Logs:The Best Tomb Raiders, Part The One

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The Best Tomb Raiders, Part The One


Characters: Jacob,Ashton,Helle,Simin as ST)
Date: 2020-07-24
Summary: The Ravenstone group decide that maybe they ought to finally do something about the little undead problem in the basement...
Disclaimers:

Helle 2m A young Pre-Raphaelite red-head SL2:Posh
  Jacob                  2m  Nice suit.
  Ashton                37s  Asian man, 20's, 5'4", slender, pony-tailed
  Simin                  0s  Tall, wiry young Persian male-SL1: Hair


The plantation has settled down into a low dull roar, perhaps after the pool was finished? Because fuck its hit in LA in the summer. Hot enough that people just want to lay down and be sticky and Not Move. But people also start getting cranky, which is why one of Lambert's helpers hunts down Jacob while he just happens to have cornered Ashton and Helle in the living room, looking exasperated. The woman is older, a short, heavier set mama figure with a giant wooden spoon in her hand, "Ah damnit, there you are. You gotta do somethin' about those rats! Misser Lambert said we needed to be tellin you about it and not handlin it outselves. Something bout leavin the cellar alone? Th'hell's he talkin about?"

Jacob's currently outside with Ashton and Helle, enjoying that new pool. The deck furniture has arrived. Plants around the pool give it a lagoon kind of feel, along with the little waterfall on one side. It's a nice spot to relax during the hottest parts of the day. Jacob's also insisted on shark and alligator floaties which float along the surface of the pool.

He's lounging on a deck chair enjoying a glass of lemonade when the woman locates him, chatting with Ashton and Helle (and Simin, if he's also present). He's dressed in his usual suit, although the jacket's off, the sleeves rolled up, the top two buttons of his shirt undone. His dark, curly hair clings damply to his skin. He smirks at the woman's words, "Who told Lambert about the skeletons? I'm going to be having a talk with them." Still, he's standing up, "Well, let's check it out. I'm not having any rat droppings in my lemonade. The skeletons have probably gone back to bed, anyway, right?"

He looks towards the woman and offers a smile, "Take a break, have a glass of lemonade."

Ashton hadn't been at the manor for long, having driven over to look over some of the older books in the library. That plan lasted only until he finds out that the pool is finally ready to use. No construction. No flooding. No other Jacob induced mishaps. "So, I overheard these guys at that little village saying something about old furnishings at an abandoned shrine, so I thought I'd take a look..." the young man's saying when the interruption occurs. He'd started telling Helle about how he ended up the way he is now, which apparently had something to do with a visit to his grandparent's birthplace in China and a treasure hunt gone wrong. The arrival of the worker cuts him right off mid-statement. "Wait, there's rat droppings in the food?!" Ashton exclaims and pulls himself dripping out of the swimming pool to confront Jacob. "You didn't tell me that!"]

Helle has been feasting upon her last smuggled bag of pickled onion crisps, a decidedly non posh snack that she eats like it's caviar on a French toast pointe. She's wearing a not remotely whorish swim costume, tastefully black, just enough flesh showing at the cut out sides that if her haughty father were there, rather than murdered, he might demand she cover up. Also an open kimono hemmed up, and an enormous sun hat on. Probably a two inch layer of sunscreen as well. As usual she's sketching, likely whatever Ashton's been describing.

"Rats? oh lovely," she deadpans, still not wholly content with Jacob's choice of abode, state, or country. "Skeletons, rats, Mothra-sized Mosquitos. Well at least our parents aren't here."

Convinced she has Summoned The Lord Of The House, Marie waddles her way back to the kitchen, brandishing her spoon like the weapon it is, "Ah aint seen no rat droppings in the food. Dont be /NASTY/ now. But I see another ona them little bastards by the cellar, Imma gonna come unglued!" Which might be a messy proposition, indeed. she doesn't really wait to see if she's being followed - she knows they can hear her and she's not being subtle, her voice spiking up as she apparently finds another offender once she gets back into the kitchen, "GOD damnit little furry demon!" *WHACK*WHACK*WHACK* "GET OUT!"

"Or don't have some lemonade," Jacob chuckles as Marie heads back towards the kitchen, brandishing her spoon. His expression is amused. He turns towards the other two. "Well, let's go have a look. Unless you'd like some more time to play with the alligators, Ashie?" He flashes a grin, the tips of his fangs showing. At least to Ashton. To Helle, he looks fairly normal. He doesn't respond to the rat droppings comment - Marie already got that one covered.

