Step, step, step. Steps could be heard bouncing off the light golden walls that surrounded the man in the empty hallway. Under him, a red carpet stretched towards a large brown round topped door. The man was quite tall. About six feet two inches tall in height. Along with his physique, he flaunted a great, white and purple cloak, and under that, he wore a dark grey armor suit. The man had a thick brown beard that was connected with a mustache. It would appear that the man was in his mid to late twenties, although the battles that he fought to be able to advance upon this hallway would have felt like an eternity to any normal person. Upon first examination, the man looked like any normal warrior. But once you caught a glimpse of the sword that he grasped so tightly in his hands, you'd realize that he was nothing short of a monster. The sword was twice as tall as he was, and about three times as wide. The sword was fully white, except for the dark blade that was the color of a man's shadow. The handle that he grasped was bright yellow, and there were three thin ribbon-like lines that ran to the tip of the sword that were yellow as well. There was also some red on it, but it wasn't originally designed that way. That color came from the blood of the dozens of enemies that he had fought just minutes prior to his steps along the golden hallway.
The man was very close to the door now. He stopped for a moment and stared directly at the door, as if he had seen something grim on it. His blank expression suddenly turned into anger, and at that moment he took the tip of the sword, aimed it at the door, and lightly tapped it with the force of a feather. As soon as the sword made contact with the door, it burst off its hinges and flew across the room that the man was soon to enter. It hit the opposite side of the room, which, coincidentally, sat a great golden throne. Apart from this throne being completely gold, it was massive, and it had a sword at least 10 times the size of the man's that was stabbing straight into the ground behind the throne. It would appear as though this sword held the throne in place as some sort of foundation. In the great seat sat King Ren, the current King of All.
King Ren was similar in height to the man. However, his physical appearance was way different. The man was quite bulky, even without his thick cloak, and was covered in muscle, while King Ren's physique was a bit more scrawny and thin. However, he still packed a great deal of muscle in the upper body, but lacked a lot of leg muscle. Also, his hair was curly and flat instead of wavy and about like the man that had entered the room.
The man took a few steps forward. His expression of anger remained as he stared into the eyes of the King. He tightly grasped his sword.
This day was special to the man. It was known throughout the kingdom, and to the world, as Throne Day. Every five years, there is a duel in the central square of the Kingdom of Mace for all of the participants who wish to take lead in the world and become the King of All. Each participant fights to the death, and the last one standing gets full admission to the Kingdom and is allowed to advance into the throne room, where the King of All sits.
From there, they are able to fight the King in a one-on-one duel for the Throne. For you to go from a civilian to the King of All, you must do the unthinkable; which is to kill the King.
"Oh?" King Ren questioned. "Has it really been five years already? I could have sworn that just last week that warrior from Karm had taken his last breath in the battle room."
The man had no reaction. He still stared angrily into the King's eyes.
"No response, huh?" King Ren asked with a half-smile. "Oh well. I can't please all the lost causes that come in here. That last guy...he at least smiled before me. He had stunning confidence, and you know what? We had a decent talk before his demise. He seemed like a pretty nice guy, but you know, things don't usually turn out well once you challenge the King."
King Ren was confused as to why the man that appeared before him had such a serious tone compared to the others that he had previously dueled with on Throne Day. This made the King feel a bit uneasy, however, on the outside, he embraced a full smile with his teeth.
"So...are you gonna fix that door?" King Ren asked. It's valuable you know. It hasn't been damaged for...god...two hundred years?" he started to chuckle.
The man didn't budge. He stared at the laughing king, and then a few seconds later, he finally spoke.
"I'll repair it once I sit upon that throne." The man's expression did not change one bit.
King Ren then busted out into full blown laughter.
"Ha! When you sit upon the throne? Well damn! I guess we'll have a walk-in throne room for the next forty years or so."
King Ren kept chuckling. He laughed for a good twenty more seconds, before returning to a half smile. Well, I guess he's no fun, he thought. After this, he stood up from the golden throne. He looked straight into the man's gaze.
Then, his expression turned serious.
"You're Jonah, aren't you?" he asked.
The man's expression remained the same.
"Yes, I am. And what about my name concerns you?" The man questioned.
"I've heard of you. They call you 'Brisk Warrior Jonah.' It's a pretty odd name considering how sluggish you were on the trail to this room. I heard your loud ass footsteps in the hallway for like thirty seconds before you entered. Were you taking a stroll, or is that label just misleading?" Ren was now smirking.
"Well," Jonah started, "I think they gave it to me because of the way I fight...and luckily for you, you've yet to see me fight."
King Ren smirk grew even wider. "Oh yeah?" Ren eyed Jonah's massive sword. "I could very well be lucky. You seem powerful...especially with that sword. If you put it in the hands of the weakest civilian in the town, he could probably kill a damn Warlord."
Jonah broke his stare and looked at the sword that he had been grasping so tightly through the halls and even before then. It's true, he thought. And that's why it's gonna be the sword that kills you and ultimately takes the throne.
King Ren noticed that Jonah's eyes shifted. He took this as a sign of impatience.
"Alright then." King Ren advanced down the stairs of the throne. Jonah directed his focus back to the King. Each step that he observed felt like an eternity to him as he anticipated the King's arrival to the ground floor. Once he had two feet on the same ground that Jonah stood on, he stared into his eyes with an expression that Jonah had been anticipating since the moment that he stepped foot into the room. An expression that resembled a fighting spirit. An expression that said "I'm ready to fight."
And then the words came out of the King's mouth.
"Let's get this over with."
King Ren turned his head towards the door to the battle room which resided on his left. He led the way, taking the first steps in the direction of it. Behind him, Jonah followed. Jonah's sword scraped the ground as he walked, leaving a trail of blood from the entrance of the throne room to the entrance of the battle room where the King and the warrior would have their duel.
There's something off about this man, King Ren thought. He serves under one of the Warlords. I supplied his master with a rank that would give him power, a city, and wealth. I would only expect good things to come out of his master's mouth about me...so what is the grudge that this man, Jonah, holds against me?
At last, they both stood in front of the battle room. King Ren lifted his hands from his side and laid it on the knob of the door. He grasped it, and began to twist it to the right. Then, he started to pull it towards him. The door let out a loud and continuous creak as he opened it. Finally, once there was enough space for both of them to enter, he let go.
King Ren then turned his head and said to Jonah, with a half smile, "I guess it really has been five years. That door hasn't creaked like in all the years I've been King!"
Jonah did not react.
King Ren turned his face back around and removed the smile in an instant. "Let's go." He took a step into the room, and Jonah followed. Once he had one foot in, butterflies started to fill his stomach. King Ren hadn't felt this uneasy since he fought the ten foot warrior in this same room fifteen years ago. Why is this man so unphased by everything I say or do? He wondered.
They were now standing in the middle of the battle room. It was a very large room, with nothing in it except for the floor, walls, and roof. It was made out of only one thing: pure, shiny metal. There was decade old bloodshed that sat in puddles on the floor from the previous battles for the throne. King Ren turned his body completely around to face Jonah.
They stared at each other.
"Are you ready?" King Ren asked.
Jonah closed both of his eyes and lifted his sword. He took four long breaths and then opened his eyes. They were now bloodshot, and his expression seemed as if he had experienced loads of pain, or like he had been stabbed somewhere on his body.
"YES!" He shouted.
"Alright then." King Ren spoke softly. Every step that he took leading into this room, he became increasingly more scared. Jonah is out for the throne after all, he reminded himself. He respects me as his King, but he will do anything, including this grim intimidation tactic, to take that position.
King Ren deeply inhaled.