He would forget all of this. He would return to his Tribe and report that he had found a Barrow, that he was triumphant. His family’s status would be restored… In privacy he would tell the Rain-Keepers of the dead hermit, of the unholy blasphemies that were waiting inside the new-found Barrow. He would say that the man spouted off unspeakable things, that he was turning feral from time in the Forest, and that Roob had killed him in the name of the Rain when he had begged for his life. He would say that he found the canyon when he followed the… Beast, from the Forest, watched it walk down the canyon and into this crevice. Yes, he would say all these things, and any other lies that would return the world to what it was.
He could see light: first the walls glowed faintly from the sigils, then true light from the outside. It would seem that he had not wedged the screen tightly enough in his haste. He processed this only faintly, continuing towards the exit; never mind his things, never mind his goggles. Roob needed one thing right now, and that was to step out into the light and look.
When he did, he was blinded briefly. The canyon was still present, although more rubble lined the floor of it from overhangs that had slid down. The light was diffuse through the clouds, as it always way, seemingly coming from all angles. The floor of the canyon had taken on the rust-colored tinge that indicated the critical material was close to being finished, and some places within the walls, new and recently revealed, seemed to indicate that they too were close to being finished. For the first time, Roob had a chance to take stock of this place, and he realized just how rich, how fertile in critical material this place had the potential to be. With its proximity to the Forest… yes, it would be perfect.
Roob would return, and telling them of the abundance of critical material, of the rubble of the canyon, of what he thought could have been a Barrow-mound, of the area itself, his family would be returned to more than their previous status. He would be eligible to marry anyone, and he would take for his first spouse someone from the military families. He would gather with his friends who were Scouts, with those who were Raiders of other Barrows; he would request the Magi who knew the Words. He would build a family of his friends and allies, with his spouse hopefully; a new family with status and respect, and they would come and live in this Barrow. They would come and do what the Rain-Keepers had always said should be done: they would fight the blasphemous Forest.
Roob thought this, knew all of this with certainty, as he stood in the floor of the canyon. The Rain, plop-HSSSSSSSSS, onto his armor, onto his neck as he stood tall; he felt the agony on his skin, burning with the mistakes of our ancestors, as he turned back into the crevice. He stripped his chest armor off, gritting his teeth, refusing to scream, refusing to give in. The Rain was a blessing, and though he would let it be nothing else, the words still made him afraid.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the story. For now that’s everything. If I come back to this it will be because people asked me to, and it will probably occur before the narrative’s current-time; I feel the society I have presented is rich enough to deserve its own explorations.