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Shadow's Rising {Wing 3} Chapter 13

by dragonight9


Chapter 13

Jarid spent most of the night training and even a few hours during breaks the next day. By the time sunset drew near he felt ready.

Ethen, Ben, and Airel had gone ahead to take their seats in the arena. As Jarid entered the dragon dome he saw Lt. Briar waiting on the far side of the arena, and as he got farther in, he noticed that the stands were packed with people. Not only students and staff of the academy, but people from the nearby villages as well.

“I hope you don’t mind if I invited a few spectators to watch our little bout.” Lt. Briar announced, raising his arms to the crowd. The crowd cheered in excitement.

Jarid shrugged. It didn’t really matter to him who was watching. He did notice, however, that the academy commander was in the crowd along with a group of dragon riders who seemed to be overseeing the fight.

“Alright Lt. Briar, I’m ready. But before we start, I wanted to make sure it would be ok for me to have my music on while we fight.” Ben, Ethen, and Airel looked at Jarid incredulously.

“Why would you ask that!?” Airel shouted. If Lt. Briar said no, Jarid would have to give up on something that gave him strength and rhythm in his fighting.

“Don’t worry. I’ve already put on these heavy, magic weakening, bracers to make it more fair fight anyways,” Lt. Briar said with a superior smile showing off the thick metal shackles on his wrists and ankles.

“Why should I keep a commoner from his music? If it gives the insect whatever courage he needs to fight, then I don’t mind. Just know that I might ‘accidentally’ break that music box of yours if you do.” Lt. Briar gave Jarid a sinister smile. Jarid nodded and plugged in his music box.

“Thank you,” he said with a sly smile. He quickly selected a song: “Play with fire” by War Hall.

Lt. Briar got into a fighting stance. “Come on then. Let’s see what a little peasant like you can do.” He taunted.

Jarid started nodding to the beat as he shook his arms loose with his eyes closed. Then he took up a fighting stance and opened his eyes, smiling like a wolf about to devour its prey.

“I’m ready. With talons sharp and heart steady. I will fight you, no matter where. So, come at me…if you dare.” He replied, holding out his hand as he invited the Lt. to attack.

“Oh ho, ho. You’re asking for it punk,” the Lt. growled. He charged, throwing out punches with more skill, precision, and brute strength than Jarid had ever seen before. Jarid fell back under the onslaught. He hadn’t realised until now just how skilled Lt. Briar truly was.

He had been able to turn the tables on him easily in class because he had caught the Lt. off guard. But now he was facing the full might of a battle-hardened warrior. Jarid was beginning to panic as he barely deflected each of the Lt’s blows.

Then Jarid felt the beat drop in his song, and he smiled. His confidence slowly returned while his panic faded as he focused on the words of the song.

“I don’t know any other way. I never laid down, never walk away. I keep pushing like a tidal…pushing like a tidal wave.” He whispered. He was still being pushed back but now he was steadily retreating rather than scrambling back in a panic.

Lt. Briar grunted with frustration as his blows, which had been overwhelming Jarid just a moment before, couldn’t seem to penetrate his defenses. He was a bit surprised by Jarid’s strength, but he was no straightforward fighter. He had a few tricks up his sleeve. He stepped forward as if to deliver a massive right hook, but skillfully feinted into a thundering kick aimed at Jarid’s midsection.

“I don’t know how to play it safe I like walk’in on a razor blade.” Jarid sang as he placed his left hand on Lt. Briar’s leg and vaulted over it like one would vault over a wall. Jarid’s smile of triumph at reading the move reflected in Lt. Briar’s look of shock right before Jarid’s foot slammed into his cheek. Lt. Briar reeled back to get some space and recover. Jarid slowly advance with a cocky smile and a little dance.

“I keep burning like a wild…burning like a wild blaze. Ha ha!” He sang and raised his arms to the crowd causing them to cheer.

Not only did he feel great for expecting and countering the trick but the look on Lt. Briar’s face as it darkened with rage made him want to grin ear to ear. He was grateful for the time spent studying the Lt’s moves with his friends.

Lt. Briar growled. His rage causing him to lose composure for a moment as he threw a punch so strong it would have broken Jarid’s arms and was about to follow it up with a kick when Jarid caught the punch, using one of the moves Lt. Briar had taught them in class to counter larger opponents, to throw the Lt. to the ground.

Jarid sprang back to give himself some room and turned to the crowd, raising his arms like a stage performer before turning back to the Lt. with a mocking bow. “Baby here I go… I’m outa control…you can’t stop me no. Ha, ha, ha, ha!” He laughed as the song built to its peak.

