SNF 2015.08 - SNF: KI Qualifier - Worth

Description: Ryu Hayabusa's investigation leads him to the realization that there's someone out for more than just the win. There's someone out for his blood! Duo Lon has been hired to take him out. And with a strong poison in his system, Duo's employers just might get their wish...

As strange as it may be to say, Ryu Hayabusa is possibly the best known ninja in the world. Although much about the man is a mystery, he has participated in multiple professional fighting tournaments and has been filmed arriving on scene during situations that place the world in danger.

Beyond merely his public perception, Ryu Hayabusa is a legend in the more shadowy world as well. The ancient Hayabusa Clan has protected the world from threats of other realms for their secretive, shadowy home somewhere near Mt. Fuji for generations. Hayabusa himself has defeated archfiends in pitched battles upon which the fate of the human world has been balanced.

Despite all of this, it's still strange to see the Master Ninja's name listed on the fight list for an exhibition match. Just what is it that has brought the famed Dragon Ninja out of his hiding place to show up at a promotional match for the Killer Instinct Tournament? Are the rumors of the corporations questionable activites true?

It's unlikely that any of that will be answered in the middle of Howard Arena. The seats are full, the crowd is ready, and the lights go on down at the center of the ring.

"Ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of Howard Connection and the Ultratech Corporation, I am proud to present to you a taste of what's to come from the Killer Instinct Tournament!" The announcer manages to pull a deafening roar from the massive crowd before he motions toward the contest entrance, "We have for you one of the most dangerous fighters the world of, a man of mystery that some say wields forbidden ninja magic... RYU HAYABUSA!"

All eyes turn toward the entrance only to be met with nothing for a few awkward seconds as cheers begin to fade. Then, in a sudden flash of whirling winds, Hayabusa himself appears atop one of the turnbuckles, his arms folded across his chest.

By contrast, the master ninja's opponent is... not quite so well known. At least not in the public eye. Part of being an assassin, after all, is to make certain that few know you. Especially the your targets. So, since he never uses his name for his underground activities, he has no fear of entering this one with his real name. There are other reasons for this too, but they hardly need naming here.

There's less fanfare for his arrival, given that he is a relative unknown. "And facing our man of mystery tonight, we have a dark horse! All the way from China, the beautiful DUO LON!"

...Wait, what?

The spotlights shine on him just in tme to catch his sigh of exasperation. Idiot announcer. Oh well. Duo doesn't care. He's just concerned whether he'd added enough of that poison into Hayabusa's tea before the match. Either way, he comes to the fighting area with much less fanfare. No disappearing, no flipping, no shows of strength or ability. He just... walks.

As his opponents prepares to enter the ring, Hayabusa flips down from his position on the turnbuckle to stand in his corner. Despite still carrying the legendary Dragon Sword it remains sheathed across his back; an ever present tool in the Dragon Ninja's arsenal.

Despite remaining his usual collected self, Hayabusa was beginning to sweat. At first he'd merely considered it a possibility that it was an effect of the powerful stage lights overhead, but even after utilizing a minor enchantment to ward off the heat he could still feel the affect continue to grow within him.

Something wasn't right; he'd need to be cautious during this match.

Duo Lon merely walks up the stairs to confront his opponent. He wasn't about to tip his hand yet. That wasn't his way, to gloat and cackle over his 'assured victory' when it wasn't certain. No, for now he had to keep Hayabusa in the ring long enough for the poison to take effect. Make him work. Elevate his heartbeat, so the poison would spread through him faster.

So for the time being, he bows politely to Ryu. "It's an honor to face you, Hayabusa," he offers quietly. And then he slides a foot back, raising his hands and keeping them flat, nails pointed forward. At the same time, he allows the foot he's left in front to ... twist oddly. His whole body seems almost as thought it is hanging there by strings, his posture loose and difficult for the unskilled to read.

