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The Shining Caves

1,000 tons of rock hung above us, 10,000 miles of distance lay between me and home, but before us was the most beautiful place imaginable.
— Tara Sonovic, Araborean Explorer
  Deep in the bowels of Araborea's islands are the shinning caves. This complex network of winding tunnels is best known for the titanic crystals that line the caves' walls. These otherworldly formations glow with an inner light, thus the name "Shining Caves".   The few people that have journeyed to these crystalline depths and returned describe it as more beautiful than their wildest dream. However, these caves are far from a shiny tourist attraction, they house some of the most dangerous creatures in the cosmos. Any who dare enter The Shining Cave must be prepared for every situation if they want any hope of seeing the light of day again.  

Dangerous Depths

  The Shining Caves are a place of unfathomable terror and beauty. The creatures that lurk within them are like nothing else in the Void. These monstrosities are a product of the combination of Araborea's ancient magic and the malevolent powers of The Darkness. This unholy union of the arcane creates aberrant horrors so alien the human mind has difficulty even viewing them. One encounter with even the weakest of these creatures could lay waste to an entire group of explorers if they are unprepared.  
caves of crystals thing.jpg
by Piotr Dura
The local wildlife isn't the only threat The Caves have in store, however. The crystals themselves are alive, and they do not appreciate visitors. Ancient texts that were uncovered in old Araborean ruins say that the crystals in the caves could answer questions or even grant wishes. These benevolent proprieties are now lost in time, with the coming of The Darkness the crystals were possessed my deamonic spirits. These evil entities pervert the crystals' primordial powers, using them only to impede those that enter their domain. Explorers might find themselves trapped in maddening time loops, or taunted by apparitions of long-dead loved ones.  
shinning caves - Simon Weaner.jpg
by Simon Weaner
 

A Crystalline Labyrinth

  The Shining Caves are almost impossible to map. It is an intricate mess of tunnels and caverns that spreads across all of Araborea. The few maps that do show the caves do not stay accurate for long. The moment the crystals learn about such a map, they begin to rework their cave system. Caverns and know to spontaneously dissolve, and the same tunnel might lead to different places each time it is traversed. Getting out of the caves alive requires more luck than anything else.    

Ancient Portals

  Although different sections of the caves are consolidated to their respective islands, explorers have described strange portals that transported them to a different island. These portals can only be found by accident, any attempts to find or utilize them only send the travelers in circles.
crystal-cave-photo
by firedudewraith
One might go through such a gateway without realizing it, only discovering that they had been transported when they resurface.   If a explorer is extremely unlucky, they might stumble though such a portal in to a pocket dimension. The mini universes are like the rest of the caves, but they are even stranger. Such places might contain gateways to other hell worlds or even Arbeqet.    

The Quiet Place

   
When I stepped into that cavern, I was met with a wave a silence and peace
— Tara Sonovic, Araborean Explorer
  Deep in the shining caves lies a single cavern where the ancient magic of Araborea remains unscathed. Here the crystals retain their original properties and are attempting to use them to fight back against the darkness that has infected Araborea. Only one person has ever visited these caves, Tara Sonovic, she was able to find shelter and peace in The Quiet Place after the rest of her group descended into madness.  
crystaloid.png
by Samuel Robbins

Crystal People

    In The Quiet Place live a small race of crystalline life forms. These creatures act as the caretakers of the place, tending to its majestic gardens and sustaining the crystals during their battles against the darkness.   Their leader, the only sane Arkubus, might be the oldest living creature in the cosmos, hailing from a time long before the current era. he has seen The Void die and be reborn countless times and has difficulty caring about anything that isn't of cosmic importance. Nevertheless, he entertains guests, as he only gets them every eon or two.
This is a revision of our first article. If you want to the the orginal you can do so here

Untold Riches

  The wealth that lies within the Shining Caves is hard to fathom. The cave's crystals are not only nice to look at, but are also physical manifestations of raw energy. The potential power in the caves could power Quantan for trillions of years, if only they could find a way to get to it.   As The World Federation of Quantan slowly saps away the energy of its home world to power its civilization, a grim truth begins to dawn on the Energy Department. In a century or so the world of Quantan will become a grey wasteland as all of its essence is draw from it by the WFQ's energy collection methods. The shining caves might be the only hope for the Federation, in they wish to continue their current methods.   There is a massive project in its planning phases with the goal to dismantling entire araborean islands to extract their crystals. This project is technically possible, but would require a massive amount of resources, funds, and time. No living creature knows of this plan, it was generated by AI and might be executed by said AI, without any human approval.  
Type
Cave System
Location under

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Cover image: by juh juh ...

Comments

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Journeyman N4th
James Slaven
5 Apr, 2021 15:56

Great work! I quite liked the artwork and the 'Ancient Portals' section, specifically. I also appreciated how many other articles are linked throughout this one. It makes it much easier to understand the context!   I found a few typos as I was reading through: "This unholy union of the arcane creates aberrant horrors so alien THE THE human mind has difficulty even viewing them..." "...old Araborean ruins, say that the crystals in the caves could answer QUESTION or even grant wishes." "Caverns and BLANK know to spontaneously dissolve, AND AND THE same tunnel might lead to different places each time it is traversed." "...she was able to find shelter and peace in The QUIET Place after the rest of her group descended into madness." "HE has seen The Void die and be reborn countless times and has difficulty caring ABOUT anything WHOSE importance isn't on a cosmic scale. NEVERTHELESS, he entertains guests..."   Thanks for the read!

5 Apr, 2021 16:32

Thanks!, I just got Grammarly, so I'm fixing all of that now!


Come and join my Discord or check out my world! And While your at it, have a look at my Costume Challenge Article, don't forget to leave a like :)
8 Apr, 2021 07:42

This place sounds absolutely gorgeous, I would really enjoy exploring it! The article is packed with a healthy dose of mystery to it, which I find very enjoyable. I will say I had a little trouble reading the links due to the low contrast between them and the background ^^

Author of Interarcanum.
8 Apr, 2021 10:45

Thank you! Sorry about the links I'm still trying to fix it, they are being very fussy.


Come and join my Discord or check out my world! And While your at it, have a look at my Costume Challenge Article, don't forget to leave a like :)
8 Apr, 2021 10:46

No worries! If you want help feel free to hmu on discord!

Author of Interarcanum.