Sakura - You did WHAT?!?

Description: Sakura's about to go for a run. Also, she signed up her good friend Natsu Ayuhara for Saturday Night Fights, despite Natsu having never fought a professional bout before. Natsu? Has just found out.

So it's a lazy afternoon. Sakura's already home from school, and she's up in her room, gathering some things and changing her clothes--pulling on her favorite white-striped, maroon tracksuit, in preparation for doing some running and training before dinner. It's... actually her usual thing--she's training more often than not lately.

She is taking her time, though, primarily to check her favorite fighter forums online. *click click* *click click*

>Dear Kenfan428. You are totally, completely, -totally- wrong. Ken will never be as good as Ryu-san! Never ever!< *click click* *click click*

Now over to the SNF community boards, where she posts under the name of FlowerKick. >Ha ha, just did something sneaky and signed up a friend for next week. She's gonna be really surprised to get the call!<

*click click* And then a voice from below. "Sakura~! You have a friend here! Come down!"

Sakura yells back, "Okay mom! I'll be right there!" And off she goes to see who's come to visit her!

Miss Ayuhara had been confused. Not a terribly uncommon experience, to be sure, but this was... puzzling.

She'd been walking through Southtown Village on her way to see Sakura, when her phone start buzzing with a message -- pretty much the only way she'd ever remember to check her email is routing it through her phone, after all. And, upon flipping it open, she'd seen a rather perplexing statement. And since she was planning on stopping to visit Sakura -anyway-...

Natsu has pretty much the same sort of track suit on. The color is a bit brighter, the material a bit more shiny as befits the sports-minded Gorin High School theme, but the general idea is the same. But as she stands with her phone in her hand before the back door -- because all the Kasugano friends use the -back- door instead of the front door, natch -- she greets Sakura with her smile twisted hard to one side. Okay, maybe that's a smirk, but it's with less approval than Natsu typically reserves for her friends.

"Saku-chan... I was wondering if maybe you could help me understand -exactly- what happened here... it seems I've been signed up for one of these... Saturday Night Fights?"

The tall volleyball player has appeared here in better moods, to be sure.

In the face of the tall, stern-looking smile that Natsu is turning on her, most would wilt. Natsu is not known to be the kindest of souls when riled. Sakura? She beams. "Oh, you got the confirmation email, great! Yeah I signed you up for Saturday Night Fights. It'll be great! I mean, you said you wanted to try being a fighter." Blithely, Sakura slips past Natsu, walking off the porch before starting to stretch a little, making sure her body is ready for whatever activities might lie ahead.

"And I'm sure you'll be great too, Natsu-chan! You're a natural, after all. It'll be tons of fun, just you wait!" Sakura turns and smiles at Natsu again, totally blithely. It's... actually kind of impressive. After all, Sakura's seen tall, well-built volleyball players crumple under such a look from Natsu.

"Wanna get some ice cream?"\

Natsu is... pretty used to intimidation tactics working on most people.

She's also pretty used to Sakura's outgoing nature -completely- derailing such attempts. Accordingly, Sakura's probably pretty used to Natsu's face falling as she rubs the back of her head, wincing visibly.

"Saku-chan... that's not..." Natsu's forced to spin around to follow the quicker, nimbler girl as she bounds past. "I wanted to practice first! You and Hina-chan, you each had lots of that before you jumped in... me, I..."

--- Ice cream?! Natsu's momentary hesitation just melts away, restoring the sardonic look from before. "Saku-chan, this is no time for ice cream! I... I was going to ask you for a spar anyway, just to see how much of a 'natural' I am, and... " She levels an extended finger at Sakura, determined glare fading into a look expressing more of a challenging stance. "... and now you owe me one!"

She glances up for a moment, then back to Sakura. "Loser buys the ice cream," she decides.

Welp. Plans changed. Sakura drops trou--her track pants, that is--revealing that she's got bloomers on underneath. And kneepads. Why? Because that's how she rolls. Fortunately her backyard is perfect for fighting, level, well-grassed, and almost perfectly square. Sakura's even marked out two starting places, approximately five feet apart. She takes up position on one of them, grinning wildly.

"You're -on-." Half-teasingly, she ads, "I want the strawberry cheesecake this time."

A wink indicates just how serious she is right now, Sakura dragging her padded handguards from a pocket of her track jacket and pulling them on before discarding her jacket as well, revealing a white t-shirt underneath.

