Hal looks around at the ramshackle building before he and Torica hustle back to the mound. “It’s not much of a shelter, but it might be better than nothing…”
Hal’s used to tracking and hunting all sorts of game; it was standard practice for Ranger training in Taugthond. But not so much the bigger quarry–though creatures come in all sizes in Taugthond forest, the truly big game is hard to come by there.
As he eyes the mound in the distance, gradually getting bigger as he and Torica move with healthy speed towards it, he reflects that although he’s also studied and trained hunting those types of beast that exist outside the forest–those biggest existential threats, abherrations and monstrosities (the concern over which seemed to keep the leaders of Taugthond Monastery up at night, including his parents)–he’s not had much real world experience hunting and killing them. Up until recently, that is,when he and his companions in Blackthorn’s Company came across the pale masks.
He has a feeling whatever this creature is may well be of the same ilk–something ugly, something sinister from deep below and far outside the bounds of normality. He’s a bit edgy about that, but also energized, knowing that, if this is in fact a creature that does not belong here in this world, he can dispatch it.
Still, he’s hoping Torica has some good insight into wahtever the hell dug itself into that huge mound–her clear prowess with big baddies and history with the Underdark might come in handy here.
Or, if it’s just some overgrown carniverous garden worm, all the better to pepper it with arrows, drag back the carcass, get paid, and get back to the rest of the company.
As they near the mound, Hal says to Torica: “Okay, here’s what I’m thinking: we set up the snares just outside where the tracks stop. I’ll set up a blind between that spot and this path back up towards the shack, and in between that, we can dig a fall pit. I’ll warm up a little trick I learned back in town from my Ranger mentor (Ensnaring Strike) which will hopefully slow down whatever comes out even more. As a failsafe, let’s set up one more fall pit between the mound and the shack in case we have to hoof it for some sort of cover…doesn’t sound too crazy?”
“…and, any chance that, along with your camouflaging, you can conjure up some sort of cow-shaped image? Might even throw some jerky from my rations on top…”