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Grahtwood

Author: 
Anonymous

Elden Root serves as the center of the Aldmeri Dominion, hidden away in the impenetrable jungle.

“This one has much patience, but it is stretched thinner than a dancing-cat’s veil here. I have come to trade, and I have fine goods for reasonable prices, but these Wood Elves act as if it’s all a game. Well, in truth, trading is a game, but they are playing a different one than Adibazzi is and they won’t share the rules. 
 
We should haggle, bargain, argue over quality and cost until we come to a deal. Instead, they want to ask riddles or want to have a hunting contest. One asked that we should each guess the number of leaves on a giant tree and count them, and whoever was closest would take all of the other’s goods. Nonsense and sugar-dreams! Khajiit does not have time for this!”
Be welcome among the branches of the great graht-oak, but be aware:
 
Look out for falling refuse and the scavengers it attracts on the ground beneath the city.
 
Do not hack, cut, burn, or otherwise damage the tree. Violators face expulsion.
 
Inter-branch travel via swinging vines is not recommended for visitors.
 
Be cautious when walking after enjoying fine Bosmeri beverages—some branches are more narrow than they might appear.
 
You are responsible for your own safety. Any injuries resulting from your choice to ignore these warnings will be met with an appropriate amount of laughter.
Though it is difficult to entice any Wood Elf to speak definitively about the race’s relationship with Valenwood under the Green Pact, it is clear that there are magical components. I have witnessed a few public examples of the Bosmer shaping the wood around them, coaxing it into habitations, temples, and even what I suppose constitutes art. Each instance has been highly ritualized, including days of slow, rhythmic chanting. I have heard it mentioned that fasting may be involved prior to and during such an endeavor. 
 
The magic itself, the interaction of the Bosmer with the plants, is difficult to pin down and analyze, especially because I have not been allowed to approach and properly examine the processes. I shall have to return with authorizations and permits. It is clear the Bosmer gain great benefits from this magic, but one wonders if it can be harnessed further and for better ends than just housing and fanciful tree-twisting.
Mother told me I got to practice writing. She said Wood Elves need to do better at writing things down. She says paper is made of trees, but this diary isn’t made from our trees, so I can use it. 
 
Today we ate a lot of jerky for lunch and Father let me drink one sip of his Rotmeth. It tastes bad! One day I want to go with Father and hunt the deer with him. He says I can go soon because I am getting good at using my bow.
 
There are a lot of High Elves in the town now. One little boy called me a bug-biter! I told him he was a dungpile and then took his toy boat when he wasn’t looking. Father was trying not to laugh. I didn’t try!
The residual Daedric energies in this place are much stronger than I anticipated, far more potent than any site of Daedric incidence I’ve visited previously. It is remarkable that this much corruption remains even so long after Molag Bal’s destruction here. The Bosmer are a bit superstitious about it, so the area has remained untouched and is perfect for my research. 
 
Preliminary attempts at very simple summoning spells within the disruption are already yielding fascinating results that seem to reinforce some of my planar “ripple” theories, but experimentation has been complicated by strong interference. The guards I have hired are rather skittish about being here, and I worry that their minds are not capable of resisting the corruption for long. Of course, the effects on them may also expose interesting information. I shall continue my observations.

Too many caterpillars in this batch. More bitterness than expected, and overdone with the tang. The aftertaste is quite fine, though; full and just enough of that moldy, earthen flavor. Next time, I’ll halve the caterpillars, or maybe use those little red ones with the fuzzy backs instead of the fat yellow ones. One day I’ll remember their proper names. The real question is whether or not to include just a touch of pig’s milk. Not enough to make it a Jagga derivative, but enough to impart that sour note so popular in it. Yes, I think that will be my next batch.

Enough gold for food and to care for our wards
 
A few bottles Sun’s Dusk ale
 
Some rubies, a small sapphire, a golden circlet inlaid with pearl
 
14 frondfire caterpillar cocoons 
 
A fine lap-drum and drumsticks
 
A caged daybreak sparrow that chirps the tune The Battle of the Ale
 
An ornate feathered headdress