"One ticket to Virtupets, please," the little Faerie Kacheek calmly requested as she handed the money needed to the pet in charge of selling tickets. She was given the ticket and pointed to a space shuttle that pets were crowding on to, and she wasted no time in taking her place among the pets that were traveling to the infamous space station.
Her name was Camilla, and she felt out of place at this moment, for though around her were all pets either dressed in rather casual attire or simply choosing to let their fur fly in the fresh air, she was donning full body armour and had two short swords strapped to her back. She spotted the suspicious way pets eyed her as she took a seat alone, and her ears drooped the slightest bit at the constant questioning stares she was receiving. Kacheeks were not natural fighters as it was, born and raised to favour the art of pacifism over all else and avoiding conflict whenever possible.
It was true that this little Kacheek had been taught the same. When she was young, her teachers used to explain to her gently that conflict would end poorly and that she should attempt to logically rationalize with other pets, or flee if words were failing, but more often than not, she found such acts were of little success. As a child she would attempt to be friendly to the pets that bullied her and they would shove her to the ground and laugh at her pitiful attempts at amnesty, they would pilfer her things and leave her beaten and bruised on the ground. Time and time again, attempts at pacifism would simply end in her being the one at a total disadvantage, and by the time she was a teenager, she was wholly convinced pacifism was a useless act, secretly taking up sword fighting.
Her mother wouldn't have approved, and she knew it. Sure, her mother had been a Lutari and not a Kacheek, but her mother acted on similar prospects of the Kacheek species, favouring gentle and friendly techniques.
Had it not been for her father, she likely would have never learned anything about sword fighting. Yes, it was quite true her father was a Kacheek, but he had always favoured sword fighting as well, and while she recalled the days where he would stare her down with his piercing blue eyes and point blank order her not to get into needless fights, he had finally submitted when she continued to push the issue, willing to give her a few lessons as long as she promised not to use them lightly.
She wasn't going against him. She wouldn't insult his memory like that. As she remained nestled in her seat and thought about the enemy she was aiming to take on, she felt justified in this upcoming battle. That Blumaroo was a menace, and all she wanted was to see him taken down a few pegs.
She ran her paws through the dark scarf draped over her armour, finding comfort in the soft touch of the material. This scarf had belonged to her father, and it was the last encounter they had partaken in before he vanished forever. Sometimes she would hold the scarf close and wonder what happened to him. He always talked about his personal mission and how important it was to him, but had never given details of what that personal mission was, and when he left to finally complete that mission only never to return, she had to come to terms with the fact that she would never get to ask him.
Much like her father, she had her own mission now. She might never know what it was her father had hoped to do, but she could at least hope that her father would smile upon her own mission now. However, she wasn't sure if she could be as confident as her father. She scowled at the image of her future opponent, but alongside that scowl was a mild shiver.
She feared that Blumaroo to some degree, and if he noticed that, he would surely latch on to it like a starved wild animal. Shivering at the very thought of him took her back to the origin of her hatred for him, and she despised reliving that experience more than anything, even if it did help push her to make choices she otherwise might not make.
Camilla was peacefully sitting at home, quietly reading a book as her son kept to himself in the other room. It had been a somewhat gloomy day outside, and not wanting to be kept down by such a foreboding atmosphere, she had opted to keep inside the home for the time being. Her ears were lifted ever so slightly as she lost herself deep within a fantasy novel of adventure and wonder, and her tail gently swayed back and forth as she began to read deeper into an action-packed scene of a grand battle being waged.
That was until a loud boom echoed from outside. She wasn't sure what it was, but she yelped sharply, dropping her book suddenly upon the floor as her ears drooped in fear. This village was usually quite peaceful – which was pretty normal considering that at this point in time, it was more or less entirely populated by Kacheeks that all shared the same pacifist mindset – so loud noises were almost unheard of. Every local was peaceful and gentle, partaking only in silent hobbies. She wasn't sure what that loud noise had been, but she was already up from her seat, and her son was already peering around the corner to question it as well.
That was when a taller Faerie Kacheek burst into the house, and the fear in his eyes was instantly obvious. It was her husband, and while she always knew him to be a rather timid soul, he had never shown this level of innate terror.
"What's wrong?" Camilla asked in a worried tone. Her son was still watching.
