Changeling: the Lost
Venice: Broken Masks, Shattered Dreams
Episode 2 - Clay - part 1
It was the 20th of December, and Christmas was just around the corner, but also so was the Winter Solstice. The House of Winter had it's own particular way of celebrating this event, and of course with Christmas being soon over, the period of Carnival would begin.
The motely were all involved in their own work. Clio was rushed off her feet at the Florian, Stitches was working at the pharmacy, Else was enjoying some roasted chestnuts, Sonata was busking and helping himself to half eaten food left about in the Christmas markets, and Freki was out doing deliveries.
Else made her way through the streets of Venice, from now where she was set upon and dragged into and alleyway where two men held her and put a dagger to her throat. They called her a freak, and knew what she was. They wanted to know where all the eyes were. Else was confused and so decided her best hope was to lead them into an ambush, using her command of contracts to cause a deep seat fear within them as she spoke of whom they were to meet. Else then began to lead them to Stitches' shop.
Meanwhile Clio, taking a break out the back of the Florian overheard cries for help, and what sounded like a fight. She rushed over to see a man beating a woman. Clio called for help and tried to stop the man. He fell to the ground and then looked back at her. His eyes were suddenly gone and Clio could see scratches all around the eye sockets.
A Brief note on Religion and the Characters
Nearly all the characters have suffered some degree of time displacement. Add into this the issues with Venice being in Italy and Catholicism being the primary faith we have some interesting issues with regard to how the characters view their time in Arcadia.
Stitches is Italian, but not a firm believer since he is one of the most modern of the motley. He does however view Arcadia as some form of hell and since his return goes to confession and views the Fae as demons which he has been tainted by.
Clio is from the 17th century and so was a firm Catholic. However, her own experiences have been so extreme in their erotic nature she can barely remember all the things that she must confess for. She too sees the Fae as some form of demons, but she is also more aware of faeries through old Italian folklore.
Sonata is also Catholic, but a non-believer. He is from New Orleans during the 1920s. He is so far beyond the need for faith to explain what the Fae are, simply that they are not of this Earth. Sonata just wants to regain that part of his soul that was taken from him.
Else, being from 19th century Manchester is a Protestant. She accepts what the Fae are since she is from a period of resurgence in fringe beliefs and faiths. She does not seek redemption, just a level of understanding of what she has become.Freki is from over 1000 years ago in Britain. Though Christian, she was also fearful of the Fair Folk that roamed the lands. Her faith is not gone, just more accepting since she is from a time when myth and magic were still very real. She simply seeks to be free from the hunt of her Keeper and his loyal Changelings.
Taking the man and woman into cafe Clio learnt that the pair were a couple. The woman who was slowly finding herself again, explain to Clio that he just turned on her, and that they were to be engaged. Clio could sense the gossamer strands of the Wyrd and Glamour over the couple. The man made little sense, other than the 'cat' had promised he would see the truth. Clio decided that she would finish her shift and go and find the Hundred Masks, and ask Malvolio about Tybalt.
Outside of the Teatro Fenice members of the House of Autumn were putting on street performances to celebrate Christmas, and also to tell scary stories to warn the children of the Fae that stalk the streets. Stitches was watching when he felt a hand in his pockets. He turned about find it was a changeling, a small beggar, and goblin like. The goblin introduced himself as Little John, one of Mad Dog's motely. He had a job for the motely. Recently there had been three people turning up at hospital, with their eyes completely removed. It was up to Stitches and the others to figure out how since Clio it seems was now involved with events. Little John also asked they look into the series of brutal attacks occuring in the public gardens near the Arsenale. He went on to explain that the Houses of Summer and Autumn were involved with other issues, such as loyalist, vampires and this series of murders by the "Bone Collector". With that Little John left Stitches.
At the palazzo where the party was being held for coporate types, Clio was able to get access and meet with Malvolio and discuss the events of the day and her suspicions of Tybalt. Malvolio explained that this was impossible, but he would ask anyway. He later returned to Clio, with a cup of hot chocolate and said that Tybalt suggested that she look into the strange individual they call the Cheshire Cat, and that he may well be behind it all if there is the hint of glamour and Wyrd behind the event. Clio decided not to drink the hot chocolate, and headed off to find her motley.
Meanwhile, near the Doge's palace, Sonata was busking when he was greeted by another changeling. The man was, to his eyes, composed of nothing but clouds and fog. His hair was being twisted by unseen winds, and from his head sprouted great antlers. This was Ayther, a air elemental, and also the Emerald Earl, the Green Duke, the head of the House of Spring. About his feet the snow melted slightly. He offered Sonata a drink at the Florian where they could also chat to Clio if she was there. Sonata explain he knew her well and was one of her motley, pleasing the Verdant Earl. In the Florian Ayther learnt more about Sonata, and about his music, and went on to tale him the tales of the lost songs of Vivaldi, the magic of Cagliostro and Casanova, and that surely what Sonata desires is to find that spark of divinity stolen from him by the Fae.
Else made her way to Stitches shop and the bell rang as they entered. Else made enough of a sound so that Stitiches, who had only been back for a while, noticed and quickly made his way into the Hedge, to his hollow, and left the door open. The door was through a cabinet of medicines. Else, knowing of the hollow, led the men into the Hedge. Immediately the Hedge reacted to the miens of the two Wizened changelings and made the place seem darker and more morgue like. The thorns seemed to hang like chains with hooks on the ends, and Stitches stood in the hollow, his mien clear to the men. One of them broke, his mind filled with terror, and ran into the Hedge after bein
g unable to open the door out into the real world. His friend pulled out his gun and demanded to be let out. Stitches took command, and he promised he would show the man out, and led the man into the Hedge itself, where he promptly left him. Else couldn't believe what Stitches had done, he was no better than a Privateer as anything could trap those men as they lost their minds in the depths of the Hedge.