"Damn it!" Kassadin heard to his right. Someone else had fallen. He heard an enraged scream and hurried footsteps, before the howl of rage was suddenly cut off.
This had happened too much. There was too much fighting, too much death. They would never be able to defeat the monstrosity of the Void standing in front of them. It reached out now, with tentacles tipped with small pores, its chemicals promising a quick, painful death.
Kassadin attempted to "surf" through reality to use his signature move, but he found his power didn't work. He tried again, but there was still no hum, nor was there teleportation. In desperation, he dived to the side to try to avoid the lashing tentacles, but one caught him in the left shoulder, instantly rendering his left arm totally numb, and full of horrible, amazing pain.
Now the other tentacles that had missed came around for another run. First one grabbed onto his left ankle, another one onto his right calf. Both places exploded in agony as more grabbed. His armor was ripped off as the tentacles squeezed, and Kassadin couldn't even make a sound as his lungs were crushed, and he was being pulled apart, and then tentacles came out of his mo-
Kassadin awoke with a start, flailing around with his Void blade, before realizing he had been in a dream. None the less, he remained tense as the events of the dream replayed in his head, as he made his way to the stash of materials near the exit to Icathia which he'd hidden in case he'd ever be in a situation like this.
Making his way into an old, dilapidated building, Kassadin turned left, passed three doors, took another left, then immediately went right, under several slabs of rubble, before reaching a small room partially restored by the Void Walker. In it was several days' worth of military rations (Demacian standard field rations, actually), a pack containing traveling essentials such as a tent and a sleeping roll, two maps kindly provided by Ezreal, the Prodigal Explorer (one of Valoran, and the other of the regions of the Void he'd forayed into), and a teleportation stone linked directly with the Teleportation station in the Institute of War. Kassadin only had eyes for the stone.
Holding the stone in his right hand, Kassadin closed his eyes and concentrated on the Institute.
It was supposed to bring him to the Institute almost instantly, after a bright flash of light and a feeling of... nothingness.
But nothing happened.
Kassadin closed his eyes and tried once more, but again, nothing happened.
Opening his eyes, the Walker realized there were only two possible explainations. One was that he had no magic in himself, but that was easily disproved by forming a quick sphere of pure magical energy in his left hand. There was only one other explanation.
There was no League anymore.
Taking the pack, the map, and what supplies he had, Kassadin began the long trek from the ruined city of Icathia to anywhere civilized, where he might be able to find information on what happened to the Institute. Even if there was nothing that could be done, the Walker still had to know what had happened to the Institute, as well as the current state of Valoran.
Taking out a map thoughtfully provided by The Prodigal Explorer, Ezreal, Kassadin realized the nearest city was Bandle City of the Yordles. And so, he began to trudge south out of the ruined city, hoping the Yordles might be able to lend him aid and information.
As he passed through the destroyed gates of Icathia, the Walker paused. He heard a chittering sound, one often made by voidli-
Riftwalking backwards, Kassadin just avoided an explosion of caustic acid. If he had been half a second slower, he'd be nothing but a puddle of sizzling goo in the ground, judging by the state of the already-molten stone where he had been standing moments ago. Looking up, he saw three more small voidlings that looked disturbingly like Kog'Maw. The Walker assumed that what had exploded on the ground was another Kog'Maw-like voidling that had stored the acid in its own body before dropping down upon him, hoping that its sacrifice would destroy Kassadin.
The other three mini-Kogs promptly dropped onto the ground in front of Kassadin after seeing the failure of their comrade. Hissing, each one of them drooled acid on the ground, each drop eating hungrily into the stone of the ancient roadways. Knowing that being hit by even one drop could prove to be fatal, the Walker readied himself for a hard fight.
The first mini-Kog stepped forwards and spat a lightning-fast gob of caustic acid at Kassadin. But Kassadin was faster, dipping into phase space for an instant before resurfacing behind the first mini-Kog before it even had time to react, plunging his Nether Blade carefully into its head, and Riftwalking away again to take cover behind a piece of rubble. The mini-Kog, without its admittedly miniscule brain controlling the acid within its body, exploded as its own weapons ate it alive from the inside out.
The other two mini-Kogs were decidedly more cautious than the first, and seemed content to stay in their spread-out positions, ready to spit at the Walker the moment he poked his head out, yet feeling an animalistic fear of Kassadin.
Kassadin, on the other hand, also couldn't move, seeing as he had to get out somehow, and the two voidlings were blocking the only way out of the city. Also, seeing as he was still not quite recovered from his ordeal in the Void, as well as just riftwalking twice in less than five seconds, Kassadin's energy (frequently called 'mana') reserves were running rather low, and the Voidlings, due to their passivity, knew it. He only had enough magical energy in him to walk one more time safely- if he attempted to do so after that, it would get harder and harder to escape phase space, and eventually, he would dip in, and not able to escape again. And even if he managed to kill one with one Riftwalk, the other one would melt him before he could do anything. And he also couldn't simply wait, seeing as more voidlings were undoubtedly on their way. He had to act, but could see no possible mode of action.
Both sides sat on their respective haunches in a stalemate, the mini-Kogs willing to wait the Walker out, and the Walker trying to find a strategy to flush them out and escape the city before more voidlings arrived.
Suddenly, the Walker had an idea. Rummaging in his pack for a moment, he took out a hunk of dried meat, took a few steps back, and tossed it between the two voidlings.
The Mini-Kogs slowly turned towards the meat, one taking slow, lumbering steps towards it. Suddenly the other broke into a stumbling trot, arriving at the meat first, and taking a massive bite out of it. The first Mini-Kog blinked once, and suddenly realizing the very real prospect of no food, wailed loudly. Seeing a tiny bit of jerky left on the ground, the mini-Kog did the only thing it could think of to save the last part of its meal.
It spat a gob of caustic acid at its partner, blowing it up, and surely saving the meat. Moments later, it was proved wrong.
As the mini-Kog helplessly watched its partner's acid explode all over the meat, it let out a second wail of despair. Turning around, its eyes could only follow the ball of null energy as it imploded into its face, causing a premature explosion, and clearing the way for Kassadin.
Shouldering his pack, Kassadin walked past the four carved craters paved with acid as he exited Icathia, turned south, and started off in the direction of Bandle City.
So sorry for leaving this on a hook for so long!
Also, I recently found "Legacy of the Void" by Ask Vayne. It's got similar plot to what I have planned, so if you like this, try reading that.
Thanks for reading, and know that I would never be able to write without your support. Thanks for that too!