Standing in the middle of a street party at Monsters University, Rachel was surrounded by people. Currently she was watching a Cyclops by the name of Al toss a smart car towards her.
Thankfully for Rachel, Al was a terrible shot and the smart car flew over and into a large brick building. Neither were damaged, the car bounced off the building and landed on its wheels in the yard.
“Wow. I guess depth perception really is important,” Rachel giggled.
Al’s eye grew wide and for a moment it looked like he was getting angrier, then he just laughed. His friends slowly joined in, unsure if they should.
“You’re funny,” said the large Cyclops. “I like you. What are you?” Anywhere else in the world that question would be rude. Here it seemed common, like asking what major you were in.
“Demi-God, and before you ask, I didn’t know my parents,” she said popping out one of her hips trying to look badass, but feeling awkward. She really hoped he didn’t ask her to prove it in some way.
“Probably not Greek, they never had much of a sense of humour.” With that, the gang of Cyclops walked away.
It mustn’t have worried the rest of the crowd; no one had paid attention and the music hadn’t even stopped. She guessed the combination of growing up around monsters and being at a university party made them completely unflappable. This would come in handy.
It was time for her to stop concentrating on being accepted and get to work. Almost exactly as she thought it, she heard a scream coming from down the street. It must have been extremely loud to be heard over the music. The crowd ignored it.
The scream was coming from two streets down between the wall of the football stadium and a row of small houses. There was no light in the grassy area but the moon. When she turned the corner she saw a small figure in a wheelchair screaming. The figure was the size and shape of a child.
Hovering over the child like figure was a tall beefy man with a long bushy beard. It wore a baggy plaid shirt and jeans. The shirt was snitched at the waist with a metal chain.
“Leave the kid alone!” She yelled as she ran towards them.
The man looked up at her and his eyes were glowing red, his teeth were sharp and brown from dried blood. His hands had long metal claws. “This child is up after seven. He is mine.” The man spoke an archaic form French that Rachel barely understood. “I am the Seven O’clock man and I always get my meal.”
Standing less than a few feet from the nauseating creature, Rachel grabbed a silver dagger with her left hand and one carved with Enochian runes in her right.
“Not this time,” she growled and dove at the monster. She really needed to work on her quips they were terrible.
The man was surprised at her attack and didn’t react fast enough to stop her from cutting his arm from shoulder to elbow. He screamed and tried to slash her with his good arm. She grabbed it and pulled him forward. As he was off balance, she sidestepped behind him and cut his throat. When that didn’t seem to kill him she plunged both daggers into its head.
She quickly cleaned her weapons and turned to the child. He had a beard. “Are you ok, kid?”
“I’m a graduate student in Metaphysical Transfiguration. I’m a Gnome, not a kid.” He watched her hands as she finished the ritual movements of cleaning her daggers. “I guess I’m next?”
“Why would I kill you? I just saved you.” She asked confused.
“I recognize a Huntress when I see one. Go ahead, kill me.”
“I’d rather not kill you,” she said.
“The last time this campus had a Huntress there were over a hundred deaths before she was caught and killed. If you don’t kill me, I have to tell the authorities that we have a batshit crazy killer running around.”
“I’m not a serial killer, I’m a demi-god,” she hoped that the lie would work. She didn’t want to kill the child-sized man in a wheelchair. “I only killed that thing because it was trying to eat you and I could hear your screams from two blocks over.”
“Oh. Sorry. My current condition makes me a little paranoid.” He pointed at the chair.
Having cleaned her weapons and then her hands with holy water, she reached out her hand to shake his. As they shook she said, “Rachel, Cryptozoology major.”
“Mind walking me back to my dorm? Looks like this party is attracting all kinds of attention.”
* * *
Hunting at night was easier after the first time. There wasn’t always a party and she often slipped into town to try and protect the locals. Her classes were another story completely. They were difficult and her teachers gave a lot of homework.
Every week she had six mandatory two hour classes, two four hour labs, and one optional class. For her optional class she had the choice between Magical History, Forgotten Mythology, and Divinatory Theory. She took the last one, hoping it might help her find what had killed her sister.
The teacher was a Hag, a race of women who were extremely ugly and had impressive amounts of magical power. They were what a Halloween witch was made to look like. Her matted grey hair and pointy chin bobbed up and down and she talked, “If you’re here in the hopes that I can teach you to get divinatory powers you’re sadly mistaken. This class will concentrate on the theory and history of divination, not it’s practice. Only one in a thousand have any sort of divinatory power and most of those only get gut feelings.”
That’s when Rachel saw someone sitting on a chair next to the teacher’s desk. It was the boy who’d almost gotten her killed. Dowan saw her looking at him and looked a little surprised before he winked at her. His eyes twinkled with mischief.
The teacher walked to the front of the class and stood in front of the chalkboard. Dowan followed her and stood next to her. A girl from the front row stood and joined them.
“Lift your hand if you see me,” the teacher ordered. Everyone lifted their hand and a few people giggled awkwardly.
“Lift your hand if you see me,” said the girl who was standing next to the teacher. Only half the class lifted their hand this time. There was some murmuring and confused giggles.
“Last but not least, lift your hand if you can see me in all my glory,” ordered Dowan. He obviously knew he was attractive.
Rachel rolled her eyes and lifted her hand. Looking around she saw that she and one other person had lifted their hand in a class of two-hundred students.