Jaws in the Ruins



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"I got to the place where we lost contact with the drone 69-291."

On the muddy bottom layed the cut parts of the foundation drone, it was facing straight at the stone wall. Doctor Dariusz Kowal, wearing a special HORN suit for works at this depth, swam closer to the wall. Behind the rock itself, he could see the outlines of the city's ruins. Tall structures with soaring towers, now that researchers were aware of their existence, stood out clearly from the landscape. Occasionally he saw shrimp coming out of the windows of overturned towers to begin hunting.

Dariusz swam closer to one of the buildings. The walls covered with silt, after running a gentle hand over them, showed a stone as white as snow. This building had four smaller towers at its corners, one completely overturned, and one tallest in the center. Dariusz more surely grabbed the harpoon and swam inside the building. The walls inside were richly decorated, the decorations were either pure gold or gilded. The main hall of the building was completely empty, leading to two corridors away. Yes, there was a wall where the bas-relief was probably originally, but now it was completely destroyed. By who or by what, he couldn't tell.

Corridor, another room. This room was in the shape of an octagon, and in its center there was a monument depicting a tall woman dressed in dignified robes flowing with gold. Her head was also decorated with a crown made of gold. The robes of the figures on the monument were lowered from the shoulders, revealing the back, from which imposing wings rose.The monument seemed to regard Dariusz with contempt.

The doctor moved closer to the figure to get a better look at the base on which it was standing, on which there was a barely legible inscription in a language he did not understand. Hearing the tapping on the stone, Dariusz immediately stopped in place, one of the local shrimps swam into the room, fiddling with its legs and looking carefully for a victim, began to swim towards him.He felt his heart pound and sweat inside his suit. He more confidently grabbed a harpoon while watching an approaching predator. When the scythe-like blade almost brushed against Darius, he decided to react quickly. Swipe by hand, reverse harpoon and fire. The shrimp screeched, then collapsed unconsciously, flexing. The Doctor began to retrieve the harpoon from the shrimp, causing its blood to be released into the sea. As the diluted shrimp blood began to descend onto the monument, the floor began to move, opening a passage downstairs.

"I am inside the building as I remember vorrectly, A-3. Found a statue of an unidentified woman, Fae inscriptions, was attacked by a shrimp, and accidentally opened a hidden passage " said Dariusz on the communicator.

He swam down, carnivorous plants grew on the walls, it began to seem to him that despite the lack of eyes they were watching him in order to devour him. Trying to avoid them, he floated down to a large room. There was a great bas-relief on one of the walls here, showing the woman in the figure above, she now had a trident in her hand and was sitting on an armored fish, a dunkleosteus.

In front of the bas-relief there were stone tables, probably for sacrifices. On the walls on the sides, you could see gold chains attached to them, probably for the arms and legs. The walls themselves on the sides were decorated with bas-reliefs resembling tentacles. They looked as if they came out from under the bas-relief of the woman and encircled the room.

On the other side of the room, in front of the bas-relief, there were badly damaged golden bars. The darkness made it impossible to judge what was behind them. Dariusz swam closer to them and turned on the stronger flashlight next to the helmet of the suit. There were many skeletons inside, both animal and human. Everything was covered with silt and stones, but some could see the bottom of the room.

The skeletal layer was a good four meters. Looking sideways, Darius saw that the wall of the room was completely destroyed, revealing the entrance to the cave, which was illuminated by greenish crystals. After taking appropriate photos of the room, Dariusz swam towards the cave. He saw small scorpions wearing shells like a hermit crab. Small crystals grew out of these shells and were also present on the walls.

After seeing Dariusz, they began to hide in the shell, raising their spiked tails. Dariusz took pictures of them and then noticed something else, a cave painting of a humanoid with wings carved on the wall, he had something similar to a spear, stripped naked and emaciated. And in front of him was a painted armored fish, opening its jaws to devour him.

Then a loud, rumbling roar was heard from the depths of the corridors. Dariusz looked towards the sound, grabbing the harpoon more firmly and retreating to the room with the skeletons. A large armored fish appeared from around the corner of the cave. Dariusz, not wasting time looking at the creature, drifted away.

The fish itself swam slowly in, the light of the crystals allowed her to accurately show her silhouette. Strong jaws, no teeth, but with bone plates. The armored front part of the body, in this case one could argue, namely that a few plates were missing, the fish's left eye was literally non-existent, and spears were impaled between the plates that remained. The longer a person looked at this fish, the more it felt as if he was looking at a zombie than at a living creature.

Dariusz tried not to move, not to draw attention to himself. Then the dunkleosteus began to accelerate, and hit his head forcefully on the bars separating the rooms, these broke almost without any problems, leaving a few fragments in the head of the fish, Dariusz noticed that there were more of them already, and that they would definitely have pierced the brain. The fish seemed to be in constant pain and madness, the next quick decision that Dariusz made was to run away.

He began swimming rapidly upward to leave the building and return to the facility. His jerky movement caught the attention of a fish that began to follow him.

"It's me again, I am chased by a large extinct fish, I will try to return to the facility as soon as I can! " shouted Dariusz through the communicator.

He appeared in the room with the figure and made his way to the exit immediately. He was back in the ruins of the city, the loud sound of the fish behind him gave him enough energy to move away from the building. When he looked back, he saw one of the temple towers which he had left falling, crashing into the ground, lifting the silt upwards. From the place where the tower had been before, the dunkleosteus swam immediately to the next tower, and began rubbing against it, thrusting spears and debris deeper into his body.

Seeing this, Dariusz began to accelerate to return to the Site. After a while he realized something terrible. He had the flashlight on his forehead on all the time, which he quickly turned off. As he looked around himself, he was surrounded by a group of lights. They were shrimps. He froze, grabbing a harpoon, and staring from the shrimps to the zombie fish in the distance.

"Ok-kay, I might have a minor problem. I am surrounded by shrriri-imps. The extinct fish is absolutely annihilating the fucking building in the ruins, and I can't move too much. I would like to ask for heheelp" Dariusz said in a nervous voice then took a slow step forward.

At one point, something caught the attention of Dariusz. It was the lights approaching him, like floodlights, began to illuminate him. He felt an unusually pleasant warmth flow from them. He immediately forgot about the shrimp and the zombie fish in the ruins. Only these two lights mattered. Upon closer inspection, he noticed that it was a foundation submarine. He began to swim towards her, throwing the harpoon aside from him, the shrimps themselves in the presence of the boat began to swim away frightened.

Through the front window of the boat, the doctor noticed Susie, the facility's security commander. She waved her hand at him, then blew a kiss. Dariusz, a bit embarrassed, swam even closer until he grabbed the entrance to the boat. A pleasant, fleshy touch of entering the boat will finally bring him peace and rest.

Wait

Fleshy touch?

In an instant, the illusion shattered, revealing to Dariusz the jaws of a giant fish that looked like a hybrid with a squid. Before Dariusz could react, the tentacles grabbed him and slipped him right into the jaws, the whole world was now darkness to him.

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