The Bell Tolls - TBT Act 1 - Let Me Take A Selfie

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Description: Cassie's leads uncover a remote warehouse within the Industrial district of Sunshine City. There, she finds a few missing children, recently abducted within the city, bound and gagged within. While she is able to dispatch the meager guards that seems to be watching them, she will quickly find herself marked by the true guardian of the children: the Shadaloo doll Noembelu, who is eager to recruit more sisters. Can Cassie drive her off, or will she join the children across the border?

Sunshine City, A unremarkable corrugated tin and hollowed out warehouse with two vehicle sized doors. Almost all the glass that had once been in the widows was broken; some windows were at one time barred but now mostly boarded up. All but for the skylights and windows on an upper floor level gantry, A decade or without use, the hoists and chains hanging from the ceiling add only to the ambience.

As the heat of the day finally passes it cools only somewhat. Concrete flooring and rusted iron walls retain enough heat to be punishing. Near on a dozen girls, all aged between sixteen and nineteen, wearing a mix of styles from bedclothes to torn and soiled street clothing. Terrified of their captors, most still bound and gagged while left to huddle together through the full length and heat of the day.

The more aggressive of the girls muscling others out of the limited shade; they are all showing signs of just how exhausted and dehydrated they've become, mostly cowed by now. There is no longer any talking, pleading or yelling for help.

The group sit and leaning around two of their number and with their backs to the wall. The two lying in their midst are those who had the gall, or perhaps courage to try and slip their bonds and flee to get help. Visibly wounded as they were, those girls were serving as a lesson that kept the cowards cowed, the empathetic among the group tending to them while hoping not to be noticed, and sharing what little water they were given.

Costly them all greatly as their strength waned, and opportunities passed. Their varied weaknesses shackled them together.

The rumbling of the engine fills the shanty of a warehouse. A massive six wheeled truck with the cargo area covered in a canvas tarp reverses in through the main doors. Grit crackles and pop beneath the treats as the giant machine creeps back into position at a careful pace. The entrance of a looming monster ready to swallow these girls so that they would never see their families again, go back to their mundane and small lives.

They would serve a better purpose than they knew, and in the end. Be happier for it.

The drivers door opens and soft rubber soled military boots hit the grimy and oil stained floor. Marching back toward the back of the truck he ratchets a handle over and drops a gate, steps up to pull the canvas covering open and fusses with tying it aside. Arms raised the poncho he was wearing over a military style uniform; it rides up enough to show the bottom edge of the holster in the small of his back. It'd take no more than about fifteen or twenty minutes to get the cargo all loaded.

Now! ...where was everybody that was supposed to be helping with the loading? Where were all the guards that were meant to be stationed here?

This investigation hadn't been going great so far. Keeping a cover of being in Sunshine City to attend some of the big, celebrity parties that always go on in the upper crust of cities like this had worked well enough, but most of the trouble was brewing well-below the level of the upper crust who can insulate themselves from the problems of "normal people."

The most that her investigation had turned up so far was stumbling into potential stalker behavior and being roped into a title match by the SNF crew where she'd been put up against that weird, fake girl with the red hood. She hadn't even wanted one of the official titles to begin with, and ending up with a nasty slash to the face certainly hadn't made that any less of a waste of time.

At least other aspects of Special Forces's recon teams had managed something, a possible connection to all of the children being abducted to one of the warehouses in the Industrial district.

A quick stopover gave Sergeant Cage a chance to swap out of the casual clothes splattered with her own blood and into proper mission gear before she pulled into the the industrial park, her rented convertable not exactly fitting with the local aesthetic, but there are more than enough abandoned containers and the like to keep it hidden out of the way as she moves forward.

With the target site in view, Cassie huddles up against a tarp-covered, chain-link fence and pulls out her guns, double checking each as the camera clearly cuts in close enough to reveal she's not bothering with the bright green, non-lethal rounds of her less serious bouts.

Each move from there onward is slow and methodical, positioning her in close enough to get a better view of the factory, only pausing as she first catches sight of an armed man clearly out on patrol.

