With almost inhuman wail of pain, Jeremiah tore himself free from the binding spell and leapt down towards Antfarm; the wounded man had downed two of the accursed natives, but the third was almost upon him. Behind him the binding field quivered but held; he had left enough of himself to ensure it would but he knew full well he’d pay for it later.
Without fully knowing how it got there, Mason felt his blade in his hand and smiled to himself as the blade sprang into life. With a final burst of speed, he threw himself shoulder first at the native and sent the cur rolling away towards the temple. The dog was up on his feet quick enough, but not as quick as Mason who, with practiced ease and incredible speed, drove his sword through the very heart of the man. For long seconds both men stood, locked in a grotesque embrace, until the dead native slipped backwards off the blade and to the ground, his torso smoking and ruined. As Mason turned and walked over to Antfarm, the dead body began to slide backwards, drawn by the vortex into the heart of the temple.
“Quick man, we haven’t much time,” Mason said as he sliced the arrow shaft off and pulled the limping gazelle to his feet.
“We. We need to get back,” Antfarm replied through gritted teeth, “This. This going. Going to be. Big bang.”
Mason half supported, half pulled the gazelle over to the plunger. Something was wrong with him, he was too heavy, too slow. “You alright there?”
“Sgruna b bg gruna bg,” came the reply.
Mason ran his finger through the blood oozing from Antfarm’s leg and sniffed. Poison! The foul locals had poisoned the arrows! There was no way that Antfarm would be able to teleport away now, meaning that he’d have to leave him to a certain death at the hands of either a nuclear explosion or the cruel and terrible natives.
A plan formed in Mason’s mind. A dangerous plan. A plan with costs.
To be continued…