Neo League 570 - #570: Seishirou vs Arika

Description: The punk rock princess has called the Ryouhara out for a Neo League battle. The date was set, the location chosen - until a surprisingly sudden change of venue occurred. Taking things to the street, Arika works off a lot of frustration even though the majority of her anger isn't directed at Seishirou. You won't want to miss this ending! Only you will, because -someone- (we're not mentioning names here *cough*Seishirou*cough*) flame-broiled the film in the one remaining camera. So enjoy your static! (Winner: @#(*&(*UDAOUI NO CARRIER)

Phone calls have been made. Things have been set up. The nice little abandoned cafe has been bombarded with cameras, crews, and lighting to make it look all the better to those in television-land.

And Arika has been waiting here since the early hours of the morning. After last nights Saturday Night Fight, she was really too irritated to sleep. As such, she wound up walking around the city and finally came here to wait for her scheduled Neo League match with the ninja.

That's not her only reason though.

While the camera crew was busy setting up, she's been up on a ladder, searching the ceiling for whatever it was that was holding Seishirou's interest when they were last here. It helps to know what your opponent is up to, and this must be doubly the case where he's involved. He -did- create a ship that was a giant energy bomb after all, and she kind've likes the quiet and contemplative feel of the abandoned cafe. She'd hate for him to bring the house down with a preset bomb of some sort.

In short, she doesn't really trust him.

Luckily enough, Seishirou has enough sense to keep the city-destroying explosives where people can just get up on a ladder and find them. There's nothing up in the ceiling. Whatever Seishirou's plan or trap was, it isn't up there. THere is a second level to things, but none of it has to do with the ceiling, merely being a symbolic point of interest for the ninja.

Though, unfortunately, none of his plotting, none of his /planning/... seems to be directly related to the match, or the cafe it lay in. After all, the cafe /was/ quiant enough for Seishirou to elect frequently. It would be a shame for him to bring it down, true. And it becomes readily apparent that Seishirou doesn't /have/ traps or bombs planted in the cafe that would result in the destruction of the cafe.

Because, at about 10 minutes to fighttime, roughly 30 or 40 lengths of chains, ropes, cords and wires of a circus in sizes and widths render the glass pane to the window to so many pieces. Like glittering snow, the shards rain about as the lengths imbed themselves into the ground on stakes, small woven spheres hung off them like gentle lanterns. These will explode, and create hailworks of invisible lines--gathering within its range just about everything that isn't bolted down in the room and ensnaring them to the links in sprays of colorful origami. Other lines yet still simply wrap around targets directly.

The ground stakes glow briefly, before snapping in half.

Ninkou - Genbu's Web.

With a hissing and grinding cachophonous racheting from the skies and an earsplitting "COM'ERE," barstools, ladders, cameras, lone cameramen, and quite possibly /Arika herself/ will momentarily be bodily thrown out the window, yanked and scattered across Gedo Street in various locations, slung off the chains at various locations.

The origin? Seishirou Ryouhara, with /most/ of those chains and ropes and cords and wires originating from various spots on his coat and sleeves, being ultimately fed through a large turtleshell like device, which he anchors to the rooftop adjacent to the cafe he's standing on by leaning one boot on it with all his strength. He orchestrates each individual line's movement by hauling on various lengths crawling from the turtleshell at opportune moments.

It is clear, based on his focus, that he has exactly one target. Arika. The rest? .. Insurance. Much to the Neo League staff's dismay.

Having had very little sleep has not really thrown Arika too much off of her game. As the glass explodes into tiny slivers and begins to rain down upon the abandoned establishment, she does two things. First, she kicks the ladder down to the floor, causing an extremely loud clattering noise. The ladder is very obviously whisked away by the links, tossed out the window like yesterday's garbage. Secondly, she's had the foresight to grab hold of the steel beam she had the ladder leaning against, gripping her arms tightly about it.

She should have known.

Leave it to the ninja to make an overly showy entrance just because he knows he's being televised.

"'bout bloody time you showed," she calls out the window. Once the diva believes he's done fishing within the poor battered cafe, she drops herself to the floor in a crouch and peers out the empty space where the window once lay, so that she can attempt to find him.

If it was his intent to show off for the cameras, he certainly seems to have failed hard. Half of the camera crew is laying unconscious on the street, camera rigs, lighting frames and microphone booms busted open on the dirty pavement. Yet still more of the equipment (and seating) hangs from disconnected chains and lines, ensnared and dangling hopelessly in the rigging leading to the ratcheting device. All in all, there must only be one functioning camera left and that one only just so, probably held by an intern with a nervous tic.

