Father of Falcons
Hello, person (or people, I suppose, depending on how many of you there are)! My name's Feather, but feel free to call me Fea! I'm an advanced, literate roleplayer who's looking to have some fun! I'm a pretty laid-back sort when it comes to roleplaying and really just love doing whatever works. I adore characters and their nuances and dualities no matter the setting, time period, or genre. Point being: I love a plot, but never do I want things to be done that are out-of-character for plot development. Let's build a story instead of going in with one. My timezone is PST and I can post at least every other day, but usually daily.
Before I go delving into other stuffs, let me tell you a bit about myself! I love an OOC chat (we don't have to be friends, though I'd certainly like to be, but collaboration and communication is key to really creating something together). I prefer to rp in PMs but threads are also fine. I'll play male or female characters in platonic relationships, MxM, FxM, FxF, or nonbinary. I'll run humans, demons, angels, vampires, werewolves, elves, dwarves, orcs--you name it, I'm probably game. I'm a flexible guy so long as I've got the space to run a character I'm passionate about in a story that clicks for myself and my partner. I'd typically like to run a character from the character list but I'm open to making a new one or delving deeper into older characters that aren't up there if the plot calls for it.
I write dark themes, sometimes. I don't want to be limited in this way. I'll never write gratuitous violence or gore, but sometimes a scene calls for something dark, twisted, or graphic.
Aside from that, I'm a writer. I'm a birdwatcher. I'm a falconer, too, plus just a complete and utter nerd. I read more than is healthy and though I draw quite often I'm still not very good at it. I'm terrible with technology but I love my dog, and I listen to music of all genres all the time. I'd like to think I'm a friendly and kind sort of human being but I guess that's for you to decide, haha!
"Rules." It sounds so...strict. If you hadn't gathered already, I'm super flexible with things, so let's say that this is really more of a list of "guidelines that I prefer and please tell me if you're going to not adhere to something."
1. Please be literate. Semi-literate may be acceptable. Please send a writing sample and be capable of writing at least 2 solid paragraphs on an average post.
2. I ask that you collaborate with me. I don't want to be the only one dragging this plot along, nor do I wish to simply be along for the ride. We're partners; let's work like it.
3. Please tell me if you're uncomfortable with something; we can work it out!
4. I'm looking for someone who can post at least every other day, and preferably daily and/or multiple times a day.
5. I'm ghost-friendly and will assume that if I don't hear from you within 10 days that you've ghosted. Assume the same if you don't hear from me. If you'll really just be gone, please, let me know! I don't mind. Life happens, I understand!
6. At least two paragraph replies the majority of the time, and absolutely no one-liners. I understand that sometimes dialogue, etc. gets short, but let's try to have some meat in most posts.
7. Original worlds and characters only. Please tell me your favorite bird.
8. Inquiries through PMs, please.
Plots organized by character!
In this, he'd be somewhere between 15ish-18ish (you'll know why I told you that when you go read his character in that next tab). He either just got out of prison or juvenile detention, depending on how old he is, and he got placed with YC(s). He hasn't really lived in a family, and a family isn't what he expects, but suddenly, this guardian is actually being a parental figure, and now they've both gotta work that one out, because he's never done this before, and odds are that YC has never really dealt with someone quite as...quirky as him.
Instead of going for the whole "Winter King" thing, he ended up delving deeper into dealing with his gang, the Blackthorns. He's built his way up the ranks and now he's involved with YC, who can be anyone. Might be fun to start it off with a kidnapping or something, just to get that extra tension, but they could also be a part of the gang, either higher up or someone new. It's up to us!
Muse A (that'd be me) is a soldier of Nazi Germany. Muse B is a civilian, off-duty soldier, Ally soldier (which I think would be super fun if they were stranded together and had to work as a team even though they're enemies), or somethin' else. Basically, Muse A is injured and stranded on a freezing winter night and winds up seeking shelter with or from Muse B. I prefer this to be platonic but if you have your heart set on romance, we can talk.
It's present-day, and long after his ghosts are dead. Muse A wants to start a new life, a normal one, without the fighting and the killing and the supernatural monsters. His scars and tattoos will never fade but that doesn't mean he can't have what he always wanted: a home, a family, love. Muse B is that person.