To Helle, he grins, "It's exciting, isn't it?" Unlike Helle, he loves being in America. In the South. In New Orleans. The land of mystery and magic, which is right up his alley, being Autumn and all. Albeit perhaps a slightly atypical Autumn. "Perhaps I should grab my crossbow and see if I can hit a couple of them." Also, he just had it polished and wants to show it off. "You guys want to come?" He's already refilling his glass of lemonade and heading off to grab up his crossbow (a bit excessive for rats but that's Fairest for you), and heading to the kitchen.

Ashton makes a face. "Ewww... Ok, the rats do have to go, or I might have to boycott this place." He runs his fingers through his ponytail to comb out as much of the water in them as possible. The other Lost would be able to see the dark gray strands of mist that serves as Ashton's hair grow thinner and wispier with the removed moisture. "I'm not exactly dressed for vermin extermination..." He glances down at himself, drawing attention to the fact that he's only wearing some swimming trunks and now a pair of plain leather sandals. No weapons, no armor. He heaves out a soft sigh.

"I seen him with a gun, but never with a crossbow, so maybe we should stay out of range if he does try to shoot a rat with it..." Ashton murmurs softly to Helle as he slowly starts to follow Jacob. He also grabs a little e-Cigarette stick that's on the table next to the lemonade and slips it into a pocket in his still extremely damp swimming trunks. "Did Jake tell you what's down in the basement or you're just still aware of the rumors only?"

"You mentioned skeletons," Helle tells Ashton, as she puts her sketchbook away and gets up. "I've seen jacob with a weapon. I'm still not entirely sure he missed me on purpose," she notes, glancing at her brother with as she alludes to something between them. "I assume he did." A quick and bright smile unlike her typical ones. "This sounds like a horrendous expedition and I should go paint instead, yet here I am following. The heat has made me lose my mind." She wipes her pickle-powdered fingers on a napkin and slips her feet into a pair of black ballet slippers to follow.

Its not like there's urgency - the kitchen isnt getting INVADED. Its just hit a couple of weeks and the staff are getting tired of the furry bastards. So when Jacob or Helle or Ashton, WHOEVER happens to be the first one that shows up in the kitchen, Marie waggles her spoon at the freezer that's been blocking the cellar door, showing the dead rat sprawled on the floor in front of it, where it's little furry head has clearly been stomped. Ooo, that had to have hurt, "They's come out from downstairs! Messir Lambert said he dunno what goin on but Messir Simin said no touchin the cellar! So you go on then!"

Jacob lifts an eyebrow at Ashton's words. "If I remember correctly, /I/ hit my target. Rather than an innocent goat." And innocent, tasty goat. "Go put your pants on if you want." He has to grab his crossbow, anyway, which is in the other room, but loosely on the way to the kitchen. It's not an emergency, after all, but it's something to /do/. Jacob gets bored easily, after all. And, well, they might as well peek in on the skeletons.

To Helle, he says, "Ask him about the door he opened and then couldn't close." He smirks, winks, then heads out to grab his bow and a heavy maglite flashlight. He then heads into the kitchen, assumine alongside the other two. He nods at Marie, "Mmm, yes. I'm going to have to ask everyone to leave for just a moment. Unless you want us finding a nest and having them scurry up your legs." He smiles a at that, a bit ferally. Dozens of them, swarming around you." His Autumn slips out a little bit there for a moment.

Ashton turns to grin wide at Helle. "Hey, I did say something about skeletons to you, didn't I?! Completely forgot about that. Don't worry, maybe it's just rats and no creepy undead monstrosities this time around. This won't blow up in our faces at all." His eyes glance around shiftily while they pad into the kitchen. "But if we end up going down into the cellar..." He immediately amends is words, after hearing Marie's complains (and grimacing at the dead rat). "Since we -are- going down there, you should stay behind Jake and me just in case. Or stay up here with the angry helper. Better safe than sorry, unless you're secretly a Black Widow in disguise." Ashton pauses for a second. "Which would be -awesome-."

Of course, Jacob just has to bring up the goat incident. And the door incident. Ashton snorts loudly and reaches out to slap his friend on the shoulder. "Hey, circumstances! I'll go grab those pants and be right back." Ashton jogs out of the kitchen, heading for the guest bedroom he usually stays and where he left his street clothes. It's not full adventuring gear, but having on jeans, t-shirt and some athletic shoes is an improvement.

"UGhr." Helle's exclamation at the sight of the decimated rat is as full of disgust as any teenaged girl could muster, and she gives the complaining servant a rather stern look. "What did I say about /smashing/ home invaders. I don't want to wonder what guts have been smeared around the house when I'm trying to relax."

She turns back to Ashton, and says with just enough restrained amusement to prevent offense, "Oh you're going to protect me?" It's the latent feminist in her more than a disbelief in Ashton's heroic prowess that adds the mirth to her voice. Maybe just a touch of ire at Jacob's relative maturity and experience, as well, considering SHE was born first.

