Rumble In The Streets - Sniper, No Sniping!

Description: While the Grand Final Championship of the Rumble In The Streets tournament is going on, the House of Councillors' Committee of Economy and Industry is meeting late. The unusual meeting time unfortunately places the chairman and directors within the crosshairs of a lone assassin. Ladies and Gentlemen of the Committee, where have all the good men gone, and where are all the gods? Where's the streetwise Skullomania to fight the rising odds?

Amane Ige's wife was going to kill him.
He's working late -again-. It's not uncommon in the nation of workaholics to spend long nights at the office, but tonight was special: an anniversary celebration. A babysitter was secured. A restaurant reservation was made. And it was supposed to be a good night.

Yesterday, the Vice-Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry stepped down from his post, amidst allegations of corruption, bribery, and impropriety. It's really, -really- tough to live down a reputation like that in a post where appearances are literally everything. Ige can respect that, and any smart man would have resigned as well, with that much political turmoil stirring up.
But it means a lot of work for him, as both a member of the House of Councillors and as Chairman of the Committee on Economy and Industry. Due to his high standing, Amane Ige is currently favored as the next pick for the resigning Vice-Minister's post, but there's a lot of work necessary before he can even begin to consider shifting things over. Particularly, the public outroar against the abruptly violent Yamaguchi-gumi is forcing the government to consider alternate sourcing for many of its preferred contracts -- it's a lot of work, and his eyes are weary.

Amane Ige would rather be anywhere else than stuck on the fourth floor of a skyscraper with 21 other equally irritable men -- a necessary departure, as their favored room in the National Diet building is undergoing renovations. He'd love a silver bullet, that manages to solve all his problems in one go.
Unfortunately, there's one with his name on it, and more with the names of two of his Directors. A sniper has set up shop in an adjoining skyscraper. Wind whistles across the 8cm-wide hole cut in the window, though it's of minimal distraction to the sniper as he takes aim. Photos of Ige and the two directors are taped to the left sleeve of the sniper -- crucial photo reference for a man who might not get a second or third shot. His rifle is propped up on one chair, while the sniper himself is sprawled across two other chairs, as he is prepared to brace himself for the one momentous pull of the trigger that will set an irreversable chain of events into motion.
Ige himself is hidden behind one of his directors at the moment, as he proceeds through a grandiose, overly telegraphed display of his frustration. The Committee slogs along with the proposal, much to the sniper's chagrin. Like Ige, he wants this over with quickly, but he needs that clean shot to start things off. "Dammit..." he mumbles under his breath, "Move out to where I can see you..."

COMBATSYS: Sniper has started a fight here on the right meter side.

                                  >  //////////////////////////////]
                                  |-------\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania had studied his facts well. Massive government corruption, involvement of high level Yakuza and a mysterious new player, and a fight tournament to cover someone's bid for power in Japan. Skullomania was just one man. He could move events, but as much as a head of state could. But in a way, he was more potent than a head of state. He didn't have rules, people to manage and watch and trust, the scrutiny of the press. No, all Skullomania had was himself, a single mote of self-empowered righteousness in this hurricane gone mad. And he intended to use it tonight.

Ige is a clear target for whomever is moving these events, leading Skullomania here tonight. He knows this is a crucial meeting, with many other potential targets in the same room. And, he happened to find out, it's Ige's anniversary with his wife, and the man has a daughter. That makes tonight especially important to Skullomania. And, Skullomania somehow senses, to whomever is pulling the strings to take down the Japanese government's internal structure. He sensed it when she probed his mind. An emotional sadist. Tonight would be the night.

Skullomania knew, from watching the mysterious syndicate's tactics elsewhere, they would not strike honorably. That was the tool of a martial artist, not a professional. Martial artists preferred contests of skill. Professionals preferred security, certainty, and self-interest. He was a used car salesman, after all, he could empathasize with their viewpoint. To an extent.

