Although the last trumpet fanfare had long faded since the summer games in Athens, there was certainly still some sport to be had. Hundreds of dark, unnatural figures trained determinedly, waiting for their chance to perform. The Harbinger of Death looked out over the training fields with approval. These beings had required a special purchase order, and he’d had to pull a few strings in the Incarnations Acquisitions department, but they were well worth it. They would do his bidding in the Maulympics this year.
Eeyoraus was walking to class with Dixie, Redfurdolphin, Keridon and greenie. They were chatting about fall festivals, costumes, and such.
“I don’t like bobbing for apples,” said Redfurdolphin. “My makeup gets all washed off.”
“Like we could tell the difference,” joked Keridon, who promptly got an elbow in the ribs for it. “Ow.”
“I like apple pie,” offered greenie. “And caramel apples. And apple butter. And apples with peanut butter. And baked apples with cinnamon and walnuts.”
“What, no apple burgers?” laughed Dixie.
“I was just kidding!”
“You could, though,” said Redfurdolphin. “If you had cinnamon raisin bread.”
“That’s not a burger, that’s a sandwich,” said Keridon. “If it doesn’t have meat, it’s a burger. You’d have to have meat with apples in it to be an apple burger.”
“You people are so strange,” commented Eeyoraus. “That’s probably why we get along so well, actually. Anyway, we have to talk about the Harbinger.”
“The what?” said Keridon.
“He comes every year to kill us,” Dixie explained. Redfurdolphin gasped. “No, it’s really fun, honest.” They stared at her unbelievingly.
“What was that all about?” wondered Eeyoraus aloud, as the afternoon grew suddenly dark. “I think it’s going to rain.” Dark clouds swept in over the sky and a torrential wind whipped around them. They all squinted their eyes, unable to see for all the dust in the air. “Run!” she shouted, and they did so blindly, until, SMACK!
When they opened their eyes, the storm was gone. In fact, the entire campus was gone. They were each standing in square, roped-off areas with spotlights shining on them. “MEET YOUR CHALLENGERS!” boomed a voice on the loudspeaker, and with a popping sound, muscular humanoid-shaped things appeared in the rings with each of them. They all looked down to see padded gloves on their hands.
“Uh-oh,” said Eeyoraus. “Best just get it overwith,” she called to the others. Dixie nodded, but the other three looked terrified. A loud bell sounded, and the beings advanced, swinging huge arms with massive force. The two experienced Debs, though clearly frightened, stood their ground, while the others shrieked and ran.
“You’re only making it worthe!” lisped Dixie through a busted lip. “Ouch.” She received a blow to the side of her head and fell to the ground. The thing in the ring with her continued to pound her.
“See you on the other side,” said Eeyoraus, who then received a hammering fist directly in the face which shoved her nose bones into her brain and killed her instantly.
Over time (which is to say, a couple of minutes) the others became weakened by the hits that had already connected, and were soon bloody lumps of flesh as well. The dark things lumbered to their corners and leaned their heads down to receive the gold medals someone was holding out from the shadows for them.