KOF 2017 - Nagase Versus The Volcano

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Description: Nagase wasn't at the quarterfinal match -- and neither was her counterpart, Noboru. Duke... has some thoughts about that, and he's demanded that the tech-ninja show up to justify her unexcused absence.

It was good to be back home.

Duke had expected an international tour of the world. India was exotic enough. The man was cultured enough to appreciate the world. He had come into the tournament for wealth, for power, for prestige, for opportunity. Coming home to Southtown, his opponent... was something familiar. Something very familiar. The connections weren't entirely there. But something felt off. No matter. That was not his concern now. Duke was completely furious over his last match. Not because he lost, no, he won it quite handily.

Because his partner had left him behind.

Duke did not have to hunt her down. No, he would not. He would leave the note in his hotel room on where to find him. The China Pearl, a Syndicate holdout in the heart of the business district. Excellent Karaoke, perfect place to meet foreigners, and of course, a major drug smuggling hub to the hardworking businessmen of Southtown. The place was even rumored to be a drinking hole of the legendary Yamazaki. A rumor, of course. Yamazaki's vices generally only was peripheral to drinking, and any place he was around? Tended to be very, very empty.

The bar was very empty.

Duke was sitting alone at a corner table, a bottle of scotch at his side, a lowball glass before him, and a smoking cigar in his hand. He glares with yellow eyes, smoldering. He was not patient. But his rage was condensed now into a singular, focused point. If Nagase had nothing to lose? She would find him. If she had nothing to hide? She would find him. If she had something to lose, something to hide?

Then Duke can respond accordingly, when she did not come.

But she would come.

She must come, for her sake.

Hyena just would not shut up.
She'd needed a ride from the airport. Technically she could have called an Uber, but she really wanted to get a feel for how the boss was feeling. And boy, did he let her know. He wouldn't even shut up when she pulled a knife to his throat, because he knew damn well that she wouldn't follow through on her threat.
That ass.

But that was then. This is now, when the door to the bar creaks open, and a slip of a girl with a long-sleeved, off-the-shoulder blouse strolls in. Black blouse, black poodle skirt, bumblebee-striped leggings, sensible pumps, and a messenger bag slung against her left hip.

The bandages would be more notable, though: a rather -big- one bridging the woman's nose, and one rather large bandage wrapped across her right shoulder. She's making no intent of disguising her identity; the big bulky gauntlets, her AI-enhanced spectacles, and her unique shock of frost-tipped orange hair are in full view as she saunters on over. Well, kinda saunters -- she has a bit of a limp.

"Hey, see, I knew you'd do fine in the tournament." she starts off, as soon as she's in range. Despite her obvious injuries, she's... willfully ignoring them, taking on a chatty tone as if she and Duke were longtime friends. "You would not -believe- who I ran into in India."

His smoldering glares are met with the barest semblance of a smile. She knows what's coming next -- and a raised finger is presented as a stall tactic, as she consults the words scrolling across her left eyeglass lens.

"'I' -- that means you -- 'will need someone familiar with the technology, or can become familiar with the technology, in order to negate any surprises he' -- and that means Lee Chaolan -- 'will pull on us.'"
Her focus shifts to Duke's golden eyes.
Her palms press together, not out of obeisance, but out of preparation.

Duke can restrain himself at the moment.

Hyena might have been able to drive with a knife to his throat. But Hyena was a sycophant. His job was to brownnose. As Nagase drags herself over, Duke almost loses his temper from sheer contempt of showing weakness before him. As Nagase keeps that disrespectful tone, the crime boss is forced to draw in a breath, and exhale. At least physically, it seemed he was keeping himself calm enough.

It was impossible to contain the chi, though.

Energy boils over him, as jets of energy burst from his skin. Gaping wounds exposed only for a moment, before resealing. The boiling storm of chi was tearing fresh burns across his plush seat and the table. The very existence of the crime boss was corroding the area around him. And the smoke seems to hang heavier in the air, as the crime boss narrows his eyes at the ninja. His teeth was cracked and bloodied; he rolls something in his cheek, and spits out a broken molar to the side. His jaw was little too tight for his temper. "Explain what you were doing in India, Nagase." He says with stilted restraint.

"I do hope it's exactly what I wanted you to do."

Nagase bristles as waves of chi begin to tumble outward from the crimelord -- but she's met this experience before. She silently notes the Battle Disc System's diagnoses: that Duke's body is breaking itself down at precisely the same rate as it is rebuilding itself; that chi is exceeding safe limits; that the chances of avoiding combat are dropping significantly.