Yes, if it was his intent to show off, he would simply have to understand if the applause wasn't quite spectacular.

The ninja's head tilts ever slightly, as he crouches on the very edge of the rooftop, his sleeves dangling out into the abyss haphazardly. One would think him a dreadfully unbalanced individual, as the two lengths of chain that weren't detached by the great anchor device reel slowly into his sleeves. But he doesn't seem to be paying any mind to that. He frowns faintly.

"Long night?" he calls into the empty space before him, perhaps revealing his location.

And here, Ryouhara thought he was making his appearance slightly early by his watch.

Early by his watch, sure. Early by Arika's definition of the term? Not really. She was expecting an ambush much earlier than this!

Shrugging, she draws to her full height and shrugs her shoulders. Picking at a sliver of glass that embedded itself in her hand as she landed, she calls back, "Somethin' like that."

His voice has revealed his location, and so the punk princess makes her way out of the cafe and gives a glance toward the nervous intern-looking person. "You keep that camera rollin', mate, no matter wot 'appens, you 'ear me?" Pointing a finger directly at him, she quickly shifts and gives all of her attention to the ninja.

"Didn't realize a change of venue was on the docket. It works though."

See, if you're expecting it, it's not an ambush. And then there's just no point, is there?

His boots grip the edge of the parapet.

The ninja vaults off the roof, rotating slowly once before his boots again touch solid footing. His landing on the street is not feather light. To the contrary--his landing causes the screws from the film casings to jump at least three inches in the air.

The temperature seems to jump slightly with proximity to the ninja.

"Hmph. I could come back later," the Ryouhara shinobi offers, a cold, bland edge to his voice.

He still crouches slightly from the impact, his arms limp in front of him. "I'd hate to lose that special place before it's time," he explains simply, though likely doing no good for Arika's faith in the establishment not being exploded to kingdom come within the next year or so. From the faint smirk he shows while saying it... knowing, is he?

Without moving overtly, he glances back. A click, as the satchel at his back unseals itself, with a telltale hiss and a curl of steam from his side. He doesn't move beyond that, but...

"If you're ready... attack now."

COMBATSYS: Seishirou has started a fight here.

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Seishirou        0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Arika has joined the fight here.

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Arika            0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0        Seishirou

"Heh." Arika gives her head a shake at the offer and motions for him to continue forward. She's been waiting for this fight all night. She's irritated, and looking for a fight even if she knows she's going to lose. Best to blow off steam that way.

"Just remember, Ryouhara, this place gets blown up, I'm blamin' you." It -is- a nice little cafe, after all. One Arika wouldn't mind owning at some point in the near future... provided her venture with the club actually starts making her money once it's opened.

His offer gets a slight smirk from the diva, and all she does is make a small, subtle nod. He's being gracious in allowing her to attack first, which likely means he knows he's going to win. Confidence will usually get you everything. Too bad hers has been wavering a lot lately.

Clasping her hands together in front of her, she swings her body around and makes it look as though she's trying for a heavy double-fisted punch to the side of his head. However, the strike never occurs, and her foot lashes out instead, attempting to strike him in the back of the knee and sweep him off his feet in the same motion.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou interrupts Medium Kick from Arika with Medium Kick.

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Arika            0/-------/----===|=------\-------\0        Seishirou

His eye turns upwards, twitching faintly as he considers the incoming double fisted blow. She's not that presumptuoius to think a hammer blow up front will work, is she? He can't be too sure. Fade is the only person he knows who presents as many facades as he does.

A non-insignificant sum.

The shinobi is still as Arika sails at him, watching her form closely.

It's worth noting that, as a stark contrast to all the other times Seishirou's faced Arika, the ice chill destructive aspect in and of his eyes is offset by the remarkable amount of /heat/ emanating from him, which gets worse as one gets closer to him. It can't be anything else but his chi.. but the radiated feeling is more than enough to make it curious why the ninja isn't simmering in his own clothing right now.


The sweep kick is met with the sole of his furthest back boot, impacting against the bottom of his heel, the strongest part of his leg, rather than the back of his knee, the weakest. The momentum--of which there is a jarring amount--transferance allows him to tumble backwards over the rocker queen's outstretched leg, his own free boot swiping up.

A rising flip kick, right up her center of gravity.

