Return to the Necropolis: Chapter 7 (Day 2)

Michael O. Varhola

nearly-invisible traceries of a magical trap.

Calling Pumayo over to him, Paros pointed out the lines of the tracery and the wizard nodded and then cast the spell that allowed him to detect the presence of magic, and they pulsed and glowed for him. The two men discussed the nature of the magic trap and determined it would in all likelihood cause an explosive elemental blast of some sort if triggered. Pumayo agreed that it was no more complex than the one he had removed the previous day in the Anemoi tomb, that he would have about the same odds of successfully doing so, and that he was once again willing to make the attempt.

Selene and Parthenia had both become very bored with the proceedings and had long before sat down together about ten feet further down the hallway from where the men were working. They took their guard duties seriously enough that they did not break out their dice and begin rolling them on the stone floor and instead sat chatting quietly amongst themselves, for the most part gossiping and complaining about the other inhabitants of the primitive hillside hamlet near the Koan village of Lagoudi where Selene made her home.

Paros stepped back down the passageway about five feet from the tomb and watched as Pumayo prepared himself, reached forward to touch the tracery, and began utter the syllables of his spell of erasure; as the wizard ran his finger over the lines of glyph, the sharp-eyed rogue watched them disappear. Paros thought he noticed his friend's swarthy countenance darken a little in the midst of the procedure and then, suddenly, before he could analyze the import of this, the wizard's words were interrupted by a load "Bang!" The stone plaque was torn straight off the wall by the force of the blast, driving Pumayo across the hall and slamming him into the wall with a sickening crunch. He slid to the floor insensate, the broken halves of the stone laying across his chest.

Paros ran to his friend and, torn from her reverie, Selene staggered to her feet and scrambled to render aid. Parthenia also stood but prudently held her position, standing so that she could easily glance over at what was happening with the wizard but keep most of her attention focused down the hallway; she had been doing this sort of thing long enough