Marie waggles her spoon and twirls it around at the other two cooks present, "Out! You all get ta work!" She actually does a decent job of getting the help out of the kitchen...and out to the pool! leaving the three in the kitchen by themselves with the dead rat and the freezer slowly humming away.

It IS a pretty heavy thing, needing all three of them to work together to get it pushed back out of the way (the entire point of moving it there in the first place being that it would take more than one person to move it). Once it IS finally out of the way, the cellar door doesn't suddenly get shoved open. No one is beating it down. In fact, it seems kinda quiet.

Jacob smirks at Ashton's words, glancing over at Helle to see how she takes being told to stay behind them. He seems amused at the little interaction. He offers the flashlight to Helle and says, "I'll need two hands for the crossbow. Also, that thing doubles as a deadly weapon." Maglites are great. He glances at Ashton, "You have a whole arsenal of weapons, so if you didn't actually bring one, that's on you." He winks at the man.

The three of them manage to get the freezer out of the way and Jacob listens at the door. After a moment, he shrugs and grins, "Sounds like they went back to sleep. Let's go find us some rats." With that, he's opening the door and peeking down. Then, motioning for the others to follow, he starts down the stairs, eyes on the lookout for rats or skeletons.

"I suggest that you hire a big, burly guy that can move something this heavy while I stand back and admire the view next time, Jake," Ashton comments after the refrigerator is no longer blocking the door to the cellar. He steps back and scrubs at his forehead with the back of a hand. The rest of him may be dry now that he's in street clothing instead of swimming gear, but the work left a slight dampness on his face. "I don't have my heavy weaponry with me, but I'm always best with a light sword and some throwing knives anyway." He pats the pommel of the jian on his back and the right leg of his jeans, where a hidden pocket probably resides. "Not that it'll work too well against animated bones. I'll have to pull something out for that." For now, Ashton draws his sword and follows in Jacob's footsteps.

Helle would probably be more help moving the freezer if she were sitting on top of it and giving instructions. "What went back to sleep...the skeletons?" Helle believes in the skeletons in theory. Now, of course, being Jacob's sister she has witnessed quite a few unusual things. Hell, she IS an unusual thing. But the skeletons only theoretically exist. Because that's really a bizarre thing, isn't it? Anyway, pushing or standing there, the two men will notice no help coming from Helle when it comes to muscle.

"I want a gun," she says, acting like the maglight is impossible to lift.

The door opens with a little effort - after all, it WAS wedged closed for better part of two weeks in the humid NOLA heat. That does numbers on wooden doorframes. So there's some creaking and groaning and finally a crunch of the door popping open, revealing the yawning darkness of the steps down to the door floor below and the initial, original plantation basement. The room with the Door Ashton Could Not Close. The Door that Is Still Open. At least there doesn't seem to be any skeletons out here, though there are a couple of those cute little lizards that Prism snagged one of, flicking their tongues in the dark before fleeing at high speed into the black.

"You'd better be talking about..." Jacob pauses. He's not sure which is worse - Ashton viewing him as the view, or Helle. "How about next time you just close the door so we don't have to move the freezer, hmm?" His tone is teasing, with just a hint of friendly challenge. As Ashton points out his weapons, Jacob chuckles, "Mmmhmmm." When Helle mentions wanting a gun, he nods, "I should pick up a couple, really. I'll do that this afternoon." He'll just go and acquire some guns as if he's going to pick up some milk. Then again, with his contacts, it's probably about that easy.

Once the door is opened - the process of which causes Jacob to actually curse a bit - he starts down. There's the cellar proper with it's old, empty casks and wine racks. Then the room beyond with the door. The open door. "Hmm. Looks like they went back to sleep. Whatever anybody does, please don't try to /steal/ from the dead people. They don't like that." He smirks a bit at the moment. "Now, let's find some rats. Then maybe check on the skeletons." He begins searching the room with the door first, looking for signs of rats. "Ashton, you figured out how to open that door. Can't you use the same trick to close it, too? After we take a peek, of course."

"Uhhh... I have a gun. Just not with me. It might be in my car... Or might not! I'm not the best at shooting one," Ashton admits to Helle and gives Jacob the side-eye as if daring his friend to criticize him again. Because if Jacob does, he can totally... do nothing about it. He starts down the stairs after Jacob, simply assuming that Helle would take the rear position as suggested, despite her amusement when it first came up.