"We need to run... or hide... something!" her husband whimpered, his entire body quivering.
"What? Why?" Camilla demanded, raising her tone of voice a little only to realize her loud voice was scaring her husband even more. She felt a pang as she frightened him, easing up a little as she continued, "What do we need to run from?"
Her husband was quivering in terror, his entire body wracked with sharp shivers, and as she held his hands in hers, she too could feel the sharp jolts of his entire body. "W-We're under attack...! A ship landed o-on the edge of town! They're sh-shooting at everyone!"
"Mom, what's going on...?" her son chimed in.
"Honey it's –" Camilla began.
"Son, you need to hide," interrupted her husband suddenly, sharing his fear with his offspring by what was likely a complete accident. The little Kacheek whimpered sharply as he cowered in the doorway, tears beginning to pool in his eyes.
Camilla narrowed her gaze a little. "Don't do that to him." She spoke firmly, but trying not to raise her voice to too loud of a volume.
Her husband shook. "I-I'm sorry, but we're going t-to die if we don't get out of here...!" His voice cracked more and more with each passing second.
Camilla still wasn't entirely sure what was even going on, but it was becoming increasingly clear to her that her husband wasn't going to explain until he felt safe. She absolutely despised the idea of running or hiding from a threat, but now was absolutely not the time to attempt to have a debate like this, especially now that her son was quietly sobbing in the other room, stricken sharply by terror.
"Alright, alright, we're going to leave. But first I've got to calm down the son you upset by putting the image of death in his mind. Can you go outside real quick and check which exit would be safer for us to use?" Camilla spoke in a calm voice, hoping to ease up her husband's fears even the slightest bit.
"What!?" her husband yowled sharply. "You want me to go BACK out there?"
Camilla sighed. "One of us needs to check which exit is safer, and I'd do it myself, but considering the emotional state you're in right now, I don't think you'd do a very good job at calming Percy."
Her husband whimpered, "I-I understand..." He sniffled a little as he came to accept that he was no longer the best choice to calm his son down. "I-I'll go check which exit is safest. Please be quick. W-We need to get out of here before we're k-killed."
"I am aware. Now please stop saying the words kill and die out loud. Your son is already terrified enough," Camilla responded firmly.
"Oh, yeah, I-I'm sorry," her husband whimpered in response. He finally let go of her hands, moving towards the door again. "I'll be right back."
Camilla moved to step into the bedroom adjacent to the living room, scanning the messy room for where her son was. She finally spotted the small quivering figure of a Kacheek in the corner of the room. Her son was curled into the fetal position, head against the wall as he whimpered and sobbed in fear. She stepped up behind him, saying "Percy" in a gentle voice as she placed a comforting hand on his shoulder.
Percy glanced over his shoulder, his fur a wet mess as his tears flooded from his eyes. "A-Are we going to die, mom?"
Camilla pulled her son closer to her, holding him against her chest as she soothingly responded, "No, we're going to be fine. Your father was simply overreacting. He's checking the exits and we're going to leave. I just need you to keep everything together for a short while. Its alright to be afraid, but we need to stand up and move." She gently rubbed a paw against his cheek, keeping her gaze gentle as she smiled at him. "Can you do that for me?"
With a sniffle, her son answered, "Y-Yeah..." He stood up finally, his entire body shaking weakly as he did so. Camilla gasped as her son nearly fell over, holding out a paw to catch the wall. "Sorry."
"You're fine," Camilla reassured him. "Now, let's get your –"
Outside the house echoed an all too familiar scream of terror, followed by what sounded like a gun shot. There was a sharp thud against the side of the house, and it certainly didn't take a genius to figure out what happened.
"Oh Fyora, no!" Percy cried in terror. He tore away from his mother as he ran across the room, ripping the closet door open, throwing himself inside, and slamming it shut behind him. He had moved so quickly that Camilla's brain hadn't even had time to process it, and before she knew it, the door was slamming shut behind her.
"Wait! Percy! Hiding will only end poorly for you!" Camilla protested as she turned a little.
"So, we have someone hiding in here, hmm? Thank you for the notification," a deep, heavy voice boomed from behind Camilla.