One thing pretty much everyone in his class had noticed was that Lt. Briar had trouble controlling his temper. It was a terrifying but useful trait, as attacks from an enraged opponent were often wild and inefficient.

Lt. Briar was still livid, but he had been in enough fights not to charge in recklessly, so he held back. Jarid wasn’t about to let him regain his composure though. He leapt forward as his right arm went as far back as it could go. “I’m gonna risk it all!” He sang as he delivered the punch with a bit of his draconic strength.

Lt. Briar easily blocked but grunted in surprise at the strength of the blow. He only hesitated for a split second, but it was just long enough for his counter to miss as Jarid jumped back out of range. Then he leapt into the air doing a small front flip to gain momentum before landing with a crushing ax kick. “I’m gonna let ‘em FALL!” Jarid cried as the blow landed, getting blocked again.

But this time Lt. Briar was ready. He grabbed Jarid’s foot as soon as he had checked the momentum and spun around, launching Jarid so that he hit the ground and rolled a few times before sliding to a stop. Jarid groaned and slowly got to his feet.

“Play with fire. Play with fire. I’m gonna light it up. Cause it’s in my blood. Play with fire. Play with fire.” He sang slowly. Both he and Lt. Briar were breathing hard and neither advanced while they took a moment to recover.

Jarid took a deep breath, shook out his arms and smiled again. He was having a lot of fun. He didn’t know why but fighting a powerful opponent like this seemed to have awakened something in him. A competitive hunger and perhaps a small desire for destruction.

For the first time he didn’t feel like he had to hold back for fear of hurting his opponent. Killing was still out of the question but right now he felt like he might actually enjoy giving Lt. Briar a few broken bones.

It felt sooo good to taunt the Lt. and watch his anger build. Maybe it was because he wanted some form of revenge for all the sneers, degrading comments, and other bullying he had suffered over the years or maybe he simply enjoyed seeing cruel people suffer just as they had inflicted suffering.

Either way, at that moment it didn’t matter. He was smiling because he was enjoying this. A lot. And his smile infuriated Lt. Briar. Which only made him want to do it more.

“Fire ain’t scaring me I got ice in my veins you see. Ha!” He cried with a smirk as he charged again. This time they exchanged blows with neither backing down.

Lt. Briar must have been tired since his blows were slightly slower yet they were still controlled and left no opening for Jarid to counter with a massive strike. However, he was able to sneak small quick jabs and pokes through. They did no damage but served to enrage the Lt. more and more.

Lt. Briar just couldn’t understand how this commoner was able to stand up to him. It shouldn’t have been possible. The poking felt like Jarid was mocking him and his inability to hit someone he considered inferior only frustrated and enraged him further.

“Let them say that I can’t win. Let them say I’ll lose again, and I’ll keep comin like a hurri, Comin like a hurricane. Cause I know I’m gonna prove, if I keep comin I cannot lose, and I’m rolling like the thunder. Pouring like the hardest rain.” Jarid sang as he fought.

Then he jumped back and smirked. “Come on. Is that the best you can do Lt?” he asked mockingly as he beckoned Lt. Briar to come at him once more.

The casual taunt was like a red flag to a bull. Lt. Briar finally lost all composure and even his training couldn’t keep his anger at bay any longer. He roared with fury as he charged throwing one roundhouse swing after another with the intent of crushing the puny ant that dared insult him.

Jarid smiled in triumph as his doing so only made it easier for Jarid to dodge his wild swings.

“Baby here I go… I’m outa control…you can’t stop me no.” Jarid sang as he dodged Lt. Briar’s swings, unable to block because of the strength of them. Hitting nothing but air continued to enrage the Lt. and now it was time to break the final straw.

“I’m gonna risk it ALL!” Jarid cried as he countered with a blow that knocked the Lt. back. But he recovered and swung at him again.

“I’m gonna let em’ FALL!” Jarid half shouted half laughed as he countered again, this time tripping the Lt. so he went sprawling on his face, much to the amusement of the crowd.

By this point Lt. Briar was blind with rage.

“That’s… it!” He roared as he jumped to his feet. Creating an explosion of flames around him that pushed Jarid back.

“I am going to crush you right here and now!” Lt. Briar roared again. Causing a much bigger explosion that knocked Jarid off his feet. Then he created a massive fireball in each hand.

His eyes were wide, and his jaw clenched from the strain of his fury while sweat poured out of his crimson face. Jarid smiled wide as he leapt to his feet.

