- The RhyDin Post?s black and gold logo flashes with an epic, orchestrated introduction theme. The logo spirals off the screen, and displays a remarkably different, updated high-tech news studio with several flat screen television sets, projected RhyDin Post Sports hologram images, and in-action moving images of famous dueling legends projected on a few walls. At the bottom of a modern, massive, glass-covered black granite and mahogany desk are scrolling digital scores from the latest matches in the Outback, Arena, Twilight Isle and Annex. It is obvious the studio has been rebuilt, though efforts were made to keep the overall look as similar as possible with the exception of a dazzling new panel display of dueling greats sitting just behind the anchor desk. Every few minutes, the images change to display a different well known duelist. Two men sit behind the desk. To the left (Peter Pham) is in his early thirties, of Asian ethnicity, has gelled black hair, and is in a gray suit. To the right is a younger man in his late twenties of Caucasian ethnicity, with red hair and freckles. He is wearing a black suit. Peter, equipped with a headset, smiles at the camera. The other man is visibly trembling. - - The new hologram setup shifts from Duel of Fists to Duel of Swords, and high-definition, in-action images of Xenograg, Siera Redwin, and Dalamar Ar?Daumon appear on the screens. -Peter
: How?s it going, RhyDin? I?m Peter Pham, sports columnist.- The ginger beside Peter twitches, smiling nervously.
: Andrew? That?s your cue.Andrew
: This is where you introduce yourself. We rehearsed this.Andrew
: Oh? OH! - Looking at the camera, obviously trembling. ?
And I?m Andrew, but you all can call me Drew!Peter
: No, they can?t.Andrew
: No you can?t! Right? Ahem. What he said. - Nervous laughter. ?Peter
: Put on your headset, Andrew. - Back to the camera. ?
Thanks for tuning in with us tonight, folks. As you can see, we?ve had a few changes to our studio, but barring any further catastrophe, we-Andrew
: - Blurts out. ?
I?m not cut out for this, Pete!Peter
: We talked about this. You can handle it. Andrew
: I know, I know. But this is his
chair, not mine! And he? - Dropping his voice to a whisper. ?
. And he won?t let me forget it.Peter
: Well, that?s his own fault for getting himself fired for ?accidentally? burning down our television studio.Andrew
: ? Allegedly.Peter
: Just read the cue cards. It?ll come naturally in a few episodes.Andrew
: And what about the sabotage? He?s out to get me, Pete!Peter
: We?ve been over this, Andrew. He did not
booby trap the studio just to get back at you for taking his job.Andrew
: My toilet overflowed this morning!Peter
: Toilets overflow all the time. RhyDin constantly brings in mages to fix the sewage problems.Andrew
: All of my shelves fell off my dressing room wall when I walked in!Peter
: Maybe you?re just not the best handyman.Andrew
: All of my Cosmo issues are missing!Peter
: Maybe? Wait. Cosmo? Really?Andrew
: They have good skin care tips. I have an oily t-zone. Peter
: - Clearing his throat. ?
As I was saying, RhyDin, we managed to get this place up and built just in time to catch the Overlord challenge. Old news by now, but hey, what can you do?Andrew
: W-we?re starting off with an Overlord challenge?! Y-you know how much he
would have wanted to cover it?!Peter
: He?s not going to magically materialize and murder you, Andrew. - Pause. ?
: THAT?S NOT FUNNY, PETE.Peter
: Few quick notes, first. The Battlefield Park Challenge
, it looks like, will be taking place on August 31st, so make sure to catch that and show your support.Andrew
: And it looks like Matt Simon has been challenged for Dragon?s Gate
, date still pending. - Pause. ?
Since, uh, you-know-who is gone, does that mean we can end the whole obsession with Matt Simon thing?Peter
: I?d tread those waters carefully, if I were you.Andrew
: I just don?t see what the big fuss is about?Peter
: And lastly in Swords, Old Market
is also being challenged, date set for the 28th. In Fists, we have another FireStar Challenge
from Anubis Karos, slotted for the night before, August 27th. Andrew
: Again? Peter
: If you want something that badly, you?ll do anything to get it. And also, this is also pretty old news, but as we have just now gained the opportunity to do so, we?d like to give a nod and clap of our hands to Harris D?Artainian, for achieving a 200 wins-over-losses streak.Andrew
: - Begins actually clapping, then stops abruptly, turning bright red. ?
Oh? I thought we were really applauding.Peter
: It?s quite a feat, but honestly we?re not surprised. Congratulations on your two-hundred, Harris, and here?s to two-hundred more.Andrew
: A lot coming up, huh?Peter
: Quite a bit. We just may have to catch that FireStar challenge live. Andrew
: - Pales. ?
I would, Pete, really I would, if I didn?t think he?d
: You can say his name, you know. He?s not Voldemort.Andrew
: It would just anger the vengeful gods. Besides, I?m not the biggest fan of Fists, honestly. It?s just a lot of aimless bashing and OW! - Yanking his headset off suddenly. ?
