After finding a place to stay in the aftermath of the battle with Zaluzi and Ori-Ori, Dey sets off on his own journey in the forest just outside the city. He walks along the Ruin, waiting to find some sign that he should continue deeper. Eventually, he finds a strange boulder that seems to have been cut in half, though the other half is nowhere to be found. Atop the half-boulder is a jaguar which, upon seeing Dey, dismounts and heads into the forest. Seeing his sign, Dey pursues.
Once in the forest, Dey "stalks" the cat while weaving a wreath of leave, twigs, and other detritus. He soon finds the cat hunting some of the small game. Trying to impress her, he hunts his own prey and leaves the gift at the bottom of a tree where the cat was sleeping. Upon waking at night, just as Dey was about to retire for the day, the cat finds the treat and turns her nose at it.
Realizing that a proud hunter such as her could only truly be appeased with a gift she herself could not obtain, Dey spends the night sleeping on a plan. Partway through the next day, Dey hears a roar from deep within the forest. He rushes to the source of the sound and finds the cat impaled by the antler of a buck, desperately trying to free himself. Seeing his opportunity, Dey runs up and sweeps the legs out from under the buck. The drop gave the cat enough leverage to strike at the antler, breaking it off and freeing the two beasts. Dey slowly approaches the cat which growls at him until letting its guard down. Dey comforts the cat as he reaches for the antler shard. He yanks the antler out at the same instant as casting a cure spell, healing the cat, though not without receiving a nasty gash on his left arm as the cat takes a defensive swipe.
Dey returns to the city with his new animal companion, Esta and finds the party back at the inn relaxing for the most part, preparing to leave. While heading out of the city via the Ruin, the party stumbles upon a boulder, seeming split directly in two but with no corresponding half in sight. Dey suspects this could have to do with the rock he saw the other day but says nothing of it.
After barely making it 100 yards into the forest, the party is attacked by a strange man who seems to be made of stone. He appears to be impervious, or at least resistant, to magic and the effects of shatter do not phase him. Clare, who is in possession of the pearl of speech, can make out that he is angry over "not being whole" and seems to blame the party. Upon hearing this, Dey makes the connection that the two half rocks must be related and tells the party to help him push them together across the Ruin. The rock man, though desperately angry, did not attack the party as they pushed the boulder across the Ruin to reunite it with its other half. Once they were about 50 or so feet out from the other half, they saw a similarly rocky looking woman standing next to the boulder, a happy, calm, and welcoming look on her face. A silky thread seemed to reach out between the two rocks which grew in thickness the closer they were to each other. The party had not quite pushed it all the way when the two rocks lifted off the ground and catapulted themselves towards each other, their rocky patrons in tow. Once reunited, two strange symbols appeared in Tenochan. Orion could only make out one of them which seemed to read "road". He placed his hand on this symbol and both disappeared. A magic belt was produced by the rock, probably as a thanks.
Back on the road again, the party paused in a particularly dense section of forest as they heard a chittering in the underbrush. A crossbow bolt flew out and just barely missed Xyn. It was fired by a group a rat looking humanoids hiding in a bush. A battle ensued with Clare being pelted from all sides by crossbow bolts as she took pots shots with her eldritch blast, Xyn trying to sneak up on a few of them, Esta being adorable what with the murder and such, and Orion leaping around the forest, at one point throwing one rat person into another.
After the battle, when all was calm, Orion did not move, his eyes still glowing red, a habit during battle. He takes a step menacingly towards Xyn, his footfall causing the birds in the trees to flee. The party members try to calm him down, but he continues to advance. At the last moment, his eyes return to normal. He seems to have no recollection of the battle.