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The Refugee Charity Tournament, Part 1

Thrown by the Eurusi Consulate, partnered with Prince Kenjay Redrain and Prince Patrizio Pravus, and hosted at the illustrious Golden Hart, this event is projected to be a grand affair. No less than sixteen fighters have offered to fight for charity, an exhibition tournament that has been opened to everyone from all walks of life. They will compete for rare trade goods, their fighting-fee going to benefit those displaced by the recent tragedies. Spectators are invited to donate upon arrival but it's not expected. Please! Join the event and observe some of the city's finest face off!

Tonight, we will have the first half of the contestants compete, the following pairs fighting first:

Prince Kenjay Redrain vs Prince Patrizio Pravus
Dame Bree Hartall vs Lord Ian Kennex
Archlector Porter Kennex vs Mistress Raja Culler
Count Drake Wyvernheart vs Mistress Auda Florin

The winner of each fight will fight the winner of the next, and so on, until we have the a final champion for the final fight, in contest with the final champion of the second half of the tournament!

OOC: Each fight is five @checks at hard. A botch is -5 points, fail is -1 points, marginal fail is 0, marginal success is 1 points, success is 2 points, spec crit is 10 points. Posing happens after the rolls are made and the winner is decided. There will probably be a scoring spreadsheet everyone can help me keep track with because my brain is porridge. <3

Date

Jan. 16, 2022, 5 p.m.

Hosted By

Bahiya Kenjay Patrizio

Participants

Auda Bree Drake Porter Raja Thea Alis Valencia Aella Tesha Watcher Ian Liara Vayne Mailys

Organizations

Location

Arx - Ward of the Compact - The Golden Hart Social & Gaming House - The Arena

Largesse Level

Legendary

Comments and Log


This isn't the first time Bree has fought in this Arena, and probably not the last, so she's easily pulling Porter where they need to be as they enter with the other guests and charity fighters alike. She wears a big smile, her wide eyes darting this way and that to spy faces both familiar and un-, and she lifts a hand to wave when it is the former. To Porter she turns, quickly telling him, "I hope we get to fight. Let's try to make it through our respective rounds, hmm?" She squeezes his arm, all exuberance and energy that is ready to explode in battle.

Havard, a battle-scarred gentle giant, Runa the clever, seafaring raven, Bryndis, another redheaded northern Prodigal arrive, following Aella.

"I'm going to try!" Porter tells Bree gamely as they go moving through the other guests. He's already wearing his gear and his weapon strapped to his back, a heavy staff that he'll use as opposed to some of his other weapons. "Where do we go to wait?" he asks, peering around the arena for where the fighters are meant to stand.

Alis is easily able to slip through the crowds and then find her way to a table to sit, because she's wily that way. Guards? What guards - so sorry there's not enough room for them at the table, though the one in charge of them all takes a hoveringly protective seat right beside her. A wave here, a nod there, and then her gaze scans the arena for the combatants so she can fangirl. "Wooooo! Go Uncle Kenjaaaaaaaaay!" Start the embarrassing behavior early, that's surely what one of her siblings always said.

Ian gets a long, slender goldsteel blade from Oiled leather bag.

"Maybe over there," Bree points to a place that has no clear indication that it would house fighters waiting to fight, but it looks as good as anywhere else! She releases his arm, rolling her shoulders back in her armor, loosening up the limbs that are about to be tested for charity.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Ian before departing.

Patrizio lingers, not too far from the ring itself, though there's a semi-nervous energy about the prince of Pravus. His hands are, remarkably, free of any potent potables for a change and unlike his cousin, he's actually on time, so... there's nothing to do for the moment, as he lurks, but to wait, to wait and bide his time upon the sands.

The Hart's staff waste no time to see that one and all are welcome and well supplied with good drink and the best of seats while the area's crew sees that everything is in order to receive those stepping upon the sands for charity this evening. Valencia arrives with a gentle smile, dark eyes quietly watching over the things to to make sure all is well so that those participating are able to focus on their fun.

2 Culler Brutes, 1 Culler Boatswain arrive, following Raja.

Alis has left the ringside table.

Sir Rhys, a Valardin Knight, Laurene, a military adjutant, 10 Valardin Knights leave, following Alis.

Sir Rhys, a Valardin Knight, Laurene, a military adjutant, 10 Valardin Knights arrive, following Alis.

Alis has joined the ringside table.

Aella arrives a little later then she had intended. She gives a passing glance to those that are gathered and friendly waves to those she knows. She finds a seat after passing by a table with refreshments and grabs one for herself. Runa, her raven, is perched along her shoulder while Aella occasionally gives it chin scritches in between sipping at her glass. Wine, or perhaps whiskey, no matter, she is relaxing and going to enjoy watching the fights. Her assistant Bryndis seems to be carrying a small wooden chest of sorts. No bigger then two hands worth, it isn't heavy but they do seem to be rather cautious with it's contents.

Lady Tesha Telmar has decided that attending events again might be in order given the two near death experiences over the last few months. So she arrives dressed in crimson and looking a little pale, but nothing out of the ordinary for the redhead. She finds herself a seat that will give her a good view of the fights and settles in to watch things quietly.

12 Grayson House Guards arrives, following Liara.

Watcher slips into the arena with a sort of ease and quiet that seems far more subconscious than intentional. The red haired woman is armed, a cloth wrapped sword slung across her shoulders, but clearly not one of the participants; she gives the grounds themselves only a passing glance, and the gathered a far longer one that doesn't manage to seem entirely casual.

The Golden Hart Arena has been decorated with an Eurusi flavor, blaziers burning, sheer fabrics draped artfully, the theme a desert in the evening, the sun just having set, a plum blush upon deep blue to mimic an expansive sky cooling after a hot day. Sand-coloredAt the Champions' table, Bahiya'al'Mathali moves to stand, the blind woman's eyes bound with a single narrow ribbon, her lids held closed. She raises her arms and lifts her voice to call out:

"To the generous people of all places and all roads: I bid you welcome to the Refugee Charity Tournament!"

One arm drops as she faces the room, the other held out to the side in the direction of the evening's combatants.

"Every fighter here has paid their fee, and others still have donated their coin to our goal. I thank you, all of you, for your generosity of money and spirit. What you compete for is the pride of your family, your people, and very rare trade goods." Bahiya gestures behind her to a table guarded, upon whose surface is stacked Pyran fireweave, ivory, and coveted steelsilk. "Only three will touch these delights, honored and favored in skill and luck."

"The first fight of this evening is between Dame Bree Hartall and Lord Ian Kennex... but before that, I invite those that wish to do so to grant the fighters of their choice a favor."

She turns unerringly to where Prince Kenjay Redrain stands at her side, reaching for him until her fingers brush his arm, finding his hand and drawing him to her. Quiet words are spoken and the Ambassador draws his head down, planting a lingering kiss at his brow.



[OOC: HI GUYS. Okay here is the link to the score sheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/u/2/d/1OPgBHcJjEeODS3T8IHPTeEosQ-1300tFSsy3NGrSbNI/edit?usp=sharing.

We are swapping fighters for today, Thea can't make it but Ian can, so Thea will fight in the tournament on the 25th.