This time, the Ryouhara shinobi will land soundlessly. Or is the sound just covered by the thin collapsing armblades that sprout from his sleeves? He wasn't joking. The first trade is simply observation. Intelligence gathering, pursuant to Arika's capabilities. Now, he is going to fight her seriously.

Arika would be insulted by anything but a serious fight. It's what she asked for, after all. What's troubling her is not that, though. Nor is the exorbitant amount of heat that appears to be emanating from him. It's the fact that she can feel his eyes as they watch her movements. Perhaps not entirely unnerving - it is what fighters do - but it's enough of a distraction that she's forgetting to watch -him-.

Thus, his retaliation impacts her stomach and sends her sprawling comically backward before she's able to gain her balance and steady her footing. Deep blue eyes narrow upon him and she wipes her hands over her face. The pain she will overcome. The frustration and irritation from previously still have a lot of working out to do.

She begins to bounce between one foot and the other. A steady, fast-pace rhythm is built up. Left, right, left. Left, left, right, left. The springy, bouncy steps continue as she advances on him once more. For a moment, her foot nearly falters on a piece of broken electronics, but she switches the steps up and continues on her path. Pirouetting through the mess he's created with his pre-match show, she chambers her right leg up and then unleashes it toward the side of his head in a snappy roundhouse kick.

COMBATSYS: Arika successfully hits Seishirou with Rhythmic Roundhouse.

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Arika            0/-------/----===|==-----\-------\0        Seishirou

And so he follows.

It's almost an analytical process for him, the act of dancing. For every step Arika takes, the ninja takes a step in opposition. He almost.. /almost/ perfectly mirrors her movements. (He doesn't almost trip over the electronics.) The act is as much one to help him think as it is distraction. By reading her movements like this, he can also match her movement. Tactically speaking, complex footwork such as that employed in capoeira is a predefined pattern of stepping, not unlike that practiced in kenjutsu and even ninjutsu, with each step having a predetermined number of attack options associated with it. Seishirou idly does the math..

14 or so steps.... 3 potential avenues of attack per step ....

42 or so attack combinations Arika is rifling through right now. But most importantly, the mind can't keep track of all of those possibilities at once, can it? Ultimately, if he is correct, the rhythm's intent is to approach in a confusing fashion, by matching those steps, Seishirou can diffuse the approach aspect of it--the planned attack, whatever it might be, is no longer viable because of his equal exchange in distance, effectively halving the tempo.. the confusion aspect of it can be diffused by working out the math...

The app--ZNGH!

Looks like Seishirou should have at least tried to trip on his way over.

Knocked out of his train of thought with a leg to the face, the ninja flips sideways in an almost tragic fashion, looking more than a degree concerned that -his reverse engineering was not completely accurate-... and more importantly, that Arika is a better dancer than him.

At least, on the ground.

A backup plan needs to be executed. As he flips head over heels, the ninja hooks his boot underneath a camera to his side as he does so, flipping the heavy thing in the air dimly, only recovering when he is just about at the apex of his catastrophic fall. Recovery.. comes fast. The camera? .. For a split second, it's just a platform. Tumblnig throguh the air, the ninja alights on it for just an /instant/. The weight is enough.

He hits the ground some ways behind Arika, skidding to a stop, with his blades at either side of his hip.

Like thunder follows lightning, the light itself from a wicked cross slash executed across the girl's last known position is seen only a moment after Seishirou lands.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou successfully hits Arika with Calculated Tactics.

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Arika            0/-------/=======|====---\-------\0        Seishirou

Sadly, the diva will have to admit that his attempt at following her every movement is almost extremely exact and precise. Most disconcerting, really, since she's not thinking of any predefined pattern or predetermined attacks. She's simply bouncing her feet back and forth as a distraction so that she can draw her opponents every thought to the movement while she springs a surprise kick at them.

And it works.

Arika has no clue what's going through his head, but she has apparently distracted enough so that he's got caught up in it. Either way, she swings her foot around and lands in a perfectly precise movement, eyes warily watching her opponent to see what the ninja has up his sleeves (so to speak).

It's his turn for distraction though, as the camera flips up into the air. Deep blue eyes follow its movements, half of her expecting him to cause it to shatter or explode with a concussive force as he sends it careening toward her.

Surprisingly that's not what happens.

Feeling the pain of the slice before she actually realizes what's going on, the punk princess grits her teeth to keep from yelping. Long thin lines of crimson appear upon her midsection, the blood quickly trickling down over her skin. Wincing from the pain, her fists clench tightly causing her knuckles to become white.

She's still going to push past the pain.

