1.71 Good Sign

Disclaimer: Hawthorne’s in this one, so language, again. Maybe I should just say ‘Hawthorne’ in the disclaimers…

Dandelion looked around the pink-tinted room. It had been a long time since he last visited Magic HQ, this part especially. But Hawthorne was right. He deserved answers.

Not that he was sure he was going to get any of those. He had no plan. It was not his way to strategise. Times like this made him feel like that was a mistake, but what would be the point of anything if he had to sacrifice who he was?

He sighed and knocked on the door to Lulu’s bedroom. The room didn’t look particularly familiar, but he wasn’t sure if that was because he’d forgotten what it looked like, or if changed so much since his last visit. Perhaps the same could be said of the mischief sage herself.

“Hi, Lulu.” He said awkwardly, not knowing what to do with himself. He wasn’t used to this. Seeing people he didn’t really want to see. One of the perks of living in Sylvan Glade.

Her eyes widened. “Dandy! Goodness me…” She paused for a moment. Seemed she too didn’t know what to say. Not like her. “I missed you.”

Did he feel the same way? Her words caught him off guard. He had missed her once. When he was much younger, and she’d seemingly forgotten all about him. Things were different now. It was his decision to distance himself from her after how she’d treated Cordelia. But why did he feel conflicted?

“I…” He got stuck right off the bat. He didn’t want to lie to her, claim to reciprocate the sentiment if it wasn’t true… But wasn’t it? Was it possible to miss someone he’d chosen to avoid on his own volition?

Thankfully, Lulu put an end to his struggle. “Why don’t you sit down while I get ready?” She gestured towards the bed.

“What are you getting ready for?” He asked, partly out of curiosity, partly because he had no idea how to bring up the actual reason he came over.

“I take it you’re not here for the pity party Morgyn’s throwing themself, then?” The sage smirked as she started to apply her makeup.

“The what party?” He raised an eyebrow, sitting down on the bed behind her.

What was it about Morgyn that made people this way, Dandelion wondered? He still didn’t get it. He’d never been a fan of Morgyn’s, and over the years, plenty of reasons piled up to keep it that way. As far as he was concerned, Morgyn could go flush themself down a toilet for all he cared. But that was precisely it. Dandelion couldn’t care less what Morgyn was up to. Why did Cordie and Lulu not feel the same way?

“Apparently, things didn’t go their way during the Winterfest dinner with their little play-pretend family.” The mischief sage gloated. “I suppose you were there, so you probably know more than I do…”

“Nope.” Dandelion interrupted her. “Nothing weird. Well, it was weird, but those dinners are always awful.”

“So why do you go?” Lulu asked him. “Every year I invite you to the magic realm for Winterfest, and every year you turn me down. If those dinners are so awful, then why do you insist on taking part?”

Because someone had to make them more bearable, Dandelion thought, but he saw no point in trying to explain that to Lulu.

“What do the dinners have to do with anything anyway?” He tried to change the subject.

“Well, Morgyn’s been in their diva mood ever since, like they always get when they don’t get what they want, so they decided we’d have a New Year’s Eve ball. Can you believe it? I can barely remember the last time we had a ball in the realm…”

Dandelion looked at her reflection, her face as she blabbed away. This made no sense.

“I can remember. And I bet you do too.” He called her out. Sure, he was a child at the time, but was she really expecting him to not remember the day of her ascension ceremony, and what was more, expecting him to believe she did not recall that herself?

Lulu frowned. “Why are you here, Dandy?”

There was no way around it. Might as well cut to the chase. “Can I borrow the key on your necklace?”

Her body tensed up, her expression frozen. She stared at him through the mirror for the longest time.

Eventually, she put her makeup brush down and walked over to him, eyeing him up and down as if he was some kind of stranger.

“And why would that be?” Her voice was cold.

The look on her face scared him. He’d known her his whole life, or as long as he could remember, at least. But it certainly didn’t feel that way right now.

“Is there something wrong with the key, Lulu?” He asked her.

“There’s nothing wrong with they key.” She sat down beside him, her movements stiff and alien. “But everything’s wrong with why you want it.”

This was ridiculous. “Then why don’t you tell me why I want it? You seem to know better than I do, anyway!” He snapped at her.

“Isn’t it obvious? You want it because she asked you to get it!” The sage’s voice errupted. “For twenty years she acted like she didn’t have the slightest clue, almost had me fooled, but turns out I was right all along, wasn’t I?”

“Cordie didn’t ask for the key. She doesn’t even know I’m here!” Dandelion could feel his ager rising.

