NFG Season Two - Odyssey R1 - The Original Wrestlemania

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Description: Antaeus was a wrestler of myth who had a totally unbroken victory streak... right up until Heracles took him out as another of the Labors. Will Xandercles manage to replicate this heroic feat, or will Skyetaeus put him on the mat for good?

Backstage, or at least, out of sight of prying cameras, Skye holds up her smartphone with a jingle of her kitty cat and rabbit charms. She holds the phone high, looking for the correct angle, then frowns. She glances around, this way, then that. She moves to a reflective shield set up decoratively, positioning herself in front of it. Lining her phone's camera up with it, she shifts to the side, jaunts a hip, then tries the other. She sighs.

"I can't really get a good photo here, Tyler, I mean, there's no mirror."



"Wait, didn't Ante Us fight Hercules like, nude?" Skye read the announcement again, more slowly this time. Her lips moved with the words, sounding them around. Reading them aloud to make sure she parsed everything.

"Skye, how do you know that?" the voice coming through the speaker was that of another woman, definitely a bit more...mature, than Skye.

"'Cause they were Greek, duh! Like, that was the thing, ya know? Like, ancient Greeks were all about the beauty of the physique, or whatever. So they ran around BUCK NAKED because ya know."

"I'm honestly impressed, Skye. Really."

"I know, right? I found that documentary thing on accident, but I managed to stay awake through the whole thing."

A deep sigh echoed through the phone speaker.

"Anyway, so, obviously you're not going to wrestle naked."

"Obviously! Like, I'd die. Literally. I'd die right in round one from embarrassment. Not that I don't, ya know, look great." Skye paused. "Because I totally do. So you know."

"Uh huh. So what's the costume, Skye?"

"I'll come up with ... something! You bet."



Skye steps toward the center of the Parthenon to a scattered cheer or two. Her long blonde hair, striped with pink as always, has to beentied back in her usual twintails but threaded through with a laurel crown that seems be woven into her hair. Her outfit looks like she took one half of a toga and tied it around her chest, leaving an open chest window and tied at the bottom in a style more evocative of Daisy Duke than Diana. Her midriff is fully exposed from the bust down, but her lower half is tastefully (?) covered by what looks like someone hastily sliced up a toga into a skirt of modest length, tied in place with brown leather belt. Her sandals seem to be coopted from wardrobe somewhere.

Swallowing loudly, Skye inhales sharply, mumbling under her breath. "You can do this, Skye, you're a professional entertainer. You don't get stage fright." She bites her lip.

Inhaling deeply a SECOND time, Skye tries again, firmly planting her hands on her hips and then awkwardly strutting to center stage.

"GREETINGS, GRECIANS," Skye pauses, as if startled by her own loudness. "And uh, NFG spectators. And viewers at home!" She pauses, then gets back on track. "I, SKYE-TAEUS, AM THE GREATEST WRESTLER IN GREECE!" She pounds her fist into her chest and then, hastily, tugs her top in place to avoid a malfunction. "WHO DARES CHALLENGE ME!"

More quietly: "Kapow! See, Skye? You were made for this."

And after Skye makes her entrance, they emerge.

From the broken remains of the pillars of the Partheon, three robed women creep out. Their robes in tatters, their hair in tangles, they seem to almost claw their way out. Peering out towards the camera, they whisper and hiss, each of their names out. "Alecto." "Megaera." "Tisiphone!" ANd then, as they make their strange dance. They stop, and then begin to recite an epic poem, explaining what was to be taking place.
"Sing, Alecto, the Anger of Xandercles, Kyokushin-Ryu's Son
The accursed Anger which brought The Netherlands countless
agonies and hurled many mighty shades of villains into Hades,
causing them to become the prey of dogs and
all kinds of birds, and the plan of Karate was fulfilled.
Sing from the time the two fighters were first divided in strife"
"It is not Xandercles, but Xanderkles."