We will be doing, hopefully, three levels of fights, and announcing who will participate in the finale! A runner up fight will reveal the third place winner. PLEASE page me with any questions, and thank you for your patience!]

Kenjay rises to his feet next to Bahiya. The man is dressed in silks of scarlet and orange silks of a defiantly Eurusi cut, over which is worn armour never designed by an Arvani smith in plain steel and scarlet-dyed leather. With his bizarre helm on the table in front of him, he's already wearing the blue-and-silver twist of ribbons denoting the favour of a member of House Valardin on his right arm just below the heavy pauldron; it provides a splash of contrast against his outfit, and against Bahiya's. He's pulled down to Bahiya with a smile, and words are exchanged before a kiss is planted on his brow. Smiling, he sits back down again with a creak from the protesting furniture.

Leathers, check. Dagger, check. Raja Culler arrives, joking with a group of Cullers. The group all bump fists with one another before Raja steps out to join the contestants of the competition. As Bahiya speaks, Raja lifts her head to look upon the Eurusi ambassador. With the talk of reward, she looks to the table, grinning.

The entering Cullers seem to spur Watcher to move out of the way; she considers for a moment, then moves to the ringside table and plunks herself down in a manner somewhat at odds with the careful way she entered.

Watcher has joined the ringside table.

Drake has a match a little later in the bout, so he took a little time getting armored up. He arrives when he means to, though, and settles in at the bar ringside for the time being. Since Thea isn't fighting, he didn't bring a favor to toss out, but it's good, he thinks, that he and his wife aren't fighting in the same round... to forgo any obvious biases on his part. Dressed in a lot of leathers, mostly dark, he sits back and looks casual as the first fight is announced.

Alis says something quietly to one of the guards that accompanied her as Bahiya starts to make the announcements, and sends him over with a pouch of coins to serve as her donation, and instruction to thank her and the others for organizing the tournament. And then she turns her attention again to the arena so she engage in more effusively encouraging behavior towards the contestants.

It's probably questionable, at least to anyone who hasn't seen Ian fight before, exactly what he thinks he's doing when, after being announced, he plants a hand on the corner table where he's sitting and another on his cane and rises through upper body strength alone. With a sheathed sword at his hip and no cane in hand, it's more apparent than usual that there's something REALLY wrong with both his legs; his gait has an uncertainty to its balance, and a mechanical appearance, like he were a marionette rather than a man. Someone who walks like that can't possibly be able to do the footwork required from a fencer. But he doesn't look worried. In true Ian fashion, he doesn't really look... anything. Just calm, through a gathering focus.

As familiar and new faces arrive, Valencia welcomes each to her Hart with a graceful incline of her head and warm smiles as she moves through the crowd. The hum and energy swirling about the arena is infectious it seems to the little vixen and she cannot help but catch breath. Glancing to to the sands as if to ensure everything is so, she makes her way to pause beside the Prince of Pravus to offer him a curtsy and likely a whisper of welcome and thanks for his charitable work before looking to Ambassador Bahiya as hails the crowd's attention and welcomes them all.

Patrizio draws a breath when the ambassador is calling the first spar to happen upon the sands - a sense, perhaps, of relief on the part of the Pravusi prince that he has a little while more to wait, or perhaps as much a bit of a hesitation and an attempt to calm himself with the matter of the thing. But there's interest, clearly, upon his features when his head turns to see the giving out of the favours, and he uses that time to ensure that he's prepared.

Liara has joined the raised seating.

Ian has left the corner table.

Is Bree going to fight first? Porter starts desperately looking for a favor to give her and comes up with: his own tabard? No, she has the same one. Beard charm? No, no beard. His prayer beads? NOPE. She has those. He yanks off his necklace and loops it over her head. "Here!"

Ian has joined the ring of valor.

Aella has joined the raised seating.

"That's me!" Bree calls when her name is announced, and she gives a little wave to Bahiya before turning to Porter. Her fist comes to his chest, a little knock of love with steel as she murmurs, "I promise not to go easy on your brother." Her voice dips to impart something else more quietly, her lips never giving up that smile she wears so frequently. Especially when he gives her his necklace. She turns then to stride into the center of the Arena, her hand moving to her blade to pull it out with a satisfying *shing*. "Lord Ian," she bows her head respectfully. "May the Gods bless us both today."

The sword that Ian draws from the scabbard at his hip is beautiful. The design is definitely not Arvani or even Eurusi. The blade is almost as long as a rapier, but with a slender, flat profile and edge geometry a little closer to an especially agile longsword. There's not much hand protection to speak of, just a small disc where hilt meets blade, which might explain the heavy gloves he's got on. But most remarkable about the sword is the metal it's made from -- it gleams a pale, luminous gold. He holds it at a lazy guard and grins as he watches his brother festoon his opponent with a favor.

Ian wields a long, slender goldsteel blade.

Bree wields Celestia, a double-edged incandescent longsword.

Tesha gives a curious look when Ian is called into fight and then she smiles. She figured the Kennex Lord was going to be fine. She leans back in her seat and folds her hands into her lap as she watches the ring, her stormy gaze waiting to follow what was going to be happening.

Bahiya stands again and gestures, her smile bright as she catches Bree's voice and leans into Kenjay as he murmurs to her, the Ambassador lifting her hand to wave and the Redrain prince nudges Bahiya until she's waving in the right direction. Ahem.

"Fighters, assume your positions!" Bahiya calls.

Bree checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Bree fails.

Bree checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Bree is successful.

Bree checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Bree is successful.

Bree checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Bree fails.

Bree checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Bree is marginally successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian marginally fails.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Raja moves to the side as the first competitors move to take their place. The goldsteel of Ian's blade catches the eye of the smith and she makes a small 'o' with her lips to see the shine of the metal reflecting the light. Leaning closer to one of the nearby Cullers, "One day, I will make a blade with that metal." She then sits back to watch the progress of the fight with a vested interest.

When the fight commences, Bree moves TOO quickly, and that proves to be her eventual downfall. She opts for exuberance over caution, for a burst of energy over the long game, and in doing so her balance is not quite... right. She doesn't fall, not at first, but when blade strikes blade, Ian's practiced skill outpaces her own. Still, she smiles, blue eyes glowing with life, and she attacks with fervor and fails to deflect with impressed grunts. "You're very good!" she breaths out when the man's arm makes her own bend and his sword finds its mark. Staggering back, she lifts a hand to stave off any further attack. "Well fought, Lord Ian." She laughs, wincing as she stretches her side. "Well fought indeed."

There's a stoic look on Patrizio's features when he's watching the clash between Bree and Ian, his breath caught at various points while he's watching the back-and-forth, though his attention lingers more on the techniques than perhaps on the actual weapons being used, even as much as they do catch the eye. His hand dips down to rest on the pommel of his own sword while he's weighting it, his head tipping this way and that as he follows the action.

Bahiya stays seated, listening with her head tilted as Kenjay describes the fight. At several points her eyebrows arch and she seems to hold her breath, holding his hand and squeezing, his lips never ceasing to move.

