Neo League 0001 - NL#0015: Haru vs Quon

Description: Haru Sakuraba uses the Neo League to face his anxieties and fears. Quon Chen fights in the league for an opportunity to perform on the world stage. Which of these two young fighters will triumph? [Winner: Draw]

Normally the Shinto shrine near the northwestern forest of Southtown would be quiet since it doesn't have anyone maintaining it and visitors are a rare occurance. However on this particular mild day, there's a buzz of activity as camera crews, officials, and producers are moving about the area to set up this particular Neo League fight.

One of the fighters, a Chinese man dressed in mustard yellow kung fu uniform with a red sash leans against the tree as he waits for the crew finish clearing the area out for a fight. He seems a little antsy and eager to get things started but other than that he seems to be in good spirits even if a part of him wished he had a bigger venue. Of course, he realizes he's not a big name yet and so he isn't surprised that beyond the crew, there won't be live audience in the area for this particular fight.

Eventually the crews finish setting up and roping off the makeshift boundaries for the fight and the competitors are called into area to get things started.

It's been a rough couple days for Haru Sakuraba. Not physically, anyway; when the group of apparently disgruntled Gorin High students attacked Justice Academy, he made it out without a scratch. On the other hand, the events of that afternoon gave him a lot to think about, some of which he is still turning over in his mind. He was sitting alone in his dorm room, feeling a bit gloomy, when the email came to his inbox about the 'Neo League'.

Originally, he thought it was spam, and was about to delete it when the actual text caught his eye. One on one battles, recorded like SNF, but a chance to face other fighters without the... uh, 'gimmickry' of Saturday Night Fights. And while his experiences on SNF haven't been negative, for the most part (even if he did get knocked off a parade float in a winter storm that one time), the opportunity to have slightly less game show-y fights appealed to the pro fighting neophyte. And so he signed up.

Within a couple days, they'd got back to him: they had a possible match-up, and would he be interested? Checking his schedule and finding he did indeed have time, Haru agreed. And that's why he's out here now, entering the shrine grounds in a reasonably good mood. A flush of either warmth, embarassment, or both comes to the dusky-skinned Justice student's cheeks as he chats amicably with a cameraman who saw him take said header off said parade float. It's not the same as 'fame,' but he got a compliment on his style... and a little notoreity is nice!

Climbing carefully over the ropes into the arena, Haru pulls on his black gloves, and then shrugs off his uniform coat, tying it around his waist before turning to glance at the other person in evidence here. "I'm guessing you're my opponent?" Haru says tentatively, giving a little wave. "My name's Haru Sakuraba. It's a pleasure to meet you."

COMBATSYS: Quon has started a fight here.

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Quon             0/-------/------=|

COMBATSYS: Haru has joined the fight here.

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Quon             0/-------/------=|-------\-------\0             Haru

Quon's entrance into the ring is a bit more flashy with a front flip and a half twist, landing him within the ropes fairly close by to the Justice High student. Just because the audience is a bit smaller than he would like, he still has an audience.

He takes a moment to take everything in and he seems a little distracted until Haru's voice brings him right back down to Earth. "Oh, huh?" There's a bit of a pause as he returns the wave with a fairly toothy smile. "Hey there! How's it going? I'm Quon Chen. The honor is mine."

Pleasantries are interrupted while the officials give their final instructions and go over the rules with the fighters and then they back off with one of them bringing their hand down as a signal to start the fight.

The action flick hopeful performs a hasty bow before easing into a stance that looks like it should be hard style though way more loose and bouncy than he should be if he was a practitioner of that type of style.

Chinese martial arts... in fact, the very roots of Haru's style -- going way back in his family's history -- also comes from China, though it'd likely be all but unrecognizable now unless you knew exactly what to work for. The bow catches Haru off guard, and he hastily sketches a bow of his own, clearly flustered when he stands up. He's kept from putting his foot in his mouth by the officials coming to the center and going over the standard rules, the Justice student nodding along.

And then it's time to fight. Squaring off against Quon, Haru tries to get himself in a fighting mode. He's not very strong, tough, or fast compared to most fighters, but he's got a very keen mind... probably his best strategic weapon. He doesn't know a lot about kung fu and wu shu, but he does recognize that Quon's stance seems to imply an aggressive striking style rather than a more defensive soft style. It's going to be an interesting fight indeed. Especially given Quon's bright, energetic aura. This is no shy violet he's facing; this is an individual of action.

With a flick of the wrist, something drops from Haru's sleeve into his hand, and he gives Quon a serious nod. "Thank you for the fight and good luck." That having been said, he swings into action... kind of literally, as the object in his palm is proven to be a heavy, gunmetal-grey yoyo. With a motion of his arm, Haru swings it around in a wide arc, looking to slam it into Quon's side. It might seem like a child's toy, but Haru's style was originally intended for use with the meteor hammer... so he knows how to make it hurt!

