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 105: New toys

     Amie has given UOPETA the all clear; he's not totally healed, but she's allowing him to move around without the sling, and COLUS says he ready to be brought back into the operation. Obviously he's elated, in a reserved way, and eager to get out there. I think we all are. This time, as UOPETA missed the last few portal sites, I briefed him in what we had achieved so far, and showed him the map. I didn't know where to from there there; we had two options and both seemed equally plausible to me, but maybe it was better to ask the advice of someone who knew what they were doing. We had the option to either head East towards following the curve of the sites, heading back to the West, and then coming back on ourselves to the base. Or alternatively, we could do it to the other way around, heading back to base from the North. After much discussion, we ended up agreeing that going to the East first, and following the path would be better than heading West. We could use the coast to guide us back during the dark, and it was likely to be easier to see around that area during the night. We hoped to make use of the telescope that OROTHO had made yesterday. We visited him before setting off. Just as he had promised, he had made a small, camera attachment which allowed me to take images of things at a distance which could prove very useful.

"It clips into place, but you need to support the camera and the telescope together. Think of it as a less stable added lens... Press the same clip in to detach it from the camera. Try not to be rough with it; it's a very fragile piece of equipment. A single sudden knock could through the lenses out of orientation, and render it useless!"

We promised to be careful with our "new toy" and set off to the East. I was eager to test this thing out with the camera, but I suppose with UOPETA being the scout, he had main priority over it.

     The good thing about the operation we were implementing now was that all of the portals were very close together, so if we needed to rest more frequently because of UOPETA's arm, we could do so in ease! As if nothing had happened, as though no time had passed, UOPETA immediately took the authoritative stance again, and began leading us to the East, to the first portal site! It was good to be back as a full group, and UOPETA didn't seem to be flagging at all despite the injury. He had recovered very quickly, but that was probably his stubborn nature for you. Defiant in defeat! It wasn't long before we actually moved up to the site; I was already looking around for holes that lead underground as I had a feeling, but I couldn't see anything. Looking from the map, the site was more or less centred around a pool of water, which we began to approach very quickly. I couldn't see anything, but now that there were three of us, we could search a wider area, faster. After a few minutes of combing the area, we could find nothing, and met again at the pool. THEROS took out the Solus stone, and held it in the palm of his hand...

"Nope... It's not glowing, so if there is one nearby, it's not active... We better move onto the next one to avoid wasting time..."

We all agreed, and THEROS circled the location on the map. We continued heading in the direction we had been heading in from before, towards the coast, hoping to find something. UOPETA seemed to think that that location might be a good area to use the telescope... I couldn't see how...

     Up ahead, the vast body of water grew closer and closer, and the number of trees decreased. We were getting close to the location, but so far we couldn't see much. There was an open beach where the main site was located on the map, but there was no visible portal, nor was there a set of rough stairs or a hole leading down. We looked around for some time, trying to find the portal, but we couldn't find anything. THEROS took the stone out again, but this time it was actually glowing!

"There's definitely a portal around here somewhere!"

"Okay, spread out and search a wider area!"

I headed off to the East a little, whilst UOPETA followed the beach, and THEROS walked in circles to try and determine the location from the intensity of the glow, but getting nowhere! As I progressed along, I eventually became aware of an odd dripping sound... I had definitely heard that before, and moved in the direction it was coming from. With each step, the sound grew louder; it sounded like water dripping from a high ceiling cavern... But with no caverns around, it could be only one thing. After coming around from a natural corner create by a sand dune, I saw the portal to my left and turned to face it. I called the others over, THEROS still holding the stone outstretched.

     THEROS retrieved the slightly yellow, translucent stone from the floor. Putting it back into his bag, he then took out the map and crossed off this location...

"Erm... Right! The next one is due East... Still along the coast..."

"The coast...? Well we should be able to see it from here then!"

UOPETA turned around and faced East. Cupping his hands over his eyes, he tried to shield the glare to see further. After awhile he shrugged and moved up to the hill slightly. We followed him, and eventually found him beneath a tree, the telescope to his right eye.

"AHA! Found it! This thing is really useful! I guess OROTHO's not just a mad fool after all! Here."

UOPETA passed me the the telescope and I looked through it in the direction he had been facing. Off to the East was a small island that was connected to the mainland via a strip of sand. On the island, just about visible, poking from beneath a dune was the top of a portal! The distinctive colour of the obsidian made it stand out like a sore thumb in this light! I passed it to THEROS who eventually returned the same exclamation, before passing it back to me. I clipped the extension onto the camera, and then clipped it to the telescope. With a lot of careful aiming, and a steady hand, I managed to take a semi-decent shot of the portal from afar. There we go: we had tested OROTHO's telescope, and it had worked, as well as with the camera! And we had proof! Now we knew where the portal was, we could go straight there. UOPETA led the way across the edge of the land, heading straight towards the portal.

     Once we got to the island, we crossed over to it, but we found it was not active. That was the one thing we couldn't determine from that distance due to the angle. I took the pickaxe from my back and began the first part of hacking away at it. A few minutes later, a good portion of it had been reduced to small obsidian chunks and dust, and THEROS took over. As UOPETA still had to be careful with his arm, we would destroy the portals, and he would act purely as the scout. I think he preferred it that way. I do too, so long as he kept did his job well. Which he always did... After THEROS destroyed the remainder of the portal, we brushed the obsidian dust and chunks into the water, watching it scatter and float away. That was another one down. THEROS crossed off the site from the map and pointed to where we were going next. This method of destroying portals was slow admittedly, but in more ways than were initially obvious. If we knew the locations, we could find the secondary portals, and head straight to them. This method was based purely on speculation. Even if there was a portal at a site, we couldn't know beforehand whether it was active or not, or more importantly if it was a secondary or standard portal... So far, we were only finding standard portals, which we knew that HoN CO. could replace easily. That's why we had launched our main offensive against the secondary portals. Let's just hope we find one or two from the remaining sites...

Syeonyx signing off

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