This time, she's not having any of that.
This time, she curls her hands around one another, as a small ball of flame begins to swirl around between her palms, casting the bright synthetic fabric with an orange glow.
And the tendrils of Duke's energy begin to swirl around her, giving way. Rather than grazing her face and shoulders, the flames dance around her, allowing her a measure of breathing room. The dancing flames reflect on the glass lenses of her eyeglasses, as her lips curl into a frown of concentration.

"There were three signs that something was about to go awry at the fight," she begins, her voice as calm as can be even as a fiery maelstrom swirls around her, the intense heat waves rippling her youthful features into a ghastly mockery of the human form. "The first sign was that Noboru of the Miyama Clan was one of our opponents -- a figure with a proven record of ignoring the rules and regulations of tournament combat. And he was nowhere to be found."

Even with the redirection, sweat still begins to bead up at the edges of her forehead, and the back of her neck. "The second," she continues, "was that airline records show that two contract killers were highly likely to be in the area. I couldn't get their exact locations, but I was able to track vehicles and eliminate any going to any publicly available sites. And that just happened to correlate with the third -- which was that it doesn't make much sense to locate a server farm in such an isolated place in India, so far from the city proper."

Nagase's fingers spread out slightly, causing the 'bubble' of fresh air around her to ebb proportionally.

"Tons of HitBit data streaming. I -was- going to plant a bug on it -- letting me root their server, which'd let me track the data's use and kill it later. But Mr. Miyama was there, and he... kind of made a mess of everything."

She frowns even more, afterwards. "It kinda went downhill from there."

Duke was listening.

If this was something he thought was unreasonable, then he would have crushed her like an egg. But the circumstances were suspect; Noboru WAS missing in the fight as well. Ninjas do ninjas things, after all. But for both to leave in the middle of a fight; was it really the best time? So he waits, and lets her explain, in the face of the towering crime boss. As she frowns, Duke's nostrils flare.

Duke leans in closer.

The paint was curling, the table smoldering. The cigar ignites again, crisping as he glowers into Nagase. "How far down hill, Nagase. I doubt they knew who you were, at least, not yet, because we are not disqualified." There is a pulse of energy, as Duke barely contains his snarl. "The place was blown up, which sounds like your friend's work. Tell me." Duke places the burning cigar in his mouth.

"Did you kill the contract killers so they can't share your identity with the tournament hosts?"

She quails slightly, but it only lasts a fraction of an instant. Duke's imposing presence makes many cower, but that one hesitation -- and the predatory way in which he presses his advantage -- is enough to shock her back into resisting the charge.
"I was disguised," she insists, forcing her lips into a tight line. And as Duke surmises that her 'friend' blew up the place, she starts to shake her head, slowly, from side to side.

"It wasn't Noboru who set charges, though he totally would have."

Hazel irises widen, the flickering trails of chi reflecting within them.
"It was the contract killers who set charges and blew up the facility sky-high. Noboru was keeping them busy, while I was implementing plan B -- securing our combat data."

Beads of sweat dribble down her nose, but not once does she actually break eye contact with the Southtown crimelord. "Tried to snag a hard drive out before the place went kablooie, but the data got fried when I dropped it. Security fuse blew inside the drive platters -- didn't even think they'd bother with that countermeasure."

Bandaged shoulders shrug -- and even those are starting to grow damp with perspiration.

"It'd be kinda tough to pin the facility's destruction on me or Noboru when it was them with the bombs. Trust me, I got proof."

And Duke calms down.

Well, less furious than more calm. Nagase seems to have pinned down the answer that Duke wanted to hear. The pressure in the room drops. Somewhere nearby, a localized hurricane would be kicking off. Hopefully not in Hokkaido (too soon?) Duke's voice comes into a low growl, a rumble, as his shoulders drop, as he leans back.

"So it was a set up."

Duke was far from calm. But the context was a little easier for him to swallow. "I am not angry at your failure; if anything, you have revealed who we are dealing with, and their willingness to fight under the table. I can manage that. But the United Nations are looking for scalps, Nagase. They have just declared the tournament illegal. For now, Japan is refusing to cooperate with the UN. When it best serves their purposes, they will change their minds." the temper begins to rise again, his cigar suddenly turning into a column of ash. "And when that time comes, I will have to answer why my opponent and teammate, both suspects in an arson case, were missing for their tournament match. And I have no lies to give, Nagase, other than I don't know." Duke clenches his hand into a fist. "I am not telling you to stop what you are doing."

