Description: Upon the sundered cliffs of Mt. Fuji, where Justice's fury has fallen, Kotal finds a place of power. There he slaughters outmatched warriors and takes their blood to serve his sorcery. But one man's blood, thick with madness, has led him here in search of a different god.
Do you remember where you were when Fuji was attacked?
Like so many awful events before it, this question has already ingrained itself into the cultural memory. Tragic stories are told. Iconic pictures circulated through the Internet. The presence of greatness hangs thick in the air, terrifying, but exciting. So wonderful and horrible it is to witness history unfolding before one's eyes. But then, some are not satisfied with merely witnessing it. There are some who wish to be the cause.
One such entity stands atop a tall stone outcropping located half way up the lower slopes of mount Fuji, surrounded on all sides by ash-dusted trees. Though in most areas a thin layer of particulate hangs above the volcano, filtering the bright sun into a greyish haze, here it shines hot and bright, lancing down in a blazing column to bathe the craggy stone in its radiant fury.
At the center of the shimmering conflagration, a towering figure hulks over his surroundings. roughly seven feet tall, over 300 pounds of mythical legend looms, great hands upthrust in praise of the sky. Bathed in brilliant golden light, the massive warrior's black and gold armor gleams, eagle helm glittering and feathered plumes spread out in a resplendent fan behind him. He is clearly inhuman, skin a faded shade of turquoise and eyes glowing gold. It is as if some ancient god of the Aztecs had been plucked from mythology and dropped into the center of Japan, jagged sacrificial knife at his belt and huge saw-bladed paddle hanging from a hook on his back.
Such a guess would not be far from the truth. Once, Kotal was worshipped as a god. Now he has returned to the land that birthed him, tasked with paving a path for the invasion of his new master. It just so happens that recent events might make such a thing far too easy.
COMBATSYS: Kotal has started a fight here.
A black clad man, hair a shock of bleach blond, roars from a shattered cliffside. His tall, if recognizably human, frame is hunched like a wounded animal's, faced toward the west, the source of the attack which obliterated the landscape of this sacred mountain. Hands thrust in his pockets, he pauses lingeringly, as though awaiting a response from an invisible interlocutor. Then he cackles abruptly, rearing back and allowing his tongue to dangle from his maw of a mouth, addressing the sky.
"Come on! Do it! Do it again!"
He lurches forward, looking almost as though he will hurl himself from the cliff, not even an iota of concern for his safety apparent on his gleeful visage.
"You missed me last time! Haaaahahahaha!"
The incredible power inflicted upon this mountain delighted Yamazaki to no end. Whoever wrought it, he figured, must be a kind of kindred spirit, someone who understands the joy of annihilation. In the hired killer's ideal world, that scale of destruction would occur every day, every hour, every minute. No: every moment would feel like that explosion, that incredible release, such transcendent devastation that it would no longer be recognizable who hurts and who does the hurting.
Maybe then people would see what he sees, know what he knows.
Not that Ryuji gives a damn either way. But he can't help be drawn to this place. Its destruction does not only speak to his twisted soul. The power churning here whispers to his blood, calls for him to awaken it. Yamazaki understands deeply that whatever is here is a part of him, has coursed through him his whole life. He's never minded serving the strong as long as they *get* him, and let him do his thing. Whatever entity slumbers here is orders of magnitude stronger than Geese Howard. Yamazaki wants to meet it. He'll know when he does.
He doesn't have to look much further to find a good candidate. Leaving the cliffside with long strides, he ambles past fallen boulders and blasted rock round the mountain bend to espy a pillar of concentrated sunlight. Naturally, Yamazaki looks straight at it, before finally blinking rapidly, eyebrows contorting, and laughing at the spots in his eyes.
It's not long before he is able to clamber over a ridge and see Kotal standing there upon the outcropping, immersed in his inhuman ritual.
"You the god I'm looking for?"
Yamazaki grins casually up at the Outworlder.
"Or just the one I found?"
He squints and reaches up to scratch his cheek.
"Y'know," he continues amiably, regardless of how or if Kotal responds, "I'm very particular about my most precious possessions. I never give 'em up 'less I want to. It's a big deal when I do. Real meaningful. So."
His arm is suddenly a blur. Then, streaking through the air with blurring speed, a large knife cleaves toward Kotal with enough force to potentially knock him from his perch.
