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Bastian - Chapter I - Into the Wild


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Entry I,

 

The dirt road I walked upon became more faded with each step, and soon enough I had journeyed beyond any civilized land... into the wild. This was it. This was my first time travelling outside the village, and into the world, alone. I had only minimal training before this moment; my home village had been visited on occasion by a Knight of the Rebellion, and he had taught me a few things. But I was not ready... not yet. That would be my first real challenge. Just being able to survive out here.

 

"Remember, when travelling into the wilderness, it's not swords and arrows that will kill you. You must first find water... next, food."

 

The Knight spoke those words to me; my first concern would not be to defend myself from the agents of the Emperor, but to forage for food, and water. I hardly knew good plants from bad, how to skin which animals, or if I could even stomach it.

 

This was my test... though it was not entirely by choice. Several days ago, a legion of Imperial soldiers marched into town. They found the Knight, and they took him prisoner. They have no honour.

 

A speaker for the Empire stood in the village centre, warning that all who would even breathe a word of rebellion would be crushed. I had never felt such a weight over the village; it was the heaviness of fear. It was then that I knew, I could delay no longer. The world was calling; I needed to prepare myself.

 

I knew the road ahead would be long and dangerous, that I would have much to learn, but I also knew in my heart that this journey was vastly important. I needed to join the Rebellion.

- Bastian's Journal

 

Corymanthor.jpg

Chapter I - Into the Wild

 

My name is Sebastian Woodland; most people call me Seb, but I as an adventurer, I go as Bastian. You can call me whichever you want! As you can see I wrote up a bit of a story here, I figured to keep myself (and other readers) entertained, I'd add a little fantasy story update as often as I can when I post my updates. Also, I love writing and don't do it enough, so this is a good excuse to get a little creative every now and then!

 

I wrote this part in my first challenge but I don't think anyone saw it since I joined halfway through, so here it is:

"More about myself: I'm a wannabe indie video game creator, as well as musician, artist, almost anything creative. I've also been using HabitRPG for a year now, and it's greatly helped me, but I think this community will be even more help! I love video games, role-playing games, and movies, sci fi and fantasy, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Star Trek, Mass Effect, Zelda, Dark Souls, that sort of thing. Since I was a kid I always looked up to the heroes in these stories and wished I could be just as awesome as them; being able to run for long periods of time and defend myself, doing cool acrobatics, climbing mountains, etc. The thing I'm really focused on now though is trying to raise my energy levels, becoming more flexible, more in-tune with my body, and yes, becoming stronger."

 

Specifically for this challenge, in case you couldn't tell from my short fantasy story, my goal is to learn new, healthy foods, learn how to prepare them and practice doing so. For the time of my first challenge, I managed to work out every second day, but in between then and now that sort of fell short. So I also plan to continue with that. This challenge will probably look very similar to that one, with a stronger focus on food instead of working out.

 

Current Main Quest:

  • To connect more with my body, and increase my energy levels and flexibility.
  • To become stronger, and increase my stamina.
  • Specifics:
    • Comfortably touch my toes with straight legs
    • Regain my ability to run for a long time: 1hour
    • Within the next few months, build up enough strength to do 10 pushups (no knees; this would be amazing for me, I've never been able to do it yet)

 

The Steps

  1. I will eat a Paleo meal at least four times a week, and try a new Paleo meal once a week. I will practice preparing this food myself, as I am not skilled at cooking (yet) which is an important skill for any ranger! - I'll count this as training Stamina and Charisma
  2. I will do my stretches routine every day of the week - This is like training for both Wisdom and Dexterity
  3. I will do my workout routine 3 days a week and run for at least 10 minutes 4 days a week - Constitution and Strength training
  4. This Challenge I will climb mount Finlayson at least once, maybe more times (a local, semi-treacherous mountain :tongue: ) to re-connect with my ranger Spirit. - This counts towards Stamina and Wisdom

 

 

Side Quests:

  • Finish making the armour pieces for my Commander Shepard Cosplay by the end of the Challenge - it's been way too long since I worked on it seriously (and I didn't succeed here last challenge)
  • Write a song this month to post to bandcamp
  • Finish reading The Name of the Wind (which is really good so far!)
  • Finish my arrangement of Dark World/Lorule theme for two guitars

 

 

Weekly Grading

Monday --> Sunday

  1. Paleo Meals:                _/4
    A+: 5+, A: 4, B: 3, C+: 2, C: 1, C-: 0
  2. New Paleo Meal:          _/1
    A+: 3+, A: 2, B: 1, C-: 0
  3. Stretches:                    _/7
    A+: 7, A: 6, B: 5, C+: 4, C: 3-2. C-:1-0
  4. Workout:                      _/3
    A+: 4, A: 3, B: 2, C+: 1, C-:0
  5. Runs:                            _/4
    A+: 5, A: 4, B: 3, C+: 2, C: 1, C-: 0

Challenge Grading

 

Grading will be done each Sunday.

