(I’ve been recycling some illustrations lately. This time I’ve done it the other way around: A new illustration to an old story. The story has been edited and you can see the original version here.)
There was a circle of mushrooms underneath some trees in the forest. Smoke could be seen between them, from the ground. It grew. Flames emerged as a hole opened.
A hand came up between the flames, grabbing the edge. Another. Two horns, an evil face. A foot.
The little demon pulled himself out of the hole, got on his feet. Stretched his back, and looked up on the starless sky. The night was coming to an end. Soon ridiculously disgusting human beings would start doing their insignificant things, thinking they mattered.
He took a step down the slippery stairway. The scarce light from the tomb entrance made his trained eyes capable of seeing the steps going down into the darkness. Nothing more. A vast blackness in front was all there was.
Somewhere down there was the tomb of Ack Asamrk, the leader of the once so powerful Ingran Kuthu empire. Where there was power, there was wealth.
At the end of the stairway Gardahr saw the shining wet dirt floor. He took anther step. The floor moved. He pulled his sword. A hiss from behind.
Peter crept under the fence, dragging his crutches behind him. Mick was already on his feet, looking down towards the facility further down the hill.
-What do you think is down there? he said.
-I don’t know. I hope we won’t have to run this time, though. I’m not so fast these days.
Peter had broken his leg when he jumped off a container to get out of the old paper factory a month ago. They used to do this, jumping over fences in restricted areas. It had become an obsession.
They walked slowly towards the buildings further down. They could see people moving around, some dressed as scientists, others in guard uniforms. The timing was horrible, with crutches and all, but Mick was always very convincing.
They reached some rows of tube piles giving them shelter, taking them down towards the buildings.