Serialized Science Fiction.

Blast from the Past
Tom Haynes

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I heard the Sarge crashing back through the undergrowth. His eyes were white and he was babbling. I thought it was due to the brambles, but then I followed his gaze and I looked over were Gorgie had been. Both halves of the body were floating two feet off of the ground. Some of that drekin white light was hovering over the body and pouring into the eyes. The bullets, which had split Gorgie in two, were forming giant stitches, sewing the body back together.

Now, I've been tutored in some of the more arcane lore of magic. Father had sent me to MIT&T for postgraduate work and then brought in some of his oldest friends to round out my education. I even spent a summer with Dunkelzahn. Father had me summon an eldritch spirit with some of my blood, so I knew all about blood magic and the dangers it posed. Then some tours of duty with the Red Raiders in the bayou, Aztlan border skirmishes, and an extraction from Chicago had given me more practical experience than I cared for with the darker side of magic.

I nearly lost it as C'gull, it could only have been him, created some sort of undead creature out of one of my oldest friend's corpse. What he did should have been impossible and also should have damned his soul forever. I even quickly scanned C'gull's aura and could not see any of the tell tale signs of blood magic. There were also no signs of cybernetic augmentation. The sword and the wand pulsed, slightly off color; they had to be artifacts.

A gut-wrenching scream pierced the night air and the writhing creature that had been Gorgie looked at her heavy weapon and directed some of the white light at the fire control computer. I could barely focus on it, but I sensed the circuitry healing itself. She stood up and opened fire on the flanking Paladins. Some died under that opening barrage and more broke from the sight of Gorgie charging their position.

The rest of the white light flowed back into the circle behind C'gull. It was about a third of the diameter it had started at. I doubted he could go back through. In the back of my mind, I knew he was deliberately burning that bridge behind him. For whatever reason, he was here to stay. Knowing what I did about the astral realms, I started to question my decision to bring him here. There were certain horrors that I did not want to be responsible for unleashing on the world. If he were what I feared, then Pandora would be remembered fondly for what she had unleashed.

I calmed down a bit when I recalled his aura, he was definitely human. I had seen Dunkelzahn in his human form and I could tell from his aura that he was not really human. I was better at reading auras than were most adepts - I could tell a shaman's totem by examining their aura.

I decided to conduct an experiment, I reached out with my will and grabbed some of the white light. As I pulled it across to me, I could feel C'gull allowing it to leave. It felt like mana, only more primal. Where mana felt like life force, this stuff truly felt alive. I quickly cast the most minor healing spell I knew and thrust the energy at the Sarge. Not only did it heal his knee, I could feel it reverse the degenerative nerve damage the Sarge had suffered at Cooleye Junction.

I then used the white light to whip the gas over towards the Paladins. As I sped it along, I changed it such that it was now a contact agent and not an inhalant. I knew the Paladins were wearing nose plugs, but they did not have NBC suits on.

The baying of the hounds announced both their arrival and that of the remaining two-thirds of the original force. Drek and more drek! "C'gull, do you have any more rabbits up your sleeve?" I asked

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