Decca: The Battle of Cards Chapter:1 (Revision 1)
Chapter 1: Focus and Win
The digital paper would store short clips of video and pictures Cassandra was able to look at. When Cassandra hovers her finger over it, she could see short clips of her sister recording video of her past experiences with her video smart drone. The device would move around her and capture moments that she felt a strong connection with, especially when she was around her friends and family.
The diary was one of the few things she had left of her sister. She obsessively read page after page hoping to find any clues as to why she went missing. Now, instead of watching the video clips and tearing up, Cassandra would analyze every second meticulously hoping to find where her sister could be. “There has to be something in here, there just has to be”, Cassandra thought as she turned another page of the diary. Maybe somewhere deep within the pages of the diary, Cassidy would give her a clue as to where she went or so she thought.
Cassandra remembered the day when people actually mourned her disappearance as if Cassidy was dead. The day her disappearance was announced in major news outlets, people actually felt like she did pass away. But Cassandra thought otherwise. Hundreds of Cassidy’s fans congregated around the Decca arenas to remember what an amazing athlete she was in the Decca tournaments.
Cassidy was never found, which gave Cassandra the hope she needed to believe that perhaps one day she will be able to see her again. Although she kept the diary to herself, there were always moments that she could not even bear opening it and looking at its content. Her older sister Cassidy was like a mentor to her. Cassandra would admit that there we’re times that it seemed she simply did not appreciate everything she’d done for her. Cassandra was torn inside knowing that it was hard at times for her to express her gratitude for all the times she was there for her in the past.
Cassandra now looked at a line of text that caught her attention. Cassidy had written some of her thoughts down about her younger sister Cassandra. “Cassandra is just so awesome to be around, but sometimes I feel that she doesn’t focus enough on the task at hand. It’s as if she’s not motivated to do anything at times. I push her, motivating her everyday as much as I can. At times I feel like she doesn’t really care about anything. I feel that not having mom around is affecting her a lot. Competing in Decca tournaments is my passion, but I feel that maybe that’s not what she would have done if I wasn’t around. Sometimes I wonder what I would be doing if mom was still around. I wonder what it would be like if we we’re all still together, here on Saturn of course.”
There was a knock at Cassandra’s bedroom door. It was Cassandra’s father, speaking through the door. “I see some lights on in there. It’s time to get to bed honey, you have a big day tomorrow at the tournament.” Cassandra quickly shut the diary closed.
“Alright dad, I’ll go to bed.” Cassandra sighed. “Good night!”
“Good night! I’ll see you in the morning.” Cassandra turned off the lights in her room and got ready for bed. She covered herself up with her bed sheets. She slowly closed her eyes.
Cassandra wasn’t thinking at all about the Decca Tournament that’s held every year. She knew that if she wanted to even have a chance in making it past preliminary rounds, she would have to focus on the game and not on her sister. This year things for Cassandra will be different. This will be her first time entering the tournament all on her own, without her sister by her side. A lot is expected of her, especially being one of the top champions to compete in the Decca Tournament. This year the pressure is on because the tournament is being held on her own planet, Saturn. Cassandra would have to compete against other fighters from Earth, the neighboring Saturn colonies and the colonies from Mars.
Cassandra suddenly opened her eyes and turned the lights back on in her room. She looked at her nightstand. The deck that she was planning on using in the tournament was sitting there. She grabbed it and removed the cards from their case. Since over the years she’s constructed so many decks, she wanted to make sure her current deck had all the cards she needed for the tournament. For her it was a last minute check. Cassandra had so many cards lying around it was hard for her to keep things in place sometimes. She wasn’t very organized when it came to these things.
She shuffled through them and looked at the different cards, “Let’s see I have Coranew level 2, Blades of Flame level 3, Electro Spark level 1... Yeah, these are the right cards I need.” Cassandra whispered and said to herself the names of some of the cards she was shuffling through. She let out a big sigh of relief. Each card she looked at had their own unique colors and symbols. Some were holographic and shiny with interesting kaleidoscope effects. Cassandra worked hard crafting new strategies over the years to create the perfect deck. She was confident that her new cards will secure her a spot in the finals this year.
She put the cards back into the case and went back to bed. That night she had trouble sleeping, wondering if she would win the tournament. She’d wonder at times if somewhere, somehow, that her sister was out there, maybe even watching her in the tournament. She felt so nervous knowing that Cassidy will not be there to cheer her on in every battle. “I have to win, I need to win. I need to… sleep”.
“Good morning Cassidy. It’s a bright and sunny day today.”
