Saturday, April 9th – Zaun vs Noxus
“Zaun, Zaun, Zaun!” The crowd was chanting as Twitch circled through the jungle around Bandle City’s base. As he disappeared from sight he mischievously snickered, “I’ll be right under their noses.” A man in the crowd ripped off his shirt to reveal black body paint in the shape of a rat poison symbol and a crossbow. “ZAAAAAAUUN!” Singed and Zac ran into the middle lane entrance to the Bandle City base and started hitting the tower. Urgot followed from behind and fired a corrosive charge over the lines followed by several acid hunting blades.
Amumu latched onto Singed with bandages and pulled himself towards the mad chemist. The Zaunite scooped the mummy up with his shield and flipped him over his back. He unpopped the cork on his vial of airborne toxins and ran towards Veigar. Zac simultaneously leaped to the dark mage. Tristana fired an overpowdered cannonball at Zac. It collided mid flight and exploded, sending the green globe soaring backwards. She started firing rapidly at Singed.
The mad chemist stopped in his tracks and held up his shield. He was knocked to the ground under the barrage. Tristana grinned, the comeback was going to start here.
Twitch reappeared and fired a bolt that ripped through Tristana, Veigar, Amumu, and the entire yordle team. “Oh, hello! Huhahahaha!” He started a little rapid fire of his own and sent toxic bolts through every yordle on the field. Urgot’s blades joined the bombardment and soon the entire Bandle City team was lying on the ground. Four shirtless fans in the stands covered with body paint in shapes of letters stood up, “Z-A-U-N, ZAUN!”
The Zaunites marched over to the Nexus. The fanfare exploded as the announced shouted, “Viktory!” Several cybernetically augmented members of the crowd stood up and shouted, “For the glorious evolution!” Several light show only lasers shot upwards as the crowd started chanting a bold statement, “Undisputed coolest faction!”
Later, in the Zaunite wing of the Institute, a summoner was addressing the champions. “Nicely done out there guys. Loved the rotations, just remember to ward before venturing outside of our range of tower vision. Viktor, your laser ray was a bit off on accuracy, better run a quick check through its systems before next week.”
The summoner looked down at a clipboard, “Alright, the only people we haven’t taken on this time around are Demacia and Ionia, but we won’t get to them till the next rotation opens up. So, the only place left for you to worry about this rotation is…” they scrolled through the list.
From the doorway a woman voice said, “Noxus.” The summoner looked up to see Cassiopeia standing at the entrance to the room. “Greetings, I believe the young summoner here was about to say that the only one left for you to fight is the great nation of Noxus.”
The summoner nodded. The snake woman smiled, “I would like to extend both Noxus’ and my personal gratitude for warming the title up for us. We’ll be happy to take it off of your hands now.”
Viktor made an adjustment to his vocal unit with his third arm before speaking, “You will face us, yes, but you too shall fall before the might of my designs, as all of Valoran has.”
Cassiopeia held the back of her hand up to her mouth as she laughed, “Oh, that ignorant optimism of your is so cute.” She slithered around the room and picked up a small laser gun off a table. She inspected it for a moment before continuing to address the Zaunites, “You see, as the competition was drawing on it became clear that a new large scale dispute would soon take priority with the League. So, I came up with a strategy: let everyone else pointlessly fight over the title, then at the end of the rotation we could swoop in and take it for ourselves. With the imminent starting of the large scale dispute this competition would be put on hold, and Noxus would get to hold the title for quite a while before the competition resumed and anyone could challenge us again.”
She set down the laser gun, “So, as you can see Noxus has been waiting, watching, and learning with every match that has been played. When we face you it will be the final move to my brilliant plan and Noxus’ champions will know better than to fail in its execution.” She clasped her hands together and smiled, “If it’s any consolation prize, we couldn’t be happier that out of everyone it was you you were able to hold the title for us.”
