• Thalimon Dailzar, tournament champion. He liked the sound of that. Thus he entered the Kellington Warrior’s Tournament. He and his two friends, Mat Carizain and Raven Upshaw traveled three days from their home in Steimand just for the opportunity to join. They had registered earlier that week and were now in the gaggle of people in the center of the open air colosseum with a couple of hundred others waiting to be introduced to the blood hungry crowd.
    The Warrior’s Tournament was one of renown in this part of the world, not only because the screening process was a very rigorous one, ensuring that only the strongest and most talented fighters could make the cut, but also because some gave their lives, weapons are not prohibited. Thalimon was amazed that he even made the cut. He had no formal training in the martial arts, as Raven did, and his cunning was sub par, though Mat seemed to have no problems in scheming and knowing just how to make the worst situations bright. He had just been good at manual labor, “I guess...” He thought, “I’m the unbridled strength that comes from chopping wood and doing chores.” He couldn’t help the chuckle that followed.

    The tournament was about to be underway so the streets were crowded. The day wasn’t hot but it was warm enough to where the person walking in the opposite direction of the crowd would have been out of place had it not been for the amount of tourist in the city. The figure wore a long dark brown trench coat with the collar turned up and a long brimmed hat of the same color, as if to ensure the blockage of their features. There was also something else strange about this figure, a long dark metal tube with a wooden piece at the end and what looked like a telescope attached. That drew some eyes, but no one questioned the item as the figure made his way to a residence.

    “Ladies and Gentlemen, It’s my great pleasure to welcome you to the Thirtieth annual Kellington Warriors Tournament!” The announcer shouted in a way that was sure to fire up the crowd, he held an item that was from an age long lost, something called a microphone, that sent the sound of his voice through boxes that amplified and reverberated his voice through the colosseum. “I’m sure you all can’t wait for the tournament to get under way so let’s bring out the competitors for the first fight!”

    The sound of the first fight were going on and Thalimon looked about him. His fellow competitors were mostly shorter then he was, and less broad too. “I’m really that big?” he thought and thought about what Raven had told him years before. “You look as if you’re about to tear out my door frame you lummox! Was your father a blacksmith, or did your mother just fall in love with a horse?” At the time he had barely cleared the door frame with his shoulders, and there was about a hand’s distance for his head. He looked to a mirror and noticed he was slightly handsome, brown hair, longer then most but still trimmed, though not combed, his nose was a strong feature but not the biggest, his blue-green eyes had a captivating feature and the rest was fairly unremarkable.
    He looked over to Mat, Mat was more the handsome type, his dark hair combed and parted in the center, brown eyes, fair skinned. He seemed like the type the women would fawn over. Then he looked to Raven, Raven looked like the bird which he was named, his dark black hair had a slight sheen, and his dark skin gave a slight off look with the pointed nose he had. Most of him took after his mother but that nose was definitely his father’s, and his dark brown eyes held an inkling of how he was raised. Raven was rich. Why Raven associated with he and Mat, he’d never understand, but he was glad for the fact because Raven was the financier of their trip. Thalimon shook his head and gathered his thoughts. “This has nothing to do with the fights.” He said to himself and prepared for his match.

    The figure moved up the stairs of a building that he was seen entering. “This is the perfect stake out. The broken wall is close and with the right opportunity I’ll get the shot I need on that kid. That’ll teach his parents to welch on a debt.” The figure thought and made it to the roof. He walked to the edge of the roof and set the strange device, that he called a rifle, though not many out side the real Ground Xero knew that name, on the ledge overlooking the colosseum. “When his battles begin...” He said to himself, the voice modulated through a device that helped no one recognize what the figure might or might not be. “I’ll have my shot.”

    Thalimon, Raven, and Mat all progressed very quickly through the first rounds of the tournament. The three were taking the spectators, betters, and opponents alike by surprise, and they quickly became crowd favorites. Especially when Thalimon took out the reigning champion of twenty years. Soon the three were in the Semi finals.