“Don’t you dare lie to me!” Lulu screamed.

That was the final straw. Dandelion couldn’t take it anymore.

“Lie to you? I’m lying to you?” He yelled at her. “All my life you’ve kept the truth from me, whatever secrets you’re keeping about Cordie, about the key, about where we came from! And now you’re accusing me of lying?”

“I did that for you, damn it! You get to be sweet, trusting, look for the best in people, even when they don’t deserve it. There’s nothing but pain in the past. You will not be better off for knowing it. And now you paint me as the bad guy for protecting you from it?”

Dandelion didn’t reply straight away. “I didn’t ask for you to protect me.” He said slowly. The need to yell was gone. All he was left with was hurt. “I didn’t ask to be sweet and trusting. All I asked for was the truth, and you’re still not telling me, even now. What gives you the right to make my decisions for me?”

“The fact that I know better.” She stood up, bringing the conversation to a close.

Was that all she was willing to say on the subject? Dandelion couldn’t believe it. But it appeared to be the case.

She walked over to the other side of the room, took off her necklace, and placed it in a metal box before uttering some kind of charm. No doubt to keep it sealed.

“You best leave.” She said, avoiding his gaze, her tone flat. “I need to take a shower before the ball.”

“You’ve already done your hair and makeup.” He stated the obvious.

“I clearly can’t go to the ball like this…” She replied, shaking. “But you’re right, I needn’t have bothered. Should have known you’d come over and make such a state of me. Should have known from the day she showed up in Glimmerbrook.”

She finally looked at him. I almost looked as if she was about to cry, but her stance was defensive, arms folded.

“We both know you don’t want to be here. And we both know I’m not giving you the key. So what’s left to say?”

Dandelion stood up, as if in a dream. He could hear her turn the shower on in the adjoined bathroom as he left the room.

He wasn’t sure what he was expecting, but it wasn’t this.

The sprites greeted him on the other side of the door. They were bright purple. Dandelion had never seen them purple before. What did that mean, he wondered?

They had a way of making it through walls and doors, appearing in the least likely of places, he thought.

Which gave him an idea. If the sprites could do that, wouldn’t they be able to get the key out of the box somehow? It was worth a try…

Before he knew it, the key was in the palm of his hand. He wasn’t even sure how, exactly. Did the sprites do what he hoped, or did they open the box for him? Was it even the sprites that did that?

He closed his fist, wrapping his fingers around the cold metal.

Was he really about to steal the key from Lulu, against her wishes? Hawthorne would be proud, he thought to himself. Not giving up, looking for unconventional solutions and loopholes… maybe she’d officially corrupted him.

***

Hawthorne congratulated herself on the decision to come back to Britechester for New Year’s Eve. Felt good to be back in Britechester.

In a way, it felt as if she never left, the short week back in Glimmerbrook a distant memory now. Her roommate was definitely back in top form.

“That dude has not stopped staring at you all night!” Chloe’s words were slurred. She wrapped her arms around Hawthorne, clinging on to her for balance.

“Show me your secrets.” Chloe whispered, drawing closer.

Hawthorne wasn’t all too sober herself, but she still smelled the alcohol on her roommate’s warm breath as she leaned in towards her. And then…

She wasn’t sure who kissed who. To Hawthorne’s surprise, Chloe was actually a pretty good kisser. Her lips were soft. The pulse surging through her neck… A sensation Hawthorne hadn’t quite experienced in years came over her. That calling…

She thought she knew the craving for blood. But this was different. For all the random guys whose blood Hawthorne tasted during her first semester, this was the first time she wasn’t all that confident she’d be able to stop if she followed through with this.

As if on cue, her father’s face appeared in front of her. His sorrowful expression when he was trying to explain to her why she couldn’t drink from Dandelion back when she was a little girl. In a sense, she felt just like that little girl now.

If you hurt him too much, he’ll be gone forever. No more memories. Not the ones you saw, and not the new ones, the ones he’ll make with you. Do you understand?

Maybe she really only understood now. She pushed Chloe away.

“A little forceful, if you ask me.” Chloe shrugged. “Though I can see how the guys would be – into it. Damn it. Hiccups. I’m gonna go – find a drink. You want anything?”

“I’m good.” Hawthorne said sharply. That was too close. She hadn’t felt that kind of draw since she buried her teeth into Dandelion’s throat twelve years ago. She had to feed, stat.

Hawthorne considered her options. She could run back to Drake Hall quickly and grab one of her fizzed juice bottles from her room. Her hall wasn’t far from Wyvern… but would she make it back for midnight?

