The War of Summer's Ending

Chapter 20 - Big Trouble in Little Haiti

Seeing that Rosita’s alliances have shifted (or been revealed), the Brotherhood of the Willow decides to return her to the Court of Spring, for her own good, and for the protection of Courtly secrets. Jack and Caden drive off to the University, taking a circuitous route to avoid Summer-controlled districts. Jim and Alex remain behind to keep watch over their quarry, lest they flee. The giant and the mute set up a stake-out in the diner across the street.

Jack and Caden arrive in Coral Gables without incident, and rush to the student housing area, seeking Queen Isabel. They find her painting and cleaning, alongside her courtiers. Jack and Caden come up to her and say simply “We’ve found her.”

CUT TO: Little Haiti
After a few minutes, Rosita and Marie leave the apartment, carrying laundry baskets full of dirty clothes. Jim and Caden follow, managing not to be seen by the two women. They walk to a nearby laundromat, and begin, strangely enough, doing laundry. Like it’s totally normal or something. Jim and Alex shift their outpost to a Creole-style diner across the street from the laundromat, and order tassot sandwiches while they wait.

CUT TO: UofM student housing
Jack explains the situation and the circumstances through which they found the girl, while Caden takes text messages from Alex letting him know what’s going on. Espina decides that the girl knows too much, and must be returned home. She tells the Brotherhood to bring Rosita back, and sends her bodyguard Selena to accompany them. During the ride to Little Haiti, Selena states simply that she doesn’t like the situation, and feels like it was too easy to find the girl.

CUT TO: Little Haiti
Officer Larouche walks into the diner, asking Jim and Alex if they had any luck finding Marie Saint-Saens. They say they didn’t and were just sitting down for a bite before they continue looking. Larouche offers to have his fellow courtiers put out a search for the girl, but Jim and Alex politely decline. Jim notices that Rosita and Marie are leaving the laundromat, and are heading across the street, straight for their diner. Jim excuses himself to the bathroom, fearing that the sight of him would spook the girl. Larouche recognizes the two women and greets them, saying that “these guys have been looking for you two.”

At the sight of Alexandre, Rosita freezes, and Alex gives Jim the signal (a dropped fork), that things are about to go south. Rosita bolts out the door and into the parking lot, just in time to see Jack and Co. get out of their car. Rosita, truly panicking now, runs away from both groups. Maria draws a switchblade and stands up to Jim, to give the girl more time, but Jim simply shoves the woman aside and leaps over her. Selena is upon the girl almost immediately, but Rosita slips from her grip. Throwing caution to the winds, Jim tackles the wayward girl to the pavement, while Jack goes into damage-control mode, invoking the Mask of Superiority to make himself appear a white-labcoat-wearing psychologist who’s just taking a hysterical girl back to the psych ward where she belongs.

They drag Rosita into the car and drive away, and make Clarity rolls for kidnapping. Jim and Jack both lose Clarity but do not gain derangements; the rest of them succeed on their Clarity rolls.)