Okay, so, magic is real .
That’s the first thing Luz internalizes. The Boiling Isles is a crazy fantasy world, but not the one from her books, where everything is whimsically child friendly. No, the Boiling Isles was freaky .
Luz is pretty sure she saw about three different people get eaten on the way to Eda’s cottage. (Or, The Owl House, as Eda has taken to calling it. Maybe because of the sentient owl tube at the front.)
“This is where I hide away from the pressures of modern day life.” Eda announces, a hint of grandeur to her voice. “Also the cops.”
Luz’s jaw hangs open as she walks into the middle of the living room, drinking in the magical sight. Now this is her fantasy books for children six to twelve come to life.
“This is beautiful , do you live here all by yourself?” Luz inquires, doing a small twirl as she admires the gorgeous wood art carved into the ceiling.
Luz turns to Eda, whose face has dropped a little bit. “Actually–” Luz squeaks at the unexpected shake from upstairs, which sounds a little bit like loud stomping. (Or a giant monster come to swallow her whole –)
“I have a couple of roommates.” The witch informs her. Luz turns her head to where a voice comes from.
“Who dares intrude upon I, the King of demons!”
Luz is expecting a large, hideous monster, probably with more eyes than she can count and a mouth that splits open in three different ways. What she gets is a tiny, fluffy black creature with a tiny skull on the outside of its face.
He is adorable .
“Ay que lindo! “ Luz shouts, running over to pick this little ray of sunshine up into her arms. “Eda he’s soo cute! Who’s a wittle guy, is it you? Is it youu ?”
“Ack! No! I don’t know who your little guy is!” The little fluffball shouts, flailing his arms around in an attempt to get loose. “ Weh- Hunter! Heeeelp!”
Luz lifts a brow at the name she doesn’t recognize, only to hear the light patter of feet on wood turn the corner where the little dog thing, King, came from.
In the doorway, a weirdly scraggly but also fit teen stands, a couple of soot marks on his face. His blonde hair shaved on the bottom, most of it pushed back, albeit it loosely, with one strand falling to the front of his face. This Hunter, she assumes, has the weirdest eye color of bright magenta. Even weirder than Eda, who has a light gold.
“Wha– Hey, let go of him.” Hunter demands. Before Luz can protest, Eda’s strong arms wrap around her middle and pull her backwards. King jumps out of Luz’s grip and scurries over to Hunter, who picks King up and lets him rest on his shoulder.
“Alright, let’s settle down. This is Luz! She’s a human, and she’s here to help us with our little– uh, situation .” Eda informs her roommates, still holding onto Luz.
“Oh! Yay!” King immediately accepts this new information, now turning to Hunter, who still looks bewildered. “Dude, you got some stuff on your face.”
“Y-yeah, I know,” Hunter stutters, probably still processing Luz’s presence. King wipes off the soot, revealing a large scar on the side of the blonde’s face.
Luz gasps and whispers to herself, “Mysterious scar, mysterious backstory .”
Before she can get caught up in guessing everything about the people that live in the Owl House, Luz remembers what Eda said seconds ago. “Wait–” Luz squirms a little and Eda instantly lets go.
“I don’t like the sound of this, uh, situation .”
“Here, just– let me explain.” Eda began, weaving together a tale of a mighty demon overlord and his most prized possession, a crown of power . The voice inside of Luz’s head squealed, now this is what we’ve been waiting for!
Luz looked over to Hunter, the only other teen in the house for his reaction. To her surprise he looked almost bored . King on his shoulder seemed very interested, though.
“So!” Eda clapped her hands together, dismissing the spell circle she cast for dramatic effect into shimmers of light. “Help us out and we’ll send you back to your realm! Whaddya say? Plus,” Eda reached for King off of Hunter’s shoulder, “Who could say no to this little face!”
“No! Don’t encourage her!” King falls with a little oof .
“I mean, we’re kinda your only way home, so.”
Luz’s face falls at that. “So I don’t really have a choice, do I?”
“Nope.” Hunter says flatly.
Before Luz can protest, she’s scooped over Eda’s shoulder. “And we don’t have much time to lose!” Luz watches the floor, before looking up to meet Hunter’s gaze. He just shrugs as she’s carried away like a sack of potatoes.
King shuffles after them, Hunter close behind. He whistles, and a small red bird flutters over to his shoulder. Luz’s brow raises at that.
“So, where are we going?”
“Somewhere super fun!” Eda answers.
The dark, spiked building looms high up, dark clouds covering most of the sky in the area. It’s so gloomy , Luz thinks.
“The Conformatorium. A place for those deemed unsuitable for society.” Eda says with an eye roll.
Luz’s hands crunch on paper, and she pulls back from the wall she’d been hiding behind. There sits a wanted poster with some pretty rad art of Eda and King. In fancy print reads the letters WANTED, OWL LADY. 1,000,000,000,000 . “Woah.” Luz exclaims.
She doesn’t miss the way Hunter tenses a bit at Luz seeing the poster. “These guys must really have the hots for you, huh.” She says, a joking hint to her voice. The other teen relaxes at her reaction.
