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Rabenschwinges Cavern blog

Breakthrough in Afelahn

Afelahn again – we used a medium excavator to dig into the rock, in a steep angle downwards into the mountain.
We had to use this steep angle, because over this region the valley begins, and we didn´t want to dig to the outside of the age.
Shane Kennett and his team helped me a lot, unfortunately they also wrecked the staircase to my office – some of the stairs broke under the big weight of the excavator, and some of the other are really scratched and scarred.
Well, I guess, we´ll have to repair them now …

Apart from this minor destructions, all went well. We excavated a corridor downwards, and then a huge room, which will be our “atrium” for the residential wing of the base.
Shane also used a smaller D’ni machine, which is able to cut stairs out of the rock to add an amazing stone staircase downwards to the atrium.
From this place, we will be able to dig deep into the rock and establish all the rooms necessary to live here for a longer time.

The number of expediton members is now equal to before all went down some years ago.
Most members have returned and/or rejoined the expedition now.
Some of those who stay away might have been involved with the destruction of Asheten mansion…
Since nobody on the surface officially knows about the cavern, we can´t really do anything against them – at least not legally. They are at least banned from any age or area we are researching and/or rebuilding – they cost us a lot, not only money, but also time and ressources.
Now, we have to depend on the ressources of D’ni and its ages mostly – we gather food from the ages, use more and more D’ni tools and machines, and many of us have made a home down here in the caverns on a permanent basis.

As I am writing this, Yeeshas words from her last visit at K’veer come into my mind: “Find a way, make a home!”
Well, I guess that´s exactly what we are doing.

Maybe we together, explorers, scientists, visitors – not only of the Forberg expedition, but the whole number of people down here in the caverns and in D’ni can find a solution to the big conflict that might still be going on out there…

Red orbs

Some years ago, in this Blogpost, I wrote about the age we then called “Unknown age 02″ because we hadn´t found any D’ni name for it.

I´ll repost the information I gave back then about this age:

“It seems to have been some kind of submarine science station erected by the old D’ni. It is some kind of pod – but a different one than those we know from “Reziksehv” – with some observation cupolas. The marine life in this age is very different from what we know – there are no fish, but some strange, ribbonlike animals, which are slowly moving through the water.
The temperature seems to be quite hot – the pod is heavily insulated, but there are D’ni scales that show temperatures about 176° Fahrenheit (80° Celsius).
How these creatures can survive this hellish environment, is one of the goals of our research there.
Our interns have dubbed them “Hadesfish”, after the greek underworld.”

Now, some years later, we know the name of the age, because we found some books of commentary about it.

Its writer, a D’ni named Furash, who was well known for having an unique and strange style of writing ages, called it “Pohiresh”.

It wasn´t open to the general public back when D’ni thrived, but only to a few selected guildsmen who did extensive research on the strange creatures of this ages ocean.

These studies have proven very useful for us and helped us understand some of the strange characteristics of the “Hadesfish” and other creatures which are similarily adapted to this hot biotope.

We even managed to bring some of these creatures to Afelahn, where we put them in one of the aquariums we installed some months ago.

The aquarium is constantly kept on 81 ° Celsius and refilled regularly with water from the Pohiresh ocean.

Unfortunately, we couldn´t transfer Hadesfish from the age alive – they died within minutes when put into transport vessels.
But we managed to catch some of the strange, red creatures we call “Red orbs”, which are round with an abrasive, scaly shell. They float around in the oceans, pushed by the currents, and tend to stick together to form huge colonies, literally being adhered to each another.
The D’ni didn´t leave a lot of information about these strange animals, and so they are a target of momentarily intense research by our expedition teams.

Afelahn expanding

Over the last few months, I did a LOT of work in Afelahn, expanding it rather quickly.

I plan on opening the age to the public in 2015, I know, I have announced this a few times already, but this time the age is in a state I can predict to be safe and interesting in only a couple of months, maybe even earlier.
I also will post KI-shots over the next weeks to show you how far the age has developed, and what you can expect to see.
My home base has come a long way. It started with a cavern in the rock, and now has grown to almost 20 rooms.
Looking forward to hear opinions on Afelahn soon! :)

By the way, the expedition also has almost regrown to its old numbers, most of our former members are back and already working again on various projects.
Yesterday, Shane Kennett, Carla Mastrelli and Keira Bracetty presented their plans of rebuilding at least part of old Asheten mansion, our former headquarters until its destruction in the year 2012.

The next big projects after Afelahn to restore to a level, where the ages can be visited by the general public, will be Ahnoto and Risoahl.

Stay tuned over the next months!

A river quick, a river deep

Now, the last three posts I told you, dear readers, what happened over the last years. Now, we have almost arrived at the present.

The following happened in September 2014, in my first age of Afelahn.

