December 2015

  • A random chance encounter in a bookstore has Aitur and Lishi face to face once again, with Haycorn bopping loudly around as a distraction. Although at first civil, if icy in their exchange of pleasantries, the discussion swiftly turns to sniping and bickering with each insulting the other. Aitur leaves strong hints that he knows her people are plotting against him, and he warns her to keep such sentiments to talk without action.
  • Aitur’s court advisor, the satyr Hannah, pays a visit to Lishi’s shop with Haycorn in tow. This discussion also does not end well, with more bickering erupting between boggan and satyr, who is clearly smitten with the Baron. Hannah leaves, but she gives Lishi a warning that the dark is rising, and if they don’t stand together, the Barony will fall as Eerie Strait did.
  • Lishi calls together her closest allies for dinner — Simeon, Jochen the Axeman, Devin the nocker, and Mishka the redcap — and to discuss the Baron, Hannah’s warnings, and strategies for maintaining their freedom.
  • Sir Taliesin ap Fiona formally introduces himself to Aitur’s freehold, where he is welcomed by Gawain and Amelie before being brought to His Lordship. The wilder Knight is well-received and offered accommodations, as well as invited to join the upcoming Yule festivities.
  • The children’s performance of the Nutcracker Ballet finds some interesting faces in attendance. A young fox pooka, kin to Ted (or Mikey or whatever name he’s using), makes his debut in an eye-searing rainbow suit. Haycorn soon finds him and glomps him, dragging him into the company of Aitur and Hannah. Lishi, Simeon, Jochen and the Troll’s family are also in attendance. During intermission, as Haycorn and Talon are goofing around, Lishi and Simeon happen to overhear Hannah pleading with Aitur for his love. He rebuffs her, proclaiming he is married, leading her to ask him if he could love her if his wife weren’t an issue. He sends the satyr home with the question unanswered.
  • The Yule festivities are finally held on the freehold grounds at the winter solstice, with a multitude of changelings invited to take part. But all ends in disaster when Aitur’s wife, Phoebe, is assassinated in front of him. The party comes crashing to an end, and a hunt is called. Lishi, Ted, Taliesin, Justin, and Simeon rush off in pursuit of the assassin, having spotted him. The assassin is identified as the nocker Devin, one of Lishi’s allies, and he escapes through the rath with Taliesin, Justin, Simeon, and Gawain hot on his heels. Lishi and Ted are left behind as the freehold’s rath is closed.
  • Lishi and Ted are questioned by an infuriated Aitur. Lishi surrenders herself to the Baron’s will, offers her weapon up, and answers his questions, telling him Devin’s name and address. Found to be innocent of any crime, both Ted and Lishi are then released. They are followed by the Troll, Sir Varick, who returns Lishi’s pistol to her and speaks to the pair for awhile. Hannah is suspected of arranging the assassination, and Varick rushes off to find her and inform the Baron, but Hannah is found to be missing from the freehold.
  • Taliesin and Justin both capture Devin in the parking lot beyond the rath, back in reality. He is brought back to the lighthouse and held until the rath reopens. Justin wings his way to Devin’s residence, finding a note that makes it clear the nocker was working with someone. It leads him to Denny’s, where he almost gets herpes from a desperate waitress, but he finds out the nocker’s conspirators were three redcaps.
  • Ted seeks out and finds Haycorn hiding and crying beneath a table. He comforts her and brings her back to the chamberlain, a boggan named Thom. Lishi, meanwhile, makes an investigation of her own, searches for the missing Hannah, and discovers the trod to Eerie Strait, sealed since 2008, has been reopened and very recently used. She warns Aitur, who takes care of the matter after reopening the rath. Aitur commands Lishi to help with the exodus of changelings from the freehold, and she ends up inviting Tinker Tailor’s traveling troupe to crash her sweet shop.
  • Devin is brought to the courtyard and before the Baron. Using a Chronos cantrip, Aitur looks back into Devin’s past to reveal that Devin was working with three redcaps, the true target of the assassination was Phoebe, he was instructed to leave the Baron alive, and he was being paid in dross and with a girl. Devin is subsequently banished to the Deep Dreaming to find Arcadia, without seeking help from friends or haven or trod. Lishi, Ted, Taliesin, and Simeon all declare they will rescue this mysterious, unnamed girl, while Aitur requests Justin’s assistance in searching for Hannah. As Our Heroes and Heroine retire for the night at Taliesin’s swank manor, Justin uses the Rite of the Questing Stone to begin his search, and Ted seeks information from his many contacts and spies.
  • Lishi takes Simeon and Ted with her to her sweet shop to see what damage has been wrought in her absence. She finds the place totally trashed and goes into Crazy Bitch Mode on all their asses, sending the troupe packing. Dolly, however, had managed to hide Lishi’s dross and stopped Tinker from stealing it all.
