Gaudy flyers have been circulating around Acryn for over a week:
| SUPER SWOLE? DANGEROUSLY RIPPED?
VETERAN of VIOLENCE, or JUST a BIG DAMN HERO??
Then PISS OFF!!!!!
CALLING ALL GREENHORNS, NEWBIES, NEOPHYTES and UNDERDOGS! THE X-TREME BATTLE ARENA needs YOU! DREAMING of GRANDEUR? CRAVING the TASTE of GLORY?!? Take the FIRST STEP on the BLOOD-SOAKED STAIRCASE that leads to your ETERNAL LEGACY!!!
Now in ACRYN for a LIMITED TIME ONLY - SIGN UP for OUR NEW X-TREME TEAM BATTLE WORLD SERIES TODAY!!
- Overload Damask Ultimate Sunset, Master of the Revels
Overleaf are some details on how to apply, along with an explanation that remuneration for successful applicants who sign-on for the world series will be at least 27R.
Seb will write this at some point.
The glow fades from the arena. Damask rises to his feet, smiles an inscrutable smile, and congratulates them all. He reassures them that, as per their contract, they will each be passed 41R by Clarence. Emilio begins to enquire about merchandising rights, but Damask protests that he is tired – if they have further business with him, perhaps it can be conducted on another occasion. For now, he must rest.
Each of our heroes readjusts to normal life in their own way, although several of them find themselves looking back on their days in the arena with fondness.
Zora reluctantly makes her way to the Tender Church, in pain from the bites Wolfbane inflicted on her. Although (for the usual fee) the priests are willing to help the bites heal, they notice the influence of a god upon her, and advise her to return in future to remove the curse of the Tyrant King.
(A few dangerous-looking individuals have been asking about the fighter known as the Gardener – it seems that this name may carry some significance…..)
Adelmar pays a visit to the Warrior Church in order to find out if anyone knows about Conquerors. Upon the revelation that Adelmar is none other than the Axe of Valydd, they are granted an audience with a neophyte. Unfortunately, they don’t gain any useful information beyond the suggestion that they should ask at the College of the Stars.
The Stone Wanderer puts up some posters asking if anyone has seen the Queen they are searching for. In this, they are aided by Adelmar. Nobody comes forwards with information.
Zip attempts to milk the trading card sensation for some cash. Attempting to accost schoolchildren to trade with them doesn’t seem to be an option, but he learns of a wealthy collector who might be interested in the rare cards he possesses. Following his contacts’ directions, he finds himself at a sizeable mansion. He is ushered into an ornately decorated antechamber and then, after being kept waiting for a suitably protracted interval, he is presented to the Young Master. Besides being an irritating snotty little kid, the Young Master turns out to be a shrewd haggler, and even Zip’s talents only secure the lawyer 15R for the cards. Zip does, however, gain an invitation to return should he lay his hands on anything else of interest to the Young Master.
Undeterred, Zip turns his attention to the legal case against Behemoth Frigidaire – or Maude Spilk as she is known in the wake of her unmasking. Bringing his fellow champions along as witnesses, Zip fights his own legal case. While Maude’s preference is to be tortured, or at least roughed up by Zip and his friends (as this makes for a better story), a settlement is eventually reached in which Maude pays 24R to Zip and the case is closed.
Amanda finds some work as a mercenary; in her spare time, she writes some short anonymous stories about, well, Emilio and Lionel. At the same time, Emilio is using his onstage rivalry with Lionel to create a fandom for the two of them. A number of nobles and criminals are beginning to fill up the seats in the Xtreme Battle Arena as Emilio and Lionel use their contacts to drum up interest. Emilio begins using subtle hints of his identity as the dancer as a chat-up line. Lionel, meanwhile, asks Anastasia out for drinks. She is amused.
It’s strange, though – once you’ve done your time in the arena, it never really lets go of you. One by one, our heroes seek out Damask, asking for the opportunity of a comeback. Each one of them frames the compulsion differently: Emilio has a fandom to nurture; Lionel is keen to fight a flux elephant. Damask smiles – they must each go out into the world; only then will they gain the further training they seek. Disappointed but comprehending their mentor’s meaning, each member of the Chain Gang resolves to try once more to break the link….
But now Damask laughs. Yes, it’s over (and… was that a wink from behind the mask?) but that’s not to say that there can’t be guest fights….