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Catracoth

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Tuesday, November 25th 2008, 2:54am

Tomb Raider Underworld Novelization

I started writing a novelization of Tomb Raider Underworld that I'd like to share with everyone! I wrote the Prologue, part of the Mediterranean Sea, and put the Previously On Tomb Raider bit into words. Here it is!

Spoiler Spoiler

Previously on Tomb Raider…
Amelia and her daughter Lara, nine years of age at the time were flying in their private aircraft when the left wing suddenly caught on fire. The plane crashed in Nepal, where Lara and Amelia sought shelter in a hidden temple. There, Lara found a stone dais, with an ancient sword sticking out of a stone in the center. Touching it, the sword went further into the stone and twisted, sending a portal over Lara’s head, activating.
Amelia pulled Lara back and held her protectively. “Good Lord”, she said, “What is it?”
“There’s something in the light!”, Lara exclaimed.
“Wait here”. Amelia cautiously went over to it and talked into the portal. “Who are you?”

It’s Lara, your daughter.
“What? What about my daughter?”

Don’t touch the sword!
“She meant no harm”.

Take out the sword. It’ll explode unless you pull out the sword!
“Oh God, no!”. Amelia pulled the sword out of the stone and was sucked into the portal. The green light shone through the room making Lara cover her eyes. When she looked back, her mother was gone.
“Mother? Mother?!”
--
Lara, several years later, was hired by Jacqueline Natla to retrieve the Scion of Atlantis, an artifact that she and her father spent years searching for. Later on, she learns that Natla isn’t who she seems.
“It was you!”, Lara exclaimed, “You were the Queen of Atlantis”.
“Once”, Natla replied.
Lara learns that Natla’s true aim is to bring about the Seventh Age to destroy the world. Natla tells Lara that she cannot die, but Lara destroys the Scion of Atlantis and pulls a pillar down on Natla, presumably killing her.
--
Lara, now older, and her good friend Amanda Evert were at an archaeological dig site where they encountered a demon that tried to kill them. They reached the main room and tried to escape. Lara found Amanda and looked around for the demon. Amanda was trying to figure out how to open the doors to get out. She saw a stone in the wall and tried to get it. “I think this stone unlocks the door!”
“The door might be trapped!”, Lara replied in negativity.
“We’re trapped!”. Amanda pulled out the stone just as the demon lunged at Lara, and it vanished. The temple began to crumble, and Lara and Amanda took off, but Amanda got stuck when a rock fell on her foot, trapping it.
“Amanda!”, Lara yelled, going back for her. The gates began to close and water filled the temple. Lara held the gate open for as long as she could, but it was no use - Amanda told her to go just before more rocks fell on Amanda.
Lara got out of the temple and set the dig site as a memorial for Amanda. After some events, Lara learns that Amanda might not have died down there. Lara finds the pieces of the sword that Amelia pulled out of the stone years back and goes to Bolivia to open the portal. She activates the dais and sees her mother through the portal, but in the past.
“Who are you?”, Amelia asked.
“Mother? It’s Lara, your daughter!”, Lara replied.
“What? What about my daughter?”
Lara realized she was in the past and she had to make sure Amelia didn’t touch the sword. “Don’t touch the sword!”
“Take out the sword!”, Amanda said to Lara, “It’ll explode unless you pull out the sword!”
Amelia, hearing this, pulled out the sword, and the dais exploded. Lara dove out of the way just in time.
“You idiot! You’ve ruined everything!”, Amanda yelled.
“Make sense right this second or I swear I’ll execute you where you stand!”
“I told you to pull out the sword, I told you!”
Lara fired her gun around Amanda’s head in frustration. “WHERE. IS. MY. MOTHER?!”
“Avalon! She’s not dead!”
--

