Trials of the Seven Heroes

One Third Less Fen

A goddess is killed, or part of one at least

The Heroes decide to journey to Fen, which they haven’t (really) visited at all. Along they way they run into a merchant train and ask questions about the warm, damp, thinly populated world. They hear that there are Fenlings in the swamps, so they say, though what exactly Fenlings are is uncertain, and that there are ancient Swamp Temples to Goddesses hidden away in the deep swamp. Successful psychic drainings allow them to get a good impression of one of the Temples; Brigid makes a quick design of it, and they travel to the place. Once there, they’re attacked by the guardians, froglike people with spears who are fast, but not fast enough, and fall to the beatings of Darby, the weapons of Ellis and Teddy. Priests with magic appear, hurtling balls of acidic mud, and are dealt with with somewhat greater difficulty, as acid stings quite a bit, and catches poor Mr. Pants directly. Inside the Temple is a vast frog-beast with human features and a voice-a goddess of Fen, she claims, with two sisters elsewhere. Eventually irritated enough to attack, a fight ensues in which first Ellis and then Teddy are eaten (Ellis teleports out and is stitched back in, Teddy cuts his way out) along with one of the Boys now in Ellis’s employ, who is not saved; Bennett drains away some of the magic in the place, and is then faced with his own magic drain, while sending a dozen of his selves to fight against the goddess, channelling their pain and wounds through the network as crushing blows rain down on them. Ridley and Gavan tried a psychic assault, and discovered they weren’t up to it, barely getting away mostly due to the ferocious physical attacks happening at the same time, but were able to discover that the Temple itself made her stronger, so that with Brigid’s help, and through the cloak, they were able to call up Teddy and bring him out, dragging the goddess with him. Removed from the Temple, she was weak enough to be Stonebound by Bennett as his last act before collapsing from exhaustion, and then was hacked apart by Teddy and Ellis into tiny fragments. Gavan summoned his magical house for them to all rest in. Bennett, on awakening hours later, was told to cancel the stone binding, and so the goddess’s bits bled out in seconds, and she was certainly dead and gone. Shortly thereafter, scores of angels appeared to confirm the death of the goddess, and strongly imply that it was a very bad idea to kill divine things, because it would weaken all of reality. They departed mournfully.

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