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon has started a fight here.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa has joined the fight here.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

As Duo Lon takes his position, Hayabusa steps forward, graciously returning the bow for a moment before drawing his hands up in front of him in a ready position, his fingers held in a loose neutral position rather than a more traditional fist or open palm. His eyes lock in on his opponent.

And when the start of the fight is called? Duo pauses, waits. Examines the situation. He needs to draw this out as much as he can. he knows the rumors around Hayabusa's strength and power. And he knows he's no match for that in a straight-on fight. his aim is not to kill with the fight, but to let his poison do its work.

That in mind, he approaches, seeming to slide across the ground... and swings a quick punch at Hayabusa. Patience. Pacing. That's what will do him the most good here, not overwhelming power.

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa parries Duo Lon's Quick Punch!

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Duo Lon          0/-------/-------|=------\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

The most important aspect of a fight is managing to place yourself in control. Allowing yourself to be taken off guard or overwhelmed is to be poised for failure. A single man can fight a dozen other men if he has the ability to read the battlefield and uses this knowledge to herd his enemies. In a fight like this, it's merely a matter of reading a single person.

While the quick attempt may simply be a testing strike, Hayabusa uses it as an opportunity to quickly gain control of the fight before Duo Lon has a chance to read him; one hand slips around the attempt, knocking the assassin's hand aside at the wrist as he surges forward to plant the other hand on Duo's shoulder. In an usual bout of acrobatics, the Dragon Ninja climbs up his opponent's front, launching himself up into the air before twisting back around to plant a vicious downward kick atop his head.

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon blocks Ryu Hayabusa's Hane Karakuri EX.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/------=|==-----\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

Duo expected the strike to be knocked away. What he did NOT expect is for his opponent to basically climb him like a tree -- he's tall enough -- and then try to cave his head in fromt above! It's only through sheer reflex that Duo manages to get his arms up in time to avoid that head-bashing kick. Even still, it draws a wince, and a hiss of pain. Did he feel something crack? Duo would not doubt it.

But now he realizes that if he's to stay in this fight, he may /have/ to give it everything from the get-go. Hoping to take the master ninja off-guard, Duo makes to stomp his foot on the ground, it seems... except his foot blurs, and then seems to pass THROUGH the ground. And Ryu may want to watch you, because the shoe-colored blur is coming up underneath him...

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa dodges Duo Lon's Habarushimu Kyaku.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/------=|==-----\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

It's definitely not the heat. Now that the fight has begun, Hayabusa can feel that there's something wrong inside of him, something that feels as if its tearing at his veins.


While Hayabusa may not know much about Duo Lon himself, the pain suddenly flowing through his body combines with the unusual fighting stance of the man in front of him; he's seen assassins trained in a similar manner before. He was a fool to let his guard down even a little, it's very much a possibility that Ultratech brought Duo Lon here as part of their questionable tournament strategy.

It's all quite distracting, and if it were not for years of training, the Master Ninja would have never seen the attack coming from below. As in stands, Hayabusa narrowly recognizes the strange ripple through the ring and kicks up off the floor at the last moment, narrowly escaping the tricky maneuver. In a clear sign that he's taking this fight more seriously, there is a sudden glint in the powerful arena lights as the Dragon Sword is drawn from its sheath and the Dragon Ninja drops down at Duo Lon in a vertical slash.

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon narrowly escapes Ryu Hayabusa's Power Strike!

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Duo Lon          0/-------/------=|==-----\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

Uh oh. The ninja's figured it out, Duo realizes. Because suddenly there's a sword coming at him as Hayabusa leaps up. It's only through sheer luck that he manages to move back, his form blurring into a vague purple shape and zooming back. Even then, Ryu's keen senses can likely see the scrap of fabric that falls to the floor of the ring. And the trailing end of his Chinese-style tunic is shorter on one side.

Indeed, this is no battle to toy with. But Duo needs to regain his bearings from dodging so quickly! There's not much time for him to do more than strike out at Ryu with a flat hand. Though given he's out of arms' immediate reach, that seems like it should be impossible unless he gets closer. Except... it's not. The arm literally stretches, and seems to easily be able to reach him... if Ryu doesn't dodge...