And the fires flare up.

"But god as my witness, young lady, if you do not show up to a scheduled match again, I will end our contracts with the Iga clan by sending you home in a matchbox!" Duke pounds his fist on the table, obliterating it in an explosion of red and violet energy. Duke rises into a stand, over the aftermath of the destruction, his frame bearing a halo of fire. "That was your one mistake, Nagase. I will not tolerate anymore." Duke's body was burning. And Duke... Duke's flames die down, as he looks off in the distance.

"Do I make myself clear?"

Nagase's hands stay curled about one another. The spinning gyre of whirling chi continues to spin at the same rate, even as the fury begins to tamp down. Yes -- yes, it was a setup.

"They expected us, yeah. And if they're looking for someone to toss under a bus, I got plenty of evidence pointing at Noboru first and those hired goons second. Can't suppose the UN is gonna say much -else- about the company they wanna smoosh under their boot."

Hazel eyes glance beyond the lenses of her spectacles to the column of ash as it precariously lists at an odd angle, before tumbling aside. Teeth remain grit as she turns her eyes back up to meet Duke's, just in time for the flame to flare up once again.

And though her skin glows a reddish-orange -- the crimson flames battering the spinning sphere into a lopsided egg shape -- she remains staring back at him, resolute.

Why is he so worried?
Should Duke have managed to lose one of his fights, she had a contingency plan in place.
It wouldn't have been -ideal-, but...

Discretion is the better part of valor, especially when staring a human volcano straight in the eyes.

Part of the ninjette wishes she'd added more creative edits to the Duke model. Given his Combot version pink hair. Or terrible deformities. Or a high-pitched voice.
Her determined half-frown flickers, just a smidge, at that thought.

She takes two steps backwards. The spot where she was standing is several shades lighter, surrounded by a ring of blackened soot left behind by the crimson inferno. With the space now provided to her, she stiffens, performing a formal bow to her employer.

And if Duke had no more to say, she would vanish into thin air as ninjas do.

"Don't you leave just yet."

Duke's rumble is more of a threat than a command. He knows this ritual. But he was not done with his Nagase. Stepping forward, he forces the chi to die down, tries and suppress his own overwhelming presence. "We have to discuss our strategy next round." Duke rumbles. He walks across, finding another table. One that -isn't- destroyed. "We are fighting the Heirs of Legends. I do not know any of them, except one of their members, Honoka, was able to defeat both Ryu and his teammate." His eyes burn at Nagase, but not out of rage. Out of a flicker of... weakness? Or pragmaticism? "Ryu and I... stalemated in our last fight."

"What do you know about their team, Nagase?"

Nagase swallows a gulp of air, halting her hands before they begin the translocation gesture. "... Oh, there's... more?" She smiles sweetly afterwards, heels clocking together as she snaps her hand up a crisp salute.
... She pretty much stands right there, with sweat continuing to roll down the back of her neck as she watches Duke seat himself again.

"Well, let's start with the easy one. Zach Glenn, current holder of the PFW Worldwide Champion Belt, commonly understood to be the boyfriend of Honoka Kawamoto. Last year -- this is rich -- he wasn't on the Twilight Star team alongside Honoka and the other members of the Twilight Star. Nooooo, it was some guy with the exact same build who wore a mask and went by the name Rhydderch, which was the name of a Welsh king from the Dark Ages." Nagase begins twirling her finger. "Look, I've fought Zach. He's got some psychic powers -- one of his tricks is manifesting a sword out of pure energy. But his candle's a slow-burner, and he telegraphs like a -mile- away. I guess he might've been trying to keep this 'boyfriend' thing a secret to help his sweetie's career or something, but whatever. Former US Marine, was deployed to Metro City to take care of the Majigen invasion, but he punched out of the Corps afterwards. Now he's just... hunting demons or something, I guess. Trick to beating him is to probably hit him hard and fast -- he folded his qualifier round against the crazy electrical chick, so... honestly, I doubt he would've lasted long with the number you just pulled on -me- just now." She smirks faintly for a microsecond, making sure to keep her hands together in case she needs to shadowstep backards. "Anyway, roast him hard, bait him into overcommitting and exhausting himself, and..." She raises her arm and slaps the back of her elbow for emphasis. "Wham! He'll be down like a sack of rice."

