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1 mo ago
Current Well, well, well, if it isn't the consequences of my own actions.
2 mos ago
She knocked that smug look off my face but luckily I was wearing a second, smaller smug look underneath.
2 yrs ago
There's nothing more intoxicating than the clear absence of a penis.
3 yrs ago
Half of Blink 182 is Wink 91.
4 yrs ago
A Freudian Slip is when you mean one thing but fuck your mother.


"I like it when the center is wet."

"You're the biggest bitch I know, but you're funny sometimes, so it's okay."
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Though Acrius didn't show it (nor want to), he did feel partially responsible for the regiment as they've been assigned with him. He was surprised that they even listened to his advice as others of a similar situation have blown him off due to his status. The formation they keep was tight and soon the seemingly endless waves of goblins would trickle into a stop. Petyr and the soldiers gasped for air and rested on what they could anchor their hands on. Acrius would've commented on their stamina but it wasn't the time for it as he was certain that the assault isn't quite finished yet.

Fortunately there was a lull for a few minutes that allowed the soldiers to catch their breaths. Acrius kept a vigilant eye and ear out while trying to regain his own stamina; he had been fighting somewhat conservatively to preserve his stamina. The second wave would come soon enough. "Hoh?" Acrius mindlessly sounded as he spotted the second wave of goblins appeared. Their arrival was marked by the splashing pattering of wolf paws.

"Off your asses now," Acrius said simply, "... and back into formation."

The officer also chimed in and began shouting for formations. Acrius was well acquainted with how wolves hunted. During his youth he frequently hunted and was hunted by wolves due to his solo nature. A singular wolf was no issue but they were a problem with a pack- moreso a pack that seemingly pack-bonded with goblins. In reality wolves usually went for lunge aimed towards their preys jugulars and occasionally could swipe with their dagger-like claws. Luckily the soldiers were clad head to toe in armour.

"Another word of advice, keep your shield taut against your neck..." Acrius said, "And maybe you lot would make it out of this."

Though he didn't like it, Acrius himself subsumed into the newly-formed formation; he stationed himself to the corner of the formation. Getting surrounded by wolves was not a clever idea; it was entirely possible that he could keep his back to the wall but that still presented the risk of being attacked from multiple sides.

The two opposing groups were now facing off. The tension was like a wire waiting to be cut. The fight would begin when a lone wolf would lunge at Acrius- The boy would catch this movement and respond with a sideways kick directed towards the neck of the wolf. His greaves would dig into the beast's neck. The force of the kick would crush its trachea and send it careening to the side- soon it would die from shock.

The rest of the goblins and wolves would crash into the shields of the formation. The formation held and the soldiers would stab downwards at either the attacking wolves or goblins. The most important part of the battle would not be breaking formation; the fight turning into a mindless melee, while fun, would be more conducive to deaths.

Acrius himself would clash, steel on steel, with a goblin during their initial charge. Though the goblin tried its hardest, Acrius was like an unloving steel wall. Acrius would allow the strike to push downwards and away from him to his open right. As this happened, he followed up by making an upward strike targeted at the goblin's neck.

The fight would continue on- the goblins and wolves would try to break and encircle their formation. The would try to keep their formation tight and their strikes quick and efficient. The continued and combined assault of the goblins and wolves was tiring, to say the least. It was to be a battle of endurance; to see which side would falter first. Acrius would make sure that it wouldn't be them as he redoubled his efforts.
Acrius listened to his fellow guard's comments and preferences of which wall to defend. Their choices made sense given their dispositions. Leonidas would soon announce where each guard would go and he waited with bated breath; he was announced to head to the sewers and he internally cheered. It was entirely possible that he would be bored out of his mind and nothing interesting would happen in the sewers but he had a feeling that wouldn't be the case.

