The Competitors


As thousands of people poured into the rectangular shaped stadium for what was being called, "the event of the century" , the participants readied themselves for the hardships they would surely suffer from the games. After a long grueling season of intense bodily torture this would by the final chapter of confrontations. Out of the 275 original members of the DFS leagues infant year, only 20 remained. These men and women were not only hardened on the outside, but on the inside as well for they had long since learned the weaknesses that emotions bring. Everyone one present in the cubical that was called a dressing room knew that as soon as the capacity crowd of 300,000 had settled, they would no longer be comrades brought together by the common bond that friendship makes but enemies of the battle field each one jockeying for the upper hand.
As the referee announced there was half an hour left before game time, a few players huddled together to say a quick prayer while others gathered around the head coach for a final word of advice. One of the competitors listening to this advice was Matt Williams or "The Destroyer", as he was known by the crowd. He was a powerfully built young man who was in the possession of deep opaline eyes, nightmarish black hair, and a ruddy complexion. Feared by all for his ruthless behavior, Matt had joined the DFS league after being courtmarshaled by the army for striking the commanding officer of his platoon. Why he was even near the coach was a mystery to him because most of the coaches words fell on unhearing ears. Matt guessed he was just nervous. Who wouldn’t be. Looking up, Matt saw that the coach had left and it was time to enter the field. Strapping on his helmet and the rest of his gear, he took a deep breath, focused his thoughts, and ran out onto the field joining the rest of the players.
The roar of the crowd sounded as if a tsunami was breaking on the beach and the ground felt as if it were pulsating with a life of its own. He never remembered these feelings before but he simply shrugged off the thought as he faintly heard the sound of the referee’s whistle. Suddenly, the sound of the crowd was replaced by e reverberating silence that was deafening in Matt’s ears.
Going into a defensive crouch, Matt circled the nearest foe to him. Jumping with raised spear, he warded off the first blow positioning his spear into a counter-attack position. Throwing it with deadly precision Matt was rewarded by the sickening thud of a lifeless body hitting the ground. As he hurried to retrieve his spear, Matt remembered a phrase the coach had said just before he left. "This will be a fight to the finish so be prepared!". Since this was the year 2071, that was no lie because last year, hyperbole’s went out of style and gladiators came back in.

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