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  • Beqanna

    COTY

    Svedka -- Year 212

    QOTY

    “He only knows home in his dreams and even those dreams do not mimic large, centuries-old redwoods. Lio doesn't remember the last time he laid his head down and truly felt comfortable.” --Elio, written by Phaetra


    ROUND ONE: Casimira v. Frenzy
    #1
    2 attacking posts each, 1 final defensive post – 3 days between posts.
    One 2-day extension per person if needed
    Attacks can be multiple things, i.e. Albert attempts to bite Rose's neck and then kicks at her knee. Counter-attacks and attacks are all counted as attacks.
    Complete dodges are allowed, but for the sake of realism, be careful when using these.
    Traits allowed.
    No editing posts.
    1,000 word limit.
    Casimira posts first unless otherwise agreed upon.

    SETTING: Normal Plains grounds. Mid-day.

    Casimira
    Gender: Female
    Body Type & Height: Anglo-Arabian; on the leaner side, 15.3hh
    Abilities: dragon shifting, serial immortality

    v.

    frenzy
    Gender: Female
    Body Type & Height: Warlander-esque hybrid, thick boned and athletic. 17hh
    Abilities: diamond armor generation, fire breathing, horn, healing
    [Image: Leah.png]
    Reply
    #2
    Her sleep the night before had been fitful, her dreams bleeding into nightmares. There were flashbacks of every time she had lost control of her dragon form, though the memories were hazy through that feral lense. She remembers attacking the golden stallion in Tephra and the strange armored creatures in the forest. She remembers being killed by the star-dappled mare from Loess, and later reborn from one of her scales the explosion had left behind. 

    Images of her past began to mingle with her fears for the future, of what might happen should she lose control on the battlefield of the Alliance. She saw her opponent, nameless and faceless, lying charred on the ground and surrounded by scorched earth.

    She had awoken with a start, her heart thundering inside her chest.

    It had been months since she was last plagued by nightmares. The longer she was in Hyaline (she had not realized how living with her mother again would offer her a sense of safety she hadn't known she was missing), the less frequently they came. As she steadied her ragged breathing, she reminded herself that she has been able to shift into her dragon form several times throughout the last few weeks without any incidents. Afterall, Breach's idea for Hyaline was to turn it into a kingdom of shifters, and what good was a dragon shifter that would not use her dragon form? She had finally accepted that practice was the only way she would learn.

    When Casimira arrives at the Plains the next afternoon, she has managed to banish all self-doubt from her mind.

    She was not a violent creature by nature.
    To have a part of her that was so vastly different from how she perceived herself had taken years to accept.
    To Casimira, the Alliance was a chance to prove to herself that she could fight as a dragon and maintain control.

    The Plains' ground is rocky, but she doesn't find it to be all that different from Hyaline's mountainous landscape. Still, she is mindful of where she places her feet, though she is already thinking how much easier this might be as an aerial battle. Dragon wings erupt from her sides in preparation, and a thick layer of white dragon scales armor the rest of her body. Other than that, she remains equine, for now.

    Her light-blue eyes settle on her opponent, and the sight of her excites butterflies in her gut. The other mare is taller than her, and built larger, too, but she doubts that will be an issue. Her dragon form would be much bigger than the other mare. Unless Frenzy can shift into a dragon as well, which, secretly, she almost hopes that she can. For some reason, she felt less guilt over her fight with Castile when they had both been dragons. It was attacking other horses as a dragon that haunted her, and she can feel some of her previous confidence in herself being to wane.

    Maybe I can win this fight without shifting into a dragon, she thinks. It would require a more tactical approach rather than sheer brute strength, but she decides, at the moment that she begins to canter towards Frenzy, that it is worth a shot.

    Her stride lengthens as she crosses the uneven terrain, and her eyes are focused on the other mare, noting any direction she might move as she approaches from Frenzy's left side. Her dragon wings extend, pumping at her sides until she thrusts herself upwards, and she is airborne. Flying was something she was rather good at; she did not often like to be a full dragon, but she did enjoy using her dragon wings.

