SNF 2016.08 - SNF: SouthSynd vs FreakShow in 'Maximum Impact'

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Description: There's 106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark out, and we're wearing sunglasses. Hit it. In one corner, we got the rough and tumble biker gang of Rae and Sorcha, along with their posse in their corner. Adding in the world-famous garbage wrestler MURDERHOUSE turns this into The Freak Show. Against them, for a kind of turf war with legitimate businessmen, is Team SouthSynd. Duke, a collector of art, will be receiving assistance from henchman and the techno-savvy ninja Nagase, in facing off. It's order vs chaos, right down at the train yards! <Winners: Draw>

To the eyes of a flying bird of an early evening sky of an overcast day, the land below is a dirt-filled scar filled with strange colors of matching shapes that just go back and forth like they themselves would on a journey to feed, or migrate.
The dirt is rich in moisture from lighter rains earlier in the day, surrounded by human constructs of metal and wood conducting the usual business of carrying people and things to and fro, across predetermined paths long laid before the time of those who would use them in the present.
"Everything's in place," says one blonde-haired caucasian man in a nice suit, eyes hidden behind sunglasses so thick that he may as well be just wearing solid black lenses that let nothing through. He taps his left hand against his left ear as he speaks, his delivery exacting and to-the-point, devoid of humor nor irritation as the footprints he tracks through mud blemish the fine polish of black leather shoes as he walks among others who appear to belong.
Camera people. Commentators. Medical personnel. Railyard technicians. Organized fighting is no small undertaking. Every person plays a small part in keeping the cog of lucrative violence turning, to whatever end it may go, to whatever greater purpose its participants and collaborators ultimately seek.
Work still continues around them, the wheels of capitalism hardly slowing to the inconvenience - or opportunity - for sponsorship fees to fall upon this particular rail yard of Chicago, Illinois, in the United States.
"Just give the word, sir."

"Why the fuck they have to go and make this shit complicated? Take two fellas, throw em in a pit, film it. Easiest god damn job on the planet."

The harsh, whiskey and smoke growl of one Rae Briggs cuts through the chatter of SNF crewmen. His biting tone, and the volume of his annoyed snarling make it clear that something about this entire setup has pissed him off. That, or he's just naturally a cranky person.

"Who the fuck am I lookin' fer, anyway?"

The question is accompanied by the ringing 'Clang' of metal on metal, announcing the arrival of the demonic biker just moments before he rounds the tail end of a stopped train and trudges into sight.

Nobody in their right mind would refer to Rae as a 'good looking man.' His longish hair is dirty, grey, and tangled. His face is scarred and pitted, with a naturally scowlish tilt and light grey eyes that look out at the world with a disturbing lack of humanity or compassion. Tattoos crawl across his leathery flesh, squirming as the powerful muscles of his arms flex. And across his chest, inked in dripping black letters, are the words: 'WARNING' 'POOR IMPULSE CONTROL'.

The aging biker's boots slosh through the sticky mud as he steps down off of the tracks, kicking clods of it carelessly out onto the legs of those who come too close. In one tattooed hand he holds an oddly pristine sheet of paper, containing 6 names, two columns of three, with mug shots beside them. Two of these people he recognizes, that being himself and Sorcha. The other shit head on his team, some cocksucker in a mask, he does not know. But the one he's most interested in, is the bland-featured blond man at the top of the other column, who's name has been smudged just enough as to be oddly illegible.

A three foot long wrench with a comically large head is gripped tightly in Rae's other hand, thudding rhythmically against his booted shin with every step. The motion pauses, however, as he slows to a stop, rage-filled eyes lifting from the paper to scan his immediate surroundings.

Mud, mud, shit heads, cameras, train tracks, train cars...Blond asshole in sunglasses and a suit.

"Hey fucker!" Rae roars at the man, his fight card fluttering down from between his fingers, only to be stomped deep into the mud beneath a booted foot, "I been lookin' for you. Let's talk, you and me, yeh?"

COMBATSYS: Rae has started a fight here on the right meter side.

                                  >  //////////////////////////////]
                                  |-------\-------\0              Rae

"He's arrived," the blonde man says into his earpiece. "I'll deal with him," he says in such an even tone of voice that speaks of confidence or ignorance. The man before him is Rae Briggs, one of the most feared biker gang bosses of the modern day. A man who has tamed a menagerie of freaks. Monsters. Somehow, he stands above them as one of the most savage of them all.
Some trains part in Rae's presence, as though a response to his arrival. It is as though even inanimate objects have some deep, primal reaction of fear deep within to escape, lest their innards be torn asunder by one with such hunger for violence.
That this man at all appears to stand before him - names (and smudges) on cards be damned! - seems almost a token resistance on the part of whatever forces could be put to muster against Rae's bold introduction to the railyard at large. The cameras are already rolling when so much as anyone gets a whiff of Rae. He is not to be missed. He is here, and the world - or at least this railyard - will bear witness to one of his latest conquests.
The blonde man takes his hand off his earpiece and raises his fists in a competent, but not too noteworthy fighting stance as he side-steps into the camera's view. It almost misses him completely. His presence seems nearly insignificant in comparison, the dark colors of his clothing meshing a little too well with the surrounding environs.
"Round 1!" Someone calls from a megaphone. There is horrible feedback that swallows up a word, "versus Rae! Ready... go!"
Heedless of the incredible danger that Rae represents himself, the blonde-haired man comes stepping in with a single right jab... and another, as they circle inward ever closer. They seem so perfectly positioned to get struck by the cartoonishly huge wrench, if Rae feels inclined to just so much as sweep an arm outward.

COMBATSYS: Henchman has joined the fight here on the left meter side.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Henchman         0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0              Rae

COMBATSYS: Rae endures Henchman's Probing Strikes.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Henchman         0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0              Rae

"Deal with fuckin' what?" Rae grunts as his hate-filled eyes narrow on the slowly approaching figure. All around them are the bangs and whistles of trains, the bustle of workers.

Some ass hat shouts something or other through a megaphone, but Rae is too far gone to care. His scarred lips peel back from yellow, slightly crooked teeth as he lumbers forward. he is not a tall man, perhaps an inch shorter than the nondescript blond before him, but there is no contest as to who is the bulkier. The demonic biker is both broader across the shoulders, and far more muscular than his opponent. A fact that is only amplified by the loudness of his attitude and tattoos.

Three swift punches thump into Rae's hairy chest as he closes on the blond, making no move to protect himself. In fact, the punches barely seem to register, as he stomps right through, wrench swinging up and back in preparation to meet out some good old ultra violence.

Abruptly, the biker lunges forward in an attempt to smash his forehead squarely into the face of his latest victim. If all goes to plan, he will shatter nose, sunglasses, or both, before his empty right hand swings up to try and grab the fellow by the left side of his head and shove him into a hard sideways stagger. Only then will the wrench descend, parting the air with a loud 'WOOF' as it cleaves the air on a collision course with the unfortunate fellow's collarbone.

As is often the case, a stream of random angry profanity foreshadows the arrival of the newest biker gang in town; or its defacto leader, atleast. And, as is also usual for this band of twisted misfits and trouble makers, Rae is accompanied by one of his premiere partners in crime as he stomps into view on their newest battlefield.

Compared to the dark leather and muted colors of the old man's attire, Sorcha's dull orange wardrobe is practically eye-searing and absurdly intricate, covered in various stylized sigils of eyes and flame. Where Rae is keen to show off the gruff worn surface of his sun-baked skin, Sorcha is almost entirely concealed behind her mystic uniform. The majority of her face is hidden behind a plain black scarf leaving only the pair of large expressive eyes in her pale face visible, one a normal brownish hue while the other is entirely suffused in faintly glowing hot pink as if the entire thing has been lamenated in colored plastic. The other primary exception to this concealment comes with her outfit's lack of sleeves, leaving her four spindly black arms free to move about as they please, as well as her bare feet.

"More fellas means more FIGHTING," the girl explains with an enthusiastic flare to the words as she scampers around in the mud, adding an even greater splatter of dark filth to the area in which she passes, purposefully kicking it about with her sharpened toenails as if its some sort of contest. She moves much faster and more erratically than her partner, darting ahead of him and then falling back in random zigzags as they make their way across the railyard towards the sounds of construction. Her hands dart out as she passes by various objects, stuffing loose tools, screws, nails, and pretty much anything that's sort of shiny and not bolted down into the satchel that hangs from her belt like some sort of mutant magpie, all the while continuing to talk and look around as if this behavior is second nature.

"Don't worry about it so much! There's people out there that want blood! Mayhem! CHAOOOOS! Ahaha... hahaha! And that's fine with me because I'm feeling all /murdery/ today!"

Ofcourse, in the process of stealing and cackling maniacly, Rae manages to find their quarry first which naturally gives him first dibs. Sorcha frowns behind her mask, lower arms crossing over her chest but she reliquishes this honor as per the code of conduct to which totally exists and she didn't completely make up when she joined the biker gang. Rules totally get obeyed because she sets people on fire when they don't. That's how rules work, right?

Sorcha snatches the fight card out of the air with a free hand before it can drift down into the muck and peers at the roster for a few moments before tucking the paper into a pocket. She waves at Rae with an upper arm and smiles beneath her mask as the fight starts, speaking in a voice that is suddenly completely different from her usual nails-on-chalkboard tone, sounding more like the fake hyper-friendliness of a telemarketer or commercial advertiser.

"Okay, have fun, big guy! Leave some for me or I will totally poison you in your sleep, kisses!"

COMBATSYS: Rae successfully hits Henchman with Combo Grapple.
- Power hit! -

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Henchman         0/-------/---====|=------\-------\0              Rae

Plastic, glass, and bone all shatter in sequence - maybe not in order, but some sort of sequence all the same - as the cursory punches are drowned upon the oncoming rush of ultraviolence that is met with a spray of blood that almost seems unto itself as some kind of celebration of this exchange.
Slammed into the mud as a limp piece of trash, that seems to answer that particular round's burning question then and there. No one would be in trouble for losing sight of the man in the suit, when that giant wrench commands attention right from that blow to the collarbone. Rae might even be afforded a good second or two in which to posture and taunt for the cameras, if he's so inclined. The cameras put Rae front and center.
What eyes do lay upon the (nameless?) fellow only barely register how he sputters, stumbles, and forcibly pushes a busted pair of shades atop an ajar nose as he comes to a stand somewhere behind and to the left of Rae.
It's at the corner of the hate-filled, violence-loving eyes of the biker boss. The sight of something coming at him at a level of speed and ferocity that might demand action, a lunging left straight thrown around Rae's upper back.

COMBATSYS: Rae fails to interrupt Peripheral Vision Lunge from Henchman with Random Weapon.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////////// ]
Henchman         0/-------/--=====|=------\-------\0              Rae

While the fight happened, an old, dingy ratty looking tour bus pulled up behind some of the lesser used tracks, the black tinted windows proving most ominous.

Inside, a figure watches Rae making mincemeat of some suited piece of trash, and couldn't help but chuckle as he slowly, patiently taped up his fists.

"This guy even need me here? Looks like he's handlin' this shit just fine."

The man Rae was sent to fight crumples beneath the weight of the wrench, leaving the brutal biker standing over his forgotten form, glaring savagely about at the gaping bystanders. A single step takes him over the blond's prone body, camera's focusing on him as he thumps the heavy wrench hard against his shin.

"The hell sort of garbage you idiots let sign up for this shit show? You think I'ma god damn joke? Sent me out to Japan to fight some big titted space warpin' rock bitch, then figure that 'cause she brought me down this useless fucker's the best I--"

In mid rant, Rae catches a flicker of motion out of the corner of his eye. Hefting his wrench in both hands, he whirls on the spot, mud flung up in a spray across two of the tracking cameras as his boots skid through the gloppy brown matter. Perhaps fortunately for his now busted-faced friend, the demonic old fellow's aim is off, and the heavy metal rod parts his perfectly nondescript hair as it buzzes past the top of his skull.

The furious straight punch whips in to thud once more against Rae's tattooed chest, and he pauses, wrench held cocked once more over his shoulder.

Slowly, the brutal old man's scowl deepens, brows pulling together as he glowers into the bloody face of his opponent.

"Listen, dick spittle. You gotta start hitten me harder. I caint' even feel these bullshit punches. You got a gun or somethin'? Fuckin' use that."

When Rae stands mostly unharmed - merely inconvenienced! - by a wild swing from just out of view, notice is taken by all. The mook of the moment stumbles forward from over-committing to the punch, coming up bloodied face-to-face with a man whose breath smells of death, of seventy-three years of untold cruelty and savagery.
To lock eyes with a man like that, to look into such a psyche surrendered to the idea of inflicting terror and one's will upon wherever they roll... is that something to envy? The busted sunglasses that seem to hang onto the blonde guy's face more out of humor than out of accuracy to the laws of physics don't seem to say much.
"If you don't like it, take it up with the boss," comes the stock reply as he tries to shove back, attempting to push onto Rae's chest, wrapping up an arm around the throat to wrestle him downward as the other arm attempts to make with wild, unfocused, smothering punches around the head and upper back as though daring to discount the rage of Rae.
This would not stand for long, knowing the biker that commands the fear and respect of the monsters of the night.

COMBATSYS: Rae blocks Henchman's Rare Upper Hand Combo.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////////   ]
Henchman         0/-------/---====|=------\-------\0              Rae

The cartoonishly large wrench drops from Rae's left hand, impacting the mud with a solid 'THMP.' Such is its weight, that the head sinks nearly eight inches into the muck, leaving the weapon's handle standing upright and ready to grab.

As the blond's arm loops around his throat, Rae's tattooed hands clamp down upon the unfortunate man's ribs. Two or three punches rain down across his back and shoulder, but he ignores them completely. Punching the old demon is like punching a leathery bag of stones, but he must have a weak point, somewhere. Right?

"I'ma take it right up yer ass, BOY."

The hellish old man's grip tightens, compressing his bland-featured opponent's chest as he attempts to tear him off of his throat and thrust him high into the air. The average-sized man's weight seems to be nothing against the strength of the demonic barbarian, who attempts to hold him suspended above his head with arms extended. For a moment, the sunglasses wearing figure will be offered a glimpse of life above the heads of everyone around him.

This must be what it feels like to be on top.

But then, reality sets in.

Unless the blond man can stop him, Rae will bring him plummeting down from the sky, his groin descending at high speed toward the brutal old biker's denim-clad knee. Upon impact, a raging inferno of hellish fire will explode up around the unfortunate man's crotch, superheating the air between the two struggling men. But that is not where the pain will end.

Stomping his raised foot back into the mud, Rae will throw himself backward, body impacting the ground with a wet 'SPLAT!' that sends a wave of filth flying out in all directions. But the man, if still stuck in his grasp, will suffer a far worse fait. For he will be flung up and over the falling biker's body, hurled through a belly to belly suplex that ends with his blond-haired head planted as deep as possible in the swampy filth.

