The PCs huddle together in Old Man Hunch’s house recovering from their escape. He tells them about who they are, how they have escaped Arcadia, and that they are now in Morgantown 2013. He explains some of the basics of being a changeling – mask & mien, contracts, fetches, and the Freehold of the Mountain Spirit. The characters take it all in, asking questions.
They are particularly disturbed by the reality that a strange doppelganger (i.e., a Fetch), created from oddities and a small piece of their soul, has been living their life in their place all these years.
Hunch points out that it is rare for more than one changeling to escape together, let alone an entire group. The group realizes that they are still wearing the royal blue tabard with a silver moon symbol left over from the twisted chess game that they escaped from. Hunch asks that at least one be saved so that he can study it, but that there is a chance that it has some connection to their Keepers. The group discusses their options and Mallica prompts action by disgustingly throwing hers into the fireplace. The others make their own choices:
- Mallica burns hers
- Lee, and Little Orchid keeps theirs
- The Professor, Damien, and Auron give theirs to Hunch
(more writeup to follow…)
Hunch takes the group to the Comfot Inn to get some rest. He tells them that the manager provides room and board and is sympathetic to changelings. When they arrive, a strong cold wind whips through the parking lot. Hunch tells them that the wind is a sign that the seasons have changed and that now Winter is in charge of the Freehold of the Mountain Spirit. Because of this, it will take a day to make arrangements to visit the new King.
The group meets the Night Manager, Pauly Dorst and are given some leftover pizzas before being shown to their rooms in the back of the motel. The Comfort Inn and it’s parking lot teem with teenagers drinking and partying after some sport match/event. With leftover pizza and the weight of what just happened the group meet up in one of the rooms with some leftover pizzas to eat and tell each other about themselves since the motley group of odd strangers all share the same fate of sorts. Damien zones out in front of the TV.
The Professor sees his fetch on TV after Damien points him out while flipping through the commercials. He ends up stealing a ‘smartphone’ to find out about himself and the book he wrote (his fetch actually) which lead to him sneaking away and the 10-25 inprogress that Old Man Hutch catches wind of the next day. Everyone else seemed quite amazed by how small phones were and with no buttons plus color screens. Supposedly even talking cars are out and about which Damien wants to see. When asked the Professor openly admits what he did to Hutch to which the man just shakes his head. Hunch gives everyone $40 pocket money and asks the group again to stay at the hotel and out of trouble.
After promises to lay low and not leave the motel the group gets the night manager to take them on a tour of Morgantown as soon as Old Man Hutch leaves. Krissy Lee finds out about her fetch being an older version of herself having married a wealthy realtor developer. Wild Orchid finds out about how her fetch ‘bombed’ with her last book that was charged with offensive material and racial slurs before she was fired for assaulting the head of her department in a drunken drug induced rage. She’d like to know what happened to her daughter as well who is probably around 10 years old. She also used her money to buy ‘better food’ since the night manager had brought her a bag of potatoes since she was ‘vegan’.
The group went to bed after a day of siteseeing and catching up on their fetches and old lives getting to bed exhausted more so than they expected. The two Changelings the PCs saved seemed to have taken off but the group didn’t have time to look before meeting the Winter Court Kin, King Jeremiah and his bodyguard Tony Horn. A little mental leg work puts the night manager not showing up for his shift and Wild Orchid realizing aloud the two sacks that were tossed into a van that previous night could be the other changlings. The Professor discusses a woman’s odd dreams after she shows up, Wild Orchid tries to get a job offer or for free with donations. The lady’s dreams seem to have the two missing changelings hanging out of a large dog’s mouth before being tossed into a pit surrounded by a thorny hedge.
The group suspects they were taken back into the hedge.