I can't believe how long it's been since I updated this story, I'm so sorry, guys.
I legit wanted to continue this story ages ago, but Living Edge and a little AO3 story of mine known as Infinity Train: Boiling Point took up all my time and interest and, yeah, that sounds bad saying it out loud, but I totally want to continue this story!
So, while not much happens in this chapter, at least we get an update on this verse, so… that's good?
Let's answer some reviews:
1) Mr. Haziq: You'll see soon.
2) Nobody245: Yeah, the Louds are kinda crazy...
3) Zombie D-Man: Thanks. I hope the long wait hasn't killed your interest. XD
And now, to the chapter.
Today was the day. The students of Epithet Academy walked into a giant stadium in droves, looking around the darkened hallways as they approached a light, just in time for an announcement:
"Hello everyone! Welcome to the Epithetlympics!"
The audience roared in excitement as the children entered the grassfield of the stadium, and as they walked to the middle, they looked around and were overwhelmed by not just how big the stadium actually was, but the swarm of spectators that had come to see them participate.
"Yeah, this isn't worrying at all," Ronnie Anne sighed. "We're gonna have to fight each other while thousands of people stare at us. Just a normal Tuesday."
Paige raised an eyebrow. "But today's a Friday."
Ronnie Anne lowered her eyelids. "I know what I said."
"I think that's the least of our problems," Chandler said. "If we make a mistake or have a humiliating loss, all of Royal Woods' gonna see it!"
Molly turned to the redhead. "What do you mean by that?"
"Didn't you know?" Ronnie Anne asked. "The Epithetlympics are a televised event."
"A televised event?! I thought this was a normal high school event!"
"It is, it just so happens to be televised, too."
"What kind of "normal" high school event is televised?!"
"The Epithetlympics, obviously."
Molly clutched her chest as she looked back to the audience, now knowing that not only would they be looking at her, but so would all of Royal Woods. And if there was anybody there who knew about her true nature…
The brunette winced and turned around, seeing Lincoln looking at her with a reassuring smile.
"It's gonna be alright, I promise."
Then, he extended his hand towards her, and Molly grabbed it, nodding with a smile as Ronnie Anne rolled her eyes at the sight.
"And here we are, Lady Mera!" Indus cheered as he and Mera sat on their seats. "The best seats in the stadium! Now we'll have the best view of Lincoln and his classmates!"
"Yeah, hooray," Mera rolled her eyes. "I can't wait to see how my baby gets injured in so many different ways with me being unable to do anything about it."
Indus blinked twice. "Did you just call Lincoln your baby?"
"Lincoln! I meant Lincoln!" Mera exclaimed, blushing madly. "But, my point still stands: Lincoln's bound to get hurt and… I don't wanna see that."
"Well, look at the positives, Lady Mera," Indus said, patting Mera's back. "If Lincoln does do something cool, then we'll have the seats to see it!"
Mera lowered her eyelids. "That's just the opposite of what I said!"
Indus wrapped his arm around Mera's shoulder. "Cheer up, Lady Mera! Lincoln will do fine!"
Mera frowned and looked elsewhere. "I sure hope so."
Back with the students, they witnessed a stage rise from the middle of the area, with Mrs. Johnson and the principal standing on it. Once the state finished rising, the man walked to the podium.
"Greetings, citizens of Royal Woods! And welcome to the newest edition of the Epithetlympics!"
The audience cheered, Lincoln covering his ears in response while Molly did the same, catching a glimpse of the boy's reaction in return.
"This event will yet again show us the progress and power that our students hold, and the bright future that Royal Woods has under their hands. So I ask you to be ready for another showcase of the true potential of the Inscribed!"
The audience cheered again, but Molly quickly reacted, placing a mute barrier around herself and Lincoln, who shot a grateful look at her.
Too bad the other students only had frustrated looks to give instead.
This was followed by a tournament board emerging next to Mrs. Johnson, who looked at it as the principal exclaimed:
"And now, without further ado, we'll begin the calculations for the first round of fights!"
The board turned on, and transformed into a tournament set of lines, with the names of the students flashing as they were slowly selected.
Molly and Lincoln held hands, hoping they weren't pitted against each other, which was copied by Paige and Ronnie Anne, though the later was confused by it before playing along.
And eventually, it stopped causing everyone to gasp.
"No way…" Mera grimaced.
"This must be a joke," Ronnie Anne muttered.
Molly put a hand on her mouth, though she had relatively little to worry about, her fight being the very last one.
Lincoln, however… how do we put this...
He was one of the first fights. The very first fight, in fact.
"You've gotta be kidding me…"