SNF 2014.12 - SNF: Hidden Potential

Description: Ken Masters was /supposed/ to face off against an up and coming MMA fighter from Southtown in a no-holds-barred Spartan Pankration, but some old geezer on a flying slab of concrete flattened his opponent and started babbling something about being on the set of the wrong fight. No one came here to listen to some feeble old man prattle! Can Ken Masters save face /and/ keep the fans from seeking refunds? (Winner?: Ken)

Pankration: "all of might". In the days of the ancient Greeks, there was no Olympic event quite like it. Two champions would step forward into the collosseum with their lifeblood and a weapon of choice. The battles were brutal and unrelenting: death was not an unheard of consequence for losing. Shy of putting a competitor's eye out or sinking your teeth into an opponent, there was little in the way of rules. Might and glory ruled this stage.

The hosts of this tournament had put no small effort into constructing an arena worthy of this legacy.

A crowd has gathered here tonight to witness Ken Masters face off against an up and coming mixed martial arts fighter who had recently started to earn a reputation in Southtown for his ruthless efficiency. "Ten Count Taliesin" has destroyed at least seven fighters in that many seconds or less and was boasting that the Masters scion would be next on the list. An excellent choice of opponent for this type of setting. Today would prove whether luck had seen him this far, or if he was truly worthy of taking his place among the world's greats.

Or at least that was the idea. Not even one minute before the fight was scheduled to begin, a massive slab of concrete sailed over the walls of the collosseum and flattened Ken's opponent. The arena, under attack by a catapult? An unannoucned publicity stunt?! The air is filled with the gasps from onlookers as anticipation builds, but it soon becomes apparent that not getting up from that. The crowd begins to whisper amongst themselves as they peer closer. Is that...a new challenger standing upon the rock?

In place of his scheduled opponent, Ken finds an old man stepping down from the concrete projectile that landed near him. Clad in a simple toga with one arm tied away, the elderly interloper peers at him with...well, something other than eyes. Where white orbs should be, instead a strange crimson radiance resides. He doesn't /quite/ give off the vibe of a demon, but something is definitely off.

"Hm, hm, hm. ...Son, do you happen to know where this colloseum nonsense is taking place?" He takes several steps forward, stretching his neck from side to side as he takes in his surroundings. "Am I late? I was looking forward to a good fight, but I can't sense anything even /remotely/ close to a 'God of Battle' within a good mile of here."

COMBATSYS: Oro has started a fight here.

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Oro              0/-------/-------|

So here's the deal. Ken Masters, in all of his splendor and glory, is currently bouncing on his heels in preparation of going to town on this Southtown Sucka that thinks he's going to put a hurting on the Red Beast. The classic and signature smirk is all over Ken's face as he starts to get more and more hype, perhaps thanks to the crowd or even just the fact that he's here in this epic level coliseum of amazing history and power. Whatever the case may be, Ken Masters doesn't seem to be worried too much about anything that may be going down. Not that he ever really is.

Stylishly dressed for kicking ass in his classic red gi with black belt and brown sparring gloves, Ken Masters looks to be primed and ready for showtime. The only time he looks serious is the moment that he spots his opponent get crushed by a huge slab of concrete. His body reacts quickly, his hands going up and his feet planting in preparation for going to town on whatever is sending flying rocks of death in his direction. It takes a full on second moment for Ken to realize that things have just gotten a lot more interesting.

"Son?" Ken's smile almost fades as he's called that. He smirks it off and gives his hair a toss to clear it from his eyes. "Check this out, Weird Eyes For The Old Guy." Ken holds out a hand in an almost taunting and accusatory manner at Oro. "You kinda' sorta' just ruined what was gonna' be the Match of the Year. So. Unless you got one serious band-aid, it looks like Ken Masters is gonna' have to show you just how much of a God of Battle I am."

Ken looks around to the crowd as he says this, as if he's making sure that they are on the same page with him about this. He keeps his smile on his face while only lightly paying attention to opponent crusher that has decided to invade his display of talent and skill. "See them? They all came here to see Ken Masters kick some serious ass. As usual." Ken doesn't mind talking about himself right now: Kentimidation. "And it looks like you just drew the short straw, dude." Ken steps back into his bouncing heeled fighting stance, preparing himself for what is about to go down.

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters has joined the fight here.

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Ken Masters      0/-------/------=|-------\-------\0              Oro

While the crowd was uncertain for a moment, things seem to be heading in an interesting direction. It's not every day that an old coot dismisses /the/ Ken Masters as being unworthy of standing in the halls of the gods! But if he isn't going to put up with that slight, there might be some entertainment to be had here after all...if the old man can deliver. Frankly, he's pretty underwhelming at their distance: they can't see those eyes quite as closely as Ken can!

