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10.3.2017 - A mysterious light filled the Sea of Skies. Those who wielded great power and abilities found themselves back at square one, as if reset.


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Sir Nicholas
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How fitting another challenger would come to him, Nicolas thought as he walked out onto the arena. Instead of his usual armor and large shield, he wore a brown leather tunic and matching pants with his belted boots. He'd declined use of his cape as well - better to move around and actually put some of his training to use. Chances were he wouldn't need the magical protection his armor afforded him anyway, so it evened out.

He came to a halt in the middle of the platform and awaited his opponent.

"Just what I needed: A good, hard scrap to get the blood flowing. It's been too long since I've had a real sword fight." He said to himself. He turned his head, cracking his neck.

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Ander
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(Nice picture, also I hope it's alright that I not post very long. It kinda kills the mood for me :/)

Ander walked out onto the playing field with an eccentric smile. He was here to fight a random challenger, someone to push his limits once more. He had brought nothing but a struggle bat to fight with, however these bats were harder than some thought. He had knocked one person out and another into submission with it; truly a good weapon to play with. He wondered how well it would do him in a battle against his newer foe...


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Sir Nicholas
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((Thank you. And that's alright, just do your best, mate))
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Nicolas walked up to his opponent and looked him once over. He was a teen. Possibly mid teens. He carried with him a Struggle Bat, which he recalled was a nonlethal weapon in Twilight Town. Best to not underestimate him just by his appearance and weaponry, and as his own father had said: "In a life or death situation, it's better to have anything, even stick than just your bare hands."

Nicolas drew his short sword, whose name was Godsend from the sheath at his belt and raised it in salute.

"Before we begin, I am Sir Nicolas Jameson; but you can call me Nic if you wish. What is your name, boy?"

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Ander
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".. Oh my name's Ander, nice to meet you Nicholas." Ander spread his legs and bent into a defensive stance as he awaitedte man's onslaught. He knew this battle was pretty one-sides when he saw the sword; but he figured he'd end up against them eventually.

He began glancing around the arena, taking precise estimates of the ranges to the walls. Perhaps those would be his tactical advantage.

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Sir Nicholas
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"It's an honor to meet you as well." He began by taking up a fencing stance. As he watched Ander, he nodded in approval. "Good, you don't attack right away, and you try to understand your surroundings. Smart."

With that, the duel was on. Nicolas started with a double stroke - left, then right, swinging his sword one handed. It was time for a warmup - feel out his young opponent and probe for weaknesses.

A curious choice of weapon, the Struggle Bat, Nicolas thought as his blade went in on the attack. Usually they were reserved for Twilight Town's tournaments. They were light, easy to use and would only injure or stun, but never kill the opponent.

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Ander
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Ander nodded and backed up slowly, he watched the man swing his blade, he was obviously limbering up. Ander would need to play his choices well, his best course if action was repeatidly blocking, but the speed Nic possessed would more than likely tear through a defense. The boy knew he had only one way to win this, he had to get into the corners of the coliseum, using the walls to halt Nic's attack then it was nothing more than going hard with a flurry of combos. ... Ander hoped this battle would be that simple..

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Sir Nicholas
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The first two strikes were blocked by the Struggle Bat, and from Ander's retreating, he was likely going to try and make him come at the boy from one direction.

Very well then, Nicolas thought as he positioned himself. Let's see, how are his reflexes?

With that, he went on the attack. He aimed in a stabbing position, directly at Ander's heart and thrust forward with surprising speed.

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Ander
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Ander watched the opponent's movements carefully, just as his books had once told him. The body movements of the knight were noticeable, and when his arm reared back.... Ander dove! He knew what attack was coming; he had made it his favorite move himself, the powerful thrust technique. However.... The attack had its many disadvantages. It allowed a wide opening to those who were fast enough to claim it.

