September 6th, 2003

It was nightfall on Eder Gira when I arrived. I had Linked to an area that was clearly volcanic in nature at one point in the past. In the immediate area columns of cracked rock orange in colour reached up into a sky that was a beautiful shade of pinkish purple. The ground was riven and vents billowed steam up with a considerable degree of force. Elsewhere evidence of lava flows now solidified could be seen.
The Link in area was surrounded by a raised level of rock that fell away to a chasm of lava. Extending from this lava were metal pipes that connected to a structure upon on one of the cliff walls. It looks like it was siphoning thermal energy as a power source.

Gazing out across the landscape I could see that only a small section of the Age was barren, outside of this lava sculpted area was a lush forest that stretched out towards a village in the distance. The architecture of the village seems similar to that of the structure harvesting power from the lava from what I can see. Does this mean it is not of D’ni construction or perhaps it is and the D’ni based the style on the native populations architecture? I shall have to see about venturing out into the greater area of Eder Gira at some point.

Whilst this initial area of the Age is mostly barren there exists some manner of flora and fauna. Large bell shaped hives grow from the ground and there are spiked vines that are as thick as my leg. As well as various scrub grasses there are some plants that look somewhat like prayer plants.

I did notice that up on a ledge next to the Link in point was another one of Yeesha’s Journey Cloths. I am venturing a guess that I shall find them in the other Ages contained within the hydrants in Relto as well.

I followed a path that circled around the Link in area ascending the cliffs where it descended again slightly before reaching a large arch of rock that spanned the fissure of lava beneath it. This natural bridge connected the Link in area to the rest of barren part of Eder Gira. As I followed the path down I eventually met a pile of rocks that blocked the way just past these rocks the area opened out into an area with double waterfalls and a pond of sorts with a stream. Behind the waterfall appears to be a network of caves.
Bioluminescent fish swam around in the pond giving off a slight purple glow, they look a bit like manta rays of Earth.
All around the area are large bones jutting from the ground, a large beast caught by the lava in past years perhaps?

Removing my shoes I waded through the water, the coolness pleasant in comparison to the heat being given out by the area of this Age. Upon a large segment of bone I discovered another one of those strange Linking Stones I had discovered in Gahreesen previously. I had must have dropped the stone somewhere along the way after picking it up because it was not in my bag when I checked for it the next morning.
This “Linking Stone” seemed to lead somewhere else a D’ni location from the look of it. I have left it for now, perhaps there are others who use them I shouldn’t keep taking every one I see.

To the left of the “Linking Stone” was the large cave behind the waterfall, it was filled with wooden baskets perhaps for catching fish? There were also two lamps that draw power from thermal vents. I turned the lamps on to reveal a tunnel that curved upwards into the rock but it was entirely too dark to see and I did not have a flashlight on my person at the time.

Across from the waterfall and the pond I found an area of stone and wood that held a Linking Book. Upon inspection I discovered it was another Linking Book to Eder Kemo. Previously I had held off going to the Age, despite my strong desire to do so, in favor of seeing D’ni first but now I feel the time is right.

When I was younger I used to swim with friends in one of the several rivers that cut through my village. There was one area where the water was deep and secluded under trees which we used to frequent. My first time jumping in there I was not expecting the temperature of the water to be so cold, the initial shock after jumping in robbed me of my breath and I struggled to stay above the surface.

Stepping from Gira to Kemo reminded me of that moment in my life, the difference being the temperatures were not as extreme in difference like the water was and as I stepped upon Kemo I wasn’t gripped by panic and concerns of drowning.

I’m not sure why Kemo became of particular interest to me. Perhaps it was the sense of mystery that emanated from documents and photos brought back to the surface by others. I had heard whispers of a door with an engraving upon it that Phil Henderson eventually vanished behind, and of strange pictoglyphs strewn upon the walls of the Age.

By my estimation I had managed to map about ninety seven percent of the Age from the photographs relayed to the surface, but I was aware I was missing the key point of how the three areas I had mapped linked together. Now I have the chance to complete my work and study the glyphs I had only seen from a distance in photographs before.

The Link in point was a small pagoda of sorts which lead out over a rocky arch of a bridge. Below was the pond, an area I had seen before from photographs and one of the areas I had previously mapped. The bridge lead over to a path that cut between the eroded rock, as I crossed I noticed large black bug like creatures hanging from the top of the rock wall digging away at the surface and eating something by the look of it.

The path eventually opened up into an area I had designated “area one” during my previous mapping attempts. A pleasant grassy area with long thin trees with pancake like foliage, smooth pebble like rocks, and what looked like bamboo. The dirt path I stood upon lead down to a stone path which curved to the left out of view. Straight ahead of me was the infamous door. The path also curved to the right where it arched around the area, passing a gazebo before reaching some steps that lead to the fountain and an area with lots of pictoglyphs.

I cannot deny, the draw to those glyphs was strong. But the door…I had to see it first, if only for a moment.

