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Awkid shook his head in disbelief and turned around. Balamor scanned the trees, the air was still and the sounds of life were quiet. The young hobbit couldn't spot anything out of the ordinary so he followed Awkid and stared at his map. He walked silently, sometimes he would glance up at Awkid to keep track of him.

Looking over their travel he knew something wasn't right about this forest. The way the inscribed trees were laid out seemed so random. Any intelligent being would know how to make an obvious trail. But this wasn't even slightly obvious. As if the point was to confuse someone rather than guide them.

All of these symbols pointed either north or south, but when Awkid and Balamor spotted the next tree it was east or west of the last tree. Nothing was adding up, Balamor felt like he was traveling in circles.

As he took another step something tripped him. His map crinkled up when he fell to the ground.

"Yeah yeah, laugh it up Mr. Anvorbeard."

He cursed as he rubbed his noggin but what he saw lying on the ground paused him. Chewed and left behind was the pit to the red plum he discarded. Laughter from above made him jump to his feet and look around. Awkid peered over his shoulder when Balamor gathered himself,

"You know sitting there isn't gonna get us to the Mog Brush. Get up, there's another tree up ahead." Awkid commanded with a strict stare.

There was an awkward silence before Balamor snapped back at the remains of the plum and then right back at Awkid.

"Something is going on in this forest Mr. Anvorbeard." Balamor felt like he was onto something.

Awkid didn't say anything, he seen the look on Balamor's face. It was serious, something gave the young mapmaker a sign. Awkid watched as Balamor walked off,

"Follow me."

The End

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