The hunting party had trouble finding crevasse, but eventually Far-See located a familiar-looking furrow in the ground. They followed it uphill, and eventually located the crevasse.
Far-See threw rocks and sticks into the crevasse, determining that it’s somewhat deep and dry inside. Dark-Meat moved farther down, to where sunlight shone in, and discovered that the crevasse is really just a narrow crack leading down into a wider, rounded tunnel.
Thunder-Gut and Green-Leaf discussed Little-Mountain, and decided that maybe giving her some responsibilities would curb her divisive tendencies. So Thunder-Gut told her she is to be the party’s main healer. Little-Mountain rebuked him, saying that such things are for the shamans to decide, not the hunting party leader. And then, in keeping with her past behavior, she complained about Thunder-Gut to Green-Leaf in an effort to foment dissent against him.
The PCs finally decide to explore the crevasse. Green-Leaf had a woven willow-vine rope, and tying it to the piece of rope from the marked mammoth they came up with just enough rope to lower Far-See to the floor.
He found himself in a lava tube, about 4 man-heights in diameter, running from the volcano down toward the swamp. At the places where the ceiling was caved in, fallen rubble formed a pile about 5’ high. Far-See called out, testing the tunnel’s echo, only to attract the attention of a giant bear (the “short-faced” or “bulldog” bear, Arctodus Simus). Thunder-Gut, Thick-Brow, and Dark-Meat quickly approached the edge of the crevasse to lower a rope, only to have the edge give way – pitching Thick-Brow and Dark-Meat into the tunnel! They’d have been injured, but Thunder-Gut held fast to the rope, burning his hands in the process.
The PCs in the tunnel ran back toward a place where the rope could be safely lowered to extract them, but the charging bear didn’t give them time. Far-See bravely stepped forward to meet it, catching a deep claw swipe across his chest. A desperate battle ensued! Thick-Brow drew blood with his spear, drawing the bear’s attention (and a wound) upon himself. Then the rest of the party piled on. Green-Leaf leaped down upon the bear from the lip of the crevasse, calling upon the Willow Spirit to empower her willow-wood spear! She missed, but the bear broke her fall – and her courageous act gave several of her companions the same idea. After lowering Big-Hand and Rock-Head by rope, Thunder-Gut threw his own tremendous bulk down upon the bleeding bear, knocking it to the floor. Soft-Touch then stunned it with a rock thrown from above, and the rest of the party fell upon the thing to make sure it was dead.
They have decided to stay the night in the tunnel, to skin the bear and heal their wounds. They plan to follow the tunnel toward the volcano, hoping it will allow them to sneak close to the Lava People Tribe village without being detected.
The evening’s experience point was won by Far-See, for his great bravery in voluntarily attracting the bear’s attention. He spent it on a new ‘throwing things’ advantage.