To someone who's not familiar with combat, it might look like Bree is going easy on Ian, because, as anticipated, he's not doing any footwork. He barely shifts on the ground at all, beyond the occasional careful step in one direction or another, and should present an easy target. And yet. And yet! She's having a hell of a time hitting him.

Anyone who understands what they're seeing, however, can see the rest of the story: Ian's skill with a blade approaches the inhuman. Everything he does is done at a blinding speed, and it ALL has multiple purposes, all choices made in split seconds. A parry might redirect her momentum, sending her blade in a direction that throws her off balance. A strike might force a parry that leaves her less able to get out of the way of the followup. A dodge, when they happen, puts him in a better position to strike. He's using his skill with a blade, in short, to force her to do his footwork FOR him.

Like a chessmaster playing through an endgame, Ian maneuvers Bree further and further off balance, never really striking HER until he's in a position where he can step in quickly, grab her shoulder with his free hand to steady his balance, and, as their two blades bind, a twist of his wrist handily disarms her. It's a charity match, after all, not a knock down, drag out brawl.

"Well fought." His voice is flat, but that's just Ian. "I'm glad you're fighting by Porter's side." He gives her shoulder an awkward pat, and steps back.

Watching Ian and Bree step to the stands brings a smile to Valencia. Her breath held, she seems intent upon the action on thee field. The arrival of the Cullers is enough to catch anyone's attention and she smiles to them in welcome, offering a warm nod to Raja, before turning back to watch the warriors square off in the first fight of the night.

Cheering with the crowd soon draws her attention back and Valencia watches again with bated breath as hits and parries are boldly made. Both competitors are cheered in equal measure. Bree is formidable, like watching fire, though a smile does blossom as Ian in a remarkable feat of finesse wins the day. As the crowd cheers, so does she!

Tesha gives a soft round of applause when the fight is over, "Well fought." she comments to others that are seated at the table she was. She doesn't get loud or anything like that. Just applauds and moves on to take a sip of her drink.

When Bree and Ian's fight finishes, Porter claps his hand in sound applause for the pair of fighters. "Well done!" he calls out over the din of other people cheering or clapping, his voice loud and carrying. When Bree returns to the area where he's waiting for his match, he slings an arm around her shoulder and kisses the top of her head. "I'm going to have to give you a better favor next time! I thought about giving you my tabard." He looks down at it, then at hers. "Maybe we need to start dressing differently from one another?" Decisions, decisions.

Patrizio murmurs quietly back to Valencia as she's speaking to him, even as he does lift his head at the conclusion of the fight to applaud at the result, though there's... a hesitation. An awareness that any of these victorious competitors might be one he has to face yet.

Kenjay commentates the fight to Bahiya, and anyone nearby - who happens to speak Eurusi - might just catch that he's not a bad commentator. And when the fight ends, Kenjay rises to his feet. "And the first match goes to Lord Ian Kennex," he announces, his Arvani edged with just a tinge or Eurus. "Congratulations to Lord Ian, and well fought, Dame Bree. You were a pleasure to watch, and Gloria and Gild must surely smile upon you this day." His Arvani is a little stilted, where his Eurusi was liquid and flowing.

"Sometimes we fight back to back," Bree informs Ian with a grin, but she returns the less-awkward shoulder tap. "Thank you for the fight." She turns to Bahiya, calling out this time, "Thank you for the chance to fight, Ambassador!" She trots back over to Porter, his kiss met with a faint huff. "Those Kennex men sure do hit hard." As to the tabard she laughs, shaking her head. "I like it." She frees herself of her gauntlets, as she won't be needing them any longer. "Who are you fighting?"

Alis cheers for both Ian and Bree, "Well fought!" her attention tugged away from the conversation at her table to congratulate them both.

Raja brings her hands together in applause for the competitors. "Bravo!" She calls out.

Ian returns to the corner table to sit and watch the next set of matches. Whoever he's to fight next is going to win one of those fights, so he's paying close attention. He sits with elbows resting on knees, hands clasped in front of him, while his eyes move fast.

Watcher claps, though in strangely awkward fashion; someone not used to clapping, maybe.

Liara offers up some brisk, earnest applause as the initial contest comes to a close. She's not really cheering for one person or the other - it's just general enthusiasm, which comes accompanied by, "Well done! Marvelous!"

Grinning, Bahiya stands once more.

"Congratulations to Lord Ian Kennex! Bree, my friend, you fought quite well," the Ambassador insists, her hand still on Kenjay's shoulder.

"For the next fight, Prince Patrizio of Pravus and Prince Kenjay of Redrain will face each other!" She gestures.

"Fighters! Take your places."

Patrizio sketches a bow, briefly, to Valencia before he's taking a deep breath and moving with purpose out onto the sands in the arena. No bold declarations from he, just simple action as he moves out and takes his place, before he's drawing his elegant sword from the scabbard at his hip, and bowing fluidly, deeply, to Kenjay. "Your highness," he says, more seriously than many perhaps have seen him about the city. "It is an honour to face you today."

Kenjay rises to his feet, bending to kiss Bahiya on the brow, then heads for the arena with every step audible thanks to the weight of his armour. He lifts his helm onto his head and does up the chin-strap, then latches the faceplate closed; turning to face the audience, he lifts an armoured fist to knock against his breastplate over his heart - once towards Bahiya, once towards Alis, and once towards Patrizio. That done he steps back away from his opponent, and pulls his shortswords free of their sheaths, moving with the weight imparted by his armour. "The honour is all mine, your highness."

Alis blows an exaggerated kiss her Uncle's way, as he prepares to take his place in the fighting ring. And there may well be an impish smile on her face when she does so. "Fight well, and good luck!"

Kenjay wields Freedom's Flames, a pair of rubicund-clad diamondplate xiphoi.

An encouraging nod is offered to Watcher as Valencia cheers a long with the crowd. A gentle nod and fond and appreciative smile is bestowed to Patrizio before offering her attention to the ring again so he might focus. Another bottle of the Hart's best is brought by staff to the Ambassador and her prince as even as pitchers and bottles flow for all the guests. The Hart's mercies are also in attendance, of course, seeing that Ian and Bree are well attended as they retreat the sands and bottles of what would please them most are brought to their table and guest. The warriors and their friends drink for free as is customary at the hart.

Valencia draws another breath as Patrizio and Kenjay are called to the ring and steps a little closer so she might watch carefully. A smile for Patrizio as he heads into the ring.

Watcher laughs at something said at her table; it's quiet, a short bark and nothing more.

Ian has left the ring of valor.

Ian has joined the corner table.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio marginally fails.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio marginally fails.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio fails.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio is successful.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio is successful.

Kenjay checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Botch! Kenjay fails completely.

Kenjay checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Botch! Kenjay fails completely.

Kenjay checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Kenjay marginally fails.

Kenjay checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Kenjay is successful.

Kenjay checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Botch! Kenjay fails completely.

Kenjay checks dexterity and performance at hard. Kenjay is successful.

Aella has left the raised seating.