Anything medieval fantasy. Just read her character on the other page there and hit me up. Might be fun to do something where YC is a monster or enemy of one sort or another and they end up getting stuck in the same mess and gotta dig their way out together, such as getting captured by a mutual foe, or maybe a greater war is coming (*cough cough* Winter King *cough cough*). We could double this over with the Winter King plot below, with two characters each or something along those lines. Pretty open to whatever!
Closed Plots (if you REALLY like one, let me know and we can talk)
The Seven Circles of Hell bent their knee in unity to him for the first time in history, and Heaven has crumbled under his iron rule. The Princes of Hell are dead and in their place has risen a single King: the Son of Sathanus, the Prince of Wrath, the Winter King, the feared tyrant and snow-hearted dictator, Cornyx Blackthorne (my main). His reputation precedes him as a man of unrivaled ruthlessness, something that's earned him both respect and fear in his new empire despite his questionable past.
Somehow, things are hardly that simple to him, however: he betrayed everything he had for this power, and now, he's beginning to question himself. Should he have really given in to that demonic instinct that lurked in the deepest parts of his frozen heart? Should he have pierced the heart of his former mentor in the name of bloodlust and power? Yet each time he's faced with another decision--another choice of whether or not to take another step down that dark path--he's chosen to do so.
He's on the brink of war, ready to storm Earth--or a more fantastical, Earth-like place we'd make together, it could be modern or medieval--and take over the final realm he hasn't yet conquered. His armies are rallying and his right-hand woman (this could be you, if you wanted) has opened the gates between Hell and Earth. The war begins as monsters begin to creep their way into this formerly mundane world and wreak havoc. Soon, his armies will follow, and the nations of this world will become as frozen as its ruler.
Perhaps your character is a rebel, who opposes his rule, or a close advisor; maybe they're someone on Earth prepared to fight, a freelance monster hunter or a soldier; there's a ton of options for it and I'm totally not picky. Maybe your character even ends up overthrowing him or freeing the people he's got under his thumb. I'm definitely not beyond killing a character if that's what ends up happening. I'd love their relationship to end up being complicated though, whether they begin as friends or foes--Cornyx has a lot of sides and they play out really differently with different characters, and I would just love to see what happens with whatever you come up with, if we decide to do this plot!
Mattathias Jermaine (my main) was a normal kid before Aeyis. Strange, maybe. Nerdy. But still human. Still mundane, despite his flights of fancy and the hours upon hours in fantastical worlds crafted by authors such as Tolkien or virtual realties like World of Warcraft or the Elder Scrolls. He drew, he wrote, he gamed, a form of escape from the rest of the world.
That was, before he got sucked into the D&D game he played with his buddies as his character--a draconian assassin with questionable morals who was, admittedly, an edgelord. But he'd made it to be a game, in his imagination. It became his reality for seven years before he got home and returned to his body.
Now, he's home, and human again. He's been back for eight months now. He's lost, a bit confused, still readjusting, and that's when he meets Muse B. Is it platonic? Romantic? Has Muse B had a magical experience, too, or are they just a normal human?
My preference for this one is MxM romance but I'm down for whatever.
Note that all characters can be converted a bit depending on what we decide! I'll give you a short backstory if you want one before we begin, but what the backstory is will vary depending on our setting and plot.
This is by soundofmind on DeviantArt, just to give her the credit for him there.
http://instagr.am/p/BtVTe3EgoSb/ http://instagr.am/p/BtVTwz1g6sh/ http://instagr.am/p/BtmfN0yHE61/ These are by Cymbelly; click the link to see the rest of their art.
Genre: Modern Fantasy. Anywhere between the 1850s-modern day.
Name: Engel Jäger; goes by "Kratzer"
Alias(es): Der Silberfuchs (the Silver Fox)
Age: Born in 1847. Obviously, his age will vary depending on what time our setting is, but typically I'll run him when he's around 170 (modern day).
Race: Vampiric Human
Alignment: Chaotic Good
Bio: He's a Frank Sinatra-loving, accordion-playing, roof-hopping assassin man who tries his best to be a good person but has found himself having to choose between the lesser of two evils one too many times to consider himself a good man. He's got a sense of honor, and of morals that he tries to adhere to (although he has broken them before, and he will always regret it). All he really wants is a normal life. A family, perhaps. A home. A career that's simple, and calm, and doesn't put his life on the line every waking moment.
