22nd day of Felsite, 550 years since the Record began,
Stakud “Closebolt” Urolalath, Mason and Bookkeeper for the Expedition Group Anuzlolor, “The Fair Letter”
More than two months have passed since we broke ground here at Anuzlolor. So much has happened, but still so much to be done. I will try to record all I can remember, lest the days to come erase the early ones from my mind. Perhaps this entry could even be used as a list to refer to when seeking subjects to carve onto the walls of our future Great Hall. That time seems so far away — and yet, right within reach!
Two days after our arrival, Stodir had hollowed out a small but comfortable hole for us all. It’s a strategic place from which we can both easily access local flora and make a stand to defend ourselves if the need arises. Stodir then went right to work on expanding the site, first creating a nook of silty clay (which Ushat claimed immediately for our first indoor garden; already we have sprouted plump helmets! Ushat, you work wonders!) That alone would have been enough, but still going strong, Stodir mined out a quiet dormitory for us all, a common area, and even a large work area for me. (As Mason, I require a great deal of space with which to both work and store my creations.) Humbled, I engraved into a wall, in full view of the common table, the standard of The Ferocious Galley. I like to think it makes the she-dwarves proud of our civilization every time they look upon it.
The Hill of Mobbing seems to be nothing but a giant rock salt formation, with a few patches of silty clay. Amazingly, it is the hardest salt I have ever encountered. Already I have chiseled out some basic furniture for us all, even the table upon on which I write now. Olin believes a small rock salt Kitchen is in order so that she might prepare meals and season them at the same time! It reminds me that the time has come to slaughter our faithful horse and camel, before the meat on their bones withers away. Will Lokum be up to the task to give the order, though?
Ah, Lokum, our good-for-nothing leader. She has done but one thing since we arrived: haul supplies around; and everyone does that. She is supposed to be our hunter! Why won’t she even try to look for something to hunt? I’ve half a mind to take back my role as leader and order her out of the hovel, not to return until she brings home some game meat. But no, that would never do; I know the rest of the she-dwarves will stand by her side. I just wish I knew what her plan was. She is a mystery to me.
Turning away from unpleasant matters, the good news of course is that the spring thaw came, praise the gods! All of us have been busy foraging the plain for anything we can find. We have found a surprising assortment of plants scattered everywhere, from grains to greens to root vegetables. I don’t know how they survived the winter, but maybe the climate here is not as severe as we all thought. As long as we are careful with our seeds, I wouldn’t be surprised if we were able to maintain a quality outdoor garden in the few short months of the year that they can grow. (I know it goes against dwarfkind to spend so much time out in the light, but desperate times may require it – we must eat!)
The brook Leechfragments, as I feared, is much too far away to be of any use to us right now, so we must make use of the murky pools that dot the area near our entrance. Fearing disease from these stagnant waters, I think we will need to pump the water through a filter before we can store it in our future cistern. That complicates our plans, but I’m believing that Edem, who already has made us wonderful beds, can construct a pump for us while I aid Stodir in the design and mining of the cistern. By the grace of Rimtar, we will finish before the first frost in the fall.
All this work requires much needed rest, which is where I am headed off to now. Tomorrow Adil will create some nest boxes for the hens. Olin has kept eggs off-limits for eating for now, at least until a small brood of chicks have arrived. With any luck, we will have a bounty of eggs from dozens of hens next year. The roosters, however… well, we only need one of those, which means… ha ha, I can almost smell the grilled meat now! And the best part is that it won’t be hunted game requiring thanks to Lokum!
The story continues in part 3.
For a breakdown of the actual gameplay, read on here.