"Don't jinx us, Jake," Ashton murmurs under his breath. He removes the e-Cigarette from his pocket with his free hand and takes a puff from it while holding his sword at ready with the other one. No hands on banisters needed! "So, I've been thinking about it and I can probably get it shut this time. If no fucking skeletons are chasing us down this time. The extra pressure didn't help. You sure you don't want me to take point, Jake?"

"So..." Helle was thinking Ashton would go get the gun he said he had. SHE was serious. But he starts off after Jacob and she frowns. It doesn't /matter/ that she's never held a handgun, the things being virtually unheard of back home. She's held a rifle. It's the /same thing/. Metal tube go bang bang. She sighs and follows.

"Are these skeletons French?" she asks, still only half believing in them. "I'll tell them to go to hell." She turns on the flashlight, sneezes, and descends.

For the time being, the open doorway just yaaaaaawns at them, inky blackness that swallows up the maglight beam when Helle shines it down that way. In fact, careful observers will note how the walls and floor have been chewed up a bit from the previous use of thorns and from scrabbling skeletons at the time. Which, you know, makes one wonder what happened to them.

At first it might look like there's no sign of life or unlife at all, but a few minutes of Helle shining the light down the hallway finally catches pale white sticking up from the ground. A leg bone? That's almost all the way down to the offending room that caused all the problems before. Its not moving, though?

Jacob lifts an eyebrow at Ashton. "You really /should/ know where your guns are. Otherwise someone else could just pick them up and shoot you with them. It's happened before, you know." He doesn't bring up Ashton shooting a goat again, thankfully for Ashton, but the e-cig does get a bit of an odd look. He just shakes his head, "Alright. On the way back, we'll lock it up. Assuming no one wakes them up again."

At Helle's question, he looks towards her and smirks. "I can't say we had a chance to ask them. I'd say it's a good bet they're either French or Spanish, though. Americans don't make a habit of building catacombs. Especially in a swamp." Which is what New Orleans is, really. He pulls out his phone, adding the flashlight to the light of the maglite as they look around. It's pretty dark, but Jacob takes note of the walls. No actual rats, though, not yet. He turns towards the door, peering down. "Oh, hmm. Looks like they left a couple pieces behind." He nods towards the bone. Ignoring Ashton's offer to take point, he heads towards the bone, using the tip of his crossbow to poke at it and determine if it's a lose bone or attached to anything else.

Ashton glances around suspiciously with narrowed eyes. His gaze goes right to the glint of white down the tunnel beyond the open stone door to the catacombs. "Hey, nothing's trying to kill us immediately, so this is a good sign..." he says tentatively. "You want one of my throwing knives, Helle? It's not a gun, could still come in handy. Not against undead skeletons, since they don't have any organs, but maybe if there's giant killer rats down here too."

Seeing Jacob step right up to the piece of human bone makes Ashton sigh, but he doesn't try to offer being point man again. Instead, he says for everyone's benefit, "I'm going to put up something to protect myself, since I have only a t-shirt on. Don't try to touch me afterwards, since it'll be unpleasant." After giving the warning, Ashton takes another puff from his e-Cigarette before stuff it back into his pocket. He holds the vapor in his lungs for a second. When he finally blows it out, the misty white substance comes out in a steady stream. More and more and more. A volume much greater than what came from the little device spills from Ashton's lips until he's surrounded by a cloud of swirling fog, which slowly starts spinning and whipping around him in a sphere of misty wind.

Helle stares at Ashton for a moment. That seems unfair of him. It's bad enough jacob can do all sorts of magical things and she can't. Now it's /everyone/ around her. She sighs slightly and beams the light around, letting Jacob use whatever magic eyesight he has to see.

The sight of bone doesn't make her squeal. She is from a land of mouldering castles and graves and history. A land where people have stacks of bones in their basements sometimes. A house that had its own chapel and graveyard full of antique humans.

She moves down, and approaches her brother, curious about the bone. "I thought the earth was too soft for this sort of subterranean chamber," she notes. "Didn't that storm wash up a lot of graves? This isn't good English study bog, you know." She stamps the earth with her delicate ballerina shoe.

With the way the basement has been constructed, the stone blocks in the foundational walls, enterprising rats will be able to find cracks and crevices that mean there is PROBABLY and absolutely skin-crawling level of rat burrows in the dirt on the other side of the stone walls. But perhaps fortunately, the little team doesn't need to dwell on that right now.

When Jacob approaches the bone, it becomes more apparent its not just a leg bone, its a partially buried skeleton, pushed into the dirt where Simin's briarthorn's must have violently pinned it in place at the time. Well, it's not moving, right? Sightless eyes stare up at the cieling, looking for all the world like it's just waiting to get back up any moment. Beyond that space, the room that caused all the trouble opens up, showing burial alcoves lining the space, and at least three other passageways trailing off in the cardinal directions, reaching even further underground. A couple of the undead definitely are not in the same positions they were in before - in fact there are two slumped on the ground in front of the alcove of the one that had grabbed Prism's hand, like they just suddenly decided to go back to sleep, right there. Shhhhh.

