“Let’s go,” Pan insisted. “We did what we came to do, Jinnaari!”
The paladin shook his head. “Not yet. We have to go back for the Gnome. I’m not leaving her here.” Without waiting to see who followed, he headed out of the room.
Halaster’s body, the robe he wore still smoldering, lay abandoned on the floor as he ran past. His head was in Jinnaari’s bag. Helix cleared his name, but he felt it necessary to bring the Baroness proof that the lich was dead.
And, without his head, he’d have a harder time regenerating.
He heard someone coming up behind him. Glancing over his shoulder, he saw Thia running to catch up to him. “Are you sure?” she asked. “Pan said he talked to Ash.”
“I’m sure,” he replied. “I don’t know Ash. I’m sure Pan thinks he’s a great God, but I’m not taking chances with her life.” Jinnaari dove through the open door, heading toward the staircase.
“Jinnaari!” she screamed.
Turning around, his eyes grew wide in terror. The room began to fall apart. Pieces of stone rose into the air. Thia was floating into a black abyss. Behind her, he saw Pan and Eli clinging to each other as some unseen force pulled them into the darkness.
Spreading his wings, he tried to reach out for Thia. Strong tentacles wrapped around his legs, pulling him down. He watched, helpless, as she disappeared before the world fell dark.
When he woke, every muscle in his body hurt. He was lying, face down, on a stone floor. Grimacing in pain, he sat up. The room was small, with only a single tunnel leading in or out. Heat rose from the stones. Not enough to burn, but enough to make the room hot.
Find the others, figure out where you are, and get out. That’s what he had to do. Hopefully in that order.
As he walked down the tunnel, a roar began to build, echoing in the small space. He knew the sound well. A dragon. Wait. Not just one voice. There were five distinct tones.