Prologue
Descending the stairs of the catacombs of Croft Manor, Lara headed through the hallway. She stopped in her tracks however, when the house began to shake violently. She heard an explosion, and ahead of her, chunks of the wall flew out, fire ablaze. She quickly turned around to see the same thing happen behind her. “My God!”, she cried, a look of fear on her face.
Heading forward, she climbed over the rubble, her hands covering her face in an attempt to protect herself from the fire. She climbed over more debris before finally reaching the door to the study. Pulling the lever, the door opened. Stepping through it, Lara saw her entire manor in flames, the roof blown partially open, showing the rainy, night sky.
She knew she’d have to find Zip, Alister, and Winston before worrying what had happened. She made her way to the door but it was blocked, at hot. Lara quickly pulled her hands back and shook them to cool them. She attached the hook of her grapple onto the handle and stepped back. Pulling the cord, the door blew open, fire following. She covered her face and headed through the hallway.
Climbing around rubble and flame, she reached the doorway to the main hall and stairwell. Heading to descend the stairs, she noticed the entire stairwell was engulfed in debris and flames. Attaching her grapple to the ring conveniently placed above the stairwell, she jumped and swung across to the other side. Running to the open part of the banisters, she dropped down onto the stone floor of the main hall. Heading toward the main doors, she saw Zip and Winston trying to open them.
Spotting her, Zip stepped forward and fired at her. “Look out!”, he said to Winston. Lara jumped back, avoiding the shot. She had a ‘what the hell’ look on her face.
“Stop!”, Winston exclaimed, “It’s Lara!”.
“I know!”, Zip yelled back.
He proceeded to fire at Lara who rolled out of the way and took cover behind one of the pillars. “Zip, wait!”, she yelled. All Lara heard was the sound of gunshots and felt the heat of her burning manor.
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Tuesday, November 25th 2008, 10:28am

Nice idea! :thumbsup

I bet I'm going to cry if you... describe, uhh, certain incidents in a very emotional way ;( ( [hehe] )
However, nice "Previously on TR" summary and I liked how you described the first part in the manor! I'll absolutely keep on reading this, also as a substitute for not being able to play it in the near future.
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Tuesday, November 25th 2008, 9:15pm

Thank you, RedHell! I fear that the Southern Mexico level will take longer to novelize since it's about the longest level in the game.
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Wednesday, November 26th 2008, 11:06pm

Chapter one is posted! Working on chapter two as we speak, :D .

Chapter One: Mediterranean Sea

Spoiler Spoiler

Lara Croft’s yacht rested on the calm water of the Mediterranean Sea. The fog in the distance blocked any views past a few kilometres. Lara squinted ahead, trying to see past the fog - no luck. Her black leather swimsuit with yellow stripes going down the sides shone in the sunlight. Below, her laptop started beeping. She had a look of disappointment on her face before she descended the stairs into the cabin of her yacht.

Pressing the button on the laptop, she smiled when she saw Zip on the video chat. “Hey Lara”, he greeted, “Find it yet?”

“Patience Zip. I warned you that conveniently undiscovered islands would be scarce in the Mediterranean”.

Behind him, Alister came into view. “Are you sure this Eddington chap knows what he’s talking about?”, Alister asked.

Lara looked at the framed photograph of her father and his dear friend Professor Eddington at an archaeological dig site. “If he says Father was convinced the path to Avalon was here, I have no reason to doubt it”.

“Fair enough”, Alister replied, “But it’s, well, we’ve been talking and--”

“You’ve been talking, man”, Zip interrupted, getting out of the chair and heading to the back of the tech room, “Leave me out of it”.

Lara loaded up her gear as she listened to Alister speak. Loading her pistols, she cocked the slide back and turned to the screen when she heard Alister’s voice of disbelief.

“It’s just, all right, maybe Avalon is real, but just because some mad woman tells you your mother didn’t die after all - I mean, look, I don’t mean to seem heartless, but this idea of your mum living in some, some Celtic underworld…well, it’s a little bit mental, isn’t it?”

Lara picked up her scuba gear and walked over to the laptop. “I have no illusions that my mother is holding court in some mythical paradise, Alister. I only want the truth…whatever it may be. I’ll ring you later”.

Closing the video conference, Lara pulled on her scuba gear and executed a swan dive into the water. The beautiful water of the Mediterranean Sea sparkled in the noonday sunlight. Schools of fish happily swam about, sea grass gently danced back and forth with the waves of the water, and where there’s peace, there’s chaos - Lara nearly avoided being snapped up by a large shark.

She pulled the spear gun from her backpack’s holster and fired, the stainless steel rod shot from the gun, piercing the shark’s skin, killing it. It jerked left and right in pain before finally dying, it’s body floating casually upward. Lara noticed she was bleeding, the red liquid merging with the blue water. Noticing another shark following her scent, she swam quickly away.

Turning around quickly, she prepared herself. When the shark neared, she punched it in the nose, sending it swimming away. She mentally exhaled with relief before investigating the temple that lay at the bottom of the sea.

Through the passageway, several jellyfish floated in the darkness of the temple, taking shelter. Ahead, three large golden spheres were imprinted into the wall, symbols engraved into them. Below her, Lara saw what looked like a golden steering wheel. She picked it up and swam over to what she assumed were the doors of the temple.

