Have you ever been locked up before? And I mean locked up. Really locked up. Not some wimpy "oh they threw me into a poorly constructed metal cage that fell apart after I sneezed too hard". No? Why, then it is my professional medical opinion that this horribly condition of your's be rectified as soon as possible.
If you have, well then, there's the small possibility, minuscule possibility, that you're not a simpleton completely lacking any number of brain cells devoted to higher level cogent thought processes. If you managed to exit said prison on your own oh so valuable time and without being escorted out in chains, then you've an even greater chance of actually being able to correctly use that wasted space between your audio receptors. Congratulations, you're now as intelligent as most respectable Rahi, please now continue on with your miserable lives and fool yourself into thinking that you can think.
But that means nothing if didn't go into that prison by your own free will.
It's one thing to be captured by the land's most elite guard, the "best of the best" which I've heard oh so many times since the beginning of my stay here, and then escape, but it's a complete other animal to fool them into giving you the premium tour of their most secure facilities at your leisure.
Yes, I probably could have overpowered the guards that brought me here. Yes, I could have easily broken the Matoran who shackled me's neck and made a run for it there. Yes, I could have done any number of things to make my stay here take up far less of my time.
But I didn't.
It's quite simple, really, though I suppose that's why so many claiming to be able to use their head for things other than looking ugly fail to grasp.
Thok may have been a planner, a plotter and a schemer. A master mastermind and "I don't have to lift a finger" manipulator. But even he'd be blindly grasping for answers. I'm not a plotter, I'm not Thok.
I'm a thinker. And I'm a doer.
I do not waste my time planning in the shadows, waiting for others to complete my goals for me, not when I could swing the sword far more effectively than they ever could.
You see, a prison is easily the most educational place you'll ever be granted the chance to see in your short, ephemeral lives. Know the prison, and you know the man who built it. From the walls to the furniture inside, all speak a story of him, if one is able to listen.
A prison tells you what his strengths are, where he deludes himself into thinking he's powerful. Where he bases his defenses on, what he relies on too keep himself standing. A prison sings of his hopes and dreams, his values and morals. As well as the fears he holds within the deepest part of his being. Though arguably most importantly to my narrative, a prison speaks of where he is weak, where he attempts to defend his weakness, and how exploit it.
And I've just about have Ta-Koro and his soulless, stone prison figured out.
It's not the first volcano-nation that I've been held captive by, so it's really nothing that new. Granted, this one has a much poorer taste in prisoner comfort and interior design. Seriously, these manacles are almost cutting into my wrists, and there's nothing here but stone and ash.
To say the least, the first involved large wooden statues, tiki masks, lots of crazy; dermis turtle-worshiping; natives, and Avak in a coconut bikini. Yeah, I know, pretty sure that single event caused the mass extinction of any hope this world had of ever knowing handsomeness. As well as fatally scaring most of the natives.
There might have also been a little thing about sacrificing the "blue demon from the depths of Dermis Turtle karz" to the "giant smoking mountain gods" in order to appease the benevolently brutally murderous "gods of the big wet thing around island" to stop them from making the "gaint Dermis Turtle on the edge of the world" make a "big splash".
Which apparently would be a bad thing, as I found out from some angry natives.
But the prison they locked me up in, was that the place to be. Endless tables full of unnaturally colored fruit, some nice big pieces of tribal wear that I'm pretty sure were solid gold, a throne which I took full advantage of, a bunch of natives with no idea what wearing coverings meant and seemed pretty keen on making sure that I was prepared for my eventual horrifyingly gruesome fiery death, and other such nice things that this place just does not have.
Unfortunately, the rest of my companions "rescued" me from that amazing place far too earily for my liking, but I can't really blame them for it. Thinking ahead does require a-usable-head to do so.
But yes, Ta-Koro was a puzzle, one that fit together nicely.
I was held within a relatively small cell, of approximately the same length and width, though just tall enough for me to not touch the dull, grey ceiling with my arms extended. A single lightstone embedded in the wall just about the featureless stone door was the only course of light, as the cell itself has no windows to speak off. Obviously, considering the fact that I was underground, evident by the route which I was taken to get here, and the uncomfortably large amount of heat radiating from the walls themselves. My weapons had long since been confiscated, as well as my armor. That was not much of a worry, I knew where they were holding them.
Currently, my wrists were bound together by a set of roughly molded metal cuffs, which themselves were lashed to the center of the cell floor by a length of chain of about a bio in length. Surprisingly, they actually blindfolded me as well, a precaution I didn't expect them to take against me, even if my species was known for it's visual abilities. My lack of sight of course made the cell seem much smaller than it actually was, though it hadn't bothered me yet.
All in all, a well prepared cage for a dangerous captive. Not to mention the unpleasant fellow who was currently standing just outside the door, there to stop me should I decide to take a walk.
I wasn't the only one here, as there were a number of other cells lined up along the cramped hallway deep beneath the Koro's surface, and judging by the number of guards stationed here, they weren't just empty cells.
The prison's strengths were obvious, the cell was built solidly to prevent any easy means of getting out, the depth gave those who did manage to escape quite the hike to take to get to the surface, and then there was the heat. A heat that would undoubtedly wear down prisoners, sapping them of their will to rebel.
Now, to just turn the tables a bit, and knock the feet out from under this place.