The round, swarthy dutch boy breaks his cue, and immediately steps out from the Parthenon. The Furies don't even have time to adjust, before Xander continues to corrects the Furies, wagging a finger at them. Oh, he was in costume. Technically. He had the loin cloth and everything. But he had the loin cloth over his gi, which was already covered by his wool jacket. Adjusting his fisherman's cap, he is brisk to continue. "I've reviewed the material on this, and I note that my family heritage has a great deal of Grecian blood in it." Xander speaks hastily. "Heracles is the Roman name for Herakles, and I insist to identify as Xanderkles instead of Xandercles out of respect of Greek culture." It's a scramble. A panic. The entire show was now completely thrown off the balance. And yet, the singers attempt to correct anyways.

"Xanderkles, who bestows upon-"

"I am not playing my character yet." Xander states firmly, and walks down the steps towards to Skye. The first glowers at Xander, and each begin to speak. "That little shit is pissing me off to no end." "It's not fair, why do they let such talentless hacks run around as the main roles?" "Oh, I'm going to make sure he's going to regret screwing up our big intro." AS the trio fume, Xander and looks her down, and then up. He briefly looks down again, before correcting himself steadfastly. He makes an miming motion at his own top, pulling around the buttons downwards on the chest area. "Do not lose your character. I just wanted to make that part clear, Xanderkles. I only care about the name out of the interest of historical accuracy." Xander's eyes seem rather forced in focusing on Skye, especially above the neck. "I have no interest in recreating other nuances of traditional Greek wrestling."

Despite this, Xander begins to disrobe.

Removing his fisherman's coat and hat, he starts to fold them neatly. Underneath was a karate gi, ivory white, tied with a brown belt bearing a black stripe through it. Just like the loin cloth they gave him. "You wrestle, professionally. Shoot and catch, the modern traditional wrestling arts. Some fighters look down on so called 'pro wrestling.' But my sensai taught us that all legitimate martial arts must be willing to show itself off in public. Karate was first demonstrated publically by Gichin Funakoshi in 1917, and with it, started the path of public demonstrations to find students. As Judo did. As Wrestling did. As Boxing did." Placing his clothing neatly at the side, he strides over with exact timing. Turning back over to Skye, he seems to relax. Relax in a tense way, though. Somehow. "I am now in character." He clears his throat, and proceeds to act out the role of Xanderkles.


"I am Xanderkles, the son of the god that is my father. Zeus. I have come to complete my trials? I am looking for the Golden apples of the Hesperides. Oh." Xanderkles takes a moment to prepare himself, and gives a sudden jolt backwards. His body language seemed shocked, if his tone and facial expressions didn't communicate it. "I am on my trials but as a great and proud hero I cannot turn down a challenge. I am challenging you, but I will not wrestle with you. I must rely on the strongest Greek technique there is." He bows his head, and then, immediately falls into his stance. Suddenly, his personality surges back, as he forces hard, his hands ready.

There is a smattering of claps.

"Oh wow," Skye says in a stage whisper. "I didn't think about announcing when I was going IC, but uh--" Skye raises a hand in a poor attempt to keep the audience from seeing her lips as she speaks. "Can you do that? Isn't that like, ya know, not Kay Fave or whatever? Uh, anyway, I'm in character too!. Let's go!"

Skye spreads her feet a bit further apart to get a more grounded stance, holding her fists up slightly above her waist on both sides. She points forward accusatorily. "Your trial ends here, son of Zeus! Your 'karate'" Skye does air quotes, "is no match for wrestling!" Inwardly, Skye was hoping for a witty pun, but maybe she'll think of one later.

"So, take this!"

Poor dialogue or not, Skye snaps forward with a strong charging elbow, throwing her weight into the hit. If she hits, she hopes to stagger Xanderkles and, in a surprising pankratic maneuver, latch on to him and execute an over the shoulder throw using her hip and back as a fulcrum.

COMBATSYS: Skye has started a fight here.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Skye             0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Xander has joined the fight here.

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Skye             0/-------/-------|======-\-------\0           Xander

COMBATSYS: Skye successfully hits Xander with Skyehook.

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Skye             0/-------/-----==|======-\-------\0           Xander

The dutch lad recoils a bit in shock.