Eyes turning a tumultuously stormy shade, she gives a yell of frustration and spins around so she can lunge at the ninja. Fists relax and both hands are thrust out, aimed at the center of his chest with a double palmheel strike.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou blocks Arika's Medium Punch.

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Arika            0/-------/=======|=====--\-------\0        Seishirou

The steam trails from the blades at Seishirou's wrists as he stands slowly. A shame none of their thoughts are made known. Some of those 42 combinations would be useful for someone like Arika... But it seems he misplaced her style. Is it more instinctive than calculating? It would be an interesting dichotomy to her personality.

"So," Seishirou asks, "Who do you hate right now?"

The lunge is fierce, powerful. It comes from a place that is only partially underneath the view of his eye. The palms of her hands strike against steel--the extension of the collapsing blade underneath Seishirou's right sleeve. The next attack is obvious--a retreating slice from the opposite hand, putting space between the two. You'd have to be insane to charge into it--but it might be enough to break the distance between the two. For a moment.

"You stay up all night...fighting I need to watch that Saturday Night Fight?" he guesses, regaining his stance some ways back from Arika, watching her closely. The heat still curls from him, but his eyes.. they're nothing short of clinical. Detached. Cold. A piercing "eye" that is determined to see.. everything.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou focuses on his next action.

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Arika            0/-------/=======|=====--\-------\0        Seishirou

"You want a list or somethin'?" Striking her hands against the steel of the blade, Arika growls. A minor irritation compared to what she was feeling already. "You ain't a therapist, Ryouhara, quit tryin' to psychoanalyze me."

He's eerily good at it, and that just seems to fuel her anger. As he creates space between the two of them, the punk princess just smirks again. Eyes narrow to thin slits and she laughs. "Go ahead. Watch it. Boost their ratings and make me more money, see if I care."

But there's a part of her that's just gritting her teeth together again as she remembers that stupid little thieving whore from the night before.

Suddenly, she lunges toward the ninja once more. Hands tear forward and grasp for his shoulders, trying to make purchase there. If successful, she attempts to yank him up off of his feet and quickly fling him toward the already broken window of the quaint little abandoned cafe.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou interrupts Quick Throw from Arika with Kunai Critical.

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Arika            1/--=====/=======|======-\-------\0        Seishirou

His robes are gripped tensely. The ninja's eyebrow .. raises.

Seishirou is slung over Arika pretty--easily. Despite the astounding amount of artillery the ninja is known to carry on him, comparitively he's quite light. It's almost too easy to yank him off his feet and send him tumbling over.. too easy. The ninja's fingertips touch Arika's shoulder. It's enough. Giving him a frame of reference to redirect his momentum from a forward direction to.. straight down.

The ninja slams into the earth hard. But standing upright.

Click. From his left hand, the blade is detached, falling from his sleeve into his grip.

From there, Seishirou plunges the weapon forward, an impaling blow from the shoulder that will likely make a mess of Arika's kidney, with an unnerving exactness belying the speed of execution.

But Seishirou.. is quite assuredly not satisfied. He is /close/ to Arika now. "You're fighting me, not the object of your frustrations. If you get distracted now, you'll just waste our time getting killed. If you need to despise someone.. for now? Despise me."

He leaps away.

The large knife will explode an instant later.

When things seem to be too easy, that usually means they are. One of Arika's slender eyebrows quirks as she yanks him off of his feet, and she's suddenly feeling his fingertips upon her bare shoulder. Certain that this doesn't bode well at all, she's not entirely surprised when the throw doesn't happen as she intended.

Hearing the blade detach with a click, she has just enough time to shoot him a hate-filled look before she finds it suddenly impaling her stomach. The only saving grace about the whole thing is that the sharp steel doesn't reach her kidney, or she'd be down on the ground and unable to move. As it is, her body drops forward, knees hitting the pavement hard while her hands slam out to keep her from falling on the blade and wedging it into her body any more deeply.

Teeth bite into her lip, a pained look swimming in the pools of her deep blue eyes as she yanks the blade from her body as swiftly as she can, bringing with it a trail of blood that splatters on the pavement. "Make... no.... yeaaargh..." Good lord, that's extremely painful. "... mistake..." A quick flick of her wrist begins to see the knife being tossed aside. She's just barely let go of it when it explodes, knocking her back to the pavement and causing her to crack her skull against it. "Uuugh... despite... our previous meetings... I don't like you..."

