Chapter 1 Escape.   Posted by Hedgespun.Group: 0
Hedgespun
 GM, 4 posts
 Cat Herder
Fri 18 Dec 2015
at 19:00
Chapter 1 Escape
The thorns take their blood toll as five changelings battle their way through the hedge, scraping and scratching at body and soul as the survivors push themselves towards freedom. They scarcely notice each other on the journey, potential threats or enemies out in the shadows. Nothing is safe no one is to be trusted until back in the world of the real. Memories of what once was start to fade drifting into nightmare, Arcadia can only hold so tight on one's mind before the mind purges itself of years of horror.

Five changelings dripping with blood stumble out of a hedge gate and into an old warehouse. The musty place is lit only by a few dim overhead lights, darkness filling the world outside from the high windows as the occasional car can be heard driving past. All manner of products line the shelves in loosely marked boxes written in both English and Chinese. The time and place is unknown to the escapees but one thing is for certain. This is the real and physical world, the gate has closed behind them.

Finally with reality clearing and adrenaline ebbing away they can start to acknowledge one another.

[All players start by taking 2 Lethal damage from wounds from the hedge]

This message was last edited by the GM at 02:38, Sat 19 Dec 2015.

Curro
 player, 3 posts
 Gotta
 Go Fast
Fri 18 Dec 2015
at 19:36
Chapter 1 Escape
Curro draws in deep breaths of air, his heart pumping on adrenaline, fear, his marathon over. The silence is unsettling, the sounds of the Huntsmen’s horns fading in his ears to nothing. He looks down at his cut and bloody hands… hands, not hooves. A look of wonder appears on his face, moving his fingers. They hurt, cold and bloody but they are fingers none the less. There is still a clatter on the cold concrete. Hooves. Not too much has changed.  Or maybe everything has. One thing is for certain. He made it, the real world, home. He has made it back alive, with only a few cuts and scratches and enough horrific memories to make a psychiatrist very, very rich.

He takes a faltering step forward, trailing his returned fingers over the cold metal shelves. Freedom. No longer prey. Never prey again.

This message was last edited by the player at 23:31, Fri 18 Dec 2015.

Image
 player, 2 posts
 Skin
 Violater
Fri 18 Dec 2015
at 20:17
Chapter 1 Escape
Open space. That is the first thing Image notices. Well, open compared to the hedge he just stumbled through, at least. He takes a moment to shake clear his senses and wipe away a trickle of blood running down his face. It takes him a few moments to filter the sounds of traffic coming from outside and recognise them for what they are and what they mean. He is out. That thought stuns him for a moment before he finally pays attention to something that the back of his mind has been shouting at him since passing the gate. He is not alone.
Tourell
 player, 2 posts
 Angst
 Regret
Sat 19 Dec 2015
at 13:19
Chapter 1 Escape
It is with a tumble and fall that Tourell exits the Hedge, back into the real, physical world. Everything hurt, a pain all too familiar. It takes him a moment to collect his thoughts, to recall what happened.  His legs burn, feet slick with blood, hands too for that matter. But now, for the first time in a long time, his head doesn't feel clouded. Nothing is muddled, thoughts flow uninterrupted, unhindered. He opens his mouth and swallows down a breath of thick air. Clean enough, but there's still something... blocking...
He reaches up, brushing his fingers over his face. Still nothing... Just a blank slate. No nose, no eyes. Just vague dips where sockets should be, skin stretched and smoothed over what was a mouth. Tourell stopped questioning how he could still see and talk long ago. There was no need to think like that in Arcadia. Not with her.
He lowers his hands down to the concrete floor, pushing himself to his feet. Dark, cold. The sounds of traffic echo through the building. Good... If there's traffic, I can't be too far in the future... When is it? Where is it? If I'm back in Ulverston...
Tourell takes a step forward before eyes that don't exist snap to the other bodies nearby.
Glis Sterling
 player, 3 posts
 Smol
Sat 19 Dec 2015
at 18:16
Chapter 1 Escape
Glis shivered, this place was far too cold wherever they were. Gone was the familiar feel of home, days under blazing sun and nights thick with muggy fog. Outside they could hear some sort of odd river, uneven and changing though that was to be expected. Nothing was fixed after all. The world seemed so much smaller though, shelves bizarrely in reach. They glanced around, even the people were smaller. People. There were others here.

The mouse bared their teeth, fingers hooked in an imitation of claws as they backed into a corner. Where each of these strangers could be seen at the same time. Not one of them recognisable, a strange faceless one, perhaps they didn't have a role yet. That creature was wrong too, some failed monster? And that one... a card? Who even knew the last one, perhaps a replacement Hatter? Still the others didn't seem very interested in them. That was good. That was safe. Looking down to inspect injuries there were more than they remembered, yes the gouges from the beast but fresh slices all down as well. Licking clean while keeping a wary eye on the others.

