The battle had progressed since my last visit, and considering how little time had passed, it seemed that Gavsot and his troops had lost a surprising amount of ground. The upside was that I was removed from the focus of battle and I was able to pick off an unsuspecting member of Halkkor’s army from the edges of the clash without getting as involved or putting myself in as much danger.
In the event that this second attempt failed, I decided to bring my prey back to my office, where I’d have a little backup. Gus was mostly powerless, of course. Sylnie didn’t have a lot of telekinetic capability either, but at least Jaelin would be useful if my quarry survived. And, as always, Torvin could help by putting his useless body between the Firstborn and the people who actually mattered.
I’d leaped toward the Firstborn at the site of the battle and transported us both the instant my fingers touched him, so my tackle concluded back on my home turf directly in front of my desk. As the occupants of my office gasped, I put my knees on the monster’s chest, lifted my dagger skyward, and brought it down toward his heart as forcefully as I could.
He blocked it.
I felt really stupid for having not seen that coming, considering I’d left his hands free. He gripped my knife-wielding wrist with one thick hand while slashing at me with the blade of his other arm. He took a few good chunks out of my ribs before I mentally set his face on fire, broke his concentration, and slipped my blade between a few of his ribs.
He let out an ungodly scream of animalistic anguish that petered out as his body deflated beneath me—deflated. His flesh became papery and his organs seemed to just melt out of him, leaving me straddling a grotesque skeleton in a puddle of bloody monster-juice. Sylnie, who was already kind of a puke-green color, turned even more puke-green.
Torvin, in a rare moment of bravery, refused to look away from the mess on the floor, commenting, “Ew.”
Jaelin was transfixed. “That’s something you don’t see every day,” she said.
Gus, doing his best to avoid stepping in any of the gooier parts, stepped over to give me a congratulatory slap on the shoulder. “We’re gonna need to make a shit ton more of those,” he said.
I stared in reverence at my knife—my salvation. “We’re gonna need to make a shit ton more of these,” I agreed.