Part 3: Entry 3 - The Gateroom
Ambient: Distant waves
Well, navel gazing about my job here wasn't getting me anywhere. It was time to get moving, and there was only one path to take.
Though it looked like there was a branch fairly quickly. The breeze and the sound of the waves was refreshing after the still, damp air of Channelwood at least, but I had plenty to check on.
A bridge, another stairway down, and a room to enter. I stepped back to see if I could see anything beyond it.
I saw something pretty damn impressive.
A giant, golden dome. Did the locals build it? It reminded me of Sirrus' extravagance. Just less... baroque. Ostentatious to the extreme though.
Still, it was impressive, and that meant it was probably important. I stepped into the room to see if there was a way through.
Inside I was struck by the solemnity of the room. I didn't take much time to look around at first. The other door looked like the right direction.
But it was gated shut. The star pattern was interesting though.
Peering through the grate revealed that the golden done was just beyond. This close I could see the brickwork, but the size of it was still impressive.
But faced with another dead end I took a closer look around. Two doors, three walls. The walls had writing on them but I couldn't decipher it at all.
There were also five pillars, each with a beetle on them. I took a closer look at the one by the entrance. Seeing the ring at the bottom, I gave it a tug.
Its wings opened up, revealing a lens of some sort. I looked closer.
I was a bit wary of sticking my eye up to random holes. The cage trap still left me jittery. But it looked like a picture, and I pressed my head against the beetle.
A man, haloed in divinity, puts a pen to paper, and from it bursts forth a world of life and beauty. Is this... Gehn?
I began to move from pillar to pillar, intent on seeing what else there was.
The same man, with a divine halo, descends from the heavens. The people, non-divine, bend their knees in supplication.
Surrounded by fire and fury, this divine being casts someone into, well, into a Star fissure. The term had been on my mind and couldn't find any other words to describe it.
Seeing that book, I pried open Atrus' Journal. He mentions losing his Myst linking book in the Star Fissure. This image... Atrus must have linked out while falling, leaving the book to continue falling into the depths. These images have to be Gehn's side of the story.
Christ was Gehn representing himself as this divine being?
More images to inspect. A hierarchy of lords, five wise men working under Gehn's authority. Builders, teachers, um, peacemakers? Something with geometry or measurement. Last... bookmakers? Take trees, make pages, seems right.
I mean, if the D'ni are about anything, its books. But Atrus seemed confident that without D'ni's resources Gehn could not possibly make any new Ages.
Then the last image. The bookmaking process, turning trees into wood pulp, boiling it in fires, all for this book that people are bowing to.
People with... divine halos on their heads. The D'ni? They look like the supplicants from the second image. Maybe it means the books would make them divine.
I had to step back, it was becoming too much to process. This room had revealed a side of Riven I wasn't sure I was ready to face. Regardless it was a dead end, and I had to turn back.
But as I was exiting I noticed a button by the entrance. Not one to leave a button un-pressed, I gave it a push.
And the whole room began to rotate!
I was left facing a closed wall, but the light gleaming from it revealed a peep hole.
Looking through revealed the room beyond, but the door had moved. So the whole room did rotate!
I mashed the button a couple more times and another entrance rotated into view. Another door!
But this turned out to be a dead end as well. The same gate, and then another door beyond.
I'm going to step outside and get some air. This atmosphere in this room gets oppressive and I need to think a bit.
From this entrance I can only get to the two exits opposite, meaning there are still two sides I haven't seen. But I'm at the limit of what I can do from here. Time to check the other paths.
Figuring if there was anything to get from the room, it would be the stairs on this same area, I went down the other set of steps.
The footing was a little treacherous but the view was amazing.
The end result deflated me even more. Another locked door, and the chain looked sturdy too.
I did note the dagger at the bottom though, and knelt down to take a closer look.
No buttons, secrets, or hidden pages though. What I did notice, was that there was a good foot and a half of clearance under the door.
I won't say I was particularly dignified crawling on my belly through the dirt underneath, but I was through. And just a little up the passage,
Was another entrance to the rotating room. Perfect!
If I could rotate the room I could get to the final entrance I haven't seen and that might just get me somewhere!
I looked around for a button, but there was none.
Looking through the peep hole showed the gate room, but no way to rotate it from here. Another dead end?
At which point I remembered. I could get back to the bridge entrance button and just rotate from there! Bursting with energy I rushed back to see if it worked.
Which meant turning around, hopping carefully down the small cliff, scraping my way under the door again, nearly running up the stairs,
Hanging a right into the entrance and just about slamming the button for the room to rotate.
Checking the peephole showed me the same view as before. Good, I had gotten the rotation right.
Back outside, down the stairs, under the door (I could do it quickly enough by pulling myself through with the doorframe), up the ladder...
I strode across the rotating room like a conqueror.
I was exultant, though I certainly didn't know what I expected on the other side. Gehn, shocked and amazed at my room rotating talents? The masked man, who would give me back my trap book, give me a spare dart gun, and join me on a soporific rampage across Riven?
What I got was, well,
The picture on top looked like the weird contraption next to the cage nearby. Maybe it did something with it.
In any case, I wasn't about to leave it un-pulled.
I considered heading back to the doohickey to see what had changed, but thinking one more stint of crawling underneath that door gave me pause. There was another room rotation button here. And some sort of switch on the left, by the door.
I was on a roll anyway, I pulled it. The sound of metal being moved sang out from nearby. Had I opened a door?
On a hunch I rotated the room a couple times and took a look at the entrance leading to the door.
The star gate was gone, and another entrance was open. Progress!
I mean, the door beyond that was closed tight with no sign of a way to open it, but it was still progress.
Now I just wonder why the switch for this gate was on the other side of the room.
Here there was another switch, and another room rotation button. Pulling the switch elicited the same sound of rattling metal, and there was only one more gate in the room.
One hell of a gate system, frankly. And utterly impossible if I hadn't noticed that side passage. Whoever is leaving these daggers around, they're proving essential for getting past all these contraptions.
All that remained was rotating the room to get back to the bridge, then rotating the room to the orientation I found it in.
And I was home free.
I still had no idea what the giant dome was for. Just that it was enormous and shining, and someone had gone to great pains to make it difficult to access.
Ambient: Low humming
I wish I could say I found answers inside.
Instead, it was just more confusion.
And symbols I didn't understand.
I'm taking a seat on the metal walkways. It's not comfortable, but after all the running around I just did I needed a breather. The shade and the water below make this place quite cool, which is an improvement over the hot sun outside. I can see the walkway curls around to the other side of the dome. I'll be seeing what's over there when I've recovered.