Jacob gives a soft grunt at Ashton's 'nothing is trying to kill us' comment. "Yet." He flashes a fanged grin at Ashton, then focuses on the bone. Ashton's mention of protection gets a wave of acknowledgement. Jacob isn't casting anything, himself, at the moment. Most of his powers require preparation, or are used for things like breaking and entering. Not much help here. No, he has to rely on his crossbow. Which also isn't much help against skeletons.

He nods to Helle's words, "Something like that. I know it's not common practice. It likely floods, which is probably what drives the rats up higher. I doubt the skeletons care, though." He examines the skeleton, then looks past the door at some of the other skeletons in their different positions. "Looks like they got tired. You think we should put them back to bed? I only seems right, since we're the ones that woke them up." He wants to poke the bees hive, apparently.

.oO( Ashton rolls 6 Dice )Oo................................................o.

 Roll: Presence + Survival + Wyrd
 Result: Success (1) -- (6 6 9 1 3 2)

.o...................................................oO( success (public) )Oo.


Ashton nods his head up and down at Helle. "Yeah, there's definitely something fishy going on here. This entire place isn't completely normal, as evident by the murder skeletons that tried to bone us last time." The winds surrounding him condenses closer to his skin, reducing the likelihood of accidentally brushing against them, when he steps forward to stare at the positioning of the skeletons, both the one buried in the ground and the ones slumped in front of the alcove within the altar room. "Aaaand... this is a little creepy." The way that Ashton utters the statement makes it sound like creepy is the equivalent of exciting.

"It's not a bad idea to stick them back where they belong instead of having them lie around like this. The only problem is that we don't know if they'll wake up when we touch them." Ashton glances down the other two tunnels before drawing back to the small group. "No rats and a sword's not great against these things if they do wake up. I'm going to switch weapons." He slams his jian back into its sheath and takes out the e-Cigarette again. When he puffs out the vapor this time, it exits in the form of a smoke ring from his mouth and he quickly makes a tugging motion with his fingers before the ring gets degraded by his wind armor. The vapor curls around his fingers, follow the motions of his hands clapping together and apart, and elongates into a bo staff made of semi-solidified air.

Helle leans close, peering at the skull, though she doesn't seem to bother using the flashlight to do so, or really seem to point the flashlight in anything but an erratic and careless way that wouldn't assist anyone in seeing anything. "Parlez-vous Francais?" she asks it, volume elevated. Still only believing in animated skeletons in theory. "Has the tomb been raided? Did early creoles inter themselves with gold and bourbon?" She seems a little flippant about the whole thing. "They're all scattered about. As if..." She trails off. Well, she HAS been told they were...moving and stuff.

Curious, she moves a little deeper down into the chamber.

The skeletons COULD start moving again. Hard to tell without risking touching them. While Ashton changes out his choice of weapons, Jacob at least has a few minutes to study the inscriptions they didnt have time to really read before things went tits up last time, the latin neatly chiseled into the stone with the effort of a stonemason - whatever they were, these catacombs were someone's official, formal burial ground.

Helle might be able to offer a little additional context - the skeleton she leans over doesn't speak to her, but it does have a smalll motif on the wall behind it, apparently some sort of commemoration of it's burial, that proclaims in French 'Rest now, my dear' and '1761'. The skeleton itself couldnt be of someone more than a young child. Or maybe a very very short person. But probably a child.

"Mmm. It is a problem, isn't it." Yet he doesn't seem overly concerned about it. After all, even if they do, they escaped once before. And the freezer's ready to be moved right back into place. Although, that still leaves the rat problem. He contemplates this dilema as he studies the Latin etchings and Ashton does his Faerie magic. "It looks like it's some sort of formal burial ground. Definitely either French or Spanish, because Americans don't really do formal anything." He smirks a little bit at that. He might love the novelty of New Orleans, but he's still a Brit at heart.

"Well, how about this? Let's take a look around, see if we can't find any major rat sized openings we could possibly close up," his tone indicates he doubts it'll help, "and then Ashton, you get ready to close the gate. I'll try moving a skeleton. If we have to run, you can close the gate up real quick. Plan? But first, let's look around." He steps past the door, walking between a few of the skeletons, and begins looking around with the beam of his phone flashlight. He goes ahead and straps the crossbow to his back for the time being - it's likely not going to be any help anyway.

