Neo League 0099 - NL#0118: Aranha vs Fumiko

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Description: The second underdog rising for the ranks is Fumiko. Coming to the solemn Promethean Colosseum, the wayward artist brings the incredible art of Iaijutsu to the Neo-League. Her opponent? Top ranked fighter and notorious capoeirista Aranha, who is eager to secure some last moral victories to make play in the tippity tops. Will Fumiko have what it takes to reach the final 8? Or will she find the standings right out of her grasp?

The final push for Neo League Standings have begun. Those hoping to shake up the final 8 have issued challenges be it through their own picks or league match makers and are jockeying for a chance to call themselves champion of this particular season.

The colosseum swiftly fills up with the potential to see history in the making. Concession stands are working at a feverish pitch to serve those getting last minute refreshments before the fight begins. And then the announcement begins.

"This fight, brought to you by Saturday Night Fights, in association with the Neo League is about to begin. Standing at 165 centimeters and weighing in at 75 kilograms hailing from Metro City, New York and fighting out of Southtown, Japan, the Dancing Spider, UUUUUHHH RAAAAAAAAHN YAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!

Traveling the world. Putting craft to the test. Pain and losses. Fumiko Abe has done much more in the past few months than she feels she has done in the years leading up to the attack on Japan. The day that cost her everything. The day that she should look back on and only feel sorrow for. But a part of her feels joy over it. Joy at the release that has lead Fumiko to a new life.

She has found herself blossomed in the wake of tragedy, but she can still taste poison when she thinks any happiness could have come from that day.

And now she finds herself in an arena, eyes closed, tying her hair back in a high, cascading ponytail behind her head. She hears her opponent. A dangerous fighter. An American fighting for Japan.

Eyes open. She steps out into the arena as the announcer calls her. "Standing 167 centimeters. Weighing in at 57 kilograms, from Tokyo, Japan, Fumiko Abe!"

The swordswoman is fresh in the league. She's still learning what it means to be a professional fighter, and she remembers the international audience probably does need to hear her name in Western order. But that is neither here nor there, and Fumiko steels herself for the coming fight.

COMBATSYS: Fumiko has started a fight here.

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Fumiko           0/-------/------=|

COMBATSYS: Aranha has joined the fight here.

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Aranha           0/-------/-======|=------\-------\0           Fumiko

As the capoeirista stands in the arena waiting for the his opponent to be announced he takes a deep breath and releases it. He was actually grateful that the announcer had avoided mentioning him being champion of the Unholy Genesis for multiple reasons. First, there was the fact that Aranha won the tournament because his opponent threw the match while he was unconscious, which did a lot hurt his legitimacy as a fighter only made worse by an early elimination in the King of Fighters to the eventual champions. Secondly, was the prize forced upon him for winning the tournament, symptoms of which were hidden by the shades, though considering that his current opponent was a swordswoman, he expects that the other symptoms will be on display soon as well.

The referee comes into the ring and gives a quick rundown of the rules to both fighters before taking his place in the middle of the ring. After that, the official signals the start of the fight.

Aranha doesn't bother with the ginga choosing to begin the fight a bit more aggressively than is his usual, though his purpose remains the same. Gather information before seeking to end the fight. He breaks into a full run before leaping at Fumiko, blue glowing hands first to grab her as he curls up to bring his feet into her abdomen. Should that initial grab be successful, he'll send a burst of chi into her before pushing off with his feet, simultaneously shoving her away and launching himself away in a flip.

COMBATSYS: Fumiko Toughs Out Aranha's Hunting Season!

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Aranha           0/-------/=======|====---\-------\0           Fumiko

Fumiko Abe is not one with a great deal of accomplishments under her belt. She was, and technically is, a perfomer of sorts. She practiced Iajutsu, could and did display the stylings across the world. But as an artform, not in combat. As a mindset and a motion. But now she is here, in this arena, to demonstrate what her style is capable of.

Her opponent comes for her. Fumiko shifts into position. Her hand hovering above the hilt of her blades. Waiting, biding, knowing when to strike is the way of her technique. Even in the fact of pain, the moment can come in the wake of suffering.

Gripped, she curls, a blast of chi propels her backward. But she maintains her footing even with the force of the blast. She skids backwards, sneakers squeaking on the floor. And she watches her opponent's flipping leap away.

The time is now. She darts forward, angles, turns, and skips upward. Her sword lashes out while she is in air. A slice of light to try and catch Aranha as he descends from the apex of his flip.

COMBATSYS: Aranha blocks Fumiko's Positioned Strike.

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Aranha           0/-------/=======|=====--\-------\0           Fumiko

In the air, Aranha can't really avoid the attack. It would require having something to push off of and that wasn't something he'd have access to until at least one of his limbs touched the ground. As a result the only option is to cover up and deflect the attack until he can reposition himself. The blade glances off of his arm leaving a shallow slash and drawing first blood before the wound begins to stitch itself closed. That would be one of the other parts of the prize he won from winning the Unholy Genesis tournament.

