A breeze ruffled the trees overhead and Max swiveled her head, sniffing the air. Uncanny magic pooled thick in the canyon. It was an odd combination of bitter and sweet—like a mouthful of salt and cigar butts all drenched in honey. The Divine magic was wafted through in thin curls. It was both caustic and sweetly pungent, like lye and pachouli. Mixed in were human smells—sweat, blood and flesh. A rank wet smell coated the back of Max’s throat. It reminded her of black mold and carrion.

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