via Daily Prompt: Underground … …so, so silly ….
Charles tapped his fingertips against the earbud and spoke, “Maria, you aren’t going to believe this-” He couldn’t even finish it. Maria was screaming with excitement. He could picture her jumping up and down, feet pounding the dust all round her. “Come over to Site 16!” He hollered and tapped the earbud off.
Maria didn’t just arrive alone, she brought her whole dig team along. They were still grimy with dirt they’d sifted over at Site 14. She smiled brightly, shaking hands with Jose who’d brought his team in from Site 17, and Helmut with his team from 13. They stood around, holding glass flutes of sparkling champagne.
Maria blurted out, “I can’t believe it!” She chugged the flute in one swallow. “Tell me how it looks! Tell me how it looks!”
Jose chimed in, “Yeah! I can’t believe it either.”
Charles put down the delicate glass. “Okay, okay. I could tell you about it but it’d be better if we all go down and see it ourselves.”
Helmut gasped. “Is it open? There’s no danger?”
“It’s pristine.” Charles smiled. “It looks exactly like it did the day they closed it up.” He spread his arms wide. “All of us. All the teams are going down!”
Everyone cheered in excitement. They followed behind Charles, farther and farther underground until they reached the entrance. Everyone collectively held their breath as the ceremonial doors were pulled open. Charles stepped aside and said, “Behold!”
Maria could hardly move. “After reading about it for so long. I can’t believe we ever found one.”
Helmut added, “And it’s intact. Not a single tomb raider has been here.”
Jose squinted at the obelisk in front of them. “It’s a diagram. This text though…” He pulled a journal from his pocket and studied its worn pages. “Yes, here it is. This is such an old dialect.” He looked back at the obelisk. “Okay, the bathing chamber is here.” He traced the route with his finger and then caught his breath again. “Oh my-oh my gosh! This one has a sacred fountain and an equine wheel in the middle!”
Helmut took off at a run. “I must see it!”
“Be careful!” Charles called out. “What else is there, Jose?”
Jose continued, “Along the sides here are the gift chambers. He pointed. These would have been the treasures they buried for the afterlife.”
The groups broke off, shouting their discoveries. “This chamber housed the burial costumes!” “This chamber is just footwear. A room of footwear!” “Look, this is a chamber full of crowns and other headgear!”
Helmut had made his way back to Charles. “You have to see this chamber. It has every implement one would need in the after life. This ruler really amassed wealth! I can hardly believe it. Shelf after shelf of burial gifts. Clearly they were meant for the afterlife. The door is inscribed Bed, Bath and Beyond!” Helmut raced ahead and pointed. “This way. Everyone, this way!”
They wheeled as a group, following him to the implement chamber when Cheng stopped them. “I found it! The equine wheel. It’s still there!”
Everyone gasped again and took off at a run. They were practically breathless when they arrived. Cheng continued, “I can’t believe I’m seeing one for the first time.” He stepped up on the flat circular platform. Slowly, he made his way between the rows of painted horses affixed to brass poles. “This is amazing.”
Jose leafed through his journal. “According to this…according to this, it would spin slowly and the horses would rise and fall and some sort of music would play.” He examined the pages again. “It was supposed to bring great joy and happiness.” He looked up. “I imagine that only royalty or patrons could sit on the horses. They’re just too nice for peasants to be allowed on.”
Charles agreed. “Yes, you can see where they held the commoners at bay with all these metal structures. They could get close but they couldn’t touch.” Charles looks around. “Two thousand years. Ladies and gentlemen, two thousand years to find an intact mall of the ancients. Congratulations!”
no, this is not my picture but it’s a beautiful look at the past