    She has calculated her take-off to be only a matter of strides from Frenzy, as her intention is not to fly high, but instead to send a backward kick just as she passes over the back of her to now be on her right side. She tried to position herself so that she was clearing the space just behind the other mare's withers (hoping that was far enough away from her horn should Frenzy decide to swing her head), kicking out behind her with both hindlegs as she pushed herself higher into the air with her wings.

    The idea was to distract her since Casimira was not sure if a kick would be hard enough to knock her off balance (Frenzy is, after all, larger than her) or cause severe damage. However, even if the other mare sported armor, a forceful kick could be enough to penetrate pain to the muscles beneath it. She did not aim for anything in particular, but Frenzy's withers, shoulder, and ribcage were all fair targets. A bruise to any one of those places would be aggravating, but of course, armor would dull the impact. By kicking with the bottom of her hoof, her own body should be able to absorb most of the shock of hitting something so solid, though her leg might smart a bit if she had decided to land.

    She flies up rapidly after the impact in an attempt to avoid immediate retaliation, her heart again a storm behind her ribs. The white mare does not go far, though, hovering in the sky along with the bright midday sun. She does not face the mare head-on but instead keeps herself sideways, giving her eyes a chance to take in as much of her as possible in preparation for what she will do next.

    The adrenaline that rushes like a river in her veins almost drowns out the monster that incessantly scratches at its cage.

    ----

    938 words
    Casimira currently just has dragon wings and dragon scales.
    Wasn't sure if Frenzy had diamond armor all the time so I left it open.
    Reply
    #3
    Even though he’s dead and buried - and enshrined! - Frenzy is still trying her hardest to prove her worth to her sire.

    She has died to try and discovered greatness, burnt by the Dark God until her body was just smoldering ruins on the beach. In dying, she has traveled through alternate dimensions and discovered beasts that she cannot describe with words; beasts that tore her apart, limb from limb, until there was nothing left and she reached the point of a second death, only to be torn back to the land of the living and left there on the beach, still entirely broken but gifted with a new ability to protect herself in the future.

    Frenzy has been practicing for weeks with her new armor, testing the boundaries of her energy to plate herself in malleable diamonds and hold them there for as long as possible, before letting the magic fade away and the precious gems to melt from her limbs. For some reason, Gospel has chosen her to represent the Silver Cove in the Alliance, and she desperately needs to prove her worth to the residents of the East. Perhaps she has less warrior experience than someone older, but she isn’t going to go down without a good fight.

    She is already waiting at the battlefield when her opponent arrives, and as they size each other up, Frenzy smirks. Casimira is older than her, no doubt, and has had a lifetime to perfect her abilities and fighting skills, but the black mare feels nothing but excitement as adrenalin begins to course through her. Casimira is smaller and leaner, which means she will probably be faster and more nimble than the heavier-set Frenzy. She watches as wings erupt from the white mare’s shoulders and her expression changes, her brow furrowing as she reconsiders her battle plan. Her opponent may have her heart set on an aerial battle, but Frenzy is severely lacking in the wings department.

    She begins to move as Casimira does, grinning as the sunlight glints off of the white mare’s dragon scales. She was raised among dragons, and if this mare is anything like her siblings, she knows that she has her weaknesses as they all do. Even coated in scales she will have weak spots where Frenzy’s horn and flames will be able to breach.

    Her slow lope traverses the uneven ground carefully, and she keeps one eye on Casimira as the mare careens towards her, wings extended. It is almost too easy for Frenzy to guess that she is going to take to the skies before they collide, and Frenzy almost laughs aloud as her opponent does exactly that. The wind from her wings washes over Frenzy like the touch of a gentle wave, and she makes the snap decision to drench her upper body in diamond in case of an aerial attack.

    She begins to spin towards Casimira as the white mare flies overhead, drawing in a deep breath that ignites the flames in her throat.

    She doesn’t get a chance to loose them though, as Casimira executes a well-aimed, double-barrelled kick towards Frenzy’s shoulder. The diamonds have only just begun to form a thin layer over her forelimbs, and even as she attempts to shy away, she knows that this is going to sting like a bitch. She cannot afford that, this early in the battle.

