From the notes of Beriana Elorelen, compiled from conversations with the First Settlers of Horizon’s Landing, and from Personal Observations:
17 Twilight – 17 Harvestin, 30 A.F.
It has been a quiet month in many ways, albeit an interesting one. The Heroes and the Araen Horizon departed together, with the plan to drop the Heroes onto the mainland before the Horizon returned to Elvedon with news of our successful voyage. It will be minimum of six months before we can even hope to see the ship return. It is known only to the gods if we will ever see the return of the Heroes, though all of us remain optimistic that we shall see them again. The call of adventure is strong, to ones such as they especially, but even Heroes need a place to call home. We have made a good beginning on giving them such a place, I think.
Before their departure, the Heroes had recommended me for leadership of our small settlement. Knowing very little (read: nothing) of leadership, I availed myself of the expertise of my fellows. Our first order of business was to set up a “town council”. Admittedly, this encompasses nearly the entire town currently, and even those few who do not share a place on the “council” proper have a voice in all decisions made. All of us agree that our survival and good fortune are very much dependant on each other for the foreseeable future. With some format for decision making in place, we turned to the issue that loomed greatest in our minds: the coming winter.
None of us had any idea what to expect from winter on this side of the Araen Ocean, but all agreed that preparations must be made. To that end, we set to work. Bracchus and William began their lumber operation with all due haste. The first fruits of their labor went towards giving the Hall a more finished look, turning it into something more resembling an inn, or small apartments. I am certain Tolfgar would be horrified by the very thought, but it was a determined that if we as a group were to be stuck in the same building due to whatever weather was to arrive, it was better for everyone’s mood and sanity if there were doors that could be closed and/or locked from time to time.
While the bulk of us saw to that effort, the Muellers and the Fields worked on setting up a farm. The Field’s livestock worked with us as well, as the men used their grazing to forge something resembling a road between the farmstead and the town. The Muellers focused their efforts on harvesting the wild grains that were growing by the river near the cleared dire weasel nest, while the Field’s worked on building up the ancient foundations their into a shelter for the livestock. It is not quite a barn yet, but we will keep at it until it reaches that lofty goal.
And speaking of the dire weasels, Alexander and Thomas have been spending what free time they have (not much, admittedly) training the young weasel pups left by the Heroes. They show much promise, and the men are confindent in their ability to assist in hunting and defense sooner rather than later. When not working with the animals, Alex and Thomas have lent their labor to laying the foundations for several houses. Our blacksmith, Jameson, has taken the lead in this project and has proven to be as skilled at carpentry as he is with a forge. He hopes for a mild start to the winter, at least, which will give him the time needed to complete at least some of the houses. He divides his time between the town and the farm, helping them get their own houses and the barn set up in case winter weather threatens even the short distance required to travel between us.
After felling several large trees (none of the proscribed ones of course), Bracchus and William returned to town and pitched in with the building. Halfway through the month, getting the farms built was the main concern. Everyone pitched in to help, with Aurora, Eventide and myself using what magics we could to help speed the process along. Aurora did take some time to set up a small shrine to Damion. This used up a small amount of the housing supplies, but as all felt that Damion’s grace had played a part in our safe arrival, no one balked at having a place sacred to him nearby.
As Twilight came to a close, the first snows fell. Nothing drastic, but enough to give a pointed reminder of what was coming. All of us redoubled our efforts, and by the end of the first week of Harvestin, two small farmhouses and a small barn stood. I do not think any of us involved have ever felt a satisfaction quite as complete as we did at that moment. We took a couple days to rest, tapping into one of the mead barrels Tolfgar had left behind in celebration. We talked about planning an annual celebration of our accomplishments thus far, and settled on the anniversary of the day we made landfall here. Rested and refreshed, we turned back to the task of the houses in town. On 15 Harvestin, the first one stood complete. There was some discussion over who would have the honor of moving in, but most thought it was decidedly unfair for one to have the privacy of their own house while the rest continued to dwell in the Hall. In the end, it was decided that this…the first town house built in Horizon’s Landing…would belong to those Heroes whose efforts had seen us safely arived. With that decided, work continues on the remaining houses.