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Class Trip

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Fade in.

“Fucking cornfields.”

“Watch your language,” Kennedy advised. “There’s students around here somewhere.”

“Where?” asked Faith. “I don’t see any students.”

Kennedy looked around. Faith was right. Not only were there no students to be seen, there wasn’t anything else to be seen either—except for corn. There was plenty of corn, wherever you looked, obscuring one’s vision in every direction. “We must have gotten separated from the group somewhere.”

“Hey wait,” Faith said. “We’re the adult chaperones. The group got separated from us.”

Kennedy slipped between stalks of corn to look for the students in the next row over. “Whatever you say, dear.”

“And who goes on a fieldtrip to cornfields, anyway?” asked Faith. “Well, people learning about corn maybe. But we’re not learning about corn. We’re a P.E. class.”

“Well, it was your idea to take the class to slay Ejn’div demons,” Kennedy pointed out. “And Ejn’div are only found in cornfields.”

“Which is the first sign that it was a stupid idea. You’re supposed to stop me when I get stupid ideas.”

Kennedy shrugged. “Sometimes I like your stupid ideas.”

Faith looked at her girlfriend. “Well, we’re in an Iowa cornfield hunting demons and not only have not found any demons, we’ve lost our students. We’re completely alone and surrounded by cornstalks.”

Kennedy nodded. “Exactly,” she said with a meaningful look.

Realization dawned. “Right, then,” said Faith.

Fade out.

“Perhaps the most important thing that a Slayer can do is to be aware of her environment. In the hands of a Slayer, everything is a potential weapon if she only knows how to see it. This cuts both ways, however: the field of battle can prove to be itself just as dangerous to a Slayer as the individual foe she is facing.”

Chalmers, L., et al. The New Slayer’s Handbook. Revised ed. London: Watchers' Academy Press, 2012.

Fade in.

Faith’s pants were at her knees and Kennedy’s hands were between her legs when the first Ejn’div demon appeared. Things could have been worse, Kennedy (whose shirt and bra were hanging from a nearby cornstalk) supposed: it could have been a student.

The demon flew at the two of them, and it was all they could do to disentangle enough so that Faith could grab it by its beak. It flailed in her grasp, kicking and scratching with its sharp talons, and Kennedy slipped out of its range as quickly as possible, bending over to pick up the sleek katana off the ground.

Of course, the demon’s cries must have attracted its mates, for now two more demons swooped down. Kennedy parried her attacks with the katana, but it was all she could do to protect herself from their dangerous beaks and claws; she wasn’t able to manage a killing blow.

Meanwhile, Faith was holding the first demon’s beak with both hands as it flapped its wings wildly trying to break free. “I could do with a weapon myself here,” she pointed out.

Kennedy continued parrying the two demons attacking her with the katana as she slowly inched forward towards the other weapon on the ground—the battle axe Faith had brought. Moving slowly, cautiously, she finally managed to get close enough to slip her foot under it. Then—one, two, three, she counted silently—she kicked it up into the air. It landed square in the back of the demon Faith had been wrestling, piercing it between the shoulder blades. Faith let go of it, and it fell to the ground dead.

“Nice shot,” Faith said, pulling her axe out of the demon. Now that it was two on two, with both Slayers wielding weapons, the balance of power had shifted, and Faith and Kennedy made short work of the two remaining demons.

“Well, that answers the question of where the demons were,” Kennedy commented. “I wonder whether any of the others found any yet.”

“Maybe we should find them, find out how they are doing,” Faith suggested, looking both ways down the long row of corn. Still no one in sight—a good thing, as both Slayers were still in various states of undress.

“Nah,” said Kennedy. “I think we were in the middle of something?”

Fade out.

“For thousands of years, Slayers fought alone. Recent events have caused this logic to be revised, however. Teamwork is able to create solutions in situations where one Slayer working by herself would have failed. Regardless of whether she is fighting alongside other Slayers or simply well-trained humans, a Slayer should learn to anticipate her teammates' needs. The ability to communicate effectively may be the difference between a battle lost and a battle won.”

Chalmers, L., et al. The New Slayer’s Handbook. Revised ed. London: Watchers' Academy Press, 2012.

Fade in.

Sixteen girls and seven boys stood in the remains of what used to be an Ejn’div nest, surrounded by hundreds of dead carcasses of what used to be Ejn’div demons. “What do we do now?” asked Shoshona, a heavy-set Slayer who still held her crossbow in her hand.

“Maybe we should try and find Faith and Kennedy,” another Slayer suggested. “I mean, it’s been, what? Over four hours now?"

"More like six," another student, not a Slayer, interjected.

"It has to be safe by now.”

Shoshona shrugged. “Jerry?” she asked.

Jerry closed his eyes and concentrated, sending his mind out into the cornfields in search of the two senior Slayers. “Nope,” he said. “Not yet.”

Fade out.