Neo League 0001 - NL#0054: Aracely vs Tabitha

Description: A fight in Las Vegas! The winner is Tabitha and also the viewers at home, because they got a free drink at the Ice Bar.

Las Vegas regularly bills itself as a place where everyone can go to have fun, rather than just people who really like gambling, prostitutes, and consumer electronics expos. But since the Star Trek place closed down, they've had to kind of spread their wings in a lot of ways.

Fremont Street has a casino currently running a fighting kitsch concept, though, and part of that is that their stage show, right near the blackjack tables, features a rolling three-match set of events and fights every night! It's great! It's awesome! It's mostly washed up luchadors and idiots who think they're good for MMA!

Except for the last match for the evening show, which usually involves some actual talent and has occasionally even seen the Neo League. Actual talent, of course, such as

"From the depths of the HOUSE OF HELL, the MOONCHILD is COMING IN!"

Aracely is wearing a black cloak over her shoulders as she struts down the ramp towards the ring, several hundred fighting-geeks and people who won show tickets in the course of running up comps or possibly to make up for having been mauled by tigers looking on. Inwardly, she thinks: Hey, this place is kind of lousy. But... At least there's an actual roof that isn't made of tin!

With that she reaches the ring, whereupon she lingers on the side... and then leaps upwards, grasping onto the top rope and twisting herself over, the breakaway clasp on the cloak fracturing in the slipstream of her passage. She lands on her feet, throwing one hand up to catch the cloak as the ring lights gleam on her blocky full-body glyphic script --

And her eyes roll back in her head, lips coming back in a grimace, even as she hurls the cloak into the crowd! After this, she leans back against the ropes, feigning limpness (but her eyes come back to normal afterwards). No need to bust herself up for the sake of this crowd. Not yet!

Once upon a time, Tabitha probably would have been at one of these - and not as the main event. Now she's good enough to actually headline. Of course, there are some... issues when you volunteer to do it at a casino in Glitter Gulch.

Of course, Tabitha flat-out refused to do the first thing they asked her to, which was fight in a costume that she judged was more glitz than actual clothes. She will do a lot of things in her quest to gain skill and exposure. That isn't one of them, if she has anything to say about it.

So she's shown up in her usual outfit, which is an an order of magnitude less flashy than anything Aracely comes up with: slightly loose athletic shorts, wraps around her lower arm and hands, a sleeveless hoodie. Tabitha has talent, but she's not actually that good at putting on a /show/. She looks like a lower-class street fighter. This may be the gimmick.

Tabitha vaults up into the ring. She's used to a roped ring too, though not quite the same one as Aracely, perhaps. Even her announcement is plain in comparison, a big booming man with the same coppery red-blond hair as Tabitha, gesturing a little too big with the microphone (but then again, he's like six foot six, so every gesture he makes is big).

"And in THIS corner, TABITHA COREN, from METRO CITY!"

Tabitha looks at her opponent with something between distaste and confusion. She doesn't seem to 'get' foreign wrestling. She doesn't lounge, punching at nothing a couple times and bouncing on her feet to warm up a little more.

Aracely, on close examination, seems to have a flesh-tone tube top on beneath all that paint. You can kinda see a very slight slip on one of the lines of gothic script that doesn't say anything. As Tabitha comes in and introduces, she doesn't move right away.

Mano 666, who is by ringside in his devil mask, gives Tabitha a respectful nod before picking up his plate of shrimp tacos.

The MOONCHILD straightens up, staring dead ahead at Tabitha -- and her right eye twitches.

Wait, no, that was a wink.

After this she starts to walk forwards, swaying as she does. "Met Ro... Ci Ty..." she intones, her voice thick and gurgly.

COMBATSYS: Aracely has started a fight here.

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Aracely          0/-------/-------|

Tabitha returns Mano 666's nod as she finishes her shadowboxing, taking a loose, anticipatory stance rather than anything inherently aggressive (or especially defensive, for that matter).

Gimmicks and tricks. Tabitha at least understands that they exist, even if she barely uses one herself; this is who she is. She likes to fight, and she likes to win, and she doesn't even mind giving the crowd a show, but she doesn't really feel the need to be someone she's not. They'll take her as she is, or, well... they won't. Either way she intends to win.

Tabitha gives a very slight inclination of her head to her opponent at the wink. At least she seems to be more than a stage wrestler, or this fight wouldn't have been booked... that or it would be very short. Either one's possible. She rolls one of her shoulders, a last-minute tell. She's not sure how to react to the words, so she doesn't. Much. "Having fun," she starts to say, but is shortly interrupted.