Dr. Mundo walked up to Cassiopeia, “Mundo goes where he pleases. Mundo pleases coolest title.”
Cassiopeia patted the “doctor” on the cheek, “Oh my dear purple friend, I am afraid you may be disappointed after we face on the fields this weekend.” She moved to the doorway, “Consider this a friendly warning between allies.” She looked over her shoulder and blew a kiss before waving goodbye and leaving.
Sunday, April 10 – Demacia vs The Freljord
Quinn touched the snow covered ground and spread her fingers out as wide as possible to gauge the relative size of the imprint. She shook her head and stood up from her crouching position. She spoke to Jarvan IV, “Boar tracks and several hours old at that.”
“Then it would seem he has eluded us.” Jarvan scowled and slammed his fist into his other hand’s palm, “Blast it. I’ll see the guard who let him escape is punished.”
Quinn waved her hands downward as to tell the prince to calm down. “He may have been able to hide his trail from us,” Quinn paused as she saw a Demacian eagle flying towards them, “but he will have to do much better to evade a bird’s eye view.”
She stretched out her arm as Valor made his final approach. He gripped the perch on her armguard with his razor sharp talons and let out a screech.
Quinn scratched him below the beak with her finger, “Nice job, Valor. Which way was he headed?” The eagle squawked in response. Quinn reached into her pouch and pulled out a small cut of meat, “You’re killing me, Val; extorting me for food while Prince Jarvan is in such a hurry.”
Jarvan scowled, “If you can’t control that bird I suggest we find an actual use for it and cook the blasted thing.” The fowl weather and the escape of the fugitive had put him in a very poor mood.
“Oh, he’s just playing games with me,” she held the piece of meat up and Valor snatched it with his beak and eagerly devoured his treat. “Alright, now where was he heading?” Valor simply stared at her meat pouch and motioned towards it with his head. Quinn reached in and grabbed another piece of meat. “I said it was a good job, but it wasn’t that good.”
She held up the piece of meat but pulled it out of reach as Valor lunged at it. “Tell me where he is going first, then you get your treat.” Valor let out a series of screechies accompanied by motions with his wings and head. Quinn smiled and tossed the meat into the air; Valor snatched it and quickly ate it up.
The eagle stretched his wings and jumped off her armguard. He gained altitude with every flap and flew high into the sky. Quinn turned to Jarvan and pointed to a snow covered hill nearby, “He’s just over a hundred yards past that hill and traveling west.”
Prince Jarvan looked over his shoulder and nodded to the company of soldiers with them. “It’s about time we finally grabbed this criminal.”
“We had better hurry: Valor said a storm was blowing in from the north. If he gets away from us we will have little hope of tracking him down again.” Quinn warned.
“You heard the lady, doubletime it.” The soldiers rushed to move out at their prince’s orders. They ran over the hill and while looking down the slope the silhouette of a man was visible. Jarvan shouted over the sound of the company running, “There he is. Remember, we are sworn to never let villains escape our justice.”
The man’s figure grew more defined as they got closer. He had yet to notice them moving in over the noise of the harsh wind blowing over the icy tundra. It almost seemed as though he wouldn’t realize what was happening until soldiers tackled him from behind.
Behind Quinn, a soldier tripped and fell onto a small boulder sticking out of the snow. His armor crashed with stone and let out a loud clang. Startled, the fugitive jumped and turned around to see the company of soldiers chasing after him. He broke out into a full sprint and turned north.
Quinn yelled out, “He’s heading for the storm. He’s familiar with this area and must know it’s coming. We’ll lose him if he reaches it.”
“We aren’t going to lose him over a bit of bad weather,” Jarvan barked, “Don’t stop, keep moving!”
Quinn’s heart sunk as the icy storm wrapped around the fugitive and cloaked him from their vision. This wasn’t going to go well, they could get lost and separated in a storm like this. The Freljord was not known to be a forgiving place. Valor wouldn’t be able to help them either, winds like that made it impossible to fly.
