I’ve decided to carry on with Scoutbridge, since two years is really much shorter than I wanted the whole project to be.  So here’s my reclamation group, randomized the same way that I randomized the original.  Also, as an added rule to make things a little more manageable as the colony gets bigger I’m allowing training of Dwarves in untrained skills under the following conditions:  1) There must already be a dwarf with a skill level of master or higher in the skill to be trained (to simulate master/apprentice relationships).  2) The dwarf to be trained must have all redundant skills (basically any dwarves that are allowed to be trained as full-time soldiers).  3)  Only 1 dwarf per Master Skill holder may be trained at a time.  Once the trainee hits expert in the skill, they are considered a journeyman and the master may take a new apprentice.  4) While Dwarves may apprentice in multiple skills, they may only hold one apprenticeship one at a time.

This also addresses what will be done with children when they grow up.  When children grow up, the are available to be apprenticed as above, but otherwise cannot be assigned any untrained labor beyond being drafted into the military.

This new rule will help with a situation where I might end up with 200+ dwarves but only one of them can cook and brew.

The Scoutbridge Reclamation party:

Kadol Tolismomuz: Stonecrafter, Liar, Potash Maker
Meng Onulakrul: Misc Object User, Leader, Mason
Dodok Saziratham: Concentration, Wound Dresser, Lye Maker, M
Sigun Gebarrigoth: Wax Worker, Pacifier, Spearman, M
Logem Loloridath: Appraiser, Diagnostician, Negociator, F
Sakzul Olonmeng: Spinner, Animal Trainer, Glass Maker
Dumed Lilaredem: Herbalist, Mason, Leader

Kit:
1x Cougar Leather Bag
1x Chestnut Bucket
7x Black Sand
8x Pond Turtle
6x Bronze Bolt
1x Giant Mango Wood Axe Blade
6x Pig Tail Fiber Thread
9x Giant Cave Spider Silk Thread
1x Groundhog Leather Low Boot
1x Cedar Bucket
1x Bronze Pick
1x Kapok Crutch
1x Zinc Cage
6x Lungfish Blood
1x Maple Toy Hammer
1x Llama Wool Yarn
1x Guineafowl Blood

Onward!

Diary Entries for Kadol Tolismomuz, Expedition Leader and Stonecrafter for immigrants from Ushilbomrek:

1st of Obsidian, 503,

We’ve heard of a new settlement on the very cusp of the dwarven Empire called Scoutsbridge.  A land of plenty.  Where beer flows like the water of the deep caverns, the food is plentiful, and the people friendly and loving.  A group of misfits and visionaries could do worse for themselves than to toss in with those frontiersman in their endeavor.  I’ve gathered a few close friends who are tired with the status quo of the Mountainhome and we’ve decided to strike out for this brave and prospering fort.  May Legon smile upon our venture.

1st Granite, 503,

The stories of Scoutbridge were exaggerated in the extreme.  I find this place deeply unsettling, and it’s all we can do to stay this course at this point.

We arrived this morning to no greeting of any kind.  It took us a few hours to find the entrance of the fort and what we found inside has made my blood run cold and slaughtered the moral of the expedition    Not a soul was inside this very recently occupied fort.  The only things we could find were bones and blood splatters of some heinous event that might be better left buried and lost.  The goods of the fort were spread all over the countryside.

It did not take us long to find the first corpse, and then the second and third.  We’re going to spend a few weeks piecing together the events that lead this massacre, and trying to lay the dead to rest.  Until we know what happened, I think we’ll all be sleeping with one eye open, and one hand on a weapon.  Since there is no other shelter, I’ve ordered the expedition to occupy the dead halls of Scoutbridge.  None of us view this prospect with any eagerness.

12th Slate, 503,

Well, we won’t go without clothes. The amount of clothing spread over the hills around Scoutbridge suggests some kind of hellish orgy before everyone died.  I’ve been shuddering with revulsion for nearly two days just considering what must have taken place here.  I’m now convinced that we’re better off not knowing.  We’ve deliberated on the situation and we’ve unanimously agreed to gather all the refuse into Scoutbridge, entomb the bodies, then collapse the entrance and seal this cursed place up.  It’s better that the name of Scoutbridge be lost to time.

15th Slate, 503,

Scourbridge_ghost

An apparition of one of the previous tenants of Scoutbridge appeared today.  It stood at the entrance of the fort and gazed forlornly out across the hills, a silent testament to the lost horrors of Scoutbridge.  It then spent a few hours following us around as we gathered the debris of Scoutbridge’s death.  The sooner we lay these bodies to rest and leave this haunted cave, the better.

scoutbridge_ghost2

Luckily it seems to be just a desolate shade, satisfied with haunting us with little more than forlorn looks.  I don’t wish to see what might happen when the lost spirits here become angry at our intrusion.

Meng pointed out a small murder of ravens that have been circling the area for a few days now.  The omen has not been lost on us; we continue to work at a restless pace to clear the area and collect the bodies.

7th Felsite, 503,

Our grim work continues.  We are running into issues with acquiring stone and wood.  There is no stone in the whole fortress, and it appears digging attempts by the previous citizens of Scoutbridge were thwarted by underground water.   There’s an obvious attempt to breach the water using the older cave-in method used by our ancestors just north of the fortress.  The depth of the water seems to have foiled this attempt.  Without stone, we’re going to have an extremely difficult time burying the dead and putting the restless souls to peace.  Wood is plentiful here, but without a skilled lumberjack, it remains far out of our reach.  I can feel a cold dread crawling up my spine.  Are we following the same path as these poor dwarves?  I’m going to continue searching for answers.