He touches down right in front of the swordswoman. Her advance left him less space than he wanted when he performed Hunting Season. Still, it was more information and that was most of his motivation.

He was still attempting to gather more information. He wanted to see how Fumiko would respond to one of his flashier moves. He placed a single hand down to the ground and with an almost lethargic kick, elevates himself into a one handed handstand with the other hand swinging across his body to perform a handspin while his legs split apart to slap Fumiko in the face with his feet.

COMBATSYS: Fumiko fails to interrupt Inverted Tornado from Aranha with Flashing Blade EX.

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Aranha           1/-----==/=======|=====--\-------\0           Fumiko

Close in. Strike hard. Take the pain and push on through to victory. The cut strikes, but the cut heals. Something wrong, something off. Fumiko stays close, keeps in, her blade clicks back into its sheathe and she keeps in close and ready for the next strike.

"Darkstalker?" she asks, eyes wide, corner twitching in a swallowed and buried rage. She shouldn't be as pushed by the apparent realization that there is something more going on with Aranha than other fighter's she's faced, but yet she is.

Her fury drives her. She lashes out, not keeping her cool when Aranha comes in with a flashier approach. Her blade catches light as she draws, but the kicks are too fast, too trained.

Fumiko is cast aside with a rolling tumble. She recovers, her hair hangs in her eyes. With a flick, the ponytail rights itself and she starts to retake her positioned, trained posture once more.

There was more that went wrong for Fumiko beyond her losing her cool. There was a subtlety to the movement that would be hard to pick up on the cameras and even in person one would be hard pressed to perceive it. The initial almost lethargic kick that elevated him into that one handed handstand was meant to build an expectation of slower attack and the arm swing across his body still provided the required momentum for his handspin. However, when Fumiko goes to draw her sword, Aranha twists his hips providing that tiny bit of extra torque which was needed to beat her to the literal draw.

With the spin complete, Aranha tilts out of his handstand and back to his feet, going into the swaying dance of capoeira's ginga and turning himself into a moving target. Aranha is an observant man turned darkstalker so he couldn't help but notice that eye twitch or the tone of voice. That reaction is not exactly pleasing to him.

"Yeah. I had it forced upon me," with bitterness in his tone of voice as he remembers everything he went through as the result of the Unholy Genesis tournament. The discrimination he went through as a recently transformed darkstalker and how it similar it was to the racism experienced as an African American in Metro City and only significantly more open.

He allows his rage to drive him now, but usually it was cold rage that caused him to fight with tightened technique, and less of tendency to make mistakes. He reaches for the ground with one hand as his foot comes up to swing a vicious spinning back heel to the jaw. The hand providing additional stability and looking under himself until the technique brought him upright again.

COMBATSYS: Fumiko blocks Aranha's Heel Kick.

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Aranha           1/-----==/=======|=======\-------\1           Fumiko

Mistakes and errors. Anger and pain. Grief and pride. Emotions and actions no different from one another. Fumiko still stands her ground. She remains in her position, stalwart and listening to the words from the man. Her opponent.

A victim. Forced to be something else. So they can infect and alter. She had heard things, certainly, but she was never sure of herself when it came to the things that invaded Japan. They could and did kill, that she knew of, but that they could force others to being like them. That was a disgusting revelation for another time.

Fumiko turns, bringing up the scabbard of her blade. Aranha's heel connects with the flower patterned scabbard and clacks with the force. Fumiko uses the blow to turn herself away and put a breathing distance between her and her agile opponent.

She settles and breaths, her attention directs, but her eyes seemingly unfocused. "I am sorry for what they have done to you," she speaks as if somewhere else. "I will add it to the crimes their kind have already committed. I am sorry to see you as something other than a talented competitor. It is my fault."

Stabilizing, her breathing slows to a crawl, and she gathers her resources to continue the battle ahead.

COMBATSYS: Fumiko enters a meditative state.

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Aranha           1/-----==/=======|=======\=------\1           Fumiko

As his opponent uses the deflection to make her retreat, and Aranha doesn't seem all that inclined to follow at least for the time being.

"Careful with that 'their kind' talk. That was kind of talk that bigots used to justify slavery and lynchings of people of my descent, it was used to justify the atrocities in Europe, and it was used to justify what those particular darkstalkers did to me."

He rolls up the sleeves of his denim jacket revealing scars from before his transformation that never went away.

"Humans did this. I've also known darkstalkers who, when I was human, had treated me more like family than certain /human/ members of my own family."

It is only when he gets that rant out of his system does he move toward Fumiko. His rage does not seem to be satiated as he dances in before spinning around and lashing out with an outside crescent kick.

COMBATSYS: Fumiko endures Aranha's Spin Kick.

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Aranha           1/----===/=======|>>>>>>>\>>>>---\1           Fumiko

No words of response. Fumiko simply is an impassive face against the lamentations of her opponent. She is focus. She is elsewhere. She is at war internally and externally. But she stands stoic if not serene.

