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...

Strange terrain...

     Heading back up the passage the way we had come, we emerged from the relative darkness and back into the bright light. THEROS crossed this latest portal from the map, before passing it to UOPETA to allow him to gauge which direction to head next. Looking over his shoulder, it seemed we had a series of options; we could either head directly South and go towards the locations to the South of the ice crossing, or head South West, take out the two further portals and then head South East and do the same, or head North and leave the ones to the South until later. It would make more sense to destroy the ones to the South first, but it was up to UOPETA.

"Right then. The next best bet is to head South West and take out that portal located within the isolated sandy area, then head South East and destroy these down here. We can take out the one to the far South West on the way back up."

Rolling it up, UOPETA passed the map back to THEROS, who carefully returned it to his bag. From where we were, we would have a long way to the next portal, and judging from the terrain, the environment would change quite drastically as well. That wasn't a major issue, in fact it could work to our advantage. With the changing environment, the temperature might change as well, meaning there would be less of a need to find somewhere to settle for the night. UOPETA set off to the South West towards the isolated patch of sand, in search of the next portal of the day.

     As we moved away from snowy area to the East, we noticed the slowly rising temperature. I could easily say without a shadow of a doubt that we all welcomed this warmth with open arms! We were at a temperature that suited us all, so let's hope that when we head closer to the sandy areas, there isn't a random escalation in temperature to the other extreme. Climbing down the final slope of a large hill, we were able to see the edge of the sandy area from the slight elevation, but no portals on the surface. It reminded me of one of the very first portals we had found and destroyed; it had been located on the surface, and was partially buried in sand. I think we had even found a HoN Co. guard close by, protecting it. Luckily UOPETA had the foresight to see that far ahead and disposed of the "threat" before it was able to take action.

"Let's hope this one is another simple one."

"It will be. I don't think it could get as complicated as the one where you injured yourself, especially when we're now prepared for that type of incident."

It was odd that we had found more and more secondary portals active, less mossy chambers and even less Affinitas cages. I was beginning to think there was a relation between the three. The Affinitas cages were usually placed near high value portals, like the secondary ones. But we hadn't seen any. The secondary portal we had destroyed that we had found within a mossy chamber was strangely unguarded; the moment I saw the moss along the walls I had assumed there would be another hidden entrance somewhere, hiding one of the cages. We assumed that they were placed by HoN Co. to draw creatures from the Nether to protect the portals for them. It was an ingenious method, and one that had nearly seen all of us killed at some point or another.

"There we go, we're nearly at the halfway point..."

     The blades of green grass, and the tall reeds suddenly changed into a starkly different environment; sand shifted beneath our feet, and the surrounding flora was transformed into dead or dying shrubbery. However, there was no increase in temperature at all, adding to the overall mystery of this strangely isolated patch of sand. Why were there random patches of isolated terrain amongst other starkly different patches? Grass besides both sand and snow, lava pools around sand! It didn't make any sense! Maybe it had something to do with the portals... Or HoN Co., although it was worrying to think they could be behind this. For all we knew this could be standard terrain for this area, but it seemed odd to have large open fields of lush grass flanked on either side by desert sand and snow!

"I can't see how HoN Co. could be behind this. It's natural. Maybe there were isolated patches of saltwater around... Erosion on nearby rocks and stones could make the sand, but that wouldn't account for a rapid and sudden draining of water. And even if that was the case, we can't explain the snow in a small patch of the area. Maybe OROTHO would know more..."

"He would know more, but he'd have so many theories, we'd all end up leaving the lab with a headache! It's probably not worth the bother. We have our mission to achieve, and we can't be sidetracked by snow and sand."

We passed a small pool of water close to the next patch of sand. Crossing over the top of a hill, we were able to see the edge of the smaller patch of isolated sand in the distance. Not only that, but we could make out a cave or small cavern off to the left.

"I wonder what the chances are of finding the portal in there...?"

Heading over to it, UOPETA led the way into the cave, using a few torches to light our path that THEROS had passed over. THEROS took out the glowing stone, but a puzzled look drew across his face.

"Hmmm... Looks like either we're way out, or it's not active..."

"Well the map points us to this place, so it's likely to be the latter. Does it matter than much if it is inactive? It means less work for us."

THEROS shrugged and put the glowing stone away, allowing UOPETA to continue down into the cave, it wasn't long until he stopped again.

"Looks like I was right... Although..."

The portal before us was inactive, and in a terrible state; piles of sand were stacked on top of the remnants of the portal frame. Obsidian chunks littered the floor in various sizes. It was difficult to tell whether this was as a result of it being destroyed or the weight of the sand collapsing on top of it...

I destroyed the remainder of the frame... What little I could get to. Every time I knocked chunks out, more and more sand began to pour in from the top, and at one point I was worried that I would bury us alive! But after a few minutes and some narrow escapes, the last of the portal crumbled to the floor, quickly swallowed up by the cascading sand.

"Was that a secondary portal?"

"I don't think so... Why do you ask?"

"It had one of the appendages on the left side... It could have been a large loose piece of obsidian, but..."

"Does it matter? It wasn't active, so it wouldn't have mattered."

That was true. We left the pile of sand behind for the entrance, and allowed THEROS to cross this location from the map.

"Right then... To the South."

Syeonyx signing off

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