The sewer grate was pried open and the foul odour from under hit his nose. Luckily, it was something Acrius was fairly used to. He waited for the other guardsmen to drop into the sewer before he himself made his way into it. A guardsman greeted him with a rather ostentatious bow on the way in; he arched an eyebrow as he recalled who it was- Petyr, the hulking behemoth he had 'trained' with last night. The man looked stiff as a board and seemed to shake in his rather comically small armour.

"Ah, Petyr right?" Acrius greeted him with a pat on his shoulder, "Can't believe you've been assigned with little ol' me."

"Ah yes, sir!" Petyr replied formally, "Sergeant Geraldson told me after I asked and you're one of the royal guard?"

"Drop the sir, I'm not your officer and I'm just a commoner," Acrius replied, "I'll just apologize in advance."

"It actually is no worries, si- Acrius." Petyr replied, "The experience itself was... enlightening."

Acrius noticed that Petyr was shaking slightly. It seemed to be his first real battle. I know that we're strapped for soldiers but this seems risky for a first exposure. The orange-eyed boy thought idly. There was a real risk of him just freezing up if the situation does get horrible. He sighed internally as he decided to keep an eye out for the recruit. Acrius excused it as him feeling bad for Petyr croaking after all the wonderful teachings he gave him in their training session.

"One piece of advise from someone whose been through many battles," Acrius paused as if he was looking for the words, "... easier said than done but don't freeze up. Keep your legs and sword moving and you should be fine."

The siege would soon go underway as he said this. Petyr and many of the guardsmen seemed wracked by nerves. Acrius himself simply leaned back onto the wall and hummed one of his favorite bard tunes. He would glance over the guardsmen a few times and they seemed to get more and more stir-crazy; the contrast of the raging battle above versus the still sewers seemed to get to them. Petyr himself would come over and make idle chit-chat to pass the time and try to settle his nerves.

Acrius ears would prick as he heard the tell-tale sound of a fuse going off. The other guardsmen noticed him being alert and stiffened up even further as he drew his longsword.

"They're here~" Acrius said in a sing-songy tune. The officer screamed at the men to stand ready and draw their weapons as the explosion resounded through the hollow sewers.

"You Bergkoff men..." Acrius said, "You're not going to let some outsider outshine you... right? Don't let some nobody gladiator beat ya or is Bergkoff as disappointing as I thought it would be."

Though Acrius was rude about it, that was his version of a 'rousing speech'. Well, atleast that was his intention. At his words the men seemed more annoyed than nervous now and charged the goblins with renewed vigour. Good, it was better to be annoyed than nervous.

Acrius could finally have some fun. Gripping his throwing knives, from his rucksack, he threw them at three goblins charging at him. One of the knives would sink into one of the goblin's necks, the blood staining the murky waters below. The other two would deflect or block the knife as they continued their charge.

The first goblin's would strike vertically; it was a wild swing, untrained and bestial, and telegraphed. Acrius' short-sword would stab into the goblin's soft neck before his strike could even come downwards. The third goblin was unfazed; his strike came horizontally. He would kick the goblin's arm upwards, causing the stroke to become ineffective as it sailed sideways into the sewer walls. Following that motion he would bash the goblin's head with the pommel of his short-sword a few times and then deliver the killing stroke as it was dazed. The blood would splatter onto his face as he did this.

With his open hand he wiped his face with his gauntlet. Goblin blood is disgusting... How are the guardsmen doing?

The guardsmen seemed to be fairing just fine. They formed a small, tight circle. This formation should be nigh-impenetrable if they could stayed in formation- it was essentially a goblin shredder. Good. Acrius would find that he thought too soon as Petyr blindly broke formation. It seemed that he had killed a goblin and began mindlessly charging forward. His stature and strength easily bulldozed through the goblins but if this continued he would likely be surrounded soon.

"PETYR!" One of his fellow guardsmen said, "DON'T BREAK FORMATION!"

