Ballroom Blitz(ball) Part 2

Dr.Cody wheeled Sy into the arena, chirping happily that the change of scenery would do the girl some good, raise her spirits.

"You didn’t want to miss the Blitzball game, did you, Doc?" Piper couldn’t help but tease.

"Someone has to be on the field in case the Alphas get too aggressive! This kills two birds with one stone."

Who’s killing birds? Wren asked warily.

“Outside voices.” Piper reminded him before Pyria had to chime in. “We’re glad you could make it, Sy. Not to brag, but this is definitely one of the best events the Spire puts on all year.”

“And the Gauntlet.” Wren added, chiming in. "That's the Neo/Alpha competition."

"Not Neo Vs. Alpha," Piper explained. "Bonded pair squared off against other bonded pair. Last year Dove and Foxtrot came out on top super close followed by Blue and Zulu. Romeo and I got third." Even AFTER graduating, there was always some competition going on. “But this game, watching the Alphas go all out? Always amazing!”

"Thanks guys, wouldn' wanna miss this fo' the world," Sy smiled. She still looked a bit peaky but her eyes were more alert, and she fidgeted in the chair a little. "Doc wouldn't let me come on my own or I'd be here on my own two feet!"

"Now now young lady, I'm tasked with looking after your well-being and you have to listen to your doctor when he tells you not to tax yourself!" Cody said cheerfully. He leaned over and said quietly: "Besides, you get the best seat in the house if you're in a wheelchair so no complaining!"

"So that was yo' play all along!" Sy said in mock offense. "Using my state to get yo'self a good seat, shame on ya, doc!"

Cody roared with laughter and turned his attention to Piper. "Piper, I take it Romeo is pumped up and ready to rumble in the catacombs?"

“He’s an Alpha,” she boasted. “He’s always ready for anything.” The doc understood, of course, but not fully. He was never a bonded pair, unlike Pyria, who jauntily made her way to her seat. Even the Den Mother was excited for the big game, and although she struggled with the notion of playing favorites, she couldn’t help but have a soft spot for the Vets. Delta 312 “Loki” - that had been her Alpha.

Piper looked over the small field, and couldn’t help but feel a little giddy as great memories washed over her. Alphas graduated ‘boot’ but not many people knew Neos had a training program of their own to earn the right to court for an Alpha. It wasn’t as intense, but it was competitive, not every Neo would bond with an Alpha. She was lucky in that respect, and it was here that she’d first took notice of the Alpha that would become her bond. The game would always hold a special place in her heart for that reason -- no matter how tired of the story other Neos claimed to be!

Maggie scooted closer to Piper, Q and Sy. It was becoming apparent there was a potential bond in the making with Maggie but at the moment neither Roach or Trag had made the first move. It was uncommon for that to happen sometimes but the rivalry between the two pups had gotten intense. Right down to eat who ate faster. Sadly, it didn’t seem either would make a movie until one of them proved themselves the uncontested superior to the other.

Maggie had carefully tried to keep herself out of it to let the pup work it out. She liked them both for different reasons but it was a bit overwhelming have the two constantly fighting! But the whole playing aloof only backfired and made them fight all the harder for her attention!

“Hey guys! Who do you think is going to win this year? You think the pups stand a chance?” She asked excitedly. Though everyone know what Piper was going to say.

“Not even if you set them all on the field at once! The Vets hands down." Piper replied confidently. She was happy to see everyone talking out loud so Sy felt included.

The bonded and bonded hopefuls got to sit closest to the field. For the hopefuls, it was a chance to see what stern stuff the Alpha they were interested in was made of. For the bonded, it was easier for Alphas to concentrate on the game if they knew where their Neo was and could easily spot them. “What about you, Sy? Pups or Vets?"

"I don' even know how the game is played," Sy said with an embarrassed chuckle. She was keenly aware that this was the first time Magpie had spoken to her without open hostility, and she wanted to make the most of such a rare opportunity. "Didn' have interest 'fore I lived in the slums, too busy survivin' to take an interest after. If it's mostly runnin', I give pups the edge. If it's got any strategy, vets. Kids got a lot of energy and not much knowledge on how to spend it, know'm'sayin'."

“Vets, all the way. Mags? Rooting for Roach? Tragedy? Or does some other pup have your eye?” Piper nudged. “You know… Wren and Lima bonded 3 months after me and Romeo. I mean, Q and Dash just bonded, it's a good time to court." All in all, there were about a dozen hopefuls, and five alpha pups left. No one said it out loud, but it was almost a blessing that Dash was back at the kennel, five on five - Zulu was still very much missed.

“I’m worried to say anything they might hear me.” Maggie said some color blooming on her cheeks. It made her very uncomfortable being stuck between two fighting Alphas. The other Neo’s thought it was a riot. “I hope at least they get the extra aggression out and get a couple of days of peace!” Maggie laughed.

Joint Post, Winters, Blitzen & Garden's Tale

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