OT: By The Book

on February 1, 2013 in Other Tales

The MPLHC had held no more meetings in the spring of 179, not after the one that ended in anger and recrimination. The individual members had not gone so far as to explicitly shun one another, though many of them did not even see each other casually as often as they had before.

Outwardly, the relationship between Jennifer and Melanie did not appear to have been sundered, but still they did not speak much in the final days of the semester. It was only the day before their coach trip back east when Jennifer sought out the older girl’s company. As it happened, she found her just outside her own dormitory. Melanie had been on her way to see her… if they’d left off reconciliation for any longer, circumstance would have thrust them together, anyway. She preferred to make up before then.

Jennifer couldn’t disagree with that sentiment, but she’d sought her out for a different reason. She had a question that she needed to ask.

“Have you seen Samuel?”

“A bit,” Melanie said. “It isn’t like before, but he hasn’t left campus, nor has he dropped completely out of sight.”

“But have you spoken to him?”

“Only a little,” Melanie said. “He… doesn’t have much to say to me, at the moment. But he says he won’t be like this forever. He just needs some time to himself.”

“Well, he’s about to have it,” Jennifer said. “Seeing as he’s going to be spending the summer on the grounds and we’re all going home. I’d think he could put on a friendly face for a few days, for your sake.”

“Samuel puts on so many faces for others,” Melanie said. “It must be terribly wearying, I shouldn’t like him to need to do it for us.”

“Well, when you have seen him, has he said anything more about my diary?”

“No… well, yes, but nothing new,” Melanie said. “He’s disappointed that you’ve written about him, and I think fearful, though he doesn’t say so.”

“I ask because it’s turned up missing today.”

“Your diary? Oh, no… could you have misplaced it?”

“Couldn’t have and didn’t,” Jennifer said. “I follow a very careful routine when it comes to handling my diary. Somebody took it.”

“Who do you… oh! Surely you can’t believe Samuel would…”

“Why not?” Jennifer asked. “He and Eugene are pretty much my only suspects, and he’s the one who’s always making a point of sneaking in and out of buildings.”

“Right, he does sneak into buildings he’s not supposed to be in, but he’s never broken into a person’s room before. I mean, when we weren’t there.”

“That we know of,” Jennifer said. “He’s certainly capable of it.”

“Physically… but not morally.”

“I’m not saying Samuel’s not a good guy, Melanie, but you know he’s not exactly restrained by what other people think is right and wrong,” Jennifer said.

“No, but he is restrained by what he thinks is right and wrong,” Melanie said.

“And if he thinks that me writing about him in my diary is somehow a betrayal of his privacy, or a threat to him?” Jennifer asked. “Would he really think it wrong to do something about it?”

“I’d think he’d beg you to destroy it, or at least the relevant pages,” Melanie said. “Stealing it from you… well, then nothing stops you from writing it all down again. Or telling people. If you really think he would be that coldly self-serving, at least credit him with the intelligence to understand it would serve him poorly to alienate you.”

“I might have an easier time giving him that credit if he wasn’t so busy alienating himself from all of us,” Jennifer said.

“He feels that he’s been alienated,” Melanie said. “We… I mean, you and I particularly… really left him poleaxed. And anyway, you said he’s not the only suspect… though, why would Gene steal your diary?”

“I don’t know, because it’s evidence?” Jennifer said. “Honestly, I don’t think it’s likely to be him. I’m just trying to be fair to Samuel by not immediately jumping to the conclusion that he’s the one who took it. But the only people who knew my diary exists were in that conference room with us. I know you and Julia wouldn’t have taken it…”

“You don’t know that, though,” Melanie said. “I mean, any more than you know that Samuel would have. How can you be sure I wouldn’t have stolen it to protect him? Maybe I would have.”

“You didn’t, though,” Jennifer said. “And if you’d wanted to, how would you have managed it?”

“Yes, alright, but my point is that you are jumping to conclusions,” Melanie said. “After all, you have a roommate. And she must have friends. There are people in and out of your room who don’t need to sneak through the hallways or open a lock to do so.”

“But why would any of them have stolen my diary?”

