You decide to head down the side of the river along a gravel bar to the south. You walk for about a mile until you come upon a large, dead crooked tree. It sits alone at the edge of an embankment and is tilled at a ten-degree angle, hanging over the gravel bar. The tree has not a leaf on it and is almost black in color. The base of the tree twists unnaturally around in a swirl, and the limbs are large but sparse and jut out at odd angles. The tree marks the southern edge of the tribe's territory. You've never been beyond it. You walk up to the base of the crooked tree and look back. This gravel bar is where one of your defining life moments happened.
It was about a year and a half ago. You were still just a pichu a couple of months from evolving. You and your friends snuck away and came down here. You dared them to come with you and mocked them if they didn't go. Out of nowhere a pidgeotto attacked and snatched up one of your friends. Then more pidgeotto showed up and almost killed you and your remaining friends but you were saved just in time by adult pikachu. It was a close call that scared you for life.
You let out a sad sigh. You look over to where the pidgeotto killed your friend. You couldn't see her face when it caught her, but you can guess what it looked like. You never really forgave yourself for getting your friend killed, and you probably never will. Her death, however, fueled your desire to become a raichu. You are doing this in part for her so you can prevent deaths like hers in the future.
You turn around and look south of the crooked tree. South of the tree is vulpix territory. They have a breeding ground near here that they all meet up every spring. They raise their young there until they are old enough to make the trip back to their parents’ den. It's late spring and the kits are getting big and demand more food. An individual vulpix is not much of a threat to you but during this time, they hunt in packs to take down larger prey. You'll have to keep your eyes peeled if you don't want to turn into vulpix scat. They are notoriously sneaky.
You take a deep breath and start walking. You don't look back. You are now the adventurer you always wanted to be.
You walk for about half a mile south and come to a river bend. A small bluff prevents you from following the river. There is a trail that leads into the forest up the bluff; it looks like the only way to go.
You hear what you think is something following you from a bush nearby, it could be a vulpix or something worse. You might need to confront it before it becomes a problem. Or it could just be something harmless like a pidgey or rattata. Then again, it could be an ambush predator, like an ekans that can take you out in one hit; you may be walking into a trap. What do you do?