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    Invnarcel
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the Mini-Crusher-Tournie - 2. First Match

Before reaching the plastic chairs there was a loud beep from the screen, echoing about in the cubic white room. A series of repetitive clicks sounded out and the teens turned to see the screen split in two, each side was rapidly flicking through numbers and photos. Suddenly the left half of the screen glowed and the photos flicked by more slowly. It was like a lottery machine, in the corner the number stopped on '02' and showed a girl with light-brown hair and bright blue eyes. It was Marine Finn.

"Awesome! I get to go first!" She lifted both arms overhead again before fist-pumping.

"At least she's confident…" Jane muttered.

"I was wondering what we were taking those photos for…" Leaf stated while staring at the screen.

"Yes! That can of coke is mine!" Marine sang while jumping about.

"You don't even know who you're up against yet!" Jane scolded.

At that moment the second half of the screen flashed and slowed down. '05', it showed a boy with white spiky hair and black eyes.

"He doesn't look that tough." Marine stated.

"He heard you, dumbass." Leaf spoke up and they turned to see him standing by his chair, glaring.

"Good luck." Jane took her seat. "It's probably best to be called first and get it out of the way."

"I don't know what you mean! This is gonna be great!" Marine hopped away and headed onto the grassy area. Her white-haired opponent followed with a scowl.

From beside the area the three Elementals trudged over to meet the two contenders.

"Alright…" Chris began as he stepped over. "First things first: no death! I understand in some situations it may be unavoidable, but do refrain from killing each other if you can help it. We have medic drones ready to carry away the losers for emergency medical treatment. Deaths just pointlessly waste Crushers we put effort into creating."

"You both must stand ten feet away from each other and begin at the sound of the siren. That is all." Blake walked away from the two before whispering snidely. "A Zorgon vs Godrid match-up already, I wonder who will win…"

"You bastard…" Chris muttered back.

"Hey Chris…" Zac spoke up from beside him. "If Zane's power is anything like Quixon's was at his age then he'll be tough to beat. But Marine is from the Finn clan…"

"Yes, Zac. If it'd been the Sprout clan member I'd be saying Zane's victory is in the bag, but a Finn clan member… we'll just have to see how it goes."

The three elementals stepped out of the fighting area. The witnesses leaned forward in their plastic seats. Blake spread his arms.

"Ready! Settie!" A brief pause and then the siren began.

Marine sprinted toward her opponent and he tensed, legs apart. She flung her left arm back and it liquified, then whipped forward at the stationary boy. Mercury hardened into a steel shoulder-plate, the impact of the water jostled him and droplets sprinkled down. Zane sprouted a gleaming metal blade from his right arm and pounced, stabbing Marine in her side. Water ran down the knife and the Finn girl leapt back again, both arms solid while the few litres that made up her water-whip splashed to the ground. Her side rippled back into skin, leaving a tear in her shirt but no wound.

The two crushers studied each other from a distance. Their two elementals narrowed their eyes at each other in suspicion.

"Fast… but you can't turn your body into liquid metal, can you? You can only generate portions through your skin." Marine surmised.

"You lost your weapon in your haste to make your belly immune to stabbing. You can only turn a part of your body into water at a time, you can't change entirely right?"

From the sidelines Jane was biting her lip and clenching the plastic of her chair. Her friend Marine could step up in a fight, but if she made one thoughtless action now she could die…

Marine raced toward her enemy again, sprang lithely into the air and aimed a spin-kick that Zane blocked with a metal-plated arm. The silver concoction spiked outward but Marine's leg had turned into water as soon as the hit connected, and Zane was covered. Disoriented, he jumped back, hair and front dripping. Marine landed on one knee, her leg quickly reformed in the puddle and she shot forward. Throwing punches and kicks while Zane ducked and built more armour for her to splash against.

"That girl has nerves of steel!" Zac spoke up appreciatively from the sidelines.

"If she can't fully transform into water she's at a disadvantage." Chris murmured, curious despite himself "She can make herself lighter by partially turning into water. And she's pressing him in the hopes of breaking through. Gutsy."

With a roar of frustration Zane shot forward with a silver-spiked punch. The metal gauntlet passed through a fountain of water that flushed through his torso. Marine's right shoulder and chest was formless water, but she managed to step closer when he couldn't see and aim a strike at his exposed neck. He went down and she shot a knee at his chest. A metallic clank came from under his shirt and Marine jumped back with a cry of pain, her arm still reforming as she hobbled backward.

Zane assessed her from his crouch, she stood panting with her hair slicked and wet. The metal blade on his right arm bubbled and detached, morphing into a spiked mace that he gripped. Marine knew a weapon like that was designed to harm as much of her body as possible, seeing as stabbing was ineffective. This time he charged, his left arm going behind his back, and she was still too injured to move away. Marine stepped to avoid the mace, looking for the second weapon that'd be behind his back, but it was a trick to keep her eyes off the mace, and it was even bigger now as he took his second swing.

Marine's upper body burst open in a torrent of water. She fell down, regenerating pathetically slow as he raised the huge weapon for her head. She kicked her legs up and they blasted into his face, twin streams of water that failed to disorient him, but they obstructed his vision long enough for her to slide between his legs, seeing as she was merely a torso with arms and a head at that point. In a puddle of herself she spun quickly, liquidly. Shot a kick to the side of his exposed knee, breaking the bone. Dislocated, like hers.

Marine was shot up as her legs fully formed, wrapping an arm around his neck and pile-driving him backwards. His own weapon knocked him out cold. Pools of liquid metal oozed around his unconscious body, objects losing their solidity. Both teens were soaking wet. Marine was panting, sitting beside his head.

"Congratulations." Blake stepped forward with a slow round of applause, clearly relieved his crusher had beaten the odds. "Marine Finn is the winner."

Chris motioned for the medical droid to enter the arena and quickly transport Zane away on a stretcher for treatment. He was grimacing, but couldn't deny his enjoyment from watching that fight. The screen zoomed up on Marine's photo and stated that she'd be advancing to the next round.

Jane fell back into her chair with relief. Then she wanted to run to her friend's side to make sure she was okay, but it didn't seem like she'd be allowed. The white-robed Blake was already by her side and helping her up. They all watched as he magnanimously presented her with a can of coke.

Copyright © 2020 Invnarcel; All Rights Reserved.
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