The door was a little more elaborate than the counterpart found at the Cleft with an elegant carved boarder surrounding the same spiral hand symbol I had been finding everywhere. I reached out, my fingers touching the cool surface of the door, tracing the embossed edges of that hand symbol. Touching the door revealed nothing, but that did not surprise me. Upon seeing a “Journey Cloth” in Eder Gira I have come to the conclusion that the Cloths are in all the Ages that were contained in the Relto hydrants.

The area next to the door revealed more of the pictoglyphs that littered the Age. It also served to show me how areas one and three from my mapping were linked, or areas one and two as I have now correctly labeled them.

Eder Kemo

My interest in the door had be fed, for a spell. I shall turn my attention back to it when I further investigate how to open it. In the mean time I felt the glyphs warranted further study so I made my way back to the fountain area.
The glyphs in this area seem to represent some of the other Ages. Indeed I am pretty sure one of them is Kadish Tolesa, and there is one that looks like Gahreesen and another that looks like Teledahn. I cannot fathom as of yet what story these glyphs are trying to tell, who are the figures?

I decided to spend the rest of the day chronicling the glyphs, drawing them in my journal and taking photos of them and noting down their locations and any other details about them that could be helpful in the future.

I feel like there is a larger story to be told by these images, I had felt overly drawn to the Age from the moment I first heard of the “Garden Age”.

Chief among my many questions is…Who drew them?

September 4th, 2003

Initially I had missed the message that had been sitting in my inbox. The message in question happened to be from Jeff Zandi who, despite the wishes of the DRC, was inviting me to The Cleft. Not as a guided tour like my previous visit, but full on access to the D’ni cavern as one of “the Called”.
It took a while to get everything organized with him before finally receiving directions today.

In anticipation I had already made the journey from England to the U.S. and was staying in a hotel in Carlsbad whilst awaiting the final pieces to fall into place as it were. I busied myself with packing items I felt I would need in a large backpack as I got antsy waiting for Zandi to get back to me.
At 11:45am local time, I finally received the directions I had been waiting for.

Transportation took me so far, the rest of the way I would have to walk and with the heat reaching around 85 degrees Fahrenheit I was certainly feeling it. I am not used to the temperatures that America has and I had already completely drained one bottle of water before the landscape started to take on a hint of familiarity from my previous visit. As if to signal I was on the right track I spied the volcano upon the horizon.
As it began to loom ever closer I reached a barbed wire fence that stretched off to either side of me. In front of me, next to a large sign that had fallen over was a gate which I proceeded to climb over.
To the right of the volcano I could make out something glinting in the sun, as I shielded my eyes I could see it was the infamous Airstream trailer that belonged to Jeff Zandi.
The heat was pressing on me, whilst I had come prepared I had foolishly forgotten a hat which would have been greatly appreciated. Still I pressed on slowly making my way over to the trailer where, to my surprise, sat Jeff himself.

Surprisingly he had little to say to me, but welcomed me to The Cleft and commented on me feeling “Called”. He proceeded to tell me that “she’s left a message for you in the Cleft. Listen to it well. Follow her. Find the journeys. And then, enter the tree.”

“She” being Yeesha? I guess so, from the talk I had picked up prior to my departure to this area I had learned that Yeesha, daughter of Atrus was now a factor in the cavern.

I rounded the trailer and passed the windmill before descending, thankfully, into the Cleft itself. The change in temperature wasn’t huge but it was enough to be soothing. I sat on a rocky ledge in the shade relaxing for a while, unlike my previous visit to the area which was constrained by time, I now had the luxury of being able to drink it all in. A hole in the earth, but home to Ti’ana and Atrus, I could see where they lived and slept, the area in which Atrus’ mother Keta was buried, the small blue flowers that grew above the grave…
I longed to ascend the volcano and climb down into the tunnels, to walk that long journey to the Cavern, a pilgrimage as it were, but first a message awaited me.

When I first climbed down into the Cleft there were wooden bridges criss-crossing the span, one of which lead across to an open door. As I made my way across the rope snapped and I tumbled to the floor below almost breaking my leg. As I looked around I noticed it wasn’t the only bridge that had collapsed from age. I walked over to another one and tested my weight against it, it seemed stable so I proceeded to climb up it like it was a ladder. On the ledge above were two “rooms” carved into the rock, they appeared to be bedrooms. The smaller one I surmised as being Atrus’ upon a time as I exited I noticed a curious tapestry on the wall made of burlap with a spiral hand symbol at the center.

The second room I believe belonged to Ti’ana as it was larger that the previous, on the bed was a letter authored by Atrus himself with comments in the margins in someone else’s hand writing in red ink which I am assuming to be by Yeesha

Our Dearest Yeesha,

Last night your mother had a dream…

We know that some futures are not cast by writer or Maker, but the dream tells that D’ni will grow again some day. New seekers of D’ni will flow in from the desert feeling called to something they do not understand.

