Rumble In The Streets - [Rumble W2] Maki vs Honoka

Description: A couple of this week's Rumbles will be in Yokohama, and the Rumble Committee will be providing a specially discounted trip there for Southtown residents! As an unannounced bonus, there will ALSO be a fight en route to the coastal city! On this special trip, Honoka and Maki will be dueling for their tournament fight atop a flatbed car, much to the delight of the two passenger cars on either side.

A crisp day in early February, high noon. It's a bright day, with scattered clouds providing cover from the sun, here on the railway tracks leading from Southtown. The eight passenger cars of a specially-commissioned train are packed to the gills with fans eager for heavily-discounted round trip to Yokohama, for both a sightseeing trip and the opportunity to watch fighting legends at their best in the "Rumble In The Streets" tournament.
Also aboard the train are also two of the very fighters who had been expecting to fight in Yokohama.
Their mobile phones will begin vibrating with the alert that, no, the fight will be taking place on the fifth car from the front of the vehicle: a flatbed car intended for hauling concrete culverts.

After wading through the passenger cars at the head of the train, Honoka finally slides the door open to the flatbed cart. Dressed in a dark purple jacket, a cream-colored turtleneck, and long bluejeans, the juggler strides confidently out onto the flatbed. The wind whips at her pink-highlighted hair, necessitating her to raise her hand to her face to sweep the unruly bangs out of her eyes -- and away from the camera of the HitBit headband around her forehead. She smiles broadly, squinting her eyes at the small aerial formation of quadrotor camera drones that has been deployed to provide coverage to the less-lucky fans who won't get a live third-person coverage of the fight otherwise.

She snaps a quick wave to their referee for this fight: a man riding on the car immediately aft of the flatbed car, dressed in the a black-and-white striped shirt. As she withdraws two 45-cm-long diabolo wands from the inside of her jacket, she states, "I'm ready and in position," confident that the HitBit recording suite will be able to pick up her words even in the rushing winds. Ah, technology!

And without further pretext, the young juggler unhooks a diabolo from her belt. And begins to juggle it, as if the car -weren't- traveling at about 60 km/h.

COMBATSYS: Honoka has started a fight here.

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Honoka           0/-------/-======|

Unlike Honoka, who might be dressed a bit more casually for this event, with regards to the weather as well, Maki is wearing her traditional fighting garb. She's a bit of a slave to her usual attire, and she sometimes believes that it brings her good luck. After all, it's what she wore when she took out the Mad Gears and helped restore peace to Metro City! And so what if they're taking place on a flatbed car? The more challenging the fight, the more exciting it is to Maki! After all, it's all about improving your skills in the fight while adapting to new challenges!

As Maki wades through the passenger cars, she stops to shake hands occasionally with her fans, but politely declines photograph sessions as well as autographs, since she's got a fight to take care of! She wades through the crowds of fighting fans until she finally reaches her destination and steps out onto the flatbed.

The wind blows by Maki's hair, giving her that extra bit of adrenaline as she prepares to begin the fight against her opponent. She stares at Honoka for a moment, as if attempting to remember if she's seen her before, then disregards it. She nods to the referee as if to say, 'I'm ready to begin!' Then gets into her usual fighting stance, her tonfa at the ready. With that, the referee signals the beginning of the match, and with that Maki starts to advance on Honoka, only to stop and also adjust her hair, making sure the HitBit is securely on her head again. "Annoying thing," She comments with a scowl. "But it's worth the money I suppose." She stares at Honoka for a moment more, then proceeds to take a few running steps towards her, before launching herself at the juggler with her leg outstretched in a swift direct flying kick!

COMBATSYS: Maki has joined the fight here.

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Honoka           0/-------/-======|-------\-------\0             Maki

COMBATSYS: Honoka blocks Maki's Hassou Kyaku.

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Honoka           0/-------/-======|-------\-------\0             Maki

Honoka's fight record isn't quite as extensive as Maki's, nor did she help save a city from the clutches of a powerful gang -- but she -does- have quite a number of fans thanks to her popularity in the traveling Twilight Star Circus. The circus is closed right now due to a wild arsonist, but that just means the performer has more time to devote to -special- promotional venues like this tournament. Mindful of the folks watching via her live HitBit video feed, she even gives her fans a first-person look at the juggling skills, showing them how she can throw the diabolo into the wind, and then catch it as the wind blows the prop backwards a few feet. Impressive stuff, if you'd never seen it before!

