But Ernestine doesn’t really listen, which is why she hasn’t locked her wrist when she punches Iala’s mouth. The fight goes quickly floorwards, and ends more quickly still, as teachers wade into Iala’s piled-on entourage: clammers deep in shrieking surf. When they finish prying, everyone’s silent about who hit whom; but there are twenty-six vengeful eyes on one side of the hallway, and one hurt wrist on the other.
Proserpina hears only later, thirdhand. Leaving her dorm to investigate, she finds Iala in her way.
“I need you to teach us some things,” Iala says, fat-lipped, bright-eyed.