Jarvan and the company pressed on regardless, marching headfirst into the snow and wind.
In an instant visibility was reduced to zero. The woman Quinn had been marching directly behind was hidden from her, as though the snow had swallowed her whole. She shouted out to her comrades but couldn’t even hear her own voice as the wind battered her. It was always said that Prince Jarvan IV could lead his soldiers through hell and back, but Quinn had never thought that he would actually try it.
She tried to move in a straight line and avoid wandering aimlessly through the storm. Shivering, she started to believe that she was doomed to die in the ice that day. After what felt like an eternity, the ice and wind came to an abrupt halt.
“-gether men!” The last of words of Jarvan’s shouting were heard as the storm blew past them.
Quinn looked around and to her relief the company was still intact. They were scattered over a radius of several yards, but not hopelessly separated throughout the countryside. By some miracle they had survived the blizzard. The joyful moment was short lived as a party of trolls were standing not 20 yards from her.
A rather large brute among the trolls saw the look of joy on Quinn’s face vanish for a look of shock. In a deep, bellowing voice he said, “Out of the pot, and into the fire.”
“Shut up. I’m the one doing the talking here.” Trundle pushed him aside. He carried the fugitive over his shoulder and a smug smile on his face.
“Well, looks like we got ourselves more than just a snack. I hope Andalk has enough spice to give them that extra kick for the feast we’re having tonight.” The trolls chuckled in response. Trundle dropped the fugitive down into the snow.
Trundle locked eyes with Jarvan, “We’ll, if it isn’t Mr. D-Town himself.” In an overly grand gesture he gave a mocking bow to the prince, “Welcome to Trollmacia. Specials for tonight: royalty with a side of mashed bodyguards.” The trolls grinned and tapped their clubs against the palms of their hands.
Jarvan glared at the troll for a moment, before smiling and rather casually saying, “Bodyguards? You got it all wrong; I need no protection. I’m here to show them an exhibition of how to rip a troll’s skull open with your bare hands. I can handle you myself, if you can say the same.”
Trundle motioned with his hand for the trolls to stand down, “Just you and me, eh? You aren’t going to have little Xinny boy come gank from the river like you did last week at Summoner’s Rift, are ya? Cause another double kill would be fun.” The trolls slapped their knees and pointed mocking fingers Jarvan while laughing.
He held his fist in his hand and cracked his knuckles. “Keep a good eye, boys; I’ll show you how it’s done.”
Jarvan grunted and leapt toward Trundle. “DEMACIA!” The troll grabbed his club off the ground and ran forward, headbutting the still airborne Jarvan in the stomach. He was knocked backwards and landed on his back.
Jarvan staggered to prop himself up on one knee. Trundle boasted, “Good, I’m glad to see that the prince knows his place: bowing before the king. You Demacians always have been good at submitting before your superiors.”
Jarvan stood up and sent a quick slashed at his opponent. Trundle back stepped and avoided the attack. He roared and swung down at Jarvan’s head with his club. Jarvan jumped to the side and jabbed at Trundle’s side with his Demacian standard.
The troll king stumbled backwards and looked at the deep cut in his side. He motioned at two of his trolls, “Grab him!”
Jarvan jumped away from the trolls charging at him, but in doing so failed to notice Trundle’s massive club swinging through the air. It collided with Jarvan’s torso and several loud cracks could be heard. In a slow, dim witted manner Trundled asked, “Oops, did I break something?”
Jarvan tried to stand but was pinned against the ground by the two trolls. “I thought this was supposed to be a fight between just you and me.”
This was starting to get out of hand. Quinn started looking around to see if Valor ever found his way back to them after flying out to avoid the storm.
Trundle scratched his chin, “This is most serious. I will not have cheating under my rule. We’ll have to look into this case in depth.” He turned to his company of trolls, “Who knows where we can find the troll judge?”