He doesn't have those things, however, so he makes do with what he has. He's a freelance assassin/mercenary, and has been since a young age, ever since he got taken in by a French mercenary way back in the 19th century. He dropped out of it for a while but got pulled back in by a woman named Boomslang, a ghost who's been around since WWII and was behind some of the most destructive forces in his life. He'd much rather kill her than work for her but he knows better than to try or to defy her, so here we are.
Earlier in the timeline, when he's younger, he's a much rowdier fellow. He always has quite the roguish charm but a lot more common sense when he's older.
Genre: Modern Fantasy (or medieval fantasy)
Name: Mattathias Jermaine
Alias(es): None. If in a medieval setting, Nerezzar Cephalos or "The Shade"
Age: 22 (if in a medieval setting, between 16-21)
Race: Human (if in a medieval setting, draconian)
Physical Appearance: As a human, he's a tall dude with messy black hair and reddish brown eyes. He wears jeans and a t-shirt, usually. If before the events of Aeyis (see in bio below), he's got absolutely no sense of style and is lanky as heck. If after, then he's pretty filled out and muscular, although he's definitely not ripped--regardless of his strength, he's not a show muscles kind of guy. He has black glasses and is otherwise quite average.
Alignment: Neutral Good; Chaotic Good after Aeyis events
Bio: At first, he's a pretty normal kid. Nerdy as all get out, and quite intelligent, but shy. He's from Britain and wound up in the US when his parents divorced and his father moved to New York, and had a hard time adjusting. He fell into his games and art as an escape and started playing D&D with a small group of people he met at his new school. Things didn't go as planned--he and his party got sucked into the game as their characters (as it turned out, it wasn't as imaginary as they all thought), and when the rest of his party got back home thanks to the help of their gamemaster-turned-god, there was a snafu and Matt wasn't teleported back. He spent seven years trying to get back out before managing to return to Earth and his own body, but not unchanged.
At heart, he's an extraordinarily kind and compassionate figure. He believes that there's good in everyone no matter what. He's quite non-confrontational and has a serious self-confidence issue prior to the events of Aeyis. After being stuck as a draconian assassin for seven years, however, he realizes that he's more powerful than he thought he was, and though readjusting to normal life is a challenge, he finds himself changed for the better. Also with some PTSD and new scars, but hey...can't have everything, right?
Genre: Fantasy. Modern preferable, but may be converted to medieval.
Name: Cornyx Blackthorne; formerly Cain Tanner.
Age: I can pull him from a few places, but 17-36 is the usual range.
Race: Draconian Demon (can be switched to human in earlier-timeline rps, before he's 20)
Physical Appearance: 6' at 15, but by the time he's 22 he's 6' 5", and when he's in his 30's he's more like 6' 7" (dragons keep growing for a while). He's pale skinned, black eyed, and raven haired. When he's older, his eyes are more of an extremely dark blue and he's got a few gray streaks. He dresses very cleanly, modestly, and straight. When he's older, he's also exceedingly formal; when he's younger, usually it's just jeans, a button-up, and sneakers. Either way, he wears sleeves. He always has a silver pocket watch with him if he's 19+. If I run this character, I'll be more specific about his appearance depending on the plot and the other character that'll dictate where I take him in his timeline.
Alignment: Neutral Good; Neutral Evil (again depending on timeline).
Bio: Well...he's got a lot of character development over the years, so let's start at the top. I'll just drop a few key ages in here to give you an idea, but I'll be more specific if we rp together with wherever I pull him from his timeline. He's always got some social awkwardness, a quick and analytical mind (that he usually uses to make up for his lack of social skills), and generally has a lot of internal conflict around his past and his conscience. BE WARNED that he has one of the darker backstories and there's drugs and abuse that are quite prevalent in it. He's my primary antagonist, so, didn't get the best life.
