Braum and Sophia participate in choosing a new Sept Elder.
"You ever get the feeling you're playing a game with someone for the last time?"
Pasebakhaenniut leads Braum and Sophia to the Sept-Elder, who has requested their presence: Flight-of-Victory is a Theurge and a Fianna, whom they discover sitting in a tent with legs wrapped up tight. She motions for her wolf companion to morph back, as Ear-to-the-Sky was in the middle of a lesson. She sends him away and tells them that she is happy to have met them, albeit a bit too late in her life: Flight-of-Victory is no longer able to carry on the fight as Sept-Elder, and is to undergo the ritual of the Winter Wolf. She implores them to support Kaylie, whose vision of hope from the Umbra is the key to the Garou's future, and that she must keep spreading her message.
Suddenly, a strong voice rings out. With a barked "What are you doing?!", Clutches-at-Straws bursts in, insulting the elder for her weakness and her imminent death. For his defiance, the Fianna claws at his face, sending him away cowed, but furious. Braum asks how it is that she has come to feel that she can no longer fight, and the elder tells them she was tainted in a battle. When Sophia presses her on it, Flight-of-Victory reveals that her legs are indeed infested by… something. The green and purple slime oozing from her legs is a mark of the Wyrm, she says, as she explains how the Garou view the world. Sophia wants to know if there's a possible way to heal her, but Flight-of-Victory only replies that Sophia "has no scars… at least on the outside". She then offers Braum a chance to speak once again to the spirit that used to inhabit his mind, Rick. Sophia moves off to give him space as he prepares to confront the troll childling.
Rick appears to Braum in his "usual" form, taunting him. Braum tries to take the high road, proving that he has moved on from Rick, but the spirit is still in his head, asking him if he "ever really left". At mention of Kay and Celyan, Braum roars at Rick, but it is Flight-of-Victory who commands him to leave with his life. Braum truly believed he had moved on, he tells the Sept-Elder, but still finds himself torn between crusading for justice, and staying home to protect those he loves.
Meanwhile, Sophia reunites with Kyoko and the other Garou. Layla, a child of Gaia, believes the rite of the Winter Wolf is foolish, and doesn't want Flight-of-Victory to have to leave. When Sophia asks who is likely to become alpha, both she and Pasebakhaenniut are confident that it will be Kaylie. Unfortunately, though, if the Ahroun was to become the Sept-Elder, it would keep her at the Cairn, rather than travelling to spread her message of hope. Sophia tells them that she wants to fight the darkness, and sets off to find Kaylie. The two take a canoe out into the pond: Kaylie knows there is much glory in being alpha, but she is desperate to find a way to spread her message. When Sophia vows to be an ally, but that Kaylie must take the action she feels is best, the Black Fury sets her jaw and paddles back.
As Flight-of-Victory and Braum speak, Kaylie suddenly bursts into the tent, knocking the elder down. She challenges her, right now! Although the cairn is shocked, the Master of Challenges sets them to speak to the whole Cairn and try to win them over. Sophia and Braum each try to use their cantrips to bolster Kaylie's presence (and enchant Clutches-at-Straws to keep him intimidated), and the Garou wins by a hair! Her first order as Sept-Elder is to forbid Flight-of-Victory from undergoing the Rite of the Winter Wolf, instead ordering her to return to The Spark with Braum and Sophia. The two Changelings, rocked by the change but understanding their allegiance, take Flight-of-Victory home, happy she will at least get to interact more with the Kithain.
Back at the Spark, Braum, Incisor, and Claude tend to Flight-of-Victory while waiting for assistance from Dr. Sayley. Meanwhile, Sophia finds Sir Xaeron in the Spark's garden, ready to begin her training in Sovereign. Both agree that the Art is "troubling", but Sophia knows she needs to harness every weapon at her disposal in her fight. Xaeron explains that Sovereign is all about projecting "the essence of you," and commands her do his every bidding. For a brief moment, Sophia is indeed swayed to view him as her lord, the master of the universe, comfortable in his powerful authority. But it only lasts for a moment, and Xaeron asks her to promise him that in her training, Sophia will first use Sovereign on him….