Neo League 570 - #591 Kyo vs Ryu

Description: EPIC. (Draw Match)

Strange twist of fate that a match with the Neo League, some time after his last, should pair Ryu up with none other than young scion of the Kusanagi line himself. An odd coincidence indeed, coming in light of successful bouts against the two other well-known practitioners of Ansatsuken in the fighting world. It had certainly not escaped the notice of the standard promoters, who'd seen fit to organize the ordeal as kind of 'grudge match' for the sake of further publicity and drawing in a large crowd.

Not that Ryu gave much though to such things, or carried anything resembling a grudge in regards to those events. A fight was simply a fight, and the King of Fighters knew his closest friend and pupil well enough to know they learned from their defeats, rather than languish in them. Still, none of that means he's any more impressed in general with his opponent's personality and ringside demeanor...assuming not much has changed since the last time. It would be a good opportunity to test that, and his strength certainly couldn't be denied.

He arrives with the usual punctuality, stepping back into the public eye after some months of isolation as if it were no event at all to write home about. He tightens his favored headband, performs a few warm-up maneuever and breathes deep of the stale air familiar to the youth center, at once re-acquainting himself with the atmosphere and contrivances of public fighting. had been quite a while.

Or maybe it's no coincidence at all; Kyo has been working his way through the other Ansatsuken fighters, and really there's not a lot of them to fight, so it's inevitable that he'd get to Ryu sooner rather than later. In the middle of the YFCC lobby, space has been cleared and Neo League cameras have been set up, to capture this monumental battle. This clash of titans. Kyo Kusanagi is, after all, the reigning World Warrior, and sits at the top of the Neo League - yeah, yeah, /along with Blanka/ - after defeating that selfsame League's own founder.

So really, how could this be anything short of epic?

"Heh... Let's show these chumps a thing or two about how it's really done," Kyo says with his characteristic overconfidence, the first words to escape the Kusanagi heir in the direction of his opponent for the night. It's true, they've got onlookers from amongst the community center's staff and regulars; but could any of them hope to compare to individuals of this caliber? Could any of them say that, before today, they'd gotten to see a fight like this up close and personal? Hopefully /they/ learn something from it.

And hopefully whatever they learn isn't Kyo's manners.

Tugging his Kusanagi gloves tighter, Kyo looks over at Ryu with a calm, confident smirk on his face, brushing dark brown hair out of his face. For a moment, flames spring to life in the palm of Kyo's right hand, burning with contemptuous ease, before the younger fighter snuffs them out by clenching his fist. "Let's go," he says, before suddenly rushing at Ryu full tilt, lashing out with a hooking right as he gets closer, his fist wreathed in trailing flames. If he lands that first punch, then he follows it up with a second, and a cry of: "You're WIDE OPEN!" before finishing his combination off by whirling around with a kick at the side of Ryu's head.

COMBATSYS: Kyo has started a fight here.

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Kyo              0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Ryu has joined the fight here.

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Kyo              0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0              Ryu

COMBATSYS: Ryu just-defends Kyo's Aragami!

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Kyo              0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0              Ryu

Well, so much for that admittedly small possibility.

Just because he prefer to observe the traditional rituals of beginning a fight doesn't mean Ryu is unprepared for the headstrong openings of more overzealous fighters. Far from it, that's rather what one of the purposes of the warm-ups are, in truth. In fact, he's just in the midst of finishing his last when Kyo decides to make his attack and for all intents and purposes it seems quite likely he's going to land it from the perspective of the audience. With the advantage in speed the Kusanagi youth has on him, even the King of Fighters doesn't have enough time to react!

Except...nnnnot quite.

The movement happens so fast not anyone but the two most directly involved may be quite aware what just happened. One moment, Kyo was closing distance fast, poised to hit..and the next his momentum is completely stopped, flaming fist solidly caught in Ryu's open palm and negated by his own counteracting chi flow. Unlike the World Warrior, Ryu doesn't offer a conciliatory comeback or even as much as a sly smirk. His face is rather unreadable.

No, the best retort he can muster is to simply jerk Kyo back by the fist and send him crashing straight into the floor.

COMBATSYS: Kyo just-defends Ryu's Tomoe Nage!

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Kyo              0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0              Ryu

Indeed, Kyo is caught by Ryu's defense of his attack; there's not much he can do to actually avoid the older fighter's attempt to then /throw/ him, so he doesn't bother... Instead, he just goes with it for the most part. Except, the part where he's supposed to be 'crashing straight into the floor'. That part, he's not a big fan of; instead, Kyo lands on his feet, skidding away in a controlled slide before twisting around to face the Ansatsuken master once again. "Yeah... So much for that, huh?" he wonders, shrugging his shoulders ruefully, his expression one of amusement at Ryu's expense!

