The last sunlight shone bright and the clearing bathed in shadows cast from the high treetops. The clearing was rather large, with a beautiful fauna growing in harmony. However, it was the enormous tree in its middle which really caught my attention.
The tree were easily twice the height of any other and about four times as wide. Its bark was so rough I could with ease fit into a crack and be completely invisible to my surroundings. A leaf as large as a full grown man came swirling down through the air. The dark green colour contrasted it self to the moss covered ground and landed with a soft sound. I’d say about five minutes passed as I marvelled at the magnificent sight. Then my feet decided I wasn’t close enough and started walking towards the unknown specimen.
Though the terrain were smooth and clear, it still took me a while to investigate the tree. Its roots were slightly rising above the moss before burring under ground. Eventually I came to the other side to where I came from. What I saw made me even more surprised.
This side had a hollowing to its very core, as high as a smaller tree, but it wasn’t just empty. There were machinery covering its inside and from the center a tentacle like arm hang, with a giant half bark, half machinery head on its end. When investigating the head closer I realised it was looking dead. Maybe it lacked power, maybe time and weather had damaged some vital parts of the machinery or maybe it wasn’t finished? The sun had almost set and darkness were inbound. I made my camp some meters from the hollowing and managed to fall asleep quite fast.
I abruptly awoke when one of the many leafs from the tree fell down on me. It didn’t hurt but it was kinda frightening. Imagen you wake up just before you see a large shadow falling at high speed towards you. The day had just begun and I swiftly took down the camp, made a quick tour around the tree once more before departing. I had to reach the main camp before midday. This was important!
I didn’t pay my surroundings much attention as I jogged at slow speed. I arrived at the main camp just before midday, almost exhausted, it had been longer than I remembered. Fenra greeted me with her usual smile which I returned tenfold. Between breaths I asked her to gather the explorer, warrior and transport divisions. I think my determined look erased any questions she might have had because she did what was told without hesitation. It would take a while for everyone to gather. While waiting I paid Elana a short visit, since my belly had started to complain, completely ignoring my determination. The chef served me some delicious soup which I drank while walking towards the meeting place.
Those with authority had gathered when I entered the tent. I felt a uneasy shiver when everyone turned towards me, their eyes judging me. After all, I’m just a simple explorer, no special status, no authority but I was certain this was the right thing to do. My feet carried me a bit faster than necessary to the tents back where a scene placed, about a meter high. I stumbled some in the beginning but strengthen by my own words and the interested looks from the audience I managed to speak loud and clear, explaining what I had seen and where. The immediate reaction were silence. At first I though everything was a bad dream but soon many questions came flowing and we spent the afternoon planing a larger expedition.
Twenty-five warriors, eleven explorers, Elana and five cooks, six scientists and necessary equipment took leave when the sun had one forth left before disappearing and ending the day. We arrived as the sun set. The real mission had just begun.