A Visitor from Prax
‘The elements reign here in frightful and eternal combat, and spirits and other immortal creatures seem plentiful; though for the most part shy and unobtrusive. Even so, I judge it no fit place for civilised man. The country, though quite varied in character, either bristles with forests or is foul with swamp, and is constantly chilled by great troll magics out of Dagori Inkarth. Horses and other pack beasts are of no assistance in the hills and marshes. The trees are older than time, and exceed all marvels with their limitless age and size. Hills are raised up where roots collide.
The stormy heights to the west of Jaskors Hold are remarkable for beasts of chase: stag, elk, roebuck, spreadhorn and horned boar. It is rumoured that fearful aurochs still haunt the wilder parts of the gallt, though I did not care to investigate this personally. Moreover, the wilderness contains a great sufficiency of otters, weasels, and utterly fearless alynx. On account of the great and ceaseless rain (The legacy of SkyRiver Titan), the entire country is dotted with rivers, mires and marshy gors. Their sole redeeming feature is that they contain innumerable eels, snapping turtles and large water wolves, with pickerals, roaches, burbots and lampreys, and sometimes salmon. From these products is made a fearsome fish sauce called blackburn or sticklepick, famed in more civilised climes but wholly repugnant to me after viewing the manner of its manufacture…
The elements reign here in frightful and eternal combat…
As for the Bluefoot, they build neither road nor village, but instead isolated walled steads, joined by treacherous and winding trails. They are rude and wild, though generous in their hospitality and childlike in humour. Their rituals seem entirely devoted to the taking of steam baths in sweat lodges of stone and earth — men one day, women the next, ancestors the third. They all bear fearsome tattoos, women and men both; and despite the constant bathing they never change their clothes. Worst of all, they drown themselves in cats and screaming children.
All in all, I was glad to rejoin the muddy track leading south from Ironspike, turning my thoughts to the civilised comforts and company of Alda Chur.
The Journey through Far Point.