Chapter 5

"A moment," Eris called, and Wei Ning left her side to doubtlessly join some other fray.

The Ahamkara carcass lay on its side, dead. At last. Eris felt her fingertips itch with the Arc energy she had channeled a moment ago. She tensed, stretched, caught her breath.

It was early morning. The sun had just begun to edge over the horizon.

She walked around the beast, surveying the damage they had done. They had caught it unawares, trapped it, blinded it, felled it.

Eris stopped when she saw the yawning chasm in its belly. Wei Ning had made this fatal cut. Viscera had spilled out and steamed in the fresh morning light.

A rib jutted from the wound, white and gleaming.

Eris unsheathed her sword. She could have a trophy. Just this. Hadn't Shaxx dragged a skull twice his size back to the City? She laid the blade's edge against the creature's rib. The bone chipped her sword and took its due, before releasing a sliver of the Ahamkara's remains.

A piece of bone lay at her feet. When Eris picked it up, her vision tunneled and she heard whispers. The bone was wet and raw and shiny. She held it between her thumb and forefinger and smiled.