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Thread: Lion Heart [M]

  1. #11
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    Default Into the Fray

    "I have a feeling you've made due with worse. Stay out of my way and you should be fine."

    The centaur was right; a blunted weapon was the least of his worries. Even with a dull blade, any weapon could do damage. Worse, if an inexperienced whelp was on the other side. The entire Arena erupted into a frenzy. Weapons of all kinds swung through the air, and Devrin wasn't keen on getting caught in the thick of the melee. A brute of a man, with the unkempt beard to boot, blocked his path. A flurry of blows from dual war axes. Each blow sent shockwaves up his arms, threatening to break his weapon - or his grip - in two. A sudden gleam of steel above his head was the cue to disengage.

    Devrin launched into a forward roll, avoiding the downward slash of a broadsword. The axeman wasn't as lucky; over the roars of the crowd, battle cries and screams of agony, he could've swore he heard the two weapons collide. He wasn't about to wait for the dust to settle to see who won that collision. Up on his feet, Devrin nearly tasted the blade of a man's sword. Maybe it was all the dust, but he might've lost an inch from his beard. A warm trickle of blood dripped down his throat, and he reacted before fully comprehending the extent of his wound.

    A shaken young man, barely old enough to enter the Arena, stood in front, weaponless with a blade at his throat and the collar of his shirt clenched tightly in Devrin's gloved hand. The kid's mistake made his blood boil.

    At least two fell as the Namida barreled through the line, catching a third in the stomach with a mighty swing of her hammer and sending him flying. A shower of dirt exploded from her hooves as she stamped to a sudden halt and wheeled around to thunder toward them again. Steel rang as the shaft of her warhammer met with the edge of a broadsword, deflecting it with ease before heavy hooves rode down the offender. The pained screams that followed barely registered as she continued her pre-emptive assault.

    She was easily holding her own in that manner for quite some time before three more combatants rushed her at once. She reared with intent to strike them down with both hoof and hammer, but a sudden and sharp pain ripped through the back of her left thigh as her movement reached its apex. The unexpected shock of it buckled her leg, sending her reeling backward with a vexed shout that was equal parts pain and frustration. On sheer instinct, her uninjured hind leg lashed out as she hit the ground with a heavy thud, blindly connecting with the scrawny attacker with force enough to send him careening into the arena wall.

    She had been so preoccupied with those she saw as more of a threat that she hadn’t noticed the man’s furtive approach. This was why most Centaurs preferred traveling and fighting in pairs whenever possible, that way there was always someone to watch your flank. Uttering a string of curses, she barely had time to glimpse the spear shaft protruding from the back of her lower thigh. Even dulled, the the fool had managed to sink it deep. There was no time to attempt removing it before the original three were on her. In a flurry, blows were both blocked and struck as she fought her way up. Devrin couldn't ignore the overwhelming presence of a centaur on the field. From over the shoulder of his opponent, neither could the others. By the time she had gotten a knee up to stand, she had already abandoned her weapon for bare fists and fiery rage. She was making headway, but before she could fully find her feet, two more combatants noticed her volatile floundering and resolved to take advantage of it.

    With a hard shove, he sent the young kid colliding with a female shield maiden, knocking the shield from her hand. He managed a quick reprieve during the sudden fight he caused, and forced his way toward the thick of the battle. He dealt blow after blow, desperation rendering the idea of a 'fair fight' pointless. Kneecapping one man, he kicked another off his feet, and used the flat of his blade like a club to knock heads together.

    He watched Nami fall, but couldn't prevent her from being rushed by opportunists. Devrin yelped in pain as a solid object struck his side. He felt the warm rush of blood oozing from a reopened wound, slowly soaking through his provided Arena armor. Before he could retaliate, he heard the clang of metal against metal from behind, and a scream of pain. He didn’t have time to stop and reap his vengeance. Blinking the sweat from his eyes, he pushed forward, shouldering others in his way. Nami’s defensive onslaught was desperate, as he witnessed her fighting off opponents with hooves and hands. Every movement he made caused pain to shoot up his side, and he damned the troll - and the idiot - to oblivion for his predicament. He rammed his pommel into a man’s rib cage with enough force to crack bones, winding the man and knocking him off balance. Devrin downed the man with a vigorous stomp to the man’s Achilles heel.

    With a powerful headbut, Namida sent the closest attacker reeling backward, clutching his bloodied face. Once an opening presented itself, a swing of her fist crumbled a second one to the ground where he remained unmoving. Finally winning the chance to stagger fully back to her feet, she managed to catch the wrist of the third’s in mid-swing of his mace. With a wordless shout, she wrenched his arm backward with enough force to pop his arm clean from its socket before taking him by the throat and hurling him away.

