Old July 8, 2018, 10:40 PM   #1 (permalink)
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[ZA] Give the People a Show (Moss, Indefinite)

When: Era XXV Spring
Where: The Colosseum, Ziel Aerca

The crowd gathered into the Coliseum was clearly getting their money's worth judging from the sheer volume. Each devastating blow landed on either one of the fighters was accompanied by a wave of cheering, seemingly with no favorite among them. Any bloodshed was good bloodshed. Bloodthirsty psychopaths. All of them. Of course, Seph would have been up there among those psychos if he wasn't otherwise preoccupied.

Beneath the cheering crowd, Seph sat on a stone bench. Shirtless as to allow for more mobility, only a pair of trousers that went to his knees. Very authentic garb to the origin of this particular sport. Well, except for the grin. He was excitingly waiting for his own turn to beat a stranger into a bloody pulp. Or be beaten into a bloody pulp. The former would be ideal.

The shackles around Seph's wrists were strong. The quel strained to pull his wrists apart as far as the chain would allow, the standard two fists wide. Just enough to pull back against your opponent's windpipe. He had heard the stories and hoped he would have the opportunity to emulate that move at least once. Seph found it highly amusing that he and his opponents would put themselves into the same situation that slaves were forced into. At least he was getting paid. Potentially. He still had to win to get any money that was worth the injuries.

Finally, it was his turn. He was led down a hall towards the gate that would lead out to the arena. "Anyone die yet, mate?" He asked with excitement to the man who was leading him. "What's the worst thing you've seen so far tonight? Broken arm? Legs? Neck?" His questions were answered with disinterested grunts.

The gate lifted, and Seph entered into the arena raising both his shackled hands towards the crowd. He reveled in the cheering, the cries for him to spill some blood. Whether his own or someone else's he wasn't quite sure. He let his hands down and faced his opponent.
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Old July 15, 2018, 03:23 AM   #2 (permalink)
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If Moss Oktra'rek had one flaw - and the gods knew he had many - it was that he was occasionally susceptible to acts of impulse. He had been known to rush into situations without properly thinking them through, and as he heard the roar of the crowd at the Ziel Aerca Grand Coliseum, he couldn't help but wonder if this was one such occasion.

The human had not come to the capital of the Principality of Moonstone to fight strangers. Having journeyed from Northumbria and headed towards Port Alyxandrya, he had taken a diversion after hearing that there might be work available in Ziel Aerca, but the amphitheatre had caught his attention, and with it, his curiosity.

One darkening later, having spent it in a local inn to rest after the long journey, Moss had made his way to the arena and after one thing led to another, he found himself readying to fight someone with whom he had no quarrel. But prepare he did, taking the time to stretch his muscles: legs to ensure he had movement and power; arms and shoulders in case he had to punch or wrestle his opponent; his abdominals to assist with his breathing and taking blows; hips to maintain his balance and provide added power.

Deciding that his body was suitably warmed up, the former militiaman removed his tunic and placed it with his other items that weren't needed in the arena - but not before taking one last swig from his waterskin, letting stray droplets work their way through his facial follicles before stepping out into the spring sunslight.

Dark grey eyes strained as they adjusted, and the human took a moment to drop to one knee and let his fingers caress the fighting surface. It was something he'd done in war; an act that simultaneously calmed him and connected him to this new field of battle.

That done, he stood, feeling the warmth of Telath's triple suns on his shoulders as he stared across to the opposite side, waiting for his eyes to adjust so he could salute his fellow combatant.
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Old July 15, 2018, 05:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Nothing like watching people beat each other senseless, you know? It was prime entertainment. Who were stranger, the people who volunteered to be down there fighting, or the people who spectated the sport?

Right then. Moss was already out there, and Sepharvaim was on his way. "Nah, we don't really get much deaths these days," he was told after asking his question. "Excellent medical care and all that. 'Sides, dead people don't turn profits." Not much fun watching a dead corpse being beaten, you know? Fighting definitely needed people to be alive to be much fun.