Tabitha is... not off like a shot, like a lot of fighters are. She advances, her fists rising into a more obviously orthodox boxing style, but she doesn't charge, and she keeps her head. She settles for a couple fast jabs rather than a full-on assault, keeping her right hand back and ready to block - provided she doesn't just clear out of the way from Aracely's assault, anyway, she's keeping her options open.

COMBATSYS: Tabitha has joined the fight here.

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Tabitha          0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0          Aracely

COMBATSYS: Tabitha successfully hits Aracely with Guard Knuckle.
- Power hit! -

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Tabitha          0/-------/-------|==-----\-------\0          Aracely

Aracely is probably about to drop some witty bon mot when instead Tabitha lunges in, jabbing her repeatedly and knocking her goose loose! (No actual goose is involved.) Forced backwards against the turnbuckle of the ring, she jerks several times, seemingly at a disadvantage. Isn't she going to block!?

No, apparently. However, what she does do is wait for Tabitha to get a little overcommitted on one of those jabs, and then completely ignores the right hand - instead bouncing off the rope towards the left, hooking an arm at Tabitha's waist, and aiming to put that momentum to work hoisting her up --

And then dropping her hard on her backside! (Tabitha's, not Aracely's. The latter would be a good deal more elaborate.)

COMBATSYS: Tabitha blocks Aracely's Moonset Toss.

[    \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////////      ]
Tabitha          0/-------/-----==|===----\-------\0          Aracely

Aracely is quick to capitalize on one of Tabitha's more minor mistakes; she overcommitted just a little on the last jab, and got her arm grabbed for her trouble. Yanked off balance, Tabitha does the only thing she can think of to avoid being thrown:

She digs in, using her free right hand to momentarily grab the ropes and keep herself from being pulled up and over (it helps that she's kind of short). Staggering slightly, Tabitha nonetheless manages to stay on her feet in a confused wrestling cluster, although she's in rather close proximity to Aracely now. Too close to Moonchild, in her opinion! Tabitha elects to try to clear some distance by driving her right fist into Aracely's stomach, impacting with some strength to try to push her back and away. Unfortunately this leaves Tabitha rather close to the ropes and turnbuckle, which can't have been her plan!

...Can it?

COMBATSYS: Tabitha successfully hits Aracely with Medium Punch.

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Tabitha          0/-------/-----==|=====--\-------\0          Aracely

Is this a fighter who can only operate in a worked environment?! Aracely takes that fist into her well toned but ultimately slightly spongey gut, her eyes going wide in a wholly unfeigned way as she's pushed back against the turnbuckle. This isn't very exciting, is it, folks!

The Moonchild puts a foot on one of the ropes and pushes herself upwards then, spreading her arms out as she clambers upright and then, without reaching back, hooks her legs around to hit the middle rope - then the top - then the turnbuckle itself.

Exhaling hard, she calls out, "Let me tell you something, my friend!"

Her arms come up. "Fists are majestic, but they aren't everything. You're putting your focus up high - having faith in your arms to guard you, against... the DARKNESS. But they will not avail you... Only the total awareness of all things, your entire body, give you any hope of survival...!"

That's different. Having done this, Aracely vaults herself off the rope, twisting around to narrow her cross-section and lower an elbow down to try and slam that bony protruberance against one of Tabitha's shoulders!

COMBATSYS: Aracely successfully hits Tabitha with Rebound Throw.

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Tabitha          0/-------/--=====|====---\-------\0          Aracely

"They've done me well enough," Tabitha says, with a slightly defensive air. It's true, too - she doesn't know all that much about kicking, but she's figured out how to counter it, at least, and how to deal with people who try to hit her below the waist. She's a street fighter, not just a boxer.

They don't save her from a top-rope assault, though! Aracely flies through the air with the greatest of ease, comes down - and slams an elbow into Tabitha's left shoulder. Catching all of Aracely's weight on one side with a pained grunt, she weaves, nearly falling over from the sudden impact of weight -

No, actually, she /does/ go down.

Tabitha recovers surprisingly quickly for someone who's just literally been bowled to the ground; she's sore but not out as she rolls through several revolutions and ends up a few yards away, then vaults to her feet with decent grace. Her attack this time /is/ fast, a sudden surge of speed that propels her back towards Moonchild, slamming her right hand out in a strike that moves so quickly it seems to blur!