Whatever Kenjay was expecting to face, it apparently wasn't Patrizio. The Redrain blurs into motion, his shortswords moving as fast as he does; he's poetry in motion, right up until he manages to put his foot down on thin air before finding out that the sand is actually another couple of inches further down. It's a small mistake, but in a contest like this, the small mistakes are the ones that end up with your shirt sleeve hanging from your pauldron in ribbons. Undaunted, Kenjay picks himself up again for another go, only to find himself face-down on the ground again. Kenjay has a little more luck after that, but, well, today is not his day. Must be something to do with that kiss from Bahiya, in public no less. The Scarlet Storm proves to be less a mile-high cloud of sand and lightning descending on Patrizio today, and more the denizen of a teacup.

Chase, a Silent Reflection in grey hooded robes, 5 Templar Knight guards arrive, following Vayne.

For his own part, Patrizio looks as if he's expecting an entire army to come at him, which might well be fair given who he's facing. There's that brief flicker of concern when Kenjay's swords are in motion, a sight he's but seen as a spectator once or twice previously.. .and it's not as if he himself is doing phenomenally. The prince of Pravus' blade is certainly enough to keep himself from serious harm, but his own footsteps are not quite as even either and.. after some clash of blades and the unease with which both are moving, the Sin with the fine hair sighs out softly, and offers out his hand to Kenjay. "Your highness," he offers softly. "We ought have a rematch at some point, I think, when the gods favour both of us more with the gifts we've been given. I would adore the opportunity, if you'd be so kind."

Kenjay takes Patrizio's hand by the wrist, and turns to hold it up to the crowd. "The winner of the second bout, Prince Patrizio Pravus!" He releases the wrist, then unlatches his faceplate, turning to Patrizio with a smile. "I would welcome that, your Highness. But the next bout is due, let us clear the sands."

Alis appears to look quite proud, despite a less than his best performance from the Redrain Prince. And, though she attempts not to be as obnoxious as she could be, claps loudly for both Kenjay and Patrizio.

The match is met with a crowd eager to see what the princes might do. Valencia, too, is rapt and riveted to the dance on the sands, though her cheers seem lost as the men fight with flashes of flair and grace. As Kenjay falters and Patrizio presses the opening to take the match, the little vixen rises with the crowd to cheer them both whole-heartedly, decorum seeming lost for a moment as she celebrates the display.

Such events aren't usually Father Vayne's style, and yet the long-haired Legate is here in his somber clothes just in time for the tail end of a fight. He pauses, regards the two fighters with interest, and locates Valencia, moving around tables to head in her direction as he watches the fighters exchange pleasantries at the end. "Well done. You honor Gloria," he says to Kenjay and Patrizio, before his voice lowers to murmur something to Valencia.

Bahiya stands, having had the fight described to her by a guard in Redrain livery, her smile proud and her applause loud. "Well done! Arvani sportsmanship is unparalleled. A fantastic fight!"

Her hands drop and she gestures to the room. "Archlector Porter Kennex will not fight Mistress Raja Culler! Please, fighters: take your places."

Ever a cheerful spectator, Liara, having been conversing with Aella briefly before the Ravenseye headed off, offers some brisk applause from her perch on one of the higher up seats, and then she settles back down to watch once more.

When Porter and Raja are announced, Ian calls to her: "Mistress Culler!" Once he has her attention, he takes the portrait case out of his vest pocket and offers it, with a grin, as a favor.

Porter has watched the last match with interest and continues to wait over by Bree. Sometime while spectating, he's managed to get himself a tall tankard of ale that he's drinking when he hears his name being called. There's bit of an 'oops me?' expression on his face. Yeah, it's him! Bree is speaking to him quietly and pressing something into his hand. He looks down at it and laughs. "We should, something like that." He squeezes her hand in return and loops a butterfly necklace over his head. He takes up his staff and heads down to the fighting ring to meet with Raja. "Mistress Culler," he offers her and nods his head once before they begin.

Patrizio sketches a bow once more to Kenjay as he smiles. "Well, it'd do us poorly to remain out here," he agrees to the Redrain prince as he moves to continue off the sands, though not without a brief pause to bow too to the Ambassador, even if she's unable to see the gesture. It's when he's off the sands for the moment that he smiles warmly to Valencia, and dips his head respectfully to Alis and Vayne, before there's a motion to one of the Hart's servers. Yes, yes this would be the time for a drink.

"Come on, Porter!" Bree calls from her spot the moment he's stepped away. He's really not even close to fighting yet, and she gives two big thumbs up to him. Never mind that the man has a title she /should/ be using in public.

Raja moves to stand up, stretching just a moment. She pauses to glance to the favor offered to her. She actually seems quite surprised by the offering. "Wow. Why.. thank you.." She says looking to the book offered to her. She tucks it away into a secure place. "Thank you." Then she moves to the ring, looking to Porter for a moment. "Hello there!" She beams a smile, pulling out a blade.

Raja gets Serpent's Sting from Black Leather Belt.

Raja wields Serpent's Sting.

Porter wields handsome cupridium staff boasting pale gold leather grips.

Caught up as she is, the appearance of Vayne breaks her revelry, but not so much that she offers an impromptu hug of welcome. "My dearest friend! Welcome, yes? I'm so glad to see you. Thank you for coming to her Grace and their Highness' event. It is for a good cause, yes?" Turning to Patrizio as he slips from the ring a warm smile is offered to him. "Come, I think wine is in order. Join me at my table?" she invites Vayne gladly as the next competitors take to the sands.

Bahiya [EDIT] stands, having had the fight described to her by a guard in Redrain livery, her smile proud and her applause loud. "Well done! Arvani sportsmanship is unparalleled. A fantastic fight!"

Her hands drop and she gestures to the room. "Archlector Porter Kennex will NOW* fight Mistress Raja Culler! Please, fighters: take your places."

Raja checks dexterity and small wpn at hard. Raja is successful.

Raja checks dexterity and small wpn at hard. Raja fails.

Raja checks dexterity and small wpn at hard. Raja is successful.

Valencia has joined the ringside table.

Raja checks dexterity and small wpn at hard. Raja is successful.

Raja checks dexterity and small wpn at hard. Raja marginally fails.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter is successful.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter is successful.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Critical Success! Porter is spectacularly successful.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter is successful.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter is successful.

Kenjay departs the sands, taking his helm off in the process. There's a smile for Alis, another for Patrizio, and then he's heading back to Bahiya's side to start a running commentary of the fight between Raja Culler and Blessed Porter.

2 Telmarine Guards leaves, following Tesha.

Vayne returns Valencia's hug without hesitation, sweeping his hair back over his shoulder once he straightens, somber expression somewhat leavened. "It is indeed," the Legate agrees, smoothly, and the tip of his head is acceptance of her offer of both company and wine, moving to seat himself. "Perhaps you can tell me of the competitors?"

"I would be delighted." Patrizio's warm smile for Valencia as he comes over to join her and Vayne, and there's a glance - warily - at the sands as he's keeping track of the next competitor. Still, even as he's moving, there's a turn of that head to consider Ian, as if he has a feeling that's the next likely pairing in this competition for him.

Laurene, a military adjutant arrives, delivering a message to Kenjay before departing.