Now! Overall bits: Cornyx is very, very intelligent, and generally uses this to override everything else. He's also very skilled at denial, something that gets progressively more intense over the years. He has a sense of ethics (not morals, mind you), and he does have somewhat of a conscience, it's just a weak one and he has a hard time with empathy. This isn't to say he can't or doesn't care: it just means that he's got to use his head to figure out where someone else is at, and can't always read them, so he can come across as callous. There are times, later in his timeline, where he genuinely just doesn't give a darn, which means it can flip back and forth at times. In his childhood, he was in and out of juvenile detention/prison, and when he was 19, he kicked it all and got clean. Then found out that a bunch of his issues--from the aggression to the spontaneous cold that came with his fear or anger--weren't because he was messed up or weird, but because he was a demon. His father is Sathanus, the last dragon aside from his son and the Prince of Wrath, and that's when things get interesting. This can be scrapped if we're doing an rp that's somewhere between the ages of 15ish-20ish (so, like, highschool and young adulthood).
15ish: On the edge of making irreparably bad decisions, he's floated in and out of foster homes, schools, and juvenile detention over the past few/several years. He smokes. He drinks. He isn't doing anything else, but he's probably thinking about it, and just trying to not totally screw himself over like he knows he's wont to do. Mostly, he just wants to make it to tomorrow. He's struggling with dealing with his past and his present and his lack of social skills/natural empathy/etc. just make it that much harder. Sure, he tries to be a decent enough kid, but he can't focus in school, tends to get into fights, is in constant conflict with his own depression and anxiety, and he definitely ditches class more than he should. Generally, he's either reading his comic books or actual novels/nonfiction, drawing, or playing on his handheld Playstation, because yes. He wants to be decent but he doesn't know how to cope with life and the only reason he hasn't already dug himself into an even deeper hole is because of his best friend, Evelyn, who he pretty much only talks to on the phone because both of them are moving around so much. He wants to be good. He just...doesn't really know how.
17/19ish: Welp. Those bad decisions happened, then prison, and that just led to more bad decisions. Eve died, too, so that's just dandy. Drugs got added to the list. He also figured out some coping mechanisms (finally!) but guess what? Th-they aren't good ones. At all. He's still an anxious wreck, on the precipice of deciding whether he's gonna fight with himself to be a decent human being or just delve deeper into the gang life and losing his fight with addiction. He's gotten better with people, though, and manipulating them, because it turns out that he can use that brain of his to pick up patterns and use them. Still, there's that voice in the back of his head pointing out to him that he has a choice, and he's making the wrong one. He doesn't really wanna land his butt behind bars again. So, maybe, he can manage a job, and school, and just...getting out of it.
Early 20's: Getting out of it is definitely where he's going. Oh, and did I mention he's a demon? Apparently those exist, and he's what's called a changeling, so apparently he just thought he was human this entire time, which probably didn't help matters. He's dropped the drinking, the drugs, and has seriously cut down on the smoking, and he does have a job. He's off parole and fixing up his life and moving forward without Evelyn. It's hard--of course it is--and he's still pretty much avoiding his childhood trauma, but hey, at least he's not dealing drugs, so...progress?
mid-20s/30s: Turns out that he was also the crown prince to Hell. And that he's got ice powers. And is a dragon. And that he really, really likes power, so he went ahead and did a little coup'd'etat, killed the last two Princes of Hell (including his father!) and the Archangel who was training him, and now Hell is his. He's the Winter King, with a heart of snow--he's here to stay. Addiction is a thing existing in the back of his head, but who needs that when you've got an empire and are working on expanding it? Hell froze over beneath his wrath and apathy is his middle name. That little voice in the back of his head is very quashed, but unfortunately, that lil' shell of his isn't as immortal as he'd like it to be. So he focuses on war instead of dealing with the PTSD that still is existent, alongside the self-hatred that he feeds on a daily basis by being a crappy not-human being who kills indiscriminately and wages war.
Image by soundofmind.