“Beause it’s a diary,” Melanie said. “That sort of thing can make a person curious. Maybe they didn’t mean to take it when they first picked it up, but simply flipped through it and then saw something too explosive to be left alone…”

“It’s not as though I leave it sitting out in the open,” Jennifer said. “Youngest of four, remember? That little book is all the privacy I’ve ever had, and I’ve learned how to protect it. Anyway, if someone had found something unexpected and shocking in it, I would expect them to either confront me with it, or else spread it around. The fact that neither has happened is why I think the person who took it knew what was in it. So Samuel or Eugene. If it’s Eugene, I expect we’ll find out on Wednesday at the latest. But I really doubt it’s him.”

“And how sure are you that it’s not Julia?”

“Why would Julia take my diary?”

“Maybe to see if you’d said anything about her in it,” Melanie said.

“What? She knows I wouldn’t be trashing her behind her back,” Jennifer said, distraught at the idea. “She has to know that.”

“I didn’t say anything bad,” Melanie said. “But maybe she just wants to know what you really think of her.”

“She knows that!”

“Does she?”

“If she doesn’t, I would have trusted her to ask me instead of sneaking behind my back,” Jennifer said. “To say nothing of stealing my most cherished possession. Anyway, she knew I kept a diary before the meeting, I’m pretty sure. So why would she suddenly be curious enough to swipe it? The timing says it was someone at the meeting.”

“Does it, though?” Melanie said. “I mean, I assume you didn’t find it missing directly after Samuel disappeared.”

“No, just today,” Jennifer said. “I haven’t written in it for a couple of days… I only went to get it from its hiding place so I could pack it in the bottom of my suitcase.”

“So maybe that’s why it’s gone now,” Melanie said. “The end of the year… it means it’s the thief’s last chance to grab it for months, and it gives you less time to try to track her down.”

“You’re still assuming it’s a girl who took it.”

“Well, you live with a girl in a building full of girls,” Melanie said. “And as I see no reason to assume it was Samuel who took it, it seems most likely that the thief was female.”

“I came looking for you to see if you knew anything about what Samuel had been up to,” Jennifer said. “And it seems the answer is no. But even without knowing anything about his activities outside of going to class, you’re still sure he has nothing to do with my missing diary.”

“Because I know him!”

“Because you love him!” Jennifer said. “And you don’t want it to be him.”

“I don’t want it to be anyone,” Melanie said. “And I love you, Jennifer, but I do agree it was silly to write another person’s private matters down where anyone could come along read it.”

“Are you taking his side against me now to make up for siding against him at the meeting?” Jennifer asked.

“Don’t you dare,” Melanie said. “This isn’t about sides, it’s about… safety.”

“And it’s not like I was reckless about it. His secrets were as safe as my own… right up until the day he found out about my diary. If I hadn’t mentioned it at the meeting, the words in that diary might as well just have been words in my head. I mean, that’s the point of a diary. It helps me sort out what I’m thinking, what I’m feeling. Asking me not to write about something that’s happening in my life is like asking me not to think about it.”

“Well, it’s moot now… whatever damage you’ve done is in all likelihood already done,” Melanie said. “And maybe that’s why you want to believe it was Samuel… because if he was simply stealing his secrets back, then there’s really no harm done.”

“No harm done? That’s my diary… whole months of my life are written on those pages,” Jennifer said.

“And Samuel’s whole life could be in danger because of them.”

“What about my life? He’s not the only one with secrets,” Jennifer said.

“Being a lesbian is not like being a half-demon!”

“Say that a bit louder and we’ll find out how different they actually are!”

“I’m sorry,” Melanie said. “I’m honestly sorry, Jennifer, but I still think you’re wrong about Samuel. Though… unless you stumble over it in your closet or something like that, I hope you never find out otherwise. If it isn’t simply lost among your things, I hope it stays missing.”

“I do, too,” Jennifer said. “If it isn’t in Samuel’s hands. But if you see him before tomorrow, ask him point blank if he has it. And if he says no, tell him I want to see him.”

“What will you do?”

“The same,” Jennifer said. “But I trust myself to spot if he’s lying. I think he’s less likely to lie to you, though.”

“You aren’t even allowing for the possibility that he could be telling the truth, if he says he doesn’t have it?”

“Of course I am,” Jennifer said. “You think I’m convinced it’s him, but I’m not… I wouldn’t need to ask him I was sure. Anyway, I have to finish packing, and I’m sure you have things you need to do.”

“Oh, Jennifer… we aren’t going to stay cross at each other all summer, are we?”