    He was panting by the time he stood before Nami, shielding her from the blow of a warhammer. Pure adrenaline and throbbing misery compelled Devrin to stave off the blow, and forced the hammer wielder back. “Thought you could use some help,” Devrin huffed, casting a wary gaze in Namida’s direction.

    Her chests heaved like the mighty bellows of a forge as she worked to catch her breath before her momentary respite was broken by the harsh ring of steel on steel. Her face sported a feral smattering of blood, sweat, and dirt when her attention snapped to where Dervin stood. The wild, battle-frenzied look in her eyes may have seemed like she wouldn’t bother to discern friend from foe, but after a tense moment she offered a wordless nod of acknowledgement and thanks.

    Seizing the opportunity, she twisted her torso to grasp the offending spear and, with a snarling shout, wrenched it free. The bleeding wound would slow her down, but it was better than trying to continue the fight with the spear still sunk. Clutching the weapon with white-knuckled anger she snorted and hurled it toward the closest movement that caught her eye, which just so happened to be the fighter that Dervin had originally shielded her from, taking him down by the shoulder before the man could attempt striking at him again. “We’re not out of the fire yet, stay sharp!”

    Devrin thanked his lucky stars he was deemed an ally, temporary as it may be, because the bloody woman was a beast.
    Set by Ru

  2. #12
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    Kaia wasted no time wondering the halls there was a bottle of Mulled wine she'd promised and get a bottle she would! With light footsteps she bounced and bobbed weaving through the crowds and out into the open courtyard. From there she began to make her way against the crowds that were flooding in from the city. Food and drink to be had, surly there would be plenty but as she reached the outside of the gates she heard the bells toll. She paused and turned back looking through the gates in the direction she'd heard the bells. The arena. Some would fight for glory, or the free fair afterwards and some would fight to impress the king and become one of the lion hearts.

    She had thought long and heard about doing the same. While she might not have risen to the expectations of the academy in the legacy her father had left but becoming a lion heart would rise above it. She'd also thought long and heard about how her father might voice his opinion... as high of an honor as it was she doubted he would want her to venture so young on a journey that would likely never see her return to make a family of her own. Ending the Vandrachen Lin with her. Not to mention how her mother would feel about the whole thing who also likely wanted to see owlets from Kaia sometime. But she would not hesitate to pick up her weapon in his deafens should he ever call her.

    Her thoughts turned to the King as she turned away from the castle. She'd grown up near him but she'd never become close. he'd always seemed preoccupied no matter how she'd approached him if she could ever get that far. Never unkind but some what cold, she'd always wondered what he was thinking especially when he holed himself up in the castle libraries. But as she'd watched him grow as she grew she thought she began to understand. He knew what was expected of him and not only was he going to do it he was going to go beyond it. He had a purpose perhaps even a dream or a demand of the world he intended to see happen. He was going to change their world somehow. She could feel it.

    She weaved through the streets, taking in a deep breath of the mixture of festival goodies, feeling her mouth water. but she needed to focus on finding the mulled wine first. Her light footsteps taking her down the streets as she searched, keeping her wings tightly to her back to keep them from getting in the way. Eventually she arrived at a stall that was selling exactly what she was looking for. It didn't take much convincing to get herself a decent sized bottle for herself. Pleased with her acquired item she began to weave her way back through the crowds.

    She figured she would watch the sparing in the arena but as she drew closer to the castle and the courtyard it was being held in she realized that the time was drawing close where they would no longer be accepting fighters and she realized that she'd really rather be in there with them. Proving herself worthy to be called a lion heart. If the King was going to change the world, She felt it in her feathers, She wanted to be there to see it with her own eyes to make sure he reached his goal with her own two hands. With this thought in mind Kaia picked up her pace through the streets.

    Kaia arrived at the booth out of breath just as the man was packing up. "Wait!" He sighed and slowly set back down to face her. Kaia smiled faintly and pushed the bottle of wine behind her back. "I would like to enter, if its not to much trouble." She took the waver he offered with a small thank you and quickly signed it, hesitating only a moment before she put her last name. He waved her in before he placed the paper with the rest and quickly stood before anyone could stop him.