Genre: Modern Fantasy
Name: Auryon Blackthorne; formerly, Sarah Sterling
Alias(es): The Viper
Race: Human (possessed by a demon, thus the lifespan)
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral, moving towards Chaotic Good
Bio: She was born in the late 19th century in California. She was a strange kid--a bit disconnected, lacking in a natural moral compass, a tomboy, someone who didn't have the same emotions most people did--but her childhood was decent. She was always disconnected from her parents but grew very close to her little sister who, in her mind, was the only person who didn't see her as broken. Outside of her family, she was actively ostracized, and the Christianity that was the norm always made her feel like she never had a choice about whether she was good or evil. She didn't have the view of the world most people did, no innate sense of right or wrong, no naturally-occurring empathy for other people. It wasn't that she didn't care. Simply that she didn't know how to. Animals made sense to her where people didn't, and even the creatures she was confused by saw her for what she was--not what they thought her to be.
When she was twelve years old, there was a fire in her home in the middle of the night. She woke up to fire and was the only survivor. Alone, and mourning the death of her little sister, she wound up in the care of her aunt who she'd always had a terrible relationship with and who all but hated her. It wasn't long before she went to an orphanage instead. Unfortunately, she acted out--in pain, and isolated, with no idea how to handle it, she got exceedingly destructive. More sadistic and aggressive tendencies came out. She found herself trapped and confused with urges she couldn't control and didn't understand. It wasn't long before she got moved to an asylum due to her more psychotic tendencies. She suffered there, and in the midst of all this chaos and confusion and anguish, she was approached by a woman named Apophis. She told her that she could see she wasn't broken. That she could help her. That she could stop the pain.
And in that moment, Auryon signed off her soul.
It got worse from there. Now, over a century later, Apophis is slowly losing power and Auryon has begun to recognize her freewill once again. Good and evil are things that have meaning again--though what it is, she isn't sure. She strives to be better, yet has no idea how to be, and again and again slips back into what's familiar.
If you're uncomfortable with more mental themes, this isn't a character I should run. You have been forewarned.
Image by soundofmind
Genre: Medieval Fantasy
Name: Tasha Hunter
Age: Anywhere from 15 to 30, depends on the rp~
Alignment: Lawful Good
Bio: Hers is a bit flexible depending on how we wanna roll, but basically, it comes down to this: when she was a kid, she got fucked over by monsters. Werewolves, to be exact. She's a spitfire, a fighter, too aggressive for her own good, but more intelligent than she gets credit for. She lived on the streets, rough and tough and the like, and eventually got taken under the wing of a monster hunter who taught her the value of honor and morality. Now, she's somewhat of a monster-hunting/mercenary vigilante, adhering to the honor code taught to her by her now-deceased mentor.
In a few words, she could be described as honorable, stubborn (for better and for worse), and a soldier. She can be reckless (this is tempered more as she gets older and more mature), has grit, and will die for the people and for what is right. Still, she's done some morally ambiguous things: after all, werewolves aren't human, so her honor code doesn't extend to them. So, certainly, she tries to be good, but that's a rather subjective goal.
Fall had turned the suburban trees a hundred shades of gold, ranging from deep crimson to pale yellows washed silver in the moonlight. The partially-bared branches were spotted with the dark shapes of crows roosting in their heights, the silhouettes of which hardly moved as Cornyx strode beneath them, ragged grey backpack already slung over one shoulder. A cigarette was lit in his fingertips, a spot of fiery light in the night that illuminated his sharp features as he walked, smoke trailing off behind him. The first nips of autumn breeze kissed his hands. No one had been awake when he'd left. He was always quiet in his departure. For once, it wasn't for something illegal: he had an early morning shift at the fast food joint a couple blocks away from his new school. It was his second week at work but it'd be his first at school.
I have been one acquainted with the night.
I have walked out in rain—and back in rain.
I have outwalked the furthest city light.
He wasn't really supposed to be smoking. If his parole officer found out, they'd probably be discussing it, though he doubted he'd end up behind bars for it. The rules were quite simple: no drugs, no alcohol, stay in school, no leaving the county, check in with his P.O. on the regular, actually attend therapy and say enough for the therapist to think they were doing something, and don't get involved in illegal bullshit. Break the rules, and he was back in prison for the rest of his sentence--or more, if he dug his hole deeper.
He'd narrowly avoided rehab. He guessed that he'd probably slid under the radar because he came across as minimally functional and funding was bull, so they wouldn't want to deal with that unless they couldn't weasel out of it. Which they could. So he was here. Working at a fast food place and going to high school out of some foster home that was mediocre at best but could've been far worse. He dropped the butt of his smoke on the ground, grinding it beneath his toe, then closed his hand around the glass door and stepped into the low-lit space that smelled like some inexplicable cleaning agent and a terrible amalgamation of fake-food-grease.