"Someone had his hand chopped off, and then got slapped with it. That count?" Speaking of which, into the stadium he'd go!

Right then. Sepharvaim vs. Moss. And, well, the shackles and all would be taken off. Something something... only rule was to be entertaining? Whatever. Fight!
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Old July 16, 2018, 06:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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"It does," Seph answered. "Maybe I'll try that one." He looked at his hands and wondered how hard it would really be to dismember someone with your bare hands. "Next time."

Seph watched his opponent kneel down to the ground. He raised an eyebrow with curiosity. Some kind of religious thing, maybe? Looking around, the Quel'anthasan didn't think this was a great place for religion. Perhaps he was praying to some kind of war god. In which case, Seph hoped that particular prayer would be going unanswered.

Another perplexing action from the man across the arena. A salute? So...honorable. Honor wasn’t something he was particularly familiar with. Maybe the nebulous “honor” among the dregs of society. If anything this behavior tempered his excitement a bit. This man meant business, and that usually meant he was dangerous.

Seph returned the salute, a bit half-hearted and raised his fists, slowly making his way to the middle of the arena to meet his opponent.
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Old July 16, 2018, 11:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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As his eyes adjusted to the sunslight and Sepharvaim stepped into the arena, Moss readied himself, calming his breathing and keeping his muscles relaxed for as long as possible. The man's half-hearted return salute was greeted with a brief nod, the lightest of chuckles escaping his lips as he found a skerrick of humour in a place where it didn't belong.

The human studied his opponent as the man approached, fists raised. As far as he could tell, his rival was of a similar height to him, with a smaller build, but lean, strong features. With a final roll of his shoulders, the bearded ex-soldier edged forward, one foot leading the other, arms bent at the elbows and hands loosely open.

He had no idea what skills Sepharvaim brought to the arena, and while he was no beginner, there were plenty of fighters who were better than he was. As such, his strategy early on was simple: keep his distance; shift sideways when the man got close; and let his opponent make the first move.

And so the dance had begun.
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Old July 18, 2018, 12:33 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The crowd roared and cheered and jeered. This was the time for action, after all! It was important to keep the entertainment value high. If all they did was dance around, then the excitement would cool down.

Somebody throw a punch already!

Kill him!

I've got money riding on this!

Having to listen to the crowd, in the midst of all that fighting, was just a part of fighting in the coliseum. But surely it wasn't all that different from the din of a battlefield?
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Old July 21, 2018, 02:10 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The two combatants took a moment to size each other up. A necessary step in any brawl, regardless of what the crowd seemed to think. They had similar heights and builds. But there was no way to know Moss's level of skill until the fight really began. Maybe the man had been in the Colliseum before. But take into account all the bar fights Seph had gotten into, they were probably at the same level, right?

Seph advanced towards Moss. Perhaps it was the roaring of the crowd getting into the Quel'anthasan's head. Maybe he would have thrown the first punch anyway. The people wanted blood, so why not give it to them?

Seph grinned at his dance partner. First he threw a right hook at the man's head, then his left fist went for his stomach, hoping at least one would connect.
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Old July 22, 2018, 07:28 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Moss braced himself for Sepharvaim's approach. There was no knowing how good his opponent was. The man bore numerous scars, which showed he wasn't afraid of a little pain, but it could just as easily suggest that he had met his match on more than one occasion.

Whatever the truth was, the mystic was sure to know it soon as the elf approached and threw a pair of punches. The first attack in any fight was the easiest to spot, unless of course it was a feint. Moss instinctively stepped backwards as the first strike came in, hoping that it might give him a split second to react, and his left forearm lifted in an attempt to deflect the incoming hook, even as he leaned back and hoped for an air swing.

