This week, I’ve been exploring the spacious Catacombs that are found well beneath the Mansion. Not exploring in a scientific or discovery type of way, I must add, but just looking around.
There’s not really a lot to write about, all things considered, as the inside of one cave basically looks like the inside of another, once you’ve gotten used to the darkness, odours and eerie groans that pop up every now and again.
Yes, I’ve discovered an old sign pointing to the Catacombs that I somehow don’t think is connected to the Mansion… and I’ve found some random postcards from a couple of local areas that seem to have just ‘randomly’ blown in. The thing is, and I should really know this, things around here are far from random. Odd as that sounds. Random is the norm.
So. My search continued. I could hear the rumbling of the Lava River below which told me that perhaps the cave walls weren’t as thick in the area where I was, and it was for that reason why I thought nothing more of the strong breeze I could feel. The warm strong breeze at that.
Well… lava’s hot, so any wind that comes off it is likely to be warm, right?
I turned into another cave which was lit up from somewhere and ahead of me was a flight of stone steps. They climbed upwards into the distance… up into the top of the cave. I wondered if this was the other entrance to the Catacombs where the sign had come from.
I hadn’t wandered that far off the beaten track, so if I was where I thought I was, I’d have been somewhere under the Grinds… possibly over by the Lake.
Direction and perception is misleading when surrounded by rock and darkness, however.
I was happy to have found these steps, and decided to climb them, just to see where they led.
There must have been a thousand of them. They seemed to go on and on. I am prone to exaggeration, but by the time I’d climbed to the top I felt as though I’d climbed a thousand. I sat and gasped for a good five minutes whilst I recovered from that ordeal, and then walked along a darkening and narrowing corridor, which also sloped upwards. When I reached the end, I found… yes, a door. A stone door this time. Well, a slab, actually, but it opened like a door when I pushed it. Well, leant on it and fell backwards, but the less said about that the better.
I wasn’t in Kansas anymore once I’d picked myself up, I can tell you!
Brilliant warm sunshine hit my face.
At least I’d discovered the source of the warm breeze, although at the time I didn’t give it a second thunk. I looked ahead and couldn’t believe my eyes.
This greeted me:
I’d only emerged from the cave in bloomin’ Egypt!
The Pyramids were just over there, and I could see Cairo. And people. Lots of people.
I decided to make a hasty retreat back into the corridor, closing the door behind me. Being in a foreign country isn’t the best idea, especially as one doesn’t have one’s passport with one.
I left Cairo where it was, and headed back down the steps into the Catacombs.
It was at the bottom of the steps where I found my next surprise…