Acrius clicked his tongue as he rushed towards where Petyr ran off from. A goblin soon jumped onto his back and stabbed downwards- at his neck. His shoulderpads would save him but Petyr couldn't get the goblins off his back. Acrius soon arrived and stabbed the goblin from behind. He lifted and hefted the dead goblin off of Petyr's back and threw it at two charging goblins.

"You fucking idiot," Acrius reprimanded him loudly as he fought off the goblins at Petyr's back, "Keep your head clear, you're not allowed to blindly race at enemies, get the hell back to your formation."

"What about you, Acrius?" Petyr snapped back to reality, "How come you're not in formation with us?!"

"Get stronger than me before you say shite like that." Acrius spat back as he grinned, "No more backtalk, I'll cover you, run back to the formation."

Acrius would jump off a wall and tiger kick one goblin, the force pushed him back onto another goblin as they stumbled onto the floor. Petyr's slowly retreated with Acrius covering him.

Soon Petyr would meet back up with his fellow guardsmen. "Good, now stay," Acrius paused purposefully between words, "... if you want to make it out of this."

"With that said... I'll show you Bergkoff men what it means to be a royal guard." Acrius said as he thought up an excuse on the spot to let loose.

Acrius wasn't about to let some guardsmen best him in terms of kill count. He would redouble his effort after escorting Petyr back and sliced through the goblins with raw skill and finesse. Some of the guardsmen would notice that his movement and sword strokes were oddly mesmerizing. It was beautiful and elegant in its on way- very minuscule amounts of wasted movement and each stroke seemed to take a goblin's life. It appeared like he was zipping through the sewers.

The guardsmen themselves were no slouch. Their tight formations made it difficult for Goblins, with no warfare knowledge, to break and attack. Acrius surmised that the guardsmen would end with injuries at worst if they continued on the same.
The nights sleep was comfortable- well more comfortable than average. Acrius' body usually woke itself up at 4:00 AM as part of his daily training and internal body clock. However a shadowy figure slunk into his room five minutes before he would usually wake. The creaking door had already woken him up; being a heavy sleeper in his line of work was a death sentence. Soon a figure stood on his bedding and he heard the sound of a bow being drawn. Acrius was getting ready to take down the would be assailant but he recognized the figure after opening his left eye slightly.

It was Celeste Roesche. A figure that's been bothering him for awhile now. "Celeste what in the godsdamned hell are you doing in my quarters," Acrius asked, his voice still deep and croaky from being awoken early, "Nevermind that. Who let you IN my room?"

The string was let loose and a padded arrow hit Acrius' chest. Air escaped his lungs as he tried to catch his breath. Celeste seemed pleased with herself.

"Acrius!" She jumped down and enclosed Acrius into a hug, "I've come with Sergeant whats-his-name to assist Bergkoff. Have ya gotten fat?"

Acrius' eyes bore down on Celeste as he got up with her clinging onto him like a koala. Though he didn't notice, it seemed that the girl was also taking in his scent in. The reason for her infatuation stemmed from the past; A younger Acrius saved her family and her caravan from bandits. The oranged-eyed swordsman was 15 at the time and was passing by on foot to another town. Three bandits were in the process of robbing and threatening Celeste's family. Acrius couldn't stand to hear Celeste's and her brother's cries and intervened.

The three bandits were simple cutthroats and easily fell to Acrius' blade. It was also his first time fighting versus a group of people as opposed to simple one-on-ones. It was a valuable learning experience, at least. The Roesche family was eternally grateful. Acrius began walking away; he didn't expect any reward as he did it of his own volition. The family was appalled and insisted on letting him ride with them to the city and even offered him accommodations for the duration of his stay. It seemed that they were a smaller noble family. Recently, the Roesche family have built up and consolidated their power thanks to the wit and smarts of Celeste's brother- Robert Roesche. Though when asked, Acrius would simply think they were some noble family. It wouldn't be a stretch to call them one of the bigger noble houses of the empire now.