Did you hear that screaming in your headphones, too? What the hell was that?Peter
: If I had to guess, foreshadowing.Andrew
: Nevermind. Roll the footage, Jeremy. - Slow-motion footage of a swimsuit-clad Peaches running on a beach rolls instead. ?Peter
: Not that
footage, Jeremy.- Roll footage: Overlord Challenge, Gren Blockman vs. Morgan le Fay, Round 1. TH/HC 1-0 Blockman. ?
Le Fay: Opening salvo does not go in her favor
Brockman: Tara said stick and move, and he does just that. The tip of his staff shoots forward for a quick strike.Peter
: Now for those who weren?t present for this match, and I can?t imagine why anyone wouldn?t
be, the Overlady selected a single match format for this challenge. But that isn?t surprising. What is
surprising is how quickly Blockman gets on the offensive. That thrust was swift and well-executed, but a little eager for my liking. It?s almost as if he is trying to prove right off the bat that his challenge carries weight.Andrew
: Well, he?s a good enough duelist, but- AGH! - Crash. ?Peter
: What happened?Andrew
: My chair fell apart! Wait? what the heck?! Where are the screws?!Peter
: I think you just need to check your chair next time. Regardless, I am pleased to see so much congeniality between opponents. But then Morgan le Fay has always been an Overlady worthy of respect.Andrew
: Say that to all her renegade barons. Peter
: Much of the time a Baron?s alignment has more to do with politics than people.- End footage Round 1. Roll footage, Round 2, 3, and 4. LC/LC, 1-0 Blockman; SH/FDU 1-0 Blockman; LC/FSS 2-0 Blockman. ?
Blockman: He shifts his staff low, going for the legs, but Morgan's sword gets in his way and they lock in an impasse. He takes a wary step back, lifting his staff into a brace position, then, tempted to charge forward, he instead shifts his attack to Morgan's legs again, and catches her stepping away from him. Peter
: You can see the calculation here in le Fay?s expression clear as day, and it?s obvious Blockman is picking up on it. But I?d like to make a small observation here with regard to Blockman?s weapon choice. Now, many new duelists are eager to charge in with whatever weapon they can grab off the rack, so long as it seems it will do the most damage. But it?s readily apparent in this round that Blockman has both chosen and learned his weapon well. - The round is replayed in slow-motion. The camera zooms into Blockman?s oaken staff at the point of impact, and drawn bright red circles and diagrams begin popping up on the screen. ?
Watch here as his staff connects with le Fay?s blade. This, - X-mark in red. ?
on the opposite side of the weapon, is what we call a pivot point. When you take a staff and make an impact at a particular point on the shaft, the staff pivots around another point. The impact point and the resulting pivot point are always on opposite sides of the staff?s balance point. For an untapered staff, if you make an impact inside the upper or middle third of the staff, like it was here, - Another red X. ?
it pivots around a point in space that?s past the end of the staff. Andrew
: Not gonna lie, having a hard time seeing what this has to do with Blockman?s skill.Peter
: Watch. Trained swordswomen like le Fay know this phenomenon, which is why her next maneuver is presumably to strike low, in the area the fulcrum has exposed. However, Blockman preemptively counters this, and bearing that knowledge of his weapon and its limitations, is able to anticipate le Fay?s anticipation. Do you understand now? Andrew
: No, but then my head is getting a little wobbly. Does this coffee taste funny to you?- End footage Round 4. Roll footage Round 5. FSS/HC 2-1 Blockman.
Le Fay: The rapier slices high before Gren can step away.
Blockman: Now its his turn to get struck in mid-step, as he tries to shift left, but finds himself in the path of the rapier.Andrew
: Now he?s, what, overcompensating?Peter
: I?d call that a timely window, taken advantage of quite expertly by le Fay.Andrew
: S'what he gets for showboating. - Hiccup. -
Man, this tastes weird.Peter
: That wasn?t showboating. Andrew
: Right. I agree.Peter
: ? You can?t just agree if I contradict you. If you are going to be a commentator, you have to make a valid point.Andrew
: What? Sorry, I?m seeing? strange? colors.- End footage Round 5. Roll footage, Round 6. FCP/LC 3-1 Blockman. ?
Blockman: He senses the double cut coming, and he adjusts his staff low, sweeping down to deflect the attack.Peter
: And that there, folks, is why that particular weapon, though unwieldy and not particularly suited for it, occasionally has its uses in close combat. Andrew
: I JUST HAD A REALIZATION.Peter
: Lower your voice, Andrew. What is your realization?Andrew
: I realized? that Nayun is verrrrry good looking.Peter
: That has nothing to do with? Really? Nayun? Andrew
: I?m feeling very strange, Pete. Like my inhibitions are lowered. I feel? manly. - Panting. ?