When Maki steps onto the platform, the juggler turns her smile towards the Genryuusai ninja. For Maki's approach, she keeps the diabolo tethered to its string rather than setting it loose, nodding quietly. The HitBit isn't -just- for the money, she thinks to herself.

The acrobatic performer deals with the kick in an evasive fashion, addressing the kick with one diabolo wand while simultaneously pirouetting out of the way, not unlike a bullfighter. It would have hurt quite a bit more otherwise, after all! In the process, though, it seems that the diabolo is upset from its spin, drawing a frown from Honoka. The prop is tossed away from its cord, landing bowl-down so that it can't roll any further.
With Maki in range, however, Honoka doesn't wish to waste the opportunity, continuing her spin around as she aims to crack her other diabolo wand upside the back of the kunoichi's head. "Hraaaa!" If that connects, it'd be likely to send Maki staggering to the front of the car -- not -much- of an initial strike, but it should serve as a good warm-up.

COMBATSYS: Maki dodges Honoka's Medium Strike.

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Honoka           1/------=/=======|-------\-------\0             Maki

Maki recovers from being defended against and lands on the ground in a semi-crouched position, regaining her footing almost instantly. "Guess I mis-timed that one," She comments aloud, before looking up at Honoka, attempting to rise quickly and assume her fighting stance again. She wants to be ready for whatever the juggling girl might have to dish out against her. And who knows how painful those sticks are as well? Maki really doesn't want to find out first hand, but it appears Honoka wants to teach her!

"Hah!" Maki lets out a battlecry as she twists to the side, moving out of the way of the incoming strike from Honoka's wands. "Not bad, but you'll need to do better if you want to hit someone as fast as me!" She pauses long enough to double check that the HitBit is still securely on her forehead, not wanting to risk it coming off and risk forfeiting all that money.

"And as for those things you use," Maki adds, pointing to the wands that Honoka is using, "You need to make sure you know how to use your weapons properly in order to succeed!" With that, Maki spins around in a clockwise manner, bringing her tonfa up on the way around and aiming it directly at Honoka!

COMBATSYS: Honoka endures Maki's Weapon Jab.

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Honoka           1/------=/=======|-------\-------\0             Maki

Honoka doesn't seem terribly upset when her wand strike is avoided: she's studied her opponent in great detail, after all. Especially the kunoichi's last Rumble fight... against her boyfriend.
"Thanks for the tip," is Honoka's level response, as she takes a couple steps backwards in anticipation of the followup attack. She raises her wands again, thinking that Maki had been starting an attack, but then sees that she was simply checking the HitBit.

And then she finds herself the target of not only a tonfa strike, but another protip on how to use her own arsenal.
Maki might be a bit surprised when her opponent =doesn't= move out of the way, but rather just holds her ground and takes a tonfa to the side of the head.
"Really?" asks Honoka with a deadpan expression and tone, even as her face stings from the red welt left behind from the tonfa. But she's not in any particular mood to move out of the way: no, she aims to advance on Maki while she's still recovering from her strike, bringing both of her diabolo wands to bear in a rapid-fire sequence of strikes. Left, right, left, right -- and if those land, she'd aim to use the cord strung between the wands to lasso Maki's leg and lift it up for a takedown.

COMBATSYS: Maki blocks Honoka's Shitumbe Marapto.

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Honoka           1/-----==/=======|=------\-------\0             Maki

The amount of coordination one needs to be a ninja is impressive sometimes. Especially since Honoka's going rapid fire on her with those wands, and Maki's utilizing some clever tonfa moves to block them from coming in fully. A few graze her, but there's no real serious damage to her at all. "Ungh! Hah! Whoa!" A few random comments from Maki during her defensive movements.

Once Maki's sure that the barrage has ended, she looks at Honoka and narrows an eye. "Maybe, or maybe it was because I was trumped in some form." She shakes her head. "But this isn't anywhere near being over. I'm just warming up!" Maki attempts to grab Honoka by the neck, then flip her over and throw her onto the ground.

COMBATSYS: Maki successfully hits Honoka with Quick Throw.

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Honoka           1/-----==/=======|==-----\-------\0             Maki

"Trumped." Honoka is not normally one to talk in the middle of her fights -- spinning about and keeping track of several moving objects tends to be challenging enough, after all. Maki's attempt to keep the conversation going seems to be running into some difficulty with the Twilight Star juggler -- especially since the kunoichi is able to snare her by the neck and sling her onto the flatbed car.

