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The Deep

Sweat and ichor. It is said the godsblood mines are where the desperate go to die. In truth? It is where the greedy turn a profit. At the expense of all else. Colloquially called the Deep, the caverns and caves of the Highlands are rich in the arcanic fuel known as godsblood. In the months following Gloomfall, the Shrikes moved into the godsblood mines. Though they were long known as champions of the common people, the Shrikes that dwell in the Deep have become greedy and ruthless. Deeper still, beyond the cacophony of mechanized drills and pumps, beyond the heat and hallucinations of the godsblood, the Seekers hear tales of strange rumbling beneath the earth. Something new moves in the Deep’s faults. Touched by the Gloom, something stirs.
Details
Repeatable: false
Rewards:

Objectives

Phase 1

Central Godsblood Pump

All the godsblood from the Bloodworks wells is funneled through this central pump. It creaks and groans often from both age and overwork. It handles a stunning volume of liquids on any given day, a testament to the original engineers who built the machinery. Were it to break, it's unlikely that the Shrikes would have any hope of repairing it, and even the engineers of Skylight would be cleaning up the mess and rebuilding for months, if not years.

Central Godsblood Pump

The Lightworks Span

The shaft above this area goes straight up to the sky, the sun peeking in through the darkness. Moss and other plants grow greedily in the cracks of rock. Before the Fall, mine workers would gather here at noon to eat and soak up light as a reminder that they were not condemned to work in the darkness forever.

The Lightworks Span

Phase 3 Station

A godsblood station used by the Shrikes, Phase 3 appears to be some kind of refining process. It's strange to think of arcane substances needing the removal of impurities, but it's well-known that if the fuel does not burn evenly, it can damage machinery or even explode. It is not reassuring, then, that this station looks to be of a makeshift nature... as if the original was lost in a blast and the Shrikes hastily erected this one to continue operations.

Phase 3 Station

Daybreak Shaft

All miners had pass through the Daybreak Shaft to enter or exit the mines. Many stashed small items to keep them from contaminating the godsblood, falling into some inaccessible crevice, or just weighing down the miner, and the Shrikes have continued this practice. As such, this room has many small items and containers storing food. Though one might have thought that a gang of smugglers and thieves could not effectively create such a communal space, it seems the Shrikes distinguish themselves from goblins by enforcing rules against stealing from their own kind.

Daybreak Shaft

Drybone Falls

The waterfalls and rivers echo through this area, giving voice to the long-dead creatures that made the caves their home. Sometimes the bones seem to move, but surely it is just a trick of the light. The Shrikes exterminated the threats they could, and anything edible was hunted or fished to extinction long ago. That only leaves unpalatable creatures and ones higher up than Shrikes on the food chain.

Drybone Falls

The Undershore

The Undershore is a natural spring fed from underground aquifers and lakes, which the Shrikes use as a source of fresh water. Though drinkable, on a typical day the water is stained by miners who wash their bodies and tools with it, and drag away bucketfuls to cool down machinery. Scattered trash shows that this is a favorite place for slackers to take a break away from the eyes of their overseers.

The Undershore

Crossover Pumps

Godsblood warms this area to an uncomfortable degree. You pity anyone stuck working here for an entire shift, but the machinery must be maintained, and so the Shrikes unlucky enough to have the skills to do so are "volunteered" into service. You can only imagine that they must be swapped in and out regularly, for the heat-induced delirium here could make any human sloppy.

Crossover Pumps

Pump Station Omega

This sizeable structure is one of the central pumps that takes the Godsblood from its underground well up to the refining stations. It is clear that the pump station is designed for control of the well's pressure to prevent a breakdown, and not for the safety of the workers. Many Shrikes and honest miners alike must have met their untimely end here because of a careless step.

Pump Station Omega

The Dig

The search for more godsblood never ends, and the drilling equipment indicates the valuable fuel might be under the surface here. When active, the steam-powered augers boring into the rock creates a deafening cacophony that forces the Shrikes to communicate with hand signals. When the drills fall into silence, the Shrikes look around nervously for the bosses reviewing their work, or worse, a creature from the depths awakened by the activity.

The Dig

Darkbed Fault

Shadows dance along the walls into strange shapes, especially when the ground begins to rumble without warning. Some say the rumbling is from the drills underground, but most Shrikes working near the area disagree. There are stories of the earth as a living thing that opens up crevasses to feed, or turns solid bedrock turning into mire to capture prey, and makes echoes from all around to confuse those that flee. For this reason Shrikes call out to one another, comforting themselves with the illusion that there is safety in numbers.

Darkbed Fault

Highrock Canopy

This natural cavern was expanded by the Shrikes. What draws your eye are the channels in the walls -- sometimes one line, like that of a deflected pickaxe blow, sometimes several parallel lines that no pick could imitate. The solid stone floor beneath your feet shows no sign of tracks, giving rise to the question: is whatever made it still nearby? Worse, what could carve stone with a claw? And if it marked its territory in such a way, what was it trying to scare off?

Highrock Canopy

Spillover Station

In case of a dramatic increase in pressure, the system can shunt excess godsblood or other liquids here. An early Shrike hazing ritual was to make new recruits and workers fetch objects tossed into the steaming liquid. After enough recruits had taken permanent damage from the burns, the bosses forbade it, at which point the practice continued but the Shrikes started wearing long sleeves, gauze, or other coverings to mask their wounds.

Spillover Station

The Boneyard

Here lie the remains of a large beast that made the mines its home. In the darkness, you could have sworn you saw its ribs move, and the whistling air down here sounds as if it is still breathing. It is easy to pass those off as an overly developed danger sense, but the glow of the fungi here reminds you of the Gloom, and there is little that the Gloom cannot do. You doubt the Shrikes overcame this creature, or they would have taken its skull as a trophy -- whatever killed it is likely still down here somewhere.

The Boneyard

Chamber A53

Godsblood is the vital resource that drives the arcane industry of the Avar Imperium. Infusion chambers like A53 are a vital part of any godsblood retrieval process. They pump water beneath the godsblood, which does not mix with it, but rather floats it to the top of a given well. Impurities such as rock fragments must be extracted elsewhere, in the refineries, before the godsblood is pure enough to guarantee no accidental discharges of arcanic energy when consumed.

Chamber A53