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Dec 16, 2018 1:38 PM
Carel & Dianav in a fairyland
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"Magic isn't common knowledge in this world. Much of my organization relies on that to stay hidden. Ties to you would bring us under suspicion, and while our cover stories hold up as long as no one suspects us of withholding information, if someone came looking for magic, they would find it, find us, and do us harm if they so wished."

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"Why would you be in danger if they knew you were doing magic?"

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"I carry no scars from the people on this planet, but I cannot say the same for all of us. For some, they were worse than the fae."

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"When I'm more powerful maybe I can stop that. I can at least wait and learn more before I start my cult, if you'd like. I'd rather learn English first anyway."

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"That would be ideal. So, how does draining energy work?"

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"I become more powerful. The people I take it from become less energetic. It's possible to take so little that a healthy person won't notice. If you do that to thousands of people every day it adds up."

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"And that's how you killed your fae?"

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"Yes. I devoured her."

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Kalutia grins. "Shall we go find your tree people, then?"

"I want to call my mom first," Emma says.

They look at her with an odd look that implies questions they aren't asking. "Okay. Do that."

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Voicemail again. She leaves another message with essentially the same content as the first.

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Carel waits and looks properly solemn about this again.

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"It's okay, we've been back, like, an entire day. The number would just be out of service if something happened to her. I think."

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"You can give her our number once we have you all set up somewhere stable," Kalutia offers.

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Carel doesn't point out that Emma's mother might just be dead by now. "Do you know anyone who teaches English?"

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They grin. "The best. I only picked up the basics from the first people I met; someone else taught me the rest. We taught each other, really. They're the only person I didn't grow up with who speaks my language, now. I'll introduce you."

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"Thank you. What other language do you speak?"

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"My people's language. I grew up in a fairyland, where we've lived for centuries at least. We've only just made contact with anyone else in the last few years."

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"Do you have this many people there?"

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Kalutia laughs. "No, we're a very small community as earth standards go."

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"So is the place I come from. It limits the gods' power a lot."

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They keep grinning but it looks more and more like just bared teeth. "If you turn out to be like the fae," they say evenly, "I will find a way to kill you, and I will kill you."

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"It would be a relief to know that someone could."

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And just like that all hostility is gone. "I think we're going to get along," Kalutia says cheerfully. "Let's go get your trees and then I can send you all to headquarters."

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"Sure."

First of all Carel needs to know if Dian is with them.

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