What Comes Around Ch 20 bit – Reputation

Phaenomena’s blade sank into the bespoke suit without at trace. No blood. No jar of steel on bone. Not so much as a flinch on Franklin Shays’ face. As if he wasn’t even there.

Because he’s not, Callimachus realized, chilled as if he’d slipped into a lion pit. He never was.

“Ah. I see you finally noticed.” Shays’ image flickered a little, as Phaenomena flinched back – then flung herself at their all-too-present guard, teeth bared. “So few of our victims do.”

Callimachus dodged the vicious struggle and the smoking hole in the floor; snapping his fingers to loose magoi stored in a ring, hissing words that would bring clarity to his senses, no matter what spell had latched its claws in. Shays’ image wavered a little more, like a shaken camera-

“Holography,” Callimachus snarled. Technology mixed with magic; just enough Life Magic to blur the edges in our minds, so we took the image as real. It’s a damned green-screen! “Why?”

There was a final thump, and the flutter in the rukh of an escaping soul. Callimachus raised his hands in first pose of a casting out of spirits, standing between Phaenomena’s bloody blade and the angry ghost that sought to lunge for her.

But the ghost seemed to shiver, and shattered into dark rukh, sweeping out and away.

“Don’t die here,” Callimachus ordered his companion, horror sweeping through his soul. “They’re consuming deaths for power. Do not die here!”

“You are quicker than most,” Franklin observed, steepling translucent hands before him to shadow a small, smug smile. “A pity we couldn’t have persuaded you to our side.” A casual shrug. “Really, you didn’t think we would let you this far into our secrets and let you go, do you? After that incident at Heunischenburg? You have a reputation, Magister Callimachus.”

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4 thoughts on “What Comes Around Ch 20 bit – Reputation

  1. *facepalm* See, this is why you don’t get into bed with people you know are doing the Very Bad Things. Especially when they do it to people like you. Because they might decide to do it to you. Particularly if they start showing you stuff that has only been rumored or hinted at before. Also if you have laid the smack-down on people for doing similar things before they might assume you might try it again and that’s bad for their business.

    So it is probably a good thing for you that Simon, Alan, and the rest of their associates are there and aren’t willing to leave you to die. 1) They aren’t that kind of people, usually (they might make some exceptions for really bad people – you are bad but not that bad). 2) While they are pretty sure that no one can create another Medium or truly Fall, these asshats are doing a pretty decent job of trying and they cannot let that continue. They have already fought the likes of Al-Thamen and have NO desire for a sequel, thank you very much. This low-rent version is awful enough.

    Liked by 2 people

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