Chapter 27

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The SoulSlayer pulled up ten yards before them and stopped. The glare of the setting suns off the black armor blazed at Uriel along with the eyes of fire. "So we meet again, mortal," said a thousand dissonant voices. "I have waited a great many days since our last encounter. I trust you will not disappoint me as you did before." Ahrokh's voices laughed and the stench overwhelmed and weakened Uriel.

"You!" The multiple-voiced entity pointed to Ghemella. "I remember the taste of your Soul and will drink fully of it today. And you, High Witch." The clawed hand moved towards Arhyvhynne. "They would not allow me to take your mother, the grey slut of the witches. But you, you I will defile and violate beyond your worst nightmares. I will fill you with my essence before I consume yours."

Uriel, sickened by the Slayer's words as much as the creature itself, made a feeble attempt to raise his staff towards Ahrokh. But the SoulSlayer made a backhanded gesture and Uriel was thrown from Ullyna and landed on the ground. Ghemella charged and another move of the Slayer's arm put both Guardian and horse on the ground. All at once Ghemella became nauseous and feverish. The black welt on her left hand began to slowly spread. Meanwhile, wild neighing could be heard as Ahrokh's skeletal mount took Ghemella's steed.

The SoulSlayer turned its attention towards Arhyvhynne and attacked her with a barrage of spells designed to weaken her. The High Witch was prepared, however, and fought a solid defensive battle. She slowly raised her level of concentration until the Slayer felt the power and force of her mind begin to exert itself against him. But then Ahrokh played his trump. Mental images of Arhyvhynne's second Trial crept into her mind. Once again she saw she had Ahrokh's life in her hands. And as she relived that Trial and its outcome, she faltered. The voices of the SoulSlayer laughed in triumph.

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