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Chapter Sixteen - The Reawakening (Quarterfinals Match 1 - Intro)
The remaining contestants were gathered in the dining hall they were welcomed by the king in, only the room was much gloomier. Instead of the radiant torches that lit up the hall, ominous lanterns hung around the room like spiders hanging down from their webs spreading its silky light throughout the dim room. Empty dishes lined the dirty table– it was clear that the palace was less attended to all of a sudden. However, the biggest difference was the empty throne that sat at the end of the table.
Rehela cleared her throat and the little chatter that filled the room died out.
“So…as you all know,” Aki muttered, “Some things have changed in the city recently. The abyss-”
As Aki said the words everyone seemed to flinch a little.
“-is back and has entered the fortress of our cities. However, this tournament, we hope, has many people fit to help stop her. We commend you for your bravery and willingness to protect the town. However, this bravery has led…um…led to…”
Aki trailed off, so the Queen sitting with Nyrea at the edge of the room stepped in. “Some acts of bravery have been rash and we care for your safety. And this bravery has led to the death of one of our proud hosts. Our king was captured by the abyss, but Aki still remains as our host. So, we will have some new restrictions upon the tournament. Contestants will now be moving into the walls of the castle. Here, we have much more protection from enchantments set by many of this castle’s protectors. Contestants will also be escorted to and from matches. Any contestants wishing to enter training grounds must check in with guards and have another contestant accompany them, if possible. We will try to keep everyone safe as much as possible. Now, Nyrine and I have some work to do.”
The queen left with Nyrine.
“Before you leave to pack, let’s overview the matches that will unfold tomorrow.”
There was a weak cheer from Meka.
Our first match, held in the city stadium will be:
MIYAN @Usaername versus USHRI AND MEKA @East2West . Please get ready before your match and move all your things to the castle before then!
(stay tuned for the next match, which will be posted on Sunday night!)
Chapter Seventeen - Match Nine (Intro, pt 2)
“You need to tell me more. What exactly happened?” the queen asked Nyrine, “Who was this monster? Where was this grave?”
“I don’t know.” Nyrine responded, “I have no idea what I saw. All I felt was cold. Darkness.”
“There’s no connection you could’ve made? Nothing?”
“Nope.” the seer paused, “I’m scared. What if-”
“Stop. There are no what if’s. What will happen will happen. We just need to prepare ourselves to face the future. Maybe Friyena will show herself again.”
“I wish I was as confident as you. I just don’t want these contestants to die.”
“Miyan” a voice called out to Miyan from his spacious room in the castle, “It’s time for your match.”
Miyan took a deep breath and stared at his once broken blade. He traced his finger along the faded silver, feeling Naku Tsuki’s ache for fresh blood.
“Yes, sorry. I’m coming.”
Miyan stood atop the same building he had killed the viashino before. He knelt down tracing his fingers on the bloodstains across the concrete roof.
What a bittersweet thing…rememberance.
Miyan looked across to Ushri and Meka. They were young like him but none of them had suffered nearly as much as he had. He watched Ushri whisper a plan in Meka's ear.
No one has to die tonight.
Aki stood up and yelled: “Let the first quarterfinal match of this tournament begin!”
@Usaername and @East2West Reminder that I won't make the final decision till 9pm PST today so you have time to add any other parts you feel like! This means that the match will be posted around 11pm PST
Quarter Finals - Match 1, Part 1:
@Usaername VS @East2West
A fight is like a story. Every stroke a paragraph. Let your sword paint pictures with every move.
“Stay here,” Ushri commanded Meka, “I can’t have you get hurt. Attack from long range since Miyan can’t. I will get in close to distract him.”
Meka nodded, though evidently concerned. The concern, however, disappeared as she found a muffin in her pocket. Ushri sighed and dashed off towards the imminent danger ahead of her. Miyan closed his eyes, allowing the gentle wind to brush his hair. He felt an odd power throughout him as he unsheathed Naku Tsuki.
Miyan considered his options carefully before running headstrong into Ushri’s attack. Their blades met in the middle of the stadium. The resounding sound of metal called a gasp from the audiences.
