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"Follow me," Mr Shin said as he walked towards the octagon MMA cage. Cadell quickly trailed behind, all the while throwing every question under the sun.

"Can you teach me how to do those spin kicks? I saw this woman do it and it was so awesome. Can you teach me how to choke someone but, like, not to death? So like half choke, half death? Can you teach me how to break someone's arm? Don't get me wrong, I don't plan on actually using it, but you never know, right? Can you teach me how to hit pressure points, so the other person is completely paralyzed? Can you—"

"Please stop talking," Mr Shin said.

Cadell stopped talking.

When they both stood in the octagon cage, barefoot with only their gloves and shorts on, Mr Shin finally spoke, "How about I teach you a decent fighting stance?"

"Yup," Cadell said. "That works too."

The two-hour karate session was intensive, but Cadell loved every minute of it.

Mr Shin eloquently explained and demonstrated blocking and the essential punches. Cadell eagerly copied his teacher's water-fluid motions. He could almost feel the power surging through his limbs as he learnt new technique after technique.

How did he even punch before this? He had no clue but, whatever it was, it was wrong. So very wrong.

"You learn fast," Mr Shin said. "Before you go, let's finish up with a sparring session."

Cadell's straight punch continuously flew through the air as he spoke. "With all due respect, Mr Shin, it wouldn't be a fair fight. My reflexes are too fast. Even with the difference in weight class, you would still be at a disadvantage. Don't take it personally. It's just... superpowers."

Much to Cadell's surprise, the man laughed. "It's been a long time since someone has looked down on me like this. Listen, a spar isn't a real fight, kid. It's only to practice and hone your skills."

The cage submerged in layers of red. "But... seeing as you're so confident, shall we pretend this is a real fight?"

"No?" Cadell said weakly.

Mr Shin stretched his gloved hand out. For a second, Cadell was confused but then he understood.

Mr Shin wanted to touch gloves, which was a sign of respect...

before starting an official fight.

"Ah, what the heck," Cadell said, touching a glove with Mr Shins.

You fool, boy. The voice said. You're a dead man.

Cadell looked up at the huge opponent who cautiously edged forwards and focused on his every move.

Cadell nodded. I agree. 

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