The old man listens attentively as the blonde youngster starts to explain things for him. Of particular interest is the idea that he's 'ruined' a match, and he follows Ken's gesture to the concrete slab...and appears to be surprised at what lies beneath it!

"/Whoops/. I thought that landing was a little soft, but he barely had any aura to speak of. ...And this was supposed to be the 'match of the year', as you say?" Oro frowns, and for all of two seconds expends the effort of contemplating the matter further. "Foolishness! Either I have been played for a fool, or you have. Granted, young man, you've got a fair bit more of an inner spark than the average hooligan...but I simply have no interest in being here. I was hoping for someone who could make me use both of my arms!"

The old man seems somewhat oblivious to the threats being leveled in his direction. Either some sort of language barrier exists between him and Ken's boisterous jeering, or he's simply choosing not to acknowledge it. Language of the body is another matter entirely: Oro recognizes the set of Ken's steely gaze and the stance that he begins to take. Clearly this youngster plans to bar his exit...not that it will amount to much! The old man takes a few leisurely steps forward, and gone?!

Well, no, not gone. He jumped into the air, but it was difficult to read due to how little flex his knees gave before he took to the air. Looking up, Ken would find feet descending toward his handsome face -- and if he's not careful, he would find himself on the receiving end of repeatedly stomping feet. Regardless of where he touches down, he would spring a fair distance away and continue on his journey toward the arena's exit.

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters blocks Oro's Jinchuu Watari.

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Ken Masters      0/-------/----===|====---\-------\0              Oro

Somewhere in the middle of playing to the crowd and trying to actually pay attention to the yawnfest that this old man is speaking in, Ken Masters is almost unable to realize that there's a sudden rush and disappearance of the old man. In fact, it is not until a random fan yells at him to look out does he look up and realize that there's some crusty feet headed in his direction. "Whoa! Dude! Chill with the arthritis feet!" Ken's arms immediately come up to protect his face, those rapid slamming feet crushing into his braced arms and even knocking Ken back a smidge.

Once Oro is bounding off and attempting to leave, Ken drops his arms and spins around to make sure that he's not too off balance. His feet plant and Ken just sends a loud whistle into the air. Because he's trying to make sure that this old dude doesn't try to walk out on him. "Hey Mr. Miyagi!" Ken's hands crackle with compressed chi energy as he brings those hands back to his side. "Catch!" With a telegraphable step, Ken moves forward and thrusts out those open palms! As he does so, that crackling energy compresses into a ball of chi-flame that is sent sailing in the direction of Oro. Punctuated with the exclamation of, "Hadouken!" that comes from Ken's mouth as he sends the fireball on a one-way trip to Oroville!

COMBATSYS: Oro slows Hadouken from Ken Masters with Nichirin Shou.
Glancing Hit

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Ken Masters      0/-------/----===|====---\-------\0              Oro

Landing neatly on his toes, Oro doesn't even pause to turn around. One moment he's airborn, the next he's walking at a casual gait. The audience is less than enthusiastic about this. People didn't make the trip out here to see some old man bounce around! But wait...that stance...a cheer starts up within the audience. /Hadouken. Ha-dou-KEN!/ Fans are rewarded for their loyalty when the fiery Hadou crackles to life within the fighter's hands and cruises toward the billigerent interloper.

While it's commendable of the young Masters to not strike an old man whose back is turned to him, Oro just doesn't seem to /care/. The whistle goes unheeded. Onward the old man plods, the projectile rapidly gaining ground on him. At the last possible moment, the old man turns, single arm swinging wide as it slings a bolt of bright golden chi into the orb with scant inches to spare. Attacks meet, briefly strain against each other, and sputter out. Only the smallest tendrils of energy remain from both attacks, but at this proximity this is to Ken's favor: a tongue of flame brushes past the old man's cheek, leaving a small black singe line at the edge.

The elder pauses for a moment, eyes slightly narrowed as if reconsidering. Eventually, the beginnings of a wry smile begin to tug at the edge of his face. "Interesting. ...What else do you have, young one?"

He's thinking about it...

Ken Masters is always quick to hurl a fireball. It's not exactly his forte but there's a reason why he keeps throwing them. A reason that may have something to do with him practicing for the moment he crosses paths with his Shoto-Brother again. He's got his own wry smile as the fireball manages to graze this not-quite-opponent. The moment that happens, he's already taking a couple of steps backwards to keep his distance. Not to mention he's got some almost bowing to do to the crowd.