"You said you wanted to try it, so... I made an executive decision. There's no practice like being in a real fight. All the sparring is great but... sometimes you just have to dive in! So..." She puts her hands up.

"Come at me."

COMBATSYS: Sakura has started a fight here.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Sakura           0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Natsu has joined the fight here.

[\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Sakura           0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0            Natsu

Ayuhara's eyes narrow at Sakura's sudden change of attire. Was Kasugano planning this -all along?- The volleyball star knew Sakura was never one to wait, but...

Rubbing her forehead, she shrugs faintly. "I should have expected you to be fully prepared after pulling -that- stunt..." she says, lacing her fingers together and stretching them high over her head. Like Sakura, she strides down to the starting line -- and like Sakura, she peels off her jacket, to reveal the white Gorin High t-shirt beneath.

And Sakura calls for her to join the fight. "No time like the present, then..." Natsu launches forward and wheels a decidedly awkward kick at Sakura's shin -- powerful enough to sweep Sakura off her feet if it lands, but undercommitted and likely to miss. Maybe kicks aren't really her thing...

COMBATSYS: Sakura instinctively blocks Natsu's Medium Kick.

[  \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Sakura           0/-------/------=|-------\-------\0            Natsu

"I'm -always- prepared, Natsu-chan. And you should be, too. Never know when a challenge is going to come along!" Sage advice, really. Sakura bobs on her feet, getting her balance, and letting Natsu come to her first. Not really her style, normally, but this isn't a sanctioned fight or anything like that. She's sparring with her friend. And it shows in her attitude--she's taking this seriously, but not Seriously(tm).

Natsu's kick might be awkward, but it's definitely got the volleyballer's strong legs behind it--Sakura is pushed off to the side by the kick, having dropped low and used her forearms to intercept it, then going into a quick tumble to further dissipate the force behind that kick.

Popping up, Sakura uses the momentum to power her through a revolving, helicoptering kick, one that arcs gracefully through the air, reaching nearly the height of Natsu's head at the peak, striking with her right leg.

COMBATSYS: Natsu blocks Sakura's Shunpuu Kyaku.

[  \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////////////  ]
Sakura           0/-------/------=|=------\-------\0            Natsu

"I... I -am- prepared!" stammers Natsu, blood rushing to her cheeks. "I just..." She shakes her head, reminding herself of the difference in attitude between the two friends. Natsu has always been one to take her time getting ready for challenges, herself -- the time Sakura skips in the changing room is time Natsu uses to prepare for battle.

She seems surprised that Sakura's able to move so quickly against her kick -- but beyond making that mental note, she continues to follow through anyway, as to do otherwise would mean falling down. Which, she supposes, is bad for combat purposes.

Instead, the tall volleyball player advances towards her tumbling friend, hands hanging low in a practiced stance. But Natsu again takes mental note of that -- is it practical to hang her hands low in -fighting- as well? She's not given much time to consider that, though, as Sakura closes in. Ayuhara steps back, twisting so as to plant her hands in the path of that kick -- reacting as if she were trying to block an incoming volleyball rather than the shin and foot of her longtime friend. "... Huh," says Natsu as she considers her impulsive reaction...

And decides to roll forward with what comes naturally: lunging forward and pressing both palms into Sakura with an attempt at setting the airborne fighter up even higher into the air. "Hah!" she exhales, putting a bit more oomph into the attack.

COMBATSYS: Natsu successfully hits Sakura with Medium Punch.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////////////  ]
Sakura           0/-------/--=====|=------\-------\0            Natsu

Sakura knew Natsu would be a natural fighter. She proves it, to Sakura's satisfaction, anyways, in a moment. It doesn't look like Natsu's lifting manuever should be particularly effective, honestly--but despite her best efforts to avoid the volleyballer, Kasugano finds herself propelled upwards, into the air, by a rather painful impact. She shakes her head and flips in midair, regaining control over her own movement.

And then she plummets downwards, looking to plant hi-topped feet right into Natsu's head! Or her shoulders at least. Sakura's not really looking to brain her friend in a friendly match. She doesn't really look to 'brain' anyone anyways...

Sakura isn't really motivated by the thought of the ice cream--she's going to have it anyways--but her competitive nature is showing its head. What was a friendly, teasing spar takes on something a shade more serious for the Ansatsuken prodigy. She doesn't want to just lie down and lose, not even for a friend.