He comes for her, she turns into the kick. She moves to be close. He strikes her with force, and she, like water, flows with it. The strike tears at her formal top, the slap of the kick loud and present. But all of the pain to put her into a better position for the strike.

And now she speaks. "For Kenji."

The first swing is heavy and arcing, a close, deft, violent slash of the air that's nearly audible at the drawing speed. And it's followed by a second, smaller blade held in Fumiko's off hand. Paired slashes, alternate cuts. Fumiko becomes a violent whirlwind of raging steel with one target in particular. One goal in mind.


COMBATSYS: Aranha dodges Fumiko's Under A Setting Sun.

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Aranha           1/----===/=======|-------\-------\0           Fumiko

Aranha's opponent moves into the strike, which while he didn't plan on it, was an outcome he didn't quite mind. She was letting him accumulate damage on her while she wasn't touching him. Of course there was the fact that he could see that she was once again taking the foot strike in order to position herself into a better position was still at least mildly concerning. However, he had only taken a shallow strike that was at this point mostly healed anyway. It was gave him the freedom to take a huge risk. He ducks under that initial slash when logic dictates that it would probably be better to move inside and stuff it. He's rising once more as that second strike comes in from her offhand and he cartwheels under it using it to both to evade and reposition himself on her flank, inside of her sword's ideal range and also away from her now armed off hand.

He then lashes out with a blue chi engulfed roundhouse kick to the face, followed by a jumping roundhouse kick and spinning around with his back turned to her for just an instant to look under himself right before he flips backwards to deliver a kick down upon her head, each kick, likewise sheathed in his energy.

COMBATSYS: Aranha successfully hits Fumiko with Aggressive Dance.
- Power hit! -

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Aranha           1/---====/=======|>>>>>--\-------\0           Fumiko

Fumiko isn't there right now. Not mentally. She's not fighting Aranha. She's fighting herself. The kick tears her head to the side. She twists, stumbles. Another kick hurls her forward away. The last one crunches the woman to the floor.

And yet her hands never release her blades.

She rises from the ground, eyes closed, blood running down from her nose. She hurls herself forward with a singular purpose. Her two blades move as one. The cut a cross pattern in the air. A driving, closing aggression laced with a nihilistic lack of care for her own well being.

COMBATSYS: Aranha interrupts Goryo's Wrath EX from Fumiko with Sky's the Limit ES.

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Aranha           1/-======/=======|=======\=------\1           Fumiko

This time, Aranha was using the close proximity he created make it harder to react to than it usually is. Granted, its aggressiveness was usually hard to react to in the best of times. His positioning made it moreso in this case.

As Fumiko was rising from the kick combo, Aranha was still moving. This time, ginga is abandoned for a straight up run as he moves towards the wall that serves as the barrier and launches himself off of it and into her attack feet first before landing and rolling. Once again, the blades cut into an arm and a leg, neither catching him cleanly enough to do much more to him than give him shallow wounds.

He looks at Fumiko for a moment. He doesn't know what's going on in her headspace but he knows something isn't quite right and she can't continue to fight him the way she's fighting right now.

Somewhere else. Sometime else. Someplace she never was at a time where she should have been. A distant fight that is not being fought here and now.

Pain. Fumiko Abe feels pain. Not just in her head, her chest, her limbs splayed out on the floor of the arena. Inside her chest is tight, choking, burning. Rage and hatred. Sorrow. This Darkstalker. This American. He stood to represent every invader, every violent moment that hurt her people in the last year. In the years before. Forever.

The ones that took Kenji from her. That demonstrated how worthless her art was in the face of a world of combat.

But Aranha is not that. He is a competitor. He is someone showing a fascinating and capable style. And she insults him. She has done nothing but lose herself to a misguided rage and insulting everything about the sanctity of a demonstration of skill and power.

Fumiko Abe rolls to her knees. Slowly, she sheathes her blades. Her hair hangs loose, a wave of white that covers much of her face. She brushes the hair from her eyes and focuses on Aranha. And then she leans forward, bowing her head to the floor. "I am sorry for this display. I cannot continue this insult and farce. I have wasted your time and the time of the people here. For that I ask forgiveness."

COMBATSYS: Fumiko has left the fight here.

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Aranha           1/-======/=======|

Other than the commentary surrounding darkstalkers, Aranha didn't really feel insulted. His concern was for her mental state which he somehow disrupted by merely being non human. He knew that this fight had the potential to shape her. Would she take this defeat and use it to further bolster her hatred or would she at least listen to his words spoken during this battle. She didn't seem receptive to it.

The capoeirista eyes the swordswoman, knowing that he didn't do enough to put her down for keeps physically. What surprises him is that she concedes the fight. For a few moments he's at a loss for words before he bows as well.

"Something tells me I didn't see the real you. Maybe next time we face each other."

As he walks away, he sincerely hopes that his opponent will consider the words he spoke during the fight. He'd rather not watch humanity make the same damn mistakes over and over.

COMBATSYS: Aranha has ended the fight here.

Log created on 10:48:03 09/04/2018 by Fumiko, and last modified on 17:44:08 09/08/2018.