Arcanum stepped onto the elevator and pressed the button to go to his floor.
The world Arcanum lived in was, in its original and current usage, a school campus. It had been created in a pocket world away from everyone else, and as the need for space grew, it naturally grew to accommodate the people who lived there. It was so large by the time Arcanum had arrived that there were parts of it that hadn’t seen a student or teacher in decades.
Normally, Arcanum made it his business to search out these places and claim them for himself. There were hundreds of floors, even more room and space away from the center elevator and Arcanum enjoyed nothing more then studying the magical artifacts the centuries old school hid.
As the elevator flew down the shaft, he sighed and shook his head. He had no idea who was killing these students, but he knew it had to stop. Arcanum thought about it a little more and tried to find a common thread between the five murders was that they were all fairly powerful magi, each of them was leading in their field in fact.
Arcanum looked up at the door as it opened slowly as a soft glowing figure walked into the elevator, surprised to see Anja Teja as his traveling partner. Anja was a half angel, and easily one of the most attractive people Arcanum had ever met.
“Going down,” he asked her, a wry smile on his face. It was no secret between the two of them that he was half demon and he took any opportunity he could to laugh at humans’ frail beliefs of the afterlife. She smiled back and said, “Not too deep tonight sadly, I have a class meeting to attend and after that I’m due in the research lab.” Anja had blonde hair that went down to the small of her back, though she kept it in a pony tail most of the time. Her voice was like velvet upon silk and every guy, and some girls, wanted her to themselves. Arcanum however was not in the habit of wanting people, and even though he was attracted to her, he was content to talk to her.
Not a friend, he often thought to himself, but a valuable colleague, and that’s what she needs to stay.
Anja shifted in position, “We need to talk sometime soon Arcanum, we need to discuss this killer.” Arcanum closed his eyes and sighed, “Look, like I told Principal Alvin…” She cut him off and said, “I know what you told him; I’m telling you that we haven’t told him everything.” Arcanum looked at her, opening one eye, “Well, share with me, by all means.”
Anja swirled her fingers in a circle and two chairs and tea appeared, the latter floating in mid-air as she spoke, “We’ve been telling him that nobody has any information, it’s not true. We know that the killer is seen, but for some reason, as soon as the victim is stabbed, everyone within thirty feet simply…forgets what they saw of the killer.”
Arcanum nodded, saying, “That matches what my Intel says as well. I think I might be able to find out how they’re doing this, who…I’ll get to who later.” Arcanum moved to look out the window and said, “Looks like we’re stopping here.” Anja jumped from her position on the wall and said, “What?!” Arcanum analyzed her with a cold eye and said, “We’re on the thirteenth floor…Do you know who lives here?’
Anja nodded and said, “I heard she uses this floor to do experiments to further her studies…”
Arcanum touched the door and said, “She does…I only hope she’s away for now.” Anja looked at him curiously and said, “Why’s that? Does she take her experiments with her?’ He shook his head and said, “There are worse things than fighting an army of hungry undead.”
“Oh? Like what”?
The door to the elevator opened and a low moan seeped into the room. Arcanum raised his eyebrow and walked out of the door saying, “It appears as though we’ve been invited.” Anja followed him and said, “By who?” He raised his hand and said, “Producto Produxi Productum.” A small orb of light opened up in Arcanum’s palm and floated in the middle of the hallway and he started walking forward. At the very edge of the light, a small person shambled toward him.
The person was clearly unhealthy, possible even on the verge of death. Arcanum wondered how he could even move, when two more people, just as frail as the first. He narrowed his eyes and said, “Candeo” and the light grew brighter. Immediately, Arcanum could see dozens of the same thin figures walking toward him, their moans growing louder and louder until they were screaming at him.
The first figure launched itself straight up, grabbing the ceiling and crawling, leg over arm toward him, though when he looked at it, Arcanum couldn’t even see anything to grab, let alone crawl along.
All of the other figures jumped along the walls and ceiling, practically flying toward them. Anja walked up beside Arcanum and said, “I think I know who invited us…” The first figure reached them and its arms turned into shining metallic blades as it fell from the ceiling. As it fell, it slashed at Arcanum, clipping his face on its way down and he scoffed in annoyance. His wound healed before he even had time to bleed and he spoke again, “Glacialas Iaculator,” and dozens of ice spears appeared, forming outward from the light source and shot out, striking the dark figures over and over, knocking them from the walls and ceiling.
The figure closest to Arcanum fell to the ground and lay still. Down the corridor, all of the figures lay perfectly still, as though they were all dead. A gentle female voice spoke, resonating loudly through the hall, “Resurrectio!”
All of the figures stood up, the ice spears still sticking out of their vital points. The voice spoke again, “Prodeo!”
The bodies stood alert and began marching forward again, grasping for Arcanum and Anja. The Undead started moving faster until Anja raised both her hands toward them and said, “Angelus Signum!”
The whole corridor was filled with a warm soothing light and the Undead stopped moving.
The voice came from the back of the hall again, “Prodeo…Prodeo…Prodeo god damn it!”
When the Undead refused to move, the source of the voice pushed her way through the corpses saying the whole time, “Resurrectio, for the love of god, Resurrectio!” A girl pushed into Arcanum’s field of vision and said, “You’d better have a damn good reason to be here Anja!”
Anja rolled her eyes and said, “I was on my way to an important meeting. You stopped the elevator, not me.”
The girl said, “Yeah, I stopped it so I could spend some time with my Arcanum.”
One of Anja’s eyes twitched subtly and she said, “Your Arcanum?” The girl smiled deviously and jumped on Arcanum and kissed his neck, trying to get to his lips.
Anja rolled her eyes and said, “Liberatio.” The undead around them began to fall to the floor and soon they were all down; at the same time, the girl fell off of Arcanum.
“Sarah, you can’t just stop people on their way for no reason,” Anja said. Sarah stood up and shook her head shyly and said, “I wanted to actually hire you Arcanum…”
He raised an eyebrow and said, “Hire? For what?” Sarah stepped toward him and put her hand on his shoulder, pulling him a little closer, and said, “I’d love for you to accompany me on a little mission to the far reaches of the school, I’m looking for a tome.” She snapped her fingers and six zombies got up and walked straight for Anja. Behind her the door to the elevator opened and they picked her up and threw her into the room and she said, “You should give me a chance, I can make you feel amazing Arcanum.”
Ignoring her statement he walked back to the elevator and said, “I’ll consider the job. If I decide I want to work with you, I’ll have a member of the guard contact you.”
Sarah pouted and stuck her tongue out at Anja as the elevator closed and said to herself, “God, now I’m gonna have to go to my room now, just being around him gets me so damn hot.”