Zakhin’Dakh had been re-shrunk by one of the Guild mages when they returned, and now they were back to waiting. Garkhen reported that nothing had happened while they were away, so Almonihah grumpily settled down to wait again, until Zakhin’Dakh trotted over to him.
I want to see the thing! He screeched, excitedly.
It took the half-bronze dragon a moment to realize what his friend was talking about. The map, he stated for Zakhin’Dakh’s benefit, guessing the griffon didn’t know the word for it.
He pulled it out and unrolled it on the ground, and Zakhin’Dakh all but pounced on it, looking up and down it excitedly. And after a few moments, the questions started.
Zakhin’Dakh was still asking a constant stream of questions when the entire room suddenly shook, as if struck by a giant. A dull roar echoed dimly down the hall outside, audible even from within the room. As one, Almonihah and Garkhen turned and ran to the door.
They found the acolyte outside looking about wide-eyed. “What’s going on?” Almonihah demanded of him. The young man could only shake his head.
“Which way’d it come from?” Almonihah demanded instead. The bewildered acolyte hesitated a long moment, then finally pointed one way down the hall. The two half-dragons charged off in that direction, with the still-shrunken Zakhin’Dakh following close behind.
Almonihah recognized which way they were going—the stairs they’d come up were right… here. A hint of something in the air caught his attention, and he sniffed as he ran. Smoke…?
Stopping at the stairs, he looked up, and then down. “Smoke coming from below,” he growled, then charged downwards, his friends behind him.
Two floors down, the smoke was visibly pouring out from the entryway into the stairwell, and Almonihah’s keen ears picked up sounds of battle. Following them the group soon burst into a scene of pandemonium: at least a dozen wizards were flinging fire and ice at twice that many Javni’Tolkhrah, all within an enormous room. At the center of the room the flaming wreckage of some sort of structure sent up billowing clouds of acrid smoke.
“Javni’Tolkhrah? Here?” Garkhen gasped.
Almonihah reached the same conclusion the Warder had. “The Amulet.”
And here it’s unfortunate that I name my chapters before they’re done, because this ended up not getting as far as I’d thought. So the chapter name is not really applicable to this chapter, but rather the next. XD