With all the activity going on in the center of the rail yard, with cameramen, commentators, medical personnel and whatnot -- not to mention the fighters totally going at it -- it'd be easy to miss the arrival of a yellow-and-black garbed ninja as she pokes her head up from the side of a currently-uncommissioned rail car. Assessing that the coast is clear, the flame-haired kunoichi hauls herself the rest of the way up, making herself nice and comfy as she settles in to watch the melee unfold.

The amber lenses of her spectacles light up as she peers back at the two fighters, a small proximity alarm blinking quietly on her right periphery to indicate the arrival of the tour bus. "Oh, boss," she mumbles aloud to no one in particular, "... this might hurt."

COMBATSYS: Henchman blocks Rae's Devildriver.

[              \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////////   ]
Henchman         1/-------/=======|==-----\-------\0              Rae

The punching continues for a short while as the unlucky minion is hefted up, up, and up off the ground with an exaggerated gape caught on camera as one final swing hits thin air as he is in the icy grip of the infernal biker.
The camera pans away from the moment of impact of groin versus knee. Some things really are too much for TV. The audience all gets to share their sympathetic winces and lost lunches among them, faces among them flashing a bright yellow color from the flames of Hell encompassing the point of impact (followed by mud on everyone's faces, everyone, even people not even in clean line of sight with the fight).
That the last belly-to-belly suplex only just misses the mark and sees the sharply-dressed thug chaotically roll across the makeshift fighting ground and not get buried deep underground is... cold comfort? Comfort? Who cares about that guy while he writhes and rolls under assumption as much as observation? The camera's all about Rae doling out the harshness. He's afforded some more time to posture, guffaw, whatever he might think of doing if he doesn't decide to press the offensive.
At some point, by some means, there goes that suited, burnt guy whose point of impact has all but turned dress pants into a showy pair of chaps, trying to leap upon Rae absolutely heedless of how poorly this has gone every time before, trying to bring the both of them down and tangle up his limbs around Rae's arm in a clumsy, desperate, but...
...Surprisingly effective arm bar?
"That's as far as you're going," these words are sprinkled in these actions somewhere in a notably higher-pitched voice.

COMBATSYS: Henchman successfully hits Rae with Surprisingly Effective Arm Bar.

[              \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////////      ]
Henchman         1/------=/=======|===----\-------\0              Rae

It takes a moment for the bulky old biker to regain his feet. Having splooshed down fairly deep into the mud, he has to plant his right fist nearly elbow deep in the stuff before he can lever himself to a knee, then fully upright. The majority of his body is now plastered in thick brown grime, which sluffs off of his leather vest and falls to the ground with a series of wet splats.

"I'm gon' find the fucker what sent me here and scalp em." He growls, mud oozing from between his fingers as he curls his right hand into a tight fist of rage. But for the moment, his focus remains on the blond man who has managed to pull himself back to his feet.

"You're a dogged little monkey cunt, ain't ya? Look at chou go. All strugglin' and shit."

The barbaric old fellow's words seem to amuse him to no end, for a deep, hacking chuckle is coughed up from his chest, heavy shoulders shaking as he sloshes ominously forward to meet the suited figure.

The running leg leap is met with open disdain. As the now higher-pitched man crashes into him, limbs tangling about his left arm, the biker flings his hand out to the side in an attempt to shake the annoying little shit head off of him. Unfortunately, it seems that the younger man does have some semblance of skill. For rather than sending him tumbling off into the mud, Rae only manages to throw himself off balance, his left knee splashing into the muck as 150 pounds of blond suit clings tenaciously to his hairy limb.

Kneeling over the struggling fighter as he does his best to hyperextend his elbow joint, the brutal old savage pulls back his mud-splattered lips in a feral grin. His tattooed arm flexes, muscle straining to keep the joint from snapping, while hellish fire roars to life around his right hand, raging up his arm from knuckles to elbow. Mud hisses and spits, moisture bubbling out into steam as it cracks and crumbles away from his tattooed flesh.

"You talkin' real big fer a smarmy little sack of horse shit." Rae growls, just before his right fist descends in a vicious overhead punch aimed to drive into whatever bit of exposed fighter he can find around his arm.

The first blow is followed by another, then another. Successive flaming punches rain down from above, the vicious old bastard putting his descending weight behind each one. His trapped arm presses down as he uses it to try and pin the blond man in place, holding him there to receive the brutal beating he has been so graciously offered.

COMBATSYS: Henchman fails to interrupt Harmageddon from Rae with Grab From Behind.
- Power fail! -

                                  >  ///////////////////////       ]
                                  |====---\-------\0              Rae

COMBATSYS: Henchman can no longer fight.

                                  >  ///////////////////////       ]
                                  |====---\-------\0              Rae

There's a sense of a magnetic relationship between the flaming fist of Rae Briggs and this guy's face as the two struggle to get the upper hand over the other. The tangles of limbs and joints and muscles are minutae that are lost, as the ultimate point of interest in the vehicle of violence here is that this man's face is being punched in like a stack of papers ready to be affixed to a binder.
Twisting and turning around Rae's grip, the punches just keep coming no matter how he re-orients himself against the far stronger man. At worst, Rae would only need to adjust the angle slightly between searing straights. His victim's only success is in that in the process of failing to wrap around him, he stands himself back up in time for the final punch to the face that completely obliterates the sunglasses into ash... and send the rest of himself staggering onto some train tracks.
A train, being manned by a competent engineer even without the heads up of the nearby event, comes to a grinding halt that the collision of train to body is little more than a gentle shove. There's a familiar scream one might be sure they've heard many times before, as the suited guy bounces off of it and tumbles off to parts irrelevant.
The camera centers back upon the newly triumphant rowdy ruffian who stands to add the metaphorical square into the company of the circles of hell itself as the clear champion of the round. (Now he might have a chance to file a complaint with the boss in question!)

Hellish flames continue to roar from Rae's right arm as he rises up from the mud, blood evaporating off of his knuckles with the hissing spit of boiling liquid. He makes no move to save the punch-drunk blond from being ran over by the train. In fact, as he watches the near death experience, breaks squealing as the multi-ton machine slides ever closer along the rails, he fishes a battered pack of cigarettes out of an inner pocket of his vest.

His sharp yellow teeth clamp firmly about the cancer stick that is shaken clear of the pack, right hand lifting to touch off the tip. The dull, cherry glow under lights his muddy, savagely scarred features, reflecting off of the faint haze of smoke that puffs into orbit around his head.

"Fuckin' pathetic." He grunts, turning away once it becomes clear that he wont' get to see the blond ass hole get split into thirds.

Trudging listlessly through the mud, the barbarian wanders back up to stand beside his wrench, cigarettes once more tucked securely away beneath his vest.

"There supposed to be more little turds runnin' 'round down here. Where the fuck is yella tits? That other shit head in the suit? I ain't even close to bein' done yet."

His words are addressed out toward the mud-splattered audience at large, his hate-filled eyes glaring around at them while he flexes the fingers of his burning hand.

COMBATSYS: Rae awaits the next challenger.

                                  >  //////////////////////////////]
                                  |=====--\-------\0              Rae

From inside the tour bus, the other potential fighter sat, watching the blond-haired man get flung right into a near death experience. His fists taped up, his mask all unbuckled and sitting on his desk, the unseen giant watching the bravado and the big display of his "team-mate". Already he didn't like the guy.

"Why the fuck am I even here?"

Nagase is sitting on a train car, all alone. How sad. Doesn't she have any friends? Maybe she'd like one. Why is she dressed like a bee? Is she some kind of cosplayer? Does she have a stinger? Her hair is a funny color too. Maybe it tastes weird.

These and many other thoughts run through Sorcha's mind as she scampers up the simple ladder bolted into the side of the rail car currently occupied by the fluffy-haired ninja. Despite being some kind of horrible spider mutant who seems incapable of not cackling maniacly for longer than ten seconds, she's pretty sneaky when she wants to be. This seems to be one of those times. Maybe the crowd is just to distracted by Rae violently abusing the loser in the suit to notice her slinking about. Or maybe she's just that awesome. Shut up, you don't know!

Whatever the case, a multi-armed mutant is suddenly sitting next to Nagase. Whether or not the bee-girl and her fancy gadgets picked up on that before she got there is irrelevant, she's coming up either way. Sorcha flops down into a low crouch and stares at the ninja from under the brim of her hat

"Hey there! I'm Sorcha. Rae's going to punch you a lot - like /a lot/ - and then I'm going to eat you." She leans forward, getting uncomfortable close to the other girl, tilting her head so that the mutanted hot pink of her chaotic eye is giving her a fish-eye stare. "Make sure you scream a lot, okay? Haaaahaha! Oh, man I can't wait to see what you taste like! Toodles!"

And with that bizarre and completely random message delivered, she leaps from the train and dives into the crowd with an overly enthusiastic 'wheee!', skittering off towards some other corner of the arena.

Nagase's Battle Disc System is more than capable at identifying threats from all vectors. If it moves, makes a sound, and/or gives off any significant amounts of heat, it's been identified by the stolen technology's advanced heuristics and sorted according to priority and relevance. So yeah -- Nagase knows she's getting company.

But she's got a small snack-sized bag of popcorn. She'd tucked it inside her billowy sleeves, and heck, if she doesn't eat it now it'll go to waste.

And she's staring, wide-eyed, at the fight unfolding befor her. She sees the man practically hurled into the path of an oncoming train, munching away at her popcorn with pretty much zero social graces. "Good god, man. We need to reconsider who we -bring- to these things."

Suddenly, it's... it's over, just like that.
And a weird... girl... with a witch hat and more than two arms is leering back at her.

Nagase just palms another round of popcorn in her mouth. Gonna =eat= her?! Is she scared? Her heartrate is accelerating, that's for sure -- but is that for the fight that she's about to enter, or for the fact that Sorcha is -really freaking weird?-

And then, with the random message delivered, a (seemingly) ambivalent Nagase raises her hand. "H-hey, wait! If you're hungry, you can have the rest of my popcorn!" The bumblebee ninja rises to a half-crouch, her popcorn bag dangling precipitously over the edge of the boxcar. An offering?!

The bag starts to fall.
And so does Nagase, tumbling head over heels off the boxcar.
Only to vanish in a plume of smoke.

"Nin-nin!" The cry materializes from a spot just over Rae's head, a hundred feet away. And due to doppler-shifting, it will be somewhat distorted.
As Nagase has instantly translocated herself across that distance -- evidenced by her hands snapped in a pose with both index and middle fingers extended. And her armored boot is dropping like a scythe down onto Rae's shoulder; her aim is to buckle that cocky, flaming bastard straight down to his knees, before kicking away in a rush. "Hi! Sorcha's way more fun than you are, pal!"

COMBATSYS: Nagase has joined the fight here.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Nagase           0/-------/-------|=====--\-------\0              Rae

By the boxcar, the bag of popcorn would continue falling, to hit the ground unless something or someone decides to snatch it out of the air.

COMBATSYS: Rae endures Nagase's Strong Kick.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////    ]
Nagase           0/-------/-------|=======\-------\0              Rae

In the middle of the churned up muck that was, for some reason, chosen as their battleground, Rae puffs away at his cigarette and waits. He has no knowledge of his team mate's crazy antics, nor does he know of the fait of an abandoned bag of popcorn which currently hangs in the balance between death and, muddy death.

he becomes aware of his next challenger only when she begins to taunt him, her obnoxious call ringing out across the muddy arena. His face tilts up, tangled grey hair falling back from the wicked scar across his forehead, and grey eyes narrowing. For a moment, it seems as if the glow of his cigarette reflects orange in those hate-filled eyes...But no.

The impact of Nagase's armored foot crashing down upon his brawny shoulder is enough to drive his booted feet an inch deeper into the muck, but beneath her his old body remains upright, unbowed. And in his eyes, flickering dangerously orange, burn the flames of a true demonic son.

"Cute." Rae grunts sarcastically up at the ninja, before his mouth yawns open to reveal a blazing furnace within. it is as if his maw leads directly into the fiery pits of hell themselves.

The hissing, raspy roar of flames unleashed echoes across the muddy ground as the devil spits a torso-sized ball of brilliant fire up at the hovering ninjette, attempting to engulf her in a heavy, napalm-like substance before she can port away to parts unknown.

Sadly, the cigarette he had been smoking is lost in the in suing conflagration. That is bound to make him cranky.

COMBATSYS: Rae successfully hits Nagase with Napalm Christmas.

[    \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////    ]
Nagase           0/-------/-----==|=======\-------\1              Rae

The discarded bag of popcorn falls to the ground in slow motion, tumbling through empty air like an unopened parachute. Alone and forgotten, it drops to the ground admist a sea of uncaring faces. Upon hitting the ground, the unfortunate paper sack crumples with impact only to bounce into the air, spewing tiny kernals of white fluffy goodness from its gaping mouth in a fountain of horrific destruction. It strikes the cold unfeeling ground again, once more vomiting its delicious cargo into the grimy pools of trampled muck, the feeble silent cries of the tasty morsels muted as they sink into the choking tepid waters of a soggy death.

Such a waste.

Such tragic loss.

Never Forget

Well, it's for the better. Smoking kills, man.

As Nagase's boot collides with Rae and she backflips away to safety, she realizes that the burly brawler has not budged an inch. Or rather, that he has, and it was in a downward direction. Mud. So it's probably a good thing that the style-conscious (if not exactly stylish by the modern definition of the word) kunoichi is avoiding the ground for the moment. She is trying to avoid getting coated in wet, sticky substances.

Which makes it all the more terrible that that's the very attack that gets slung up at her, accompanied by the roaring flames of Rae's attack. Is that phlegm?! Oh god that's--

A midair evasion is attempted. But by the time she realized that the attack was an... attack and not just the old coot clearing his throat, it was too late for a ninpo, and much too late for her to leverage herself out of the way. The sticky flames coat her left sleeve and upper arm, the minor conflagration searing into her flesh. "GNNNGH, that is absolutely -disgusting!-" she cries out, trying in vain to swat out the flames before she lands in the muck.
That same muck she was initially trying to avoid.

"Oh, I get it. Your friend likes her meals flame-broiled, huh?" She brings her left hand before her chest, pinching one eye shut as she forces her body to choke down the obvious sensation of pain ripping its way up her arm. Her right arm sweeps over it, drawing the flames away from her arm and collecting them into two fiery spheres. The departure of the fire leaves behind blackened scorch marks on her yellow dress -- it was practically brand new, even. Feh.

Nagase tilts herself forward, slamming her hand into the ground. The two wisps of fire grow larger, and bright, spinning around in a double helix that ripples along the ground in parabolic arcs. "She isn't one of those monsters who likes her stuff well done, is she?!"

Rae says, "hmm"

COMBATSYS: Rae blocks Nagase's Unrelenting Fire.