"Dude. I got more than you can handle, Old Man. Trust me." Ken doesn't seem to be too keen on continuing to or pressing the fight. He's narrowing his eyes as he hasn't had the pleasure of fighting this particular older person before. He does, however, know and understand that someone that can effortlessly fling chi to obliterate his fireball like that has got to have some sort of ability and skill. So he's taking a bit of a slightly less impulsive approach. At least, for the moment.

"I ain't gonna' be too many more Sons, Young Ones, Sports or whatever else you think of either, Old Man. So maybe you better stop and take your pills before this gets too real for you." Ken may be a bit confusing by this point. Offering many chances to forfeit, but also wanting to beat him down at the same time. It's really damn complicated.

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters is about to make it hot!

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Ken Masters      0/-------/--=====|====---\-------\0              Oro

Oro may be old, but decades of boredom has not done much for his patience. Midway through Ken's admonishments the hermit finds himself in a familiar pickle: with only one arm to work with, the closest he can come to crossing his arms is lifting a hand to drum fingertips against his opposite shoulder. "As you're so quick to remind, I'm not getting any younger over here. So if you aren't going to /show/ me..."

The old man tilts his head forward, levelling his crimson not-eyes at the younger fighter...and breaks out into a sprint. His arm trails behind him as he charges, seemingly with no tension coiled within it at all. This is a bit of a predicament as Ken doesn't what style his opponent has up his sleeve. Definitely not an offshoot of Karate. Not a form that involves a raised guard. Flying kick? Hammerblow? One-inch punch? A feint?...

In the end, Oro closes the distance and darts forward like a viper. His arm yet trails behind him as he slips past Ken's side, but no strike comes.

Instead, Oro whips around the moment he passes the younger fighter, his hand snapping out to try to clutch whichever limb Ken brings to either strike or guard with. Should he succeed in achieving this grip, he'll wrench backward and heave Ken into the air, flipping into the air to deliver an overhead slam into the ground.

Rather than releasing though, Oro would just yank him right back up over another overhead slam. Three of these total, in fact. What the hell?!

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters full-parries Oro's Niou Riki!!

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Ken Masters      0/-------/=======|=======\-------\0              Oro

Talkin' Trash is part of Ken's style. There's a reason why he's so much more charismatic (and hopefully beloved) than his best rival in the entire world. While they are the same, they are also vastly different. And this is perhaps the reason why Ken is more of a champion, while Ryu is more of a hero. Their differences are their strengths and Ken's strength seems to be bubbling over right about now.

Facing a new opponent, though, comes with an entirely new set of problems. Being unable to fully predict what his opponent is going to do or how they are going to fight is a problem. So that just means that Ken has to do something he really doesn't like to do: Pay Attention. Which is why his eyes focus in and narrow up the moment Oro takes even the slightest step. He watches closely as Oro becomes a blur of speed. Hands go up in an immediate thought to guard or block whatever attack is coming but none comes. Instead, Oro is behind him and Ken whirls around to see that lanky arm and creepy hand getting very close to his body.

"Whoa! Chill out, E.T.!" Ken remarks, flinging that already primed for guarding hand out, his open palm aimed to slap at Oro's wrist and redirect that grabby hand away from his body. He puts enough velocity behind it to maybe even send Oro off balance for a moment as Ken's own momentum builds. Which might be way he's smiling.

"I don't know where that hand's been!" Ken has already taken a step towards Oro at this point. His body is leaping into the air and he's reaching out with both of those hands in an attempt to grab Oro by the skull and bring his head down towards the rising knee that he's got extending during this stylish display of overconfident tactics. Ken is clearly ready to show this crowd just how damn awesome he is. After all, he feeds off them almost as much as he feeds off Oro's own tactics and style. He may not know specifics but a fighter is a fighter is a fighter.

COMBATSYS: Oro endures Ken Masters' Hiza Geri EX.

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Ken Masters      1/------=/=======|=======\=------\1              Oro

The usual facial cues don't come in /quite/ as cleanly for Ken due to his opponent lacking any freaking eyes, but for a moment there he catches the glimpse of something on the geezer's face resembling mild surprise. But rather than crumbling under that surprise, this impression is quickly lost and replaced by an overpowering sensation in the air of...glee? Excitement? One can sometimes pick up the feelings of their opponent as one fist speaks to another, but this is a totally different ballgame. It's like it's coming from the air itself...but the old man isn't giving off /that/ powerful of an aura. What gives?

The majority of the crowd is oblivious to this, but they're eating up the exchange as the fighters build toward a crescendo. Back and forth like this can only go for so many trades...when someone connects, it's going to be a doozy...!