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My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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GREAT challenge, feeling very inspired... -- I think you've done a great job choosing your goals, and I can't wait to read your journal entries :D I'll be with ya for Mt. Fin, let's wait til a cooler day though! LOL!

[Kat al'Anka Latze]


LVL 2 Catfolk Adventurer


(Apprentice Namer)


STR 1 | DEX 2 | STA 1 | CON 3 | WIS 2 | CHA 3


---


Current Challenge1 | Epic Quest


---


Each time you grab the weight, you’re slightly better than you were before.


- Rog Law Fitness


 

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Entry II,


 


Searching my bag for food, I found only cheese, bread, and crackers, made for me by a kind baker of my home village. These will have to do for now, but if I keep eating like this, I'll never be strong enough for the Rebellion. This is going to be harder than I thought... Later tonight I'll consult the book of meals, written by the wise man Gu'gle. Perhaps I'll find enough ingredients to prepare something more nutritious.


- Bastian's Journal


My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry III,


 


The sun has already set, and still I have no good food to show for my efforts. I attempted to fill myself with what I could find... a wiener and a carrot. Perhaps not the worst things to eat in terms of health, but not nearly filling enough. I have been trying to avoid bread and so far it has only brought me hunger, but that is no reason to give up. When the sun rises, I will set off to gather some ingredients and foods. Tonight, I'll succumb to the bread.


 


I was wandering through the woods when I came across a strangely alluring glade. Beautiful shafts of light sifted through the leaves above me. Within the clearing, I found a lone tree stump. On the ancient stump of the tree there lay a single cookie; it was a banana chocolate chip cookie.


 


I took the cookie and ate it. At first I was filled with a joy and wonderful taste, but soon, I realized... this was a trick. An evil spirit had lured me here to eat this trap... and I failed. Have I ever much to learn!


- Bastian's Journal


My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Thank you very much! :D I'm pretty excited!

 

Entry IV,

 

I was late getting up when the sun rose; last night I had spent many hours reading legends of other adventurers (I was sure to pack some old books with me on my journey). However, I managed to find a single egg this morning. I set up my campfire and scrambled it, eating it hungrily. I'll have to note to cook it longer next time; it wasn't so moist that I couldn't stomach it, but it could have been a more desirable texture. I also ate a few carrots, but I'm running low on supplies. Soon I must go forage for food, or pay a visit to the nearest village and trade with them.

- Bastian's Journal

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry V,


 


For lunch today I managed to scavenge half an Avocado, an Apple, some more Carrots, and a fair amount of Almonds. I would count that as eating the right sort of things, only I didn't exactly prepare them in any appetizing way; I just sort of ate one after the other. Still, I feel good about this minor success. Each step I take brings me closer to the day when I may take on the Empire.


- Bastian's Journal

  • Like 1

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry VI

 

After my lunch, I retrieved my guitar and began practicing. I spent my time trying to learn the melody of another ranger, one known as Sheik. I memorized the notes, but the ability to play it swiftly has eluded me thus far. I just need more practice, surely.

 

I had been avoiding doing any other sort of training... up until the plans for the rest of my day seemed all too near to do anything about it. However, I got up, and put in the effort. Granted, this training session was short, one of the shortest I've done. But, as a wise leader of the Rebellion once said, "If you're strapped for time, cut short your workout, not your warm up."

 

Afterward, I stretched, and calmed myself listening to the rustling of the trees in the wind.

- Bastian's Journal

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry VII


 


Today I encountered a dark enemy, one who's presence I have felt in past days, lurking, hiding, watching... I thought I had been rid of him. But this entity is difficult to destroy. He revealed himself to me this night while I walked through the woods.


 


I felt a creeping sensation on my spine and the hairs on my back tensed. The dark of the forest was unnatural and claustrophobic. The sound of a screeching wind came swiftly, and with it, the shadows moved, gathered, and twisted together before me. Out of the shadows came a creature, his shape and features eerily familiar. Something stirred within me upon meeting this figure with my gaze; a dark power was clawing at my mind. I knew there was only one dark enemy who this could be. It was my nemesis...


 


...Dark Seb!


 


Dark Seb draws his power from fear, apathy, anger, and similarly unwelcome feelings. His presence was driving me down a dark path tonight, one which leads only to fear. Fear... perhaps the greatest power ever to threaten the goodhearted. Some say anger is the opposite of love; I say that fear is love's true foil. After all, fear leads to anger, among other dark things. Nevertheless, fear is a great warrior, striking down even the mightiest adventurers.


