2021-01-30: Getting A Little Bit Lost

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DG: A party led by Ida Everstead-Rey is now entering The Lost Woods.
DG: Party formation is now over. An Entry Challenge will now be drawn and displayed to the party.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
=======================<* CHALLENGE - A Familiar Scene *>=======================
|Type: Entry       |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 At its edges, along roads and settlements, the Sylvara Great Woods seem
 normal. But for those seeking treasure or secrets, there are a number of
 small pathways that lead in further. As you follow one of these, the mists
 grow thicker and light is sparing beneath the thick and high canopy.

 You emerge from the path into a narrow clearing. A small pond can be seen,
 and a few birds chirp by it. There are three small paths: one to the north,
 another to the east, and a final to the west. You come from the southern
 path.

 Whichever one you take, after a few twists and turns, leads you back to
 the... same clearing. Surely, there must be some way to continue, if you can
 find the right path.
=Dungeon Conditions: Stupify, Tire============================================
<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    In the modern era, Filgaia's great forests are few and far between. To a naturalist like Ida Everstead-Rey, each one is a precious treasure, worthy of preservation as well as understanding. This isn't the first time she's been in these woods, but it is the first time she's been off the beaten path, as it were. Sylvaland keeps the way to the Live Reflector relatively clear, and as well-guarded as it can manage. Beyond that, who knows what lies within the forest depths?

    Ida walks out of the treeline, into a small clearing strewn with wildflowers. Pure, clean water bubbles from a nearby spring in the rocks, flowing downward into a pool. Birdsong fills the brisk, cool air--despite the fact that it's winter, this part of the forest, at least, has held on to its leaves. This only adds to the strange, fairy-tale picture awaiting Ida and her group.

    It would be much more charming if they hadn't seen this exact clearing twice before.

    "All right," Ida says, letting out a huff of breath. She walks over to the pond, and sits by the mossy bank. "Let's take a moment to regroup, shall we?" She pauses a beat. "Now I see why they call these the 'Lost Woods'." Her voice is as dry as can be. She reaches down to scoop up a handful of water, when--

    A tiny black-and-white blur races across the forest floor like an Ida-seeking missile. The heiress barely has time to turn to look before said blur is upon her, jumping up... and licking her face, while barking.

    "Lola--!?" Ida says, between licks. "You're supposed to be aboard the Endeavor! Did you follow me?" Lola does not answer. Ida looks back at the others, a sort of benign helplessness on her face. "My dog," she explains, for those who haven't met her. "I... suppose she can come with us." And in fact...

    Ida rises, pulls a leather leash free, and clips one end to Lola's harness. A bit of rummaging turns up some jerky, which she offers to the tiny papillon. "Lola, sniff," she says, stooping down and letting the dog scent her hand. "Find." It's like someone flipped a switch. Lola is no scenthound, but she knows Ida's scent--and that means, she knows where Ida has been before. Which should make finding paths they've already taken that much easier.

DG: Ida Everstead-Rey has used her Tool Lola toward her party's challenge, A Familiar Scene.
<Pose Tracker> Ethius Hesiod has posed.

    Ethius is along, as... he sort of happens, sometimes. The moment he's heard about there being a plan to check out the depths of the woods, he has more or less volunteered himself to come along. To whatever benefit that might be, when much of his irritating emotional distance remains even so many years later.
     He is here with purpose, which is odd to believe when there are no rumors of strange lost or misplaced technology here - nor any reports. The Spectral Lens is already warm in his hand after having given it three zaps over their journey so far. He seems fixated on the ground in particular as he walks along and... Ida has to say that they need to stop and regroup. He hasn't been paying attention to the forest for the trees. (Or the identical clearings.)
     When Ida's dog comes running, Ethius looks up and has his shoulders rise as if in shock.
     "I've yet to clear--" Clear what? His posture slackens as Lola delivers her love to her recognized master. A hand goes to his forehead as the heiress sees her help with the pathfinding.
     "...Ah, I should clarify." Ethius says, which... is not a thing he usually says. "I had concern there may have been buried explosives planted along routes outside of immediate patrol and notice." Something he likes to assume, or claim. "...Suffice to say, I have found no such sign thus far."
     This means that playtime with Lola is go! So far.

DG: Ethius Hesiod has used his Tool Spectral Lens toward his party's challenge, A Familiar Scene.
<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

To Eleanor, the forests are still beautiful, and still precious, but less startling than to many; she's spent time in Sylvaland many a time, not least 'the last month or so' already where she mostly stuck around this area. But that also means she's familiar with what the woods are called...

And having been here before doesn't change that; it was only recently that she last had to traverse some of these Woods to the Live Reflector.

Last time she came, she had rather different company than this time. And this time, that company includes...

"Oh!" Eleanor brightens as she sees the little dog. "Awww," Eleanor says, "Look how much she loves you!" She is charmed, though not so much so that she forgets to look around. And Ethius mentions...

"Oh," she says. "That's very thorough of you!" She has nice things to say even to Ethius, because she's like that. She smiles at the little dog, but does not interrupt her while she's Working, and then looks around thoughtfully. "So, if we're coming this way.."

Eleanor makes some mental notes. "We went..."

She can memorize the steps they take, at least.

<Pose Tracker> Avril Vent Fleur has posed.

    "I believe we may have come this way before," a certain young woman remarks, pausing up by the trail. She kneels for a moment, fingers brushing against the little flowers and leaflets of a low plant.

    "...Haven't we? It seems so familiar, and yet..."

    It's hard to disentangle from her usual sense of familiarity with things, and what's worse, she has the strange haunting feeling that she's rounded this particular path...

    Well, not just once before, but many many times before. Is the Ley distorted here? Is it similar to somewhere she once was, thousands of years ago? Or...

    She rises to her feet, turning to regard to regard the others who have come on what should have been a short trek into the Lost Woods. She was fond of flowers, and as Filgaia is suffereing from a deficit of them, it had seemed a lovely way to spend an afternoon.

    But the prospect of getting lost in here is rather less lovely.

