Taejin Mission 035: Small Steps towards Bigger Dreams.
Bartz was relieved when he realized he had managed to evade the Captain’s first attack. Apparently his Haste spell had caught the opponent off-guard and he ran a few more paces fom where they had met. When his hearing told him he wasn’t imminently followed he turned around to to face Basch again.
‘Thirteen chocobos, fourteen chocobos, fifteen chocobos’ he counted in his head to keep track how long his spell would last. The surrounding recruits he noticed in a spare moment seemed amazed he even managed to avoid that one attack. This had indeed worked much better than expected but running all the time wouldn’t help him. Surely Basch was much more enduring than him so tiring him out wouldn’t work and most likely soon he would see through him and simply evading like this wouldn’t be an option anymore. He could try some kind of debuff but poisoning his superior didn’t seem like a good idea. Even if - and this was a big “if” - he was lucky enough for it to work.
No, he would have to face him head-on, somehow. The taller man had already turned to charge again. Bartz decided to cast Bravery as his next step. Whether the increase in strength would be enough to keep up with his opponent he would have to find out. He discarded his first thought to mimic the Captain and instead decided to just try to hold his ground.
As Basch closed in Bartz had no idea what manner of attack he was about to use. ‘But judging from his last move it might be another shield blow…’ So he prepared to attack with his sword at the right moment forcing his opponent to use his shield for defense and block a possible sword strike with his shield as good as possible. Now he’d see how much good the Bravery would do.
During his renewed charge, Basch was paying close attention to Bartz. He was moving fast, abnormally fast. He noticed a slight pattern in his foes’ movements, his body moved and shifted in his fighting stance, albeit at a much more rapid pace. He flipped his sword in his hand, shifting to an icepick grip, if this doesn’t work I’m going to leave a huge opening… But he shrugged off the thought, he was committed to the attack. He saw Bartz shift into a sword-stance, This is it.
As he approached, he quickly brought his shield up, feigning an attempt at a second shield strike, but just before he reached his target he brought his shield back down to his side and leapt straight at his foe’s torso, landing his attack with his shoulder. It took Bartz by surprise, but it didn’t stop him from striking with his sword. Basch took the blade strike in the side of his chest. His mind screeched at him, the pain was intense. Far more intense than it should’ve been. The momentum from his shoulder charge should’ve unbalanced Bartz and reduced the force of the attack, but it was incredibly powerful.
Using the momentum, Basch forced Bartz into the ground, and he quickly dug his knees into the ground either side of Bartz’ torso, sat up, and brought his blade, still in the icepick grip, straight up to Bartz’ throat, stopping mere centimetres from his foes neck. Even though Basch still had Bartz’ blade embedded in his waist, his blood pumped adrenaline through his veins and he roared ”DO YOU YIELD!?” at Bartz. He could counter this… but he might not have the strength to do so.