Putting the wheel into one of the empty slots, it fit perfectly, to Lara’s pleasure. Now, where was the other one? There was already one placed in the middle sphere, but she needed one more. She left the temple and looked around. She spotted a smaller temple and swam toward the doorway. Ahead of her on a raised table was the third wheel. Grabbing it, she swam back to the temple doors and put it inside.

She noticed that it was a puzzle in itself. Each of the doors had symbols on them, the same ones, and Lara assumed that they needed to match. She figured out that by pulling the wheels, the sphere that the wheel was on spins one hundred eighty degrees clockwise. Matching the symbols, the doors opened, revealing a deeper passageway into the temple.

Swimming through it, Lara noticed a dark shadow ahead of her. She swam toward it, but turned around quickly when she heard a crumbling noise. If she had looked back the second she turned around, she would have seen a large tentacle pull back into the temple, out of her way. She turned back around and noticed that the shadow was gone. Shaking thoughts from her mind, she made her way out of the water and onto dry land.

Making her way through the temple, she came into a dark room, a doorway blocked by a gate. She turned her utility light on and saw two pressure plates, most likely when both activated, the doors opened. Lara found two stone weights and put one on the first pressure plate. It wasn’t heavy enough. Lara put the second one on the first plate and it worked. How would she get something heavy on the other plate, and activate the lever to open the gate?

She noticed the head of the snake statue was corroded. Throwing her grapple on it, she pulled it down onto the pressure plate and knew it was more than sufficiently heavy. Heading to the switch, she pulled it, and fire spewed from the first snake statue’s head and from the neck of the second, since the latter was now decapitated.

Lara entered the room and took out her field camera to record her findings. “Incredible! The carvings are clearly similar to early Germanic design”, she said, looking at the carvings along the wall. “But this is far older than the fifth century, yet strangely, more sophisticated”. She examined the carvings above the doorway to the rest of the path leading further into the temple.

She squinted her eyes, studying it closely. “Proto-Norse runes. Let’s see…World of Mist…that would be Niflheim, the Realm of the Dead. Not Avalon exactly, but the Norse equivalent”.

Lara put away her camera and headed further into the temple ruins. She climbed up onto a higher platform and jumped to the ledge above it. Pulling herself up, she dropped down to the other side and headed up the stairs to the temple.

Ahead of her was an open room, it would seem. She headed forward but leapt backward when a giant tentacle shot through the ground, destroying part of the floor. Lara watched as it twisted and slowly descended. Breathing heavily, she crept closely, pulling out her camera. Below her, rested a humongous kraken, the biggest she’s ever seen, blocking the rest of the path. “Oh, that’s lovely”.

Looking above it, Lara noticed a hanging platform, spikes at the bottom of it. On the left and right of it were statues of Thor, the god of Thunder, holding their own platform that locked the spiked platform in place. Lara zoomed in on the kraken’s eye and noticed it was albino, the pupil barely visible. “I hope it’s as blind as it looks”.

Stepping back, Lara noticed a corridor to her right. Heading for it, there was a large hole in the floor, blocking the path to the other side. Lara jumped to the ledge on the left wall and shimmied right, dropping down on the other side. Ahead was another hole - Lara did the same and dropped to the other side. Turning the corner, three vertical poles rested ahead, hanging over the murky water that was surrounding the kraken.

Jumping for the first pole, Lara turned herself and jumped for the second, then the third. The kraken had one of his tentacles wrapped around the column attached to a walkway. Lara jumped to a ledge in between the winds of the tentacle. Shimmying right, she pulled herself up onto the walkway. Before she could react, the kraken squeezed the column with all it’s might, crumbling it to bits. The walkway began to shake and would no doubt fall to the depths below. Lara saw a horizontal pole a foot in front of her, and quickly, she jumped toward it. Swinging, she let go, launching herself onto the right platform that was being held by one of the statues of Thor.

To the right was a room with several gears that no doubt when activated, pulled apart those platforms, letting the spiky platform hang loose. Lara headed into the room and noticed another tentacle resting against the gears, rising up onto the platform. Lara pulled the switch to activate the gears and smirked when they crushed the kraken’s tentacle, causing him to groan in pain and pull his tentacle out of there.

She headed back and jumped onto the spiky platform and headed around it, jumping to the other platform being held by Thor’s statue. She did the same in the second room and smiled when the other platform pulled back. The spiky platform now hung free, being held by one final chain in the center. Lara ran and jumped onto the spiky platform and looked straight ahead. There was a lever in level with the platform, just above the kraken’s position. Jumping for the ledge, Lara grabbed it and pulled herself up onto the walkway. Pulling the lever, the spiky platform raised to the ceiling of the temple.

