Description: "The last battle at the pit destroyed much of our bridge infrastructure. While my mages have made more than ample repairs, much of the debris is still scattered across the floor beneath the bridge. As a result, we thought it may make a more fitting location for battle. Many of the collapsed stone pillars and bridge sections will offer some cursory protection. But as I've heard it said. A sword is a sword. ALEXIS LOVELL. JEREMIAH GRAVES. Try not to lose your balance." *whisper, whisper* "Yet again? If such is the will of the Elder Gods..."
"God, it stinks down here."
The statement is redundant for two reasons: first, it's unlikely that God or any living soul can hear Alexis' voice as it echoes through the pit below Shang Tsung's palace. Second, it would only require basic olfactory faculties (let alone omniscience) to confirm the Canadian's words as understatement.
The stench of death is heavy; corpses of varying stages of decay litter the floor of the pit, broken and impaled on the metal spikes protruding from the ground. Certainly, some of the deceased are (or were) former participants in the current iteration of the tournament.
For her part, the Canadian fighter looks to be in marginally better shape than the pit's other inhabitants; the lacerations that cover much of her body have mostly scabbed over and begun to heal in the time since they were first opened, and she herself at least smells marginally better than a cadaver, having washed the blood previously covering her body away at some point. The scarlet leotard-like garb she was previously wearing, having been cut nearly to ribbons, has been exchanged for a nearly identical outfit in black.
She's been awaiting her opponent for some time now.
"You know, if you'd just come out so we could get this over with, I -probably- won't kill you," she tells the rubble-littered emptiness as she carefully circles a large section of hewn rock that's created something of an island in the bed of spikes by crushing a number of them beneath its weight.
Rudely, no one comes out. The nerve! Alexis even asks politely. There is supposed to be another, by decree of the sorcerer whom has overseen this kontest of grave konsequences. Where are they? Where have they gone? Could her opponent have already fallen along the way, to some unseen challenger or hazard?
There's a very familiar-sounding scream coming from above. If Alexis looks up, it looks like one of those purple-robed mystic sorts from the tower where she had almost met her bloody end by the fiercely determined Takako Fujiwa.
Said purple-robed mystic sort... sort of bounces along the spikes and bodies. Each impact is as morbid as it is, by divine standards, hilarious. Alexis may have stepped into a giant pinball machine where the impaled bodies are bumpers, the spikes are... surprisingly avoided, and just beyond two bodies angled in such a way that may be flippers...
They land upon another pile of bloody bodies that are so numerous upon the spikes they rest that they cushion the fall completely.
Upon one toe, almost obscured by sandals, is what looks like a blue tag? It has a rather dim glow to it. What a fancy toe tag! Did he wake up from a morgue? (Did someone scream in frustration at dropping them down the Pit?)
Ah! They move! They move far too readily and surely to be coincidence, standing back up like virtually nothing's happened as they step off the pile of corpses and into the little rubble island that may make for the arena with the eventual bout between Alexis and Jerem--
"You're here," the voice says, nonchalantly. Their face is obscured by a hood, as fists raise and then shake in small, round circles. Aggressive stance. "This is a far as you're going."
COMBATSYS: Henchman has started a fight here.
COMBATSYS: Henchman equips a dim Blue Soul Shard.
Henchman [E] 0/-------/-------|
Alexis' first instinct at hearing the scream from above is to look up - very briefly - assess the angle and velocity of the descent, then take a step in the other direction, cover her head (particularly her ears) with her arms, and close her eyes. When the screaming isn't cut short in the instant one would assume that the spikes at the pit's bottom would need to do so, she lifts her elbow and peers sidelong past it to watch as the robed figure bounces, miraculously unskewered, to a stop atop the conglomerate of corpses.
It takes a moment for Alexis to realise her jaw is hanging open.
"D'you, uh..." she starts to mutter as the robed figure rises. Any forthcoming offer assistance is cut short when the faceless figure utters its threat.
Alexis' eyes narrow, and she slowly adopts a fighting posture, fists balling and raising. It's a set-up, almost certainly - send her down here, away from the rest of the kompetition, under the premise of a match, then send one of their hooded monks to eliminate her. She should have known that this tournament was rigged! Her jaw and brow set in fierce apprehension.
However, a more important fact quickly rises in her mind.
These robed guys were the ones who were perving on her when she got pulled 'sans habillement' through the portal to the island.
And they /can/ talk. Somehow, this only makes her more furious - and more eager for payback!
"Think again, creep!" Alexis shouts as the air around her fists and feet starts to ripple and hum. "You have no idea how badly I've been waiting to kick your ass!"
The black-clad brunette hops onto a chunk of rubble, pushing off with a shimmering sound and into the air as she swings her left leg around and forward, aiming to smash her boot's humming sole into the gap in the robe where the mystery monk's face most likely resides!
