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...

Getting lucky

     Putting the map away, we headed off to the North East, in the driving rain. The guards were still unconscious, but otherwise fine. As expected, they'd wake up, not knowing what had happened moments before losing consciousness, and forget about trying to piece it together. Instead they'd go back to patrolling as if nothing happening, more than likely thinking it was a lapse in concentration... Thank you OROTHO! You've made our lives easier! The rain began to ease off as we proceeded through the dense foliage, and it allowed me to see ahead easier. We had been going for some time, and around every tree I expected a guard or a Creeper to pop out to catch us off guard. But there was never anything there. Obviously I wasn't complaining about the lack surprises and ambushes, but my mind is a dangerous thing when I let it wonder, and I begin to doubt the certainties... The first location was just to the North East of the tower, surprisingly close to three other portals we had managed to destroy. THEROS had taken to carrying the Solus stone around again, but so far it was not glowing any more than it usually did.

"What do you reckon the chances are of finding one here...?"

I thought they were pretty low; if there was one near here, we would have found it on the way to destroying another, surely. Instead though I just shrugged and said "probably not". A few moments later, we arrived at the location indicated on the map. THEROS held the stone out, spinning slowly on the spot, looking slightly odd, whilst I checked around for any location that might suggest a portal was there. Just because this place was a suspected portal site didn't mean there was one here. And even if there was, we couldn't guarantee it was active, so the Solus stone would be useless! After a few minutes of searching, THEROS can to join me looking for the spot. We couldn't find anything except a small pool that had a dirt lip running around the lower edge. This was the closest we had come to finding something that could suggest a portal; we had found others in similar places surrounded by water. But there was no portal nearby.

     Under the shelter of a tree, THEROS took out the map again, and circled the location we were currently at.

"We can't say conclusively that there is no portal here... We just can't find it. If we find any more reports in the future and they turn up a location near here we know we were close."

So basically we were doing it exactly how we did it before, except without UOPETA giving us guidance. I hope he was okay... Looking at the map again, we deduced the next location: it was literally back in the direction we had come from, but instead it was in the opposite direction from the tower we were headed in. From the tower, it was South West for approximately the same distance. I had a feeling that this one wasn't going to turn up anything either as it was close to the path we usually took from the base to the conducting tower. Surely we would have seen it by now if there was one. Rolling the map back up, we set off back towards the tower. I wonder if the guards are still unconscious...

     Instead of cutting across the open area where the tower was, we continued around the edge of the tree line to avoid detection. I don't think it would have made much difference either way as the guards posted outside were still out for the count! That sedative was powerful stuff! We passed through to the other side, leaving the tower behind us, and setting off for the next half hour's walk to the next portal site. The rain had eased off considerably by this point, making it easier to progress forward at a faster rate. We approached the location which the map indicated: a small of patch of unassuming sand... There was no portal nearby, nor was there anything to suggest a portal... I was beginning to wonder how THEROS had decided this was a potential portal site! It posed no landmarks or geographical features that suggested something as ominous as a portal could be located nearby at all! As we continued though, my worst fear came true; the sand began to shift downwards, and in the direction of the corner of the pit! I quickly jumped back onto what I hoped was solid ground, and watched as the sand slid at an angle towards the edge of the pit. After a few moments, the sand stopped. I looked towards where it had slid to and found a small hole! More than a hole, a hole with a crude set of stairs leading down! Had we actually stumbled across the portal location accidentally? THEROS passed me a torch, and I ventured down the stairs, careful to avoid causing another sandslide. Peering down, moving the torch to throw light into the hole, I looked around, hoping to either hear or see the portal. There was nothing but silence and darkness... This didn't look promising. I climbed to the bottom of the stairs, passed the torch to THEROS and readied an arrow with my bow. I wasn't taking any more chances with skeletons! We continued in the direction the hole opened up into, but it wasn't long until we realised it was a dead end... What? Was this a trap? Was this the location of a portal? Or had we just stumbled across a random, natural hole?

     After a few minutes of delving around inside the small chamber, we left, not finding anything to help us. The chamber seemed totally natural; there were no markings on the stone or walls to suggest an excavation, so it was likely to be totally natural. A little annoying for us as I thought we had found a hidden one! Circling this one too, we left in a North Westerly direction to the far one. We had initially though to go due West to the closest one to us, but it would mean having to backtrack to the North and go back again! Instead, we were going to head off the far Northern portal site, check it out and then head back. This pattern allowed us to stop at the base for a small resting period before continuing with the search to the East. It would mean having to travel for over an hour, and that we were returning to the sand area we had been to recently. I was positive though that we wouldn't find anything there as we had brushed past that area when heading towards the large lake a few days earlier... But I suppose we'd see. The journey was easier than I initially thought; despite it having stopped raining, and the heat had been turned up, we were surprisingly cool. However, as we ventured further West, the tree density dropped quite low, and we were springing between cover to ensure we weren't spotted. Even though it was unlikely that a guard would be around here, we had to maintain this style of moving forward in case we were caught unaware. We did this until we closed in on the area. Close by there were a few holes, and I thought that there may be something down them. But after venturing forth, none of them went more than a few metres in before dead ending! We continued on towards the spot indicated on the map, thinking it was unlikely we would find anything. But as we approached the area, I noticed an odd hole in the ground. Nothing like the one previous, but literally a hole. A giant absence of anything! As we grew closer, I began to hear noises... Odd echoey, dripping noises... There was a portal nearby. Then I saw it! On the far side of the hole was the portal! It was a standard one portal, not a secondary one, but as we got closer, I noticed that the hole actually contained four portals, not one! Jackpot!

     We carefully made our way into the hole, checking first to ensure there were no cages, Creepers of skeletons in the hole or nearby. Once we were inside, we realised that all of the portals were standards portals. Three of them were active, but one was partially buried ins sand. THEROS placed the Solus stone onto the edge of one of the portals, whilst I took the pickaxe from my back and began hammering away at the inactive one. After some time, and after shifting a lot of sand, we swapped. I took out the second portal using the stone, and he destroying the remaining obsidian frame. Once that was done, THEROS placed the stone on the final portal, and we stood back and watched as it collapsed into itself. Well... That was eventful! We started off with a poor show, being unable to find anything, and then we find four at once!

 Logically we were one portal ahead of ourselves! But I was confused... I couldn't be sure we had been past this area before, but we must have passed near enough to it to be able to see it...

"Maybe it's recent... Maybe these were placed..."

Oh yeah... I kept forgetting... HoN Co. had managed standard portal replication... Maybe these had been placed and then activated... Well now I was worried. If they could get three portals set up and running, and presumably linked to a secondary portal within days of us passing by the same location, we were in trouble. We needed a way to track these iter waves to determine the location of these portals more accurately. Stabbing at random locations was wasting time. If we could find a way to track the networks set up, we could more easily locate the secondary portals from the multiple feeds it would have linked to multiple portals... Maybe that was something to enquire about to Amie and OROTHO when we got back. In the meantime, we headed off to the South East, to the next portal, hoping it would remain dry, and we would remain undetected...

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