[     \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////////     ]
Nagase           0/-------/----===|=======\-------\1              Rae

"If we're bein' honest, sugar tits," Rae grunts, his mud-caked boots coming free of the earth's grasp with gurgling sucks, "I ain't sure what the fuck yer talkin' 'bout. But if Sorcha said she'd eatcha, there's even odds that ain't the sort of eatin' she's talkin' 'bout. I still ain't sure if she's a rug muncher or not, but damn if she ain't fucked in the head."

Once the old biker has lumbered forward out of the smoky haze leftover by his toxic discharge, his face comes once more fully into view. The flickering orange flames have spread throughout his eyes, completely consuming all other features. And as he grins savagely, his scarred lips draw back from cracked yellow fangs, so unlike the crooked teeth of an aging tobacco smoker.

"But if ya like, you and I can fuck off, and see what trouble we cain't stir up." The offer is made with a hoarse, jeering tone. Clearly Rae is a man who knows he is repulsive, and gets a kick out of wielding his scarred, aging appearance as a weapon.

It is about then that the dual arcs of fire converge on his position, and he briefly diverts his gaze downward, devoting a few moments of his time to stomping the flames into the mud with extreme prejudice. Steam roils up around him, flames licking across his boots, but after two or three good splats of mud, the attack has fizzled out.

However, the fire remains, Now crackling steadily on his heels and toes. And, as yet more flame roars up the length of his left arm, he powers forward into a short charge.

Five lumbering steps are taken to get his mass up to speed, mud steaming where his footfalls land. He is still roughly 7 feet out when he leaps into the air and swings both flaming boots forward, body rotating backward until he is flying parallel to the muddy earth. The aim is clear: to land a hellfire infused super drop kick to the chest of the young ninja, before falling from the sky to once more flop gracelessly into the mud.

COMBATSYS: Nagase counters Bat Out Of Hell from Rae with Nagase Spiral.

[      \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////          ]
Nagase           0/-------/------=|=======\===----\1              Rae

Gracious. It's a good thing Rae's being -honest-, now, isn't it? Nagase picks her hand out of the mud, her face pulling into a distasteful sneer. It's on her hand now, in addition to her backside and all along her legs, courtesy of Rae's warm introduction just a few moments prior. She reminds herself, yet again, that she'll have to worry about that later.
Though, just to get the scent of whatever it is off her left sleeve, she slathers some of the mud over top of it. It's -already- gross, why stop there?

Raising an eyebrow, the kunoichi doesn't bother rising back to her feet, instead preferring to remain low to the ground in anticipation for whatever else Rae has in mind. Her expression takes a turn for the mirthful, as she comments, "Oh, uh... you -know-, that's a really -sweet- offer, but I don't mind if you just fuck off, y'know... by yourself?" Amber lenses flash with anticipation as she gets a detailed readout of exactly how -little- damage was registered by her attack. And yet, something else comes to mind as the giant comes lumbering towards her. Nagase breaks into a small grin, grabbing two scoopfuls of mud in her hand as she brings herself back to her feet. Globs of mud drip from the kunoichi's armored hands as she smirks back at her attacker. Smug. Pure, one hundred percent smug, as her hands suddenly flicker into motion, mud flying every which way as a series of ninjutsu seals are etched into the air, arcane wisps hovering as faint blurred outlines of her motions.

At the very moment that Rae's feet are scheduled for arrival into Nagase's chest, he will find a distinctly -different- sensation applied to his: two muddy hands. "Wouldn't mind a quick dance, though!" The flames are mitigated by the thorough helping of fresh mud coated all across the tiny ninja's lower body -- the cooler liquid providing a thin layer of protection.

The very next thing he will feel will be one fashionably muddy knee slamming into his thighs, while Nagase's other leg wraps around his thigh. It could be considered intimate, for the split second in which it happens, but that's not the point at all. The idea is that, in that brief and violent fashion, she imparts spin onto the airborne Rae, redirecting his forward momentum into an abrupt spin. And =in= said spin, she also twists Rae around so that his head points downward towards the mud, with his own bulk and momentum doing most of the work for the crafty kunoichi!

An instant before Rae's head plunges into the muddy depths, the Iga-ryu ninja winks back at him, slamming her mud-coated fists into the brawler's chest and propelling herself into a backflip away to safety. As she lands, once again, in the mud, she wrinkles her nose in disgust. "Gosh. I just realized, you probably -do- kiss your mother with that mouth."

"My fuckin' what?"

That is all that Rae has time to say, his rage-filled face briefly baffled as he is caught mid kick, the lithe young ninja curling herself around his lower legs. He has just enough time to wonder if this is some sort of crazy ass sex thing, before, wait, nope, he is upside down.

Still, it could be a sex--

Rae's shaggy head impacts the mud with a satisfying squelch, followed almost immediately by the almighty splash of his bulky shoulders. He is not a tall man by any stretch, but there is a lot of weight and density to his powerful build. That weight is turned against him as he vanishes up to his ribs in thick, sticky mud, his lower body jutting comically into the air.

Mud bubbles and boils as he plunges his fists into the ground, knees smashing to the earth with great wet splats. Steam is everywhere, fogging the camera lenses and drifting skyward, rising from the flaming bits of the old biker's body.

It takes a surprisingly small amount of effort for the old man to jerk himself free of the ground. There is disappointingly no stretch of seconds where he flails helplessly about. But, it is likely incredibly satisfying to see his entire upper body caked in mud, turning his tangled hair and beard into a lumpy mass of goop.

"Ye'." The demon grunts, spitting a mostly solid wad of clay out from between his lips, "Me and you is gonna be real good friends, ya sneaky little bitch."

Clambering stiffly to his feet, the hulking man gives himself a violent shake, head and shoulders twisting in different directions and sending mud flying out into the crowd. A large quantity of it sluffs away, revealing dirty patches of his hairy, tattooed flesh.

And always there is fire.

Yellow teeth bared, the barbaric hooligan lumbers forward to close the distance, heavy, quick steps throwing up clods of filth as he rampages toward Nagase with murder in his eyes.

As he nears, he swings his right fist around in a wild, heavy haymaker, before throwing his entire body toward her head first, in an attempt to smash their skulls together and use his bulk to carry her smaller form backward and shoulder tackle her roughly into the metal side of a parked cargo car.

And if he misses? Well, he's likely to impact the train car head first, with a loud, metallic 'CONG!'

COMBATSYS: Nagase dodges Rae's Combo Grapple.

[      \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////         ]
Nagase           0/-------/------=|=======\====---\1              Rae

Nagase |

Nagase rises from the mud. Somehow she's managed to avoid getting more than a few flecks of the goopy substance smeared on her face, but the rest of her is much more... dirty. Which is probably appropriate considering the direction of spoken discourse.

Still, it's hard for the tech-ninja to keep from smirking at the bubbles in the mud that suggest where Rae's head's been placed. "Heh, as if your mouth couldn't get any filthier," she comments to no one in particular, two hands reaching back for the ninjato perched across her back, testing to make sure the panda-hilted weapons are still there. Yep, still there! Satisfied, the Iga-ryu ninja keeps her hands folded behind her back, showing a complete disregard for the burly man -- exuding a complete lack of the =fear= he's no doubt attempted to instill in other folks he's attacked.

Fear would encourage him, after all. Him and Sorcha. It'd show that they're getting into her head. And dammit, they're -not-.
She's reminding herself of this, anyway.

"Oh, are we?" she quips back, glancing sidelong at Rae over her shoulder. "Good, good, I could always use some more friends. You got a Fightagram account? I hear that's how the olds are keeping in touch these days." She smiles faintly as she steps in a wide arc around him, maneuvering herself towards the side of that train car. Always thinking, always planning.

And when the charge comes? She continues maintaining her casual, nonassuming gait. She smiles -- chuckles, even.

"No? It's a shame..."

She doesn't even use her translocation abilities -- she simply twists her upper torso towards Rae. That's because she's twisting her lower torso towards the train car, and with the sound of her two comically oversized boots, she's springboarding off of it. The simple motion has the girl careening over the man's head.

And then -- *CONG* --

And the kunoichi lands in a splash of mud. Her two ninjato flash out, reflecting twin arcs of cold steel in the harsh night lighting. One slash across the man's back, and one against the back of his thighs, with deadly precision -- intended to test just how thick the demon's skin really is. "Hmm... What social sites -are- you on, gramps?"

COMBATSYS: Rae interrupts Random Weapon from Nagase with Harmageddon.

[            \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////           ]
Nagase           0/-------/----===|=======\====---\1              Rae

The train car rocks back and forth on its tracks, swaying ponderously to and fro as the old man bounces back onto his heels from the hellacious impact. Though there is now a large, rounded dent bubbling the metal siding inward, the filthy old bastard seems completely unharmed. In fact, he is laughing.


The harsh, coughing chuckle hacks its way past his scarred lips, vicious yellow teeth bared in a wrathful smile as he whirls on the spot, spraying still more of the disgusting, clammy mud across the rocking car behind him..

Rather than striking his back, Nagase's twin ninjato thud into his chest and upper thighs. The sharp steel of the upper blade scores a ragged slash across his parted vest, badly scuffing the aged leather. His skin, however, fairs much better. The thinnest of cuts is left in the wake of the strike, as if he had nicked his leathery chest while shaving.

Down below, the second sword leaves identical yawning mouths in the front of his muddy jeans, each gaping open to reveal hairy tattooed thighs. And, apparently no underwear, which is enough to make even the most jaded of watchers quickly avert their eyes, lest something slip through to say hello.

Even as the swords are biting into his tough old flesh, the rage-filled demon is powering forward through the strikes. His ragged, coughing laughter continues while he reaches out with blazing hands to grab her roughly by the hip and chest.

Bad touch bad touch bad touch!

Nagase's back impacts the rocking train car with a teeth rattling 'CRASH!,' Rae having whipped her through the air like a doll in a quick reversal throw. And now that he has her, he seems unwilling to let her go. Staying in relatively close, he crowds her against the wall, releasing her only to free up his hands for the punches that follow.

Blazing, powerful hooks slam into the ninja's ribs, hips, stomach, and the sides of her head. For perhaps six or seven seconds he works her over, tenderizing her like a side of beef in a Rocky montage. If Rocky had flaming fists, and a personality comparable to a demonic badger with hemorrhoids.

Huffing out deep, smoker's breaths, the bulky old man steps back from Nagase and spits flaming, muddy sputum onto the ground, glaring across the short distance at the poofy-haired girl.

"God damn mouthy little shit kicker, is what you are."

Nagase had fully expected her ninjato to do more than -that-. And in a way, they did. It's just that she doesn't want to face those results in particular, flashing a distasteful expresion as she staggers backwards, placing her swords back into their scabbards. She was already pretty grossed out, but... yeah. That crossed a line.

"Ugh, you're on Omegle, I was /right/..."
It's just a joke. No one actually goes there. Nagase of all people knows better.

And while she was already starting to consider getting away, the fact of the matter is that her intention to drop sass proves to be her undoing, as the ninja finds herself ensnared by the rapid grasping hands of her opponent. Protip, folks: DON'T SASS. It's one thing for the ninja to whip around in her death-defying leaps and twists under her own power, but having herself be wrenched around in a circle like that is nauseating -- let alone having a barrage of punches hammered into her all over. Blood spurts from her mouth on the final few blows, as she starts to ease down along the surface of the train car...

"I... I get that a lot..." comments Nagase, as she weakly tries to edge her way past the burly brawler in her path. It looks like she's going to make a run to get off to his side...
But instead she suddenly starts upwards, driving a fast knee into the man's groin. And if she manages that, she'll leap forward and cut a quick backflip, driving her boots down hard on his shoulders. It's at that point that the ninjato will come out again -- and stab down hard into his shoulderblades. One more forward flip would bring her to safety -- relative safety, such as it is.

COMBATSYS: Rae endures Nagase's Nagase Stomp.

[             \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////            ]
Nagase           0/-------/-----==|=======\=====--\1              Rae

Glaring down at the muddy, yellow-clad ninja before him, Rae opens his mouth to speak. A little burst of flame can be seen through his yellow fangs, and heat rolls off of his body, parts of which are still alight. He is likely about to say something cocky. Some racist, sexist, or mean spirited bit of nonsense that is two parts awful, one part idiotic. But before he can say a single word, Nagase's knee rises up to offer his jollies a friendly 'howdy do.'

Let's be honest though. At least the girl has finally discovered why he's so cocky. he's got a lot to be proud of.

"Huh." The muscular fellow grunts, seeming more perplexed than outright hurt. That, probably should have done more damage. But, maybe he's just kicked in the groin a lot. Would that really be so surprising? Regardless, he stands there, pondering over what just happened, as his acrobatic opponent flips neatly up onto his shoulders. He does not look up toward the skirt over his head, which is probably a blessing.

Nagase remains unmolested as she flips away, small spurts of blood spraying from the shallow puncture wounds left in Rae's back by her twin panda-hilted swords. Slowly, by degrees, his bemused expression is replaced by a deep, thunderous scowl.

"Little bitch just kneed me in the balls." he grumbles to the world at large, blood pulsing down his back as he slowly turns to face her. Across the distance, he eyes her up and down, burning fists flexing at his sides.

Then, he lunges.

With a burst of speed uncommon to his lumbering style, the brawny biker hurls himself across the distance in an explosion of flames, hellfire blasting out behind him as if he were rocket powered. Lips pulled back and muddy hair flying out behind him, he thrusts his right fist up and forward, attempting to hammer a positively savage uppercut into the young woman's abdomen...

COMBATSYS: Nagase counters Lucifer's Hammer from Rae with Tricky Rounder.

[             \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////               ]
Nagase           0/-------/----===|=------\-------\0              Rae

Having just stabbed into Rae's back, Nagase lands from her flip a fair distance away. Her landing point is a raised pile of coarse crushed stone: the kind that goes on railway beds to keep it level. There's a half-dozen similar piles around the rail yard, but Nagase really only picked this one because it was bereft of the mud that's plagued her throughout the fight thus far. Rocks grind against one another as the kunoichi's boots settle. "Well, hitting the brawn didn't work, I figured I'd go for the brains..." she quips, in response to the demonic brawler's restatement of the obvious.

It's certainly true that Nagase could be more terrified of the flames belching out of the demon's maw, but the kunoichi hasn't come to these fights because she wants to be babied. She felt tremendously out of her league against her King of Fighters teammates, and against Ryouhara's insane ninkougakujutsu -- so it's refreshing to fight someone more singleminded and direct. Even if he =is= strong enough to punch her into next week, at least she can see it coming.

