A few weeks ago, just before Halloween, Cottington Woods held its last event of the year. It originally was going to be the last event of the campaign, before the campaign was extended by one extra one-day event (coming up in January) and one more weekend event (coming up next spring.) I’m really glad it’s not over yet.
All three late fall events of the campaign have featured Last Harvest’s Day, an in-game holiday celebrating the last harvest of the year. The night before Last Harvest’s Day, the Land of the Dead draws nearer, and accordingly, we had various encounters with ghosts from our pasts. It was easily the most heartbreaking moment for Quill, my wind-up doll character, in this entire LARP when the ghost of the woman who had owned Quill before Quill came to life, came to visit but had to leave again when the evening drew to a close. Poor Quill tried to follow. The night after, the Slumberlands drew nearer and Nightmares plagued us. And all the while, we dealt with the war between the Clublands and the House of Cards, and the werewolves roaming the woods. (The luck granted to Quill by Goldleaf the Gnome really helped protect her against werewolves.)
Other highlights of the event included a brilliantly funny letter written by the Wizard of Oz, defeating the Slenderman, and hunting the Medusa. That last encounter involved piecing together the shattered mirror shield of the hero Perseus (Quill isn’t bad with puzzles, and used her skill as a smith to reforge it) while dodging the deadly arrows of Medusa without being able to look at her. Medusa’s head was taken as a trophy (it was such a cool looking prop, with snakes springing out in all directions), and it now sits beside the heads of a mighty dragon and the Jabberwock. (Medusa’s head is concealed, under a cloth, of course.) I wonder if we can’t find a way to use it in the war with the Clublands?
I also finally got to help retrieve the Last Harvest Day pumpkins from a field protected by crows and a scarecrow (much less friendly than Cottington’s own resident scarecrow), an annual task so that we might carve pumpkins and leave them out as gestures of respect to wandering spirits. (Last year, the cabins without lit pumpkins got cursed. No one wanted a repeat of that.)
The last battle of the weekend was fought to save a fairy by the name of Second Star on the Right, who I think was being used to open a portal into Farraway City that we did not want opened. We had to flee into the Fairy Mists, and Second Star on the Right lead us through to Neverland. I’d never seen Disney’s Peter Pan before, so I finally watched it when I got home in anticipation of being in Neverland for the one day event in January. It’s going to be an adventure!