But if he wants her to despise him, she can happily oblige. Struggling on her back, it takes her a few more seconds to kip herself back up to her feet. Doing so, she makes an attempt to skirt behind the ninja and set one leg in front of his. Moving quickly as she can, she uses her left arm to attempt to grapple around his throat and strangle him a little. Her right hand curves into the shape of a claw, and should her grapple attempt actually work, the claw-hand will make a very valiant attempt to grip into his ribs and apply a severe amount of pressure as she tries to force him into the pile of broken electronics and downed cameramen.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou endures Arika's Dominant Diva.

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Arika            0/-------/---====|=======\-------\0        Seishirou

"You shouldn't," Seishirou agrees, mentally focusing on Arika, coming to a stand. She managed to change the point of entry on his stabning. It's enough to keep her from being on the ground.

"If you focus on that much, it'll be enough. Don't let go of it."

In this case, the blade is kind of a refresher course to what Ryouhara is capable of. Had Arika not moved to stop him, it could have been that. much. worse. Compassion is not something he promised Arika, and further, he'donly be insulting her by expressing it. In this case, it's pointful to expect that in return... he have nothing less than her full and undivided attention.

After all. When he fights, their lives are on the line.

He looks up, as Arika surrounds him, throttling him, and slamming him into the shattered plastic cases and silicon, grinding his body and spilling what is likely a not insignificant amount of blood. He grits his teeth through all the pain. Yeah... he groans, managing only barely. "That's... more like it." Locked tight by Arika, it would be difficult for him to move and mount a proper defense. He struggles to get his feet beneath him. Luckily, he doesn't need to.

Arika is exactly where he needs her to be.

The heat level around Seishirou has been amping up in barely noticeable increments. This close however, the sheer difference in temperatures is difficult to miss. Moreso when Seishirou activates the full force of his jutsu. Requiring no other component, it radiates from a very core of his being. A stifling heat. If fighting Seishirou was like fighting an oven before, now it's like fighting a blast furnace.

A specialized jutsu using a concept of 'weaponized aura', in a sudden blast of heat, Seishirou turns the air to steam, causing the world to appear hazy around him. At the center of this corona, the force is crushing. No, he isn't hitting Arika with a fireblast, or summoning lava. No. Seishirou's very essence is heat. That is enough.

Every metal, every rock surface around Seishirou becomes scalding hot. Air becomes vapor. Plastics melt. Film bursts into flame. Interns become whiny. Belt buckles become branding irons. With the chi radiating out from him in waves, it is the Ryouhara shinobi's intent to strangle Arika with pure willpower, engaging her on the basest level. Not by force.

There is simply no longer any air to breathe.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou successfully hits Arika with Katon - Shinrou Kiritsu EX.

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Arika            0/-------/-======|=======\-------\1        Seishirou

The injury is bad enough as it is, thank you very much. Arika would not be thrilled if she got gutted again. People seem to like gutting her, or slicing her throat open, or trying to eviscerate her and leaving her dead in alleyways.

Maybe it's time she got some new friends.

Blood continues to spurt forth from the wound, she's not had opportunity to put enough pressure on it to help it coagulate at all just yet. She likely won't get to do so until the fight is over, or until a nice medic is nice enough to bring her over a large square piece of gauze to cover it before she gets real medical attention.

Unfortunately for the viewers at home, all they get to see now is that fuzzy, snowy static. Because -someone- just went and burnt up all their film. The punk princess isn't going to point any fingers when this is all over, but anyone who knows her fighting style will just -know- that she has neither the capability nor the willpower to effect electronics in such a manner.

Sorry folks! You don't get to see what happens next! But don't turn that dial! We're sure the Neo League has some commentary or some bits and pieces of other fights to amuse you with in the meantime! Maybe if someone on this decrepit street is sitting around with a video camera, they'll be able to add what happens next to the DVD.

But you'll have to buy it!

And you'd better not complain!

That same heat that just destroyed the only camera that was still working is what is effecting the diva right now. Damnit! She knew that he had that whole heat wave thing going for a reason, and she should have been more mindful of it. Screaming out in pain, she's forced to release him from her grasp, her blood feeling as though it's going to boil if she doesn't get away from him quickly enough. The ring on her finger heats up, but she doesn't make a move to take it off.



That ring is stuck to her finger until she dies, and she'd probably come back from the grave to keep someone from taking it.

There is a nice band of red around it now. Her skin is seared to the point of looking like she over did it in a tanning salon in order to go off on a vacation to a wondrous tropical locale. It might actually look okay in a few days time, but for now she looks like an over-cooked lobster. The heat is overwhelming, making it difficult for her to breathe, so she backs far enough away that she can gasp for breath.