... Of course, she also cheats a bit; the sudden flare of potential is signaled to the tech-ninja by flashing signals in her amber lenses. She's learned to trust her battle heuristics as much as her own eyes and ears. And so it is that, without so much as another thought, the kunoichi swings her right ninjato in a low, sweeping arc as if to cut Rae's legs out from beneath him.
There's the thing about momentum, though -- if she'd done -just- that, she would still have had to deal with his considerable girth falling onto of her like a forestry job gone critically awry. Which is why the kunoichi vanishes from view just one heartbeat before her sword connects with the rapidly rushing Rae.

When she rematerializes from her translocated state to flank Rae on the left side, she continues her momentum, delivering brunt leverage via the flat of her ninjato directly to the back of Rae's knee. It's lightning quick -- but without knowing exactly what Rae planned, she had only make a reasoned guess as to his velocity, and acted accordingly.

Which probably means Rae's going to be enjoying a faceful of sharp gravel, and Nagase gets a view of the demonic hellspawn from behind. So... yay?

"Man," comments the ninja, amidst the sound of her ninjato being slid back into their respective scabbards, "I was hoping you'd be more of a challenge!" She raises a gauntleted hand to flick mud off her nose. Keeping the big brute annoyed is probably going to work out better for her than being civil about things, after all...!

The tricky thing about felling a powerful opponent like Rae is, you have to hit him hard enough to buckle the knee. Sure, professional fighters do it all the time. A swift, precise kick to the knee of a huge powerhouse knocks the joint forward, and their great weight tends to do the rest. But it isn't always as easy as it looks.

Hellish fire has spread across the entirety of the savage biker's body by the time his flying charge reaches Nagase. His right fist is already thrusting upward, preparing to deliver a blow that will likely turn the mouthy girl's innards into strawberry gelatin. But, as the heat swells, and the moment of his impending victory looms ever closer, the blasted ninja up and vanishes.

"GOD FUCKIN'--!!!"

Rae's bellow is crackly and distorted from the amount of flame he is generating, but the curses are clearly audible as Nagase appears behind him to deliver a slash to the backs of his knees. Unfortunately, such quick blows, by necessity, can't have a lot of power behind them. And so the savage hurtles on, smoke and steam billowing out behind him.

A flaming, hellfire-infused knee blasts straight through the pile of stone, sending sharp bits of smoldering shrapnel flying out in all directions, but he does not stop there. Onward he rages, until his right fist impacts the side of a steel cargo container that is currently resting on a cement slab, awaiting a flat bed train to carry it away from this place.


The metal container crumples around the blazing man's fist, conforming to his knuckles, wrist, and forearm as the force of his charge turns it into the world's largest boxing glove. The initial impact is followed by a huge wave of fire, all of the pent up energy he had been building rushing out in a single, massive discharge. This leaves the remains of the container glowing white hot, popping and cracking with the suddenness of its flash heating.

For a moment, there is quiet, broken only by the sounds of burning, and the heavy, raspy breaths of a man who's arm is now buried to the elbow in near molten metal.

"I'm gonna gouge out yer eyes and skull fuck you!"

And he's back.

Rae's arm comes free of the metal container with a metallic shriek, little bits of liquid steel dripping from his scorched skin to sizzle against the earth. If he were a normal man, such an experience would have likely crisped his flesh to the bone. But he's a mother fucking half demon, and he's sick of this shit.

All of the flames that had been burning across Rae's body have sizzled out, though as he once more rounds upon Nagase, she can clearly see that his eyes continue to blaze solid orange. She does not have long to study him, however, because as soon as he is free he begins to rampage across the rock-strewn ground, boots crunching over the bake clay of his passing.

As per usual, there is no subtlety to his attack. He simply approaches his lithe opponent at a lumbering charge, tattooed fists held over his head. Once he is close enough, he throws himself forward and brings them crashing down in an attempt to flatten the young warrior beneath his furious might, and likely stomp his way right over her to the other side.

COMBATSYS: Rae successfully hits Nagase with Fierce Punch.

[                   \\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////              ]
Nagase           0/-------/-======|==-----\-------\0              Rae

The mud is going to take forever to wash out. It conceals the color of Nagase's yellow and black outfit, which in turns conceals the light suit of polymer armor, which in turns conceals the multitude of bruises running the entirety of the kunoichi's front. The smartaleck shinobi has been hurt way more than she wants to let on -- to show weakness against an opponent of such formidable power. It's pretty clear that he thrives on terror -- but it's also quite possible that the demon -literally feeds- upon it as well. Which makes it all the more important for the lithe kunoichi to keep from displaying any fear whatsoever.

Swords re-sheathed, she tilts her head askew, like a bird surveying the landscape before her. Gravel is churned up into the air, tracing thousands of parabolic paths back to the welcoming embrace of the muddy earth. The cargo container buckles, glowing white hot at the point of impact. Flames erupt outward, engulfing the cargo container in whole. Metal groans, as the upper edge of the container begins to sag downward towards her.

"Wow," speaketh the kunoichi, her high-pitched voice rising above the flames' steady crackling. "Sure glad I wasn't in the way of -that- madness."

As Rae pulls away from the container, turning his blazing eyes towards the smug grin of the Iga-ryu ninjette, one red-hot door of the container voices a complaint. It was wedded to a fully rectangular container, and as the structure is no longer the shining bastion of rigidity it was promised to (It's not me, babe, it's you), the door violently registers its divorce by falling against the concrete pad with a loud *CL-CLANG*.

And still, Nagase smirks onward. Another violent charge? The disdain is clear on her face. Her hands rest on her hips -- a show of defiance that she doesn't even bother to prepare a translocation sequence.

"Skullfuck?" repeats Nagase, apparently familiar, perhaps even -bored- with the concept of the threat. It's clear she's heard it before, at any rate -- but she's already planning her next move out as soon as she sees his fists raise high. Her fingers splay outwards, her body coils with anticipation for a simple leap out of the way. "Heh, your smack-talk is rated M for Mature, but it only gets like 33 on Metacriti-"

That's when she hears the first squish. Her foot slips: one is on solid footing, and one is not. Her eyes widen behind amber lenses, and the confident facade slips. She tries to correct by bringing her foot up, but the muddy hold prevents the rapid motion she was hoping for. She winces, bracing for impact...

Two meaty fists crash down into her shoulders, driving her, butt-first, into the mud. Something creaks, groans -- and it's not the cargo container.

The brute does not relent from his vicious attack -- his boots continue onward, ploughing straight into her. Nagase's torso is squishy underfoot -- the second squish - but perhaps that's due to the supersaturated earth and not a lack of exercise. Whatever the cause, Nagase jackknifes up from the blow, her howl of pain intertwined with a sickly gurgle -- it's probably a fair bet that it hurts!

Nagase curls up onto her side, her reddish-orange hair matting with mud as she seems to have completely given up any pretense of staying clean in this exchange. She lifts her head away from the mud, drawing in her breath -- and slams her left hand into the mud. A shockwave of force sends rippling waves into the soil, but also propels Nagase into the air. A quick twist and a pivot, and Nagase is back on her feet -- albeit, doubled over, and more than a little pissed-off.

She spits, clearing her mouth of the bloody glob that had found itself there. She raises her muddy sleeve, almost wiping her mouth upon it before remembering how terrible an idea that would be.

Rae should be grateful she doesn't say anything now. She just lost the urge to speak. But, perhaps actions can speak louder than her annoying words do.

The ninja hurtles forward, aiming to grab hold of his right wrist. She's a sliver of the man's size, but she's also got a bevy of training -- which is why her goal is to put her entire body to the task of breaking his arm. Legs would wrap around his arm like pincers: while her left boot would find purchase on his ribcage, her right would ram itself against the back of his neck. And then as she throws herself behind him, she would aim to jerk the arm backwards in a highly unnatural position, extending her body outwards with the intent to break the arm like a crab leg at a horribly overpriced seafood restaurant. Then, she'd see how well he'd enjoy punching...

COMBATSYS: Rae interrupts Power Throw from Nagase with Combussive Concussion.

[                       \\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Nagase           0/-------/=======|==-----\-------\0              Rae

The threat of the skullfuck is a time honored classic. Those cultured in the way of trash talk recognize the subtle nuances inherent in the threat, and tip their metaphorical hats whenever it is brought into play. However, Rae just likes to shout. It's doubtful he even realizes what he is saying right now, such is his level of fury.

Having just finished trampling the pretty, if muddy, ninjette into the ground, the bulky old biker stomps forward and punts a head-sized rock as hard as he can. Lost to mindless rage, he doesn't even notice as it hurtles across the muddy arena and decapitates one of the remaining SNF cameras, the technician behind it just managing to dive clear of the projectile.

"Fuckin' Cunt!" Rae roars at the top of his lungs, a long strand of drool hanging from the corner of his lips as he begins to literally froth at the mouth. Flailing his head from side to side, he slings mud, spit, and blood in all directions, while yet more of the steaming crimson liquid drips from the dual puncture wounds in his back. But even now his injuries are healing, blood flow lessoning with every second.

"HAAAAEEH!" he yells, head thrown back and raspy old voice gargling with incommunicable rage, "I'ma break every bone in yer god damn body and arrange yer lumpy carcass inta the next modern art masterpiece! I'ma shove my foot so far up yer ass you can tongue polish my fuckin' boots! I will end you, bitch! I will fuckin' end you!"

Having briefly lost track of where he put the girl, Rae whirls about, wild eyes scanning for a flash of yellow and orange. Unfortunately for him, the mud-smeared figure that comes dashing toward him does not register on his hate-addled mind as the person he is looking for. She is able to leap onto his right arm and tangle her legs about the limb more or less uncontested.

But then, he becomes aware of her.


With an ear-straining bellow of malicious fury, the powerful old demon flexes his arm. The young ninja is torn off of his body and whipped through the air, swung up at the brutal bastard's face as if he planned to use her as a club to beat his own brains out. Unfortunately, as she is coming up, hellfire roars out of his mouth and eyes, trailing out behind his head as he thrusts it forward and down.

Rae and Nagase's skulls meet with a loud 'CLONK!' of bone on bone, hellish flames roaring past her pretty features and baking the mud plastered throughout her hair into a solid mass.

Brutal blow delivered, Rae staggers a step to the side, briefly confused, and gives his arm a violent shake in an attempt to deposit the lithe fighter carelessly into the mud beside him.

The random profanities are really helpful for Nagase's state of mind -- that is, even if she can't seem to make much of a dent in the brute's thick hide, at least she can get through to him with her sneak attacks, right?

"Heh, Those're a -bit- less derivative..." quips the ninjette as she struggles to gain purchase on the half-demon's meaty arm.

But she won't have time to say much more than that, as the brawler pulls his way right out of her pincer grasp right before she can lock his arm out to full extension. "Uuuh-whoooa!" she stammers, flailing about in midair. By the time she understands exactly what's going on, Rae has reasserted control over his arm, and has slammed his forehead squarely into her own.


And just like that, the star has about eight million new stars, by Nagase's estimation. The mud is flash-baked into place -- it's a revolutionary new beauty technique, you should all try it -- by the hellfire that erupts outward, but the Iga-ryu ninjette can't really testify to its efficacy just yet as she's being flung once again into the mud.

A moment later, the spunky shinobi extricates herself from the mud, rising back to her feet. Streams of brown mud run down her face, but they are joined by thin streams of red running down from her ears as well. She keeps her eyes closed, though her nostrils are flaring with each breath.
It would also seem that the young woman is... chuckling to herself.

Nagase may be temporarily blind, and a bit disoriented, from the way she staggers first in one direction, and then the other. But for one moment, it seems she has a moment of crystal clarity.

That's when she surges forward suddenly -- and disappears, moving on muscle memory alone. The chuckles get louder -- for now, Rae may be spared her juvenile attempts at wit.

Rae will then find a lightning-fast kick plunging into his right abdomen.
Followed by a second kick driving into his left thigh.
And a third whirling kick to his shoulder.

Bystanders would be able to attest that it looks like there are two Nagase's at once -- each shadow image blurred and only present for half the time. But the cumulative effect for Rae is such as if he were getting kicked repeatedly from both sides at the same time.
And both are laughing at him.

If she manages to land the majority of her attacks, one whirling roundhouse would send him flying into the air, followed by a second spin kick juggling him back in the opposite direction, before a third overhead flip kick slams him back down into the mud!

COMBATSYS: Rae Toughs Out Nagase's Punishment Mode - Mirage Assault!

[                        \\\\\\  < >  //////////                    ]
Nagase           0/-------/----===|=====--\-------\0              Rae

The demonic brawler staggers, mud-caked chest heaving with great, rattling breaths. A steady stream of lava-like slobber drips down his chin, splattering against the earth between his boots. He sways, mind struggling to remain functional beneath the weight of his emotions. Within his brain, rage and ecstasy blast along his neural network, causing bits of it to short circuit like a badly wired house.

"HUUUUH." Rae groans, the noise not unlike a drunk that is slowly coming awake, but there is no escaping the pleasurable pain within his skull. It burns too bright, consuming him. Whiting out his vision. Who is-? What-? ...-? !!!

Nagase's opening kick slams into his side. And though the impact rattles up her body, and the brute sways in place, it provokes very little response from his suddenly inert form. A second, third, and fifth kick all hammer home, knocking the heavy brawler back and forth, threatening to topple him over.

But when the first roundhouse finally ploughs into his stomach, shifting him far back onto his heels, he suddenly comes to life.


The berserker's enraged bellow causes the air to vibrate, muddy puddles trembling as flames suddenly erupt from both fists. Launching himself forward, he takes the second roundhouse squarely to the side of his head, the force behind Nagase's armored boot splitting open the abnormally tough skin from his left eye to his mangled ear. But it does not stop his advance.

Flaming slobber drips sizzling onto his chest as he swings a wild left-handed roundhouse at the airborne girl's stomach, attempting to tag her out of the air in a burst of hellfire and smash her backward into one of the scattered piles of rocks. And if he can ground her, he will loom over her prone form, heavy, panting breaths spraying her with flaming spittle as his fists rain down blow after blow onto her face and chest, each wild, barely aimed, and containing all the hate that the demonic old bastard has throbbing through his overloaded brain.

COMBATSYS: Rae successfully hits Nagase with Death Engine.

[                            \\  < >  /////////                     ]
Nagase           0/-------/-======|=======\-------\0              Rae

There's no way Rae should even be conscious after such an onslaught of attacks. Nagase knows this -- she's working entirely off of muscle memory, and she knows exactly how brutal the nauseatingly-fast array of attacks can hit. If Rae were any other man he would be knocked out... or worse.

Even as disoriented as she is, though -- and even without the aid of her Battle Disc System -- she can tell that he's still awake.

And as a roundhouse rips its way towards her, she spits out a cry of: "... Seriously?!!"
Swatted out of the sky, she hurtles groundward, sending hundreds of tiny rocks scattering every which way. Percussions shower against the sides of the nearby train cars as Nagase finds herself lying face-up, pain etched into her features. It's been a long time -- a =really= long time -- since she's been this thoroughly abused.

And it's not even over yet, as a barrage of punches is slammed into her, time and time again. How long does it last? She can't even know...