Since our last expedition some years ago, we hadn´t went far from the valley where my home base is situated – or better, near the mountain, were the base is in.
But on 20th of september, Clint Spano, Noemi Moots, Alex – who had returned to the cavern only one week earlier – and myself went on a hike up the valley, into the mountain range.

It was almost evening, when we finally came to a small brook, which after some hundred meters disappeared underground.
We took water samples and returned to the base.

Some days later, Alex told me, she wanted to explore the lower side of the valley, to look for the exact spot, where the brook came out of the mountain again.
I had some work to do on another of my projects, and so Noemi went with her.

When they returned, they brought some really good KI-shots with them – they indeed had found the brook again, only now it was a river, more than 5 meters wide and at least 2 meters deep.

When we sat in my office, discussing their findings and examining the pictures on our KIs, I came up with an idea.

I dont know, if you, dear readers, remember my old posts about the so called critters, our small, remote controlled vessels, some on wheels, some flying – and some floating on water.
One of the latter, critter 4, is stable enough to withstand the currents of a fast flowing river – and so we decided, to give it a try and explore the river downwards by letting poor little critter 4 be carried away by the water.

We realized, that we almost certainly wouldn´t be able to retrieve the small vessel, but at least we´d get a lot of interesting shots from the downhill part of the mountain range.
And so we did.

The camera that was built into the critter showed us, that beyond the part of the river that we could see there was a section with dangerous rapids – the critter was flung from one side to the other very fast and violently, but miraculously, it survived the harsh voyage, until it reached calmer, slower currents. It was not until then that we saw the rocks part way to let us watch in astounishment, as we saw a huge, lush forest with big trees, long, green vines and big, almost three meter high ferns. A little bit it reminded me of Yagee Mohts, but it was even cooler, and even more moist.
We hadn´t expected such vegetation after having experienced only the harsh, cool and barren mountain range.

Critter 4 finally came to a halt, when it hit a big root, that grew into the water in a big arch. We tried to get loose, but to no avail.

We decided to shut down Critter 4, to spare some battery power for later.

All these pictures and film material will need some time for examination – we still aren´t done with it five months later!

Recapitulation – what happened over the last two years, part III

In the following months, we “played it safe”, stood in ages like Afelahn, Risoahl or in D’ni and continued our research. Numbers still dwindled, to the point, when our group only consisted of four people: Shane Kennett, Jack Rowe, Tom Woods, and myself.

Chances were that in a few weeks nobody would be around any more.
I had big doubts myself about staying down in the caverns, but I had invested so much work and time, that I decided to stay, whatever happened around me.
Then, in march 2014, surface issues forced me to abandon my team for some weeks, spending a lot of time in my home country of Austria to sort things out.
I finally returned to Afelahn in June, only to find the age deserted. Everyone had left. I tried to contact some of the other groups, but no one answered. It was as if D’ni had once again died.

From my previous experience, I was sure, that D’ni finally would revive again, like it had again and again – still, a dark spot of doubt lay on my soul. What if nobody ever would return? What if D’ni was done for good this time?

I lost motivation. Many of my projects came to an abrupt halt. I locked away the books I still had, with the exception of Afelahn, which I visited sporadically.

Then, in september 2014, when I once again browsed some of the explorers forums, I read an announcement by some former team members of the Forberg expedition. Funding had been secured again, scientists, workers and explorers from the former team returned at a fast pace, and projects were restarted, continued and begun.

Euphorically, I packed my stuff, told the surface goodbye once again, and returned to D’ni.

It wasn´t for the first time, but it felt different – hope, and a feeling of determination were stronger and more urgent than ever before.

Recapitulation – what happened over the last two years, part II

After the expedition fell apart, we – that is our small team of explorers, scientists and friends – continued to research, explore and write.
Our work was much more difficult – our ressources small, our time sparse.
And finally, even the few people left started to leave for the surface.

I was one of the few who remained – mainly working on my own ages, but sometimes I managed to pay a visit to ages like Risoahl, Resehren or even Yoshonah.

Then came the darkest day of the year 2013. On 20th of September, a small expedition, consisting of Shane Kennett, Alex, Noelle, Jack Rowe and myself, went to Nifehrehn.
We wore our maintainer suits to protect ourselves from the extremely harsh cold of the age.
When we left the abandoned D’ni outpost, we almost immediately got lost due to our compasses spinning around maniacally, which had happened never before in Nifehrehn.
As we were trying to find the way back, one of the apex predators of the age attacked us out of the blue – or rather, out of the white – and quickly locked jaws onto Jacks suit, ripping it open.
It would surely have killed him, if not for Shane, who had a D’ni stun gun with him. He stabbed the thing with the gun, and it shrieked terribly, rearing up and starting to run away. Some 20 meters (approx. 60 feet) away, it collapsed and – as we found out later – died. It seems, these creatures are extremely vulnerable to this kind of stunning device.