This does not, however, stop her from continuing. She looks as though she's barely standing. A slight wind might just knock her over. Her skin feels broiled and tender, but she's struggling onward. She knew what it was going to be like, and she's just going to have to trust her instinct about this opponent, and hope she's not mistaken.

Taking a deep breath, she staggers toward the intense heat that is likely still radiating from around the Ryouhara. Without a care about her hands, she reaches down in an attempt to hoist him up to his feet by way of grabbing at his shoulders. Once more, if she's successful at this, she attempts to force him into the air.

Only, this time she joins him.

Managing to grasp him, she leaps up into the air with the ninja, and once at her highest point, she uses her momentum and her weight to crash him down to the pavement below. If executed correctly, she should land crosswise atop him with the full amount of her weight.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou dodges Arika's Medium Throw.

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Arika            0/-------/-======|=======\-------\1        Seishirou

Seishirou manages to get to his feet. Most people are smart enough to be repelled by the heat in that kind of situation. Arika included. That is why the development of that particular jutsu was expensive.. but useful. Interestingly, it seems he is suffering the same effect as Arika--all the metal pieces of his outfit--from the rings on his arms to the earring in his ear--are all steaming hot. For some reason though.. this... doesn't seem to affect him. It's difficult to conjure why, just in the same way Seishirou notices there are a few choice pieces of metal the screaming honey blonde isn't eager to tear off in that heat.

Though he is hardly factory perfect condition himself, he finds that more curious than dealing with his own array of wounds, which stain his clothes a deep shade of crimson where silicon boards pierced his flesh, or his own internal weapons cut him.


His eye tracks every movement, every breath of the woman as she flies towards him. Though the heat surrounding him has died off a bit--it is possible to breathe in the corona again--she is still quite daring to pierce into it after him again. Attacking into the active corona of Shinrou Kiritsu is almost suicide. An eyebrow raises, Seishirou turns..

And in exact time to Arika's next heartbeat, the ninja is behind her.

"You don't seem to hate me enough...." the shinobi thinks aloud, walking away.

Again. He doesn't need to render an attack. Arika is already standing in a field of sympathetic chi that he controls. That, and the markings about four feet wide--a circle, with a whirl of three leaves within it--on the ground in which Arika stands. A large version of the Ryouhara clan sigil. Expressed.. as a more court version of the dragon king's seal. Normally a chi attractant assassination technique, placed locally on a part of the body. The same principle applies in this case however--this seal will form an sympathetic resonance with the heat chi in the air. All of the chi is attracted to that point. It will glow white, then the seal itself will explode, leaving a crater in the street. The effect is remarkably concentrated. If Arika is outside the seal, she might only be aware of a vague shockwave. Within... well.

It'll hurt much worse than a slight wind.

COMBATSYS: Arika blocks Seishirou's Ryuuouin.

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Arika            1/-----==/=======|=======\=------\1        Seishirou

Doesn't hate him -enough-? This is the type of day where Arika hates people for just looking at her oddly, or offering a chirpy hello. She had to WALK OUT of her SNF last evening, in order to stop herself from attempting to kill someone, and he's saying she doesn't hate him enough?

Guess she needs to learn how to focus her anger and hate him all the more; something like what she did with Kirishima in Thailand when she thought he and that demon-wench did away with Drake.

That lesson is about to be learned the hard way. See, Arika's not all that keen on the ninja stuff. Most of what she knows comes from cheesy '70's movies. The ones that give ninja clans a really bad name, and very tacky costumes. So, she's not -exactly- expecting him to have had this elaborate plan to create a very large version of his clan sigil. Nor is she expecting the previously used energy to bond with the sigil and cause the street beneath her to explode. Which means... she doesn't exactly think to get out of the way until it's too late.

Though not exactly outside of the seal, she's close enough to the edge that she doesn't explode along with the street. She does get sent up into the air with the explosion though, crashing down into the pavement strewn crater once it's been created. A large piece of jagged pavement embeds itself in the punk princess' wound causing teeth to grit against the pain and a small well of blood to pool upon her lip where she bit it hard enough to break skin. Abrasions have formed in various places of her body where she took the brunt of the fall into the crater, and yet she's still pushing up to her feet.

She's either insane, determined, or not willing to admit defeat.