Skullomania stepped out of the elevator on the fourth floor of the building the sniper was in, slowly stalking forward to the windows facing the skyscraper the Committee was meeting in. He made no effort to hide his boots falling on the floor of the dark, cold building, his hands clenching and unclenching as a way to keep his coiled energy taut and in control, knowing that this sniper was about to make a widow and an orphan from the family of a good, average man, much like himself when he was young.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania has joined the fight here on the left meter side.

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Skullomania      0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0           Sniper

It's true -- the tournament has been a long time in planning, and many of its events had shifted at the last moment, in order to facilitate bigger, bolder initiatives. The mastermind behind the Rumble In The Streets tournament has spent the past year planning things, zigging one way, zagging another... all to moment an atmosphere of unpredictable chaos and disorder.
Though, with this many irons in the fire, there's bound to be some elements that fall between the cracks. Such as security: the building's supposed to be closed, and the armies on the battlefield are stretched far too thin to allow for every sniper to have an armed escort. And, what's more -- this man does not have the veil of misdirection that the other parties have -- his mission is essentially -unpredictable- to those who don't hold all the clues in hand, to those who don't look above and beyond the surface. Or... perhaps the sniper simply made himself too obvious by picking the location with the best line of sight for the target room.

Whatever the cause -- the sniper did -not- expect a visitor. And he has sound-cancelling earphones on, so as to reduce the chance of the rifle reports upsetting his equilibrium for the second and third shot. So he won't -hear- Skullomania's approach.
But he will notice that his view of Amane Ige shudders in a way that is not indicative of an earthquake. Someone's walking on the marble tile floor behind him. One eye still on the scope ( he's about to walk into view again!! ) he glances at the window...
That's when the sniper sees the skull reflected in the window with his other eye. A somewhat... deformed skull, wobbling unsteadily atop the white painted bones of a skeletal body.

The sniper doesn't waste any further time thinking. It's a missed shot, but he'll have more. The sniper throws himself hard to his left, rolling like a log. In midair, the combat veteran -- an aging retiree from the Self-Defense Force -- withdraws a combat knife from the pocket upon his chest. And in one swift motion, in the midst of his fall, he hurls the knife at his skull-faced combatant, hoping to stab the man in the knee.
The veteran knows that taking time to talk about his problems is only going to mean sacrificing his pay -- at -best-.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania blocks Sniper's Pigsticker.

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Skullomania      0/-------/------=|-------\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania sweeps his hands down in a graceful movement, both his arms sweeping down and around as he spins. The knife slices into his hand instead of his knee, and he turns around briefly as his arms swing upwards, throwing the knife aside. After the turn is complete, Skullomania is facing the sniper, his shoulders hunching up as he dashes forward. He aims to grab the sniper off his position on his back and hefts him to his feet, twisting him and throwing him away from the window. It's a sudden, forceful tortion, intended to drive the Yakuza assassin directly into a wall.

"WHO DO YOU WORK FOR?" he shouts, not caring about his voice carrying, since they are very alone in this building. This will be a nasty fight, potentially lethal.

COMBATSYS: Sniper blocks Skullomania's Power Throw.

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Skullomania      0/-------/------=|=------\-------\0           Sniper

The sniper is quick to move about -- still rolling, he manages to flip himself onto his front and push himself back to his feet. It's at that precise moment that he finds Skullomania right in his face.
Arms hinge shut, and forearms impose themselves in the path of the tokusatsu hero's grip. The grizzled Japanese sniper grits his teeth, but otherwise says little as he's picked up and hurled into a wall -- he says even -less- when twisted about in mid-air to plant his feet against the wall, absorbing the energy of the attack and redirecting himself away on his own terms.

The sniper hits the floor with his shoulder, but snaps into a safer roll. He'd love to take out Skullomania with a rifle shot -- but that sniper rig is -way- too heavy to use in up-close combat like this. Even his handgun would be more likely to miss, drawing undue attention from the others.
So why'd Skullomania have to go -shout?!- Someone might hear! What a jerk...!