Looking to her left, the chain that pulled the platform had a weak link, as did the one on the right. Shooting them both, the platform went crashing down onto the kraken’s head, crumbling to bits. Lara watched from above as the kraken jerked around, groaning in excruciating pain. The spikes from the platform were lodged in it’s head, blood spewing out of it. Lara exhaled when the kraken sunk forward underwater, clearing the path Lara was meant to take. She walked to the edge and swan dove into the water. Turning around, she climbed out of the water and activated a switch to open the door that the kraken was guarding. Heading inside, Lara manoeuvred her way through the passageway before finally reaching the last room in the temple - the Gauntlet Chamber. On her left and right were two pressure plates, and ahead was a locked door with a shiny ring at the top. The door had several holes in it so you could see the artifact inside.

Lara walked toward the door and looked inside. She saw a giant statue of Thor, and two statues of Jormungandr on his left and right. “Thor - the Norse god of thunder. Whatever are you doing down here in Niflheim?”. Looking down, she noticed Thor’s Gauntlet hovering above a raised table, a luminous blue magic about it. “According to the Eddus, Thor needed special iron gauntlets to wield his mighty hammer, Mjolnir. Could it be?”.

Lara found two stone weights and put them on the first pressure plate, as one was not heavy enough. The weights pushed the plate down, and the first lock on the door deactivated. Lara hooked her grapple onto the door and stepped onto the second plate. The second lock went down and Lara pulled the door open. Stepping inside, she went to touch the glove, but it fell to pieces in front of her. Floating in it’s place was an artifact, the size of a fist. It was iron all right, but not as heavy as one would imagine.

Lara examined it before placing it on her hand. Four pieces shot out and locked itself onto Lara’s hand protectively. A radiant blue light shown on Lara’s hand in the shape of a glove. “Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir, was powerful enough to level mountains…but how does all this relate to Avalon?”.

Before she could investigate further, she jumped at the sound of the cocking of a machine gun. She turned around to see herself outnumbered by a group of mercenaries. The leader was closest to her and aimed an AK-47 directly at her chest. “Put your hands on your head!”, he said in an Irish accent, “Turn around, slowly”.

Lara hesitated for a moment, looking at the group. Two on his left behind him, another two on the right. She knew she couldn’t take them. She mentally swore and did as he instructed. “I don’t supposed you’d be open to bribery…would you?”.

He came up behind her and slammed his gun against her head, knocking her out. When Lara came to, her vision was blurred for a moment. She looked at her hand and saw she was lacking a gauntlet. She turned around to see the mercenary leader set something down at the entrance of the room before the chamber. “Amanda Evert sends her regards”, he said.

Lara pulled out one of her guns and pulled the trigger, but all she heard was a click. He had disarmed her - she saw her ammunition magazines tossed aside. He turned around and squeezed a device, pressing a button on it. Lara heard beeping and knew what it was. Sliding behind the table, she ducked as the bomb went off, trapping her inside the chamber. She looked up and saw that the exit was blocked by debris. “Bloody hell”, she sighed.

Lara looked around for a way out and found a ledge that led up and around the debris. She dropped down on the other side and followed the mercenary out of the temple. Backtracking, she made her way to her yacht and climbed aboard, wiping her forehead. Looking to her right, she saw a cargo ship in the distance, barely visible in the fading fog. She took out her field camera and zoomed in on it, looking around. She spotted the mercenary leader walking around the bow of the ship, heading down to the cargo hold.

Lara put the camera away and got into the driver’s seat. Turning the engine on, she sped toward the cargo ship. Pulling along side the anchor, Lara stopped her yacht and climbed up the chain holding the anchor. Climbing over the railing, she climbed aboard the ship and took out the mercenaries wandering above deck.

Following the path the leader took, she eliminated the rest of the mercenaries trying to stop her. Heading through the engine room, she dove forward as the mercenary leader came from behind her and opened fire. Lara returned it and reloaded behind a canister. She looked up as the mercenary leader’s bullets hit it. Lara gasped as she read what is said - flammable. “No..”.

She sprinted out of the way just as it exploded, launching her forward. The explosion killed the mercenary leader, to Lara’s pleasure. She made her way below deck and followed the sound of voices. Pressing against the wall before the next room, she peered inside, but ducked back a little to avoid being seen. “Damn! It’s too small!”, she heard Amanda say.