The second strike allowed him less time to react, however, and he twisted his hip away, thrusting his right arm down as he tried to stop the incoming attack. Even as he did, he tried to capitalise on Sepharvaim being slightly off balance from his attack with a strike of his own, a left hook swinging at the side of the elf's head.
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Old July 23, 2018, 01:48 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Moss managed to step back and dodge the right hook, Seph's fist hitting nothing but air. The followup gut punch from the Quel hit Moss' forearm instead, as the man brought it down a little too quickly in his attempt to block. That stung quite a bit.

Left hook towards Seph!
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Old July 23, 2018, 10:03 PM   #10 (permalink)
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First punch hit nothing but air and the second only the man's forearm. The elf tried to keep that from throwing off his rhythm. Seph copied his opponent's movement and attempted to block the incoming left hook with his right forearm.

As Moss stepped back, Seph stepped forward wanting to keep the distance between them small.

Seph jerked his right fist again, as if aiming for Moss's stomach. Instead, his right arm stopped short and his left fist went towards his head.
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Old July 25, 2018, 06:00 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Moss was relieved to see the first punch swing past him as he arched backwards, a tiny gust of air against his face as the man's knuckles went perilously close to his nose. The attack affected the elf's balance, but not so much that his body shot was easily evaded, and the mystic let out a grunt as fist met forearm.

He felt a jarring pain run up his arm, but he kept it in place as he launched his left hook. The pain caused him to look down towards his arm, weakening his own punch, but if it fortuitously revealed the incoming feigned attack, he would step back as quickly as possible, leaning away if he was quick enough, trying to get as much distance between his face and the incoming punch.

Evade or otherwise, the human would be looking to create a bit of space between himself and his opponent just long enough to shake off the initial knocks and prepare for the next collision.
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Old July 25, 2018, 10:39 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Left hook from Moss, hitting Seph's arm. One moved forward, the other tried to retreat. The chase was on! Inevitably, it was easier for Seph than for Moss, as one of them was trying to back up, and that was always more difficult.

Seph kept the heat on. Moss looked down just as Seph feinted for his stomach, and so it was hard for him to see the fist that was coming for his head. The movements of both of them, and the speed needed for the feint, resulted in more of a stinging graze than a full on clock to the head. But it still stung quite a bit.

Moss wasn't able to keep space between them.
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Old July 31, 2018, 05:46 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Moss let out a growling grunt as one fist grazed against his head, silently cursing that retreating was never going to give him the distance he wanted unless Sepharvaim either tired or changed his plan. And that meant he would either get dizzy from walking in circles or find his back pressed against a wall, while never gaining the ascendency that he sought.

And that meant, quite simply, a change in strategy.

As Moss took another step backwards, he immediately planted his foot into the earth, crouching and launching himself at his opponent, aiming to plant his shoulder into the man's stomach and tackle him to the ground. The attack, which involved pushing off his back foot and wrapping his arms around the man's torso, relied in part on his comparatively broad size.

If he was successful in his counterattack, the former soldier hoped to use his weight to pin the elf down just long enough to snatch a punch or two into the man's side beneath his ribs.
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Old August 3, 2018, 02:17 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Pumping blood and the screaming crowd filled Seph's ears and body with adrenaline. He was winning...maybe? It was hard to tell in the heat of the moment. Either way it felt good to throw blows at a complete stranger with no restraint.

Seph continued to follow the man's retreat, not wanting to give him an inch of ground to recover from his flurry of blows. Another fist went towards Moss's face right before he was caught off-guard by the tackle.

In response to the tackle, Seph would try to wrap his arms around Moss's head and bring his knee up into the human's stomach.
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Old August 5, 2018, 03:20 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Tackle!

Moss got a fist to the face for his trouble, though. However, he was now atop the elf and, from his position, smacked the elf but good into the side. A liver punch? Hmm, close, perhaps. Sepharvaim definitely felt like he'd gotten the wind knocked out of him, and his subsequent knee to Moss' gut wasn't as effective as it could have been - but it definitely still stung. Not quite to the point of debilitating, though.

Moss' vision swam just a little, though, from the earlier face punch he'd received.
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