Luckily, she had alternatives…

***

Dandelion looked around the room uncertainly. The Britechester campus was completely out of his comfort zone. He already got lost twice, and when he finally found Drake Hall, the place was deserted.

Everyone’s at the party in Wyvern Hall, well, everyone who doesn’t take exams seriously, which is almost everyone, some grumpy student informed him.

He didn’t have much time to look for Hawthorne when he got to the party, a blonde girl approached him almost right away.

“Hey there, cutie!” She squealed, stumbling over to him.

“You must be new, I know, like, everybody.” She continued. “Your eyes are so cool! You wearing contacts? And what’s with the hood? I can’t handle this much mystery…”

“I’m looking for Hawthorne.” He ignored her questions. Time to find out if she really did know everyone.

“Of course you are,” she giggled for some reason. “Hawthorne and her boys… But she’s, uh, busy, if you know what I mean.”

Dandelion suddenly felt silly. He got on the train to Britechester as soon as he got the key…  Was it all a mistake? He wasn’t used to being around this many humans.

“Do you know where she is? I’m her friend from home.” He explained. “There won’t be any more trains back tonight, and I’ll need somewhere to stay… won’t keep her long if she’s doing something important.”

His words made the girl laugh. “I’m sure she’s not doing anything – or anyone – that important. Let’s go find her.”

The girl kept talking as they made their way through the room, asking how long he’d known Hawthorne and such.

But when they did find Hawthorne, Dandelion forgot all about the blonde.

“Whoa, that was… I’m a bit lightheaded.” The boy Hawthorne was with exhaled, leaning onto the wall. “Imma go chill for a bit, but find me later, yeah? We need to finish…”

Hawthorne seemed to be paying no attention to him. “Shit! Dandy!”

Dandelion watched the guy stumble away. “Who was that?” He asked.

“No one!” Hawthorne’s voice rose up a few octaves. “I don’t know. No one that matters. Dandy, it’s not what it looks like. I didn’t actually sleep with him…”

“I think it’s exactly what it looks like. You have blood on your lips.” Dandelion pointed out.

“Listen, can we talk?” Hawthorne pleaded with him. “Outside… how come you’re even here?”

“I’ve got the key.” He told her, feeling worse and worse about his decisions from earlier that evening by the minute.

Her eyes widened. “No way! Holy fuck… ok, you’ve gotta come with me now… please?”

Dandelion sighed. He couldn’t have come all the way from Glimmerbrook for nothing. “Ok.”

“Look, a sprite!” Hawthorne whispered as they headed out.

Sure enough, he saw the fae fluttering before them. Bright purple once again.

“That’s gotta be a good sign, right?” Hawthorne grinned in the sprite’s direction.

16 thoughts on “1.71 Good Sign

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  1. Ahhh the intrigue! I kannot wait!
    Poor Dandy. First the confession, then the dinner, then developing kleptomania, now the discovery that Hawthorne drinks blood… (he doesn’t seem too surprised though, been there done that I guess?) What a ride for him. He can’t even throw himself a pity ball. Bummer.
    That aside Lulu looks spectacular and I am jealous. ><

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lmao developing kleptomania 😂 Hopefully the theft is a one time occurrence, haha. But you’re right, Dandelion’s not had the smoothest few months, has he? I suppose crashing a university students’ party is a bit like a budget variation of a pity ball 😆 Though I’m not sure if a ball is what would lift Dandy’s spirits anyway, as someone who spends most of their time in Sylvan Glade he’s not that big on crowds 😄

      I’m very pleased with L Faba’s makeover, glad you like it 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So that is why Lulu hated Cordelia from the moment the two of them met. Not because of her character or because she’s a human, but because of the key around her neck, and where it leads. Did L Faba and Dandelion come from beyond that door? Does it lead into a bigger world like Sylvan Glades? Is it Faba who made that realm for Dandy? Why does it need two keys to open, and why did Cordelia’s mother have one? Faba seems happy to be here, like she left a bad situation and took Dandelion with her when he was too young to remember. I wonder what happened.

    Oooh, interesting. So Hawthorne does have control issues. Maybe it’s only with people that she genuinely finds interesting… or maybe it’s only the really tasty ones? Hmm… her prey-of-the-day looks so much like your standard university jock my gods. xD

    GAH THE ENDING! Is that Alba?! How did they find Hawthorne?! What is she doing there did Verena send her or is she going out for revenge herself gaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh! I need to know! Next chapter, please! T.T

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Phew, that’s a lot of questions *breaks into a sweat* The one I can answer is yes, the key is the reason why L Faba hated Cordelia from the get go. The rest of the questions about Dandy and L Faba’s past… you’ll get an answer to all of those real soon.

