Sunlight trickled through the trees, casting changing shadows as a gentle breeze drifted lazily through the trees. Birds could be heard off in the distance, mingling with the trickle of water and the buzzing of insects. Such is the soundscape of a forest. A young man, dressed in a long shirt and simple trousers hiked along a discrete forest path, a small pack strapped to his back. He was clearly a rare sight in this part of the forest, his purple hair standing out among the more 'normal' browns and greens.
The young man paused and gave a sigh, his eyes closed as he leaned his head against the tree, taking in the tranquil atmosphere. After a brief moment, he took off once again, moving along the path behind his sister.
"It's not too much further," he called up to her, "keep your eyes open."
"How did you even find this place?" Kat asked, turning back towards her brother as she walked.
"I was doing research in the library when I came across a reference to some sort of temple or something in this forest. Doing some cross-referencing, I was able to deduce the rough location of where it'd be." Nathan said, obviously excited about his recent discovery.
Kat puased for a minute as the stream they were following cut in front of her path. She carefully bent down and propelled her lithe body over the stream. Flailing her arms as she tried not to fall backward into the water.
"So this temple is supposedly located in this forest?" she asked, "The one that's literally right outside our town?"
"Apparently so," Nathan said, as he breathed deeply, searching for trees familiar to him.
Kat turned to continue walking, "And you're sure we're getting close?"
Kat smiled, shaking her head as she walked. This wasn't the first time that her brother had invited her to explore some ruins with him, and she had to admit that he had a knack for finding some pretty cool places, even if the ruins were pretty lackluster. Her brother had been researching a civilization that was only recently re-discovered. The ruins were apparently from a civilization that thrived in the area centuries ago. "Global anomaly" had caused the culture to vanish. They hadn't found anything more recent than a couple of centuries ago, but there was a temple, built during the same period somewhere in these woods.
He'd spent many nights and days in the library, looking for references to this civilization, and would often go out and do "fieldwork" as he called it. Though to Kat, it usually involved going off to some remote area and finding a broken wall or piece of pottery that her brother would then gush over for hours. Sometimes they'd find some broken statues or the remains of a stone building. Though, Kat usually just came along to get out of the house.
The siblings continued to walk along the path, circling their way through the woods. She'd been trying to stay fit and figured this was a good way to do it. After all, they'd been hiking since early this morning and it was already approaching noon.
"Wow! There it is!" Her brother exclaimed from behind her.
Kat stumbled as her brother pushed recklessly past her, his eyes fixed on something in front of them.
"Hey! Watch it" Kat said, punching him in the arm, before turning her gaze in the direction he was looking.
A large stone structure could be seen through the trees. It was covered in vines and other plants making it hard to notice at first, but as she continued walking the trees suddenly gave way to a clearing, revealing the full marvel of the temple before her.
The front of the temple was adorned with cracked and crumbling pillars, though the building itself looked in surprisingly good shape. There was a large, arched entrance set in the middle of the building, flanked on either side by a pair of waterfalls that fell into a couple of pools near the base of the building. The pools seemed to be the source of the stream they'd been following. Several statues were nestled between the pillars, though it was hard to make out what they were. They were obviously people, but beyond that, Kat couldn't tell.
"This is incredible! And still in such good shape" Nathan said more to himself than Kat, he was already halfway across the clearing and didn't show any signs of stopping.
Kat kept her eyes on the building as she rushed to catch up with her brother. She couldn't believe how amazing this place was. The afternoon light cast shadows and patterns over the walls, making them glow in the weak sunlight.
"This really is awesome Nathan!" Kat exclaimed as she finally caught up with her brother.
Nathan whipped around to look at her, excitement practically bursting from every part of him, "So should we go in?"
Kat smiled, "Ha, someone's excited!"
"Can you blame me," Nathan asked as he stepped through the large entrance into an enormous room beyond.
Kat followed her brother through the entrance. It took a moment for her eyes to adjust to the dim light, revealing a massive chamber before her. Pillars lined the walls on either side of the room, though several had long since collapsed to the stone floor. Several streams of sunlight came through holes in the roof that had piles of debris beneath them.
"It's so quiet…like a church almost," Kat said, her voice the only thing to break the silence.
"Yeah," Nathan said looking around, "It's like this place, it was all bustle and life not so long ago. What caused this place to decay so much?"
"Global anomaly," Kat said with a slight smile, a snarky response to her brother's silly question.
"Ha, yeah, thanks for your three cents," Nathan replied, rolling his eyes.
Kat glanced around the room as Nathan began heading towards one of the collapsed pillars, rummaging around in his pack for his notebook.
The room was enormous and she could tell it would've been very impressive back when it wasn't falling apart. The air in here tasted stale though, signally that no one had been here in a long time. She could hear the waterfalls outside, and the dripping of water falling from above onto the stone floor. Her brother's footsteps echoed ominously as she took her own hesitant steps forward.
She was about halfway to the far wall when her eyes fell on something that had been blocked by a pile of rubble. There was a large stone pedestal at the far end of the room, adorned with three statues, though she couldn't really make them out from where she was.
She began picking her way through the rubble towards the pedestal, keeping her eyes on the three statues as she went. She slowed as she approached, examing the three figures that seemed expertly carved.
The one on the left depicted a young girl, probably about Kat's age, though she was significantly fatter than Kat. Her clothes were tight and form-fitting, though her belly protruded greatly from them. Everything about the statue was fat and round. In one hand the statue was holding a bunch of grapes, in the other a staff.
The one in the middle also looked about the same age as Kat, however, this one wasn't fat. Instead, it had enormous breasts that seemed to burst from her clothes. Kat wondered how she could even support such a top-heavy frame. The statue's hands were occupied by pinching its massive nipples.
Finally, the one on the right depicted a girl, again Kat's age, though she was massively pregnant. If Kat had to guess, she was probably carrying a full litter in her distended belly. Her back was arched from the weight, and she was rubbing the side of her belly with one of her hands while the other supported one of her large breasts.
The detail on the statues was amazing. If Kat didn't know any better, she'd say they were real people. However, they were obviously just stone. Still, they intrigued her, and she found herself moving closer to investigate.