WARNING: contains non-graphic murder, violence, and brief mentions of bullying.
I really like the idea of Elsewhere University so I tried to write a thing. I hope I did the school justice (and didn’t offend the fair folk). :)
She calls herself Angel and tries to live up to the name. She says please and thank you and sorry and excuse me with almost every breath and always with a smile. Ask her to share her food and she’ll happily oblige; ask what you owe her and she’ll respond with a wave and a smile, insisting that your company is payment enough.
You can find her in the churchyard on Sunday afternoons, offering to tell your future in exchange for the story behind your question.
Sometimes people will knock at her dorm room, heartbroken, homesick, worried, or just generally out of sorts. They leave after an hour or so, soothed with tea and conversation and carrying a few sprigs of peppermint. Peppermint tea, as Angel tells her guests, fixes everything.
There are rumours that Angel isn’t human, with her pale skin and perpetual smile. Those rumours quickly dry up when a too-bold freshman confronts her and she shows him the handmade iron clasp on the ribbon around her neck. She doesn’t, however, do anything to dispel the rumours that she has found favour with the gentry, or that she is somehow behind the minor accidents that happen to the tormentors and former paramours of her guests.
Angel does her best to be kind, to be helpful, to be accommodating. The gentry take notice. Angel reads the future in her cards for students with too-bright eyes and offers tea to students who flinch from the steel of her allergy bracelet. When they ask what she wants in return for her kindness she passes on the stories of unfaithful lovers and cruel classmates and leaves the rest up to them with an admonition not to do anything too nasty. She claims it’s easier on her conscience, not that anyone believes her.
Everything changes when Angel’s younger sister is Taken during orientation. (She names herself Beitris after a character in a story she wrote and follows a group to see the beehives… which don’t exist.) When she isn’t back by nightfall Angel takes action.
It should take more than a few minutes for Angel to leave her dorm room with a little bottle of salt and rosemary around her neck and a wooden dowel with iron nails hammered through one end in her left hand. It doesn’t, but it should.
The forest should not have lights and music coming from the ash grove. Evidently, no one has told the forest.
“Where’s my sister?” Angel demands of the first gentleman she sees.
“How should I know?” he sniffs.
“Where. Is. My. Sister?” Angel taps her weapon against the gentleman’s ankle with just enough force to draw blood.
“Ah! Singing! She’s singing!”
“Far end of the grove, under the blue banner.”
Angel moves swiftly through the crowd, mercilessly swinging her weapon into anyone who tries to stop her. She and her sister gather up the other Taken and leave without hassle. There isn’t really anyone left to hassle them.
“I thought angels were supposed to be nice!” calls the one gentleman left alive, trying to hide the fact that he was obviously favouring his iron-burned ankle.
“Sweetheart,” Angel drawls condescendingly as she turns to face him, “ did no one ever tell you that angels are warriors?”