The Citadel of Tiryns
Lara Croft entered the large circular room, spotlights illuminating the stone walls. A small excavation site held her gaze, a round opening in the floor. Lara grinned at the thought of adventuring down into a newly discovered, untouched section of The Citadel of Tiryns; a significant archaeological site in Greece next to Mycenae. She was set for her search.
Lara dropped into the dark hall, stirring a cloud of dust under her feet. She lit a magnesium flare, bouncing a green light off the sand coloured stones. A declining slope lay before her. She gave a small smile and cautiously followed the limited line of sight of floor in front of her.
Soon Lara found herself in a large rectangular room. Opposite her was a large mechanical door, obvious to our tomb raider it was connected to the twelve circular pressure pads lining the back wall. Lining her wall were twelve large, breast high vases. “Now for a bit of fun Lara said to herself as she began to take a closer look at the ancient pottery.
Soon after a minute or so Lara understood the puzzle. Twelve vases each depicted one of The Twelve Labours of Hercules. By placing the vases in order on the corresponding pressure pads the door should open. This seemed easy for someone as knowledgeable as Miss Croft and she quickly found the first labour: The Nemean Lion and with some effort pushed it onto the furthest left pad. It sunk down, with a following clunking sound. Lara was pleased, one down, eleven more to go.
Next came The Lernaean Hydra, then the Ceryneian Hind and then the Erymanthian Boar. Four done now and relatively quickly too. Soon she was onto the eighth labour: The Mares of Diomedas, the ninth: Hippolyte’s Girdle, the tenth, the eleventh and before you knew it Lara pushed the last vase: The Capture of Cerberus onto its pressure pad.
The rewarding sound of ancient mechanics at work followed soon after and the door slid open. As she entered the next corridor there was a sudden screech of bats and Lara had to drop her flare as she quickly drew her dual pistols. There was the flapping of wings and a sharp pain as the bat sunk its teeth into the flesh on the back of her neck. Lara threw it off firing three rapid shots into the dark direction of the bat.
Silence. She released her breath and wiped her forehead with the back of her gloved hand; her neck was bleeding. She holstered her pistols and took out a small medi-pack from her bag. There was the necessary sting of her anti-septic spray and she covered the wound with a square of skin tape. Lara drew another flare. Its light revealed a tiled passage, columns bordering the walls and mosaic reliefs of Olympian Gods decorating the walls greeting her. She continued walking with a new sense of wariness.
Surprisingly, a lit room could be seen at the end of the tunnel. She quickened her pace, desiring a change from being surrounded by the eerie green light of her flares.
When Lara Croft reached the end, she realised just how big this discovery under Tiryns was.
She stepped into a room made for hiding treasure. The white and blue tiled walls lit by mirror shafts hiding the fact of how far underground the room really was beautifully contrasted the gold chests overflowing with riches. Ancient tapestries and rugs piled up like pyramids on the floor and armour and weapons lined up on shelves.
But Lara had eyes for only one treasure. At the centre of the room, lying on a raised pedestal was Hippolyte’s Golden Girdle of Ares. Lara had no doubt that this was the artefact of legend.
She walked over to examine the inscription:
Here is hidden Hippolyte’s Girdle, stolen by Hercules to be gifted to the daughter of King Eurysthesus. But with its gift of profound strength abused and the chance of the power falling into the wrong hands once again, the Girdle shall be hidden here under Tiryns forever.
“Interesting...” Lara turned to her prize. She noted the holes at the base of the pedestal seemingly placed stop a thief with skewering spears and Lara smirked. “Too easy” she muttered and with that jumped at her artefact and at a breakneck speed grabbed the Girdle a kicked off the pedestal launching her flipping over the propelled spikes, landing back where she had stood.
Lara grinned widely and gazed at her trophy. But suddenly Lara got more than she bargained for when hidden grates slid open sending water rushing in. It seems that the Greek architects had more in store for our raider as a portcullis began to drop over the entry.
Lara sprinted for the door as she cursed herself for her cockiness as she watched the gate fall too fast for her to escape. But fortunately for her after many centuries past the mechanics of the gate were a little rusty and its fall was delayed enough for Lara to escape.
But time was still against her. Water rushed past her legs down the halls and her movements were hindered. By the time she had reached the vase room she was forced to wade and because this slowed her ever more the level reached Lara’s shoulders at the opposite door. She lifted her feet and began swimming on the surface of the water. But soon there was no room between surface and air and Lara was forced to take a large breath and go under. She swam as fast as she could through the dark water. Her lungs began to ache.
But then she saw shafts of light further down the flooded hallway and Lara was further determined to reach the opening alive. She was so close! Her lungs screamed at her and then... Lara Croft burst through the surface relishing the welcome of fresh air. She rested her arms her arms on the edge of the floor, the water running out of the room, out of Tiryns. Lara laughed with her prize in hand and the thrill of yet another near death experience, she wouldn’t have it any other way.
NOTICE: This story is a work of fiction. Lara Croft, her likeness, and the Tomb Raider games are all copyright of EIDOS Interactive. There is no challenge to these copyrights intended by this story, as it is a
non-sanctioned, unofficial work of the author's own.