COMBATSYS: Alexis has joined the fight here.
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Alexis 0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0 [E] Henchman
COMBATSYS: Alexis equips a warm Scarlet Soul Shard.
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Alexis [E] 0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0 [E] Henchman
COMBATSYS: Alexis successfully hits Henchman with Strong Kick.
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Alexis [E] 0/-------/------=|====---\-------\0 [E] Henchman
No one's saying anything for or against, from above or around. This could be a set-up... but whoever she's supposed to come across, hasn't. (Did they end up on top of the bridge, find this guy, get impatient, and throw him over out of frustration? We'll never know.)
The boot to the face sends an echo throughout the entire floor of the pit, a small shockwave eminating from the point of the impact that spreads a hum across the spike-filled floor that makes for a very nice resting place for the dead. (No paid rent!)
His actual physical body's movements in regards to getting kicked in the face are somewhat understated in comparison to the grandiose, showy effect the strike has on the surrounding terrain as he steps backwards with flailing arms. He comes deadly close to falling off the little make-shift rubble island and back into the spikes.
"That's my face," he corrects, hand up his hood. When he moves it away, there's a bit of red on his hand. Must've split him open.
He does not present his ass for proper kicking. Stepping off to Alexis' left, he comes in with a lunging punch from a fair distance away that - despite its namesake - she might not be hard-pressed to follow unless she gets distracted by all the dead bodies around.
At least one of them's probably wearing the same robes this guy is.
COMBATSYS: Alexis blocks Henchman's Peripheral Vision Lunge.
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Alexis [E] 0/-------/-----==|=====--\-------\0 [E] Henchman
Alexis lands on the rubble, continuing to press the advance without stopping to steady herself as the monk (?) teeters precariously. One gloved hand snaps upward, forearm intercepting the punch as it sails toward her. A buzz sounds out through the chamber as her limb trembles from the impact. Determination remains on her face and ferocity in her eyes as she retorts in anger: "What?!"
Apparently, she doesn't get it, but she doesn't let that stop her! Her other glove reaches out, attempting to grab the faceless menace by the collar at the bottom of his hood and wrench his head downward toward her chest before squeezing it past to her midsection. Should she succeed, she'll follow up by hooking him in place with her arms and driving her right knee up to his gut a couple of times, with accompanying bursts of static-like sound, before turning around to throw him to the other side of her person!
COMBATSYS: Henchman interrupts Charged Combo from Alexis with Sucker Punch.
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Alexis [E] 0/-------/---====|=======\-------\1 [E] Henchman
Grabbing and holding down the mysterious minion of murky motivations, Alexis seens to have a solid hold on him. Arms got him locked, at least one knee going at his gut like a drummer might--
Then, just suddenly out of nowhere, a sucker punch. More of a sucker uppercut, actually, that might even take Alexis off her feet!
"Toasty, kinda." Dan Forden comments in a normal speaking voice, leaning from just out of view. He's a black-haired caucasian guy in a plain-color maroon shirt, whose image seems to be very badly compressed in a very lossy way.
"Yeah, sorry guys, I got a sore throat today. I'll hit the falsetto next time. Promise." He leans back into nothingness.
There's a juicy coughing coming from the battered monk(?) as he takes a step back or two to put some space between them, who does not see it fit to comment or acknowledge what just transpired over yonder.
"You won't win," so he comments, even as he still seems a bit worse for the wear. A drop of blood falls out of the hood as another decoration of ichor here at the very bottom of the Pit.
Unfortunately for Alexis, due to certain aspects of the position as well as certain aspects of her person, she's unable to see the sucker punch coming (which is, admittedly, a good part of what makes it a sucker punch). The uppercut slams into her midsection and knocks her backward through the air, breaking her hold on her hooded would-be assassin (?) and sending her sprawling on her backside between a pair of the protruding metal spikes. A sidelong glance at the sharpened tip of one of them causes her to grimace in appreciation of her good fortune.
"What, like you think you're invincible or something?" the Canadian replies, ignorant of both whatever may have just happened while she was in the air and the fact that the assertion wouldn't be entirely inaccurate under present circumstances. She pushes herself up to her feet, chin tilting toward the drop of blood falling to the floor. "Looks like you can bleed to me."
A quick tug at the wrist of her left glove tightens the fabric over her fingers before they clench into a fist once more. "And you can talk, too. Pretty soon you're gonna have to decide which you like doing more!"
With that said, Alexis surges forward, her fist throbbing with audible energy as she cocks it back. The punch that's coming for the mysterious figure's chest is fairly telegraphed, but it's also fast and hard and loaded with riotous sound ready to be unleashed.
COMBATSYS: Alexis successfully hits Henchman with Fierce Punch.
