There are too many people here, too many people involved. Being the Slayer, carrying the Mantle, means keeping things as secret as possible. It means doing your work under cover of night. It means deceiving your friends and family, hiding who you truly are. It means huge responsibility at a tender age, responsibility that most never know in a lifetime. Jennifer Matlow, the Slayer here in Carlisle, appears to have told too many people her secret. It is all well and good that she has her Watcher, William Redford, ineffective as he may be. However, a huge group has sprung up around Miss Matlow, and they are causing problems here. Oh god, I need to file a report. How do I even go about explaining my first evening here?
Possibly the most interesting, and the most concerning, is the involvement of a Phillip Templeton, the religious studies teacher at Cleaveland Park School, where I have been placed by the Council as a teacher of the classics. He is a self-proclaimed demon hunter and preternatural bounty hunter, but is very clearly so much more than that. He is dangerous to the situation simply because his capabilities and alignments are unknown. However, I cannot help but have a grudging respect for the man; he clearly cares for the Slayer and her wellbeing, but I have to question his motives. He has admitted to hiding something from me, something that I "cannot afford" to know at this time. If there is a secret of that magnitude in Carlisle, the Council were right to send me here to uncover the truth.
He has brought his godson, Geraint Springer, into the mix, and is training him alongside Miss Matlow. I am concerned for Geraint at the moment - he and another boy, Jonas Blake, have been taken captive by Moira, an ancient vampire with great power. This is one of the dangers of the Slayer's circle being expanded beyond its required limits - innocent people invariably get hurt. And the more people get hurt, the more exposed Miss Matlow's - and, by extension, the Council's - position will be. Miss Matlow is overly concerned for these boys, and it is my suspicion that she may be romantically involved with one or both of them, just as the intelligence handed down to me had alluded to. If this has happened, Mr Redford's care and supervision of the Slayer must be reconsidered immediately.
Joshua Travers, an older boy, and the ward of Max Thames, a now-retired Watcher who I once met, has also insinuated himself into the group. I am unclear as to why he is here in Carlisle - could it be that Max has planted him here to spy on Council activities for some reason? Max, from what I understand, left the Watchers' Council on unfriendly terms, so this is causing me to wonder whether or not he is trying to do something to regain a position within the Council. Mr Travers has a friend, a Ryan Winters, who is also concerning - if not scaring - me. He is very young, but has been practising the magickal arts. This evening, he cast something that almost killed him from the looks of him now, and I am concerned that not knowing his limitations with spellcasting will place everyone here, and even the city itself, in danger. I also need to discover with whom he is learning the occult, and why he seems to be so ill-prepared to deal with the after-effects of casting - this could be another issue in itself. If there is someone in Carlisle who is indiscriminately passing on knowledge of the arcane arts, it may need to be dealt with at a higher level.
William Redford concerns me greatly. Disinterested, uncommunicative, sullen and unco-operative, he has refused to get involved this evening, preferring to keep his own counsel, and to hand over control of proceedings to myself and Mr Templeton. It is clear that the Slayer adores him, but adoration has never been a desirable emotion between Slayer and Watcher. Mr Redford is so far refusing to acknowledge my presence and my purpose in Carlisle, and, although this will make my work harder, it will not make it impossible. If the situation is as dire as the Council fears it to be, I will have no compunction in suspending Mr Redford with immediate effect and requesting a new Watcher be assigned to Miss Matlow.
And the Slayer herself...
Jennifer Matlow is very young, and seemingly very fragile. It broke my heart to see the state in which she returned this evening, carried like a ragdoll by Joshua Travers. Her agony as her bones were rebroken and set still sits with me now. However, she is adept at manipulating a situation and people involved. She spent a lot of time and effort trying to draw me in, to pull my emotions into play, and, I am ashamed to admit, I almost succumbed. I cannot allow myself to become involved here - my work will be done within a few weeks, and I must then move on.
However, I am intrigued with the dynamic here, and I may find myself unable to let go as easily as I would like.
I am afraid that I might start to care.