Irritably, the sniper switches from 'annoyed' to 'really pissed off', as the entire mission may now be compromised. The veteran's memories of Iraq serve him well now -- he simply substitutes Skullomania for the insurgent who had threatened his life over a decade ago.

The sniper snaps forward with a decisive one-two punches at Skullomania's sternum. Forceful, deliberate, and fueled by rage, he's actually hoping to stun the fighter long enough for him to slam a powerful karate chop down at his knee with an aim to slow him down and hamper escape.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania blocks Sniper's Fierce Punch.

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Skullomania      0/-------/-----==|=------\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania raises his arms to guard against the incoming punches, a tight boxing stance combined with wiggling torso to bounce the shots off his shoulders, forearms, and biceps, grunting with the two-shot combination. As his arms throb with the deep muscle pain, he sees the chop coming down at his knee, and snaps his hands forward at the sniper. He pushes backwards and lithely dances backwards atop his feet, in a move that would make any young boxer envious. Fancy footwork indeed. With the sniper down low for the chop, Skullomania snaps his left hand out to slide his hand across the back of the assassin's neck, holding it firmly.

"WHO DO YOU WORK FOR?" he repeats in a roar, before he swings his right hand forward with incredible torque from shifting his body against his grip on the Yakuza sniper. He pulls his left hand towards him as his right extends, body pivoting with his hips as the point of leverage. There's a faint squeak on the polished floor of the darkened office, produced by his shifting boots.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania successfully hits Sniper with Skullo Punch EX.
Glancing Blow

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Skullomania      0/-------/----===|==-----\-------\0           Sniper

Coughing lightly as the Skull-headed one demonstrates his tap-dancing evasion technique, the sniper draws back to a safer position. He has another knife and that sidearm he could use if need be, but this fight is proving to be a bit too much for the guns. He isn't anywhere near as nimble as his opponent, though he is quick enough to be able to spin out of his way.
Kind of, anyway. When Skullomania slides his hand across his neck, the veteran can twist out of the way -- but the masked man's grip is such that it wrenches his neck something fierce. "Nnngrh!" he groans as he flails about, his boots squealing across the floor as he staggers back to a half-crouch. When the followups swing in, the sniper hops backwards, the fists missing by mere centimeters.

And then Skullomania shouts again. Is there anyone at street level who -hasn't- heard the commotion through the tiny circle cut in the glass?
Who do you work for? It's an interesting question. The sniper snorts a derisive breath. "I pride myself on not knowing and not caring. Snipers don't get jobs by coughing up names to any costumed has-been who asks."

The sniper scowls. And then without any real warning, he surges forward with one fist, following it up with a second, third, and fourth, aiming at wiping the smug painted smile right off Skullomania's face.
It'll take a lot of punching, he's sure of it. But in his mind, it's the best way of closing the gap between him and his costumed opponent.

COMBATSYS: Sniper successfully hits Skullomania with Aggressive Strike.

[         \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////////     ]
Skullomania      0/-------/-<<<<<<|===----\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania is sent stumbling backwards under the hail of blows, his face and stomach being pummelled by the sniper's incredibly blunt use of combinations and special forces fighting. After a punch sends Skullo reeling across the room and to the floor, he takes a moment to spit blood into his mask, without a proper open mouth to discharge it. It turns dark on the fabric, barely visible in the dim light. Skullomania rolls to his back and springs upwards with his hands providing his stance and his legs in the air as he twirls off the ground and back to his feet.

"Where's the pay drop?" Skullo hisses, swinging around with a roundhouse kick aimed directly at the sniper's head. He twists after the kick is performed, spinning about and landing in a side stance, his left arm down in a fist to block any incoming attacks.

COMBATSYS: Sniper blocks Skullomania's Dangerous Heel.