"Then we got the weird one. Nakoruru. My AI tells me she's wearing an Ainu garment -- which only tripped a flag because of your sword of Koshamain that almost got stolen at the end of Rumble. Past that, I... don't have a whole lot really. She cleaned up after Zach in the qualifiers, taking down both Sylvie Paula Paula -and- that..." She pauses for a moment, squinting at her screen, and decides to roll her R's for effect. "Miguel Caballerrro Rrrojo. Sexy dude. That guy's got some affiliation with Chaolan too, but I'll save you that story for later. This Nakoruru, though... she's fast, and she sometimes carries a curved sword into battle. But she almost -always- carries a gigantic falcon into battle as well, and..." Her fingers flick through an imaginary scroll wheel, with her screen scrolling into view. "... KOF rules don't forbid it. Whatever. She's pretty good. Fighting style is largely based on swordplay and kicking, but she's good enough with the blade to not kill. Fast. ... If you were wondering about this Heirs to Legend name, it's because she too has the name of a legendary hero, this one a character in some Ainu legends partly responsible for taking down some demon badass named Mizuki." Reaching into a pocket, she pulls out a small tablet -- one she doesn't mind losing to the flames -- with a photo of a painting. In the photo, several heroes led by a blonde woman in gleaming metal armor are facing off against a skeletal figure. She shrugs, afterwards: "Might be a descendant or something, I guess."

Fingers twiddle about on her thumbwheel, with the image on the tablet cycling down to show a promotional poster with Honoka Kawamoto pictured. "... Then we have Honoka, like you mentioned. She's a juggler at the Twilight Star Circus, largely agreed to be their star performer. Aside from fighting people at the circus and in KOF, she mostly sticks to the occasional Saturday Night Fight. She fought Ryu prior to Rumble In The Streets, so that wasn't their first rodeo -- I'm guessing that's where she got all the data she needed to run circles around him this year. She's some kind of prodigy when it comes to fighting, and she's got a huge bag of tricks -- " At this point, she changes the screen to show an impromptu street performance from Honoka. " -- always using some kind of juggling trick with her diabolos to keep her opponents guessing while she sets up attacks with those fancy wands. Her fighting style is some unholy blend of Escrima -- you know, like Big uses -- mixed in with some karate throws and that juggling technique. Oh, and she's got some kind of psychic energy attacks too. Interestingly enough, Ryu's protege seemed to do a lot more damage than -he- did, whenever she whipped out Hadoukens left and right, so that might be her weakness."

While mostly cheerful (and occasionally a bit flippant), Nagase frowns on the next topic, thumbing up the tablet image to show a picture of a white-haired guy wearing an orange-and-black spandex bodysuit. Looks close to the white-haired Zach, but quite a bit more powerfully built. "Then there's Radel. Apparently he's... got some demon hunting history too? Got his face on a couple websites here and there. You could've told me -this- guy was Rhydderch and I'd have totally believed it. Don't know much about him though, he's not done any big public fights that I can tell. He mostly just sits around in the Heirs tent and broods a lot."

Finally taking a moment to whip out a hankerchief and douse her forehead and neck off, she concludes, "Soooo, that's the ten-thousand-foot view of the team. I can dive deeper, compile some FightTube vids for you if you want?"

Duke's presence seems to reshape itself.

Instead of being the glowering titan of rage, he was shifting into an executive role. A leadership role. A decider, not a brute. The crime boss was exactly that, a boss. If he was simply muscle, he would simply be a wrecking ball like Yamazaki. No, Duke had to act in his namesake. As Nagase explains, Duke -does- look bored at points, but he listens. He mulls. And by the time she asks about the FightTube vids, he asides his hand. "You will not have to get deeper with me, I've made my choice."

"You will lead against them, Nagase."

Duke steeples his hands, beginning his own explanations. "It's clear that they are careful planners. They are not going to be focusing on you for the preparation in this fight; they know your loss against Haru, they know what you are capable of, and what you're -not- capable of. They will be preparing for me, Nagase. They are preparing for my weaknesses. They will exploit my temper where I overextend myself, and when I focus all my energy into any one of them, the second will pick me off, and then, they face you. Despite your previous performance..." Duke averts his eyes, snorting. "I do believe you are more than capable of defeating any of them one on one."

"If they lead with Zach..."

Duke looks at it carefully at the tablet, idling tapping it. "Ex-Marine, dedicated boyfriend, and a tendency towards deception." He rubs his beard, considering carefully. Psionics were troubling; the Psycho Soldiers won last year, after all. Another Psycho Soldiers kind of team... perhaps this was their Athena? Duke taps on it again. And finally, he answers.