From here, movements are carefully timed, cutting closer and closer with all of her Special Forces training until finally she's on the guard like a shadow, hooking one arm in around his neck and disappearing him into a busted shipping container as drops him into a state of unconsciousness. Make-shift bindings and gags come together, and every weapon she can find is off him, with every magazine he has slipped into her own gear.

Never let the enemy rearm themselves, after all.

The process continues from here, with Cage identifying guards, intercepting them, and disabiling them. All that's left is the building itself.

Gliding into the loading bay, it's only a matter of waiting for the driver to be distracted long enough for Cage to clear the distance, baton in hand as she's on him in a flash, swinging up into a nasty low blow from behind that's instantly followed up with an elbow to the face to give him the beneft of unconsciousness to get over some of the pain she's inflicted.

Hands on hips, the drivers irritation was getting the best of him. The stock was cowering over there in the corner, doe eyed and tearful girls murmuring and whimpering and that sight didn't faze him one iota. They were raw material, and what they'd be turned into were the Masters own monsters. The Seemed easy enough to handle, but he'd just driven a solid six or so hours to collect.

The guards should be loading them up around now.

Knees turning in and eyes bulging if the driver expresses his disbelief at being on the receiving end of a Cage special. Reeling forward and curling forward into a foetal position while he's still standing, on his way to the ground. Hand clutched to his severe wound his face hardly changes until deformed around an elbow which sends him swinging back in the other direction. He claps the back of his head against the truck door and flumps straight down, knees buckle sunder him, ass uppermost in the air and hand still firmly cradling his hurt.

In the rafters above a non-human shaped shadow separates from the spot it has been quietly watching over the girls and traces a path along one of the beams overhead, a faint wafting of the dust and corroded flakes disturbed by her feet the only sound of her passage.

The poncho worn over her bodysuit helps break up her silhouette, the soft soled boots were unsuitable for any kind of real stealth as she would view it.

Despite the possibility the girls might be saved, they don't react with happiness. They escalate to visibly cowering in fear and trembling despite looking at Cassie easily and comically defeating their captors. The revealed girls already in the back of the truck barely turning their heads to acknowledge the fracas going on.

The shadow overhead pauses and settles back on their haunches. Observing the newcomer and how they would react, they had already demonstrated a strong grasp of the fundamentals of stealth and hunting.

Shadaloo personnel were dangerous. A worthy prey to hunt for those so inclined. Should this be a worthy or a cocky hunter?

Obvious targets are down, but Cassie still takes the time to disable all of his weapons and secure the man in the poncho down using prisoner zip-ties from her kit, a temporary measure admittedly, but it's better than running around with a dozen pair of handcuffs jangling around in your pockets. Plus, after that sort of trauma, odds aren't great that he's going to be willing to move around enough even if he does wake up after the testicular trauma that's been inflicted on him.

As Sergeant Cage maneuvers her way around the back of the truck, trading the baton for a pistol and a flashlight, double checking every flank before she twists around the shine the beam of light in across the collection of captives. The barrel of the pistol is lowered quickly, although the flashlight remains up.

"Easy there, I'm with UN Special Forces, I'm here to rescue you. We'll have you out of here real soon," she says, putting on a soothing, calm tone totally at odds with her cocky, smart-mouthed fighting persona.

Reaching up to her earpiece, she opens up a channel, "This is Sgt. Cage reporting in at Site Charlie. We need clean-up, extraction, and medical for..."

And then there's a pause, a flicker of distraction as debris spills down into the beam of her flashlight. It's enough to quiet her down as she raises both flashlight and pistol toward the ceiling. Hopefully it's just a stray cat or a trash panda, but something here has Cage on edge.

So that was it. The interloper was United Nations Special Forces, a professional soldier and this arrival was a full hour earlier than chasers were anticipated. Noembelu had not been warned of this particular unit's action in advance, nor had time to properly prepare a greeting. The Doll would have to adapt, she was sent here to hunt and watch over prospective additions to the DOLL unit.. The hunting in this place however was poor up until this very moment. Strong enough to live, not strong enough to fight or resent a challenge.

