A Fragile Immortality
Sid went to work. The rest of us headed over early. He headed over right after the show. We brought snacks and water and food. Sid brought cupcakes.
We pledged with Ruthie not to flee and got temporary boons.
At 11:30ish pm, the Trod opened- a shining beacon.
The first refugees came as a pair, fighting their way free of the thorns, with no pursuit appearing.
The second refugee was accompanied … by Niobe’s original Fire Haired Keeper. She hid on the ground and rocked, thinking small thoughts. Sid used his charisma-fu and told Him that he didn’t want to fight this many changelings… and he was right. The Keeper retreated without the changeling. She spotted Niobe after He was gone and rushed to hug her. Niobe stood stone still- terrified it was a trick and she was about to be pulled through the hedge. The pretty refugee told Niobe , that she’d heard of her, of Deidre and her escape and that was what made her willing to try. Niobe took her by the hand and led her to the refugee tent and ran back to her motley.
The third set of refugees appeared with an army of hobs and 2 battle fey in close pursuit. A witch on a giant maggot and a dark knight in a chariot drawn by 2 10 foot high komodo dragons. Ruthie called challenge and declared all around enemies and said that none could pass- and she held the choke point. Missile weapons and grenades and the Gatling gun tore up the hobs and the maggot. Injuring the Witch. But her thorns attacked and dragged the Quartermaster through the ground, into Arcadia and destroyed the Gatling gun. And the Fey witch fled. We called for Miss Stewart to help Ruthie as she was horribly injured. She arrived but had to wait for Ruthie to fall, for her shield was strong. And then Amanda Stewart succeeded in healing Ruthie… succeeded TOO well. Ruthie was healthier and stronger than Miss Stewart and Amanda could not survive the wounds she had absorbed. But Ruthie was healed with nary a scratch. We flung the bag of grenades at the last fleeing Hobs as they retreated.
The final pair of refugees were chased by a single unit of hobs. But, it was near midnight and they were far to the other side of the Trod. One of the changelings was caught by a net and the other looked at us and then turned to fight. We stood on the edge of the Trod, ready to rush the Hobs when King John Winters declared that we could not cross into Arcadia. The time was too short. Impotently we watched- as the hobs were out of range of our weapons. Sid spoke to the hob with the net, seeing no one else in charge. Declaring that they should go- making them see him as a Fey whose lands they had trespassed on. The hob declared they’d leave the other, but not the one they had caught. The free changeling fought until he fell and the hobs left with his friend. Looking at the time and the hedge, John Winters turned to Andrea and asked if she could hold it open. Andrea pledged to try, and urged them to hurry. And two of our swiftest runners were sent to get the fallen body. They got him and ran for us, as the Trod gates began to close. Seeing no other option, the swift-runners swung the body; forward. back. And HEAVE! And flung the fallen Changeling ahead of them, through the portal, just as the Trod closed- trapping them in Arcadia. Healthy and only with each other.