It would seem that Raja has met her match this day! The Culler woman ducks and dodges, only to be met with the counter attacks from Porter! Her movements are lithe and quick, but Porter's training and competence far outshine any of her own ability. One particular blow causes her to skiteer back into the ground, sliding a few feet upon her back. Dark eyes look up to the man as she bares her teeth. With an kick into the air, she pops up, only to be defeated again. In the end, she pauses, panting and dips her head politely. "You.. are good." She bows, conceding to him.

Vayne has joined the ringside table.

Bahiya has joined the Champions' table.

Patrizio has joined the ringside table.

Kenjay has joined the Champions' table.

"YES!" Bree is hardly a quiet observer in the fight, and neither is she still. She ducks and moves as if she is right there with the Archlector, and each hit he lands has her cheering, each move he makes has her singing his praise. "Porter!"

If anyone was thinking that the Archlector of Gild was getting soft while attending to his new duties, let them be dissuaded of it this day. He's quick for his size and the swing of the staff is hard and punishing when it connects. But he also fights fair and honorably, he's driven Raja back and when she concedes, he lowers his stuff and drops into a stiff bow. "You're very skilled as well, thank you for meeting me in the ring this day." Considerably more sweaty than he started out, he returns to where he was, searching for that tankard that he didn't put down and absolutely do NOT bringing into the ring with him.

Ian's eyes track Raja and Porter as they fight; they move fast, forever taking in details. He's mostly watching Porter execute a work of art with that staff, and the arch of his eyebrows as the match plays out is impressed, but not surprised.

Kenjay's commentary in Eurusi comes to an end, and he rises to his feet, setting his helm on the table in front of him again. "The winner of the third bout is Blessed Porter Kennex! Let no-one say that becoming Godsworn has dulled the Archlector's edge; Gloria and Gild are honoured indeed."

Waiting, tense and excited, Bahiya listens to Kenjay orate the fight, just as thrilled about this one was she was the Prince of Redrain's. When Porter is declared the winner, her hands flail out and she knocks over her glass, on her feet and applauding loudly. Catching Bree's voice, she turns in her direction, grinning and still applauding.

Valenica smiles aside to Vayne and nods again. "Thus fair we have seen Dame Bree of Hartall face Lord Ian of Kennex. She was as fire and Lord Ian as cool as ocean wataer and is so very experienced. He won the day," Valencia explains. "Next was Prince Kenjay of Redrain and Prince Patirzio of Pravus. I believe you know all thus fare, yes?" she whispers trying to bring him up to speed. "Both princes fought magnificently. But I like that they are so well with each other both before and after such a fierce match. It speaks to their character, yes?" Nodding to the ring again, "And now, Archlector Porter of Kennex, with whom I am sure you are familiar, and the most mysterious Mistress Raja of Culler," she introduces as the fight roars on and the winner declared.

Five, a probationary assistant arrives, following Mailys.

Vayne appears to look pleased, clapping for Archlector Porter, studying his opponent with interest for a second or two as they step out of the ring as Valencia brings him up to speed. "An excellent bout does comprise two well-matched opponents," he murmurs, with a nod towards Patrizio.

The first part of the tournament is going quite well, donations given and extended, bets and wagers made and called. A messenger darts through the crowd, however, and soon, Bahiya stands and raises her hands to the crowd.

"I have been informed that Mistress Auda Florin has been briefly waylaid. In light of this, we will begin the next tier of fights while we await her. After a respite, when you are ready, Archlector Porter Kennex, and you, Prince Patrizio of Pravus, I would have you take your place in the ring." Her smile is warm, the blind woman taking her seat.

Drinks are passed out as well as more wagers and bets, food offered and served, as people take the lull in the tournament to discuss the fights so far.

Raja moves back to wherever Ian sits and produces his sketchbook to hand back to him. "Thank you for the favor, but it seems I still had my butt handed to me." She chuckles. She takes her loss in stride, finding a place to sit. A mug of ale is procured and she kicks her feet up to watch the rest of the competition.

"You're up again!" Bree exclaims after showering Porter with much adoration for his skill, and checking of his armor to make certain each piece is tightly bound. "Fight well, as I know you can."

Over by the ringside table, Patrizio's briefly been engaged in conversation, but the sound of his name being called does have him lifting his head and... there's an easy chuckle from him, before he's straightening up once more. "I'm ready when the good Archlector is," he voices to the ambassador, and to the crowd in general, before he's sketching a bow to his companions and moving out onto the sands once more to prepare himself. Though this time, he might look a hint more grim than his first venturing forth.

The arena was not hard to find, buzzing with voices and the fight dying down. Mailys stops near the entrance, surveying the crowd and the status of the fight, and sighs at her poor timing. She missed Patrizio's first match by a hair. As soon as she hears about his next match, the Corsetina makes her way to the bar as things prepare to start anew.

Ian takes the little metal case housing Zoey's portrait back from Raja with a nod.

Mailys has joined the bar.

"It is so. It is something I mess when we host our Sip and Spars. To see such martial arts, it is inspiring," Valencia notes to Vayne with a little nod as she explains. A smile as Patrizio is offered as he joins the table a well. "Welcome, Highness. Contratulations and best of luck in you next match," she offers with great delight, her excitement and composure seeming to have reassured again. A glance to Ian and a bright smile for him, clearly happy to see the Kennex's present.

Porter is just lifting the ale to his lips when he hears his name being called again, once again his eyes go wide. This time he hands his drink off to Bree for safekeeping (and possibly to find out that it's been consumed in his absence). "Ah! Alright. I better go, before my muscles go cold." He thinks on it. "Or are they too cold already? I guess we're going to find out!" He takes up his staff again and goes rushing down to the fighting ring once more. "Prince Patrizio! An honor to fight against you." He's ready! And already there. And a little short of breath.

The first thing Bree does when the drink is handed off to her is lift it in salute to Porter and take a long drink, so he might be right that it will be empty by the time he returns!

Valencia is overheard praising Bahiya: Exquisite and generous hostess with a charitable heart. Honoured to have her charity event hosted at the Hart.

Valencia is overheard praising Bree: Fast like fire. Formidable, fierce and well worth watching.

Valencia is overheard praising Ian: The finest of friends who constantly awes me with his skill and prowess. Honured to watch him again.

Valencia is overheard praising Kenjay: Obviously a man with skill and grace on or off the sands. Can see why the Ambassador has him at her side.

Valencia is overheard praising Porter: As masterful as his Kennex kindred. So glad to see him again. Well fought.

Valencia is overheard praising Raja: Bold and bright and excellent in a fight. A thrill to watch.

Patrizio sketches an elegant bow to Porter when they're arriving on the sands, and the prince draws his sword once more - it'd be gauche for him to have had it out at the table while speaking with others, and he bows deeply to Porter. The honour is mine, excellency. May we do honour to the gods and to this cause with our bout." There's just a hint to his voice that the prince is hoping anything at this point helps him.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Critical Success! Porter is spectacularly successful.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter fails.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter is successful.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter fails.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter is successful.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio marginally fails.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio is successful.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio fails.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio is successful.

Patrizio checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Patrizio is successful.