      All vampires have preferences in terms of prey, some people they find more irresistible than others. Hawthorne may only be half vamp, but that still applies to some degree, whether it be lesser or the same, we don’t really know. As vamps get to experience their prey’s memories, it’s those memories and the mind that make the biggest difference in appeal, though other factors can play a role. Needless to say, Hawthorne was grossly incorrect about her feeding preferences when it comes to her targets during the first semester.

      It sure is. Maybe she’s just getting a degree at Britechester Uni, she needs to pass time somehow, after all 😛

      Like

  3. I like that Dandy is self-aware to realise his lack of planning but just thinks ‘aw well, can’t change who I am now’. I think that’ll bite you on the bum, sweetie. If Lulu doesn’t bite you first for stealing her key with your elfy magic. Let’s just hope that the keys aren’t the reason that L Faba and Cordelia are so hung up on Morgyn; I mean, Cordie did openly start to hate them after giving away her key. If Dandy starts gets gooey over the lacy-panted sage now he has that key, things are gonna get very disturbing. It would mean that Cordelia’s mother was once hung up on Morgyn as owner of a key. Ugh god, I hope this theory is wrong, but I’ll add it to all my other tinfoil hat ones.

    … Does Lulu remember her ascension ceremony? Or does she not because… she’s had some brain jiggery pokery happen/she’s not L Faba/it never happened? Wait, Dandy doesn’t know where he came from? As in where babies come from or where baby elves come from or where he actually comes from? * Scribbles furiously* Maybe there’s a fairy wonderland behind the door. Or some sort of portal to hell. Or a big machine randomly firing brand new baby elves into the sky to be caught and raised by random people.

    When I was younger, I used to do my makeup and hair before my shower. I’d hop in with half my eyeshadow case on my face and a can of hairspray dye in my hair, not brave enough to face the world like that, but knowing that for 5 minutes, until it all vanished down the drain, I looked *awesome*. I know that’s not what happened here but I’ll add it to my notes too because why the heck not; ‘L Faba is possibly a secret goth.’

    Dandy’s thought process changes right at the end of the scene, when he’s holding the key. Hmm. Darn. Hmm. I need a new pen.

    So… Hawthorne’s blood preference is sickly sweet with a side of sugar, then? Unless Chloe is also an elf. Who had a fun life. Maybe Hawthorne likes girls who dress like bananas. Or just girls, although Dandy is not a girl. Or is he? Oh goddess I don’t even know now. My head hurts. I’m with you Chloe, I can’t handle this much mystery either.

    Yesssss, Dandy is definitely acting out of character now. And ooh great! Another vampire has shown up! I forget her name, but wasn’t she the one who emptied people in the bakery? I wonder if she’ll take out a few students before she inevitably follows Hawthorne and Dandy to the door of doom to ensure maximum effing up of the situation.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I see you’ve got your tinfoil hat on, so many conspiracy theories!

      I think Dandelion knows he’s putting himself at a disadvantage, but even with his limited circle he’s been exposed to some very manipulative people, so he makes a conscious effort not to do that. It doesn’t particularly serve him to stick to his principles, though I suppose his approach is a marginal improvement from when he decided to yell at Verena 😀

      Lmao, elf baby firing machine, I’m dead XD I guess Dandy didn’t demand a birds and bees conversation from Cordelia when she got pregnant, so presumably he did not mean where babies came from in general… with that in mind he had to have appeared in Sylvan Glade somehow.

      Oh, I totally know what you mean. Who knows, maybe you’re right and L Faba is secretly a goth and all the pinks and purples are an elaborate cover up.

      Yep, Hawthorne’s preference is probably bananas. I was going to add something else but I’ll leave it there lol.

      Dandy’s completely out of his element in Britechester and at the party, so some unusual behaviour is a given. Do we even know what’s currently usual for him? We haven’t seen that much of him as a “grown up” yet.

      Mhm, bloodbath bakery lady returns. I don’t know if she’ll be offering you baumkuchen this time, but someone might. Ensuring maximum effing up of the situation is the exact energy we’re striving for here, haha.

      Like

  4. Dandy your question is as good as mine.

    Is that… resentment LFaba kinda expressed there for Dandy’s pure and trusting nature? I guess she and Lilith will make good friends lol. Now that we know LFaba knows something of Cordelia’s background, I wonder if she knows as much about the sprites and is quietly laughing behind Morgyn and Cordelia’s backs as they try to figure out Cordelia’s sprite problem. I’m leaning towards ‘no’ though because if she knew, she wouldn’t keep her key in that safe knowing that the sprites can spring it out like a jack in the box.