I stopped for a moment in my musings, the neutral grin plastered across my face turning downward into a frown. There were... sounds... just outside my cell. And not the normal sounds that I'd attribute to this lovely place. I'm quite certain that torture wasn't a method used by most self-respecting Matoran, so shouts don't really fit in here.
I knelt down, pressing my head against the warm stone floor to hear more.
And generally, it does not seem like the place where cell doors would be torn away, and then chucked against the wall, but that's just me guessing here. The unmistakable impact of footsteps, though the hard, rapid footfalls of someone going somewhere in a hurry. Not at all the slow beat of a criminal being lead away. Oh yes, something was definitely happening.
I was getting tired of waiting here anyway. So why not?
I pushed myself off from the ground, the movement awkward from the fact that my hands were bound together.
Heat was Ta-Koro's strength. The entire village was built around the concept of fiery warmth, though this was the farthest thing from a surprise as one could get. They lived by it, hid behind it, fought with it, farmed it. It was this singular idea that laid the foundations of their way of life.
Which was great and all.
Because I just so happened to be able to use that.
Thus why I spent the last few minutes gathering the heat from the area surrounding me, consolidating the source of power that just came off in waves from the stone encasing me. I could not see, but I could feel it, and I could direct it. And I did, manipulating the burning power towards the metal bindings surrounding my wrists. I winced as the metal immediately shot up in temperature far faster than I expected, pity, I suppose heat resistance wasn't something I'd picked up from the Maru. No matter, pain was a temporary sensation.
It didn't take long for the iron to soften to the point where I could pull my wrists apart, bending the cuffs back. They fell to the floor with a clatter, the acrid stench of something burnt filled the air. I rubbed my hands together, before reaching up and removing the blindfold from around my eyes.
The steady, unending light from the single lightstone shot daggers into my eyes before I was able to adjust to the sudden brightness of the world around. I blink once, my vision gradually returning to a more usable state.
No longer stuck in one place, I moved towards the solid, unmovable block that was the cell door, pressing my audioreceptor against it to try and get a feel for what was on the other side. I did not hear a thing, which was good enough for me.
I took a step back, looking the structure blocking my exit up and down. The hinges were locked on the other side, so I was unable to see them, but I had a good guess as to where they were. I raised a hand, and directed my newfound power towards the door.
No, I wasn't going to try to melt through solid stone, even though I probably could with the Maru's prodigious power, but the metal lock would give way under the rising temperature soon enough.
Not a minute later, and my efforts were rewarded as the door suddenly shifted slightly. I smiled, the movement causing my mouth to spread nearly across my entire face. Having no desire to burn myself, I drained the stone of excess thermal energy before giving the previously immovable door one good shove.
The stone block fell forward, hitting the ground with a wonderfully satisfying boom. Whoops. I stuck my head out and glanced left and then right. The guard stationed at my cell was nowhere to be seen, though the door to an adjacent cell currently lying against the wall explained why well enough. I stepped over the now ineffectively placed door into the corridor outside, dusting myself off.
And with that, I strolled down the hall to the surface, mildly surprised at the lack of resistance on my way out as I traced my steps to get here backwards. I rounded a corner, and came upon the body of what I assumed was the guard that attempted to stop the first escapee. The remains of his mask lay around him. I stepped around the body, the pieces of his Kanohi crunching beneath my clawed feet.
A few corners later, and I paused, the faint sound of footsteps echoing just up ahead. Careful footsteps. Not of the kind that guards would use to try and apprehend escaped captives. I could probably find my way our of this granite maze, but on a whim, I followed the footsteps through the winding corridors. They took me in a somewhat roundabout path, though as far as I could tell, I was approaching the exit to this prison.
Suddenly, a shout sounded behind me, the noise echoing through the halls. That's my cue. I quickened my pace from a light jog to a full on sprint down the corridor, managing to keep the guards behind me at least a reasonable distance from me.
I rounded one last corner, skidding a few inches before I dug my claws into the ground, and came upon another hallway with a single open door located at the end. There were shouts coming from there too, but they didn't seem to be directed towards me.
I didn't stop, and simply ran the last few bio towards it, skidding to a stop as I passed through it.
Judging by the scenery laid out around me, I'd say this was the female lockers.
Forget what I said earlier about this place having bad interior design.
Too bad I didn't have time to take in and fully appreciate the view. Most of the guards who I assume were inside when the first escapee ran through here, judging by their dress, or lack of, were crowded around a shattered window, muttering something about not again. And didn't seem to have noticed me.
And so, I did the thing that any reasonably intelligent being would do, and ran towards them. One turned to the sound of footsteps, a look of surprise on her face when she realized I wasn't reinforcements. The first half of a word formed on her lips just before I vaulted over her, and the now open window behind her.
"Sorry ladies, can't stay," I apologized as I passed the unfortunate souls.
The ground rushed up to meet me with a none-too-comfortable embrace. Alright, who's bright idea was it to jump out of the third story window anyway. I acted without thinking, and shot a blast of flames before me that superheated the air, the resultant updraft just enough to cushion my fall.
I swore I heard something along the lines of "You've got to be kidding me," come from the window I'd just jumped out of as I landed. I didn't concern myself with that too much, and was already on the move as the alarms started to sound.
Time to get out of this place, they don't have any good tourist attractions anyway.
Besides, I had to go say hello to my friends.
OOC: gravvy can make long posts too look
am i kewl noaw?