He's carefully ignoring the fact that his own attack was about as effective.

But then, oh then, Kyo comes after Ryu again, reaching to try to catch the smaller fighter by his gi. If he manages to do that, then he's simply going to pick Ryu up and smash him into the ground, much like Ryu himself attempted not moments before... Except, Kyo will follow it up by /falling/ on Ryu, elbow-first, to add a little oomph to the attack. "Hua-!!"

COMBATSYS: Kyo successfully hits Ryu with Issetsu Seoi Nage.

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Kyo              0/-------/-----==|==-----\-------\0              Ryu

For all that his opponent's overconfidence and taunting lend temptation to consider Kyo a second-rate fighter, as whom these qualities are often attributed to, Ryu would be a fool to do so. He's beaten Ken fairly regardless of any swaggering bravado and that's more than enough to treat him with every bit of caution such a feat garner (Don't worry Sakura, you'll be there one day!!). So, it's not much a surprise that the wielder of the famed Kusanagi flames is able to counter Ryu's strike every bit as effectively as the vagabond had done to his own just a moment ago. The answer, now, was what would follow.

He winds up being a hair quicker on the rebound than the herald of hadou had anticipated, and accordingly his movements are a mite too slow to escape Kyo's grasp. For all weight Ryu might have on him, Kyo's strength is sufficient to do just as he designs, a grimace running over the ansatasuken fighter's previously stoic features as he unceremonious impacts the floor. Not only that, but the unforgiving follow up leaves him agasp for breath and quickly rolling away as soon as he's able, upon his feet and keeping and establishing a working distance between the two.

First strike to Kyo.

But it's the last one that matters, no? And in preparation of that, Ryu remains on balance, focusing his mind to distill all unnecessary elements from this fight. The glaring lights, the sounds of the crowd, the barely audible hum of the camerawork...even the stage itself seems to fade to darkness until Ryu sees only one thing before him: An opponent worth fighting, whatever his flaws. A mutual test of strength, a challenge to be overcome. He would rise to meet it, if nothing else.

COMBATSYS: Ryu focuses on his next action.

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Kyo              0/-------/-----==|==-----\-------\0              Ryu

With Ryu rolling away, Kyo lets out a faint 'hmph', pulling back as he gets to his feet. "What... Nothing to say?" he wonders, tilting his head to one side as he regards his opponent. The Kusanagi heir slips back into his fighting stance, fists loosely raised and held close to his body, as he watches Ryu... Watching him.

It's kind of a tense moment, between these two fighters who have traded titles; before Ryu, Kyo was the leader of the last winning King of Fighters team... While before Kyo, Ryu was the last World Warrior champion. It lends an air of even greater significance to the proceedings, though the audience watching them, and the cameras recording ever move, almost detract from it, somehow. Not that Kyo notices; he wouldn't deign to admit to paying attention to things like 'significance' or 'tension'.

Instead, as he watches Ryu, Kyo starts to build energy. It's palpable, especially to someone like Ryu, rather than being overtly visible... A sense of pressure, of something getting closer, as Kyo gathers his strength. "That's fine, I guess... If you gotta focus entirely on beating me, and don't have anything left to talk. It'll make it even funnier when I kick your ass!"

COMBATSYS: Kyo gathers his will.

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Kyo              0/-------/-======|==-----\-------\0              Ryu

It's certainly one of those moments people like to make movies about, the spiritual tension coalescing to a level even normal people may be able to pick up on and quiet down accordingly. It seems like nothing happens for almost an eternity, the two engaged in a silent (On Ryu's part, anyways) battle of will and determination, the flare of Kyo's chi completely unmistakable to Ryu's sensibilities.

Very well then, he shall break the silence.

It begins the same way as it always does, and yet the dramatics of the whole affair are as if it's happening for the first time, over and over again. His hands cupped back, his own aura flares around him as chi from within and without is gathered and compressed in an unmistakable reaction of blue, burning light that threatens to overflow from the confined space within his palms.

He nurtures it, lets it grow and expand naturally without coercion, until that same energy is such that even he dare not try to contain it longer, and hurls it forth directly at Kyo, his first words of the fight a shout, "HADOUUUUUUUUKEN!"

COMBATSYS: Ryu successfully hits Kyo with Hadouken.

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Kyo              1/------=/=======|====---\-------\0              Ryu

Sakura and Kyo have had this... rivalry ever since the unruly tomboy first started punching people at Taiyo. It's only natural she be interested in his fighting career... but really, she really enjoys being there when he loses so she can rub his face in it!