"I can get behind that plan. Leave the potentially dangerous stuff at the very end, after we finish doing what we have to do. Closing that door might also help with the rat problem too, assuming you don't have hundreds of burrows elsewhere in the house already," Ashton agrees readily. The comment about Americans gets an eye roll, yet his expression is that of amusement than irritation. He glances curiously at Helle while he stand guard by her, since she's the one that he'd identified as the most vulnerable. "Huh... can you actually talk to dead things and have them answer? That'd be a pretty neat ability to have right now."

"It's French," Helle says, and shines her flashlight from a distance at the inscription she saw. "18th century, the French had the territory then didn't they? 1761 seems like the last they had it until a few years later. There was a war with the Spanish or...something." She trails off in a way that suggests American history disinterested her and it was only by accident that she retained that much. She keeps going deeper into the chamber, morbid curiosity. The way she keeps looking up suggests she might be trying to figure out where her room is in relation to the crypt.

.oO( Jacob rolls 8 Dice )Oo.................................................o.

 Roll: Intelligence + Occult
 Result: Success (2) -- (5 8 5 7 1 7 10 3 6)

.o...................................................oO( success (public) )Oo.

.oO( Ashton rolls 8 Dice )Oo................................................o.

 Roll: Perception + Wyrd
 Result: Success (4) -- (9 1 9 6 1 4 7 10 8)

.o...................................................oO( success (public) )Oo.

Indeed, for anyone that starts checkint dates, it seems more like Bad Things stopped happening around 1762 - at least that's when the last death is recorded, so maybe there just wasnt anyone left to care after that year? Who knows. Roughly speaking, there are about 9-10 alcoves in this room, say 2 per space between each cardinal directly, so 8 total. All of them have bodies in them, or well, all of them DID have bodies in them. Right now, four of those bodies are out in various piles of disarray where they stopped moving when last the team came through

Jacob nods as Ashton agrees with his plan. "Mmm. I might have to call out someone to take care of the rats. But we might as well try and appease Marie so she doesn't hit us with a spoon." At the question of whether or not Helle speaks to the dead, he lifts an eyebrow, glancing over at his sister with an amused smirk before returning to his own examination of the room.

"French, hmmm? And yes, the war. The Spanish and French fighting over the territory, as they are prone to do." Not like England fought over any of the territory or anything. Ahem. "The inscriptions, though. They lead me to believe is was the Roman Catholics who built that place. That would make me inclined to believe it was the Spanish. They're a bit insane like that. A couple of the pieces of jewelry, too, look Spanish. Not all of them, though." He looks back at Helle, thoughtful. He might never have been to actual /school/, but the man's smart. Very smart.

"So that means... it had to have been both. The Spanish built it, I'd guess, but there are French buried here as well. So, when the plantation passed back and forth, they knew about it. Up until..." He nods to the plaque with the most recent date. "1762. I wonder if that's when the door was built."

Ashton furrows his brows. "So this place is really old. Now that really lends to the theory that the tunnels aren't normal, because two hundred fifty years of existence in flood central should have degraded the shit out of them." He moves around the chamber to inspect the various alcoves without touching any of the skeletons. The bo staff remains in his hand, but it produces almost no sound when he taps it against the ground, unlike a wooden one would. On the other hand, the wind swirling around him produces a low and constant whistling.

Ashton peers at the alcove with the two skeletons slumped in front of it. His eyes run over the white bones and the gold ornament that Prism tried to snatch last time. "Huh... hey, guys. Don't touch, but that object on the skeleton's chest looks familiar now that I'm seeing it without the trappings of mortal danger. It's similar to some of relics that I've studied in the past. The only thing is... Those patterns etched into the gold isn't European at all like the rest of the pieces. It's Central American folk magic, maybe Incan. That had to have come from outside this area. Wonder if it had anything to do with whatever happened leading up to 1762."

"Not yet," Helle answered Ashton before she went for a walk around the crypt. "The French are rabid Catholics as well," Helle reminds Jacob. "Perhaps not in the same way?" She shrugs a little. "When people are Catholic, they tend to be rather assertive about it," she adds, screwing up her nose a little. Jacob, of course, will be reminded she was forced to attend Catholic boarding school. "No one loves the pope quite like the Irish though." And the slight scoffing noise she makes suggests the nuns failed to get through to her. "What do the French have to do with Incan anything?" Helle queries from a short distance away as she carefully tries to extract herself from a spiderweb.

Indeed, the area doesnt bear the signs of periodic water damage - so either its been shored up asnd doesn't flood, or it drains REALLY well and the bodies dont float. Either way, last time the group didnt have any time to explore any of the other passages leading off, so Simin's maps pretty much end right here. With Helle's maglight and Jacob's camera flashlight, they can at least tell that the passageways continue on for at least another 20 feet in each direction - man, there are some TUNNELS down here. They must run the entire length and breadth of the grounds. Which means there could be an entire network of undiscovered chaos down here. Doesn't Jacob feel happy about that??