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Skullomania      0/-------/-<<<<<<|====---\-------\0           Sniper

The sniper may be mad, but he's not exactly the gloating type. Once his fists land true, the former soldier steps back, cracking his neck to one side, then the other. He notes the sound, he notes the gesture, and he notes that the mask is getting a bit darker. But he doesn't gloat about that either.

The sniper simply keeps his wary eyes locked on his non-payable target. His onslaught doesn't appear to have slowed the costumed warrior much at all -- problematic. With every move from his opponent, the sniper steps about in an attempt to keep the same amount of space between the two -- a distance allowing for an appropriate defense to be raised.

When the roundhouse kick comes in, he's ready for it, snapping his forearm to the side. It may not be terribly clear from the black denim overcoat, but the man has some form of body armor in place as well -- the impact sounds plastic and hollow, rather than the satisfying give-and-take of flesh and bone. But even still, Skullomania hits hard enough to torque his arm a bit, forcing him to step back to compensate.

"Now you just sound bitter," chides the sniper, as he takes note of the costumed attacker's defenses. Left arm down -- that just means his right shoulder's -up-.

The ex-soldier rushes in to grab at Skullomania's shoulder, channeling his momentum into shoving the man backwards. If he can topple the man to the floor, he'd follow through by giving him a good steel-toed kick to the side, before following up with a solid, crushing stomp kick to the gut and solar plexus. He's got a pay drop to get to, and he's in no mood to share. "Now STAY DOWN!"

COMBATSYS: Skullomania interrupts Curb Stomp from Sniper with Skullo Head.

[               \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////            ]
Skullomania      1/------</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania narrows his eyes at the sniper as he comes rushing in. He dances backwards on his feet as the man grabs at his shoulder, and is indeed pushed to the ground, but on his terms. The steel toed boot slams into his side, producing a dusky, fluid-drenched wheeze as he something inside him pops, before the boot comes crashing down into his mid-section. He grabs it with both hands, refusing to let the sniper pull his leg back, even with all the pressure on him from above causing his entire body to shout with pain.

"I don't think so," he rasps.

Skullomania's legs snap upwards as he throws his shoulders backwards, wrenching the sniper's body forward while his legs fly up behind him. His incredible flexibility comes into play as his legs since around the man's hips, and then he performs a great act of torsion slamming his body straight on the floor to yank the sniper off of him and to the ground. Skullomania's upper body comes up as he releases the boot and puts both legs on the floor, sliding his legs out from under the ex-soldier and propping himself upwards.

"Give me a kiss."

Skullomania pops upwards into the air, performing a swandive down, crashing his skull into the man's jaw while he's on the floor.

The expert marksman may prefer firearms, but that's never stopped him from working out. Indeed, the grizzled veteran still gets up at early o'clock for his morning run, and spends a good part of the late afternoon working out as well. He's fit enough to win races against recruits and cadets alike.
And yet, in peak physical condition for someone his age, he finds Skullomania's motions to be too fast, too dizzying to keep track of. Men with Skullomania's build have been felled by his disabling techniques in the past -- and the old sniper had let down his guard somewhat, expecting more of the same.

He starts to move to the side, as if to escape -- but for one dizzyingly long series of motions, he can't even tell what direction constitutes 'the side', or even 'up and down' are. All he knows is -- this was -way- more motions than he's used to undergoing.
And also, geez, he hurts -everywhere- and that's -before- Skullomania cracks his skull into the man's jaw. The sniper convulses rapidly, curling one hand around his cracked jaw as he pushes back to his feet. He spits blood onto the smooth floor tiles, shaking his head as he tries not to add to the fluid buildup on the floor.

"Gonna... pass on that..." he replies, not really dwelling on the significance of the 'kiss' in regard to what he'd just experienced. It's just not something he wants to spend brain cycles on.

