CTTOC Round Robin Novel - ch1

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RavensHiddenSoul's avatar

Literature Text

History has always offered modern humanity much more than just a glimpse into the past. Regardless of how each era defines its own "modern", no matter how distant and relative the "past", for every eon, culture, and generation there are those who seek to plunder the graves of ancient civilizations in the pursuit of knowledge. Understanding. Wisdom. Sometimes fame is the ultimate goal and sometimes it's the fulfillment of discovery. But it always begins with a mystery...

"That's strange..."

Dove's quiet voice hardly broke through the relative calm of the living room. But her white-dressed figure seemed absorbed in the words before her with an intensity completely opposite of that mumbling voice. It was rare to see the telepath near any computer, but apparently glimpsing the too-familiar-seeming ruins on the cover of an anthropological magazine at the library could coax out enough curiosity to drive her beyond the article, and straight onto everyone's favorite search engine.

Now that very article lay open before her, eighteen separate windows crowding the screen and twice as many myths, stories, and contradicting theories crowding her mind...


"...the center of great archeological excitement. Two months into the expedition, a stone carving was found which provided enough insight that Professor T. K. Burnes was able to speculate much of the meaning behind the mysterious hieroglyphics..."
"...pictographs indicating an item of godly important..."

"......supposedly either a threat or a gift from the Mayan god Hunab, known as the creator god that, in true fatalistic Mayan fashion, destroyed the world three times to recreate it, only to grow bored......"

"...The item is believed to reside in the uppermost tier of a six "story" temple rivaling the fabled Tower of Babel built halfway around the world..."

Apparently this temple stood someplace in Mexico, with a name she couldn't begin to pronounce.

"Discovering this temple was a shock. People have explored the area but never seen it. How did they miss it?"
"...never seemed to exist until now..."

The picture showed a strangely geometric tiered temple that almost stood above the ancient forest surrounding it, with a staircase so intimidatingly great it made Dove breathless just to see. Untopped columns stood erect around three of the four sides, like makeshift trees - or an attentive crowd, standing guard in stone-still procession.

               "...baffling investigators; scientific instruments detected energy readings they don't know what to do with. No discernible pattern has been found in these strange but very weak emissions..."
          "...coinciding with Burnes' baffling claim that Hunab's mysterious gift is one of great power."
     "......Surely only the Mayan's fearful respect of their powerful and fickle, reactive gods prevented them from attempting to wield it themselves?"

My sources say this thing is how the Mayans advanced so fast. I mean, for a country still building with stone-age techniques in 400 AD, they were pretty freaking advanced.
fat lot of good it did them. we all know all their books were burned by the Spanish monks and everything.
Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!
But that calendar thing? pretty advanced to predict the end of the world.
Yeah, but they called it seven years too early.
actaully if you look at the math thier calendars were interpreted wrong
What math? The calendar was only wrong by with thousandths of a day. (That's 0.008 of a day. Not 8,000 days. Because I know some uneducated math t*** will read it wrong.)
but there our a thousand days in three yaers. so if every three years their wrong by 8 days...

...Okay, time for Dove to leave that forum; as so many conversations on the internet do, it dissolved into an argument quite irrelevant to her original search.

Another image.

"Caption: Images leaked from the expedition. This depiction of worship was found on the temple door."


"...wealth, success, power, and riches. The figure it depicts is surprisingly human, but stands oddly apart from the rest..."
"...In each myth, the pictures are explained differently..."

"......The Mayans had no interest in alchemy or man-made magic, but rumors still fly: the strange circle shown on some of those columns isn't the sun. It is indeed the Philosopher's Stone! This would explain why it was lost to Europe, and if when the Spanish explorers came, the stone was left behind..."
" if the entire internet forgot all they cared about was calendars..."
"...great wars of conquest thought to end this modern anthropological mystery, but the item depicted was meant to lead them all to great victory..."
     "....remains elusive, lost indefinitely in the final battles of their greatest civil wars."

          "Or so historians thought."


...Great Azar, it was confusing. Rather than offering any answers, this latest archeological find gave them a hundred different keys to a thousand locked doors. And its secrets lay buried deep in a dead civilization in all ruins and no writing to explain them, but these stone carvings and some 800 hieroglyphics that have yet to be decoded!

Well, if there was one thing Dove excelled at, it was recon and delicate study.

And so it was without hesitance that once her hunt-and-pecked search through the Titans' informational database was rewarded with speculative mission files, Dove called the others who had been mentioned in the initial briefing and send them the files of her saved search.

"Hey, guys? You may want to see this..."

