This post is part of the series Hashut's Hellhammers
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“If I’d have been in that game, there’s no way those puny humans would’ve won,” Marduk grumbled. “Their second touchdown was a gift from Nuffle – under what stars does that play work!?”
“Well, yes…” coach Sacerdotalist began.
“AND NOW ABZU IS MISSING OUR FIRST PLAYOFF GAME WITH A LAME HOOF!?”
Sacerdotalist shrank back in front of the enraged dwarf. After recovering, he cleared his throat, and piped up again.
“Well, yes, but these things happen in blood bowl from time to time. You – err, we? – have had a great first season considering you lot had never so much as handled a blood ball before. Winning the conference and securing a playoff berth! And leading the league in casualties inflicted. My previous teams never did THAT.”
Marduk grunted, slightly mollified. Still, a mollified Marduk resembled nothing so much as a cannon with an inch-long burning fuse; short, iron hard, and liable to erupt in cacophonous destruction any second. Then, a toothy smile appeared behind his beard like the sun shining through inky black smog.
“I did have front row seats to that pathetic tantrum their coach threw after Lahmu stomped out that blitzer’s neck, though. Accusing us of poor ‘sportsmanship’? If our hobgoblins don’t relentlessly foul our opponents during the middle of a tie game, THAT would be poor sportsdwarfship.”
“That was odd and hilarious, but let’s focus on the next game, Marduk. The playoffs are a different beast entirely. Teams are more physical and more skilled, and our lack of experience could hard to overcome. But I have an idea about how to fix that lack of experience, if you’ll hear me out…”
“Now Elric, hear me out,” Sacerdotalist cajoled.
“My leg is ruined! I’d run like some graceless human out there. And I haven’t picked up a blood ball in months now,” he says, holding up his manacled hands. “My hands are chafed raw from this inelfane treatment!”
“Sure, you might not be as fast or agile as you were, and you’re horribly out of practice, but you have playoff experience. Veteran savvy. Leadership ability. Wait, no, if you spoke up in the locker room, Marduk would just cave your face in. Forget leadership, just keep your head down and play. But maybe you could earn your freedom if you help them win!”
Elric scowled, looking down at the cumbersome brace on his left knee. Could he actually play blood bowl again? Would he want to, with a bunch of fat, smelly, mean, ugly dwarfs and their revolting, underhanded hobgoblin hangers-on? But to feel the ball in his hands again, to hear the roar of the crowd, to forget the plight of his enslavement…
“Of course, you’ll have to dress like a hobgoblin. Basmu the Malevolent was thrown in the furnace after the last game, so you can wear his practice uniform. Might want to wash it first, though – the odor of hobgoblin urine, you know?”
“I’ll think about it.”
The Hellhammers postseason starts against the Stormreavers BC on Wednesday May 31 at 2:30pm EDT. Tune in at twitch.tv/sacerdotalist.