Gathering energy of her own, she glares at the Ryouhara. Doubtful that what she is attempting is actually going to work, but she's got to try. Her shoulder raises up on a slight angle, her eyes just narrowing upon the ninja. Forcing her left arm to cooperate, she holds it out at her side about three inches below her shoulder. Her right arm swings in to draw the jagged pavement from her stomach, and once it's been tossed aside, she hovers her hand over the injury. Bracing herself, she strums her right hand as though hitting a perfectly difficult chord on a non-existent electric guitar. At that exact moment a dazingly bright explosion of mulit-colored chi bursts from behind her - her very own set of pyrotechnics. Her footing begins to falter a little, but not before the energy arcs upward out of the crater and directly toward the ninja.

COMBATSYS: Arika has reached second wind!

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Arika            0/-------/-----==|=======\=------\1        Seishirou

COMBATSYS: Seishirou dodges Arika's Siren Song.

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Arika            0/-------/-----==|=======\=------\1        Seishirou

An eyebrow arches as the crater bleeds electricity. Her ability..

"Impressive," he's finally forced to concede.

He leaps back, flowing away from the points of contact on that deadly technique. While he's relatively sure he could withstand it, he's, for once honestly not sure how long the battle might go on. With the nexus of energy he detonated at the site of the Ryuuouin, he wasn't aware of many people who've taken that much punishment who could have withstood it and remained standing.

He moves fast, astoundingly so--so when he slams against the lightpost, he skids up its edge, taking several steps at the end until the entire steel of the thing shifts, bending back underneath the force of his impact.

But despite standing at nearly a 100 degree angle to the ground, Seishirou .. remains standing on the surface of the lamp, his sleeves drifting ahead of him in the wind. He looks back, tersely watching for .. well. Obviously. Lightning. His location isn't the best for reflecting it. He is certainly no fool.

The ninja reaches behind his back into his satchel /visibly/ for the first time in the fight, mumbling something incoherent... Yes, as she is now, she is a danger. Of course, he was never foolish enough to think he can beat Arika easily. Those days are long in the past, where Seishirou hadn't the experience to realize a simple truth: Everyone gets beaten...

This, now, is a fight that is worth their time.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou focuses on his next action.

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Arika            0/-------/-----==|=======\=------\1        Seishirou

It's too late for an edged compliment now. Arika's confidence in her abilities was shot months ago back on that damnable ship. She's had moments where it's come back in full since, but they've been rare and she's constantly dropping into a state of disbelief in herself.

The punk princess has a bit of the Hulk in her though. Make her angry enough and she keeps trying to smash things, even -if- her confidence in herself is completely shot.

Since he's not dropping into the crater, she figures he either assumes she's fallen over from fatigue and pain, or he's being overly gracious and giving her time to climb out of the suddenly giant pothole that's taking up most of the street. Whatever his intentions, it's the latter that she's attempting. Pushing off the ground, she gets enough height to grab the edge of the deep crater and struggle to pull herself out. Her hand slips once, and she nearly drops back into the pit but she perseveres and fights her way back to the street.

Feet nearly crumble beneath her and spill her to the pavement, but she forces herself to stay steady despite what her body is telling her to do. She's stubborn and contrary now. And she's running toward the ninja atop the lampost. She doesn't stop, despite the fact that he's well out of her range. She uses her surroundings. Leaping up onto a bench, she keeps the momentum going. From the bench she springs up onto a bus shelter and from there? She runs across the top of it, tossing herself into the air feet first attempting to knock the ninja from his perch.

COMBATSYS: Seishirou counters Medium Kick from Arika with Kawarimi Crisis.

[                             \  < >  /////////////                 ]
Arika            0/-------/=======|-------\-------\0        Seishirou

She's pretty strong, especially as a front runner for Jinchuu and one of his preferences for the grand prize. She performs.. to expectations. But she seems a little more instinctive now than she was on the ship. Focused by emotion. By... something.. but now, the direction is more to him. The /focus/.. is on him. That's good. It reminds her what he is. Shinobi. An assassin. Period.

In doing so, it validates his coming here.

But.. is she different now? Seishirou can't shake that simple feeling.

She flies with some measure of bloody minded grace towards him, forcing him to turn an eye upwards. No time... hm... he braces slightly on the pole. Against Arika's kick, the ninja takes it full on, his body shifting with the motion as he blocks the attack against a braced forearm, absorbing all of the damage of her full body weight.

A faint contrary breeze stirs Arika's hair.

