On a freezing cold night at the City Ground, Forest extended their winless run to 17 games after a goalless draw with Gillingham.
In the first minute of the game there was an appeal for a penalty from Marlon King who thought he was brought down in the box.
King, playing against his former side, then shot just wide as Forest started brightly.
In the fifth minute the Gillingham defenders just managed to clear a Gareth Taylor shot before Taylor had a header deflected from a corner after 17 minutes.
Nicky Southall drove a shot wide after 21 minutes for the visitors.
On 26 minutes Michael Dawson scooped the ball off the line after a deflected shot looked like it was trickling into the net.
Taylor had a shot deflected wide on 34 minutes, but the home side were again denied by a determined Gills defence.
On 43 minutes an inswinging free-kick from Andy Reid was headed just wide by Taylor.
Eoin Jess and King both fired shots just wide early in the second half as Forest continued to apply the pressure.
The ever-present King had a powerful shot blocked in the box on 55 minutes.
Gillingham player-manager Andy Hessenthaler then hit the post with a rasping drive on 67 minutes that beat substitute keeper Barry Roche who had replaced Darren Ward in the 65th minute.
Forest continued to make the running late in the game with Jess hitting an 18-yard drive that was well-saved by Frenchman Bertrand Bossu in the Gills goal.
Forest were desperate for a goal to end their winless run but it was not to be as King volleyed wide from a Reid corner on 87 minutes to leave Joe Kinnear's side cast adrift in the relegation zone, two points from safety.