    There is sudden blur of movement. Avril turns towards it sharply--

    It's a small dog. "Oh? So this is your dog, Ida? She's very beautiful. You must be proud of her. To think that she came all this way in search of you..."

    She approaches the two of them and kneels down before Lola, extending one hand towards the hound. "Well, Lola? Might you assist us?"

    It seems that the answer is yes.

    Avril, meanwhile, turns towards Ethius as he remarks that there might be--

    Blue eyes widen.

    She pulls out her mirror, perhaps to follow his lead in delaing with this problem. "I hope that there are none here," she says, gazing into the mirror's depths.

DG: Avril Vent Fleur has used her Tool Mirror of De Soto toward her party's challenge, A Familiar Scene.
<Pose Tracker> Dean Stark has posed.

    Dean hasn't been to the Sylvara Great Woods before! After several go-arounds only to find themselves at the same clearing over and over, he's definitely also seeing why it's called the Lost Woods. At least it's a nice place, but he's kind of getting tired of seeing this one same pond.
    
    "We've definitely come this way before. Either that, or this forest has a lot of the exact same clearing in it!" he tells Avril. At least this time she can't chalk it up to a weird sense of deja vu. (Though that is probably also contributing to it.)
    
    "Good thinking," he tells Ida, whom he's glad has already recovered enough to be out and about. "Maybe there's actually a hidden path? I can use my Detector bullet to check--" But before he can complete that sentence, suddenly, there is a tiny puppy leaping into Ida's arms! Dean laughs in delight to see Lola, having met her before at Ida's family's home. "Oh hey! How'd she get all the way here? Good girl!" After ruffling her adorable head, he steps back to let Ida handle the dog, and himself handle his ARMs, which flash into his hands like usual. He fires a shot, which creates a green overlay with brighter green triangles spinning forth towards any hidden items, chests, and passageways. Guess they'll see if there's a way they *hadn't* seen.
    
    Then he stares at Ethius. "...why would there be bombs in a forest?" he wonders, baffled. Dean shakes his head a moment later. If Ethius even answers that question, Dean probably won't understand anyway. Instead, he looks expectantly at Eleanor as she calculates their past paths, and Avril as she uses her mirror to divine the truth.

DG: Dean Stark has used his Tool Detector toward his party's challenge, A Familiar Scene.
DG: Eleanor Klein has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward her party's challenge, A Familiar Scene.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
=======================<* CHALLENGE - A Familiar Scene *>=======================
|Type: Entry       |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 At its edges, along roads and settlements, the Sylvara Great Woods seem
 normal. But for those seeking treasure or secrets, there are a number of
 small pathways that lead in further. As you follow one of these, the mists
 grow thicker and light is sparing beneath the thick and high canopy.

 You emerge from the path into a narrow clearing. A small pond can be seen,
 and a few birds chirp by it. There are three small paths: one to the north,
 another to the east, and a final to the west. You come from the southern
 path.

 Whichever one you take, after a few twists and turns, leads you back to
 the... same clearing. Surely, there must be some way to continue, if you can
 find the right path.
=Dungeon Conditions: Stupify, Tire============================================
=========================<* The Lost Woods - Round 1 *>=========================
=========================< Results - A Familiar Scene >=========================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ida Everstead-Rey                   0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Lola                                1   Wits    Effects: Cleanse
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ethius Hesiod                       0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Spectral Lens                       2   Wits    Effects: Enlighten
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Avril Vent Fleur                    0 --(8)--> 8                   Fail
Mirror of De Soto                   1   Wits    Effects: Cleanse
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eleanor Klein                       0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dean Stark                          0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Detector                            2   Wits    Effects: Stalwart
-----------------------------------< Party >------------------------------------
Leader: Ida Everstead-Rey           0 --(20)--> 20                 Pass
Conditions: Stupify(2)|Tire(2)
Effects: Cleanse|Enlighten(1)
===============================< Dream Chasers >================================
DG: The party led by Ida Everstead-Rey has passed this challenge! The party gained 20 exploration! If anyone needs to
use party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    Lola is a tiny, adorable lap dog, but she's also well-trained. She puts her nose to the ground, following Ida's scent trail as the group walks out of the clearing. It stops at a fork in the road pointed out by Dean's clever little scanner--and Ethius' lens picks up a subtle shift in the flow of the local Ley that backs up Dean's data.

    "It's as if the woods themselves are shifting," Ida says, as she glances at Dean's display. "Amazing."

    Are there mines? Avril doesn't find any. Both she and Eleanor keep track of more mundane surroundings, as well as the number of paces. Suddenly--

    Lola stops dead in her tracks, ears perking up at something in the path ahead. It's small, it's furry, it's...

    A perfectly ordinary squirrel, eating an acorn. Lola sniffs in its direction, curiously, unsure what to make of this strange, furry entity. The squirrel drops the acorn and flees up the nearest tree.

    On the upside, though, the next time the group makes a turn, they're somewhere different! Progress!

DG: Ethius Hesiod has drawn a new Challenge.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
==============<* CHALLENGE - Ancient Statues and Hidden Caches *>===============
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 The next clearing that you find has a statue overgrown with moss. Much of it
 is unrecognizable; moss has stained the stone green, and its features are
 worn away, only to suggest a woman in a dress. She may be elven, but it is
 hard to say, as the ears are mostly worn away and the hint of a point could
 only be seeing things.

 The statue has a small, sealed door on its base. Made of sturdy stone, the
 door looks like it should hold a cache -- or maybe a way underneath.
 Breaking the door may damage whatever is behind it, but perhaps some method
 can be found to open the door.
=Dungeon Conditions: Stupify, Treasure========================================
<Pose Tracker> Ethius Hesiod has posed.

