NFG Season Two - Odyssey R1 - [Don't?] Call Me Beautiful

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Description: It's the invincible Achilles versus the amazonian Penthesilea in a little bit of NFG matchmaking. Sure, Achilles fell in love with the queen of the Amazons, but only after he'd killed her. A fitting Valentine's Day celebration, New Fighting Generation style - with some surprising twists and turns along the way.

Hawksley stands upon the top of the hill, surrounded by the remnants of stone walls and structures from a long gone civilisation. His shoulder-length golden blonde locks blow around his tanned face in the breeze and his piercing blue eyes look out to the horizon. He's dressed for battle today, his clothes made of metal and leather. On his upper-half is a leather and metal muscle cuirass with metalized, vacuum-formed breastplates, back plates and copper panel ornamentation. Around his mid-section is a belted integral pteryges apron with brass ornaments and leather ties on the sides. On his lower-half is a pleated leather lace up skirt. On his arms are leather and metal lace up arm gauntlets and on his legs some metal greaves. On his feet he wear soft leather high top boots that fasten with laces. As yet however, his opponent hasn't arrived.

It's Valentine's Day and normally Hawksley would be spending it having a romantic meal with whoever his current love interest is. In recent months, that's been his fellow New Fighting Generation competitor, Constance Coalbridge. Its seems that the organisers of the contest have a sense of humour however, as instead they have paired the tumultuous twosome in a match.

He hasn't actually seen Coco since early January when he'd left her parent's place in The Cotswolds, after spending the holiday season together. Since then he's been on a tour of Europe with his mate, Jimmy and his purple haired paramour has been reluctant to appear on video calls. He'd been expecting to meet up with her when they boarded The Mermaid Cruise Ship but so far she's been a no-show. He can only hope that she decides to turn up today.

He takes a large ornate drinking mug out from beneath the pleats of his skirt and plonks his arse down on a soft patch of grassland. Looking inside the empty drinking vessel he says in a clear commanding voice with a thick Cork accent. "Henschke Hill of Grace Eden Valley Shiraz." Instantly the mug is filled with rich red liquid with the scent of blackberries, mulberries, redcurrants, blueberries and plums. The Irishman inhales the aroma and then take a thirsty gulp.

There's been a lot of speculation online about whether Constance Coalbridge would be making her return to the New Fighting Generation after the scathing treatment of the project by the Coalbridge estate in the aftermath of her life-altering injuries. However, after an initial wave of criticism, threats of litigation, and leaks of sightings of Coco and Hawksley in Cork and The Cotswolds, the estate and its heiress have been oddly silent for weeks.

That silence is bombastically broken by the approaching drone of helicopter rotors approaching from the direction of the Aegean. The sleek black vehicle might as well be an attack copter, based on the aggression and intent of its approach, but as it circles around to reveal an open side, it's clear that the payload it's delivering is...

Well, to be fair, it's a pretty explosive one. After all, Constance Coalbridge has been described as a bombshell in just about every sense of the metaphor, and it appears that she has no intent of changing that on this occasion.

The woman's face is completely concealed by a full mask covered in LED lights presently configured to show an image of the same woman's face - as it was before her injuries. It's probably at least a little unnerving, and distracts from the remarkable remainder of her aesthetic - a black and gold top with some ornamental armoured elements, a necklace, a battle skirt and bracers, and a pair of gold-plated shin guards and sandals give the appearance of a warrior woman of old as depicted by Hollywood or some video game franchise. That may or may not have something to do with the fact that the skirt is a little on the short side - or that may simply be a practical measure for a high-kicking Amazonian queen.

Knowing Coco, it's probably both.

One wouldn't expect Penthesilea to be deploying military-style from a helicopter directly onto a hilltop ruin, but apparently, it's on the agenda. The purple-haired pugilist slides down the thick rope with the aid of a pair of padded gloves before pulling them off and tossing them aside, revealing a more practical pair of fingerless fighting gloves underneath as she saunters toward Hawksley.

"Did someone call for an Amazon delivery?" she asks, voice muffled behind her mask, before the image displayed on it shifts to a winking face.

Given that the most exciting delivery Hawksley has previously had from Amazon was a set of bluetooth earphones, the Irishman can't help but be impressed by this particular pretty package. He blinks up into the winter sun, his eyes stinging and the wind whipping a silken strand of hair into his open mouth.

