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Caer Chan Carega #2

Author: 
Stariovarius
Old Vault Category: 
fanfiction
Old Vault ID: 
430

Caer Chan Carega

Five years on, he was still in the same mines, although a more senior position. He'd made friends... some, anyway. He'd put away a large sum of money, since most of his living expenses were covered by the Hogof mining company. They provided food and accommodation for those who had to live in the mine because of work reasons. Chloddio had bought a small dwelling on the outskirts of the city near the foothills of the mountains, but mostly used it as a storage area for the various things he acquired. He was easily able to make repairs to it because of his training, so there was no real upkeep cost. Still, it felt more like a place to live than an actual home.

Shaking his head of the thoughts of what could and couldn't have happened, Chloddio went to check the stone of the new mining development. He'd been down there almost every day since they started work, since the mining engineer was the one that picked out all the routes and the shape of the room. Now he was going to mark out the main route down through the ore. This particular line was high quality iron, used primarily to build structures where only the strongest materials would do, or more likely go into the supplies of the army. Either way, the Hogof mine would be well paid for the ore, provided he could find a way down into the seam.

Walking through the candlelit darkness of the mine, past the tracks with their carts of ore passing by, Chloddio could hear the team of men he was coming to meet chattering away, relaxing before they began the dig. This part of the mine was pretty quiet, just the tracks going into the new staging room for the dig, no activity here yet, which was why the voices drifted clearly to him. Rounding the corner of the tunnel, Chloddio stepped into the main room of the staging area, well lit for the moment with lamps and candles hanging from the ceiling, although not enough to use up the air.

Looking out across the faces, the mining engineer recognized some, but not all, of the people who would be boring out the tunnels. Nodding at those he knew, Chloddio walked to the far wall, where the veins of iron were showing, a different coloured streak standing out from the surrounding rock. Placing his hands against the rock, one on the ore and one on the stone surrounding it, he reached out, looking for the stress lines as they curled through the rocks, seeing where it would be safe to dig and where the main supports lay. At this point, with the rock undisturbed, the lines were by and large uniform, broken only where faults cut jagged lines through the rock. The ore lines were rich, thick enough that they would be mining here for quite some time, stretching far enough down into the rock that even Chloddio's trained senses couldn't reach the end.

Turning, the mining engineer grabbed a piece of chalk and began drawing on the walls, marking out the entrances for the tunnels and how deep they should go before they called him in for a second look to check how the tunnel was holding up. The crews grinned and set to work, happy to finally have something to do other than sit around in the mine, which at this depth was cold and moist, and the only warmth came from working.

Chloddio watched them work for about 15 minutes, then, satisfied they were going to do an acceptable job, he left, going on his daily rounds of the mines, checking up on each of the ore fronts, making sure there had been no major accidents, and stopping occasionally to test the stress levels of the walls in the tunnels, new and old, in case anything had shifted in the earth and stone around them. Chloddio had other people reporting to him for these tasks, but even despite his dislike of being trapped underground, he still preferred to do it himself. It also relieved the closed in feeling a bit when he could wander through the open caverns that had been hollowed out, rather than sitting in his office near the entrance to the mine the whole day. It made it worse, sitting there knowing that the outside was close, but that he couldn't spend enough time outdoors to really enjoy it, since he was always worried about something happening in the mine and then his subordinates not being able to find him.

 

Caer Chan Carega #2 © Stratovarius

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