!3! .flats

that surrounded her. She had been slim before the journey and yet, she was now far thinner. The greatcoat that so well-protected her was two sizes too big and her belt had a new notch to hold the cloth underneath it together. She was supposed to be a Magi, a scholar and expert of high esteem in the Singularity, but – no. Out here that all meant very, very little.

Whatever it was stabbed again; it had moved, slightly further in front of her. She shook herself; if it had decided to move again, it didn’t think she was a threat. She had to be fully aware now, sharp focus directing her Arcana as she began to weave a ward to brace herself; her left hand palm was opened to the floor as she maintained her vigil, sightlessly drawing an intricate pattern of silver lines below her feet.

“Arcin, goroth al’ash.” The words of Arcanic power burned through her neck, a warmth she quietly noticed was not dissimilar to that of the wine.

That follows, I suppose.

She watched the air in front of her thicken slightly as a translucent barrier reached up from the completed ward. It just passed in front of her face as a bolt of searing white energy cracked into it, pulling the air from her lungs in one sharp breath. Yes, she was expecting a threat, but that power was – familiar.

The whistle it made was almost silent, but she distinguished its sharp trill as another bolt landed; she realised she had no breath and gasped to fill her lungs as she struggled to find a target. The strain on the shield was palpable after both hits; the third made her grunt quietly as she searched her horizon with every sense she had. As the fourth bolt quietly screeched towards her, her fingers flexed, and her wrist shifted slightly. With those small changes, the barrier warped as the energy made contact, bowing slightly before flinging it back out at much the same velocity. This clipped the edge of – something – and she made her move; there was no time to second guess what it was.

She knew what it could be.