Welcome to "The Diary of a Miner"; a blog detailing the adventures and mysteries that I, Syeonyx, embark upon in my quest to further my mining and survival skills! It'll be tough, there will be good times and bad times, but I'll always be alive to post my adventures... probably...

Day 86: Exploding stone!

     I spent the day with THEROS today. Mainly because I felt like trying to help out, and he might need the most help. OROTHO seemed content on working alone - more than content! - AMPHIS was happy to spend his entire time in the library, THEXIS was mainly monitoring the radio, but doing little else and COLUS was usually with OROTHO. I found THEROS on the second floor of the library in a small alcove where every table was buried beneath maps and papers! I remembered that THEROS was the cartographer, and I wanted to know how he knew so much of the area. His maps were so detailed, and from the looks of the desks, he had drawn numerous maps of different areas:

"I often go out with UOPETA as a scouting party, looking for HoN Co. activity. As I go I draw a very basic area on paper; the coastline, significant landmarks like cliffs, large trees etc. Then I come back here and add meat to the bones, so to speak. I have an eidetic memory... It means I can recall images from my surroundings with incredible accuracy. It usually helps if I'm in a quiet place, and I have a large blank area to focus on. My mind sort of projects the area I'm remembering onto the wall, and I just record it on the paper. I suppose it also helps that I was good at orienteering back in training."

I was terrible at it! Well, I wasn't terrible, but I wasn't good. I was OK at it... I looked at the maps on the desk, picking a few up and realised that a few of them were copies. Not like basic rough duplicates, but almost exact copies! THEROS explained that he could draw things to the exact scale if he had an original version present. On three separate pieces of paper, he had the same map drawn out perfectly, as though they had been scanned and printed off! If it wasn't for the paper it was drawn on, I'd swear I was seeing double! Well, triple... I found the duplicate of the map THEROS sent me, and was able to find the other section that he sent me a few weeks ago. I put them together, and realised this was the same map that UOPETA had taken with him. THEROS must have redrawn the map just for that purpose; every other map was almost the same size! Putting the maps down, I eventually asked if he needed any help. Knowing a bit more about him, I doubted he did but it turns out I was more use to him than I thought...

"Actually, yes. I do need some help... As you can see I'm not very good at keeping things tidy, and it sort of messes with my head... I've labelled the maps from 1 to 20, this one I'm doing right now. Could you order them for me? Bearing in mind that all of them have two copies labelled "a" and "b"... So like 1, 1a, and 1b, then 2, 2a and 2b and so on... Put them in those three piles and we'll see where to go from there. Thanks!"

I set to work ordering the maps, placing the single digits in a pile, separate from the a and b piles. It took much longer than expected; there were about sixty maps in total, and I just wondered how far they had adventured to get all this data!

     I finished with the map ordering, and took each pile up to AMPHIS to log and store away. He chuckled as I lumbered up the stairs, my arms full of papers, commenting that at the rate OROTHO and THEROS were going, it was likely a fourth lower floor was going to be needed! I still couldn't understand why all of these maps were needed...

"Well we need to cover as wide an area as possible. Whilst THEROS and UOPETA are out scouting the areas and plotting the maps etc., they keep the Solus stone with them. They're basically covering as much ground to look for portals. As you know the stone glows when it detects the radiation emitted from one, and that's what they looking for. That's why most of the maps are standard maps. Some of them have little purple marks on them; that's where a portal has been found and destroyed. Seventeen in total I think... Not counting the ones you destroyed..."

That made it about twenty six then... Twenty six portals, and HoN Co. was still a threat! I asked how many portals were needed and AMPHIS shrugged. He explained that as long as we destroyed the portals as we found them, it wasn't a problem.

"If you make another trip to the master portal, you might be able to gain some more valuable information concerning that. But even then there's no way for us to know how many are currently active... I suppose, the master portal isn't active, so that's a plus for the moment..."

I'm a little nervous now; how did they know when to stop? Could they stop? Or was this a constant thing? Did they have to keep recruiting new miners to take their place? I hope not! Then again, I couldn't see me ever settling down into a stable routine ever again...

     THEXIS has just come into the library to find me and THEROS. Apparently UOPETA is already on his way back! I was shocked. THEXIS said that he's taken the necessary images and has a good idea of the guard's routine and patrol routes. He's not saying any more though... Suddenly, without warning, an explosion was heard from above! A fraction of a second later, AMPHIS, THEROS and THEXIS were all holding swords! I felt a little out of place, but I followed them with a mixture of keen interest and terror welling up inside me! What was that? Were we under attack? We got to the top of the library and entered the discussion room which was slowly filling with smoke... What the? OROTHO and COLUS came running from the science lab, coughing slightly. Had a Creeper blown up then...?


     A while has passed since the initial shock of the explosion! Turns out we weren't attacked at all... It was OROTHO experimenting! He had mixed crushed lapis lazuli with the blood from a deceased Creeper, which had caused the minor explosion and copious amounts of smoke! He was following up on an experiment, trying to find the link between Creepers and the apparently inert stone. Well, it turns out that lapis lazuli is a little more volatile than any of us expected! OROTHO spent most of the time sitting with his head in his hands saying "It can't be!" over and over again... He says that what occurred cannot possibly happen, due to the nature of the stone itself. It was non-reactive. Maybe there is a little more to this than we realised... Not only this, but if this is how the Creepers can explode, how is it controlled? It can't just be raw lapis lazuli powder excreted into their blood! After the smoke cleared, OROTHO found that only a small amount of the table had blown up, and promptly set to work trying to figure out the chemical composition of the stone. He believes that something that makes it up is being excreted and then triggered by the adrenaline, and not the stone itself... Despite the huge shock that everyone was put through, everyone - but OROTHO - seems to see the funny side of it! No-one was hurt, and nothing important was damaged. However there is a small amount of concern about the surface impact the explosion might have had. Hopefully no guards were near the entrance, otherwise they may have heard a rather odd sound! We're all hoping that OROTHO can make some headway with the investigation so we may not need to go back to the house to retrieve the book at all!

Syeonyx signing off

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