If Acrius had to guess she probably picklocked the door and snuck in. He was certain others weren't allowed into the private rooms. "Can you get off now." He continued, "Weren't you on the the trail to find out my 'origins' or some such? Even when it's a fruitless endeavor."

"It isn't a fruitless endeavor-" Celeste stopped herself as she caught a whiff of an unknown fragrance on him and released the hug, "Wait this smell..."

Acrius stretched and began getting ready for his morning routine. "Probably from a girl I met during this campaign, Elizabeth," He said, "... Speaking of, women from this city are more forward and dangerous than those from the capital. One even exchanged rather uncomfortable pleasantries last night."

Celeste was used to Acrius' denseness and knew that he wasn't the type to be a playboy; he definitely wouldn't do anything to a girl. Still, the boy was catnip to women so it wouldn't have surprised her if the women here were more forceful than the capital. "What did this woman do?" She scoffed, "Kiss you or something?"

"I guess so," Acrius said simply, "I think that's what the action was called." He stepped out of the door and his eyes met a few guards who gave him ear-to-ear grins and nodded at him. He arched his brow, those same soldiers simply ignored him yesterday.

Celeste stayed in the room with a dumbfounded expression. Someone actually stole that idiots first. Who the hell was this woman?

Acrius got breakfast at the soldiers barracks and ate by himself. Food was one of his secret vices and he enjoyed a good meal. However he was also used to the horrid gruel and food served during marches. The food in Bergkoff was, atleast, decent so he could enjoy it to some degree. He didn't have an opinion about the noble meals, he was talking more of meals served to commoners.

Acrius did his normal morning routine after thirty minutes of letting the food settle. The routine itself was intense, it was devised by him; normally it would leave him winded and out of breath. However he thought it prudent to not get himself too tired on the day that he predicted would be a long and tiresome one. Afterwards he would prepare a bath by himself with the help of serving girl to wash off the gruel and dirt from yesterday.

Finally he would step into the room with the other royal guard and greeted them all by name. He silently listened to Leonidas' suggestions and Balthazar's ever in-depth analysis from his scouts. The more information the better, even Acrius knew information is important in war. If you had to ask him; it'd be best in the sewers for full on action for him or the north for the chance to test his mettle versus Orcs. "Full on melee on the sewers sounds fun- err, strategic. The orcs also seem a tantalizing option." Acrius said, "I will, however, go where Prince Leonidas commands."
Acrius nodded at Elizabeth's words. It seemed that his ploy would work out. He almost left when she muttered;

"But first."

The boy turned around in anticipation of her saying one last thing before they were enclosed in a kiss. Acrius himself had no idea what in the world was happening and stood there stupidly. With an arched brow, he thought back to the past; he had seen men and women do this exact same action in public. Mostly Lancelot with different women every time Acrius went to visit him. As such, in his mind he surmised the kiss to be some sort of specific and odd pleasantry exchanged in the Empire. Otherwise he'd have no idea as to why she'd done so. A mental note was made in his head; ask Balthazar about the pleasantry.

"Err- goodbye." Acrius said as he wiped his lips on his sleeves. However he counted his lucky stars; Aside from that whole exchange, he was finally alone. However the night grew darker and it was best to get some rest. The amount of stress he accumulated over the stress-release was imbalanced. It's best to call it a night and end the day.

Acrius made his way back to the keep. A few soldiers and even citizens were out and about; mostly drunk and eager to make their way back to their beds. He tried to keep his mind off what in the hell happened that night.

The gatekeeper was wary of him but reluctantly let him into the keep after Acrius showed him the (admittedly dirtied up) Royal Guard emblem. The boy would soon realize he had no idea where he'd be allowed to sleep; he flagged down one of the serving girls. She too seemed to think him a low-ranking soldier and treated him somewhat crudely. It was no skin off his nose, however, as he came from a rather poor background (ex-sellsword and gladiator) and was used to similar treatment. He wasn't really one for formality or rankings- atleast in terms of needing to 'respect' those above you because of (what he thinks are) arbitrary rankings. Being born into nobility and being born as a commoner was a simple coin-flip.

