It's a pleasant day for travel, and Deka's enjoying it - just enough clouds in the sky to cut the early summer heat, a nice breeze, birds singing in the trees, the clop of her draft goat's hooves on the trail, the twittering of her griffon friends as they flit from tree to tree overhead, keeping pace with her cart. She's excited, too: She's on her way to wizard college, but she's decided to check with any wizards she hears of along the way, as well, to see if she can find an apprenticeship, and the people in the last village she passed suggested she try here, at the arboreal mansion she's surely just a few minutes from being able to glimpse through the trees.
"Mmhmm. Better than I was expecting, he didn't give me any trouble at all."
One watches the dog go curiously, but also listens attentively when Raafi speaks.
"Good. Next problem - don't think I can drive and carry him."
"I can drive for today, if that's all right? And we can figure something else out for tomorrow, I have a few ideas for how it might work."
Deka agrees, and so they can get going, with the dog alternately lying at her feet and running alongside the cart and the griffons flitting from tree to tree overhead and occasionally coming down to offer One a choice bug or berry or bit of greenery to eat.
For the start of the ride, One stays tucked in a ball, hiding behind his tail, but as they get further away, he slowly starts relaxing and taking in more of the surroundings - and the flames that had still been dancing over his fur slowly start to die down. He sniffs at the offerings from the griffons, and will occasionally take them, slanting looks at Deka and Raafi just in case.
Deka grins and pets him encouragingly; Raafi seems to be lost in thought and ignoring him entirely.
They get a few hours of travel in, and stop just as the western sky starts to turn colors, when they spot a campsite by the side of the road. They unload, and Deka goes to get the travel rations out of the storage in the back of the cart, but Raafi stops her and casts something that produces a pile of food that's at least half bamboo, though the remainder is still plenty for everyone else; it's not a small pile.
One blinks at the pile of food for a long moment, and then at Raafi, but doesn't move.
"You can eat as much as you want, sweetheart, the magic'll fade in a day anyway. Stop if you start feeling sick, that's all, and let me know."
The griffons are hanging back too, but after a moment Phantasm glides over and rummages through the more diverse half of the pile, coming up with a sprig of cherry tomatoes, which he expertly plucks from their stem. "Tastes right," he declares after a few seconds' consideration, and then he grabs a piece of bamboo to bring to One. (Figment, meanwhile, goes for the rest of the tomatoes.)
One sniffs, curious and suspicious in equal measures, at the bamboo, before curling one paw around it, eyes still flicking between Deka and Raafi, and, if neither of them seems to object, he'll start nibbling at it.
They don't object even a little bit.
Raafi goes off to find some firewood, and Deka attempts to get the fire circle cleared out enough to use without putting One down; this doesn't go very well, though Phantasm's help is useful.
One will try to shift to help, and after a little bit: "You could put me down? I can- Help more?"
"This'll... catch, easy," she nudges the leaf litter with her foot. He's not on very much fire, though, and she does have the area partly clear... "Maybe... stay in the circle?" She bends down to let him into it.
He goes into the circle, and curls up, staying very still, and trying to stay away from the leaf litter.
There's not really enough room to stay properly away from the leaves, but between the stony firebreak encircling him and Deka's hasty clearing of the rest of the area around it, the resulting fire stays contained. She pauses to check on him when she's got the immediate area clear: "You okay?"
One looks up at her, and hums quietly. "Yes?" he doesn't sound entirely certain, but that might be more that he's not used to people asking that.
"Good. More bamboo?"
"...If that's okay?" (He doesn't believe he can eat as much as he likes yet.)
"Healer said so." She brings over an armful and sets it just outside the ring of stones.
He reaches his head over the edge, sniffing at it, and then reaches one paw to draw a shoot into the circle to eat.
She grins at him and goes back to clearing up the area, then goes to have a look at the food and figure out what to do for dinner. By the time Raafi gets back with the firewood, she has her dog fed and goat set out to graze and has started putting together a simple meal for herself and him.
When Raafi comes back, he sets the wood he's collected down outside the fire circle. "Are you comfortable in there, One? I'd like to build us a fire, but I think I can keep it to one side, if that's all right."
"...I should be okay? Fireproof?"
The structure he ends up building doesn't quite keep all to one side, but ends up as more of a crescent half-encircling One but still giving him a clear space to leave through if he wants to, with Raafi checking a few times as he goes to make sure One doesn't feel too crowded, and then he goes to help Deka with dinner, piling leaf-wrapped bundles against the far side of the fire to cook.
"So, what do you think so far? Anything you've been wondering about?" he asks, when dinner is settled and Deka's gone off to brush the goat.
One seems a bit perplexed by the affordance given to his escape routes, but when the fire's built, curls up in the middle of the crescent, apparently enjoying the warmth of the fire. He startles a little at being addressed.
"I don't- it's...calm? Peaceful. I don't- It's big?"
"Mmhmm. You'll get used to that, I expect it's a lot to take in right now. We should get to town tomorrow afternoon, and then you'll be back indoors, at least for a bit - I think we should take a day there, give me a chance to go talk to my druid friend without losing track of you - I'll have to teleport to the other side of the continent and back, he's not nearby."