It is about an organization who save ordinary people from being sucked into the narrative of fairy tales. Why is there an organization? Why do ordinary people need saving from fairy tales? Because contrary to what Disney would have us believe fairy tales often have a whole lot of collateral damage, and a fairly high body count. Even the princes and princesses who are theoretically slated for a happily ever after ending often end up dead when the story tries to play out in real life.
How is it there are people who know when a Story is starting and who needs saving? The ATI Management Bureau is made up of people who were touched by The Story and survived.
This series contains examples of:
- Cats Are Mean: A Cheshire Cat does a favor for Sloane but takes payment in blood.
- Child by Rape: Henry's mother was that kind of Sleeping Beauty. In a coma, her doctor took advantage of her while she was unconscious.
- Friendless Background: Sloane's "role" of Wicked Stepsister makes it dangerous for her to get too close to anyone, even a "found family" could trigger her homicidal tendencies.
- Friend to All Living Things: Played with. Henry has the woodland creatures flocking to her, but she's not really excited or pleased about it.
- Jerkass Façade: Sloane acts even more obnoxious than she actually is to make sure people don't get too close to her.
- Limited Wardrobe: Henry has one by choice, but she implies that certain articles of clothing resonate with The Story and so certain people wearing certain things could be harmful.
- Magitek: Henry's car has bulletproof, charmproof glass in its windows.
- Older Than They Look: Sloane appears to be in her late teens, but has been working for the Bureau since before Henry was born.
- Pretentious Latin Motto: In aeternum felicitas vindactio translates roughly as "defending happily ever after".
- Reality Warper: Storytellers. They can bend and warp The Narrative and the world around it into pretty much whatever shape they want as long as they don't go too far from the various tropes that make up the various Fairy Tales.
- Transgender: Henry's twin brother was born in a female body. When he started openly living as a man, it kept him from falling into the role of Rose Red, since that story calls for twin sisters.
- Tropes Are Not Bad: Referenced verbatim by Henry, as the tropes of fairy tales are what help her and her team identify when a Story is starting to take place.
- We Help the Helpless: The whole purpose of the ATI organization is to protect people from being swallowed up by fairy tales, and harmed as the narrative seeks to tell the story at any cost.
- Weirdness Censor: How the Bureau manages to get most of its work done without freaking out the general populace. The general populace rationalizes away whatever weirdness ensues.