She turned around suddenly, coming face to face with the enormous foreboding figure out a very dark blue Blumaroo. She was like a baby in front of him, for he stood more than three times her height. She felt her blood go cold as his glowing red eyes pierced through her very soul. It was like the Blumaroo himself was the pure embodiment of evil, and the very definition of being cold and empty. His tall ears dangled lifelessly behind him, and the springy tail that Blumaroos were known for was simply flopped upon the ground.
The Blumaroo tilted his head just the slightest bit, glancing towards the door to the closet as he quickly deduced that to be the likely location he would find someone hiding in, and it was at that moment Camilla felt a surge rush through her. Never before had she felt such a confusing series of emotions tearing her apart before – rage, terror, sadness – but just seeing that Blumaroo even glancing in the direction of the closet triggered this series of emotions, and she suddenly felt like the only thing that mattered was the safety of her child. Thus, she charged suddenly at the Blumaroo. She wasn't armed, wasn't even a particularly skilled fighter, but the only thing on her mind was protecting her son, and that was enough to set her at him, teeth bared in anger.
The dark blue Blumaroo did not shift his head, though his eyes tilted just the smallest amount. He stepped to the side just the slightest, and Camilla blew past him as if he had never been there. She gasped as she missed her target, turning around to face him.
His expression had shifted mildly, and while it was barely noticeable, he seemed to be some slight degree of surprised. "Hmm, a Kacheek that dares to charge at me? What an interesting change of pace. Here I thought you would just run away."
She charged at him foolishly again. "Get away from that door!" This time, the large Blumaroo grabbed her head firmly, halting her dead in the middle of her charge. She only had a moment to let out a surprised gasp before the Blumaroo shoved her backwards. She struck the wall, letting out a heavy gasp as she felt the sting of the impact.
The Blumaroo proceeded toward the closet once again after easily pushing Camilla out of the way. It was quite effortless for him to seize control of the situation, and Camilla felt useless as there was nothing she could seemingly do to stop the Blumaroo.
Camilla lifted her gaze to see the Blumaroo wrapping his hand around the closet door, and it was that moment the adrenaline rushed through his body with a rather strong suddenness. Her mind yowled in silent terror as she saw him turning the handle, knowing her son would be incapable of doing anything to prevent the Blumaroo from having his way, and she absolutely refused to allow this. Camilla rushed forward as fast as her little legs would carry her, leaping at the Blumaroo and sinking her teeth deep into his arm.
In reaction, the Blumaroo did little more than growl in annoyance. "Stubborn little Kacheek, aren't you?"
He didn't seem too bothered by the tiny teeth tearing into his skin, and even as Camilla tried to shake her head from side to side to do more damage, he seemed to be more amused by her antics than actually threatened. The Blumaroo suddenly jolted his arm to the side sharply, and the whole world briefly went completely silent as Camilla's skull struck the side of the wall hard.
Everything was empty and quiet for a second as she felt the warm trickle of blood down the back of her skull, gasping sharply as she released her grasp on the Blumaroo's arm. She collapsed to the ground in a mound.
As the world began to develop life around her again, she heard a cry of terror, and it quickly processed in her mind that the Blumaroo had opened the closet door and the terrified cry was that of her son. She tried to force herself back to alertness, lifting her head to see the Blumaroo grasping her son quite roughly by the ears as he struggled and sobbed in terror. He kicked and flailed as he begged the Blumaroo to let him go, using gentle requests as though he were likely to listen to them.
Camilla tried to force herself to her feet to throw herself at the Blumaroo again, but he had already spotted her movement from the corner of his eye, and as she tried to stand back up, she suddenly felt a heavy force upon the back of her head as she was shoved back to the ground. The Blumaroo had his boot firmly pushed against her head, and he pushed against her a little more firmly as he held her against the ground, his cold gaze lowering to observe the helpless victim in front of him.
"Your attempts to combat me are absolutely pathetic, Kacheek, but I find myself entertained that you even tried to attack me at all." He chuckled in a deep, ominous way. "Not a single other Kacheek had the gall to do such a thing." She yowled sharply as he pushed his foot against her even more roughly. "Consider the fact that I am allowing you to live a recognition of the amusement you have conferred upon me with your pitiful attempts to combat me."
It was at this point the Blumaroo released his foot from upon her head, but not before delivering one last heavy kick to the back of her skull before doing so.
