January 24, 2012

Dancing With Death Part II

Ganondorf snarled and approached Magus. They were only a few feet away from each other. The audience was deathly silent. The only sounds that could be heard were Ganondorf's labored breathing and the dark wind blowing in the night.

Magus's cape fluttered behind him in the wind. He spoke calmly. "If words were weapons, this match would already be over. Go ahead, take your best shot."

Ganondorf's powerful right fist flew forward at the magician. The Triforce embedded in his palm glowed, and erupted in a burst of power, striking Magus in the chest. Magus stumbled back, gasping from the blow. He hid his pain, and stood up straight, laughing. "Is that the best you can do?"

Ganondorf threw another powerful punch at him, but Magus ducked under the blow. Too predictable. He prefers to rely his strength alone. Even Crono knew better than that.

Ganondorf roared and came at Magus with a flurry of fists. The first one caught him in the stomach. Bearing the pain, Magus dodged to one side and swung his scythe in a lateral cut. The doom scythe glittered wickedly as it sought to claim another life. Ganondorf gasped in disbelief as he felt the weapon scrape, then penetrate his armor. He spun to face Magus and grabbed him by the cape. Ganondorf hurled him across the arena floor.

Magus made no effort to try to stop his movement, but let himself slide away from Ganondorf. He rose to his feet again and raised one beckoning hand. Moonlight shone off his cursed weapon as he raised it high in the air. Ganondorf growled and raced forward. Magus tried to use his scythe again, but Ganondorf slammed into him before he had a chance to react. He fell onto the floor again, reeling from the attack. Ganondorf growled again, incensed. Dark energy began to flow from his fingertips.

"Enough games! Do you even know who I am, wizard?"

Magus tried to catch his breath, and nodded his head. "You were the king of the Gerudo. You were the only male born into a tribe of women, and so you became their leader. You're the fulfillment of a prophesy which takes place once in a thousand years. You became the first among the insects that surrounded you, forced to hide away in a valley with rejects like yourself. You're nothing but a common thief."

A burst of dark energy flew from Ganondorf's palm. Magus rolled to one side and stood up, barely avoiding the blast. Ganondorf began to gather the energy for another shot, as Magus continued speaking.

"But of course, that wasn't enough. You feigned allegiance to the King of Hyrule, manipulating him for your own ends. You tricked Link into opening the sacred realm for you so you could claim the Triforce for yourself."

Ganondorf fired an enormous dark beam at him. The black energy crackled through the air, and Magus barely had time to erect a magic wall. His barrier strained, but withstood the barrage. The spell would absorb magical attacks up to a point, but the protection worked both ways. It limited the magical attacks he was able to use.

Ganondorf ceased his spell, and laughed at the wizard's verbal and magical efforts. "I see you've done your homework. A commendable effort. I envy you. I never had the opportunity to learn from another greater than myself."

Magus resumed his story, ignoring the wizard's taunt. "You took the Triforce, but failed in your goal. Power, wisdom, and courage were within your grasp... but you did not have all those qualities in yourself. You claimed power as your own, but lost the other two elements."

Ganondorf snorted. "Power is all I need. What use is anything without power? The powerful take what is theirs by right. The weak exist to serve them. It is the natural order of things."

"But there shall always be one more powerful than you. I learned that myself. The weak, together, can defeat the strong... as long as you are blind to your own weaknesses, you can never win."

Ganondorf shook his head. "Pathetic. I would have thought that even an excuse for a wizard like you could recognize true greatness."

"Oh, I know what you're capable of, Ganondorf." Magus stood on edge, preparing for another attack. "I've seen your power firsthand. Killing half the crowd here would be nothing to you. I know you, Ganondorf. But despite that, I'm not worried." Magus paused, and smiled at Ganondorf's expression. "You should very well wonder at that. Do you know me?"

Ganondorf hurled a ball of shadow energy at Magus, and was met full on by a wheel of lightning. The two magical spells twisted and convulsed upon each other. The lightning spell cut its way through Ganondorf's dark sphere and struck the warlock in the chest. The warlock twitched involuntarily, literally shocked by the attack. His own missile continued on unimpeded, and hit Magus's barrier, and the sheer force of the spell knocked Magus backwards.

