TWO: Winter Coming
Deh knew that his clan was not as strong as it once was. The journey to this new land had been long and arduous, and many of his people had not survived. But he was determined to make a new home for them here, in this fertile valley.
He looked out over the rolling hills and saw the potential for a thriving community. There were fields to be harvested, game to be hunted, and rivers full of fish. With hard work and determination, they could build a new life here.
But first, they needed to establish themselves and ensure their safety. Deh knew that there were other tribes in the area who might see them as a threat or an easy target. He would need to gather his warriors and send out scouts to assess the situation.
Once Deh had gathered his warriors and sent out scouts, they discovered that there were indeed other tribes in the area. Some were friendly and willing to trade, while others were hostile and ready to attack.
And they were still without fire. None of the local clans had fire: The valley of the Giants Clan; the Hill Ape Clan, who were short in stature, and very hairy; or their close cousin clans scattered for miles around in small groups. Some seemed to fear fire, thinking of it only as a danger that came from the skies, the Gods fighting, they reasoned and lay waste to animals, forests, whatever it touched. Other tribes had used it, but none had contained it as the Bone Clan had once done.
The survivors of the disaster felt a deep sense of loss and despair. They had always known that their world was harsh and unforgiving, but they had never imagined that it could be so devastating. As they looked around at each other, they saw the scars of the disaster etched on every face. Some were missing limbs or eyes; others bore deep wounds that would never fully heal. They knew that they were lucky to be alive, but the cost had been high. This land contained no caves they could settle into. No clans that possessed fire. It could not be their home and winter was here, growing colder and stronger every day.
Despite their grief and fear the survivors were determined to carry on. They knew that they could not give up hope, even in the face of such overwhelming odds. They would have to find new ways to survive in this harsh world, relying on each other for support and strength.
And so they set out into the wilderness once again, their hearts heavy but their spirits unbroken.
Despite the challenges that lay ahead, they knew they had to keep moving forward. The wilderness was unforgiving, but they were determined to persevere. They had come too far to give up now. As they walked, they shared stories of their past adventures and laughed at the memories they had made.
On the fifth day, they came to a small valley carved out of the grasslands. They descended into the valley to scout.