The Exodus Journal: Entry 11-12

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A great discovery of the ages? Or just the last remnants of childlike wonder dying by the hands of reality? Either way, I will continue to seek it out, this land that is suppose to be dead; harbouring nothing but ghastly beings of the spectral kind.

Entry 11

As predicted, the caravan has significantly slowed since yesterday, but not for the reasons that I initially thought. For as I made my way through the line, I encountered a wagon blocking the path. It was tilting dangerously to the left, with its wheels half-buried into the ground.

On closer inspection, the wagon’s wheels had revealed a hollow, covered by the undergrowth. My interest peaked and I requested to investigate further, but I could not, as this would risk the entire wagon to roll over. I understood their concerns, but I wasn’t about to give up either; so I waited for hours as they tried to jerk the wheels back on the path, but in the end, it was without avail.

As they wheezed and grunted at their failure, I carefully reminded them that if they could not salvage the wagon, they would simply have to let it roll over completely, for it stood in the way of the others that needed to pass. Their eyes showed only contempt for me then, and I was certain that they would attack me at any moment. But thankfully, reason prevailed, and they removed their belonging before they let the now worthless piece of wood crash over the edge.

As the wagon teared through the thin layer of roots and sedimented sand, a much larger hollow was revealed, as I expected. What I didn’t expect, however, was the significance of the find. Under the rubble, that the wagon had caused, there were remains of a structure; not very large or well preserved, but a foundation was there, including parts of a four-sided wall.

I can hardly contain myself as I write this, for this is the evidence that I have sought ever since hearing about the stories of the Ghostly Kingdom. Naturally, the civilisations demise, and the origin of the ghost stories, had been exaggerated through centuries of oral tradition — facts twisted through the generations.

Though, maybe I’m getting ahead of myself again, for these rocks are not clear evidence by any means, only an indication of may yet to come. But what else could it be unless we have stumbled upon an old hermits humble abound?

It saddens me, however, that I cannot study them in further depth for my duties lay elsewhere. But I am certain this is but a part of a greater discovery, so significant in its implication that my heart shatters whenever I think about the circumstance to which it was found; for its discovery will be almost meaningless, beyond personal curiosity, when the very existence of our people lies in the balance.

Entry 12

Before I was able to head out this morning, an old man approached me. Having heard of my interest in the ruins, he explained that he once visited these rocks as a teenager. Apparently, the people of his village never embraced the ghostly stories that the other villagers told; instead, they had a rite of passage were the young men ventured deep into the highlands until they found an item by which to bring back as proof of their exploit.

This excited me to no end, not only because of the amusing gesture of spite against the other villagers of his kin, but also that it meant that there indeed are more ruins laying about.

Though my face surely shone with excitement at the time, I was taken aback by the lightless eyes that the old man expressed. Showing fear and weariness that is so rare among his kin, who otherwise hides their emotion behind a cold expressionless face.

As the old man continued his story, he suddenly dug into a satchel, strapped under his belt, and presented an item for me.

The item was shimmering in gold, with markings of an unknown kind. An around it, jewels were encrusted in red, yellow and blue, and another gem that was missing.

I was speechless. Its design was uncanny in its similarities to my own culture. It is almost as if the gems represented the Three Great Tribes of our race, by which I belong to the yellow. Of course, because of my eye colour. Truly, it must be a coincidence?

As I tried my hardest not to touch it out of respect, I noticed how fragile and famished the old man was, his hands trembling as he held it before my eyes. I quickly dug into my own satchel to offer him some food, but as I turned, the old man had already left. Limping down the hill back to his own kind.

Dumbfounded with questions, I could not draw breath to ask who he was and I just watched as the mysterious man disappeared among the crowd below.

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