"I disagree with hitting him fast."

"I have dealt with a marine before in the past, when I was working a protection in okinawa. He was an ex-marine who ran a bar. Tough salt, wouldn't break, would fight with any gangster I threw at him, but not me. He had just enough discipline to hit back, never hit first. You can't push a guy like that. But what I had to do was target his family. A single hand grenade; sent his wife and his baby to the hospital. The next time I saw him?" Duke tapped his chest. "Shot me five times in the chest." He tapped his temple. "Twice in the head. I ended up acquiring his bar with a trusted vendor, and he ended up hanging himself before the trial completed over his kid passing away. You understand what I'm saying, Nagase?" Duke glowers. "Soldiers are disciplined, but they fight for their loved ones as well as their country. Focus on their loved ones, they will fight back with an unbridled fury. Then you can taunt him easily enough to provoke and overextension, and dispatch him. If you fail to dispatch him after he overextends? Then I can clean him up, and move into the next opponent."

"If they lead with Nakoruru?"

He looks at the picture of the young lady. This was dangerous. An unknown, with a sense of the past? The Ainu... he did not care about the Ainu. Mere words to him. Fast, swordplay, and the falcon... "Tradition is a dangerous thing. When I was punishing an old dojo, it was a question of what to twist. Family is easy, but these people... you hit one of them, you end up only uniting them more. You hit them all? They unite themselves even more. It was frustrating. But what ended up being the simplest thing to do was... break the master's legs. Wrench them around the kneecaps. And then just leave. Just leave, Nagase. By the time we came back 6 months later? THey were in such dire financial straits, we were able to buy his daughter off to cover his debt." He taps on the picture, zooming in.

"Focus on the bird."

He says, coming to a quick conclusion. "She's a talented fighter, if she can clean up an opponent and finish up the other. But animals companions are rarely simple tools. They are pets, friends, even loved ones. I would even say seperate her from the sword, but that's easier said than done. No, I would target the bird. Dispatch it quickly, or cripple it early. You focus on harming the bird, she will overextend herself to protect the animal. And then in turn, the animal will overextend to protect her. And it will be useless too quickly. You will either break her spirit, or strengthen her resolve. Break her spirit? She is nothing for me. Strengthen her resolve? Spirits snap the hardest when they taut with resolve. It will stew inside her, rot her head. She will mourn her bird. And then, her friends will mourn her."

"But, if they lead with Honoka, hrm."

Duke taps his chin, considering. The information that Nagase shared, it... still did not match an opponent that could clean a two man team that was anchored by Ryu. He sifts through the pictures, narrowing his eyes. What was worse, was that she seemed so familiar. He couldn't touch on it. But it was so obvious, and so... muddled. It was uncanny. And yet, all he could muster was a deep-seated anger. But what do with what is likely the most dangerous opponent on a team of dangerous opponents?

"I think I have it."

"She isn't like Zach; you target the loved ones with soldiers. not simply themselves. She's different from her boyfriend, she is no soldier. I've dealt with people like her in my work, Nagase. They act like performers, but they crave something else. They gain power by being in control of everything, putting everything in their place. Look at the... those things." He gestures at the diablos. "They pull the strings, and manipulate you into place. The price of that is that they have to be in control. You take away that control? They obsess in taking it back. They can't surrender themselves into a position of weakness, especially when all eyes are on them; and if you force them into a position of weakness? If you trap them? They will lash out. And they will fail. They can assume the role of weakness when they are not the focus, when it is what they need to lay their traps, their schemes, their tricks. But when everything hinges on them... yes."

"Humilate her."

"No, with her, make it personal. Taunt her, flummox her, stall if you have to. And on top of that, you throw her off her game? Not only are you provoking her, but her boyfriend, Zach. He will not be able to resist coming into the second round. And there, I will destroy him." Duke gives a growl; not of anger, but self-satisfaction. "And that leaves Radel. Who cares. You have what you need to prepare, and I would like to see any previous fights. But I would not suggest detailed performances of Honoka's fights, at least, not alone."

"What about her performances, Nagase? And critical reviews on them?"

As the temperature of Duke's inferno dials back to the range typically exhibited by humans -- which is to say, zero -- Nagase relaxes considerably. She even... smiles, faintly, as the crime boss assigns her to lead the next round of fights. She could protest, or show alarm, but instead she just curls one hand into a fist and mimes punching herself in the jaw. "Sure thing, boss."

