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ATEE: Partners in Crime *Me (That Guy) and Alex64*

This fire burns bright!
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"I've heard of him, but that's all..." Ellie replied.
"I... don't see any tattoos on him," Raku mused. "Is he not a member of my tribe...?"
Sinbad scoffed at Gates as he drew his own sword, uninterested in the group's chatter.
"Don't make me laugh. The only thing 'destined' to happen is for you to fall to my blade!"
 
thea ante hominēs
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"As fun of a time as that sounds..." Gates pointed his cutlass lazily at the echidna, with all the poise and none of the investment of an invitation to duel, "...I'm really not as submissive as that."
"...Okay, there's no way he's not doing it on purpose," Midnight remarked, mostly to himself, unsure of whether to be amused or disquieted by the interaction.
 
This fire burns bright!
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"Have at you!"
Promptly, Sinbad dashed at Gates with an upwards swing of his sword.
 
thea ante hominēs
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Apparently choosing to leave any response to the last possible second, Gates held up his cutlass to block the oncoming attack. It had all the semblance of having no effort behind it, and yet he must have held it in place with more than a fair amount of strength, given that it held Sinbad's blade back admirably, and with distance enough that the pirate could-- and, indeed, had the nerve to-- reach forward to tickle his opponent affectionately on the chin.
"Come on, Baddy-boy, you're not going soft on me now, are you? You're better than this~"

Finally, he shoved back with his sword, retreating by just enough to adjust his stance, and shot forwards, blade-first, with a dancing amount of grace to his oncoming attack.
 
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Evidently trying not to focus on Gates' distractions, Sinbad jumped aside and out of the way of the thrust, with a spinning counter-swing of his sword in return.
 
thea ante hominēs
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Almost-- almost-- without even turning to look, the pirate swung his arm across, bringing his blade up in another frustrating block. To any onlooker, it would be evident that the two of them had done this dance hundreds of times before, and Gates had the audacity to wear a look of passive amusement throughout, as if one wrong move wouldn't spell an instant end to his life.

"Should we, uh..." Midnight shifted on the spot, full of unease, "intervene..? --Or is this just, like, a thing they do, and the "real fight" hasn't started yet?"
Qatif offered a half-amused look of impatience.
"If you think you have it in you, go right ahead, but they're neither of them to be taken lightly."
"Could've fooled me..." he muttered, inclining his head as he continued to watch the duel.
 
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