The Bell Tolls - TBT Act 3 - Damnable Diplomacy

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Description: Demitri meets Morrigan near the duck pond at midnight to discuss plans against Jedah Dohma. However things do not run to plan.

A green-haired woman sits in a six-seater corner booth on her phone. She's dressed in a loose, buttoned white shirt and tight-fitting black pants, the legs of which she casually crosses every now and then. The cut of the top draws a few repeated glances and lingering looks--it's mostly unbuttoned save for being hold only closed enough for decency by what looks to be a bat clasp in the middle.

Her phone, likewise, sports a purple case and several bat charms which jingle now and again.

"Hey pretty lady," a twenty-something Japanese man makes his way up with the confident swagger of a Syndicate ganger. "I like your hair. Real green."

"Thanks," the green-haired woman says, never looking up from her screen. She launches another yellow, crystalline bubble at several other yellow orbs, narrowly missing and stacking it on a row of reds instead.

"Can I buy you a drink?"

"No thanks," she says, eyes still on her phone. "I'm waiting on someone," Morrigan looks up almost dreamily, her eyes fluttering a few times. "But why don't you come back later, hmm? Maybe we can grab a bite after my meeting? Would you like that?"

The man's face reddens. His heart pounds in his chest. "S-sure lady, I'll come by later. Uh," a pause. "How long's good?"

"Don't worry," the green-haired woman smiles. "I'll come find you~"

A text: <Hey Demi-Demi, you've got competition if you don't hurry up. It's rude to make a lady wait.">

Deep in the Castle Zeltzereich, the dust has settled after Akuma's intrusion a week or so ago, and the entire place lies still. Quiet as a tomb. The only sound coming from the wind rushing along the spires and stonework outside.

That and the vibrate function of a cell phone deep within the casket of the lord of the castle, that is.

*Click.* "Sigh..."

A short time later, the green-haired woman is joined at the pond by what looks like a giant horde of chittering bats--which coalescing into a cloud and then finally a human shape--materializing into Demitri Maximoff himself. While the bats might be heard, Demitri is not seen until he steps from the shadows nearby, approaching the man and Morrigan.

"I'm wounded--it appears you already found a consort for the evening, Aensland," Demitri is in a darker suit than usual, the cape hardly visible around him. Looking more like a man in a tuxedo and heavy jacket, for the moment.

"Shall I return later?" Demitri deadpans at her.

Morrigan leans back in the booth and crosses her legs. "Well, if you weren't fashionably late as always, maybe I wouldn't be looking for other entertainment." The succubus was the man off with her hand before setting her phone down on the table.

"I do appreciate the suit though. Is it new?" Morrigan slides her fingers through her hair, sweeping back her green locks as she shifts her position, uncrosses, then recrosses with the other leg. Those green eyes focus on Demitri, running along his form steadily. Without concern.

"It has been a while. How was your play time with the Raging Demon?"

"I am a busy man," Demitri responds casually, side-stepping her pointing out how late he had been. Hey, regenerating and restoring energy by the light of the full moon took a while, okay--damn. This was why vampires didn't get married. Nobody could withstand /centuries/ of this.

"My usual was a bit frayed, and yes, the fight with that one was invigorating, to tell you the truth--I have studied his pattern since World Warrior," he occked his chin up to her, as if gesturing for her to get ready.

"Speaking of, I suppose now you will wish to get revenge on me for what happened in France, well, Mistress of the Night--now is as good a time as ever," Demitri threw back the right side of his cape--revealing it as such, not just a jacket. The vampire's eyes momentarily flashed and he seemed to be whisked or teleporte away--further toward the side of the pond and the grass, away from the walk.

"That is, unless you're too anxious to feel my fangs again..."

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

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                                  |=------\-------\0          Demitri

"Well, then I'm flattered to be worked into your busy schedule," Morrigan twirls a few strands of hair around her fingers. As Demitri unfurls his cape, Morrigan uncrosses her legs and stretches them before hopping upright and resting her hand on her hip.