In the rafters she rolls forward into open air. Her feet propelling her into a kick assisted and headfirst dive down toward the flashlight illuminated target. The shriek of metal framework protesting her shove like some demented parody of a hunting birds cry.

Subdue and take this one too!! Lord Vega had set her to hunt here; she would continue to do so up until the moment this unit was withdrawn. Soldier or civilian made no difference, only girls with the right qualities.

The attacker descends from above, a broad-winged soaring bird that is heedless of the flashlights beam revealing her or firearm the other wields. Even should her opponent raise them in time enough to threaten or injure; she is of a single mind and purpose in her dive.

By her size and stature the attacker was clearly a young female even in silhouette. Sharing traits and comparable to the other young girls that had been abducted. She openly wears a feather as a hair ornament, has that hair bound in twin short braids which is popular fashion with some of the local tribes.

Those captive girls aren't however are not wearing a pair of large axes in thigh holsters like they were sidearms. Nor do they have a placid and calm exterior and smooth face while apparently trying to leap twenty down feet plus, into head butting Cassie Cage and knocking her to the ground.

COMBATSYS: Cassie has started a fight here.

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Cassie           0/-------/------=|

COMBATSYS: Noembelu has joined the fight here.

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Noembelu         0/-------/-------|=------\-------\0           Cassie

COMBATSYS: Cassie dodges Noembelu's Condor Dive.

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Noembelu         0/-------/-------|=------\-------\0           Cassie

"Oh sh-"

Cassie cuts off her own exclamation of surprise as the flashlight lights up the suddenly falling target. There's a half-heart beat where training starts to kick in, and it's either shoot or roll. In the end, the defensive mindset briefly wins out as Cage tucks and dives forward just moments before this new attacker comes flying down into the spot that Cassie had been standing in only moments before.

Partway through the dive, the flashlight is completely abandoned, it's beam wobbling around the open space like some sort of strobe effect as Cassie ends up popping back to her feet a good distance away with both pistols now in hand, carefully considering the angles of the environment. She can't risk any stray shots getting anywhere near the hostages, but she also can't risk letting the new target reach the hostages.

And based on the information coming in over her earpieces, it sounds like the back-up team is at least 20-30 minutes out, which means she's got to either stall or secure the situation herself.

"I'd tell you to surrender, but I'm pretty much guessing you're not into that sort of thing," Cassie offers with a bit more of her trademark, familial wit, using the words as just enough of a distraction to try to reposition herself, lining up the shots well clear of the truck as she unloads a rapid series of shots at her attacker.

COMBATSYS: Noembelu blocks Cassie's Blood Splat.

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Noembelu         0/-------/-----==|==-----\-------\0           Cassie

Clapping down hard against empty concrete rather than her prey. With a shake that rattles the shards of glass in the windows as the entire structure quakes, its foundations are played by a single strike from a drummer hand. Her expression remains neutral and unchanging as the flowering poncho settles down against her back.

She betrays no readable emotion, just a hand reaching down to her side.

As the dark interior of the building illuminates brightly with each gunshot a corresponding flash of orange appears as an axe whirls through a striking kata. Catching and deflecting bullets at close quarters against the tool-hardened hard edges, heavy head and blade alike used, and in the dark bullets ricochet wildly, with no such concern for the other occupants of the room.

Battle was battle. There were always casualties.

The soft patter of droplets falling reaches her ears, her own blood falling. Over the many hours she has spent sequestered and waiting in this space, it is a new and alien sound in this space. The sting of her many wounds where shrapnel and deflects slugs had buried themselves in her flesh is noted but ultimately shrugged off.

Noembelu wavers where she stands, the yellowish ochre poncho pockmarked with burns ad holes and gradually turning a slick and wet black that glistens. Instead of falling back she takes a decisive step forward and begins a running advance with a single axe held pointed right at Cassie.

Her opponent was nimble and adept at finding her target and striking from range in the dark. Dangerous. Noembelu swings for the back of Cassies leg, a hook and pull with a strength unbefitting of a girl that small. She's a sold four inches shorter than Cassie but behaving as though she was the one advantaged by getting in close. With a long handled axe.

