Tunnels of Ningyo

Photobucket

From Shishinza’s Dossier

The Tunnels of Ningyo does not label a single feature. Rather, it is the collective name for numerous caves and tunnels located throughout the island. When they were first discovered, it was thought these oddly-circular openings in the rock must be artificial, created, perhaps, by the aquatic Ningyo or a similar race – hence their name. However, ship’s masters sailing near the Fire Fountains have recently noticed similar structures apparently in the process of forming from lava flows, suggesting that the tunnels may be a natural interaction of the kami of earth, fire, and water. Whatever their origin, many of these tunnels exist on Kaigen’s Island, both above and below water. Most are less than one hundred feet long, terminating at blank rock walls and containing little of interest. About one in ten, however, extends for many hundreds of feet. Their diameter ranges from as little as two feet to as much as ten feet. While they are generally straight and usually slope gradually toward the island’s margins, they do occasionally bend or drop sharply. And while most are empty, they sometimes contain items either dropped overboard or lost in shipwrecks, such as sections of waterlogged planking, corroded weapons and armor, and even skeletal remains. Debate continues as to whether these items have been deliberately placed, or are simply the result of currents and wave action. Many easily frightened, superstitious residents believe that many of the tunnels link together and hide aquatic monsters or remnants of the Dark Wave and their Taint. Personally, I have seen no evidence of any such things in all my years here, though, a sharp eye should still be kept on the Tunnels. Pirates, brigands, and bandits occasionally think they can utilize the myth of the Tunnels to hide from justice. I hope you will prove them as wrong as I have. Even without the threat of dangerous criminals however, the Tunnels can be quite hazardous. Pitfalls, cave-ins, accumulations of toxic gases, and sudden jets of scalding steam are just some of the threats explorers face within these supposedly enigmatic passages.

Tunnels of Ningyo

Shadowed Autumn Leaves ohyoungmarriner