"Jesus, Coco. That's some mask." He states. "Where did you get your hands on something like that? It must have cost a fecking fortune."

Of course, money isn't something that is a concern for the Coalbridge family and given the importance they seem to place on appearances, they likely didn't hesitate to cough up.

"Where's Morgie?" He wonders, as his eyes scan the skimpy costume Coco is almost clothed in. "Will he be wearing a little helmet or something? It'd be grand to see something like that."

He takes another swig from his mug and then gets to his feet. "Happy Valentine's Day, by the way. Eros is the fella around these parts for that kind of thing, isn't he? Maybe they should have dressed me up as him or something. Not that I'm complaining about being cast as someone Brad Pitt played.

That explains the aesthetic then. Hawksley's costume is very much modelled on that worn by the movie star in Troy, right down to the blonde wig and tinted blue contact lenses he's wearing.

"I don't really know much about all that Greek mythology shite but the film was alright."

"He's off for a skydiving lesson," Coco explains Captain Morgan's absence matter-of-factly as she straightens out the gloves that she's still wearing and traces lines in the dust with her sandals. It's hard to see from directly below, but it seems that the bearcat is, in fact, harnessed onto a professional skydiver's vest up in the chopper. "And it's hardly expensive, Lucky. It's just a bit of LED and some shatterproof glass or plastic or whatever. Of course, mine's designer, so it was a couple of hundred quid, but it's cheaper than a pair of shoes."

The mask gives a nonchalant expression to accompany the girl's shrug.

"But yes, happy Valentine's Day, Lucky. I'll try not to ruin our plans for later." She cracks her knuckles as she makes the promise, the mask smiling across the uncanny valley at him. "You know, you'd almost look a bit like Ken Masters in that wig, Lucky, if it weren't for the contacts. I guess Achilles wasn't too bad, hmm?"

The face on the mask winks out of existence as Coco stops scraping her sandal and lifts one knee up, bringing her fists up into her Muay Thai stance.

"Right, the sooner we get this started, the sooner I kick your arse, the sooner we can get on a boat and enjoy unlimited drinks in international waters. Finish your drink and come get some, Lucky."

COMBATSYS: Coco has started a fight here.

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Coco             0/-------/------=|

The strange sight of Morgie looking like he's about to take part in extreme sports causes the Cork fella to chuckle. "I swear that bearcat lives a more exciting life than some people." He comments.

Looking down at his boots he shrugs his shoulders, mimicking Coco's gesture. "Your shoes maybe. These ones aside mine are usually a lot cheaper, so they are."

He gives a light tug of his wig, still not used to the extra length. "I'll take the comparison to Ken as a compliment, so I will. He's a helluva fighter."

Downing his drink as requested, he wipes his mouth with the back of his hand and starts to make his way over to Coco. "So no kicks to the crotch then, if you're not wanting to ruin our plans for later. Although perhaps I wouldn't feel it in this get-up."

He tucks the mug away in whatever secret place he'd previously been stashing it and instead pulls out a silver hip-flask. Stepping closer to his sweetheart, he unscrews the lid and takes a long lingering drink before igniting the booze and blowing it in her direction!

COMBATSYS: Hawksley has joined the fight here.

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Coco             0/-------/------=|-------\-------\0         Hawksley

COMBATSYS: Coco blocks Hawksley's Hedonism.

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Coco             0/-------/----===|-------\-------\0         Hawksley

"Well, he's a more exciting person than most people," Coco comments casually on her companion. "Not to mention a more interesting conversationalist. But then, you've already met my parents and their friends."

She huffs audibly behind her mask, the expression in lights taking on an annoyed look that is likely familiar to the Irishman by now. "Yes, Lucky, in the interest of making the implicit explicit, that is what I was referring to. But no, you would definitely feel it."

The warning in her tone is laced with confidence on the matter.

When Hawksley blows the gout of flame toward her, she scoffs behind her mask. "Fire. How considerate."

Regardless, she gets the gloves up, the bracers blocking the brunt of the blaze as it connects with them. Her wrists still smoking, she fights off a coughing fit while circling toward Hawksley with aggressive intent. In seconds, she's closed the gap, the unseeing eyes of her mask seeming to lock onto the Irishman's own and create a strange sense of connection as she attempts to clinch his shoulders with her hands. If she can manage it, she'll swing a knee up sharply - fortunately aiming high - to try and connect with his ribs and force him to double over.

