Starke twisted, blinking at the girl in front of her. Looking her up and down with her stormy grey eyes, she allowed a small smile to tug at her mouth.
"Yeah. I’m Starke."
They were at the training fields already; she’d been overseeing her team, and currently it was Zach and Jerome tangling in the ring. Nodding once, she turned back around, whistling to her boys.
"Take a break, lads. I’ll be back to review your progress in a bit." Though Jerome groaned, they’d split, both shirtless men panting in the heat of the sun, taut muscles flexing under their sweat-slick skin. Steam curled off a few of their injuries. Bronwyn and Avia saw to them both, making sure they were alright and making notes on how long it took their injuries to heal, all for Hanji’s sake.
Hass just took the other cadet aside.
"Yeah, I can teach you. Mikasa’s style is very forceful, she’s a dominant kid. Knows what she wants- and she wants to win." Across her face, a grin plastered itself, her passion for fighting ebbing through. "Her kicks are ruthless and always well-aimed. Her punches even more so. So you’re going to have to favour one of two styles; defensive and tank the damage, or you can have offense as your defense. The latter works best, I find."
Pausing, she glanced at Chell’s face.
"Haven’t seen you around much. What’s your name?"
“Chell.” She replied simply with a nod. “Our mission schedules rarely match up.”
Overall Chell was impressed already by this Starke, allowing a small smile of admiration to appear on her otherwise neutral face. Either she had gone against Mikasa many times or she was very good at analysing a problem and working out the best solution. Chell was inclined to go with the former because so far the latter simply was not working.
Mikasa often aimed for Chell’s legs and sweeping them out from under her. It was obvious that Chell was not designed for simply ‘tanking’ damage as repeated injuries had left her knees a bit less sturdy than the average. Attack however, in the respect of leaping around the place and lunging in for quick and repeated attacks, often led to slightly better results in her lasting a bit longer against Mikasa. Sadly though the end result was always the same; her lying on the ground with a few more bruises and Mikasa telling her that it was enough for today despite Chell insisting on a rematch.
“The latter would best.” Chell nodded in agreement. “So far I have yet to win against Mikasa. When shall we begin?”
With her gear in the small back over her shoulder Chell was itching to fight not only to improve her abilities but also to get her mind off ‘Caroline’.
"Ackerman’s a hard girl. Even with my experience, she’s knocked me on my ass plenty of times." Nodding, a short laugh escaping, she gestured to a smaller ring away from her friends. "Mikasa fights with the view to win, always. She hasn’t even let up on me- not even once. You’ve got to learn that kind of mindset if you want to beat her."
Scuffing her boots across the sanded area that was a designated ring, she cleared off the offending bits of bark and dirtied, bloody sand. And then, she took up her position, legs staggered, arms loosely by her sides.
"Chell- let me see your stance." Cocking her head, Hass slipped into hers, guard coming up; enough for her to see through, a little higher than most people would hold theirs. "I’ll explain mine in a moment. Just let me see yours."
Having dumped her bag just outside the little ring. With a simple nod Chell complied with Starkes command and fell into her own stance. Standing with unusual steadiness on her toes Chell kept her knees slightly bent and left fist extended slightly towards Starke whilst the other stayed a bit closer to her body. It was the same stance Chell had grown into before joining the Scouting Legion and her fingers almost seemed to try and curl around a device that was no longer there. She clenched her fingers into fists trying to rid them of the memories the muscles still held.
Looking back up at Starke, Chell awaited her response. Chell was looking forward to this with a hint of nervousness, despite what her somewhat blank face may have suggested, and as she awaited Starkes own commentary Chell’s eyes roved over her opponent’s stance trying to quickly work out the best way to solve this puzzle.
"You see, I have to defend my head and neck. If I were to take too many blows to either, I could be in serious trouble. The rest of me? Not so much." Grinning, she bounced on her heels, before beginning to circle, eyes near-enough alight with the kind of lightning-strike confidence Hass held in the ring. She was a master of her own body; she was a destroyer of anybody who dared step in and challenge her to the thing she’d been doing all her life. Fighting.
Only those who knew what it was to fight for their lives stood a chance within the sanded pit that was her playground.
"You want to feel the confidence in you, Chell. Let it brim out of you, make sure you have presence in the ring or I’m gunna walk all over you." That statement was true. Hass’s game was half about bravado, half about power and all about skill.
"You need to have fire to match the other person’s. How much do you want to win, Chell? What are you fighting for?" With a crack of her neck, the warrior gave a grin; all teeth and feral glee, and then she darted forward to give an experimental jab- aiming for the heart. Just a brief little test. Like a cat dipping its paw in water.
Chell blinked and tried to duck beneath Starkes punch but felt with painful annoyance the blow graze forcefully over her shoulder and clip her ear with a sting. Hissing through the pain Chell aimed a jab of her own towards Starkes abdomen.
Starkes own style didn’t seem too dissimilar to Mikasa so far going for painful areas in an effort to quickly take down her opponent, which annoyingly often worked against Chell in the end. As a result Chell had decided to do something similar aiming to wind her opponents and dive out of reach before hoping back in for another strike. But while Starke was obviously trying to make Chell nervous and make a mistake, after all Chell had been through Starkes own attempt was a rather nice prod to her confidence, Chell stayed quiet and focussed. But the ghost of a grin did slip through her stoic defences.