Event News


(Alias... the Devil comes to Cambridge!)

It was morning ticking into afternoon, and the air was unusually warm for such a chilly time of year. All was peaceful save for the tweeting of songbirds, the far-off rumble of cars, and the slosh-slosh-slosh emanating tellingly from the bags and backpacks of the devils strolling along the path.

They were a frightening sight, they were. There was Behemoth, whiskered and feral, their shape blurring and shifting as they bounded along in a form that wavered between human and cat. There was Azazello, fanged and grinning, eyes roaming ahead and clawed fingers wrapped tightly around the trigger of their gun. There was Hella, the dead lady, whose kindly eyes and smile bore at odds to the frightful and terrifying instrument of death they held.

And between them all, Woland strode along without much as a care in the world. Birds sang, cars rumbled, and the water tanks sloshed as the entourage made their way to their first appointment.

Part 1: The Solar Panel Inspection

While inspecting the solar panels in the University Library car park, trying to determine whether it was cost-effective or even possible to install a set in Hell, the devils were ambushed by a group of interlopers looking to put an end to this Satanic invasion of Cambridge! Fire was exchanged on both sides, and the ambushers retreated, forcing the devils to cautiously pursue into what could very well be a trap. But alas, for the brave heroes gave up their lives defending our town, and it was Hell’s minions who emerged victorious as Woland watched on with that same carefree smile. Deciding that corpses were no fun, black magic was used to resurrect the deceased, and Azazello sent to accompany them on a journey down the street. They vanished in the blink of an eye and the turn of a back, and the group of devils (now three) were left with no choice but to seek out their traitorous comrade. Ah! A flash of orange behind that wall! The rustle of movement, then the unmistakeable sound of a wildebeest stampede as gnus mowed down anything in their path. When the dust had settled, again our heroes lay dead upon the floor, though this time Azazello had shared in their demise. The third time battle was met, it was decided a pincer formation would provide the most optimal ambush positions. As the Defenders of Cambridge ran for their lives down a side-street, accompanied still by the grinning Azazello, the other devils split up to cover both ends of what they knew was a close with no other exits. Loyal Behemoth stayed with their leader, and Hella teleported out to Yalta (a nice long loopy flank to cut off the enemy from behind). Woland prowled, moving slowly, covering little ground as they waited for the net to tighten. But Hella's repertoire was such that no additional help was needed: when the heroes and Azazello finally did reappear, they were once again walking corpses.

Overall Result: Devils 8, Heroes 0, Woland unkilled, and an agreement that a reshuffling of teams and/or weapons was needed to make things more balanced.

Part 2: Killer Geese Recruitment Survey

It is a little known fact that on the Upper Cam, hordes of geese plot to murder unsuspecting tourists that venture out alone in the earlier hours of the morning. Having heard of this magnificent operation, Woland wished to perform a survey of goose aggression and fighting capabilities with an aim to expanding Battalion 78 of Hell’s Army to include an aeronautical subunit.

Fortunately, this dastardly procedure was interrupted by the arrival of Behemoth and Hella, who had decided that it was against their honour as devils to ever associate with something as terrifyingly immoral as a goose. Shots were exchanged between them and Woland’s crew, which included the redeemed Azazello as well as corpses press-ganged into bodyguards by necromantic magic. Their line stretched, Hella slammed one isolated bodyguard into the hedge. Behemoth lurked around the shadows of a lone building, and pounced on another unsuspected zombie sent to scout out that general area. That was all that Hella needed to mop up, and soon Woland’s plan came to an abrupt halt as the entire team perished within seconds to volleys of waterfire, taking first one of each of their legs and then their very souls (well, at least for 5 minutes till resurrection)...

Score: Feline Entity Insurgent and Reversed She Ra Tiara Wearing Insurgent 4 Devils 0; Woland killed.

Woland, of course, would not be stopped by this minor setback, and slipped away alone to the edge of the Cam. There the poor heroes who had given their lives to become the Devil’s playthings were once again brought back, and a plan for revenge took shape in their minds. Personnel was shuffled, Azazelo now donning the sinister Choirmaster Koroviev's chequered cap, whilst Hella sat this round out in the interests of game balance, tagged along chatting amicably to the once-humans. Once again, the plan was to split up: once again, Woland stayed in the larger group while a solo hunter ventured out alone to look for devils in the dark of the shade cast by the overhanging trees. The Devil’s luck prevailed, and Koroviev and Behemoth were brought down by a few well-placed shots.

Result: Devils 2, Insurgents (because we can’t really call them ‘Heroes’ anymore) also 1. Woland Survives.

Part 3: Hunting Llamas.

It is common knowledge to everyone passing by that the Llamas of Llammas Lland are flighty and dangerous creatures. Less well known is that Llama Hunting is the official sport of the Dominion of Hell, and that Woland takes part in such matters whenever Cambridge is on the ‘to-visit’ list. Which, given the murderous depravity Cambridge students are well known for, is fairly often.

Finding no Wild Llamas, for they had all been poached (or murdered by the killer geese) some time before, the Devil was not stopped from enjoying this time-honoured tradition. With the click of a finger, Hella was transformed into a Llama, finding themselves unable to use any type of weapon apart from pitiful little spitting. The hunt was on! With Azazello guarding against any possible traps, the Devil was free to chase the Llama across the grassy field. But Behemoth, cunning shapeshifter they were, managed to lead the humans against Azazello and cripple the movements of Woland’s bodyguard. The Llama then turned feral and spat, killing the Devil from the direction they guarded against the least.

The final round of Llama hunts gave the Llama a head start to run away, then Woland and Azazello to pursue, and their attackers following up the rear. Through some miracle of fate (well, being made to carry all the spare equipment), the Llama was successfully hunted. Once that obstacle was dealt with, the Devils found no problem dispatching the rest of those after their life. Results: Devils 4, Insurgents 2, Llama 1; Woland killed in one of the two rounds.

Part 4: Capture the Flag

Refilling on water, and shedding our devilish disguises, we proceeded to the large conker tree in the middle of Queens’ Backs for as many rounds of Capture the Flag as we could fit in before the sky got too dark to sensibly play. There were all-on-all death matches, three-team resurrection rounds, rounds where if one teammate is shot the whole team dies, and walking-only rounds to favour the less athletic of the group.

Perhaps the most successful was a Hunger Games inspired Cornucopia round, where weapons were scattered around the base of the tree and alliances were declared at the beginning that turned out to very much not be binding: there would only be one victor. This was exemplified by one person shooting their ally once they judged said ally was probably the only other threat to them still alive. How nefarious. (They proceeded to win that round.)

As dusk set in, and we began to doubt our abilities to find all the darts we might fire, both ex-devils and ex-humans gathered around the tree base for cookies, cake and chats. One by one each person wished the others well and wandered away to other commitments, and the event drew to a close.

In the night, hidden beneath a mask of black and red, Woland smiled. The Devil’s visit to Cambridge had gone well indeed–at the very least, it was warmer here than in Moscow.

[There were approximately 60 kills in this phase, which actually saw Brienne of Tarth fight for Lady Catelyn, bodyguarding her capture of 2 enemy flags to win the 3-team capture the flag round. Azazello won the main all-on-all round. Behemoth won the Battle Royal.]


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