HA\LF: Dead nor Alive
“Youre not kidding about this guy, Tom, this guy really is a beast,” Ruby said as she scoffed and wiped the blood on her nose.
“We need more men, I suppose? Never mind that we need everyone to beat this guy up.” Tommy replied as he tried to fix his shoulder that was dislocated because of Archies punch.
“Boys! Come here and show him that theres no such a thing as a fair fight!” Ruby shouted at the others who were watching from the side.
Archie backed away and watched everyone from the 102nd division were walking toward Ruby.
They all stood behind her and smiled with excitement, Archie took a deep breath as he readied his stance. Ruby and Tommy knew that Archie had no experience in a fistfight because the way he moved, punched, and kicked was like someone who had no idea what he was doing.
“You know what we are going to do to an opponent thats stronger and bigger than us?” Ruby asked as she looked at them over her shoulder. “Thats right, we are going to use formation 4 for this. Lets go!” Ruby tilted her head toward Archie as she looked at them.
Ruby ran toward Archie on her own, Archie immediately threw a punch at her but she dodged it easily. She grabbed Archies hand and pulled him toward her then she kneed him on the chin so hard. Both of them were in pain because Rubys kneecap got dislocated from kneeing his chin.
“Fucking hell…” Ruby said under her breath.
Archie was stunned for a second but the moment he gained his consciousness back, he was already surrounded by Tommy and the others. Suddenly his knees felt weak and realized that some of them kicked his knees from the back. He fell to his knees and Tommy punched him in the face so hard that Archie finally fell down to the ground for the first time.
Tommy sat on top of Archie and bombarded him with punches while Archie covered his face with his arms.
“Come on, Archie! Get up and fight!” Ruby yelled at Archie to encourage him.
Archie tried to free himself but then both his hands and legs were being held by the others so he couldnt do anything but took all the punches that Tommy threw at him.
“Come on, Archie! Youre going to die out there if you cant rely on your strength!” Ruby yelled and looked down at Archie who was beaten by Tommy.
Archie couldnt see clearly and the only thing he could see was fists that came toward his face.
“Is this the best you can do? Do you think this is unfair, Archie? The world doesnt care about fairness, it only cares about killing or being killed!” Ruby clapped her hands as if she wanted Archie to focus on her words.
Archie tried to lift his arms but realized that each arm was being held down by 4 people, and it was the same on his legs.
“Show me what you got, Archie. Come on!” Tommy said under his breath as he kept punching him.
Archie started to feel annoyed by the sting and the pain he started to take a deep breath and exhaled deeply. He glared at Tommy without even flinching and it started to make Tommy feel uncomfortable with his glare. Archie used the strength that he had been holding back and removed all the hands that held him down.
Archie pushed Tommy from his body and stood up, he punched Tommy in the gut and Tommy immediately coughed blood. Archie threw a right hook at him that threw him away and dragged him to the ground for quite a distance. Tommy wasnt moving and just stayed there laying on the ground, everyone was shocked and looked at Archie with fear.
They all saw the veins in his eyes start to visible and it was dark red and purple that it looked like he was being possessed by a parasite. Ruby furrowed her forehead with confusion and then she immediately ran toward him and threw a punch but Archie dodged it easily. Ruby then turned around and climbed up onto Archies back and pulled him down with her but Archies footing was solid that he wont budge no matter how hard she tried to pull him down.
Ruby immediately choke Archie between her forearm and bicep. “Archie?! Calm down!”
Archie grabbed her nape and slammed her down to the ground with just one hand. When Archie wanted to grab her head, Ruby grabbed a knife hidden in her boot and pointed at Archies eye and Archie managed to stop before the blade stab his eye.
“Enough!” Ruby screamed at Archie.
Everyone was frozen as they watched them both.
Archies eyes went back to normal and realized what he had just done. He slowly backed away and looked at Ruby who was scared of him. “Im sorry, Capt…”
Ruby stood up and put the knife in her boot. “Thats okay, you showed me enough that youre capable and thats a good thing.”