COMBATSYS: Cassie interrupts Medium Throw from Noembelu with Rollin'.

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Noembelu         1/-------/=======|======-\-------\0           Cassie

Goddammit, getting attacked with shattered bottles and razor blades earlier tonight had been trouble enough, as evidenced by the bandage still covering Cassie's entire cheek, now she's got an axe to worry about. Getting hit with one of those is going to be a hell of a lot worse than just a risk at a minor scar and some infection.

The bullets being deflected randomly is also a problem, but based on her earlier positioning, it would take a lot of extremely bad luck to actually get a dangerous hit in on the hostages. More importantly, it's pretty clear now that this girl is something dangerous, but at least she's being drawn away from the back of the truck and into a proper fight.

Just have to hope that axe isn't going to get used properly.

"Okay, this is definitely not one of the official ways to declare surrender that I know of," Cassie shoots, slipping both pistols away quickly as she settles into position. As Noembelu goes low to sweep the legs, Cage suddenly flips back, a faint green aura coming into existance over her foot as it rises up to connect with the Doll's jaw as Cassie herself catches herself with her hands and completes the rest of the somersault.

"So, maybe you want to try again, but this time use a white flag?"

Struck on the underside of her jaw the Doll pitches backward into a high-flung backward arc and comes down heavily on her back and upper shoulders. The rattle of the axe striking stone echoes and the structure continues to shake with these kinds of impacts. Though even as her legs fold back atop her a strength return to them and the momentum stops, and incredibly reverses direction into a near instantaneous kip-up as she flips back up into a low crouch.

A thread of blood leaking form the corner of her lips it seems to have neither hinder nor shaken loose her tongue. There is no conversation, are no words. Noembelu continues a silent and glowing appraisal of Cassie's skill. If this girl were made a sister, their training sessions would be... She had no word for it; she would look forward to it being that time, that opportunity to push herself.

Sweepiiiiing her oversize hatchet backward Noembelu coils herself into an explosive stance from which she can launch herself into a spiralling feet first drilling attack. An unnaturally bright wash of purple light clinging to her legs and form in the process.

A teenage terminator that as yet to make a sound and appears to want nothng more than to crush a heroc do-gooder.

COMBATSYS: Noembelu successfully hits Cassie with Spiral Arrow.

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Noembelu         1/-----==/=======|=======\==-----\1           Cassie

Not getting back any response is rough, and just watching how this girl responds suggests something weird as hell as going on here. There really isn't enough light in here to get a good view of her, but just a few flickers from the flashlight when they were closer together and some of the near passes in the dark suggest that she really can't be much past 18.

The sudden burst of energy does manage to light things up a bit more, but even between green from Cage and purple from the Doll, there's far too much motion to actually get a good view of what the hell's going on, but Cassie's sure of one thing, she really doesn't want to feel what that's going to hit like, trying to shift back and raise her arms in front of her protectively.

All that spinning makes it really hard to guess just what direction things are moving in.

Getting caught in the chest by a pair of spinning feet, Cage is knocked back, stumbling awkwardly as she tries to keep her feet under her, with her teeth clenched. This girl clearly isn't just some random pick-up for hire, she's got some serious training to back up all that hurt.

"Maybe you need to go back to school to work on your colors, that definitely wasn't white, and I don't know if it really counts as a flag, either. It might help if I helped you clear your ears out or something, just hold still for a second."

Not wasting any time getting back to her feet, Cassie lunges forward, moving to grab hold of the Doll by the shoulder as she reels back with one hand, drawing it in for a massive slap to the face with enough force held back in it that it should have Noembelu spinning a clean 180 from the impact. It all flows into another smooth motion as the extendable baton is whipped out again, swinging in a clean upward arc between the Doll's legs for some classic Cage cheap shot.

COMBATSYS: Noembelu barely endures Cassie's Severance Package.