    "...It is a precaution," Ethius remarks to Dean as he picks up that change in the Ley flow. "There is increased traffic through the area, some from places exotic to these lands." Spira, he means. "Some, coming or going, may look into opportunities to prey upon the unaware." It's not clear why anyone would go through such an effort, when the primary routes are so well-guarded that anyone up to no good would be caught... but it's not the first time he's found the strangest excuses to go looking specifically for them.
     However, it is true that Ethius has not been thrown in a dungeon somewhere for merely existing, so maybe there is a point to worry about it. (He's still a weirdo.)
     He volunteers to take point subconsciously, because he picks up another connected energy reading that takes the group to a clearing with a statue overgrown with moss. It appears to depict a woman, going by the dress and physique... but time and the elements have weathered it and smoothed out many of its features, up to and including the point. Ethius brings a hand to his forehead again, because he does not have very many idle animation cycles to work with.
     "...I do not believe this structure has been touched in some time," this is saying the obvious. "I can tell that there is a cavity carved into the structure, though I cannot ascertain its purpose." The reading he got on the Spectral Lens is vague other than there being something. He moves forward and kneels down, gently touching the structure's base with his gloved hands. He's not certain he sees a button or a switch anywhere.
     As it has not yet exploded, the previous inquiry about potential hidden explosives can be ruled out (here, anyway).

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

"There's definitely magic here," Eleanor comments about the woods maybe shifting. But they go--

"That's true," Eleanor admits to Ethius. "Though, if you think about it, that's true of a lot of places..." Hmm. Eleanor considers this, but not very hard. Instead--

She looks at the statue, blinking in surprise. "This..."

She stares at it thougtfully for a moment, but then she pulls out her notebook. "I remember this," she murmurs to herself, flipping through the pages as she steps forward and kneels down. "Be careful with it--We don't want to break it. But there's a way to unlock it..."

Eleanor looks pretty familiar with this thing, though she doesn't seem to know where the mechanism is. She feels around carefully for it all the same.

"This iconography is interesting. How old is this?"

DG: Eleanor Klein has used her Tool Seer's Journal toward her party's challenge, Ancient Statues and Hidden Caches.
<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    Now that they're out of the maze, Ida relaxes just a hair. Lola does, too. The little papillon walks by her human's side, sniffing curiously at the underbrush. "This is the first time she's been outside Guild Galad," Ida says, as Lola sniffs at the base of a tree. "Everything must be so new to her, and so different." As Ethius takes point, Ida pulls in a little of her companion's leash--she wants to let Lola explore, but it's best if she doesn't stray too far. There could be danger lurking just out of sight.

    Fortunately, all Ethius finds is another clearing. Ida stops at the entrance, inspecting the statue for a long moment. She glances at Eleanor, brow furrowing in thought. "I don't know," she says. "But it's definitely old." Ida leads Lola forward, stopping at the base of the statue. She kneels, looping more excess leash around her forearm. "And if you saw it, it must be important, hm?" Carefully, Ida feels around with both hands. Lola lends her nose to the task.

DG: Ida Everstead-Rey has used her Tool Lola toward her party's challenge, Ancient Statues and Hidden Caches.
<Pose Tracker> Avril Vent Fleur has posed.

    There are no explosives about...

    ...that Avril can sense. This may not be the good results it might appear to be at first flush, no. Though there is the question of why anyone would have planted explosives about here in the first place, particularly when the paths leading in would have taken them past far-more-guarded locales.

    Nevertheless.

    "I can tell. She seems very excited to be out here, Ida. Perhaps this might be a good experience for her?" Avril remarks as they walk along, mirror still born in her arms. The path has shifted from before, which is good; perhaps they're on the right track.

    ...They're at least somewhere different, if that statue is to be any mark of their progress. "Hmm... I wonder..." Avril muses, gazing up at the statue. The mirror in her arms glitters as she so attempts to divine further within its reflection. Is there something special about this place, some way in which it resonates with the Ley...?
    Moreso than the rest of the forest (and the Live Reflector) already does, that is.

DG: Avril Vent Fleur has used her Tool Mirror of De Soto toward her party's challenge, Ancient Statues and Hidden
Caches.
DG: Ethius Hesiod has used his Tool Spectral Lens toward his party's challenge, Ancient Statues and Hidden Caches.
<Pose Tracker> Dean Stark has posed.

    Progress!!
    
    "Oh. That does make sense," Dean tells Ethius, to his surprise. Huh! Is it him, or has Ethius been opening up lately? He seemed chattier the other day in Luca, too. It's a nice thought, and he gives Ethius an encouraging smile and a nod. "Thanks for explaining!"
    
    The next clearing has a statue in it, covered with moss. It's a pretty statue, he thinks, though his standards for art aren't especially high. It probably would've been prettier just after it was carved, though. "I wonder how old it is," he muses, looking it over.
    
    Ethius says that there's a cavity inside the statue. Eleanor makes it more clear that that means there's a door to an empty space inside. Dean sees this for himself when he leans over at takes a look. Everyone else has lenses and books and hands and noses and mirrors on the base, though, so he opts to hang back and let them figure this out. He can lend some muscle to actually pull the door open once they've got that figured out.
    
    "Yeah," he chimes in after Avril in the meantime. "She must love all the fresh air and exercise!" Avril goes on to suggest it's a good experience, and Dean nods vigorously. "Yeah, I bet she'd love it if you took her out with you more often! Just getting to be with you more would be the best!" he tells Ida.

DG: Dean Stark has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward his party's challenge, Ancient Statues and Hidden Caches.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
==============<* CHALLENGE - Ancient Statues and Hidden Caches *>===============
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 The next clearing that you find has a statue overgrown with moss. Much of it
 is unrecognizable; moss has stained the stone green, and its features are
 worn away, only to suggest a woman in a dress. She may be elven, but it is
 hard to say, as the ears are mostly worn away and the hint of a point could
 only be seeing things.

