"What's a dirtbag coward like you doing leaving my army? You ain't got half the guts to join the arena. Hell, even MY training couldn't turn a bratty teenage punk like you into a man!"

"I… I-"

"My point exactly kid, you don't have the balls to even talk back to me. You'll shit your pants after you get within ten miles of the arena at this rate!"

"I think the arena will do much better for me than… than your training."

"Get the fuck out of my office!"


"Ha! I'll be watching you participate in the arena when I'm in the mood for a laugh."

"You won't be laughing when… when you see how far I'll go!"

I could hear the echoes of my sergeant's laughter going through the hallway as I walked out. I wasn't too confident that my life dream would work out.

Ever since I was 9, I would always run around with cardboard guns pretending I was in the arena. I had posters of all the big names in the arena at the time. Punisher, Rage, you know, all the people that have long left Quake arena and were forgotten. Now, new names are broadcasted all over. Everyone's running around with Sarge and Xearo t-shirts, and all the kids are talking about the new signature Anarki's hoverboard soon to fill the market. Things are always moving, changing.

. I grew up in an orphanage, never knowing my mom or dad. When I was 14 I ran away, seeking a life of adventure and danger. Boy was I fucking stupid. I then realized that a place to stay was a necessity, so I just kept staying with my friends for a while.

I then got serious about the whole arena deal. I joined the army when I was 16 to get the training I needed, but it wasn't the "do-little, buff-much" thing I expected. It was HARD. Quitting things before I was done again, I quit the army. I then had no place to go. Luckily, 16 was the minimum for the arena as well. I thought I would be a big shot straight away, the opponents would be easy, and that life in the arena would be nice and snug. Boy was I wrong. The longass paperwork was the easiest of everything.

"What's your name?"

"Eh…um… Crusher…"

"Haha, what kind of faggot name is that? Eh, doesn't matter, welcome to the arena… ehhh… crusher… haha!"

"So… um…. Where will I be staying?"

"Oh, yes. Right this way."

The official led me down several of the longest hallways I had seen in my life; some clean and pleasant, others broken and uncomfortable. We didn't talk again until we were on the elevator.

"So what brings you to the arena?"

"Oh it was sort of a life-long dream of mine."

"Really? You wouldn't believe how many of those we get. It's rare that they even survive the first tournament. I feel so bad watching them pack their bags and leave with tears on their faces."

That made me feel so confident about my standings here. Ugh, I should've wished to be a doctor or something.