Out of the gate, it does look like there's going to be a repetition in some sense - the sway to Patrizio's steps as if he's not quite as accustomed once more to being on the sand. Though despite the slow start, it becomes quickly apparent that the Pravusi is not a slouch with the blade he wields, the light catching it as he's trying to maneuver about the staff. There's a huge difference, though, when one comes to the fight with such a disparity in arms, and it's simply that of reach - it's all he can do, truly, to not end up on his back on the sand, taking the blows that find him around his defences.

Porter comes back onto the sands warmed up from the last fight, perhaps a bit too warmed up! There's a few fumbles here and there, but a very strong showing the ends a completely satisfactory showing. Porter fights with the same surprising speed and display of strength as the last time, using his impressive reach of both limb and weapon in order to get the upper hand on Patrizio. When he lands a final blow on the Pravosi knight that sees the Archlector coming out the winner, he steps away to give his opponent time to recuperate. "Thank you, your highness. You're surely a testament to House Pravus' martial arm."

Raja brings her hands together, grinning. Calling out to Porter, "You are still a fantastic fighter!" She beams a grin at him.

"Another round," Bree calls to one of the workers of the Hart, because she totally drank all of Porter's ale and he'll need something to refresh him after the fight. She watches, leaning forward dramatically to try to see every angle of the fight, and when Porter lands a particularly impressive blow, she whoops, throwing a hand in the air. "I knew you could do it!"

Kenjay's commentating ends again, and the Redrain rises to his feet. "And the winner is Blessed Porter Kennex! Congratulations, Archlector - but well fought, your highness, also. Gloria surely smiles upon you both this day."

The second win by Porter gets a flicker of a smile out of Ian. It's possible he didn't blink the whole time it was going on.

Bahiya is once more on her feet after another breathtaking fight, applauding as loud as anyone, her smile bright. "Wonderful! Truly, truly wonderful! Well done, Archlector! And you as well, Prince Patrizio!"

Again the crowd goes wild with delight as the competitors face each other. Even the Hart's staff pause to watch and cheer and the fight continues before heading back to work to fill the glasses and bring bottles to Bree among many others.

Valencia speak softly at the table, smiles for companions, but her eyes are upon the ring. Bottom lip bitten softly and winces coming as each fighter lands blow upon blow. It is Porter who prevails as the Pravusi prince falls and though she cheers, fully, there is a wince for his highness that is washed away with a pride in his formidable performance.

Patrizio faces Porter once more when the match is over, that warm smile finding his features again as he bows deeply, placing his palm against his breastplate. "Thank you for the match, Archlector," says he seriously, though there's a laugh that follows on its heels, and the taking of a breath. "I think that I need to do more training before I face you again." And once more, a bow to Bahiya and Kenjay, before he's retreating back to the table, and some well-deserved beverages.

Alis has left the ringside table.

Sir Rhys, a Valardin Knight, Laurene, a military adjutant, 10 Valardin Knights leave, following Alis.

There's a flurry of activity at the Champion's table, and the lull between fights seems to carry on a little longer. Finally, a messenger leaves and Watcher is being escorted to the Champion's table.

"We have a change of plans," Bahiya announces, standing and raising her hands, voice carrying across the crowd. She gestures. "This person has offered to step forward for Auda Florin, to hold her place against Count Drake Wyvernheart." She leans towards Watcher, asking, "Please, I thank you for this. Would you tell us who you are?"

Drake always watches fights with interest, and this tournament was no exception, but he was starting to get impatient waiting for his turn at the ring, too. His foot is tapping. When he's finally called out, he gets up with a quick hop and heads out into the arena. His longsword is drawn forth, and held out at ready. This is the sword he most often uses for Champions duels, forged for that purpose from steel. He gives it one slow and almost lazy swing before putting it into a guard position. He looks over at his new opponent, but doesn't seem to be entirely unfamiliar with her.

Ian blinks and straightens when Watcher gets up to fight Drake, with the air of someone for whom this whole event just got a lot more interesting.

Raja lifts her mug to drink deeply. The back of her hand is used to wipe the remnants from her lips. When it is known that another will stand in for Auda, Raja's gaze quietly slips to the Watcher. She looks the woman up and down, canting her head slightly. More ale is consumed. Can't have good entertainment without a bit of inebriation.

3 Thrax Guards, 1 Thrax Elite Guards arrive, following Cassima.

Watcher's expression and body language as she gets up from the table where she's been chatting is somewhere between caution and extreme reluctance, though the latter is pushed down by the time she reaches the champion's table. "Watcher," she says. And only that. When she faces Drake, she eases the sword slung across her shoulders free of its sheath - alaricite, it would seem, going by the faint silvery sheen of the blade's metal, but it's otherwise unremarkable. Drake gets a slight nod.

Watcher wields a sharp alaricite blade with a hilt and pommel wrapped in black leather.

Bahiya nods and leans back, head tilting as her voice trails off as she heads on to meet Drake. "Watcher, facing Count Drake Wyvernheart. Fighters! Take your places."

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake is successful.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake is marginally successful.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Critical Success! Drake is spectacularly successful.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake is successful.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake marginally fails.

Vayne leans to murmur something quietly to Valencia for a few moments, though he straightens as Patrizio and Porter part ways. "Well done, Archlector," he calls towards Porter, and with a nod to Patrizio to welcome him back to the table, "And to you, Your Highness. You return with a greater touch of Gloria to you." His smile flickers, as he watches Watcher move towards the ring with interest.

"Good luck, my lady," Valencia offers with an encouraging nod to Watcher as she is called before waving a hand to send more more bottles to Ian and Porter's table. "Mistress Raja, would you and your companions care to join us as well," the little vixen invites the Cullers to join them as she pours Patrizio and Vayne more of the wine. "Count Drake is an exceptional fighter. He is one of the Hart's most formidable Sip n'Spar champions. Always exciting to watch. A good match for our new friend to show her talents, yes?"

Watcher checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Watcher is successful.

Watcher checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Watcher is successful.

Watcher checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Watcher is successful.

Watcher checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Watcher is successful.

Watcher checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Watcher marginally fails.

3 Thrax Guards, 1 Thrax Elite Guards leave, following Cassima.

Drake wields a steel longsword engraved with the sigil of Gloria.

"Thank you, Legate Vayne!" Porter hollers from roughly seven or eight tables away. But it's very loud. It feels like he's right next to him! Isn't that nice?

Raja furrows her brows as Watcher gives the name she wishes to go by. She goes to drink from her mug again, but finds that it is empty. But then, she hears her name and her attention turns to Valencia. "Oh. Yes. Thanks." She moves to stand up, moving towards the table and accepts the offered seat.

Raja has joined the ringside table.

Valencia is overheard praising Drake: Always spectacular and fearsome to behold in the ring. Never fails to impress.

Valencia is overheard praising Watcher: A lovely dark horse who brings her best. So very impressed with her bold and brave skills upon the sands.