“No, I don’t even plan on being ticked at you through the trip back,” Jennifer said. “I don’t need months or even days to lick my wounds, but we’re not going to make things better between us standing here and arguing. So you’ll go back to your room, I’ll go back to mine, and we’ll see each other tomorrow. And unless my diary turns up in my room somehow or Samuel comes clean to you, we won’t say anything about it until we’re back in Anonymity and we have room to stomp away from each other. If we have to.”

“That’s… actually really sensible,” Melanie said.

“Youngest of four,” Jennifer said. “It teaches you how to be mad at someone you love, and to love someone you’re mad at. And how to manage the practical side of life while doing so.”

“Anyway, Samuel isn’t licking his wounds… he’s just got a lot on his mind,” Melanie said. “He says he’s beginning to reconsider how he manages his secrets.”

“If that doesn’t sound like thinking about how to collect and destroy evidence…”

“Thinking about, maybe, but he hasn’t decided anything yet,” Melanie said. “I haven’t had much time face-to-face with Samuel lately, believe me, I know the difference between when he’s pondering something and when he’s made up his mind to act. A resolved Samuel might be capable of… well, many things… but he’s a deep thinker, steady and slow. He might do something drastic, but he wouldn’t do it rashly.”

“You know, I actually believe you… I mean, I believe your estimation of him,” Jennifer said. “I think he could lie to you, but I don’t think he can hide himself from you. But I’m telling you, I didn’t just lose my diary in my laundry hamper. So if he hasn’t stolen it…”

“I’ll warn him that it’s missing,” Melanie said.

“That’s a good idea,” Jennifer said. “And I’ll ask Julia to ask Eugene, I think she intimidates him.”

“You intimidate him, too,” Melanie said. “He’s not sure what to make of either of you. I’m sorry we’ve quarreled.”

“But I’m glad we’ve talked,” Jennifer said. “See you tomorrow.”

“Yes… you, too.”

They hugged and then parted, Jennifer heading back into the building and Melanie heading off towards hers. Jennifer was surprised to find the door to her room unlatched when she got there… her roommate had already moved out for the semester, so the only ones with a key were the dorm mother and herself. She really expected to see Samuel sitting on her bed, so that was where she looked as she stepped through the door… her gaze instead fell on the familiar leather cover of her diary, with a note sitting on top of it.

She didn’t feel any relief at the sight, because she could tell at a glance that the cover was not sitting right… someone had torn out a whole chunk of pages, and even before she grabbed it up and flipped it open, she knew it would be the section concerning the current school year.

She snatched the fallen note. The stationery was hers, the ink might have been from the pen sitting on her desk, but it was written in a spiky hand she didn’t recognize.

All it said was:

Thanks, little lady.

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46 Responses to “OT: By The Book”

  1. tigr says:

    Eeep, creepy! wonder if that was The Man !? Ominous ending to the year… I do hope we get to hear more about them, I love this detour from Mack&Co 🙂

    Current score: 1
  2. mareng9 says:

    Simply put, this piece gave me chills. Well done.

    Current score: 1
  3. Not her the other girl says:

    “Little lady” totally makes me think it’s The Man. Also, ditto the love for this detour.

    Current score: 0
    • tomclark says:

      I actually find that very doubtful, simply due to a question of motive. What need would he have to do something like that? Do they know anything–about Samuel or about The Man–that The Man doesn’t already know?

      Current score: 0
    • Author_Unknown says:

      Everyone seems to be forgetting what year this story is set in. They still have segregated libraries for gods sake. “Little Lady” is probably still something in common use by the male population.

      Current score: 0
  4. pedestrian says:

    Automatically we suspect Demon Daddy but remember the new wards were suppose o be effective in keeping him off campus? Unless those have been relaxed for the end of semester, it does not seem reasonable that DD could be the person who got hold of the diary.

    Unless the wards are powered by/maintained by personal attention of trained enchanters, who have left the campus? Or somehow been corrupted?

    Unless someone who knows of the club and has some knowledge of DD’s behavior/mannerisms is working for DD? I have always been of the opinion that during Our Mack’s time, DD has had agents/sympathizers/blackmail victims on campus and continues to covertly manipulate events.

    How come we have never see any Diabolists freelancer/students/staff apparently interacting with Mackenzie? Or Samuel? Khersis, if just to do a thesis or research hybrids. Religious militant orders fighting demons would certainly have an interest in learning about their favorite enemy.

