They decided that it was not. With some kind of hostile influence in the area, it would be best to stay together until they had more information.
But, again, right or left?
Consideration of the geography showed them that the river would pass between The Old City and the two big towns on the right. They assumed there would be a bridge somewhere along the way.
To the left, though, was a single small town and there was no way to be sure that the tunnel did not veer off that way, and there was the source of their night time visitors.
They had no trouble agreeing. They were not looking for trouble...yet. They would take the prudent course. The two of them, burdened lightly with their travel gear, strode with casual and good-hearted determination on the road along the river.
After several miles of nothing but hard dirt and short yellow grass along the roadside the path turned sharply right and bolted toward the river like a homesick water snake. There was no bridge.
There was no bridge where the road met the water and none within sight in either direction. The dirt road slithered itself into the water and then, ten yards on the other side, slithered itself back out. There was no elevated bank here at all. The river was like a shoreless pond somehow drifting barely downhill.
The two exchanged glances, shrugs, and waded with that same casual determination into the water. They walked out on the other side, wet only to the knees.
Ahead of them only a few miles they could see the first outskirts of their immediate goal. But those outskirts seemed unfamiliar. The buildings did not match the ones of Groakpod. They were longer and lower and dried mud was much more in evidence as a building material than in their home town. At first glance they did not like the difference. As they drew closer, and the smell of the town and the sound of the breeze through the reedy rooftops assailed them, they liked it even less.
They muttered their disapproval to each other, and Feldspar added a humorous disparaging remark hoping that the people did not smell like their homes.
As they walked forward they were noticed by the citizens living in the those homes. Strangers were uncommon. Large and well-formed strangers that looked as fresh as if they'd stepped out of their own homes only hours ago were as rare as beneficent buffalo.
Most strangers that came from that way, if they got that far at all, were much the worse for wear. They usually had wounds to be bound, fractures to be re-splinted, and sported broken tusks or horns. Matted blood usually adorned their fur.
The pristine condition of these two would be the talk of the town.