Freestyle, Round 2!

After a missed couple of weeks, it's time to continue our Freestyle Adventure Series. We had some really good story seeds turned in, but unfortunately my idea of a comment voting system didn't work out -- the plugin was definitely sub-optimal. In lieu of that and so we don't have to wait another week, I just picked our winning seed and image. Unfortunately, a high percentage of them failed to follow instructions and either weren't written in second person, weren't gender-neutral, or didn't have a good jumping-off point.

Our winning story segment comes from the puissant pen of ... Skybandit!

The cobwebs were thick upon the intricately carved altar, throwing odd shadows from the guttering candle in your hand. Your uncle had never installed electricity in the basement of the ancient mansion that he had left you in his will. Opening the crumbling book to the page he had marked before his horribly bloody death, you fulfilled the only proviso to gain the full inheritance by reading out the words on the crumbling parchment, stumbling over the strange words.

Perhaps you should have been more careful with your pronunciation, for in a flash and with a rumble like a Californian quake, there appeared …

Thus your challenge this week is one of two things (or both, if you fancy a challenge):

  1. Write the next short section of our ongoing adventure using the seed in blockquotes above and what is depicted in the winning image, below. The text should be written in second-person point of view ("You are a young warrior of the Wu Tang Clan") and should be gender-neutral. The section should end with an open-ended statement making it easy for the next person to hook on their section, something like "You turn the corner and see ..." or "Leaping from the cliff, your wild hands scrabble along the rocks and encounter ..." or "Heat vision blasting, out of the corner of your eye you see descending from the clouds a ...", that kind of thing. The goal is to make it easy for the next person to know where to jump off.
  2. If writing isn't your thing, you can post a link to an image you've created in HeroMachine that the next person will have to incorporate into their scene. It might be a human character of some sort, or an animal, or an item, or a scene, or whatever you like.

If you choose to write the next segment, here's the image you must somehow incorporate into the story, courtesy of Keith_Kanin:

(Click to embiggen.)

I've installed the GD Star comment rating system, which I hope will be more stable than the last plugin I tried. Registered users can vote for entries they like with a thumbs-up; the image and story with the most thumbs-up votes wins!

If this turns out not to work, I'll just pick the best story and image like a regular contest.

Good luck!