Can you still be friends with half a corpse?
This was the first thing that had come to Vorelando’s mind as the uneaten half of Berry’s body fell to the floor with a thud.
Somehow, it seemed like what used to be the left eye was looking up at Vorelando, directly into his own.
It was as if Vorelando was being told, had he been there from the start, had Berry known that his best friend was cheering him on instead of thinking he’d abandoned him, that this would never have happened.
It was a purely emotional reaction. Logically, Vorelando knew that this outcome was unavoidable.
Kobe had clearly done his homework, Clark was Mark with all of the flaws removed it seemed. Even though his style was simple, it was effective. Clark’s pace and power were always going to be too much for Berry to handle, you can’t step off the track if the train hits you before you even realize it’s left the station.
Even Kobe would’ve had trouble dealing with him and Berry was barely half the vorer he was. If the match ups had been flipped and Berry had faced Mark, he might’ve had an outside shot at winning but as the draw had fallen, he had been doomed the moment he stepped into the cage.
While Vorelando wrestled with the thoughts in his mind, Clark had strolled over to the remaining half of Berry’s body and bitten off the pinkie finger on his left hand.
“That’s game! Clark Eaton is your winner!”
As Wuce announced the verdict, the crowd lifted the roof off the arena. Clark Eaton had given them what they wanted. Not just total victory but total disrespect.
“Ennie, what the hell was that?”
“What do you mean?”
“He hasn’t finished him off.”
“Technically he has, they changed the rules a few years ago, you only have to vore 51% of your opponent before you’re declared the victor. They call him ‘Majority’ because all of his matches end this way.”
“Who the hell came up with a stupid rule like that?!”
Of course. Vorelando thought. Who else would come up with such a cowardly rule other than that son of a bitch, the Vorefather himself, 20 time defending vore world champion, Voran Magic.
The cheers from the crowd had begun to die down and Clark was being ushered out of the cage. As the distance between Clark and Berry’s mangled half-corpse grew, Vorelando felt his rage grow in tandem.
He hated vore, everything it was, everything it represented. That was why he had walked away in his youth, he wanted no part of the vore machine.
But he had thought, at that time, he could never hate it more. So, to see a display such as this, such disrespect to the opponent by the victor, was a shock. A fair and friendly competition was the bedrock of vore, that’s what he had thought, it was the reason, even if he couldn’t respect the game, he could respect the player.
Maybe it was this conflict of emotions that caused him to do what he did next, crazy as it was.
He leapt from his seat towards the cage. As he hurtled through the air the crowd dropped into a shocked silence. He hit the side of the cage but managed to hold on and pull himself up to the top. He walked over to the stunned announcer, who was paralyzed by the sheer audacity, and snatched the mic from his hand.
“YOU! CLARK WHATEVER THE FUCK YOUR STUPID GODDAMN NAME IS!”
Vorelando shouted into the mic and Clark stopped in his tracks in response.
“GET BACK HERE AND EAT THE REST OF MY FRIEND, DICKHEAD!”
Clark turned to face Vorelando.
“I don’t see any reason why I should.”
“Because its disrespectful! Honouring your opponent is at the core of the spirit of vore!”
Vorelando’s fierce expression annoyed Clark. To him Vorelando was just some salty fan who didn’t like that his friend had lost. He didn’t get to tell Clark Eaton how to vore, nobody had the right to do that.
“Someone get this idiot off the cage, he’s holding everything up.”
Clark turned back around and walked towards the changing rooms. He didn’t need to get involved with the rabble, that was what had gotten his brother vored. He would have scholarship offers coming in left and right after such a decisive, high profile victory, no need to ruin it by causing a scene.
“You’re just gonna walk away?”
Clark said nothing.
“If you won’t do it then you better be prepared to get back in this damn cage. If you think you’re above eating my friend then you’ll have to beat me too.”
Clark ignored the taunts, he knew what was ahead of him.
“Unless of course, you’re a coward.”
Just as Vorelando said this, guards who had finally made it to the top of the cage tackled him. The mic fell through the gap in the cage and smashed against the floor, sending a harsh noise reverberating around the arena through the speakers.
Clark had frozen again. His fists clenched in anger, his arms twitching against their mental restraints. There was only so different twins could ever be. Vorelando knew this. If Clark didn’t appear to be a hot head, it was only because he was better at keeping it in. If Vorelando could push him to his limit, the results would be more explosive than they ever would’ve been with Mark.
Underneath the bodies of several guards pinning him, Vorelando strained his neck upwards to face Clark.
“Come on pretty boy, you gonna let me get away with that? If you’re really that guy you should be able to stop me talking smack. But you’re not are you? You’re afraid you might lose.”
Clark spun around on his heel and screamed.
“I’M NOT AFRAID OF ANYONE, BOY!”
Vorelando smiled to himself. He’d gotten him.
“Guards, get off him. Someone clear off the cage floor, we’re having an exhibition match!”
Everyone in the arena paused. The staff all looked at each other, unsure if they should do as Clark said. This wasn’t the plan, no one was sure if this was permitted within the rules.
“Ladies and gentlemen…”
But everyone wanted to see it happen and when it came to vore, there was no rule more important than entertainment.
“I hope you didn’t have any plans because at this rate we might go all night!”
Even without the mic, Wuce Wuffer’s voice filled the arena with an electric enthusiasm. He was beyond ready for this matchup, Wuce was a diehard vore fan and he hadn’t gotten to announce an impromptu match in years. He wasn't going to let anything get in the way of this bout.