But she really can't do that here. Not with her own master fighting. She's got to keep her mouth shut here, and hopefully not even indicate her own presence here, lest it disturb the master at work! ... Still, it's a Neo League fight in her own hometown, of =course= the Ansatsuken disciple has to be in attendance. She just happens to be behind other people, with a big baggy hoodie covering most of her features, and some tall dude in front of her. Every so often she hops up to look over his shoulder at the fight, but really... it's better this way. Really. ... Though that was a pretty rocksome fireball, one would have to admit!

...Well, Kyo WAS trying to goad Ryu into saying something. So it's not like he has any grounds to complain about what it is, right?

The gathering energy on the Ansatsuken master's part doesn't go unnoticed by Kyo either, his dark eyes narrowing faintly. There's only so much he can do in response without breaking his concentration though, so when the little package of searing chi is hurled towards him, the taller fighter crouches a bit and brings up his arms to try and--

--But it doesn't work, the Hadouken splashing through his guard and knocking him back, putting it at one solid hit each, so far! "What the hell was /that/ supposed to be, anyway?" Kyo wonders, as he takes a few dashing steps forward. "I thought you were supposed to hit /hard/, Ryu!" With a final step, Kyo hurls himself into the air, whirling over horizontally as he does so, going up and over and down, a wide arc towards Ryu; as Kyo falls, his extended foot describes a half-circle towards the legendary fighter's head, trying to smash him into the floor.

COMBATSYS: Ryu interrupts RED Kick from Kyo with Shoryuken.

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Kyo              1/-======/=======|======-\-------\0              Ryu

Hey, it's that one guy battling.... that other guy!

... With the memory only spanning a few years and a TV-watching habit that's even shorter, that's pretty much the extent of Shurui's knowledge of the fighting world. However, even she knows there's a person named Ryu. And, perhaps, she's heard of Kyo too. Kyo... who happened to tag the first account of being one of a pair of people who almost had exactly the *same* aura. Power-wise, anyway. And here, Shurui's able to confirm that not being just a quirk of her strained eyes at the time.

And, then, there's Ryu, who is interesting in his own way. True, blue, and Hadouken-y. TV never has the same effect for Shurui, so here, seeing the two with her glasses perched atop her forehead, she finally realizes what is behind the hype is all about. Holy shi- guh, she can't see anything now! Single-minded in her pursuit of knowledge (and her want of seeing a damn good fight), the other girl with the hoodie pushes and squeezes by some tall by-stander, trying to ignore the plethora of distracting auras so close to her. Nnnn. At least these two shine brightly enough that she can focus on th- Whoah...

In the future, it might pay to be careful what you wish for!

Ryu apparently just just a bit more to say, having seen enough of young fighter's style know to expect a quick recovery in the face of all but perhaps the most devasatating attacks. So, when Kyo leaps overheard to reap a much-expected counterattack from his successful strike, Ryu is crouched and waiting awash in the ambient energy left in the projectiles awake. It's palpable still, manipulated and channeled into a gentle swirl of rapidly rising heat, keen to turn ferocious at any given moment. And now? Now, you might catch just the hint of a smile on the vagabond's lips.

Rule one: Never jump in on an Ansatsuken user.

Ryu's rise is as furious as it is fast, leaping into the air with just the right twist to put the trademark spin into effect, his fist smashing through the World Warrior's sweeping kick, too fast and too strong to even provide a visual aknowledgement the admitted damage done in the process. It doesn't end there either, his rise relatively unfetter until he catches that younger fighter squarely in the midsection at the pinnacle of his leap, carrying all the upwards force with power to mirror his voice, "SHOOORYUKEN!"

When he lands, it's with an unexpected kind of fluidity, brown eyes settled on his opponent's likely landing spot. See? He speaks when it matters!

This moment seems... Familiar, to Kyo. In fact, it's almost identical to what Ken did when he fought /that/ Ansatsuken fighter... Don't these guys have anything original to contribute? Gosh. Anyway, Kyo gets hit pretty impressively as Ryu punches /through/ the aerial kick, driven further up into the air by the impact and sent crashing towards the ground in a much less cool arc through the air than the one he initated.

But Kyo's not down for long, oh no. In fact, it's only a heartbeat or two before the Kusanagi heir is pushing himself up to his feet, standing up with only a bit of an initial wobble. Though his expression is definitely serious for a moment, it soon melts back into his usual confidence, as he says: "See, now that's better. How are the kiddies watching gonna learn anything if you stick to the little sissy slaps?" Fists come back up loosely, and Kyo hunkers down a little bit, keeping his attention fixed on the Ansatsuken master. He is, at this moment, waiting for an opening.

