The hog-headed demons had fallen for the illusion. Instead of a blank stone hallway, they saw a narrow bridge high above the streets of the City of Brass. Instead of following Callista’s trail back through the hallway into the Tower of ???, they were distracted by a pair of Ifrit archers. Or the images of a pair of Ifrit archers.
Most of the party had initially believed the illusion, as well. Only Callista had seen through it, although “through” was the wrong metaphor. It wasn’t as though the Ifrit faded away, or became transparent like glass. It was very strange to both see and not see something at the same time, but many strange things had happened in Callista’s mind since the Jade Cup raised her from the dead back in the tunnels of Arden Vul. It was terrifying to step off the edge of the bridge, even though could see, and feel, the stone of the floor extending beyond it to the wall of the hallway. Not only did she see herself falling past the towers, she could feel the air rushing past her face as she fell, endlessly. Apparently the sudden stop at the bottom was not a part of the illusion, for which she was grateful. She wasn’t sure she could feel her all of her bones shattering at the same time without crying out, and she needed to be quiet now.
She was quiet, moving absolutely silently along the wall, coming up behind the two demons. How much noise could she make, walking on air? Besides, the demons were hooting and baying at the Ifrit, trying to draw them into melee range. Their stubby shoulder-blade wings, while surprisingly effective, were no match for the quickness of beings made of elemental fire – especially beings who cheated by not being real. Fortunately, the illusory Ifrit ignored her, either because she was off the “bridge,” or because her mind was not ensared by the spell that created them. It was something to ask Pyrite about, if she ever got back to Narsileon.
When the moment was right, as the first demon fell to the bridge howling with a flaming Ifrit arrow through its eye, Callista sprang and crushed the back of its skull, just where it joined the spine, with the Spoke of the Wheel. Despite its being damaged, it was still the only magic weapon she carried. Before the other could react to her sudden presence, she sprang again, driving the other back off the bridge, or slamming it into the wall, stunning it so that she eould line up the Spoke for another lethal skull-crushing blow.
That was the plan, anyway.