“Lets get this show on the road!”
The command from Wuce was all the staff needed to spring into action. Within a matter of minutes, the stage was set for Clark and Vorelando’s battle.
Normally, vorers would go into a match wearing their signature outfit. As long as it didn’t offer the wearer any significant advantages, vorers could wear whatever they liked. Most chose to wear sports gear for maximum mobility but it wasn’t a rule and many pro vorers were known for their eccentric wardrobes.
Vorelando, hadn’t brought anything to wear, so he stepped into the cage barefoot and topless, the only thing covering him were the jeans he had gone to school in that morning.
As soon as the two of them were in their corners, the lights shut off.
“In the winners corner, he needs no reintroduction, he’s Mr. Majority, Clark Eaton!”
The cheers as the spotlight lit him up were as feverish as they had been before but Clark was different. His calm, composed mask had been peeled back to reveal the snarl underneath. If it was even possible, he planned to end this match quicker than the last one.
“And in corner number 2, we have no data for him on file, it’s Vorelando Jones.”
The boos had started before his name had even been announced. The spotlight acting as a target for the crowds missiles to be directed towards. He was hit with every food item available for purchase in the arena, doused with every beverage. Some people even threw their phones at him to try and cause injury.
The countdown started and Clark got into position.
“I’m gonna give you the eat down of a lifetime.” Vorelando taunted.
Clark remained silent, his eyes unblinking, focused solely on Vorelando.
“3… 2… 1..”
Vorelando wiped the sweat from his brow just before the match started. He was nervous, he hadn’t been in the cage for over five years, no doubt he was rusty. But he simply had to win, it was the only way he knew to honour Berry.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, it’s time to dig in!”
Like a flash, Clark shot across the cage but Vorelando sidestepped just in time. Instead of stopping like Mark had done, Clark conserved his momentum, planting his feet on the bars on the opposite side of the cage to launch back instantly. Again, Vorelando had the speed to match him.
Clark bounced all around the cage, across and back, left and right, trying to catch Vorelando out but every time his efforts were thwarted.
His reactions were too quick, it was as if he knew what Clark was going to do before he did it. The type of skills you only develop after years at the top of the game.
Clark came to a stop. He was baffled, how did that trash he had eliminated earlier even make it to the finals when there was someone this skilled in the same school?
“Who are you?”
“Don’t lie to me, boy. You don’t get that skilled without being someone special.”
“Of course, that’s what you’d think.”
“I’m offering you a few more seconds at life for the mere price of an answer and you’re throwing it back in my face. You’re scum, not worthy to enter the cage.”
“Thought you said I had to be special?”
“You’ve taught me that even scum can be special, you’re just scummier than most.”
Clark mounted himself again and sprang once more. Vorelando dodged once again.
“How are you planning to win boy? Do you have some kind of signature move?” asked as he bounced around the cage.
“Don’t need one.”
“Then how are you expecting to win? There’s no path to victory through defense alone!”
“You think I’ve been defending this whole time? You really are an idiot.”
Clark came to a stop on the cage once more but suddenly his arms and legs gave out. The whole crowd let out a gasp he fell to the ground. He tried to push himself back up but slipped on a thin layer of his own blood.
“If you come in with a defensive mindset, you’ve already lost the match. That was Berry’s problem, he knew that you were the better vorer and he acted like it. But counterattacking is not a defensive play, it’s an intelligent one.”
Just then Clark noticed the chunks of flesh missing from his arms and legs. He was so hopped up on adrenaline he hadn’t noticed but every time he had attacked, Vorelando had bitten back. Small enough that no single bite would seem like it came from anything more than a mosquito but over time they had built up, sapping Clark of his endurance.
“Vore has no time limit Clark, this is a battle of attrition, once you missed your first attack, you were cooked.”
“I haven’t lost yet!”
“Sure you have.”
The crowd was dead silent. They couldn’t believe what they were seeing. The number 1 ranked junior vorer in the state was being bested by someone who’d arrived as a spectator, a no name with serious game.
Vorelando’s footsteps echoed in the arena as he walked over to Clark and picked him up by the neck.
“I’m going to show you the respect you didn’t show to Berry, I’m going to kill you first so you don’t feel anything, then I’m going to eat you piece by piece.”
Vorelando went to tighten his grip around Clark’s neck to snap it but as he did, Clark’s body vanished into thin air.
“I told you I hadn’t lost boy, I’ll never lose, not to the likes of you!”
Vorelando craned his neck to look directly above him. There was Clark, hanging from the ceiling, locked and loaded and dripping blood onto the ground below. Vorelando tensed up, dodging an attack from above was going to be difficult.
As the two stared each other down, a drop of Clark’s blood hit Vorelando in the eye, causing him to blink. This was all the opening Clark needed. He launched himself like a bullet directly downwards and screeched.
Vorelando couldn’t react fast enough. Clark’s teeth made contact with his skull, gluing him to the spot. The corkscrew motion of Clark’s attack gave him the traction he needed, his teeth pulling the rest of Vorelando’s body into his mouth in an instant as he crashed face first into the ground.
The crowd held their breath. A cloud of debris had been thrown up into the air by Clark’s attack, obscuring the result.
As the dust settled, a silhouette came into view. Battered, bloody but not beaten, Clark Eaton lay on the ground.
“I won! I did it! I DID IT!”
The announcer didn’t even bother announcing the result, he was too busy cheering with the delirious crowd.
The crowd in Crackremento Arena would never as loud again as they were that night. The night they witnessed the defeat of Vorelando Jones.