Entry 6 (Shadow at the Hill)

Entry 6. Tape 3.

Tape begins. Shuffling and the crunching of leaves is heard.

(Indistinct voice) “Do—think he——where he—–going?”

Noise and footsteps. The audio finally clears.

Kio: Dr. Kiyomi here. We are about…an hour into our hike through the forest? (panting) Currently moving uphill. It’s cold here, probably because we are at the base of the mountains. It’s hard to tell which direction we are headed anymore.

More labored breathing is heard. (Male voice in the back ground) “We’ll be there by nightfall, right?”

Kio: Hey, Miriam. Is there anything you’d like to say? You know, for documentations sake?

Breathing and shuffling.

M: Sure, we’re making history. I might as well mark my spot in it. (chuckles)

M: I know this isn’t going to be easy. In fact, I’m almost scared they’ll either turn us away when we get there or break out the spears.

Kio: Well, the Kuroga were known for the fearlessness and ferocity when it came to defending their territory.

M: You know a lot more about their histories than me, doctor.

Kio: You’re a good study, Miriam. If there is anyone here that I trust to handle certain situations with…care, it’s you.

Leaves and twigs crack.

Kio: So, what are you thinking about all this?

M: It’s amazing. I mean, there is one thing that’s been on my mind.

Kio: Tell us. Tell the people. This is all we’ll have so let’s make sure to share everything we can.

M: Maybe they’ll make a movie.

Kio: Maybe. (Chuckles)

M: So, I have been working on a lot of the historical facts—and I’m definitely not dissing you Dr. K.

Kio: No, facts are just as important as the myths, Miriam.

M: What really interested me was the previous expedition to █████. It was led by that famous explorer, James van Hagen. They weren’t the first to come to █████, or the first to take notes, but they were the first modern explorers to have made contact.

Kio: Victor was very inspired by Van Hagen in regards to this trip. He wanted to do what Van Hagen could not.

M: What’s interesting about Van Hagen is that he was obsessed with legends of the Kuroga vitality and strength. I mean, the man was manic about it. Raved that they held knowledge on eternal life. He barely jotted down any other findings if they didn’t regard immortality and mystic powers—or at least, maybe that’s all they had found from his party.

Kio: He went missing, right?

M: Him and his party were never heard of again after their trip. Only one man was said to have made it back and he was out of it. I mean psychologically shattered. They said it was due to dehydration and lack of food. That he got lost up in these woods and went crazy.

Kio: Great.

M: What trips me out though is how six people just vanish and only Van Hagen’s journal was recovered. Like nothing else was found and the one survivor just ranted about shadows and “dark faced demons.”

Kio: I think he listened to Van Hagen a bit too much.

M: Yeah, but he did have that stone.

Kio: Oh, that black—

Dr. V: Hey, Kio. So, it’s getting really foggy. We’re thinking of resting. Maybe wait it out.

Kio: (lowers voice) I’m not camping out here.

Dr. V: It’s fine. Plus, we don’t want to end up lost. I think Achi knows the way, but why chance it?

Kio: (sighs) I told you I didn’t like this.

Dr. V: Honey, it’s fine.

Indistinct chatter. Recording abruptly ends.

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