OK, the last post was employing some dramatic license. But I wasn’t making up the building I described, and that was the one we entered next, though a door at its corner.
We were on an upper floor that extended only halfway to a wall of windows opposite us, three stories high. We descended to the main floor, which was apparently the cafeteria: in the front half there were round tables with chairs as well as red, yellow, and green picnic tables, and in the back half were cash registers and counters. The floor in the front half, where we were, was carpeted and the floor in the back half was tiled. That made it easier to hear the slow footsteps of something from the far end of the room moving in our direction.
It was another metal sculpture, about five feet high. It had two arms and legs and walked like a person, but its head was what I guessed was a frog’s and its limbs were long and thin, like an insect’s. It wore a vest, tie, and tailcoat and carried a bamboo walking stick with a curved end. Like the Cat in the Hat it had a creepy, immobile grin.
The three of us crouched under a picnic table watching it. The gentleman frog stopped walking and surveyed our half of the cafeteria. Then it looked at the table we were under, and started walking toward it. The frog grasped the upper part of the cane with its free hand and pulled its hands in opposite directions, revealing a sword concealed within the cane. It dropped the cane and slashed the air with the blade.
Ingrid stood up, removed the crossbow she wore over her shoulder and grasped the club hammer that was hanging from her belt. She held her left arm, which was covered by the police baton, in front of her. “OK,” said Ingrid, “this I can handle.”
Ingrid moved to our left, and the frog altered its direction to follow. She moved to the central part of the room, where there was more empty space between tables, and stood at the ready. The frog stopped in front of her. They were still for a few moments, and then the frog swung its sword.
Ingrid easily blocked the blade with her baton and countered with the hammer, striking the frog in the side of the head. The frog staggered but quickly recovered and thrust forward with the sword, which Ingrid was able to dodge. She gave another swing of the hammer, striking the frog in the chin.
There were a couple more of exchanges like that, the frog missing and Ingrid striking hard enough to leave a dent each time, her braid twirling around her. However, the frog’s speed remained the same for each of its maneuvers, while Ingrid’s became slower.
Then the frog bounded to the closest table, leapt on its surface, and leapt again toward Ingrid, holding its sword with the point downward. Ingrid dodged and struck with the hammer, this time on the frog’s right knee. The frog landed in a crouch and rose to its feet, but was having trouble standing: Ingrid’s blow had knocked a curve into its leg.
Ingrid placed the baton on a table near her and immediately picked it up again, this time holding it by the shaft rather than the short handle. The handle was now on the end of the baton furthest away from her, like she was carrying an “L” on a stick. She moved toward the frog, who looked like it had figured out how to stand on its bent leg. Ingrid moved the baton forward, caught the frog’s sword arm within the L part of the baton, and struck again at the frog’s right knee. And then at the other knee.
Ingrid backed away from the frog, who fell to the floor. It tried to get up but its legs were now so bent that it couldn’t. It flailed its sword wildly. Ella picked up Ingrid’s crossbow and the two of us approached Ingrid, who was catching her breath.
“Ingrid, that was amazing,” said Ella. “Eh, no problem,” responded Ingrid. “I think we’re good here.” Ella recorded some footage of the frog and we made our exit.