"Why are we fighting?" Was about the first thing I asked the incredibly scary looking griffon.
He just seemed to get angrier. <"Stop talking in your slave babble!">
"WHY ARE YOU SCREAMING?" I brandished Disconsolate threateningly, but the knife itself felt woefully inadequate versus the griffon's clearly compensating for something blade.
The referee groaned. <"For crying out loud..."> His horn glowed and suddenly I understood.
The bubble around us, sure it was magic.
The consequences of this fight were to be tragic.
One of us was sure to die.
No healer or bandage to apply.
"Let us begin," I started to say.
But my mind, the spell did sway.
Instead of my statement, free from chance,
I started to rhyme as if in a trance.
The griffon before me with painted wings,
Took his sword and began to swing.
I dodged quite nimbly with my saving throw,
Though how I did I do not know.
It cut through the air like a blade through butter
But surely it was I who began to mutter.
"An epic poem sure this isn't."
The blade hit the ground and I didn't miss it.
This urge to rhyme, me it annoyed
But at the least, I still could avoid;
For the form of the griffon did not remain inert,
He easily unburied his blade from the earth.
The runes on it's length they did of course glow.
"Can I change rhyme scheme?" I did not know.
"I'd much rather this fight happen in free form."
The crowd looked like this style was the norm.
And of course, the bets did fly.
Some bet for my nose, others my eye,
Of which one the griffon would pluck,
Sadly for them they would be out of luck.
"Hear that noise?" The griffon inquired.
I wished I didn't, that I desired.
He gave me a smirk and hefted his blade.
And I asked how this game would be played.
"Your head is what I will split!"
The narrative seemed to be intermittent.
I took my knife and tried to think
If I didn't do something, my blood would be ink!
For him to paint the circle red,
Hell, I would surely be dead!
And not fulfill any of my dreams!
Of fame and fortune, and all that that brings.
"ORANGE! ORANGE ORANGE!" I cried!
And suddenly, my heart, it felt like it died!
Thankfully, the spell began to crumble.
And I recovered from the unicorn's fumble.
With the narrative returned to normal, I could finally plan out the fight. His blade looked cumbersome and methods of attack were sure to be limited by it.
Though the fact that the runes on his weapon looked remarkably similar to kanji made me a little nervous that this might be a sword EXACTLY like an anime sword.
"Right. At least I won't die rhyming." I said out loud, not at all confident.
The griffon glowered. <"Ready to die, ass?">
I could understand him at least.
A donkey in the crowd rolled his eyes. <"Can we please go through a fight scene without using my race as an insult?"> He stomped his hoof. His complaint and request disappeared into the crowd. He sighed.
I nodded at him. "Yeah yeah, you and your mother." I would've exchanged meaningless witty banter with him but I only understood him. Still couldn't speak it.
The fear was slowly draining from me thanks to breaking the rhyming hell and my mind came across a single idea rather carefully.
Using my mind carefully, I decided to win this with style. I funneled my magic into a threadish construct and reached through the thin leather satchel for my topaz. I kept my knife firmly in my mouth and took on a sturdyish stance and swore to learn how to actually fight soon.
The griffon lunged at me, having probably gotten tiring of posturing and trying to look tougher than he was. His blade wooshed towards me and I stood my ground and waited until it went into range.
"GUARDIAN!" I shouted, forming a large yellow barrier around me. The blade jerked as it hit the barrier and bounced off. The street crowd roared its approval at my showing off. I flashed them a smile.
<"The zebra has deflected the griffon's attack with a single spell! What a surprise, I didn't think he had it in him!"> A sleazy looking earth pony spoke into a rod that amplified his voice.
The griffon snarled and seemed to almost spit venom at me. Or at least at the dirty pavement. He glared at me and I felt like the world flipped on its side.
Suddenly, there was no barrier around us, there was only a primal feeling and echo of being hunted down and ripped apart. His claws rending my flesh and devouring me and then there was a feeling of something happening in the air.
I barely snapped out of the trance in time to duck back from the blade. As it was, I felt it bite into my muzzle and sharp bolts of pain spread through my body as blood began pouring out. It was like a spray, like the very presence of the blade was forcing more blood out.
I woozily shook my head around to clear the feeling out of my head. Seriously, getting a bit of your nose sliced into is pretty damn painful.
<"And the zebra has taken a hit!"> The Earth pony, who I just noticed was a sickly shade of green, continued to take in bits as a form of betting money. <"It's Terrible Terrible Damage on his form, let me tell you.">
And that line snapped me out of my pain and forced me to let out a groan. "They have one of those guys over here, too?"