But the dream tells of a desert bird with the power to weave this new D’ni’s future.
We fear this power – it changes people.

Yeesha, our desert bird, your search seems to take you further and further from us. I hope what you find will bring you closer.

– Your father, Atrus

Comments in the red ink;

I will use them to bring me the least
Impossible
Now his burden is mine.
What I have found must be returned

The least? What could that mean? What has she found?

Perhaps her message would hold answers for me. I made my way across the span and into the room on the opposite side of the Cleft from the bedrooms, it appeared to be some sort of workshop. In front of me was a strange looking device with four symbols surrounding a button, pressing the button didn’t seem to do anything. As I cast my eyes around the room I noticed a carving on the wall that used the same symbols as the device only one was different. I returned to the device and changed the symbol to match that of the carving, but still the button would not do anything. I rifled through the various papers that littered the workshop in the hopes of finding information of use but there was nothing. I decided to move to the next room down a short flight of steps which turned out to be the kitchen. The door in this room was closed, and pressing the button next to it to open it wouldn’t work. Turning my attention to the left I noticed a pole going up through the roof that was locked into place. Of course! Power, there needs to be power…the windmill…

I unlocked the pole and headed back outside and up to the surface and into that blistering heat once more. The windmill was stuck, I put all my weight behind the lever and finally it gave way and started to move. Now it was time to see if I was right.

Back in the workroom the button on the device was now lit up, so I pressed it for a third time and it activated. It appears to be a holographic imaging device, no doubt of D’ni design. A lady appeared of curious appearance, her head partly shaved with dreadlocks and tattoos covering her face.

Shorah. Rekooahn treCleft preniv legloen b’rem… Oh yes, not in D’ni, they won’t understand.

Once again, the stream in the Cleft has begun to flow. It was dry for so long. The water is flowing in from the desert. The storm is coming.

Have you heard of the City? The deep City, the ancient Uru? Where there was power to write worlds? For thousands of years, the City lived; lived beneath the surface, keeper of the secret, keeper of the power, keeper of the Ages. Always keeping. The City grew proud, and then it died.

The water flows where it wills. It seeks its own path uncontrolled except that it flows downward, always downward.

D’ni, the City of Ages, of other worlds, died. But now it breathes again, it awaits. Some will seek that destination, but you should seek the Journey. It’s as a fine tapestry, complex beyond comprehension, but now torn. We will show you remnants; pieces of the tapestry. Pieces of the Journey. Find the remnants, these Journeys. Seven. Seven in each Age, seven here in the desert. Consider it a quest. No, a request.

Worship.

The water flows downward, and there it pools and collects, and finally, it reaches the roots. And the tree begins to grow again.

I am Yeesha. My parents brought me to this place. We will bring you.

I had to replay the message multiple times in order to make sure I got it transcribed properly, even now I’m unsure if I got the D’ni portions of her speech correct but for now it will suffice. As she spoke, another tapestry appeared in the workshop, one of these “Journeys” she was speaking of?
I lay my hand upon the cloth within the workshop, part of the hand began to glow and it elicited a frightful sound. What on earth are these things?

My search for the “Journey Cloths” took me back up into the heat and so I headed back over to Jeff to see if he had any thoughts on the message or the cloths themselves, as I did so I discovered another one of the cloths on the back of his Airstream. Despite his sparse use of words he was most helpful in pointing the way at times. My search too me out into the desert area surrounding the volcano and I wandered I discovered some large sheets of metal protruding from the ground, on closer inspection they appeared to be remnants of the telescope that once sat above the Fissure on Riven according to Catherine’s journals. Across the way I could spy some large bones, upon which was another cloth. Then bones as it turns out (from looking at the formation of the skull and tusks) is that of a Wahrk, which leads me to wonder what other relics from that infamous Age has fallen through to Earth to be left here gathering in the dirt unloved. If I had my way I’d be carting them off to somewhere safe. It seems likely that the Fissure on Riven eventually lead to this location, perhaps the Myst Book as well? If only Atrus knew…

It has taken me a couple of hours but finally I located all seven of the Journey Cloths within this area. Recalling Zandi’s initial greeting I returned to the bottom of the Cleft to where a tree sat, upon this tree carved in stone was another spiral hand symbol. Following the same process applied to the cloths I placed my hand upon the stone where like the cloths it started to glow and let out that sound which whilst still concerned me was becoming familiar.
The stone slid downwards revealing a ladder that descended down into a darkened tunnel. The tunnel was short and lead to a small cave that was covered in strange pictoglyphs of symbols with D’ni lettering, figures, and spirals all of which gave off a blue glow when passed by. At the center of the cave was a small rock pedestal which housed a small Linking Book. A Relto Book judging from the Linking panel…my Relto Book?

I attached the book to my belt with the clip on the back of it and took another look around the cave before Linking out.

It’s been a long day, I will have to chronicle the pictographs when I return here, but for now I need to rest.