From the Introduction:
A typical longhouse usually serves multiple purposes. They house one large or multiple smaller families contain stables and barns, and often enough have room for all the other tools needed for farming and a craft or another.
This longhouse is a simple construction, erected from sturdy beams and boards. Isolation against the cold of winter is provided by furs and tapestries hung on the inside of the walls. The roof is thatched with reed to keep the rain out while letting smoke from the central open fire warming the house filter out.
But something seems off about this scenery. Although plenty of firewood is stacked in front of the house flanking the main entrance no smoke rises through the reed of the roof and disgusting scum floats thickly on the small pond next to the house. No animals or people mill about following their daily chores either. The house looks pretty much like it is abandoned.