The lights were still on when I returned home, past ten. I wished Polly and Alfred a peaceful night together, and opened the door. Sitting in the living room, I saw Jack sitting on the chair, curled up, her arms around her legs, face buried between her knees. She appeared to be sleeping, and the pose almost made me wonder if she’d been waiting up for me. I considered, for a moment, picking her up and carrying her down to the bed. I decided to think better of it, less out of fear of her stabbing me in surprise, and more because I thought it would just weird her out. Instead, I lifted a blanket from the couch and draped it over her, and turned off the light, walking towards the kitchen to see if there was any pizza left in the fridge.
I returned to consciousness, although only reluctantly.
Sad things are sadder when contrasted with happy things. This is probably a self-evident statement, but it hits me hard, from time to time. I remembered- of all things- a political comic about an exiled African prince, who was forced to stay at a McDonald’s while dealing with the loss of his family’s kingdom. The comic, of a well-dressed young man holding a burger, with an expression of soft despair on his face, stuck with me. The fast food restaurant seemed to add to the deep poignancy. The absurdity of the contrast heightened the tragedy.
“Well, Atina. How’s the writing coming along?”
My name is Jenny Nishi. I apologize for intruding on Atina’s narrative, but she gets into a mood when she is preparing for a case. She is a kind person, but somewhat prone to obsessive behavior. I also apologize for not obscuring my true identity in some exciting way, but I am very new to all of this.
I had a long, difficult time figuring out what, exactly, fairies are. Undead are straightforward- When you die in a certain way, you may become an undead. The precise details of what decides who becomes undead are still a bit beyond me, but every Undead was once a human, and it’s not such a mystery where the first one came from. Demons, likewise, are a bit less of a mystery, now that I know a couple individuals. An animal who is the focus of attention for a human can become one of them. But fairies… a human can become a fairy, if, before they become an adult, they are raised by a fairy. So where the hell did the first fairy come from?
The stories that stand out to people tend to be the ones that are full of twists, turns, death, and pain. When you read a novel, it’s easy to start seeing a character’s life as one long, unending ride of pain, horror, and knowledge-steeped monologue. But life is more complicated than that. Life is full of interminable stretches of just getting by. Talking just to talk, boring walks, mindless activities, cases that don’t have any huge significance. Not every case I take ends with me getting threatened with a brutal and sudden death.