A couple of weeks ago a session I was GMing left of on a bit of a cliffhanger with all of the party members scattered across different planes.
- The wizard, Teoru is in the overworld.
- the Druid Siobhan in "Druid Space", a space where items go when druids transform. She was ejected there by the ancient apocalyptic dragon Ñolan Emeranxu when it took her body as its mortal vessel.
- and the Cleric Xoru in "The Backup", a extra dimensional space created by the mercenary Wizard Tʰem as a safe haven from dimensional collapse. He ended up there after Tʰem stuffed him into a bag of holding which Siobhan then moved into Druid Space when she transformed. This caused an extra-dimensional collapse. Four anthropomorphic moles (assistents of Tʰem's who maintain an extra-dimensional lost and found) helped Xoru escape into The Backup, where they await the return of Tʰem.
The next session Teoru's player wasn't able to show up, and considering the state of things we just played without them focusing on the stories of the other characters in extra-dimensional space. And then the player couldn't join again, so we continued. Eventually over 2 and ½ sessions Siobhan met Xoru; the undertook a long journey and arrived in the overworld on a desolate island in the sea (quite far from where the started). The met new NPCs and progressed the plot.
Now, for our next session, it seems like it is time for Teoru to return to the party. Now I don't want to play out 2 and ½ sessions with them alone. For one it is a not super fun to play 1:1, but really the issue for me is that Dungeon World is play to find out and in this scenario Teoru has to show up at a certain place at a certain time, traversing a great distance in a short amount of time. I can't justify this, and my prediction is that it would be a big slog at the best and a disaster at the worst.
So my plan is to just open the next session with Teoru arriving and play from there. My question is:
What degree of ownership / responsibility should I give the player vs what degree should I take myself?
I'd like to prompt the player to some extent, but I also don't want to tell them what their character does, or wants.