But she knows she's about to lapse into unconsciousness when it stops. Blood drips from her mouth -- but the lips curl into a masochistic grin.

"Y-you... sure know how to treat a girl right."

She may be blind. But she also knows he's standing right on top of her. And that means her all-out kick upwards is poised to hurt him that much more -- right between the legs.

Especially since she's releasing a pre-arranged ninpo, unleashing a torrent of flames that even the demon who -wields- flame would be able to feel.

Only then, after she's delivered her final say on the matter, does Nagase let her leg drop, and start to let the toll of battle catch up to her.

COMBATSYS: Nagase can no longer fight.

                                  >  /////////                     ]
                                  |=======\-------\0              Rae

COMBATSYS: Rae blocks Nagase's Fierce Kick.

                                  >  ///////                       ]
                                  |=======\-------\1              Rae

Rae is beyond speech. Beyond anything but the fitful flashes of color and sound that prod his mind into action. He has become something sub human, unable to comprehend the world on any recognizable level.

As the flaming kick is launched upward toward his balls, his left boot comes crashing down on Nagase's shin, forcing her armored leg back down and grinding it cruelly into the stones. The flames still manage to roar up his leg, however, setting his torn pants alight and scorching his leathery flesh before his body consumes their essence, adding the fire to that produced by his own body.

Confused and lost, the berserker staggers down the rocky hill and stumbles back onto the crusty surface of the partially baked battlefield. There is only silence from the majority of the huddled onlookers, their heavy gazes full of mixed emotions. But still the old man stands, flames raging around his body and devilish features twisted into a grimace of pain and hate. The wounds that his skillful young opponent has managed to inflict are already closing, and will likely be completely healed in a matter of minutes.

If a new challenger is to fight him, they should do so now. Before he can fully regain his breath.

COMBATSYS: Rae awaits the next challenger.

                                  >  //////////////                ]
                                  |=======\-------\1              Rae

Almost the moment that Rae turns away from the fallen ninja, a shrill voice explodes from somewhere within the wide-eyed gaggle of onlookers.

"Mine! MIIIINE! Back off, I already called dibs!"

Several alarmed looking people are shoved aside as Sorcha pushes through the crowd from wherever it is she's been off to for the last few minutes. Even if she didn't have four arms with which to bully her way forward, no one seems keen on getting in the spidery little mutant's way and she quickly scampers forward, her bare feet crunching on the cooked shards of mud. She bee-lines for Nagase, clearing the last couple of feet with a little leap that ends with her straddling on top of the pummeled girl's waist.

"Heheheee! I told you! I TOLD YOU! Sooooo many punches!"

She grabs at the ninja, pinning her arms down with her lower hands while the upper set grasp the sides of her head, pulling her face up closer even as she bends down. Her eyes sparkle with delight, one figuratively and the other literally, swirls of pink chaos energy twisting beneath the surface of her mutated peeper.

"Hey. Hey! Hey hey heyheyheyheyhey! Guess what that meeeeeans~? Ahahaha!"

Letting go of Nagase's head, the witch uses her now free hands to draw the scarf covering her face down revealing the mouth concealed beneath it. Somewhere between the Joker and a shark with out proper dental habits, Sorcha's smile is all pointed yellow teeth, dozens of tiny zigzags that create a zipper-like mesh as she peers down at her chosen victim.

"Mmm, medium-rare, Rae knows just what I like!" She turns her head to yell at the old biker, "You're a turbo sweetie, Rae! You will not be killed in your sleep tonight! Probably!"

The presence of the last opponent on Team SouthSynd was quiet.

Within one of the train cars, he was sitting alone in dim lights. A faux record player plays opera from a speaker. It was digital, a neat introduction from Nagase. 10,000 operas could play, just from this box. The man carves a steak, enjoying a delicious meal as the chaos outside roars aloud. Occassionally, he would take a break to puff on a cigar, or sip a globe of red wine. It was as he was enjoying that stogie, when the train car door opens, and closes A man in brown emerges, wearing dark glasses, and with a briefcase handcuffed to his wrist. "Nagase's down. Their still on their first man." The other man nods firmly, removing the napkin around his neck, as he rises up. He turns off the speakers. From outside, the door into the lone train car opens up again as a cloud of smoke bursts out.

And out emerges Duke Burkoff.

The dark-skinned Russian was towering. The man was garbbed in a red three suit jacket, with black slacks. Blonde streaks cut through his hair and his goatee, the figure looming with the presence of a crime lord. The man strides with a steady gait, as he looks on the aftermath of the assault, a glower across his face. "Well, it looks like the riff-raff has gone through my henchmen."

"In fact, one of them looks mounted."

Duke rumbles, every step coming with a burst of violet-red energy around his ankles. Chi starts to boil around his frame, the waves of energy pouring into the nooks and crannies of the warzone that was torn up. Every step almost comes with a rumble, as the last of the team, the leader, comes steadily in. He looks dead at Rae with golden eyes, as the volcano of rage boils up. "Get your men in line."

"Before I lose my temper."

The crime boss thunders right for the monster with a cratering haymaker with the right, attempting to crush him under the pure force of the titan's fists. The blow comes with an eruption of energy behind the man, a cascade of chi surging behind him. That force was comparable to a train, and would be a staggering finisher. But if Rae couldn't revive himself into the fight in time?

Duke would hurl out a long left afterwards with the same boneshattering force.

"Jesus. I've been teamed with a bunch of freaks."

The man sitting in the tour bus is disgusted at what he's seeing, but he has to admit that the old guy in the leathers could really do some damage. Even as he got up to walk around and stretch his legs, he kept his eyes firmly on the action at all times, wondering who the opposition was gonna through out next.

And all around the trainyard, figures in black clothes, black shirts and black hoodies would start infrequently arriving, dotting the landscape in teenage angst and a little too much skin oil. Many of them had their phones out and were starting to watch the fight through a digital eye. And absolutely all of them were focused, more or less, on that tour bus.

COMBATSYS: Duke has joined the fight here on the left meter side.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Duke             0/-------/-------|=======\-------\1              Rae

COMBATSYS: Rae barely endures Duke's Strong Punch.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////                      ]
Duke             0/-------/------=|=======\====---\1              Rae

The shorter, but no less powerfully built figure of Rae continues to stand near the center of the baked battlefield, flames rolling off of his body as he drags in deep, rasping breaths. His flamed over eyes do not register the sight of his spidery team mate leaping onto his last victim, nor does he seem to hear her cheerful exclamation. He is lost in a sea of sensation, barely able to hold himself together.

Duke's presence does seem to draw something out of the old biker, for as the towering man approaches, the berserker slowly turns to face him. His scarred features remains twisted into a mask of uncomprehending pain and fury, liberally splattered with hardening mud and dried blood. flaming drool still leaks from between his lips, sizzling across his grey-haired chest.

There are no words. he no longer understands what they are.

There is only the extremely powerful punch, Duke's fist meeting the old man's skull with a blast of burning red chi. The force of the blow rocks through the old man's bones, lava flying from his parted lips as his head is snapped violently to the right. The follow up left soon follows, catching him squarely in the center of the chest and sending him stumbling backward across the shattered earth.

But he does not go far.

It takes only two or three steps for the savage to regain his balance, his fractured cheek bone beginning to swell while chi burns on his face and chest ooze clear fluids. But he is still upright and angry.

Glaring hatefully up at Duke, Rae's chest expands with a rattling inhale. His scarred lips part, mouth dropping open to reveal the depthless inferno that blazes behind his teeth.

With a loud, rushing 'SSHSHSWOOOOOOFH,' he releases his hold on the blaze within, allowing it to rush up his throat and spray out across the distance between the two fighters in a wide, ever expanding stream of hellfire. Whatever the horrible substance touches, it clings to and burns, while the grey-haired old man sweeps his head to the left, abruptly setting a large swath of the train yard on fire. Only once the area around him is totally ablaze does he snap his teeth shut, much of the intense orange flame contained within his eyes having diminished.

COMBATSYS: Duke blocks Rae's Hellraiser.

[ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////                     ]
Duke             0/-------/-----==|===----\-------\0              Rae

There were words.

Statements, commands, explicit warnings. As the first blow comes, the inferno boils up from the monster. And Duke's own aura erupts around him. Violet energy roars around him as the second punch connects, almost like it was hitting a switch. Drawing back his punch, the towering crime boss could see the light building from the creature. He heard he would be fighting abominations. The man crosses his arms before him, as his aura boils from his form. That aura turns into a shadow, as the full hellfire boils force. There is only an outline in the flames, as the spittle clings to the figure. The wildfire spreads around, fully ablaze. The outline wasn't moving back. It wasn't moving forward. And through the fire and flames, the shape begins to take detail again.

And Duke uncrosses his arms.

The flames distort the shape of the crime boss, the sheer heat still lingering in the conflaguration. But Duke's expression was a steadily escalating fury. His face twists up into a snarl. The shadow was fading into the frame of a man whose suit was burned, whose skin was seared. But the towering crime boss thunders for the monster, one hand reaching out.

Aiming to seize Rae by the top of the head.

It would do nothing there. It would just be a firm grip. Just to hold Rae in place. But if he could keep Rae in place, if he could get the grip, the other hand would be drawn back, the full momentum of the titan rolling back, and then coming back like a tsunami. Duke wouldn't simply hit the monster. Duke would rip that fist straight through Rae's chest, through the ribs, through the lungs, through whatever fiery entrails and shattered bones that this creature held within. Duke had given his words. He had given his command. He had given his warning.

And now, he was giving his statement.

COMBATSYS: Rae fails to interrupt Power Axe from Duke with Harmageddon.

[  \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Duke             0/-------/---====|

COMBATSYS: Rae can no longer fight.

[  \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Duke             0/-------/---====|

As the shadowy outline of Duke resolves itself once more into a man, singed and angry, but standing tall, Rae lets out a grunting grumble from deep within his chest. But still, even when faced from another of his kind, one with hellish chi that dwarfs his own in magnitude, there is no fear in the devil's flaming eyes. No recognition that his end might be imminent. Only wrath, all consuming, burning hot as the sun.

Lumbering forward to meet the crime boss's thundering approach, Rae bares his jagged yellow fangs. He seems not even to register the hand that clamps down on his shaggy scull, his own tattooed mitts lunging forward to grab the dark-skinned Russian by the burnt remains of his lapels. His intent is clearly written across his hate-filled face. To lift the huge man off of his feet, plough him into the ground, and beat the ever loving shit out of him.

But Duke is having none of it.

The huge man's fist blasts between the old man's muscular arms, catching him squarely in the chest. But where he expected it to pass straight through the berserker, likely ejecting a large quantity of chunky salsa from the large new hole in his back, there is resistance. The crime lord's dark knuckles crunch into leathery flesh, And with the loud, echoing sound of shattering bone, the tattooed biker's sternum caves inward.

Thick, toxic lava erupts from Rae's mouth, trailing out before him like the stream from a jet engine as he is hurled backward out of Duke's steadying grip. The expelled liquid hisses and sizzles across the ground, marking the path of his flight as he is launched over the heads of the SNF crew and impacts the side of a disconnected passenger car.

Windows shatter, and the entire structure folds around the demon's body upon impact, but even that is not enough to blunt his momentum. For as the train car crumples , it tips, wavers unsteadily, then continues over onto its side with a resounding 'BOOOOOOM!'

Within the lightly smoking wreckage of the train car, the badly injured form of Rae finally, blessedly, falls still. There is no last ditch effort. No explosion of flame to announce his displeasure. it seems that he can, after all, be put down.

One down.

Duke turns his back to the aftermath that was Rae, and fixes his attention on Sorcha. There is the explosion, as the monster smashes into a train car. Duke doesn't even look back. Through the tatters of his suit, his skin was smooth, as if he wasn't roasted rare by the hellfire. The clothing spoke a different story. But Duke does not speak. He just transfixes his gaze upon the thing that was on his employee, his yellow eyes narrow to pinpricks at the creature. He just begins to walk towards Sorcha at that steady pace. He just snaps his fingers.

And he just nods at the four-armed creature knowingly.

COMBATSYS: Duke awaits the next challenger.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Duke             0/-------/---====|

Things were going great.

Rae was punchin doods left and right. There were several large bulges in her pockets and satchels from all the crap she'd swiped since arriving, more than enough scrap to maybe build something special; spruce up her bike with some widgets or something. On top of that, she had a ready-to-order meal hand delivered to her! These organized fights are great! They should do this all the time!

The sudden explosive introduction of Rae's head to a nearby rail car snatches the mutant's attention away from the half-conscious girl pinned under her arms and she slowly turns her head to regard the smoldering crater that is now her partner. Her arms retract from Nagase, though she remains seated upon the ninja's stomach, folding across her chest in a wierd multi-layered crosscross as she peers between the old biker and the slowly approaching Duke.

After a moment, she holds up a hand, one finger extending towards sky. "Hold that thought, big guy, okay? You're a doll, thanks!" Her voice is that of the overly friendly telemarketer once more as she wards Duke off with a quick gesture. Hopping to her feet, Sorcha hefts her prize overhead in all four arms, stumbling slightly with the bulk of human cargo and quickly scuttles over to a nearby dumpster. Flipping the lid open deftly with her foot, she leans forward and tosses Nagase head-first into the container.

"Stay there or I will EAT YOU! I mean, I'm gonna eat you anyways, but I will DO IT EVEN WORSE THAN I WAS GONNA!"

She glares down into the trash bin for a few seconds then slams the lid shut and turns to make her way back towards the large clearing that has been created by the various trains for the contestants to fight in. With her attention now undivided, she finally gets a good look at Duke. Her eyes widen a little at his size, six feet of raw muscle and salty beard. He looks a lot like Rae, just not quite as rough around the edges and with a bit more class.

"WooOoooOooo...! You're a big one!"

The witch comes to a halt several feet away from Duke, her fingers wiggling about in strange ways. The eyes growing out from the center of her palms begin to glow a little more brightly as she grins, a faint girlish cackle that's about two octave's higher than is comfortable leaking through her lips.

"Well, you know what they say! The bigger they are..."

She trails off, perhaps leaving the obvious conclusion to an age old adage to be filled in by the minds of those listening in. However, after a couple of seconds she peers around as if just now noticing the crowd and the many gazes directed at herself and the impressive crime boss.


COMBATSYS: Sorcha has joined the fight here.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Duke             0/-------/---====|-------\-------\0           Sorcha

COMBATSYS: Sorcha charges her next attack!

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Duke             0/-------/---====|==-----\-------\0           Sorcha

In the bus, the third member of Team Freakshow was watching with vested interest as the first, seemingly unstoppable member of their team just got annihilated...and instinctively turned his head and covered his ears when the train car actually toppled over, the sound of it hitting the ground was as awful as it was deafening. When the heavy metal ringing finally stopped, the third man finally looked back up, eyes narrowing as he watched the last opponent stand dominant and ready. He watched the other one, the weirdo monster with four arms walk up, but he wasn't sure if she was gonna be enough. But hopefully, she'd give this powerful newcomer enough of a workout, so that his face would be easier to break when push came to shove.

