Beren the Yellow has been dubbed the official champion of the Chromo Gyamdre. The young warrior was the long lost heir of the Golden Spear clan of martial arts. He displayed a repertoire of skills and techniques as an homage to his pilgrimage. Once victory was granted, and the Mantle of Courage chose the warrior as its vessel, the Red King, leader of the Chromatic Lords, challenged him to a duel. The two warriors clashed in a heated battle with the Red King using his signature, undefeated technique against Beren. Find out the aftermath! 

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The light was blinding, Jade Tiger shielded his eyes while hoping to catch a glimpse of this great exchange of martial prowess. The tabaxi warrior glanced back at their unconscious friend, though Mei Fong seemed unphased by the thunderous strikes from the colossal warriors. This was a fight that would be remembered for the next ten lifetimes when the Red King of the Chromatic Lords clashed with the newly minted Beren the Yellow.

Mei Fong laid adrift in the darkness of the dreamscape with only the fragmented echoes of voices to comfort her. She left lost, her defeat was sound, and while it was an earnest fight, it still felt bittersweet. Her body felt heavy, stiff, and cold. The light had faded from her, the flames of the phoenix were extinguished, but she wondered what any of it meant. What did all those years of training mean? she wondered. There was no answer in the void, yet she came to this place anyway. Wait! There was something there, a tiny flicker, it was small and fragile, yet it began to grow. A spark in the dark, it felt warm and familiar. Who are you? she asked the void.

The light grew into a bright sun before condensing into a small form, almost human-like. Once the light subsided, an outer glow outlined the lost visage of her master. He never spoke, but there was a soft smile on his weathered faced. It was like she remembered before his death at the monastery so many years ago. His eyes were sad, not for their reunion but Mei felt his regrets. She was the last of his students, the one to inherit all his teachings and wisdom.

The old master extended his arm and presented the swordswoman a flaming sword. It was Honryu, the flame blade forged from a phoenix fire and dragon-flame. It was made with iron from a fallen star which granted its unique darken exterior and the twinned flames crafted a truly unique shine that no blade could ever compare. Honryu was lost, never found in the wreckage of the monastery. Mei never saw the weapon in Beren’s or Shiro’s possession, she merely dismissed that the blade was stolen in the end.

Here it was, still as pristine as the day her master wielded it.

She wanted to reach out and grasp it but ultimately paused. Unsure of her resolve or the destiny before her, until she heard a thunderous roar beyond the void. It was a call to fight, to seize the moment – to never give up. Even if she was no longer worthy to possess the Mantle of Courage, she was still a proud warrior of the Crimson Phoenix clan, and she would never forget it. She looked back at her master, his eyes no longer portrayed sadness but pride. Instinctively, Mei Fong reached for the searing weapon and grasped it. The world brightened and became consumed in an endless white light, the visage of her beloved master faded at last, and Mei was left with the legendary weapon with a mantle of flames.

Mei awoke and found herself next to Jade Tiger. The tabaxi was unaware of her revival, but her eyes already recognized the intense brightness that filled her vision. She had returned to the mortal coil, a part of her knew that Beren was fighting possibly a worthy fighter. I’ll place my faith in you. 

The light receded, and everyone within the hall could only wait for the outcome. There was nothing but silence as the image of the Red King nursing the cracked gauntlet, but Beren was not unscathed, there were numerous wounds on his body and streaks of blood flowing from his forehead. The new warrior managed to withstand the Red King’s most powerful technique? Almost everyone in the large room was certainly in disbelief, except for Mei Fong. She struggled to lift herself up before the tabaxi quickly noticed and assisted her to a sitting position.

That’s a good look on you, you seem determined.

Beren was battered and bruised, but his determination had not taken any damage, he even grinned back at the Red King. In truth, he was sore all over, that strike from the Chromatic Lord required all of his strength to just withstand it. The damage to the red warrior’s gauntlet was superficial, Beren could see beyond the facade – he was outmatched. Any ordinary fighter would learn to retreat or surrender, unfortunately, Beren never quite knew what it meant to be defeated. It was a thrill, a rush of adrenaline, and euphoria that couldn’t be described. He was the only one who believed he still had a chance of victory or maybe not? He spotted Mei Fong sitting on the ground outside of the arena with a gentle smile, like a newly blossomed flower.

There was a hint of joy as the Red King regained his composure. “Impressive, you pushed me back. I like your resolve. But I still have one good arm left. Show me the fury of your determination, boy!”

Beren summoned once again the Mantle of Courage and channeled his ki into his fist until it was encased in golden light. The young warrior charged with his golden sash and fist, the Red King, lunged forward to meet his adversary in the middle again. This was the final exchange between, only one would stand victorious – and it was going to be Beren! Mei summoned the last of her ki and clapped her hands together, molding the energy as she stretched outward to reveal a dark blade from a cloud of flames. Using her remaining strength, Mei stepped forward to toss the legendary blade towards Beren, placing her faith in the young warrior she had only met barely a week ago. She wanted to believe in the future that Beren gave her and the freedom from her master. Beren saw the whirling blade and grabbed it with his off-hand to strike at the second fist from the red armored warrior. The blade and gauntlet connected, sending a wave of energy that cracked the wooden pillars of the room and stone tiles of the arena.

“Take this!” Beren shouted as he plunged his golden fist square at the Red King’s helm.

The strike was deafening and shook the entire hall. The arena floor cracked and caved from the force of the impact. A short burst of light was seen and felt but nothing compared to the previous clash between the two warriors. The Red King laid on the ruined rubble of the former battle arena while Beren kneeled with Honryu near his side. There was some movement, and the armored visage of the Red King stood tall again, seemingly undamaged from the blow.

“That was well done, you fought well and displayed your determination for all to see you. You have well Beren the Yellow. The real battle awaits, but for now, rest and recover. We shall have need of your strength soon. Your friends can stay as well.” The Red King decreed and slowly walked down one of the corridors. The remaining Chromatic Lords left in suit and followed their leader.

There was a wide grin on Beren’s face before he collapsed from exhaustion. Mei Fong and Jade Tiger went to retrieve their friend and were escorted to a large room with plenty of room and medical kits. It was going take some for the young warrior to recover, the Red King’s cryptic warning was the least of their concern at the moment.

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