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Voldemort

Final Meeting in Dawn Komturie: The Charnel House

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After winning the inaugural Feast of Blades, the mutant had planned to resupply himself before hitting the road with fervor. The black mage had stayed much too long in one place, and it showed in his anxious fidgeting as he navigated the halls of the Order of the Force Majeure. Even the nightly all-you-can-eat buffet of the Order’s feast wasn’t enough to keep Arthur glued in place, though the novelty of being greatly fed was quite the motivator for staying. He probably could have mooched off the Order’s kindness for a small while longer, but he also knew that such welcome would wear thin. However, unfortunately for the mage’s plans, it did seem like the Order had need for his time and its leader wanted to meet on the training ground that served as the staging area for the mutant’s first two bouts.

And so, Arthur waited upon the upper levels of the Charnel House where spectators had sat during the tournament’s bouts. Seated upon stone, the mage stared off into space with his baggage present to either side of him (for he looked forward to departing after the meeting), including his wax canvas rucksack, haversack and suitcase. Arthur was also dressed for the road in a navy-colored short-sleeved t-shirt, a pair of tan cargo pants, and a multi-colored pair of trail running shoes. His black half-robes settled atop his broad shoulders, the dire wolf pelt that formed the coats mantle and hood giving them an even broader and intimidating look. A wide-brimmed hat with a crooked point sat atop his head as well, which served To complete the wizened look he was going for even if he was uncharacteristically large and athletic for a wizard. 

Yawning into the emptiness of the training ground, Arthur placed the end of his long pipe into his mouth and took a drag. An ember within the bowl lit up and produced blue smoke, which was later joined by a column of the same smoke as Arthur exhaled deeply. 

“...I should have brought something to eat...” 

Of course, he had foodstuffs in the market wallet stored in his rucksack, but the mage didn’t want to make a dent in his travel supply before he even stepped past the gates of Predator’s Keep. 
 

@Fierach

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Posted (edited)

"Thanks for indulging my request" came the voice. The source of it strode over to the arena, looking implacable even without his usual panoply of war. The visage of the high winged helm was gone, replaced by the stark features of an Oriental man in his late twenties. 

James sketched a light salute to Arthur as he stepped onto the platform, dressed only in a light sparring outfit, a dark muscle shirt atop long black slacks. A longsword lay belted at his hip although he didn't seem too inclined to use it.

"I spend too much time dealing with paperwork these days. Can't get soft. If you're game, up for one last round? Your rules, of course".

Edited by Fierach

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“It’s no problem at all,” Arthur replied after he exhaled a long column of blue smoke into the air of the Charnel House. Shaking out the burnt remains of his pipe weed, the mage deposited his pipe near his luggage, then removed his pointed hat and robes. He stood from the stone bench in the spectator’s area and leisurely made his way down towards the arena in the center of the chamber. “But if you really want to thank me, I could use some brunch before I leave town.”

The mutant settled his fiery, inhuman gaze on the Master Knight curiously. Did he just want some sparring match to gauge the strength of the Feast’s dinner, or did he want to fight in earnest and prove himself even greater than the Feast’s best? It was hard to tell but the black mage figured he would have to play it by ear. Arthur approached the platform of stone at the center of the Charnel House and leapt onto its heightened surface, joining James on the solid structure. 

“I would have assumed that the Order would provide its leader with many great sparring partners,” Arthur grinned wolfishly, moving his feet shoulder-width apart, and settling into a squared stance with his right foot forward. The mage didn’t raise his hands yet, however. “But I doubt none greater than me, so I’ll indulge you since you’ve been a most gracious host. Though lose the sword, I’m tired of winning duels with so little effort.”

The mage rose his right leg onto the ball of his feet, keeping his lead leg up and his knee jutting outwardly as his weight leaned onto the mutant’s left leg. Arthur lifted his hands and began his approach casually, moving at a slow pace while keeping his lead leg bouncing on the ball of his foot. With such technique, the mage would be ready to check his opponent’s kicks and utilize kicks of his own. 
 

@Fierach

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"Variety is the spice of life they say", James chuckled, and then gave him a small bow as he unbuckled and dropped his sword to the side. "That's fine though. We wouldn't want to invalidate your new title too quickly now".

The Daemonslayer loosened himself up, giving himself a shake that started at the head and rippled down his arms to his legs.

Beginning to bounce on his feet lightly, James held his fists loosely, right hand at waist level with the shoulder angled forth, and left hand in back up by his face. With a deft adjustment to his footwork, James began circling to to Arthur's right.