Ushri pushed harder on the attack than Miyan. With a golden blade whirling in front of her, she seemed to attack Miyan from all angles. However, Miyan’s defense was almost impenetrable. Every attack was paired with an even better parry.
“He’s better than I thought…” Ushri muttered.
She tried to slash again at Miyan, but her blade met Naku Tsuki again close to the hilt. He twisted the sword causing Ushri to yelp and drop her blade in the awkward angle. Miyan kicked it off the edge of the tower.
“Now!” Ushri commanded.
Obediently, Meka fired a large projectile from her gunlance. It made a perfect arc in the air before crashing down in front of Miyan.
Thinking quickly, Miyan sprung forward, tackling Ushri as Meka’s missile exploded. Throwing both Miyan and Ushri off the roof.
“Argh!” Ushri shouted as she kicked the boy off her in midair.
She grabbed a rotting windowsill as her opponent fell to the ground. Miyan landed softly below her and disappeared into the maze of buildings below. Ushri scaled the building slowly before reaching the rooftop again. However, Miyan was nowhere to be found.
She looked over at Meka. “Ushri?” She shouted, “I’m scared. Where is he?”
“I don’t know…”
Ushri looked around carefully for a sign of anything. Nothing. The crowd was quiet, as though trying to aid the duo to find Miyan. A frigid wind swept across the buildings, sending shivers down Ushri’s spine. She scanned the buildings again. Still no sign of Miyan. Was he behind her?
Just as Ushri turned her back from Mesa’s direction, Meka screamed.
She spun around again, but Meka had disappeared too from the rooftops.
“Meka! Meka? Where are you?”
Ushri jumped down into the streets in a panic. Explosions echoed through the winding alleyways as she ran to track the source.
No no no….please don't let anything happen to her. Please.
Quarter Finals - Match 1, Part 2:
Every story comes to an end. Some just come earlier than others, so we must fight to keep our stories alive.
Right as Ushri turned around, Miyan seized his moment. He jumped up on the building behind Meka and leapt across the gap, landing right behind her. Miyan grabbed Meka and jumped backwards, dragging her down with him like Ushri had been taken moments ago.
“Ushri!!!!” she yelled.
They crashed down on the filthy ground below. There was a jarring crack followed by a yelp from Meka. She had likely broken a bone or two. She scrambled towards her gunlance for protection, but Miyan threw one of his throwing stars at Meka and it embedded itself into her leg. The girl collapsed over her gunlance.
Weakly, she held it up and fired at Miyan. He artfully dodged the attack allowing an explosion to reduce a building in the distance to rubble. Meka fired again and again to no avail. Miyan was just too fast.
The monk closed in. Meka was now just slightly out of Naku Tsuki’s reach. Panicked, she fired again, but this time Miyan deflected it into the air, allowing a flare to reveal their position to the tense audience. The monk brought his blade down on Meka’s special weapon and another explosion caused Meka to soar back into the wall.
“Meka!” A voice cried. It was Ushri. Miyan lowered his blade for a moment as Ushri checked the half-conscious Meka’s pulse. “She’s alive…”
Why did I falter like that..? I must do what I was trained to do.
Miyan continued forward. This time he fought more aggressively. He could feel the heaviness in Ushri’s arms yet still her desperateness with every block. She was doing this for Meka. Yet even her best wouldn’t be enough. It would take more than that to beat him.
The monk stomped to draw attention away from his blade, then struck again, this time nicking the samurai’s shoulder. Ushri winced, but counterattacked quickly, leveling the damage with a slash that grazed Miyan’s face. Both of them moved with such finesse and precision, it would seem too perfect for anyone who could see into the shadowy alleys of the abandoned city.
Ushri swept downwards, but Miyan jumped and quickly kicked his opponent in the face. Ushri stumbled backwards and Miyan raised his sword. However, he faltered for a moment.
No death. No. No death.
Despite Miyan’s efforts, Naku Tsuki started to feel heavy in his hands. The blade glowed a dangerous purple as it guided Miyan’s arms downwards to strike Ushri.
“No!” There was a thud, then a splatter of blood. And then a scream. Miyan stumbled backwards, then there was another thud.