The bell dinged as he entered and slid behind the counter. One of his coworkers--a young woman who seemed perpetually tired, as though she was Sisyphus and every time she reached the top of her mountain, her burden fell to the bottom once more--nodded to him, and no one else acknowledged his presence. He barely made eye contact to return the favor to her, then disappeared down the thin, white-walled hallway to go change in the bathroom and abandon his bag in the back. He donned the green polo, the green hat, the green apron, the green-bordered nametag that read only Hi! My name is...Cornyx, which people always looked twice at, if they bothered to look at all. Whatever. It was better than his given name. At least this one felt like...his.
I have looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.
The next four hours were the same as they always were. Boring and long, with his mind more on the verse he'd read that morning rather than on the french fries that he was making. He usually read a few before he'd left but that morning, it'd only been the one from a book of Robert Frost that he'd borrowed from the library. There was something about it that he found...relatable. He wasn't sure what, and it was still this set of stanzas on his mind when his feet pounded against the sidewalk on his way to class. The crows had awoken, finally, and a few pecked at debris on the road as he strode past, barely giving him a second glance. Their harsh, candid cries called out across the suburban streets to one another, stark black shadows in the ever-deadening trees.
I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
When far away an interrupted cry
Came over houses from another street,
But not to call me back or say good-bye;
And further still at an unearthly height,
One luminary clock against the sky...
The walk was a short one: two blocks, from the end of his shift at seven to get to class by seven-fifteen, when it all started. Another cigarette was in his hand. Maybe lung cancer would take him young and everything would sort itself out. He wished, for neither the first nor last time, that he could just get this all over with and work instead. That thought only exemplified when he stepped through the double-doors to the main hall and the wall of sound struck him: the chatter of voices, the dull sounds of music thrumming in headphones and earbuds, the scuffle of feet against tile, the clicking of lockers, the buzz of the lights that bore into his eyes and made him drop his gaze to the floor. He skirted the wall, making his way to his own ugly green-blue locker and popping it open to grab his pocketwatch. He never took it back to the home with him. Didn't want anything to happen to it. Nothing was safe where other people had easy access to it, and although he worried for it here, he was less worried than if the only thing between idiots who might steal it and the watch itself was him when he was asleep.
He shoved it into his pants pocket, chain disappearing with it. He didn't want people to know he had it and he had a feeling that if a teacher saw him with any sort of chain, they might get on his ass about it.
The bell went off and he ducked into the classroom. English was first period, according to the schedule he'd been given, and he took a seat in the back corner behind two rows of students. His pencil hit his desk, followed by his notebook, and he silently prayed that he wouldn't be called out because he was new. Please, ignore him. Please, please, please. He didn't want to be noticed or known and he didn't want questions asked.
The clock read seven-fifteen, the ticks of his own watch thudding in his ears.
Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.
I have been one acquainted with the night.
He didn't hear most of what the teacher said. Something about a project and an author and a partner over the endless din of the classroom. His mind was still with the poetry, pencil scratching aimlessly over the lined pages. It was that one line, at the beginning and at the end. The rain that he could almost hear pattering against the earth, the darkness of the place of which Frost spoke. The shame in the avoidance of the watchman's gaze and the melancholy inherent in it. How, for a moment, it was almost as though he hoped that someone cared enough to bring him back, but at the end, there was nothing more than a moon and timelessness and the fact that there was nothing in the nocturnal shadows except for himself and the stars.
The teacher, for her part, spoke well and clearly about the assignment that she wrote on the board in spite of his inattentiveness. Rather than immediately leaping into a paper, she'd break the class into partnered groups. They'd choose a writer, then make a short presentation about their work--either a specific piece and an analysis of it--and why they chose that author and that particular piece. It didn't need to be brilliant, but it needed to be polished and at least a little bit personal, for something about 'fun' and 'bonding' that was useless, but presented with noble intent. And, she said, the author could be anyone: a poet, a novelist, a playwright. So long as they had published works, it counted. They were to work on it in class and outside of it at least once, and the next Monday would be when it was due.
