Missy lowered the brim of her hat to block out the sun. “Mr. Muntz,” she said. “There is a warrant for your arrest and you are openly bearing magical mischief on the streets of Smokewood in violation of a local ordinance. This is your last chance to turn yourself in peacefully.”

“No,” Muntz said. “This is your last chance to escape with your life, little thrall.” The flames around him raged still more violently, and a current of pure heat bore him a full foot off the ground, with puddles of freshly minted glass beneath. Muntz fired off a stream of molten matter at a hitching post in front of the jail, violently combusting it, apparently in the hopes of making Missy flinch.

She stood her ground.

“Prepare yourself,” Muntz said. “The Art is about to make an example of you.”

He drew his arms back, white-hot energy already building up about his fingertips, enough to char anything in its path to greasy ash.

Missy abruptly cast back her duster. There, strapped beneath either arm, were two pocket revolvers, halfling-sized, in quick-draw holsters. She ripped one out, leveled it, and fanned five .44 slugs into Muntz before he could finish his cantrip or even react.

The pyromancer, shocked, let his arms go limp. The energy he’d saved up mostly dissipated, but the sudden loss in focus caused him to pitch violently to the left. As the magical heat melted away from his body, he slumped onto a watering trough next to a tied up horse. The horse, perturbed at its drink suddenly being heated turned and gave Muntz a mighty kick, driving him through a plate glass window and reducing his chest to a nightmare of red mash.

Missy watched the scene unfold impassively, and then opened up her smoking sixgun for reloading. “Violence is useless, Mr. Muntz, because it doesn’t gain you anything. Are you any smarter for being shot down? Are you a better person? Have you learned anything?” She punctuated each remark by working the ejector and kicking out a spent shell.

Muntz lay where he had fallen, gasping and gurgling as his own blood filled up what was left of his lungs, not even able to summon the ghost of a flame.

“No,” Missy said. “All that you’ve learned is that the day of the mage being able to do as he pleases with the Art is over, since the most lowly of little lady thralls can put you down with a twenty dollar shooter.” Her gun empty, she holstered it and drew the other, aiming it at Muntz point-blank.

“I just hope that someone else might learn from your example,” she added. “Violence is useless, and it ain’t the law. Unless, of course, you’re a lawbreaker being met with reasonable force after proving yourself to be a danger.”

The pyromancer choked his last without the need for a coup; Missy spun her gun and put it away.

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