I ordered a cavity carved out from the side of their failed cave-in attempts.  This will serve as the burial chamber of Scoutbridge.  Hopefully the dead will be satisfied with the meager accommodation   We did find a single coffin among the debris we’ve collected.  We immediately put that to use and buried on of the bodies we’ve found, may that soul find peace with Legon.   We found a tag around the corpse’s neck with the name “Datan Imazgusil” inscribed on it.  Though we cannot know for sure, we’ve copied the inscription to the coffin.  At least one soul here will sleep easy tonight.

27 Malachite, 503,

The news of Scoutbridge’s demise is apparently still not known to the people at Mountainhome.  We were greeted this morning by five migrants looking to join the fort.  You can imagine their disappointment when they were greeted by our resident ghost.  Hopefully we can get him buried soon so that he’ll leave the meet and greet to those of a more corporeal nature.

Within the group that showed up today is a fellow who is the answer to our troubles: Etur Oltarmubun is both a carpenter by hobby, and a lumberjack by passing acquaintance.  That’s plenty good for the likes of us, all we need is wood and coffins.  With upwards of 20 bodies to bury, Etur is going to find himself very busy.

Scoutbridge_stock

Meanwhile we’ve gathered a huge pile of junk from all the debris.  The pile ranges from a few bone rings obviously carved by a master of the art, to piles of clothing, to a few tanned hides.   If we can convince a trade caravan to stop by this haunted cave, we could probably offload some of this for a few blocks of stone to speed up the burial work.  Anything that gets us out of here faster, it’s already been almost four months and everyone is itching to be finished with Scoutbridge.

Meanwhile another restless spirit has begun haunting these blood-stained halls. This one turned violent during the night and pounded our herbalist into unconsciousness. We need to move faster at planting some of these dwarves back into the mountain, before they are no longer satisfied by a randomly nocturnal beating.

4th Sandstone, 503,

A third spook has joined our ranks and beaten another of my colleagues insensate.  Our carpenter is working as quickly as he can, but he can only churn out so many coffins in any week.  We’ve got six of the previous denizens of Scoutbridge buried in our mass tomb, and another seven caskets ready to be added.  With winter approaching it’s unlikely that we’ll finish our work here until the spring, so we’re beginning to gather whatever resources we can get our hands on.

More immigrants looking for Scoutbridge arrived today.  Luckily for all of us, one of them was a brewer who I’ve put to work replenishing our depleted stock of beverages.  If we’re going to be stuck here for another five months with a group of spooks, we may as well enjoy it as a nice blur of color.

Our population has grown appreciably from the two caravans, I’m becoming concerned that we won’t have enough supplies to get back to Mountainhome with this large of a group in Spring, which means delaying our exodus until at least Summer in order to gather enough food.  It’s a prospect I’m not thrilled with.

18th Sandstone, 503,

We were briefly up to a third ghost before we finally managed to plant the right corpse.

Scourbridge_ghost_rest

Luckily it was one of the violent ones, too. One less thing to worry about tonight. Looks as though we’ve got about 15 more souls to put to rest before we’ll be done with the task of laying Scoutbridge to rest.

15th Timber, 503,

It’s been a bad day.  One of the remaining ghosts turned murderously violent today.  Our carpenter, Etur, was visciously attacked by the ghost, which tore the poor fellows left arm clean off.  To his credit, Etur finished chopping down the tree he was working on before running back to the fort for hospitalization.  Let’s hope our doctors can patch him up and get him on his feet before too much longer.  He’s really the only source of coffins we have.

On the plus side, the caravan arrived today.  We’ll unload a bunch of this junk we have floating around and see if we can pick up a few necessities from them.  Like stone.

13th Moonstone, 503,

The caravan had a few things we needed, but no stone.  We ended up trading away all the weird bone crafts for a steel anvil, a big pile of cheese, 10 barells of alcohol, a stack of metal bars, a dog, a goose, and some pig tail seeds.

We had a few probing attacks from kobolds today as well.  The guards from the caravan ran those off without much issue, though it would have been nice to have ended that threat in a more final way.

Once we get back to civilization, I’m going to put Etur in for a commendation, however it is one goes about doing that.  Not only has he suffered the loss of his arm with grim acceptance, but completely forwent any medical attention in favor of continuing his carpentry work, choosing to pack the wound with sawdust and keep at it rather than be properly bandaged.  We are all rather amazed he didn’t end up with some kind of infection from that.  Once we’ve got all the dead buried, I’m going to order a special berth made just for him.  Truly a paragon to dwarfdom if ever I’ve met one.

2nd Opal, 503,

We laid the last of the three ghosts to rest today, a good thing too because they were becoming increasingly violent.  It’s a fortunate thing that there was only one casualty, and it was not fatal.  Even so, a one-armed carpenter and lumberjack is less than ideal, no matter how great a Dwarf that carpenter happens to be.  Our tomb continues to swell with occupants, and we estimate that we’ll have all the previous tenants at rest by mid winter.  This will conclude our duty here at Scoutbridge, allowing us to plan our exodus from this cursed and haunted place.

Scoutbridge_Tomb

Meanwhile. We’re strapping in for a long, cold winter.  The pools of water have already completely iced over and the cold weather has even driven those blasted ravens away.  We’ve got plenty of food, spirits, and kindling to last until spring, at which point we can begin our preparations to depart in earnest.  With 20 dwarves and a long journey ahead of us, I feel that late spring is optimistic, but doable.

Otherwise, it looks like we’re in for a fairly boring and uneventful winter.  I think I’ll draft some more of our layabouts into the military.  If nothing else, training all winter will keep them warm.

This marks the end of Year 3 of Scoutbridge.

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