    Or, someone with information about the Club and their research trying to intimidate Jennifer? For whatever unknown motivation they might have, say someone working for LAW.

    Or, someone maybe Eugene, maybe not, is tossing in a red herring to confuse the issues and muddle the evidence.

    Current score: 0
    • Ducky says:

      Samuel keeps his heritage quiet a hell of a lot better than Mack (pun only slightly intended). Nobody would be approaching him, simply because they don’t know about him.

      I was wondering about the wards too, though.

      Current score: 0
      • Morten says:

        Re: Wards – Maybe dwarven tunnels? Or The Man just found a way through. He ain’t dumb.

        Current score: 0
        • Hasufin says:

          I’d consider it possible – even probable – that the wards were *never* effective. The Man recognized that they were meant to stop him and, having no pressing need to enter the campus, he let the school believe they were secure.

          As to who it was.. well.

          We can rule out any members of the MPLHC – it simply doesn’t fit with any of them in a number of ways.

          It wasn’t the Law, since they’d have simply requisitioned it and let her know it was her duty as a citizen, etc.

          It might have been some other student, but it’s doubtful that there’d be a random student who would want it, know about it, and be able to find it.

          “Little Lady” does seem somewhat consistent with The Man’s known modes of address. The question is, how did he know of the diary? My best guess is, he was compromising the dreams of one of the MPHLC, possibly Samuel.

          Current score: 0
    • Time Kitten says:

      The wards have likely improved over the years… but we do know they can’t keep him out of dreams at the very least.

      Current score: 0
      • XSanguine8 says:

        In Mack’s time the wards let up if you have a valid school ID, I think, could be that the only thing that keeps “The Man” out is the pain of the probe spell that checks your status…he has shown he can handle pain though…

        Current score: 0
        • zeel says:

          In the new campus there isn’t a wall, and their are not all encompassing wards on the campus. The paths are warded, though whether they are triggered by a demon is unknown (no issue for Mackenzie). The town is the thing that they need the ID to enter.

          The Man could walk onto campus without a problem, at least as long as nobody figures out what he is.

          Current score: 0
      • Lunaroki says:

        We also know that The Man or someone working for him has at least once physically invaded Mack’s room in her time. Remember the spiked bath salts or whatever it was that relaxed the inhibitions of anyone who breathed the vapors? Mack’s bath supplies were right in her room up until she used them that day, but somehow they got tampered with and it caused not only Mack and Feejee to more strongly desire to act on their impulses but it also affected every girl out in the hallway. Even Dee was affected by it, though she fought it with admirable self-restraint.

        Current score: 0
    • Nightshade says:

      excluding the obvious…Who’s to say “THE MAN”, has ever left the campus ? Those wards would still be in place and enhanced by the time Mack, arrived on campus. (Just MHO.) Or perchance,a certain “Dr. Embries’… Hmmm?

      Current score: 0
      • adsfadsfadfs says:

        he said it’d be dangerous for them to meet and maybe he could arrange for the two of them to pass on a street one day.

        he nailed the paladin to the gate from the outside, killed him outside ect. he isn’t sealed within the wards. he is strong enough to mostly avoid eating females and survive triggering wards and handling the healer’s blessed silver armor he probably got a way around them after having time for a good look

        Current score: 0
      • Ducky says:

        Then how exactly did he statutory rape Laurel Ann?

        Current score: 0
  5. adsfadsfadfs says:

    its the demon in the woods obviously.

    Current score: 0
  6. Jalben says:

    I’m thinking The Man may have hired Mercy.

    Current score: 0
    • CLT says:

      I don’t think so, based on the ‘spiky’ hand writing, as well as the words chosen. Keep in mind that Mercy is some type/percent elven, meaning above human motor skills, and probably a least some time spent learning among elves. Leading to a very high likelihood of a more flowing script than spiky.

      On the other hand, ‘Little Lady’ seems like a nickname that The Man might give, given previous known encounters. And men tend to have rougher handwriting than do women, so the spiky description could lean towards a male figure.

      Of course, I could be trying to derive too much from such a simple description and phrase.

      Current score: 0
      • Zukira Phaera says:

        Mercy is a grey elf, which both above and below ground elves both try to pretend never existed because they are nominally (except for Mercy) extinct. The dark and light elves both say they can’t cross breed

        Current score: 0
    • Anne says:

      I doubt that! Somehow I don’t think that their interests coincide enough for him to ever trust her.

