Chapter 1: The Poster Sale
Saturday, September 6
To her surprise and pleasure, Edie slept soundly and late on Saturday morning. Of course, she had been up quite late reading and knitting a little to calm her mind, but she'd been afraid she would sleep restlessly. She sat up to bright sunlight coming in the room from Corrie's side; her blinds were still closed, though they didn't completely block the sun. She flexed her right arm experimentally. It didn't feel odd at all. Relief flooded her. She could almost dismiss what had happened last night as a bad dream. She wouldn't, of course; she knew now that it was all too real.
Of course, not all the things that had happened last night were bad. She couldn't help but smile when she thought about Leila. She was a beautiful, wonderful woman who actually wanted to date Edie. That, too, almost felt like a dream, but she wouldn't allow herself to imagine it was. Besides, the memory of Leila's lips was too real.
Corrie wasn't in the room, so she showered and dressed lazily, then knocked on Dawn and Naomi's door. As she had expected, both Dawn's and Corrie's voices called to her to come in. She did and joined them where they sat on Dawn's bed. "Good morning!"
"Hi, Edie," said Dawn. "How's your arm?"
"It's doing great, actually," she said. "It doesn't hurt or anything. Did anything exciting happen while I was sleeping?"
"I was just asking Corrie about the party," said Dawn.
Corrie nodded. "And I was just telling her that Byron is a very good kisser. What about Leila?"
Edie felt herself turning red. "What do you mean?" she asked, though she knew perfectly well.
"Is she a good kisser?" Dawn prompted, grinning.
Well, she couldn't get away from the questioning, so she just nodded quickly. Corrie laughed. "We heard you tell Marlin you're with Leila now," she said. "You couldn't hide everything from us."
"No, no, I wasn't trying to hide anything from you!" she protested. "I was just, well... embarrassed."
"Well, I'm glad we all have somebody now," said Dawn. "No one has to be lonely."
"True," Edie agreed. "So, are we doing anything today?"
"There's a poster sale," said Corrie. "I checked it out but didn't get anything yet. We definitely need to decorate our room."
"Oh, that is a good idea. I think I need something to eat first."
"I think that's an excellent course of action," said Dawn.
They gathered up their things and went to breakfast, then found the poster sale, which was taking place where the job fair had--in the lobby of the administrative building. Edie was glad it was inside, because it looked to be another hot, sunny day. She made a mental note to start applying sunscreen in the mornings. It was crowded; apparently a lot of people also wanted to decorate their dorms. That was probably why the people selling posters came all the way to campus. Before they approached one of the tables, Edie grabbed Dawn and Corrie's arms and said quietly, "Do you think there are any faeries here?"
Dawn looked around. "I'm sure there are," she said. "There are a lot of people. I don't see any right now, though. Corrie, do you have the clover?"
Corrie shook her head. "I left it in my desk. Sorry."
"That's okay," said Dawn. "I'll keep an eye out and let you guys know if I see one."
"Discreetly," Edie added quickly.
"Right," said Dawn with a rueful grin. "I think I can control myself enough not to let it slip that I can tell. But that's a good idea, Edie. We should be on our guard."
That decision made, they approached the first table. The room was set up with several large folding tables in two lines. Each table had at least one huge binder with posters in plastic sleeves. Some of them also had boxes of smaller posters or postcard-sized ones. Edie didn't know what kind of a poster she would get, but she supposed she would know what she wanted when she saw it. Corrie started to flip through one of the binders and she looked on. Nothing caught her eye.
As they were looking, she heard a familiar, soft voice behind her. "Hi guys!"
Edie turned to see Annie standing there, her roommate Salome slightly behind her. She smiled--it seemed like it had been days since they'd seen Annie, even though she lived just down the hall and had class with her and Corrie. "Hi, Annie! How are you?" She looked like she'd gotten some sun recently; her freckles were prominent on her pale skin.
"Great! How are you?"
"Oh, pretty good. Did you get a poster?" she added, seeing that Annie had something rolled up in her hand. They would tell Annie about the adventure--that's how she was starting to think of it for the sake of preserving her sanity--last night, but they would have to wait until they could talk to her without her roommate around. Edie didn't dislike Salome, but it didn't seem like she liked them very much, and she was fairly confident that Annie hadn't told Salome about being kidnapped by faeries. She seemed to have been affected by whatever spell had made almost everyone else forget first that Annie had ever existed and second that she had ever been gone.