Honoka's diabolo is shaken up from the bed as the lithe performer is dropped into the bed, but it remains fixed in its place -- just far enough out of Honoka's reach. But it's no matter to her, for as she twists back to her feet, Honoka reveals a second diabolo from the inner lining of her jacket. She twirls it on a finger, before setting it loose on the roller-coaster-like line between her diabolo wands.

"I'm glad. It would be a shame for the fight to have ended so soon." None of the good cheer she entered the fight with -- though, to be fair, she's not terribly -upset- either.

And for right now, it just seems that the juggler is trying to keep her distance while she begins to rock the diabolo through progressively faster loops on its string, building its rotational momentum faster and faster while watching the kunoichi like a hawk.

COMBATSYS: Honoka focuses on her next action.

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Honoka           1/-----==/=======|==-----\-------\0             Maki

Maki smirks as her throwing technique works well, but then she steps back as Honoka gets back onto her feet. Maki narrows her eyes, gripping her tonfa tightly as if anticipating Honoka to do something without warning. It's almost like the prey watching the predator, hoping to find an escape or way to counter. The laws of survival at work or something.

Maki stares, but nothing happens. Instead, Honoka decides to try to stare down Maki, almost like they're doing a classic staring contest, to see who will blink first. Maki decides to go along with the staring contest. She may blink a few times, but she's still keeping a stern gaze on Honoka, while her tonfa continues to twirl in her hands. Her teeth are shown a little to show a sneer on Maki's face, indicating she won't be initimidated by Honoka.

COMBATSYS: Maki focuses on her next action.

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Honoka           1/-----==/=======|==-----\-------\0             Maki

Honoka is a bit sore from her attacks, but she's hardly going to sit the rest of the fight out from a couple undercommitted attacks aimed at teasing out a stronger performance from the motion-conscious juggler. But she doesn't feel the need to overstate it: simply standing before Maki is proof enough that she can take a few hits.

Swoosh. Swoosh. The pendulations of the diabolo are rhythmic, controlled... possibly even hypnotic. The third, fourth, and fifth bounce are more of the same, just a little faster. Maki's sneer, though, only brings out a faintly bemused smile from Honoka -- Is that the kunoichi's game-face, or is she actually getting the kunoichi -angry- with her committed patience?
A sixth bounce, and Honoka's smile grows.
A seventh bounce, and the juggler shrugs her shoulders.
The diabolo goes airborne on the eighth bounce, but with the twang of the string, it's not returning him as it had for all the rest. The diabolo is on the move.

And so is Honoka, as the performer demonstrates her acrobatic talent, pirouetting about to deliver a scything spin kick, aimed at dropping her canvas shoe down onto Maki's left shoulder. Should it connect, she'd follow through with a twist -- rapidly reversing momentum to bring her diabolo wands back in an uppercut-like motion.
To say nothing of the diabolo which is -also- arcing to land on top of Maki, depending on how she chooses to react.

COMBATSYS: Honoka successfully hits Maki with Strong Kick.

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Honoka           1/--=====/=======|=======\-------\0             Maki

Watching her opponent carefully with wide eyes, Maki attempts to anticipate what her opponent is going to do next. She thinks she has what it takes to avoid the attack. But unfortunately, poor Maki mis-times her dodge, and she gets hit hard. She gets hit hard and finds herself a bit dazed and confused for a few moments. "Uhhh... what happened?" She says in a dazed tone, before slapping herself a few times to try to get the stars out of her head and her vision back to normal. "Ungh... that was foolish of me!" She shakes her head then looks at Honoka again.

"You really caught me off-guard there. I'll admit I made a bit of a mistake there. But I don't make the same mistakes twice! You'd better watch yourself!" Maki looks like she's going to come in quickly with her tonfa, only to prove it's a bit of a fake out as she drops onto the ground... then begins spinning around quickly?

Indeed, Maki begins to spin round and round like a whirlwind, while balancing on the tip of her tonfa. The kunoichi has some good strength as well as balance skills. Not to mention being hit by a sneaker clad foot at that speed might hurt a lot!

COMBATSYS: Honoka interrupts Bushin Senpuu Kyaku from Maki with Sarak Kamui.