 The statue has a small, sealed door on its base. Made of sturdy stone, the
 door looks like it should hold a cache -- or maybe a way underneath.
 Breaking the door may damage whatever is behind it, but perhaps some method
 can be found to open the door.
=Dungeon Conditions: Stupify, Treasure========================================
=========================<* The Lost Woods - Round 2 *>=========================
================< Results - Ancient Statues and Hidden Caches >=================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ida Everstead-Rey                   0 --(5)--> 5                   Pass
Lola                                1   Wits    Effects: Cleanse
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ethius Hesiod                       0 --(5)--> 5                   Pass
Spectral Lens                       2   Wits    Effects: Enlighten
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Avril Vent Fleur                    8 --(5)--> 13                  Pass
Mirror of De Soto                   1   Wits    Effects: Cleanse
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eleanor Klein                       0 --(5)--> 5                   Pass
Seer's Journal                      3   Wits    Effects: Rally
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dean Stark                          0 --(5)--> 5                   Pass
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC
-----------------------------------< Party >------------------------------------
Leader: Ida Everstead-Rey           20 --(25)--> 45                Pass
Conditions: Stupify(2)|Treasure(1)
Effects: Cleanse|Enlighten(1)
===============================< Dream Chasers >================================
DG: The party led by Ida Everstead-Rey has passed this challenge! The party gained 25 exploration! If anyone needs to
use party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
<Pose Tracker> Ethius Hesiod has posed.

    It is a venerable piece of stonework, something all of them treat with responsible respect and care. Eleanor is the one who takes the lead from talking about how she recognizes it. A way to unlock it must exist, but it is very old. The locking mechanism itself may have been eroded to the point of inoperability, now. There doesn't seem to be any... knobs, or switches that anyone can find. A few parts seem like they should have give in order to be fit into a depression, but no such luck here. (This has been the case with some others that look exactly like this - but this isn't one of them.)
     Avril holds up a mirror, and finds that there is in fact nothing of the sort there - definitively, which helps narrow down what, exactly, can be done about it.
     Dean's footstep, as he stands back, reveals that the ground underneath is hollow. If it's hollow under where he is, it's a tunnel. If it's a tunnel, there's a way in. And the idea of there being an entry to a tunnel matches the patterns of the mirror.
     Those who are touching it give it a gentle push where something clicks. A resonant fanfare of melodious chimes rings out along the wind as it reveals a fully intact staircase underneath that leads further in.
     "It is something I always hold in consideration," he explains to Dean. They don't have answers about how old this is, or its special significance beyond the fact it's been used to hide a staircase to somewhere. Maybe there's a treasure underneath. (Watch it be a single green gem.)

DG: Eleanor Klein has drawn a new Challenge.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
===========================<* CHALLENGE - Octoroks *>===========================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Combat    |Challenge Rating: 1          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 Several forest paths intersect here, making a web of paths that cut between
 groups of trees. It is hard to have line of sight to anything; but you do
 catch a glimpse of red moving between the trees. Then, several large,
 octopus-like creatures -- on fat legs, moving effortlessly on land -- scurry
 out and face you. They spit, and send huge rocks hurtling at you at high
 speed.
=Dungeon Conditions: Fright, Injure===========================================
<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

"...I'd like to think that," Eleanor admits of how she 'saw' it. It's a nice idea, though. She does also find it a pretty statue but that's not her main interst in it. Then again, with the features worn away... Well, she's an elf, too.

"I bet she does," Eleanor agrees with Dean about Lola. "This is really her first time out of Guild Galad? Let's be sure to make it a pleasant time, then."

Eventually, though, they do get to consider the staircase...

Eleanor carefully wraps what they find and puts it away for now, aiming to do some looking at it later.

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5VRr9NG7RE0

Now, though, they move on towards another set of forest paths, an entire web of them between groups of trees. It's difficult to see much of anything here, except for suddenly a glimpse of red running through the trees. Eleanor blinks. "Oh, dear--"

A huge rock hurtles for her and she drops to the ground immediately, rolling to try to pull at her flute to play a helpful song in a moment.

But they're spitting at everyone else too, strange octopus-like creatures!!

DG: Eleanor Klein has used her Tool Eerie Flute toward her party's challenge, Octoroks.
<Pose Tracker> Ethius Hesiod has posed.

    Ethius doesn't seem to have much to say about Lola, but in some ways... that might be seen as a welcome change? He stays out of her way (and Ida's) wherever she might go, as if content to actually be a background element in their lives and not impress his thoughts on the matter. His initial surprise at her running across a place he wasn't sure was safe, anyway. (Should Lola come up to him for pets, she gets a standard six pats. Each pat is carefully executed, as if a gesture of kindness were something you rehearse and later do with technical skill rather than perform from the heart.)
     He also doesn't ask Eleanor to take a look at what she found, which is another change. Maybe it's the environs? Who knows. Well, someone knows. Someone knows that they're all there. Those someones are somethings. Those somethings are octopus-shaped creatures who defend their territory by shooting rocks.
     Maybe they just shoot rocks for fun because they are horrible little creatures. One of them manages to strike him upside the back of his head with one, as if an element of mischief rather than a life-threatening situation. (It's not like they throw them all that hard.)
     The odd man takes a moment to gather himself, unable to join the immediate battle.

DG: Ethius Hesiod has contributed a Combat Basic Action toward his party's challenge, Octoroks.
<Pose Tracker> Avril Vent Fleur has posed.

    "There is little presence of the Ley here," Avril announces, after a short time. "I do not think it is affecting anything." The glowing light streaming from the mirror fades out; she tucks it safely away and moves to help the others look around. In due time, they uncover a tunnel... and then a staircase leading elsewhere!

    To where lies a treasure, which Eleanor investigates.

    "Shall we try this path?" Avril suggests, pointing in a particular direction. While it happens that the path gets them somewhere new...

    "Ah--"

    ...it also happens that the path is not devoid of an obstacle. Of a sort. "Are those... is that an octopus?" She points in the direction of one of the creatures, just as it ducks out from behind a tree and... lobs an enormous rock at her head?
%TFortunately, Avril has good reflexes and is good at ducking; lunging forward as the rock crashes into a tree behind her instead, she is a veritable battering ram as she takes her blade into hand.

    Of course, these creatures are quite quick.

DG: Avril Vent Fleur has contributed a Combat Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Octoroks.
<Pose Tracker> Dean Stark has posed.