But will Ryu present one?

COMBATSYS: Kyo focuses on his next action.

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Kyo              1/-======/=======|======-\-------\0              Ryu

Goading can be an effective strategy for the sort of opponent who is sensitive to perceived slights against his honor or skills. No doubt Kyo has found it to have served him well, else why would he persist in it (Besides for the fact of being Kyo, that is)? Unfortunately Ryu's not the sort to rise to that kind of bait with anything beyond a solemnly disapproving stare, like an impassive monolith of paternal-seeming disappointment in the perceived waste of potential. But that's neither here or there, and the only cure for Kyo has is an even dose of humility. If it so happens that Ryu should supply that, well, that's how it goes.

But to the task at hand, Ryu will provide Kyo with the opportunity to find an opening..if there is one, and if he is quick enough to take advantage of it. The amount of distance the king of fighters can close in such a short amount of time is rather impressive, feet seeming to barely grasp the ground in an almost gliding motion, kicking off with a twist at just the right moment to making a sweeping strike at Kyo's exposed side.

COMBATSYS: Ryu successfully hits Kyo with Light Kick.

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Kyo              2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|======-\-------\0              Ryu

Truth be told, Kyo just likes to talk smack. He eats smack, he breathes smack, he dreams and drinks smack. Sometimes, maybe, he focuses more on it than he should, occasionally to his detriment... Such as when Ryu comes in like that, and he zigs when he probably ought to zag. Twisting to try and intercept Ryu's kick with his forearm, Kyo's block gets powered past, and the Ansatsuken master's bare - and probably /stank/ - foot slams into his tender sidemeats, driving the air out of his body and knocking him to one side with an undignified 'Geh!'

But don't think Kyo Kusanagi is out yet.

"All right, no more kids' table crap," Kyo says, holding his side with one hand as he turns to face off with Ryu again. Straightening up despite the pain, Kyo raises his right hand into the air, and a brilliant flame springs to life there, raging in his palm. But... It's not the only flame, as Kyo himself begins to glow with a reddish-yellow light, a brilliant light that hurts the eyes like almost staring at the sun, tendrils of Kusanagi flame rising off of his body as something terrible comes together. "EAT--" Suddenly, Kyo seems to /slide/ forward at Ryu, sweeping his upraised right hand back across his body and then /down/, unleashing the flames in his hand, the flames on his body, and what seems like it might be all the flames in the whole wide world as the burst grows and expands and turns into a raging, hellish storm of sacred Kusanagi fire, seeking to obliterate Ryu entirely.

And maybe some of whatever's behind him, too. "--THIS!!"

COMBATSYS: Ryu just-defends Kyo's Orochinagi'!

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Kyo              0/-------/---====|======-\-------\0              Ryu

Questions pertaining to hygiene aside, Ryu's strike is a quick one and he'll withdraw as soon it's completed, leaping back to good distance; One which Kyo very quickly makes up for.

It was amazing to him, truly, just how quickly the Kusanagi scion is able gather and effectively channel such a large amount of chi, enough to the point that he has to wonder for a split-second where that suffocating pressure of force came from.

It's all he can spare however, and it's perhaps his instincts alone that save him, along with a little luck. In the face of that remarkable, furious torrent of sacred power, the former world warrior's own significant reserves of chi flare in a purely reactive response, instinctively shielding him from chi that seeks to harm. Ordinarily it would last but a moment before breaking before an attack of such ferocity, but Ryu is fast enough to cease it in the same moment and take control now that Kyo has relinquished control to let the energy do as it will, turning the very attack into his own advantage.

It is by no stretch of mind an easy thing to manage, as if to attempting catching a bee by it's stinger without being stung on the process, but by some remarkable stroke of fate he manages it. The flames swirl and rise around him, but the wanderer seems unharmed within the fiery corona, tense with concentration as the attack dissipates around him.

But before they are completely gone, he acts. Leaping forward, the King of Fighters advances swiftly on his opponent in a fiery whirlwind of an attack, his own chi turned against him in what's assure to be a thrice-devastating counterattack if successful, the third staple move of the Ansatasuken school, "Tatsumaki Senpu Kyaku!"

COMBATSYS: Kyo counters Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku from Ryu with Nue Tsumi.
- Power hit! -

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Kyo              0/-------/-======|=======\-------\1              Ryu

For a moment, Kyo just looks... Shocked. Maybe he's been /too/ lazy lately; the terrible power of the Orochinagi... Hasn't been nearly as terrible or powerful as it ought to be, Billy's fiery doom in Greece aside. But in a way, this just makes things more interesting. He's gone and thrown his trump card, and Ryu, more experienced certainly, has dealt with it, with authority.