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki has joined the fight here.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0 Kotal
COMBATSYS: Kotal blocks Yamazaki's Thrown Object.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0 Kotal
In the wake of the explosion, many odd figures have passed through these woods. Most have given Kotal's perch a wide birth,but Some few have chosen to disturb his contemplation.
Their scent is likely the first thing to reach Yamazaki, the coppery tang of blood and heavy wreak of split bowels filling his nostrils. The unpleasant aroma rises from a spread of gory remains half concealed in the tangled brush at the base of the stone monolith. Here a hand. There a head. The remains of those who's blood now powers the Outworlder's ritual. All who chose to fight, and there by sealed their fate.
The initial shout brings Kotal's arms down, feathers swaying as he turns to cast a curious look down toward the bestial human below. Despite his imposing stature and glittering armor, his rugged face is more stern than fierce, holding a rough patriarchal edge that seems capable of both great rage, and great compassion.
"Only those desperate or foolhardy go in search of Gods." Kotal booms back, his voice the chesty rumble of a lion, rough but somehow majestic. Still, he does not lay claim to which of these the man before him might be.
Not until a knife is thrown at him.
Lifting his right hand, Kotal catches the weapon blade-first, rapping his thick fingers around the knife with no heed for the safety of his flesh. Razor edge biting deep into his palm, he lifts it to eye level, observing as thick dark blood oozes over the heel of his hand to drip along the underside of his bracer. Lips pulling back in a fierce smile, made all the more ominous by the eyes that glow above it, he gives a slow nod of his helmeted head.
"Very well, mortal." Kotal practically purrs, dropping his gaze back down to the man some 15 feet below him. "You have gained my attention. Now we will see what I choose to do with you."
Flexing his mighty legs, Kotal gathers his strength before hurling himself free of his perch, feathers trailing behind and bone-decorated belt rattling as he descends upon Yamazaki with all the ferocious power one might expect. Thrusting his left palm forward, he attempts to smash the smaller man roughly in the face and drive him backward to the ground, only to land crushingly atop him, right knee hammering down toward his chest. Only if he can thus capture his prey will he bring the criminal's own knife lancing down, still held by the blade, to drive it brutally into the savage man's shoulder.
"Bleed for me." he breathes, words laced with brutal intent.
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki blocks Kotal's Kombo.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/------=|=------\-------\0 Kotal
It is the same shout that Yamazaki had, moments before, unleashed from the cliffside: a provocation and exhortation toward an overwhelming power. He wants to find the god who dwells within this mountain. He wants to face whatever god-like thing unleashed its power upon Fuji. He'll fight any god, anywhere, any time, if the mood strikes him.
That's what living is about. And if the corpses scattered about him were lucky, they knew it too. Maybe, just maybe, one of these mangled faces was smiling in its final moment, just as Yamazaki will be.
The impact of Kotal's assault sends the gangster skidding back along the scorched and bloodsoaked stone. Sensing the oncoming strike to his face, Yamazaki had hunched again and whipped his arm up in a blur to take the palm to his forearm, maintaining his footing. The knee still slams against his amboden, wringing from him a strangled bark of a laugh. But before Kotal can raise his other hand to pierce Yamazaki with his own blade, the crazed killer will attempt to grab hold of that arm to briefly keep Kotal in place.
"Don't get it twisted--"
That's his job.
"I only bleed for myself!!"
Yamazaki then lunges forward, launching a reckless headbutt at the god's own face.
COMBATSYS: Kotal endures Yamazaki's Bopper!
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Yamazaki 0/-------/-----==|===----\-------\0 Kotal
The vicious gangster's shout brings another fierce smile to Kotal's lips, the giant hammering into Yamazaki's guard with all the subtlety of an enraged bull. Still, for that brief moment, his power is matched. Furious charge brought up short, wrist grabbed and knife poised just inches from the smaller man's flesh, Kotal finds himself unable to hammer through.
It delights him.
"You have strength." Kotal praises, acknowledging the might of Yamazaki even as a brutal head but rises toward his nose. he makes no effort to defend himself. In fact, his massive left arm hooks around the smaller man, dragging him forward toward the oncoming collision.
Kotal's nose crumples sideways in a spray of gore, steaming blood dripping down to sizzle against Yamazaki's face. But not even that slows the giant warrior.
Allowing the knife to fall carelessly to the ground, Kotal's powerful frame surges with strength,a tempting to either tear his right wrist free of his opponent's grip, or else drag the vicious human's arm along behind him as he wraps both tree-trunk arms about the man and lifts.