    Heyy, a tunnel under the statue! More adventure!! That's pretty exciting, honestly. Dean nods to Ethius, then joins the others in traversing down underground into the tunnel. It's not that deep, and they fetch the treasure within and re-surface to continue on through the woods.
    
    "Yeah, definitely," he remarks to Eleanor of Lola. When Avril comments on the Ley, he tilts his head curiously. "Huh. I wonder why that is?"
    
    Everyone heads down a new path further into the woods. As they walk, red flashes between the trees. Dean looks around, Twin Fenrir flashing into hand as he prepares himself--and sure enough, rocks come shooting out from weird tentacle monsters!! He turns and braces himself, Twin Fenrir's rods crossed before him, and he grunts when the rock hits but stands his ground.
    
    "We'll take these guys out in a flash!" he shouts, dismissing Twin Fenrir (with, yes, a flash) and pulling out Ace of Spades. With the mighty Devil Shovel in hand, Dean roars defiantly and charges at the creatures to hit them real, real hard. El Kabong!!

DG: Dean Stark has used his Tool Ace of Spades toward his party's challenge, Octoroks.
<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    "It is," Ida says. "She's been a cherished house pet her entire life--I didn't want to take her with me, for fear she'd be in danger, but..." She looks down at the papillon as she sniffs at a patch of moss. "She missed me enough that she followed me all this way." From the boat, that is, not from Guild Galad. "I'd be remiss if--"

    Something rustles. Lola stops in her tracks, and barks twice--not in alarm, but loudly enough to get everyone's attention. Then...!

    Ida's lips pull back from her teeth. In an instant, she dives forwards, scooping Lola off the ground and cradling her in her arms, protectively. Ida leaps out of the way, whips a metal canister from her belt, and ignites it. She covers Lola's eyes and ears.

    BOOM, goes the flashbang.

DG: Ida Everstead-Rey has used her Tool Flare Grenade toward her party's challenge, Octoroks.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
===========================<* CHALLENGE - Octoroks *>===========================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Combat    |Challenge Rating: 1          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 Several forest paths intersect here, making a web of paths that cut between
 groups of trees. It is hard to have line of sight to anything; but you do
 catch a glimpse of red moving between the trees. Then, several large,
 octopus-like creatures -- on fat legs, moving effortlessly on land -- scurry
 out and face you. They spit, and send huge rocks hurtling at you at high
 speed.
=Dungeon Conditions: Fright, Injure===========================================
=========================<* The Lost Woods - Round 3 *>=========================
=============================< Results - Octoroks >=============================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ida Everstead-Rey                   5 --(5)--> 10                  Pass
Flare Grenade                       2   Combat  Effects: Embolden
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ethius Hesiod                       5 --(18)--> 23                 Fail
Fight                               0   Combat  Effects: BASIC
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Avril Vent Fleur                    13 --(5)--> 18                 Pass
Fight                               0   Combat  Effects: BASIC
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eleanor Klein                       5 --(5)--> 10                  Pass
Eerie Flute                         2   Combat  Effects: Embolden
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dean Stark                          5 --(5)--> 10                  Pass
Ace of Spades                       3   Combat  Effects: Rally
-----------------------------------< Party >------------------------------------
Leader: Ida Everstead-Rey           45 --(20)--> 65                Pass
Conditions: Fright(2)|Injure(2)
Effects: Embolden(1)
===============================< Dream Chasers >================================
DG: The party led by Ida Everstead-Rey has passed this challenge! The party gained 20 exploration! If anyone needs to
use party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

Eventually Eleanor manages her song, which disorients the strange creatures long enough for others to take some better action, and Ida's flashbang ensures they have a harder time recovering. Lola helps ensure that none of them are taken unawares. ...Ethius doesn't, so much. He needs a moment. And he got hit in the head, again. But Avril makes up for it by being kind of a machine. A machine asking about whether there's an octopus here.

They do not answer; they show no particular special sign of Ley energy themselves. They're just... land octopodes. Who are about to get buried by Dean's Devil Shovel (metaphorically speaking) as he roars and charges.

In short order the strange creatures are dispersed, and the group could try to have some extremely ill-advised takoyaki.

Eleanor doesn't suggest this--she sets down her flute. "See? You can keep her safe," Eleanor says to Ida. Pause to Avril. "They were pretty strange, weren't they? Then she turns to check on Ethius...

DG: Avril Vent Fleur has drawn a new Challenge.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
===========================<* CHALLENGE - Timber! *>============================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Brute     |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 Much of the Lost Woods is not mapped, which makes the streams and rivers
 that run through it a mystery. The result is that many of them have no
 bridges or other safe crossings. You come to one such creek, which is a fast
 moving one, with steep banks. Swimming it would be dangerous; leaping across
 is precarious.

 Fortunately, a tree grows close enough to the creek that toppling it -- at
 least, in the right direction and carefully -- would create a bridge.
=Dungeon Conditions: Weaken, Injure===========================================
<Pose Tracker> Avril Vent Fleur has posed.

    "I do not know," is the only answer she can give Dean, shaking her head in the process. "The air of this place is very strange, Dean. It's as if it does not wish me to even look at it. I wonder if that might be why they call it 'the Lost Woods'." Even those with a spiritual connection might be doomed to wander by whatever force is at work here...

    But soon, an octopus (land octopus!) battle commences! "They were," Avril agrees, 'sheathing' her blade, which is to say, returning Absolute Zero's edge to nothingness and tucking it away. She glances over at Lola, as if to check in with the little dog. "Well, shall we? I think we may be on the right track," she says, continuing along.

    Ill-advised takoyaki is not on the menu.

    But before long, they come across a steep-banked wide creek with no apparent way to cross. Avril glances this way and that, regarding the tree that looks almost as if it could be toppled with some effort, the creek's banks, the creek, and back at the trees when she suddenly pauses visibly and kneels. She brushes a little dirt aside at her feet. There's... something buried here.
    It sort of looks like part of a giant rounded... fingertip?