This was what he had been waiting for.

He closed his eyes chuckling evilly to himself. “Fire ain’t scaring me. I got ice in my veins you see.”

Then he opened them again and looked at Lt. Briar who was creating more fire balls. If he was using magic, then Jarid was free to do so as well.

“Now we’re playing with fire.” Jarid laughed, cracking his knuckles with a wolfish grin.

“That’s my game.”

He could feel the power and arrogance flowing though him. This often happened when he let himself get absorbed in his music and honestly, it only made his magic stronger. However, he had to be careful since losing himself in the music had once caused him to black out.

Jarid slammed his fist into the ground creating a wall of earth between them just as Lt. Briar threw the fire balls. The fire slammed into the barrier causing it to crack but it didn’t break. Lt. Briar screamed in rage and threw out both hands. A stream of fire poured out from them and slammed into the wall causing more cracks to form.

Jarid began whispering to himself as both the song and his magic built up within him.

“Can you feel the fire… See the flames go higher… Can you feel the fire…”

The earth barrier shattered but Jarid was already releasing a torrent of water from his left hand into the center of the blaze. He began to sing loud once more as he held the flames at bay with his left hand while gathering earth magic with his right.

“I’m gonna risk it all. I’m gonna let ‘em fall. Play with fire. Play with fire! I’m gonna light it up.” He sang as vines began sprouting at Lt. Briar’s feet. Then Jarid clenched his right hand into a fist. Vines quickly grew, climbing up Lt. Briar’s body as Jarid closed the distance between them.

“Cause it’s in my blood… Play with fire… Play with fire.” He continued as he caused the vines to pull the Lt.’s arms to his sides.

Lt. Briar roared as he tried to burn the vines, but he couldn’t keep the stream of flames going and generate a strong enough shield of flames around his body at the same time. All he could do was burn the surface of the vines as they slowly wrapped him more and more. His stream of flame slowly died as he focused more on burning the vines. But Jarid quickly encased his feet with stone magic to prevent him from escaping until the stream of water was able to douse his flames.

Lt. Briar screamed in outrage as his arms were pulled to his sides by the vines. Then Jarid used stone magic to create walls of earth to pin them there.

Jarid finally reached Lt. Briar and grabbed him by the neck. Applying just enough cold magic to make the Lt.’s breath visible. A ring of white frost appeared around the thick muscles of the abusive instructor’s neck. His shivering breath came in wheezes and gasps.

“Your fire ain’t scaring me. I’ve got ice in my veins you see.” Jarid finished as his song came to a close.

He leaned in and looked into Lt. Briar’s eyes. His own gaze deadly serious as he recalled all the terrible things this man had done to his friends.

“Never try to harm me, my friends, or any other student at this academy again. Understand?” He whispered coldly. Lt. Briar’s eyes widened in fear under Jarid’s intense gaze.

He nodded slightly and Jarid let go with a friendly smile. “Good. I’m glad we have an understanding.”

Then he turned to the crowd and raised his fist. “I claim victory in this fight!”

The stands erupted in cheers. However, even in the midst of the cheers, Jarid noticed a pair of dragon riders leaping back into the stands next to the academy commander.

He learned later that the two of them had jumped in to help when Lt. Briar started using magic, but Commander Valdur had stopped them.

Jarid wondered why, but it wasn’t like he was going to bother the academy commander just to ask him a silly question like that, so he dismissed it.

After that, Lt. Keldor was put in charge of training for the second years until the usual second year training instructor was healed.

Lt. Briar, after being freed from his binds, was put on probation, and banned from teaching again for cheating in the match as well as putting a student’s life in danger. Apparently, a few students had also come forward in the wake of the match to testify about Lt. Briar’s mistreatment of his students. They must have found a bit more courage now that the Lt was in the sick bay recovering from the cold and shock.

After that it seemed like everything was returning to normal... until a few days later.

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Wed May 15, 2024 4:03 pm
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RavenAkuma wrote a review...



Hello Again, My Friend!

It's me, Raven, and I'd like to review the next chapter in this great story using my Familiar method! Let's dive in, shall we? Heh heh heh...

What The Black Eyes See...

WOW, this chapter was so incredible to read! Normally I like to make little notes as I read, but this time I got so absorbed, I reached the end and was like "oh yeah, I'm reviewing this" haha.

Okay, that fight? Incredible. The staging, the dialogue, the magic, and of course the action! And the conclusion was as grand as I could've hoped! Let's get into the details though.

Where The Dagger Points...