The lines on his paper took form. It wasn't the best artwork, but he'd had a lot of time doing nothing in prison, and so drawing ended up taking time. A lamppost on the edge of a town, its pale light silhouetting a man in a long coat, the moon hanging high above. It was almost comic-like in style but well-done in spite of its nature.
She read off names, and he didn't hear them. What did catch his attention was when, suddenly, most of the class was moving and he had no idea where he was going or why.
Meaty fingers gripped his shoulders and Kratzer dug his heels into the ground as Bear slammed into him. It did little more than slow the larger man's forward motion and before the fight had even begun, the vampire was slammed against the wire. It was a typical rookie mistake - underestimating the mass of an enemy and paying for it before one even had a chance to fight. Kratzer had done it when he was younger, and to these men, it'd just look like he was in over his head; all he had to do was keep them going.
The chains clanged deafeningly as his bare skin was rammed into it full-force, metal digging into his back. He felt blood drip down it. For some, the pain would've put them off their game, but to Kratzer, it did nothing more than awaken the demon within. The fighter, the survivor, the vampire, the predator and the prey that fought to survive every day of his life.
Bear's fist made contact with his face and the crowd's volume increased as pain shot through his face, again and again. He'd be fine in a few days' time - sooner, if he fed - and as far as the German was concerned, playing the crowd was as important as the battle itself.
Kratzer dropped him and he collapsed to the ground, coughing up blood and spitting it out onto the ground, a man truly defeated. The spectators were going wild at the sight of such bloodshed, overlooking the ever-growing smile that graced his lips even as he let himself be beaten. Bear grabbed him by the back of his neck and threw him across the cage. He hit the other wall and rolled to the ground.
His opponent advanced slowly, gaining confidence. The savage turn of his lips told Kratzer something very simple yet vital: Bear was fully assured he had already won the battle. Bear grabbed him by the neck and started to haul him up to pin him so he could continue his fun - and Kratzer's leg shot out, his knee making contact with the soft spot in the back of Bear's own leg. His opponent's knee buckled and his grip loosened, giving Kratzer all the time he needed to roll out of the larger man's grasp and come up behind him, standing on his toes and licking the blood that dripped down his face.
To Bear, this was a combat, a savage fight, but to Kratzer, it was a dance. A barbaric dance, and perhaps a dangerous one, but a dance nonetheless - and dancing required subtlety, lightness, fluidity, none of which Bear possessed. In moments the battle went from Bear's inevitable victory to Kratzer's toying with him. He leapt and ducked and pivoted away from each swing and punch and kick Bear sent his way and retaliated with the quick jabs and strikes of someone who knew combat and anatomy well. The two circled in the arena and, blow by blow, Bear began to slow.
It was then that Kratzer stopped playing with his prey and closed in for the kill.
A punch came at him, and he grabbed his adversary's wrist, stopping the blow mid-swing and making brief eye contact with Bear. Kratzer gave him the deadliest of smiles before promptly flipping the man over his shoulder and slamming him onto the ground behind him. Bear went head over heels and hit the ground hard. He started to rise, only to find himself being kicked down by a swift blow between the shoulders. Then again, and again, and again, and again, each time beginning to rise only to be felled by some creative invention or simple technique utilized by the smaller German.
And in time, Bear didn't get back up.
The crowd went wild. Their voices and yells of support, shock, and frustration alike became a dim monotone in the back of his mind. The sharp scent of blood, the beating of his heart, the shallow breathing, the tang of fear - these were what the vampire saw. Nothing more, nothing less, as his entire world became this hunt, this battle, this victory.
And then it was over as quickly as it began. He turned to the crowd and raised his fists. By now, he was streaked with blood over the scars that decorated his back, arms, and chest. Crimson rivulets dropped to the ground at his feet from his injuries and the spatter from beating down his enemy. Most notable of all, though, was the look in his eyes and his countenance. The haunted, broken man was gone, replaced by a being formed in the fires of adversity. A survivor. A fighter. A predator who would stop at nothing, who thrived on the adrenaline and the battle and the final kill. Who fed off of the yells of the crowds and the wild rush that came with such danger.
The gaze of a monster, primitive and true, sanguinary in its purity.