    She stumbles a step as the mare’s hooves make an impact, but recovers swiftly and lets the fire erupt as Casimira flies upwards, knowing that the flames will wash harmlessly over her scales, but hoping to scorch the leathery, unprotected membranes of the dragon-woman’s wings. If she can render Casimira flightless for the remainder of the battle, it will force them to meet as mostly equals on the ground - from the ground, Frenzy can only pray to inflict damage on a sky-borne opponent.

    Scowling now, she comes to a brief halt to assess herself, rolling her shoulders experimentally as she lets her armor fall away. Nothing is broken or torn, but she knows that Casimira’s attack will certainly leave a decent bruise. Is it worth it to carry a bruise that could become worse and cripple her in any future rounds of the Alliance? For the second time, she makes a swift decision that could cost her precious energy later in the battle - she simply heals the bruise, knitting the veins back together and soothing the already-aching muscles. It is not fully healed, but it will distract her less now.

    As she begins to move again she coats herself in armor, the diamonds glimmering as they crawl up her neck and click into place on her chest. She leaves her legs and most of her face uncovered but takes extra care to protect her vital organs and uses her armor to essentially weld her horn to her face. She does her best to keep at least one eye on Casimira as she does so, knowing that a counter-attack is only seconds away.

    In her adrenalin-soaked veins, it feels as though they have been here for hours already, even though perhaps only ten minutes or fewer have passed on the battlefield.

    As Casimira prepares for her second attack, Frenzy turns to attempt and meet her opponent head-on.



    ---


    883 words
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    #4
    She is surprised when fire erupts from Frenzy’s mouth, though really, she should have expected it. Maybe not fire, exactly, but she should have known better than to assume her opponent didn’t have some other trick up her sleeve. She had caught a glimpse of the diamond armor forming across the other mare’s dark body, and she should have predicted that she could be harboring another ability. Casimira knew, perhaps better than most, that several things could be hidden underneath inconspicuous exteriors. After all, to the average passerby, she was nothing but a plain-looking Anglo-Arabian mare. There was nothing about her that hinted to what lurked inside of her, clawing to be free. Nothing about her quiet, astute stare that indicated the war that roiled internally.

    Everyone had their own brand of monster that they did not want the world to see. Hers is just larger than most.

    She had been confident that she could keep hers locked away for the entirety of this battle, but she can feel it now hissing and rattling in its cage. When pain flashes white-hot across her left wing, it opens the door and lets the monster out.

    She cries out, but beneath the evident pain, there is a feral growl that builds inside of her chest. The feel of heat crawling across her side (her dragon scales, when in her equine form, were not immune to fire) and up her leathery wing is like a taunt to the dragon, seemingly daring it to come forward.

    With a grimace of pain, she hits the ground with a graceless thud, stumbling but remaining on her feet. Her hooves have hardly touched the earth before she shifts into her dragon form.

    Her body contorts and twists, but it all happens so fast that the transition is nearly seamless. She has shifted hundreds of times, but there is something especially ferocious when the shift is accelerated by anger.

    Her pale blue eyes, previously placid and somber, become sharp and hard in their new draconic shape, and the black pupils narrow to thin slits. She sports the same white scales and wings (the left one still injured and burnt), but now there is a row of spikes protruding along the ridge of her spine and the full length of her tail. Rising to her maximum height, she towers above Frenzy at roughly ten feet tall, and her mouth opens to reveal her sharp and gleaming teeth when she emits a warning hiss. At this size, the sound is loud enough to nearly cause the earth to tremble, and the air between them grows hot from the heat that radiates from her mouth. A tendril of smoke curls from her tongue, but she does not unleash the firestorm that she knows she is capable of creating.

    She has practiced enough in her dragon form that even though the pain from Frenzy’s fire had spurred her to shift, she manages to cling to a thread of control. She doesn’t want to kill her.

    Just hurt her.

    She fixes her stare on Frenzy, finding it was much easier to track her movements with the forward-set eyes of a predator rather than the side-set eyes of a horse. She takes note of the diamond armor that her opponent has fortressed herself within, but she is undeterred. With her depth perception dramatically improved, she lowers her great head, her long neck snaking forward in an attempt to block her from escaping should she try.