Should she succeed, she'd swing her legs around to straddle his head and mount his shoulders, intending to swing him around with her waist while sharing her own sense of turning her upper body in the opposite direction, before sending him to the ground with a twist of her hips!

If she manages it, he'll likely be left with a lingering sense of inebriation and lost equilibrium beyond the potency of his Shiraz.

COMBATSYS: Hawksley blocks Coco's Singapore Sling.

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Coco             0/-------/---====|==-----\-------\0         Hawksley

Hawksley's mind drifts back to his time spent with John and Margaret Coalbridge and their cronies. It hadn't actually been as bad as he'd expected, although he had had to bite his tongue on several occasions, and to be fair, he was mostly inebriated when he was around them. There's a lot of criticism he could give out to Coco's parents but stinginess with stocking their bar wasn't one of them.

He does indeed recognise the irritated look the Englishwoman's fake face wears. He's probably spent more time in her bad books than in her good graces in their time together but he seems remarkly resilient to her changeable moods. At this stage, he's had a lot of practice weathering them.

"I've been thinking about the fire and all, since I found out we'd be fighting each other in the first round." He admits. "But I figured that you're gonna come up against it sooner or later. Bucky Boy uses it, that dragon girl does. Probably some other feckers I haven't heard about. At least with me if it all goes wrong, I'll be here to look after you."

That's probably cold comfort to Coco but it's likely the lad has honourable intentions at least.

It's with some relief to him that she manages to deal with his delivery of flames without too much fuss, simply seeing her wrists starting to smoke. "Plus I reckon if you've come back then you must be ready for all this again." He continues to chatter. "Otherwise, why bother? You can't expect people to go easy on you if you've entered the fray."

When she comes for him, he's ready. The eye contact captures his attention and does throw him off guard briefly, allowing his shoulders to be grabbed and the knee to connect with his ribs but before the bombshell can mount him, he stops her in her tracks, muscular arms reaching out to maneuver her into the position he desires.

Face to face with his flirty frenemy, he takes a swing at her masked visage, aiming to knock her off-balance. Should his jab connect, he'll grab the girl's own shoulders and pull her down to meet his rising right knee.

COMBATSYS: Hawksley successfully hits Coco with Buzzkill ES.

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Coco             1/-------/=======|===----\-------\0         Hawksley

"Oh, save your breath, Lucky," Coco chastises Hawksley for his defensive remarks as she clinches with him. "You're going to need i-"


The initial jab connects with Coco's mask, causing her to stumble backward until she's caught by his hands.


Then, his knee comes up, connecting even harder with the electronic facewear, this time leaving spiderweb cracks in the plastic and some of the nodes flickering and failing to light as she reels from the follow-up blow. It echoes a time much earlier in the competition - nearly a year ago - when the two of them first fought, and he'd pulled the same move on her, despite her insistence that they avoid hitting each other in the face.

"Bastard," Coco mutters behind her mask as the expression shifts to one with her two-dimensional tongue stuck out at Hawksley. "Still can't help hitting me in the face, hmm? I thought you'd be at least a little more gentlemanly by now."

She doesn't sound especially sincere in her remark, at least, nor particularly distraught. She instead tries to resume the close-quarters combat, reaching for his arms again as her flickering electronic eyes make contact with his. This time, she throws another, dangerously lower knee, but the seemingly predictable strike is a feint intended to drop Hawksley's guard to the defense of his family jewels. The real attack is an elbow about to be thrown over his lowered guard and into his face. If she manages to unbalance him with the attack, she'll chase it with a forceful sidelong smack of her hips to his center of gravity - one accompanied by an empathic echo of her own sense of the impact, should it connect, making it feel twice as hard for Hawksley.

COMBATSYS: Hawksley blocks Coco's Tiki Bongo.

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Coco             1/-------/=======|====---\-------\0         Hawksley

"That's me." The brawler brazenly responds to Coco's less than flattering name for him. The sounds of the mask breaking do have the fella cringing however. Obviously Coco had felt the need for some coverage and now he's only gone and cracked it. It is still in place though and Hawksley finds himself amused by the sight of the teasing tongue.

"If you were after a gentleman then you shoulda stayed home in Chelsea." He suggests. "Instead of chasing after me. You can't say I ever gave false advertising about who I am. I reckon you knew full well what you were getting yourself into."