"Maybe this will be fun after all.", the elder muses as confirmation while taking a step back to gain space. Following through with his momentum though, Ken Masters has zero intention of giving him that reprieve. The maneuver succeeds, and Ken can feel the old man's noggin' being hauled in for some good old fashioned trauma with little resistance. ...The old man's eyes flicker blue just in time for him to realize that it's /too little/ resistance...!

The blow connects, but the old man is already leaning backward, reaching up to catch the ribs of the crimson garbed fighter and enhance his momentum before he can escape. Springing upward himself, if Ken isn't careful he'll find himself spinning in the air a hermit busily engaged in his own act of daredevil acrobatics. The two would become entangled into a human cannonball that descends towards the ground, ultimately ending with Oro in control and driving his knee straight into Master's groin as they connect with the ground.

The air around the two would then wrench in a way that Ken can sense, but not quite fathom and a violation of the laws of physics occurs. The recoil of that impact would /somehow/ launch the two straight back up into air for a repeat performance. And if Ken hasn't gotten the hell out of dodge by then, there's a third coming!

Old men are assholes.

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters full-parries Oro's Kishin Kuuchuu Jigoku Guruma!!

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Ken Masters      1/-======/=======|=------\-------\0              Oro

Momentum. It can be a crazy thing, can't it? The fact that Ken Masters is apparently on some kind of a momentum roll against someone that he has never fought before is something that could be considered both 'The Usual' and 'The Whoa'. You see, for some reason, Ken has the ability to always be on a roll. It just comes naturally to him. Winning or losing, Ken Masters is always about giving an opponent the best fight he can possibly give them. And when there's a crowd around? He goes for the same even more.

When Eliza's around? All Charismatic Bets Are Off.

Er, not that they are an exclusive item or anything, ladies. No no, Ken Masters is still single. Mostly. Kind of. Somewhat. Ahem.

Ken's focus doesn't fade, though, as he finds himself grabbed by the Old Man within the same moment of connecting his knee with his skull. He wasn't particularly prepared to be snatched up while still in the air and attempting to backflip out of the way for recovery purposes. No, that gi of his is snatched up and for a moment, Ken's eyes are wide with surprise. But somewhere in the spinning through the air, thanks to the Old Man's skills and tactics, Ken's surprise turns into a smile. The human dual-cannonball that they have become is filled with spinning. Spinning that Ken uses to attempt to take control of with some deft hand movements and weight distribution. He plants his hands against the grip of Oro, pushing himself away just a bit to break the momentous occasion. There is only a brief moment before Ken reaches out to snatch the Old Man right back into himself. He works on letting gravity take control, smacking into the ground and immediately rolling backwards to see if he can't launch the old man off into distance.

Apparently, Ken's from the school of Two Can Play That Game...

COMBATSYS: Oro just-defends Ken Masters' Jigoku Fuusha EX!

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Ken Masters      1/--=====/=======|=------\-------\0              Oro

Eventually the fighter katamari simply explodes. It's hard to tell who went for the chi first, but it's no surprise when a blazing force of Hadou collides with blinding sun-like chi and the two fighters end up tumbling in opposite directions.

Oro leans back on his arm, hooting with laughter that sharply contrasts his earlier disinterest. "This is great! I haven't had this much fun in years!" Slowly drawing up to his feet, his red eyes cross the distance to meet those of his crimson-garbed opponent. Well, as much as eyes can be met with one such as he. "What was your name again? Ken Masters...? Kenny-boy, against my better judgment I'm going to give you a chance."

Lurching forward with a giddy glee, Oro hobbles to his feet and glances back at his tied sleeve in contemplation. This is a mistake. It /has/ to be. There's no way he misread this boy's aura earlier. But maybe, just maybe...quick wits and blinding potential...maybe he's the real deal?

He's having too much fun. Damnable old logic gets thrown out the window. This youngster fancies himself a God of the Arena...he will shape him into one by the time this is done. Turning his torso away from Ken, Oro reaches back with one arm to undo the binding of his arm, both physically and spiritually.

Everyone in the arena jumps as they're hit with the spiritual equivilant of an arm crack. Oro's eyes briefly flicker in color. One moment they're red...then a deep, vibrant green that pulsates with life.

"Don't disappoint me, Ken!"

COMBATSYS: Oro is taking this seriously now.

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Ken Masters      1/--=====/=======|=------\-------\0              Oro

"First of all, Final Fantasy ten, it's about time you recognized the skills."

Ken seems to be taking whatever kind of breather he can muster up taking at this exact moment. He's actually a little bit winded at the moment, but that's just because they were going back and forth for a few brief moments there. He takes the moment to quip up some witty banter so it doesn't look like he's completely taking these moments to find some mental footing and what not. Oh no, he's simply just spending some time talking smack. Because that's what Ken Masters is all about. Talking smack.