Ganondorf rose up into the air, looking down on Magus with an evil glare. "For one who knows so much, you're still ignorant. Enough talk. This ends now."

Magus used his own magic to lift himself up in the air, hovering lightly above the ground. "Indeed."

Link leaned forward, breathlessly. Ganondorf was no longer holding back. His legendary nemesis began firing midnight black blasts out of his palms, while Magus was simply straining to avoid being annihilated. The lesser magician raced through the air as the dark forces pounded the ground below him. If there had been anything alive on the arena floor, whether it was animal, plant, or microscopic bacteria, it was dead now.

Magus halted, suspended in the air. A dark vortex of energy appeared around his hands, sucking in Ganondorf's attacks. The dark wind which had stayed with them for the entire match seemed drawn to it, spinning around Magus's form. Magus hurled the black hole at Ganondorf. Ganondorf's eyes widened. Link held his breath, waiting to see what Ganondorf would do to counteract the attack.

Ganondorf spread his hands apart and let loose another powerful spell. The black hole grew larger as it absorbed more energy, but Ganondorf concentrated his force around the edges of the black hole, attempting to compress it. The Gerudo King managed to tighten the edges of the black hole, but it continued to speed forward at him. Gritting his teeth, Ganondorf raised his fists and directed all his energy downwards. The black hole slammed into the ground below them, forming a hole hundreds of feet deep.

The King of Evil roared in triumph and fired an enormous blast at Magus, who tried to counter it with a dark bomb. Intense energies crackled through the air, beyond the likes of what most of the crowd had ever seen, or believed possible. Ganondorf's blast was several feet wide, but Magus's spell began growing upon contact with Ganondorf's discharge of energy. The dark bomb exploded in a maelstrom of power, surrounding Ganondorf's own spell and threatening to reach the magician. Ganondorf gritted his teeth and let another spell loose. It blazed through the air, piercing through both of their attacks. What was left of all of their energies slammed into Magus. His barrier collapsed upon itself, and his entire body felt like it was being destroyed from within.

Ganondorf flew through the air and slammed Magus into the ground. The prince of Zeal gasped in pain as he felt Ganondorf's iron boot pressing down on his chest.

Ganondorf laughed at his helpless opponent. Public humiliation was his favorite kind. Magus's hands were twitching helplessly, and he was muttering something. Ganondorf leaned over Magus's face, and spat on his brow.

"A pity to do so well only to fail. How would you like to die, weakling?"

Magus mumbled something else. Ganondorf leaned over to listen and laughed.

"What's that? It doesn't matter?"

"No..." Magus whispered. "Dark... matter."

Zeal's civilization had represented the peak of scientific and magical studies for the human race. The gurus of reason, life, and time had worked to unlock the mysteries of the universe, and sought to understand time, space, and reality itself. Their achievements were only beginning to be matched fourteen thousand years after the fall of Magus's kingdom.

The pinnacle of their studies had been an understanding of matter itself... and its parallel opposite, anti-matter. They were like fire and water to each other. When the two opposite manifestations of matter collided, they destroyed each other, and released pure energy. With the right magical manipulation and channeling of natural forces, it was possible to produce a sufficient quantity of anti-matter to destroy anything that existed in the physical plane.

Ganondorf, of course, understood none of this as the unreal projectile began to fly at him. He watched it curiously as it pulsated and grew in size. Had he studied what Magus had, he might have recognized the nested triangles in it as a three dimensional projection of a fourth dimensional object. But what his own senses and mind could not comprehend, he soon felt. The blob of surrealism tore at his armor, annihilating it. Ganondorf screamed in pain as he felt the skin around his heart being eradicated. Only his own magical energies saved him-he desperately tried to force the spell away. Its destructive force finally collided into the ground, having consumed an equal part of his skin for what it had lost.

Ganondorf fell onto the ground. He was bleeding from the chest. It was getting hard to think, let alone move. And yet he chuckled.

Magus picked himself up and looked down on the Gerudo warlock. His expression was without remorse or pity. "Enough. This battle is ended."

Ganondorf laughed bitterly. "You said it yourself, wizard, one of us is going to die here." Ganondorf's eyes began to burn with fire. "Only it won't be me..."

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