Chris may stared out of the window, feeling on top of the world that he had finally found out where the ancient treasure and the tomb of King Ophir was, he could finally be a world famous archaeologist. He felt proud as he looked around the cabin at the two other members of his team that he had gotten this far with, Alicia Silva, one of the best archaeologists in the world, in Chris’ mind anyway. She was a fine looking tanned lady with long black hair glistening in the early morning sun beams flooding through the planes window.
Like Chris himself, she was very interested in being a famous archaeologist and was one of Chris’ best friends. Sitting next to her, fast asleep, was Dougal Murdock, a rugged Irishman with long, grey, curly hair, a stocky build and a coarse, thick Irish accent. He also had an unprecedented knowledge of Peru, due to him working all over the country when he was younger for a mining company. He was not really too interested in the archaeology, but came along to help the archaeologists because he was a nice enough man and he was receiving a rather large paycheque.
They were to land in south Peru in a few minutes to try and excavate the Peruvian King Ophir’s tomb, which is decked out with millions of pounds of his wealth in Inca gold, diamonds and other precious stones. The grave has been sought after for hundreds of years and only recently has the technology been advanced enough to locate exactly where it was. The British Museum had offered them a modest amount of money for the findings, but for Chris and Alicia becoming top in their field was a lot more important.
They got off the small dinky plane and it was late morning and the sun was reflecting off the frozen runway into the eyes of the team so they quickly moved off the runway. They got into their Jeep and drove off to the camp they had set up last time they had been in the Andes. On the short journey they discussed what they should do for the rest of the day and by the end of the trip they had come to the conclusion that they should go to the tomb as there was still quite a lot of the day remaining.
After arriving at their camp and depositing all of the travelling gear and picking up the minimal quantity of archaeology and hiking equipment they set off to the area of the Andes where the tomb was situated in the Jeep. When they stepped out of the car a crisp icy blast of cold air hit them straight on but they clambered up the makeshift trail they had found, Chris and Alicia trekking on ahead and Dougal slightly lagging behind. It was about 3 o’clock when they reached where they had predetermined the tomb was, although it was not distinguishable in all of the snow and rocks that they could see.
Then Alicia noticed a vague outline of an arch, which is what the tomb was supposed to look like, but it was covered in rocks and snow that had gathered there over the years. Dougal went over to see how easy it would be to get through the rock and because of his mining experience he knew that the rock was actually really light compared to how it looked and all of the rocks could be moved out of the way in under an hour if they all worked efficiently.
After they had scraped all of the snow out of their way they got to work, Alicia was struggling a bit but Chris’ enormous workrate because of his excitement meant that nobody noticed Alicia. About forty-five minutes in the light constant snow had stopped; Dougal remembered when this happened from years ago. A storm was coming. They started to work faster and within a minute or two they had made a small opening in the rocks, just big enough to get one person through at a time.
They clambered in just as the wind was picking up and were speechless. Everything they had been told about the wealth of the tomb was true. It was jam-packed full of the finest gold and artefacts the team had ever seen in their lives, but they had to drag themselves away from it because if they ever wanted to get back to the camp they would have to before the storm got worse. They packed up all of their gear and started to race down the hill as quickly, but as safely as they could, almost.
When they were almost at the car Chris took a fall on an icy patch and tumbled down around thirty feet of the dangerous snowy and rocky mountain. He was left lying right next to the car, holding his ankle and in agony. Dougal picked him up and put him in the back of the jeep, out of the storm and they drove off. Alicia in the back of the jeep with Chris helping him stay conscious and making sure the injury wasn’t too serious and Dougal driving. When they returned to their camp the blizzard had just reached its peak while they were checking out Chris’ ankle.
It turned that he had a mild sprain but should be able to walk again in a week or so. The next day was spent at the camp because they couldn’t go out due to the storm still raging and Chris’ ankle was still giving him quite a lot of pain. They used up the hours in the day talking about their fantasies about the fame they would get when they returned, what they would buy with the money and about the treasure inside the tomb. An aspect of the conversation seemed to be brought up a lot by Dougal- how much all of the treasure was worth in the tomb.