"Oh, was it France? I could have sworn it was Italy. So many busy nights since then," Morrigan pauses as Demitri teleports away, leaving the confines of the club for the pond outside. She curls her lips, then reappears before him.

"I could use a stretch," Morrigan says, "if you're that anxious for a fight. Imagine, Demi-Demi taking time to study an opponent. This new age of fighters has done wonders for you, hasn't it?" A flurry of bats pours out of the darkness like a wave, wrapping around Morrigan in a tide before fluttering away to leave her in her typical tights, her wings--head and back--having returned once more.

"But I do have a question before we get started, you know," Morrigan tosses her hair back. "Did you hear what our dear friend Lord Dohma has done?"

But as she speaks, Morrigan's wings unwind almost lazily, fraying like yarn before weaving back together into great, pointed spikes that shoot from behind her toward Demitri. She's almost casual about it, at this point.

COMBATSYS: Morrigan has joined the fight here.

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Morrigan         0/-------/------=|=------\-------\0          Demitri

COMBATSYS: Demitri blocks Morrigan's Dark Quills.

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Morrigan         0/-------/-----==|==-----\-------\0          Demitri

Demitri is taken somewhat by surprise as Morrigan's wings splay out and elongated--their sharpened, dagger-like surfaces biting into Demitri's raised arm like spear heads.

"I am aware--thought we might have a discussion about it, after this--" Demitri wards off the wing spears by bracing his arm against them and trying to keep them from lancing into him. Blood sprayed--as was the usual consequence of Morrigan stabbing someone with her wing blades.

Demitri grimaces and throws back his cape again, materializing out of the darkness again--the scalloped edges of the cape itself taking on the likeness of knives as well, attempting to slash at the succubus from a distance away!

COMBATSYS: Morrigan dodges Demitri's Medium Punch.

[ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////////   ]
Morrigan         0/-------/-----==|===----\-------\0          Demitri

"Oh, of course," Morrigan says, "Just wanted some exercise first, did we?" Morrigan's mouth curls into a smile. "I confess that I could use it." The spears curl back like cobras ready to strike, then reel in rapidly to mess and tangle back into wings once more, like silhouettes in candlelight.

And Morrigan herself is on the move when the cape punches through the night air, bobbing backwards and ducking beneath the blades with an unnatural grace supplemented by a sheer defiance of gravity. Balance matters little when you don't fall.

And Morrigan snaps around, balanced on an unseen ledge as she handstand kicks forward toward Demitri's ribs, her heel trailing with gold-green psychic power as she does.

"So was he as grumpy as he was when I faced him in World Warrior? The one they call 'Akuma' that is?"

COMBATSYS: Morrigan successfully hits Demitri with Medium Strike.

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Morrigan         0/-------/----===|=====--\-------\0          Demitri

"Tonight I was actually interested in some extra rest--until you disturbed me," Demitri drew his cape back, the sneaky succubi elluding his strike, finding himself off balanced enough that Morrigan's boots plunge into his midsection--knocking him back and spinning him around with a loud grisly smack and a crunch of bone.

"Urghh--he is nearly as hellbent as you when he's after something," the succubus is faster than he recalls, and he just got clipped for real there, he knows it. Maybe she /was/ cutting down on snacktime, after all.

Favoring his injured side with one arm, Demitri briefly dematerializes--coming back together again nearby enough Morrigan to attempt clapping his large hands around the succubi's wasp waist and carry her up into the air for a flying suplex!

COMBATSYS: Morrigan blocks Demitri's Hell Ride.

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Morrigan         0/-------/---====|=====--\-------\0          Demitri

"Well," Morrigan says, "you could always turn off notifications." The succubus taps her chin idly. "Though I'd be a little hurt, I think, if I couldn't bother you. Such is life." The queen of the night holds her pose for a moment before sliding back and standing upright once more.

