Right or wrong, Layla held their verdict on the edge of the executioner’s sword, and everyone who’d invaded the island would suffer the same fate. She didn’t have time to weigh their crimes – the murderers, voyeurs and brainwashed. Whatever part they’d played in the tragedies unfolding, they stood guilty on the brink of humanity’s destruction, and so they’d face her retribution. But before swinging the blade, Layla scanned the civilians for children, relieved to find none.
Not a shimmer of evidence exposed her as she planted her feet on the ancient cobblestone walkway. Then she raised her invisible palms and summoned her wall. She knew the magic worked as soon as she heard the outer guards’ shouts, which turned to screams the moment her deadly cloud caught up with its prey. They didn’t scream for long. The jet stream grew stronger as it contracted around the mountaintop like a savage rubber band, scorching people and plants alike.
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