“They infest people. They eat you from the inside. Somebody gets infected with lycanthropy, you’ve still got a chance to save them. If a daelkyr-spawn gets inside you…” Issin shook his head. “You’re solo, Tae. Like Kirito. You don’t have to come.” He blew out a breath. “Heck, you’ve heard more daelkyr lore than any of us. If you’re scared, I know we should be.”
“Who says we’re not?” Dale said wryly. “But they’re our friends.” He gulped. “Even if we can’t get them out – how could we leave them in a ‘spawn nest alive?”
She covered her face with her hands, shuddering. “…You’re right.”
Yeah, Dale thought, trying not to shake himself. Why does that not make me feel any better?
Fists lowered to her sides, Tae unfurled her wings. “You’re all right. And if they’re going to have a chance, we have to move fast.” She fixed a dragon’s gaze on Kirito. “I don’t care what you say. I saw you. You’re a ranger. You can track a hawk on a cloudy day. Do it! I’ll find them. You find me!”
A thunder of wings, and she was gone.
A ranger can do this, Kirito told himself. A ranger can….
Most players would say his chase was impossible. Tracking by way of Scan needed a trail you could see. And both Tae and the psiwasps were flying.
Trail or no trail, if you were on the map, an allied player could still find you. But drop into a pit, or get yanked into the air – and you weren’t on the map anymore.
Giant Wasps have their nests in trees or underground. If psiwasps hold true to that, they won’t show up on the map until we’re in the nest. Great.
So he was Scanning for a trail that wasn’t there. Literally. Tae left no trail of her own – but if he sensed where animals weren’t, spotting turned tracks and ruffled beast-minds where a larger predator had passed overhead….
He ducked and dodged down deer-trails and through swaying branches, following feelings as fragile as a spider’s web. He had to make this work. And he had to do it fast. Wings were so much faster than feet, and Tae’s could carry her into a fight she couldn’t win alone.