Vol 13: Chapter 15-2.
“All corpses have been left rotting for about four days. I poured sufficient amount of gunpowder on each one and ignited them. Don’t worry, I have control over the amount, the fire won’t spread toward the wood nearby. The trees here are also rather moist so it’s not likely to turn into a forest fire.” WangXia said within the soul link.
The group had been in this village for a day. The villagers all turned into vampires when brown hair wore the mask and died along with brown hair’s death. The village was now desolated. They were probably the first visitors in the past several days.
To prevent any possible plagues and also the smell of rotten corpses was not pleasant, Lan scanned for the corpses and WangXia burned them down with gunpowder. Then they headed toward the ruins.
“The archeological group didn’t find the entrance in the beginning. They planned to break a way through. When they were digging the wall, they found that you just have to press this rock.” Evelyn said and kicked a rock on the outer area of the ruins. The rock sunk down. Several rocks on its side moved away and exposed an entrance.
The players smiled. Kampa whistled and said. “What is this? Stone age automation? Haha. That’s pretty cool.”
Xuan stood underneath the step pyramid and stared at it. “Perhaps we found something valuable.”
The others turned to him. Xuan adjusted his glasses then walked into the step pyramid. Evelyn quickly followed and the others right behind them.
Evelyn said as she walked. “Unfortunately, I am acquainted with Egyptian but not Maya script. I can only recognize about half the hieroglyphs. The rest are guesses. Even though the step pyramid is preserved very well but we still couldn’t decipher the secrets within.”
The inside was roomy. Due to the structure of this step pyramid, air could be ventilated between the stones. So the air was not stale at all. It was also not dim nor humid. There were no little bugs.
Zheng said. “This step pyramid is much cleaner than Egyptian pyramids. No bugs crawling all over the ground. Oh and Imhotep, do you know ancient symbols and characters and their rules? If you do, can tell us?”
Imhotep’s mind was wandering off. He was looking until Zheng patted him on the shoulder. Then he turned his head around and took a breath. “Can you believe it? A civilization existed even before my time. That civilization created the step pyramid, the prototype of pyramids. After the civilization declined, the pharaoh thought using pyramids for rituals was too wasteful and they admired the magnificence. Under the encouragement of a high priest, the pharaoh altered the pyramids’ shape and turned them into tombs. The earlier pyramids are only used for rituals, just like this Mayan pyramid.”
“Although I was a high priest, the usage of these characters and symbols have been lost. The two books you have only recorded their usage but not meanings because Egyptian pyramids had changed in shapes and purpose.”
Zheng immediately asked. “You mean we can find the meanings and rules of the characters and symbols in this step pyramid?”
As Zheng was talking, Imhotep stopped in front of a wall. He began reading out the glyphs in a language unknown to everyone else. The others also stopped. Xuan ran over to Imhotep and entered the unlocked mode.
Imhotep finished reading the wall then pointed toward a corridor. “The record keeping room is over there. This way is a room that contains the remains of the devil. Behind the wall is a stargazing room. Behind the other wall over there is the energy storage room and control room. That way is the crafting room.”
Xuan’s fingers moved over the glyphs. He repeated every line after Imhotep. When Imhotep mentioned crafting room, he suddenly said. “The person with tools represent crafting? Then what about the person covered in a strange thin layer right after?”
Imhotep explained. “The combination of these two means crafting of tools. It requires the crafter and the user.”
Xuan pondered for a moment then turned to Zheng. “Do you think this looks like you? These person covered in a strange layer looks like when you covered yourself in qi or blood energy. If these tools are energy converting weapons, in other words magical weapons, does it mean this place can craft such weapons?”
Imhotep walked over to a smooth wall. He searched on the wall with his hand and finally pressed a section inward. However, nothing happened afterward, as if that section was nothing important.
Imhotep said with a confused look. “Maybe the mechanism is broken. The wall can’t open the door.”
