These words dominated Alyssa’s thoughts as she slammed into the mat. Her father had drilled it into her head after her first year at the Academy. She’d come home expecting a break from military life but quickly and abruptly learned there was no going back. Even her childhood bed had been replaced with the same bunk and rough blanket as in her dorm.

Pushing herself up off the ground, Alyssa got as far as one knee when a brutal blow landed across her shoulder blades, knocking her back to the ground, gasping for air this time.

"What doesn’t kill me, makes me stronger."

She’d been given one day back home to complain and mope, like a normal kid would. Early the next morning, her father woke her and took her outside in the silence. He explained she was a soldier now, and would be until she quit or died. And he didn’t raise a quitter. There would be no more looking back for her. His tone was affectionate but absolutely firm. There would be no argument. Alyssa was shrewd, always near the top in academics. Grasping the implications of her path, she figured out the best path forward. “Father, will you help me get better?”

That training started to come back to Alyssa. Sprawled on the ground, she remembered to roll away before trying to stand. This time, she made it back up to her feet. Just in time to see her opponent rushing at her with his shoulder lowered. They collided and fell together in a heap.

"What doesn’t kill me, makes me stronger."

Her father had trained her during the entire break. He was relentless. No punches were pulled; no quarter was given. When it was time to head back to the Academy, Alyssa was battered more than she had ever been from her classmates. Yet she was now smarter, faster, and more skilled. Arriving back in the dorm, the others smirked at her bruises. She didn’t mind. Her eyes lit up at how soft and clean they looked. They hadn’t been hurt in a month. Still, they were all males, and that made them strong…

On the ground, Alyssa ended up underneath the heavier boy. He reared his arm back for a blow to her head. She turned away and his fist hit the hard back of her skull. She was dazed but conscious.

"What doesn’t kill me…"

He pulled back for the finishing blow, his knees digging into her chest. She struggled to breathe.

"Makes me…"

He swung. She jerked out of the way at the last moment. His unchecked momentum carried his head downward. She wrenched her arm free and threw her elbow up as hard as she could. It collided with the side of his descending head. He was knocked out before he hit the mat. She pushed his limp body off of her and stood up, the victor.




Text and stats prior to phase 1 of the rebalance.

  • When Alyssa is dealt non-battle damage and survives, it gets +1 Attack and +1 health for each damage dealt. Attack2/Health10
  • When Alyssa is dealt non-battle damage and survives, it gets +2 Attack and +2 health for each damage dealt. Attack4/Health14
  • When Alyssa is dealt non-battle damage and survives, it gets +3 Attack and +3 health for each damage dealt. Attack10/Health22

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