Unless Yamazaki can fight or slither his way free, he is likely to find himself caught up in a bone-grinding embrace, body compressed tighter and tighter against the chest of the god as raised tattoos along his turquoise skin begin to glow with faint golden light. Light that burns and scorches like the sun, searing into exposed flesh.
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki barely endures Kotal's Cuazquia.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/-======|-------\-------\0 Kotal
Yamazaki laughs hoarsely as, despite straining with all his might, Kotal tears his arm from the gangster's grasp. This guy's the real deal. Not the god you seek, his blood sings to him, not your destiny. But strong, fabulously strong, absolutely wonderful. Here is pain. Here he flirts with death again, his old seductress. But Yamazaki won't die. No, he's lived a long time for the kind of life he leads. If he dies, he won't get to experience this anymore, again and again, these dizzying heights.
So he'll kill instead.
That thought explodes into a thousand shards as Kotal seizes hold of him. The crushing power and the light of sun which the god radiates overwhelm the gangster's senses. Blood bursts from his lips as Yamazaki's cough becomes a retch, the crazed grin never fleeing his face.
At last Yamazaki draws from his depths the strength to break free. His knee lifts to create just a hint of space between them. And, somehow, with surreal flexibility, his leg slithers up through that space until it points straight up, Yamazaki effectively doing the splits against his standing foe. His leg then slams down with explosive force, aiming to hammer the god against the stony ground and at last tear away completely.
"And you've got guts!" he rasps. "Got me curious ... to cut 'em out and see!"
COMBATSYS: Kotal just-defends Yamazaki's Flight of Tempering!
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Yamazaki 0/-------/--=====|-------\-------\0 Kotal
Muscles strain and sinew creaks as the two combatants struggle against one another, Kotal to crush the life out of the gangster and Yamazaki to live. Slowly, despite the brutish being's best efforts, his freakishly flexible opponent is able to wedge a knee in, then slide a leg up between them, turning every muscle in his body against the Sun God's arms.
"There shall indeed be a spilling of guts this day." Kotal growls back, smile abandoned in favor of a much grimmer mask. He can feel his grip beginning to give. He wont' be able to hold the pugnacious man for much longer. So, he doesn't.
Giving one last brutal squeeze, Kotal forces Yamazaki back in close, shattering his attempt at a thrusting kick that very well might have ended with the ancient warrior flat on his back. But he does not attempt to maintain his grip any longer. Surging forward through the brush, he charges toward a nearby tree, attempting to throw his full weight behind crushing the gangster between muscular bulk and unforgiving bark.
Unless the insane man can escape, he will be hammered clean through the trunk in a shower of splinters, tree toppling noisily as Kotal tears his burden free of his chest and spins 180 degrees, hurling him back toward the side of the sun-baked monolith.
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki blocks Kotal's Back Throw.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/=======|-------\-------\0 Kotal
Was that a laugh or a cough? You can never tell with Yamazaki: blood tends to fly either way. Not expecting Kotal's sudden charge forward, the gangster is swept up in his massive opponent's rush, left in an awkward position with his leg still extended upward. Yet as they hurtle toward the tree, Yamazaki, a look of ecstasy painted upon his strained face, somehow manages to use his bizarre posture to his advantage. Slipping his leg down just enough to brace his foot against Kotal's shoulder, he pushes off the living god's crushing weight, thrusting out his other leg behind him in a ferocious kick -- at the tree. The combined force of the two battling men projected in the same direction causes the tree to erupt in splinters and kindling, and Yamazaki smiles with satisfaction as he feels the bones in his leg creak and crack with the impact.
In this position, Yamazaki cannot prevent himself from being thrown, but he is in full control of his fall, twisting his bulk so that he catches the stone floor and slides to a crouching halt before he can be slammed into anything else.
"Yeah, you said it," he concurs. "Come on, give to me."
His eyes snap wide as saucers, tongue dangling from his lips.
"GIVE IT TO ME!!!!"
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki charges his next attack!
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Yamazaki 1/------=/=======|-------\-------\0 Kotal
Lumbering free of the debris left in their wake, Kotal fixes Yamazaki with a gold-eyed stare, dust and blood streaked across his massive form like the primitive war paints of old. His once bent nose has straightened itself, though smears of dark blood remain crusted around his lips.