It was nearly time to MURDER.

Duke begins to grow alight with energy.

He was not amused at the treatment of Nagase. Not that he had any feelings for the girl. Well, not those kinds of feelings. But Nagase was an employee, like a little sister to the crime boss. And to see her treated like that by some GUTTER TRASH, his yellow eyes begin to sizzle in their sockets. His entire body trembles as his steps stop cold. The earth under his feet begin to splinter. And then, as she bursts out about the eyes around her...

Duke actually blows his top.

The moment that creature gets back into his line of sight, the Crime Boss's shirt explodes. The naked chest of Duke is exposed as his skin begins to rip and tear. Plumes of red-violet energy rupture his skin, before the man's hide reforming almost instantly. The man hurls back his arms, and roars in fury as he slams both limbs together.

And with it, the cataclysm wave unleashes.

The shockwave boils outwards, the full wave of chi energy rolling forward like a hammer. Duke was firing the full force of his blast, pouring his rage straight into Sorcha, straight into the THING that threatened his people. His employee. His standards. Sorcha was an affront.

And he was dealing with this insult first hand.

COMBATSYS: Sorcha blocks Duke's Sledgehammer.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////////   ]
Duke             0/-------/-------|===----\-------\0           Sorcha

Despite being clearly distracted by the sudden realization that these /people/ are here to oogle at her, even Sorcha's goldfish-like attention span is capable of recognizing an imminient threat on the level posed by someone like Duke. Particularly when he goes and asplodes his clothes off like some kind of Chip n' Dales super hero.

The mutant's eyes go wide as the sight of the Russian mobster's bitchin' bod, those bodacious abs and scultped pecs a sight to behold. Even as deep in the embrace of chaos-induced madness as she might be, there's still a teenage girl underneath all those limbs and eyes. She lets out an appreciative whistle and begins to clap enthusiastically.

"Ahahaha! I didn't know it was /this/ kind of show! Take it all off, fella! Momma's got something ta give ya!"

Well, it looks like he's got something to give her first. The explosive wave of power ripples through the mixture of half-baked mud and wet dirt sending bits of dirty shrapnel flying in all directions. Sorcha cackles madly as the terrifying energy blast descends upon her, her mind too warp to distinguish fear from excitement any longer. However, in the heat of the moment, she loses concentration on the energies that were being channeled through her body and a small measure of her power vanishes back into the void from whence it came.

Not that she needs it. With such a bountiful harvest put forth onto her platter, how can she resist taking a nibble? The red wave slams into Sorcha like a battering ram as she extends her palms out to catch it. A barrier of black interwoven sigils forms in the air mere instants before it connects and the brunt of attack slams into the hastily erected shield. The witch is driven back several steps, her feet digging into the soft mud for purchase as she fights to divert and absorb some of the overwhelming energies for her own.

The struggle lasts only a few moments, the localized apoclypse venting the fury of its master and then fading out. On the far side of the arena, Sorcha remains standing, her grin even more crazed and happy than before somehow.

"Ahaha! Haaaahahaha! I had to use ALL MY ARMS for that!"

Said arms slowly uncross and the pink chaotic fire burning within her palm-eyes shimmers brightly with the newly siphoned power. She shakes them a few times, attempting to wiggle some of the sting left over from catching that ridiculous attack out of them. But, no time for that! Now it's her turn!

Bringing her hands forward, she thrusts two of those twisted claws forward and crackling black fire explodes into the air. The magical projectiles arc upward in a slight curve then quickly drop back down towards Duke, corkscrewing in an erratic and completely nonsensical pattern like a pair of drunken meteorites.

"Your power tastes like /lemons/! Here, try it!"

COMBATSYS: Duke dodges Sorcha's Empowered Chaos Magick!.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////////     ]
Duke             0/-------/-------|==-----\-------\0           Sorcha

It was only the beginning.

The rage was unleashed, and Duke was, for a moment, calmer. Not calm. Calmer. The fact that the creature was not dead was a mistake. An accident that he would be correcting very soon. As the thing just babbles manically, playing with the energy for a moment before hurling it back, Duke twists his nose up in disgust, continuing his stride towards the witch.

"What kind of dime story crazy are you?"

"I've seen psychos, I've employed psychos, and I have -tamed- psychos." Duke rumbles, the pyre around him growing. The corkscrewing blasts were a problem. There is a groan from the earth as Duke leaps, diving to the side as the blasts come cratering right where he stood. Dipping into a roll, he stands back up, brushing his shoulders.

"And you are just a flea on the backs of those men and women."

Duke lunges at Sorcha, attempting to crush his fingers around the woman. One hand on one shoulder, the other on the rest of the arm. The massive man hated those extra arms. It disgusted him. It was vile. It was sick. And Duke imagines them crawling all over his employee... should he get those grips, the brute of a man would simply wrench one of the arms out of the socket, dislocating it fully. He couldn't tear it off, not yet. But a growl comes from the depths of the crime boss.

"Lets see if you can Sadomazo."

COMBATSYS: Sorcha parries Duke's Power Throw!

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////////     ]
Duke             0/-------/-------|===----\-------\0           Sorcha

"Aww, you moved! You're not supposed to /move/! Now you're not on fire!"

Sorcha glares across the dirty arena at her opponent, one foot stamping in annoyance as she throws a little tantrum. The shimmering energy in her palm-eyes dies down to a low dull glow that paints her twisted black hands in a strange ethereal light but the ground behind Duke where the fireballs fell continues to burn furiously with the ominous black fire, apparently sustained by its own power. The mobster's approach doesn't seem to worry the little mutant in the least, despite having witnessed the power at his disposal.

"Crazy?! Haha! I'm not crazy! Who you calling crazy?!"

The witch makes no move to intercept Duke as he draws closer, though she falls into a hunched over stance, all four arms splayed out some kind of insect ready to pounce. It isn't until he lunges for her, attempting to grab one of her many spindly arms and take it for a souveneir, that she reacts. As it turns out, the creepy little spider thing is pretty nimble. She leaps into the air just as the beefy arm shoots out towards her, planting two of her hands on Duke's shoulders as she flips into a vertical handstand atop his manly frame.

"Hey! Guess what! I've got... FOOOOUR AAAARMS!"

She grins down at him from her precarious perch, even as her momentum and his inevitable annoyance at being used as gymnastic aid cause her to begin to fall. She holds on for a long as she can, steadying her fall so that at the last moment, she can push away from him sending her flying backwards while still hanging upside down in the air for a few moments, grinning like the Chesire Cat.

"Which means I can do... this!"

Her two previously unoccupied hands thrust forward at Duke in a fashion similar to her last attack, palms flattened so that the mutated eyes within can unleash their warping power directly at his back. Instead of a pair of fireballs, this time the air infront of the witch simply explodes with a concussive burst of black magic.


The blast wave erupts like a stick of dynamite sending the still falling Sorcha sailing away from the bronzed Russian as she giggles maniacally to land in a loose heap some dozen or so feet away.

COMBATSYS: Duke barely endures Sorcha's Darkflame Cannon EX.

[ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////////     ]
Duke             0/-------/----===|=====--\-------\0           Sorcha

Nimble creature.

The titan's grips are evaded, as she whips up to her shoulders. The fury builds in the crime boss, as Duke lashes out at the chaotic woman. Instead, she pushes off, leaving him off-balanced for a moment. Duke turns, as The other palms fire energy, point blank, straight into his chest. The crime boss is actually blown back with the witch, sent hurling backwards into the still smoldering aftermath of Rae. He lands upon the hardened magma, his skin hissing as it endures the heat. For a moment, he lays there too long.

And Duke rises again.

The brute's torso was ripped open, the flayed skin spider-webbing across him. Deep lacerations still burn, the scent of roast pork filling the air. He breathes hard, as flares of energy actually rip out from his chest, distorting it more. He was in pain, that much was clear. But in the corner of his mouth, the faintest of a smirk was beginning to come."Hm... Hm hm hm." The crime boss rumbles with laughter. "That hurt." He growls, staring across at the creature. The smirk suddenly fades to the scowl.


Duke slams a foot down hard to the ground, the very earth shuddering as he pours his rage and power straight into the earth. Violet red energy flows from his body into the ground, as it explodes around him. A shockwave rips out on impact, tearing up the earth into a full blast. The tsunami of earth and fire rips outward, threatening to consume the woman into the waves. Duke was pure power now, pure hate. But something else was there. His chest was... no longer oozing blood, no longer weeping fluid. It was sealed up, the open sores gone.
Already, the blackened flesh begins to peel away to fresh skin underneath.

COMBATSYS: Sorcha dodges Duke's Seismic Impact EX.

[ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////////     ]
Duke             0/-------/----===|=====--\-------\0           Sorcha

Such power!

Sorcha watches with awe-struck eyes as her attack is shrugged off like little more than a bug bite. The smell of burning flesh wafts through the air, drifting from the scorched shattered flesh where her magic ripped into the man, but even after a hit like that he can still laugh! That makes her want to laugh! Most people catch on fire when she burns them. And they call /her/ a witch!

"Why aren't you on /fire/ right now?!"

As interesting as it is to see, she's actually pretty annoyed by this. She went through all the effort to cast magic at him and he doesn't even have the decency to burn properly! The nerve! Some people have no manners. Like this chump, not burning and throwing more giant waves of energy at her! Oh hey, there's a giant wave of energy coming at her.

Sorcha flips back to her feet, one hand going up to adjust her hat while another draws the scarf that had been hanging around her neck for the past few minutes back up over her face. Not that she actually cares about showing her warped visage off to people, but the scarf is cool, damnit. It gives her a bit of visual flare! Class! Distinction! Like a monocle for her mouth. Combined with her snazzy hat and she might well be the most stylin witch around!

Argue with that. I DARE YOU!

The second physical manifestation of Duke's rage crashes down over the little mutant while she muses on these varied and important topics and she vanishes beneath the tide of earth and fire. The blast continues right over and past where she once stood until it finally meets solid resistance at another of the many train cars sititng idle on their tracks. A resounding boom fills the yard as the energy hits several tons of metal. The rail car rocks sideways, tilting a few inches off its wheels but quickly shifts back to settle into place once more.

When the smoke and debris settles down a few moments later, Sorcha is precisely where she was before, looking completely unruffled. Two of her arms are extended out, palms flat against the air where a massive half sphere of black intertwined arcane symbols hover in a protective shell over the mutant's body. She grins at Duke beneath her scarf and even though her face is now concealed the undisguised glee in her voice makes it easy to tell her emotional state.

"Aahaha.. haHAhahaHA! Still aliiiive!"

She hops into the air, spinning in place with a little flourish, her arms wiggling about as she cackles. Those wiggles turn out to be somewhat more purposeful than simple taunting, though there's definately a bit of that in there too, c'mon. Chaotic energy crackles to life in her palms and she once more unleashes the power of the void upon Duke, hurling a thick storm of staggered miniature fireballs at him in rapid succession.

"It's raining DEATH! Ahahaaaahaha!"

COMBATSYS: Duke blocks Sorcha's Chaos Barrage.

[   \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////////      ]
Duke             0/-------/---====|=====--\-------\0           Sorcha

The madness.

Duke recovers from the shockwave, and approaches once again. But Sorcha's power was only reaching a peak. The woman was unleashing the barrage of staggering force. And Duke, only slowing down his approach, responds with distain, attempting to bat away the blasts. And for that, it does work. But the chaos magic was ripping into the titan like a hot knife through butter. His arms were charred, the flesh dug deep. He was beating away the blasts, knocking them away with his arms. They tore into his flesh and bones, the sickening sound of the cracks as his forearms are broken again and again. Duke was blocking, but he was sacrificing his arms in the process. It was pure pain, pure agony.

But from pain, became power.

Finally, as he is close enough, the guard drops. Duke lunges in, whipping his leg forward into a singular, thrusting kick. He was attempting to simply boot the woman away, driving the bone-shattering force of the limb into her. With the kick, the back of the crime boss erupts, violet energy exploding from his back and shoulders as the power forces through him. He was regenerating himself, yes. But he and Sorcha were now tearing Duke apart, piece by piece, fragment by fragment.

Could Duke really survive both?

COMBATSYS: Sorcha blocks Duke's Medium Kick.

[  \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////         ]
Duke             0/-------/--=====|======-\-------\0           Sorcha

Needs more death! This guy just won't stop!

The deadly barrage of magic missiles continues to whittle away at Duke's body as he marches forward, battering them aside with sheer will and brute force. Sorcha cackles the entire time, apparently enjoying her chance to blast away at a target that doesn't simply evaporate with a well placed fireball. Except, when she speaks again, she sounds, rather upset by Duke's longevity. Or rather, his refusal to atleast act like being pummeled with arcane energies kind of hurts.

"Your agony is /boring/! Gimme a scream or something!"

Instead, he gives her a kick. The magical assault cuts off only when that foot lashes out forcing the witch to throw her arms up into the path of the incoming boot. The kick smashes into her slender frame like a pnuematic hammer and the blow sends her sprawling backwards several feet, arms pin-wheeling for balance. In the end, she simply stops fighting the momentum and flops onto her back, using the impact to keep rolling until she's placed several more feet between herself and the angry crime boss.

"Hrngh... guess I'ma have to cook up something /special/ for a beef cake like you! Just gimme oooone moment and I'll bake you some /screeching pain/! Haaahaha!"

Sorcha's hands once more begin to create unrecognizable shapes in the air, her fingers interlocking in a complex weave of shifting patterns. The air around the girl grows dark and heavy, reality distorting as she summons powers not meant for mortal consumption to fuel her mutated form for further fiery destruction!

COMBATSYS: Sorcha gathers her will.

[  \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////       ]
Duke             0/-------/--=====|=======\===----\1           Sorcha

Every blow was like a hammer.

Duke was tearing into himself apart, just as Sorcha was. Pain was his being, he was in the purest agony. And yet, he had grown past mewling like a babe as he was torn apart. The power in him could only be contained by the regeneration. And drawing back his leg, he glares into the creature. The shapes and sounds were unknown to the man. But he has only one response.


Duke draws back his fist, building a storm of power behind him. Violet energy whirls around, blasting back. "If you want some pain..." Duke growls, as the storm of energy behind him suddenly focuses into a singular point. The drawn back trembles, bone snapping within the limb as the power solidifies into a breaking point. His wrist twists, as he bellows.

"Let me give it to you!"

And Duke hurls out the skeleton-shattering punch straight for the side of her face.

COMBATSYS: Duke knocks away Sorcha with Power Axe.