“Huh? Cassidy?” Cassandra was abruptly awakened by the voice of an AI assistant. It was coming from Cassidy’s diary. Cassandra had placed it on the nightstand next to her deck. “What’s going on? Why is it talking?”
Cassandra opened the dairy up to the first page and realized that she had mistakenly turned on the AI assistant when she was looking at the diary last night. A thought then hit her, if she could get the diary to think she was Cassidy maybe she could get information from it and hopefully find her sister. Cassandra’s heart began to race wondering how she was going to pull that off. “Maybe Daru can help me out. He knows a whole lot about tech.” Cassandra looked at the time and started getting ready to go to the tournament. She put the diary in a drawer in her nightstand. The rest of the day the diary was on her mind. It was getting harder and harder to focus on the tournament.
When Decca finally became an international sport, all year round athletes from all over, including Cassandra, train rigorously preparing for the yearly Decca Tournament. At first no one could really understand how a trading card game could turn into an immensely popular sport but once people saw not only the physical strength required but also the skill and strategy needed to win each battle the masses kept growing. The hologram technology used to emulate the different abilities in each card pushed the boundaries of human imagination. Not only could a card make lightning appear from thin air but certain cards could make it seem like a fighter could even manipulate time and space itself. As people watched and witnessed what the fighters could do, the awe-inspiring moves the fighters could pull off, they were hooked and kept tuning in to see each match.
As Cassandra entered the massive stadium full of screaming fans and spectators she couldn't help but wonder once again if her sister was watching as she participated in the welcoming ceremony in the center of the stadium. Before she knew it, it was her turn to fight.
"Why did she leave?" Cassandra stared at the ground thinking of the past. Her mind was on her older sister Cassidy, and her diary. Cassandra strongly felt that Cassidy’s disappearance couldn’t be a kidnapping at all. She felt that Cassidy had to have left on her own. To Cassandra that was the only possibility. But in the end she really had no idea if it was or not.
After Cassidy’s disappearance two years ago, Cassandra’s life hasn’t been the same. The thought of entering a tournament right after her disappearance was unbearable for her. So Cassandra decided not to enter a Decca tournament the year her sister went missing.
"Cassandra!" A voice from a far called out. Cassandra quickly lifted her head and realized that she was in the middle of something important... a battle. A fire ball from the sky quickly raced at her. She jumped and dodged just in time as the fire ball crashed landed in the spot she was just standing in. While dodging Cassandra jumped out of the way, the force of her speed made her slide across the stadium making her fall in a kneeling position. Flames from the fiery ball burst and spread out a short distance from the spot of impact. The flames slowly dissipated.
Cassandra let out a big sigh of relief. It seems she had zoned out again but this time in the middle of her match. Cassandra felt exhausted, a bit sleepy and her mind was not in the game.
"Haha!" Her first opponent Kaito laughed at her. "You better focus Cassandra, I'm not holding back". Kaito drew a card from his deck that's connected to a band that's fastened to his waist. He looked at the card and smiled. “Yeah, just what I need.” Kaito whispered to himself as he looked over back at Cassandra who was recovering from the last attack. She got up from the kneeling position and dusted herself off a bit with three cards from her deck in her hand.
Cassandra looks to her left. She was in a stadium full of cheering people, hundreds of people watching her match with Kaito. She smiles as her eyes quickly scans around for a familiar face. Cassandra makes eye contact with one of her friends in the stands. It was Daru. "Thank you Daru!" Cassandra yells out with joy back at Daru for helping her avoid the last attack. She was amazed at the fact that she was able to even hear his voice from the noisy crowd.
She cracks her neck, closes her eyes for a split second and took a deep breath. Cassandra attempts to get her mind back in the game. ”Come on Cassandra, stop thinking about that diary.”
The stadium was full of bright large lights and the battle field was almost as large as a football field. The score board had both fighters names displayed in bright lights. The status of each player’s battle armor was under their names. Kaito was at 50 percent while Cassandra was still at 100 percent. Once a player’s armor’s health reached zero, the match was over. Each player would use the power of their cards to inflict damage on their suits health. Cassandra was wearing the blue suit that had bright almost neon like color strips. Kaito was wearing the red suit.
Cassandra’s heart was pounding. She was so nervous even though she had done all of this tournament stuff before. The real reason why she felt so much pressure was because Cassidy this time wasn’t around to give her that mental support she needed. She felt strange inside, as if something very important was missing. Her game was off and she knew it from the start of the match, her father and her friends knew this too.