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Honoka           1/-======/=======|=======\===----\1             Maki

Having anticipated Maki's attempt to avoid the sudden strike, her diabolo landed perfectly on target, allowing the subsequent kick and upward slash to land home. And as more insult to injury, the extra diabolo Honoka had 'dropped' earlier in the match began to figure into the attack as well. The Twilight Star juggler's smile fades only briefly -- the broad smile was mostly a tactic to unnerve her opponent, after all.
Much like everything else the deceptively fast juggler has brought to bear in this fight.

With a 'clack' from her extended wand, Honoka brings her airborne diabolo back under control before returning to a somewhat safe position. She spins the diabolo around to build up acceleration again, neither encouraging nor dissuading Maki's self-deprecating remarks. It's all just a competition to the young juggler -- a competition to win the hearts and minds of the audience, more than anything else. She winks back at Maki -- but rather than to target her opponent, she's aiming to reach the audience tuned into Maki's HitBit.

As for the tonfa dropping low to the ground, Kawamoto nods in approval -- it's a nice feint, but not one the juggler will choose to fall victim to. Instead, she senses the shift in momentum -- that being a thing that acrobatic performers look for -- and tosses her diabolo into the air once again.
Diabolo now airborne, Honoka collects both her wands into her right hand. And as she squeezes the sticks together, a flat pink 'ribbon' of energy cascades out, following the path of her diabolo cord. And then she charges, headlong, into the whirlwind headed her way. She leads the charge with her left forearm, plunging her elbow into the first kick that's swung her way.
The expression of pain on Honoka's face is -not- a deception of any sort. It hurts like hell, and there's no real way to hide that. But it isn't just foolishness that leads Honoka to charge in -- for now that she's gotten close to Maki, she leaps sideways, matching her momentum with that of the kunoichi. She isn't quite as fast, but doesn't have to be -- she narrowly avoids the second kick by leaning backwards.
It's at that point that the glowing pink "ribbon" of energy begins to take a more discrete form -- that of a drill. And with herself positioned now at Maki's back, Honoka takes the opportunity to stab her ribbon-drill forward, striking Maki squarely in the back with a spiralling blast of psychic energy. If Maki wasn't dizzied by her own kick, she might start feeling vertigo from Honoka's sudden infusion.

Honoka hops backwards, raising her wands up to the airborne diabolo and catching it neatly in the bowl. Her battered left arm hangs loosely by her side, but she shakes the numbness out in good order. "Nice..." she comments, taking a few ginger steps backwards. "I actually -felt- that one."

One minute, Maki's spinning around and around like a whirlwind, and the next minute she's feeling like she was just sucked into a whirlwind! She's now finding herself crumpled on the ground, feeling dazed and bruised again. "Damn it, what's wrong with me?!" She yells in frustration, trying to push herself back up again. But while the train and the world around her are still topsy-turvy, Maki's finding it hard to figure out which way is truly up or how to stay on her feet. She finds herself also being blown around a little, but somehow remains on her feet.

"You've gotten me good the past couple of times, but those mistakes were not related at all. Don't think you caught me in the same trap twice!" Maki steps towards Honoka, pausing to take a breath and try to keep herself from falling over. "Unngh... no!"

Maki regains her balance and walks towards Honoka again. "Here, let me show you another trick!" She steps towards Honoka quickly, while letting the inertia of her forwards step help bring her tonfa towards Honoka in a swift strike.

COMBATSYS: Honoka blocks Maki's Genkou.

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Honoka           1/=======/=======|=======\====---\1             Maki

Some audience members have crowded onto the end of their respective passenger carts -- others are hanging out the windows to get a better look. But with the technology of the HitBit headbands, and the armada of quadrotor drones, everyone present got to experience the rush of the last few moments in vivid high-definition, up close and personally.
This pleases the performer, and it's enough to bring a smile to Honoka's face as she withdraws her wands -- the pink energy exploding in a series of fireworks. Flashy -- and she's not afraid to show off. It's not often that her newest trick has actually -worked-, after all.

The Twilight Star performer doesn't seem to mind Maki's bluster -- actually finding it kind of amusing. "Yes, show me your trick," she beckons, taking a pre-emptive step to the side. In doing so, she gives the diabolo on the ground a little nudge onto its side, letting it roll towards the rear of the flatbed car...

The rolling diabolo is all but forgotten in the wake of Maki's powerful strike, as Honoka hops backwards, bringing both wands up to deflect the blow. She winces from the strain it's putting on her beleaguered left arm, but she manages to landing in a low crouch without too much additional fuss.
"It's missing something," is her comment on the 'another trick.'