Xander makes a decision on his opponent, when she talks about whether one can or cannot announce when you go IC. That decision was as follows: Skye was dumb. The opportunity to explain or explore the notion that Skye was dumb had not presented itself, as she was back in character and was going to end his trial. But even though it was in character, when she delivers the air quotes about his Karate, Xander visibly bristles at the implication about how it was no match for wrestling. And yet, she comes in. A charging elbow, trivial if powerful. Xander neatly brings his arms up, quickly blocking the technique by deflecting it. The force does stagger him, but he had fought thugs before. She quickly grabs him, and starts to hoist him over and-

And Xander does not have a single idea of what he should be doing.

Not one. Naturally with his karate being very intuitive to this point, not having an idea of -what- he needs to be doing when she scoops him up and throws him over her shoulder was rather disruptive to his flow of karate. As he flies through the air, he has the dignity of at least knowing to land in a position that didn't put most of the impact point on his neck. Landing with a slap on the the hard stone ground, one that was mat free, he hits hard. Stunned. Speechless. For a brief moment, defeated. He writhe on the ground.

And there is a burst of flame around him.

Rising back up, he takes in a deep breath as red cinders scatter around him. He was bruised, battered, but seemed to be taking it in spirited stride. "An excellent technique. Tell me how you defend against wrestling moves!" Xander had immediately broken character. He doesn't even seem to remember he needs to be back in character as he swiftly rattles off. "I will offer you how to defend against my karate. I am using the Tobi Mae Geri. Front Jump Kick. The best defense is to block against, but beware, it carries my momentum forward, and makes it easy for me to strike immediately afterwards." Xander sounded as frank as he was about being Xanderkles. And just like he said, he picks up speed to close the distance. With a short hop, he jumps forward and lets out a front kick. Snapped straight out, aimed right for Skye's head. How she reacts, it wasn't clear.

But Xander seemed pretty set on -one- particular reaction.

COMBATSYS: Skye endures Xander's Tobi Mae Geri.

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Skye             0/-------/-======|=======\-------\0           Xander

Some of Skye's teachers used to say she had her head in the clouds. Her name was appropriate, they would say, because that's where her attention was. By some definitions, that would make her dumb. That would not be an entirely inaccurate statement. Her ability to think on her feet is, at times, questionable.

But at times, she is crafty. Intelligent, even, in her own special way. It does not always work in her favor.

Like today.

"Wait, are you telling me the best way to defend because it's the actual best way to defend or is this some kind of trick--"

Skye does not time to figure out, as before she knows it, Xander has descended upon her with the Tobi Mae Geri. Left without adequate time to guard herself, Skyetaeus instead takes the hit head on, charging front kick collides with her belly and knocks the wind out of her. She staggers back with a wheeze, but only a half-step. After it, she steels herself, moves in, and reaches out to try and grab the left of the young karateka.

"Ya know, I don't really know the best way to counter, like," if Skye grabs Xander's lower leg she pulls him by the gi to try and get a second, higher handhold and swing him around into a giant swing. She may not be bright, but she seems reasonably strong.

"My teacher doesn't really talk about defense 'cause she's kind of like," Skye gets quieter. "She's kind of like a brick house? She just kind of crashes through things like, I dunno, kind a truck I guess?"

COMBATSYS: Xander interrupts Strong Throw from Skye with Ushiro Kakato Kin Geri ES.

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Skye             1/--=====/=======|=======\===----\1           Xander

No no she was doing it -wrong-

Nobody is supposed to actually power through the flying kick. That's ridiculous and dangerous. It is -stupid-. And yet, as Skye stumbles over the fact Xander was directly explaining what he was doing, what she should be doing, and what he was going to do next, he is at her. What's worse, Skye completely threw off the momentum of that attack. By charging forward, the head kick was now an abdomen kick. And she was already trying to -grab- him before he even could adapt. Skye was grabbing his leg, and lifting him up. Xander did not imagine being handled so roughly and firmly by a girl, especially one that was wearing an outfit just like so. His entire flow was being disrupted. Especially with her squeezing his thigh just so. Lifting him up like a little guy, while she was stronger-

Xander suddenly bursts into flames.