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Alexis [E] 0/-------/---====|=======\====---\1 [E] Henchman
Telegraphed as it is, the generic hooded figure of little greater conseqeuence (by all appearances) thinks to see it fit to crouch, and try to let the punch sail harmlesly overhead.
Because the figure starts to crouch, what's intended for the chest, instead, goes up against...
Alexis might get a flash of the face underneath. Just... some guy? Blue eyes, blonde hair. It's some details that don't seem like anyone should've cared to give to someone like this. Not particularly memorable. Even the spray of spittle and blood flying right out of his mouth would be the sort of thing one would regard for long.
The groan of pain takes on a musical quality while sound reverbs through his entire person once more, down through his feet, and through the little island of rubble that rumbles as he's tossed off his feet, and onto his back somewhere near the edge again.
"...throat, yet again," the voice is wheezy. That he pulls himself back up at the exact same speed and fashion of someone healthier does not do a great job of masking the swimming focus, the shaky steps, the bowed head indicative of having problems staying upright...
Until he maneuvers about to lock his left arm around Alexis' right and violently pull up to try and stop her from using it, for as long as he has her.
"Hold still! You won't get away."
He might be putting a little too much stock into stopping Alexis by trying for her upper arm and working from there, but one can't deny that it's a...
COMBATSYS: Alexis endures Henchman's Surprisingly Effective Arm Bar.
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Alexis [E] 1/-------/=======|=======\=====--\1 [E] Henchman
The brief glimpse of the hooded figure's face that she gets isn't quite what Alexis expected. She'd been anticipating the sort of crazed look - wild or stone dead - one usually associates with murderous zealots in fictitious works. Perhaps some kind of tattoos or ritual scarification. Instead, her quarry seems to be a... kind of regular guy? It gives her pause - enough so that the man has time to recover and catch her off-guard, twisting her right arm up behind her. She tries to pull it free, but the angle is awkward and painful.
"Hey, what do you think you're doing?!" Alexis protests, kicking her legs in a fruitless attempt to get loose before wiggling squirming to try and free herself. Even the use of her left hand doesn't seem to be of much help as she fumbles awkwardly to try and get away. "Let go of me, you creep!"
Alexis glares over her shoulder as she braces her feet against the ground. A rumble starts to fill the air around her body, the sonic energy to which she's attuned building along with her frustration and distress. Her captor of the moment may well be able to feel the build-up of chi waiting to be unleashed. The scarlet gem on the choker at her neck glows and howls in sympathy for the girl's anger at captivity. Alexis' back arches, her midsection thrust forward and head tilting back near the blond monk(?)'s, teeth clenched as she repeats herself.
Within half a second's span, the energy around her flows into a concentrated point, just below her waist, and -
- she SLAMS her hips back into the man's midsection, the force of the impact bolstered not only by the shockwave of sonic energy (with a sound strangely akin to the generic 'BWOOP' one might expect from an old arcade game), but amplified by the howling of the tormented souls dwelling in her neckwear.
COMBATSYS: Alexis channels the strength of the killing fist.
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Alexis [E] 1/-------/=======|=======\=====--\1 [E] Henchman
COMBATSYS: Alexis successfully hits Henchman with Aggressive Strike.
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Alexis [E] 1/------=/=======|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2 [E] Henchman
"You're mine," the monk(?) spits out some more blood as he says those words, saying the obvious and kind of flat dialogue as Alexis struggles to break free. He does not heed Alexis' request to be let go. One hand tightens into a fist, as though being ready to break her down further while he's got his grip on her...
His body starts to vibrate as the soundwaves begin to build in intensity and volume (aren't they the same thing, here?). The cloak starts to flare out underneath the building power underneath Alexis, fuelled by the fury of spirits contained within her blessing from the Elder Gods...
The little blue tag around one of his toes almost seems ready to blow off from the gathering strength, as he seems too dumbstruck to think to let go. Good thing Alexis reminds him...
A familiar scream escapes his lungs, albeit distorted from the sonic waves coursing through him, as he is bumped off at an unfathomable velocity that doesn't seem like the human body ought to survive. Immense g-forces threaten to crush him from simply going so fast, and yet--
A sudden, hard stop. His body is halted ever close to the edge, like some otherworldly force has chosen to hold him still. Gravity, in a twisted way, fights this. It looks like his entire upper body rotates around, giving the idea that he's in a daze.
Some force has decided, no, this single blow alone - incredible as it was - is not the best closing song for Alexis' violent playlist.
"FINISH HIM," comes a booming voice. The same voice that oversees matches, which announces winners, at which point Alexis may know...
It seems this one, whoever he is, will count. The little glint of blue light might catch her eye as the only limitation, but the memory of just how he came by ought to be fresh to give her an idea of how far she could go to express her displeasure.
COMBATSYS: Henchman takes no action.