COMBATSYS: Sakura successfully hits Natsu with Strong Kick.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////       ]
Sakura           0/-------/-======|====---\-------\0            Natsu

Natsu is... glad that Sakura can sense her potential. Even though she doesn't admit her own skill, if it weren't for Sakura's outgoing assurances, it's doubtful Natsu would even have tried out for the volleyball team in the first place, so many years ago.

...Still. She -is- surprised that her volleyball moves seem to have an effect on Sakura. That ... will simplify training measures somewhat.

... Well, until Natsu is forcibly reminded that what goes up, must come back down. It didn't need to come sneaker-first, but... well, it did. Natsu realizes one moment too late that moving out of the way is the best option -- and gets flattened by the impact, knees buckling from the unprepared approach, as the volleyballer is unprepared for ninety-two pounds of schoolgirl when she's used to the weight of a volleyball.

To her credit, Natsu does roll off to one side as she lands, so as not to be =completely= squished by Sakura. She even exhales a brief chuckle at her own silliness, as she rises to her feet -- why didn't she think to move -sooner?- But that's neither here nor there... for Natsu's got a lot of ground to cover to reach Sakura now.

"I guess I had that one coming!" she acknowledges, as she dives into a roll for Sakura. A roll? Why, yes -- and she snaps out of the roll, hoping to catapult Sakura into the air again with a rising, two-palmed bump. "Ikeeeei!"

COMBATSYS: Sakura blocks Natsu's Rolling Receive.

[          \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////        ]
Sakura           0/-------/<<<<<<<|====---\-------\0            Natsu

This time, Sakura stands her ground, tightening her defenses. She's rewarded for that action by getting to take Natsu's rising volleyballer-styled attack again on her forearms. Which is pretty painful for her--no lies. But certainly less painful than letting Natsu hit her full on.

Shaking out her forearms, she comments, "All that brute strength you got's definitely good for fighting," taking just a moment to regain her fighting stance. She has a brief, internal war with herself over her next actions--so far this has been a pretty friendly match--but ultimately, she decides--if Natsu's gonna do this, she'll have to be prepared to face anything.

Sakura draws her hands to her stomach, fingers shaping into claws--between them, concentrated chi pours in, taking on a physical manifestation, blue-tinged white glowing and crackling between her hands. It just takes a moment to expand that ball to something roughly the size of her chest, and another to hurl it forward, Sakura shouting something that's become quite familiar to her neighbors recently: "Ha-doooooooooou-KEN!"

COMBATSYS: Sakura successfully hits Natsu with Medium Hadouken.

[           \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////             ]
Sakura           1/------</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\0            Natsu

Ayuhara nods tacitly at Sakura's assessment of her strengths in fighting. Well, strength in specific, really. Of course, if Shoma or any of the guys were to make the same assessment they would probably get an earful from the volleyballer.

As it is, though... Natsu believes she knows what's coming next from the Ansatsuken fighter-in-training. When Sakura curls her hands beside her, Natsu laces her fingers together, stretching the muscles in anticipation.

The blue-white energy rockets forth, and Natsu meets it just as a volleyballer should -- with open palms, fingertips making contact with all the surfaces of the ball at roughly the same time.

If all layers of the Hadouken were integral, that might have worked great! But as it is, the core of the Hadouken is enough to punch through the protective 'net' formed by Natsu's fingertips, blasting its way between her hands and nailing her square in the chest. Blasted backward from the sheet concussive force of the blow, Natsu finds herself next to the trash can -- which she knocked over, unfortunately.

Plucking herself up off the ground, Natsu could easily be deterred by the impact. But with her hair blown back, and a nice scorch mark on her shirt... nah. She's grinning up a storm. "I'm glad to know you're not pulling punches on me, Saku-chan!" But rather than charge right back into the fray, Ayuhara seems to be... lurching forward into her volleyball stance. Ready, waiting... and watching intently. "I... aside from that? I think I'm starting to understand why you like this..."

COMBATSYS: Natsu focuses on her next action.

[           \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////             ]
Sakura           1/------</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\0            Natsu

Hearing that, Sakura is grinning. "C'mon, you know me. Would I ever pull punches? What good would that do? They," she says, gesturing vaguely at the outside world, "are not going to pull their punches. So, gotta be ready for it. And..."