"I found him a little droll. All that power, yet his drive is so ..." Morrigan waves her hand, as if trying to grab the word that's escaping her. "Obsessive. At least that one, Sakazaki, has some desires in his heart besides a good battle."

But then, Morrigan's grabbed by the waist and lifted up into a spinning piledriver. As they descend, her wings worm out from Demitri's grasp, splaying into great hands that soften the impact, creaking like bone and sinew before she breaks away and flips to her feet once more.

"Though his drive is delightful. That sort of desire for power is charming its own way. He wants a good fight like some men desire a good lover. It's kind of fascinating, really, what sort of people exist in this era."

Morrigan extends her clenched fist, bracing it by placing her palm on her forearm. A flash of gold-yellow energy erupts from it, shaping into a fluttering bat that chases toward Demitri before the spectre's jaw opens wide and tries to clamp down into an explosion of power.

"Wouldn't you agree, Demi-Demi?"

COMBATSYS: Demitri dodges Morrigan's Soul Fist.

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Morrigan         1/------=/=======|=====--\-------\0          Demitri

"So, how long did it take for him to beat you?" Demitri raised an eyebrow with a bit of a grin--only to find there to be some... strange resistance in trying to carry Morrigan into the air with him. He was basically just doing a jumping, flying piledriver, nothing too fancy--but he'd not counted on the woman's ability to rebel against gravity and give resistance to his grab--either that or she had not been skipping the snacks as much as it first seemed--the plot thickens!

The soft sandy soil nearby the pond it turned out was just as thick--a cloud of it thrown up as the succubus wormed out of her grasp on the way down, softening the impact.

"Proving to be more of an insurmountable object than usual," Demitri leaped into the air and came down with his right boot and leg extended--intending to crash into the succubi with it!

COMBATSYS: Demitri successfully hits Morrigan with Bat Dive.

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Morrigan         1/----===/=======|=======\-------\1          Demitri

"Is that really a question you should ask a lady?" Morrigan says, her Soul Fist evaded before Demitri crashes down with a diving kick that collides with her stomach and smashes her into a slide across the sand. Her wings spread out wide behind her, curling to hook and pull her back out from beneath Demitri's boots and upward...before they contort violently and explode into a flash of gold, flaring energy like jet exhaust.

And Morrigan rockets forward like a missile, threatening to smash into and past Demitri before breaking suddenly over the lake, water trailing in a wave in her wake. Her wings flap briefly, then twist and contort again, wrapping around her feet and legs before she corkscrews back in a dramatic imitation of Demitri's own dive a moment ago--this one spinning like a drill as her wings twist violently around her boots.

"I try," she says, "It's no fun otherwise!" Morrigan says, "though what you surmounted, lately, hm? Do you have a new belle back at the castle?"

"Uh, yes?" Demitri is actually taken off guard there, perhaps by the question, also by the lady herself's attack--the golden psycho-powered bat tearing past him, nearly hitting him dead on. Demitri's boot had crunched down on her something fierce, and now the succubus was on the move--her wings transfixing themselves into jetpacks and she took off with a supersonic screech into the air.

Realizing the lady of the night would be bearing down on him with a horrible kick--more likely her boots formed into a giant gimlet or spike--it was time to move as well. The vampire grimaced and needle-like fanged teeth erupted from his mouth, entire visage and body contorting as he split into what looked like a squadron of black, red glowing bats--trying to power /right through/ Morrigan as she came down, some of them likely getting speared in the process!

It was a desperate and risky gambit, to be sure.

COMBATSYS: Demitri interrupts Valkyrie Turn from Morrigan with Demon Horde EX.

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Morrigan         0/-------/-======|====---\-------\0          Demitri

As Morrigan doubled back into the drilling maneuver, Demitri rose to meet her with a spearing charge of his own. The swarm of bats ripped and tore through Morrigan's defenses, shearing off elusive, smoke-like strips of shadow as it took her out of her dive, hurling her back into the nearby pond with a splash and a noise halfway between a gasp and a grunt. For a moment, the pond is silent save for a steady bubble from beneath the surface.