She hadn't been able to prevent him from taking her son, or from killing her husband, and ever since that day, she had loathed everyone that Blumaroo stood for. She hadn't known who it was at the time, but as years had passed after that day, she came to learn the name of the red-eyed Blumaroo well, and she remembered it with a burning hatred in her heart for it. Commander Garoo – the right hand man of the notorious Dr. Sloth. He was a vicious, cold, ruthless soul, and it became quickly clear to her that she was far from the first person he had victimized. It seemed no line was unable to be crossed, no boundary was out of question, and no act was too heinous in the name of his end goals.
And she wanted to see him suffer for his atrocities. Yes, she admitted it was mostly what he had done to her that infuriated her, but it made her feel better to know inside that if she took him down, she'd be doing a service to the memories of the many pets he had stolen the lives of and the families that had to go on alone because of him.
And that pure, cold determination was what fueled her to climb aboard the space shuttle all these years later and head up to Virtupets.
She had been a contender in the battledome a few times, usually taking on lesser threats in matches that were more friendly in nature, but when she had noticed his name listed upon the challengers of the Neocola Centre – the battledome that existed far up in Virtupets – she knew that was once chance she couldn't pass up on. He was willing taking people on in fights for his own amusement, and she saw this as the perfect chance to finally seek her revenge.
That was what drove her, and that's was was driving her right now as she stepped off the space shuttle as it finally docked in Virtupets and boldly walked towards the battledome.
A Mutant Grundo sat at a desk alone, his feet kicked up on the table in front of him as he read to himself. Camilla could tell by the loud cheers and cries a match was going on. She struggled to see the arena from her location, but that was unimportant anyways. What was important was getting her chance to take on Commander Garoo.
She stepped up to the desk, fully being ignored by the Mutant Grundo who either hadn't noticed her yet or was going out of his way to pretend she wasn't there. She loudly cleared her throat with a scowl and finally the Mutant Grundo glanced over the edge of the desk, spotting the short Kacheek looking up at him.
"What do you want?" the Mutant Grundo asked with an amused grin.
"I want to challenge Commander Garoo," she boldly proclaimed, showing absolutely no hesitation as she stated her exact business here.
The Mutant Grundo laughed sharply, but when the little Faerie Kacheek standing in front of him didn't falter in her expression in the slightest, he started to realize she wasn't joking. "...Wait, you're being serious?"
"Evidently," Camilla answered firmly.
"That's cute," the Mutant Grundo taunted with a grin. His grin quickly faded, replaced with a more serious expression. "Now piss off!"
Camilla was taken aback by the rejection, and yowled, "Wait, why!? I'm not joking around, you know! I want to challenge Commander Garoo."
The Mutant Grundo leaned over the table with a small, stern glare. "Look, you little Faerie pipsqueak. Commander Garoo doesn't accept fights from cannon fodder like you. He's got better things to do than take on every single overconfident rat that thinks they've got a ghost of a chance taking him on. He'd wipe the floor with you."
"That's not your place to make that choice! Besides, his name is on the damn list! Why can't I challenge him?" Camilla protested firmly, slamming her paws against the table.
"Commander Garoo reserves the right to deny any and all challengers. He's not required to fight everyone that wants to fight him," the Mutant Grundo stated firmly.
Camilla confidently argued back, "Oh, and I assume you're qualified to make choices for Commander Garoo now, huh?"
The confident expression of the Mutant Grundo briefly faded as the little Faerie Kacheek in front of him expressed what was admittedly a valid point, but he wasn't about to let her get the best of him, and he quickly returned to his prior stern expression as he growled, "I'm making the choice I'm confident Commander Garoo would make anyways so he won't have to be bothered by your foolishness. You couldn't even beat the S750 Kreludan Defender Robot. There's no way in hell you're taking on Commander Garoo."
"I demand he denies me himself!" Camilla cried.
The Mutant Grundo snarled, "Not happening, now either challenge someone else or beat it!"
Camilla was not giving up on this so easily, and for the next couple hours she remained in the area, constantly demanding a fight with Commander Garoo and pestering the same Mutant Grundo over and over again only to be constantly refused. Her presence in the area was beginning to become the common discussion of both the local mutants and tourists alike, though most of them either took a mocking tone or believed she would eventually give up and go home once she finally accepted the fight wasn't happening. Few believed she stood a chance and even less considered there to even be a ghost of a chance this fight would ever happen.
