An as yet unknown champion observes another in battle, noting the subtleties of his movements that make him more than a mere fighter. I attached a "violence" warning because, after all, the whol...
To do well, he had to know his opponents. To know his opponents, he had to watch them. See how they moved, fought, rebalanced and rejoined.
But it was just so loud, and the people were too many. He could feel them, brushing against him, touching him, drawing ever closer within his circle of space, crawling all around him. He could hear their shouts in his ears, shouts for more strength, cries when a harsh blow was delivered, whimpers, whispers, screams.
It was hard to concentrate with so much going on around him. Hard to stay focused with so much pulling at his thoughts. Disrupting them, confusing them. He did not see the necessity in this exercise. He had faced many an unknown combatant before. Faced and succeeded with little trouble. Why was it now so important?
Besides that, he had finished his task for the day. He had fought his battles, earned his victories. His place in the next round was assured. The rest? All futile wastes of energy. Unnecessary attacks on his senses.
There was a sharp scrape against his arm, one he recognized well, and he turned just the slightest. Master gazed sternly up at him. "You need to pay close attention to this one. He will be a challenge to you later."
Except he did not want to stay and watch. What did he care of challenge? He had faced them all time and again before and emerged the victor. What challenge had he left to face?
He wanted to leave. Was going to leave. Then the fight started, the man who was his challenge began to move. Lithe and smooth and graceful. Quick and agile. His movements were sure and right. Innate. He was a man born into it, the motions familiar long before lessons could teach them.
This man was not a fighter. This man... This man was a dancer. And he could not look away.