COMBATSYS: Haru successfully hits Quon with Random Strike.

[   \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////////]
Quon             0/-------/----===|-------\-------\0             Haru

Quon's eyebrow rises slightly when he sees that gunmetal grey yoyo drop from his opponent's sleeve. He doesn't quite know what to think or expect. And that's the exact reason Quon is caught flat footed and nailed just a little under his rib cage with the yoyo. He stumbles away from the yoyo wielder.

"That's not something you see every day." While the hit to his side hurt a bit, he still seems to be relatively cheerful, taking the hit in stride. He flashes a grin, probably for the benefit of the cameras, before he goes in attempting to close the distance before leading with a forearm to the collarbone of his opponent while slipping his leg behind Haru's. If he should manage that, he'll deliver a push with the palm of his other hand to take advantage of the positioning of his leg to trip him up and send falling onto his back.

COMBATSYS: Quon successfully hits Haru with Wind Chases the Clouds.

[     \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////////////    ]
Quon             0/-------/--=====|==-----\-------\0             Haru

"I'd hope not!" Haru says with a faint smile, as he twists his wrist and snaps his preferred weapon back to his hand with a heavy slapping sound. Pride might be a sin, but Haru IS proud of what he's accomplished, more or less adapting a fighting style for his use, one that he has found frequently surprises his opponents... though not always pleasantly. For a second, he flashes back on Gabriel Kai's insistence that he 'take this seriously!' and her dismissal of the yoyo as a serious weapon.

Then Quon is in his grill and the memory is banished by necessity.

Considering his opponent is coming for his HEAD, Haru does the natural-seeming thing in that situation: he ducks. This might save him from the very first part of the technique, but it actually makes the second part all the worse. His center of gravity is now much lower, making Quon's attempt to trip him and then send him to the ground is all the easier, sending the Justice student onto his back with an 'ooph!'.

Climbing back to his feet, Haru smiles ruefully. "Nice," he offers, watching his opponent carefully. This is going to be a difficult fight indeed. Deciding that going on the defensive against an aggressive style might be just playing into his hands, Haru heads right back at Quon. He lashes out with the yoyo again, but this time he's not attempting to strike; rather, he tries to loop the end around an exposed limb -- an arm, a leg. If Haru can get that grip, he suddenly heaves backwards, yanking Quon into the air before reversing course, swinging Quon back toward the ground, hard. However, the downswing is accompanied by a storm of... flower petals? Specifically, the petals of the lotus flower, but made of an opalescent white light and slicing back and forth across that downward path.

COMBATSYS: Quon blocks Haru's Amber Grace.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////////     ]
Quon             0/-------/-======|=------\-------\0             Haru

The return of aggression works in the yoyo wielder's favor. When he sees the metallic colored yoyo flying towards him, he raises a hand to turn aside the weapon and it isn't until he has it wrapped around his wrist that he can truly appreciate how he fell into Haru's trap.

He has no other choice but to perform damage control. While he can't do anything about him getting swung upwards, he spreads his weight outwards landing with both palms and feet on the ground as his body is pelted by the petal storm and all he can do is grit his teeth. And that's when he realizes the energy he's being hit with feels different from the type that his master and fellow students used. This fight was truly an eye opening experience for him

Quon's still wrapped up by the yoyo so he tries to improvise by trying to dart low and past Haru, sweeping the yoyo string through his legs and attempting to flip the yoyo wielder up and over himself.

COMBATSYS: Quon successfully hits Haru with Medium Throw.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////         ]
Quon             0/-------/=======|====---\-------\0             Haru

Upside: Haru's far too experienced using the yoyo as a weapon to let it be used against him in this manner; as soon as it looks like Quon's not going to take the full brunt of that attack, he's already twisting his wrist to snap the yoyo back into his hand. Downside: this doesn't actually prevent him from being flipped into the air. He wasn't expecting Quon to be moving so fast, and he attempts to reposition himself, in the process actually flipping himself up and over by stumbling over his opponent, landing flat on the ground.

Grimacing as he gets to his feet, Haru rubs a hand across his side. This is not going well at all, at the moment. Merely getting out of the way of attacks probably isn't going to work so well against so nimble a fighter. There's got to be a different way to go about things.

"Okay..." he whispers to himself under his breath. "Don't get flustered." He takes a moment to decidedly slow his breathing, focus his mind, consider his opponent. This can be turned around. He's just got to be careful.

COMBATSYS: Haru calculates his next move.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////         ]
Quon             0/-------/=======|====---\-------\0             Haru

The Chinese fighter didn't really expect for his wrist to suddenly be free like that or for his opponent to end up stumbling over him. Fights are often chaotic things and far be it from Quon to look a gift horse in the mouth.