It also has the added bonus of leaving her left hand completely unoccupied, which lets her recover from the impact on that shoulder. ow ow ow

COMBATSYS: Aracely blocks Tabitha's Blue Streak.

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Tabitha          0/-------/---====|=====--\-------\0          Aracely

In comes Tabitha as the Moonchild lands and kips back up, stepping back with a grimace on her face. "Sure, they have done you well enough... for now. But you're already showing the problem you have -"

In comes the punch! Aracely thinks: That was quick. This is no scrub, as if the other hits weren't making that quite clear. The fist coming towards her is sharp enough that she twists /into/ it, taking her own painful shoulder bump as she wobbles back -

Except, of course, this is deceptive. She is not trying to just roll with the punch. She is trying to get her shoulder, despite the huge slam just taken against it, underneath Tabitha's armpit as she sweeps her other arm up.

Her goal is to hoist her up briefly into the air, twist around while taking a casual step forwards, and then with an exaggerated shrug just dump her down, tummy-first, onto the ground!

COMBATSYS: Tabitha blocks Aracely's Bone Dropper.

[             \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////            ]
Tabitha          0/-------/--=====|=====--\-------\0          Aracely

Tabitha is having what might be termed, by some people, a style conflict. Though a street fighter, all of Tabitha's training (and much of her experience) is in boxing - and in boxing nobody tries to pick you up, or at least not legally.

Oh, Tabitha has defenses, but her defenses tend to be somewhat improvised and less than ideal. Like this time, for instance. She can't stop Aracely from getting her shoulder under her arm, starting to lift her up - but what she does figure out how to do in the nick of time is turn it into a forward vault.

Tabitha gets her hands on Aracely's shoulders and passes just over her head by about an inch. She lands on the far side, tucking into a roll because there's no way she's going to make it on her feet and fetching up against the ropes that Aracely jumped from not that long ago. At least it makes getting up easy!

"What problem?" Tabitha says, letting out a huge puff of air that moves some of her hair away from her eyes. She draws her right fist back, her entire body tensing, almost as if she was preparing, watching while she builds power.

Tabitha explodes forward some moments later. She puts her entire body into the blow, pivoting her body and releasing that stored tension in a single colossal cross; the impact is so impressive that, if Aracely gets hit squarely, a momentary shockwave of air ripples away from the impact point in all directions, ruffling hair and tugging at loose cloth, more a minor distraction than anything else.

COMBATSYS: Tabitha successfully hits Aracely with Impact Knuckle.
>> Decisive Hit!! <<

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Tabitha          0/-------/--=====|=======\-------\1          Aracely

Moonchild's eyes narrow as Tabitha gets her retort in.

Mano 666 makes a note to pencil in some additional blocking drills for the next round of developmental style work for Aracely; after all, if she's going to eventually bust up Jack Sanders, she has to be able to keep her mitts up, to take a blow - lest she end up... a chicken!

Of course, then comes that huge blast, the wind from it rattling tickets throughout the entire assemblage to a general murmur of shock and awe. Thus struck, the Moonchild staggers back several paces, accelerating even to reach the far turnbuckle, propping herself up on the ropes and taking huge, bellow-like breaths.

"Darkness... darkness... hwagh! Glahhhh," she says, her mouth sort of snapping at the air like a landed fish - though Tabitha is probably savvy enough to guess this is an effort to un-gas-out herself more than an actual investiture of Demonic Power. Probably.

COMBATSYS: Aracely gains composure.

[              \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////               ]
Tabitha          0/-------/--=====|=======\-------\0          Aracely

Now that she has managed to seize the initiative, Tabitha isn't going to let it go. /Almost/ getting thrown around so often is starting to add up, and while Tabitha's normal strategy is to let a battle go long until she can finish it, she'd rather not let it go quite as long against a wrestler. If she lets Moonchild go for one of the more complex holds that she hasn't a clue how to get out of - well, that could be it. She can take a punch, but a submission hold is a lot harder.

Moonchild gasps for air, to recover. Tabitha shadowboxes momentarily as if to show that, yes, she's still active (and maybe to show off for the crowd) and then starts to move in against the propped-up wrestler. She's done the same thing before (well, minus the possible demonic power, but using the ropes for support while she's recovering). She knows that trick!

