The Space in Between
Slayers have been watching umbral Behemoths leap through portals into (and out of) the Umbral Void for years. And in the heat of battle, most are usually too busy to study what a Riftstalker might experience between the time or dives through a portal and the moment it emerges from the ground beneath a Slayer's feet. Is it something like the nightmarish "murder place" such Behemoths can use to trap and torment unwary foes? Or is the Void something far more strange—and vast?
What my hypothesis supposed is that the dimensions we know—width, height, depth, even time—work differently in the Umbral Void. And I now have an opportunity to test that hypothesis in rather dramatic fashion with the Portal Driver.
With the aid of some Ramsgate's finest Slayers, my colleague Dr. Priyani, and scraps of data left by the Void Runners themselves, I've worked out enough of its functions to move a great many people, animals, and supplies a considerable distance—to the other side of the Ram formation if all goes well. Then each end of the portal should seal itself, assuring our escape.
When we cross that threshold to a new island, what will we see along the way? Will we see anything at all? Will the journey feel like a walk of a thousand years or the single beat of a human heart?
I cannot risk the Driver or our limited supply of charged umbral aether to investigate these questions. The city has one shot at this. So it is in that spirit, my honoured colleagues, that I inform you of my intent to activate potentially forbidden technology to save the people of Ramsgate. I do this with full knowledge of responsibility it puts upon my shoulders, and I put the responsibility. I will either be the city's saviour or our doom—but if we stay, that doom is certain. It is my hope that you will see the necessity of this grand experiment. Indeed, if I am able to record anything of the time within the Umbral Void, we could even be on a path of regaining the full knowledge of the ancients.
What a world we could build, armed with that knowledge, and the lessons of our past failures.
- —Arkan Drew