But before the flames are completely gone, the massive blast which actually makes everyone who was behind Ryu /scatter/ before the realise the Ansatsuken master is going to all but obliterate the attack before it can do anything, before they've disappeared Ryu attacks, leaping through the air at Kusanagi. And as he whirls in that kick, Kyo is given precious little time to recover from his surprise; there's no time to get out of the way. Instead, Kyo is going to have to get fancy.

Suddenly, there is a satisfying impact as Ryu's foot and leg hit Kyo; except, they hit Kyo's hand, as he catches Ryu by the ankle and stops the kick /cold/. "Whoops," says Kyo, in a very feigned innocent tone. "Did I do that?" And then, the Kusanagi heir lashes out with his other hand, aiming a fiery punch at Ryu while the Ansatsuken master is too wide open to possibly deal with it.

Also it's right in the nuts. Kyo, you're such a douche.

For those supporting Ryu in this fight, it's probably quite easy to go and mentally cast the fight in his favor as soon as he obliterate Kyo's most powerful attack. But the thing about a fight, any fight, is an inherent unpredictability to its course. No one can be sure exactly which way things will fall out, and there's no better example of such a thing as when Kyo does...well, exactly what he does.

Even if you're Ryu, there's no real anticipation of a hit there, not when engaged in that kind of maneuever. Kyo may find a bit of satisfaction in the brief widening of the wanderer's eyes reflecting genuine surprise as his movement comes to completel halt, completely open to the retaliatory strike.

He takes it about as well as one might expect, flying back a few paces and crumpling to the ground in a heap. Pulling himself up to his feet, Ryu coldly regards Kyo with something that might be marked as the beginning of a glower, but it doesn't quite progress that far. Maybe, just -maybe- the legendary wandering warrior has managed to get just a bit perturbed at the younger martial artist's antics.

Now time to wonder, though. Shrugging off any lingering discomfort, the man allows his hitertofore suppressed aura flare out in full, gathering what ambient chi in the air he can, building upon his own and expanding in preparation. The next several blows would decide things. Of that, he intended to make certain.

COMBATSYS: Ryu gathers his will.

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Kyo              0/-------/-======|=======\====---\1              Ryu

So you might wonder: After punching Ryu right in the mean bean machine, what does Kyo do next? Does he have some amazing followup planned, some dread strategy to exploit the obvious advantage that he's created for himself? Or is he, perhaps, just going to do something else to make himself look like an even bigger jerk than he already does? It is a mystery indeed.

However, while Ryu is almost but not quite glowering at the Kusanagi heir, Kyo himself is looking around at the audience. In fact, he doesn't even seem to notice the terrible power that the Ansatsuken master is gathering, nor have the faintest clue as to the character of the look that he's getting from the normally stoic and imperturbable martial artist.

Instead, Kyo points into the crowd. Right at Sakura. "Hey! Hey! Kasugano!" Kyo calls, singling her out amongst the other spectators from the YFCC's staff and regulars, plus whoever else might have shown up to a fight of such consequence and gravitas as this. Gravitas which Kyo is totally, totally ruining. On purpose, no less. "Is this seriously the kinda guy you go for?" he wonders of the fighting schoolgirl, whether or not she even acknowledges his speaking directly at her, jerking a thumb at Ryu. "'cause when I punched him right then? Didn't feel a /thing/. I think he might have an innie!"

COMBATSYS: Kyo gains composure.

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Kyo              0/-------/--=====|=======\====---\1              Ryu

Ow. Ow. Ow. Shurui hisses in pain as the two fighters duke it out, one hand fumbling for the glasses on her forehead. Then, a second later, she decides against it, steeling herself against the brilliant displays of both fighters and, while narrowing her eyes into slits and pressing her teeth together, she keeps watching, no doubt seeming odd in her display of pain to anyone next to her. Of course, that pain gets shared overall when those dual chis become visual attacks. As it stands, it's so much *better* to see them fight like this, as much as it pains her ey-

"....." Did the flame guy just punch the blue guy in the balls? Or are her eyes deciding to go out?

No, he did. And he's calling someone out on their like for the other one. Maaan. From her current position hunching underneath someone's elbow and behind someone's side, Shurui narrows her eyes into deadpan slits. "Prick."