As Acrius was being led to the soldier's barracks he remembered he had actually left his armour and weaponry in one of the private rooms- his room, probably. He asked the serving girl where the private rooms were but she scoffed before he showed her the emblem aswell. Her demeanor changed rather abruptly and she curtly apologized before leading him to the private rooms.

With a weary sigh he sunk into his bedding and ruminated on the day. He considered the day more stressful than fun. Was it just karmic fate, but what had he done wrong? Pushing those thoughts away, he thought of battle tactics and strategy. With these thoughts he slowly drifted off to sleep.

"You be careful, Acrius' 'teaching' has been known to leave men with broken bones,"

"That's a tad mean... even if somewhat valid." Acrius said the last part in a whisper.

"Zatana and I have work outside the walls tonight. The Guard will be two short, so be extra vigilant. But don't spread that about."

Oh was this an easy out? Acrius could simply excuse himself back to the keep in the guise of guarding Prince Leonidas. "Got it, report back to the keep to keep an eye on dear old Leo."

Zatana would soon appear on her mare, seemingly glaring at the red-headed girl. The drow greeted him and would leave as soon as she appeared however. Acrius would stay silent at the girl's exchange with Faira. His arm was squeezed on-and-off during their conversation, like a child's plush doll.

"Hey Acrius, you don't have a girlfriend or anything at home do you? Are you involved with one of those women?"

What in the hells is a girlfriend? The boy thought, Something like a friend whose a girl? Somewhat arbitrary but...

"In a way... yes? I would say Zatana and Faira to an extent?" Acrius said, confident that her quandary was answered. He took no heed of her spinning back and forth, simply excusing the movement as exercise, "With that said, I'd have to take my leave, the prince has summoned me."

The boy's voice was pseudo-confident at the end; hopefully she would buy it.
The oranged-eyed boy grimaced as Elizabeth's grip seemed to tighten even further.

"I can't believe it I'm going to have a great knight protecting me!"

"Have to stop you there," Acrius said in a somewhat serious tone, "I'm probably the furthest thing away from one of the Empire's knights. They don't take kindly to self-proclaimed knights. Boring lot really, but some of them are strong, atleast."

Acrius' mind was elsewhere during the confrontation. In his mind he was just shadow-training with Lancelot. Anything to keep his mind off his current 'predicament'.

"Acrius, who have you been beating up?"

Faira's voice snapped him back into reality for a second. "Not many of note," Acrius replied nonchalantly, "It's honestly been pretty boring."

"He didn't "Beat up" anyone He was demonstrating his martial prowess for us new recruits"

It seemed like everyone just observed Acrius and his nightly-exercise excursions. He simply disliked idleness; he doesn't like feeling his bones and muscles stiffen from inactivity. Martial prowess was his only strong suite after all. Still, he'd go along with Elizabeth's explanation instead of the real reason.

"Acrius was about to give me some Private tutoring on my technique. I'm sure someone of your caliber can hold your own so please let us continue."

"... Or sleep, a very valid course of action too," Acrius continued, "... on an unrelated note, has your mother sanctioned this?"

Acrius actually had no idea what was happening in this situation. His mind silently retreated back to his shadow training with Lancelot. He hoped whatever 'this' was would pass over and dissipate like a silent oceans wave.
Acrius was right. He'd prefer not to be but he was. A pair of eyes watched him harder than the other soldiers- no, a more apt term, would be analyzed. His very being was being watched. A chill run down his spine. Even during the messiest, most dangerous battlefields couldn't compare. It was more exhilaration than outright fear.

"That was amazing Acrius! Could you teach me to do that?"

The boy's ear pricked at the scarily familiar voice. No way, it couldn't have been. His head craned towards the voice- it was Elisabeth. She seemed dressed up like those trainees. Wait, was she there during the spar? Acrius thought, surprised at not being able to pick her apart from the crowd. Think, Acrius, Think.