And then, Morrigan erupts from the pond once more, her wing wound around her arm like a jagged spear as she thrusts it toward Demitri.

"I wasn't planning on a swim this evening, you know," she says. "But I suppose if other methods don't work, this is one way to get a girl w-"

The blade shings through the air, muting the last syllable.

COMBATSYS: Morrigan issues a challenge!!

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Morrigan         0/-------/-======|====---\-------\0          Demitri

COMBATSYS: Morrigan successfully hits Demitri with Power Strike.

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Morrigan         0/-------/=======|======-\-------\0          Demitri

Demitri reformed out of the swarm of bats quickly--something clearly taken out of him thanks to the effort of doing so. One did not simply just bat swarm through a descending succubus with their legs formed into a drill--especially not with how much she weighed. It's also a good thing Morrigan can't read metaposing icly.

"Like I have trouble with that--ohshi--" Demitri had to duck very quickly to avoid the Succubus's next strike--however the upper right section of skin and scalp of his head is torn free--in a spray of scarlet.

"Argh--woman, how many times--never the hair!" Demitri winces, hand clapped over it, wincing and fuming in impotent anger.

"I will punish you momentarily," Demitri then proceeds to hiss--like he's sucking in air--the vampire's chi flowing to the wounded spot on his head. Like a horrible bit of Tim Burton stop-motion animation, the torn section of scalp flicks /back/ into place with the hair rising like dark brown grass out of a piece of turf--regrowing!

COMBATSYS: Demitri gains composure.

[              \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////            ]
Morrigan         0/-------/=======|=====--\-------\0          Demitri

Morrigan draws back into a landing, pulling the blade back near her as bits of blood--black ichor? Shadow?--drips from the blade. She draws it near her face, as if getting scent, before the weapon curls back around and remolds into a wing once more.

"I suppose it is one of your best features," Morrigan says coolly. "Does it do that on its own, or do you have to style it? I'm genuinely curious."

But then Morrigan flips, whipping around in a downward arc with a heeled kick aimed--politely!--toward Demitri's shoulder instead of his head. At least she's not trying to add insult to injury.

COMBATSYS: Demitri blocks Morrigan's Random Strike.

[             \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////             ]
Morrigan         0/-------/-======|======-\-------\0          Demitri

"Not things for you to know," Demitri mutters a bit defiantly. The battle has worn on him, it is evident--though he knows the succubus has also been quite injured--he just has to keep going a little more.

"Once we're done here, we will speak about Dohma," the vampire charged--wreathing his cape around himself and spinning cruely as he tried to barrel into her, trying to throw the winged woman further afield of where she now hovered. The reddish chi energy that he glowed with spoke of pain, and death.

COMBATSYS: Demitri successfully hits Morrigan with Demon Cradle.
Grazing Hit

[                \\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////              ]
Morrigan         0/-------/=======|======-\-------\0          Demitri

"Oh, not defensive, are we?" Morrigan clucks her tongue. She carries herself well even in duress, but the signs of a wearying battle are present in how she moves and how her recovery from attacks slows.

This latest assault smashes into Morrigan, with Demitri's chi-infused cape slashing across her as he rises. Even so, Morrigan keeps moving, seeming to flicker into two Morrigan's briefly as she breaks away from the attack to withdraw. The cut across her midsection goes in a wisp of smoke and a creep of shadow.

"Oh, of course," Morrigan says, "there's a great deal to talk about, as much as it pains me to discuss that dreadful bore."

Morrigan sweeps forward, closing the gap as she seems to flicker, shifting from one point to another in an instant. She reaches forward, trying to slide her arms around Demitri. If she gets a hold, her wings curl behind her, shifting and reshaping into rocket thrusts with which she takes to the air.

And rising steadily upward, she would then flip vertically, dropping into a spinning piledriver as she descends.

