A Walk in the Unknown

Each step sends ripples across the ground. As if walking on the surface of water. This odd forest expands beyond you. Its story is as warped as the space you are living in currently. The sky is bathed in perpetual night, while the forest itself shines in a variety of colors. All the colors shift every now and then giving the place its mystical atmosphere. The dimensional forest of eternal mana is where you have been taken to. Your training as a druid is complete. To show your prowess you transform into a bear, then an owl and then back to the forest dweller.

Drums echo throughout the air. The sound dances in the winds and even moves the flowers. You kneel before the druid grandmaster as he bestows upon you the energy of this mystical place. As a fully fledged druid your main task is to defend the forest from any invaders and keep your people safe. The mystical forest soon fades. You awaken after what felt like a fever dream. The other dwellers go about their day. Meanwhile a few are gathered at the doorway to your home, a small hollow space within a tree. Those few, family and friends, are happy to see you awake. They are aware of the experience you went through. The elder is there to congratulate you on your endeavor of completing your training. Now, the important task begins. On the eastern edge of the forest lies a human settlement. Those invaders know nothing about respect for nature nor the rules of the dwellers. Despite previous attempts to negotiate with their leaders, nothing has proven effective. This slowly escalated from animosity to full on aggression in a short time. Every breeze now carries the warnings that the humans are preparing an army to invade the forest and attack the dwellers. This must be stopped.

After months of high tension on the border and a change in the human kingdom’s leadership, a small group approached the edge of the forest. It was a royal messenger guarded by a few knights. He stepped off his horse and walked forward. This was considered dweller territory. The dense forest was proof of it. The young man exclaimed that the previous ruler of the kingdom had done serious transgressions against the dwellers and that reparations would be made. First, a nearby village, which harvested a lot of lumber from the forest, would be removed. Second, a treaty was being proposed. You listen carefully. The winds whisper caution, but not danger. The messenger’s heart is true. As an owl you fly down to meet this messenger and transform into your dweller form. Acknowledging their message you quickly transform into a panther and rush back to the village. With speed so great no horse mounted knight could hope to catch up, much less dare tempt a swipe of those sharpened claws. The elder hears the message. It is glad tidings, for a war against the humans would have been costly. Druidic teachings value life above all, to them the loss would have been twice as painful for human life is as valued as dweller life.

Peace reigned for years. The forest continues to be safe and a new generation of druids now goes about the forest in their various forms. Humans have remained distant only occasionally sending messengers with pleasantries. The king honors the commitment, but mentions that not all humans behave as such. So the dwellers, in all their wisdom, continue to keep a watchful eye on their beautiful domain. A light flute melody travels the air. The flowers and even the leaves seem to dance a slow dance. Every note is a protective charm always hoping for a bright, peaceful future.


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