Anastri collapsed, shaking. Ash fell to his knees beside her and checked her pulse.
"Anastri?" Solus asked, dropping to the ground beside Ash. "You okay?"
Ash waved her away and she felt a spike of rage. "Give her some space. She's fine."
With a poorly concealed grimace, Salorien turned away. If the team members were already collapsing at the sight of blood, this was going to be a long journey. She stalked across the cavernous space, her annoyance only growing when she stumbled over the spine of a rat. Stupid darkness. She was going to do something about that.
"Warren?" she called. "I'll be just a moment. Going to check the rest of the area for anything interesting like an entrance."
He glanced up at her from where he was describing what happened to Ria. "No problem, we'll regroup here in... ten minutes?"
Salorien smiled. "Perfect." She set off with renewed purpose, searching the rough walls until she found a suitably dark, inconspicuous nook. Crouching, she pulled the wriggling, squirming shape she'd picked up earlier from her pouch and set it on the ground, keeping a tight hold around its neck. She'd have to act fast - across the cavern Anastri was already getting to her feet.
"I need to be able to see. I'll be no use down here without darkvision," she muttered. "This rat pup is my sacrifice. With its blood, I invoke you and stuff." She risked another quick glance up, and saw the others walking away. She would have to hurry. Raising her dagger she brought it down on the pup's neck, muffling its squeals with her hand. Its blood spurted out, narrowly avoiding her skirt as it sprayed onto the ground. There was a faint rumble, and she felt a presence stir in the musty air.
You have invoked me.
Solus caught her breath. "Yes. I need darkvision. Temporary, permanent, whatever. I can't have any disadvantages if I'm going to pull this off, and there are too many people who can see in this party for my liking."
You know what it will require.
"Yes." Her knuckles were white from how hard she was gripping the dagger. The presence faded, disappearing into the stone. She braced for impact, but it still took her by surprise when a vicious wind kicked up, slamming her into the side of the cave. Stars burst behind her closed eyelids and she muffled a cry of pain before dropping to the rocky floor. The wind died away, and this time she knew it was really gone. She lay there for a moment, breathing heavily, before scrambling to her feet with the support of the wall. Her shoulder hurt - maybe strained. Her head hurt - she didn't like to think about what could've happened to it. Her right eye was already beginning to swell up, but she grinned with satisfaction when she realized that she could make out the piles of rubbish and bones scattered around the cavern. The sacrifice had worked.
Holding her shoulder gingerly, she started back to rejoin the group.