He flashes her a cheery grin as she comes in closer. "Now, darling. We can get around to that later. First of all we..."

Hawksley flinches as Coco tries to feint him with the knee strike. His quick reaction is what saves him from the elbow coming straight for his nose. Instead it hits the Irishman on the chin, sending his head jolting backwards as he jumps out of the way of the forceful follow-up.

Glancing behind him on the ground, the lively lad reaches out behind a stone structure to produce a metal helmet with horse-hair bristles attached. Passing it from one hand to the other, he then dashes forwards, seeking to strike Coco in the chest with it.

COMBATSYS: Coco just-defends Hawksley's Random Weapon!!

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Coco             1/-------/=======|====---\-------\0         Hawksley

"I just thought a bit of class might have rubbed off on you by now," Coco remarks in the midst of their exchange as her hip finds nothing but air and she adjusts her stance back into a defensive guard. "I suppose it's gone a bit the other way 'round instead."

The purple-haired pugilist is ready as Hawksley reaches around for a weapon, the mask taking on a one-eyebrow-arched expression at the selection. "You do know that's for wearing, don't you?"

Somewhere behind the mask, the sharpness of Coco's concentration intensifies, her focus turning inward as the horse-hair helmet is heaved toward her cleavage. Rather than blocking the improvised weapon directly with her arms, she draws in a deep breath, actualising a defensive tautness in the targeted region through her inner eye until she's confident in her ability to achieve what she's about to attempt - all in the space of a second or less. And then, she thrusts forward, clashing against the helmet with her bust and sending it flying out of Hawksley's hand, leaving her chest unaffected save for a momentary tug-of-war with gravity as her advanced physics set in.

"Well, that worked," Coco comments, sounding mildly surprised in retrospect as the face disappears from her mask and she focuses her attention directly on Hawksley, one hand shifting to her waist as she cocks a hip tauntingly. "I don't suppose you considered bringing a real weapon for once, Lucky?"

COMBATSYS: Coco focuses on her next action.

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Coco             1/-------/=======|====---\-------\0         Hawksley

"I'm not sure class works like that." Hawksley laughs. "So don't you be blaming me for being a bad influence now. I'm sure you've always had a bit of the wild woman in you deep down."

He eyes the helmet as Coco advises him of its true purpose. "I am about knowing that, so I am. I just couldn't fit it on without knocking this stupid wig askew. I suppose I coulda gone with the helmet instead but it seemed heavy, which is why I thought it'd be handy as a weapon."

As he fails to find his intended target with the hat, Hawskley's currently blue eyes go wide. "Well how about that then?" He marvels, as the helmet is sent bouncing by the kickboxer's breasts. "It seems they have more than just the one use."

He shifts his gaze downwards and shakes his head. "I don't own such a thing but I suppose if I was really getting into character I could have brought a spear and shield. I'd be just as likely to do myself an injury as yourself though."

He moves in closer planting his lips against Coco's neck before whispering into her ear. "So what do you fancy doing later then? You know, once we're finished with the fight."

Perhaps he's feeling frisky or maybe he's just making the most of a chance to catch his breath after being out of action lately.

COMBATSYS: Hawksley focuses on his next action.

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Coco             1/-------/=======|====---\-------\0         Hawksley

"What's this about the 'one use?'" The scowl behind Coco's mask is practically audibly visible. "Nevermind, don't answer that - there are probably children watching."

She backs off from Hawksley after he plants his lips against her neck, lifting a warding hand. "Professionalism, Lucky. We're supposed to be fighting here. And again - children watching!"

She hoists herself up onto a wall before jumping off of it with her leg extended, attempting to kick Hawksley in the side of the head. Apparently she doesn't need him thinking straight for whatever it is that she has planned for them later.

COMBATSYS: Hawksley interrupts Diving Kick from Coco with There's A Star.

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Coco             1/--=====/=======|======-\-------\0         Hawksley

As he sees Coco coming towards him, Hawksley holds out his hand, creating a burning ball of fire in his palm. As his hand moves through the air, a fiery trail can be seen. lighting the sky with it's flickering flames.

He rushes forwards to meet her and then starts to spin, stopping her diving kick in its tracks, but not before it crashes into his shoulder.

The purple-haired posh girl will find the Irishman's palm slamming into her, hot and heavy and likely to hurt.

