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The Mechanical God.

Author: ZAVAZggg/Elijah Thompson
Rating: Explicit
Status: Complete

Lucian watched from the observation platform, as the smoke belching excavators delved deeper into the cliffside below. Even though he had been a member of Parson's Mining Company for over thirty years, Lucian still couldn't help but be amazed at how efficient and precise the machines were.   

Sometimes he would visit the factories and watch the workers forge, refine, and assemble the various gears, tracks, drills, and steel plates that made up the bulk of the massive machines...  

"Sir?" A female voice to his left says, disrupting his thoughts.  

"Yes Alexandra, what is it?" Lucian says, slightly annoyed at her interruption.  

"They've finished excavating the tunnel sir."   

They had? He had been so caught up in his thoughts, he hasn't realised that the machines had stopped digging until she mentioned it.   

"Well then..." Lucian says. "Let's go see what they've found."  

"Of course sir." Alexandra says as she follows him towards the observation platform elevator.   

Even though he couldn't see her, Lucian knew Alexandra was critiquing him. He wondered why the company didn't just tell him to retire and then give his position to Alexandra. After all, Lucian knew that he had made several costly mistakes over the course of his career, some of which almost killed his colleagues. He also knew that at fourty eight, he was too old for this kind of work.  

Lucian refocused his attention on the world around him as the elevator began its slow descent. Upon reaching the bottom, the elevator doors slide open with a metallic clank and a hiss of steam.  

Lucian and Alexandra approach the tunnel entrance via a metal walkway. As they do one of the excavator operators runs out of the tunnel to meet them.  

Upon reaching the pair, the breathless man tries to speak but only ends up panting in exhaustion.  

"Easy, son. Take a moment to catch your breath." Lucian replies.  

The man manages to catch his breath after a few minutes and begins to speak.  

"Sir, you need to see this."  

"See what? What are you talking about?" Lucian asks, confused.  

"We found some kind of...seal." The man says.  

"Seal?" Lucian asks.  

"Yes sir. It seems to be made of solid granite and it's covered in strange symbols."  

"Show me." Lucian says as he marches into the tunnel.  

"Of course sir!" The man says as he quickens his pace in order to keep up with Lucian.  

"A seal? Who would put something like that here? Why would someone put something like that here?" Alexandra asks as she, Lucian, and the excavator operator make their way deeper into the tunnel.  

"I don't know. But I intend to find out." Lucian replies.  

As they walk, sunlight from the tunnel entrance is soon replaced by darkness and eventually gas lamps, which create small pools of dim yellow light.  

After about five minutes of walking the trio find themselves standing before the massive slab of engraved granite.  

"As you can see sir..." The operator says, gesturing towards the granite slab. "It appears to be some sort of seal made of solid granite."  

"Obviously." Lucian says as he studies the alien symbols etched into the circular wall. "Alexandra...have you ever seen symbols like these before?"  

"No sir I haven't" She says, peering closely at the symbols. "Have you?"  

"No." Lucian says before stepping away from the wall.   

"So...what should we do?" The operator asks.  

"First," Lucian says. "We're not going to touch or attempt to drill through it until we know exactly why it's here. Secondly, you..." He says, pointing to Alexandra. "...are going to go to the Academy in Logra, find their top linguists, and bring them back here so we can find out exactly what these symbols mean."  

Alexandra nods and walks back to the tunnel entrance.  

"What do we do now sir?" The operator asks as he turns to face Lucian.  

"We wait."  

About five days later a carriage arrives at the digsite. After resting for a few hours (as the journey had been very long) the group of linguists from Logra begin studying the symbols etched into the granite slab.  

Progress is infuriatingly slow.   

Sometime during the month of August Lucian approaches the men (who have set up camp in front of the seal) and asks them how much they've managed to decipher.  

"Not much, unfortunately." The leader of the group, a man named Nadir, replies.  

"Not much I? I thought you were one of the best linguists on Mazzaroth." Lucian says with a smirk.  

"I am." Nadir replies. "When it comes to human languages."  

"Wait, you mean these symbols weren't made by people?" Lucian asks, confused.  

"No. They are some of the most intricate I have seen. The level of complexity these symbols have is beyond anything we humans could ever hope to achieve." Nadir says, gesturing to the slab in front of him.  

"If these symbols weren't created by us...then who were they created by?" Lucian asks.  

"I don't know." Nadir replies. "But whoever they were, they weren't human."  

"Alright...well let me know if you make anymore progress." Lucian says before heading towards the tunnel entrance.  

"I will." Nadir says as he resumes his study of the symbols.  

A few weeks later Alexandra rushes into Lucians on site office (which is connected to the observation platform) and tells him that Nadir and the rest of his group have disappeared.  

"Disappeared? What do you mean they disappeared!?" Lucian exclaims in outrage.  

"They vanished!" Alexandra says. "I went into the tunnel to see how far along they had come, but when I got there Nadir and the other linguists were gone!"  

"Maybe they returned to Logra?" Lucian suggests.  

"That's what I thought at first..." Alexandra says. "But then I realised that all of their supplies were still in front of the seal. The carriage we arrived in was still here as well. There's no way they walked all the way back to Logra with no food or water."  

Lucian steeples his hands beneath his chin and thinks for a moment before replying.  

"I want a contingent of guards down there round the clock. I also want to be notified of everything that happens down there. Understood?"  

"Yes, sir." Alexandra replies.  

"Good." Lucian says.  

Over the next two weeks round the clock patrols armed with revolvers and rifles constantly guard the seal. They report any and all activity to Alexandra, who in turn reports it to Lucian. So far nothing out of the ordinary has occurred.  

But on Sunday of the third week a massive tremor rocks the digsite.   

Once the tremor ceases, Lucian, Alexandra, and a contingent of guards enter the tunnel to investigate the seal. When they arrive, they find piles of rubble, corpses, blood stains, and a dark gaping hole where the seal used to be.  

Out of that hellish void crawls a chaotic mass of limbs, mouths, eyes, and teeth. Alexandra screams in horror as a clawed tentacle slashes her stomach open. The guards open fire on the beast, but their bullets do little but irritate it.   

In retaliation, the amorphous mass of fetid flesh, teeth, and eyes begins ripping the guards limb from limb with its tentacles. It seemed as though the foul beast took pleasure in their deaths, for the more they screamed, the slower it killed them.  

It was at this point that Lucian ran. He didn't hesitate. He didn't think about what had happened to Alexandra or the guards....  

He just ran.  

And all he heard the whole time he was running, was laughter...  

Inhuman, spine chilling, laughter.