First year is going to be a tad uninteresting because the game is set up to make sure you don’t have any of the fun stuff (like sieges), so expect this to be kinda slow and dry.

Diary entries for Udib Fikodosod, Expedition Leader and Armorer for the settlement of Scoutbridge:

Granite 1, 501,

After a long, arduous journey we have finally arrived at our plot of land!

Scourbridge_Start

Wow it’s awfully… green. No wonder it only cost two chickens! I bet this place is just loaded with those prancing tree-loving idiots. An elven welcome is really the last thing everyone needs. I bet they’d bathe and everything.

Well, it’s too late to back-out now, so we may as well start digging. And by we, I of course mean our two esteemed volunteers.

On a more personal and dire note, I took the opportunity to read up on farming on the way here. Nobody told me it would involve worms! I’m going to set to work immediately in developing a brand new form of wormless agriculture. Hopefully the method will be ready to test by the time our diggers are finished getting everything dug out.

As a final note I’d also like to mention that, amazingly, nobody died of dysentery on the way here. Praise be to Stettad Goldsilver for watching over his tiny flock! Also, if you’re listening Stettad, we could use another barrel or two of beer. No rush.

Granite 15, 501,

WE’VE BEEN HAD!

These bargain crates are full of absolute rubbish!  Aside from an extra pick, a few stray seeds, some wood, and some bronze, the rest of it looks like cast-offs from the last failed gods-damned antique liquidation sale!  What the hell do we need a pile of moth brains for anyway?!  On the plus side this vest made from buffalo hide is quite nice.  I’m setting it aside for special functions and ambassadorial work.

Fath has suggested we use the bird blood to christen our new farm.  I don’t know about him sometimes, I think he may not be quite right; I’ll make sure to keep an eye on him, just in case.

On the promising side of things it looks like there’s a lot of sand here!  That will make it easier to start making glass and stuff.  I’m told the humans go crazy for it so maybe we’ll be able to work up a trade agreement with them.  If nothing else we’ll be able to replace all the beer mugs we broke in last night’s drunken brawl.  Good times.

Water’s going to be a bit of a concern as all we seem to be able to find around here is tepid pond water.  There’s a pair of Kangaroos wandering around and I’m pretty sure I’ve seen them pee in those pools, which is just rude.  I thought of leading a hunting party after those cheeky bastards, but apparently we don’t have any hunting weapons.  Which is a lesser concern to the fact that none of us know how to hunt.  I’ve sent word off to the motherland that we could use a hunter and a butcher.  I’m positive they’ll deliver on that need.

I’ve been notified that the area for the farm has been cleared and is awaiting my expertise.  Luckily the soil here is extremely sandy, so it should work perfectly with my new wormless farming method.

Slate 1, 501,

Farming is hard, but at least there aren’t any worms.  Our food and drink stores are still good after a month, but we’re trying to look ahead so that we’ll be eating more than just plump helmets by the end of summer.  We’ve got two nags that came with that wagon full of crap so they might become a food resource in one way or another, but for now we’ve put them out to pasture above our new home.  I thought about grabbing some of their droppings to incorporate into the farm, but the book says that manure is the best way to entice good worm growth, so I quickly dropped that idea.

Scourbridge_mid_spring

The first floor is pretty much done for the time being.  We’ve got a spot to store all that junk, and a meeting area for all those lazy sods to sit around and talk at while I’m down mucking up the sand to raise our food.

I’ve been told on good authority that the developing vermin problem might be just the thing we need to add variety to our diet.  I quickly put the individual in question to work making more stairs down.  We’re gonna need stone pretty soon, and the less I hear about rat soufflé, the better.

We’ve also seen quite a few bee-hives in the area, which would be great with that hive box made out of chert we found… if anyone knew how to bloody keep bees.  I’m sending another request off to the capital for a bee keeper along with the hunter and butcher.  Hopefully the idea of keeping a single hive of bees in a rock box appeals to some crazy sod over there.

Slate 15, 501,

Scourbridge_aquifier

Bloody hell, our water problems are solved.  The crazy digger, Mafol, hit a layer of water just under the new workshop level he mined out.  No idea how deep it is but we’re not seeing a single boulder of stone until we get through it.    Between bites of his raw rat, Mafol let me know that he thought a cave-in might get us past it.  He’s obviously cracked under the pressure of being one of the only two miners in the colony.  I’m adding a new mining foreman to the list of talent I’m requesting from the capital.  We really need to get Mafol out of the tunnels before he starts experimenting with his new digging techniques.