Eda clicks her tongue and throws a finger gun at her. “Yep! But they never caught us, because we’re too slippery .”
As if on cue, King slips off of his perch on her head.
“The plan is that you and I are gonna sneak up to the top, that’s where my crown’s being kept.” King points to the top of a spiky tower.
“Hunter and I will make sure the warden’s distracted. Should give you guys enough time to get that crown ‘n get out.” Eda declares. Hunter turns to look at her bewildered.
Luz guesses this is the first he’s hearing of the plan, too. She giggles.
Hunter throws her an unamused frown.
“But first, Hunter’s gonna take you two up there.” Eda gives a quick pat on the back to Hunter, who grumbles something underneath his breath. Whatever it was, Luz elects to ignore it.
The red cardinal transforms into a staff, similar to Eda’s. Luz can’t help but gasp in awe. He sits on it, then throws a look at King and Luz to do the same.
King doesn’t hesitate to run over and sit himself on Hunter’s lap. Hunter returns the gesture by patting King on the skull.
She’s not particularly sure what to do. Is it like riding a motorcycle? Do you hold on to the person in front of you? Sure, she rode with Eda on the way to her cottage, but Luz was sitting in the front that time. “Well?” Hunter’s mildly annoyed voice breaks her out of her thoughts.
Luz shuffles over and sits behind Hunter, sitting on the staff sideways instead of keeping her legs on either side. Before Luz can tell him she’s ready, Hunter begins to fly, causing her to yelp and clutch onto his shoulders.
Luz can practically feel his eye roll.
Gotcha. Mysterious scar, mysterious backstory, and a sassy personality. Luz feels like there’s a TV Tropes page for this somewhere.
Reaching the top, Hunter helps King into the window. After the little demon jumps down, Luz moves to follow. “Human.”
“Hm?” Luz turns to look at him, her foot on the window ledge.
“...Look after King. He can– uh, get a bit ahead of himself.” Luz was expecting a witty remark of some kind, not a heartfelt request. Luz can’t fight the big smile that breaks out onto her face.
“You got it, boss.” Luz puffs out her chest and does a salute. It gets a short chuckle out of Hunter, which is a win in her book.
Luz scurries her way through the window, landing on her face on the other side.
The crown is… disappointing. It’s a Burger Queen crown. The cheap foil it’s made out of shines almost mockingly as Luz hands it to King.
Actually, this whole quest was kind of disappointing. Eda had joined them just before reaching the contraband room, saying something about the small nose creature keeping the Warden distracted. Hunter was staying behind to watch the Warden.
It was wrong. People shouldn’t be locked up for just having different or weird interests! That’s not fair! Though her complaints had fallen on deaf ears, as Eda followed King past the large, wooden door.
“Yes! I can feel my powers returning!” King declares, before marching off to take command of a small plush rabbit Luz had also found in the box where the crown was.
“That crown doesn’t give him any powers , does it.” Luz sighs.
“Uh, no.” Luz crosses her arms.
Eda sighs, “Look at us, Luz. The three of us don’t have much in this world. Just each other. So, if that dumb crown is important to him, it’s important to me. And that goes each way for us.”
Luz glances back over at King, who looked… really happy, actually.
“Besides, us weirdos gotta stick together,” Luz looks back, eyes wide. “Yknow?” Eda winks.
Luz feels her face flush– it’s a nice feeling, acceptance . It’s unspoken, but there. Eda’s accepting her as a weirdo. Eda can tell, can’t she? Luz is just like them. Maybe she’s missing the whole magic witch thing, but she is weird. So is Eda. So are King and Hunter.
Luz is pulled out of her thoughts to the sound of Hunter flying into the room quickly, shouting “Hey! Guys!” With a bit of alarm in his voice.
The Warden is behind Eda in a flash, Hunter zips into Luz’s view at the same time, a protective hand placed in front of her. With a loud slice! Eda’s head goes flying off her body and into Luz’s arms. Luz shrieks .
“ Ow! Oh, I hate it when that happens!” Eda huffs. Luz screams again, looking back and forth from Eda’s severed head to Hunter. He doesn’t have a quippy remark in response.
“Are- are you okay?! ” Luz asks as Hunter assumes a defensive stance in front of Luz, blocking the Warden from being able to make another swipe.
“Ugh, yeah, this just happens when you get older.” Eda sighs.
That’s– disturbing. Very disturbing. “Does it?” Luz leans in close to ask.
“What do you want, Warden!?” Hunter demands. The Warden stares him down before taking a couple monstrous steps forward. Hunter doesn’t falter, but Luz sure does. She huddles in close behind him, holding onto Eda’s head for dear life.
“Finally, I have you cornered, Eda the Owl Lady .” The Warden spits out her name venomously. Luz decides that she probably have some tense history together, what with him being a cop and Eda being a criminal.
“None of my men have been able to ever capture you, but I knew luring you in with your pet’s toy would be the perfect plan.” The Warden grumbles, crunching King’s crown in his hands. King whimpers, clutching onto Luz’s leg.