Sarafina another close friend of Cassandra, who was sitting next to Daru, smiled and waved at Cassandra. "You better win this match Cassandra!" Sarafina screamed at the top of her lungs. Cassandra's father, Mr. Zyta, Daru, and Sarafina watched her every move from the stands.
Cassandra held three cards in her hand now. Her deck began to glow with a bright yellow golden color. It was time for Cassandra to draw a new card. She looked at her card. She saw ancient symbols on the cards. She knew what each card was capable of by just looking at the different symbols. Players of Decca can only see the name of the card in front and the unique symbols. To see how each card preforms, players would have to play the cards in battle and study how each one works. Fighters of Decca find the most thrill in unlocking the true potential of a card.
“Why is it always me”? Kaito thought, frustrated having to have to fight Cassandra, a fighter that out ranks him. “How in the world did I get chosen to battle an elite fighter like her? This isn’t fair. Right at the beginning of the tournament too.”
“So your finally back, Cassandra Zyta. It’s a pleasure. Lots of us Decca fighters really missed you.” Kaito smiled as he scanned his cards. Kaito was nervous. For him it was an honor to finally fight someone who’s so successful at Decca, but at the same time he knew he was out matched.
“Like you even care if I’m participating or not.” Cassandra got serious.
“Decca fighters have deep respect for each other, even if we’re fighting one another to be the best. Besides we all understand why you took a break from Decca for a bit.” Kaito had a concerned look on his face. He knew all about Cassandra’s older sister’s disappearance. Everyone knew.
What he said annoyed Cassandra a lot, even though Kaito seemed genuinely worried for her. “Your pity isn’t wanted or needed.”
“During the opening ceremony you looked as if you were on another planet. Are you alright by any chance? What were you thinking about?” Moments ago Kaito could see Cassandra from a short distance as all the fighters that had entered into the tournament would walk out onto the field as a torch was lit to commence the tournament activities. During that time a representative of the tournament would make a short speech before the first two fighters are called onto the field to start the preliminaries. As Kaito walked onto the stadiums field, he saw Cassandra but he could see it in her eyes she hardly even payed attention to anything that was going on around her. Cassandra could only think of Cassidy’s diary that she had left at home.
“Eww gross, why are you even looking at me?”
“I... I was…” Kaito began to blush just realizing what he just had said to her.
Cassandra interrupts him. “What’s on my mind is none of your business! Are you trying to distract me here? Is that your genius plan to win this match? Whatever you’re planning isn’t going to work on an elite fighter like me.”
“Then let’s see what an elite fighter can do!” Kaito placed all three of his cards in a holding pocket next to his waist. Kaito now held only one card in his hand and activated its power.
The card he was holding floats up in the air and disintegrates. “Here’s my Pyro Blast card!” Kaito held both this hands out in front of his body, both his palms facing in the direction of Cassandra. Two spheres of fire now formed in front of him. He quickly pushed one sphere forward and then the other towards Cassandra who was bracing herself for the attack.
The spheres of fire races towards her at lightning speed. As Cassandra was preparing to dodge the attack, Kaito prepares two more spheres to throw at her.
“All you seem to do it throw fire balls at me! Can’t you do anything else?” Cassandra dodged one sphere to her left then activates a card in her hand. She places the other card in left hand as the card surrounds her right hand with a green neon like light and instantly the card transforms into a hammer. She grabs hold of the hammer firmly in her right hand. It felt as if she was holding a real heavy hammer. However, in real life a hammer of that caliber would be very difficult for her to pick up using both her hands.
“My Mega Hammer card will take care of these weak attacks.” Cassandra swung the mighty hammer with only her right hand slamming the second fire sphere out of her way as she saw Kaito throw one more sphere at her. “It’s blatantly obvious he’s a distance fighter, doesn’t like to get up close. And he seems to prefer only fire elemental attacks too.”
As one more sphere came flying straight towards her, Cassandra did the same with the next sphere slamming it out of the way, this time upwards into the air where the ball burst into nothingness.
“Mega Hammer huh. Okay.” Kaito spoke to himself then smiles. He didn’t want to look worried but he was getting a bit agitated trying to get past Cassandra’s defenses. As long as she has the Mega Hammer, Kaito knew that none of his distance elemental attacks were going to work on her. Kaito looks at his last fire sphere floating in front of his right palm as he grabs the three cards he has tucked away in his holding slot on his waist.
“The Mega Hammer’s got to run out of energy sometime. All I have left is this last fire ball from my Pyro Blast card.” Kaito took a look at his other cards and began thinking of another strategy.
Kaito then threw the sphere of fire with everything he had at Cassandra. The ball shot directly at her but all of a sudden Kaito notices something about Cassandra. “What in the world is she even looking at right now? The ball is going to hit her directly and she’s not paying attention to it at all!”