On the plus side his rat and pickled moth brain soup was a huge hit at dinner last night.  I’ve sent the recipe along with the latest update to the capital, hopefully they’ll understand why I sent it along.

Felsite 16, 501,

I finished pulling in the first full harvest of plump helmets.  It was pretty pitiful, but at least we’ll have something to eat.  I’ve put sweet pods in the ground too, though I don’t know what we’ll do with them after harvest.  Probably sell them to the elves or something.

The vermin problem is growing increasingly worrisome. Despite Mafol’s best efforts to curtail them, rats and bugs are infesting our foot stores.  I’ve added a pied piper to my immigrant request.  Baring that, I hope somebody brings a pet cat or something.

The wildlife continues to be frustratingly coy.  For something so delicious looking, a wombat sure is pretty fast.  I hope that hunter gets here soon, I could really go for a wombat pie.

The underground water continues to be a problem.  We’ve got plenty of theories on how to get past it, but most of those involve magic, explosives, or magical explosives.  We really need somebody who knows what the hell they’re doing around here.  Or at least somebody who knows how to dig under water.

On a sadder note, we ate the last moth brain last night in a strange but still tasty beetle and moth brain bouillabaisse.  Everyone was too polite to tell the cook that there’s generally of seafood somewhere in that dish.

Hematite 1, 501,

Ah Summer if finally here.  For being such a miserable group of clueless imbeciles we’ve come a surprisingly short way in three months.  Our miners carved out three floors of useful space from the soft, sandy loam before being stopped by an abundance of water, we have no ability to brew any more beer, we can’t cut down any trees because nobody has ever held an axe before and most of us are afraid of splinters, but that isn’t a big deal because we wouldn’t know what to do with wood anyway, and finally our lack of stone means our resident stone mason has had plenty of time to catch up on his semaphore hobby.  The dress rehearsal for his one-man show about the history of semaphore was last night so we’re all waiting in anticipation for the live event tonight.  The surgeon is standing by as an impromptu medic in case of any suicide attempts during the performance.

Despite everyone being such an utterly useless waste of space, or maybe because of it, moral is running surprisingly high.  Granted, all we ever seem to do these days is hang out in the cavernous and empty dining hall and count the rats as they run through towards the food store.  I’m supposing that part of this joy is from the blissful ignorance of our increasingly dire alcohol problem.  If we don’t get a brewer in here by the end of fall, we’ll be down to drinking water.  Which is handy because we’ve got a gods-damned abundance of it below the workshops.  We better get some new blood in here soon ore this whole fiasco is gonna fall apart.  What the hell were we thinking, anyway?

The construction of the kitchen has done quite a bit to bolster our dietary variety.  Really, with the right equipment and enough free time you’d be surprised at the number of ways a person can prepare plump helmets.  That said, I don’t think I’ll opt to have another piece of the plump helmet pudding this evening.

In other news, training of the scuba dig team is not going so well.  Luckily nobody drowned, but the sudden hygiene of our two diggers was alarming to everyone.  We made sure to have them roll around in the dirt a bit before coming to dinner.

Malachite 8, 501,

The promised skilled artisans from the capital arrived today.  All bloody 5 of them.  I quickly took stock of them and put them to “work” with the rest of the intrepid crew.

What did we end up with?

Well, we’ve got a butcher who’s seen the knife once or twice, which is handy because we still don’t have hunter.  The butcher also informs me that he  does good work on the yarn spindle, which will come in handy when we eventually get some pig tails planted.

They did send us a renowned blacksmith by the name of Domas Roldethasob for all that ore we’ve managed to dig up.  Luckily she’s also an animal expert, who can do just about anything with animals that you like, provided you don’t need them house-trained and are OK with her performing a few hobby dissections with your fancy rats.  She’s also a passing bee-keeper so I guess I know what she’ll be doing for the next three months.

In the group is also one the best fish cleaners in the entire dwarven empire.  Indeed, I’ve heard songs of praise about Rimtar Shematast since the day I was born.  Pity there aren’t any fish around here.