And then, with a blur of motion in the rushing wind, Honoka charges forward again. She's aiming to swing her doubled-up sticks across Maki's shins, taking advantage of the close proximity... opting to let her actions do the talking.

COMBATSYS: Maki dodges Honoka's Medium Strike.

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Honoka           2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\====---\1             Maki

"Well, nobody's perfect," Maki comments as she regains her stance after that attack didn't quite land the way it should have. She's truly having a rough time here, but she's not giving up either. "We can try, but we can't be perfect! Otherwise I'd have all of Metro City so clean you could eat off any surface there!" She pauses after she finishes speaking to take a breath. "Ooh, my head..." She shakes her head, hoping she can motivate herself to stay on her feet still without getting dazed and confused.

"But I'm not a city cleaner. I just clean up the punks who mess it up! And while you've beaten me badly so far, I'm still not through yet!" Maki attempts to leap into the air, grab onto Honoka's neck, and then do an abrupt one-eighty in the air before slamming her onto the ground from in the air.

COMBATSYS: Honoka dodges Maki's Tengu Daoshi.

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Honoka           2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\====---\1             Maki

Honoka's strike doesn't land -quite- the way she'd wanted it to. She flicks the diabolo back onto its cord as she rises back to her feet, grinning faintly.
"Cleaning cities isn't exactly my idea of fun either," confesses the performer, as she hops backwards to a safer position. When Maki leaps up into the air, though, Honoka seems a bit surprised. Not quite perplexed, but pleased in a good way. The acrobatic performer throws herself into a cartwheel to her right, shadowing the diabolo she'd sent rolling to the back of the flatbed car, while the Genryuusai ninja sails towards her previous location. The diabolo bobs along -- as the expert juggler is able to keep the juggling prop in motion even -through- the cartwheel.

"And, no, I'd say we've both been holding back," comments Honoka as she springs back to a standing position. A sudden tug of her right arm is enough to snap the diabolo back into the space between her elbows -- and then it seems to be hopping all over the two sticks. The confusion is settled when the sticks snap apart -- resolving the string into a star pattern.
And Honoka smiles, as the star-shaped string begins glowing a brilliant pink-purple, bright enough to be seen even on the partly-cloudy day. Her hair whips about, though it's questionable whether that's from the wind, or the growing mass of psychic energy gathering between her hands.

Perhaps Maki will be a better judge -- as the energy suddenly rockets outward in an expanding column of pink psychic pressure. If it lands, it'd feel like running into a wooden door.
Honoka smiles, eager to see how her 'Starry Heavens' attack is received.

COMBATSYS: Honoka successfully hits Maki with Nochiu-o Kando.

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Honoka           1/-------/<<<<<<<|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2             Maki

If Maki misses with her aerial throw attempt, the best thing to do is just go with the flow. Or in this case, the motion, in which case she drops to the ground and executes a solid rolling maneuver once she touches the ground. Even though she's a bit out of it, her agility hasn't suffered much. In fact, she's mentally kicking herself for underestimating Honoka this time around. "That was foolish. And to think so many people saw it. If Guy were here, who knows what kind of lecture he'd deliver me?!" She stands up and watches as Honoka starts to gather her energy, and her eyes widen. "Oh no..."

Maki thinks quickly, but not properly. She thinks the best course of action is to avoid this attack, but it's no use, as Maki literally runs into it and it's like hitting a wooden door... hard. Maki falls flat on her face, groaning as she feels the pain coursing through her and wondering if she's secretly drunk and isn't realizing it.

Then it happens... Maki begins to channel her power into her body. "I won't give up. I won't go down without a fight! I'm going to turn this around any way I can!" She pushes herself up onto her feet, still glowing with power. "You haven't seen anything yet! I'm really gonna show you the true power of Bushin-ryuu!" Maki charges at Honoka, attempting to deliver a series of tonfa strikes with a few kicks thrown in for good measure, and finished with a good rising kick too!

COMBATSYS: Maki successfully hits Honoka with Bushin Gou Rai Ha.

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Honoka           1/-------/<<<<<<<|>>>>---\-------\0             Maki

Honoka smiles, hearing Maki's every word thanks to her HitBit. The psion can tell the audience is having a great time with this fight -- every ebb and flow, every surprise delivered by -both- sides has resulted in a favorable impression from those on the train. Well, except from Maki -- she can tell that the kunoichi was none too happy about running into a veritable wall of force from the juggler, who's been taking full advantage of the unique locale.
There was a reason she'd taken the point in -back-, after all: it allowed her to aim anticipate the upcoming turn in the track ahead that would make it just a little bit harder for even a skilled ninja to get out of the way.

