Character Description and History
Garth, the Hornblower, is one of Kevin Matchstick
's most fervent allies in the war against the forces of darkness. The other avatars are more ambivalent about Kevin's leadership, but the Hornblower believes Kevin is their rightful leader and will do anything he can to help. In fact, he is sometimes too eager, and gets on Kevin's nerves.
We first see the Hornblower picking up a woman in a bar. It turns out she is a Leanhaun Sidhe
, or succubus, and is trying to seduce and kill him. However, he knows this: he is a hero and is on the hunt for evil faerie creatures. His trap is interrupted, however, by the Sun Twins
, a pair of other heroes. They squabble over who gets to capture the Leanhaun Sidhe, and she gets away. Kevin Matchstick happens upon the scene, and upbraids them for letting their personal feelings get in the way of the hunt. The Sun Twins brush it off, but the Hornblower is chastised, and goes back on the hunt.
Later on, the avatars
have a meeting, and Garth sticks up for Kevin as they all discuss their strategy.
Afterwards, Kevin, Joe Phat
, and Wally Ut
are attacked by Wisp-Wraiths in a park. The Hornblower comes to their aid, and uses his kazoo to down many of the small evil faeries.
The next day, the increasingly-fawning Garth shows up at Kevin's apartment with pastries for breakfast, looking to help. Kevin, annoyed by his continual presence and compliments, sends him to the local cemetery to hunt for faeries in what Kevin believes is actually a wild goose chase. He just wants to get rid of him. However, when Garth gets there, he is attacked by a contingent of Redcaps
, and blows his kazoo to summon reinforcements. Meanwhile he is pelted by many Redcap pellets and kicked by their boots. Kevin and Joe arrive to help, and together they start to beat them back. However, Garth has taken too many hits, and when one of the Redcaps hits him in the head from close range, he dies. Kevin feels enormously stricken with guilt: he thought the cemetery would be empty, and sent Garth, his truest true-believer, to his death as an act of spite and annoyance. It is one more death on his mind.
Powers and Abilities
Garth has a magic kazoo, which he can blow for a long time, as if it were a hunting horn. It's sound can be a call or warning to his allies, or it can inflict damage on his enemies. It does not seem to be particularly powerful. It took down many Wisp-Wraiths, a small weak flying faerie. But it did not seem to do much damage against Redcaps. He also mentions that he can make some kind of mystic shield with its sound.
The Hornblower seems to have a degree of superhuman durability, as he was able to survive many hits by Redcap pellets, but is by no means invulnerable, since a well-aimed pellet to the forehead killed him.