Barely would he take two steps however, before he lunged in, James dropped his leading right hand down further, crossing over his left over his face as if he was guarding it and presenting a smaller target as he closed in, moving fast, trying to get in as close as he could. Arthur might try to check him with a kick or some other footwork, and for the uninitiated it might seem like he was trying to cover himself if that happened.

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Arthur’s eyes rolled slightly at his opponent’s words. The Master Knight was a cocky son of a bitch indeed. The mage would see the man humbled in this friendly sparring match, making words a useless distraction as the mutant prepared to fight. Saying nothing, Arthur maintained his bouncing lead leg stance, moving towards James until the knight began to move laterally. With the knight circling to his left, the black mage came to an abrupt halt, and stayed in place as his feet moved subtly to the right so that the other man couldn’t flank him. He kept his sharp eyes on his opponent, reserving his explosive movement and power for a counter. 

When James turned and lunged towards him, Arthur burst into swift and decisive action. His bouncing lead leg returned to the ground, shifting his weight there as the mage’s left leg took a diagonal stride forward and to the left. Immediately, Arthur’s right leg slid behind his left leg in a clockwise rotation, completing his own circling motion to the left (James’ right) as the master knight attempted to get as close as possible. The mutant’s quick footwork accomplished two things simultaneously. It allowed Arthur to circle off to the left like a matador, positioning the mage somewhere between James’ 1 and 2 o’ clock while the Master Knight advanced on  Arthur’s original position. Meanwhile, it also allowed the mage to transition from a southpaw to orthodox stance, bringing his left hand very close to the opening on the right side of his opponent’s face.

As Arthur slid his right leg behind his left, the mutant skillfully twisted his hips, turning his lower body from left to right as Arthur fired off a check hook at his advancing opponent. With his left arm up in a protective position, the master knight covered his face well. However, from Arthur’s new vantage, James was open to strikes that traveled over his right shoulder, especially with his hand held so low. If Arthur’s aim proved true, his enclosed fist would tense near impact as he attempted to drive his fist into James’ right cheekbone in an explosive first salvo.

@Fierach

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Cocky son of a bitch indeed, but James never brought into his own hype. He had been too close to death too many times to seriously believe he was invincible. He knew when he could take a hit, and when he couldn't.

This was one of those moments. James twisted his hips from right to left, turning his cheek away from the incoming hook and attempted to dip low, bending his knees. That the Knight had anticipated and knew such a blow was coming did more to lessen the damage then such a measure though, as he plowed forth regardless, catching the hook as a blinding ache of pain across the side of his head. He used the hook to gauge distance. His right hand was already chambered, and it shot up like a lightning bolt as he sprung forth at Arthur.

A smash! A hybrid punch, somewhere between a hook and an uppercut, possessed of devastating power, targeting the mage's chin. Even if blocked it would likely throw Arthur back. His best bet would be to try and avoid it entirely, but the attack came with a fairly decent arc to try and catch him.

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Posted (edited)

Arthur grinned savagely as he felt his fist collide with the side of James’ head. It was a satisfying sensation even if knew that it wasn’t even close to finishing his opponent; the master knight’s movement allowed him to roll with the mage’s punch, stealing some of the strike’s power in the process. It would prove quite the start regardless. Just like the master knight, the mutant had softened the impact of his opponent’s forceful advance, stepping off to the side and forcing James to weave away from his punch. In its reduced state, Arthur was more than ready to meet James‘ charge head-on. 

When Arthur’s fist collided with James’ head, the attacking hand wasn’t immediately recalled to the side of the mage’s head. Instead, it began to pull away from the knight’s face before attempting to hook around the back of James’ head in a single collar-tie, digging his fingers into the knight’s hair (or simply grabbing the back of his head if there was no hair to grip) as he pressed his left forearm into his opponent’s right shoulder and pectoral muscle. If the grab succeeded, the mage lowered his head and stepped forward with his left leg, closing the remaining distance between the combatants. 

Simultaneously, the collar-tie would have an effect on James’ own attack. With his forearm framed against the knight’s shoulder, which was the source of the motion behind James’ hybrid punch, it impaired the opponent’s swing. James’ shoulder would have difficulty rolling forward with Arthur’s arm serving as a barrier. Similarly, his right bicep would also find its path blocked by the mage’s arm, reducing the power of the blow significantly before it reached its unintended target. Having lowered his head in his advance, James’ strike landed on the left side of Arthur’s cheek. The strike stung but did little else in the face of Arthur’s defensive clinch.