Honoka seems impressed with Maki's momentum, as the blonde ninja begins to gather her energy. Good -- more fun for the audience, right? Though Honoka does spare a moment to look upwards at one of the hovering quadrotors -- one marked with a red stripe, whereas the others are not. Her gaze lingers a bit too long upon it, though... and it's right about then that Maki is right up in her grill.

Alarm. Honoka hadn't shown the expression yet, but she reveals it now as she leaps backward to try and avoid the strikes. It's no good -- her wands are swatted away by the series of blows. Her diabolo flies away, knocked aside in the exchange -- and Honoka is battered backwards. She can't raise a defense, can't bring her arms up to fend off the kicks that follow. She's bashed into the flatbed car -- and then kicked skyward.

Pain is pretty clear on her face, and the bruises will probably bother her in the coming week. But while she lands shakily, forced to drop to one hand to steady herself -- she's still in this fight.

She exhales a ragged breath, her ribcage hitching somewhat from the series of strikes. Acrobats aren't... exactly known for their resilience. But as she rises to her full height, she lashes out with her wand in a simple poking strike. It looks like an insult... but Honoka is actually striking -several- times with that one simple motion, making use of the wand's additional reach.

And, just in case anyone forgot, her diabolos are still in play, pushed back along the flatbed by the wind.

COMBATSYS: Maki dodges Honoka's Quick Strike.

[                   \\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////                    ]
Honoka           1/------=/=======|>>>>---\-------\0             Maki

Even in her bruised and battered state, and recovering from the force of the chi leaving her body, Maki is still able to watch her opponent carefully and try to anticipate what's coming next. And with what stamina she has remaining, she can still dodge attacks with some ease. It's not easy, but a ninja never gives up at all. Maki tries to grit her teeth through the pain she's in, trying to let the blowing wind keep her going as a form of motivation.

Honoka is still capable of fighting too it seems, and Maki knows it well. She watches her opponent come in quickly with that strike, and she dodges backwards, walking quickly literally as she avoids being hit by Honoka. After being hit by those wands several times, she knows how painful they are and doesn't want to risk being hit again. Once she dodges, she takes a couple deep breaths before looking at Honoka again.

Maki looks like she's about to speak, but doesn't say anything this time. Instead, she simply moves towards Honoka again, trying not to let the limp in her movement show as she does so. She gets closer, then attempts to drop down and deliver a swift foot sweep to Honoka.

COMBATSYS: Maki successfully hits Honoka with Light Kick.

Honoka has taken some bumps and bruises in the fight, but her clothing doesn't really show it, aside from a few frayed threads. Where the injuries really make themselves obvious, though, is in her drooped stance and her swollen face. She nods back to Maki, noting that the ninja isn't quite as chatty for the moment -- which just shows how close to the line both fighters are.
Honoka smiles. She's dealt with ninjas before, and knows how fast they are. And if striking back means letting the ninja get a kick in...

Honoka's face betrays an alarmed expression as, even -with- her expectation, Maki's just -that- much faster. She winces as she finds her feet swept out from under her, leaning over to one side to dampen the fall. But in her current state... yeowch. The flatbed car is -not- pleasant to land upon.

As she falls, she notices that one of her diabolos is still in reach. She rises to a crouching stance, snaring the juggling prop with a lash of her diabolo cord, and passing it around behind her back to pop the diabolo into the air.

But rather than land a direct attack on Maki, just a few feet away, Honoka furrows her brow and thrusts her palm out towards Maki.
The pink energy takes the form of two dozen tiny shards, bearing some vague resemblance to acupuncutre needles. And that's -about- what it would feel like, too... if the psychic energy were to pierce through Maki's guard and lance into her nervous system.
The diabolo cracking down onto her head would be icing on the cake.

COMBATSYS: Maki dodges Honoka's Ishirishina.

Maki succeeds with her foot sweep, but the motion causes her to strain a little, and she grunts as she comes back into her fighting stance. "Owww... why me?" She wonders aloud as she shakes her leg out, trying not to grimace too much. Namely because something else needs her attention... Honoka and her latest attack!