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa just-defends Duo Lon's Genmu Ken!

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Duo Lon          0/-------/------=|==-----\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

Against many opponents, that extra bit of extension likely would have been a total surprise, but Ryu Hayabusa is a man that has fought fiends that seem unwilling to let the constraints of their bodies hold them back. Under the circumstances, the extra distance between the ninja and the assassin allows Hayabusa to make use of the tools of his trade, whipping the Dragon Sword up in front of him so that Duo Lon's strike is met with the flat of the blade, bending back in his hold to absorb all of that power as Ryu's eyes stare dead on into Duo's.

With another flash of glinting metal, the Dragon Sword returns to its sheath and Hayabusa's hands drop down to his thighs as he leaps back toward the ropes, whipping the kunai out from the sheathes on his hips as he aims them for each of Duo Lon's limbs, quite clearly aiming to disable the assassin as much as possible.

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon fails to slow Four Rings from Ryu Hayabusa with Habarushimu Kyaku.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/---====|====---\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

CLANG! That's the sound of Duo's nails impacting with the blade. Wow those are some hard nails! It's notable that they aren't broken, the hand was merely diverted away. Now, as Ryu leaps at him, Duo prepares to meet the ninja with a quickly gathering nimbus of sickly gray energy. It just /smelled/ wrong, everything about it, everything about Duo. He feels like death.

Duo was not prepared for the ninja's speed to surpass his own -- and in retrospect that was rather foolish of him. As he gathers and prepares to release the large ball of deathly ki, the blades flash across his limbs, slicing the fabric and drawing a spray of blood from each wound. But the only sound he makes is a gasp and a hiss. But as Ryu probably expected, he falls to the floor.

Things have been cut that shouldn't have been, and Duo knows it. But he needs to get up. he's going to need some time to try and get to his feet again. Somehow.

If anyone came to the fight without understanding that the advertising included an actual Ninja Master (and not just some quick, flipping fighter), there is a good chance that they are horrified in this moment as blood is suddenly everywhere. The weapons that adorn Hayabusa's person are not for show, and outside of professional fighting he has left behind a massive body count among his enemies.

But there is some consideration to be made for the venue, and as Duo Lon goes down, Hayabusa doesn't make a move to draw his sword again; no among everything else, the Dragon Ninja intends to find out just what sort of poison the assassin has inflicted upon him. Taking a less bloody approach, he leaps up into the air, twisting about again as he drops a vicious kick down across Duo's chest.

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon dodges Ryu Hayabusa's Strong Kick.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/---====|=====--\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

It does look for all the world like Duo is not getting back up. Ryu got him good, in places that are going to hurt like hell. How he's not completely a ragdoll is anybody's guess. But as that kick comes down, somehow Duo manages to collect himself. And something odd happens. He quite literally falls apart, as if his body merely turns to ashes.

He reforms a short distance away, standing... briefly. One of his legs falls out from under him -- apparently he hasn't quite collected himself yet. For the time being he kicks out at Ryu with the leg that he CAN get to listen to him, however briefly.

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa counters Light Kick from Duo Lon with Mekkyaku - Koryu EX.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/=======|======-\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

The fact that the assassin is able to avoid Hayabusa's assault from his current position, especially after being cut open by those kunai, says a great deal about the level of skill that Duo Lon has. This is a man whose abilities and technique would leave most professional fighters with no recourse. It's only unfortunate that the opponent he finds himself against now has figured out who is responsible for his poisoning, and has a mastery of his art that exceeds what any would expect given his youth.

As Duo Lon attempts to use surprise to take control of the fight, Ryu shows the insurmountable experience his has accumulated by adjusting his posture and knocking aside the kick with one of his own, using enough force to spin Duo Lon about on his other foot before the Dragon Ninja whips forward, plowing Duo Lon to his knees with a downward swing, then twisting into a back kick to put him back to the mat.