"Red or white?" The frightened mouse asked, eyes flitting from one to the next.
Curro
 player, 4 posts
 Gotta
 Go Fast
Sat 19 Dec 2015
at 18:59
Chapter 1 Escape
"White or Red?" What?

Curro turns for the first time, looking over those who followed him through. They weren't from where he was...they looked all wrong. Maybe the mouse thing, but the others? He looks over them. His vision is drawn first to the pitiful creature with no face. What the fuck is that thing?! Some freak show? It has the air of a predator, but clearly prey. The one next to her looks normal by comparison. Lot of tattoos. Nice ones as well. A predator. He could get no handle on the third and so turned to the final one. Tiny, shaking, prey. The kid looked like he was tweaking, real high strung. And a weird ass question like red or white? Best to calm him down, he might be dangerous if he's got a knife stashed under there.

He walks ever so slowly towards the cowering kid, palms out. "Hey kid. You ok? I don't know anything about any whites or reds. Not gonna hurt you. Just, try to relax ok?"

This message was last edited by the player at 19:19, Sat 19 Dec 2015.

Tourell
 player, 3 posts
 Angst
 Regret
Sat 19 Dec 2015
at 21:05
Chapter 1 Escape
The voice stopped Tourell in his tracks, freezing to complete stillness. He looked over at the small mouse creature, fingers like claws. They're afraid... He couldn't blame them, especially if they don't know what's going on. Tourell glanced over at the others nearby, taking their appearances in. Another half beast, a deer or something. He was moving closer to the mouse, animals banding together... The two others were stranger. Tattoos covered his body, the sight of the paint almost made him flinch. The fifth, stranger yet. Something in their eyes, not all there... Not all with it.
Tourell turned back to the mouse, staying mostly in the shadows. He'd already seen the animals' expressions when seeing him. Best he stay back, in case they attack him. He wasn't armed, after all...
Image
 player, 3 posts
 Skin
 Violater
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 14:32
Chapter 1 Escape
Image glanced about in confusion at the sudden question. What did colour have to do with anything right now? Thankfully none of the others in the room seemed to understand the question either so maybe he hadn't gone crazy. Or maybe they all had - it seemed a bit too early to tell. Either way, the mouse person looked a little on edge so not crowding them was probably a good plan.

Keeping himself loose and ready to react if things turned ugly he decided to try to look as non-threatening as possible. While the guy with horns and hooves starting trying to calm down the jittery one, Image took the opportunity to examine the surroundings, planning exit routes and where there was enough room to fight if forced.
Mani Kynligr
 player, 1 post
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 19:18
Chapter 1 Escape
Heart pounding in her ears, Máni tumbles out of the hedge splattering the floor with blood.
Panting and taking what feels like the first breath of real outside air, she notices a trickle of blood trailing over her eye bleeding prefusely.
Her vision obscured, she blinks and sits up licking her wounds clean.
Overcome with joy that she is finally free from that hellish place from where she came, she gives a wide disturbing grin as she wipes her glasses off with a clean bit of her torn and blood ridden shirt.
"I can't believe this, i'm finally out." she thinks to herself, feeling the new sensation of the cold stone floor and taking it's wonderful new texture in with her feet "gritty".
Finally taking her bearings in she notices she's not alone.
This new possible threat didn't make her feel comfortable at all, since the only thing of even close to people she ever knew were voices behind a metal door that brought only pain and intense experiences.
She scurried back on all fours in the darkness trailing her hair on the floor like a dirty black mop, she will have to wait and see what these new creatures mean to her.
Friend, or foe?
Hedgespun
 GM, 6 posts
 Cat Herder
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 19:32
Chapter 1 Escape
As the five being to recover and explore the double doors at the opposite end of the warehouse open up and two figures begin to walk forward through the gloom towards the quintet.

"It looks like you were right we have newbies. Remind me not to doubt your stones again" The voice is hollow, almost as if it's an echo.

"Hmm, well I had predicted six but I suppose this is within margins of error." This one is more clear, a Scandinavian tilt to the voice for those with an ear for it.

The pair walk into view one a figure of indeterminate gender is an almost cloak like back coat, with sunken pallid skin, white eyes and patchy grey hair. They look almost like the living dead. The second is a woman in a brown leather jacket and white skirt, she has a rune branded onto her forehead and looks more concerned for the people before her.