Sparing a quick glance at his knuckles for a moment -- they've served him well thus far -- he smirks faintly. "I got two questions. Who the hell are -you-? And why are you here bothering an old man like me?" He's not playing innocent -- not -exactly- -- but one can get the sense that he delves into self-deprecatory talk quite often.

He doesn't, though, play nice, nor does he give too much time to answer. He begins to glow with a faint blue aura, which grows as he begins to chuckle somewhat. And with a sudden blur of motion, he surges forward sharply.
Like his previous volley of attacks, he launches into three rapid punches. But these are underhanded strikes, intended as a savage followup to his earlier attacks on the costumed man's abdomen. And if he manages to connect with the first two, the third won't be a punch -- but instead, a headbutt to the upper region of Skullomania's head. He knows the man doesn't want to remove his mask -- but if he can't see due to all the blood and/or swelling, there's a good chance he'll -have- to.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania blocks Sniper's Black Eye EX.

[                 \\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////            ]
Skullomania      1/----<<</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania pushes up off the ground and rolls backwards to his feet away from the mercenary he is in the process of dueling. "My name is Skullomania. And I am the devil." The two fists careen into his stomach, his upper body jibing forward with each strike, grunts merging from deep in his windpipe. But as the headbutt comes forward, his hands slap forward, grabbing the sniper around the face. As one force moves forward, Skullomania moves backwards with the grip, narrowly staying on his feet with the force used against him.

"You're going to tell me who you work for, or I'll make it so you never fire a gun again," he hisses in close range, his mask close in to his foe.

Skullomania's thumbs slide up the man's face and attempt to gouge both his eyes at once, before his leg snaps up in a knee that then explodes into a front kick at the man's groin, as he releases his grip on the man's head. And then, a downward whallop with his fist, hammering a blow into the man's spine.

COMBATSYS: Sniper fails to interrupt Skullo Dream from Skullomania with Kidney Punch.

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Skullomania      0/-------/-------|=======\=------\1           Sniper

The sniper grimaces as his head is grabbed. The punches were enjoyable, but this is... not what he planned. His eyes bulge out somewhat from how hard he's being squeezed -- and from his body suddenly becoming dead weight.

Who do you work for? The man's expression is tense, but unyielding. At least, until his eyes are gouged in. It hurts like hell -- blood spurts out, and Skullomania makes progress on ensuring at least part of the statement is true, in that the sniper =won't= be able to fire a gun any time soon.

And then he gets kneed in the groin. Even with his eyes getting gouged, the man was able to keep from screaming. But not -then-.

The grizzled soldier had, to his credit, already balled up his fists with an attempt at giving Skullomania a double kidney punch, but the unexpected knee to the groin had taken every bit of enthusiasm out of such an endeavor. The hammer blow to the back of his spine? That just puts him flat on the floor.

"You... son of a bitch..." He rolls over to one side, one hand snapping to his bleeding eyes. "If you make a threat... you gotta give time for a response! Fucking -amateur-... nnnrgh..."
The sniper pushes back and away from Skullomania, though he's finding it really hard to move at all. "I'm not going to tell you a goddamn thing now, you psychopath...! How far are you willing to push this? I... I assure you, I've had worse!"

Skullomania stalks after the veteran soldier, orange chi swirling around him in whipporwhirls. "I don't mean your eyes. Your eyes will get better. I mean taking your trigger finger. Now tell me. Who do you work for, and where will you collect your payment?" he asks calmly, far too calmly, with an edge behind his voice that indicates he's serious. His muscles ache in pain, but the costume hides all, as he breathes slowly and ominously. He reaches into his belt and pulls out a switchblade, opening with a loud, metal *flick*.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania gathers his will.