But wrestlers use the ropes to attack as much as defend, and so Tabitha's approach is careful, measured rather than all-out. She's not going to let Aracely recover forever, but she's not going to put herself at risk to take her out immediately; she tries a pair of quick left-handed jabs, hesitates a moment to break up the rhythm, and then a third punch that comes from her other hand to try to hook in and get a lucky hit against the stomach or ribs.

COMBATSYS: Aracely blocks Tabitha's Rapid Combo.

[             \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////                ]
Tabitha          0/-------/--=====|=======\-------\1          Aracely

Aracely twists her way out of the jabs and is perhaps about to fully capitalize on that pattern when in comes the right, hitting her RIGHT - get it? - in the gut. Exhaling with agonizing force, her eyes water, but --

You can't just give in here, she thinks. Not in a situation like this. Even if this is a Vegas casino resort, she can't just lay down and let herself get punched into a wet mess! Her eyes glitter then, and she lunges forwards, head down, torito-style --

Aiming to get her arms around Tabitha's waist and bull-rush her straight into the opposing turnbuckle! Can anything overcome the power of this... a weaponized hug?!

COMBATSYS: Tabitha blocks Aracely's Medium Throw.

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Tabitha          0/-------/-======|=======\-------\1          Aracely

Weaponized hugs are truly terrifying weapons.

Tabitha manages to get her arms between Aracely and herself, but this means two things: one, she still ends up being mashed into the other turnbuckle (if, perhaps, without the added drawback of having Aracely slam into her gut), and two, she has her hands stuck where she can't punch Aracely with them. This could be a problem.

Fortunately (?), Tabitha does have one weapon that remains available to her, and she uses it; she drives her forehead forward, trying to slam right into Aracely's and cause her to reel backwards! Tabitha has a pretty hard head and she's not afraid to use it.

Off camera, David - the big guy she came in with - winces. He didn't teach her that!

COMBATSYS: Aracely endures Tabitha's Headbutt.

[               \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////                   ]
Tabitha          0/-------/-======|=======\==-----\1          Aracely

"Now that's using your head, huh?" Mano 666 remarks to David.

Of course, that incoming head is hard and fast, and Aracely is kind of screwed in the face of this barrage. Probably so, anyway. She does, however, do something a little unusual, which is lean forwards, smashing her forehead into Tabitha's!

Well, that wasn't the best thing to do. Except that she laces her hands up to try and grasp Tabitha's own head briefly, pressing forwards as her eyes roll backwards and she grimaces - before her hands split apart (not literally, thankfully) to rest on her shoulders. At which point Aracely pushes down.

To flip up? Not a flip, no. She's throwing herself up into the air, using Tabitha's spinal column as leverage. But why?

To get her shins around Tabitha's head and twist around, throwing herself to the ground and whipsawing her entire body around to send Tabitha, hopefully, flying towards the turnbuckle - the ropes - hell, maybe all the way to the Paris down the street! (Actually it's another street, but shh.)

COMBATSYS: Aracely successfully hits Tabitha with Huracanarana.

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Tabitha          1/-----==/=======|==-----\-------\0          Aracely

David shrugs. "She's normally a lot more careful than /I/ was," he says, possibly as some kind of excuse.

Aracely has apparently figured out Tabitha's biggest combat weakness; she's not always entirely sure what to do in the face of complex throws and holds. She thinks Aracely is vaulting her to get onto the turnbuckle, and she actually tries to counter this by leaning forward, trying to shrug Aracely off her.

But this actually makes it easier to reach to get her legs around Tabitha's head. She feels something clamp around the sides of her head, vicelike, and then there's a whole lot of angles changing and a blur -

Tabitha whips across the ring, slamming not into the turnbuckle but into ropes next to it. She kind of hangs there for a moment, slack-limbed as she tries to figure out where she is and how she got there from where she had been fighting, near a corner and defending herself from being rammed into the turnbuckle. Her nose is bleeding, and so is one of her upper arms, from impact and rasping against the rope respectively, and she seems at least partially dazed.

Tabitha's body kicks into life again all at once. It's not quite a spasm as she twists up and around, but it's close. Her head is spinning but she's still up, and 'up' might be all she needs... All she has to do is make sure she's pointed at Aracely and not, say, going to run right past her.

Because running is what Tabitha does, a charging rush with one fist drawn back. She drives it forward as she approaches Aracely, slamming with enough force to launch /Tabitha/ back, almost immediately bringing both hands up to cover her chest and chin in a guard - admittedly that works better against other boxers, but it will stop Aracely from immediately leveling a hit back, she hopes, and she tucks her elbows in to make her harder to grab, too. "One more!!"

