30 Old Tricks

"Yeah, we did. However, I don't know how difficult it will be. We might need a full party, or us three could be enough." Colt explained as he led the two women towards the gates. "The problem is, I don't really know anyone else here well enough to invite them to join us. What about you guys?"

"I know a few other streamers, but…." Beans hesitated to continue with her reply.

"I might know one or two. However, I haven't seen them here. I just knew they were joining the game, but they might have chosen a different race." Donna gave her own reply with a frustrated expression.

Colt nodded his head as he knew that this could be a problem. 'I'm guessing Aeri probably told the team to choose the Human race if there was a race selection so that they could all be together. They wouldn't have been able to plan out something else without knowing what was available.'

He had to admit that Aeri had been smart about it. Colt did not doubt that there was probably a few people who were tempted to choose something else. But when you were part of a team. You had to go with what was best for the team as well as the company supporting it. That was about the complaint he had about his old job.

Colt led them to an empty snowy hill before taking out the parchment he had received from Jarxos. Donna and Beans had curious expressions on their faces as he unrolled it to see what information it held.

It turned out to be a very basic looking map. It showed a path over the hills to the mountains ahead. Colt looked up from the map to try and judge the distance. They would have to avoid any combat on the way there to be fully prepared for whatever they may find. However, this area only seemed to have the wolf packs, which ignored the players if they kept a distance.

Colt grinned as he realised that this should be easy. The only problem with the journey should be whether or not Aeri decided to attack them before they reached the tomb or on the way back. 'She'll probably have someone follow us to find out where we're going. And if I were her, I'd ambush them on the return journey when they're at their weakest.'

"Let's go take a look." Colt smiled as he led the way over the snowy hills while avoiding the wolves.

It took them half a day to clear the snowy hill area and reach the base of the mountains. They stopped for a moment to recheck the map before starting the climb. The scenery was peaceful, which was making the three of them somewhat nervous. RPG's rarely had safe areas outside of the cities. If a place was quiet, it usually meant that there was an unknown danger.

Colt glanced towards Valheim in the distance as they climbed further up. It looked golden with the sun shining off of all the marble. It was a fantastic sight to see, especially when its surroundings looked pristine due to the snow.

"We should be close. Spread out and look for anything unusual." Colt called out as he started searching around.

Donna and Beans shrugged their shoulders and did as he said. They knew that he had gained something in the store, but he had refused to tell them what it was so far.

"You know, it'd help if we knew what we were looking for," Donna complained as she brushed her black hair behind her shoulders.

"Just look for anything that might be an entrance or lead to one," Colt replied calmly.

They had not seen any other players the entire way here. Which meant that they did not have to rush for now. 'Does it even get dark here?' Colt wondered after a few hours went by while finding nothing.

"Exile! I found something over here!" Donna shouted excitedly from a spot further up from him. Colt made his way up to meet her as Beans came down from a location even higher up.

"Look! Doesn't this seem like it used to be stairs or a path?" Donna pointed as some smooth rock sticking out from the dirt on the ground.

"This could be it. Have a look around and see if we can find any more. We have to find out where it leads to." Colt replied with a serious face as he took a look at it.

"Oh. There's a whole section of it up there. I didn't think much of it because it didn't seem to lead anywhere." Beans cut in with a red face from embarrassment.

"You should've said something!" Donna admonished her friend, saving Colt from the hassle.

"Forget it, let's just go." Colt waved a hand as if it were no big deal.

Beans led them up to the spot that she had found earlier. Sure enough, they found more smooth patches that could have been a buried staircase along the way. Colt raised an eyebrow as he saw the smooth disc-like platform with some rubble on it. 'It's definitely not natural.'

He became excited as he ran his hands over the surface. After years of playing Mayhem, which was made by the same developers, he knew what he was looking at. That game had something similar, and it seemed like they had reused it here. He had to move several pieces of rubble before he found what he was looking for.

"Guys, get ready." Colt grinned as he slid his finger inside of a hole. There was a button not far inside of it, and Colt did not hesitate to press it.

The sound of stone grinding on stone entered their ears, making them wince in discomfort. The platform slowly opened up towards the sky as if it were a pair of doors, revealing a marble staircase spiralling downwards. Colt glanced into the empty space that went all the way to the bottom in the centre. However, it was too dark to see how far the staircase went down.

"Let's go…."

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