As the mutants began to discuss it among themselves, the discussion finally crossed the ears of a certain red-eyed Blumaroo himself.
"Is that Faerie Kacheek STILL demanding a battle with Commander Garoo?" asked a Mutant Jetsam with a loud laugh.
The Mutant Gelert in front of him hummed, "Sure is. She really thinks he's going to accept her challenge."
"Challenge?" the Mutant Jetsam laughed. "That pathetic little runt couldn't pose a challenge to any of the contenders in the Neocola Centre, nonetheless Commander Garoo himself."
"She's still demanding a fight. Insists Commander Garoo himself refuse her," replied the Mutant Gelert.
"He's got better things to do," huffed the Mutant Jetsam. "Hopefully she pisses off and goes home soon. Why in the world does she even want this fight so badly?"
The Mutant Gelert shrugged, "You got me. But she's persistent."
Commander Garoo stared at the two of them as they discussed, and his mind began to wander to unheard of places. It wasn't surprising to him when he was told people requested fights with him that other pets denied on his behalf – he more or less told them to just refuse fights that appeared to be a waste of time for him - but it was seldom often that someone was this level of persistent. He began to ponder, memories of years long past churning in his mind once again, and his curiosity was pecking like an irksome little Pteri deep within his head.
Could it be?
It seemed so unlikely, but what if it was?
Commander Garoo was distracted now, and he deep within wanted an answer. It seemed so unlikely that an element of the past that far gone would creep up to say hello to him again, but if he remembered that memory at all, then it was wholly possible that the opposite was also true – that the past remembered him. Thus he approached one of the pets in charge of the battledome, looming behind him like an ominous shadow as he waited to be noticed.
The robot Grundo tilted his head, gasping as he noticed the fierce gaze looking back at him. "Oh, Commander! Hello. Can I help you?"
"I hear a Faerie Kacheek has been spending hours demanding a fight with me," Commander Garoo stated firmly.
"Oh yes, that. Don't worry about it, Commander. We've already told her its not happening. Eventually she'll give up and go –"
Quite suddenly, Commander Garoo interrupted, "Set up the match."
The robot Grundo was taken aback, his red eyes flickering an uncertain green as he stared at the fierce Blumaroo looming in front of him. "Excuse me?"
"You heard me," Commander Garoo growled.
"Commander, you don't honestly want to amuse this Kacheek, do you? She doesn't look like a good fighter. She won't possess any –"
"Either you set up this match, or I'll throw you off the edge of the space station and find someone who will set up this match," Commander Garoo sternly huffed. The robot Grundo squeaked nervously, realizing just how serious his commanding officer was being, and with a tiny nod, he dashed off to go alert those in charge of the battledome.
Meanwhile, Camilla was still bothering the Mutant Grundo from before, demanding an explanation as to why she was still being denied a fight or even the right to be refused by Commander Garoo himself. At this point, even she was beginning to grow weary, convinced this fight was never going to happen, but she had gone through the effort of finally convincing herself to do this in the first place, and she wasn't going to let that confidence so easily go to waste.
"I've told you twenty times, you little Faerie pipsqueak! Piss off!" yowled the Mutant Grundo, who was increasingly losing his patience with her. "Commander Garoo is never going to accept –"
The robot Grundo tapped the Mutant Grundo on the thigh now, and the Mutant Grundo glanced down at the little robot, his annoyance still quiet clear. "Commander Garoo has approved the fight."
"What fight?" asked the Mutant Grundo, believing he was misinterpreting this notification he was receiving.
"The fight with the Faerie Kacheek. Commander Garoo wants to go through with the fight," replied the robot Grundo.
"Wait, for real!?" the Mutant Grundo yowled, his face pale from shock. "You're joking me right? This fight would be a waste of his time. He isn't just –"
The robot Grundo interrupted, "He threatened to have me jettisoned off Virtupets if I didn't put this fight through. He wants the fight to happen. If you've got an issue with it still, you can take it up with the Commander himself."