“Only Lara can use it now”, the second voice said.

“Until I kill her”.

“Even that won’t help you unbind the artifact”.

The ship shook violently, making Amanda lose balance. Regaining it, she looked around, angry. “Shit, we’re taking on water. Damn it! We’ll pick this up again later”, she said, taking off.

Lara headed inside, and in front of her was a large, glass, specimen jar. She saw a creature in a white suit with wings, sitting with its back to Lara.

“I’m very pleased to see you again, Lara”, it said. Turning around, Lara gasped when she saw none other than Jacqueline Natla. “This specimen jar offers little in the way of amusement - so I’ve grown fond of watching Amanda suffer the effects of sharing your interests”.

“Jacqueline Natla”, Lara said, walking toward the jar, “You just don’t know when to die”.

“A trait we have in common”, Natla remarked, walking around in her chamber.

“It was you who told Amanda about Avalon”.

Above her, the specimen jar’s locks deactivated, pulling inside the jar. “Our time is short, so choose your questions carefully”.

“What do you know about my mother?”, Lara asked.

“The dais you and she found in Nepal is part of a travel network, so to speak. It took your mother to Avalon”.

“My father thought Avalon was below, but that’s Niflheim. What’s the Norse connection?”

“Ah, Richard found the wrong Norse underworld. Your mother didn’t go to Niflheim; she went to Helheim”.

“Where is it?”, Lara demanded.

“I will tell you where it is…one day”.

The door above the jar opened, revealing the sky. Lara focused on it as Natla jumped against the glass, making Lara jump back, startled.

“But when that day comes, you’ll need Thor’s Hammer to get inside. Perhaps you’ll have better luck finding it then your father did”.

“What do you mean?”.

Before Lara could ask any more questions, the specimen jar released, raising upward. “Your answer is on the west-coast of Thailand. Seventh parallel!”, Natla said as a helicopter extracted the jar from the ship.

Lara heard an evacuation alarm as the ship began to sink. Lara headed for the exit, sprinting down the corridor as pieces of the ship fell around her. A flammable barrel exploded, causing fire to spread amongst the locker room of the ship. As the ship began to sink, vertically, may I remind you, Lara cursed aloud and climbed her way toward the escape doors of the ship.

Pushing one open, she walked out onto it and looked down - the water was a good thirty feet below her. She looked to her left however, when she heard the whizzing of a helicopter. She saw Amanda dangling from a rope. She pulled out her pistol and fired at Amanda, the first shot missed, but the second grazed her along the left cheek. Amanda threw the gauntlet into the water and climbed into the helicopter.

Lara holstered her gun and swan dove off the door, moving her arms in front of her as she neared the water. The cold water felt good compared to the heat of the fire in the ship. Grabbing the gauntlet, she climbed onto her yacht and watched as the helicopter faded into the distance. Smiling, she looked at the artifact and headed to the cabin. Starting the engine of the yacht, she was on her way home.
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RedHell

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Thursday, November 27th 2008, 7:01pm

Aww, poor underpus, and Lara even grinned while smashing his tentacle. Mean :P

Again, I love the way you write. But now, for the first time, I noticed a passage I didn't like:

Quoted

She looked to her left however, when she heard the whizzing of a helicopter. She saw Amanda dangling from a rope. She pulled out her pistol and fired at Amanda, the first shot missed, but the second grazed her along the left cheek.


You used "she" as a beginning for a sentence three times in a row, I think there could have been a more elegant solution ;-)

Looking forward to chapter two :-)
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Thursday, November 27th 2008, 7:07pm

I appreciate the feedback, RedHell. I'll footnote that and be sure to take it into account for the next chapter. Thanks, :-) !
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Saturday, January 3rd 2009, 2:56pm

Usually I don't bump threads, but I was hoping you'd continue this at some point...? I'm still interested in reading your next chapters if there are any :-)
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Saturday, January 3rd 2009, 3:31pm

I'm taking some time on Thailand, but I've skipped ahead and wrote Croft Manor, if you'd like to give that a whirl. Here it is, :D :

Chapter Three: Croft Manor

Spoiler Spoiler

My father stripped Bhogavati of artifacts and destroyed any information that might have led to Helheim, but he left behind a clue that only I would be able to understand. He must have discovered something very dangerous to destroy such an important archaeological site.