She's in a good mood right up until he brings up that loss to Haru, twisting the proverbial knife in her gut. It's at that point the smile fades away totally... until he mentions his confidence in her ability to take any of them on one-on-one.

She still doesn't -smile- again, though. The pattern of manipulation is one she's encountered often in her online travels, and particularly in her prior negotiations with the crime boss. Laid out so simply, she responds by dialing back the casualness of her demeanor.

She has no particular disagreement of Duke's assessment of Zach -- after all, her previous encounter was not exactly a rousing success. And he's likely improved since then. "... I'll see what dirt I can dig up on his folks, yeah. He spent an -awful- lot of time in the UK after his tournament fights last year, so that's a place to start."

The tech-ninja studies Duke's face as he analyzes the picture of the mysterious Ainu woman, furrowing her brow. She's okay with a little rambling here and there, but it's clear her eyes are starting to glaze over with the extended tangent into breaking dojos -- though those eyes snap back into focus as soon as he mentions the bird. "... Dirty, but I see the logic in it. The good part about that fight is if she's fighting with her sword, I got no honor issues keeping' me from using mine -- which'll be good considering that bird's reach." She nods slowly, before reaching up to scratch at her bandaged nose.

As Honoka becomes the topic of discussion, Nagase sifts her fingers through her flame-orange tendrils. Now that he's calmer, Duke shows his analytical prowess, combining the actionable information from Nagase with his own informed study of the psychic-powered juggler. And, as before -- once Duke lays out his strategem plainly, it makes perfect sense. Her eyes widen with the realization. "Yeah, yeah, I think you're onto something there. She never -speaks- in her circus performances; and whenever someone gets her to start talking in a fight she ends up starting to lose her cool. It's a random, chancy element she doesn't have control over, on top of the challenge of actually -fighting- someone. Dredge up the past, sass her about things she's nervous about..."

Suddenly, her eyes light up, and she drops her fist into an open palm. "She's got an informal rivalry with Lightning Spangles. The old one, not the little runt we got now. When they were fighting, pretty much the whole set caught on fire and some kid -died-. From what I read, Honoka's legal team basically threw the Lightning Spangles actress under the bus for it, and any time someone asks Honoka about it she bursts into crocodile tears and ends the interview."

Nagase rubs the back of her finger across the tip of her nose, lips parting in a broad grin. "So if she's worried about -image-, that's a good point to prod her on. If we get waterworks out of her, we win -- and if she tries to lock down her feelings, all we gotta do is remind her about social media and the internet outrage machines. Break her confidence, break her will -- check and mate."

She snorts once -- and the emotion threatens to become full-on snickering before she remembers who she's standing in front of. Coughing into a balled fist, she adds, "That incident was a while back, so I might need to dig something else up. I'll pull what I can of her circus performances.... and look a bit more into this Radel guy, just in case."

She inclines her head towards Duke, folding both hands behind her back in a more overt show of respect. "I can start putting that together for you, unless there's something else?"

She was nearly as talented as Hyena, when it came to sucking up.

Every time she said boss, it soothed Duke's temper. Duke was not a subtle man; his analysis was simply processing information presented before him. Duke's imagination was limited. But when it came to insight and judgement, he was capable of making the hard decisions needed. This is why he needed Nagase; Nagase could gather information and knowledge. She may not have the wisdom to process it yet, but that is what Duke's job was. It was a balance of teamwork. But as Nagase returns back Duke's own judgements... two words strike him.

Lightning Spangles.

His sister liked Lightning Spangles. She was bedridden, and it started as a show that was just on. But eventually, she begged for it to be on. He was pretty sure there was a Hoedown Dillo, and a bunch of other animals. She would sing, and dance, and tell her viewers that they could always be strong enough. Sentimental trash. And yet, it kept her sister going, to the point where Duke even bought some episodes on DVD for her. They may still be rotting somewhere in a dark basement. Maybe if she was a better Lightning Spangles, she could have lasted long enough for him to see her one last time. Duke grimaces, as he rubs the scars on his neck.

"So she has issues with Lightning Spangles..."

He mulls, leaning back. "I think that might be what we need, Nagase. Good work." Duke makes a motion with his free hand, dismissing Nagase. "You are free to go. Make sure to get me more information on Honoka especially, as well as this Lightning Spangles. Our match will be coming up soon, and we need as much preparation as we can muster." Duke furrows his brow.

"Don't be late."

Log created on 11:55:03 09/12/2017 by Nagase, and last modified on 15:49:55 09/14/2017.