    Most everyone had left their gear and grabbed the provided weaponry and armor. She took to a corner and stripped off her short sword, having left her halberd at her home as it be to cumbersome in a crowd. Stripping away her gloves and armor. Carefully setting her bottle of wine safely between her things and covering it gently, out of sight out of mind. There would be plenty of time after the arena to catch up with her father. For now this is where she needed to be. Strapping on the armor that was provided and snatching up a long polled weapon she adjusted herself to its weight and grip. The armor was more cumbersome then her own and did not fit nearly as well with her wings, chaffing against the joints that connected to her shoulders, the weight of the weapon was fine but it was heaver in her hands then her own weapon.

    Finely she took a deep breath and followed the others out into the ensuing chaos. Clashing metal, voices shouting and voices crying in pain. Kaia's eyes caught the gimps of steel and ducked as a dull broadsword swept just above her head. She popped up and spun to face the broad shouldered man easily a head taller then herself She leaped back and used her weapon to redirect his swing before she spun the blunt end up and slammed it into his chest. He grunted at the impact but smiled. Kaia knew her strength was easily outmatched by this man, truthfully by most people on this battlefield.

    He grabbed the staff and jerked it to the side, jerking her closer. Kaia kicked up flaring her wings to give her air as her foot smashed into the man's chin bloodying a tooth as he released her weapon with a groan. Kaia hit the ground with her wings splayed over the ground but she lost no time in swinging the blunt end into the side of the man's head before he could recover. As he reeled to the side Kaia rolled up stabbing the weapon into the ground and using it to propel herself into the air as she swung around and smashed her knee into the man's ear sending him to his knee. He swung his weapon out wildly in her direction the flat of the blade catching Kaia in the side and sending her tumbling sideways.

    She managed to somewhat control her roll ending up in a crouch, clutching her weapon as the man staggered to his feet but before he could charge her two fighters barreled into him knocking him to the ground once more. Kaia dived to the side to avoid the wrestling bodies and rolled back to her feet.
    Last edited by P.K.; 02-07-2019 at 12:49 AM.
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  3. #13
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    In the presence of his lord and sovereign, Brennus' back straightened, shoulders squared. The High King was a young man yet, but commanded a respect beyond his years, even beyond his station. The gravity of his burden, known since birth, was not to be understated. Brennus cleared his throat gruffly,

    "Beg pardon, your Grace," said Brennus, his steely eyes trained forward. "Have you ever considered that I am fully aware, and therefore speak with purpose?" Brennus smirked. "In that, at least, I intend to be apart from certain others in the palace." Obstinate as a bulwark, unmoving at first, Brennus' stern brow quirked incredulously at the passing dismissal of his lord.

    "Your Grace, I appreciate your thoughtfulness and candor, but my daughter, my wife, and I are aware of what my station entails..." he paused, the High King already moving on with that sly and knowing grin on his face.

    Cocky little shite, Brennus thought to himself with a low harrumph.

    "You've made your mind, your Grace, so at least permit me to escort you off the palace grounds." Brennus said, not quite a question or request as a statement. He was a man of purpose, to which he had fully dedicated himself. Half measures and cut corners were not something he would easily abide, even with permission given.

    Once Brennus and his ward had parted ways, he walked the stalls on parade, helping himself to spiced wine and a steaming mutton pie, its warmth felt even through the layers of his gauntlet. The passing performer would make a show of their novelty skill, earning jeering and applause, and a shower of coin if they were fortunate. Keeping a leisurely pace, Brennus followed the herd of citizens to the arena. There, he would find himself a seat and give cheer to deserving contenders, standing and hollering an eagle-cry for his daughter, showering those seated beneath him with half-chewed pie.

    Spoiler: Puttin' the Ass in Crass 


    "The bullshit stops when the hammer drops" – Viking proverb

  4. #14
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    Default The Battle Continues

    Seig slumped down in his chair and took a quick drink, he watched with interest certain bodies on the field, locking eyes with more than one of them. He took another drink and realizing his discomfort rose from the chair and began grinding his hands together massaging his knuckles as the Prince and the Prince's mother walked around the corner. His eyes lit up and a genuine smile found its way stamped on his face. There was no falsehoods, no masks, when Seig saw his saw it was a bright light in the void that shined his way. The Prince wrapped his arms around his father's waist and quiet 'Hey Dad' could be heard passing from one to the other. He embraced his son tightly for a moment before raising a hand to his mother. It was somewhat of a handshake, but, more like a romantically inclined squeeze. He and She had always shared a special bond, even if the laws didn't permit a normal life for him.

    "So Dad, who do you think is going to win?" The Prince's eyes were specifically locked on one creature on that battlefield, because he had never been witness to the prowess of a Centaur, actually he had never seen one at all. He was visually excited with anticipation of watching the heroes fight, a slight bounce up and down while he leaned on the wall of the balcony had all but consumed his movement.