Sakura nods. "I knew you'd enjoy it. It's... I'm not sure I can even describe it." Not sure she should. It's the kind of thing that needs to be experienced--as Natsu is experiencing it now. Live, in-person. That thrill of battle. The understanding that comes from the wagering of fist against fist, style against style, willpower and determination against the opponent's.

She thinks about all that, then notices that Natsu is just kind of standing there, at least to her eyes. And that, that will never do. There are times where Sakura can get contemplative, or slow down tactically, of course, but her natural inclination is to action, not inaction. She's a go-getter--she goes, and she gets. Or tries, anyways. Sakura backs off a good number of steps; on the last one she crouches, then leaps into the air. She clasps her fists together, arching her back, and as she comes down on Natsu's position, she brings those fists down, kicking her feet outwards in a wide V as she goes. If she hits, she'll have mor ethan enough momentum to guarantee a picturesque landing.

COMBATSYS: Natsu interrupts Sakura Otoshi from Sakura with Set and Spike.

[                 \\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Sakura           1/---====/=======|=======\-------\1            Natsu

Natsu grins faintly. "It's... it's fun, yes. Tactical, kind of like a big game, but more... personal, I suppose?" In volleyball, one can certainly contest their strength against that of the other team, but the ball tends to detach the human element somewhat. Here, with Sakura...

Well, Natsu doesn't get to finish her thought, because, as Sakura's noted, Natsu seems to be spending more time drawing parallels with volleyball than on living in the moment and actually -fighting-. Her eyes narrow with intense focus, the words she -would- have said falling unsaid as Natsu backs up, shifting her stance to compensate for Sakura's telegraphed attack -- Natsu might not know -how- the attack will land, she just knows that it will.

And she finds that she can deal with it this time, instead of getting squished in the head. Two hands are raised, her broad palms slapping upwards just as Sakura's fists slam down. Natsu winces somewhat as her fingers clamp down around her friend's, her arms and legs bowing from the effort.

And yet, Natsu's able to shove the Ansatsuken prodigy back into the air, stopping her forward momentum entirely and propelling her roughly upward.

But if that were it, it probably wouldn't hurt much. And Ayuhara already agreed with Kasugano to not pull punches. "Attaaaaaacku!" Natsu leaps into the air, gritting her teeth as she ratchets her right palm backward, and then suddenly drops the hammer, slamming her wrist and palm down into the airborne Sakura, aiming to spike her back towards the ground. There may still be a picturesque landing, but probably not the one Sakura may have hoped...

Sakura lands on her face. And bounces once. A loud 'Oooooh~' sounds from the back porch--a quick check would reveal Tsukushi, having heard the commotion, come to the door to watch. "Hey sis, that looked bad, real bad," he pipes up, in an insouciant little boy's voice.

Sakura pushes herself up from the ground and spits some grass out and shouts, without even looking in his direction, "Shut -up-, Tsukushi!" Kasugano springs back to her feet and undergoes a quick, full-body shiver of sorts, making sure everything's in place at least nominally. Tsukushi was right about one thing--that did hurt.

"Told you... you had a knack for this." Sakura grins, just a little bit, bringing her hands back up. Resilient and never-say-die, that's Sakura.

"But I'm not done yet!" Power is already building up around her, almsot palpable, but she doesn't let it go--instead, she lunges in, darting forward and throwing a classic right cross, putting a good twist of the hip and rotation of the upper body into it, aimed to smack right across Natsu's jaw.

COMBATSYS: Sakura successfully hits Natsu with Medium Punch.

[                 \\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////                  ]
Sakura           1/---====/=======|=======\==-----\1            Natsu

Natsu lands lightly upon her feet, shaking the sting out of her hands. Yes, she may have bounced Sakura into air, but it was not without cost -- her hands hurt quite a bit from that! She takes a moment to rub the soreness out while Tsukushi bickers with his sister. A grin comes to her face, but she's deliberate in not poking that hornet's nest.

"Well, that's a relief!" Natsu's not above teasing, of course, just... brothers and sisters have their own special brand of teasing.

Natsu is, however, taken a bit off guard as Sakura aims for her face. Really, if Natsu's weren't normally hunched over, Sakura would have a hard time hitting her in the face -- but as it is, she manages to clock her in the jaw. And as Natsu's head snaps back, she realizes... that kinda hurt!