    "Oh... were you sleeping there," she murmurs, before standing and taking a few rapid steps backwards. From her pockets she pulls out a small flat device, and unfolding it, firmly presses the button within. The ground rumbles.

DG: Avril Vent Fleur has used her Tool Remote Golem Override toward her party's challenge, Timber!.
<Pose Tracker> Ethius Hesiod has posed.

    The odd man among them looks a bit woozy and dizzy, but after a minute he can rise up again. "...I am well enough to continue the expedition as we are currently situated," he sounds coherent enough in that roundabout, circuitous way but it's probably more convincing than 'I'm fine!' As it happens, nobody important was harmed in the exchange, so all is all right.
     He does fall behind the others along the way to the nearby creek, breaking out the harness for the Hot Air Sack. His coordination seems okay after the recent experience, he's not making mistakes in trying to lace it around his wrist or otherwise doing it any slower than usual, when he picks up a movement from something buried. He throws an arm out behind him. (There's no one behind him. He fell behind. Stepping forward and doing that would be awkward. He is in the process of attempting to do this anyway.)
     The tree starts to shake. Drawing his quarterstaff, he lunges forward to strike it at the very edge of his wingspan to try and influence the direction it falls, as if picking up on the intended solution a lot faster than he did in realizing he's not in front of anyone.

DG: Ethius Hesiod has contributed a Brute Basic Action toward his party's challenge, Timber!.
<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    Ida holds Lola close to her chest, cradling her. The tiny dog whimpers, shaking in her human's arms--she's not entirely sure what happened, it seems, but she can definitely pick up on Ida's tension. "There there, girl," Ida says, and she plants a kiss on Lola's forehead. "They're gone. You're safe now." It takes another few minutes for Lola to calm down, and during that time, Ida keeps her in her arms, snuggling her. Once she feels her cherished friend is ready, the heiress sets her down. Lola shakes out the stress.

    "Yes," Ida says, to Eleanor. She gives Ethius a moment more to collect himself. They continue on, and this time, Lola sticks much closer to Ida's side.

    "...What's that?" Ida says, eyeing the half-buried something-or-other. Lola walks forward and gives it a cautious little sniff, but Ida pulls back on the lead. Both she and her pet move to a safe distance while the others take care of this.

DG: Ida Everstead-Rey has contributed a Brute Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Timber!.
<Pose Tracker> Dean Stark has posed.

    "Huh... Maybe we'll find out why it's weird if we explore mode," Dean offers to Avril. Still, it's as logiacal as anything anyone else has seen.
    
    The battle ends! They eventually come to something partially buried in the ground. Dean has no time to look over the strange thing before Avril takes out a certain button.
    
    "WOOOO! MORE GOLEM PARTS!! YEEEEEAHHH!!!" he cheers, jumping up and down in excitement as those brains go *lick.
    
    He is absolutely useless right now, but hey, at least he's having fun.

DG: Dean Stark has contributed a Brute Basic Action toward his party's challenge, Timber!.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
===========================<* CHALLENGE - Timber! *>============================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Brute     |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 Much of the Lost Woods is not mapped, which makes the streams and rivers
 that run through it a mystery. The result is that many of them have no
 bridges or other safe crossings. You come to one such creek, which is a fast
 moving one, with steep banks. Swimming it would be dangerous; leaping across
 is precarious.

 Fortunately, a tree grows close enough to the creek that toppling it -- at
 least, in the right direction and carefully -- would create a bridge.
=Dungeon Conditions: Weaken, Injure===========================================
<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

Eleanor would have to admit, if she were less polite, that looking at Avril here gives her a little of a headache. Just something about her and this place together makes her feel a little dizzy. So when Avril mentions the strange air of the place, Eleanor finds that she agrees. "That may be part of it."

She is satisfied eventually that Ethius is well enough, and she walks along, not at the head of the group herself but not as far back as Ethius. She just walks along with the others. "I think so, too." She may sneak over to smile at Lola, though. She wants to stop and pet her, but Ethius seems to have another idea. The tree shakes...

"Oh--Oh my," Eleanor says as she sees what looks like... a fingertip? Something sleeping there? Avril hitting a button? Instead of helping she watches in fascination.

Well, she wasn't going to be much help in a brute force challenge anyway. She isn't as loud as Dean about it but she is very interested.

DG: Eleanor Klein has contributed a Brute Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Timber!.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
===========================<* CHALLENGE - Timber! *>============================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Brute     |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 Much of the Lost Woods is not mapped, which makes the streams and rivers
 that run through it a mystery. The result is that many of them have no
 bridges or other safe crossings. You come to one such creek, which is a fast
 moving one, with steep banks. Swimming it would be dangerous; leaping across
 is precarious.

 Fortunately, a tree grows close enough to the creek that toppling it -- at
 least, in the right direction and carefully -- would create a bridge.
=Dungeon Conditions: Weaken, Injure===========================================
=========================<* The Lost Woods - Round 4 *>=========================
=============================< Results - Timber! >==============================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ida Everstead-Rey                   10 --(25)--> 35                Fail
Force                               0   Brute   Effects: BASIC
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ethius Hesiod                       23 --(25)--> 48                Fail
Force                               0   Brute   Effects: BASIC
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Avril Vent Fleur                    18 --(12)--> 30                Pass
Remote Golem Override               4   Brute   Effects: None
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eleanor Klein                       10 --(25)--> 35                Fail
Force                               0   Brute   Effects: BASIC
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dean Stark                          10 --(12)--> 22                Pass
Force                               0   Brute   Effects: BASIC
-----------------------------------< Party >------------------------------------
Leader: Ida Everstead-Rey           65 --(15)--> 80                Fail
Conditions: Fright(1)|Injure(2)|Weaken(2)
Effects:
===============================< Dream Chasers >================================
DG: The party led by Ida Everstead-Rey has failed this challenge! The party gained 15 exploration! If anyone needs to
use party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
DG: Ethius Hesiod has drawn a new Challenge.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
========================<* CHALLENGE - Moblin Snipers *>========================
|Type: Final       |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 Your destination is in sight. Only a final clearing lay between you and the
 way out of the woods -- such as the ancient Live Reflector that works with
 your Reflector Key.