 


I drew my sword, but even as I did so the shadow morphed out of sight. He was there though, I could tell. A streak of black smoke shot by me in a second. I trailed the darkness to him, Dark Seb, who wielded a great bow of shadow in his hands.


 


I thrust my sword at him and with lightning speed, he drew his own blade and parried the blow. Instantly, we were engaged in battle, our swords dancing in dangerously precise arcs. With a swift strike, he cut my leg, only his sword won't pierce skin. It cut straight through to my soul, leaving a piece of its blackness to linger and poison me. He swung again, a shadowy tendril trailing after the tip of his pitch dark blade. He kills with fear, each strike meant only to weaken my hope, my courage, my strength.


 


He struck me several times, though none of the wounds were too serious. But his power began to eat away at me. We kept fighting, all the while I was growing ever more fearful. But eventually, I knocked his sword aside long enough to cut clean through his body. The cut split him in two, and quickly his halves exploded with the howling of wind, and his shadows were gone.


 


I am recovering from our battle still... though he did hurt me, I have won for now. I must keep an eye out for him in the future.


- Bastian's Journal


  • Like 1

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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I found Bastian resting at the crossroads that night, cleaning his sword. 

 

"Need someone to take a look at that wound?" I called out, noting the bandages wrapped around his leg. Surprised to see me, he turned and smiled. 

 

We shared stories over dinner, both healing in our own ways. We talked of fear, and the darkness it wrought. We talked of love. Of magic.

 

He told me Dark Seb would be back. But next time, he'd have to get through my sword first.

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[Kat al'Anka Latze]


LVL 2 Catfolk Adventurer


(Apprentice Namer)


STR 1 | DEX 2 | STA 1 | CON 3 | WIS 2 | CHA 3


---


Current Challenge1 | Epic Quest


---


Each time you grab the weight, you’re slightly better than you were before.


- Rog Law Fitness


 

Link to post

Entry VIII,


 


After my battle with the shadow, I took a rest to clean my sword. It had been a long, long day, and I wished more than anything to be back in the company of my friends. But such battles are often fought alone; such is the way of things.


 


Nevertheless, I was met with someone dear to me... she called out to me, asking about my wounds. I smiled to see her; Kat, a young, courageous Rebel, was exactly who I had hoped to find, and it was a miracle that she found me.


 


We talked, rested, looked after each other. I didn't get much done that day in terms of my mission, but it was incredibly important. We talked together for a time, her words being such a comfort. I told her of my encounter with the shadow, and she told me she would look out for me.


 


We would have stayed together longer had I not already had other obligations tonight. A cousin of mine returned from a long journey to a distant land, and I was required to go to her welcoming celebration.


 


Afterwards, I returned to the woods, started a small fire, and picked up my journal. That's where I am now.


 


Inner strength is the only thing that can fight inner weakness... but friends can bolster you beyond any sword or piece of armour. Friends are the greatest shield you will ever have by your side. Even a few words can change a person's outlook, and therefore change their actions. I will rest well tonight knowing that I am well looked after, and knowing that I can offer aid to her in return. Perhaps some day I will aid the rest of the Rebellion. Perhaps, if I can complete my training...


 


But late nights are a time for rest. I'll read for a heartbeat, then go to a welcome sleep.


- Bastian's Journal


My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry IX,

 

My first week is coming to a close; I did not accomplish as much as I had hoped. However, I didn't anticipate my encounter with Dark Seb... I believe I have learned from that battle and if he strikes again I should be more well prepared. The whole food thing is still a problem... earlier this week I bought a collection of yams, but I didn't know what to do with them. Some of them started to get moldy, and I haven't even eaten any yet. Perhaps my companion, Kat, will teach me a few things about preparing yam before all of them go to waste! If not I can always try my book of Gu'gle, or get more yams.

 

I hope this second week will prove even more successful! After all, as one of the greatest rangers once said, "There is always hope."

- Bastian's Journal

 

Report Card - Week 1

  1. Paleo Meals:                2/4
    C+
  2. New Paleo Meal:          0/1
    C-
  3. Stretches:                    5/7
    B
  4. Workout:                      3/3
    A
  5. Runs:                            2/4
    C+

Overall grade Week 1: B-

 

Next week's goal: B+! Specifically, more focus on the food aspect of the challenge. If I could do that, that would be perfect. Stretches I should really do every day, and runs would be good to do some more.

