Deluge charged through the narrow corridors of the arenas cells beating every guard that happened upon the thrasher's path. The cacophony of the fish's mad dash echoed throughout the winding halls. Two large sentinels blocked Deluge's access to cell housing Acuity. Having witnessed several of their comrade's limbs torn off, armor crushed to the point of impaling its occupant, and many weapons snapped like twigs the pair made a wise choice and slowly stepped to the side. A simple nod displayed gratitude as Deluge passed by the only survivors of his spree.
When the nine-foot-four mountain of muscle first attempted to enter the tiny cell a moment of idiocy struck him while trying to cram himself through the ill-proportioned opening. After stepping back and thinking for a few moments Deluge seemed to have an idea. The Titan slowly approached the bars of the cell and felt of them, gently patting them, and gazed rather intently at them. Without warning, the thrasher took hold of the bars with both hands and ripped them from their homes with next to no struggle. After a few moments, the dust had settled and Deluge made his way into the cramped chamber where the expression on the Titans face changed from anger to concern as he gazed in awe at the Valiant 's collection of wounds. Acuity's breathing was so shallow that the fish had almost not noticed it until she deeply inhaled and turned to face him.
"Could you be a little louder, I don't think all of Kiln knows were escaping yet," Joked Acuity.
Deluge shrugged in an ambivalent manner and cocked a scaly eyebrow.
"I'm guessing the plan is going well," she asked rhetorically, to which the Titan gave a nod of affirmation.
"Then shall we go, I'm sure the others are waiting," a heavy cough coated her lips in fresh blood.
Deluge projected the image of a figure walking as he gave her a worried look.
"You'll have to carry me," She said shyly.
After Deluge gathered his friend's equipment he slowly lifted the wounded woman from the stone bunk. As careful as he was there were several injuries that had to be shifted. After several long minutes, the thresher had Acuity held firmly with his left arm. Her size reminded Deluge of how he used to hold the hatching in Garrote. Deep in thought, the mighty Titan stepped out of the small room and stood erect, smashing his head into the eight-foot ceiling hard enough that both guards winced. A low growl and several vivid images of bloody death quickly silenced the two and their snickering. The large angry fish made his way back toward the arena, careful of the cargo in his arm.
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As Maxiss was escorted into the tunnel a strange sight caught his eye. Though highly damaged, Finis was clawing his way out of the rubble. The cat clawed gravel and hissed as pull himself free from beneath the ruined wall while blood gushed from his tearing flesh. The charred stones were quickly covered in a thick crimson mist as Finis pulled himself towards Maxiss spouting a string of curses that would make a guardsman gasp. Maxiss watched the cat and he felt a confident grin creep across his face and a horrible thought bubbled deep in his mind. It had been so long since the weaver had a worthy opponent, and that was the best fight he'd had in ages. A part of him hoped they would get the chance to test their might once again.
The roar of the arena quickly diminished as Maxiss followed the tunnel into the depths.
As our trio descended with the liberated miners into the caves they talked whilst tending to their various wounds. After patching up the more life threatening injuries conversation turned to a lighter tone as Maxiss and Deluge shared their stories. The weaver spoke of how Acuity and himself had fought many strong foes whilst in the arena. He over embellished everything from the strange servant to the furry psychopath leaving Acuity to correct what she could.
As Maxiss drew his tale to a close his attention was drawn to the tunnel walls. The Weaver asked his companion how the prisoners were able to get the surface so flawless and smooth. Deluge responded with an odd series of mental images. The first was a foggy yellow crystal pulsing with life. With each surge of energy earth and stone alike spasmed and swayed. With little warning the vision shifted to a small tree, rapidly growing as the sky flashed blue and black. Once the now mighty oak had reached maturity the image changed again. All color drained away as a shadow wrapped figure with a visible yellow aura came into view. The being writhed in agony as more and more of its body crystallized and fractured. Each segment of the figure’s broken body made its way outward, away from the central mass.
Maxiss rubbed his eyes as the final projection drew to a close. Deluge's mental projections were unusually draining. The staggering amount of information transferred in only a few moments overwhelmed the Weaver and left him in a trance like state for a few minutes while he gathered his thoughts. Eventually Maxiss turned to the big fish and resumed the conversation.
“First, give a guy a heads up before you try and cram that much in that fast,” Maxiss said with a smirk, “And second, are you saying that not only is the earth surrounding us alive, it was, and kind of still is, sentient.”
The mighty fish responded with but a simple nod.
“Whoa,” Acuity exclaimed, “The very earth itself is on our side.”
“Wait up you three,” called a familiar voice as it quickly approached from behind.
The trio turned to face the brothers Snoh and Ward. The brothers were making their way through the crowd as best as possible, however, thanks to Snoh’s size pressing forward was difficult. On the other hand was Ward, who was having difficulty simply seeing through the crowd. Eventually, when the brothers caught up with Maxiss and co they began to talk with the group.
“We were hoping to meet up with you after your battle, but since your group bounced early we followed you in here,” Ward explained, “We saw how you fought and thought our organization, the Gilded Ladder, could use someone like you. If you are interested we could set up a meeting with our leader Vadovas.”
Maxiss considered his options as he walked. He didn't want to put Acuity in any further danger and chance worsening her wounds. Deluge looked exhausted and wouldn't be much help if trouble did occur. Even if Maxiss could power through his own wounds he was without a viable weapon. Regardless of if these brothers were being honest or not, they were the groups best chance of survival in an unknown city. Maxiss glanced over at the young men and begrudgingly accepted the offer.
“We'll go with you,” Maxiss stated, “however we'll need some help. Once we're out of this tunnel shelter is the first priority. We need to rest and tend to wounds.”
“Not a problem,” responded Ward, “there's an old abandoned house that the Ladder uses occasionally. It's a bit of a walk, but it'll be the safest place to lay low.”
“Sounds good,” Maxiss said as he looked ahead towards the front of the tunnel, “I think that the opening is close, I can see light ahead.”
“And I think I recognize where we are,” Snoh added, “Well, I've got good news and bad news. Which do you want first?”
“All right, what's the good news?” Inquired Maxiss.
“We've only got a few miles to go till the safe house,” answered Snoh.
“And the bad news,” Maxiss asked.
“If I'm right, we have to make it past two security checkpoints,” Snoh explained.