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The segment of tail wrapped tighter around his ankle, threatening to crush the bone as he growled in pain. He could feel the rough, grating scales of the devil’s lithe appendage as he was dragged backward, his grip on his staff tightening as he uttered the single word of a spell.


The sudden jerk as his body halted where it was brought a fresh wave of pain as the devil laughed, pulling herself through the portal she’d opened as the wizard glared at her through a narrowed gaze.

“How cute,” she crooned, her rough voice assaulting his ear drums, “Do you think your body strong enough to withstand my might?” The tail yanked on his ankle as felt the limb stretch painfully, the bones quaking as he thought quickly, waiting just another split second as the demon continued to pull herself through.

Slamming the butt of his staff on the ground created another flash of light as he yelled, “Keenest!” while striking with the staff as the edge it had retained met, and parted, the tail holding his leg, the ethereal blade breaking scales and parting flesh easily as the demon howled in pain, falling back into the portal as she caught herself, her talons digging into the edges of the swirling ribbon of energy that was keeping the portal open. The agony of this must have been great enough, but as the wizard scooted back quickly he spoke again, his voice infused with magic as he spoke.

“Banished you are, and shall remain, to stay this way until whole again!”

“No!” the devil howled, “No! I will return you wretch!” the devil howled, her muscles bunching as she tried to escape, “I…will..!”

The effect of his spell took hold as the devil’s body stilled, then calcified as the energy suffused her body, giving the monster a dry, brittle look as she remained lock in a pained, grimacing pose as the next effect took place. As he watched, the form of the creature began to break apart, flaking away in massive chunks to dissipate within the air as they tumbled from the demon’s form. In a matter of moments, nothing was left, save for the chunk of tail that was still wound around his ankle.

An idea came to him then, but the pain came first.

(to be continued)

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