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Alexis [E] 1/------=/=======|
COMBATSYS: Henchman can no longer fight.
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Alexis [E] 1/------=/=======|
Alexis turns around to face the man, now suspended in the air, bringing her fists up again cautiously for a moment before lowering them with a bemused expression when she realises that the monk seems to no longer be a threat. When the words ring out, seemingly from nowhere - words that seem somehow familiar to her - she looks up and around, searching for the source for a moment before settling her gaze on the floating figure, her eyes hardening with intent.
She stalks forward, tugging at her gloves and pulling them taut against her skin as her fingers flex and pop inside them. She can sense that her would-be tormentor is now completely at her mercy; that any vengeance short of murder is hers to take. She walks up atop a leaning ruined block that puts her at the same level as the suspended fighter. A look of concentration crosses her face as sequences of violence flash like medleys through her mind's eye. A wicked grin crosses her lips as she pictures the revenge she will wreak on the hooded man, whose trappings have become synonymous with her captivity here on the island.
She raises her fists. Her left hand snaps out in a jab, colliding with the man's torso with a dull 'fttt' sound.
Suddenly, she hesitates. And in the space of that moment, whatever force was suspending her victim in the air sees fit to release him to the ground.
Alexis blinks as the chamber goes oddly quiet and still.
Then, after a moment:
"Wait, is that - it?" Alexis questions the void. There is no reply.
Alexis' cheeks flush as an abrupt and uncanny sense of shame fills her soul. "I mean - hey! I can do better, eh! I - ugh, whatever!"
Alexis leans down to reach for the monk's collar to hoist him up. "As for you...!"
It would seem that the seeming servant of the sorcerer Shang Tsung may be in for some rough questioning from a young woman in search of answers...
The odd monk(?), who turns out to not have been a match for Alexis' sheer relentless fury of sound and attitude, barely seems conscious. 'Barely' applies here, for his fingers twitch. One hand even tries to be raised - it doesn't go up far - when Alexis yanks him up by the collar.
He doesn't look her in the eye. Maybe because the hood's in the way. So he could be looking at her in the eye through the hood. That's not important, other than the one hand that went up, then down, and up again tries in vain to cover his throat. Looks like he doesn't want to get hit in the throat again.
"What...? We-we're done here," he strains out. Oh, like that's going to work...
"You guys work for the guy in charge here, eh?" Alexis questions, or states in the form of a question, jostling the hapless monk(?) as she does so to keep him present. "You're in charge of making the portals work. Bringing people here. WITHOUT CLOTHES, which, I mean, WHAT the HELL." The outburst is accompanied by another shake and followed by a quick clearing of her throat. Her voice grows much quieter, yet still strained. "Tell me how to reverse them. Tell me how to get out of here, and I'll get out of here and leave you assholes alone." The look in her eyes is steely, but beneath the surface an almost desperate pleading brims, there to be glimpsed if one were to look close enough.
Not that he can see, since his hood's in the way.
"Y-Yes, yes," they work here for the 'guy in charge,' the single word jostled as much as he is shaken about by a frightened, desperate young woman whom segues into the hows and whys of her hopes - fleeting as they are, in this hellish place - that he might have the answer.
"I don't p--" Whatever he's saying in regards to her protests about the summons, a lot of it is lost to her violent shaking. She shouts over some of the words he has to say, "any of that, my j--"
How to reverse them. How to get out of here. There's not really much emotion to be had from these words - he doesn't seem any more distressed nor pleased about any of this, in terms of what body language he has in his half-conscious state.
The same may not be said for Alexis when he finally has it in him to speak the answer she so seeks... or, as it may be, not seek.
"You're asking me how to leave?" Yes. There must be a way. If they can come in, they can go out, right? There has to be a way! There must be--
"I wouldn't know."
It seems the truth would have to be found at a far higher pay-grade than this guy.
Alexis sets the dazed monk down on his feet, her face darkening at the relevation, as the unique opportunity of her circumstance proves to be nothing more than illusory. She turns away to search her thoughts. Further violence against the man won't get her anything useful. Someone further up whatever hierarchy they employ here might know. She'll have to seek them out. She starts to walk away, finished with the hooded minion.
Wait, didn't he attack her?
Abruptly, she snaps an elbow back toward the half-conscious hooded man's face before carrying onward, out of the pit.
With another crack to the face by the elbow, there's another instance of that familiar scream as he is sent tumbling helplessly, uselessly, and unimportantly rolling towards the edge of the debris island that has been their little safe space among all these spikes, and bodies, and... this place is spikes and bodies, mostly, and a lighting source of mysterious origin. There's not much else to say.
It would seem the Canadian musician's mission to dodge the dimensional draft may yet drift elsewhere...
Log created on 17:38:42 10/10/2016 by Henchman, and last modified on 23:43:53 10/10/2016.