      Current score: 0
      • pedestrian says:

        Mercy may be as crazy as cocoa puffs but she seemed too clever by half to get herself linked to DD.

        Any such connection would get her unwanted official nosy parkers rooting around in her knickers.

        Current score: 0
      • Lunaroki says:

        If the Man and Mercy were in cahoots there’s no way he’d let her waste his precious daughters in her misguided efforts to breed a race of half-demons. No, clearly the Man and Mercy are working on contradictory agendas. Any meeting between the two of them would be immensely interesting.

        Current score: 0
      • Marian says:

        Not to mention that it is rather unlikely that Mur-si is already around the town. I believe there was something about a suicide mission during the chaos wars to earn amnesty and all that …

        Current score: 0
    • Daez says:

      I don’t think they were working together on this, but…. I knowit’sit’s assumed that Samuel is the demon killed in the riots…. but do we actually KNOW that? Because… now I may be grasping at straws here but…. Eugene Harlow is a student. Eventuality a dorm for non-human students is established, and we know The Administration is not above scapegoating. So what if Samuel is one of Mercy’s pets, one of her boys, and the death of Eugene (assumed eventual death, Anyway) was… what if our half-demon was scapegoated as him being the half-demon? We know nothing about Mercy’s boys except that they are male, so…. what if?

      Sorry if this has been suggested before, but this is my first time reading these and it’s presumably all since been solved but I wanted to voice that for fun, anyway! 🙂

      Current score: 0
  7. 'Nym-o-maniac says:

    “Thanks, little lady.”

    Oh shiiiiiittttt. Only one person we know who talks like that… or one Man, rather…

    Current score: 0
  8. Getting Annoyed says:

    The story is nice as background I guess but I’m really getting annoyed with this “detour”. I started reading Tales of Mu for the story of Mack and her life and friends. This “detour” had just gotten to be a story about college kids with some problems and really could be the same as any college, even in real life. The draw of AE’s writing for me at least, has been the strangeness, the half demons, The Man, Amy, Steff and Two. Bring them back.

    Current score: 0
    • P says:

      Yeah, one of the friends I made my first year in college was part demon too. There’s not much benefit to me reading about something that close to my own life.

      Current score: 0
      • Kevin Brown says:

        Had a roommate you would swear was full demon if you woke him up to early.

        Current score: 0
      • Getting Annoyed says:

        The point I meant by saying:

        “This “detour” had just gotten to be a story about college kids with some problems and really could be the same as any college, even in real life”

        was that Samuel might be a half demon but other than basically a reference to the demon that spoke with him, there is nothing that couldn’t happen at any college in the world. Samuel has never done anything demonic or caught fire or had issues with being a half demon like Mack has had. The main characters other than Samuel are four humans whose most interesting traits are that they are friends with a half demon that has been threatened by a full demon. Mack has halflings, kobolds, nymphs, elves, dark elves and an emancipated golem for friends. To me, that is what set ‘Tales of Mu’ apart from any other stories on the Internet. That was the draw of this story among all the other writing online. Before this “detour” the ‘Other Tales’ at least were either short stories that had to do with fairly benign things like how Mack’s mom met her demon dad, one off stories in the form of mythology or background in the world, or had to deal with Jamie, another student in an interesting situation with a Iason. Now its like AE wants to not write so much fantasy with all the different races and such but like a story about human college kids and their problems.

        Current score: 0
        • Whataslacker says:

          I have to agree. While I like this story, I miss the gang. But then again I have been missing the gang for a very long time. This entire school year just hasn’t been that great. I miss the interaction of the group. I miss the sex. It was a huge part of year one and now it has gone away. Only time there is any action it is way too vanilla these days. Personally, I want MU back, but OLD MU.

          Current score: 1
  9. readaholic says:

    Dun dadundun!

    Possibilites – the Imp(erial)s, The Man via magic, The Man with assistance from inside (willingly/tricked/spelled). I doubt it’s Samuel or Eugene, as they wouldn’t know The Man’s characteristic way of speaking. The Imps might, and this would be a way for them to warn off the students from a very powerful enemy without obviously doing so.