"I'm only joking, so I am. There's many uses for them." He backs up, blowing her a kiss as he prepares himself for whatever revenge she has planned.

Hawksley's burning hand slams into the thin armor covering Coco's midriff, sending its searing heat through the leather and metal and causing her to tumble backward into the wall, knocking her head against the decrepit stonework with a dull thud. She groans in pain behind her mask, forcing herself up to her feet with the support of the ancient structure as she breathes heavily behind the cracked digital void.

"And you'll be lucky to have a chance exploring any of them, at this rate," she says hazily as she gets her feet back under herself. "These spiderwebs aren't helping. I can hardly get a good look at you."

One hand comes up to her cracked mask, a gentle tug pulling it to one side. As it does, a single silver eye becomes visible, gleaming as it locks with Hawksley's, a glimmer of pale, unblemished cheek beneath it. "There. That's better," she says in a low (for her) voice as, in the physical stillness of the moment, the cobra suddenly lashes out mentally - an invisible connection attempting to sink its fangs into the Irish fighter. But rather than a painful poison, the metaphysical influence attempts to flood Hawksley's mind with a physical memory, one likely to be overwhelming if he should give in to it; a sensation empathically imprinted from the Irishman's own experience in a Metro City alley.

The exact details of that experience cannot be described due to the fact that, as Constance keeps saying, children could be watching.

As the mental assault is unfolding, Coco is winding her body into position, steadying her focus back on Hawksley. And if he can't pull himself out of her imposed reverie, he'll find her foot suddenly descending from above him as she delivers a devastating vertical roundhouse to his golden crown!

COMBATSYS: Coco successfully hits Hawksley with #Cobra's Fang#.

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Coco             0/-------/-------|=======\====---\1         Hawksley

"Oh Jesus! Feck!" The Cork fella cries out as Coco's head smacks against the stone. He's happy to knock her down but he doesn't wanna kill her. She's soon back upright though and he breathes out a grateful sigh of relief.

He watches as she moves her mask to the side, seeing the silver peeking out from behind it. Her skin seems almost smooth in this light, restored to its former perfection. The Irishman inhales sharply, realising his mind must be playing tricks on him. "Why don't you take the mask off?" He suggests softly. "You're still beautiful you know." Not that she's given him too much chance to see her minus her bandages since she was badly burned. She's only exposed herself when the lights are out or his back has been turned.

As he looks towards her loveliness, he feels his brain flooded with flashbacks of a frenzied frolic behind the back of an Irish bar. He finds himself almost unsteady on his feet and by the time the foot crashes into his crown, he can't stop himself from falling.

Down he goes, the blonde wig coming off as he collides with the ground, revealing his more familiar short dark hair. He blinks though the blue lenses, before removing them too, restoring himself to his usual natural appearance. Albeit it whilst wearing a Greek warrior's wardrobe.

He's taken a lot of damage but anyone who knows Hawksley is aware he isn't quick to give up. He gets to his feet slowly and steadily, staggering towards Coco as he clutches a hand to his head. "It could have been worse." He claims, putting on a brave face. "I reckon all that hair cushioned the blow."

He starts to circle Coco, his expression thoughtful before he mutters. "Feck it." As he stamps his foot against the ground, the grassland around the pair ignites, forming a ring of fire that surrounds them. He takes a second to glance in her direction and then darts forwards, seeking to deliver a devastating lightning-fast punch and send Coco flying through the fierce flames!

COMBATSYS: Coco just-defends Hawksley's Burn Baby Burn!!

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Coco             0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0         Hawksley

"And you've probably not burst any vessels, because the blood was all diverted elsewhere," Coco wryly remarks in response to Hawksley's claim of cushioning coiffage, the mask having been slipped back into place. "I prefer you dark anyway, Lucky. Try not to get too distracted," she teases as she slides back into her typical Thai boxing stance.

The grass around the pair catches fire as Hawksley drives his burning chi into the earth, and Coco flinches just for a moment. It doesn't last for the time between the Irishman striking the ground and his sudden lunge forward, though - with an equal burst of speed, her bracers cross, catching the attack with a ringing clang as she's sent skidding back along the dirt with her sandals. The broken bracers fall from her wrists as she keeps going, sliding through the wall of fire in an instant, and at first, it seems that she may be engulfed, as the skirt and bustier and sandals of her outfit start to ignite. Miraculously, though, as the smoke rises off of her body, her skin remains unburnt. Her dark, expressionless mask is barely visible behind the burning barrier - until it starts to approach once more.