Blank faces and scratching heads were the only reply. Trundle in a solemn voice asked, “Does no one know where the troll judge is?” A couple among them pointed at him.
Quinn spotted the silhouette of an eagle circling above. She loaded a bolt onto her crossbow.
Trundle smiled broadly and looked at Jarvan, “That’s right. I’m troll judge, troll jury, and exe..cute…troll.” He pointed a thumb at this chest, “I make the rules around here, and far as I see it, this is still just playing with my food.”
He looked at the trolls holding down the Demacian, “I think this meat needs some tenderizing. Pound ‘em!” They grinned and raised their fists into the air.
Quinn fired the bolt from her crossbow into the throat of one of the trolls. Valor screeched from above and dove onto the other, slashing with his razor sharp talons at their eyes. Jarvan used the opening to stab the troll through the stomach.
Quinn loaded another bolt and fired at Trundle. He lifted up his club and blocked it, but that was the idea after all. It gave Jarvan the chance to stand and back away into the formation of the Demacian soldiers.
Valor dove at Trundle, wings outstretched and talons hungrily reaching forward. The troll king held his arm in front of his face to block the eagle from reaching his eyes as it had with the other troll.
Valor quickly turned and angled for the fugitive. He picked him up by the shoulders with his talons and carried him to the Demacian formation that was moving to protect their prince. Quinn ran after and positioned herself behind the barricade of muscle and steel. She outstretched her arm and Valor perched on her armguard. He spread out his wing and let out a screech very much resembling a growl.
Trundle laughed, “You really think that’s going to stop us? You could barely handle a little ice and wind, and little princess here can’t even hold up his cute little spear.”
Quinn didn’t like the idea of a fight with these conditions. The soldiers were in poor condition after going through the storm and the trolls army greatly outnumbered their small company. She could have Valor carry her away, but she refused to abandon her fellow soldiers, even if it meant her death.
Jarvan glared at Trundle, “Can’t I?” He lept into the air, holding his Demacian standard with both hands. “FOR THE KING!” He planted the standard into the ground as he landed; the force of the impact sent shockwaves through the ground below. The ground rose up in a ring around the Demacian soldiers.
That gave them a barrier the trolls would have climb over to attack them and a more defendable position. Quinn still wasn’t hopeful; all that meant is they would be able to take a few trolls with them while they were killed. She looked around for anything that could give them an advantage, but could find nothing but snow.
Valor must have sensed her distress and gave a concerning look at her. She forced a smile, “Don’t worry, pal; these guys got nothing on us.” Hearing how poorly she could spin the situation only made Quinn feel worse.
Trundle growled, “You don’t know when to just die do you. Go get ‘em, and don’t be too gentle either. Just make sure the Prince and the guy the bird stole from me are taken alive. The rest…well, have a little fun and give them a good thrashing.”
The trolls ran forward, howling. Jarvan shouted to the Demacians, “Hold your ground!”
A loud voice echoed across the icy tundra, “Cease this madness!” A wall of ice rose out of the snow and blocked the trolls’ path.
All eyes turned to the direction of the voice. Lissandra had appeared with several Frostguard mages. She spoke to Trundle, “Whatever your quarrel, what could you possibly hope to accomplish with fighting here? Imagine Demacia’s wrath being brought upon us after you slay it’s crowned prince and his companions. Despite your confidence in your troll armies, even you would have to admit that you would not be able to stand against an attack by Demacia’s armies and its allies, the Avarosan.”
Trundle tried to act innocently, “What am I supposed to do when a three course meal comes running to me? I mean, what else did they expect by coming onto my turf?”
“That does bring up a very good question,” Lissandra turned to Jarvan, “Why did you come here? I don’t believe Ashe or the Avarosan were informed of your visit to our icy paradise, and I doubt the wish to go sightseeing would cause you enough motivation to be willing to die.”
Jarvan inclined his in respect to the noble woman, “At last, a voice of reason from this tumultuous land. There is no greater cause to die for than justice in the name of Demacia.”
