This is a transition chapter. It focuses on the child’s mental ability, and begins drawing out some of the role play information. It presents a child with an eidetic memory who is a masochist. His powers of concentration are also highlighted a little more, such as what is noted in this scene:
“Because of his isolation, he had never learned to wolf his food to keep another from eating it. So when the food was delivered to his darkened cell, he often would be deeply involved in a mental drill of the moves, and what they were to look like, often he ignored the food until it was cold. Sometimes, the same portion that had been delivered the night before would still be sitting just inside the door and untouched when the breakfast portion was served.
He had learned well that perfection was the driving force of the Arena, and so drove himself mercilessly to achieve it. Day by day, week by week flowed by him as he perfected not just what he was taught, but also what he was teaching himself. In his sparring sessions, he learned quickly what the weaknesses of his official forms were, and from observation which other forms were viable against each other. In each case, his agile mind adapted the moves he had learned by observation of the opposition. His mind was sharp enough and active enough to now memorize everything from seeing it only once. The trained eidetic memory that he had developed worked almost in over drive to replay scene after scene when he was returned to his cell. Little did he know that such intensive mental work was unusual to any fighter, even others who had been raised in isolation. Especially after they had been introduced to the concept that there were other beings out there with whom they could interact. But his young mind was still rigidly held to the mandate that what was, was the only way it could be. ”
It is also noted that the child is a fast learner. How fast, however has not yet been completely shown.The foundations laid down in Chapter 3 have begun to take root, and the small sapling can be seen in the above example. Also, his iron will is becoming more prominent. The will that allows him to continue on when his body tries to give up.
So far, the child continues to seem like everyone else, just a little tougher, a lot more stubborn, and so driven even his master worries over how fast he is progressing.
Until next time… keep those pages turning!
If I’ve peaked your interest, you can find a copy of Out of the Darkness on