The Amazonian warrior woman strides through the flames unfazed as blackened bits of her battlewear tumble in a trail of ash behind her. She kicks off the leather sandals, leaving her bare feet to leave prints in the dirt. Even the mask begins to melt from the intensity of the heat until she reaches up a hand to pull the molten mass of plastic and ruined electrodes away from her face and toss it aside.

What's left is a Coco standing in her tight black bikini bottoms and top - seemingly made of oddly more advanced and resilient material, perhaps procured as a precautionary expense based on her past experiences - and otherwise completely exposed.

With a self-satisfied smirk drawn across her face, restored and pristine, save for the minor bruising around her temples from the prior battering through her mask.

"Well, that little secret didn't last long," she comments casually as she gives her back a brief stretch, then brushes her bangs away from her face. "You should be more careful, Lucky. I'm sure somebody's just launched a navy somewhere."

Then, back to business, Coco shifts forward and drops down onto her hands, lashing out with one luxuriously-sculpted leg to try and kick out at Hawksley's heel, intending to take him down in lore-friendly fashion!

COMBATSYS: Coco successfully hits Hawksley with Medium Kick.

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Coco             0/-------/------=|===----\-------\0         Hawksley

The sight is truly spectacular as The Irishman's speedy strike is stopped by Coco's costume. When the flames melt away her modesty, revealing the flawless flesh beneath, the Cork lad stares in awe. Not at the sight of the Londoner in her bikini, that's something he's witnessed many times. His wonder is at what's beneath the mask.

"I thought I was imagining it." Hawksley claims. "When I got a glimpse before like. Where are the burns you had? It's like nothing ever happened to you."

He's feeling all kinds of emotions right now. Elated at the fact that Coco doesn't have to face up to a lifetime of looking away from her reflection. Confused about how she could have been healed when she'd seemed so against such a thing before. Relieved that perhaps he now has the woman he wanted back with him. Not that it was ever her physical self he grieved, not past the initial shock of the incident anyway. He'd missed the dynamics they'd had between them. The teasing, the banter, the edginess in the air. As he'd cared for her and comforted her, all those things had slipped away. Truth be told, their time in Cork had been challenging to say the least. He'd wanted to introduce her to all his friends and show her around his beautiful county. She had refused to leave his family home however, sending him to see his mates alone and claiming she'd be happier hidden away. The same story had unfolded in The Cotswolds. He'd celebrated the New Year with her family and friends, whilst she insisted she was too tired to come downstairs to the party. He'd been torn between his natural inclination to be surrounded by people at the centre of things and the desire to protect her and ease her pain.

On his trip to Europe he'd felt like he could breathe again and just be himself. Go back to being the boy with no responsibilities and the freedom to do what the feck he wanted. He had of course been looking forward to seeing Coco again but there was some trepidation about how things would be. Today, those thoughts had gone away. He could tell she was full of fun and flirtiness and now he knows the reason why. She's been sheltering her secret, saving it for some big reveal. He wonders how long it would have been until he'd discovered the truth, if Coco's hand hadn't been forced.

"Helen of Troy". He murmurs. He remembers her from the movie and knows she was famous for being fair of face. As the strike of Coco's leg swoops towards him he's simply too stunned to do much about it. He feels a sharp pain throb in his heel and just like the man he's portraying, he starts to wonder if this will mark his downfall.

Lashing out wildly at whichever part of her he can reach, Hawksley seeks to land a punch on her firm flesh. It lacks any of his usual boxer's technique. It simply has the goal of making contact with Coco and proving he is still in this fight.

COMBATSYS: Coco interrupts Improvised Punch from Hawksley with Tequila Sunrise.
- Power hit! -

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Coco             1/-------/=======|=======\-------\0         Hawksley

For one reason or another, Coco doesn't answer Hawksley's question. Instead, she just holds his gaze, taking advantage of his awestruck state to maintain the mental link that she's been cultivating with him throughout the combat. For a moment, her serpentine psychic guardian relinquishes its sentinel state, opening up to allow her to feel the emotions that Hawksley is going through. It's only once he makes his statement that she finally reasserts dominion over her metaphysical core in order to deliver the kick to Hawksley's heel.

