67 Ashan, Arc 716
Nivasi paused to take a drink from her waterskin before returning it to her sash. She'd headed up the Zor river, intent on reaching Lake Krom. She wanted firstly to scout it and see precisely how much she was going to have to practice swimming for the seasons to come. And of course because one could never become complacent, and more coins were always needed for future plans and expansions, to asses the fishing in the lake as well. It was this underlying practicality and tendency to try and save or make coin whenever possible that had her ship anchored and her walking deeper into the forest. Not too deep though, Nivasi was not good in forests. She not only didn't know what the dangers were or how to deal with them, she also had a tendency to get extraordinarily lost the one or two times she'd gone inland in her youth. On the sea she always knew where she was and where she was going, on land, not so much.
The forest here was old growth though, and from the river she'd spotted a few fallen trees. Fallen trees meant logs, and logs often meant grubs or worms. Prime bait for sweet water fish. So she'd anchored and come to shore with her shovel and worm-pouch, intent on getting herself some bait for free.
She glanced back behind herself once, assuring herself that she could still hear the river, that the Bravi'os was just out of sight, waiting for her return. This done, she went back to pushing her way forward through the most recent batch of bushes, the woods which had previously looked so open and accessible having swiftly morphed into a place that existed for the sole purpose of scratching and impeding her. She thanked whoever was listening that she customarily wore tough leather pants. They may have been salt stained and not the latest fashion by any stretch of the imagination, but they protected her legs from all but the most stubborn thorns. She kept her arms, bare in a sleeveless shirt, up, holding the shovel over her head.
Drown it. Next time I'll suck it up and buy the damned bait. It's not worth the effort. Or I'll just use the net to catch something and cut that up and use it as bait. Worms are not worth it. I bet chicken farmers don't have to deal with this, but no, I had to live at sea. Ah, there is too much of U'frek in my veins for anything else, but I could have used a touch of Moseke for this! Ah, there, finally!
She pushed through into a clearing overshadowed by several large old trees, glancing up uneasily at the branches that blocked out the sky. At sea she often used the stars as her guide, and though it wasn't night, the fact that she could not see the sky made her uncomfortable. Still, there was a peacefully decomposing log that looked like a likely contender. She gave it an exploratory poke with the business end of the shovel.
To her great delight, a piece of largely rotted through rood simply fell off, revealing several fat white grubs. While many of them started wiggling farther in, out of reach, she managed to grab a few and put them in her pouch.