    "Oh, I have my thoughts, but first, I would like to know if you have chosen a name yet?" He looked at his son with a cocked eyebrow wondering if he had been like him at that age and would end up waiting till the last moment. "Yes sir and I think you'll like it a lot, Mom told me it was a good one." The Prince looked at his mother for approval and she nodded while running her fingers through his hair. "It is a wonderful name and Seig, I have no doubt you'll be satisfied at the coronation, he's spent nights thinking and deciding all by himself."


    "Well, well, he's better than his old man, I waited till the last minute for mine." He laughed and pat his son on the back while his eyes focused back on the contest. Specifically he watched he Centaur as it was knowledge to the obvious who would likely win this contest if it went to one fighter. "Dad! Who do you think is going to win?" The Prince prodded again in excitement, he knew his father knew a lot about fighting and wanted an answer now so he knew who to watch. "Well, if you want my honest opinions, the young Centaur is going to destroy the competition, skilled or not she is the strongest opponent on the field. Since you're so interested...." He pulled the Prince to his knee, "...She is from a place called The Fringes, a place that lies beyond the protection of our borders, she comes from a place where constant battles our being waged to survive and she's grown up stronger than most because she had no choice. There are other fighters on the field today who actually pose a challenge to her and to some extent I'm more interested in them, I want to see what they'll do to stand as a threat against her."


    "She's so cool and strong!" The Prince's eyes gleamed watching the Centaur fight it was obvious to Seig how much she had to hold back so as not to kill her opponents outright, it was impressive to say the least, now if only they could be adept at containing magic like the other races. He watched for a moment more continuing to lock his gaze onto certain combatants. "I think I have chosen my Lion Heart." He finally said it allowed even though he'd known for weeks prior to the festival.


    "Hey, Dad? Will I know who my Lion Heart are?" The mood quickly to a sour turn and Seig felt his jaw clench when the question was asked and even more the boy's mother bowed her head quietly. "Yes, you will, but with any luck, this time around you won't need one. Let's watch the fight!" He feigned excitement to get his sons mind out of the dark but in some sense he began to wonder.


    Don't question yourself now, fool.


    What is a King without his pride? If you're looking for answers come find them in my first RP since my return to RPA!~
    Lion Heart OOC
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    War on High Interest Check
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  5. #15
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    Kaia smiled at the unmistakable call she could just barely make out over the roaring crowed and the clash of steal. Her father was in the crowed above and though she didn't have time to spare looking for him she knew he was watching closely and she couldn't disappoint. The numbers were dwindling slowly but surly through the onslaught. Men and women alike were being dragged off the field to be tended to. Young and old, experienced and in experienced. It was thinning out to the lucky and those with quick wit and even quicker reflexes.

    Kaia used the slight hook at the end of her halberd to catch the ankle of a passing young man. He rolled into a tumble catching himself with his battered shield and turned to face her just as she came down on him with both feet. Landing squarely on the shield She thrust the halberd down past his shield sending a glancing blow off his shoulder but it was enough to make his arm buckle under her light weight pinning his arm against his chest as he attempted to swing at her with the sword. the sword caught her leg as she drew back and struck for his head.

    Kaia's leg buckled making her flop sideways as a line of red ran down the side of her knee. The man staggered to his feet one of his ears bloodied after the blow of her weapon had caught it he rushed her bringing his sword down before she could get to her feet. She deflected the blow once, twice, thrice before they held fast, locked in a struggle. He pushed down with his weapon while she struggled to push it back. She grunted at the effort but watched it steadily lower towards her shoulder before her brought his shield arm up to bash her in the head.

    Kaia tipped her weapon suddenly making him slide past, pain snapped across her fingers as his weapon grazed them but she wasted no time as she stumbled past in tripping him on his face and finishing him off with a sharp smack to the head. She staggered to her feet, Her knee ached but it was just another addition to collection of bruises and cuts appearing over her body. She tightened her grip on her weapon feeling the blood running between her fingers making the poll slick in her grip.

    Her heart beat against her chest and her breath came in rapid gasps as her dark eyes scanned the arena. She wanted to stand and catch her breath and truthfully watch the centaur fight. She'd heard of them but she'd never seen. From what she had seen out of the corner of her eye she was glad she was on the far side of the arena from the powerful swing of her hammer.
    Last edited by P.K.; Yesterday at 03:49 PM.
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  6. #16
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    It was an unusual sight, seeing someone escorted around in the middle of an arena match. For most fighters, this was a once in a lifetime chance to prove their mettle.

