It was never going to be easy, and that is borne out when we hit the ground running.
We landed on the far edge of open territory before the Spire; between us and it a host awaits. Weapons are raised within seconds, as well as shouts. There is only one objective, to reach the soaring tower and, to that end, I throw my hands up.
The eerie green shield both Horin and Enris deployed erupts from my fingers as a bird in flight and becomes an ethereal wall between us and them.
“Go!” Damin hollers.
We cannot concern ourselves by those taking the flanks; I concentrate on getting to the Spire with Damin, Gennerin and Marian. The shield, I am aware, will aid the others for some while, in the form of wings, but eventually the Glonu will discover the chinks.
Now is the time to be swift.
Even in the darkening it is obvious the Spire is plastered shale. I did not notice that before, as Lyra, but my attention then was for what lay inside, not on the outside. Sending out feelers, I reach for the weakest points, the areas where we will insert our explosives.
Suddenly I come to a halt.
Gennerin nearly runs into me, controlling the involuntary action just in time, and he grips Marian’s arm as she almost hurtles past us.
Damin, heaving, demands, “Why are we stopping?”
“The weakness lie below,” I tell him. “We need to get inside.”
“The trapdoor you used before?”
Nodding, I say, “It will be heavily guarded. Call the others back to us. We go together.”
“Damn it, this smacks of failure,” Damin mutters. “Changing a strategy is what gets soldiers killed.”
“They are not all soldiers and if we do not change strategy, Massin will be Glonu territory within a few days,” I snarl back at him.
Gennerin blows a silver whistle, the screech painful on the ears. Lowering it, he murmurs, “Allin and Ross know the whistle; they will ring the others to us.”