Tuesday, February 16, 2016

By your powers combined chapter 22

So busy over the past few days that I've found it hard to even think about the BYPC, much less get motivated to get it done. Been thinking about the next story since part 1 of BYPC is coming to an end. Looking like it's going to be Romeo and Juliet meets ???? not sure yet. Got the magic system and the opening idea done. And some of the world as well. The two main characters are clear in my head right now, and the conflict between them, too. I'm trying to start closer to a normal life part with the character striving to do something, but not something major the upends his life at the very beginning. And as I write this, Goo is running around like a crazy cat.

First chapter

Previous: Chapter 21

Chapter 22 (False names)

            With Yalrein beside me, I waved goodbye for now to Wholt and Pentorse as we stepped out of the cheap inn’s stable by the western gate.
            There were so many people in this area it was hard to breathe. Like in Ayuhod, the stink of oil and burned hair permitted the air, but on a much thicker, smoke-like scale, mixed with the rotten grapefruit smell of the crowd’s body odor.
            Maybe that was the reason it was hard to breathe. That mixture of smells on top of the heat was atrocious.
            By ten steps away from the stable, my last good shirt had been soaked through with sweat. Too bad I hadn’t thought of training shirtless sooner. Though, I still had a bit of a rash from exercising in the armor without one.
            Yalrein grumbled something behind me as I used my grace to maneuver through the crowd, leaving him to shove his way forward.
            “Remember,” I said, glancing back at him, raising my voice, “we’re from a small mountain family, isolated from the world and apart of the same martial arts school.”
            Yalrein rolled his eyes, shoving his way next to me. “Tell everyone, why don’t you?”
            I inhaled sharply to do just that then stopped myself. “I still hate you.”
            “And today, I finally get to go all out on you.”
            “Shouldn’t that be my line?” I started forward again, stalking through the crowd and glaring at everyone I passed.
            The line outside the stadium stretched around the block and made me want to scream.
            How were there this many people who wanted to compete in the preliminaries?
            I stepped into the line by a bakery, and the mouth-watering scent of pie reminded me that we had trained this morning and burned through the last of our food. Deep breaths calmed my stomach and allowed me to focus on the fools around me—well, in front of me and Yalrein.
            The purple, metallic-skinned group directly in front of me were all at least as tall as me, two of them more than a foot taller. Their weapons were solid black, hung from hooks on their shoulders and belts, sable-forged steel bare.
            I turned away from the Wave Rider people, unsure why they were so far from their homeland, into Regime territory, but it couldn’t be anything good.
            Or, I reminded myself, they could just be here for the fame and price money.
            Despite how long the line was, it moved pretty quickly. The Wave Rider people in front of them each registered their names, though only one of their names stuck: Kkustt. Odd for a woman to have a name that didn’t start with a vowel, even odder than her being the tallest in the group. They were handed a letter, one for the entire group of four.
            Speaking of names, I hadn’t come up with any good ideas yet. Just reversing their names wouldn’t work. Well, it could work for Yalrein since his name ended in a consonant, but my name ended in a vowel.
            “How many in your group?” the gray-haired old man asked.
            “Group?” I asked.
            He narrowed his eyes then looked at me then Yalrein. “I’ll take it as two. Names?”
            “Wait.” I shook my head, and a wave of dizziness kicked me in the nose. “We’re not a group. We’re going to fight alone.”
            “If you make it past the first trial. Which is a group competition considering the number of participants.”
            “Oh.” I glanced at Yalrein, who nodded. “Okay. Markdown … Penta-Destroyer and The-Great-Spiderchicken.”
            I could feel Yalrein’s gaze boring into the back of my head.
            “Right …” The old man scribbled on a piece of paper then handed me a letter. “While it is alright to enter under an assumed name, the final records of this round will require your real name.”
            I swallowed.
            “For now, I’ll just put you down as--” He met my eyes. “—Penta-Destroyer and--” He glanced over at Yalrein. “—The-Great-Spiderchicken.” After scribbling a few more notes, including their descriptions, the old man handed me an envelope. “Open it when you get back to your room and follow the instructions exactly for your first trial.” He closed his book and stood, retreating into the {stadium} since we were the last in line.
            Thinking on that, we were lucky to make it on time.
            I stifled a sigh and turned to Yalrein. “Now, we just need to find a room. Any--”
            “Tima!” Aisa shouted as she skidded around the corner, stabbing a finger at me as if to shoot my eye out. “What in the One’s name do you think you’re doing?”

Next: Chapter 23

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