"Oh no!" Maki yells out, and she dives forwards, trying to avoid being hit by Honoka once again... and this time it actually works! Maki rolls forwards and successfully avoids being hit, albeit breaking a little more of a sweat. And hopefully the HitBit wasn't damaged at all. She stands up and dusts herself off, albeit in a more mocking manner, and then stares at Honoka. "Looks like we've still got some fighting spirit left."

She hmmphs a little, then gasps for air again as she unknowingly strains something. "Or maybe not... but who knows?" She gets closer to Honoka. "This fight has to end sometime! And don't think I intend to lose that easily!" She drops down onto the ground and begins to spin around once again, this time hoping that she'll actually hit instead of being hit.

COMBATSYS: Maki successfully hits Honoka with Bushin Senpuu Kyaku.

Sadly, Honoka doesn't have much sympathy for someone who strains themselves kicking her. Nor does she really have much to add when Maki's play-by-play commentary resumes; the juggler merely gives a simple nod as she rises back to her feet, snaring the diabolo out of the sky and resuming a slow accelerating spin. That's how she rolls fights in the circus' big top, and that's how she's going to roll today as well.

This time, when Maki spins, Honoka isn't quite as ambitious to leap in and attack, nor is she able to raise her wands to form an adequate defense. Though she does mutter, "... really...?!" around the time that she's clocked in the shoulder. She hadn't expected the same attack again so soon, after all...

Bashed about in the spin cycle, she's not able to keep track of her diabolo as it whirls out of her reach -- though she does find herself becoming acquainted with the flat railcar once again. "Nnngh!"

Exhaling sharply, she pushes herself off the deck -- though she's having a great degree of difficulty with that, pushing off the floor of the car as someone who's practically out of breath. "Ugh... I guess I'll have to... hand this one to you...!" But when she looks up to Maki, she seems to be focusing on a point on the roof of the car behind the two.

The quadrotors draw in close to get a better view of Honoka and Maki, as it looks like things are winding down. But that's not what Honoka was looking at.

"GET DOWN!" And with her last bit of energy, Honoka leaps straight at Maki, letting go with one of her diabolo wands and swinging it in a wide arc.
It's not an attack at Maki. It's intended to bat away the four kunai that are flying straight for the pair... courtesy of a rival ninja in a black gi who had parked himself atop the top of the passenger train car.

COMBATSYS: Rival Ninja has joined the fight here on the top side.

COMBATSYS: Honoka assists Maki.

COMBATSYS: Honoka can no longer fight.

COMBATSYS: Rival Ninja successfully hits Maki with Kunai Strike.

Maki nods to Honoka, smiling a little. "That was a really great fight, I agree." She reaches out to offer a hand to Honoka and help her up, only to turn around as she sees Honoka's look change. She spies the ninja in question and she goes wide-eyed for a moment. "What the? Where the hell did HE come from?!" She looks again and sees Honoka diving for her. Maki lets Honoka do that, knowing she's trying to help out instead of hurt her this time. Maki twists her body at the same time, attempting to avoid the incoming kunai. But her body twists the wrong way and gets caught by the kunai. She lands on the ground with an oomph, feeling the blood trickling from her wounds.

She tries to get up and go after the ninja, but she's too seriously injured for that. She's barely conscious, and she knows if the ninja got her again, she'd be out for the count as well. "Who was that?" She mutters, loud enough to be heard by everyone. "Assassin? Obsessed fan?" She wonders more as she is helped up by the assistants for the fight, with Maki herself helping Honoka to the medics, before being helped off herself. Something's definitely not right here, and it looks like Maki's going to be in for more than she bargained for!

COMBATSYS: Maki has left the fight here.

It wouldn't have been difficult for the ninja to work his way aboard: stealth is what ninjas do best, after all, even if his black gi -does- stand in marked contrast to the noontime, partly-cloudy sky.

Seeing that Maki was hit by his blades, irrespective of Honoka's attempt coming up short, he draws his hands before him into the gestures of a ninja seal. An instant later, the shadowy assassin disappears in a plume of smoke. (Though the quadrotors overhead would likely see him in another puff of smoke about a quarter mile away.)

Honoka groans as she looks up at Maki, grateful for the help. "... Sorry I couldn't knock them away in time," she admits with a pained smile, as she's led to the medical assistants.

Perhaps Maki will find an answer to her query by looking more closely at the blades; the kunai each bear the distinctive style of the Koga-ryu ninja clan.

Log created on 19:45:48 02/03/2016 by Maki, and last modified on 22:06:09 02/08/2016.