"Uh you must be mistaken miss," Acrius said, trying and failing to change his voice,
"I'm Arthur Dayne- er Bain was it?"

"I decided I can't sit back and let these things attack our home! You inspired me to take action."

Acrius respected her resolve. To protect your own home- your own city is one's duty. Not many soldiers had resolve as strong as that. As such he couldn't really comment on her choice as it would besmirch her pride. He wondered, however, when did he inspire her to do such things. All he remembers earlier was beating up a rather weak goblin lord and Leonidas' reprimanding glare. Rather uneventful for someone like him.

"I'm still new at this though so you'll protect me out there wont you?"

Acrius wasn't sure if she was playing it up. Her grip on his arm was tighter than that soldier- Petyr, from earlier. How can she produce more force than that behemoth?! What could he teach her, really? He quickly poured over ways to escape that grip but couldn't. His mind flashed back to his quick discussion with Balthazar over city girls. Whilst telling him of his predicaments with city women the old man could only blankly stare at him; Acrius took it as silent agreement rather than blatant bewilderment on his part.

One of the main reasons he avoided the capital or bigger cities was honestly because of the women. Any other observer would be able to tell the obvious but Acrius couldn't. He simply thought they were more touchy-feely and stared openly at outsiders (in this case, Acrius thinks they have distrust of soldiers, merchants and strangers). Still, none were so blatantly close and quite as touchy-feely as Elisabeth. She was the most aggressive from what he could tell. Others atleast just gawked from far away or, at worst, gave him their handkerchiefs. Their reasoning, however, escaped him.

Acrius himself has also met women on the battlefield; their valour and skills were comparable to men. So he didn't understand what in the world was happening. Women were... what was the word Balthazar taught him? An Enigma, to say the least. I can't understand women. I'd rather fight five Lancelots than deal with this.

"Err..." Acrius started but paused, "I'll try to keep an eye out in the battlefield, I guess?"

Acrius could feel eyes on him once again. Seriously, who was it this time? It really did mimic his time in the capital. Even when prodding Balthazar he was assured there was no 'physical danger' in the capital. So why did he always feel eyes on him during his time in the capital? Ughhh. He groaned internally. The boy used his free hand to scratch his head. He wasn't used to this, he just wanted to mindlessly train for the hardships that may come tomorrow.

Elisabeth at this point would likely be confused at his silence as he ruminated in his own thoughts.

"Isn't it time to sleep so we are better rested for tomorrows trials?" Acrius finally coughed out, "... else I can uhh- supervise, yes, supervise your swings right?" The orange-eyed boy really didn't know what to do and offered the two alternatives his mind could come up with.

Though he didn't believe in any of the gods, this was the first and last time that he prayed; he actually hoped one would listen.
The rest of the retinue came in rescue of the drow. From Manald, Merik and then eventually Rudolph. Acrius was slightly impressed at how open and accepting the rest of them are. The reactions of the soldiers, however, was expected. Luckily Leonidas came to disperse the already whittled down crowd. The prince's speech would tug at heartstrings but the deep-seated hatred of drows after years would likely win over his words. The crowd were all but gone now but Acrius could feel some leery soldier eyes their way. Leonidas would then heal Zatana before assigning each member a gate to watch. Acrius failed to stifle a chuckle at Zatana being treated like a child and told to go rest. He wouldn't have known if she was glaring at him as he quickly looked away.

Acrius sat on a box and kicked his feet onto the battlements that overlooked the northern plains. The attack on the western gate was definitely the biggest of the day. The rest were just small attacks that looked to prod and test the city's defenses. All Acrius had done was don the bow a couple of times; most of the time, however, it was just idle chit-chat with the crowned prince. Nothing of much import, just musings of past misadventures and events.

