The clammy-handed guard shoved him face down into the soft, pale sand of the arena. He rose slowly, the gates crashing shut behind him. He stumbled further into the arena, spitting the sand out of his mouth, disgusted. A horn sounded sharply from somewhere above, and looked up to see, besides where the emperor sat on his jeweled throne, a muscular man, his lips to a broad golden horn. Claudius put his hand to the sword at his belt in anticipation. For a moment, nothing happened. Then, at the opposite end of the arena, a large black gate grinded open. There was a growl, and a huge winged beast pounded into the arena, hungry and slathering. It had the head and mane of a lion, the muscular torso of a bull, and a hissing cobra as a tail. Two blood-red wings shot from Its back. Claudius gulped, bracing himself. You’ve defeated the others he told himself, You can defeat this one… how do you expect to defeat the Ultimate… and to gain your freedom, If you can’t defeat this guy. “The Ultimate” was the Emperor’s prized beast. He had only heard stories… Few had faced “The Ultimate”, and even fewer had lived to describe it… At the other end of the arena, the beast lifted Its huge head and sniffed the air. Then growling, it turned to Claudius. Claudius drew his sword. Calmly and boldly, he stepped forwards. The beast roared, displaying a jaw of gleaming fangs. It scraped the sand beneath its feet with an ink black hoof, like a bull would before It charged. Claudius took a deep breath… The beast charged.
Surprised at the beast’s speed, Claudius rolled across the sand, barely avoiding the tongue of the snake as it lashed out at him viciously. The beast skidded to a halt, turning back round to face him, roaring and baring Its fangs. It charged again. This time, Claudius was ready. As he jumped out of the way of the charge, he lunged at the beast’s rear, and brought his sword down, slicing the hissing snake clean off the beast’s torso. To his disgust, the snake continued to writhe and hiss. It slithered towards him, tongue flashing angrily. Meanwhile, the beast had recovered, and was readying for another attack. It charged. Speedily, Claudius grabbed a firm hand around the snake’s neck, hoisting it into the air. Then, dodging the beast’s charge, he threw himself onto the beast’s back, making it roar with anger. He whipped the snake viciously across the creature’s muscular back, making it cry out in pain.
“Hi-ya! Hi-ya!” he cried, lashing the beast again, guiding it slowly up, past the crowds of people in the audience, past shocked and awed faces. He flew up and up, past an infuriated emperor, who fell backwards off his grand throne as the beast, Claudius aback it, passed closely, then continued to soar up, up and into the clear blue skies.
I wrote this story on 29th January for a Literacy assignment. I hope you had as much fun reading it as I had writing it (… which was a lot, by the way :-) )