  • Simeon returns to Taliesin to have a talk with him, and to his despair, is told that Taliesin is already intent on winning the heart of a sidhe Countess. As he shows the sluagh her portrait, something a little strange happens, leaving Simeon mildly confused and a little upset as he takes his leave.
  • Justin finds Hannah in an apartment complex down in the ghettos of Detroit. He has to beat a hasty escape when he’s nearly spotted.
  • On the 24th of December, Our Heroes learn that the missing girl’s name is Clarissa LeBlanc, from Macon, Georgia, and they venture into Eerie Strait. On their way, they’re attacked by rampaging nocnitsa but manage to escape. Ted speaks with an old post down at the river docks, learning the license plate number of the car that took Clarissa away. The number is tracked to an apartment complex — the same apartment complex that Justin found, as it happens. There, all Hell breaks loose when Simeon is spotted. Thallain come out to kill Our Heroes, but are met by the arrival of Baron Aitur and his forces. A fight breaks out, resulting in several chimerical deaths, the rescue of multiple damsels (Clarissa included), and Hannah’s rescue. Ted and Taliesin get to carry some girls. Lishi shoots a wyvern in the eye and brings it down, and Simeon ends up missing. He’s eventually found, fighting with a Bogie, and he is rescued by Ted, Taliesin, Justin, and Jochen.
  • December 25th: Simeon finds the time to speak with Basil and get more information about that odd painting that Taliesin owns. He also finds more information to confirm that Duchess Gwen ni Gwydion is pretty crazy-cakes.
  • December 26th: Lishi goes back to the freehold to speak with the nocker named Dolly, and her suspicions that Tinker Tailor is highly abusive are nearly confirmed. She begins snooping around, and she finds a mysterious, locked cabinet in his vardo that’s guarded by powerful magic.
  • Figuring that she needed help in getting through the sealed door in Tinker’s vardo, Lishi went straight into Wood Grove Barony. There, she hoped to find a wizard-for-hire in the Unseelie market freehold. On her way to it, she met a Plague Nervosa preying upon a homeless man, and she nearly died in her attempt to rescue the bum. For her trouble, she was found by one of Deirdre’s Knights and taken to the Baroness herself.
  • Lishi wakes several hours later to find herself in a bed in one of Deirdre’s strongholds. She is presented with a deal. As she is dying from the advanced cirrhosis of the liver that the Plague Nervosa has given her, Lishi can either swear fealty to Deirdre or be left to die slowly and painfully. She is told that her first task would be to attain one of Baron Aitur’s hairs at open court held on the New Year, and that there is hope she could earn back her freedom someday. Deirdre also promises that, as her new BFF, she would send one o fher sorcerers to help Lishi with her sealed door. Reluctantly, Lishi swears fealty to Deirdre, she is healed, and then she is introduced to a satyr named Nileas who is assigned to opening the door.
  • December 27th: Lishi returns to the freehold with Nileas. The satyr accompanies her to the vardo, where he skillfully casts counter-cantrips to open the sealed door. Inside, they discover dolls crafted to look like each of the members of the troupe, and each holds powerful enchantments that keep each member under a strict geas of obedience. Nileas coaxes Lishi into taking the dolls to the Baron, so that she might receive all due praise and glory. Lishi eventually decides to take the dolls straight to the Baron, after she realizes that any other method might result in Tinker coming back too soon and hiding the evidence. After she does this, Aitur nearly goes apeshit in rage, hauls Tinker forward, and has him arrested for his crime. He is soon sentenced to castration and for eternal imprisonment as a stone statue. The troupe proclaims gratitude to Lishi, and a strongman troll named Erick takes control of the troupe.
  • December 28th: Ted comes to visit the freehold, meeting his kinsman Gawain ap Fiona. As the two lounge together in the kitchens with mulled wine, Tom the boggan tells the pooka about Lishi’s most recent adventures. Ted also met with Hannah, sharing cupcakes with her, while she spoke of her dreams and portents of dark things.
  • Ted hosts a festive occasion and entertains the freehold with a song written to honour some recent heroics.
  • Gabriel has been the subject of some artistic photography, and his Dreamer hosts a show that displays her work and his nudity. Simeon and Lishi attend, as does the Baron and other members of the freehold. During the festivities, Countess Lunette ni Gwydion makes an appearance. This woman, a former lover of Gabriel’s, turns out to be a snot-faced beyotch. Simeon and Lishi slip away to Gabriel’s manor while they’re occupied, find her painting in his office, and burn it. The magical hold on Gabriel is broken. He speaks of bringing her to justice and bringing her crimes to the light.
  • Justin flitters about the freehold, meeting people and making friends. He meets Haleth, who tells him that as a granddaughter of the Morrigan, they are distant kin. He also meets Gilda, gently letting her down from her crush on him, and then he meets Babette, whom he tells of Chrysallis Corporation and the Sept of the Eighth Sign.

December 2015

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