His talking of smack may be assisting him with biting off more than he can chew but that is also part of the charm that is Ken Masters. He doesn't back down from a challenge and regardless of the fact that this old dude has glowing eyes and one hand tied up, Ken is not going to keep going easy on him. He's supposed to be one of the greatest fighters of this generation and he's going to take this as an opportunity to set himself up to be considered one of the greats. One of the Legends.

"And secondly?" Ken has managed to catch his breath and has taken a few quick footed steps towards Oro. He immediately drops into a slide across the ground, dirtying up the knees of his uniform in the process, as he skids towards the one armed old man. His lips curl into a smirk and he speaks to himself, mostly, with the phrase, "Once chance is all I need."

When he gets close to Oro there's a brief ignition of fire behind his eyes. He unfolds out of the slide with easy, moving instantly into a crouch as he brings back his fist. Smoke rises off that arm in that moment, a sudden wave of heat pouring off that side of his body. He rises with a combination of speed and skill, bringing that heated fist with him. As it cuts through the air, it gains a sense of power. A sense of chi. A sense of Flame. His fist ignites as he rises like a dragon and aims that fist for a blazing connection with the underside of Oro's chin. If he even has a chin. This dude is /really/ old. But skilled. So Ken doesn't feel too bad about adding his signature vocal inflection of: "Shoryuken!"

COMBATSYS: Oro blocks Ken Masters' Shoryuken EX.

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Ken Masters      1/--=====/=======|==-----\-------\0              Oro

Oro takes little in the way of action for several precious moments, giving Ken plenty of time to recuper--err, talk smack. Right. The geezer is too distracted to immediately comment, preoccupied with reacclimating himself to the sudden flow of life force with in him. Spiritual head rush.

Fortunately, he doesn't actually need to hear what Ken says. That smug confidence, so easily dismissed as youthful arrogance...perhaps there has simply not been one to provide the right guidance. Without challenge, how can one help to grow? Something he can truly relate to!

It's somewhat disappointing that by the time Oro has worked his way through all of this re-aclimination and introspection that he's only crossed half the distance between them. This is already looking bad.

With two arms to work with, the punch of a Dragon is easily contended with. Standing his ground, the old man gently twists his torso to the right...and meets the powerful uppercut with the slam of his elbow. "No, no, that won't do at all. It needs to be more like this!"

Holding firm against the encroaching inferno, Oro bends at the left knee briefly. Giving way to Ken's attack finally, the old man uses the counter-force to spin in place as he leaps upward. His opposite elbow slashes upward akin to an uppercut of his own, the technique ending in both elbows extended. Almost comically mundane in appearance, the old man has become a rising propellar with extended elbows. Elbows that cut through men like scythe does wheat. "Oni Yanma!"

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters blocks Oro's Oni Yanma.

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Ken Masters      1/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=------\-------\0              Oro

Looks like things are really starting to heat up. Or they were before Oro decided that the Shoryuken was one dragon punch that would not be coming in for a landing so soon. The moment only pressured by the fact that they are so close in proximity, Ken can barely see what's happening as his uppercut is dismissed with a sense of superiority. It is a sense that Ken knows well due to his overdramatic flair and epic level over confidence.

Kenneth's feet touch the ground just in time for him to realize that there's a self-styled uppercut headed in his direction. His hands come up to put a stop to those elbows that are aimed at putting him through the painful ringer and then some. He just keeps those hands in the way, letting the padding of the sparring gloves lessen the blow for a brief bit. When there's a moment to, Ken steps back and gives his hair a shake.

"Wait. Don't you mean something like this?"

Ken is all about flipping one's own quips around to use at his own advantage. His feet are not on the ground long because he's stepping forward and twisting with it, before leaping into the air and giving his feet the momentum as he flips his body like a wheel, bringing one heel after another in the direction of the old man. He's clearly attempting to put a little pain behind all of that smack talking.

COMBATSYS: Oro dodges Ken Masters' Ryusen Kyaku.

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Ken Masters      1/-<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=------\-------\0              Oro

The pedant within the old man wants to berate the youth for suggesting that a series of kicks has /anything/ to do with a demonstration of how to properly cut someone down with sheer might of biceps, but even stubborn old men know a lost cause when they stumble upon it. Fortunately, Ken has some unexpectedly redeeming factors! Such as the ability to not need a chiropractor after defending himself from a Sennin's elbow. One of his first students quit after that. :'(

"You could turn that into one of these with a bit of work!"