No complaints, no recommendations! Great writing job!

Why The Grin Widened...

Ooookay...Word of warning, this will probably be a long review, haha.

So as I mentioned, great staging. Black Squad coming together to help Jarid prepare in the last chapter was excellent, and seeing the results not just throughout the fight, but in Jarid's almost uncharacteristically confident demeanor, you can really feel the payoff. Not to mention the setting itself. We know a lot of wild things can happen in the dragon dome by now, and this...

he noticed that the stands were packed with people. Not only students and staff of the academy, but people from the nearby villages as well.


I like that you decided to add this detail. Not only was the cheering crowd a great element throughout the fight, a cue to keep the readers grounded, but having so many witnesses was the perfect way to build some tension and put more pressure on Jarid. Not to mention bringing about more uncertainty, since they cheer solely for Briar at first.

Then he took up a fighting stance and opened his eyes, smiling like a wolf about to devour its prey.

“I’m ready. With talons sharp and heart steady. I will fight you, no matter where. So, come at me…if you dare.” He replied, holding out his hand as he invited the Lt. to attack.


Love this; love the lyrical insert, love the confidence, love the predator-prey analogy. And continuing along those lines...

His confidence slowly returned while his panic faded as he focused on the words of the song.


I find it interesting that Jarid keeps using music in his fights. I mean, first of all, I like the song choices and the lyrics, and having them in our heads as we read is just so awesome in and of itself. However, the idea that he may rely on the music to keep him steady (at least in the very challenging fights), especially with that hint toward the confidence/power boost, makes me think it's one of few things that help him repress and control the shocking power that keeps popping up when he's overwhelmed. If it were gone and he was overwhelmed...Ooou, I could be off here, but either way, the music element works great and I like it a lot. Heck, you should make a Shadow's Rising playlist!

(also, if you haven't already, I would recommend checking out Thousand Foot Krutch. They totally fit this book's vibe ~)

The action for the fight was very well-narrated; fast-paced and detailed, but not so much that it felt cluttered or took away from the impact of those special moves. Like the way he dodged the kick with a vault? That was so cool! And the descriptions of the characters as the fight goes on was awesome:

He didn’t know why but fighting a powerful opponent like this seemed to have awakened something in him. A competitive hunger and perhaps a small desire for destruction.


The casual taunt was like a red flag to a bull. Lt. Briar finally lost all composure and even his training couldn’t keep his anger at bay any longer.


Not only do I feel like that line for Jarid has potential foreshadowing behind it, but just the feeling here; Briar, someone driven by rage, while Jarid finally feels challenged and is actually enjoying it a bit. With neither of them holding back, you know things are about to heat up ~

The introduction of magic, with a blast of fire, felt like such a big turning point in the fight, amplified by Briar's obvious rage and humiliation. And Jarid continuing to theme the attacks around the song not only lends credence to the idea that he knew what was going to happen, so Black Squad's preparations paid off, but it was just too cool to witness.

And the results of the fight...

Lt. Briar, after being freed from his binds, was put on probation, and banned from teaching again for cheating in the match as well as putting a student’s life in danger.


Like that a lot! And Keldor stepping in as the new sub, as I like his character.

After that it seemed like everything was returning to normal... until a few days later.


This, don't know about! What's going on here?! (O.O ) Great cliffhanger to leave on, after such an intense conflict.

Our Mad Thoughts...

Overall, awesome chapter, nicely done! :D

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dragonight9 says...


Thanks so much for the review! This was a chapter I really enjoyed writing.

I was curious though, there was a certain line Jarid says as soon as Briar starts using magic to really illustrate it but I wanted it to come across as Jarid's whole plan in the fight was to goad Lt. Briar into using magic because that is where Jarid is most powerful.
Did that come across clearly?
Thanks ;)



dragonight9 says...


By the way, about Thousand Foot Krutch. I just listened to a few songs and I think I've found a new artist to add to my favorites playlist! Thanks so much for recommending them.
A similar group to them is Skillet if you don't know them already I'd highly recommend them.



RavenAkuma says...


No problem! And yes, I did notice that, with the clarification that since Briar started using magic then Jarid could, and that it was exactly what he was waiting for. And the song lyrics acted as a great hint for that too.

Spoiler! :
Also, I'm glad you like them, and yes I love Skillet! ^^ I used to torture my brother blasting "Awake And Alive" when I was like eight or nine because it was my favorite song for a while XD




The true adventurer goes forth aimless and uncalculating to meet and greet unknown fate.
— O. Henry (William Sydney Porter)