Survive the Forbidden Forest

October 2015
Matilde Rayne

Hosting the Bronze and Blue Olympics in the Forbidden Forest sounded like a great idea, until the time came to actually head into the woods. Now, after a less-than-amicable meeting with the centaur herd and a werewolf sighting, Mattie was wondering why she have ever agreed to the plan.

She, Arielle Lemoyne, and Iris Ixchel had a number of their fellow Ravenclaws in tow as they made their way along a winding path that snaked deeper into the forest. They had been walking for about half an hour, when, suddenly, Arielle stopped and asked, “Do you think this is far enough?”

Iris shrugged, her expression making it clear that she was also having doubts about their plan.

Mattie looked around before answering. She said slowly, “Well, I can’t see the castle anymore. I’m not even really sure which direction the castle is in anymore, so I guess if we wanted to make sure no one could sneak off for help, we’ve accomplished that.”

“Sneak off for help?” Iris remarked.

“Sneak off back to the castle for more food or supplies,” Mattie corrected.

“If anyone needs help,” Arielle added, “that’s what we’re here for.”

“And if we need help?” Iris mumbled, almost out of earshot.

Arielle, however, had heard the comment. She gave Iris a reassuring look and said, “We’ve got things under control.”

The three event planners gave their surroundings a quick check. They were in the middle of a forest clearing. Branches from the surrounding trees stretched over nearly the entire clearing, but patches of moonlight were filtering through, giving the chilly mist that crept along the forest floor an eerie glow. On the other hand, there was no sign of any acromantulas, unlike in the last clearing they had stopped in, so all three decided that their current location was a great place to set up camp!

“Okay, Ravenclaws!” Arielle called out cheerfully, waving for everyone’s attention. After a number of their flock turned to her, some looking regretful at volunteering for the “adventure” and others looking terrified, Arielle continued, “First matter of business: we need to get two camps started! One for the Blue team and one for the Bronze team!”

“You’re splitting us up?” asked one of the first years, horrified. “I thought we were all going to look out for one another!”

“Where would the fun be in that?” Mattie joked dryly. “Even though half of you are going to be Blue and the other half Bronze, you can all definitely still count on each other. Unless it’s competition-related, of course. Then don’t trust anyone on the other team.”

The three organizers quickly split the group of Ravenclaws in two and dismissed their charges, who all started fiddling around with branches and vines, trying to figure out how to build their shelters. All was peaceful for about an hour, and shelters started coming together nicely on both sides of the clearing. Mattie was impressed and was just about ready to admit that maybe their foray into the woods wasn’t such a bad idea after all, but just then a rustling in the bushes at the edge of the clearing caught everyone’s attention.

“The acromantulas are back! Run!” shrieked one of the Blue team members.

As almost everyone in the clearing started running around, panicking and trying to salvage what they could from their camps, Mattie joined Arielle and Iris, thinking to herself as she pulled out her wand to battle the acromantulas, at least it’ll be an exciting Olympics.