Day Twenty-Eight

Rene Oliver

Went on another walk today. Grabbed a few more things from the library. There’s some fascinating stuff in here. Flipped through a book with some pictures of animals. I’ve seen a lot of the animals in that book, or at least things that look remarkably similar. Pretty stagnant ecosystem, then.
Shit what if we brought some awful new disease down here with us?
Anyway. Saw some other interesting things while I was out and about today. There was this building that I’m pretty sure was a restaurant. Or maybe a mess hall, if this place was populated by soldiers. Also found some sort of big armory. The weapons were all really worn out, barely recognizable as weapons except a few of them still had blades and barrels. It still seemed pretty advanced though. Wonder if we’ll ever run into some working gear. Might be useful to have down here.
Weird that the armory had so many swords in it, with how advanced most of the weapons down here seem to be. Maybe they were technologically enhanced somehow. Not sure I can think of a way to make swords viable in a planetary-scale battle. Maybe they were just ceremonial, and only stored with the new gear because it’s more convenient to have it all in one spot. For parades and knightings and stuff. And maybe duels? Zephyr seems like he’d be into duels, and he always talks about being old-fashioned. Wonder if they did duels. I’ll have to ask when he gets back.

Zephyr’s back! Showed up when I was getting ready to sleep. Flawless timing, as I’ve come to expect. He’s really interested in all the stuff I’ve purloined from the library. He’s been translating all of it. Writing so hard he’s actually sweating a little.
He told me that the paper is made from the wood of a norzát tree, a sort of tree that grows on his homeworld. They’re almost entirely resistant to just about everything - including the passage of time. That explains how the books survived. Doesn’t explain how everything else is in such good shape.
Including the roof of the cave… still hung up on that. How the fuck did that happen?


I have returned to our hut after spending more time than anticipated in the field. After apologizing profusely to Rene, I went over my findings with him - and discovered that he, himself, has made some discoveries of his own, namely a library! This will, with any luck, prove to be incredibly useful. I have begun translating the documents Rene acquired, though I have saved most of what I believe to be the more worthwhile texts for tomorrow, when I am well-rested.
Before I sleep, I would like to describe the two very interesting discoveries I made on my trek. The first - and easily most relevant to our collective struggle - is an artificial reservoir just beyond the edge of the city. This body of water is massive beyond estimation. From a brief inspection, I noticed neither its far end nor its bottom. The water appears to be fresh. Its potability is a matter of concern. I have consumed a large portion of the water myself and will monitor my health closely over the following days. Should I see no side-effects, I will reveal the reservoir’s existence to Rene.
Surrounding the banks of the reservoir were several carcasses, all of which appeared aquatic. Some had been there for a while; others still had meat on their bones. None of these carcasses appear to be carnivorous.
While I am on the topic of carnivores, I must mention a fascinating animal I witnessed today. It is difficult to accurately estimate the size of an animal whilst running and hiding from it, but I would assume the creature to have been at least eight feet in height, and at least twice that long.
The thing was reptilian. Its scales were thick and most of them - those not near joints or other moving parts - were spined. The snout was long and thin, with rows of teeth the size of daggers. It walked on four legs, but was capable of lifting itself onto its hind limbs if need be - a fact I learned after it lost my scent briefly and shifted its lethal focus to a small, wall-dwelling lizard. Its forelimbs were almost like arms in a sense, with three clawed fingers where the hindlimbs were hoofed.
This creature is unique in that it is one of few animals I have encountered here which I do not recognize from Su-Kalus. That something so large moved while making so little sound strikes fear into my heart. How does it conceal itself? Further study of its camouflage may prove advantageous in our war against Astyajarel. Something to remember for later.

Continue to Day Twenty-Nine-->