Hoping that the Masters boy proves a quicker study in this technique than Kaede--Kasumi!--chan was the other day, Oro escapes Ansatsuken foot to face by dropping fully down onto his back. Or...perhaps not fully. Quite possibly demonstrating the lowest limbo that Ken has ever seen, the old man is fast to snap his torso back upright and kick his own legs into the air as the youth begins to touch down for a landing.

But rather than try to kick Ken in the head again, both legs will attempt to encircle his neck and latch on like vices. Should he obtain this newfound leverage, Oro would hail his torso up alongside the back of Ken's head and pinch his nose shut within the crook of his elbow. Locking that arm in place with the other, he'll be more than happy to suffocate Ken until he can figure out how to extract himself from the sennin pretzel.

Be thankful, Ken! Kasumi only got the single arm demonstration of this hold!

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters interrupts Kubi-jime Kataguruma from Oro with Shinryuu Ken+.

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Ken Masters      0/-------/----===|=======\-------\0              Oro

Ken Masters has never been and will never be an actual Lost Cause. Just because he does things differently than most students of various martial arts practices would does not make him a lost cause. He's actually better at doing things when he's not doing them by the book. It is what makes him unique. It is what separates him from the pack. It is what makes him Ken Masters.

"No thanks, Mac and Me." Ken is just throwing out alien reference after alien reference in an attempt to keep his own spirits up. Not that he has any doubt in his mind that he's going to be victorious. He always goes into each and every fight with the spirit of a champion. Carrying himself towards what will likely be an eventual victory. And that's when he takes chances, during moments of drama, to punish his opponents and put them in a position of having to deal with the Red Beast's skills.

Like now.

As Oro bends back into that epic level of limbo that looks more like it should be in a Johnny Cage action film than in a real and actual fight, Ken's lips curl into an impressed smirk. But his body is also in motion, touching down to the ground, where he immediately drops into a low crouch. As Oro's legs are sent for his neck, Ken's arm reignites into flames and he launches himself upwards in a spiraling motion of fire and stylish justice, "Shinryuu Ken!" Smacking into Oro with his fist, but still managing to catch some of that leg contact, even as he hopes the flames and the spiraling of this maneuver will help clear some space and back Oro up off him some. Can't have him bleeding all over his gi. This damn thing was expensive.

Even wily old men from Mars only have so many degrees of air control! The mighty Shinryuu Ken catches Oro just as he's starting to anchor himself around the neck of Masters, sending him into a comical airborn spiral with limbs extended in all directions. The bleachers roar with laughter at the spectacle, but at this distance it's somewhat drowned out by laugher of the old man himself. "Ha ha ha! Good, good!"

A short distance away, the slab of concrete that flattened the forgotten Talesin begins quiver in place, before launching into the air of its own volition. It's easily missed, both by the audience and Ken himself. One moment Oro is flying, and the looks like a huge rock is in an airborn collision course!

Instead of being plastered against it though, the crazy geezer braces against it with his feet to negate his momentum...and launch himself right back in the rapscallion who knocked him into the air to begin with! Ideally catching Ken before he can touch down again, Oro would deliver a solid punt to his midsection that wrenches him slightly upwards, followed by another kick that does the same. The end result, should Ken be less than fortunate, would be Oro "jogging" in place midair as he climbs him like a stairmaster. This would end with a solid kick to the noggin' that launches the old man away with a backflip.

The concrete slab lands on the shock absorbant floor of the colosseum moments later, having accomplished its clandestine mission.

COMBATSYS: Oro successfully hits Ken Masters with Hitobashira Nobori.

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Ken Masters      1/-------/=======|=======\====---\1              Oro

Misfortune favors the bold and it looks like Ken Masters is getting paid in full. Still being in the air after such dramatic moments of epic divine dragon punches, there's little time to dodge or react when being acted upon by an outside force that is really intent on making sure that they come out victorious as opposed to the victory that Ken is fighting for. In fact, all thoughts of victory fade from the moment Oro's foot punts him right in the mid-section. His body reacts, doubling over itself and becoming nothing more than a weight bag as foot after foot is sent sailing into the body of Ken Masters. He ends up flipping end over end due to the velocity and angle of these kicks, before the final one to his skull has him sailing towards the ground with reckless fury.

Ken's collision with the ground is one that makes an impactful sound and by the time Ken rises to his feet, there's blood coming from his face. He's even slightly wobbly, either from the pain or from being knocked slightly dizzy by the epic maneuver of Oro. He's smiling, though, because it's always better to actually have trouble with an opponent. It's always better to push yourself to the limit and beyond to become a better fighter. A better warrior for the world, as they say.