As Haru gets back to his feet, Quon doesn't immediately go after the Justice student. He rubs his wrist for a few moments and tries to shake off that weird feeling that Haru's energy gave him. He takes a few moments to collect himself and then take his stance only to see that Haru isn't coming to attack him.

The Chongquan fighter begins hopping back and forth on his feet but then impatience takes over and he goes into a round off back handspring backflip with a full twist to close the distance between the two fighters and upon landing he steps forward while twisting to the side and leaning over to the side as he delivers a pair of palm strikes to the torso which is then subsequently followed a shove aided with a gush of water chi to knock the yoyo wielder backwards.

COMBATSYS: Haru fails to counter Moving the Mountain from Quon with Topaz Vigilance.
- Power fail! -

[         \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////               ]
Quon             0/-------/=======|=====--\-------\0             Haru

Even the best laid plans, and all that; as Quon starts to move, Haru narrows his eyes, chooses his moment, and carefully considers his aim. He's prepared, focused. In that moment, the Chinese fighter's movements seem like an open book to him. He flicks out a wrist, intending to snag Quon's attacking arm with one yoyo to pull him out of the way--

And his foot slips on some frozen ground.

That's all it takes for Quon's attack to put Haru on his back... again. He groans as he gets to his feet, feeling aching pains flow through his arms, legs, and back. He's barely landed one solid strike on his opponent; meanwhile, Quon appears to be able to attack Haru with impunity. But a sharp memory of his fight against Gabriel springs into his mind, reminding him of the perils of letting the frustration get to you. He'd rather not go through that harrowing feeling of some spirit leaving his body, again.

And so he tries to smile, in spite of it all, as he faces off with Quon once again.

The water chi in Quon's finger tips disippates as he returns to his previously upright position. He takes a deep breath as he shifts into that way bouncier than it ought to be version of a Chongquan stance. He edges in, letting Haru get back to his feet.

He lets the tension set in. That type of thing is good for the television audiences right? There's a dramatic pause and then all of a sudden, the Chongquan fighter is off!

His approach towards Haru is fast but the delivery of his initial kick is not so much. He performs a low step kick delivering it to the tear drop muscle on the interior of the Justice High student's thigh, he then follows it up with a hopping spin putting him in position to deliver to a side kick right into the other fighter's chest.

COMBATSYS: Haru counters Heavy Kick from Quon with Moonstone Tenacity.

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Quon             1/-----==/=======|=======\-------\0             Haru

Maybe keeping his cool was the right thing to do. Quon gives Haru a sportsmanlike moment to collect himself (even if it is to build dramatic tension for the viewers), and in that moment Haru is reflecting on his situation; more specifically, he's reflecting on his emotional state during his various battles. Confusion, fighting Lilith; terror, fighting Sagat. Relief, fighting Haru, and an uncomfortable sense of... anger, fighting Gabriel. In one of those moments, his powers awoke to save him, and in another they left him entirely to his fate. Only fighting Hotaru -- that feeling of kinship with another fighter who shared his anxieties -- was he able to call on it at will.

There's a moment of realization, and that's what saves him.

As Quon's first kick comes in, a visible change comes over Haru. His posture straightens a bit, and his stormcloud-grey eyes briefly flash with a pure, opalescent white light which then spreads to flow around his body like faerie fire. With a shout of "Hup!" the Justice student brings his hands around in front of him, palm out. When he does, an orb of that opalescent energy suddenly springs into being like a barrier, catching Quon's attack fast like an iron grip on his leg, before the orb bursts into a storm of those lotus petals from before.

When the smoke clears, Haru is still limned by that faerie flame, but he's taking deep breaths, looking like he's exerting a lot of effort even though he's not actually DOING anything physical right now. "I'm sorry, Chen-san," he adds, genuinely apologetic. "I promise you'll get my best from now on."

When Quon looks back on this moment, he'll remark on how many surprises this Haru Sakuraba fellow seems to have. That and frickin strange that energy seems to feel. Upon having his foot collide with that orb of energy, the stop in and of itself sends shockwaves into his legs. The energy that blasts him away in a burst of lotus petals... Well that was a completely new experience for the wannabe action star. He goes flying away in an uncontrolled spin and lands on a stone pathway skidding across the grounds until his momentum is halted by a tree.

He rises to his feet, dusts himself off and lets himself grin as he eases into his to his stance. "Don't apologize to me." He says as bounces from one foot to the other, "Apologize to those watching us. After all, we both want to put on the best possible show for them, right?"

The Chongquan practitioner flips forward as he brings a heel wreathed in aquatic chi down upon Haru's head.

COMBATSYS: Haru blocks Quon's Crossing the Bridge.