Watcher's style, whatever it is (as it certainly is at least a little unusual), cannot really be described as 'graceful', though it certainly is fluid. She's *fast*, seemingly capable and willing to turn in any direction on a silver, and equal parts aggressive and defensive, seemingly on a whim, one moment circling Drake at an almost predatory stalk, another lunging in for an attack, sometimes a feint, sometimes real. Drake, on the other hand, is very clearly her match in this fight, meeting blow for blow, keeping up with near every slash and thrust. Though it takes some time, he proves more than her match, predicting several moves and taking advantage of several noticeable mistakes, particularly near the end, though a particularly spectacular success early on may well have finished things even without those. She goes down heavily, and there's a certain wild light in her eyes when she pushes up moments later. "Congratulations," she tells Drake, with sincere pleasure.

Drake's good with his choice of blade, no question. But beyond that, he's also a Champion fighter who is used to playing things up a bit for the crowd. When he looks Watcher in the eye, there's a stern look in his... just for a moment, and then he smiles. That smile is the only telegraph of his opening attack. He dances back and forth as he works, appreciating her own speed, but able to clearly match it. He has a little fun with this for a moment, turning into her blows, parrying, and getting a little looser and weaker with his strikes before he gets in that one excellent blow.

Another parry and strike, a twist, and then a blow not quite on, as he sees her begin to falter.

When she drops, he holds out his hand... but she gets up on her own, so he again lowers it. He nods to her. "Good bout." He also seems quite genuine in his praise.

"And the victor is Count Drake Wyvernheart!" Kenjay's voice rings out above the crowd, the formal acknowledgement of the victory. "Congratulations! A most entertaining bout!"

Ambassador Bahiya'al'Mathali stands, applauding again.

"Well done! Very well done! After a brief respite, Count Drake Wyverheart will face Lord Ian Kennex, and the resulting winner will fight Archlector Porter Kennex for the final portion of this half of the tournament."

Ian rises once again when his name is called, pushing to his feet the way he did the first time. Of course, this time around, nobody's going to have any illusions about his ability to fight, even as he picks his way with care towards the ring, once steadying his balance on the railing that surrounds it, with his left hand. With his exotic goldsteel blade in hand, held in a lazy guard, the tip of the blade dipping down, he faces Drake with a dispassionate gaze, that same mix of a serene expression and luminous, intense eyes, glittering like lightning in a bottle. "After that last fight, I don't like my chances," he observes to Drake with a note of dry humor. But there's no reluctance, just an acknowledgement of the combat prowess he just witnessed.

Watcher takes a few moments to slide her sword back into its sheath - with surprising care, given everything else - then slings it over her shoulder again, crosses to her former seat, and flops back into it. There's no smile from her, but that light in her eyes has yet to fade. She does not seem at all disappointed in the loss.

Drake heads back to the bar to wipe his face at least, before turning and moving back into the ring. He stretches his back for a moment to get back into the arena, rolling both shoulders. He feels ready for this, though this is a different opponent with different odds, and he squares up with Ian checking his defenses before he holds his blade once again at the ready.

Valencia's applause join the raised voices in celebration of a match well done. "Bravo!" she happily calls and lifts her glass to the fine fight before her. "She is very good, yes?" she exclaims to the table with a bright smile. "Mistress Raja, would your companions prefer wine or something a little stronger? We should be well fortified for this next battle," she notes with a look of open admiration for Ian and Drake as they prepare themselves.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Patrizio adds his applause to the acclaim for those who've come through the competition so far, followed by the lift of his glass in salute. Though he's heard more softly to be saying, "I don't envy either of them, who need fight in the next match. That's a long time to be on the sands."

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake marginally fails.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake fails.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Botch! Drake fails completely.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake is successful.

Drake checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Drake fails.

Mailys has left the bar.

Five, a probationary assistant have been dismissed.

Drake had a good first run, but maybe the change in opponents has thrown him off now, or he's tired from his initial bout. Ian seems to have the better of him. Getting ready this time with his blade out, he has a tentative strike early, then falters up the next. At a moment he steps out of position... and leaves himself absolutely wide open to be clobbered. He didn't see this one coming, and a slick strike takes out his knee, making him buckle. He fights back a moment from a one-knee position, but it's not as elegant by far as his previous showing.

He gets back to his feet for a second, but the early injury cost him. Once again he finds himself bested and at the end of his ropes, dropping to both knees and dropping his weapon. He his hand empty, he taps out by slapping the dirt to signal surrender.

Raja lifts up her mug to Vayne. "Vayne. I think I had sent you a few messengers before, but we never had a chance to meet. That was before you were promoted to Legate. How are you enjoying being a Legate?" She inquires with genuine curiosity. Her gaze shifts back to Watcher, and gives the woman a lift of her chin in greeting. "Nice fighting. Name's Raja." She introduces herself.

"Watcher," says Watcher, as though her name hadn't just been announced to the arena anyway. She's sipping at her retrieved wine glass. "Nice fighting to you as well."

Raja brings her hands together for the fight. "Woo Ian! Wait, are you wearing your scarf?"

There might have been a certain amount of inherent advantage for Ian in his first fight with the fact that Bree had never sparred against him before. The same can't be said for Drake, who knows all of Ian's tricks inside and out, and the difference tells in the sheer intensity of the fight. Both men move with blinding speed, little more than blurs and flashes of steel. It would probably take fast eyes to see the opening Drake left for Ian, but Ian's absolutely merciless exploitation of that opening is a lot easier to see. It doesn't LOOK like it should have hurt, especially given the slender blade he's using, but the placement of the strike is perfect. This is an exhibition match, and so he doesn't press his advantage when Drake goes down on one knee, but doesn't hesitate to fight just as hard against an injured man. Still, there's no elegant disarm, this time; he has to win the fight the hard way, and the effort shows once Drake yields and Ian steps back.

"And the victor is Lord Ian Kennex!" Kenjay's voice is a clarion above the hubbub; whatever else you might want to say about him, he's a natural showman when he exerts himself. "Commiserations to Count Drake, and may Gloria smile upon you both!"

Again the crowd explodes into louder cheers. Valencia joins them with a bright smile and calls of delight and respect to the competitors as the winner is declared.

Vayne's interest sharpens at Raja's words. "It is certainly a change of focus. My life is both more challenging and correspondingly more fulfilling," he answers her with the faintest of smiles. "Did you find what you were looking for? I'd be happy to make time, if you wanted to discuss your matter again." As the current match comes to an end, he nods approvingly towards the fighters.

Bahiya's voice carries over the crowded room as she calls, "OUR FINAL FIGHT FOR THE EVENING! ARCHLECTOR PORTER KENNEX verses LORD IAN KENNEX." She pauses, leaning down to ask something. Incredulous, she says, "Brothers? Brothers!" She straightens, surprise and delight warring across her be-ribboned features. "Well! Fighters, take your places!"

Raja shouts from nearby, "KICK HIS ASS LORD IAN!"

Raja grins at Porter, "Sorry. You kicked my ass. I gotta vote for him."