“Justice, I should have guessed, knowing you Demacians, but that was awfully vague; could you please elaborate for me?”
Jarvan looked at Quinn, “You explain it. My broken ribs here are making it hard to breath.”
Quinn stared back, “Are you sure we should give information to her? You remember my report on the Freljord. I -”
“Just get on with it already. Regardless of what you think of her we are still standing by her intervention.”
Quinn nodded. She picked up the fugitive off the snow, “We are here to capture this criminal who escaped from our prison and fled here. We would have informed your Queen of our intentions to venture into her land but we could not spare the time if we wished to remain on his trail.”
Lissandra pondered for a moment, “What did this man do to warrant the attention of Prince Jarvan the Fourth himself? I doubt this is just a mere criminal.”
“He snuck onto the island of Ceruleana, trespassing on our land and violating the sanctity of our goddesses’ domain. All so that he could study the true ice the island is comprised of.”
Trundle barked out, not liking being ignored, “I don’t care who that human is or what he’s done; he’s my dinner. All you are.”
Lissandra ignored the Troll king. “True ice, you say? Naturally you were going to share any information you gleaned from him on the matter with your allies.”
Quinn clenched a fist in anger, “We aren’t going to further violate Ceruleana’s sanctity so we know more about frozen water. He is to be immediately executed upon our return to Demacia.”
“Yes, of course. But, you see, the fugitive is on Freljord territory, and now you have entered into combat on our land over him. That changes things: we have right to claim wrongdoing on your part, and reason for him to be turned over to our custody.”
Quinn clenched a fist in anger, “He has committed crimes against Demacia, not the Freljord. We will not leave here without him. Justice does not give way for anyone.”
Lissandra nodded, “And so, we are at an impasse. You have the fugitive and are more than willing to fight to the death to hold to your claim of Justice; whereas forces of the freljord have the means to take him by force, but doing so would only cause much devastation to ourselves. So, may I suggest an alternative to this mess.”
Lissandra walked next to Trundle, “The trolls here want the fugitive, and the rest of you, for rather savage reasons; the Avarosan will be most interested in gaining information on true ice from him; and, I recognize this man, Bratak is his name, a member of the Winter’s Claw. They will be most eager to have him returned to them. The Freljord, with my help, could easily come together unitedly before the League to fight for custody for him. I am most certain that in exchange for his help in a dispute, I will be able to easily convince Ashe to pay Trundle with some rather tasty delicacies that would solve his interest in you.”
Trundle shrugged, “I haven’t had poro in a while. Just make sure there’s a lot of them and they’re not overcooked.”
Lissandra motioned to Jarvan, “Of course, that is if you are willing to walk away from this situation in which no one will win. Let us settle this before the League, where at least one side will win and the losing side isn’t destroyed.”
Jarvan paused for a moment, “I do like leaving a chance that this filfth,” he kicked the fugitive, Bratak, “will not see Demacian justice. However, to avoid our mutual destruction, I will agree to fighting within the confines of the League. Since this is my decisions, I will make it my personal responsibility to ensure our victory.”
Lissandra smiled, “Excellent.”
Quinn whispered to Jarvan, “Don’t you find it a bit odd she just happened to show up when she did, or that she only offered to dissolve the situation once she found out we had something that interested her?”
Jarvan gave a stern, though not unkind, look to Quinn, “You need to give a more substantial reason to your distrust to Lissandra. Do not forget she is our ally, and we should simply be happy that she arrived when she did. And, you are mistaking her tact for mischief: she did not wait until there was something of interest to here, rather knew she needed to know more of our situation before she could help.”
Quinn stayed silent. She still was not convinced of Lissandra’s motives, but would not argue with her prince further about it.
Jarvan pointed at Valor, “Have the eagle send word to Demacia ahead of our arrival. Tell them we must prepare to take to the Fields for Justice, for Demacia, for Justice.”