Not all of him, of course. But a burst of cinders rolls over him, as his hair catches fire. The rush of fire that surges through him, along with the strong focus of karate, is what stops his mind from wandering into other things. Overflowing with the embers and sparks that scatter around him, he begins to smoke from inside his gi as he is spun around. Contrails leave lovely smoke lines as he spins around and around, as he brings his leg around. And with a single, strong, smooth motion, Xander unleashes the built up momentum into the mother of all kicks, aimed squarely for the pelvic region of Skye. The giant swing breaks, into a throw. Xander collapses across the flagstones again, rolling in an uncontrolled manner as he slams violently on the ground again. Another burst of flames and embers send him standing up, as he continues to smoke both within his gi, and on his hair. He was back in his karate stance.

But he seemed to be having a very hard to time make himself to move

"Brick House or Not, she's not a very good teacher then." Xander states curtly, gritting his teeth. "If her technique is to just power through things, then she should teach you that and you should learn it! Master Koji made that very clear." Xander continues to smolder, cinders flying from his body in thick clouds of red ember. "A master who fails to teach, is no master at all. The only techniques worth learning are techniques worth teaching! However, I will give her the benefit of the doubt. You are not thinking critically on your style." Xander was about to add to that, and give Skye an opportunity to thank him for his unsolicited advice, but then the Three Furies begin to speak over him.

"Thus did they converse. But Xanderkles could no longer hold his ground
for the power of wrestling that rained upon him,
the will of Skyetaeus and the javelins of her throw were too much for him,
the helmet that gleamed about his temples rang with the continuous clatter of the flagstones
that kept pouring on to it and on to the cheek-pieces that protected his face.
Moreover his left shoulder was tired with having held his guard so long,
yet for all this, let fly at him as they would, they could not make him give ground.
He could hardly draw his breath, the sweat rained from every pore of his body,
he had not a moments respite, and on all sides he was beset by danger upon danger."

Acknowledging it as ridiculous and dangerous would take more combat sense, more finely-honed instinct than Skye seems to possess. No, instead Skye powers through the hit and keeps going for the aggressive throw. Unfortunately, Skye is even less prepared for the retaliation.

"Hrrrgh," it's not really a word so much as an wince, a heaving out of air as the kick strikes her squarely in the hip and thigh, which both wobble from still developing discipline. Skye's leg gives out next as she lets go of Xander and falls over.

"Ow," the second punctuation follows and she's rubbing her exposed thigh, a sour expression on her face. When Xander calls out her teacher, well, Skye looks like a deer in the headlights.

And then she gets mad.

"I mean, she's not THAT bad, she's just done this a while, and I'm still trying to get in that kind of shape!" Skye huffs. "We're doing conditioning, ya know? But not the hair kind, because she had to explain that. I gotta get TOUGH and STRONG and learn to take a BUMP! Skye pauses, having risen to her feet now and heaving between breaths. She pauses for a good second before continuing.

"Oh, shoot. That was out of character! Ah-HEM!"

Skye gets a smile on her face, it's an uncomfortable smile. It's one in spite of the pain and the discomfort. She laughs, just a little, at some yet unknown joke.

"I, Skye-taeus, will next show you the original Grecian martial art!"

She charges forward with a burst of speed, picking up momentum. She seems to be mulling out her method of delivery in the brief trip to her destination before, as she gets close, she suddenly shifts position and throws herself, hip first, to try and bowl Xander over with her bottom.

And if she succeeds, Skye is then moving upon him with another throw, aiming to heft up the karateka over her head then JUMP with him in tow into a flying powerbomb to SLAM him violently against the stones.

But not done yet, Skye follows up:

"This is Pankr--PanCAKEtion!"

True to her word, Skye leaps after Xander, aiming to land in a seated slam, and well. The pun becomes obvious.

COMBATSYS: Skye successfully hits Xander with Skyelight EX.

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Skye             0/-------/---====|=======\===----\1           Xander

The pun was not obvious to Xander.