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Noembelu         1/-======/=======|==-----\-------\0           Cassie

Her young face turned aside the young Natve American spits a mouthful of the blood that was already filling her mouth to the floor. Craning her body back as though the blow meant nothing there a solid thunk as the baton rings out against both flesh and the bone of her pelvis. A human should fall, Noembelu doesn't.

Nothing! This close to Cassandra Cage, point blank - she has the warm brown coloured eyes of a living creature but they're devoid of emotion or expression as if she were being driven by the unfeeling and computational core of a machine. The thing buried deep behind the eyes of a young girl cares nothing for the flesh it inhabits, if her body were scattered and broken across the floor she wold continue to fight on.

Dolls, representing the ideal, absolute and unquestioning loyal servants. Selected all from the best of Shadaloo's enemies and most prodigious children humanity has to offer. The gifts they possess, present in the flesh and marrow now put to a use for a higher purpose, service greater than that of petty nations and their fears.

Still, not even a murmur of complaint or whimper of pain. Noembelu won't ever stop. There's an uneasy tremor in her hand she's never seen before, she felt every torment of the pain from her wounds but wouldn't let t slow her. Now she was in this close?

This was what she wanted. She spears a hand out to grab at Cassie's face, strong enough to lift the taller girl into the air with her arm fully extended. On contact she'd leap both of them into the air, wind milling the Cage around as though she were a ragdoll and then smashing the 'American' soldier into the foundations with her full weight, tremendous strength and all that momentum.

COMBATSYS: Cassie endures Noembelu's Mexican Typhoon.

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Noembelu         2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\0           Cassie

What the hell is wrong with this girl, and is too much to ask for Cassie to get a chance to fight someone tonight who isn't some manner of busted mental condition and unreadable monster?

At least when she was fighting B.B. earlier in that disaster of a title match, there were people on scene who would be able to step in and deal with shit if things got too heated. Here?

Honestly, right now Cage isn't quite sure how much longer she's waiting for reinforcements to show up, but the simple fact of the matter is, they're nowhere near close enough, and this girl likes to run around with an axe, which probably means she doesn't just take being a winner graciously...

And there's all the girls in the truck. If Cassie can't put Noembelu down, who knows what's going to happen to them. Will they end up just like this girl?

Cassie can't risk that, but she can risk herself.

The way that Noembelu is moving, there's barely any time to react as she goes in for the grab, and Cassie ends up not even trying to move. All of this is going to hurt like hell, but if she can just get through getting tossed around like a ragdoll, she might just be able to take advantage on the other side...

Cage cries out loud as she hits the ground, but there's no time to let a thing like what might well be a few cracked ribs get in the way of doing the right thing. Rolling up on to her side, one hand catches the floor along with it's elbow and in a flash, Cassie twists upright as her body is sheathed completely in green energy before she rockets straight up into a hit aimed clean to Noembelu's jaw, twisting back around at her apex, clearly defying physics as she shoots back down again from above.

COMBATSYS: Cassie successfully hits Noembelu with Assault Force.

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Noembelu         2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\1           Cassie

Sailing into the air amongst a cloud of spittle and blood the dolls head rocks back hard enough the ringing in her ears wipes away he awareness of the world around her. Her neck feeling would sever as it cracks audibly. Her jaw endures where her neck might fail, a perk of not wasting her words or having her jaw flapping open. She can barely see through the haze of white emptiness that melts away like snow.

Flying high up and then being spiked downwards one again the eagle crashes to earth and tumbles as though a boneless ragdoll, suffering that kind of damage and hitting the sturdy pavement that hard she had to be beyond her limits.

Though by the third revolution a wicked swing of a second axe rings out, a long trail of orange sparks as she throws down a swing of her axe and slows her careening progress with it as her anchor.

Within the space of a few more feet she is back up into a visibly knee trembling and unsteady run. Releasing her axe from numb fingers that will no longer hold it she raises her one good arm and continues a headlong rush. Face completely masked by a layer of blood from her hairline and scalp, she still hasn't lost that air of calm composure and indifference to her fate.