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Skullomania      0/-------/---<<<<|=======\=------\1           Sniper

The sniper throws himself to his feet. He can't see much -- but as much as he relies on his sight, the sniper is also well-accustomed to using his other senses. You can't properly aim a gun unless you can also become one with the world around you, after all.
He 'looks' back at Skullomania, blood continuing to seep forth from his eye sockets. "One, I work for the Devil."
Astute observers would recall that Skullomania called himself the devil, sure, but the old man has some wisdom to drop, so hush! He steps forward, slowly and deliberately, cracking his neck from one side to the other. He's still in a lot of pain in his spine and nether regions, but he seems to be leaning heavily on the adrenaline coursing through his veins.

"Two, I'll pick up the money... " If Skullomania hasn't already gotten the memo, the sniper's got no intention of answering honestly: "IN HELL!"

The ex-SDF soldier charges forward. Skullomania might expect, from the way he was lurching about, that the sniper would approach with another barrage of punches -- but instead, he's drawing another knife from the back of his belt. He swings around in a violent diagonal slash, aimed at carving a slash right across that costume of his. Another slash would follow afterwards, and a third, as the crazed onslaught continues.

Should all three slashes land, he'd follow through with a hard shoulder check, and then he'd grab onto Skullomania with said shoulder and arm. Lifting up, he'd then spin Skullomania around once before piledriving his head and shoulders into the marble floor with enough force to crack the tiles. It's a last-ditch effort -- but at the very least, he needs to ensure that the costumed warrior isn't able to unleash the full terrible might of that chi that he's accumulating -- chi that's hot enough that even the mostly-blinded veteran can feel it.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania blocks Sniper's Jailbreak.

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Skullomania      1/------=/=======|=------\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania spins the knife in his hand between his thumb and palm to point downwards, before rolling it into his palm with his fingers for a loose but tight grip. He swings his bent arm forward to block one slash, then shifts and interjects the sniper's knife with his own knife's blade (the pressure surface), before finally shifting the knife to the up position, held with the thumb behind the very hilt, and swinging wildly across with a savage riposte to knock the knife away. This leaves Skullomania's guard open for the shoulder check, his arm and upper body grabbed as he's lifted into the air, his own knife dropped and forgetten as the Skull Knight grips the sniper's upper body to stay steady during the spin. He's slammed downwards inverted into the tiles, feeling his shoulder nearly dislocate from the force of the blow, merely tearing a tendon instead. He coughs and chokes and sputters quite audibly from pain, before the chi around him coalesces.

Skullomania explodes off the ground with a lurch upwards at the sniper, his body spinning like a torqued missile directly at the Yakuza hitter. He drives right at him with a long, low arc, his entire body a weapon with his arms crossed in front of him and his legs tight together, the burning chi producing a great deal of the force behind the maneuver.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania successfully hits Sniper with Super Skullo Crusher.

[                     \\\\\\\\\  < >  ////                          ]
Skullomania      0/-------/-------|======-\-------\0           Sniper

Upset that his knife strikes were deflected, the grizzled sniper is at least glad he didn't decide to go easy on the follow-through attacks. With the Skull Knight deposited on the floor, the old man lumbers backwards, teetering somewhat before tilting over to spit globs of blood onto the floor. He can at least appreciate pain with the younger opponent, if not the same overly optimistic ideals.

"There's a lot of pain in the world, boy. Lot of pain. And some people think they're gonna do the world right, by doing some people wrong. That's just the way it goes." He smirks somewhat, and even spreads his arms outward, knife still clutched loosely in his right hand. "Do your worst, young man! My ex already took everything I own anyway, gahahaha!"

As the human missile collides with him, the sniper even begins to laugh. The world turns into a swirling vortex of color, with the bright orange chi at the twirling center, as nausea begins to overtake him. It's disorienting as hell...