"Oh, if you say so, Lucky," she says as she slithers back up to her feet, bending down toward him and smiling as she catches his eyes again with her own. Her psychic prompting subtly diverts his attention toward the close-up view of her swaying chest that's on offer, firm and plentiful flesh ripe for the punching. He may not have even been intending to aim his fist that way, but somehow the gravitational pull seems to guide him in...

...only for the posh purplenette to grab a handful of his hair mid-blow, taking control of him and pulling him up as she robs the punch of its full power. A moment after it lands amidst her ample cleavage, her knee swings with sudden violence up past his overextended guard and into his chin.

"Happy Valentine's Day, babe," she says as she relinquishes her grasp on his dark hair to let him fall where he may.

As his hard fist finds the cushioned cleavage it's almost comforting for a moment. Almost. Hawksley is soon pulled out of any brief respite he's receiving by Coco's cruel tug on his hair. He's yanked upwards by it and then knocked backwards by the blow to his jaw.

He rests on the fragrant meadow, soothed by the scent of anemones braving the latter part of the coldest season to bring themselves into bloom. "I'd have preferred a nice card and some chocolates like. Or we could have shared a bottle of champagne. You might need a bit of help with the art of gift-giving, Coco Pops."

As he rises again, Hawksley feels dizzy and drained but not yet defeated. "I don't want to sound ungrateful though, so how about I give you a gift back? Since you went to the bother and all." He suggests.

Setting his arms and hands ablaze, he stalks towards the British babe. Once he's close enough, he starts to throw a series of hooks and crosses at her body before finishing off with a straight punch to the face.

COMBATSYS: Hawksley can no longer fight.

[               \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Coco             1/-------/=======|

COMBATSYS: Hawksley successfully hits Coco with Burn Out ES.

[                         \\\\\  <
Coco             1/-======/=======|

When her knee connected with Hawksley's jaw, it felt like time for Coco to bust out her win pose. After all, he'd be happy to leave it at that, wouldn't he? She's clearly had the best of him. And so, she's turned away with a hair toss and a smile for the drone she's clocked earlier angling for a shot of her (other) good side by the time that Hawksley starts getting up.

' about I give you a gift back? Since you went to the bother and all.'

Coco slows her preening and turns around with a frown as Hawksley storms toward her with fists aflame.

"Hey! No! I've won already, Lucky!"

She tries to block the body blows, but being caught off-guard as she is, what might have otherwise been a relatively straightforward combination from the sluggish slugger slips between her arms to hit her ribs.

"We have a date night!! -"


The beleaguered Brit's eyes glaze as the burning straight hits her right in the face, leaving her toppling back onto the grass. Luckily, it won't scar like the last fiery fist to the face she took - but her freshly restored face is going to be sporting a black eye for Valentine's dinner.

And to cap it off, it's enough to put her down just long enough for the officials to declare her knocked out.

COMBATSYS: Coco takes no action.

COMBATSYS: Coco can no longer fight.

No sooner has he landed the punch to his Valentine's face, then the Irish fella falls forwards to land on top of the lass. "Well I'll be damned. It looks like we got ourselves a draw."

It's the last words he manages to mutter with his boozy breath before he slips into a satisfied slumber. He's likely to weigh considerably more than his usual hundred and seventy five pounds with all the armour he's currently clad in. As such, Coco is probably feeling a little crushed under his fit frame.

Some time later when he finally stirs, she's still beneath him and he gives her a slow smile. "How about we get our arses back to that cruise ship in your chopper? There's a cocktail bar that will do us nicely for the night. This time you can actually have the real deal with us being in Europe."

Coco was the first to come to, but she'd decided to refuse the NFG staff's offers of moving the fallen Achilles, citing his need for a nap. It clearly had nothing to do with wanting to enjoy the feeling a bit longer. Or the fact that he was keeping the cameras from getting a clear shot of her marred eye.

She frowns when he brings up the chopper, though.

"I think it might be still in use at the moment..."

==*== ELSEWHERE ==*==

"Are you sure it's safe to jump with one of these strapped on?" the skydiving instructor asks his boss.

"With how much she's paying? You're gonna have to find out. Ready?"

An exceptionally adventurous binturong chuckles with excitement as it plummets down from thousands of feet in the air toward the crystal-blue Aegean...


Log created on 07:51:06 02/15/2024 by Coco, and last modified on 17:30:37 02/15/2024.