As he recovers from his lecture, the karateka waits for Skye to make her next move. She refutes him, out of character of course to the frustration of the Furies. But as she comes, Xander looks up and down her, and gives a rather soft stern response. "You're not really built for tough and strong though. More fast and agile..." But it was moot, because after all, she was building up speed. And Xander, well. Well he blocks, right? As she brings the full force of what Gaia gave her, he realizes about halfway through catching the kick, that it wasn't a kick. It was a full on ass. She was assing at him. Xander's cheeks immediately go red, as he staggers back from the full force of the hip check. And as he falls over, well, it's like the ninja girl all over again. That strange girl who stabbed him. Lifted right back up, he is sent slamming down with the heftiest power bomb yet. Laying flat on his back, he is stunned and exposed. Right as she aims the buns right after the puns. Helpless, Xander is left with the least karate move he has experienced so far.

The Butt Stomp.

For a brief moment, Xander reflects on his karate career on the global stage starting under a set of weapons grade glutes. Slammed into the broken flagstones, the absolute despair of being associated with being butted is the fuel that fires within him. He wastes no time. A blast of flames boils up around him, scattering ash and embers around as he rises up once more. Xander was shaking cinders off himself, as he diligently brings himself back into his fighting stance. Looking across at his opponent, he bursts out curtly, "It's pankration, not Pancaketion! And using your buttocks as a weapon is inappropriate! Are you being trained in being a professional wrestler? Or are you being trained in being someone's lingere model who tussles in a pool of Double Donk Sauce! Your teacher should be ashamed!" Xanderkles indignation seems to only empower him more. "It it time that... time that...." For a moment, there is a familiar spirit of rising escalations, a hint of a bombastic rise. But then, something restrains it. The dutch boy restrains against it, latching down on it. The smoke and fire rises off his back, as he steadies his stance.

"... No..."

"I cannot use the Hi-Ougi just yet."

And he takes in a deep breath.

Inhaling deeply, he engulfs his aura. Embers, smoke and all. Consuming the cinders, he eats the flames and draws them within. He shudders, as he swallows the fire. Body shaking a moment, the acrid energy finally settles. He steps firmly and deliberately forward, approaching Skyetaeus once more. "Seiken Chudan Tsuki. The appropriate response is to defend and deflect." He rattles briskly, lunging forward with a swift palm strike with the left, and a suspicious palm strike with the right, advancing with every driving blow. There was an invisible struggle taking place now. A battle of attunements. The spirit of the phoenix.

A battle between the earth, and the Skye.

COMBATSYS: Xander successfully hits Skye with Medium Punch.

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Skye             0/-------/=======|=======\=====--\1           Xander

Skye seems fired up as she delivers the combination. Landing the hip check, then the powerbomb, then the butt slam all seems satisfying, rewarding...UNUSUAL for her. Perhaps her combinations seldom work that smooth. Even so, Skye doesn't linger. Rather than continuing to keep her substantial seat parked on Xander after the slam, she shifts and rolls---something which he trainer will lecture about her later. Not going for the pin when you have the advantage is a rookie mistake. To Xander's misfortune, it does Skye a minute to get her broad bottom off of him. Perhaps she hasn't landed the slam enough to practice the recovery.

"Ahem," Skye gets ready to go back into proper lines as Skye-taeus, but she quickly finds herself awestruck---even dumbfounded---by Xandercles's accusations.

"I--it was a pun! I know it's pankration, but ya know! I tried to squish you like a pancake! With my big b--" Skye's jaw drops and she staggers back as it struck, even though Xander hasn't thrown his next blow yet.

"I am a pro-wrestler! I know all sorts of throws and holds and strikes, it's's just...ya know! That's...that's part of my style! I'm not that kind of girl! And neither is Erin!! Oh, shoot--"

Skye brings up her arm. Defend and deflect. She pulls in her guard and Xander keeps striking, with palm after palm. Skye intercepts the first one but leaves herself open for the follow-ups. One hits her in the stomach and she wheezes as she almost doubles over, taking another to the jaw that knocks her over.

"I couldn't defend and deflect that! There were too many of them!" Skye complains, rubbing her jaw and looking worse for the wear. Taking a few deep breaths, she slaps her cheeks a few times to psych herself up, then springs onto her feet from a sitting position in a surprising show of agility. "I'm FIRED UP NOW! Skye...SKYE-TAEUS will not be defeated so easily, Xandercles!"