The Mutant Grundo exhaled. He was in total disbelief and simply couldn't even begin to put his finger on why Commander Garoo would agree to such a fight in the first place, nonetheless why he'd go out of his way to insist it occur at all. "Alright, I understand." The robot Grundo nodded firmly as he wandered off, returning to his prior affairs. The Mutant Grundo finally turned back to face Camilla, leaning over the desk. "By some miracle, Commander Garoo has approved this fight. I don't know why or how he did, but you got what you wanted. Get in the arena and have your damn fight already! You'd better enjoy it."
Camilla's ears lifted in excitement as she realized her fight was finally being approved, but as she stepped into the bright metallic arena wholly alone, the eyes of many confused observers upon her as she waited for her opponent to arrive, her ears began to sink downwards in fear. She suddenly began to worry this was a bad idea, and even more than that, she began to ponder why the fight had been so abruptly approved by Commander Garoo himself.
"Well, well, well, look what ancient relic of the past the Kadoatie dragged in," a deep voice boomed loudly.
Camilla felt a sharp shiver rush down her spine as she looked up, her gaze locking with the sharp, red eyes of Commander Garoo himself. She tried to keep her stance confident as she held up her swords, but the mere fierce gaze he looked at her with was fear-inducing. It was the same all-consuming gaze from all those years ago, and she immediately could feel those events replaying in her head on fast forward as he stared at her.
"When I heard a Faerie Kacheek was demanding a fight with me, I simply had to know if it was you," Commander Garoo began to explain, smirking just the slightest bit. "I wondered to myself, would that Faerie Kacheek from all those years ago really follow me this far into the future for a chance to seek vengeance? It seems I was not misinformed in my assumption. It's so rare I get a chance to take down the same person twice, and even rarer when my victims come to me for such a beating, but I can't say I'm wholly against it. Part of me cherishes getting to relive the amusement I felt all those years back. I only wish you had another child I could kidnap, but I guess I don't get so lucky twice."
A wave of fury washed over Camilla as Commander Garoo mocked her son so brazenly, "Shut up! Don't you dare talk about my son like that!"
Commander Garoo grinned in amusement. "Struck a nerve, did I? Maybe this time you'll actually do something about it, but given the way you're shaking in front of me, I find that quite unlikely."
Camilla felt her heart stop for a brief moment as he calmly pointed out her shivering, her gaze shifting as he confidence washed away on a tidal wave of malice.
"You're just as weak as you were before, aren't you?" Commander Garoo chuckled deeply. The crowd watched in confused as the large Blumaroo slowly turned his back to the Kacheek, staring straight ahead as he put himself in a vulnerable position. "I'll make this easy for you. Go ahead. Strike me. I'll wait for you to prove me wrong."
The way he turned his back to her infuriated Camilla. Somewhere deep within she recognized this was all a mockery of her abilities, and that not only did Commander Garoo not see her as a threat, but that he saw her as little more than a toy he could play around with at his leisure. She felt the rage of years long past claim her and she drew both swords, pointed them forward, and silently dashed straight for the Blumaroo commander.
Commander Garoo lifted his head the slightest bit as he heard footsteps rapidly approaching him front behind, but he made no effort to go for a weapon or even turn around. As she rushed for him, he merely stepped aside, and she lunged forward only to hit absolutely nothing.
"This feel familiar, doesn't it?" Commander Garoo chuckled deeply.
Camilla turned around with a sharp growl, her eyes glowing in anger. She wasted no time in dashing at him again, slashing in his direction. The Blumaroo leaped backwards multiple times, his expression never shifting as ear strike harmlessly whooshed past him.
"Still pathetic," Commander Garoo laughed. "You haven't learned a thing."
"Stop dodging me and fight back already!" She lunged at him in anger and while he side-stepped her again, this time he suddenly seized hold of her left arm as she was dashing past him. She gasped as he squeezed her arm tightly, losing her grip on one of her swords. She swung for him with the right-handed sword, but he threw her forward as she swung and she landed with a huff upon the ground. The throw wasn't even painful, clearly meant to be nothing more than a means to make her attack miss.
Commander Garoo bent over and picked up the sword she had dropped, scanning it with amusement. It appeared so small in his massive hands and he grinned in amusement as he looked it over. "What a low quality blade. You couldn't slay a Draphly with this thing." He threw it back at her, and she felt insulted as he returned her weapon to her.
