After a long, treacherous battle, the party stands exhausted, Isla dead at their feet.
Faust, clinging to life, accepts Isla’s fate, exclaiming that she won’t be alone for long.
Rook does his best to help tend to Faust’s devastating wounds but doesn’t have much hope for Faust’s survival.
Rook asks Suri how Isla got to be on Middara to begin with. He’d always been told that those from Arkalla couldn’t take physical form for long. Suri explains that creatures from different dimensions can create a Soul Bond with each other, allowing them to travel freely between worlds. Faust was Isla’s Soul Bond and this was highly illegal. Although this is usually safe, Suri’s home world of Arkalla is one of the dimensions that is off limits from travel. The Great Bounty are the being that enforce this law and will surely be here soon.
Suri then notices a dark opening in the sky and dread overcomes her. The agents of The Great Bounty were already here.
Dread overcomes Suri as a dark opening tears into the sky above them. An agent of the Great Bounty was already here. Suri wisps away, giving Rook one last desperate look before vanishing in fear at the newcomer.
Descending from the skies, a massive lion-like creature, three stories tall with flowing feathery wings like something out of the book of Revelations lands nearby.
The beast introduces itself as an agent of the Great Bounty. Promising that it means humans no harm. Instead, the creature congratulates them for bringing it lawbreakers. First, it turns on the Living Oblation. The red headed girl with the scythe struggles with her injuries and crawls in a vain attempt to escape.
The Lion-Beast leans down over the squirming Living Oblation. The red headed girl screams out as the Lion-Beast tears the human vessel into pieces, exposing the creature that was habitating the human body. It explodes out of the carcass like a black ooze, similar to the Maluma.
Nightingale covers her mouth in horror at the idea of the monster tearing her apart to get at the Maluma within herself. Somewhere deep within her, she feels the Maluma shrink and disappear as though it too was fearful of the monster.
The Lion-Beast is disappointed when he sees Isla’s still dead body. The agent of the Great Bounty explains that they only offer payment for fugitives that are delivered alive. Then, he tosses a cloth sack filled with gold for their delivery of the Living Oblation. Finally, the Lion-beast tears open a pocket of reality itself, revealing a portal to some place far beyond. The Lion-beast nods to the party before walking through and snapping the portal shut behind him.