Everyone had grimaces on their faces. They had never thought that someone would be shameless enough to hit the place that held their future families.

When she saw the attack, Eloise burst out laughing.

"That's the spirit! I did say everything goes, so don't hold back! I want to see wit, strength and creativity. Show me your value, you muts! Prove that you are worthy of serving the army that will conquer the world!"

When she was done, she threw a quick glance at Atta, which reflexively covered his crotch. Although he admired her, she had shown him that she was as ruthless as barbarians.

Seeing her aid fearful aid, she giggled. In the week since they had started the training, they had become closer, and they started creating various battle formations. She liked educating him because he had a sharp mind and was quick on the uptake. To Eloise, it felt like raising a successor in case anything went awry.

The first round of battles quickly ended after that, leaving only 80 soldiers on the winning side. The trio that was once part of the strongest fighters, Martin, Lucas and Trey, all lost, even though they had tried their best. Their bodies were simply in no shape to fight.

So far, nobody had really caught the attention of Eloise and Atta except for Thomas. For him to recognize that winning was most important, no matter how, meant that he had a mind suited towards schemes and deceit. These types of commanders were always dangerous and their opponents always had to watch their backs.

After a short intermittence, it was now time to start the second round.

Thomas tried looking for an opponent, but everyone avoided him. They weren't ready to risk their futures, even for the prizes at stake.

When he was about to despair, a youth presented himself in front of him.

"Remember me?"

Thomas froze. It was... the skinny guy he had beaten up before! What the hell was he doing here?! The harsh memories of his friend's death resurfaced, making him grimace.

When he saw the reaction, the skinny guy smirked.

"It seems that you do remember! I'm sorry that your friend died, but you were all scum that terrorized us weaker people. In the end, you all reaped what you sowed..."

Thomas's face turned solemn. He knew that, from the bottom of his heart. And yet, when someone said it, it irked him to no end. It was like an itch that refused to go, no matter how hard he scratched it. He wanted to show that he had changed, that he was reborn.

"What's your name?"

The skinny guy was taken aback, but smiled. He knew that it was time to get collect his dues, and with interest at that. He had given his all this last week, going from a powerless chick to one that had claws.

"Jojo Trubisky"

"Now that we know each other, I'll be frank. It is true that I was absolute scum, the lowest of the lows. Beating those weaker than me always felt like I had an extra edge on everyone. Of course, that was all an illusion, something that would keep me going in that direction. Bragging in our little group of trashes felt like the world to me, but I've realized how shallow it all was. I'm not the same guy from a week ago. Nevertheless, I'll still beat your ass even harder than last time, so don't start begging for mercy!"

With a shout and his face full of conviction, Thomas leaped forward, ready to strike.

When Jojo heard the last part, his smile was instantly gone. Who the hell was this guy taking himself for?! They had ganged up on him, so he had had no choice but to give in that day! He had sworn to never be that weak, and he intended to prove that today!

"I'll show you who's the weak little bitch this time!"

With a similar roar, he also leaped forward.

They both arrived face-to-face in an instant. With a fierce right strike, Thomas tried to end it right away. He didn't want to admit it, but he looked down on the scrawny person he was facing. He clearly thought that one week couldn't let him overcome his disadvantages.

Jojo felt the disregard and his heart burned in his chest, raring to go. He had had enough of being seen as a weakling. He had been a farmer all his life, laboring the fields, and he didn't know why or how, but his body kept refusing to get bigger or bulkier. However, that didn't mean he didn't have weapons. He had discovered them during this past hellish week.

When the strike reached him, he bent backwards elegantly and swung his wooden stick at the legs of Thomas, who was flabbergasted. The little shit had moves!


Thomas badly grimaced and his leg flexed awkwardly. The strike had damaged the muscles behind his knees and it had hurt like hell! The pain twisted his face, and he saw the evil grin and the now standing Jojo. That bastard was a head shorter than him, but his agility seemed on another level.

It appeared that he had made the same mistake as his previous opponent... After controlling the pain, Thomas turned to face him.

"I underestimated you... Seems like you'll be worth crushing after all..."


Thomas slapped his face with both hands, hitting himself with his stick at the same time. Jojo was first confused, but quickly understood.

"Awake now? Let's end this"

"Come at me BOY!"

With a damaged leg, Thomas had to carefully evaluate his next step. This wasn't supposed to be his last fight, so he had to figure out a way to maximize each of his moves while predicting his opponent's.

Jojo wasn't stupid. He knew that his adversary was looking for an avenue to quickly end the bout, so he immediately rushed in and rained hits after hits, destabilizing the weakened ex-thug.

After a few minutes, the various battles had begun finishing, making the winners slowly trickle down to the right side. However, one particular fight caught the eye of both sides, including Eloise and Atta.

On one end stood a scrawny kid riddled in bruises and on the other stood a bulkier man staggering. They were both panting and were drenched in sweat. Their initial plans of going for a quick victory had gone out of the window, and they knew they had no chance in winning the next battle, even if they advanced. Seeing the stalemate, Thomas decided to speak.

"It appears we're both fucked haha..."

"Yeah... I didn't really expect to win, so I'm still proud of my result hehe..."

With an arrogant and proud tone, Jojo answered him. That sentence sent a dagger through Thomas's heart because he knew that if he hadn't been careless at the beginning, the flow of the fight would've gone differently. Alas, it was no use crying over spoiled milk.

"You little bastard... We're ending this right away, once and for all. Let's forget about the prizes and go all out, or we'll be here all day..."

Jojo was surprised, but he smiled in response.

"You're right, this has dragged on long enough..."

While both letting out a loud roar, they ran towards each other, ready to leave their hearts behind.


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