"Saa tte..." responds Natsu, brushing her chin lightly. Yes, that may bruise, she considers, but... well. Sakura's giving her all, Natsu may as well do the same. Clasping her fists together, she raises them suddenly in a reverse axehandle, aiming at bowling Kasugano over the same way she would lob a volleyball back over the net. "Atttaaaaacku!"

COMBATSYS: Natsu dazes Sakura with Aggressive Strike!

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////                  ]
Sakura           2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\===----\1            Natsu

Sakura didn't like the look of that. And she was -right-. The blow strikes home and it's a powerful one. Sakura staggers back, grunting in sudden, sharp pain, and her stance devolves into a half-drunk stagger. "I... ugh..." She's temporarily lost her powers of speech! It actually might be kind of restful for some. Tsukushi hoots with laughter, rolling around on the porch, and Sakura has just enough conscious brain to shoot him a -very- dirty look.

He's getting wedgied later.

Sakura shakes some of the cobwebs out--some--but is still lurching about a bit; she doesn't quite have the focus necessary to pull out her best techniques, but she's trying to keep in the fight. Her actions are borne on instinct, training, and memories of her favorite martial arts movies, so it shouldn't be a surprise that dazed and confused, Sakura resorts back to one of her favorite movie martial artists--

--and lunges forward with a sharp blow to the chest, almost like the 'one inch punch' that a certain martial artist popularized years ago. She even throws in the 'wataaah!' though it isn't as clear and piercing as it should be.

COMBATSYS: Natsu fails to interrupt Aggressive Strike from Sakura with Knock It Off!.

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  ///////                       ]
Sakura           2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\===----\1            Natsu

Natsu glances over at Tsukushi losing his composure over there. She admits -- that -was- a bit harder than she wanted to hit her dear friend, but honestly, the laughing is actually keeping her from rushing to Sakura's side -- she's all about -helping- her friends, not inducing concussions! Tsukushi's laughter keeps things real though, reminding Natsu that... hey, Sakura's tougher than she looks.

... But even still, Natsu's ready for Sakura. Or so she thinks. She's aware of Sakura's normal set of moves, having watched her publicized fights many times. So she has a sense of what to respond to, and she raises her hand to try and get a solid grasp of her friend before she can manage it.

But she needs to brush up on kung-fu films, clearly -- because her hands weren't ready for -that-. As Kasugano finds her way past Natsu's guard, the surprise and the sudden impact combine to give Natsu her own dazed and confused look, as she staggers backwards, forehead knitted in pain. That... could have been -worse-, easily, but...

"Aheh... good one, Saku-chan...!"

That foggy moment is gone from Sakura--she's back in full control, and thankful for it. "Guh, now I know why that kid Himura ran away from you when you smacked him in fifth grade," she comments, shaking her head. Once again she takes up the wide-footed stance. Perhaps sensing that the end of the fight is near, she approaches a little more carefully, edging closer step by step.

"So you'll do it? The SNF?" I mean... she -can- back out. If she wants. But Sakura thinks that'd be a mistake. That this is not only her calling, but Hinata's calling. And Natsu's. She feels like... they're going to -need- to be able to take on the world. That it'll be important...

But she couldn't say why. And the moment for that passes as quickly as it comes upon on Sakura. "Alright, Natsu-chan... here I come!" Usually one doesn't -warn- the opposition, but, hey, Natsu's a friend and this is a friendly fight, right? So. Sakura uses her patented jolt forward again, this time twisting her body to the left and coming up with a sharp, short-aired leaping uppercut, arching her body and putting herself into it, pushing off to leave the ground just as she'd be hitting Natsu!

COMBATSYS: Sakura successfully hits Natsu with Shou'ou Ken EX.

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  /////                         ]
Sakura           1/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\====---\1            Natsu

Himura ran from her because he was a loudmouth braggart who couldn't take what he was dishing out! ... Which is to say, Natsu just gives an awkward laugh. She -did- get in trouble for that fight, after all.

"... Of course I will! I'll just have to find some other way to repay you for meddling..." And considering the pranks the three young women -already- play on each other, this might be a grave threat indeed.

Still... since Sakura is nice enough to warn Natsu of the incoming attack, Natsu is kind enough to grit her teeth and bear it. She curls her hands defensively before her, but yet again, Sakura's speed and battle acumen is a bit more sharp than her own, catching her in the jaw on the -other- side this time!

