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January 1, 1786
First Entry

My name is James Hawk. I am an English explorer. This is the log of my ship, the Dasadania.

Today, we set sail from Callorack Island, with fresh provisions and repairs. Our objective is simple; to find new islands, or possibly continents, for the Queen. Her majesty has commissioned us to find one island in particular, known as Sakonia. Why exactly Her Majesty wants us to find this one particular island is unclear to me. I do not ask questions, though. I simply do as I am told. Callorack Island is, supposedly, close to Sakonia, and so that is the starting point of our expedition. We have already located several other exotic islands. This will be our last island. After this we will return to England. I must end this entry now, for I am required on deck.

January 2, 1786
Today, I had a most unsettling experience down in the hold. I had gone down to bring up certain objects of dubious legality when there was a thump ahead in the shadows. This in itself was neither disturbing nor unusual; it could be a barrel that fell over, the cat we kept down there to keep out the rats, or, heavens forbid, a rat itself.

As I stepped forward, lantern lit, to check, I discovered that it was, in fact, none of these things. Nothing was visible within the shadows, as if my lantern had chased them away. I looked up in time to see something darting around the crates where I could not follow. I stepped forward, noticing a small, white patch of fur, stained with blood. Shifting the crates, I discovered a shocking sight: nothing. Whatever it was, it was long gone, and so, it seemed, was the cat.

January 3, 1786
Today, I am proud to announce that we have sighted what we believe to be Sakonia. It looks like a quite nice place to relax; perhaps that is why the Queen wishes us to find it. On a rather more grim note, the steersman, Alexander, has gone missing. This leaves us a hand short. We are conducting a search of the entire ship tonight.

January 4, 1786
Today, I am the herald of tidings both good and bad. The good news is that we have found Alexander in the hold, unconscious. The bad is that he appears to have come down with a fever of sorts. Upon revival, he began shouting and screaming, and now refuses to steer us towards the island. Exactly why he does not want to land there is unknown; he simply refuses to move, shouting at us. What he is saying is both disturbing and cryptic; he speaks of the one-eyed torturer, the beast in the hold, and other nonsense.

However, as long as he remains in such a state, we can not steer into the island. Unfortunately, this is the least of our problems with him. He has injured himself and written cryptic messages in his own blood. The strangest message he has written, however, is “Croatoan > Roanoke < Croatoan.” We do not understand what he means by this, although we do know that Croatoan and Roanoke are two islands discovered years back. However, Alexander has, to the extent of our knowledge, never heard of them.

January 5, 1786
Today, we woke to the crashing of rocks and wood. We all rushed on deck to discover a grim sight. Alexander had lashed the tiller and wheel in the direction of the island before winding his Crucifix tightly around his hand and committing suicide with a knife. The ship had sailed straight into Sakonia. Nobody has been injured, other than Alexander. We are fortunate. After we have salvaged any supplies that we can, we will go ashore.

January 6, 1786
Today, we went ashore. The island is a pleasant enough place. However, there is a vague unease about it. We will set camp and sleep on the shore of the island tonight. We have committed Alexander’s body to the sea. The crucifix was in a death grip about his hand, so we simply left it there. Oddly, Alexander had carved another message into his own flesh before he killed himself. It simply said, “He comes.”

The island is rather strange; although it is a tropical paradise, I have heard no birds or any other animals. The trees rustle and sway as though in a wind, and yet the wind is blowing in a different direction. We will discover more in the morning.

January 7, 1786
Today, we went further inland. The eerie silence continues, save for the occasional noise in the distance; we are unsure what they are, but they are certainly not natural. We are not alone. The word “Croatoan” has been carved into several trees we have passed so far, but who carved them? What does Croatoan mean? In any case, our destination is the summit of the mountain on the island, where we will stake our claim for England. This search party, me included, consists of 4 of our 8 man crew. The rest of the crew are back at the landing site, repairing the ship.

January 8, 1786
Today, I awoke to find out that one of the other three men was gone. His tent was normal, his sleeping bag was ruffled like he had risen early, and there were no signs of trouble. He was simply gone. Whether he was taken by means of force or simply got up and left for reasons known only to himself remains a mystery. However, it is my personal belief that if he had left voluntarily, he would have taken his equipment with him. We will continue towards the mountain and hope to find the missing man on the way.

January 9, 1786
Today, I awoke to find everything normal. Nobody had vanished during the night. This is a good sign. However, Mandolin, a crewman, reported hearing “strange noises” and seeing “strange visions” during the night. I believe he was dreaming. I sleep lightly, and I heard nothing, I saw nothing, and I am starting to believe the other two men are crazy, or extremely paranoid. I, however, remain cool; I have been on too many expeditions to let tales of spooks and ghouls frighten me. We will press on.

January 10, 1786
Today, we found the missing man’s body. He was naked, lying in a clearing, his eyes wide open and his mouth in an eternal scream. No cause of death is apparent. I mentioned earlier that I would not quit; I retract this. We are going back to the landing site and getting off Sakonia.

January 11, 1786
We are now back at the landing site. Nothing is here; The tools of the other 4 men are still here, but the men themselves are long gone. The ship is also gone; the crew appears to have repaired it and left. A little further exploration turned up a note. The note said “We are getting off the island. The night is dangerous; DO NOT GO TO SLEEP. Build a raft and get off Sakonia. Now. May God have mercy on your soul should you remain. If you hear dru-” The rest of the letter was gone. Needless to say, we have begun construction of a raft; night is fast approaching. Should the rest of the crew be believed, tonight will be a dangerous one. We will keep watch.

Night of January 11, 1786
It is now night, I heard some of the strange sounds and saw some of the visions mentioned by Mandolin. They were of the most disturbing variety. One thing I saw was the missing crew member, walking about; He came to the shoreline and lay down as if sleeping. Then he was dragged away by an unseen force backwards into the forest. Another was that, the moment the sun went down, a deep blackness began spreading across the woods. Screams and howls, as well as other animal noises, begun to reach our ears.

I kept watch while the other two built more of the raft; Then, extremely disturbing noises reached our ears, just as the blackness hit the edge of the woods. Agonized screams rang out. Crying and thumps began. Then, suddenly, we began hearing thuds. Drums. They were far away in the jungle when we first heard them, but they are getting closer and closer. The note mentioned dru-. I think it must have meant drums. We must get off the island; the drums are now past our last campsite. The raft is almost finished. The drums are coming; they’re speeding up. They’re almost out of the woods. They’re out of the

This is the last journal entry. The rest of the pages are blank.