Contenders (Rabbitrun and MegaNerd)
"Dammit, for the love of God, can someone please change the music around here?"
Rolling his BMX bike into the gym on a hot Saturday morning, the last thing Chase Falconer wanted to be greeted by was an electronic remix of Zombie by The Cranberries. Apparently someone thought it'd be inspiring to add pulsing, computer-generated beats to what he considered were classic songs, and another someone thought it'd be a great idea to play these terrible remixes over the various speakers mounted about the gym's bright interior. It was supposed to encourage enthusiasm during training sessions, but in Chase's opinion there were far better options for that kind of purpose. Sadly, he wasn't paid to be the gym DJ, and thus, alas, did not have a say in its song selection. The guy manning the counter near the glass pull-push doors, Gabe, fixed him with an exasperated stare. "Do you have to mention the music whenever you come in here?"
"Yeah, when it sucks," contested Chase as he parked his bike against the nearest wall, skirting about the square, elevated ring which sat smack in the front of the gym, completely visible from the outside. Behind it was an enormous open space, boasting a line of heavy bags arranged in a straight row. The walls were covered in mirrors, and several plastic boxes contained weights and other equipment utilized for circuits. Hanging from pegs were jump ropes, some knotted to shorten them. The first 'students' were beginning to file in, heading up the spiral stairway which led to the locker rooms and showers above the gym area. In contrast to its competitors, this boxing gym was one of the more popular in the area, mainly because of its newer, cleaner facilities and ample space for practice. Classes took place every hour or so, utilizing a rotation of three resident instructors. Chase was one of them - at twenty-five he was relatively young, but could hold his own when it came to the sport's demanding routines. Students consisted of anyone from bored college kids to high-flying executives seeking a break from the drabness of office life. Some did it for fitness, others for competition. But they all shared one thing in common, and it was love for the sport.
"All right people, jump rope for ten minutes, let's go!" Chase barked as he clapped his hands sharply. Despite his youth his voice had a deep, authoritarian quality to it, and he often found that he didn't have to shout excessively loud for his class to pay him some attention. Immediately those present moved to the walls, grabbing rope after rope. Soon the repetitive slapping of ropes against the floor echoed throughout the gym, some obviously having more trouble than the others. Light, bluish-green eyes observing their progress, the instructor began to put on his black hand-wraps, winding them quickly and casually. His dark hair was a crew-cut, low maintenance, and his heather gray top showed off toned, hard-earned biceps marked with various tattoos. Each one had a story - from the eagle in flight to the quotes in elegant script. Standing at a height of at six-foot-two, he cut an intimidating figure to the initial observer, but most found him the nicest of the three instructors. Howie had a habit of yelling too loud, while Theo tended to have a fondness for overdoing burpees.
"Time's up!" When the ten minutes were concluded, everyone was allowed a quick sip of water and a short rest - but this was the easiest part of the entire session. Stepping into the center of the floor, Chase addressed the gathered class attendees with a crooked smile. "All right, anyone new here today?"