The attack comes almost before Duo knows what hit him. He'd been expecting the kick to be knocked away, but not the downward swing or the kick that put him down again. He should be finished now -- speaking of youth, Duo's pretty young himself. He shouldn't be able to stay standing after all that. But yes, he blurs away again, and pulls himself to his feet. Slowly.

And then? Counter to good sense, Duo rushes in, trying to zoom underneath Ryu's guard. But when he does, a great explosion of ghostly-looking orbs explode around him. And, he hopes, catching the master ninja in the effect radius as well!

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon successfully hit Ryu Hayabusa with Hiden Genmu Bakkou Shikon.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/-------|=======\==-----\1     Ryu Hayabusa

From an untrained observer, it would appear that Hayabusa is in complete control of the match. Even if someone knew that the ninja was being afflicted by a poison, they'd assume that he was using whatever training he had to completely suppress the effect. It's certainly true that the poison is having a lesser effect on Hayabusa than it would most people, but he's sweating far more than he should for a fight like this, and he can feel it starting to weigh on him.

His reaction time is still impressive; as Duo Lon comes charging in at him, Hayabusa draws back into a defensive stance, but his ability to read has been thrown off, he doesn't notice the build-up of chi until it's too late. The orbs hit him from all directions, ignoring his prepared stance and throwing him across the ring from the force.

Slowly Hayabusa pushes himself back up to his feet. It's clear that he'll need more than martial arts to take control of this fight in his current condition. Rather than fall back into a proper fighting stance, he pulls his hands up in front of him, cupping them around empty space as he begins to focus his chi into a single point. As he continues, he pulls himself into a low stance, his hands braced in the same orientation as they fall to his side; the space between them looking as though it is being twisted and torn apart into a single, dense point. It's as if a black hole exists between his fingers.

It all occurs over mere seconds, even though it feels momentarily as though time stretches onward. The Dragon Ninja finishes pulling his chi together and thrusts the sphere forward, sending it flying across the ring on a course with Duo Lon.

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa successfully hit Duo Lon with Art of the Piercing Void.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/----===|=------\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

the master ninja has no need to worry. Duo's really not in the best shape, either. Really, he should have known this wasn't going to be easy. A stronger dose of poison might have been tasted in the tea, though. And the chances of catching Ryu Hayabusa with a poison dart are slim and none. All he could do is wear his opponent down as much as possible.

But then again... something inside him isn't pleased about it anyway. Something about this fight... maybe he shouldn't have taken the job. Not because he was to be defeated, no. But because something about his opponent made him think that... perhaps he doesn't need to die.

But when one hesitates, they say, one is lost. The hesitation is clear... and it's just enough that Duo can't pull his arms in fast enough. The apparent singularity strikes him head on, and tosses him across the ring. If the ropes weren't there'd he'd have been flung completely out. As it is he strikes them and is flung back in, to all but skid on his face. He looks like he's in a lot of pain. Now would be the perfect time to find out what Ryu was poisoned with, right?

Or maybe not.

It's a sudden burst of energy -- likely the assassin's last. He all but flows to his feet like quickly-moving water, and then thrusts his hands forward, attempting to slam both his palms into Ryu's solar plexus area. It's not his most pwoerful attack... but it's all he can muster at the moment.

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa dodges Duo Lon's Shiryou Kunhotsu Seikin.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/----===|=------\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

By some standards, Ryu Hayabusa is a monster. The trail of bodies he has left in his wake is outrageous for a single man. He wields a sort of power that makes him almost inhuman. However, the Dragon Ninja has never fought a single battle for personal gain, his entire life is utterly devoted to achieving the goals of his clan. While he is remorseless with those lives he is forced to take, he does not treat killing as a joyful act and will spare those deemed innocent, even if it places his own life in danger.

But to be face-to-face with him in a fight is to see why he is treated as an almost mythical boogeyman among those of fiendish blood. Even now as he is poisoned, even after such a vicious blow, he is unrelenting. As Duo Lon comes for him, Hayabusa ducks back out of the way, leaving little more than air behind.