The ninkou master flies past Arika in midair, landing hard against the ground at the edge of the crater. There's only issue. Ryouhara is still up on the lightpole, in the midst of absorbing the shock of her fury. The clone.. smiles grimly.

Then its chi matrix overloads violently, shaking the earth and leaving nothing left of the lightpole but a scorched and melted pole in the aftermath.

All that work for nothing. Arika might be disconcerted by this, but she's perhaps a little too focused now. He wanted her hatred, and she's willing to give it all to him. Years of it that have been building up at different people, all focused on him.

Then he... explodes? Wha?

The poor punk princess has about one-one-hundredth of a second to realize that he's flown past her and the 'person' she's just hit is some sort of volatile energy clone.

Then said clone explodes. Or the chi that comprises it explodes. From her vantage point, it's really rather difficult to tell exactly -which- it is that explodes, but something -does-. The lightpole is a melted mass of metal, and Arika finds herself shot up into the air again. This time, she's not given a nice, soft, pavement crater to fall into, but she lands harshly against the remains of the lampost, her back cracking against it. "Nngh."

Lashes fall closed over her deep blue eyes, her breathing denoting the very extreme workout her body has undergone as it comes in raggedy gasps.

In her complete insanity, she pushes herself off the pile of wreckage. With a small groan, she forces her weary body forward, angling what would appear to be a final strike at the ninja. Her right hand shoots out with a fast jab toward the center of his face. Following behind is probably a very useless attack, considering his modus operandi. Strikingly bright violet energy engulfs her left hand, lances of the energy seeming to burst and crackle around it - obviously controlled a little by her emotions. Lunging the left hand forward with a palmheel strike aimed at his chest, she falls to her knees just after her arm extends to its full reach (this whether she hits him or not).

COMBATSYS: Arika can no longer fight.

[                 \\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Seishirou        0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Seishirou fails to interrupt Diva Allegro from Arika with Quick Throw.

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

He can't stop it in time.

The shinobi's hand flicks out quickly, to stay Arika's hand underneath his own vice grip. Seishirou is tired his own body receiving a battering, and at best, this is the simplest solution. Fade can't have much more left in her, can she?

In any case, he takes her arm into his, but not before the full weight of the punk rock princess slams into him, before that charge leaps from her hand to his chest, energy cutting into him, arching the nin's back with the enervating force. Hos body has taken a certain limit of damage today, and it would seem that his reflexes are compromised as a result.

He breathes out slowly, and.. flicks her hand away.

He stands there a moment longer, looking down at her with something might consider determination flickering there. In the set of his jaw. In the set of his eye. Others might simply call it a crazed light.

Ryouhara steps back, waiting silently.

In the end, Arika says nothing. Her breathing is heavy, to the point of being labored. She's pushed her body to the limit, and though she attempts to push up from her knelt position, she falters and falls forward.


... she's not about to allow herself to slip into the happy state of unconsciousness just yet. With great, painstakingly slow movements, she lifts her head just enough so that her deep blue eyes can meet his browns and linger there. Clearing her throat with a loud cough, she attempts steadying her voice. Knowing that it cannot come out with the dead neutrality that she wants it to, she simply bows her head back down and concedes the fight to the ninja.

The ninja returns the nod, in a stiff fashion.

Though the gesture is brief, it is nonetheless respectful. With that, he steps away. The process is slow, laborious. The shinobi conserves as much energy as he can, heading into the cafe proper. He passes the intern as he does so, keeping a very careful eye on the man's camera. It's definitely disabled.

He steps inside, his boots crunching across the broken glass as he steps into the backroom, where he'd secreted away something earlier, marked with a peculiar insignia, and locked shut tight with iron bolt banding. It's a scroll, which he seems to have little trouble extracting now that Arika is only debatably conscious. Revealing it to this much is.. okay with him now. For some reason.

"I think I'll find you out," Seishirou murmurs, stepping out of the cafe, at the same time firing a longer cord at the array of chains on the ninkou he used only some time ago, before the fight started. The cable affixes to a chain link by way of umbrella clamp.

"... But don't worry about your part of the bargain," Ryouhara allows. "This much is fine by me."

He gestures in the air, one handed handseal, activating some array in the web that causes the rest of the chains still hanging out of the device to ratchet back in rapidly. With Seishirou's weight alone, for the device to remain anchored up there isn't hard. The shinobi catches the sky as he's pulled bodily off to the rooftops--somewhere where he can bleed without immediate concern for people taking pictures.

Log created on 17:15:05 01/06/2008 by Arika, and last modified on 10:01:02 01/09/2008.