It was over in a matter of minutes. The boy - stupidly - had walked right up to them. However, he had given the creature exactly the kind of distraction she needed. She braced herself against it's marble-hard chest and brought her forearms up, the guards under her sleeves protecting her from the razor edge of the blade as she forced its arms apart and spun towards Jeredynn. He backed up a few paces to get out of her way as she drew out the old-fashioned Webley pistol from her hip holster. As she thumbed the safety off and pulled the trigger, the startled creature had begun to writhe, made of nothing one second then solid the next. The bullets tore through it, but the problem about being made of darkness, Carmen mused, was that you were insubstantial. There was the click of an empty chamber and she cursed inwardly. She didn't have time to reload - the shadows had already reassembled into the creature and it was charging, blade raised.

"Get back to the chapel!" she yelled at Jeredynn, who looked as if he couldn't quite make sense of what was going on in front of his eyes. She turned back to the creature just in time to drop to her knees, snatching the blade as it dived overhead and bringing it round in one swift motion to drive the silver sword through its back before it could turn to black mist again. With an anguished howl it evaporated, the sword turning to ash.

Carmen replaced the useless gun in its holster and looked behind her. Jeredynn hadn't moved.

The End

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