As Ashton points out the amulet, Jacob moves over to examine it thoughtfully. "Interesting." He grows contemplative for a moment, then glances at Helle and chuckles. "Perhaps. I'm still leaning towards there being /both/ Spanish and French buried here. Which is off in itself, but," he motions to the relic, "So is Incan."

As they explore a little more and the tunnels are revealed, Jacob considers that. "I wonder how far those tunnels go. If they go as far as they look like... there might be other entrances. There's one way to find out." He gets a rather wicked look on his face. "Ashton, go get ready to close the door. Unless you want to start exploring tunnels in the dark."

Ashton grins in amusement at Helle's "not yet", but the amusement leaves his face at Jacob's order. "Ok, what the hell are you thinking of, because I don't trust that smile of yours!" He stares at Jacob for a long second before moving to comply with the order. "Not that I'm concerned. I just want to put it on record that if anything bad happens this time, it totally wasn't my fault!" Is he acknowledging that he might have something to do with the mishap last time? Either way, Ashton's jogging back down the tunnel towards the stone door with his own wind literally following him. Some of the elemental armor peels away from his hands, so that he can start poking and prodding at the faded motifs on the door's surface. "I said there -might- be something here that allows me to close it, not that there -is-, so keep that in mind!" he calls back over his shoulder.

Helle is a little confused, but she keeps that to herself. After watching Ashton for a moment (she can't be completely blase about the weird things he's magicking) she turns and wraps her kimono around herself and ties it closed. She hadn't really taken the idea of a subterranean crypt and passages seriously. So she's not dressed for this. But it's nice and cool compared to the surface.

Indeed, the Incan did not have a damned thing to do with the French, so that being present in a crypt of French and Spanish bodies is Damned Peculiar. Of course, down here there's no real way to do any research on what the symbols mean or what its from or anything like that, its just a recollection from something someone saw that 'hey, that looks like what I saw in that book that one time'. Which, you know, could have been worse, right? Regardless, so far so good. Noone's disturbed anything so none of the undead are moving again. Yet. Though from the sounds of it, that wont be staying that way for long...

.oO( Jacob rolls 6 Dice )Oo.................................................o.

 Roll: Dexterity + Athletics
 Result: Success (1) -- (7 8 5 2 5 4)

.o...................................................oO( success (public) )Oo.

Jacob just grins at Ashton's question. "Trust me. I'll explain in a minute." You know, /after/ he's done it. It's much easier to ask for forgiveness after than it is to ask for permission, after all. Not that he really ever asks for permission about anything. As Ashton heads back to the door to work his magic and get ready, he turns towards Helle and grins. "You might want to be ready, too. They don't move terribly fast, but they outnumber us, so be ready to make a run for it." Once he's sure that she's ready, he turns back towards the skeleton.

"I'm sorry to bother you, but I'm going to have to borrow your trinket for a little while. Hope you don't mind." With that, he reaches out, grabbing the relic, and jumps back. He waits just a moment, to see if the skeletons start moving again. If they do, he starts running towards the door.

Ashton is too busy with the stone door to try to see what Jacob's doing, but he probably already suspects why. After all, his friend must be either moving the skeletons or touching something that he shouldn't if the plan is to get ready to run. "Man... one of these days, I should get to do the planning..." he complains softly to himself. Both of his hands are still roaming over the stone, which means his staff made of semi-solidified air is left on the ground for now. The mantle of wind around his form is also now contracted to fit snuggly against his torso, but bits of dust still flies every time the edges scrape against the door.

"Where was that switch last time...? Here, but nothing's there now. Ok, what if I check this location? Must be a way to close this damn thing..." Nimble fingers brush against a battered angel wing, across a featureless face and under the blunted curve of a time-worn arm. "Hey, Jake! Not sure there's anything to shut the door after all! I'm not finding..." And surprise appears on his face a second later. Someone with the right abilities might notice a thread of Glamour tighten around the object and that Ashton's expression is faked, but that's how Loopholes work. You act the part and you get your result. "Aha!" His finger sinks deeper into a depression and a loud click sounds. When Ashton tries to swing the heavy door, it moves readily, as if it's now on rollers. "Got it!"

"What?" Helle is still confused, but it's easy to figure out, so she retreats with some regret towards the door and Ashton. She always liked to explore dark and creepy places. It's a wonder Jacob's the one the Gentry caught. Then again maybe they don't use creepy overgrown woodland paths to lure children.

