Thursday, March 16, 2023

Page 3252

Banda could only care so much about that, though. He had to get back to the encampment. To Bloodeye and their reinforcements. It was the only hope for a reprieve, right now, and even that was questionable.

Problem was, they were quite far. In Callum. He would have to fly all the way across Lorent in order to get there. They did have a couple of smaller encampments in Lorent, too, but those were only harboring one or two servants each. Not enough to provide him a proper place to rest, especially when being pursued.

Worse still, he feared deeply that a visit to Lozaro would be required, which would be a much longer trek all the way over to another continent. But if this pain didn't alleviate once he and Grigozo separated, then that would be the only course of action left. The more time passed, the more tempted he was to simply separate right away and let the chips fall where they may.

He just. Had to. Hold on.

His face was caked with sweat, even as the wind howled past him and tried to dry it out, even as he shifted between his solid and gaseous forms in order to reset the moisture. It simply wouldn't go away, goddammit. He wanted so badly to resolve it with mind over matter. Years upon years of meditative training and experience--it all felt so worthless, right now.

And then it hit him.

A shooting pain in his gut that made him stop flying and double over in the air, clutching his abdomen as he writhed in agony.

This was too much. Far worse than before. He could feel it in his head now. In his mind. His soul, even.

He used his anger again. Tried to force it back down. Suppress it violently.

But it didn't help. It wouldn't listen to him. It wouldn't be ignored.

The Chaos form activated against his will.

The most dreaded scenario to his mind. The loss of control over his own body. He could feel the damned souls clawing against his flesh now, tearing at him from the inside, demanding to be let free.

Then it was his stomach again. No longer painful. Suddenly, there was relief from that. But not from something else.

Something there.

It didn't hurt, anymore, but he could feel the physicality of it now. Forcing open his stomach, his throat, and then his mouth.

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