Excerpt From a Report on a Missing Caravan by an Unknown Bounty Hunter
When we arrived at the area where the incident had occurred it was grimmer than me or my men had imagined. It had taken us a little under a week’s journey to get to where they had met their end. As you would expect, we often encounter scenes of death and despair in this line of work. My men and I generally try to keep morale up, cracking jokes at the expense of the people we are hired to hunt, but that had all ceased as we approached. Something to this degree isn’t unheard of, but uncommon at best.
From the information we had gathered, the trade caravan comprised of 32 men and women had made one last stop at Atoria Hold. Filled with supplies, they quickly set out on their 6-week journey. They were on their way north to Gintaras. The caravan was under contract to take their supplies - mostly textiles goods, and preserved foods to the city-state, restock, and return. However; with months of silence, the merchant lords responsible for the caravan had assumed one of many things but knew that two were most likely: the caravan had deserted, or they had been killed.
We had just discovered that the latter was true. It was a damn shame too, the caravan was most of the way through the rugged mountains of the region and close to the red desert which had challenges of its own, but something like this was much less likely to occur. They were low in a valley which would’ve been rather peaceful if not for the incident. Nevertheless, we began to inspect the site. As we got closer it became all to obvious what had happened. From what was left behind you could tell that it was a bear attack. In general, out here, a normal bear would tend to stay away from something as strange as a man unless of course provoked. But the claw marks, bite marks, and clumps of matted fur left behind on splinters of the broken wagons had given it away.
Once you get this far north it isn’t all too uncommon for animals to wonder into the Underdark. There, they become crazed and when they resurface, they wreak havoc on whatever is unfortunate to be near. Something as small as a crazed fox can do serious damage to someone unprepared, so you can imagine what might happen when a crazed bear meets a group of merchants with only a few equipped guards. The bodies that hadn’t been eaten or dragged away from the site had begun the process of being reclaimed by Mother Nádúr.
We grabbed what supplies we could haul back. There were few that looked salvageable. The things that weren’t worth taking were piled together and burned. What remained of the bodies were also gathered and given a fiery sendoff. The bear had torn through anything that could’ve been even remotely considered edible and took time to thoroughly investigate most of the goods they had been carrying. We also grabbed a lock box we had found near the back of what used to be a wagon as proof of us finding the poor souls and began our ride back to deliver the news of what had happened.
Excerpt from a report on a missing caravan by an unknown bounty hunter