Natsu's head snaps backwards, her crosstrainers leaving the ground for a moment before slamming back down, her heels carving small gulleys into the Kasugano backyard as she skids to a halt.

Coughing into a balled fist -- the punch hit a bit too close to the -throat- too, after all -- Natsu bucks up yet again. "Okay, Saku-chan... Here =I= come!" She leaps forward, leveraging a massive overhand "serve" to try and daze Sakura again with her palm and wrist, before leaping forward to give another open-hand slap to the shoulder, a third strike with her shoulder, and then another two-handed reverse axehandle to send Sakura flying into the air. That's how it would work in Natsu's head, though... she may be having delusions of grandeur.

COMBATSYS: Sakura dodges Natsu's Rival Launcher.

[                      \\\\\\\\  < >  ////                          ]
Sakura           1/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|====---\-------\0            Natsu

Ohhh no. Not this again. Sakura's eyes go wide, she remembers the ringing feel of Natsu slamming her in the head, and she scrambles backwards. She has to spend some seconds furiously avoiding Natsu's attacks--her friend might be a large, Amazonian volleyball player, but she's not -slow-, and just clearing out all the way, well, there isn't enough room for that. She doesn't make it look easy--and it isn't. On the last two strikes Natsu gets close enough to brush Sakura's hair.

This is it--the big finish. Maybe. Sakura pulls her right hand back, concentrating energy into it, and it begins to glow with that power of hers. There isn't -much- of it--maybe slightly bigger than a softball--but she hopes that might be enough to end the fight without Sakura going whole-hog and blowing Natsu through the fence or anything like that.

She's replaced that thing once--singed it with a big Hadouken--and that was tough work. Dad would not be so appreciative of having to buy the materials for Sakura to do it again.

COMBATSYS: Sakura successfully hits Natsu with Small Hadouken.

[                       \\\\\\\  < >  ///                           ]
Sakura           1/----===/=======|=====--\-------\0            Natsu

Natsu smiles faintly as Sakura moves out of the way of her attacks. Clearly, she still needs to work on refining that sequence -- she'd like to do more than ruffle her opponent's hair in a real fight.

She =is= a bit cautious of the surge of power in Sakura's hand though. She's seen the amount of power Sakura can dish out, and -- friendly fight or no -- she's not entirely sure she wants to deal with that. Withdrawing, she brings her hands up in an attempt to 'set' the Hadouken right back at her childhood friend, but no, yet again, the energy slips right through her fingers. Grimacing, she nonetheless is -more- prepared, and twists to the side so that the pint-sized fireball slams into her inner arm rather than catching her squarely in the chest.

Staggering backward from the blow, Natsu realizes she'd been squinting her eyes ever since the powerful draw of the fireball brushed her fingers, anticipating the worst... and realizing it wasn't the big fireball she was afraid of. Hazarding a brief chuckle, she calls back to Sakura, "I thought we were going all out, Saku-chan! Heh heh..."

And Natsu, dazed though she may be, still manages to launch herself into a fast forward tumble, only to snap out of it with a sweeping chop aimed at knocking Kasugano's legs right out from under her.

After which, the fatigued Natsu -might- just fall over herself...

COMBATSYS: Natsu keeps on fighting!

[                       \\\\\\\  < >  ///                           ]
Sakura           1/----===/=======|=====--\-------\0            Natsu

COMBATSYS: Natsu successfully hits Sakura with Sliding Receive.

[                             \  < >  ///                           ]
Sakura           1/=======/=======|======-\-------\0            Natsu

She thought that was it! Finito, end of fight, winnah by knockout, Sa-ku-ra Kasuganooooooo!! She could hear the cheering! ... no, wait. That's Tsukushi hooting again, and that distracts her again. "Shut -up-, Tsuku--" She doesn't get to finish the words. She doesn't get to finish the words because she didn't notice Natsu -getting- up, and by the time she reacts to hearing Natsu's -voice-...

She's getting her feet swept out from under her. She goes down, flipping over, but she has the presence of mind to -do- something about it. So Natsu wants her to go all out? Well, fine. She was afraid of blowing a hole in the fence--but if she flattens the grass, well, it'll grow back. Might grow back a little -funny-, but it'll grow back.

This isn't something she could do on demand--this more of an instinct and reflex coming to the fore, taking over for conscious thought. No shout, no dramatic buildup--to Sakura it's like she hangs in midair for a half-second--her chi surges, filling her hands, and she's throwing it, all of it, almost straight down for Natsu as she passes underneath.