 

This wasn't my greatest week ever in terms of the challenge, but I did level up my life; I got a job, when previously I had none. It may be a level 1 job, but still. I'll get my level 2 job soon enough! Honestly my main goal this next week is not freaking out about my new job (not letting Dark Seb get the better of me) even if that's not part of my 6 week challenge. It's certainly a challenge though. :tongue:

 

Adventure awaits!

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My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry X,


 


Sidequests, sidequests, sidequests... by the look of things that's what this week will be full of. I have still been running, which is good! And I know I will get a workout in soon as well. I am however distracted by other things at the moment; worthy things, to be sure, but I don't intend for the distraction to last.


- Bastian's Journal


My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry XI,


 


Today I made a dangerous decision... only time will tell if it was the best one. However, it was the decision my heart yearned for, and I have the support from my family at my home village. 


 


On a more related note, I ate for dinner chicken and steamed yams, a delicious and filling paleo meal.


- Bastian's Journal


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My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry XII,

 

This past week I have lost track of time and this challenge, focusing on other matters. This week, I shall try to do better.

- Bastian's Journal

 

Report Card - Week 2

  1. Paleo Meals:                2/4
    C+
  2. New Paleo Meal:          0/1
    C-
  3. Stretches:                     2/7
    C
  4. Workout:                      1/3
    C
  5. Runs:                            1/4
    C

Overall grade Week 1: C

 

Next week's goal: B+

 

This week I was dealing with a lot of unrelated stress and trying to sort out other parts of my life... I need to prioritize more, but I haven't given up hope for this challenge!

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry XIII,


 


A day ago, it began again... inside me, a flame of passion, pushing me and driving me to move. I must move... those words filled my head as subconscious thought though I did not say them. And after spending hours upon hours at my campsite reading books, inventing games, and searching the newsletters I had scavenged from the nearby inn for suitable work, I stopped. I had to meet my companion, Kat.


 


Earlier that week, I would have taken a ride on a passing carriage or slowly marched along to meet her. Destination aside, my journey would have been aimless, almost a waste of time. When compared with sitting around on a carriage for half an hour, teleporting seems like an ideal option. But I wanted more from this journey; I didn't want to waste the time nor did I want to skip over it. I would use this time to exercise my body; I was to run.


 


Each step I took my pace quickened ever so slightly until I knew increasing my speed would decrease my stamina too greatly. I kept on at a steady pace, my heart beating again, like an old dusty book being opened, and read aloud, its stories coming to life once again.


 


This morning, Kat and I went on another exertion, testing ourselves to see how far we could travel. It was exhilarating. I'm connected with the ranger within, once again. I'm learning that for me, as hard as it is to remember at times, the greatest healer of personal stress is often a good exercise. Exactly the kind of thing Dark Seb wants to prevent me from doing.


 


And so, as I write this, I am mentally preparing myself. I shall do a workout tonight... though perhaps I shall begin with dinner. I plan to add another entry within the next few hours, reporting my success. This challenge is far from over, and I still have plenty of time to finish strong if I work hard at it.


- Bastian's Journal


My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry XIV,


 


I didn't do a long one, but I did a workout! I also did yoga/stretches afterward. It's times like these that I am reminded of the importance of looking after one's body. Body, mind, and spirit are all connected. If you let one fall, it will pull the others down too. The same goes in reverse; if you bring one up to its maximum potential, you will raise everything in your life to be a little greater.


- Bastian's Journal


My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry XV,

 

With each failure, the steps back to the truest path seem more and more difficult. Hardly any part of me wants to look back on this past week, perhaps that is why this entry is late. I was attacked with a severe Aura Migraine a few days ago, but that doesn't explain the rest of the week. I know the challenge is only half over but I feel defeated... I also know that I can succeed, if I choose to do so. We shall see, next week.

- Bastian's Journal

 

Report Card - Week 3

  1. Paleo Meals:                2/4
    C+
  2. New Paleo Meal:          0/1
    C-
  3. Stretches:                     3/7
    C
  4. Workout:                      1/3
    C+
  5. Runs:                            3/4
    B

Overall grade Week 1: C+

 

Next week's goal: B+

 

B+, that is my goal. When I achieve that, I know I have done well! And it leaves room for improvement.

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Entry XVI,

 

Tonight I wondered what to do. I had heard while spying the roads that a travelling band of Rebels was on their way here, and would arrive soon. This could be my chance to prove myself to them. I figured this gave me about a week of preparation.