In return, the black mage turned his hips from left to right, chambering his right arm for a brief moment before looping upwards in a close-ranged uppercut. He aimed the blow for the underside of James’ chin, seeking to illustrate just how precarious of a position the knight was in. 
 

@Fierach

Edited by Voldemort

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Posted (edited)

James brought his right hand down on Arthur's left forearm, and brought up his left arm to help, pushing the mage away and breaking the clinch, swaying back just in time to narrowly dodge the uppercut. 

Stepping back on his right leg now, putting it behind him, the martial artist would bring both hands up by his head, as if to guard against any follow ups, before he pushed off, pivoting left on his front left foot to deliver a fast low kick to Arthur's front leg, if he remained in range.

Edited by Fierach

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The mage found himself in a sudden and forced retreat as James pushed him away, prying off the hand that grasped the back of the master knight’s head. Despite the loss of his clinch, Arthur continued to grin as he took a quick pair of steps away from James before rebounding from the momentum of James’ push. The mutant advanced once more, wasting no time to step back into range and maintaining his orthodox stance as he did so. He reacted swiftly when the master knight whipped a kick towards his lead left leg, lifting his knee in a ninety-degree angle and turning his leg to the outside (left, James’ right). Moving the tip of his left foot upwards in an incline, the black mage flexed his massive calf muscle as the knight’s shin collided with Arthur’s own in a violent bone-on-bone clash. The collision would hurt both combatants but it wouldn’t show on the mutant’s face. After all, it would have been far worse had his opponent’s kick had struck the flesh of his calf or thigh. 

When the master knight’s shin was finally deflected off Arthur’s leg, the mutant immediately dropped his foot to the ground, placing weight on it as his body twisted towards the left to empower his right cross. Arthur fired his punch straight, aiming lower while James leg was returning to its original position. The master knight’s movement brought Arthur’s target back in line; the mutant’s fist shooting underneath and in between James’ guarding arms (which protected his head) in an attempt to connect forcefully with his opponent’s solar plexus. Meanwhile, Arthur maneuvered his left arm to the side, maintaining a protective position over his head and the left side of his rib cage.

If Arthur’s long range punch connected, it was likely to deliver sufficient force as to pull the air from James’ lungs, and making it doubly difficult to take a breath while his diaphragm spasmed involuntarily.

@Fierach

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Posted (edited)

As James pulled his leg back from the kick, he twisted his torso in sync as well, tucking in his left arm so Arthur's attack landed squarely upon it near his left elbow. The same motion saw him chamber his right arm back for a strike of his own. Both men were resilient, and barely hurt by the strikes thus far. And so it would continue, with the Master Knight kicking the fight up a notch into a series of faster exchanges if his opponent was drawn in and willing. As soon as the mage's straight was pulled back (if it was pulled back), and the pressure on his left arm eased, James responded with a pair of lightning jabs towards Arthur's face, more to draw his attention then anything else, before weaving down, looking for that left to counter with his other hand, his right hand.  

Edited by Fierach

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Arthur rammed his fist squarely into James’ guard, still grinning like a rogue despite the failure of his body punch. A layer of sweat glistened across his exposed skin; a welcomed fact considering how quickly and efficiently he had dispatched his opponents during the tournament proper. The mage was finally facing an opponent he could go toe to toe with, and in a format (hand to hand) that actually required Arthur to put forth some effort. When the mutant drew back his right arm into a defensive position covering his head and flank, he moved quickly to respond to his opponent’s assault. The first jab was deflected towards Arthur’s right (James’ left); the mage’s lead left hand moved forward and knocked the jab offline. In time with the second jab, however, the mutant leaned away, outdistancing James’ strike by a matter of inches. 

Keeping his hands up in protective positions, Arthur lurched forward from his evasive lean. As he did so, the black mage thrust his rear right leg up and forward, aiming to ram his knee into James’ abdomen as his opponent was weaving downwards. Arthur timed his attack with the hope that James would crouch directly into his knee, seeking to deal a blow to the master knight’s diaphragm/solar plexus as before.

@Fierach 

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With his first attack spurned and second jab missing completely, James knew his window to fish for a counter punch had already gone, and instead he seemed to try to weave back, turning away to his right, about to take the knee as a bruise his left side.

Only to drop down even further onto his hands.  Balanced on the ball of his forward foot, his left foot, he would twist around and sweep the mage's feet out from under him. With how close they were, if it were successful, Arthur might be all but falling right ontop of him.

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