    However, The Man has already demonstrated the magical ability to interfere inside the wards in the MU story, so I’d say he’s the most likely suspect. Although why he’d give himself away like that I don’t know.

    Current score: 0
  10. Kevin Brown says:

    Isn’t there a ward to keep demons out of the material plane existing between the infernal and material plane? Any demon that can get past that could eventually get past school wards.

    Current score: 0
  11. Greywalker says:

    I am thinking that this came from Law, not DD. I also have this crazy thought that if Law has a society/group/bureau/whatever-you-call-it, then why can’t Chaos? A group of covert Chaos agents secretly spreading small, and sometimes large, swathes of chaos throughout the lands. Maybe one of them has been watching this little group and found a good time to strike.

    Current score: 0
    • pedestrian says:

      If KAOS is running loose, how soon will Agent Maxwell Smart and Agent 99 will be in hot pursuit?

      Or is this trope about to spin out of CONTROL?

      Current score: 0
    • Burnsidhe says:

      Law in this context refers to a specific arm of the government, the equivalent of the USA’s ‘Three Letter Agencies’; CIA, FBI, NSA.

      It does NOT refer to the collection of archetypal principles that make up elements of philosophy.

      Current score: 0
      • Greywalker says:

        Yes, I was referring a little to both. When I was stating “Law”, I was referring directly to the group that not only gave Callahan her “pardon”, but the same group who investigated the campus after the death of the swan princess. The one that gave the pardon to Callahan in one of the previous side stories stated that for all intents and purposes, he was Law (referring to the group).

        I was also making reference that since this organization exists, and seems to be a collection of behind-the-scenes, extremely ‘lawful good’ types, with probably more than a few ‘lawful evil’ ones for good measure, why can’t there be a hidden organization of the more ‘chaotic’ aligned people. Ones who would see the Man as a good thing, as something to foster and assist. Scary to me… but oh the possibilities…

        Current score: 0
        • Burnsidhe says:

          … Where do you see Law as being ‘Lawful Good?’ They’re not. They’re far from it. They kill, assassinate, prosecute and convict innocents, and don’t hesitate to throw someone under the carriage all in the name of keeping the Empire stable. They carry out spying operations. As an organization, maybe it’s ‘Lawful Neutral’. But there are many ‘chaotics’ in it.

          The agent who talked to Mackenzie as much as said, that if it were necessary for the Empire to blame her for the murder, they would. They’re pragmatic, not Good.

          Current score: 0
          • That one guy says:

            No, they are The Law, they have specific permission to kill, assassinate, prosecute and convict innocents. They can do all that and still remain lawful in alignment because they have specific permission to do so. The organization itself is probably Lawful Neutral and everyone in it is probably no more than one step away. Chaotic people are just too, well, chaotic. You want people who will follow orders, even when they don’t agree with those orders.

            Current score: 0
    • zeel says:

      Law wouldn’t have snuck in and taken it, they would have walk up and demanded she hand it over. And as a good citizen she would.

      They also would not have given it back, or left a note.

      Current score: 0
  12. bubble says:

    I don’t think we know exactly what keeps demons in the pit. I think it’s been mentioned they need to be summoned from the mortal plane. Presumably not by another demon.
    We really don’t know much about them, and the tid bits we get from MU religious books can’t exactly be trusted.
    My guess is that he is just a really bloody old n powerful demon. Human wards probably only annoy him.

    Current score: 0
  13. Ermarian says:

    The Man? Don’t the wards keep him from entering the school grounds?

    On the other hand, I can’t imagine anyone else who’d gloat like this. It’s poor tactics – she was already suspecting Samuel before the diary was returned, and without the note, that suspicion would have increased further since the missing part was exactly the part he wanted gone.

    Adding the note made it immediately clear that someone else took it.

    Current score: 0
  14. Arisu says:

    Not Lawful good, or Lawful evil,
    Just Lawful practical.

    Yep, sounds like a government agency.

    Current score: 0
  15. Joshua says:

    Typo: “I wouldn’t need to ask him I was sure” probably should be “if I was sure”?

    Current score: 0
  16. Mr. Unicorn says:

    I am honestly amazed that no one seems to have considered Ariadne Einhorn yet. And this is not a spoiler, I just now read this chapter.

    Current score: 0
  17. Lara says:

    Oh my god, so good. Yet another chapter that has had me freaking out out loud.

    Current score: 0