Rushing in, Skye barrels toward Xander's middle. She crosses her arms to guard her head and then goes for a spear more reminscent of Brazilian Jiujutsu than pro-wrestling, aiming to slam into the karateka and take him to the ground. If she does, she then grabs hold and hefts him up---tossing someone's Xander's size seems surprisingly easy for Skye---and from there she'll flip him over and deliver a tombstone piledriver if he doesn't wiggle away.

COMBATSYS: Xander endures Skye's Skyescraper.

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Skye             1/------=/=======|=======\=======\1           Xander

Foundations proved themselves once again.

The constant rhythm steadily overcomes Skye's defense, as Xander keeps the pressure on. Every blow comes with a burst of embers and cinders from his shoulders and back, the Dutch teen smoldering. He was okay with hitting girls, thanks to Master Koji's intense training. Certainly, she rebuts his point. But he already had enough with her butts. As he knocks her over, he declares firmly. "I will see and learn what kind of woman your teacher is after this fight. And from that." He falls back into his defensive stance. "I will learn what kind of woman you are! Do you even know that?" As she slaps her cheeks (I hope her face), Xander realizes that once again, he was going to be grappled. He had... no defenses for it. But offenses, he had plenty. It dawns on him, as what must happen. "I am sorry, Master Koji. But fighting a woman who wrestles...." Sweeping his arms around, he stands fast, staring down intensely at Skye, as one does with the skye, as she launches right at him.

"I must use Hi-Ougi Hou-Ou Ken."

Xander crosses his arms before him, the fire spreading over his body. She spears him hard, taking him down as he continues to empower himself. Exposed, she lifts up the round little lad, and tombstones him down. Head first, he seems to go limp a minute, the constant barrage of grapples tearing him to pieces. But he doesn't uncross his arms. No, in fact, he erupts into a volcanic erupts of ash and sparks, as he rolls out, over. As he rises back up briskly, the agony of his head, the blood pouring down his crown, he begins to spread his arms apart. As he reaches the apex of his rise, he unloads. The Dutch lad unleashes a wave of crimson embers, smoke, and cinders before him, tearing along the flagstones in a billowing surge. He does not explain how to defend against an attack like that.

He doesn't know how.

COMBATSYS: Xander successfully hits Skye with Hi-Ougi Hou-Ou Ken ES.

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Skye             2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\1           Xander

Skye does, in fact, slap her face, and not any other cheeks! (That would be weird.)

"She's..." Skye trails off, as if trying to find the words. It seems to be a bit harder than she would like to admit to describe her teacher.

"The what?"

Skye is abruptly interrupted from her waxing about her tutor with the prospect of some secret technique. A finishing move, perhaps. The full nature of this proclamation becomes known soon enough when Skye is faced with an overwhelming surge of fiery chi energy that smashes into her like a cannon shot and sends her tumbling backwards into a roll, head over heels or ass over elbows. The wrestler tumbles once, twice, three times before thumping heavily against the side of the arena in front of the Furies and everything. She's staggered, dizzy. Her head spins. Her eyes water. Her whole body hurts. For a long moment, it's unclear if she'll even get back onto her feet at all.

But, shaking her head, one hand pressed to her forehead, Skye staggers and stands, putting her other palm on the edge of the stands to pull herself up. "Urgh..." Skye grumbles. "Skye--Skye tay oos will not go down so easily, Xand...Xander...Xanderkles!"

Skye drops onto her palms in a runner's stance evocation of her (extremely short) time on the track team. (She was totally on the track team.) Wobbily pumping her legs, she breaks off into a full-on charge. She steadily builds momentum as she runs, putting everything she can into it, before throwing herself heavily in a bodyslam toward Xander!

And if she takes him down she rides the momentum, rolling forward as she wraps her arms around his waist. The blonde goes for a tumble, intent to roll over him then back onto her feet, lifting Xander above her, to bring him down for a suplex! From there, she tries to tumble over him again, and repeat herself for a second suplex. If she still has him, she'll go for a third before finally turning loose.