By now, Porter has had more than the first tankard of ale. Most of his time has been spent cheering for the various participants, and talking with Bree in quiet but enthusiastic whispers at their table. It's the last fight that holds his attention the most acutely, his eyes switching between Drake and then Ian. When it turns out that his own brother will be his last fight for the evening, he scrubs his hands vigorously over his beard. For good luck. He says to Bree, "This is fitting in a way." Up from his seat, he takes his staff up for the final time this evening and travels across the building to find his way to the fighting ring. He finds his footing on the surface, and nods across to the other Kennex whenever he's joined him and is ready to start. "Brother. I'd say good luck, but we both know you aren't going to need luck."

Liara sits up more, an attentive observer of proceedings, and this time, with no small amount of mischief, she calls out, "Go, better brother!" Which one's that? She does not clarify.

A little smile is politely hidden behind her own glass and Raja calls out in colourful jest. Vayne's interest is marked and noted but then the Kennex's are called to face off and Valencia turns to watch what unfolds in the ring, lips softly pressed, large dark eyes keen.

Ian remains on the sands to wait for Porter to join him, and gives his brother a grin. He's a little bit shorter than average, and so is really looking UP at his much, much bigger brother. "I don't believe in luck. But the way you've been fighting today, I wish I did." He gives Porter a playful salute, shades of a careless spar rather than a final match for the qualifying rounds of a tournament, then steps back.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian marginally fails.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Ian checks dexterity and medium wpn at hard. Ian is successful.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter fails.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter marginally fails.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Botch! Porter fails completely.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter fails.

Porter checks dexterity and huge wpn at hard. Porter is successful.

If a person wants to be known as an exceptionally skilled fighter, there are some things that they shouldn't do. First all, do not win two fights in a row and then sit down at a table and start drinking. This is a mistake and does not lead to good balance. Porter's balance is not at all good right, as exhibited by some impressively poor footwork to lead off with. Second, if you're going to do the first thing, don't then get into your third fight with one of two people in the room who knows /all/ of your fighting tells. This is especially not a good plan if that person is your own younger brother who has literally decades of experience dealing with your shit. Despite having nearly as much time to study Ian's fighting, he gets hit again, and again, and again, and gain... and... OW. "Ah! Ah!" He holds up his staff in a point of concession. "I concede to the better Kennex brother! Congratulations brother, as sharp as ever and /definitely/ not in need of luck!"

Even as Porter falters in his blows, Bree cheers his name, her support of the man never faltering. "You got this, Porter!" And while he doesn't 'got this,' she still cheers when the fight comes to the end. And for Ian, too, as she was the first to fall to his sword.

Raja is overheard praising Ian: Woo! Kicked that butt!

Bree is overheard praising Porter.

Bree is overheard praising Ian.

Kenjay is overheard praising Ian.

Kenjay is overheard praising Porter.

Kenjay is overheard praising Bahiya.

Patrizio is overheard praising Kenjay.

Raja is overheard praising Porter: Still mad you kicked my butt.

Patrizio is overheard praising Porter.

Patrizio is overheard praising Bahiya.

Bahiya is overheard praising Kenjay.

Bahiya is overheard praising Patrizio.

Bahiya is overheard praising Ian.

Bahiya is overheard praising Raja.

Bahiya is overheard praising Watcher.

Bahiya is overheard praising Bree.

Two of the three Brothers Kennex, Archlector of Gild and Sword of Stormward, facing each other on the stands of the Golden Hart. They were always going to put on a good show, at least for those who can follow the speed of the fight. They're well matched, and what's more, they've been fighting matches like this their whole lives. Ian gives ground initially, trying to keep himself out of range of being swept off his feet by that staff, and knowing he's not nearly strong enough to oppose his brother directly, strike for strike. It's his ability to anticipate what Porter will do that saves him from ending up on his ass; just getting into striking distance against the reach of a much larger man with a larger weapon takes some doing. Eventually, he's able to bait Porter into overreaching enough that, sidestepping the strike he knew was coming, he grabs the end of the staff and winds up getting swung WITH IT in a way that puts him behind Porter and close enough to finally really open up the offense. The fight's probably his at that point, but that doesn't mean the flurry of strikes, parries, and dodges that follows isn't a treat to watch.

He's grinning again once the match is over. "You're a lot better than we were last we fought. A lot faster. I didn't used to have to take risks like that to beat you." Because the move with grabbing the staff WAS a risk, the kind of thing only justified if someone is pretty desperate.

Patrizio is overheard praising Valencia.

Bahiya is overheard praising Porter.

Bahiya is overheard praising Drake.

Valencia smiles at Watcher's thoughts on the north, seeming to nod in agreement as Ian is called out as winner. Turning to Patrizio, she offers another incline of head. "Thank you again for hosting your charitable event at the Hart, Highness. I hope you will convey my thanks to Prince Redrain and her grace the Ambassador. We are so happy to be able to assist in what way we can."

As the crowd roars its pleasure to the fighters, Valencia rises to cheer with them, glass held out to toast them with a call of ' Bravo! WELL DONE!"

Liara offers some brisk and enthusiastic applause as the match comes to a close, rising half-way to her feet. "Splendid! Both excellent! Well done, Lord Ian!"

"And through to the final is Lord Ian Kennex! With Blessed Porter to compete for third place in the tournament, after a series of most impressive battles!" Kenjay's voice fills the room again. "Congratulations to both, but I think we can all agree that after today's display of sheer prowess the true winners here are the audience, and the honourable matches we have seen must be the delight of Gloria!"

"It's my pleasure to find ways to support the Hart." Patrizio smiles behind his wineglass when Valencia's addressing him, and that grin spreads before he offers, "I'd imagine that, if you should be so pleased, they'd love to hear it from you directly, and I would be very happy to accompany with." There's the shift of his chair to ease it back, with a dip of his head to the others at the table, as he moves to rise and offer Valencia his arm.

Raja brings her hands together once more! "Bravo! Good show!" She calls out.

Bahiya is overheard praising Valencia: A fabulous hostess, allowing us to use her space for our charitable ends. Delightful and generous, this woman.

Vayne has finally finished the wine he's been nursing all night, just in time for the final match, and he applauds approvingly, nodding his recognition of the final two fighters. "Well done to all," he agrees.

Porter swings his staff down, using it to lean against and support some of his now very exhausted weight out here. "I've spent time training, a lot of time. Maybe too much!" He exhales a great gust from chest and listens as Kenjay calls the fight for his brother. Before he departs the fighting ring entirely, he drums his fingers against his weapon and pauses in the act of exiting. There's some hesitance to the way he waits before speaking and then he says to Ian, "We don't have to wait so long between this spar and the next. When you have time?" The offer is left in the air, to take it if he wishes.

"Please! One and all, be merry and enjoy the drink and food. I do announce this half of the tournament ended, and with great satisfaction. Join us twenty days hence for the second half, to learn who will face Lord Ian Kennex in the finale!" Ambassador Bahiya'al'Mathali bows to the room at large, taking the hand of Prince Kenjay afterwards to reclaim her seat, the two speaking rapidly in Eurusi; excited.

"Can't have too much training, these days." Ian gives Porter a not so gentle pat on the arm in the tried and true Thraxxian tradition of 'I must only show affection with a token side of violence'. "I could use some practice against staves. I'll look for you in the training center."

Kenjay has left the Champions' table.



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