    Many had different motivations, but nearly all were unified by that grandiose idea that the Lion Heart had been established on. Helping to save their world with their sword hand.
    Lumen had no such illusions, especially here on the outskirts of the brawl.
    His priority was right where it always had been, the people in front of him.

    “Correct, Doctor Lumen”, the medic replied, not even waiting for the end of their introductions to size up his newest patient.
    Did he recognize either of them? Perhaps. The perforations of his enclosed helm made it difficult to identify others at a glance. No doubt there were a dozen other fighters on the field who would give him that same sense of familiarity, this caste of society was the most prone to injury.

    But he couldn’t think about that right now.
    The boys arm was dangling, and Lumen intended to keep it that way. His honorable opponent had suggested it would only be a minor injury, but such things were often underestimated by people who lived and breathed adrenaline.

    “Stay still”, Lumen ordered, pressing a thumb against the injured fighters forearm, then carefully navigating down.
    Wrist injuries were far from uncommon, but they came with their own unique set of problems. A large number of bones sat between the radius--the long bone of the arm, and the metacarpal bones of the fingers.

    If the damage was bad enough, or the bones did not mend properly this boy might never hold anything again, let alone a sword.

    Well, it was a bleak thought he’d keep to himself. There were always magical means of mending, but that was a dangerous thought-trap.
    Energy used to heal was stolen from the King. Wasting it frivolously, when the body could often repair itself on its own was a dangerous mentality to fall back on--

    The boy hissed, as Lumens thumb fell onto his wrist.
    “There it is, the lunate”, Lumen murmured, identifying one of the small bones nearest to the radius, “I don’t feel any floating, so its probably just a hairline--”


    The Medic felt a pair of hands grab him in a frenzy, and he let go of the recruit just in time to feel a sharp rip at his chest.
    Where?
    Where?!
    Where had he come from, the woman had been watching the--
    Lumen put it together quickly, recognizing the man whose arm he’d reinserted back into his socket who now held a handful of golden cloth.
    He grabbed again mindlessly, the whole exchange of Lumen being pulled down happening in moments.
    Lumen pulled his fist back sharply, driving it hard into his frenzied patients temporal bone--right behind the ear.

    To be fair, the Doctor couldn’t blame him for it. Doped up on massive amounts of adrenaline from fighting and being injured. He’d blacked out, but it was common to wake back up in a frenzy and confused state.
    Lumen almost felt bad, but--

    Where had he gotten a fistful of that cloth? The rules of the arena meant--

    “Oh no…”, Lumen muttered, feeling for the gold tabard on his chest, the one that identified him as a non-combatant.
    Gone, shredded from their tumbling match.
    “Oh, this is bad, this is very bad…”
    Having been half distracted by the medic’s murmurings Theorynn was just as shocked as he when the first injured combatant started to grapple him in a frenzy. Cursing under her breath she geabbed the other man’s shirt aiming to refocus his attention just as the tabard on the medic ripped and the man was knocked unconscious once more by the medic’s expert blow.

    “Well shit,” she swore, “you’re not kidding. Listen I’ll get you to the outskirts, just stay behind me and I’ll do what I can to get everyone back to the......ah completely opposite side of the courtyard.......well shit......”

    Shaking her head Theorynn rolled her shoulders and repositioned her shield infront of their small group. Before them was the slowly, too slowly, thinning wall of weapons and though the outer perimeter was relatively empty there were still combatants and bodies alike huging the stone walls of the courtyard striving for protection from the onslaught. Their options were slim and unpromising. Around the edge would be safer, but would be too slow, the frenzied man could wake up again and once more attack Doctor Lumen, too risky. Through the Middle wasn’t any less of a risky option either of course, especially with an unmarked medic. Theorynn frowned.

    “Our options are pretty bleak,” she called over her shoulder once more, “around the edge may take too long if our friend wakes up again it could spell trouble. I don’t like the idea of trying to forge a path through the middle of that fray, but it would get is there quicker granted you could maybe keep us at least shielded from behind.....I don’t really like our chances of that, but it could be worth the risk. Up to you doctor, I’ll follow your decision.”

    Lumen was not a slouch, years of drilling at Academy had grinded out any pacifistic notions he’d had growing up. But he was unprepared, both mentally and in terms of equipment on hand to fight competitively.
    But the man quickly dealt with the second issue, as he grappled with the first.

    Lumen unceremoniously looted his now thoroughly concussed attacker, taking his sword belt sheath and all. It rested uncomfortably high on his midsection, above the coiling rope of scales that was wrapped slightly lower, his tail.
    If his shield had a strap, Lumen wouldn’t have hesitated to take that as well. But the Doctor would not do without the longstaff now held in his off-hand, far more familiar to him than the sword that he would fall back on.