Lara descended the main stairs of Croft Manor after changing out of her damp and dirty shorts and tank top. She now wore dark brown slacks, a matching pinstripe jacket and a black undershirt; her boots were brown leather, the pants tucked into them - her new favorite style. Heading into the Tech Room with Winston, Zip and Alister looked as they proceeded to a bare section of the wall. Winston pulled out a ring of keys and inserted one in the barely visible keyhole. “My apologies, Lady Croft. But I have not tended to the crypt recently.”

He opened the hidden door to the Croft crypt and stepped aside so Lara could go through the doorway. Zip and Alister headed toward the door, a little freaked out. “Why didn’t you ever tell us this was down here?”, Alister asked.

“Yeah, I wish I still didn’t know. You know what, I‘ll wait up here.”

Lara flicked the light switch, but nothing happened. Turning around, she grabbed two flashlights and tossed one to Zip. “I did warn you that playing your music so loud could wake the dead.”

Zip shrugged and helped Alister lift a dark green crate down the steps after Lara and Winston. Descending the steps, Lara shone the light toward the stone caskets that lay down there. The dark, damp room, was infested with spider webs and mildew. “Damn. This is creepy”, Zip shuddered.

“What makes you think it’s here?”, Alister asked.

“Father signing his name with all three initials was a clear reference to my grandfather”. Lara found her grandfather’s tomb and walked over to it, setting the flashlight down on top of it. Crouching, she felt around for something that would be of use. “Light, please.”

Zip shone the light in the right spot - a silver switch on the side of the casket reflected the light. Lara flipped the switch and stepped back as the casket rattled and slide aside, revealing a stone staircase. “Well, it seems my father was full of surprises”, she smiled.

Heading down the steps, she maneuvered her way through the passageway and down to the room ahead. Pulling out her guns, she fired several shots at the bats and rather large spiders coming her way. Once they were done for, Lara headed forward and found a pressure plate. Nothing around her was heavy enough to put on it. Looking around, she found a way to get up to the higher level. Climbing on the scaffolding, Lara found her way to the ledge above that led into the next room. Jumping for a horizontal pole, she swung to the other side and proceeded down the steps.

Finding two stone blocks, she carried one to the closed gate and dropped it. Going back for the second, she reached the gate and stepped on the pressure pad. Throwing the stone through the now open gate, she picked up the other and threw it as well. Diving forward, she made it back into the first room before the gate closed. Bringing the blocks onto the first pressure plate, she set them down and to her pleasure, they were heavy enough. Both gates opened and the fire was activated, illuminating the entire room. Heading to the room ahead, Lara found a structure with several levers. Above were metal designs that when turned properly, reflected angels on both sides of the locked door ahead. Pulling the levers properly, the locks pulled back. Lara headed to the mechanism under the door and rotated it so the door opened. She looked up and noticed the door was slowly closing.

Heading around the structure, Lara climbed onto the one behind it. Climbing up the ledges, she reached the top of the second structure. Firing her grapple at the ring, she jumped and swung through the narrow space between the closing door. She disengaged her grapple and got it back just as the door closed. Heading up the steps, she reached her father’s secret study. On the desk was the same ancient stone glove she saw in Niflheim. Thor’s second gauntlet lie inside of it. Next to the glove was a tape player. Lara pressed the play button and gasped when she heard her father’s voice. How she missed it so!

“Hello Lara. Here in this room is everything we recovered from Bhogavati, Thailand. Be especially careful with the thralls…”

Lara turned and noticed a metal cage that looked like it was ripped open. Walking toward it, she looked around cautiously. “…they managed to kill six of us before we boxed them up. They were protecting one of Thor’s gauntlets, and the map showing where the rest of his treasures were hidden. All of which are necessary to open the way to Avalon.”

Lara headed back to the desk and leaned over it, listening to her father explain. “The Norse believed this site contained a powerful weapon and to safeguard against this possibility, I destroyed the original map. I hope this was not a terrible mistake…”

Picking up the manila envelope, Lara opened it and saw a photograph of the map before her father destroyed it. “…but if it was, I hope you and your mother can forgive me”. Lara put down the envelope and touched the gauntlet. The glove disintegrated and the gauntlet levitated in midair, shining with the familiar, radiant, blue light. Lara put it on her right hand and it wrapped around it, the shape of a glove taking presence over her hand.

Hearing a strange growl, she turned around to become face to face with what her father described as a thrall. It looked like a skinless tiger with tattered fur all over it. Behind her, another one closed in. Lara vaulted over the desk and emptied both pistols into them. They dropped dead, but moved slightly. Lara raised her eyebrows as they levitated and came back to live. “Oh my God”, she gasped. Firing at them a second time, they dropped dead again. Stomping on their corpses, their bones scattered all over the floor. Lara prayed they were done for good, and to her pleasure, they were.

