After 10 minutes of digging through the rubble I find the wolves. They’ve been badly mangled by the rock trap and their fur is stained with blood .
Rough, but still% usable as far as I’m concerned.
I carry all four wolves with me to the fire and then proceed to skin them. It’s much more difficult than the rabbits as the pelt is marred with many rough cuts from the rocks. Despite this I complete the skinning in about the same time as I would a rabbit. The difference that just a few points of dexterity make sure is noticeable.
Upon finishing the first wolf I see a new message, alerting me that the skinning skill has leveled up. It’s a pretty drastic change, doubling the skills effect.
I immediately notice the improvement when I skin the second animal. The sharpness bonus really helps when using a terrible knife like this, which also influences how fast I level the skinning skill. The harder the task, the more Experience that is earned toward the skill specific to the task. That’s why the marred wolf pelts each earned me 20% experience, where the rabbit skins earned me around 7. The increase in efficiency wasn’t usually so great but the dagger I’m using is absolutely terrible.
I bitterly laugh and tell myself to look up. After all, without the kindness of Flora I wouldn’t even have that. I stand up, stretch, and then remove the skulls of the wolves. I crack them open against a rock and remove the brains with my knife. I don’t have access to fancy chemicals so I’ll have to brain the leathers, which is a process of using the brain to tan the pelt. I repeat the process of washing the gore off in the river and then hang them to dry above the fire.
I get back to skinning the last two wolves and by the time I’m finished my skinning skill has gained 49%, leaving me at 50. It’s also at this time that I receive a message telling me that I’ve finally learned tanning, which halves the amount of time the pelts must dry. I return to the creek and wash the last two pelts, but despite the darkness I feel something staring at me.
I know it sounds silly, but it’s true. You really do have a sixth sense about these things, which I think has had a profound impact on how we accepted VR. I personally think it’s the brains theft of information from the mainframe, but no real advance has ever been made on the subject.
I turn around but no one is there, and so I instantly prepare for battle. These pelts were hard won, I can’t just leave them. After a few minutes of standing there holding my knife the feeling disappears and I rush back to camp.
I dry these leathers too, but I pay much less attention to them, as my next two hours are completely filled with de-hairing the first two wolf hides. As you might suspect that does in fact involve scraping a knife against the grain of the hide until none remain. It’s a long arduous task, but the reward waiting for me at the end is far worth the effort. I yawn and stretch out midway through. Taking a moment to close my eyes I relax and think back to all the weird events that transpired. When I’m rescued from the capsule I think I’ll keep this character, but I’ll also have to apologize to Cathleen and Bobby. That was not going to be pleasant. Sitting up I finish de-hairing the wolves and find a large rock, I pick up an equally large rock and beat them together, holding it with two hands, until the one on the ground cracks in half. I then proceed to ram the center of the broken rock with the pommel of my dagger until a small bowl is fashioned. I add some water to the bowl and mix in a handful of wolf brain to start braining the hides and furs.
After several hours of work I end up with 12 rabbit furs, and 4 wolf hides. I yawn once again and decide that this is my limit. I lay out the leathers next to the fire, which I add some more kindling to, and then lay the furs on top of me like a makeshift blanket. Tomorrow I’d be rescued. And I’d gain some respect from those damn villagers if it killed me.