So as Ander quickly dove to the side he threw his arm upward and attempted to hit Nic's face with the tip of his bat. The attack was blunt but pretty quick. It was meant to send a jolt into the man, a pretty decent first strike... However, besides the fact that a piercing move left an opening he doubted his attack would land. The enemy appeared to know what he was doing, which meant he probably had experience in getting around blunt strike, while in his weak defense.

Ander quickly took this to account and jumped back and began walking toward the corner behind him, it was his only shot. He just hoped the knight didn't catch on to the box-in technique.

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Sir Nicholas
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When the Struggle bat came at his face, Nicolas' free hand snaked out and blocked it with his bracer at an angle. With a grunt, more of annoyance than pain, he forced it away. He immediately countered with a downward strike, but Ander had already moved to the side.

When he saw the boy was heading for the corner, he was sure of the younger man's strategy. With that, he decided it was time to step up his game. He broke into a run and stepped in between Ander and the corner of the arena, just as the younger man was about to turn around.

"Using the surroundings against an older opponent. Smart boy." He spun his blade around once - and using its momentum he struck hard, aiming a sideways blow at Ander's left flank. Simultaneously his free hand turned about in a cross-punch - intending to catch the younger man between the two attacks.

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Ander
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"Damn." Nicholas moved like a headless chicken. It seemed his speed forfeited Ander's technique which meant raw stamina and catching Nic's opening was the only way to when.

"Smart is an understatement." Nic ran at the boy and striked across with a powerful shot, his left flank was cut, however Ander had moved just enough for it to stay in the minor damage column. Just barely though.... Ander was about to attempt using another opening when a large fist popped him between the eyes! The jolt sent him back several feet. Blood leaked from his nose as he grunted and almost broke a tear; he did not. He stood up and yelled a battle cry before taking his bat and launching towards the seasoned fighter!

He began his combo with using follow ups, with an almost mastered style, He first brought his bat to the left of the man, using his momentum to put himself closer. He then began to create a flurry with speed, trying his damndest to slam that hard bat against Nic.

His reaction time in these quick strikes, was very impressive to the say the least. Mostly because his strikes weren't just being used offensively, but they were knocking and pushing Nic's sword back. Like a hawk Ander kept his eyes on the man's arm. When the muscles tightened he immediately went at the man's sword hand. Knowing that when this happened muscles were being used to lift the blade.

He hoped that this wouldn't be easily overcome. It was breaking several sweats; it was also his usual advantage maker. Though combos only went so far, if anything he would continue it until he finally ran short of breath and jumped back.

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Sir Nicholas
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The first strike came to his left, which his blade blocked at an angle.

"Don't just use standard attacks." Nicolas said with a riposte. "Use the unorthodox." In between each strike and parry, he forced the Struggle bat away - simultaneously dropping hints on how to be a better fighter. "Stay out of my reach when you're not attacking. Faster; disrupt my focus." He was saying while holding off his younger opponent.

Ander would no doubt notice that he was holding back. He was content to ride out the onslaught: Every strike and parry, every riposte and counter-strike was made well. Nicolas was inwardly impressed. His opponent held tremendous potential; what a happy day this was for him!

"You're very good. You do not lack for skill, but you need experience." Nicolas raised his blade in salute. From his grin and how he didn't bother to hold off the next strike, he obviously meant the compliment.

This time he deliberately allowed Ander to hit him - hard, in the face. The Struggle Bat was much denser than it looked - and it caused his head to ache when it struck him just above the left cheek. It even left a bruise.

"You fight brilliantly, young one." He said as he backed away momentarily whilst examining the bat. "But you rush right in when you see a chance for victory. Recognize that it's endurance where battles truly count. Struggling against your enemy is only half of it. The other half is knowing yourself: If your enemy is faster than you, you will be outrun. If you are weaker, you will be overpowered. If you are less intelligent - then you will be outwitted."

He emphasized his point by gesturing to the newly created bruise. "And if your enemy is more durable, then you will be outlasted."