Apparently the artifact had already been the target of several malicious missions: two funding relocation attacks from within the university (that were quickly quelled), and espionage activity was suspected at the site, but far more worrying were the attacks from outside and beyond. Information was wrestled from an excavator just two weeks ago. A whole team was chased away from a large chamber in the temple by a pack of dogs that had an "eerie resemblance" to the "mutant creatures" on a recently-discovered carving on the wall. Attacks from the local wildlife. Suspiciously sudden rockfall, and trees collapsing from nowhere and small earthquakes not foreseen by the National Weather Service's seismographs. And many, many more dangers were expected on the way.

At the very least, these archeologists needed far more protection than their flimsy tents and hard-hats provided.

And that's where the Teen Titans came in.
Written for ClubTeenTitansOC's Round Robin Novel project.

Let the adventure begin!~

Next chapter: Will be linked, as soon as it's posted!


...~Okay. So with all my notes being on flashdrives and computer issues everywhere, I was unable to access the files and notes and word processing and internet and generally everything I needed to make this happen. Until, like, two days ago.

Basically: it was rushed. Leaving it as a lead-in? I did my best. And I've poured every spare moment of the last three days into making sure this was ready to post!

The information dump in the middle of the chapter didn't come out quiiiite how I'd first imagined it... But you get the gist, right?

Mayan history is actually pretty fascinating... What draws me in most, and makes Mayan ruins a great mysterious place to set the RRN quest, is that not only was the civilization around in the relatively recent years of classical Rome, but there's so much information about them that was LOST. They didn't WRITE on the time-tested stone tablets of Sumeria, or the thick papyrus sheets of Ancient Egypt. They wrote in relatively small paper books, with natural ink. The books they wrote really WERE burned by fanatical Spanish monks... and now only three books and a fragment remain of their entire civilization's writing. (At least, according to the scant information I could find of them at the library.)

And there ain't no Mayan Rosetta Stone, none that we know of anyways. (It's funny... We've decoded their numbers and calendars. But we still have no idea how to read their writing. Those 800+ symbols mentioned in the narration? Yeah, that was a real number.)

We REALLY don't know a lot about them! So there isn't much worry about historical or archeological accuracy, not when we're STILL discovering and exploring plenty of things about them.

Also: it turns out writing 800+ words is a lot easier than it looks! This intro gives you guys a good idea of how long your chapters should be. Microsoft Word said this chapter was about 1,024 words - which falls nicely into our goal of 800 to 2,000.

Here's to hoping this story is taken to great places, with these great people, by the writers who've come together to make this story happen! 8D

*passes the baton* Write on, guys!
© 2014 - 2021 RavensHiddenSoul
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SuperheroGeek13's avatar
I like the mysterious opening of this chapter. Sounds almost mystical with all this talk of the "past" and the "modern."

Dove is a pretty a dedicated researcher. You did a great job of leading us through her research to the relevant points. Great exposition.
Hmm, a temple appearing in Mexico with no explanation. And strange energy readings as well! Intriguing...
The creatures that attacked resembled the carvings on the walls? And other forces of nature deterring the researchers as well... This has potential!

Question: Who exactly are the others that had been mention in the initial briefing?
Linzerj's avatar
Oh gosh oh gosh oh gosh this is incredible!

I can't wait for my turn, because this is gonna be epic and so much fun and oh man, I don't even know what I'm trying to say anymore. But it was a perfect beginning to the story, and oh man now the pressure is on to follow up on this!!
Coolspeedbot's avatar
I share the feeling of pressure but increased due to being the only one (as far as i'm aware) who hasn't done a robin round activity before, and I'm last in the list so hopefully it will not be ch#1= good, ch#2= good, ch#3=good and ch#4 pants. but I'll do my best.

by the way nice doctor who quote 
Linzerj's avatar
No I'm sure you'll be fine! Doubt is your worst enemy. And to be honest all of us are probably nervous about our respective chapters being terrible.

Ah thanks! Sarah Jane was the best companion in my opinion, and I will quote her for forever.
Coolspeedbot's avatar
thats true

and I agree sarah jane smith was the best, what episode does it come from?
Linzerj's avatar
It's from "School Reunion", which is episode 4 of season 2 - with the 10th Doctor.
Coolspeedbot's avatar
wait I thought it was episode 3 it follows new earth, tooth and claw
Linzerj's avatar
Oh yeah, episode 3 - on netflix it's listed as episode 4 though, which is kind of weird. :shrug:
Coolspeedbot's avatar
they most likely think that the 2005 xmas special counts as part of that series because it's released with the series 2 box set 
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Coolspeedbot's avatar
very good opening, I can so easily imagine this as a prolog to a episode of teen titans

can't what to see where superherogeek13 and linzerj take the story next
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