Right until he's plowed into the wall of the small room overlooking the Councillors' rented room.
And then -through- said wall, in an atomized explosion of sheet rock material. The sniper finds himself embedded into the metal supporting studs, denting them in the process ...
And yet, he's still laughing. Powdered dust flakes off his figure as he lurches forward, falling free of the wall. "Do you have someone you care for? I do... But she'll get by, when her old man's gone..."
The old man rushes out with the knife. He clearly aims to get another slash in at the man who moments earlier was a living torpedo. But, as the old man ignores the blackness creeping into the edges of his vision, he intentionally telegraphs the blow a bit -too- cleanly -- for the battered, brusied, and barely standing senior citizen inverts the blade, using it to stab into Skullomania's shoulder and anchor himself in place.
At which point he would piston his offhand fist repeatedly into the warrior's abdomen -- three gut punches, driving him back with each blow, finishing off by bodyslamming him into the floor. The old ways... are sometimes the -best- ways, in his mind.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania dodges Sniper's Combo Grapple.

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Skullomania      0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0           Sniper

Skullomania springs backwards with a flip to his feet, dropping into a kung fu pose as the sniper faces him down. "The man you are trying to kill has a wife and child," Skullo says coldly, before the fight returns to its full pace. His left hand swings up to grab the knife hand at the wrist, twisting the arm to the side to prevent the blade from finding his flesh. He spins around with a graceful flamenco while he holds the knife arm, moving with his back to the battle hardened warrior's extended, now trapped arm, his hand still holding it. He slides into a graceful kneel on his right knee, attempting to pull the arm over his head as his right arm pivots down to slide the sniper's right knee out from beneath him and upwards, assisting the bodily throw to the ground.

"Death will not find you tonight. You can ponder what failure means to your superiors then."

COMBATSYS: Skullomania successfully hits Sniper with Medium Throw.

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Skullomania      0/-------/-------|==-----\-------\0           Sniper

Far away from here, one champion succeeds over another on a floating stage, viewed by millions of people all across the world. A battle long fought, the final in a succession of questionably-staged clashes between titans of the professional fighting world. It was all a grand distraction, for a series of crimes the likes of which will not be fully detailed until days after the end of the tournament.
The number of people who would even comprehend that everything was -connected- would be few indeed.

The sniper staggers about as his knife hand is twisted aside. He's unable to -fully- halt his forward momentum, but does the best he can with his arm trapped.
It's a moot point, though, for despite his attempt to roll out of the attack, the sniper finds himself flipped over, landing with a rather painful wheeze onto the tile floor. His breath comes out in ragged gasps, his half-lidded eyes still seeping crimson as they orient themselves towards the ceiling.

He considers a wisecracking response -- but hasn't the energy to even consider delivering one, his ribcage heaving in overtime to make up for the wind knocked out of him just then. Instead, he simply closes his eyes... and chuckles to himself.
After lying there for a few moments, the old man finally decides he has some wit to share. "You don't know death like I do, boy."

Fluttering about the room are the three photos which had been taped to the sniper's sleeve. The three gentlemen who would have been the targets. And one -- a photo of Amane Ige, and his wife and daughter. The same man who is finally throwing up his hands in triumph, as a hard night of deliberating is now complete. One victory down for Ige, and one more to go.

COMBATSYS: Sniper takes no action.

[                    \\\\\\\\\\  <
Skullomania      0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Sniper can no longer fight.

[                    \\\\\\\\\\  <
Skullomania      0/-------/-------|

Skullomania stands up, pulling the bottom of his mask up and spitting blood to the side, before replacing it. He shakes his head down at the sniper, muttering, "It's not just you, me, and our targets we're fighting for. It's all of Japan. You and your cohorts are trading meals for the lives of our countrymen and women." Skullomania turns about and slowly walks away, gingerly touching the spot where the steel toed boot hit him in the side early. That still stings. He steps into the elevator and hits the down button, being shuttled towards the first floor. He puts his hand on the elevator wall, head down, breathing heavily.

There was only one question for Skullomania: why did this man protect his employer if he had nothing left to lose? It will haunt Skullomania until this affair ends, one way or the other.

COMBATSYS: Skullomania has ended the fight here.

Log created on 12:55:59 03/15/2016 by Mint, and last modified on 21:48:46 03/15/2016.