"Why isn't Cassandra attacking him like how she was before when she started the match? I don't get it." Sarafina spoke up, with a confused face.
"There's no way in knowing what's going through her mind right now. She managed to get him down to 50 armor health with her Blade of Flames card but now... I have no idea what she's doing out there." Daru just shakes head in disappointment.
"Yeah it looks like she's just getting her cards ready? Or something, I think." Sarafina's eyes and mouth opened up because she just had an idea. "Oh! Maybe she drew cards she can't really use right now and it's messing up her strategy."
"Well yeah, I guess that could be it." Daru shrugs as they continue to observe the match.
Cassandra’s heart was racing while she looks towards the crowd cheering. She was hearing something. No, it wasn’t something… It was someone calling out to her. In that moment she looks to her right, her eyes scanning the crowd closes to the stadiums battle field, and she felt as if she could see her. Cassandra could see her there, Cassidy, on the side lines yelling back at her. Cassandra felt as if time itself was slowing down. In that moment the battle between Kaito and her was completely out of her mind. “It is her”, she thought her big sister was there cheering her on. She was screaming out to her, telling Cassandra to watch out.
“Cassidy, is that you?” Cassandra could now clearly remember what her sister had told her once at her first tournament when she was younger. Her advice was echoing deep within her mind.
“You need to give it your all. What’s the point of coming all the way here if you’re not going to give it your best? Don’t waste your opponent’s time. As a matter of fact, don’t waste my time. Now give me your right hand.” Cassandra confused would give Cassidy her right hand. Cassidy and Cassandra would lock hands and she’d continue saying something. “Before you go out there and start your first match, just remember that at the end of your battles you should have been able to learn something new about Decca and about yourself, win or lose.”
“That was something we would do at each Decca tournament. She would take my hand and tell me something important, something uplifting to motivate me. Cassidy that day told me one final thing before I turned around and stepped onto the field.”
Cassidy would smile and say, “Now go out there and show the world what you’re capable of!”
When Cassandra snapped out of it, she came to the realization that it wasn’t her. “You have to stop thinking of her, at least for just a second. I need to focus on this.”
Cassandra gasped as she turned her face back at Kaito. The fiery ball slams into her Mega Hammer right in front of her face, making the hammer crack and disintegrate. The hammer turned back into a card and materialized back into her discard pile on her waist. The Mega Hammer took most of the blow but the flames burst out and pushed her back. Instinctively because of the light of the flames in her face Cassandra quickly closed her eyes and jumped back after the blast had pushed her back. Her suit vibrates and pushes her back due to the impact of the flames. She attempts to avoid the blast but it was too late, the ball burst in front of her causing damage on to her armors health. As soon as her suit began to vibrate she knew that the attack made contact.
Instantly the entire stadium became quiet. Everyone in the stands was shocked. Sarafina’s mouth opens wide while Cassandra’s father and Daru looked on in disbelief.
A machine like voice spoke up from Cassandra’s armor. The armor reveals to her its status. “TWENTYFIVE percent armor damage. Decca armor at SEVENTYFIVE percent.” Cassandra was shocked that he landed a blow. She turned to look at the scoreboard. Everyone in the stadium as well was shocked too. Cassandra however, regained her composure and put on a serious face.
“I’ve got to focus, no more games.” Cassandra was disappointed with herself, letting her thoughts get the best of her. She tried playing it off as if the damage Kaito did was not a big deal for her.
“I can’t believe I just damaged her armor.” Kaito knew it wasn’t the time to let up on his attack. For some reason he just knew that Cassandra wasn’t giving it her all. She was distracted. He wondered if she was alright but at the same time he wanted to win so badly. He decides to see if he could actually distract her like she had mentioned before. He wanted to frustrate her even more and use it against her in order to throw her off her game.
Kaito didn’t want to make her mad but he had no choice, he desperately needed to win. He spoke up to distract her. “You always have that look.”
“What look? What are you talking about?” Cassandra was breathing hard, still shocked from the blow of the last attack. What was making it worse was the fact that her lack of sleep last night was making her first match more difficult than it really was. Cassandra rubs her eyes, slowly noticing that her eyes had a stinging pain. She was getting more and more tired. Because of how physically demanding Decca was, how nervous she was feeling inside and the lack of sleep, Cassandra’s deteriorating performance was affecting her ability to go on.
