YA Fantasy Showdown

Photo courtesy of Simon Pulse


Greatest wizard in Earthsea
A master of names and Old Speech
Wants to correct the wrongs he has created


Dedicated wholly to doing good
Photo courtesy Marilee Heyer


First female Knight
Skilled fighter and mage
Strong desire to prove herself
Knight of the Realm and King's Champion


Unsure of herself, especially romantically
Tends to solve problems by punching things

How we think the fight might go...

Ged sighed, tossing his rulebook back into his sleeve. This girl looked angry, ready to prove something to someone. Yes, she disguised herself as a man, but the tell-tale signs were all there. She was too pretty and facial features too delicate. It was an obvious deception, at least to him.

Alanna watched this man warily. He held himself too easy, too self-assured. That meant he was either cocky and easy to take down, or he really was as good as he thought. She flexed her fingers over her sword, waiting.

“You'll have to attack me first,” Ged said. “We may have to fight, but I won't be the one to instigate it.”

“Fine by me,” she said, running toward him. Some of his mannerisms reminded her of Roger and that grated on her. No, it wasn't even that. It was just how he held himself, like he really could take on the world.

He let her take a few swipes at him, let her know she was doing rather well for someone with only a sword. A couple actually came close to hitting him. But Alanna's fury drove her on, and a single-minded resolve can push through just about anything.

Ged waited, dodging until she seemed tired.

“Had enough yet?” he asked, his deep brown face crinkling into a smile.

That cocky... she thought, breathing hard.

“Never,” she spat, wiping away the sweat to keep it from her eyes. She surged forward with renewed strength, wanting wipe that smug look off her face.

He spoke a word and a wall of fire came at her. Alanna's eyes opened in amazement. She barely had time to form the words for a shield before the wall scorched around her. She took out her sword and used it to focus a spell. A return blast of fire went back toward the mage. See if he likes his own medicine.

A torrent of air dissipated the flames.

Ged blinked.

“You have magic as well,” he said.

“It's called The Gift,” she said.

He shrugged, like the name made no difference to him. But his stance shifted, becoming more solid. He was ready for a battle. Alanna grinned. Now this was more like it.

They exchanged blows with magic instead of swords. Elements blasted around them, sending up more destruction than she'd seen in many battles. The longer the fight went on, the more upset the mage became.

“This is senseless destruction,” he said.

Alanna twirled her sword. “Well until you can get past my magic and my sword Lightning, you will never move on in this fight.”

That seemed to give the mage an idea. He smiled again.

“So, are you fast with your magic and your sword?” he asked.

She took her stance. “Faster than you can imagine.”

“Faster than lightning?” he asked and spoke a word and a bolt came down striking the spot where she was standing.

Predicted winner: Ged

Alanna is from Tamora Pierce's The Song of the Lioness quartet and Ged is from Ursula Le Guin's Earthsea series
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