He kept asking questions about it, but then Chris and Alicia replied by saying they would be giving it to a museum anyway so it didn’t really matter but estimated around six to six and a half million and the conversation moved on, and they thought nothing more of it. The day after was spent in pretty much the same manner, although the storm had passed Chris’ ankle still hurt. Chris and Alicia woke up to a shock. The place had been wrecked, all the drawers open, everything tipped on it’s side.
They frantically looked around the place to see if anything important had gone and they found out something had. Dougal. With the mess in mind Chris concluded that Dougal had been kidnapped and caused the state of the office area and his tent in the struggle he made resisting being taken. They rang the local police to come out and check around for traces of Dougal and when they came they discovered car tracks that indicated speeding away but the tracks disappeared before they could work out where the car was going.
The police couldn’t find evidence of a lot of kidnappers being there, one or two at the most. Chris’ ankle felt a bit better today and he thought that it would be a good idea not to stick around in the area too long if there was a risk of him being abducted so he and Alicia determined that they would go out and collect the artefacts later that day. They couldn’t do anything more to help with the police search and they thought finishing the job would have been what Dougal would have wanted so it seemed like the right thing to do.
Subsequent to them packing all of the archaeology equipment and hiking equipment into a van a lot larger than the jeep they travelled back to as far as the road went and as far as they went last time. It took them two trips up to where the tomb was with all of their apparatus and found out that from the storm a few days prior the entry to the tomb had once again been covered in snow. They scraped it all away and were stunned to find the rocks had been moved away, that feeling turned to panic, that feeling turned to confusion, that feeling turned to suspicion.
They walked a bit further into the cave and all of those feelings came back again as all of the gold, jewels and the rest of King Ophirs fortune had vanished, except the mummy of King Opihir itself. How could it have gone? Were they in the right cave? Only 3 people in Peru knew the location of the tomb Chris, Alicia … and Dougal. They suddenly realised that either Dougal’s abductors had made him tell them where the treasure was or Dougal hadn’t been kidnapped at all, he had gone and taken the fortune for himself with people he knew in the area.
None of the options were good news. They knew that it would be near impossible to reclaim the treasure because if there were kidnappers they would be Peruvian and if they weren’t then Dougal knew his way around Peru like a Peruvian, both cases meant that the treasure would probably on the other side of Peru being shipped off to the biggest bidders. They thought they might as well just give up on the treasure and the hope of being the most famous archaeologist in the world and just get a small amount of money for the mummy of the king.
The best thing for them to do would be pack their stuff up travel across to Lima airport and wait for a plane they could get on back to England. They were sitting around in the airport lounge when Chris suddenly spotted what looked like the long grey hair of Dougal’s head over the top of a chair. As Chris hadn’t fully recovered from his fall Alicia rushed over to see if it was him and shook them hard, a scream was heard as the hair belonged to an ageing woman, but before she got embarrassed about it an coarse Irish voice shouted her name.
She turned around to find Dougal standing infront of her wearing an expensive looking slick suit that she was pretty sure he didn’t have before. He sneered and told her that he’d robbed the artefacts and sold them on and they were just about to take off but she was too late to do anything about it. She thought if they haven’t taken off yet she could do something about it but then she couldn’t catch Dougal. She slapped him and called Chris over, after he’d hobbled over he offered to shake Dougal’s hand for being a good friend but then somehow managed to turn that into him having Dougal pinned on the floor unable to move.
The airport police had come over now about the fuss and Alicia told them what was happening so they arrested Dougal under aggressive behaviour and theft and illegal distribution of historical artefacts, which should make a long enough prison sentence. Alicia half carried Chris as fast as she could out on to the runway but they were just a minute late, the plane was taking off. As it was only a small plane it would be untraceable and nobody knew where it was going so decided to give up a lost cause. They sat down on the runway and watched their chances of being the most famous archaeologists in the world fly off into the sunset.