For being the hub of a nation that was supposed to reek of prosperity, this depressing little market square hit only one of those modifiers. Elizabeth couldn’t put her finger on exactly what she sensed, but it was certainly present in the very air of Iodua. The denizens of that island nation, already shorter than her by half, scurried past her with eyes downcast, their grey and brown hoods coupled with their booted feet making each look more than a little rodent-like. From beneath tattered awnings hungry, hopeless eyes peered unseeingly into the nearly-empty street. A few shopkeepers actually backed away a pace or two as the young woman strode by.
Beneath her feet, Elizabeth could see ages of packed earth and as she walked, she dodged wheel ruts filled with muddy rainwater. There was a putrid odor wafting in on a sickly breeze from the partially-masked alley to her right, the torn and dirty curtain ruffling discontentedly. She halted in what could be considered a crossway, looking up to the stucco and stone rooftops. Exposed structural beams were clearly visible from the street level causing Elizabeth to wonder if the building had any sort of roof at all. She could feel the eyes of the citizenry as they gazed at her, half in wonder at the foreigner, half in fear of what she might do.