Thursday, March 8, 2018

Page 1582

The cooling effect on the armor could take a little bit of a back seat, he felt. While helpful, it wasn’t strictly necessary--nor was talking to Garovel. Maybe he could lump those together, too, in a less effective capacity.

Sorry, Garovel,’ he said. ‘I might not hear what you’re saying for a little while.

What’re you--?’ Even before that, the reaper had already been saying something, but Hector needed his focus now.

He needed to remember.

A fresh distraction arrived first, however.

The worm was doing something different. Its movements had changed. Its mouth was wriggling and twitching, and its bulk was starting to twist and bubble. It even stopped chasing him.

Hector stopped running in order to stand and observe it with his actual eyes this time.

Oh, what now?’ said Garovel.

Hector saw a crackle of blue light within of the monster’s cavernous mouth and heard the bristling static of electricity.

That was all the warning he got. A flashing bolt of electricity arced out in an instant and crashed upon a freshly materialized lightning rod. The iron exploded on impact, taking a chunk of the second floor with it and knocking Hector into the wall.

Oh god, I forgot they could do that!

Hector steadied himself and started running again, ignoring his ruptured ear drums and stinging eyes. ‘You’re a reaper. How did you forget?

Well, okay, I didn’t technically forget. I was just hoping this one didn’t have that power!

That certainly would’ve been nice.

He started materializing lightning rods behind him as he moved. He wasn’t sure if he and Garovel could survive a direct hit from one of those bolts, and he didn’t intend to find out.

Heh,’ said Garovel. ‘I guess it’s a good thing you have experience fighting against lightning.

That reminded Hector that he’d found out from Ivan that Desmond Grantier was still alive. And if Desmond was alive, Hector had a feeling that Karkash was, too. Or at least, it wouldn’t surprise him.

Hector tried to refocus. The crashing boom of ardor-infused electricity was making it difficult to concentrate, though. The bolts weren’t frequent, but the fact that one of them had destroyed part of the second floor was very troubling to Hector.

This whole chamber was infused with ardor, which made the rock far more durable than normal. All the times that he’d slammed into it--either just by landing in full or getting thrown into the wall--Hector hadn’t left a single scratch. Nor had the worm, until now.

Which was another question.

Why did the worm only just now start using its electricity?’ said Hector. ‘We’ve been fighting for a while.

Well, it WAS just born. Maybe it’s still getting used to its own power. Maturing, if you will.’

His eyes widened at that notion. ‘So it’s getting stronger as the fight draws out.

I don’t know about THAT, exactly... but kinda, yeah.’ The reaper broke for a laugh, though it sounded somewhat nervous to Hector. ‘It’s not like its power will just keep growing indefinitely.

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