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A fantasy take on Alien Nation, in which fantasy species find themselves in the human world, trying to adapt. Actually attempts to take a more realistic take on this (to some extent), with all the paranoia, Fantastic Racism and bureaucracy that would actually happen. The main story follows Noelle, a rather petulant and very determined elf, who tries her hardest to get a job and stay off the streets, while having to deal with not only her human enemies and plain apathy, but also a set of hangers-on who make her life complicated, and a burgeoning invasion attempt by dark elves.
Notable for a story with an unusual amount of development and surprises.
Other than Noelle, main characters include:
- Dusty, a rather laid-back but persistent dwarf;
- Rosie, a naive fairy who (as it turns out) can grant wishes;
- Ixy, her fellow (rather badass) fairy, who's lost her wings;
- The trollish bartender of the eponymous Corner Alley 13 bar;
- Tsac Tuo, a waiter at the bar;
- Drel, a shapeshifting thief;
- Cole, a semi-sympathetic drow.
Tropes in this work include:
- Berserk Button: The bartender does not take it kindly if he's called an ogre. He's only a half-ogre.
- Big No: Happens when Noelle notices that her café doesn't have any customers.
- Cross-Popping Veins: Happens here.
- Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": The bartender is just called bartender. The supplemental material even acknowledges it:
His real name is unknown, which kind of shows what his friends are worth.
- Evil Matriarch: Drow society is revealed to be so backstabbingly treacherous that even the nicest of matriarchs are forced to become vicious tyrants to keep their positions and their heads. The villain of the first arc turns out to be quite sympathetic because of this.
- Expressive Ears: This is used with elves, here.
- Hypocritical Humor: here
- Klingon Promotion: how the drow change Matriarch.
- Oblivious to Love: Noelle fails to realize that Tsac has feelings for her.
- On Second Thought: See the quote below.
Noelle: "So what is your name?"
Kh'ohl: "Bat's clan Kh'ohl Kankaar Vree."
Noelle: "Ah! Cole!"
Kh'ohl: "No, Kh'ohl. And don't use my first name."
Noelle: "Mr. Cancan-tree?"
Kh'ohl: "...Cole will do."
- Sdrawkcab Name: Tsac Tuo is revealed to be the shapeshifter Drel in disguise, and points out that his name is "just outcast spelled backwards". The heroine's response? "I thought it sounded foreign."
- Sweat Drop: Used here
- Swiss Army Weapon: Dusty has a Swiss Army Axe.
- Urban Fantasy
- The Unmasqued World: one of the premises of the setting.
- The Quisling: The main character, Noelle, who remains comically loyal to human society regardless of how poorly they treat nonhumans such as herself.
- Visible Silence: Used here
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Drel is a magically altered werewolf with this ability. The prequel Weakness reveals that he must remain at a set mass while transforming.