Tyler frowned a little more, looking around at the others suspiciously. "Tyler." He finally admitted, voice flat.
Nate continued his optimistic smiling. He’s going to have to work hard to gain Tyler’s trust. The others shouldn’t be too hard, but it still sucks being here at all. “Tyler, huh? I had a cousin with that name. He always beat me at chess—I could never figure out why,” he sighs dramatically, as though it bothered him deeply, “Worst part about it, he was a good ten years younger than me.”
Tyler just stared at Nate, going back to being silent, lips pressed together. He went over the situation in his mind, trying to figure out a solution.
Cole laughed, "that's funny. Same thing happened with me." He backed up and tripped behind a tree stump.
Nate laughed as Cole fell backwards over a tree stump. “You alright?” he yelled, still chuckling. Then, turning to Tyler, he let his smile fade substantially. Tyler was just staring at him. This was going to be very, very difficult. Tyler was one of those people that the scammers just pass by. He’s like a rock. An extremely quiet, tense rock. He sighs. “Alright, I can tell what’s going through that head of yours. You’re thinking of every possible way you could’ve gotten here, and every possible way to get out. Am I right?’ He paused momentarily, but knowing he was correct, continued on. “Fact is, none of us know the solution to either of those riddles. And we’re not going to, unless we work together to answer the unanswerable.” His tone was calm and factual, no longer light and nonchalant.
Tyler blinked a few times, staring at Nate with his serious eyes. Slowly, he nodded, and took a few steps closer. He didn't drop his guard, but he did relax just the slightest bit.
Nate returned the nod, glad that he started to get through to the rock. Bit by bit is all the progress he needs. He returned to a half playful, half serious mood. “Well, assuming Cole is fine, what suggestions do we have for out next course of action?” Nate starts twirling his staff around like a ninja, “Anyone here watched those survival shows on discovery?” Of course, he already knew the general outline of what had to be done. But he knew the team needed to practice communication
"Yeah, first thing is shelter," Cole got up, "we could build a lean-to then make a fire. But we should find a stream to build our shelter by." Cole was already searching for a stream.
Nate frowned in concentration, running a few scenarios through his mind. What to do if you can’t find water, what kind of animals live in forests—that type of thing. “Alright, you look for water. Tyler, you and your knives will be useful in cutting materials for shelter. I’ll get stuff for the fire,” He paused, “Watch out for predators. I believe those live in every forest. I’d say there’s hogs here at the very least.”
Cole searched for a stream and found a lake. It gleamed in the light He looked at it and observed the surroundings. It was nice and there was plenty of room to settle down in. "This will do." Cole ran back and shouted, "hey! there's a good lake over here! We can stay over there!" Cole pointed back to where he came.
Nate looks up from the large pile of tree bark, twigs, sticks, and kindling he has nearly jumping out of his arms. He had found that his staff is equipped with a knife. It’s a useful addition that he was quite thankful for. “Awesome. Lead the way!”
Cole hurried to the lake. He bursted through the forest and came to a small clearing with the lake. Cole now noticed a small stream with water flowing out of the ground. He pointed to that, "it'll be our source of water."
Nate dumped his treasure of twigs on a dry patch of land a small distance away from the stream Cole pointed at. He took a second to scan the area, and then nodded his consent. “Very good. Do you see any animal tracks around? We may need to set up camp farther away and just haul water.”
Cole observed the area, "no I don't. If there are then hopefully our scent will scare them off." Cole began to find rocks to build the fire boundary. "I think I'll work on fire."
Tyler crouched low, using one of the knives to carefully push aside twigs and leaves on the ground, eyes skillfully searching the ground for tracks of any kind,human or otherwise. He shoved the other knife in his belt, silently staring at the dirt and leaves.
Nate laughs softly to himself. “Yeah, that’s probably for the best. I wasn’t too confident on my fire-making ability without the aid of a lighter.” Suddenly relieved of his job, he thinks of something else to do. He walks over to Tyler, who is staring intently at the ground. “I have a knife now,” he exclaims somewhat proudly, “need help finding shelter materials?”
"Old rabbit tracks." Tyler mumbled, using his knife to point to the tiny imprints on the ground. "Really old."
If Nate hadn’t been intrigued by Tyler’s discovery, he probably would’ve repeated his question until receiving an answer. Instead, he crouched closer, inspecting the tracks. Suddenly, he became tense. “Something’s wrong with this forest. I can feel it…” he mumbled, “any water source as large as this would attract frequent visits from wildlife. They were either scared off, or left for some other reason.” He rose to his feet, intently scanning everything before looking back at Tyler with intense seriousness. “Animals know their stuff. Whatever made them leave…it’s dangerous. Watch your back.”
"I always do." Tyler replied seriously, not even looking up from his discovery. He gravely stood up, not even bothering to brush the dirt from his jeans. His chest felt tight with the revelation, he didn't need Nate to tell him what it meant. His experience with forests had taught him much. But he didn't allow anything to show outwardly.
For the first time, Nate allowed himself to feel anxious, even afraid, of the situation at hand. No matter what came at him, from the time he was a child, he never let that side of him surface. He was always the fearless leader. If something made him feel like anything but that, he switched over to his calm, friendly, playful mood and got through it. Heck, he didn’t even cry when his parents died. This is bad…really, really bad. He glanced at the rock-like guy beside him, wondering if Tyler was as anxious on the inside as he felt. He gravely turned to walk towards Cole, “I’m going to tell the others.”