    Oh. Damn. I hope Chloe doesn’t die somewhere down the line. I like her too much. Don’t mind me I’m counting chickens even before the eggs are fertilized. K. Weird territory. Coming back to earth..

    Hopefully we get to see what’s going on with Faba and Dandy’s origins. Seems like there’s lots of mystery to cover in the last few chapters of season 1 BC. What if there’s no room for it!? Gah!

    rofl I’m instantly intrigued by the ‘grumpy student’. Hope he gets flying colors seeing as he’s not part of the ‘almost everyone’ group.

    Well, what great timing Dandy and Hawthorne has. I suppose its good that Dandy found out first than any of her parents. As far as they know, Hawthorne only takes fizzy plasma.

    Oooh Isn’t this that lady vamp from the dessert store? Alba? They’re the same person right? At least I think so. Does that mean we’ll finally see my other fav character? 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s definitely possible that it’s resentment. And now that you mention it, yes I could picture L Faba and Lilith getting along, weirdly. Good question, how much does L Faba actually know? All we can be sure of is that it’s more than she’s sharing, but that’s not a lot to go on, I know, haha.

      You guys and your doomsday scenarios. I’m sure there will be no problems whatsoever with Chloe and her vampy roommate who has just realised the potential appeal of Chloe’s blood.

      There aren’t many chapters left, but I can promise that you will be much wiser about Dandy and L Faba’s origins before the season is up.

      The grumpy student might just be the only one to pass, haha.

      This is true. Her parents’ reactions would have been… interesting. I suppose we’ll see if Dandelion decides to share his newfound knowledge with them.

      It is Alba, yes. As to what it means… who knows? Maybe the bakery didn’t pan out so she’s working towards a degree, and that’s all there’s to it 😀

      Like

  5. I am going to try and keep it together because I know there are more chapters to read but omfg!!!!!!!!

    First of all, hello to everyone’s outfits in this chapter. Seriously. L. Faba’s robe? Hawthorne’s jacket? Chloe’s top? Perfection.

    And Dandy returns looking like a snack.

    I loved getting his POV! There is an underlying mystery here about what went down between him and Lulu and between Lulu and Cordelia, but I feel like we’re getting closer! Interesting the way the “adults” have their own preoccupations with each and it keeps them from moving on. Dandy’s observation about the way everyone obsessed over Morgyn was particularly resonant.

    Okay, I’m so excited I’m immediately jumping into the next chapter!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Woop! I’m glad you like the clothes. I’m in love with Hawthorne’s entire wardrobe, she gets all the good stuff. I guess I’m just as guilty of spoiling her as her family are 😂 L Faba deserved an upgrade after all this time, I reckon. Dandy was the tricky one, because I needed something where I would have an at least vaguely similar version of his outfit with hood up and hood down. It was a challenge 😄

      Oh yes, Dandy is totally calling them out on the Morgyn fixation. Haha I like that you’re calling them “adults.” They should really get it together, they’re old enough, haha.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. That disclaimer 😂

    Faba looks beautiful, and so does her room! I’m disappointed that she still doesn’t talk to Dandy though. She probably thinks that he is safe anyway, won’t ever find out anything, but one can never know. And I think it would be smarter to tell him everything, not only to not ruin the last bit of relationship they may have.
    It’s sad to see how his excitement to see her faded into indifference.

    Hehe Hawthorne coming out of the wall closet and right in front of Dandy was certainly a highlight in this chapter 😁😁 As is Alba! 😈 I almost gave up seeing the vampires again kekeke

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha I have stopped disclaiming Hawthorne-related swearing after this one, I figured at this point, it’s a given.

      I like Faba’s room too! It’s very her, at least in my opinion. I did enjoy decorating the sages’ rooms 😊 Yes, it’s definitely not doing much for their relationship, though as you say their relationship is so strained at this point it may have well been beyond saving already. Oof, true, when we first meet them, Dandy was so excited to have Lulu re-enter his life… now, not so much.

      I never forgot about the vampires, even though it may have looked like it. It’s actually the exact opposite, I enjoyed them quite a bit so I decided to give them a much bigger role than originally intended, but oddly enough that meant they had to sit in the backburner for a bit. Which I figured was ok, since they didn’t know where to look for the magic ream, and they live forever, so 20 odd years is not that big of a deal, in the grand scheme of things…

      Liked by 1 person

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