“Hey, I’ve never actually broken any of your stupid laws. In front of you.” Eda retorts. Hunter turns around to look at her quizzically, and all Luz can manage is a shrug.
“Yeah,” Hunter tacks on, getting the Warden’s attention. “So what do you want from us?” Luz is really impressed with how calm he is, because if that were Luz trying to boss around a creature three times her height she would’ve cried.
“I don’t care about you , child.” The Warden stomps up to Hunter, easily moving him to the side with one of his large hands. Hunter looks offended.
“Owl Lady, I want you… to go on a date with me.”
“What.” Hunter deadpans.
“Wuh?” Eda drawls.
Luz can see a couple of guards giving a thumbs up. A faint ‘go boss!’ can be heard.
Okay, that’s… better than the alternative of being locked up forever. Still really out of left field.
The Warden began a short speech, adoring Eda in flowery praise and a tender voice. It would’ve been sweet if he didn’t just behead her, Luz thinks. The Warden calls Eda alluring next, and Luz can’t help but open her mouth.
“I hate everything you’re saying right now.” Her grip on Eda’s head tightens.
“You stay out of this!” The Warden roars, his muscular arm transforms into a group of tentacles, grabbing onto Hunter and Luz.
“Hey! I didn’t say anything–” Hunter shouts as Luz shrieks, trying to fight her way out of the Warden’s grip.
“So, how about it, Owl Lady ? Think about it, you, me, we’d be the strongest power couple on the Boiling Isles!”
Eda glances over at the two teens, one violently fighting against the Warden’s grip while the other quietly watching.
“Also it’s uh, not really like you can say no right now, so, uh.”
“Sure thing, Warden. You win. Just… come a bit closer? I need to tell you something. No, a bit closer, just a bit– yeah, that's good–” Eda then spit all over his face.
“Impudent wench .” The Warden spits out, too preoccupied with cleaning his face to notice he had dropped Luz and Hunter. “Don’t you know how many germs are in your mouth? Blueegh .” Eda cackles.
“Get over yourself! You had your guards stalk me then you cut off my head! Like I’m going out with you.” The witch rolls her eyes.
“If you don't accept, then I’ll have no choice but to–” Whatever he was going to say was cut off by Hunter smacking him over the head with his cardinal staff.
Luz was riding an emotional high. Adrenaline, probably. She and a bunch of other weirdos got to defeat the Warden, and hey! Those fireworks did come in handy! Take that, Principal Hal.
This was the adventure she wanted. Sure, it’s a little more than a PG-13 fantasy movie, or a children's book for 5th graders, but– but Luz got to find her people here. Weirdos that understood her.
She didn’t want to have to say goodbye.
And thankfully… she didn’t. Eda agreed to let Luz stay.
“Let her stay! She can make us snacks.” King loudly whispered, silently begging to be picked up. Eda obliged, holding him in her arms.
“Well, I guess I could use the extra help keeping this goofball in line.” Eda snorted. “What do you think, Hunter?”
Hunter had been watching from afar with his arms crossed, leaning against the back wall. Luz stared at him, giving him the biggest puppy eyes she’d ever tried. He snorted, rolling his eyes. “Sure, I guess.” He shrugged, before moving into the hallway and up the stairs. Yes!
“Looks like that’s settled. I’ll teach you how to be a witch, and you can stay here, but you have to work for me before you learn any spells.” Eda layed down the ground rules. Luz responded with a hug. Hunter had been left out of the group hug, but she’d get him involved later. Somehow.
So that’s how Luz ended up in one of the storage closets littered within the cottage.
Luz drops her stuff on the ground near the middle of the room, rolling out her sleeping bag and pillow. The trinkets and knick knacks add to the charm of the house, Luz thinks as she unpacks her messenger bag.
The first thing she pulls out is a photo of herself and her mom. Next, her phone, which has an unread text message.
How’s summer camp?
Luz doesn’t know how to respond. Lying to her mom is the last thing she wants to do, but…
There’s a knock at her half opened door. King and Hunter peek around it.
King is holding onto the stuffed rabbit from earlier, looking at Luz with an expression that’s hard to read. Nervousness , maybe? Hard to tell with his little skull.
“Your sleep cocoon looks… nice.” King huffs, and Luz pats the side of it, a quiet invitation that the demon happily accepts.
Luz looks up to meet Hunter’s eyes. He flushes a bit, Luz can tell he’s embarrassed. “Just– Just brought you a blanket, if you need it.” He mutters. Luz gives him a big smile.
“Thanks, Hunter.” She really means it.
Hunter walks in and drops it next to her before shuffling out of the room. Luz takes a good look at his pajama pants, which are decorated in bright red birds. That gets Luz to hold back a giggle; this guy must really like birds.
The blanket is a nice quilt, decorated in constellations that Luz doesn’t recognize. Probably the Boiling Isles ones, which Luz will have to look into later. Getting comfortable with her new blanket, Luz snuggles up to King, holding her phone above her head.
I think I’m gonna like it here , Luz texts her mother back.