"Whew! After pushing through those huge plants it is nice to have a solid slab of rock to rest on," Arabelle admitted.

"It would be a great place to have a picnic but, unfortunately, we didn't bring any food.  Maybe next time we will have a party but as soon as you're rested, I'd like to push on.  There's more to see up ahead."

Rest wasn't quite what Arabelle had in mind but she agreed there was no sense in pushing on too fast.  Certainly not on the first date....if this could be called a date.   
"Okay, I've got our bearings now!  Feel free to be impressed by my Boy Scout training," he teased.  "Of course alien dimensions don't always follow the standard rules.  Not that I'm trying to scare you.  There is nothing to be afraid of here...unless you are foolish enough to chew on any of the plants.  The tree I'm in is highly poisonous for example.  Which doesn't matter since we don't have to try living off the land.  We'll be home long before we need to risk that."


"Wow!  Eat your heart out Robin Hood!" Arabelle said in delight.  "This isn't Sherwood forest but we are definitely in the greenwood.  Imagine living up here in the cool green shade."

"Hold on," Daire advised.  "It's a long way to the ground.  I am responsible for your safety.  The portal might not let me back in if you get hurt.  Forever is a very long time to eat nuts and roots."
"We're trapped!  What is this horrible contraption?  It's blowing fumes at us!" Arabelle cried.

"Don't panic!  It's just a slight miscalculation.  I'll get us home safely.  We'll need to jump over the spinning rays.  I'll go first so I can catch you when you jump.  As soon as I call, you take a deep breath and jump to me as hard as you can.  I'll catch you," he promised.

Arabelle put her hand on his shoulder.  "Be careful, Daire.  Somehow, I don't think the portal would like it if I lost you."

He grinned.  "I'm a first class explorer.  We don't do careful...only smart.  Which means there is nothing for you to worry about.  I always come through."