She reaches out of Cassie, a repeat performance of what happened earlier, but without leaping she would grab the other woman and dash her against the ground hard enough to bounce her into the air; then leap to catch the airborne opponent and flying to an even greater height, then entomb her in in the ground.

COMBATSYS: Noembelu has reached second wind!

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Noembelu         0/-------/---<<<<|=======\-------\1           Cassie

COMBATSYS: Cassie blocks Noembelu's Psycho Typhoon.

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Noembelu         0/-------/---<<<<|=======\===----\1           Cassie

What's it take to keep a bad girl down?

Alright, there was a period not long ago where Cassie absolutely posted shit like that about herself with a complete lack of irony, but everyone deserves the right to bring that shit back around in a more appropriate setting, because right now there's not much else to think about the way this girl keeps fighting on despite all the punishment.

Even with only one working arm, the Doll is moving too quickly for Cassie to get completely out of reach before she's grabbed, and this is the point where it's clear some other approach is going to be needed. As Noembelu lets go with the initial toss, Cage pulls everything she's got together, twisting about in mid-air so that she manages to hit the ground in a roll, kicking up dust along the ground and finally twisting about with her feet under her in a crouch as she comes to a stop.

There's something wrong with Noembelu. With someone her age acting like this, somebody must have raised her in some terrible conditions or done something to really mess up her mind... but that's enough of a connection that Cassie knows there's no way that she can let her get away with all of those other girls.

She's not going to let something this awful happen to anyone else.

In a smooth, practiced motion, Cassie wheels her pistol back out of its holster and barely even pauses to line up the shot as she squeezes the trigger.

"...I'm sorry."

COMBATSYS: Cassie successfully hits Noembelu with Blood Stain.
Glancing Blow

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Noembelu         0/-------/-<<<<<<|=======\====---\1           Cassie

The feet distant figure of the Doll lands unsteadily, her fingers making contact with the ground and dragging her forward into a tottering and forward leaning run. Slowed, on the verge of failing and yet she still isn't slowed. Well past the point she should have fallen and still moving at the limits of what her flesh was capable of.

Her youthful features blacked out with glistening blood and the dark and blood sodden poncho. She charges the cavalry in such a head-on and directmanner it emphasizes the white of her eyes in the dark, the still unblemished and proud feather in her hair she will no blink or waive off. Her people were warriors, men and women who knew the pain of a three hundred year old grudge, descending from a line of warriors stretching back into the infancy of civilizations.

The forceful kick in the torso stills her forward momentum as though she were kicked, she can feel flesh and fabric both tearing but ..won't. Her strength fails her as her run peters out and she stumbles, hand to knee to support her. Her breath came short, her knees were too weak to support her unless he locked them straight, but this was almost close enough.

The words of the soldier lodged against and irritated something akin to pride. Warriors should never apologize for using their whole strength. All that mattered was strength, that was the truth that was embodied by Lord Vega.

Strength! Above all else.

Fortified, the native American rocks back on her heels and lunges back into the fray by hurling herself in Cassie's direction, such that she would fall short by just a few feet - if she were not going to launch into an ascending flying kick, wreathed in that same vibrant aura of wrongness and twisted emotions. It was fuelled by her hate, Cassie fed into and kindled what was already there; Her resentment and hate stoking a conflagration of negative emotion in her heart. A deluge of negative force and pain all pouring out of Noembelu where all of that suppressed feeling, hurt and torment!! All of it weaponized against Lord Vega's foes.

COMBATSYS: Noembelu successfully hits Cassie with Cannon Spike.

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Noembelu         0/-------/-======|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2           Cassie

The world was full of assholes.

People who wanted to call Johnny Cage an asshole might have a good point about it, he always was too full of himself. He could be inconsiderate. Some of the things he said and did were completely embarassing. Cassie wouldn't even deny that she was sometimes an asshole, throwing whatever shade she could manage in a fight just to throw off her opponents. Putting people on blast through Twitter or Instagram, which could end with a barrage of her followers building more trouble on someone who was barely a blip on the radar before that.

But the real assholes were like these kidnappers who'd gone out of their way to abduct a bunch of girls off the street. The people causing a war along the border just to move drugs, getting people who didn't deserve it caught up in the crossfire.