I think there was something in that coffee. Mind if I take my shirt off? Peter
: Ah, yes, I do mind. But as I was saying, this method is ideal here, because-Andrew
: - Interrupting. ?
The lights are SINGING, Pete. And they sound like Bonnie Tyler.Peter
: Someone take his coffee away.- End footage Round 6. Roll footage, Round 7. FLP/FSS 3-2 Blockman. ?
Le Fay: A moving step keeps her still in this match.
Blockman: He goes for the bookend parry, but he is outflanked by the quick maneuvering.Peter
: And here we see a lot of Morgan le Fay?s strategy is taken from? Put your shirt back on, Andrew.Andrew
: I CAN?T SEE ANYTHING WITH THIS ON.Peter
: Stop yelling. It?s over your eyes. - Shuffling. Sounds of struggle. ?
Oh, fine, just take the damn thing off, then.Andrew
: - Maniacal laughter. Panting. ?
Look at these pecs! Man, I am PERFECT for this job! Peter
: That might be the case if you would comment just a little.Andrew
: HURGH! I?ll comment! I?ll comment so hard it?ll make you puke! Peter
: I?m brimming with anticipation.Andrew
: Here?s your comment, Pete. If that loser were still working here, he?d probably point out that le Fay is biding her time? But he isn?t and he?s WRONG. Peter
: This will end well.- End footage Round 7. Roll footage Round 8. TH/LC 4-2 Blockman. ?
Blockman: He watches for an opening and finds one, the staff is thrust forward and its tip finds Morgan's midsection.
Le Fay: And find it he does, she winces.
: I must say, I am quite dazzled by the steady lead Blockman has managed to keep this whole challenge. The humility of his initial challenge most decidedly belied his desire for the title. Andrew
: - Incoherent rambling. ?Peter
: What he said. That le Fay is being so conservative this late in the match worries me, however. It?s not at all like her to throw in the towel. - Pause. ?
: I?M KING OF THE WORLD!Peter
: Get off the desk. Andrew
: Never! The desk represents something, Pete. It represents how far I?ve come. Never again will I be abused by that foul-mouthed, idiotic buffoon. He?s gone, Pete! GONE! I can do all the things I always wanted to!Peter
: Yes, and you can start by getting off the desk. Christ, someone run an analysis on whatever it was that was in that coffee. - End footage Round 8. Roll footage, Round 9 and 10. FSS/FDU 4-2 Blockman; TH/TH 5-2 Blockman. ?
Le Fay: Slight lowering of her chin as they trade in his favor.
Blockman: A shifting to the left, trying to outflank Morgan, but she stays still and he gains no advantage. He lunges forward a third time. Wincing at the exchange, but it was worth it in the end.Peter
: You know, watching now, I rescind my earlier statement. If le Fay had been operating from a purely offensive standpoint, I likely would have pegged her as being reckless and foolhardy. I actually think she handled that match exceptionally well, all things considered. - Camera returns to the studio, where Andrew appears to be half-naked, but grinning quite maniacally while staring at Pete. He isn?t blinking. ?Peter
: As much as I hate to see le Fay go, I have to admit Blockman?s win was quite refreshing, given his rather humble persona. - Clucking his tongue. ?
I give it five years before these politics get the better of him. - Pauses, finally looking at Andrew. ?
: Nothing. I?m just real happy to be here. And you?re very good-looking, you know.Peter
: - Sighing. ?
Yes, well. We?re glad to have you. Andrew
: Now that that idiot is gone, things are going to change around here, folks. I?m
the new anchor in town, and we?re going to do what I
say! No more pig-headed, booze-laden, passive-aggressive?Peter
: Easy there, Andrew.Andrew
: Poorly conceived, would-be commentary by a dueling FOSSIL who probably couldn?t bowl that dueling cat over if his life depended on it.Peter
: If I were you, I?d stop while I?m ahead.Andrew
: I will NOT stop! I?m GLAD he?s gone! And you know what?! You know what else? Yeah, this is for you, bud. - Glaring at the camera. ?
MATT SIMON SUCKS.- Dead silence. There is a creaking. Then a groaning. Then a louder groaning. Suddenly, a massive torrent of stones and rubble cave in from the ceiling and crush Andrew in a gigantic pile of debris. As the dust settles, a multicolored paper banner flutters down from above. It reads: MATT SIMON ROCKS. ?Peter
: - Unfazed. ?
Yes, well. Congratulations to our new Overlord, and well fought, Morgan. We look forward to seeing what comes of this new reign. Thanks for having us back, RhyDin. We- well, I
- hope to catch you all in person sometime soon, and I look forward to hearing from you about duels or duel news that merit our coverage. But until then, let the blood run, and stay sporty!- Blackout. Voices still continue. ? Peter
: Well. That?s that, I guess. JEREMY! It?s your lucky day, buddy. The co-anchor chair is yours!- Terrified, girlish shrieking ensues. ?