[  \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Duke             0/-------/=======|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2           Sorcha

Stars and flashing white light intermingle into a brilliant tapestry of agony before the mutant's eyes as the super-charged fist collides with her head. She sees the blow coming, knows that she needs to raise her arms to intercept it, but something stops her from doing so, some force locking her clawed fingers into the intricate dance of arcane sigils as she draws power into herself. There is no resistance when Duke's punch smashes into her face, save the meager amount of mass that comprises her twiggy body, and that proves to be about as much of an obstacle as a floating leaf.

The witch flies backwards with such force that she would likely have been blasted right out of her shoes, were she wearing any. Instead, she leaves behind several contrails of crackling black fire and pink chaotic light from the many eyes in her palms. Sorcha rockets headfirst into the rail car behind her, earning a repeat performance of what happened the last time Duke unleashed his power into it and adding a fresh six-limbed dent in the side of the metal wall.

Unlike Rae, the witch does not bleed fire and lava upon impact with her impromptu backstop. Her particular brand of corruption manifests as a sizzling black stain that quickly spreads out across the surface of the bus-sized cargo container from the places where her magical fires touch. The sound of warping metal quickly fills the air as the paint peels away to reveal the raw steel beneath, already itself beginning to crumble into clumps of rusty sand.

Sorcha flops face-first onto the muddy ground once her body is free from the mangled metal imprint, letting out a low grunt as she bounces a couple of times. It takes her a few moments, but the witch gets back to her feet, wobbling a little as her senses slowly come back into focus. This is the second time in one of these silly shows that someone has clocked her upside the head. This is starting to become a bad habit! On the other hand, being half-senseless is kind of fun too, hehehe.

"You know what's gonna be great, Sorcha?"

The teenaged mutant speaks out loud, her voice shifting slightly to a lower more gutteral octave. When she answers her own question, however, it's with her normal voice.

"What' s that, Sorcha?"

"When we /murder the hell/ out of that guy."

"Haha, yeah that's gonna be /awesome/!"

"Hey, let's go see what his skeleton looks like without all that skin and junk!"

"Oh my god, you are a genius, Sorcha!"

"I know, I know."

Turning her gaze back towards Duke, the little witch narrows her eyes into dangerous slits as she glares at him dramatically under the brim of her hat, which somehow remained on her head throughout that brutal but short air trip. Beneath her mask, her jagged grin returns in full force and she starts to giggle in a faint and creepy manner, barely able to contain her excitement. The black magic that had gathered around her returns twice over, space warping around her body as she resumes her dark ritual, fingers wiggling tantalizingly at the mobster.

"Good sir, I believe your order is up!"

Four mutated black arms thrust forward in unison and the air between them explodes into a truly massive ball of churning corrupted power. It flickers and lashes like a living flame as it streaks through the air, dribbling hot sparks that burst into miniature explosions as they ripple along the ground.

"Shadowfire nuuuuuke~!"

Sorcha sing-songs out loud as the absurdly huge mortar shell of magical power crashes down at Duke. That alone would be bad enough, except it's not alone. The witch repeats her gesture, pumping her arms back and then forward as if loading a shotgun and another of the meteoric fireballs explodes from her palms. Then a third! Aaaah, they're still coming!

COMBATSYS: Duke barely endures Sorcha's Let The Galaxy Burn!.

[            \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////               ]
Duke             1/---====/=======|>>>>---\-------\0           Sorcha

And for a moment, you can see his bones.

The staggering blow was not enough to destroy her. And now, she was returning the fire. Duke does not yield, as each eruption cuts deeper into his body. By the time the third burst comes, Duke was almost down to one knee. His entire front was torn open; shattered bones and entrails seeping out. Chi energy was pouring out, as the flayed face of Duke stares blankly, a death mask of death masks, the broken teeth falling out from the broken jaw of the crime boss.

A jaw that was tightening.

Swollen yellow eye focus, sinking back into their sockets. A sheen of flesh pulls over the pieces. Organs, useless by force, drop away to the ground as Duke, rising back to a stand, continues to pour out with violet energy. There was no scream, as he lifts his hand out high. "Grrrrraaaaaagh!' Was the second roar as the energy becomes a wildfire, as Duke hammers down his fists, unleashing a second shockwave. No, an explosion, with an atomic cloud of its own, as the blast rips through the trainyard, blowing over cars, blasting away equipment. It was ground zero.

And Sorcha was going to be a part of it.

COMBATSYS: Duke knocks away Sorcha with Ground Zero.

[            \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >                                ]
Duke             0/-------/-------|>>>>>>>\>>>----\1           Sorcha

After the fourth hellish blast of raw chaos, Duke isn't looking so hot. Well, technically, he's looking /very/ hot due to most of the front of his body being burned away into a pile of slag. The flesh that sloughs off under the raw power of the witch's arcane assault doesn't simply melt, it morphs into unrecognizable piles of goo that sizzle and hiss when they hit the blasted earth. The sorched refuse wiggles and squirms as if still alive, tiny tendrils extending from its gelatinous surface to flail at the air as if reaching up to grasp onto Duke's legs so as to pull themselves back to his blackened skeleton.

Sorcha lets up her infernal barrage, eyes going wide once more with twisted glee. She claps her hands together, holding them in a ball infront of her face like a love-struck dope as she inhales in a happy squeak, her already annoying voice raising up to a new level of audial torture.

"You did it...! You did iiiiiiit!"

Unfortunately, her giddy rejoicing is short lived as even having half his flesh melted off, entrails spilled upon the ground, and skeleton barbequed doesn't seem to be enough to stop the creature that is Duke. His primal warycry cuts off her girlish cheering and replaces it with earth-shattering fury. This time the flames leave no where to escape to, no shelter to hide behind. The ground and air become a single mass of searing power and it engulfs everything present within the large clearing, the witch included.

Still, all is not lost. Acting with reflexes not her own, Sorcha snaps her hands up to create a barrier against the absurd onslaught, only barely managing to seal herself away from its terrible destruction with moments to spare. The hastily formed arcane shield does not protect the girl completely and Duke's furious outburst sears at her own body much in the same manner as hers had torn at him. However, it does not burn her. Her mutated flesh, twisted and warped from the very energies of creation, disperse the power far more effectively than that of a mere human though the process of keeping her alive is not particularly pleasant.

Like the rest of Duke's displays of raw power, this one is short lived. The fires vanish within seconds leaving a blasted crater at the center of what used to be the makeshift arena. Sorcha tumbles from the sky, bouncing off the remains of what used to be a camera crane on her way down. She hits the ground like a sack of bricks, body smoldering with black acrid smoke from a mixture of Duke's outburst and her own attempts to ward it off. She attempts to rise but quickly stumbles back down onto her stomach, legs refusing to cooperate with her attempts to put weight on them. A feeble cough escapes her lips, completely with a little cloud of smoke that wafts out from underneath her scarf.

"Ladies and gentlemen... Sorcha is DYING!"

Ofcourse, there isn't anyone left around to help her even if they wanted to. The cameras are all mangled masses of shattered machinery, those that weren't simply obliterated by Duke's raging blast cast across the trainyard in various directions. The crowd of spectators are in a similar state, some lying unconscious nearby while others are scattered about the ruins of toppled rail cars, cast aside like children's toys in a messy room.

Clucking her tongue at the lack of audience support, Sorcha rolls over onto her butt and sits up, propping herself mostly vertical on one pair of hands. With the other she begins to make magical motions yet again, drawing on what power she has left to deliver a parting gift to the half-baked skeleton.

All around Duke, the air begins to distort and darken as if tiny patches of reality were being replaced with messy ink stains. From those twisted voids emerge eyes, massive and glowing hot pink in mirror likeness to that possessed by the witch. They push their way into existence one by one, surrounding him in a cage of nightmarish horror as the energies stored within their temporary construct quickly begins to reach critical mass.

"See you... in your dreams... Hahahahaaaa!"

The eyes suddenly open wider, every one of them taking on a piercing terrified stare directed at the man standing amidst their number; and, with a final snap of her fingers, they all explode into a tornado of whirling chaos.

COMBATSYS: Sorcha can no longer fight.

[            \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Duke             0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Duke blocks Sorcha's Nightmare Fuel.

[               \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Duke             0/-------/-----==|

Two down. One more to go.

The flesh of Duke was reforming; where there was bone was repairing muscle and fat, concealing. Even as the blastwave is unleashed, Duke was pulling himself together. They never could numb the pain. That was past their technology. Duke breathes hard, his lungs collapsing and reforming. He could take unbelievable punishment. But there was only so much a body could take before the very act of living prevented him from rising. But as Duke lurches back up, he just stares at Sorcha.

It was a reminder just how strong the crime boss was.

But while Sorcha was dying, she was not defeated just yet. As Duke rises from his assault, the witch was already going into her psychotic finish. The eye begin to appear around Duke. He shifts his gaze from Sorcha to the eyes, turning around as he narrows his yellow eyes. He felt a tingling. An unnatural one. Duke's senses were reeling. But he had an idea of what could come.

And the blast comes, as Duke crosses his arms again.

For Duke, his extremities would be his shell. Jagged flesh hangs from his arms and thighs, as his slacks begin to go ragged. The blast consumes around him... and he throws his arms apart. He was still standing. He looks at the aftermath around him. There was suffering all around, countless dollars in damage. And yet, the man that hell spat out just stands fast, observing the aftermath with distain. He had left his train car. And he was out for only one reason. Duke rumbles out, to what few could still hear.

"Who is next?"

COMBATSYS: Duke awaits the next challenger.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Duke             0/-------/-----==|

COMBATSYS: MURDERHOUSE has joined the fight here.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Duke             0/-------/-----==|-------\-------\0      MURDERHOUSE

From the bus, the last piece of the puzzle watched as the multi-armed witch failed to put down the walking gorefest, and shook his head as he finally stood, adjusting his gear and grabbing his mask off of the stand, and prepared to make his official entrance. It was finally time for "MURDERHOUSE" Mick to make himself known.

All around, the crowd of blackclad youths grew bigger, like an ocean of hoodies and stupid hats converging to the site of some horrible event. From away in the distance, the top of that tour bus changed as amplifiers rose up, filling the air with something with low guitars, heavy bass and drumming that sounded like a funeral dirge. On either side of the 'doors', rows upon rows upon rows of blue-flame candles were suddenly lit even as those gas hydraulic powered doors finally, noisily opened. Nothing happened for a few moments, until finally? He stepped out into the world.

Seven feet of muscle, bones and hatred, upper body covered by a large black T-shirt that looked small on a powerful frame like his. Whoever "Cannibal Corpse" was, they seemed to love artistic depictions of horrible, disgusting carnage.

Down below he was wearing greyish silver wrestling tights, with black kneepads with the left resembling a hockeymask. Beneath that the tights continued until they were hidden underneath a pair of glossy black wrestling boots, both laced up rather tight. On the man's hands over the hand wrapping were fingerless black gloves, and around that left elbow was a black elbowpad. Hanging from his right hand, a worn, beat-up duffelbag filled with all kinds of tricks of the trade no doubt.

With his long black hair out of his face and going down to his shoulders, that horrible leathery black mask of his was easily seen, with those freakish looking eyes of his glaring out, looking directly at Mr. Mutilation. He never looked anywhere else during that entire, long walk to the fight itself. People were taking pictures and recording this part with their phones, all watching with bated breath to see what was going to happen.

When Mick finally got to the fight proper, after taking all the time in the world to get there, what did he do? He looked the man up and down, before finally looking away momentarily, and scoffing. Immediately he was looking back and Duke, and speaking rapidly and angrily with that whispery voice of his.

"You're really fucking disgusting, you know that man?!"

That was all the pre-game chatter Duke was gonna get before Mick tossed that bag aside and rushed in, throwing rights and lefts and rights, lefts, kicks and the occasional headbutt at the crime lord. This assault would only end, in theory, when Mick eventually grabs for the forehead of Duke while hooking his own leg behind his, trying to throw him down to the ground violently, not caring if the back of his neck or skull lands on something rough. MURDERHOUSE wasn't playing around!

COMBATSYS: MURDERHOUSE successfully hits Duke with Combo Throw.

[            \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Duke             0/-------/---====|-------\-------\0      MURDERHOUSE

Duke was waiting.

He didn't care what his last opponent was wearing. In fact, he could just take his sweet time, as his stands fast, arms crossed. Duke had only one thing on his mind. How to make the last of these upstarts regret ever drawing the wrong kind of attention from the crime boss. The insolent man strides up, wearing a mask. And he states the obvious. Duke rolls his neck, unleashing a loud cracking sound.

And the assault begins.

As the bag is tossed aside, Duke uncrosses his arms, the ragged flesh falling off, new flesh underneath. The first wave of rights and lefts are met with curt parries from the crime boss, the boss staying on the defensive. It begins strong. Except, unfortunately, some of his tendons weren't fully back. All it takes is fake-out headbutt, connecting with a sick crack to stun Duke long enough for his chest to be open to the follow up punches. Murderhouse could feel the sensation of cracking bones that were only just beginning to heal. When the final throw comes, Duke is sent hurling away to the twisted railroad tracks.

Eye only inches from a railroad spike.

Duke rises again, as Duke always does. Reaching a full stride, the battered crime boss turns back to the man. His body was twisted, scarred and torn by the constant attacks to his vital organs. But Duke could only glare, only could smirk. "You're scrappy, I'll give you that." The smirk turns into a snarl. "But that's a mistake." Tightening his fists into cracks, he thunders right back at Mick, drawing back his leg. With a slam, he eschews a full combo for a staggering, bone-shattering kick straight for his chest, his body beginning to flare up with the crimson energy again.

He was going for 3-0

COMBATSYS: Duke successfully hits MURDERHOUSE with Medium Kick.

[            \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////////      ]
Duke             0/-------/--=====|===----\-------\0      MURDERHOUSE

Mick looked down at the man, and saw the man shedding his skin like some sort of garden snake, saw him raise to his feet with a body that looked broken and wrong. And as everyone watched on, Mick made a show of turning away and shuddering at the sight while rolling his eyes, and making a gesture with his left hand. It wasn't a very nice gesture, and it got a bit of a snicker from the watching crowd. Mick should have kept his eyes on his opponent, because as he turned back towards the speaking crime lord, the speaking crime lord turned into a kicking crime lord. That boot smashed into "MURDERHOUSE" Mick's sternum and, though it didn't cause any snapping, Mick did feel a bending that should not have happened as he was launched backwards from the impact himself. There was no soft or gentle landing, there was no skilled martial artist's roll, Mick just landed hard on his shoulders, and the sheer momentum of that attack caused the seven foot Irish monster to roll back up to his knees.

He didn't look amused anymore. He looked downright pissed off. Those eyes were now glaring pure MURDER.

