Thursday, 9 July 2009

Fiction Battle: Jack versus Bloodkind Chieftan

Okay, this is something for a little competition I'm taking part in over at Legends Of Satura. Every year, around the anniversary of the MLC's founding, we have a series of fiction battles. Each entrant selects a character and then lots are drawn (In a manner of speaking). We battle each other in a knockout tournament. How do we decide which character wins? Well, both fighters begin their own version of the fight scene, but leave it open-ended. Then the other members vote for who wrote the coolest piece. Afterwards, the winner gets to wrap up the fight.

Full rules can be found here. My character, the Bloodkind Chieftan (Members of the Bloodkind can be found in the post prior to this one) faces off against Jack Macalaster, from Zokusho: Tahou Ibun. Yes, this means that I may not get to finish, because I may not win. Either way, we get some great stories.

In a field on a world far, far beyond the reaches of imagination as men know it, a small butterfly landed on a flower. It made its’ way past the jagged thorns and towards the delicate circle of red petals. As it approached the flower twitched and snapped shut, enclosing the butterfly completely.
As the flower began to excrete powerful acids, the butterfly laid its’ eggs and peacefully died, secreting a paralyzing toxin that would prevent the flower from opening until the caterpillars had hatched. All across the field this was being repeated as an entire flock of butterflies descended upon the unfortunate flowers.
In the middle of the field a huge explosion occurred, despite the lack of anything to explode. As the smoke dispersed a small child of roughly nine human years coughed. His crimson-trimmed silver robes stood out starkly against the green of the field. A few more coughs, then the child clambered to his feet.
“Note to self: Never listen when Raziel suggests combining time and teleportation magic. You will not, as he suggested, summon ‘Miss December’ from the calendar he found, but will instead transport yourself to a field of thorny plants.” Jack pulled the head of one of the flowers from his rump, wincing as he did so.
After taking in the landscape, Jack checked the jumping crystal he had used. He had carved a time displacement rune into it, but was now regretting that decision. The crystal glowed with a dull light.
“Well, at least there’s a strong magical field on this world, so it shouldn’t take long to recharge and go home. So all I have to do is find a way to kill time,” Jack glanced around the field once more, “Should’ve brought a camera.”
For a few minutes Jack sat and watched the butterflies getting eaten, but found himself bored. He walked over to the nearby woods where he sat down with his back to a tree and began to read a book.
He hadn’t gotten past the first page when the tree next to his exploded in a shower of splinters. Jack instinctively used his body to protect the book. When he dared to turn around he saw two massive monsters duking it out barely more than ten yards away. The first creature, which had thick splinters embedded across its’ back, was a mix of a gorilla and a wolf. It reached more than ten feet in height, but was crouched over, walking partially on its’ huge fists. It had a sword larger than most men sticking out of one shoulder.
Hanging from the handle of that sword was a humanoid. It too was larger than most men and more muscle-bound than any Jack had ever met. It’s crimson skin shined with gore, presumably from the creature it was fighting. With seemingly impossible dexterity it placed its’ feet against the raging creature and pulled its’ sword free. After a backwards somersault it landed in a crouched position. With its’ free hand it pushed its’ dreadlocks out of its’ face, revealing a white mask with red patterns.
The larger, wolf/gorilla lunged, but the red man spun quickly, slicing through the large creatures’ wrist and removing its’ hand. It was obvious that the battle had gone on for a long time.
The creature roared in pain, but was quietened when the red man plunged his sword into its’ face. With one hand he withdrew it and let the creature slump to the ground. Then he turned his attention to Jack.
“Fing! Fing gar rhuk creng!” He yelled. Jack had no clue what language he was speaking in, let alone what he was saying. Jack just shook his head and gave a theatrically large shrug. The red man charged.
Jack barely had enough time to choose a spell before the red man had closed the gap. He leapt to the side, barely dodging the swing from the huge sword. The tree he had been standing in front of was cleanly sliced in two. With trained speed Jack scrawled a symbol in the air and passed his hand through it. A sheet of ice sprang up at the feet of the red man. The ice rose up in thick stalagmites, trapping the red man between them. Jack turned and fled.
Before he had even gotten ten strides away, Jack heard cracking from behind him. He turned to see that the red man was already free.
“What? That can’t be right?” Jack muttered to himself. As the red man swung his sword over his shoulder and began another charge Jack scrawled desperately in the air in front of him. Unlike the hasty ice spell he had used earlier, this symbol was intricately complex, requiring great sweeping motions and small but precise scribbles. The finished symbol hung in the air, a blazing white against the green grass.
By this time the red man had nearly reached him, so Jack didn’t have a chance to admire his artistic skills. He hastily slammed his palm against the symbol, unleashing its’ power upon his foe.
Between Jack and the red man a great gust of wind had sprung up. The red man slammed his sword sideways into the ground and hung on for all he was worth. The wind only got stronger, lifting him from his feet with such force that he was parallel to the ground. Nevertheless, he didn’t let go of his sword, holding on with incredible strength. It was clear to Jack that his spell would run out of power long before his foe tired, so he tried a different strategy. He quickly drew another symbol on the ground, which glowed green. The ground holding the sword in place gave way. The red man was flung backwards by the wind, which had already begun to peter out. He still crashed into the forest with enough force to pulverise the first tree though.
Jack lumped to the ground. Despite using two spells at once, at a much higher power level than usual though, he didn’t feel as drained as he normally would have. He could feel the magic of this world coursing through him, strengthening him. Making his magic more powerful than ever.
A thought suddenly occurred to him. He reached inside his pocket once more and withdrew the crystal. It was shining as brightly as the day it was first charged. Now he could go home.
Before he did though, he heard a splintering sound from the direction the red man had landed. Jack stood up and watched as his foe flexed his shoulder muscles, a grin on what was visible of his beneath the mask. He hefted his sword up and noticed something stuck to the end of it. He reached up and removed the offending item.
It was the book Jack had just begun to read.
The red man deftly sniffed it. Then, to Jack’s amazement, he took a bite out of it. After some thoughtful chewing the red man spit it back out and sneered loudly. He threw the remainder of the book into the air and chopped it in half with his sword. He then looked straight at Jack’s face. If he had been capable of fear, he would have been petrified by the expression of sheer anger emanating from Jack’s features.
“Oh buddy, you’re in for it now!” Jack said. Feeling the magic surge through him, he began drawing a symbol in the air in front of him.

You can view Raziel's version and see the poll here

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