Walking around the room, a platform shone with the same light the gauntlet was shining with. Touching the platform, Lara was able to move it with the power of the gauntlet. Positioning it in between two other platforms, Lara climbed onto the thrall cage, onto the platform and up onto a ledge. Shimmying her way around the ledge, she jumped to the right and grabbed the ledge on the next platform. Jumping behind her, she pulled herself onto the ledge of the exit of the study. As she did, the light of the gauntlet faded. Pulling it off, Lara sighed. “That didn’t last long. Ah well”. Putting it in her backpack, she headed up the stairs and pulled the lever, opening the secret doorway leading to the hidden passageway in her bedroom.

She started walking through the passageway but stopped in her tracks however, when the house began to shake violently. She heard an explosion, and ahead of her, chunks of the wall flew out, fire ablaze. She quickly turned around to see the same thing happen behind her. “My God!”, she cried, a look of fear on her face.

Heading forward, she climbed over the rubble, her hands covering her face in an attempt to protect herself from the fire. She climbed over more debris before finally reaching the door to the study. Pulling the lever, the door opened. Stepping through it, Lara saw her entire manor in flames, the roof blown partially open, showing the rainy, night sky.

She knew she’d have to find Zip, Alister, and Winston before worrying what had happened. She made her way to the door but it was blocked, at hot. Lara quickly pulled her hands back and shook them to cool them. She attached the hook of her grapple onto the handle and stepped back. Pulling the cord, the door blew open, fire following. She covered her face and headed through the hallway.

Climbing around rubble and flame, she reached the doorway to the main hall and stairwell. Heading to descend the stairs, she noticed the entire stairwell was engulfed in debris and flames. Attaching her grapple to the ring conveniently placed above the stairwell, she jumped and swung across to the other side. Running to the open part of the banisters, she dropped down onto the stone floor of the main hall. Heading toward the main doors, she saw Zip and Winston trying to open them.

Spotting her, Zip stepped forward and fired at her. “Look out!”, he said to Winston. Lara jumped back, avoiding the shot. She had a ‘what the hell’ look on her face.

“Stop!”, Winston exclaimed, “its Lara!”.

“I know!”, Zip yelled back.

He proceeded to fire at Lara who rolled out of the way and took cover behind one of the pillars. “Zip, wait!”, she yelled. All Lara heard was the sound of gunshots and felt the heat of her burning manor. When she heard the clicking of an empty gun, she pulled hers out, popped out of cover, and aimed at Zip. “Drop it Zip, or I’ll drop you.”

“What, so you can shoot me again?”, he growled.

Winston held him back, trying to talk some sense into him. “It wasn’t Lara! Why would she set fire to her own home?”

“She got into the vault. It had to be her!”

Lara carefully made her way toward Zip and Winston. “Is that what happened here? Someone blew open the vault?”

“All right”, Zip said, pushing Winston aside, “Say it wasn’t you…someone who looked a hell of a lot like you opened it using the retina scanner.”

“Impossible.”

“Exactly!”

Lara frowned and gestured for Zip to toss the gun and the ammunition clip aside. “Then what happened?”

“You…she got away with Amanda’s Wraith Stone.”

A thought struck Lara’s mind as she turned to Winston. “Where’s Alister?”

“We haven’t seen him.”

“All right. I’m going to the Tech Room to watch the security video. You two get out before the roof comes down.”

Lara headed to the fireplace as Winston helped Zip out of the burning manor. Lara glanced upward at the portrait of her mother and father. As the painting remained intact, she exhaled when she noticed that the left side of Amelia’s face was missing, no doubt burned off by the fire. Lara waved a disturbing thought from her mind before climbing up the side of the mantle. Reaching the second floor of the manor, she jumped for the horizontal pole sticking out of the glass wall of the Tech Room. Climbing on top of the wall, she dropped onto the other side.

Heading for the computers, Lara slowed to a halt when she sensed something wrong. Turning around slowly, she saw her shadow on the other side of the glass. Raising an eyebrow, she walked toward it, tilting her head. It came closer as she neared the glass. It moved as she moved. Lara got close to the glass but gasped at what she saw. It was her doppelganger. She wore a black catsuit, dual pistols in her leg holsters. She had wine red hair pulled into a braided ponytail and fierce, yellow eyes. “No…”

Lara glanced back at the switch to open the doors. Stepping backward and pulling out a pistol, the doppelganger mimicked her exactly. Lara looked past her when she saw Alister step behind her, coughing. She turned and fired a shot to Alister’s chest, sending him to the floor. “NOOO!”

