It is unknown how long Rascal was unconscious.
The other fairies were slowly getting back to their usual activities and, though they missed him tremendously, were trying to remember him with fondness rather than fear.
A sentry was left blocking the Gateway to the Unknown so nobody would walk through it. Some of the littlest fairies had tried to follow Rascal, hoping to be heroic rescuers of their idol.
There was a lot of arguing among the fairies as to whether to leave the Gateway intact. Arguing is quite rare for fairies and they did not seem able to come to any conclusion. Instead, they settled on the use of sentries in the hopes that Rascal would be able to find his way home.
It was early in the evening when the sun began to set and the humans went inside to clean up for dinner. One of the littlest fairies was staring at the gateway from a distance. He swore he saw something moving on the other side of the opening.
His wings fluttered and he flew with jerky movement towards the sentry.
“I saw something, I saw something. It has to be Rascal.” He shouted with ear piercing excitement and was soon followed by all the other fairies.
In the time it took for the sun to dip beneath the treeline, the fairies were all gathered around the opening and looking intently for any movement. There was indeed a darkness that had not been seen before. The darkness seemed to be moving in a very ominous way.
The fairies began edging back away from the mere plastic toy as forms began emerging from the opening. The creatures were larger than any other insects the fairies had ever seen, and yet they did appear to be some type of insect.
They were covered in a hard armor and gave off the foulest of smells. It did not take long until the entire area was devoid of all fairies. The oldest and wisest fairies had noticed immediately that some of the younger and smaller fairies were beginning to faint because the stench was so great. The strongest fairies quickly carried the littlest fairies as far from the area as possible.
The whole fairy community gathered together inside the largest den they could find and watched in terror as the creatures moved through the land.
They truly were hideous creatures. Within days they had overtaken the entire world around the fairy community.
Even the humans were disturbed by the stinky invaders. It seemed they had no ideas of how to battle the foe.
Usually humans were able to call in experts who would spray something in the air that would rid the land of unwanted pests. The fairies had learned to watch for such signs and they always managed to stay safe in a den until danger had passed.
Now the human experts had no idea how to approach the new creatures. They seemed as terrified as the fairies.
The worst part was not just the mind altering smell. The worst part was the fact that whenever one of those horrid creatures even looked directly at another insect the insect would immediately become comatose. It was a very dark time for all living things.