The sequence shuts Tsukushi up, anyways, as Sakura flips twice before landing on her butt.

COMBATSYS: Sakura has reached second wind!

[                        \\\\\\  < >  ///                           ]
Sakura           0/-------/--=====|======-\-------\0            Natsu

COMBATSYS: Sakura successfully hits Natsu with Shinkuu Hadouken EX.
- Power hit! -

[                        \\\\\\  < >                                ]
Sakura           0/-------/--=====|=======\=====--\1            Natsu

So Tsukushi is over there cutting up again. Natsu pays him almost no heed -- she's had several years to figure out a way to block him out, and she's managed to get pretty good at it.

What Natsu has -not- gotten used to is Sakura's squirrely ability to defy the laws of physics. Volleyballs go where she sends them. Arrogant punks and bullies fall down where she smacks them. Miss Kasugano does whatever the heck she pleases!

Accordingly, Natsu -- in her bleary-eyed state -- looks around for Sakura. She should be =right there=, rationalizes Natsu, taking a step back.

And looks straight into the eye of the storm... a raging torrent of blue-white energy threatening to envelop Natsu whole. The blast of energy she had been afraid of just moments before.

Screwing her eyes shut, Natsu decides to plow -right into- the blast, headfirst.

Not all decisions are good ones, though. Drawn into the vortex pulls her off balance, but the sheer force of the wind and lightning of the attack knocks her backwards, carrying her off her feet, and sending her flying across the backyard in a scene that Tsukushi may in fact find amusing.

Natsu's out cold. And the fence to the next-door neighbors? Pretty much wrecked by the Amazonesque fighter, who even now looks like she'd just fallen asleep there ... slumped over, her head suspended over her legs, but only because her spine doesn't want to bend any further than that.

Looks like 'all-out' meant something after all.

COMBATSYS: Natsu takes no action.

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

COMBATSYS: Natsu can no longer fight.

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

*blink blink*

"oooh... I'mma go tell -Dad-!" And Tsukushi scampers off. Sakura? She utters a curse it's best her Dad not hear, or her Mom, or her idiot brother, and, shaking her head, runs over to pull Natsu out of the wreckage.

"Hey, hey, Natsu, wake up," she says, sounding worried. The dog--finally roused from a nap by all the commotion, comes up to investigate, and with a couple of short wuffs, he starts licking at Natsu's face. That might wake her up faster than Sakura.

"Sakura, what--what is--SAKURA!!" comes the voice of her father, and Sakura half-turns, already looking apologetic. "Sorry, sorry, sorry--I'll fix it, I promise!" That gets her father to turn a Stern Eye(tm) on his daughter, and then, with Tsukushi making faces at her from behind him, he simply nods and walks back into the house.

"Hey, c'mon, Natsu. I need that ice cream now..."

COMBATSYS: Sakura has ended the fight here.

Natsu was only checking her eyelids for light leaks -- really! ... Well, okay, maybe she was a -bit- out of it, since it takes a Shiba Inu to really snap her out of it. "H-hey, cut it out, alre--" she protests... before coming to the realization of where she is and why there are splinters stuck in her back right now.

"S-Saku-chan? Wh--" Natsu's eyes blink in confusion for a moment longer. "... Ice..."

Eyes go wide with realization. Natsu pushes herself out of the wreckage, rubbing her arms tenderly. "Wow, you... really did a number on me..." she notes, surveying the multiple small cuts and abrasions traced across her skin.

She looks over at Sakura with a raises eyebrow and a very curiou look -- once more confused. "... Ice cream? What about ice cream?"


A warm smile spreads across her face. "Nah. You... hit me hard, but not -that- hard. Let's go, before I come back to my senses."

"Ahehe..." Sakura rubs the back of her head with her right hand as she helps Natsu up.

"Shouldn't've taunted me about not holding back," she replies, with a little grin, then nods.

Trotting over to her stuff, she pulls back on the pants and the tracksuit, and then she gives Natsu a big thumbs up.

"Alright, let's go. And..." A hesitant pause, then Sakura smiles.

"I think you're gonna find that this is the best thing you ever did."

Log created on 20:53:44 11/10/2014 by Sakura, and last modified on 11:08:41 11/12/2014.