Friday, April 24, 2015

Lord of the Arena-04

The dozen now reduced to two turned a brawl into a duel, the very thing that the hardcore fans in the stands hoped for, and with one of those two being their own hometown hero and the other from the long-hated home of arrogant asses this promised to be a final that kept everyone talking for years. The arena promoters counted on this result, and they got their wish.

Eric the 30 Second Ace and Manhattan Matt kept circling and jockeying attempting to set up the other for a decisive kill, and the arena promoters were not the least above interfering by way of manipulating the mobile obstacles to thwart those attempts until they felt good and ready to let it happen.

"Keep making the moves, Eric." his tactician said, "But focus on wearing him down until I give you the go-ahead."

"Copy that." Eric said, and he shifted to short bursts of fire from the miniguns to wear away at Matt's car while using the mines and flamethrower to disengage when Matt got too close or near his blindspot. Matt kept going for the kill, and as his frustration mounted he let loose on the arena obstacles as they popped into his line of sight at the last moment to spoil the shot.

The arena crowd got louder and louder as they cheered at each of Eric's escapes, and jeered just as loudly for each of Matt's thwarted kill shots. Eric clearly saw that Matt did not remember that, as arena fighters, the shot--not the fight--came first; his years as a road warrior, one he still revealed in openly, served him badly here as it messed with his good judgement.

"I think the promoters are ready to let it end, Eric. Get ready."

Eric saw Matt cut past him again, trying to take his blindspot one last time, and he punished Matt with a blast from his flamethrower. That served to taunt the arrogant ass from New York City, and he spun about in a wide turn with plenty of drift; his targeting laser flashed out, but when the laser-guided rockets fired they just missed their mark; one got a glancing hit on Eric's right-rear quarter and the rest went just high over the rear and hit the wall.

"He's blown it. Finish him!"

Eric brought his car around, lined up for a maximum angle to strafe, and spun up the miniguns. With the last of his ammunition, he burned through Manhattan Matt's front and right side armor. He hit the rocket launchers' magazines, touching off the solid fuel and causing them to detonate. The explosion blew up Matt's powerplant, and that in turn blew up Manhattan Matt. His car ignited into a fireball and crashed at high speed into a wall- and the crowd erupted as one to cheer on their hero's great victory.

"The 30 Second Ace Wins! The 30 Second Ace Wins!"

Twelve entered. Eight left. Six walked out. Of the four that died, only one had a clone- and it was not Manhattan Matt. This had consequences.

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