Chapter 56: Sharing
Corrie shoved her hands in her coat pockets as they left the magic building, heading back toward Gilkey. It was getting really cold. “Dammit, I don’t want to do my homework.”
“Well, I don’t think you have to quite yet,” said Dawn. “We should really tell everyone else about this.”
Corrie glanced at her and nodded. “You’re right. Our friends need to know.”
“I should probably let Leila know,” said Edie with a frown. “I mean, it’s her sister trying to mess with us still. They really don’t seem to get along at all.”
Corrie sighed and looked up at the sky. It was gray and pale, but not actively threatening. And there were still a few hours before night. Much as she hated to let Edie go, she eventually nodded. “She probably should know. And I guess you should go find her now before night.”
“Don’t worry,” Edie said, slowing as they approached Gilkey. She held up her arm and tugged on her sleeve. Between her glove and her sweater shone metal wire. “I have my bracelets on. And I probably won’t be long. I have homework to do, too.”
Corrie grinned and gave her a quick hug. “Okay. Be safe.”
“Keep your cell phone on,” Dawn said. “And don’t let us worry about you too much.”
Edie laughed and waved as she headed around the building, towards the woods. Corrie fumbled her ID card out of her pocket and managed to get the door unlocked.
At least it was warm inside. Corrie and Dawn separated at the fourth floor to collect people; Corrie found Roe staring into space and clicking a pen, and Talia typing furiously, her face inches from her computer. Finals were approaching in a few weeks and that meant even more studying and essay-writing than usual. Both of her friends were glad for the break.
In a few minutes they were all assembled in Dawn’s room—they had hoped to find Naomi there as well, but Dawn said she would just tell her later. She and Corrie explained to their friends what they had learned from and about the book and what Professor Lal had told them. “So it sounds like Mardalan is trying to mess with the whole campus now,” Dawn finished. Corrie nodded.
“What about that rule?” Roe asked. “Aren’t they supposed to not be allowed to harm any students?”
Annie shook her head. “Come on, we knew how well that worked as soon as we found out about it. They have a funny definition of harm.”
“And when Marlin was turning girls into statues, they didn’t do anything about it,” Corrie said, remembering Professor Lal’s reaction when they had caught him trying to do the same thing to Edie. “Not until Professor Lal caught up to him, anyway.”
“If there’s one thing we can’t rely on, it’s promises made by the faeries,” said Rico.
“Should we try to find Mardalan so Professor Lal can punish her, too?” suggested Roe.
“No way, that’s too dangerous,” said Dawn. “I’m still a little anxious about letting Edie go into the woods.”
“Leila will take care of her,” Corrie said. “I might not trust Leila completely but I definitely trust her to protect Edie.”
“But we should probably be careful about anything new we come across, even though that sounds hard,” said Dawn. She frowned. “I wonder if Professor Lal would teach us how to do whatever she did to test the book for malevolent magic. That would be really useful.”
“We should ask her after class tomorrow,” said Roe. “Maybe it’s something that will come up before the end of the semester.”
“I hope so.” Corrie shook her head. “It seems like the semester is nearly over and we’ve hardly learned any magic!”
“There’s still more to do with trance, right?” said Rico. “Or are you guys done with that already?”
“No, the syllabus says trance for tomorrow,” said Dawn. “But I guess trance and elemental magic are the two biggest parts of magic anyway.”
“We’ve got two… two and a half weeks until finals week?” said Annie. “There must be something else to learn. I can’t remember what’s on the syllabus—I stopped paying attention once we started the practical side since there wasn’t anything to read in preparation.”
“I think we’ll be doing stuff with Tarot cards. That will be fun.” Dawn shrugged. “The worst we can do is ask, right? And the best we can do is keep taking magic classes. I think most of us are in situations that mean we should get as good at magic as we can.”
“Definitely,” said Roe, and Annie and Corrie nodded. She had to glance at Rico—was he the only one in the room who didn’t have any weird magical heritage or unusual powers?
Dawn looked up at the clock on the wall. “Okay, I hate to kick you guys out, but I do need to get some homework done. It’s been a busy weekend.”
Roe groaned in protest even as she stood up. “I should too. Maybe this break was good for my brain.”
Corrie stood and stretched. “Dinner later? After Edie gets back?”
“Sounds good,” said Annie, smiling. Corrie shared a secret grin with Dawn before going out with Annie and Roe, leaving Dawn and Rico alone.