And yet, if Skye has made it this far, she is not done. The wrestler, if she's still standing, plans to climb up to the side of the stands above Xander to make her proclamation:

"Ha ha! How was that? Had enough yet, Xanderkles? I hope not, because here--" Skye stops, hikes her toga-shorts up, and slaps her bottom. "Is THE END!"

And of course, Skye then backhops off the stands to try and smash the poor Dutch lad under the weaponized glutes.

COMBATSYS: Xander interrupts Skye's the Limit EX from Skye with Hi-Ougi Age-Tsuki ES.

[                             \  < >  //////                        ]
Skye             1/-----<</<<<<<<<|======-\-------\0           Xander

COMBATSYS: Xander has reached second wind!

[                             \  < >  //////                        ]
Skye             1/-----<</<<<<<<<|======-\-------\0           Xander

Xander hangs there, unsure of how to even recover from the blast of fire.

He just slowly retracts his hands, as he stares into the aftermath of the secret technique. It was a finishing move. She should be finished. There is no follow through. No recovery. The only thing he knows is that you should bow afterwards, because you have won. And yet, SKye was back up. And yet, she staggers and stands. Xander tries to reset himself back into his defensive stance. But his body is stiff, slow. Already, she was coming at him. His body was becoming weak.

But the spirit of the phoenix was willing.

It's that spirit that shudders deep within the Dutch lad's heart as he is lifted up. Tumbling him down to the ground, the round little Xander tumbles along with Skye, finally mustering a defense in grabbing her. But it couldn't be enough. He is slammed down over and over, with each impact bringing a surge of life in him. A blast of fire. When he is turned loose, he was already rising up, almost unconsciously. As the slapping comes, he stares directly into the End. Was it His End? Or Was it Her End. That big booty comes slamming straight for him. Xander closes his eyes. He was ready to accept it. But the spirit of in the phoenix within him wouldn't. At the lowest end at Skye's lowest end, she finally touches down upon him.

It's like setting off a landmine.

Xander erupts up in a volcanic eruption of smoke, fire, and cinders. Hot air comes with his rise as he thrusts his palm up. The billowing blast of fire envelopes them both in a swirling pillar. When it clears, Xander's upper part of the gi is ripped apart. Bruises cover his body, angry black welts filling it. A scar is revealed on his chest, blazing with a red flame. Crimson cinders, red flames were fading from his body, as his eyes begin to smoke in the corners. But the flames that were expelling from Xander, they were hanging on Skye. The spirit of the phoenix lingers on Skye, the cinders catching her on fire as they spark and flash on her. Burning on her, burning at her. Blazing and roasting. Xander returns back to his karate stance. Blood still trickling on his brow. He beckons Skye, his eyes cloudy and smoking.

"Again." He repeats, sounding almost possessed.

When Skye lands her daredevil throws, executing suplex after suplex in sequence, she is ecstatic, high off adrenaline despite the injuries and soreness. She's able to forget that for a few moments and just relish in her success.



"You should really work on combinations, Skye," a tall, broad orange-haired woman adjusts her glasses and crosses her arms. Skye, using a headlock to hold a plush dummy in the shape of the person in place, looks up and lets out a heavy breath. "Huh?"

"Combinations. You can't deliver all your power in one hit. You aren't there. Spread it out. Throw a few blows."

Skye makes a face and thinks. "Combinations..." She blinks. "I've got it! What if I do like..." Skye squeezes the dummy and slams it in a suplex, then rolls over it and does it again. "Rolling suplexes! In a chain! Won't that be cool?"

"Won't you get dizzy?" the older woman retorts.

"Of course not!" Skye stands up, one hand on her hip and the dummy pressed into the other. "*I* did plenty of tumbling. Because *I* was on the all-state cheer team." She puffs up her chest.




Skye actually does feel a bit nauseous, now that she thinks about it, but it doesn't matter. Soon she's going to be sitting on Xander, and he's gonna give up because--

With a yelp, Skye hops off of him, half jumping and half blasted by the sudden explosion of chi. She's frantically trying to pat out her flaming toga and extinguish her now-toasted buns when she fully loses her balance and slams, face-first, into the stones. Rather than being left with her rump in the air, she does at least tilt on forward and flop on her back with a groan.