“Like as if you’re mad at the world… Or mad at someone.” Kaito wasn’t really making any of that up. He was watching her during the opening ceremony and he could see this anger lurking within her eyes. Then the anger in her eyes would turn to sorrow. Cassandra wanted Cassidy so desperately to be there by her side. That’s what was making her angry and bitter inside. Somehow Kaito could tell, he could see that somewhere inside her she was fighting a losing battle.
“Not only is she fighting me, but she’s fighting something inside herself. I can feel it. She’s losing both battles and I just don’t want to…”
“Look! Can you cram it with the small talk? If you haven’t noticed I’m trying to fight here. People are watching.” Cassandra stepped forward towards Kaito, getting ready to continue the fight.
Kaito laughs a bit, putting a tough guy face he takes a few steps towards her and began to sprint and then went into full on running as Cassandra prepared herself. "That’s right, we can’t disappoint the fans! Here I come!" As he spoke he drops a card on the ground. The card began to hover over the ground. It stopped and stood face down motionless in midair. Flames materialized around the card and it began to glow red. Kaito kept running towards Cassandra. Cassandra knew that wasn't a good sign.
The announcer of the tournament began to speak. ”Woah! It looks like this time Kaito is going to play a Focus card. He dropped it on the ground, yes, it appears to be a Focus card onto the field. He’s hoping to increase the power of his fire elemental attack. He’s now on the offensive again, and he’s moving fast. What is he planning to do!?”
"Kaito dropped a Focus card on the ground. Not good. He's powering up for a big attack." Cassandra thought to herself as she looked at the card she drew earlier. "Come on! Think!" Cassandra yelled out to herself as she started to grit her teeth.
Kaito now shifts a card from his left to his right hand as he ran towards her. The card in Kaito's hand was now engulfed in flames. The crowd then began to yell out in anticipation. They wanted to see Kaito's big attack.
"If I destroy his Focus card, his attack will fail. That's the first thing I need to do." Cassandra was thinking of what she needed to do to avoid getting any damage from Kaito’s next attack. Getting hit a second time would be embarrassing for her. It was time for her to put an end to the match. She looks quickly at her hand. "These two cards... Yes! I can use them to destroy it." Cassandra now confident in her strategy, proceeds to throw one card straight past Kaito towards his hovering card on the ground and threw her other in the air above her head. The third card still in her hand activates. Cassandra’s card began to surround itself with lightning. The card now disintegrates and her hand is now completely covered with sparks of lightning. Cassandra looks at her hand and she felt confident that her new strategy was going to work.
“Look! Cassandra’s using one of her electric attacks”. Mr. Zyta pointed that out to Daru and Sarafina. They could all clearly see the sparks of lightning forming in Cassandra’s hand. They could see everything that was happening from the jumbo screen that was hanging in the middle of the stadium. “I’ve seen a dozen or more of these matches but I still can’t believe how real it all looks. Yet no harm is really inflicted on the person. The suit may vibrate and push the other fighter back or slow down their movement but other than that the elemental attacks don’t actually bring any physical harm to anyone using these cards.”
“Yeah, at times it amazes me too. The technology behind the holograms is incredible. The power comes not only from the suits they wear but you can’t forget the nano chips in the cards. Also a lot of the technology is embedded in the stadium as well Mr. Zyta.” Daru explained a little of the tech of how Decca works to Cassandra’s father.
"A lightning attack!? Is that all you got?" Kaito said that out loud racing towards her trying to fake his confidence in his victory. Kaito was secretly worried about the two cards she had thrown away from her hand. Kaito knew he was outmatched but he needed this victory very badly. If he could defeat one of the top Decca fighters, he could gain a high ranking score in the tournament and the respect from others for the victory. It would be an added bonus to his already broken ego.
“I got to win this. I can’t be eliminated in the preliminaries like last year.” Kaito thought as he pushed on towards Cassandra.
“Cassidy, I hope you’re watching. This one is for you!” Cassandra looked at her card in the air then looked straight at Kaito coming at her, getting closer and closer with flames coming out from his hand.
"Everything is set!" Cassandra began to smile as she held her hand up surrounded by bright lightning. She had a plan, she knew just what to do. "Get ready Kaito. I have something in store for you!"
In the lower level of the stadium, closes to the field where the match was being held, stood a young girl observing the match between Kaito and Cassandra very carefully. She was talking to someone on a cellphone in a low voice. “Don’t worry sir, I’ll make sure I select the right fighters for the job.”
A deep strong confident voice over the phone spoke back to her, “And make sure to do it fast. We don’t have a lot of time.”
The Unknown Shadow
Will Cassandra ever see her sister again?
>>>>>Decca: The Battle of Cards Chapter:2