Nonetheless, she picked the sword back up and dashed at him, sharply veering around his backside in an attempt to trick him into believing she was going for a different attack than she really was. Not only did he not attempt to sidestep an attack that wasn't even coming, but he seemed almost as though he already knew what she were planning. He tilted his head slightly, spinning around right as she charged for him and then delivering a kick upon her back and knocking her to the ground as she harmlessly ran past.
Camilla yelped sharply as she slammed into the ground. She lost her grip on one sword as she hit the ground and as she reached forward to reclaim it, a heavy foot pushed against her arm, and she yowled out loudly.
Commander Garoo placed his other foot upon her backside and as she wildly tried to swing her remaining sword at him, he easily grabbed her wrist, squeeze it firmly and she lost her grip on that weapon as well. She struggled to reach for it, but it had fallen just out of the range of her tiny arms.
"I was not wrong to think your skills were just as pathetic as they were all those years ago," Commander Garoo brazenly mocked her. "And here I had hoped you would've improved a little. Ah, well." He leaned close to her ears, smirking as he whispered to her, "At least you're still as amusingly pathetic as you were to me then, too."
Camilla huffed sharply as Commander Garoo pushed his foot firmly against her back, knocking her away from her swords. She rolled across the floor and collided with the wall, and while it was mildly painful, she knew somewhere deep within she was still being mocked. He was still going out of his way to put absolutely no effort into this fight, and that became even more clear as he turned his back to her, crossing the arena, his arms passively behind his back.
The Faerie Kacheek was enraged by his attempts to leave the fight, by his refusal to take her even slightly seriously, and with that anger driving her, she seized her swords off the ground and raced after him while he was unaware, more than prepared to seize the opening for a surprise attack and stab him from behind while he walked off.
Commander Garoo continued to stride forward, but he smirked ever so slightly as he continued to keep his strides at a normal pace. It was painfully clear to everyone except Camilla that he already knew she was coming at him, and the audience watched in amusement as they waited for the moment where Commander Garoo revealed this as well.
"You want me to fight back so badly?" Commander Garoo muttered with an amused grin. "Consider it done."
As Camilla readied her strike, Commander Garoo finally reacted. His motions were swift, and if one had blinked, they surely would've missed it. Mere seconds passed as Commander Garoo reached for and drew his massive broadsword, suddenly turning around and thrusting it straight at Camilla. The huge blade tore through her skin, striking just below the collarbone and tearing through the shoulder bone as it pierced through the backside of her body. She let out a piercing yowl, her expression one of both agony and shock.
Everyone went quiet. It wasn't just her. Even the audience was dead silent as they stared.
A loud thump echoed across the arena as Commander Garoo lifted his sword, taking the Faerie Kacheek's small figure with it, and slammed her body against the wall. His blade partly cut into the wall of the arena itself, effectively pinning her against the wall. She let out short, jagged breaths as a torrent of warm crimson liquid pooled around the wound and rushed down her chest.
"This is what you wanted, right, little Kacheek?" Commander Garoo chuckled in his deep voice, grinning mockingly. "You wanted me to fight back, right? Well, here you go. You got what you wanted. You should be thanking me."
Camilla coughed and sputtered weakly, unable to resist, unable to fight back, uncertain how she was still even alive.
Commander Garoo's grin widened. "I could've easily killed you with that strike, but I decided to spare you once more. You haven't stopped being amusing to me yet." He glared firmly as he leaned forward, seizing hold of her chin and tilting it back just the slightest so their eyes would unavoidably meet. "You had best not cease to amuse me." He then pushed that hand against her chest, holding her in place as he tore his sword out of her shoulder.
As he released his grasp on Camilla she skidded rapidly down the side of the wall, leaving a trail of fresh blood before she finally hit the floor. Her weak, quivering body was held up by nothing more than the wall, and she could only weakly lift her gaze to watch as Commander Garoo returned his sword to its proper place – her blood still coating the blade – and walked off once again.
She didn't dare attempt to get up and pursue him again. She was in so much pain, so much agony, and she knew that even if she could somehow force her body to rise once more, he would only do the same thing again.
She had failed, and she felt that utter failure wash over her as weakness claimed hold of her.