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Nature Abhors a Vacuum

“Everyone, rally around me!” Aiden cried out, readying his sword as the others
rushed over to him. “Clavis, can we outrun these things?”
“They can keep up with us, if yer thinkin' of running lad!” he called back, pulling out
a hand axe as he skidded to a halt next to Aiden. “They hate bright lights, loud sounds,
and fire though, and I think we have plenty 'o that right here with us. We don't have to
flee, man - we can hold here!”
“You better be right about this,” Aiden muttered as one of the two Borers shrieked
and charged towards the light that was hurting its puny eyes. When this was over, and
assuming they survived, Aiden would have to have a word with their dwarven friend
about the concept of 'full disclosure'.
Chapter Seventeen
The giant borers moved on all fours, and seemed to resemble a cross between a
wolverine, a tortoise, and a mole. Their armoured hides glistened a sickening shade of
yellow-white, and each of their four paws was tipped with vicious claws. They towered
over Aiden and the others by a full three feet, and must have weighed close to a ton. Colt
was the closest to the creatures, and had been backing away from them to regroup with
Aiden and the others, but now that it was clear they were going to stay and fight these
things, his posture changed from defensive to offensive.
The big ranger drew his greatsword and waited for the first borer to move in close
enough, then swung the huge weapon at its flank, slicing through its chitinous hide and
gashing it severely. He hadn't anticipated the creature's hind legs though, and was
suddenly thrown backward by a retaliatory blow from a leg that sent him into the path of
the second Borer. Colt roared with pain as that creature struck him from behind, and
seemed ready to trample the big man until it was distracted by Pacian's sudden
appearance from the other side.
Aiden had lost track of him in the darkness, but as usual, the blond rogue had found a
way to be of use. He struck hard, plunging a dagger in between the armoured plates of the
beast, giving Colt a chance to stagger back to the rest of the group. Pacian tried to hit it
again with his other dagger, but the Borer's thrashing turned it away and he was thrown
back into the shadows with his first dagger still stuck in its side.
“Clavis, give Pacian some cover!” Aiden yelled as the Borer Pacian had struck
turned to follow its attacker into the shadows.
“I can't,” Clavis exclaimed, “I left me bow over with me tools!”
“Same with my longbow,” Colt grated, swinging his sword back and forth to try and
keep the first Borer at bay. “Come up with another plan, quick!”
“I still have my crossbow,” Nellise cried, grabbing her weapon from over her
shoulder and setting it up to shoot. Aiden wished he had time to get his own crossbow off
his back, but was far too busy dealing with the giant creatures.
Sayana pulled out her axe and ran around to one side of the creature focused on Colt,
lashing out with its paws as it warily searched for a way past. Aiden didn't wait around to
see what Sayana was going to do however, for while they could probably handle that
borer, the other one was going to make a meal of Pacian in a one-on-one fight. There was
enough light to see the back end of the second creature, which gave Aiden an easy target