Selene was able to convince Anastasia and Alexi, the children we rescued from the slaughterhouse, to get into the magic bag so that we could bring them back to the hut for safety. Once Fenn teleported us back to the hut, we brought them to the candy room so that they might be more comfortable while I asked them questions using the translator in my ear. While I was able to get useful information, the children were thoroughly creeped out by a room made of candy. Who would have thought?
As it turned out the kids had seen Rasputin and he had planned on going to “Grandmother’s realm” which could be found within the ruined church. They had met what sounded like Baba Yaga and indicated that we had not been looking hard enough at the church.
It was also apparent that the children were seeing a different version of the camp then we were. Where we saw a slaughterhouse and a monster, they saw a barracks and a doctor. My interest was piqued but before I could explore it further, Alexi transformed into a 3 headed dragon and attacked us. He looked like the animated dream because the real Alexi was already dead and this creature had taken his place.
Despite taking us by surprise, Taryn and Koyo were able to get over and under it respectively leaving it nowhere to go, and it was quickly destroyed. I was able to console Anastasia before putting her in Zorka’s care for the time being.
While we rested, Fenn and I poured over the World Engine and World Anchor schematics. I figured based on what the children had said, that the Engine was meant to superimpose 2 planes, and that the key to finding Baba Yaga was in the church; that perhaps the Anchors were holding another plane over the church. That would mean the real structure was out of our view. By removing the Anchors we might reveal the true state of the church. Fenn and I figured out how we might disable the Anchors by teleporting from one tower to another in rapid succession before the camp knew what was happening.
It was a resounding success (save for Selene taking a few metal projectiles to the abdomen) as within half a minute we had cleared the corner towers surrounding the complex and disabled the Anchors. The camp erupted into chaos below us as a series of arcane discharges emitted from the towers with each sequentially Anchor disarmed.
As hypothesized, the church transformed from ruin to an ornate temple. We stealthily made our way to the doors of the church. A corpse tattooed with alien religious symbols was nailed to the door. As we approached, a spirit emerged from the corpse and fixed Selene with its terrifying gaze. She faultered for possibly the first time in my memory, but Fenn and Taryn stepped up to her side without hesitation, destroying the spectre.
There we stood for a long moment on the precipice, Baba Yaga and Rasputin beyond, the chaos of the mobilizing compound behind us, and as always shoulder to shoulder against it all. Would Selene’s faith and fortitude prove steadfast enough? Would Taryn’s blades and determination be resolute enough? Would Fenn’s arcane might and intellect be powerful enough? Would my trickery and stealth be cunning enough? Would our bond be strong enough to endure the last leg of the Rider’s hunt for Baba Yaga?