Carson suspected that people never quite knew what to expect with him. He looked exactly as one might expect a Strider to look; rugged clothes, scarred skin, clothes crusted with grime and dirt. Many people had fear in their eyes when they saw him, no doubt due in part to the rifle over his shoulder or the sturdy hatchet he wore plain on his hip. He hated that it was necessary to what he did that he look so imposing, that he carry tools that made innocent people tense. But in a world like this one, what choice did he really have? He made up for it in what ways he could. When someone was scared of him and he had to deal with them directly he was quiet and polite. When they tried to intimidate him he would joke and disarm them. He didn't want to be someone to fear, not even to his enemies. If he could convince a raider to put down their weapon and pick up a civilized lifestyle again, that was worth it. All of this was why, when word came down that a town was in need of a new Strider, he was quick to take the responsibility. Theirs had apparently been killed by a raider band that caught him off guard, and it was imperative to reach the settlement quickly and establish himself. By the time he reached the settlement, the signs for which declared it as 'Little Lake', he was half asleep on his feet. The guards met him near the gate, primitive pitchforks clutched in hand, and he soothed them with an offering of Strider's Bread, a special sort of stuff that only his kind knew how to make. He was allowed inside and given the same small room his predecessor had used, a clean but tiny shack with a single bed and a handful of notes written in ancient binders. Carson set about heating a can of soup for himself as he poured over the notes, carefully picking through the encoded messages left behind. Local threats, caches of as-yet untapped resources, raider movement patterns. He took a moment to note that those patterns had to have changed, if they'd caught the last man unawares enough to kill him. He heaved a sigh and leaned back against the shack wall, eyes closed, allowing himself a moment to simply rest and think. He was tired, too, but he had a job to do. Sleep could wait until he'd learned everything he could about Little Lake and its people.