Chatoyant College, Chatoyant College Book 13: The Teeth

Chatoyant College Book 13: Prologue: Failure

All of his attempts so far had ended in failure.

He knew that there must be a way. He was sure he could find it. When everything was so broken, when life had changed so much from one simple decision, how could he not be able to return things to the way they were?

He had the power. He knew it.

He just needed to try something different.

He carefully closed the door to his room and made his way down the dark hall. It would be less safe outside, but where was it safe? He could not call it safe here, in his room.

He walked down the middle of the deserted staircase, careful to avoid the railings. Moonlight, low and thin, entered through the windows, making wide stripes on the floor. He walked around the patches of light.

The door opened to his touch. He shut it quietly behind him. No one could notice anything out of place.

If all went well, no one would notice anything out of place ever again.

He walked to the center of campus, carefully measured out from his map and his knowledge of where the borders of the magic lay. In the grass between three academic buildings, he stood and looked up at the sky.

It was clear. Thousands of stars sparkled down at him. The moon, over the trees to the east, had light that did not quite reach him; he was shadowed by the building.

He took a deep breath and lifted his arms, closing his eyes to the stars, feeling the magic. Threads of it were still in place; he had not ruined all of it, after all, only broken the web. If he could strengthen the web, bring the fibers back to their original state, then he would be able to fix everything again.

He knew that this was the right place to be. He had a much better sense of the shape of the magic from here, outside his iron-laced dorm building. He could reach it all. So what if it was less safe? This time, he was sure, it would work.

He anchored himself down into the grass, reaching below for the magic of his strength. Then he stretched up, grounding and reaching at the same time, sending energy toward the web of magic.

It shook before him, the strands nearest him strengthening, then fading out again. He could not tell, but he believed the magic had run out toward the ends of the strands, where the strength was most needed.

It shook again, though he had not done anything else. He could feel something toward the north edge of the web.

Something was fighting back against his magic. He had to stop it.

He poured more magic into the strands, but this time, though the magic ran toward the ends on three sides, the north did not take it. The north shook again, something growing bigger, something devouring.

He could not help it. Against his better knowledge, he opened his eyes.

Something was rushing toward him, something with no shape—

Only teeth—

He flung out his hands toward it, threw magic, all his strength, to stop it. But it did not stop. It came through his magic, came through his hands, as though it were made of nothing but smoke.

But when those teeth, long and sharp as needles, closed on him, they were solid and substantive as iron.

Chatoyant College, Chatoyant College Book 13: The Teeth

Chatoyant College Book 13 starts Thursday!

13_The Teeth cover

One death is just the beginning.

Corrie, Edie, and Dawn are awakened to terrible news: a student has been killed on campus. They instantly suspect a faerie killer—but with no evidence and no suspects, it’s difficult to come to any conclusions.

Among the other students, rumors swirl. Why is no one investigating this death? Why was the dead girl so reclusive? Where are the police, her family, any suspects? It’s finally time for the students to ask the questions they have been unable to ask for years. Answers come with difficulty… but, in time, they come.

When all is known and the dust is settled, will this death be the end of Chatoyant College?

Chatoyant College, Chatoyant College Book 12: Reemergence

Chatoyant College Book 12: Chapter 57: Gone

Edie stood looking at the dirt for what felt like a long time, but couldn’t really have been more than a few minutes. Nothing changed, except that the sounds of dripping overhead became louder. A few raindrops plopped into the dirt, dampening it. The tree no longer protected it.

Finally, Edie turned and began walking directly back toward campus. She was glad Leila had been prescient enough to give her an excuse for not entering through the front gate; she wasn’t sure she could walk all that way right now. She didn’t know how she felt, but she was so shaken that she didn’t want to have to make her way through the dark forest or face anyone.

Continue reading “Chatoyant College Book 12: Chapter 57: Gone”

Chatoyant College, Chatoyant College Book 12: Reemergence

Chatoyant College Book 12: Chapter 56: The Tree

Edie waited; Leila was taking a long time to respond. Anxiety twisted her stomach, but she clutched her umbrella and said nothing. She wasn’t going to rush Leila into a response.

She didn’t want her to leave, of course. But she knew, at this point, that there was nothing she could do to stop her. So she just wanted to understand. And if Leila was just going back to her tree, why bring Edie with her? Why bring her at all, when she’d vanished so abruptly last semester with the expectation that Edie would just forget her?

It was dark in the woods, the only light coming from the moon filtering feebly through the clouds—and perhaps from Leila’s tree itself. It was quiet, the dripping of the trees still the only sound. Edie waited.

Continue reading “Chatoyant College Book 12: Chapter 56: The Tree”

Chatoyant College, Chatoyant College Book 12: Reemergence

Chatoyant College Book 12: Chapter 55: Trust

The rain let up later that afternoon, but the clouds didn’t clear away, so Edie didn’t trust it. She and her friends went to the dining hall for dinner, and then she went back to the front gate with all of her rain gear, even though she was very early to meet Leila. She wanted to be sure she didn’t miss Leila or make her wait.

Leila wasn’t at the gate when Edie arrived, so she pulled out the book she’d put in her pocket, making sure that her four-leaf clover and phone were both where she’d left them in another pocket. She didn’t want to get caught without any protection or a way to reach her friends. She’d also made sure that not only Corrie, but also Dawn, Annie, and Roe knew where she was going. She knew Leila wouldn’t hurt her—she was fairly certain of that—but it was still good to know that if she was gone for a long time, her friends would know what to do.

Continue reading “Chatoyant College Book 12: Chapter 55: Trust”