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Quon             1/----===/=======|=======\=------\1             Haru

The air crackles as Quon's attack splashes (literally) against Haru's guard, both of the Justice student's arms upraised to cover his face and 'catch' the weight of Quon's kick. The watery chi does battle with that pearly white light, both types of energy spilling off to the side, even keeping the two combatants locked physically in connection for a moment or two, until Haru grimaces and then pushes back, forcing Quon away. Anyone who thinks Haru made it out of that exchange unharmed is a fool, though; that kick delivered plenty of force, the soreness in Haru's arms attesting to that.

"A show...?" To Haru, that's a strange concept. He doesn't necessarily fight for fame or to impress others; for him, it's about pushing his limits and facing down his fears. But he can also sense some of Quon's feelings about the situation, especially now that his powers are in this briefly heightened state. The revelation of it is actually kind of a surprise to him. "I... guess that's true," he says with an embarassed smile. "But it applies to you, too."

Trying not to get bogged down in coulda-wouldas, Haru goes back on the offensive, hoping that this momentary burst of awareness will help counter Quon's considerable skills. He snaps out a wrist once more, attempting to snag Quon's arm again, but this time if he gets a grip, the technique shifts. He suddenly pulls BACKWARDS, dragging Quon through the air in a horizontal circle before letting him go, using the fractional moment where Quon is loose in the air to lash out with a *second* yoyo in his offhand, snagging the Chinese fighter and slamming him into the ground.

COMBATSYS: Quon blocks Haru's Jade Turbulence.

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Quon             2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\==-----\1             Haru

The shove away actually ends up forcing the Chongquan fighter to flip off of Haru which leads into inadvertant flashiness on the part of Quon. His heart rate starts rising, and the give and take nature of this fight pumps him up. He begins to feed not off of the crowd but the anticipation of having people all over the world watch this footage and enjoying it.

He doesn't have much time on the ground before the second yoyo comes into play and knowing how unpleasant it was to have the yoyo wrapped around his wrist, he decides to bat the yoyo aside before launching himself into the air. He twists and then shoots downward like a human missile with one foot extended. If that initial foot should connect, he'll rapidly stomp on the yoyo wielder's head with alternating feet before launching Haru away with both feet as Quon himself flips backwards.

COMBATSYS: Quon successfully hits Haru with Breaking the Shell.
- Power hit! -

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Quon             0/-------/<<<<<<<|=======\======-\1             Haru

Managing to block those diving kicks was possible once, but isn't terribly likely a second time. Haru grits his teeth and prepares to just weather the proverbial storm, but that second one isn't going to happen. The ache in Haru's arms is too great for him to maintain his guard, and he falls prey to Quon's series of stomping kicks. In fact, it's probably all the worse for him trying to block them in the first place, as the repeated strikes just make his already bruised and battered forearms hurt even more.

Stumbling backwards, Haru just about manages not to fall over, but he's clearly deeply winded, not long for this fight. But the white light still flows around him, keeping him up long enough for, perhaps, one final attempt to even the score. His breaths are deep but rapid, as he tries to get his protesting body to move.

But he does manage it, in the end. In fact he sort of... HEAVES forward, slinging out that yoyo one last time. Its aim is dead center for Quon's stomach, looking to daze him with the armed equivalent of a gut punch, before slinging his other yoyo for Quon's arm.

If he can make the combination stick, what results is a surprisingly flowing series of strikes: Haru slings Quon into the air, then detonates a petal burst of energy to send him in a different direction, then another sling of the yoyo to pull him back into the air, then a strike with the second yoyo, then another sling, until finally he extends both hands palm-out, all of that white light erupting in a final burst of energy like a lotus flower in bloom.

Regardless of what happens, however, Haru drops to one knee, breathing heavily. The light has faded, and with it the last of his stamina. He's not so badly hurt he'll drop unconscious, but he's clearly out of the fight.

COMBATSYS: Haru can no longer fight.

[                  \\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Quon             0/-------/<<<<<<<|

COMBATSYS: Haru successfully hits Quon with Crystal Ferocity.

[                            \\  <
Quon             1/--<<<<</<<<<<<<|

Quon was not prepared for the ferocity or speed of that initial yoyo strike to the gut folding the Chongquan fighter like a paper airplane. From there, it's child's play to wrap the Southtown University student's arm. His eyes widen and then from there, his body gets the rag doll treatment between Haru whipping around and the energy blasts batting him about. His face contorts in agony until sudden it all ends.

He struggles to rise to his feet but no matter how hard he tries the best he can manage is getting part way up and then his knees buckle. After a while, he stops trying to get himself to stand up and then he collapses on his back staring at the sky.

With a groan, he then brings his hands together and claps.

At the very least, Quon enjoyed the show.

COMBATSYS: Quon takes no action.

COMBATSYS: Quon can no longer fight.

Log created on 19:58:43 12/02/2014 by Quon, and last modified on 11:34:46 12/03/2014.