Gunvor was lost in the cold, dark depths of the mountain. How could the minotaur have gotten separated from the blacksmith? He could hear the human calling out to him, but the guts of the mountain distorted the sound, twisting it, making it echo everywhere around him. And the smell…the rot of decay, the stink of it filling his nostrils, making him unable to catch his friend’s scent. There were dead things here, and perhaps some things living that were best left alone and not encountered.
The candle he held cast a feeble glow, barely giving him enough light to see, but his instincts told him this might be the only good thing out of this terrifying experience. He probably wouldn’t want to see the terrors that lurked behind every shadow, but he also wouldn’t want the wick to go out. Even if it meant the light might attract unwanted attention.
That, in his opinion, would be a very bad thing. Almost as bad as not having any light.
A natural bridge came into view of the candlelight, and from what he could see it spanned across a chasm that was perhaps bottomless, but fortunately it was wide enough for him to cross, his hooves clacking dully on the stone surface. What might lay ahead of him? More danger? The friends the blacksmith spoke of, or their corpses? He’d seen dead bodies–he saw too many when he was forced to flee his home and everyone he loved or die at the hands of the kundalini–but the thought of having to see any corpses inside this cold, dark mountain filled him with a chilling dread down to his bones.
What if there were things here that could cut even his hide? As a minotaur, his skin was tough as armor, but even armor could be damaged. He didn’t want to be damaged. Where was the blacksmith? Was he dead? Hurt? Or worse? What could be worse than death, he wasn’t quite sure, but he was very sure he never wanted to know.
His first mistake was daring to call out for the blacksmith.
His second mistake was failing to look over his shoulder.