"Come on, man. Anybody saw that comin'." Ken says, finally whirling himself around and getting back into his classic fighting stance once more. He has no real clue where Oro is, after that backflip of escape, but he's ready and willing to get his body back under control so that he can put himself back into this fight. He's not going down without a fight!

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters brushes his shoulders off!

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Ken Masters      0/-------/=======|=======\====---\1              Oro

Touching down a respectable distance away, Oro takes a moment to contemplate the state of his opponent -- providing ample opportunity for Ken to get himself pumped up again. Perhaps taking a cue from the younger fighter, he takes a moment to smooth back the few wisps of hair that he still lays claim to. This is a bit pointless of course, since the moment they're released those hairs simply lift straight back away from his head, carried by the vibrant forces of life exuded by hist body. "You sensed that? Remarkable!", the old man beams, seemingly oblivious to the boisterous airs and taking the lad at his word. "I'll have to give you a little bit more of a challenge, then. Let's see..."

Not pausing to contemplate that maybe, just maybe, his opponent is buying a moment to catch his breath and not suggesting that he try a less predictable maneuver, Oro raises two fingers to his forehead and squints. "Let's see. One would be too easy, so...maybe something like this!" Snapping that hand forward, another orb of yellow energy begins closing the distance between them...but something is off. Before the chi has closed half the distance between them, it splits. Not two, but /three/ orbs of identical size and shape are now cruising towards Ken Masters at alarming speed!

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters blocks Oro's EX Nichirin Shou.

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Ken Masters      1/------=/=======|=======\======-\1              Oro

There are not many things that Ken Masters can pull off at the moment to try and deal with the trifecta of chi orbs sailing in his direction. His hands prep for a Hadouken but the timing is off and he reads it well. There's no way he'd be able to get three off in succession fast enough. So the crackle of energy fades just as fast as it began. Instead, Ken steps back and brings his arms up in front of him, letting the chi energy slam into those arms one after another. He winces in pain after each significant hit and gives a shake of both his head and his arms once the last one connects.

"I hope you didn't just empty your tank, Father Time!" Ken takes off in a brisk run towards Oro. He takes to the air and extends a leg that becomes an over dramatic feint as he pulls that leg back in and somersaults over Oro. The moment his feet touch down on the other side, though, Ken extends a foot, aiming a stomp styled kick towards the knee area of Oro and his alienotic body.

"Cause I'm just gettin' started!"

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters successfully hit Oro with Fumikomi Mae Geri.

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Ken Masters      1/-----==/=======|=======\=======\1              Oro

Trusting that Ken is more than capable of entertaining himself one way or another with the light show, Oro takes a break from the battle for a moment to kneel down and begin poking at the ground experimentally. "Not what these things were made of back in my day." His eyes narrow into slightly less luminescent slits as he peers down, trying to puzzle out the construction. "...hmm...layered..." While the possibility of him having gone full on senile is probably low at this point, it's hard to puzzle out exactly what he's doing as he begins tracing something on the ground, almost as if doodling. By the time Ken closes the distance, it's fully apparent that he's actually humming to himself.

It wouldn't be sporting to completely ignore his charging opponent though, so by the time Ken arrives Oro has risen once more. "Oh. It looks like you didn't have much trouble with that either. Excellent!" He finishes this as Ken flips overhead, making no effort to stop him.

One thing that is rapidly becoming apparent as blows are landed on Oro is that his body carries none of the feebleness that typically comes with old age. His body is seemingly nothing but muscle with little else, which might be why the eyes had to go. The remaining teeth are just being stubborn or something. In any event, Oro takes a step forward that *might* have cleared the distance, but not quite. "That smarted a little, but you need to pace the fight better. You're not going to win by treating this as a game of footsie!" As if to demonstrate, Oro stomps the ground in front of him.

Fracture lines begin circling the ground within a wide berth of the old man's foot. Freed from the confines of the neighboring material, the topmost layer of the floor has little choice but to rebound off of the shock absorbant materials beneath it and bounce into the air as the old man takes a step back.

"Think fast!"

Impossibly, Oro snatches the massive chunk of flooring out of the air and turns on his heel, swinging it his unwitting student!

COMBATSYS: Oro successfully hits Ken Masters with Huge Random Weapon.

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Ken Masters      2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2              Oro

Never in a million years did Ken Masters believe that he would get destroyed by an old man that's using the floor as a weapon. No, seriously, he never even thought this could be a possibility. Which may be why he's in the middle of running towards him when he realizes that was a mistake. As he gets clocked right in the chest and face by the huge piece of flooring, sending him sailing end over end, while also being crushed by it... there's not really much that Ken can do but feel the pain. He's down. For a long moment. Almost seemingly unable to move.