In another burst of motion, he launches himself into the air toward Duo Lon foot first. Like a falcon to a perch, he aims to plant his feet on either side of the assassin's head as he stands vertical above him before flinging himself backward and dragging Duo along behind him by the head, releasing his foothold only as the other man is flying toward the ground.

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon dodges Ryu Hayabusa's Power Throw.

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Duo Lon          0/-------/----===|=------\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

Ryu's feet do find purchase on Duo's head! But the master ninja will find his quarry disappearing again, crumbling into ash. There's no time to waste! Duo reforms as quickly as he can, and then tries to capitalize on the moment. Hopefully he'll be able to catch Ryu in the back in the moment that the master ninja is still mid-flip.

What with? He leans down in a crouch, then seems to surge forward at Ryu. His neck bends in a near-impossible angle, whipping the braid out at the master ninja. At the end of the braid is a large white ball though... and with the speed it's going, it might hurt a little if it hits...

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon successfully hit Ryu Hayabusa with Benpatsuken.
- Power hit! -

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Duo Lon          0/-------/---====|====---\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

Poisons are a tricky threat, and one that Ryu Hayabusa knows full well to fear. Most poisons work slowly, working over time to put an end to their target, with symptoms getting worse the longer they go without treatment. Hayabusa is certainly feeling the effects coursing through his veins. His reactions are slowing, and he's losing his command of the fight. As Duo Lon makes his swing, the Master Ninja fully intends to interpose his arm between himself and the weaponized hair ornament, but his sluggish response means he's left with no defense. The hit sends him flying, crying violently into the turnbuckle.

Clearly it's time to release his personal restraints if he hopes to get out of this. Rising back up to his feet, he looks to be a mess, on the verge of collapse... but then he takes a deep breath and it's as if the air all through the ring goes completely still. Having recentered himself, Hayabusa moves with remarkable speed, given his condition. Nearly instantly crossing the open space between himself and the assassin, he swings with a violent upward blow, launching Duo Lon nearly to the ceiling with a single blow as he leaps upward, only to vanish until the long-haired assassin reaches the peak of his arc; Ryu reappears, arms wrapping around his prey as he sets both of them into a downward spiral back into the ring, ready to let Duo Lon experience the full force of their combined drop.

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa successfully hit Duo Lon with Izuna Otoshi EX.

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Duo Lon          1/------=/=======|-------\-------\0     Ryu Hayabusa

By this time Duo knows he's not getting out of this one without getting mangled pretty badly. Besides that his enthusiasm, if one can call it that, for killing Ryu is about gone. He made a mistake taking this job, and not because he's outclassed. But because this is a man that indeed does not deserve to die.

Ryu comes at him out of nowhere, and Duo has no time to move. And in his state it wouldn't have been possible anyway. The uppercut rings his bell painfully, and the following piledriver seals the deal. Depending on whether Ryu's kept hold of him or not, he might feel the assassin go limp. Yeah, he's not getting up from that.

...Well, at least now Ryu can ask him about the poison. though the announcer might want to call the match first, since it doesn't look like Duo's getting back up.

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon takes no action.

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Ryu Hayabusa     0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Duo Lon can no longer fight.

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Ryu Hayabusa     0/-------/-------|

As Duo hits the ground, Hayabusa flips back, landing in a weary crouch as he waits to see whether or not he's finally put the assassin under. This gives the referee time to count out the victory. The moment that the bell rings and the announcer belows, "The winner, by knockout... RYU HAYABUSA!" the ninja releases his stored up energy, crossing the ring to Duo Lon and snaring up the beatdown assassin as he drops a smokebomb, filling the entire ring.

By the time the smoke clears (literally), neither of the two fighters is left behind.

Finally, a chance to ask questions and figure out what the antidote is.

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa takes no action.

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Ryu Hayabusa     0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Ryu Hayabusa has ended the fight here.

Log created on 21:44:46 08/06/2015 by Duo Lon, and last modified on 08:43:40 08/10/2015.