But, blinking several times, Skye sees Xander standing, surging with power. Why is he on the ceiling? Oh wait, she's just upside down.

Skye rolls over and coughs, wheezing, before gradually pushing herself back onto her feet. Now, it seems, it's her turn to be incredulous that her finishing move didn't quite live up to the "finishing" part.

"H-how come you're still standing? You're supposed to be squashed flat! That was the finishing move!" Grumbling, Skye almost falls over before steeling herself again. She clenches her fists tightly enough that they squeak, then goes in again, even if she's running on fumes. This time, she hops in and tries to clobber Xander with her hips again, aiming to set him up to be grabbed once more. If he's left open, this time Skye tries to get hold of his arm, pull him in, then flip him up deftly onto her shoulders for a good back cracker before she starts to lose her balance.

"This is totally for that one guy," Skye wheezes, "with the globe!" She aims to spin Xander with like an airplane then throw him over to the ground--though she probably goes down with him.

COMBATSYS: Skye can no longer fight.

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

COMBATSYS: Xander blocks Skye's Skyedive.

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

Smoked hams.

Xander thinks it to himself, about the fire blast. It might be a pun. He doesn't say it out loud though. He just stares intensely, waiting. There wasn't a whole lot of internal thoughts. It was a blend of instincts, intuitions, and a desperate battle to stay up. His body wanted to give up. His body was striving to give up. But it was the spirit of the phoenix that was keeping him up. But when she comes in, he doesn't know how to probably defend. He could block her, sure, as he does with the hips. But as he is left open, she just grabs him through his guard, and lifts him up on her shoulders. How is he supposed to react to that? But as she spins him around, the thought comes to him. He just needs to control his landing. Somehow. So when she throws him to the ground?

He lands on his feet this time.

It was the most important lesson Xander took away. He learned how to deal with a throw. He learned how to deal with wrestling. He adapted, just like what Mr. Timmons told him. He adapted his own style, his own technique. And outside of his karate, he learned to land on his own two feet. It still hurt horribly on his knees, and he felt a blast of flames around him as he steadies out. But he doesn't attack. He returns back to his karate stance, hands forward. ANd he speaks. "Atlas." Xanderkles states firmly.

And he waits.

Master Koji taught him this. That when you use the Hi-Ougi, you can wait. Let the fires of the phoenix do their work. Let the fires burn. Xander was erupting again, another flash of cinders, as he nearly passes out. Soon. It was now an attrition of staying standing. Another burst of ash and embers. Let her burn. Let the smoke and fire do it's work. It's a timer now. He just has to wait.

Just Keep Standing.

Skye staggers away from the clash when she fails to properly put Xander to the ground. She stumbles two steps to the right, then three to left before swaying dangerously. Parts of her wardrobe still seem to be smouldering. Her bottom hurts. Really, her everything hurts.

"Thassss right," Skye slurs, punch drunk. "That guy."

She falls forward, face-first, to thump onto the ground. She doesn't completely face plant, but she definitely hits the ground harder than she shoulder just lays there.

"I'm. I'm gonna tap out now, k?"

Xander waits, staring intensely as he stands fast.
Intensity. Raw intensity. As plumes of smoke and cinder reignites again and again. His body could not stand. But the spirit of the phoenix still drove him forward. He just waited, waited, until Skye falls over. One. Two. Three. The call for Xander's victory fills his ears. He had won, with his master's karate. But the moment it reaches him, the spirit leaves him. It was unnecessary. Xander collapses on the flagstones, body crumpling like a ragdoll as he slumps forward. And he still smokes and smolders, still burns. And there, the three Furies, the three women, almost glide upon the stones, encircling the dutch boy, as they sway their arms. And there, they begin to speak, and they dance.

"Those of The Odyssey
Look Upon Xanderkles
This is the boy who brought karate
And towered up, most powerful of men
No mortal eyes but looked on him with envy
Yet in the end, ruin swept over him
Let every man in mankind's frailty
Consider his last day, and let none
Persume on his good karate until he find
A way to defend against wrestling without pain"

Log created on 20:31:24 02/19/2024 by Xander, and last modified on 07:27:12 03/03/2024.