"So, after we left, we searched a few towns for the parents of the poor baby that idiot Xander kidnapped, and returned her. Then we came here," Rajaini finished.
"Why here?" Dally asked, glaring at Kharnyx.
Kharnyx sighed, exasperated. "Because I knew you would know where the things from my chambers would be. I know Ash and her forces raided what was left of Gustav's stronghold. There are books that I need, books on The Void and the creatures within."
Krieger stroked his beard, a look of deep thought on his face. "I know Tim and I salvaged all we could from Kharnyx's old laboratory. We split what we took...I know there is a stack of books tucked away in a corner that I have not touched probably since we brought them here. If I do not have the books you need, Tim will. I will send a raven to him."
"Ok," Dally said, "I suppose take Kharnyx and Ano with you to your lab and see if the book or books are there." Ano nodded, Krieger stood and Kharnyx reluctantly followed them out of the room.
Reginald cleared his throat. "So, Rajani, would you care to explain where you have been for the last five years?"
"I think that is rather obvious," Rajani replied flatly.
Reginald removed his glasses and rubbed his eyes. "Why? Why would you take up with such an evil person?"
"Oh, here we go..."
"You have talent! I sent you to study with THE best magic wielders in Atlas! And you leave them to go join a CULT?!"
"I told you," Rajani said through clenched teeth, "that I would do AN-NY-THING to bring my mother back. Kharnyx told me she knew how. She lied. I was a fool. Blah blah blah..."
As the green moon rose over Atlas once again, the portal to The Void shimmered. The surface parted and a creature emerged. Part dragon, part cosmic being, the eyes that adorned its head, wings and heavily armored body took in the surroundings and saw everything. Its scrying orbs came out of the portal behind it and flew off in different directions to observe more of the area. The creature lumbered impossibly quietly into the forest to find a meal and a place from which to observe.