“They will be attracted to you, but it is not love,” said the headmistress. The class of young girls, just across the cusp of puberty, still uncomfortable with new breasts and new feelings, watched her pace between the desks.
“They have a responsibility – no, an attachment to their Dark Lady. They will smile at you, and court you. They will promise you the moon and the night eternal, but they will always serve Her. They will never leave Her.”
“Perdonious is different,” Nancy hissed after class, as she and Jasmine balanced their training stakes and books down the crowded hallway. “He really cares about me.”
Jasmine looked at her friend.
“He does. He didn’t just promise me the moon and night eternal” – Nancy’s impression of the Headmistress was uncanny – “he loves me like he has loved no other.”
Jasmine had never argued with Nancy when she got like this. There was nothing to do but smile and nod, to try to change the conversation at the first opportunity.
But she still felt sad when Nancy disappeared that night, and again when the drained husk of Nancy’s body was found days later.