"Stealing from the dead in the crypt below our bedrooms seems like a splendid idea, brother. It's no wonder mummy loved you best." She gets ready to run.

For just a moment, Jacob might have second thoughts. Did this not work? The bodies aren't moving. And then there's a stirring of dust, and an unnatural cracking and snapping of 200 year old joints demanding they move again. Somewhere an agonized spirit is screaming in pain as it is compelled to move to retrieve the Precious that Jacob has taken. With a crash of effort, the skeleton that the pendant was resting on falls out of it's alcove, and like something truly out of a horror movie, slowly reassembles itself up to its feel height, glaring at Jacob with sightless eyes, and *HISSES* at the Helldiver. The two skeletons that had been piled together awkwardly disentangle themselves and claw to a standing position, crawling to their feet. Whups.

Probably a REALLY GOOD IDEA that Ashton found his switch when he did. Cause Indiana Jones just started the damned ball rolling down the corridor. Lets hope Helle and Jacob run fast.

Jacob has faith in Ashton. Nothing like a little pressure as incentive, after all. And so when he's fairly certain Ashton's at the door, and ready to close the gate, he snags that relic and he runs. And it's probably things like this that caused him to be taken - the lack of fear (something he joined Autumn Court to learn to feel), the impetuousness, the lack of reguard for cause and effect. And the Fae do love tempting with creepy overgrown pathways. Helle must have just gotten lucky.

Right now, though, Jacob focuses on running. Through the door and then he's saying, "Shut it, shut it, they're awake again!" Of course, after Helle is out as well. Once the door's shut, he grins at the two of them, holding up the relic. "Ok, now we can study it." He holds it out to Ashton. "You're the relic expert. I'm going to patrol the grounds, see if I can find anywhere there might be another entrance." He looks towards Helle, "You want to help me, or help Ashton, or, we ought to do some research into the history of the plantation, too, and what was going on in 1762."

"You're crazy, you know that!" Ashton shouts at Jacob when he sees skeletons chasing after his friend and Helle. Despite the accusation, there's a glint of avarice in the young man's eyes when he spies the potentially Incan relic in the other Lost's grip. What Jacob's doing is anything that he haven't done dozens of times, though alone and without living witnesses. "Ok, go, go, go! I'm going to shut this damn door!" he exclaims as soon as he's sure that Helle's also through. Both the mantle of magical wind and the staff on the floor disappears with a pop of displaced air as Ashton shoves his shoulder against the door and pushes. The extremely heavy object, which must weigh at least several hundred pounds, if not over a thousand, glides across the floor on rollers temporarily conjured into existence to slam shut with a click.

Helle didn't scream, but she gasped. It's one thing to know something can happen, in theory. It';s another to witness it. And while Helle has witnessed and been a part of some horrifying things, the sheer bizarreness of seeing skeletons rise and HISS does a bit to unnerve her. Almost as much as seeing her brazen brother turn and run unnerves her. THAT makes her bolt. She's fast too. Whips right out of there like a dust devil, her own kind of magical wind.

Which is probably good fof both of them the ground isnt broken up and uneven, or this could become troublesome quickly. As it stands, there at least isnt that far to run maybe a good 20-25 feet down the hallway and past Ashton's door as he pulls it closed, the stone hitting hte frame heavily enough the three FEEL the impact of stone on stone as the door closes itself. The dust settles, stiirring up a small cloud as things slowly become quiet again - there COULD be activity on the other side of that closed door, or their might not. Its just too thick to allow sound to really carry through...

Jacob just grins when Ashton calls him crazy. Of course he is - he's a Changeling. And a rather powerful one, as far as the Wyrd goes. He's definitely not sane. Once the door is shut and the relic handed over, his brushes the dust off his suit absently. "Well, then, let's get started. Let me know if you find anything out about the relic. I'm quite curious. In the meantime, I'll look for any doors or entrances, and perhaps do a little more studying /this/ door. Perhaps we can find out how to open it without using your little trick."

He turns towards Helle and grins, "See? New Orleans is fantastic." He obviously had fun. "Oh, And I need to call pest control." Since they didn't actually find any rats.

Ashton takes the offered pendant from Jacob and holds it in both hands to inspect in the dim lighting. "Wonder if this thing is cursed. A lot of the stuff that gets stolen from the native tribes end up cursed, unless the original characteristics of the relic is incompatible with curses. Maybe if I put it on... Nah. Touching it is risky enough until I find out its purpose." He hefts the golden object a few times before closing his finger securely around it. "I've got some work to do!" he proclaims, like that's the best thing ever. Before he forgets, the young man pivots to grin widely at Helle. "See? Living, breathing... OK, -not- breathing skeletons."