Soon the sun would be swallowed by the horizon and they were all given free time. Acrius noticed that Faira and Zatana were to have a mission but since it didn't involve him he shrugged and walked away. Still, only being allowed to use the bow all day made him a little stir-crazy. The tavern seemed to bustle with activity but the memory of his night of (forced) drinking drove him away. He'd rather not get close to ale again.

His eyes would be drawn to an open field that seemed to serve as training ground. A few shadows tussled and wrestled with each other. Despite it being night there seemed to be a few recruits and what seemed to be a higher-up overlooking their late-night training. Oho, even after all that, it seems that some of 'em have more energy than I gave them credit for. Acrius mused to himself as he tucked the Royal Guard badge into his tunic. Luckily he had taken his armour off at the inn they were staying at earlier. Donning a (rather taut) tunic and trousers, he looked like some starry-eyed schmuck looking to serve the kingdom.

Acrius noisily made his way to, what looks to be, the sergeant overlooking the recruits training. The sergeant, as expected, noticed him immediately;

"State your name and rank," The sergeant eyed him up and down, "... and the reason you're here, soldier."

"Sir!" Acrius played it up and even did the Empire's salute as accurately as he remembered, "I'm Arthur Bain, a fresh recruit from the countryside!"

"Hmm..." The sergeant hummed and stroked his chin, he seemed hesitant but eventually continued, "At ease, Arthur. I'm Sergeant Geraldson. Currently overlooking these fresh recruits' training. The lot are recruits from this city, said they want to join the Prince in defending the city, heh."

"I would like to join my fellow recruits training!" Acrius kept standing at ease, trying his hardest not to break out into a grin. "I've been told that my grappling was a little exceptional!"

"A lively one, eh?" Geraldson let out a heart guffaw, and decided to haze the fresh-eyed recruit a little bit, "Alright you will fight Petyr, one of our best. Petyr! Come here."

A giant behemoth of a man appeared and towered over Acrius. Petyr was about 6'4" and was really muscular. What in the hells are they feeding this man, He thought idly as he looked up at him.

Acrius kept up the act, trying to look as scared as he could manage.

"We will do two matches, recruit Arthur," Geraldson smiled at him, "But worry not, you will be able to tap out."

The oranged-eyed boy popped a vein at how Geraldson enunciated 'you' but he let it pass.

The match would soon begin. Acrius kept up a standard grappling stance while his opponent simply smiled at him. It seemed that this recruit in particular had become a little cocky due to his size advantage. Well, well, we can't have that with the Empire's recruits, can we?

The rest of the recruits giggled amongst themselves; they began to gather to watch what they expect to be a fresher recruit put into his place. Even Geraldson seemed eager to be entertained.

Acrius let the man make the first move, offering a tiny bit of resistance to seem genuine. Petyr was quicker than he gave him credit for and appeared behind him, placing him into a rear naked choke. Acrius rated it so-so, about a 4/10. What lax training. He could easily escape in three ways; the most basic was to grab the choking arm and squat downwards whilst lifting said arm into a backwards throw. However there was also empty space in the hold; an amateur mistake as you never leave empty space. The empty space could allow him to place his own arm to weaken the choke. The same empty space could also be used to escape.

The swordsman would let them tumble back onto a floor rear naked choke hold. The choke itself let him breathe easily but he gave it a few more seconds before he 'tapped' out by hitting the ground floor.

Acrius faked cough and accepted the hand that hoisted him up, "You're good, Petyr!"

Petyr seemed please with himself and turned away not expecting 'Arthur' to want another round. "One more round, ser Petyr."

Petyr simply huffed and turned around and prepared himself for what he expected was a second beating. Acrius would now simply swat away any attempts at a hold. Petyr's dive was swatted downwards, his face dragged into the dirt. The same rear naked choke was simply countered the few times he attempted it. The giant seemed to get angrier and angrier as each and every choke hold attempt was easily denied. The crowd also got quieter and quieter as their star recruit was being played with, like an adult would play-fight with a child.