Luckily, the knife hadn't been snatched out of my mouth by the blow.
Unluckily, the griffon was going for another.
I snapped out my magic to the gem by reflex and barely managed to stop him. "GUARDIAN!" The barrier saved my life again.
And the griffon staggered back from having his sword almost flung from his grip and I took the opportunity to press my advantage
I shoved my magic through the satchel yet again and wrapped the small threads of my will and whatever else magic is made of around a ball of guano and sulfur.
Trust me, it was about as disgusting as you would think it would be. I shoved it out of the satchel through use of the several component in my bag and cast on of my favorite spells. "FIREBALL!" I almost cheered, the foot in diameter sphere of explosive fun hurling through the air.
<"Hold on folks, it looks like the zebra has finally whipped out a bit of his magic for us. But how will the griffon react?">
The griffon nimbly brought his blade in front of him and sliced through the admittedly slowly moving projectile. It split and parted on either side of him, not only violating the very nature of the spell, but looking pretty badass. The rest of the spell dispersed on the barrier behind him with a flash of sparks and the faintest hint of ozone in the air.
<"The sparks are flying in this battle arena.">
"The rules regarding magic can be bypassed if the effects are considered cool enough..." I muttered, glaring at him.
He smirked and then spat out on the pavement. <"What's the matter, your little magic can't deal with my sword?"
I hate people who spit. It's just a pet peeve.
I held my hoof in the air in an effort to flip him off. I was left awkwardly balancing on three legs with a bleeding nose. And looking ridiculous, I might add.
He snickered at me and started back to his previous decision of rushing in and swinging. <"You're little shield will pop eventually!">
It was true, the spell was draining when I wasn't trying to do it wrong. I could only do it the normal way ten or so times and the way I was going I might as well have been trying to filter boulders through a coffee filter to get more magic.
That's actually an accurate comparison. Using magic was sort of like trying to force something through a filter. A filter made of headaches and pain. And when you got tired, the filter got smaller and the object got bigger.
"Like driving a cart through a web."
Oh great. God spider thing is back.
I let out a wine at the whisper through my head and it was just enough to force my barrier to shatter as a sword passed through it.
I bowed my head back and let it clatter against the pavement, and indeed cutting through some of it.
<"Oh? What's this? Something seems to be bothering our zebra! Will this prove to be the end of this match?">
I rolled my eyes and dove towards him while he struggled to pull it from the pavement. My blade flashed at his talons gripping it.
Now, considering what this knife had done already to everything else that I had tried to kill with it you would assume that the griffon would've been missing a few talons.
The tip barely sank into the talons holding the sword and the griffon calmly balled his other taloned appendage into a ball and launched me across the arena in a sucker punch.
I splatted against the wall, feeling much like a fly hitting a bug zapper.
<"AND THE ZEBRA TAKES SOME TERRIBLE TERRIBLE DAMAGE!">
I can't really describe how it felt; my nerves shut down for a second and I blacked out for a second longer than my nerves did.
I came back to reality a second before the griffon split my skull open. Or rather, would've split my soul open if I hadn't jerked my head to the side. I looked at the griffon that loomed over me, his grin almost splitting his face.
I blinked. "Geez. Rape?" I bucked my hooves up into chest and knocked him off of me before smashing the sword welding arm into the ground. As a reflex, his arm came open and his sword tumbled out of his reach.
I growled at him, it being high pitched because of lack of bass. Not threateningly in the slightest, but still enough to convey my point.
He gulped. Freaking coward.
I took great pride in smashing my hoof against his face and feeling the blood spill out. His eyes fluttered shut.
<"KNOCK OUT! AUDIENCE! PLEASE COME TAKE YOUR WINNINGS."> The griffon slumped in defeat and I got off of him. There was no need to kill him yet; I feared the repercussions from his posse and their slut.
The barrier faded and I licked my lips and carefully pulled out a few of the griffon's painted green feathers before walking out.
And then I paused, picked up my dagger and placed it in my satchel and then picked up the griffon's sword. It hissed against my life for a bit until my nose sopped a bit of blood on it and the pain slowly faded.
I slowly walked away from my fallen opponent, feeling awesome.
"Back in my day, my disciples shot their at their enemies and gave it to me as presents. Mmmm... Souls..."
Annoying god spider immediately made me question my satisfaction at the fight and made me think of earth.
I wonder if annoying God Spider would've gotten more than a thousand views on YouTube.