And with that, he reached up - and in a flash of light his sword disappeared: But a split second later, a new weapon appeared in his hand. A large war hammer. Made from dull grey metal, the head and the shaft were inscribed with brilliantly glowing runes all over.

"Gatebreaker." Said Nicolas, raising the weapon. "I've seen your brawn and your brains. Now let's see your brass. How well can you take a hit, especially when I hit you, like THIS!?"

And with that, Nicolas counterattacked - swinging his hammer parallel to the ground, two-handed, directly at the younger man's legs.

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Ander
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Ander was panting, from his previous attack. He nodded at Sir Nicholas's advice. Taking it in, he began to store it for further use in the future. Which what he did with most of the info given to him, however Ander knew Nic had held back. The previous burst of strength was far superior than what he had just showed. It almost made Ander flinch when the sword disappeared in a burst of light.

A second later the knight was holding a huge war hammer! Except this one looked much different from the previous mallets' in the child's books. This weapon looked very much like a mystical item; with its glowing runes and whatnot. Ander's eyes squinted as the old warrior spoke of endurance... Giving away that Nic intended to bash him up in return for that smack to the face.

With the last word out, Ander knew the hammer would break his legs in a short instance. The way the angle was set, the way Nic was bending, in no less than a second... Ander hopped up and missed the hammer. He was actually more surprised he pulled that off than he thought, of course he fell right on his ass a second later. "Yeah, yeah! I can't take that kind of damage!" The young fighter said jumping to his feet once more. "In fact theirs no more reason to fight an opponent who will outlast me... But if I've learned anything from past experiences... It's that you don't surrender; and so If I have to keep dodging or taking damage from your freakin' hammer than I will. I refuse to give up. It's just my thing."

Almost immediately yellow static began to form around the boy, mimicking his stubbornness, his determination, his motivation. Surely Ander was the sparks inspiration.

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Sir Nicholas
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"I admire your commitment." Said Nicolas. He paused a moment. "But there's another lesson you need to learn. Sometimes victory is impossible, and surrender won't be an option. That means the only option is not death - but retreat. There is much truth in the old saying, 'He that turns and runs away lives to fight another day.' A more appropriate way to put it though would be, 'Never surrender, sometimes retreat.' Recognize that my moves earlier have all been but a show of strength. Now that I know you're not going to give up, I'm going to use my full power. You have not faltered and you've displayed mastery of your fear. You've recognized that you are outmatched.'

'While I commend you for your courage, you must recognize there is a very small chance you'll be able to beat me. That's why if you don't give up now, then I'll have no choice but to knock you out. Know one more thing as well; there will be opponents that are not as benevolent as I am, and will kill you at the first opportunity. So, now this match ends - boy, prepare."


And with that, he resumed his attack - a blow that struck the arena floor and the ground was split beneath their feet - sending bits of shrapnel every which way.

Through the smoke, Nicolas charged - shouldered his hammer and swung it - two-handed, aiming right for Ander's chest.

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Ander
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With a large boom, dust flew everywhere. Some even getting in his eyes! The static began to form furiously, but Ander had no time to realize what it was doing, the stuff in his eyes was too destracting! Before he knew it... A large war hammer had splatted against his chest, he was sent flying into the arena wall, finished in a one-shot attack. His ribs busted and his head bleeding. It was remarkable he hadn't died! Quickly paramedics of the war lifted him out and a wild cheer of gore hungry fans began to shout "Sir Nicholas! Sir Nicholas! Sir Nicholas!"


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Sir Nicholas
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He raised a hand. "Please, do not applaud me. Instead, applaud my opponent." He said, gesturing to the wounded boy. "This was a match he fought bravely. He has performed admirably, and he holds much promise. I believe with time, he will become my equal in combat. Come, let's give a big round of applause for Ander!"

It started off slow, then it started to grow. Soon, every person in the arena - Nicolas included, was clapping and cheering Ander's name.

When all was said and done, the knight sheathed his hammer and nodded his satisfaction as he walked out of the arena.

~Topic End~

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