 Unfortunately, as you enter the clearing, arrows begin to rain down upon
 you. High in the trees are clusters of moblins; dangerous beastfolk said to
 be aligned with the King of Evil, Ganondorf Dragmire, though tribes are more
 independent (but still often vicious). You will have to outrun a hail of
 arrows to get to your location.
=Dungeon Conditions: Slow=====================================================
<Pose Tracker> Avril Vent Fleur has posed.

    "It is a--"

    Dean answers provides the answer before Avril can, which might be for the best because the rumbling hits its apex. The entire area trembles violently. It is indeed a fingertip--

    Because launching itself from the earth at speed is an entire Golem's arm! The good news part of this is that there is indeed now a bridge.

    The bad news part of this is that it was perhaps a little 'overeager' to escape its earthen tomb and they've all gotten to experience a very localized earthquake. It's entirely likely that none of them were able to stay on their feet.

    But no one's hurt and that's the important part.

<Pose Tracker> Ethius Hesiod has posed.

    The important part of the important part is that no one is hurt... yet. Why this is important about the important part, the text is about to impart. (sorry)
     The group finds themselves taking a tumble - be it by creek or the change in the ground's shape - towards a new clearing where arrows are already flying. Moblins peek out from the trees, the bushes, the rocks, and also each other. Only one has the audacity to appear out of thin air, but never mind them.
     Several more bowstrings already drawn as one signals for them to keep shooting, keep firing. Problem is, the way back is... uh, well, they can't go that way. They pretty much have to go through.
     Ethius draws a length of staff with some cool jangly stuff, that gnarled staff of antiquity from Dragon Roost Island. With the slam of its butt on the ground, suddenly...
     A lot of the arrows stop outright, hanging in mid-air. A call to the forces of nature to stop, stop and listen, as if there were something of importance to say.
     "Come on," Ethius says. The arrows might be halted, but the moblins are already working on a plan 'B' by drawing spears and charging at them once one of them has the idea to actually have a plan 'B.'
     (Ethius does not consider the ramifications of effectively crank calling an entire forest.)

DG: Ethius Hesiod has used his Tool Staff of Audience toward his party's challenge, Moblin Snipers.
<Pose Tracker> Avril Vent Fleur has posed.

    Yet. The watchword is yet.

    They never get to cross over that Golem-arm bridge, because what happens is a localized landslip. Avril at the very least goes tumbling down that fresh slope that's been built, landing in a clearing. "Oh--" she starts, glancing this way and that. Is it some sense of forboding that prompts her to cry out, or is it the light glinting off of moblin arrows?

    ...Why not both?

    "Lucadia!" she calls out, because she's nothing if not quick on her reaction time as the situation takes a very sharp verve into dangerous with their new 'friends'. Light shimmers in the air about all of them, and perhaps with that sudden blessing it might be possible to outright leap at least most of the way across the clearing?

    Or at least, get a running start ahead of the arrows. That would also be acceptible.

DG: Avril Vent Fleur has used her Tool Sea Medium toward her party's challenge, Moblin Snipers.
<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

"That..." Eleanor before she can say much of anything has to pick herself up off the ground, but once she does, she looks at Avril. "Was extraordinary. There was really just an arm down here!" She scrabbles about and stands, wobbling on her feet as she moves for the bridge.

Whent he arrows come she looks dismayed--but Ethius's slam of his staff draws a curious eye from Eleanor, who pauses a moment to marvel at it and look at the arrows in the air. Then, of course, she focuses, and activates the blue hoop at her left ankle, which helps to steady her as she goes into a straight out run ahead--one that turns into a leap from which she doesn't fall flat on landing!

"I don't like these very much!"

DG: Eleanor Klein has used her Tool Blue Anklet toward her party's challenge, Moblin Snipers.
<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    Ida's eyes shoot open as the golem fingertip suddenly becomes an entire golem arm, ripping free from the earth. She braces, keeping her balance with some difficulty--Lola, meanwhile, barks in alarm at her human's side. "What--" She doesn't quite get the rest out. Part of a golem, buried? And Avril just knew it was there, conveniently awaiting her input so it could try and dispose of an obstacle?

    Lola barks again. This time, the bark trails off into an alarm growl.

    Ida reacts with lightning speed. She scoops her dog off the ground and beats feet, sprinting after the others. The wind kicks up behind her in a flurry of green sorcerous motes, forming both a tailwind for the fleeing party and the crosswind for the arrows.

DG: Ida Everstead-Rey has used her Tool Zephyr Boots toward her party's challenge, Moblin Snipers.
<Pose Tracker> Dean Stark has posed.

    Dean absolutely fell ass over teakettle when the Golem arm ERUPTS from the earth to form a bridge for everyone to cross. He absolutely does not care, and spends the next minute on the ground whooping and hollering about how "COOL" and "AWESOME" and "AAAAAAAAAA" the arm is.
    
    Eventually he calms down enough to cross the bridge with everyone else. As they move forward, he sees another clearing, and beyond that, the light of outside. "Guys! I think we're almost through!" he says cheerfully, breaking into a forward jog.
    
    Except then Moblins happen--and so too do a number of arrows. Dean yelps, but he's already in motion and it would be more dangerous to stop, so he does his best to curl, jump, dodge, forward roll, and anything else he can do to avoid becoming a pincushion long enough for Ethius to pull off this one weird trick and freeze the arrows in mid-air.
    
    "Woah! That's amazing! How'd you do that?!" he wonders, wide-eyed. But---not really the time! As Avril summons Lucadia's power to help jump everyone forward, Dean joins in with Eleanor, Ida, and Lola to sprint across the clearing to the other side of the woods where they'll be olly-olly-oxen-free.

DG: Dean Stark has contributed a Agility Basic Action toward his party's challenge, Moblin Snipers.
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
========================<* CHALLENGE - Moblin Snipers *>========================
|Type: Final       |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 2          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 Your destination is in sight. Only a final clearing lay between you and the
 way out of the woods -- such as the ancient Live Reflector that works with
 your Reflector Key.

