@Saren of the Dark Path Elenora almost fell to her knees in relief when she came upon the overgrown entrance to the crypt. Putting her shoulder against the cover-stone, she cringed as it squeaked against the stone behind it. the dense forest was full of noises of animals, wind in the leaves, water, and they mysterious sounds that always filled a forest, but Elenora's ears were tuned for the sound of heavy boots; although she hadn't seen any patrols for days as she trekked these last two weeks through the forest, searching under every brush and boulder. Absolute silence was necessary; she couldn't afford to be thwarted. Maybe, once she'd found the weapon, she'd have some time, and she could sing an ode to the end of the world. She bit her lip to stifle a gasp as she felt cobwebs in her hair, ducking into the crypt. Gritting her teeth, she began pulling the entrance shut behind her. Her undershirt and sleeveless tunic were already as filthy as her boots, which were caked with mud, leaves, and bits of moldy plant up to her knees, worse things up to her thigh. The only water she'd encountered in this forest had been in the swamp, and there wasn't enough coin in the world to get her into that water willingly. As to her hair, tied up in multiple long black braids, she was fairly sure it was stuck in its current slapdash style as if it had been painted in paste. Chunks of damp earth fell down past her ear and onto her shoulder when the stone slammed back into its groove in the ground, and all she could think was that she'd do murder for a futile bucket of clear water. Having closed the crypt, she pressed her back against the cover-stone, and quieted her breathing, listening in the dark. She'd effectively blocked out the light, and when, fifty heartbeats later, there was still no sound, she relaxed, placing her palm against the edge of the cover-stone, she drew it back slowly, murmuring a simple incantation as she drew her hand back, a small portion of daylight hovering above it, giving off about as much light as a candle. The entrance to what had once been a crypt to stand undisturbed until the end of time had performed its purpose admirably, and had decomposed into what anyone would take for a common cave. The earth was damp, as were the walls of the cave; it felt humid. There was water somewhere. Following the cave, she found a dead end a short way off, and turned her attention to the ground, digging in the earth with her foot until she found a second cover-stone. This one was buried in the earth, but thankfully the earth was mostly soil and clay, and she could dig it out with her hands; there was already a healthy portion of dirt under her nails anyway. Depending on how far this went down, she thought, futilely wiping her hands on her legs as she pulled the flat stone up and over, she might have to go back into the woods and retrieve her pack; this would be a good place to hole up, rather than going and returning every day until she found The Weapon. A chill passed through her spine as the word crossed her mind. The Weapon; the one that was never to be used, except when there was nothing else to do. The silence as she scrabbled for a rock to drop into the space only pounded the gravity of the situation into her bones. She had no idea what she was looking for, only that it was powerful enough to stamp out the forces stomping the world under their boots, and everyone else along with them. It was a strange feeling, being the one who had to be surer than anyone else that there was nothing left to do; the one who had to strike the killing blow. She wondered if there would be a bang, a pulse, a shockwave. She had a nightmare last week that the weapon possessed her, turning her into a demon who rampaged across the earth, accomplishing the necessary task with her own bloodied hands. She lowered herself into the space, which didn't seem to be much more than a couple of meters deep, and found her new footing smooth stone; undisturbed except for the earth that had fallen during her excavation. She scraped and scuffled her way through three more doors and trap-doors, two of them still very well-hidden, before she found herself in an open room; the daylight in her hand was turning orange and waning; the sun was probably going down outside. She shuffled forward, wary of traps as she eyed a long, dry-rotted wood box on the table at the end of the room.