Whoever it was that helped turn Noembelu into this sort of monster, they were just the type who needed to get their balls punched straight off, but right now all that Cassie could do is keep fighting until reinforcements could arrive and set things right... she's not sure there's anything she could do to actually put the Doll down short of killing her.

But the assault just won't stop.

Cassie's feeling the weight of this fight weighing her down, and it's all she can do to try to move aside.

She's not fast enough.

All those fires of hate catch her hard as she's knocked back by the kick, sent reeling in pain as she nearly falls over, every part of her body starting to scream in pain. This is it and she knows it.

"Why don't you just do everyone a favor and stay down?!" Cage shouts as she pushes forward one last time, her body starting to glow once more as she lashes out with a quick kick to the head, whipping her leg back around once more for a strike toward the shin before raising back up about chest level when her whole body surges forward, once more defying all physics as she goes for the final blow with all she had left.

COMBATSYS: Cassie can no longer fight.

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Noembelu         0/-------/-======|

COMBATSYS: Noembelu dodges Cassie's Fancy Footwork.

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Noembelu         0/-------/-======|

Punch drunken choreography at its finest and most deadly. Noembelu no longer had the reserves or the balance to do more than sway backwards in response, the kick lashing out at her head sweeps one of her braids around into an arc where it slaps harmlessly against her back. Her movement in of itself overbalancing her such that she has to take a step backwards in retreat to try and stay upright.

The other leg being lifted and her retreat continuing as with the next blow Cassi attempts to lash out at her leg. She overreached and fell, that much was now beyond her abilities. Her sluggish and weak body was slow to respond, ungainly and drunken by hero own assessment she hits the ground with a tooth jarring impact. Looking to the green glowing fighter first and then out of the corner of her eye at something else.

The soldier spearing towards her prompts her to tuck in her elbows and throw her body to the side in a roll across the ground, and to her most recently dropped axes. She was once again armed, she would continue to fight!

She would absolutely not 'stay down.' It takes a supreme effort to elbow lever herself into a kneel, then a crouch and back to her feet. The axe hanging from her loose grip, the handle was slick with cooling and fresh blood. The sight that greeted her caused a pang of regret. Her opponent had fallen while she was so focused on pushing through her own weaknesses. There was something deeply unsatisfying and bitter about this outcome being reached in this manner.

Noembelu swings her axe back into her hand properly, held precisely and as a proudly as a warrior of Shadaloo should.

The young girl walks painfully over to Cassie and drops into a crouch over the soldier, ignoring feeble defences the girl slides her hand down the blood soaked axe, firming her grip behind the head of the axe she sets about a practiced and grisly task.

Hunters skinned what they took, butchered the animal as cleanly as possible in order to minimize what was left for the scavengers and more easily transport,

There is a heavy rip and pop as the razor sharp axe is levied against straps and Kevlar. Systematically the and without wasted motion Noembelu extracts Cassie from her webbing, belt, firearms and tools. This girl was what she wanted all along, a prize worthy of battle and being claimed. It's well and good she went this route with the sound of speeding vehicles approaching from a distance.

The rest here, it could be sacrificed to secure the one gem this exercise had turned over. An oiled and damp leather creaks as she returns the axe to its holster, Lifting the neck of her poncho up over her head she lays the fabric over cassie, arms and legs bound together with straps taken from her own harness.

Good enough to travel.

When the Special Forces arrive they find the guards incapacitated where Cassie had deposited them, a man requiring medical attention and a number of the abducted girls, all now safe and sound though understandably shocked and traumatized by their ordeal. Of Cassandra Cage, a spaghetti mess of her webbing and plenty of blood pooling around the area. Her dog tags ominously lying right in the midst of the carnage. The agent has vanished, it's a disheartening and high price paid to save so many other young women. A twitter feed gone quiet.

COMBATSYS: Noembelu has ended the fight here.

Log created on 21:43:07 07/09/2018 by Cassie, and last modified on 12:03:14 07/12/2018.