He raised up to one knee, and immediately launched himself forward at a full charging run, eyeing a target behind Duke, a big, iron pole that had been driven into the ground for some train-related purpose. It was clear on the other side of the tracks both men were on, but that wasn't a problem. If this running rhino-inspired charging tackle worked like it should, the garbage wrestler would leap clear across those tracks with a crime lord on his shoulder, and Duke would be caught somewhere between a Mick and a bad place.


[                  \\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////        ]
Duke             1/-------/=======|==-----\-------\0      MURDERHOUSE

And Duke stares back with yellow eyes.

Smolding rage pours off his body through the endless waves of chi energy. The man was a conduit of power, and he wasn't done with Mick. And yet, Mick may have had an opening. As the charge comes, Duke doesn't evade. He only holds his ground. The blow comes, knocking Duke straight backwards... and the pole forces straight through his body, stabbing through to the other end. The crime boss, for a moment, groans an audible grunt in pain.

And Duke begins to laugh.

It was a heavy, deep laughter, mirthless and cruel. The pole slides out from his body, as he attempts to lash both of his massive hands upon him before he could get away. "So you want to wrassle, is that it?" The crime boss rumbles, blood pouring from his mouth. The pole begins to turn white hot, as Duke's energy floods it. The pole begins to melt away into slag around the Duke's body, as he prepares to seize up MURDERHOUSE into his hands.

And if he gets those grips on him...

COMBATSYS: Duke knocks away MURDERHOUSE with Volcanic Bomb.

[                  \\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////                      ]
Duke             0/-------/-------|=======\==-----\1      MURDERHOUSE

The initial grips are where the pain starts.

The force that Duke was gripping MURDERHOUSE with was enough to crush an engine block. Pure power, folding in like mechanical pressure. Duke slowly pulls himself from the molten slag of a pole. He unleashes a headbutt into the face of the wrestler. Another. Another. After the third, he turns, whipping him into the air. And Duke leaps after him. Seizing him in midair, he prepares to powerbomb him. Not into a table. No. Into a smoking, overturned train car. As Duke powerbombs him straight in the heart of the car, an explosion erupts around them both, thankfully blasting Mick and most of what's left of the train car up and away.

A crimson mushroom cloud spreads around the epicenter of the powerbomb.

IN the heart of this cloud, Duke stands. His body was trembling, the muscle twitching and writhing over his bloodied, fiery body. Around him as another pockmarked crater in the trainyard. Duke crosses his arms as he stares around. Was this it?

Was that the last opponent for the Syndicate tonight?

Mick was grabbed, feeling the heat build all around the smaller, but oviously powerful thug, and Mick knew he was in trouble. Duke's vice-like grip was going to bruise muscle and possibly damage some nerve endings, and with every headbutt, "MURDERHOUSE" was driven to his knees from the unforgiving onslaught of skull to skull contact. His mask wasn't gonna protect him from his brains feeling like scrambled eggs, and his freaky eyes were rolling around in his head like billiard balls from the force and the fury of Duke's onslaught. Then he felt arms locking around his waist, and Mick knew he was really in trouble.

Flying through the air and coming back down again, the big man was powerbombed with authority through that ancient metal construction, being driven through iron and steel and gravel and dirt, the explosion sent the big man flying, almost half a mile away from the site. When he landed, he almost didn't stir...until his eyes snapped open, powered by the shock and fear of the pedestrians around him. He sat up suddenly, and looked around. Instantly, he saw something interesting. Something that might turn the tides.

Duke stood in the middle of a crater, onlookers and official SNF crew looking dumbfounded, their mouths agape. Were they witnessing multiple murders? Should they step in, and do something about this? Was that man growing skin underneath his skin? Soon, all questions were drowned out, by the horrible horrible noise of nails scraping across a chalkboard, and the sight of sparks flying way down, down the distance where Mick somehow flew. He was sat in the driver's seat of what looked like a trolly, a cute little thing designed to cruise around the city and pick up tourists. It was never designed to drive off of rails, and it was kicking up a large billowing amount of dust from tearing through dirt and gravel directly underneath it. It's PA system crackled and whined as an eardrum-tearing decibel, as Mick's voice roared out.

"Choo choo, motherfucker!"

It was also never supposed to be speeding that fast, and certainly wasn't supposed to launched into the air from hitting the burning wreckage of a traincar's side as if it were a ramp. The construction of glass and wood and iron and machinery plummeted down, and only at the last minute did the shirtless, extremely hurt and injured looking Mick manage to leap out of the driver's seat, landing hard on the harder ground a few feet away from what could be a horrendous explosion!

COMBATSYS: Duke dodges MURDERHOUSE's Huge Thrown Object.

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Duke             0/-------/-------|=======\==-----\1      MURDERHOUSE

That was an entire trolley.

Duke hears the choo choo, as well as the motherfucker. As the topless, torn up man turns, he sees the entire thing hurtling towards him. The man was a titan, a font of force. But as he had proven in this fight time and time again, you don't get to be the top through illegal tech and violence. Duke was a time-honed streetfighter before he became one of the Syndicate top officers. And as that thing goes flying?

Duke was already rolling for it.

Tumbling over scrap metal and flames, the titan rises up, skin torn more by the effort. But the trolley lands where he once stood, and Duke roars. "You should have STAYED DOWN!" Was the bellow as he storms towards Mick, fighting up the crater towards him. By the time he reaches the lip, he was outright surging with pure power, aiming right for that mask with two punches.

A surging uppercut with the left, followed by a second, juggling uppercut with the right.

COMBATSYS: MURDERHOUSE blocks Duke's Tall Hammer.

[                  \\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////                       ]
Duke             0/-------/-------|=======\===----\1      MURDERHOUSE

The wrestler, as big and as powerful as he was, was slowly working his way to his knees, and pushing himself to his feet by the time Duke was charging towards him with frighteningly powerful blows. That first uppercut is caught with both hands of Mick, who quickly felt them damn near going numb even as his biceps and shoulders burning from the severe effort that this collision has caused. If that wasn't enough, the force of that 'blocked' uppercut still causes the masked powerhouse to fling back from the force of it. Even technically "missing" that second powerful uppercut, the shockwaves through the air causes Mick to land on his back. However, he quickly rolls to his feet, grabbing something from his open duffelbag even as he quickly charges forward. In his hands was a solid steel folding chair, painted black and glistening in the sun, though a bit scratched and dinged up from all the flying gravel and dirt clods. The edge of it he was launching forward, trying to smash it into the man's gut to double him over. This wasn't as fancy as burning energy and exploding traincars, but it was reinforced metal with a running seven foot giant behind it.

If this worked it would quickly be thrown to the ground to clatter, even as Mick (hopefully) scooped Duke upside down, the crime lord's head between the deathmatch wrestler's thighs even as he leapt high into the air. They would both be spinning as he came back down, Mick's arms grabbing for Duke's own legs, to cradle the man up like an upside down package. This was to ensure that Duke had nowhere to go, no way to save himself from his skull being driven powerfully into that same steel chair that was just used.

This was the same move used against poor, poor Lita and made Mick such a terror in the wrestling world. This was the devastating, infamous "MURDERDRIVER!"


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Duke             0/-------/------=|=======\====---\1      MURDERHOUSE

It was a gradual grind for both.

Both staggering blows come with fatal force. And yet, Mick is able to stop them, stop the full powre from destroying him. Off balanced by the assault, Duke draws in a deep, sucking breath. And there, the opening comes. Duke finds himself scooped up, and the chair coming. "No!" He bellows, as his body tenses. And there, tightening his body, he manages to rip his arms around, to guard his head.

And that makes the difference.

He lets his wrists take the impact, letting them slam into the chair, smash with a sickening crack. There is a pained groan. But as long as Duke's vitals were untouched... he would rise again. Duke was like he had gone through three, seperate meatgrinders, three full forced woodchippers. But Duke, growling, ripped free of the MURDERDRIVER, rises up again to lash out at the wrestler. To seize him from behind his neck with both hands. And should he get that grip? He would tighten it.

And smash HIS face into the chair.

COMBATSYS: Duke successfully hits MURDERHOUSE with Quick Throw.

[                   \\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////                          ]
Duke             0/-------/-----==|=======\=====--\1      MURDERHOUSE

"MURDERHOUSE" Mick was slow coming up, and unfortunately for him he had just barely gotten to one knee(a familiar problem throughout this fight), when Duke blurred around and the seven footer felt hands around the base of his thick, powerful neck. Sneering beneath his mask, the big man growled and instantly grabbed for those recently pulverized wrists of Duke, tightening his own grip in response even as he started to power up to his own feet. He wasn't afraid, and he wasn't intimidated.

Unfortunately for him, he was also in an inferior position, without the leverage his opponent had. And instantly, Mick's head was swinging downward until his face smashed into the 'seat' of that chair with a loud, sickening 'THUD'. Instantly Mick went limp, his arms splaying out, his eyes rolling around in his masked head.

If this were a movie, this would be where the scare chord is suddenly played. Because those limp hands suddenly curled into fists with a jolt, and Mick would spin around with those eyes frighteningly wide. His left hand shot up, grabbing the side of Duke's hair. And his right came up, in a vicious looking punch, aimed for the side of Duke's face.

And then? And then...

COMBATSYS: MURDERHOUSE can no longer fight.

[                   \\\\\\\\\\\  <
Duke             0/-------/-----==|

COMBATSYS: Duke fails to interrupt Hellfire Hammer from MURDERHOUSE with Dive Bomber EX.
- Power fail! -

COMBATSYS: Duke can no longer fight.

And then, "MURDERHOUSE" Mick would live up to his nickname. Punch would be followed by punch after punch after punch, quickly devolving into forearm smashes to Duke's cheek and general face area while Mick worked his way to his feet. The onslaught just kept coming as the crowd in black finally got excited for something. They knew what was coming, and they couldn't wait. They counted the blows until forearm number 10 finally was sent pounding into the side of Duke's skull. Then and only then would Mick step to his side, quickly bending to scoop the man up on his shoulders. Duke's ribs and side were across his shoulders and neck, Mick's left hand grabbing the side of the crime lord's face and cruelly 'pulling' downward even as his right hand did the same with one of the man's knees. It was like a vicious accordian as the big man walked around, and roared out in a terrifying voice.


And in unison, every voice shouted back.


That was all "MURDERHOUSE" needed to hear as he leapt up impossibly high, enough to hit every phone recording this with a bit of lens flare, before both men hurtled down for the crater that Duke made earlier. They tipped over, Mick aiming Mr. SthSynd's skull for the epicenter.

Now, why was there a table in this crater and wreckage? And who set it on fire? These are questions that would go unanswered, as both men smashed through that thick, Japanese wooden table, one of the most infamous tables in all of pro wrestling, the only inanimate pieces of furniture that could have a 'tier'. That, plus the raging fire on top of it, meant that this would not be a pleasant landing for either men, but Mick made sure that Duke got the brunt of it.

Eventually, when the smoke cleared and others peered inside, Duke would most likely be unconscious...and so was Mick, across from the crime lord and the shattered pieces of the table beneath them. It was unclear which one of them was the worse for wear...

Nagase was borderline unconscious from her fight with the demonic biker brute; able to register what was going on, but blinded from her blow to the head, she was neither capable nor motivated to do much about it. Even when Sorcha climbed atop her, the Iga-ryu could only find the strength to shiver in the wake of the dying flames.

But when she was inverted, that's when the survival instinct kicked in. The nauseating sensation of having the world go topsy-turvy under someone else's power compelled her to draw in one long breath of the rancid air -- it's pure instinct, no different than being thrown into a body of water.

As soon as the dumpster slammed shut, Nagase doubled over, pinching her nose with one hand. Just thinking about her predicament was enough to make her vomit, let alone the terrible smell. The battered and bruised ninja's battle-ravaged attire became uncomfortably acquainted with the claustrophobic environs of the inside of the garbage as she maneuvered herself upright.

Mere moments after the four-armed witch leaps into battle, the lid of the garbage dumpster lifted up.
An eyeblink after that, the lid fell shut with a clank, followed shortly thereafter with the sound of gravity reasserting itself on the displaced garbage bags.

When tiny patches of reality unleashed a torrent of devastation, the dumpster would have -- like many other fixtures positioned in the railyard -- been toppled over, blasted open. Flimsy plastic bags were melted, shredded from the wave of destruction, scattering assorted food waste and refuse across the hard-packed dirt of the railyard.
But no ninja.

Safe upon a nearby rooftop overlooking the railyard, the tech-ninja had been busy. She had vomited, of course -- having held out as long as she could. Some other schmuck could clean that up, if a few rounds of rain didn't wash it away. Her brief soujourn in the dumpster was enough to provide a sense of urgent clarity to the calculating kunoichi. Arrangements had been made for the safe and efficient egress of the Southtown Syndicate.

As far as Sorcha would be concerned, there was only one coda for Nagase to leave behind. And it is left behind just as the Southtown crimelord gets his meaty hands around "MURDERHOUSE" Mick's neck.
Sorcha may be conscious, or she may not. She may look up -- or she may not. But she probably won't notice the instant that Nagase flits into view overhead, much less the instant afterwards in which the bumblebee ninja disappears.
She'll probably notice the burning garbage bag that gets dropped on her head though. The flames are hot enough to melt the plastic sheathing holding in all the reeking food waste, refuse from a local steakhouse that the raccoons and opossums weren't able to glean the best from. Fatty steak leave-behinds, intermixed with liquefied asparagus, wilted lettuce, and tomatoes. Fun stuff -- and definitely not medium rare any more.
All courtesy of Southtown Syndicate.

Duke was about to stop this.

As he moves to finish off his opponent, his opponent comes in a desperate, final attack. Both were moving in harmony, as Duke takes to the air. Leaping up, he draws his knees in as he comes crashing in. The titan was crashing into the titan, man against man. Duke's yellow eyes almost burn as he drives for MURDERHOUSE.

And Mick catches him.

The knees come down to strike, but Mick was attacking, blow after blow, pummeling the man's face. Something is struck, and for a moment, Duke goes limp, clinically dead for a brief flash as something snaps in the brainstem. ANd yet, the blows keep coming, as the cerebal bleeding continues in. He was deaf to the cries, as Duke is a ragdoll, lifted up and carried over, slammed with full force into the table, the bonfire erupting around. There is silence. The smoke clears.

And Duke's eyes were open, looking around.

Technically, he was awake. Technically, he was aware. And technically, he was alive. His brainstem jumped started, the pinch correcting himeslf. His brain bleeds itself out, cleaning the bad for the good. A severed spine, dislocated arms, and the fact that his ribcage was pancaked into the ground, mingled with the fragments of burnt. He wasn't slipping in and out of consciousness, but sepsis. And yet, while the eyes are open, he was silent. His body was unmoving. They would need to scrap him out of the crater. It was a DKO, for all purposes. Duke had fallen, he had been defeated.

But he would rise again.

And he would remember Mick, very, very well.

Log created on 17:41:54 07/30/2016 by MURDERHOUSE, and last modified on 22:59:59 08/16/2016.