Friday, May 12
Edie woke up, for once, excited and full of energy. She was finally getting to have the magic class they’d missed on Wednesday. She knew for sure that today’s class was on, because Ginny had sent out an email to the class warning them against missing it—with only five classes left in the semester, they couldn’t afford to skip anything, since they would be squeezing the rest of the lessons into the remaining time.
Today they had water magic. Edie wouldn’t want to miss that no matter what.
She was relieved to find that Corrie was out of the room as usual—her schedule was back on track, unlike Wednesday. She felt bad about Elrath, but the whole campus didn’t have to mourn him.
As she got dressed and ready for class, she wondered whether Professor Strega was particularly affected by Elrath’s death—whether she was particularly upset or even happy. They had not exactly worked together, but each had had information the other had needed. But Elrath hadn’t liked Professor Strega much. Then again, he hadn’t liked any faeries much. Maybe that had been all he had against her.
She grimaced at herself. She wasn’t exactly going to ask Professor Strega about it. They probably weren’t even supposed to know it was Elrath that was dead—no, Corrie had told her that Professor Lal confirmed it. Then again, Professor Strega and Professor Lal didn’t seem to get along very well, either.
Well, she wasn’t going to get involved in this mystery anyway, not if she could help it. Anything that could kill Elrath wasn’t going to be stopped by anything a bunch of humans—or even part-humans like her—could do.
She went off and had a quick breakfast, then was early to class; the first to arrive, in fact. She supposed she was the most excited about water magic. She’d been wondering whether it would be easy for her, since, as she had learned from Professor Strega, her faerie great-grandmother was a lady of the lake. Surely there was some genetic component to magical ability.
Derwen and Darcy arrived after a short wait. “Did you hear about Christy?” Darcy asked them in a low voice.
“That’s the girl who was killed, right?” Edie asked, darting a quick look at Derwen. Edie had told Derwen that Elrath was the one who had been killed, but she couldn’t remember whether she’d ever mentioned that Elrath had been going by Christy.
“Yeah. Isn’t it awful? No one knows what she was doing out in the middle of the campus during the night.”
“Do they think she went out there on purpose?” Derwen asked. “Couldn’t the killer have brought her there? Or killed her somewhere else, but left her body there?”
Darcy’s eyes widened. “I don’t know. I hadn’t thought of that. Don’t you think it’s weird…” Her voice dropped to a whisper. “That there are no cops on campus? Aren’t they investigating at all? Or do they already know what happened?”
Thankfully, before Edie had to come up with an answer to that, Professor Agnew entered the classroom and called out to them. “All right, everyone, I hope you read the syllabus and didn’t bring your bags today! It’s okay if you have, just bring them with you. Come on, we’re going outside.”
Derwen immediately jumped up, grinning. Edie and Darcy weren’t far behind. Edie had to grab her bag—she’d known she wasn’t supposed to bring it, but apparently hadn’t been able to break the habit—and they all followed Ginny down to the floor of the classroom and then down the building’s stairs.
“Before we go outside, let’s have a vote on where,” Ginny said, stopping them in the lobby. “Shall we go to the north or south end of campus? Raise your hands for north… and for south.”
Edie raised her hand for south. North was too close to faerie territory—she would rather be close to the iron gates. She was pleased to see that most of the class agreed with her.
“Okay, east side or west side of the gate? Raise your hands for east… and for west.”
This time Edie was less certain, but picked east because that was the side of campus Gilkey was on. This time the other side outvoted her, but she didn’t mind. Ginny led them out of the building and to a nice, sunny patch of grass between Mary Thomas and the wall. Of course, it was sunny everywhere today—they’d picked a really beautiful day to go outside.
“Before we scatter, let me explain,” Ginny told them. “I like to teach water magic last, though it’s usually not the most difficult of the elements, because this way we can go outside and make a big mess. I’d like it to be a bit warmer, but I think you’ll have fun anyway. Now, you all should know what to do by now in terms of connecting to your inherent magic. Scatter yourselves, leaving at least a foot or two of space between yourself and your neighbor, and start creating water.”