Kasugano? What? Sakura's in the house? Sure, there's a decent audience present here, but Sakura was going incognito, her distinctive headband more or less hidden from view by her hoodie. But since Kyo's so nice (read: such a jerk) as to point directly at the tomboy, the audience actually tears their eyes away from the two fighters to gawk at the diminutive disciple!

Camera flashes go off at this point, for it's not often that Sakura Kasugano actually -blushes- in a public place like this. "Sh-shut up, what the heck are you talking about, Kyo?!" she snaps, fists plunging to her side in barely-repressed rage. "T-takin' cheap shots like that, what kind of martial artist are you? Oh, oh right! The SUCKY kind who gets KOed by watermelons!" A fully red-faced Kasugano doesn't =directly= respond to Kyo's question, but... well. Her aura sure is flaring up now! The audience gives the tomboy some space -- it's gettin' a bit toasty in here!

There are a lot of ways Ryu could choose to react to Kyo's little exchange in the midst of their fight, none of them particularly pleasant for him. It wasn't as if he was unaware Sakura was in the audience; Experience had taught him that she'd find -some- way to know when he was around, especially if he was doing an official fight in the area. Not only that, but her at this proximity her own personal chi tended to give her away. Not everyone in the audience is just a normal spectator, he knows that, but it's not something he pays much mind. His attention, after all is on the fight.

Speaking of that, he elects for a simple approach! If Kyo wants to engage audience members in the midst of battle, that's fine. But don't be surprised when your opponent tries to pull fast one on you during the middle of it all and aim to plant his heel in the dead center of your chest, closing distance in absurd and sudden burst of speed.

COMBATSYS: Kyo just-defends Ryu's Joudan Sokutou Geri!

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Kyo              0/-------/--=====|=======\===----\1              Ryu

"Ha ha ha, she's blushing!" Kyo laughs, because he's a jerk. He doesn't seem too worried about Sakura's agitation, of course, instead focusing on finding it terribly amusing. "Hey, I'm just teasing, Kasugano... It's not my fault you're such an easy mark!" Meanwhile, behind Kyo there is a freight train a-comin', and it has a tattered gi and a red headband on. The Kusanagi heir is, despite appearances, not unaware of Ryu's approach, though he might have been hoping that the Ansatsuken master would be unsettled by Kyo provoking his disciple, or claiming that he doesn't have any bits.

Silly Kyo.

But speaking of sudden and absurd bursts of speed, Kyo whirls around at the last possible moment, facing Ryu as the other fighter comes in for that heel strike, and slipping back at the same moment as the attack; there's a bit of an impact, but it's hardly worth writing home about, as Kyo moves back at near enough the same speed as Ryu moves forward, nearly putting himself into the audience as he defends himself. "It must be hard for you, sucking that bad," Kyo says to Ryu, suddenly lashing out with a hooking punch at the other fighter's face, once again trailing those Kusanagi flames. If that hits, then he steps into the attack and lashes out with his other fist, a thunderous uppercut aimed at Ryu's chin, with an accompanying explosion of fire!

COMBATSYS: Ryu blocks Kyo's Aragami.

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Kyo              0/-------/-======|=======\===----\1              Ryu

Kasugano can normally keep a lid on embarassment when she's already =in= a fight, but having been called out when she was trying to remain discreet was... unsettling, to say the least! But when Kyo eases up on his verbal volleying, Sakura finds herself relaxing... just a bit. Her face is still beet-red, mind, but her eyes are still narrowed. "Pff, whatever! Just keep your head in the fight, loser!"

Seeing that her 'disguise' is pretty much worthless, she pulls her hood off. No sense in roasting herself alive if she doesn't have to! But, thanks to the dry winter air, her hair sticks out at all different angles, making the tomboy's normally unkempt hair even moreso. Not that she notices, or cares, but hey!

"Jerk..." she mumbles, under her breath, as her face sloooowly returns to a more appropriate color.

Okay, so Kyo is aware enough of his surrounding that he can take time to harass the audience and still defend against an incoming attack. Impressive, but still poor form if you were to ask the ansatsuken fighter. Not that the World Warrior is likely to care much about that, of course. Still, Sakura shows admirable restraint beyond that initial outburst, and he'll only hope and expect that she'll be able to keep control of herself for the rest of the fight, no matter what absurdities and the Kusanagi heir decides to toss her way.

He's fast to react at least, successfully brushing Kyo's attacks aside with decisive blocks of his forearm, sustaining naught but a few minor burns and scrapes in the process, nothing he can't live with. Ignoring Kyo's prattle, he's put himself in position to try and make a play for Kyo's clothing, aiming to yank him back and send him clear into the floor as he'd aimed to do at the beginning of the fight, courtesy of a helpful footplant in the stomach along the way!

