Nature Abhors a Vacuum HTML version

impact, sending a shower of blue sparks into the air and leaving his spectral armour to
absorb the rest of the strike.
Aiden bellowed and rolled away as the spear was drawn back by this new assailant,
giving him a moment to regain his footing. During this time, Morik had risen from the
floor, ignoring his wounds and stabbing at the ir armoured opponent with all of his might.
Erag spat out some words in his native language, his helm making his voice sound
hollow. The only word Aiden recognised was 'Morik', who replied between stabs with his
short spear.
Aiden moved in on Erag's left flank to slash at the man, the battle too close to risk
using the sceptre lest he strike Morik with the deadly ray. Aiden was suddenly struck a
blow to his head which seemed to come out of nowhere. He staggered backwards, only to
be struck again by the sharp end of Erag's weapon.
For a moment, Erag was exposed as a clear target and Aiden seized the opportunity
to invoke the sceptre's power, scorching the warrior with a blast of light. He seemed to
ignore the searing burns across his body as he lunged at Aiden.
The shaman, Tald Black-Tiger, had so far remained out of the fight, no doubt
watching his champion finish his adversaries but after Aiden's crippling attack, he spoke
up for the first time.
“You are wielding borrowed power, boy,” he rasped, slamming the butt of his rune-
covered staff into the ground. “I shall strip it from you, piece by piece.” Aiden felt a wave
of coldness wash over him and his supernatural strength drained from of his muscles.
Erag, nursing his crippled arm, was set upon by Pacian, whose attacks were little
more than harassment to the towering warrior. This still gave Aiden the time he needed to
recover and he made full use of it, raising his sceptre and unleashing another blast at the
akoran usurper.
Somehow, Erag still had the strength to remain standing after the sceptre blast, and
looking at the big warrior Aiden could see why. Even as he watched, Erag's wounds were
slowly healing over as a faint, misty green light danced around his body, a light that
seemed to be emanating from Tald's staff.
Aiden now realised their mistake - focusing their attacks on the big warrior instead
of the real danger, the shaman. Erag was suddenly engulfed in Sayana‟s green flames,
blinding him momentarily as his howls of rage and agony echoed through the caves. It
was at this moment that a bloodied and enraged Pacian appeared behind the blinded
savage and finally drove both of his daggers into Erag‟s back.
“Insolent upstart!” Tald cried out, dismayed at the loss of his powerful ally, and he
retaliated by raising his staff, but aside from a few sparks crackling from the tip, nothing
happened. A clothyard shaft then sank into his shoulder, staggering the old man
backwards momentarily as Colt, armed with his longbow, limped into the battle.
Nellise was just behind him, clad once more in her breastplate and the tattered
remains of her robe tied around her waist. With tears streaming from her blackened eyes,
she clutched at her crystal and whispered her prayers, holding back Tald's attempts at
summoning the elemental forces of nature. This seemed to enrage the shaman even
further, and he slammed his staff onto the ground once more in an attempt to overpower
Nellise's efforts.
“No, you shall not,” she uttered with determination, again dispersing the build-up of
power that threatened to end their lives. Colt loosed arrow after arrow at the shaman, who