It took Ekimu and the Protectors over an hour to regain control of the audience. As soon as the fight had concluded, Nilkuu personally marched up to Rahla on the arena floor; stopping part way to shake hands with Velka and Hanak, before banishing him to the wilds of the Stone Region.
Ekimu reflected on how Rahla’s eyes widened in horror as his sentence was issued, the terrors that had recently been attacking the regions struck fear in the hearts of all Okotan. Was it truly wise to banish him? Are we subjecting him to a fate worse than death? Ekimu had wondered.
When Ekimu had voiced these these thoughts to Nilkuu, the Protector of Stone had remained steadfast in his decision. “Let him reflect on his actions!” Nilkuu had roared, “he knew the consequence if he showed dishonour in this trial, I warned him more than once. Don’t expect me to stand by and have my peoples reputation tarnished!”
Eventually, all the Protectors, and Ekimu, conceded Nilkuu’s decision would be final. So sitting there an hour later, Ekimu consulted with the Protectors. "
“Are we still in agreement that Narmoto and Izotor’s warriors shall go next?” He received nods in response. Heaving himself to his feet, Ekimu walked to the edge of the balcony.
“My friends!” He declared loudly. “We are sorry for the earlier situation you all saw. Our next warriors have assured us that they want this competition to be a sight to behold, they apologise for their peer and beg you won’t blame them. So once again, let us commence!” A roar of applause followed Ekimu’s final words. Before he seated himself, Ekimu brandished his hammer, and swung with a mighty force, the sound of the gong shook the entire arena.
Then the shaking didn’t stop. Once more the arena began to morph, a jagged fissure appeared roughly midway in the floor. On the eastern side rivers of lava began to appear on the floor, pouring out of the stone encirclement that ran around the arena floor. These rivers slithered like glowing snakes across the ground, winding and turning as they ran, they gave out a faint hiss and thick black smoke drifted eerily above them. Meanwhile, rest of the floor on the east became harshly cut, blackened rock.
However, on the western side, powdery clumps of snow began to arrive, iced snakes drifted between snow hills, inside their own artificial valleys. Snow floated about, swaying left to right, forwards to backwards, as it cascaded to the floor. Winds howled like wolves, cut like knives, and lashed out with frozen fangs.
Where these two opposites met there was a loud sizzling hum, with tendrils of steam slowly escaping to the sky, their smoky arms grasping upwards as they pulled themselves to freedom.
A group of Okotan then entered, three of them were as white as the snow, and had shades of blue. Their names were Kaija, Salih and Loh. The other three Okotan were instead blood red, with shades of flaming orange and occasional burnt black. Their names were Firian, Tiakro and Arkaro. One thing that unified these Okotan was that they all carried weapons as harshly fashioned as their environments.
Cautiously, they all approached the fissure, there they bowed to another before retreating to a safe distance. A tense moment followed. 10 seconds past. Then 20. Then 30. And 40. 45. 5-
“BEGIN!” Declared Narmoto and Izotor in unison, upon command the Okotan leapt into action:
Salih swept forward in a flurry, his halberd spinning around his body like a furious snow storm. Swift as an athlete, he vaulted himself over the fissure, using his weapons shaft, and landed gracefully on the opposite side. Next, he glided towards Tiakro, blasting the Fire Okotan with a flurry of blows. His opponent’s chain-sickle, a device of Tiakro’s invention, was knocked to the side. The athletic halberd bearer then proceeded to spin Tiakro around, leaving him with his back to the fissure. Salih swung the swung the final blow…
But Tiakro was quicker. Wrapping his chain around the halberd, he hooked it against the edge of the blade at the end. Salih’s grip faultered. The halberd fell to the ground with a loud clatter. Soon after the Ice Okotan found himself on the floor, the chain wrapped round his leg.
Wishing to aid his friends, Tiakro forced Salih to surrender, then he rushed off. The rest of the Okotan had splintered into two fights, Kaija hacked away at Firian’s defences, whilst Arkaro swung his mace at Loh. Tiakro saw that Loh was beaten and bruised, his arm had a noticeable scratch and the other hung limp at his side.
Eventually, Loh staggered to the ground. Collapsed, broken and beaten. Arkaro’s eyes blazed with determination and he ran off to aid Firian, who was still battling Kaija in the distance.
Tiakro hurried over to his side, he crouched down. “Are you alright?” Loh managed a stiff nod before gesturing to Tiakro to rejoin the fight.
Kaija had now used her signature claw blade to disarm Firian. Not willing to be defeated so easily, the Fire Okotan leapt over a snake of lava. The two opponents stared each other down until Arkaro reached them, he once again swung his mace, however the remaining ice warrior raised her claw blade and clamped it around his wrist. Without any hesitation, she swung her blade at his legs and he crippled to the ground.
Outraged, Firian flung herself at Kaija, seizing hold of Arkaro’s fallen mace. She hailed blow upon blow at Kaija, until the Ice Okotan managed to knock her back with a blow to a shoulder.
Before Kaija could finish her second opponent, Tiakro hooked his chain-sickle around her left wrist and wrested the claw from her hand. Kaija freed herself from his chain, bounding across the fissure into the ice segment, disappearing from view amidst the swirls of snow.
Both Tiakro and Firian followed her, Tiakro felt a dull thud as Kaija’s foot struck his head, he stumbled and fell into the fissure. Luckily, he managed to hold on to the edge so he didn’t fall. “Help!” He called out to Firian, but she ignored him and pursued Kaija.
Soon after, Firian too was knocked into the fissure along side Tiakro. Tiakro then had an idea, he used the blade at the end his chain and swung it so that it embedded itself in a shard of ice. Using the chain as rope he climbed out of the fissure before offering it to Firian, who followed its example.
The two of them once again Kaija, but before the battle commenced once again, the arena began to shake and slowly resumed its original shape. All three warriors shared confused looks.
“WELL DONE TO OUR VICTORS, KAIJA AND TIAKRO!” Bellowed Ekimu from above, “AND A VALIANT EFFORT FROM THE OTHER COMPETITORS!” Polite applause echoed around the walls of the arena.
On the edge of the arena, just below the stands, Narmoto had appeared; he beckoned Tiakro and Firian over.
“What happened?” Asked a confused Tiakro. “We didn’t finish.”
“You didn’t have to!” Beamed a delighted Narmoto. “I am immensely proud of you, Tiakro, immensely proud. I am pleased you took my lessons to heart.”
“You demonstrated something there that no one else did, team work and compassion. What with helping Loh and aiding Firian.” Explained Narmoto. "I do hope you learned from this, Firian?’ He asked sternly.
Firian bowed respectfully. “Yes, sir.”
“Excellent.” Beamed Narmoto once again. “Now, Tiakro you need to go back down to the armoury rooms where the victors are meeting up, it will be the large one two doors down from the room you were fitted in. And, Firian, help Arkaro he is injured.” At that moment Kaija approached. “Ahh excellent, you can take Kaija with you, Tiakro.”
They all bowed as Narmoto left to join the other Protectors once more.
“See you around I guess?” Tiakro said, but Firian walked off without a word.
“Well we should go,” stated Kaija, Tiakro nodded in agreement and they both set off for the armoury.
Sorry this took a while, I had to rewrite the ending as I wasn’t happy with it before.
I’m open to any improvements and please point out any mistakes/inconsistencies.
If you need to recap the story, serials #1 and #4 are by @Drahcir_Nosnevets as well as the short story that isn’t part of the main story. And serials #2 and #3 are also by me.
Hope you enjoy it, thanks for reading