"You bleeding coward!" Petyr screamed, holding the lapels of Acrius' shirt and lifting him up. "Are you going to fight back or not?"

"As you wish." Acrius let his grin show, it was a big mistake to grab him by the lapels of his tunic. The orange-eyed boy would jump upwards and slither his right foot around Petyr's arm. His other foot would grip around his neck as he pushed the giant downwards. He had performed a flying armbar choke. Petyr, being inexperienced, had not seen this choke before and fell downwards like a giant bag of bricks. The giant's arm was now locked into place and another motion could potentially snap it. There was something that made all men equal, and that thing was leverage.

Acrius exercised restraint, however, and waited for Petyr to tap out. He did place more and more pressure on the giant's arm but he just wouldn't tap out. If anything, Petyr had a respectable amount of pain tolerance. Acrius looked to the now bewildered sergeant, to see if he would end the fight, but he didn't say anything. The crowd's earlier booes and jeers from Acrius' avoidance of holds were now replaced by a stunned silence.

Acrius sighed to himself and let the hold go. There was no fun in combatants who didn't know the concept of defeat; the body is a fickle thing, sturdy yet weak. So knowing when to give up to preserve your future was obvious. Soon he bent down and hit the dirt, signifying him tapping out.

"Petyr, you need to work on your fundamentals," Acrius growled, somewhat disappointed at the brutish man, "... and know when to surrender."

The silence was deafening. Questions could be read from their confused faces; 'Who the hell is this Arthur', 'How'd Petyr go down that easily'. Petyr kept his mouth shout and didn't move from his position; instead he seemed to enjoy gazing up at the starry night sky.

"I thank you my fellow recruits and Sergeant Geroldson for this opportunity," Acrius said and bowed indignantly, "I need to train myself harder for future battles."

Later, Geraldson would inquire on who 'Arthur Bain' was but was quickly told it was Acrius Stroude, the 'wild dog' of the Prince.

Acrius walked away from the open field, folding his hands behind his head as he whistled a bard's tune he'd heard awhile back. He had worked up a decent sweat and his stir-craziness was somewhat abated for now. His mind flickered over to Lancelot, he'd be one that could entertain Acrius. The boy couldn't help but feel eyes on him. Surely from those soldiers earlier, right?
Acrius pumped his fist at his plan working. The goblins he had marked earlier exploded, the radius of the explosion taking out a good chunk of nearby goblins. His eyes gravitated towards a robed figure in-front of the castle gates...? It looked to be Zatana, the orange-eyed boy had no idea how she managed to get there considering the height of the walls. It was a very reckless and zany plan, he wasn't sure if even he would do that. Nevertheless he grinned in approval despite trying not to. Zatana seemed bolder than he initially pegged her for.

The not-so-currently swordsman directed his shots towards the crowd that seemed to surround the drow. Acrius gave her covering fire as best she could before he noticed an explosion went off. He wasn't certain if she was caught but she disappeared once more and appeared on top of the walls. On closer inspection, she was definitely hit by that explosion; her clothes were charred and she looked worse for wear.

A few soldiers went to her aid but immediately stopped. The small crowd hovered over her and Acrius could tell something was up. Luckily the small army of goblins quickly retreated after the explosions so he could direct his attention to Zatana. He himself would check on what the commotion was about. It seemed that she was a dark elf; the soldiers wore expressions of confusion, betrayal and some looked angry. Acrius couldn't believe their reactions, right after she saved their asses like that. His annoyance bubbled in him as more voices and whispering joined the noise.

"You lot..." Acrius said, his voice was uncharacteristically low and bone-chilling, "I see Rudolph has been lax with your discipline."

"She endangered herself to keep this gate up," The boy pushed his way through the two inspecting her and turned to face them, "And this is how you men react? You sure you lot aren't missing a pair?"

"Either help," He growled, "Or get out of my sight else you'll answer to me. Trust me, I'm not quite as nice as Rudolph."
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