Turning away from his tackling drill, Blavod observed the increasingly pallid figure of his coach approaching. Git – Never had he met a man for whom a nickname were more appropriate. He had truly proven himself to be an asset, crafty and meticulous and with a ruthless streak. Dead Metal had won 11 out of 16 games under his leadership – sure, there were rough edges, at times he appeared to be uncomfortable with his new identity and surroundings, and some of the petulance that had followed him through life were still there to see – but none of that mattered, he could wield the Hand of Glory.
The wight noted that even he was starting to feel a strong compulsion toward the will of the Hand, almost as if he were synchronising to the thoughts of the wielder. Where previously he had been keen to engage on the frontlines of a Bloodbowl scrimmage, Git was willing him away from danger, compelling him to stay on the fringes and strike targets of opportunity. Git had told him that the injury suffered against InGen Apocalypse had nearly been fatal and that they wouldn’t be able to fulfil the Maker’s will without one another …. He had felt the beginnings of a bond emerging, feelings he’d long considered beyond him …. was it the power of the Hand? Or did he feel kinship in the similar beginnings he shared with his coach … his master in their second lives?
“Blavod, prepare the team for revenge – I want you to double down on the tackling and endurance drills right now!”
Tackling and endurance drills – These were Git’s humanspeak way of saying gargoyle smashing (tackling), and standing perfectly still whilst Gerhart Steelcaps shot a cannon into your midriff (endurance). The drills had been proposed by Conrad the Maniac after Dead Metal’s disastrous first game against Madonnatron & Shaniqua Bot’s colourful dwarven troupe, and they had served the team well up to this point…
“But mast- …. but coach?” Blavod corrected himself, seeing the disapproving stare from his coach – Git hated being called master, he had embraced the partnership, and was genuinely grateful for the second chance the wight had offered him, despite the cosequences of accepting it ..
“But coach, do you think this wise? Gerhart has been somewhat …. erratic with his aim recently … speaking of which, where is that blasted skeleton?”
“Tending to the Abattoir ravens.” came the reply from Git. In truth, he was waiting for news to come from MML HQ regarding which team they would actually be playing – Git had instructed Gerhart to wait until a raven arrived with news in the immediate aftermath of the team’s victory over Los Pumas – that was 5 days ago now. One of the perks of dominion over … coaching a team of undead was their utmost adherence to simple instructions, no matter how mundane, something Git had always struggled with in his time with the Royal Rat Authority – they had seemed determined to make an utter mess of anything simple!
“For revenge, coach?”
“There’s a chance we could play the Weeping Widowmakers – if we do, I want us to bring our absolute A-Game, I won’t allow that insufferable southerner another victory over us!”
Blavod considered pointing out that the displeasure of the Maker would be far more damning for both of them than some petty feud, and he didn’t really understand the southerner reference. It didn’t matter anyway, their goals were aligned here, and if indeed, it were the Widowmakers, Blavod knew they’d need their absolute best. There were in fact 3 teams it would be possible to meet, all of them extremely strong and storied –
Clink. Clink. Clink. Clink. Clink.
The unmistakable shuffling of Gerhart Steelcaps and his ludicrously heavy boots punctuated the air with their rhythmic ‘clinking’ sound.
Clink. Clink. Clink.
Git and Blavod watched on, seemingly bemused at just how laboured the Skeleton seemed to be when it came to the simple task of walking across the pitch. It had been widely noted that having a target on the floor to boot had a marked effect on the mobility of this wretched creature, but no such victims were currently available. Thoughts swiftly turned to the parchment clutched in the attendant’s bony hand …
CLINK. CLINK. CLINK.
The skeleton finally arrived, and opened his mouth to speak, before Git hurriedly snatched the parchment and Blavod dispatched him to the cannons – Akhenaten the Great was needing some cannonball practice and that seemed more valuable than anything the mindless minion may have to say.
Git scanned over the parchment, and a mixture of intrigue, disappointment and concern swept across his face…
Hashut’s Hellhammers. Last season’s challenge league champions, led by the now legendary coach Sacerdotalist. Even Blavod knew that name.
This was doubtless as tough an assignment that Dead Metal could have received – but Git appeared to have a plan.
“Blavod, fetch that skeleton and the shamblers, take some shovels, we’re going to need … reinforcements. You may want to sharpen the studs on all of your boots too, I know this team, they are without mercy. We must be equally merciless.”
Stifling a laugh to himself, Blavod turned away.
Yes master, he muttered softly.