Blood on the SandSwinging my straight swords wildly, I expertly crush my panicking enemy’s defenses, leaving him open, and allowing me to get closer. His broadsword is no use at such close-range, and he is unable to defend himself. Taking advantage of the situation, I drive my short sword’s pommel into his chest, rushing the air out of his chest, and follow up by a smack to the head with the flat of my blade. He collapses to the sand, unconscious. The crowd cheers, and I twirl my swords before sheathing them. The village’s leader, a less-than-young Agori with a slight limp, signs of a life in combat, raises his staff into the air, ready to announce the winner. “The Glatorian Wilnoth is the victor! He shall advance in the tournament!” He shouts, and the crowd doesn’t wait for him to finish to cheer. I nod my recognition before stepping back into the arena gate, disappearing behind two guards. They both whispered words of congratulation. I remain silent, but nod as before. As soon as I have gotten my armor repaired and my swords sharpened, I am notified that my second fight is about to begin. I make my way to the arena, and find that the battle is at it’s very end. Two glatorian, both from the jungle tribe, are severely wounded, and their attacks are sluggish. The smaller one releases a burst of energy and lunged forward, catching the other off-guard and downing him. I throw a coin onto the sand as the crowd would, showing my respect. The glatorian and I make brief eye contact, and his wounded, depressed look pierces deeper than any blade could ever. His expression haunts my thoughts as I make my way down the arena steps and into the sand-filled fighting pit. I’ve never seen someone so… subdued by sadness. His eyes showed that what he did was wrong in his eyes, and that he would have done almost anything to change the battle’s outcome. In all my years of arena battle, I have never seen one with emotion, let alone regret. The simple stare has challenged my entire view of life. Could we not have to kill each other for land and water? Could we actually coexist? My thoughts were shattered by the announcement of my opponent, an obscure female from the Ice tribe. I spin my swords silently, attempting to push my troubling thoughts away. My opponent enters the arena, and from the way she holds her spear and carries herself, her skill is apparent. Her spear’s blade glistens in the sun, its masterfully crafted blade catching the light with beauty. On her belt, a pair of katana-like swords glisten as well. Her eyes fall on me, and her mouth curls into a smirk. She obviously thinks that I am no challenge. Perhaps she is right. Only one thing will settle it, though. Battle. These thoughts rush through my head as I charge forward, sword blades ready to attack, block, parry, and counter attack. She expertly stabs with the spear, and I sidestep to the right, forcing her to pull the spear back for another attack. As she does so, I rush forward, Swords in a X in front of me for protection. She swung the spear vertically, missing me with the blade at such close range, but smashing the wood pole against my shoulder, sending me tumbling once more to the right. I use the force to roll, but even as I evade current danger, I know I stand no chance. I attempt to scramble to my feet, but a vicious kick sends me back down. Before I can roll once more, a sword blade finds it’s mark in my back, taking my life in one quick motion. As she draws the blade out, she kicks me over, and my wound’s blood flows onto the sand. As with many others, my blood runs onto the harsh sand where so many have fallen. The arena has claimed another life yet to be fully lived. The victor accepts the crowd's cheer with a smile on her face, no regret in her mind. Was I truly like that every time I won a fight? Was I truly so selfish and cruel? It is disgusting now to look upon, but I had no such thoughts before. Blood on the sand. A cry of victory, and a cry of pain. One final cry of pain, to be exact. One final cry, one cry that takes with it your life, your soul. Your essence. Your dreams, your hopes, your beliefs. And for what, some pond you've never even seen? That, my friends, is hardly a fair deal. Blood on the sand, victor alive, and loser dead.
Edited by Lord Darkon, Mar 24 2012 - 09:47 PM.