The Committee for Expanding the Enchanted Wood

 Once upon a time there was a little boy who wandered the woods every day. He wasn't afraid, even though there was a fairly good chance that the woods were enchanted.

    He wasn't afraid mostly because his parents weren't afraid. And why weren't his parents afraid?

    Well, what was the most an enchanted wood could do to him? What was there to fear, in an ultimate sense, really?

    It could have monsters, or cruel witches, or crueler fairies—but all of those were just adventures. They were only things of trying natures; things like stepping into a fairy ring, or being cursed to be a goat, or walking a winding path that would have him lost in circles. Scary things, yes. But there is only one outcome that results from an adventure in an enchanted wood, and that is to be set free by some good being while enriching the adventurer into a person of extraordinary character.

    There are worse fates.

    Which is why his parents wanted him in the enchanted wood as often and as frequently as possible. It was safer. In fact, they did all they could to expand the magic of the enchanted wood so that other children would have a chance to have adventures that might be scary, life-altering, and of great challenge. But nothing more. And, indeed, when they were really pressed—when they really truly stopped to think with their soul—it was what all the parents wanted for their child, provided they could strike a deal for some extra protection from the nearby village witch.

    Thus began The Committee for Expanding the Enchanted Wood (an obvious outcome, as parents are always thinking of new committees), and if you look hard enough for it—somewhere near your local wood—you might find your nearest branch, too.

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