Instantly, Lara hit the switch and started toward the door but jumped back when she became face to face with the doppelganger. She blinked and smiled faintly, yet mischievously. Lara raised both pistols to her face and fired, but her clone already dodged the shots and was on her left. She twisted Lara’s arm, forcing her to drop one of the guns. Spinning out of her grip, Lara aimed her other gun at her head and fired. Nothing. Looking to her right, Lara turned as the clone stood where she was previously, her head tilted. Lara aimed at her and fired, but the clone ducked out of the way. Twisting Lara’s hand, she kicked her twice in the stomach and punched her in the face before ducking down and sweeping her leg under Lara. Standing up, she glared over Lara before running out of the Tech Room.

Lara sat up and rubbed her head in time to see the doppelganger jump onto the stairwell railing and through an open section of the ceiling, like a genetically engineered super-being. Lara got up and ran out of the Tech Room, dropping to Alister’s side. “Alister!”

“I feel…bloody awful”, he groaned.

“Shh, just lie still”. Lara applied pressure to the bullet wound as Alister jerked in pain.

“See--see you--”

“Alister, hold on!”

He grabbed Lara’s shoulders and looked into her eyes. “See you in…Avalon”. With that, Alister let go of Lara and dropped back into the floor, dead. Lara lowered her head and sighed, fighting an urge to let a tear fall. “Damn it!”.

Outside the manor, Zip and Winston waited by the hedges near the gate. Zip looked up when he saw a figure drop from a high point of the manor. Winston looked too as the doppelganger glanced in their direction before sprinting out of the grounds. Looking back toward the manor, Zip saw Lara head toward them, Alister’s body over her shoulder. Stopping near them, she gently set Alister down and turned to look at her manor. “Oh no”, Zip groaned.

Winston checked his pulse and shook his head negatively.

“What the hell was that thing?”, he asked Lara.

Turning toward Zip, she sighed. “I’ve only seen something like it once before - a doppelganger that Natla sent after me years ago…but that one didn’t have a mind of its own.”

“But how could Natla have sent it if she’s Amanda’s prisoner?”, Winston asked.

“They’re a team of sorts now. Amanda and Natla, her pet Atlantean god”, Lara mocked.

“What are we going to do?”

Lara listened carefully and heard sirens in the distance. Taking a few steps toward the gate, she faced away from the two. “After I deal with the authorities, I’m going to Southern Mexico to retrieve Thor’s belt”. Lara grinned at the thought of finding Mjolnir and slamming Natla with it. She turned when she heard Zip’s word of protest.

“What?! Alister’s dead! And…it’s just business as usual?”

“I need Thor’s belt to get his hammer”, Lara said, walking toward them, “And I need the hammer to kill a god”. Turning toward the gate, she walked toward the police who surrounded Croft Manor, leaving Zip and Winston groveling over Alister’s body. Lara couldn’t imagine what the police would do when they saw two guns in her leg holsters and a shotgun strapped to her backpack.
RPG Character Profile
"A famous explorer once said that the extraordinary is in what we do, not who we are."

RedHell

Fridge Raider

  • "RedHell" is female

Posts: 2,767

Location: Hamburg

TR Platforms: PC, GBC, Xbox 360

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9

Saturday, January 3rd 2009, 3:54pm

Now that's what I call a quick reply :-o
And that you skipped to the Croft Manor level reminds me of one of my previous posts...

I bet I'm going to cry if you... describe, uhh, certain incidents in a very emotional way ;( ( [hehe] )


I was a bit confused by theses two parts:

Spoiler Spoiler

Lara glanced back at the switch to open the doors. Stepping backward and pulling out a pistol, the doppelganger mimicked her exactly. Lara looked past her when she saw Alister step behind her, coughing. She turned and fired a shot to Alister’s chest, sending him to the floor. “NOOO!”

...

Winston checked his pulse and shook his head negatively.
“What the hell was that thing?”, he asked Lara.


Because...

Spoiler Spoiler

... in the first part, it gives the impression that the actual Lara fired at Alister, not her doppelganger. In the second quote, you'd think it was Winston asking the question, but iirc, it was Zip ;-)


Alright, now I'm done being a smart ass [hehe] I liked how you described everything so detailed, I can only imagine how many times you played the game or watched cutscene videos and runs to get everything right ;-) Looking forward to the next part.
"It's not denial. I'm just selective about the reality I accept."