To try and make up for taking so long to update, here's another chapter, detailing the first fight of the tournament.
Nothing else to add, so let's answer some reviews:
1) Phillip Craig: Nah, he just had an anime training arc offscreen.
2) Mr. Haziq: Nope. ;)
3) Zombie D-Man: Yeah, that's definitely the inspiration for this little arc. Except this time, everybody will know what happened
* You could still make one if you want, I won't stop you.
4) Nobody245: We'll see soon enough.
And now, to the chapter!
"I have the first fight…" Lincoln bemoaned as he sat on the sidelines, Ronnie Anne and Molly by his side. "I can barely handle my own epithet still, and I have the first fight…"
"Hey, it could be worse," Ronnie Anne shrugged. "You could be fighting someone with a powerful epithet. Instead, the girl you're fighting, I heard, has one that's on the weaker side."
"And what is it?" Molly asked.
"Come on now, Ronnie Anne, just because her epithet is weak doesn't mean you should say something so mean."
"No, I mean, her epithet is literally pathetic," Ronnie Anne corrected. "It's the word "Pathetic."
"Oh…" Molly frowned. "That's sad."
"No, it's Pathetic."
Molly narrowed her eyes. "You know what I mean!"
Ronnie Anne flashed a cocky smile. "Yes I do."
"And now, we'll begin the first fight of the Epithetlympics!"
Lincoln winced and stood up, the girls patting his back as Ronnie Anne said:
"Good luck, Lincoln."
"We'll be cheering you on!" Molly added.
Lincoln looked at the girls, took a deep breath, and walked out of the waiting room, ready to fight his opponent.
"Wait, the fight's already starting?!"
"That seems to be the case, Lady Mera."
"But that wasn't even five minutes after the tournament roster was revealed!" Mera folded her arms and shook her head. "What's the rush?!"
"Well, whatever the case," Indus smiled. "Let's do our absolute best to cheer for Lincoln in his battle!"
Mera sighed. "Sure, let's do that."
The combatants got on the arena as the audience waited expectantly, and once they were at opposite sides of it, the announcer exclaimed:
"On this corner! His Epithet might make him seem weak, but don't underestimate him! He's got the perfect mind to make good use of it! Lincoln Salamin-Tarbella! Epithet: Weak!"
The audience cheered, with Indus quickly joining them while Mera blushed.
"W-Wait a minute, when did he get both our surnames?!"
"Don't you remember, Lady Mera? I asked you about whose surname Lincoln would get-"
"I THOUGHT YOU JUST WANTED TO MAKE SMALL TALK!"
"And on this corner! Don't let her melancholic stare and fitting Epithet fool you, she's a force to be reckoned with when she puts the effort! Penelope DiMartino! Epithet: Pathetic."
"A-Actually, I prefer to be called P-Persephone," the girl remarked quietly.
"And now, let's begin the countdown for the first fight!"
Persephone frowned and lowered her head. "Ignored, like always."
Lincoln stared at the girl sympathetically as the audience and announcer began counting down from five, before he gained a serious expression once she turned to face him.
As soon as the fight started, Lincoln bolted towards his opponent, who opened her parasol and aimed it forward.
Lincoln smiled and sped up, eventually touching the parasol and making it fragile… but before it could crack into fragments, it dissipated, leaving behind the structure of the parasol.
"What the?!" Lincoln exclaimed as he took a step back.
Persephone threw the parasol up, and Lincoln raised his head, giving Persephone time to rush at him.
"Lincoln, look out!" Mera exclaimed.
The boy quickly reacted and slid to the side, causing Persephone to trip and roll twice before planting her head against the ground.
"Whoa, are you okay?" Lincoln asked as she stood up. "That looked like it hurt."
"Y-Yeah, I'm fine…" Persephone said as she slowly stood up. "I've… I've had worse."
Then, Lincoln felt a strange surge of sympathy for the girl. It wasn't even a case of him feeling sorry on his own, though he definitely did to an extent.
He felt like he was being compelled to feel sympathetic for her, especially as she stood up and faced him.
"Could you… do something for me?"
"Sure," he said without thinking. Now it was clear something was up.
Persephone moved forward, and whispered to his ear:
"Walk out of the arena, please."
Lincoln's eyes widened as his body began moving on his own, taking a few steps back as Persephone touched his shoulder…
And then a hotdog hit his head.
"Stay focused, Lame-O!"
The duo turned around, and saw Ronnie Anne standing at the edge of her seat, shouting:
"This is a fight! So less talking and more punching!"
Lincoln, realizing what she meant, quickly turned around and tried to punch Persephone. However, she slid back, then cartwheeled to one edge of the arena.
"Your Epithet…" Persephone blurted while looking at her hand. "It's Fragile, isn't it?"
Lincoln's eyes widened. "How did you guess?"
Persephone hummed as she crouched down, and touched the floor.
The arena began to crack around Persephone, creating a medium crater beneath her, with several rubble surrounding her.
Then, she raised her hands, levitating the rubble before launching it forward, forcing Lincoln to roll around to dodge it
She's using my own Epithet?! But wait, if she can use it to break a small part of the arena…
Lincoln promptly put his hands on the ground, and unlike Persephone, his attempt at weakening the arena not only cracked the floor around, but the entire arena, stunning everyone.
Persephone tried to fight back, raising the rubble around her, but unfortunately, the floor beneath her gave in and shattered, causing her to fall off the arena… as well the entire top half of it.
The audience's silence was deafening, though not as deafening as the announcer shouting:
"And the winner is Lincoln Salamin-Tarbella!"
The audience's turn to be loud came, and they roared in excitement, forcing Mera to cover her ears.
"Huh, I didn't think Lincoln could do something like that," Indus said, scratching his chin. "Did you know about it, Lady Mera?"
"No, I didn't," Mera sighed as she lowered her eyelids. "This is a surprise to me too."
Then, as she saw Lincoln run to the rubble and search for his opponent, Mera took a deep breath and flashed a serene smile.
A smile that quickly got Indus' attention. "You're smiling, Lady Mera!"
"Is that so weird?" Mera flinched. "I-I mean, Lincoln won! Of course that would make me smile!"
Indus just smiled and laughed, causing Mera to blush as he wrapped her in a hug.
And as for Lincoln, he finally found Persephone and pulled her out, dusting her as she regained consciousness.
"Oh, thank goodness, are you okay?!"
"Yeah, like I said before, I've dealt with worse," Persephone giggled. "You really caught me off-guard with that last tactic, hehe."
"You caught me off-guard too," Lincoln confessed. "I didn't even know you could copy Epithets."
"You say copy, I say poorly imitate."
"If you say so."
The duo chuckled as Persephone and Lincoln wrapped their arms around each other, and walked away, concluding the first fight of the Epithetlympics.