COMBATSYS: Kyo blocks Ryu's Tomoe Nage.

[             \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////               ]
Kyo              0/-------/=======|=======\====---\1              Ryu

Whoa. Deja vu.

This time though, neither Kyo nor Ryu react with quite the overwhelming defense they managed at the start of the fight to these almost identical techniques; Kyo's punches at least manage to get a little damage in to Ryu's guard, and the Ansatsuken master does manage to throw the Kusanagi heir properly, though the thrown young man remains in some control of his flight this time as well. Landing in a roll, Kyo manages to avoid the worst of the impact, though he does make an annoying 'ootto!' sound when he does it.


And then what does Kyo do? Well, he turns and rushes directly at Ryu again, reaching to try and snag the older fighter by the front of his gi. Should he manage to do that, he doesn't have any throw or finesse-laden technique in mind: He simply unleashes a sudden explosive burst of Kusanagi flames, accompanied by a bellowed command. "BURN!!"

COMBATSYS: Ryu interrupts Koto Moon Positive from Kyo with Shin Shoryuken.

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////                  ]
Kyo              1/--=====/=======|====---\-------\0              Ryu

Wh... well, Sakura knows better than to interrupt her master's fight! It's not like a Saturday Night Fight, or a pay-per-view where anyone who wants to can just jump in, after all! This is Neo League, where the best are forged in battle! So of course she manages to keep a lid on it.

Aside from mumbling to herself, and generally being irritable at Kyo, and... still brandishing *quite* the aura of her own, the air rippling with near-invisible waves of blue. She's pretty much into the fight, now that the Sakura-mocking has been replaced with serious fighting! Good stuff!

Indeed, the last sequence of events is a strange mirror to the beginning of their fight, fitting that it heralds the oncoming end! Both are relentless at this point, neither letting up or giving up an inch of ground to the other. For Ryu's part, he's decided it's time to play his own trump card and see if the Kusanagi heir is truly up to the challeng.

The rush is so broadcasted that it could be likely outmaneuevered, but the wanderer instead slows his movements by just the right deliberate amount, allowing himself to be grasped in the beginning of Kyo's attack. It's then that he acts, able to pull away in a crouch that escapes the full force of the flames, but still receives moderate scorching in the process. Nonetheless it's an acceptable result for what comes next.

And what comes next is a complete and unprecedent explosion of inner chi.

Completely raw with the stuff of life itself, Ryu darts back in with a blinding speed, his first lower and poised to catch the youth squarely in the stomach just as his flames clear. His impact coincides with a crest in power as a furious torrent of wind kicks up about them, "SHIN"

But it doesn't end there. The strike travels further upwards, solidly catchin the heir's chin as the force of the winds and impact carry both fighter likewise into a chaotic spiral of punishment, the razor thin whisps of air that travel in the miniature doing as much damage as the blows themselves "SHOOOORYUKEN!"


Kyo's triumphant attack turns into his once again getting a heaping helping of Shoryuken, and you can't just send that stuff back to the chef. The Shin Shoryuken blasts Kyo into the air along with Ryu, finally sending him flying back to crash on the ground in a heap, skidding at least two to three feet across the YFCC lobby floor on his back.

He might have cracked the tile floor a little, too, because why would they be fighting on that actual set-aside sparring area? Padding is for chumps!

Still, once again Kyo doesn't stay down for long, pushing himself up and rubbing his chin with the back of one gloved hand. Ryu's definitely someone who lives up to the hype about him... A veritable modern titan of martial arts, a living legend. But Kyo Kusanagi? Kyo Kusanagi /surpasses/ hype. Kyo Kusanagi brings down the giants, the titans. Kyo Kusanagi is in the process of /writing/ his legend.

"I guess you're pretty good," Kyo admits, grudgingly for such a faint compliment. Once again, he raises his right hand, and once again flames spring to life in his palm, his power focusing there. "But this time for sure... Your ass is goin' down." There's no additional fire this time, no glow about the Kusanagi heir... But it IS the same technique as before. Can Ryu defeat it as handily a second time? Kyo seems to think he won't be able to as he lunges forward, sweeping his hand through the air and sending forth a wave of Kusanagi flames, smaller than the one he threw earlier, but no less devoted to the task of making Kusanagi Fried Ryu. "THIS IS THE FINISH!!"

COMBATSYS: Kyo successfully hits Ryu with Orochinagi'.

