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We started up the pass today. Or at least the guide assured us that this was the pass. I have my doubts, as I have heard that Cerdyn's Pass is quite well traveled and wide, and this is barely a cart's path wide.
I have every reason to worry that this guide has led us astray. The path continues to narrow and we are now climbing, with some difficulty, single file. He assures that at the end of this day's travel we should be in a town known as Naresh, and there, if we wish to, we can hire on another guide if we feel he has done us disservice. I have my doubts
Day 25, Evening
Naresh is a hole in the ground. Literally and figuratively. There is nothing of this place that does not make us all worry. From the sickly looking inhabitants, to the strange things that crawl at the edge of vision. I do not know if I will sleep, or if I even want to.
Our guide has disappeared with our money and much of our supplies. I fear that we will be stuck here until we can secure supplies for the return trip, or to push onward for the Beyond. Perhaps more disturbing are the sores I found this morning. I showed them to Harrik with his medical training, but even he does not know what they are, or where they came from.
Harrik has gone missing. The past few days saw all of us develop the sores, and some have started to suffer unduly from some kind of psychotropic effect. I do not know if it is the condition we have contracted, or this place, but their behavior has started to change.
I have found work in the tunnels and caves below the city. Harvesting mushrooms and other ... things. The pay is terrible, and I have taken to stealing bites during the shift and hiding some of what I take for myself. I will get myself home.
I think I found Harrik. It was hard to tell, covered as it was by fungal growths. I've started to look more closely at the mushroom "gardens" and I realize now that we are all just eating the dead. He said it was ok though. He couldn't go on, but he wanted me to escape. I don't know how he knew it was me with those worms eating his eyes.
Day 45? 47?
I don't know ... When did I last see the sun? The creeping things at the corner of my eyes are growing more bold. The children under my skin keep them away. Harrik told me where to find the others. I had to kill Jandus, he was trying to steal my food, now he is my food. The others whisper to me and keep me safe from the things in the town. I remember long ago when the town was safe, when there was light, but now only the dark is safe.
Summary - The journal of a madman. An explorer from the Steadfast rendered into something no longer human by the dank shadows of Naresh