A GUIDE FOR YOUNG LADIES ENTERING THE SERVICE OF THE FAIRIES, by Rosamund Hodge
This is the lie they will use to break you: no one else has ever loved this way before.
Choose wisely which court you serve. Light or Dark, Summer or Winter, Seelie or Unseelie: they have many names, but the pith of the choice is this: a poisoned flower or a knife in the dark?
(The difference is less and more than you might think.)
Of course, this is only if you go to them for the granting of a wish: to save your father, sister, lover, dearest friend. If you go to get someone back from them, or—most foolish of all—because you fell in love with one of them, you will have no choice at all. You must go to the ones that chose you.
Be kind to the creature that guards your door. Do not mock its broken, bleeding face.
It will never help you in return. But I assure you, someday you will be glad to know that you were kind to something once.
Do not be surprised how many other mortal girls are there within the halls. The world is full of wishing and of wanting, and the fairies love to play with human hearts.
You will meet all kinds: the terrified ones, who used all their courage just getting there. The hopeful ones, who think that love or cleverness is enough to get them home. The angry ones, who see only one way out. The cold ones, who are already half-fairy.
I would tell you, Do not try to make friends with any of them, but you will anyway.
Sooner or later (if you serve well, if you do not open the forbidden door and let the monster eat you), they will tell you about the game.
Summer battles Winter, Light battles Dark. This is the law of the world. And on the chessboard of the fairies, White battles Black.
In the glory of this battle, the pieces that are brave and strong may win their heart’s desire.
You already have forgotten how the mortal sun felt upon your face. You already know the bargain that brought you here was a lie.
If you came to save your sick mother, you fear she is dead already. If you came to free your captive sister, your fear she will be sent to Hell for the next tithe. If you came for love of an elf-knight, you are broken with wanting him, and yet he does not seem to know you.