Archie looked at Tommy who was still laying on the ground and hadnt moved a muscle. Ruby looked at Tommy as well and immediately checked on him with Archie.
“You okay, Tom?” Ruby asked as she patted Tommys back.
They heard a groan and Ruby immediately turned him over, she saw Tommy was closing his eyes as he groaned in pain.
“I think I broke all my fingers, Capt.” Tommy weakly replied as he slowly lifted his hands to show his broken fingers to Ruby.
Ruby scoffed and helped him get up. “What happened?” Ruby jokingly asked.
“Heh… I punched a fucking wall.” Tommy weakly replied as he pointed at Archie with a smile on his face.
Both Archie and Ruby were laughing at him.
“Alright, thats enough for today, you all can rest for the rest of the day. But remember, we are going to train again tomorrow!” Ruby said as she carried Tommy on her shoulder.
Everyone was laughing with disbelief as they left and went back to their own home.
“Archie, could you carry him? I cant walk properly because I dislocated my kneecap…” Ruby asked as she started to feel the sting on her knee.
“Yes, maam…” Archie replied as he grabbed Tommy from Rubys shoulder and then carried him on the back.
“Just call me Captain, for now, Im not that old… in fact, Im only a year older than you,” Ruby said as she groaned in pain.
“Yes, Capt,” Archie nodded with understanding.
They both went to the hospital to treat Tommys broken fingers and Rubys knee.
After Ruby got her treatment, she went to where Tommy was being treated. On her way to his room, she looked at Archie who was sitting on the chair, and stared at the floor.
“Youre still here?” Ruby asked as she approached him.
“Oh? Yeah, I just feel bad for Tommy.” Archie replied as he sat straight and looked at her.
“Why? You dont have to. He beat you up pretty badly back there as well.” Ruby sat down next to Archie and looked at him, but then she furrowed her forehead with confusion. “How can you have no bruises nor blood after you got punched in the face dozens of times?” Ruby asked as she swirled her index finger around Archies face.
“I just built different, thats all,” Archie replied jokingly.
“Okay…” Ruby replied as she laughed at him.
It was just silence afterward and it felt so awkward for Archie.
“Archie, what I said earlier during the training, you have to keep that in mind that the world wont pity you,” Ruby said as she stared at the wall in front of her. “If theres a moment where you have the chance to survive, you do it, no matter what.” Ruby continued with her trembling voice.
Archie looked at her from the corner of his eyes. He knew about what happened in her past, and he thought that it was a way for her to justify her action in the past.
“I have been living for the past 7 years trying to survive, Capt. I know how it feels and I will do what I must do to survive,” Archie replied as he rested his arms on his thighs.
Ruby looked at Archie who stared at the floor again and then she leaned on the chair and crossed her legs. “For someone who doesnt know how to fight, you sure know how to survive, huh? Thats really interesting and weird at the same time.” Ruby squinted her eyes as she kept staring at Archie.
“Out there, it doesnt matter what you know and what you dont know. Everything will take you by surprise and the only thing that will keep you alive is your instinct and will to live, thats what matters.” Archie replied as he smirked and kept staring at the floor.
Ruby was squinting her eyes and staring at Archie with curiosity. “I heard you stayed in the barrack, how about you stay in my place and sleep there? I have plenty of beds because all my friends sometimes sleep in my house.”
“Im fine, Capt. The barrack is comfy enough for me,” Archie looked at Ruby over his shoulder.
“Its fine, I want to hear your story more so come to my place,” Ruby said as she tapped on Archies shoulder and got up.
Archie was staring at Ruby who walked past him and didnt move a muscle.
Ruby stopped and turned around, she then crossed her arms and raised her eyebrow. “Come on, thats an order from your Captain.”
Archie slightly smiled and nodded with understanding. “Yes, Capt.”
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