    “They’ll pile up on us, if they sense weakness”, Lumen murmured partially to himself. It was a lesson many green warriors had already learned here in the ring.
    He took a moment, a long moment to observe the field, his intrepid protector, their raving attackers.

    The Doctors stomach churned sickly, pressure rolling around in his guts. Fortunately his helm hid any weakness in his expression, and his tone was well measured.
    Lumen’s hand slid down, shifting along the tall height of the staff until he held it like a long two handed sword.
    Imposing, intimidating, it could deliver a great deal of power that really would snap bones.
    “We’ll probe the middle, and shift alongside it. As far away from the Centaur as possible”
    He only hoped someone was manning the closed gate on the other side, like they were supposed to be.

    This woman could just as easily have thrown him to the wolves, he’d have to thank her properly once this was all over, “What's your name?”, the Doctor inquired, taking a complimentary position beside her.

    “Theorynn,” she said giving the medic an approving look, “Theorynn Redmane, and believe me I have no machinations to put us up against the centaur. She’s like to be the most formidable fighter here and I’d rather go at her without distraction. In fact should I stay on my feet long enough......I hope to have a chance to. Are you ready?”

    The Doctor nodded, taking position alongside Theorynn's shield, "Lumen", he paused, "Laelius Lucianus. I owe you one for this, Miss Redmane."

    They pushed forward, then rotated hard around the dense melee. Already some were reacting to their presence, smaller engagements shifting away in acknowledgement of the threat Lumen and Theorynn posed.
    The Medic had hoped that some would recognize his armor, any long winded explanation would be drowned out in the roar of the crowd. But his gear was not unique or memorable, similar helms dotted the field of battle.
    The fighters had acknowledged them, but were unwilling to move much more. On the opposite side of the melee the centaur was locked in combat and other combatants had adopted their same strategy of staying as far away as possible.
    "We'll have to push them out of the way to get through", Lumen noted, shifting to hold his staff forward like a spear.
    Another pair of fighters seemed to be coming to an agreement of their own not far away, and immediately turned onto Theorynn and Lumens defense with a sharp warcry.
    The Doctor harried their advance with the point of his staff, but they were clearly not inexperienced. The nearer fighter pressured the point of his staff with a shield, trying to pin it down enough for the two of them to rush forward.
    Lumens insides churned, his mind racing for a solution that was lost in a mountain of medical text and theory.

    Theorynn’s sword rang out in a loud metallic clang as it’s blunted edge met the blades of both combatants halting their incoming blows. With a practiced motion she stepped around Lumen and swung her shield between her chest and their weapons. Both combatants went stumbling and the nearest grunted as Theorynn’s hilt came crashing down upon his jaw. In seconds the first combatant was up again his shield up as he began to circle them looking for an easy “kill”. Many fighters would be emplying this method to narrow down the numbers. A smart tactic in normal circumstances, but with two injured and a likely less combat experienced medic it simply made things dangerous. Gritting her teeth Theorynn charged the fighter whilst his companion still dealt with his bruised jaw and likely somewhat spinning head. Their shields crashed together locking the two in a struggle of strength and wits as their blades met and clashed over head. After a moment or two of struggle Theorynn managed a decisive blow to the man’s ribs earning a harsh crack as his bones gave under the metal blade. Grunting the man shoved her back and dropped his sword for a moment clutching his side.

    “Let us by,” Theorynn barked, “I’m trying to get them to the medics! You can settle this with me alone once I get them to saftey. Now move!”

    Moving back to place herself between the combatants and the injured Theorynn nodded to Lumen.

    “You alright there,” she called over the fighting, “looked like you froze for a moment there. They didn’t get a hit in did they?”

    Shame tumbled around in Lumens guts, their opponents only faintly recognizing the situation as it was explained to them. They retreated to opposite corners, their temporary truce of convenience seeming to be already forgotten.
    "F-fine...", the Medic choked, a sickness in his belly. For a few brief moments, he'd believed he could stand alongside Theorynn and aid her as she was aiding him.
    But in that instant of action, when thoughts and words no longer had a place the whole world seemed to pour into him.
    The sour stench of the arena turning up his nose. The shrill cheers and jeers of the crowd up above them, rising with each thunder-crack of sword meeting sword.
    Even the light seemed to take on a new quality, as Lumens oval shaped pupils sharpened down to narrow slits beneath his helmet.
    The moment was there.
    To strike. To prey upon. The instincts of his illegitimate heritage demanded blood.
    But as Lumen wrestled with the tumbling heat of fear and doubt in his guts, the moment was lost.