 Unfortunately, as you enter the clearing, arrows begin to rain down upon
 you. High in the trees are clusters of moblins; dangerous beastfolk said to
 be aligned with the King of Evil, Ganondorf Dragmire, though tribes are more
 independent (but still often vicious). You will have to outrun a hail of
 arrows to get to your location.
=Dungeon Conditions: Slow=====================================================
=========================<* The Lost Woods - Round 5 *>=========================
==========================< Results - Moblin Snipers >==========================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ida Everstead-Rey                   35 --(0)--> 35                 Pass
Zephyr Boots                        2   Agility Effects: Quicken
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ethius Hesiod                       48 --(0)--> 48                 Pass
Staff of Audience                   4   Agility Effects: nothing
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Avril Vent Fleur                    30 --(13)--> 43                Fail
Sea Medium                          2   Agility Effects: Quicken
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eleanor Klein                       35 --(0)--> 35                 Pass
Blue Anklet                         2   Agility Effects: Stalwart
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dean Stark                          22 --(13)--> 35                Fail
Rush                                0   Agility Effects: BASIC
-----------------------------------< Party >------------------------------------
Leader: Ida Everstead-Rey           80 --(35)--> 115               Pass
Conditions: Injure(1)|Slow(2)|Weaken(1)
Effects: Quicken(1)
===============================< Dream Chasers >================================
DG: You have overcome the dungeon's trials! This run is a success!
DG: The party led by Ida Everstead-Rey has successfully explored The Lost Woods!
==============================<* The Lost Woods *>==============================
===============<* CHALLENGE - Ancient Plinth - Power Bracelet *>================
|Type: Discovery   |Dungeon Ability: Conclusion|Challenge Rating: 1          |
---------------------------< Challenge Information: >---------------------------
 You have come near the Live Reflector -- or perhaps a different destination.
 Today, the path snakes through the woods, and then leads to a small
 clearing. You know well that you might never find this place again; these
 woods have a way of changing the route when you next visit.

 You find a small stone plinth, built on a square of stone that is largely
 overgrown by grass and vines. The plinth has a small red bracelet on it --
 which is unchanged. When worn, the bracelet can change your strength
 enormously for short bursts.

 You may wish to apply for the Power Bracelet as a Brute Tool! Alternately,
 it can be sold for money.
=Dungeon Conditions: Treasure=================================================
<Pose Tracker> Ethius Hesiod has posed.

    It's going to take some manner of divine providence to get through this many mobilized moblins (sorry) - Avril calls upon Lucadia to make a path clear, as Ethius has given the time for a path to be made at all. Eleanor uses the blue hoop at her ankle to make good on this boosted jump power. Ida takes her loyal companion for runnies (this is way beyond walkies time). Dean is able to run in the tailwind or the Lucadia-granted boosts. The only knock against their route is that they don't know for sure what's on the other end, and some of them may stumble or run headlong into a treasure chest or something - but they're way the hell out from the hail of arrows that are about to start again, and the Moblins don't seem keen to chase. One hopes they didn't end up somewhere worse.
     They come into a small clearing, which is not any more dangerous (which is good). As everyone is able to catch their breath, stand back up, or what have you, Ethius comes up from a kneel to... address Dean's question? "This is a staff that came from Dragon Roost Island. I had momentarily ended up in a chamber that could not be escaped due to the number of hazards ahead - rolling boulders, and their ilk. That, after going through an entry that otherwise appeared only able to be accessed with the use of the Hot Air Sack."
     ...A hand to his forehead.
     "I noticed when it made an impact on the ground that almost everything ceased movement. It was not quite... stopping time. Natural forces, perhaps. I was able to leave the chamber." And so, Ethius recounts the totality of his experience with good game design via teaching a player through intuitive mechanics. (And that he might not know the entire significance of what it actually is, but...)
     "I will be returning it once I am fi--" Nope, too bad, no more Ethius pontification, there's something cool to catch one's eyes - a small stone plinth, nearly overgrown by grass and vines. It's in excellent condition, as though timeless. There's a small red bracelet that can fit around anyone's wrists - it looks pretty, and when one wears it, they feel themselves welling with strength.
     ...
     Hey, guess what, the way out has a huge boulder that is indestructible (not even Ethius can melt it) that is just sitting there and making it impossible to leave. Huh. Wonder what anyone can do about that...

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

Running with the others, Eleanor comes to a stop trying to catch her breath, and is still breathing hard the whole time Ethius is explaining his staff. The sorceress is interested in the explanation, but this takes her a minute, and she stays on the ground at first. But Ethius explains, and then she spots...

"Oh!"

Eleanor peers at the bracelet thoughtfully, tilting her head. "What is this...? Ah, it's lovely. ...Do you mind if I try it on?"

A few minutes later, Eleanor tries on the bracelet. She feels very good as she does, but when they come out to find this huge boulder...

"I--" Eleanor looks excited. "I feel..."

She walks over and lifts the boulder straight over her head, throwing it to the side where it might break despite being indestructible!

"Ahahah!"

<Pose Tracker> Dean Stark has posed.

    Wow, Ethius really *is* feeling more sociable these days, isn't he? Dean has literally realized this twice during this adventure already but he's still surprised all over again by how he *explains*, and explains in a way that's not over his head! He nods as he explains, capping it off with, "Huh! That sure was lucky! I'm glad you figured out exactly what you needed to keep going on ahead. It would've sucked if you had to turn back!"
    
    But now there's a boulder blocking the way forward, and a mystical bracelet on top of a plinth near the Live Reflector. Eleanor, being closest to it, grabs it first. "Go ahead," Dean encourages her--and then whistles, duly impressed, when Eleanor proceeds to effortlessly lift that boulder. "Wow!! That's so cool!" He grins at Eleanor as she hurls the boulder away. "Looks like you're having a lot of fun!"
    
    And with their fun complete, they can all proceed to leave the Lost Woods. Success!!