There was also a gentleman there who desperately wanted to become our new milkman.  Imagine his surprise when I told him that we didn’t have any buckets.  The look on his face was priceless.  Totally worth the 3 months without booze that we’re all facing.

Oh, there was also a child in the group, which is bloody brilliant.  Now we can have a small useless person to go along with all of our full-grown useless ones.

In other news we’ve had a group of 9 ravens circling the outpost for about 2 months now.  I think I can safely say, without fear of contradiction from anyone, that the raven is probably one of the most delicious looking animals that was ever breathed to life by Stettad Goldsilver.  Maybe the fall will see us with a hunter so that I may feast heartily upon raven flesh.

Limestone 1, 501,

Fall is now upon us.  We ran out of spirits nearly 6 weeks ago and the drain on the moral has been devastating.  We’re expecting another group of helpers to show up in the next month, so hopefully the capital will have finally gotten together a few useful souls for us.  A carpenter, a mechanic, and a flipping hunter would set us up for winter.  A brewer would set us up for life.

We’re also expecting the trade caravan sometime before winter.  There’s little else we can do aside from offer up some of our plump helmets and a barrel full of bird blood in trade for a barrel of something to take our mind off things.  Otherwise our diet of plump helmets and water continues to keep us alive.  Stettad only knows how long it’s going to be before the first one of us snaps.

Limestone 19, 501,

We received another group of dubious looking characters today who wanted to be part of our grand fortress.  Luckily there was both a brewer and a hunter among them!  I guess those boys at the capital finally read my letter (or maybe they finally tried that soup recipe I sent them).  The next months will likely consist of frantically gathering as much food and beer as possible in hopes we survive the winter without killing each other.

We still don’t have a mechanic, carpenter, or lumberjack, but hey, we’ve got three people who can milk animals and two who can make cheese.  We’re all bloody set.  Hopefully that caravan has a bucket or two on it, otherwise all these milkers are gonna go stir crazy.

Sandstone 11, 501,

With our situation stable, but still grim, I decided to authorize Mafol’s cave-in attempt to displace all that water which stands between us and the stone.  Time will tell if that was a mistake or not.

Moonstone 14, 501,

Winter is upon us and I’ve been asked to spend another year as the leader of the expedition.  Something about being the least stupid of the group, go figure.

Last bit of business before I close the books for the winter:  The caravan came and went, they had a lot of buckets and we bought many of them; milking will begin shortly.  We also picked up all their spare stone block and wood to keep us going until the cave-in project completes.  The cave-in project is nearing completion and should be collapsing just before spring.  That’ll be pretty much the only foreseeable event in the remainder of winter.

Meanwhile our hunter brought down a wombat using just about every spare bolt we owned.  The thing was damn tasty, though.  We built a tannery and craft-shop to deal with the bones and leather.  Hopefully we’ll be able to sell it all to the next caravan that comes across our door.

I thought I’d take this last moment to express how horrible I think everyone has done in fulfilling my dream to create a Dwarven paradise out here in the… wherever we are.  Seriously, how do you people succeed so well at being useless?  Let’s hope next year is a bit more productive, and possibly includes a few useful immigrants.

State of the fortress after 1 year:  3 levels, 19 dwarves, enough food and beer to survive the winter.  Export goods are non-existent, and we have no more ammunition for hunting.  At least we’ll be able to milk the damn horses the rest of the winter.  Hold on a second, one of the milkers needs to talk to me.

Apparently you can’t milk horses.  Great.

Our farm and dining floor.  The gardens are beautiful, aren't they?  And completely worm free!

Our farm and dining floor. The gardens are beautiful, aren’t they? And completely worm free!

Opal 20th, 501,

As an addendum to my previous entry:

The miners completed work on the cave-in today and it went off quite a bit better than expected… until all the displaced water rushed up and then froze the whole thing solid.  Completion of the project will need to wait until spring when it thaws out.

Scourbridge_cave_freeze

As a final note for the year, let it be known that Mafol Logemmorul went missing during the cave-in and is presumed dead in the line of duty.  Those who knew and loved him will be comforted in the fact that he went out of this world doing the thing he loved: mining while chewing on a rat head and talking about moth brains.

Mafol, wherever you are, I just want you to know that we’ll really miss that pick axe that you took with you.

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