Zheng shrugged. “Or maybe it ran out of energy since the ruins are several thousand years old. You also mentioned an energy storage room and control room so this door isn’t totally mechanical. Let’s go. We will check out the energy storage room and control room.”
They followed the direction on the wall. Xuan and Evelyn was the most excited of the bunch. Actually, Xuan was in a craze while Evelyn was simply excited. The two kept inquiring Imhotep about the glyphs. Imhotep answered patiently. Zheng had to change the topic. “So how do you know the Mayan script? There wasn’t any contact between Egypt and Maya.”
Imhotep said with pride. “I was a high priest. The high priest of each generation raised a group of monks then selected the most learned and smartest one to teach. Only when this monk mastered all the knowledge passed down from generations would he be able to inherit the position as high priest. We were different from pharaohs in that our position was not inherited by blood but by knowledge.”
Zheng then realized why the most beautiful woman of Egypt at the time liked Imhotep. Imhotep was also a brave warrior in history. His knowledge and handsome appearance were attractive at the time and even in modern age.
Imhotep continued. “Within the knowledge passed down to us, there were several areas that used hieroglyphs. One of them used Chinese hieroglyphs. I saw some bronze antiques that was said to be from the Shang Dynasty in museums while in the U.S., I can recognize most of the glyphs on them.”
WangXia and Zheng’s expressions turned cold. After some time, Zheng smiled bitterly. “Such irony that you saw our things in the U.S. Forget it, let’s keep going.”
Imhotep was confused and asked Xuan. “Did I say something wrong? That was certainly Chinese hieroglyphs.”
Xuan shook his head. “No, the issue is with the matter itself. Back to what you were talking about. The knowledge you inherited contains scripts from several civilizations of various locations. Can we assume that those who passed down this knowledge once came in contact and all agreed to leave the keys to the civilizations within each other? So that when people find ruins of these civilizations in the future, they can use these keys to recreate the glory of the civilizations?”
Xuan muttered to himself, not looking for any answer. They continued heading forward until they reached an end. Imhotep began searching the walls. After some time, he pointed at a smooth wall and said. “The energy storage room and control room is behind this wall. But how are we going to enter it?”
Everyone turned to Zheng simultaneously. He was aware of it and walked to the wall. He placed both hands on the wall. Since he didn’t know how thick it was or if there were writings on the other side, he had to use a stupid method to break in. The spear might damage important material behind.
Qi channeled to his hands and shattered the rocks into sand little by little. His hands gradually sunk into the wall. A minute later, his hands reached the other side. Behind the wall was a dark room.
Now that it was confirmed the other side was empty and the wall wasn’t too thick or tough, Zheng focused his qi and smashed the wall with his fist. He broke through the wall in just a few punches.
Everyone held their torches in and observed the room. In the center was a smooth stone pillar. Next to the pillar were several stone platforms. The platforms seemed normal aside from an indent where one could place their hands.
Further in were just ruins. The stone pillars in the back were collapsed. They couldn’t see the other half of the room. Maybe an earthquake or something else destroyed it. This stone pillar and the surrounding platforms were the only items intact.
Zheng walked around the pillar then looked at the platforms carefully. Due to the golden mask, he looked for symbols and characters on the platforms and indeed, there were symbols and characters carved all over. The hand shape indents were the size of an adult hand.
Xuan also studied the pillar and platforms. After some time, he turned to Zheng. “Do you want to make the bet? The probability is fifty fifty. Either we live or die.”
Zheng smiled. This was what he said to Xuan the other night. He took a deep breath and stood in front of a platform. Then he placed his hands on the indents. As he channeled his qi, the point of contact between the stone platform and his hand glowed in a golden light. This light spread through the symbols and characters into the stone pillar. Finally, a golden liquid flowed onto the stone pillar. The pillar emitted a soft golden light. At the same time, the step pyramid was trembling. The crevices within the walls also glowed.