"Get up!" A man yelled while the steel toe of a boot made a hard connection with my back.
I wheezed; breathing was difficult. What's going on? Had I been captured? The steel toe connected with my stomach this time. Blood spewed from my mouth as I gasped for air. I put my hands up trying to show I was trying.
"Give him a second. He just earth trash after all." A snide male voice filled the hall.
"If you read his file you would also know he is rebel scum." A more aggressive deeper voice said.
" I prefer the term rebel combatant." My voice strained as I forced myself onto my feet.
"Another Talker! Maybe a quick little adjustment will fix that."
"Don't! Kobish has already given left this one with a disadvantage and you know how he gets when we tamper with them."
" Doing my best. Kinda hard with these handcuffs though."
"Keep that mouth of yours shut. My friend over here doesn't exactly understand the concept of patience." The Snide one said standing in front of me as his friend released my handcuffs.
I stared at him sizing him up; a well placed punch to the temple was all I needed....
"Get moving!" The other grunted prodding my back harshly with what I could only guess was a shock baton.
There goes that plan. I submitted and followed Mr Snidey; however I let my mind roam. I knew that they didn't usually treat captured combatants with dignity and fairness;but something was different here. Disadvantage, and tamper? Those words were definitely in reference to my condition somehow. Also what was my disadvantage?
I was pushed forwards into the Snide one who reflexively slammed me into the concrete wall. Pressing his hand into a wound in my abdomen. I screamed as blood began to flow out of the wound. He let go of me letting me get a glimpse of the wound. It was a bullet wound no doubt, an improperly treated bullet wound at that.
" Great." He muttered, " Let's go we're almost there. Try to put up a good fight would you?"
Fight? That's when it clicked. I was here, I was in the arena.
"Superpowers inc." I said under my breath.
Maybe it was the adrenaline from losing blood or maybe it was the fear of knowing what was likely to happen to me, or maybe it was exhilaration from knowing I would be combat soon. Either way the pain resided as I stood up straight and followed them to a door that was beginning to let in rays of light from outside. There was a slight scent of blood and burnt flesh in the air as I edged closer.
" An excellent closure I can assure you; but worry not for our next rookie round is a special treat! In one corner we have a cowardly Terrorist and in the other a proud paladin that came to us! Begging us to give him the power to become a vessel of retribution against the plague that weakens our populace!" The commentary reverberated in the halls.
"Go on. Don't be shy." The Snide one said pushing me out into the open arena. I stumbled in barely holding my balance.
I was starting to feel a little woozy. I had a find a way to stop this bleeding, but how? I looked ahead sizing up my opponent. He was stocky like an athlete, and almost looked like he had been spending too much time pumping weights. I took note this guy probably could hit hard but probably didn't move fast. Then again in this condition I wasn't going to be either. He looked to be around 18-25. Probably never been in a fight for his life before. A timer began to go off in the distance but I was zeroing in on what I needed to know. I only had so much time before this wound would have me passing out. He started to charge, I stayed put. Reading his body movements. He was going to try to throw a right hook. I had to make it look like I was going in for a counter so I step forwards putting my left hand up. When he got within range I side stepped and suckered him with an uppercut to his gut. A mistake. His skin had somehow turned to metal and a few of my knuckles were now broken. A smile crossed his face as his left hand connect with my shoulder knocking me backwards and onto my ass. I gritted my teeth swallowing the pain. He coming again; but from where? The pain and panic was blinding. I jumped onto my feet breathing deeply I had to control my fear. So he had one of his powers figured out. Whatever; I had combat experience, and knew what one of his powers were. If I could manage to stay calm I still had a chance. That and I had a few tricks of my own that I just had to figure out.
He was running at me again. Knowing I would keep my distance now he sprinted at me to rob of any distance I had gained. I tried to run but he was catching up. New tactic then! I turned and kicked the sand into his eyes. Stunning him long enough for me to close in and push him to the ground. On top him now I went to beat in his face but he caught my arm before my fist connected. As it turned metallic it's grip strength increased If held my wrist any longer it would shatter. His other fist was heading for my face and that's when the weirdest instinct kicked in. I went for a headbutt and things only got weirder when the ending was not my face exploding. Instead his hand slammed into the ground throwing up a plume of dust. He was screaming in agony and his grip loosened. I managed to escape and ran out of the plum of dust. What was that? Did I have supernatural ability of unbeatable headbutts? Either way this dust cloud was enormous and if I could do that again but with a direct hit I could win this match. As it settled the silhouette of my opponent was coming for me. I stood my ground again this time. I watched him again his body telling me it was going for another right hook. In case this was a deception I would jump back this time. He fell for it I breathed in Imagining the effect with my headbutt but this time with my fist. My left fist went for his chest Excitement shot through me as my opponent was launched backwards through the air; carried by an orange like energy. His body augured into the ground dramatically rag-dolling about, kicking up a wall of red sand. A smile crept across my face. I had won hands down he wasn't getting back up from that.