Finally, though, he stirs and pushes to get himself free. There's a groan as he struggles back up to his feet. His gi is torn in all the places. Blood is leaking from his face and his arms. Even still, though, Ken doesn't seem to be in bad spirits at all. He really doesn't. Instead, he seems to be more ready to go for broke than ever before. He shakes some of his hair out of his face and draws a cocky smile up onto his lips. He leans to the side and points with sparring gloved finger. "This'll hurt!"

His eyes light up with that fire from before and after a single step, Ken's body hurls up into rapid motion, his legs engulfed in flames as he spin-soars off in the direction of his older opponent. Each one of those flaming legs is aimed to put a serious hurting on Oro as Ken's movements are trained and skilled. Whether he'll be able to connect with these and launch Oro up into the air so that he can follow up with a massive flaming Hurricane Kick is still in the cards, but if so, that'll definitely be considered.

"One more for good measure!"

COMBATSYS: Ken Masters successfully hit Oro with #Guren Senpuukyaku EX#.

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Ken Masters      0/-------/-------|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2              Oro

Oro looks genuinely crestfallen as his sparring partner ends up sailing to the opposite side of the Promethean. It's not that he doesn't know his own strength, but...that wasn't supposed to happen at all. What happened? Ken was doing so well earlier! A sad frown begins to creep its way across Oro's face as he considers the possibility that maybe, just maybe, he's been overdoing things by a few degrees. Sure, this is why he keeps his power bound to begin with, but...he was doing so well! And everyone was saying the GODS OF THE ARENA were supposed to be here! Then again, the department store TV didn't EXPLODE during the events of SLAMFEST! either, so he'll just have to stop taking all of this hype seriously.

It's with this thought that Oro dejectedly discards his impromtu weapon to the side with a long sigh. "I should have a word with the irresponsible cretins setting up these competitions. World's strongest? 'Gods' of the Arena? Bah!"

But wait! Ken isn't done yet! Turning back to his distant opponent with an approving eye, Oro offers a grim nod in response to the challenge. Part of him wants to talk the boy out of continuing further, but the fiery passion he senses at this range is not the kind that is easily dismissed. And fiery is indeed the right word...for once more, Ken's will burns bright, the air around him reminding the Sennin of his last pilgrimage to Death Valley. The first several kicks clash with the palms of the Sennin, but the spiritual force behind them is such that his guard is eventually thrown wide, allowing Ken the opportunity he was seeking: the two soar up into the air above the arena. Even as his chest is wracked with blows that would knock a lesser fighter senseless, Oro wryly grins at his opponent in midair. "You were better than I had hoped...but you've still got some learning to do. Train hard for our next meeting." The last blow sends the old man sailing even higher into the air. As he leaves airshot, the younger fighter can hear him saying, "...I'll be watching you!..."

There is no dramatic buildup leading to what happens next. One moment, Oro is reaching up into the space above him as his eyes their most intense green yet. The next, both arms are swung down like a hammerblow. An enormous sphere of blinding chi suddenly manifests beneath him: a veritable sun of raw power, nearly encompassing the entire space of the arena floor. There may be no escaping this!

Regardless of what happens next, when it is over, the old man is gone: the force of the attack was such that he apparently went flying all the way out of the arena, and there's no way to find him now. Ken Masters will be declared winner of the match by disqualification.

COMBATSYS: Oro has left the fight here.

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Ken Masters      0/-------/--<<<<<|

COMBATSYS: Oro successfully hits Ken Masters with #Yagyou-Oodama#.

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Ken Masters      2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|

Ken Masters doesn't stop fighting until he can't move. That's always been a good thing and a bad thing, really. He hasn't ever been able to really give up on a match just because he knows he's facing something or someone more powerful than himself. By sheer force of will he's been able to overcome obstacles that most normal people are unable to bear. He's often finding that his potential is still in need of being harnessed and used for the betterment of his own abilities.

None of that matters though as he's blasted all the way to Why and Back by the epic level of powerful chi beaming that comes from above. He's caught in the middle of the air from his fiery kicks and the initial blasts has him smacking into the ground putting a dent in the floor. He grunts from the pain and would likely be unconscious if that powerful blast didn't have him stuck and also in serious pain the entire time.

By the time the chi energy disappears, Ken Masters is completely unconscious. The level at which is clearly written all over his face and body. Both of which are scarred and burned from the application of raw chi power striking his skin directly. His gi has been burned to various states of crisp, as well.

Ken just lies there. Unconscious. Bleeding. And somehow still managing to have a playfully wry smile on his face.

Log created on 00:15:13 12/16/2014 by Oro, and last modified on 14:54:53 01/10/2015.