"We figured you'd be hurt from your trip, these ought to help" She sets down a backpack and opens it up, six golden apples inside. The cloaked woman looks between the group. "You're still recovering so I'll stick to the basics. It's January 2016. You're in the English city of Manchester"

This message was last edited by the GM at 19:35, Sun 20 Dec 2015.

Glis Sterling
 player, 4 posts
 Smol
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 19:42
Chapter 1 Escape
"You're new then." Glis said to the approaching horned man. Their body language was clear, don't come any closer, don't touch me. "The right answer is never red, unless there's too much red around, then the right answer is to stay quiet."

Glis's eyes were fixed on the horned man, the others were slow to react, or simply uninterested. Well, as far as they could tell at least. Hard to read a man with no face and others hiding in the shadows. Deep breaths, look for weak points, look for exits. Look for anything that could save them. That is of course, when even more newcomers showed. These one's weren't afraid, sure in their roles. Those roles apparently included explaining. Guides Glis understood, guides were easy. You didn't hurt guides because they helped everyone and chose no sides. Something about those words stuck the mouse though, Manchester. Somewhere from a lifetime ago. He stared at the pale one, that one was safe. Better to listen to that one.

"We're... we're not in Wonderland?"
Hedgespun
 GM, 7 posts
 Cat Herder
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 19:48
Chapter 1 Escape
The two shared a look before one spoke up.

"No. This is the real world, the physical plane. You are all safe now, they can't hurt you any more. You are all free and we are here to help."
Tourell
 player, 4 posts
 Angst
 Regret
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 20:00
Chapter 1 Escape
January 2016? It's been two years? Shit... Tourell turned to the two newcomers, keeping completely still otherwise. Manchester, though... That was better than Ulverston or Carlisle, that's for certain. And it looked like there was a court system established already. Thank god... He didn't fall out in the middle of nowhere.
"We're back in the real world..." He walked over to the two newcomers, grabbing an apple from the bag. "2016, too...? Two years, I think..." He murmured, going to take a bite of the apple before pausing. No mouth... This'll be interesting.
Curro
 player, 5 posts
 Gotta
 Go Fast
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 20:03
Chapter 1 Escape
"New? There's no...it's over. We got away, I think. So white is good? This a gang thing or something?" Curro whispers back, lowering his hands a little when the kid doesn't do something immediate. He turns to his side when he hears the other voices, not going to turn his back on it yet. It's going to be hard to tell predators and prey apart when they aren't as vulnerable as we all are right now. But at least these two aren't running us down. So that's something. Manchester? Up North? Shit, only just got out of a hellhole...

"And...and who the hell are you?" Curro mutters, trying to keep his voice steady, fighting the urge to flee from the strangers. Don't show fear. If they're predators they'll see you as weak, and if they're prey there's nothing to fear. The faceless creature seems to trust them...but he was the one Curro trusted least right now.

This message was last edited by the player at 20:06, Sun 20 Dec 2015.

Hedgespun
 GM, 9 posts
 Cat Herder
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 20:10
Chapter 1 Escape
In reply to Tourell (msg # 13):

As Tourell goes to open what would be his mouth a hole opens in the lower dent of his face. A distinct bite is taken out of the apple despite the lack of teeth. It tastes of Mead. This gets a raised eyebrow from the runed woman who hadn't really noticed Tourell until she started moving.
Hedgespun
 GM, 10 posts
 Cat Herder
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 20:17
Chapter 1 Escape
In reply to Curro (msg # 14):

"I'm Charon and this is Völva. I guess you could call us the welcoming committee. We're here on behalf of the local Freehold, that's the name for a town or city of changelings...that's what we call ourselves."

"It's ok if you don't know your names you can chose yourself a new one if you wish. This is all about a fresh start."
Glis Sterling
 player, 5 posts
 Smol
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 20:36
Chapter 1 Escape
"Queens not gangs, but if this isn't there and instead we're all in a here that isn't back there then we're all going to be okay.... Even if we only have their words that this here is a good one."

Glis takes another deep calming breath, dropping the combat stance. This was not the time for fighting, that was dangerous. The horned man seemed actually interested in helping them, even if he seemed unsure too. He certainly looked more confident than any of the others. Edging a step to position the gazelle between themselves and the two guides.

"Don't much care what you call yourselves, how to know we can trust any of you?"
Hedgespun
 GM, 12 posts
 Cat Herder
Sun 20 Dec 2015
at 20:43
Chapter 1 Escape
In reply to Glis Sterling (msg # 18):

"I suppose you can't other than the fact that if we knew you were coming and wished you harm then the sensible thing to do would be to attack before you regained your senses. That is the problem in all our lives, everyone is a potential threat but if you are to survive you need a little faith in people."

She gives the mouse a little smile.

"The apples will heal your wounds, a token of good faith."