    She takes a few ground-eating strides as needed, her large talons digging into the red earth as her massive body subtly tries to curl around Frenzy. In an almost viper-like movement, she feints an attack with her mouth, her jaws snapping at Frenzy's face as though she means to swallow her whole. However, she intends to hopefully herd the mare backward towards her waiting tail, which she now sweeps across the ground in a robust and swift motion. She was aiming to either knock the mare off her feet or incapacitate her in some other way. Even if it were just a glancing blow, the strength of her enormous tail would be enough to cause injury should she make contact. It was large and primarily made of solid muscle with hard scales, and even alligators, who are much smaller than a dragon, have been known to use their tails as weapons. Any sort of hit from her thrashing tail should be able to penetrate pain well past the armor, possibly even break a bone. 

    With her head lowered, another heated hiss rolls from her throat, a rumbling growl vibrating inside of her chest. The fury still licks at the fringes of her mind, but she knows she is still in control of herself since she has left Frenzy alive.

    ---

    word count: 800
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    #5
    Using my extension~
    clarissa | cirilla | dawn | frenzy
    bewitched | chalkydri | folklore | paradox | phobia | sunset

    Reply
    #6
    Frenzy isn’t too sure what she expected when the flames bathe Casimira, but when her opponent cries out in pain, a feral smile flashes across the diamond-encrusted mare’s face. She watches as the mare lands, stumbling on the uneven terrain but managing to keep her feet. As the mare begins to shift before her eyes - a dragon! Frenzy probably should have expected that! - Frenzy’s smile grows wider yet, and a crazed giggle escapes her as her opponent grows and elongates smoothly into a new form.

    The air grows hot between them as Casimira opens her mouth to hiss, and Frenzy prepares herself for a torrent of flames that never seems to come. It seems as though a dragon would use that as an attack, no? Perhaps not. Her opponent’s eyes are like chips of ice and Frenzy wonders if she has another hidden ability below the surface. If so, now would be the time to use it, right?

    She decides to keep moving just as the dragon begins to gallop towards her, and Frenzy swears she can feel the ground shaking beneath those taloned legs. Casimira attempts to curl around her, but the best part about a dragon is that they are large and a bit graceless when they are forced to battle from the ground. Casimira probably weighs several tons in this form, all muscle and armored scales, and the weight that she is carrying is certain to slow her down.

    Her head and neck, however, will be just as fast as always.

    When jaws snap near her face, Frenzy shies away and spins, hoping to put some distance between the two as she calculates what her next attack should be. What she hasn’t counted on, however, is the heavy, spiked tail that is now sweeping towards her. Eyes wide, she tries to scramble away, but it is much too late at this point. She lets out a guttural screech as Casimira’s tail makes contact with her shoulder and upper leg, sweeping her off of her hooves.

    She lands heavily on her newly-injured shoulder and snarls as she scrambles back to her hooves, desperate now to put some distance between herself and the dragon. It is sheer adrenalin that pushes her away from Casimira, and she only stops and turns once there is a distance between them that she is certain the dragon’s flames would not be able to reach.

    The pain swells at this point and Frenzy shifts her weight experimentally, grimacing as her injured leg takes her weight. I did not do this to lose, she thinks as she watches the dragon, tracking her opponent’s movements. Knowing that healing her new injury would require too much time and precious energy, she stands tall and lets most of her armor fall away. On her face, she thickens her diamonds, coating her entire head and most of her upper neck, the precious gems gleaming as the mid-day sun catches them.

    Lowering her head, she faces Casimira head-on, testing her footing experimentally before breaking into a smooth canter. Her vision is severely limited by doing this, but if the dragon moves to either side, she will be able to catch the movements and correct her course all the same. She is confident that her opponent will not - cannot - take to the skies, and even as the pain threatens to pull her under she charges towards the mare, her intent clear as her diamond-shrouded horn gleams in the sunlight.

    Dragon scales probably aren’t impervious to diamond, after all.

