by Kevin Myrick

The men lined up, their armor glinting in the limelight as the throngs of crazed onlookers shouted curses at them from the grand stands. The combatants faced each other as they all took stock of their position and steeled themselves for the oncoming battle. The crowd hummed with the anticipation of the bloodsport; they licked their lips as they waited with the sun beating down on them. At last one of the men on the line bowed his head in a silent prayer for deliverance from what was about to come, then lifted his head and shouted loudly for his fellows to charge. 

The crowd was the winner in the end, its reward the bread and circuses it so desired.