 

I stood by my camp, watching the tall trees around me. They held their breath, waiting for me to return to my training, and I nodded to myself silently before getting down on the earth beneath me. I had already made plans for the evening, but as I keep remembering, "I don't have time" is no excuse. So, I didn't do a full workout, but I dropped down and did 10 push ups (though not all at once, I still have a lot of strength to gain in that regard) and proceeded to plank for 100 seconds, by my reckoning. As I expected, it was incredibly refreshing. The fact is, I love training, I find it exhilarating and I can feel it strengthening not only my body but my mind also. It seems so foolish that anything could sway me to neglect such matters of health, fitness, and strength.

But then I looked up again toward the dense trees, as a dark thought pervaded my mind. My Shadow could sway me, and taint my thoughts...

 

Everyone has a Shadow. They manifest in different ways, sometimes invoking fear or anxiety, other times depression, confusion, or anger... many times it is a combination. These Shadows will follow us, providing us with challenges. But even a brick wall can be toppled; even a wide chasm can be crossed. Sometimes it takes building a 30 foot bridge to cross, but it is still possible.

 

Forgive me, to all who read this. I get carried away in my thoughts. What matters is, these Shadows can be beaten. They are no stronger than their casters. And I intend to defeat my Shadow at our next encounter.

- Bastian's Journal

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Report Card - Week 4

  1. Paleo Meals:                0/4
    C-
  2. New Paleo Meal:          0/1
    C-
  3. Stretches:                     2/7
    C
  4. Workout:                      1/3
    C+
  5. Runs:                           1/4
    C

Overall grade Week 4: C-

 

Report Card - Week 5

  1. Paleo Meals:                2/4
    C+
  2. New Paleo Meal:          0/1
    C-
  3. Stretches:                     0/7
    C-
  4. Workout:                      0/3
    C-
  5. Runs:                           2/4
    C+

Overall grade Week 5: C-

 

 

Next week's goal: B+

 

Entry XVII,

 

Last week, I encountered a group of 3 soldiers from the Empire. I thought I could take them on but when I approached, they were ready. I barely escaped, and without anything to show for it. I have much training still to do. Perhaps it is not yet time for me to join the rebellion...

 

Though my own method of tracking would say otherwise, I have learned much these past weeks. I find it difficult to spend much time writing when there is still so much to do... I shall return to this journal at a later time.

- Bastian's Journal

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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Final Report Card - Week 6

  1. Paleo Meals:                3/4
    B
  2. New Paleo Meal:          1/1
    B
  3. Stretches:                     2/7
    C
  4. Workout:                      2/3
    B
  5. Runs:                           2/4
    C+

Overall grade Week 6: B-

 

Side Quests

  1. Commander Shepard Cosplay
    0/1   F
  2. Write a song this month to post to bandcamp
    2/1   A+
  3. Finish reading The Name of the Wind
    1/1   A
  4. Finish my arrangement of Dark World/Lorule theme for two guitars
    0.5/1   C+
  5. Climb mount Finlayson
    0/1   F

Overall grade Sidequests: C

 

Overall Challenge grade: C+

 

Entry XVIII,

 

Here we are at last, at the end of my first challenge as a ranger. I certainly gave myself a handful to deal with and honestly, I believe I did fairly well all things considered. Still, my quest is only just beginning, I've only gotten a taste of the wild, and I have plenty of momentum left to build. By my reckoning, C+ will be my score for this challenge. Not an utter defeat by a long shot, but nor is it a victorious finale. I must recall however, the great many trials I faced alone in the wilderness. Well, not quite alone; at many of my darkest moments my companion Kat arrived, and traveled with me, teaching me and helping me. I could not have done so well as I did without her.

 

One thing which hindered me so was the intense heat. You must understand me, I am a ranger, born to walk for miles and survive in the wilderness. But I am from a land untouched by wild weather. Even the mildest of heat waves feel almost crippling to me, a weakness which I should like to overcome at some point. I always felt better under the cover of trees then the piercing heat of the sun, but nevertheless the brightness has been a welcome sight. Still, I long for the touch of rain.

 

I was also dealing with outside forces, such as my hunt for work, and inner forces, such as Dark Seb. Kat and I might have scaled the mountain, but we feared in the heat we might collapse from exhaustion. I shall save that journey for another day. I would have struggled harder for that B+ this week, but in the end, other priorities got in the way.

 

I definitely learned some things in my quest, though most were unrelated to my challenge. There's no sense wasting time dwelling on the past now though. I will do better in the future, and in the present.

 

All in all, I could have done better. But a penny is better than no penny, a drop of water is better than a grain of sand. A tired wanderer is better than a dead one. And I survived. I'll get some rest, and see you all next challenge. Hopefully by then, we all with have improved in one way or another! 

- Bastian's Journal

My Character

There is always hope.

- Aragorn, Lord of the Rings

 

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