Eric blinked as the Aberrant Eye flew over the edge of the pit.
/Shit. This is |not| good./
Eric started to give chase, again unlimbering his crossbow, only to find the dirt Gregor had summoned did not reach the lip of the pit. First helping Gregor's Companion over the lip, Eric turned and climbed out.
High from the adrenaline of the battle, Eric nearly flew up the rope and hit the ground running.
/I'm not moving fast enough - let's hope this works./
Eric mentally crossed his fingers as he composed his will. He shivered as he felt his mana start to flow, and grinned. /I'll never get used to that - don't think I'd want to./
Shaping his mana to his will, Eric spoke the commands between gasps as he ran - then his grin spread as he felt himself speed up. /This is more like it-Woah!/ Eric barely managed to dodge a tree as he entered the thicker forest in pursuit and his grin turned again into a frown of concentration.
Eric had a general idea of the Aberrant Eye's trajectory and it didn't seem as worried about losing pursuit as it was about gaining altitude; so it was easy enough to follow the general direction of Asavar's ascent with only occasional checks as the forest would allow. But not being able to travel as fast as he now felt he could go worried Eric to desperation.
Laboring to think of what other tricks he could pull, while keeping himself moving at his magically enhanced speed - without becoming a smear of jelly on the side of a tree in the process - Eric caught a sparkle from the ring on his right hand. Eric winced, frustrated with the artifact he'd been given after being pulled to Aviron from Earth then not taught how to use, and saw the ring begin to glow at the attention.
/Okay, O great and powerful Ring of Mithrandir; you want to prove you're so great an artifact? Then help me see a path through this forest to my friend!/
Eric blinked as his eyesight seemed to clear. Realizing he had finally gotten the ring to do something useful, Eric grinned as his vision narrowed in and extended before him and pushed himself to the limit of his newly enhanced movement.
Checking another glace to Asavar, he cheered mentally as he saw the Eye seeming to flag in it's ascent, then frowned; he was still too far away.
/This is going to be close - Allyra, let me make it in time!/
Eric felt a strange tug, then noticed his speed increase. Sending a prayer of thanks to his adopted Deity, Eric's mind went quiet as his attention narrowed into moving his feet towards where Asavar would eventually land.
Suddenly, Eric broke through into a glade, and saw the orc plummeting out of the sky on top of a limp mass of tentacles, eyes and blubber. He stopped so fast he nearly feel onto his own ass, then winced as Asavar hit. He stepped quickly to the orc's side, ignoring the chunks of Aberrant Eye that would be nearly impossible to remove from his boots.
Asavar lay quiet, head and limbs laying at impossible angles, and Eric had to swallow, hard, to prevent his last ration pack from joining the gibbage cluttering the ground.
Eric quickly laid Asavar in a semblance of a decent position, then spread his hands above the body. He summoned his magic, and felt how little a reservoir he had left even after the travel time to regen. He stopped for a precious moment, trying to think what to do.
/I've got one round, but I don't have the mana for a large enough healing spell. I can use my life force - but will I have enough?/ Eric shook his head. /Bah! Asavar is dying. I can't let that happen without trying everything. Besides - this isn't my world. This is his world, and his destiny has to trump mine./
Eric quickly summoned his will again and built the spell larger and larger. /C'mon, Asavar! Just hold on!/ Eric set himself, and started the spell. His breath stitched in pain as he felt the spell begin to drain away his vitality, but grinned as he saw Asavar's neck and limbs straighten out.
As the spell neared completion, Eric saw through dimming vision sprinkled with small flashes and dark circles that it wasn't going to be enough. Holding his concentration as long as he could, Eric managed one final train of thought.
/Allyra... Save Asavar.. Use me up if you have too.../
Eric's back stiffened in pain; then the world went dark.
Gregor, Thurgood and Wonder Mutt, show up and to find the bodies of their two comrades lying next to each other. Aberrant goo is everywhere and it is hard not to step in it. As you each rush to them your hands probe quickly to check for a heartbeat as your minds recite the last remnants of a desperate healing spell. You each feel the mana leave your body, giving all you have and then some. You both fall unconscious, wondering, “Will it be enough”?