    "I'm fine", he repeated, more confidently, "We're nearly there, lets keep moving"
    He'd lied to himself, coming to the city. His superiors had not 'volunteered' him, as he'd insisted to himself.
    Doctor Lumen had come of his own accord, against the recommendations of his instructors.
    One last chance to prove he could have been something else, someone else.
    But it was time to stop pretending.
    "I'm not a warrior, but we don't have much further to go"

    Theorynn frowned at her companion’s expression but didn’t press the issue. Now was not the time. She could worry about him later when the fighting had ceased. For now she needed to get them to safety. True to Lumen’s observation their goal was close at hand. Minus a few glancing blows and persistent combatants warded off by a few hard knocks with Theorynn’s shield they made it without too much incident. As they got up to the area sectioned off for the medical staffing Theorynn grabbed Lumen’s shoulder and forced him to face her for a moment.

    “Hey,” she said quietly, “whatever you were thinking back there.....just because you hesitated this time doesn’t mean you aren’t a warrior. You have it in you. The first time always makes you hesitate, and you’re a doctor. Your job is to heal. Fighting is entirely different and it takes a lot of guts to even attempt much less think about it. You did good. Don’t let your thoughts control you......find me after the fight?”

    The man hesitated, but after a moment peeled off the now sand stained helm. Mint blue scales traced up from the curve of his mandible to wept and sweaty hair, matching his eyes that now returned from sharpened slits to round dark pupils.
    Lumen's exotic face was no less expressive for its features, lines of hesitation and a touch of sickness.
    "Y-yeah", the man began, the practiced confidence of his tone betrayed by his face, "After the fight. Go take down that centaur"
    Certainly there was more to be said, but not now. He'd distracted her enough.
    This was Theorynn's moment. Perhaps one she'd been training her entire life for.
    He wanted this warrior to make the most of it.

    Without hesitation Theorynn smiled at Lumen and gently but firmly bumped her fist against his shoulder. It was a soldier’s way of showing affection or comradery, but she hoped it sufficed for now as a show of good faith and appreciation. What were soldiers without someone to patch them up after all? Turing back to the fray she put her shield in front of her and charged. Now she had more to fight for. A new more pressing cause than just some title. She wanted to.....well in short she wanted to impress a boy....Sir Cian would Be proud....and smug....and likely get in a few laughs at her expense although there was nothing funny about wanting to impress ones friends and allies....he’d still laugh.

  7. #17
    The Dragon Lady
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    Even as the number of contestants steadily dwindled, the amount of people focused on the wounded centaur and her human meat shield, only drew focus to the duo. He could feel the side of his cuirass grow damp from blood. Having fought in worse conditions, he was prepared to do whatever it took to make it out in one piece. Those nearby who witnessed Nami impale a man like a slab of grilled meat, had taken a step back.

    Good idea, he thought, backing an injured animal into a corner was a bad idea. A lesson he learned at an early age, was to give space. Devrin edged forward into a defensive stance, shifting from one foot to the other, eyeballing a broad shouldered man - looked like a brawler from Lyse - wielding a flail. Gritting his teeth, he braced himself as the metal ball of spikes swung through the air. The moment he dodged the brunt of the attack, he couldn't stop the chain from yanking his sword from his hands.

    Desperate and unarmed, Devrin lunged away from the man's next attack, slamming into a woman closeby. He was gambling on the centaur, and her next move as he wound up grappled with an irate ginger with a cracked shield and sword.

    Taking advantage of the other contestants’ momentary hesitation, Namida swung her human half down to retrieve her hammer. Blood loss and the exertion of the fight made it heavier in hand than she recalled it being when they first started.

    When she witnessed her temporary ally become unarmed, she snorted hotly as her warrior spirit rallied. His ill fated lunge sparked her ingrained instinct to defend and protect and, with little warning, a strong hand snatched Dervin up by the back of his cuirass and jerked him backward.

    The sudden disengagement was enough to stagger the red haired woman before Namida thrust her hammer forward, nearly doubling her as the head of the hammer knocked her backward. Catching movement from the corner of her eye, her heavy hooves danced sideways in effort to evade but her wounded leg made the motion unwieldy and slower than necessary.

    She managed to avoid the full force of the brawler's flail, but its spikes tore across her flank in a glancing blow. With a snarling shout, she shoved Devrin to her defensive side before grasping the hammer in both hands, shattering the wielder's arm with a retaliatory swing.