He seems, amused, though only faintly, taking in the gangster's feral posture.
"Within you I sense the berserk rage of the ancient one. If he had not this claim on your soul, perhaps I would take you into my service." Reaching over his right shoulder, the towering warrior grips the cloth-wrapped handle of his massive Macuahuitl in one hand, lifting it from its hanging spike and swinging it around with effortless strength. "But it is no matter." He continues, turning the huge sword toward his own body and dragging the serrated blade down his left bicep, blood welling from the fresh wound to fall in great steaming droplets to the ground. "There are other ways to serve."
Blood glistening along the leading edge of the horrific weapon, Kotal hefts it in both hands, lifting it high overhead and fixing Yamazaki with the full weight of his gaze. Flashes of red now swirl throughout their golden depths, chaotic and promising violence.
"Come. Prove yourself worthy of sacrifice."
COMBATSYS: Kotal issues a challenge!!
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Yamazaki 1/------=/=======|-------\-------\0 Kotal
COMBATSYS: Kotal channels the power of the Blood God!
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Yamazaki 1/------=/=======|==-----\-------\0 Kotal
"Ha ha ... haa haaa!"
The god won't give it to him. Yamazaki might ordinarily be pissed, or at least, more so than usual. But he finds this amusing too. Because this guy gets him.
"You gotta be careful with sacrifices," he replies conversationally. "Animals in their death throes ... they kick and squirm and wriggle, they lash out. Those who've never killed become killers. And killers ..."
He runs his tongue along his teeth as Kotal's blood spills to the ground ritualistically.
He's gone. Or his face is -- he's become a shadow. He does not move so much as loom forward, his whole body appearing to stretch forth rather than close in. A phantom from a bedtime story, a monster under the bed. No fear to a god, perhaps. But it's not like Yamazaki does this on purpose. No, he has only one intent.
He's closed in, blood rioting, meeting the challenge, and with a sinuous motion the knives are out. With the first stab Yamazaki follows through with the full force of his body, attempting to knock Kotal to the ground with him atop. If he succeeds, his arms become a blur, knives sinking -- slamming, really -- into the god's body again and again. Eventually Yamazaki, utterly unable to contain himself, will lunge in and sink his teeth into Kotal's throat, seeking that blood for himself, however it hisses and burns!
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki successfully hits Kotal with Lunatic Fist.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/------=|=======\=------\1 Kotal
"I have little to fear from one such as you." is Kotal's dismissive response, looming over the crazed berserker like some divine statue of battle. And indeed, no fear flashes across his face at the sudden, shadowy lunge, arms descending as if to catch the unhinged killer on his black and gold bracers.
Perhaps he should have been afraid.
The first stab slips through the god's guard, drawing a surprised grunt from his lips and forcing him into a backward step. Likely his intent was to gain distance for a swing of that vicious sword, but he doesn't get it. Yamazaki's tackle catches him mid step and unbalances him further, toppling the massive man backward into the brush. branches snap and dust flies, followed soon by great sprays of blood as knives descend into Kotal's exposed gut again and again, hacking into the tattooed flesh with wild abandon. However, with every stab, the tattoos shift a little more from gold to crimson, until finally, with Yamazaki's teeth sunk deep into his throat, Kotal's eyes shift completely from gold to red.
The shout is punctuated by a vicious blow from Kotal's elbow, the enraged god attempting to hammer Yamazaki off with frightening strength. The ancient Aztec then plants his left fist in the earth and levers himself to a sit, before rolling into a kneel. Braced and ready to stand, blood still pouring in great gouts from the open wounds in his flesh, he fixes the gangster with a red-eyed glare, raised tattoos pulsing crimson all across his body.
"I will paint the sunset with your blood!"
This declaration made, Kotal returns his left hand to the hilt of his Macuahuitl, muscles bunching in preparation to strike.
In one, explosive surge, the god of blood and battle rushes to his feet, serrated sword swinging up and over in an enormous overhead arc. Bringing the weapon down with all of his fury, the god does his level best to cleave Yamazaki messily in half.
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki blocks Kotal's Tenchalli EX.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/----===|=======\=------\1 Kotal
Yamazaki is blown from Kotal's body by the concussive elbow strike, tearing a chunk of flesh away with his teeth as he goes, spitting it out -- accidentally -- with his bellowing laughter as he rolls away. Thrilling with the adrenaline high of letting the insanity take him, of obeying the whispers of his blood, the gangster, dark clothes only showing the blood upon them by staining the dust that covers him, gets to his feet almost lazily. His abruptly casual air isn't deliberate mockery.