    She is aiming to pierce Casimira’s scales, hopefully in the chest or shoulder area. A wound to the chest could be crippling, possibly even life-threatening depending on how deep it is. A shoulder wound could possibly tear pierce the many muscles that lay there and, once the adrenalin has worn off, hinder Casimira’s movement later on, if her opponent is the one to progress further instead of Frenzy.

    Mostly, Frenzy just wants the dragon to bleed.

    As her attack reaches its conclusion, she spins away from the dragon, grimacing as she begins to let her guard down. The battle has reached its end now and Frenzy, breathing hard, limps away from the dragon. She isn’t too sure of the extent of her own injuries, but she knows that they hurt. Hopefully, it isn’t something that will cripple her if she is to move on to the next round.

    She wonders if Father will still be proud of her if she is eliminated now.


    ---


    784 words
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    #7
    Casimira keeps the mare centered in her crosshairs, watching every move she makes with the calculated gaze of a predator. She has maintained her control thus far, but she can feel her hold beginning to slip with the finish line in sight. Frenzy wavers between opponent and prey, and the longer Casimira continues in this adrenaline-driven state, the more the line begins to blur. When the mare scrambles away—surprisingly uninjured for being swept off her feet by the tail of a nearly ten-ton dragon—there is a moment her pulse spikes unexpectedly. Her muscles twitch, and her head lowers as if she is going to pursue. Fire is already crawling up the back of her throat before she remembers herself.

    This was a fight. A game. The goal was to win, not to kill her.

    The beast snarls but withdraws, flaring her leathery wings in agitation but otherwise does not attack. She takes a few long, sweeping steps to circle the black mare again, and the beast would have laughed had she heard Frenzy refer to her as graceless. She did not need the grace of a panther or some other small animal to stalk her opponent from the ground. Four legs were not much different to her whether they had hooves at the end or talons, so other than being significantly larger, she had no trouble at all navigating the terrain as a dragon. With Frenzy so close, it would be difficult for her to manage an escape, and Casimira's jets of fire could engulf the entire area if needed.

    The part of her brain that is still reasonable remembers that this is just a battle of pride, and not to the death, and that keeps her flames in check.

    It reminds her that they both needed to leave here alive, though the dragon is beginning to think Frenzy's bones would feel nice crushed between her teeth.

    Her reptilian eyes narrow as the mare begins to make her run at her, and she is surprised that Frenzy has chosen to discard most of her armor. An interesting choice since it was the only thing protecting her from Casimira's flames or from bearing the full brunt of a defensive blow. It didn't seem wise to assume the dragon would respect the rules of engagement, but of course, Casimira—the mentally sound and logical Casimira that was currently trapped beneath layers of muscle and scales and predatory rage—had no intention of breaking the rules. It was a safe assumption for Frenzy to make, this time.

    She shifts her body to the side but does not dodge Frenzy's attack entirely, and she braces for impact as the mare rams her horn into her shoulder. Her massive head snaps towards the mare just as she releases another draconic shriek of irritation, but she does not retaliate. Thankfully dragon scales were impenetrable to everything, and that included diamond. There was nothing that could pierce her scales, save for if Frenzy had managed to get her underbelly. Although it did not puncture, it would certainly still bruise into the muscle. Casimira expected she would be considerably sore over the next few days, especially once back in her equine form.  Her mother could heal her, though, if need be.

    When the other mare retreats, she does not move. Her blood pounds, and she snarls and shakes her head, as though she was fighting some internal war. This had been the struggle in the past. To convince the dragon to relinquish its hold on her. Eventually, her body seems to melt, the wings and the scales falling away into nothing and leaving in its wake an Anglo-Arabian mare that seemed so delicate in comparison to her dragon counterpart. Her sides heave as she catches her breath, her muscles feeling weak as the adrenaline begins to ebb away.

    Her pale blue eyes, so much clearer and softer now, watch the other mare across the battlefield. Injured, but alive and whole. She cannot deny the pride that swells inside her chest at realizing that even if Casimira lost this battle, she had won the one she always had with herself.
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    #8
    Winner: Casimira
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