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  /////                         ]
Kyo              0/-------/-----==|=======\-------\1              Ryu

In spite of his remarkably...regrettable attitude, Ryu can't deny that Kyo has given him a truly challenging fight. And truth be told, he didn't expect anything less when it came to the youth at this time. "You're talented yourself." He admits, with only trace of disapproving tenor. But as much as its had it ups and downs, Ryu feels the end upon them as surely as his opponent must, preparing accordingly.

Having experience the attack already before, he can tell that it's coming..but this time, it's too fast. This time he won't be able to dodge or mount a meaningful defense, having expended himself too much from before. But you don't become a full legend just yet, not if he has anything to say about it. There's far more humility to be learned than that.

As the wave of flames approaches him, Ryu allows himself a small smile. Can't counter it...but, he should be able to create a simultaneous strike of sorts. And as he once more gathers crackling blue chi withing the palms of his hands, far more intense in nature than before, that's precisely what he does. "DENJIN HADOUUUUKEN!" His words echo over the roar of the flames, the concentrated essen will puncturing a hole clear through the oncoming wall, streaking for the World Warrior in one last act of aggression.

The flames however, continue unhindered. And King of Fighter has blasted clear across the room where he unceremoniously skids to finish. He does not get up.

COMBATSYS: Ryu can no longer fight.

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

COMBATSYS: Ryu successfully hits Kyo with Denjin Hadouken.

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

A fight of legends, that is to be sure. If not legendary in practice but legendary due to the people who took part in it. Both fighters gave an outstanding, if fairly bread-and-butter performance, and in the end it could have easily gone either way, but both fighters wound up fighting to their all, and the match seems to have gone without a clear winner. Truly it was an event that could easily hold even the lowest of interest. After the last of the flames flicker out, and the wave of energy, nobody even moves to leave.

But one spectator was watching the fight for completely different reasons.

As Kyo Kusanagi launches his patented Orochinagi technique, he might feel a bit of a tingle within his blood and his flames. And should he look around for the source, his eyes just may meet with serene, smiling boy. And while his facial expression may seem innocent, there is something about his aura that betrays something... and slowly, his innocent grin grows into a malicious, predatory smile. He pays absolutely no attention to anything else, apparently not even aware of the Ansatsuken fighter's, and oblivious to the rest of the crowd surrounding him. Is he even real? Or just a figment of Kyo's imagination and psyche? Before he can get any solid answers, though, the lights of lobby begin to flicker momentarily, only to immediately die for a few seconds. And whether they come back on, whether or not Kyo is conscious, the boy is no longer there.

It could only be a coincidence, right?

The sudden appearance of that crackling Hadouken is... Troublesome, to say the least. But Kyo sees it coming, and he has room to avoid it, he knows he does, already starting to move back to put more room between it and himself as the Orochinagi crashes into Ryu and puts the Ansatsuken master out of the fight /finally/. Well, it would be boring if it was too easy, right?

But, just when it seems that Kyo is going to avoid the sphere of pain and come out ahead, he gets distracted. His eyes fall on that smiling boy, meeting Chris', and he can't help but notice the way that innocent smile pulls into something much worse. "What--" he starts to say, which is when he gets reminded about Ryu's last little present.

Unfortunately, Kyo is reminded by the fact that it impacts with him, blasting him with electrified chi. "Gaaah!" the Kusanagi heir exclaims, as he falls back, shocked and just plain... Hurt enough that he's not getting back up either.

So close, and yet so far.

COMBATSYS: Kyo takes no action.

COMBATSYS: Kyo can no longer fight.

Kasugano sure doesn't move to leave or anything! She may as well be riveted to the floor, gaze transfixed upon the two fighters before her. She'd seen Kyo and Ryu fight before, sure... but the last time was in the King of Fighters tournament, on the world's stage. And now... she's here in the heart of Southtown, in a building that she's probably going to find herself patching up. But none of that matters... because, as she stands with her hands tightly clasped before her, mouth slightly agape... she has only the seesaw of wills before her to focus on.

In a way... she sees this battle as hope. Because she's fought Kyo -- she can be his equal on a bad day. And on a good day, at least in her mind, he's now found himself to be Ryu's equal. Living vicariously though some guy she'd love to defeat -- pretty sad, huh?

And then the lights flicker out. Sure, she felt... =something=... didn't she? But the fact remains that when the lights come back on, her master's still lying there on the floor. And the medics, having been equally unresponsive for a moment, aren't moving quickly enough.

Normally she might have more restraint, but they're taking too damn long. While the refs make the obvious call here, Sakura grabs a damp towel and makes like a medic!

Log created on 21:02:28 02/17/2008 by Kyo, and last modified on 04:05:14 02/18/2008.