COMBATSYS: Tabitha successfully hits Aracely with Impact Guard.

[                        \\\\\\  < >  ////                          ]
Tabitha          0/-------/-----==|======-\-------\0          Aracely

The Moonchild runs a hand through her hair. Yeah, she thinks. Yeah!! She can do this! Then she's getting charged forwards upon by Tabitha, and she thinks: Maybe I don't.

The impact hits her in the sternum with a mighty WHACK, hard enough to disrupt the lines on her fancy occult-painting top. Well, it's not so fancy now, although since Tabitha's spilled BLOOD on it -

Something on her glows.

David can see Mano 666 pointing what seems like a flashlight with a black light bulb in it towards Aracely, even as Mano himself says, "Go on, you were saying?"

"No," Aracely breathes after that blow, even as she hits the ropes - and pushes up with her feet, kicking herself off the mat to slide along them and come to the top rope. Straightening up, she can feel herself wobbling, but the choices here are 'correct for that' or 'win', and by God she's making the right choice here.

"NO more!"

And with that, she vaults forwards, nearly three meters straight up.

How did she manage it!? (Answer: The ropes in Vegas are really springy.) Aracely herself seems surprised, but she pivots anyway, tucking up her legs and leading with her thighs. This will at least diffuse the possibility of breaking Tabitha's neck and instantly killing her, but it won't defuse her getting shoved down...

And pinned?! (Probably not.)

COMBATSYS: Aracely has reached second wind!

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Tabitha          0/-------/-----==|>>>>---\-------\0          Aracely

COMBATSYS: Tabitha dodges Aracely's Fall From Heaven.

[                     \\\\\\\\\  < >  /                             ]
Tabitha          0/-------/-----==|>>>>---\-------\0          Aracely

"No, really," David says, leaning back slightly. "She's good - she's certainly better than me - but she's so /patient/ about it. Wait, dance around, block, and then she punches you in the gut so hard you go flying and aren't sure what hit you."

Tabitha seems to be working on that now. She's moving a lot more than she has been (minus being thrown across the ring a couple times), shifting her weight; on one hand she knows she can't take another hit like the last, but on the other hand the near loss is giving her some kind of crazed don't-give-up energy, enough to keep her active.

Aracely goes up, and Tabitha's gaze follows, startled. She wasn't expecting anything like that, and ordinary swaying away from blows isn't going to cut it against a fall from ten feet up! She moves backwards, one two three steps, letting Aracely slam down onto empty ring -

Tabitha is immediately right there again. Stepping forward, she puts her forward momentum into an overhand punch, driving downward and trying to ensure that Aracely does not get back up! For the first time in the battle, lights dance around Tabitha's hand when she does it, like she has a fistful of rainbow - and on impact, it bursts, causing a brief aurora, a bright flash, and a sudden discharge of bitterly cold chi!

COMBATSYS: Aracely fails to interrupt Arctic Blow from Tabitha with Gear Grinder.

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

COMBATSYS: Aracely can no longer fight.

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

Aracely tenses, pushes herself up off the mat after hitting, and perhaps it would have been a good plan if she had been facing a regular bunch. Sweep around, put them into a submission lock, but what comes out instead is something far flashier.

The sweeping cold as ice smashes downwards as the Moonchild makes her grab upwards; it goes owhere, and the blow instead hits her in the collarbone. She rolls down, hits the mat and rolls, sprawling out and laying on her front; she reaches for her head without apparent urgency to get back up into her feet, into the fight.

Mano 666 hides the flashlight.

And with that, confetti falls! A promoter over in the corner starts up something on the screen over the mat - which is, thinking fast, an announcement for TWO FOR ONE DRINKS... at the ICE BAR (literally an ice bar!) with your VALID TICKET!

Tabitha doesn't break out the chi much. It's hard for her, and often not worth it - but when it's good, it's good.

Tabitha holds her combat stance for a few moments when confetti falls around her - David, at least, is cheering, though it's not as widespread as Tabitha would probably like. Still, she'll take it - she has a grin on her face, now that she can focus on one thing at a time again.

When the spotlights meander somewhere else (the promoter, mostly), Tabitha offers Aracely a hand up. Not that she's in much better shape (her nose is still bleeding) but hey. She tried.

Log created on 21:36:53 02/18/2015 by Aracely, and last modified on 02:36:04 02/19/2015.