Like a prepared spell waits for the master mark to be dropped in to activate it, those of you who were at Con will notice a conspicuous absence in my previous posts about Con.

I’ve given shout outs to lots of the staff who helped run an excellent Con. I’ve expressed appreciation and gratitude for my excellent players who took every turn in stride. What I haven’t done is acknowledge the reason that this all happened at all. My better half for the weekend was a dauntless soul that showed inspiring flexibility and unflappable optimism. It was his first time at Baycon and he jumped in with both feet as an attendee and my full time assistant.

This gentleman ran around with me everywhere, from gaming to ProgOps to Art Show to collaborate 2, and back again. I lost count of the number of times we ran up and down the stairs between the mezzanine and the lobby.  He carried heavy bags, held open doors, and did it all with a smile. He let me throw a barrage of names and faces at him, and drag him around to the same places so many times that by the end I at least was dreaming of them.

On day one, he held down the fort and engaged the players in conversation while I ran around like a crazy person trying to get Collaborate 2 unlocked. On day two, he sat in our room with me for hours, cutting and stapling and sorting things for “Persephone’s Gift” because I’d suffered a bad case of real life in the week leading up to Con. Of course, he had also sat with me and helped me print and sort everything in the first place the Sunday before. On day three, he sorted Garden Station papers while I addressed a case of unexpected nausea. And, he played. In every game. He stepped in and filled out the game roster, making it possible for us to play when we were short for both Garden Station runs, and was an absolutely inspiring host character for Persephone’s Gift. Ah the joys of cat herding.

I cannot imagine doing what he did at my first Con. I spent most of my first Con camped either behind a table in dealers room pointing to the person next to me whenever anyone asked me a question, or at my then boyfriend’s feet. Everything was new, and big and loud and terrifying. I can’t imagine smiling and shaking hands and shooting the breeze with strangers. He did all this, and was also my anchor when my head was in the clouds, my safe place when I ran out of spoons, and an endless source of infectious optimism.

And so, hats off to the master mark that made the spell we cast together at Con into the wonderful, amazing roller coaster that was Baycon 2016, “It’s All About Space.”