    Suddenly being airborne was definitely not a first, but being man handled by a furious, injured centaur was. Thrust from the arms of a woman (when was the last time that happened?) and forced into an unarmed defensive stance, he lucked out when someone nearby was disarmed mid-fight. He scrambled for the discarded weapon, and rammed an elbow into someone's sternum in a mad grab for a dagger. A quick swipe of a blade slashed the man's thigh open, bringing the man to his knees.

    Standing back-to-flank with the centaur drew curious gazes, and from among the thinning crowd of competitors, he saw someone with wings - and was that a tail? He told himself he'd recognize Lumen's distinctive features anywhere, but the pain in his side was making it harder to concentrate. He ducked as a woman lunged at him, and grabbed her by the belt, using her own momentum to fling her to the ground. Where she once stood, a claymore impaled the ground. The wielder, who obviously overextended, had gotten his weapon stuck, and Devrin capitalized by kicking the man squarely in the chest.

    Nothing's fair in the Fringes, and Devrin would be damned if playing by the rules meant allowing serious injuries on the field. Namida’s wounded hide was a murky sheen of sweat, blood, and dirt as they continued to thin out the near-endless onslaught of contestants. They were coming from all sides at this point, the only positive being that she didn’t have to run the challengers down with her leg wound. At least she wasn’t facing them down alone now. The man was no fellow Centaur at her flank, but he would do well enough so long as he could continue to hold his own.

    She glanced to the contestants at the far side of the frey, wondering if they were merely biding their time before joining or if they were wise enough to remain clear of her. Snorting, she lunged at a man that looked as if he had only lasted this long by sheer dumb luck. Her mock charge was enough to startle him backward and into the middle of two others who were squaring off. A flash of wings drew her attention as the fighting pair quickly ended the man’s lucky streak.

    Namida eyed the avian beast-kin warily. She never enjoyed having to tangle with enemies on the wing, no Centaur did. As long as the distance was respected though, she wouldn’t go out of her way to engage the feathered woman. A sudden warcry drew her attention back to her own present, blocking a mighty hammer swing with the shaft of her own. The blunt force of the attack jarred her enough to stagger backward a step as she eyed the mountain that wielded it, he looked as though there was quite a healthy dose of Orc blood in his veins.

    Baring her teeth in a snarl, she shoved him back. The next clash of their weapons rang out nearly as clear and loud as the toll of the starting bell itself, to the startled surprise of many. Some disengaged briefly to watch, but everyone nearest to them seemed to take a collective step back as the colossal warriors traded blow for blow. Within the first few seconds, it was obvious that they were nearly equalled in both strength and skill.

    The thunderous blow of weapons striking nearby meant one thing - someone was able to go toe-to-toe with Nami, his wounded centaur ally. Devrin uttered a string of curses, slightly relieved that others took initiative and retreated from the fray. Perhaps Nami could've easily taken the man, if she wasn't injured. She might get killed, he thought grimly, fist tautly clenching the dagger in hand. Flashbacks of trolls marred his vision. Their stench, the smell of blood and rotting flesh made his stomach churn. It seemed all too real, and Devrin was already on the offensive. The timing of attacks were sporadic, but he was able to find an opening between one of Nami's powerful swings. His body absorbed a glancing blow from the hammer when the man's eyes zeroed in on Devrin skirting around his side.

    He couldn't kill the man, but as he dodged a massive elbow clearly meant to cave in his head, Devrin plunged the dagger into the man's hamstrings, straining to deepen the blow. This had to buy the centaur enough time to capitalize. Two things happened in that moment, the orcish man roared and staggered as he swung to strike Devrin down and Namida grimaced through the throbbing in her leg to rear up, bellowing a warcry of her own as she brought the hammer down with all her remaining strength and full weight behind the blow. The cry was enough warning for him to rally his defence, but their fierce battle had compromised the integrity of his arena leant weapon. To the horrified shock of both contenders, her strike shattered through the hilt of his hammer and slammed heavily into his sternum, driving him into the dirt before she could stop it.

    Namida froze, watching in stunned silence as her mighty opponent’s wide-eyed face went slack. Surely she hadn’t? Nearly every orcish enemy she had ever faced before had a much stronger physical constitution. She stood, mentally willing him to draw breath before dropping her hammer and taking a front knee beside the man to check for any sign of life. Her futile effort came up wanting and she shook her hanging head in disbelief, reaching out to draw his eyelids closed out of respect. Remaining where she was, she spoke out to Devin in a strained voice. “It’s likely to matter little now, friend, but my name is Namida Thunderhoof. Anyone who fought by my side as you did today deserves to know it.”

    Spoiler: Don't lie to yourself, you know you want to look. 

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