Illyra felt a rush of air by her elbow where she was nearly struck with an arrow. She spun on her heel and dashed back across the courtyard. Tendrils of magic darkness clung to her arms and legs and fanned out around her chaotically, making her a difficult target despite her lack of cover.

“This isn’t working! Elysia! Hurry!” she yelled. Somewhere in the building or on the rooftop, Elysia was supposed to be subduing the archers. “This isn’t as easy as it looks!”

The archers had the high ground — the plan was to distract them long enough that someone could get on the roof. In retrospect, Illyra thought it was a stupid plan. She narrowly avoided another arrow that passed through the magic around her and stuck into the ground.

For a moment, Illyra caught a glimpse of one of the archers — she’d been too focused on evading their arrows to look for them before. “Ha-ah!” she yelled, and she made a wrench gesture with her hands, as if to grab the man around the throat. The tendrils of magic on her arms surged towards the man, who cried out in surprise as the magic slammed into him.

Illyra spotted the other archer a moment after he loosed his arrow, and she smiled triumphantly until the arrow threw her off her feet. She bounced when she hit the ground, and she saw tiny lights in her vision. Illyra clenched her hands into fists and felt pain in her right arm, which she focused into squeezing the life out of the archer she still held with her magic.

She felt him start to break under the power of the magic before the grip on him slipped without warning. She heard a yell from above that she could swear was Elysia, and a moment later, she heard the sound of two bodies as they hit the ground a ways away.