Jack lost a lot of blood, and the cold started to take a heavy toll on him. Fortunately, our combined efforts helped us to rescue him just in time, and then leaving quickly with our emergency books that led us back to D’ni.
Jack had to undergo massive medical treatment, but after a few weeks, he fully recovered from his wounds.
We decided not to go out into Nifehrehns dangerous environment until we would be able to protect us better.

After the accident, we played it safe – stayed in a few secure ages mostly, doing a lot of harmless research.
Alex and Noelle decided to leave the cavern shortly after the incident and wouldn´t come back until much later.

All these things happened from July to October in 2013.

Recapitulation – what happened over the last two years, part I

This is my first post in my blog for over two years.Rest assured, I´ve had good reasons for my decision not to post updates in the time inbetween – but these reasons are past time now.

Maybe you remember, where my last post stopped – after our escape from the prison age called Panuehr, after the destruction of most of our research and of our homebase at that time, Asheten mansion.

As you may recall, the Forberg expedition continued to work in the caverns, this time from an age I can now give the name of – Yoshonah, a beautiful, lush and peaceful age of green hills and meadows.

From this time on , the expedition started to fracture. More and more of its members left for good, many to form their own smaller expeditions, some to return to the surface.
The core team around B.P. Forberg stayed for the moment, but their fundings and ressources dwindled quickly, until they were limited to a few ages they researched.

I was one of those, who broke away. I always have tended to be a loner, and all this turmoil, chaos and mistrust led me to the conclusion, that I should join one of the smaller groups, particularly one, that did a lot of research on my ages and were kind of friends to each other.

It seemed, that the perpetrators of the previous attacks had been expedition members all along, because when the expedition fractured, the attacks came to a sudden halt.

All of that happened in a time frame approximately from January 2013 to June of the same year.

To be continued…

OOC: The blog continues

OOC: After a long, looong hiatus because of lacking motivation, reallife and lack of time, I´ve gained a lot of new motivation, especially by reading about the new fan age projects (e.g.: DIRT), so I again will continue this blog from now on!
I hope to at least post once a week, the more the better.

Hopefully, there are some people who will read this blog again :)

Best wishes,


Hi, all.

I’m back. after a lot of surface issues, I finally got time again to venture down to D’ni – the expedition went on without me, I’ll have to learn what happened in the months of my absence.

One of my first tasks I chose to start, is doing more inspections. The Guild of Maintainers has been rather quiet for the last months, so I guess, now is the perfect moment to contribute a little.

You can find my inspections at the Guild of Maintainer’s forum (Link. OOC comment: Be aware, that they are out of character and contain spoilers and information that could break immersion, especially for ages you haven´t visited yet.)

I also plan to continue my work on Afelahn, my very first age – might be I decide to let people visit the place in the next months.


Free again!

I´m back. After months of isolation in a prison age called Panuehr, we managed to find a way out.

I guess, I should begin with telling you, what happened 3 months ago. Shortly after the new members had arrived, we intensified our research on some of the ages we hadn´t been able to because of our limited manpower.

When a team of 20 expedition members went missing on an expedition to one of the new ages, we sent teams to search after them.

That was the moment they struck. A number of unknown persons in disguises attacked Asheten mansion, causing the few expedition members there to flee. They devastated the mansion, stole most of our scientific data, and set fire to the mansion.

When we finally arrived, alarmed by KI-distress signals, we found the mansion being aflame. We had no chance to extinguish the fire, and so the buidling, most of our equipment, and three adjacent houses burnt to the ground.

Fortunately, the smoke dispersed rather quickly, probably because of the ventilation system of the caverns – and most of our linking and descriptive books were safe in various hiding places.

With most of our research stolen or destroyed, the council met in an emergency meeting and decided to first set up a new base in an age which name will stay classified for the moment.

After gathering what was left, we abandoned the ruins of Asheten mansion – a sad day for the expedition.

Then, we started to look for the perpetrators by combing through every single age we had access to.

I was part of a team of 15 people entering an age called Panuehr, an old prison age of the D’ni. To get out of there again, we had brought various linking books with us, besides our Relto books.

When we entered the complex of buildings in Panuehr, some kind of trap was set off. A gas was led into the room we were in, and we lost consciousness almost immediately.

After we had woke up, we realized, that all our books were gone. That was the beginning of our isolation in the age.

Our KIs were still there, but they were mostly unfunctional. Darian Glover, one of our engineers, who was there as well, speculated, that some kind of energy field drained the KIs batteries.

It took us weeks to explore the vast building complex – our food and water ressources were dwindling alarmingly fast, and we had to ration them strictly.

Finally, after weeks of research, our engineers managed to combine various KIs and their energy sources to contact the expedition.

They told us, they had looked for us, but hadn´t been able to enter the complex. By using our research of the last weeks, we were able to identify some kind of control room in the upper part of the complex, and there found controls that allowed us to open the doors – we were free again.

Now we are still looking for this ominous group of attackers.