Morcant felt a surge of urgency and alertness from Gurin, the mind-linked dwarf, as soon as the door slammed shut. Morcant quickly cleared his mind of any controlling thoughts. This was a situation which the dwarf would need his own expertise and no outside influence.
Morcant attempted to put his talents to work replicating Gurin's earlier work. He reckoned the opening of a hidden passage couldn't be that difficult - especially if a dwarf was successful. What he failed to take into account were Gurin's decades of training and expertise with traps, locks, doorways, and dwarven construction techniques.
Gurin wheeled around, eyes fixed on the chain jerkin and the place where it just was. Something there had triggered this trap. Gurin couldn't discern an apparent trigger but suspected a pressure plate system. He yanked the jerkin from Marlit's hands and placed it back where he assumed it belonged. Oddly enough, it seemed as if the sands began to pour faster.
His frustration continued to mount, in proportion to his fear. A fleeting thought occurred that he may be able to yell to the others the exact method used to open the door. Even though he hoped against the propertie of the thick granite door, he shouted about visible cracks, pressure, and doors. The screams fell silently to the floor where they were swallowed by the rushing waves of sand.
Standing still, and seemingly calm, Miranda glances at the ceiling - looking for any aid to stem the tide of sand racing into the room. Prominently positioned in the center is a glowing rune. It illuminates the chamber, and until now went unnoticed for the most part. The method was unusual compared to the torch sconces they had seen to this point in the vault.
Climbing on a sturdy weapon rack, Miranda positions her feet securely on several wall rungs. She quickly inspects the rune, trying to both depress it, turn it, and remove it. To no avail - the stone is firmly fixed in place. But the glowing portion appears to have been added to the original stone. To Miranda it looked like finely crafted glass poured into an etching or deeply chiseled grooves.
Failing to move the stone in any way, Miranda brandishes her dagger in anger. She grasps the metal and leather wrapped hilt tightly and backhands the butt against the glowing glass. The tinkling sound of her tapping against the rune's magic imbued light source infuriated her further!She whaled away at the lighted stone with a ferocious volley of smashing blows - each harder and more pronounced than the last.
Her attempt tired her legs, shook her body, and offset her balance - and she fell. Face first into the sand and soot. The rack of weapons, luckily, fell the other direction as she crashed against it on her way to the ground. Face down in the granite sands she feared this was the end of her adventure.
Then the sounds of the sands shifted. At first one tinkling bell, then another soon after with a sightly tinnier sound. Then quickly, like crystal rain falling, shards of glass fell around her. The shattered rune ceased it's glowing, and the chamber was darker than a moonless night.
The sound of stone grating against stone could be heard. A vibration began to build in the floor below their feet. The sands shifted around Miranda's hands and knees as she began to stand again. Gurin's feet quickly sank back down through the vibrating table of sifted granules to find rest on the hard granite floor. The tone of the cascading earth changed as well. It sounded as if the flowing was increasing!
Meanwhile, fumbling with the wall outside, Morcant is blinded by an image from Gurin. He sees clearly the very crack which the dwarf exploited for entry. Morcant moves determinedly to the exact spot and asks the others for assistance as he pushed against the mighty granite door.
As the door gave way a smooth flow of ashen sand fell out to cover their feet. The door continued to move slowly and became jarred against the pile in the room. Light poured in from the torches they carried and danced across the faces of the frightened few inside.
Slowly the grains continued to sift themselves toward the exposed drain in the center of the room, like a giant hourglass. The vibrating chamber rattled with the clinking armor and assorted weaponry. As Miranda took to her feet, finally, she looked around in awed surprise. The once glistening armor, and untarnished blades had changed. The fine lustre which adorned each instrument of warfare had faded, their true condition now showed clearly. It would seem the rune's glow cast far more than light.
What do you do?