He's just having such a good time.
That massive sword looks like more than masochism can tolerate, though. Two heavy knives spring into his hands and cross before him, catching the terrible blade just before it would've split Yamazaki's head like a melon. "Yeah, don't you make a pretty picture," he chuckles. "What'd I tell you about sacrifices, huh?"
He doesn't await a response. Twisting to push the sword to the side, Yamazaki lets one knife fall as one hand clenches into a fist. His arm contorting unnaturally, the limb arcs at a peculiar angle before his fist hammers toward the god's wounded throat. The gangster attempts to take the opportunity to spring to the side, out of the natural swing range of that dangerous sword.
COMBATSYS: Kotal endures Yamazaki's Snake Tamer.
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Yamazaki 0/-------/---====|=======\====---\1 Kotal
Bloodied, battered, and full of indignant rage, there is only so far even one such as Kotal can bend before he finally snaps. So often he is considered to be a calm, even-headed warrior. A tactician and sage adviser. But every man, god or otherwise, has a point passed which he just wants to hurt someone.
'What'd I tell you about sacrifices, huh?'
Kotal's enormous sword drops from his hands, skittering away from Yamazaki's knife to impact the forest floor with a heavy 'thump'. Stoic face twisting down into an ever-deepening frown, he takes a deliberate step forward, not even flinching as the gangster's twisted fist hammers brutally into his already injured throat. Blood squirts out to sizzle across the grass, but still he comes, angling to intercept Yamazaki as he attempts to dart away.
Huge turquoise hands lash out for the slippery man's throat, aiming to lock and squeeze, cutting off that obnoxious cackling laughter once and for all. Meanwhile, the area directly around them grows brighter as the beam of light that had been focused atop the stone suddenly shifts, swooping across the grass toward the pair.
"I will teach you of sacrifices." Kotal growls softly into Yamazaki's face, his hands beginning to smolder with power.
Unless the gangster can escape, a pulse of bloody chi will be released directly into his throat, the sensation sharp and burning like acid. But that will be the least of his worries, as he is swung up, then down again, slammed violently to the ground like a rag doll, only for Kotal to loom up over him and bring both massive fists pounding down into his stomach like an enraged gorilla.
"Come, little mortal." He snarls, reaching down to grip his prey by the chest and hoist him high, high overhead, the beam of sun finally swinging around to blaze down upon them both. "Witness the power of the sun!"
And then, everything burns, the world whiting out as Kotal calls down the full, laser-like force of the star upon them both, blood and grime boiling away from his turquoise skin as filthy steam, leaving him cleansed and reborn anew, wounded yet pristine.
COMBATSYS: Yamazaki fails to interrupt Soleil from Kotal with Sadomazo.
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COMBATSYS: Yamazaki can no longer fight.
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Yamazaki cannot laugh, not with Kotal's hands about his throat. Only little wheezes and gasps emerge from the deranged murderer's lips. But he can grin. Oh, how he can grin.
His body convulses as energy pierces his throat, blood spraying in an arc as he is hurled again down to the dust. His body trembles as the god hoists him into the air. It may seem from the spasms that Yamazaki is paralyzed with agony, that he is unable to function.
But this is not the case. No, he trembles with exultation. He begins to struggle then, ferociously, with a sudden eruption of strength, tongue lolling, eyes bloodshot. He breaks free just as the sun beam rockets down. Yet he does not seize the moment to withdraw or guard himself.
He lunges toward Kotal, into the ray of sun, ecstatic.
This is it. It's exactly what he was waiting for. His challenge was answered. The terrible weapon, it's come from above, straight for him. And he does what he always does when he's at his happiest.
He goes for the kill.
But Yamazaki never reaches Kotal. His form evaporates in the heat of the sun. It is difficult to tell at first, but he has been blasted back, flesh sizzling, hurled toward the cliff's edge. And soon he hurtles off of the edge, descending the sundered mountain, the only remaining trace of him--
"Haaa haa haaaa!"
--the demented echoes of his laughter, not yet silenced for good.
COMBATSYS: Kotal has ended the fight here.
Log created on 16:07:48 10/07/2017 by Yamazaki, and last modified on 00:12:00 10/08/2017.