Returned from the Dreaming, the motley celebrates Beltaine.
"I've played strip poker once… I think it was more of a game of chicken."
As the motley leaves the The Spark's workshop, they sent Kaylie back to Heart's Light to report to Sir Xaeron. In the Exhaust, Claude is relieved to see them return, shocked by their success. Things here in Cross' Shadow have been "on pause", he tells them, although the politics at Tara-Nar have become more "interesting" as of late, given certain outspoken Reformers in the Parliament of Dreams.
Braum and Kyoko reunite, and though they missed each other deeply, the pooka goes to elaborate lengths to persuade Braum that she has become a "rebel", including sporting some fake scars. Patches reaches out to both Cog and the Duke, inviting them to Beltaine (although she is more hesitant about Cog, thinking it might be a bit "mature" for him). Sophia goes to reclaim Incisor's coat, and leaves the repaired garment in the redcap's room.
Braum meets up with Dr. Sayley in the Exhaust, and the sluagh cracks his ankle back into place with her usual glee. Starting up his phone for the first time in a few months, he discovers quite a few from Claire and his sons wondering about his whereabouts (he told them about a trip that might "take a while"). Calling her back, he is surprised to learn that she is engaged to Giorgio the satyr… although she, of course, isn't aware of that last part. "He just had more time for me," his ex-wife admits. Braum offers to take them both out for a celebratory drink, hoping to uncover more of the satyr's intentions.
Sophia is paid a visit by Incisor, who thanks her for the lengths she went to in order to get her jacket repaired. Sophia senses that she has something more important to talk about, and the redcap gently breaks things off with Sophia, telling her that she needs to try to move on. Sophia is secretly relieved, hoping that her time with Incisor has helped her. Meanwhile, Kyoko has created a dress for Sophia to wear at Beltaine, made entirely of LEDs and able to be controlled via simple gestures, truly a marvel of design!
On the day of Beltaine, Patches praises Kyoko's work is setting up the Spark's garden for the festivities, thanking her for taking it on in their absence. The pooka, along with the other members of the Spark, have set up the garden with last year's huts and maypole, but have added dozens of lights in the pond and under the grass to create illuminated spaces at night. Ramzia and Sophia have a brief moment where they acknowledge the incredible weight of what they managed to accomplish, and the pooka reassures Sophia that Quiet Word was "beyond help". Sophia refuses to believe that anyone is beyond help.
The Beltaine guests begin to arrive: Padraic asks to "have a talk" with the motley about their methods, calling himself a "troubleshooter"; Pasebakhaenniut tells Sophia in confidence that Kaylie has never been more excited to have seen a place "without the Red Star" (even if she seems unflappable); Alnek and Baroness Akanthea claim that Faerilyth is exacting but a good ruler for the Chateau Frontenac. Patches sees Little One touch down in the garden, and is pleased to hear from Duke Granville that dragons are no longer to be hunted — Zistor's petition was successful. Padraic approaches the nocker, who tells him that things are now "square" between them before walking away. While Padraic is hurt by her coldness, Patches isn't necessarily going to ignore him all night….
Cog arrives on the heels of Sir Xaeron, a young piskie in tow, whom Cog is desperately trying to impress. Braum welcomes them, but not before chiding the piskie for some petty theft. Braum tries to search for Zistor and Talus, but they are nowhere to be found in the Spark. Patches takes the Duke into one of the huts for "inspection", and Kaylie takes Sophia aside as well. The Garou tries to communicate to Sophia her fascination with her: among their kind, leadership is earned, but Sophia simply is a leader by her nature. As Sophia allows Kaylie to kiss her cheek, wanting her to explore her desire, the Garou surprises her with news: she is going to have pups!