COMBATSYS: Morrigan successfully hits Demitri with Vector Drain.

[                \\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////                    ]
Morrigan         1/-----==/=======|=======\=------\1          Demitri

"I never am," Demitri whips his cape up and back away from him as he comes out of the charging spin attack, realizing only the very tip of his attack actually contacted the succubus. Damn. One would think the succubus's midsection or hips would be a handier target, given their size--but alas.

When Morrigan disappears and comes back from behind him--he tries to turn and evade her grasp--but he's just too slow--and winds up being taken for a ride by her.

WHAM. There is a thud into the earth and a crunch of bone and sinew as he's brought down, rolling up and away from her--using his powers to right himself again, just in case she took advantage of his time prone and charged. She was proving a bit too fast for him again, like last time. But he was hurt, and he wanted some paypack.

"Witch--" Demitri growled as he seethed in anger, drawing his fist back before dashing towards Morrigan--his form disappearing briefly as he moved with vampiric speed--rising up off the ground in a spinning charge like last time--this time body glowing dark red with energy, the attack far more cruel than before!

COMBATSYS: Demitri successfully hits Morrigan with Entropic Chaos Cradle.
Grazing Hit

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Morrigan         1/---====/=======|=======\====---\1          Demitri

Morrigan kicks away from the piledriver, launching into the air weightlessly as her wings smoke with rocket exhaust. She lands with a flap, wings wings once more rather than rockets, and then settles into a lazy stance. Her arms are raised up in front of her, and her weight is shifted to one hip.

"Mmm, if you say so, Demi-Demi," Morrigan's eyes seem to gleam with her smug satisfaction. That is, until Demitri is moving unnaturally fast toward her.

The succubus shifts to the side, the spinning blade biting in beneath her ribcage and tearing into her flesh. Even as it does, Morrigan seems to lose synch with reality, becoming almost ethereal as she slips away from the attack and starts to weave herself back together. The succubus hisses as she reels from the cut.

"Oh, you are /definitely/ improving. Even from last time! I'm impressed." Morrigan says. "What is it they say? Iron sharpens iron? It seems this age of heroes and monsters is doing your physique well." Morrigan bares her fangs, her wings warping and slithering around her arm. "But let's test it, shall we?"

The wings shoot forth as a jagged, asymmetrical needle of a blade, launching forward to try and spear the vampire in the chest. If it does, it steadily saps strength from him, sucking away his unnatural vitality to give it back to Morrigan.

COMBATSYS: Demitri dodges Morrigan's Cryptic Needle.

[                     \\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////                     ]
Morrigan         0/-------/----===|=======\====---\1          Demitri

Demitri can feel /some/ contact, but like before, it's hardly substantial--the full force of his anger yielded practically nothing--and the vampire growls in impotent frustration. That and the :smugbat: and the 'Demi-Demi' and all of the rest of her antics, were piling up on him. He hated to admit it, but he wanted to full on destroy her--in more ways than one. She knew just how to tease /and/ emasculate.

"I know something that will do my physique even better..." Demitri slips by the massive black appendage as it slips past--Gigeresque and terrible, capable of draining a man dry in seconds, no doubt.

"Perhaps you'd join me for a drink this evening...?" Demitri grins, and his whole mouth has turned to a nest of white needle-like teeth, Morrigan would only be able to see this briefly as he proceeds to dash in close--cape raised and swirling up as if to grab her and cloak her in the choking hot darkness beneath the cape--and the teeth.

COMBATSYS: Demitri successfully hits Morrigan with #Midnight Bliss EX#.

[                                < >  //////////                    ]
Morrigan         0/-------/---====|-------\-------\0          Demitri

Morrigan's Cryptic Needle spikes into empty air as Demitri narrowly avoids it, the awful appendage writhing like something from a Cronenberg film before curling in on itself and drawing back toward her. Reeling it, but not quick enough. Demitri is already upon her.

The claws dig into Morrigan's skin as she's lifted up, cape swirling around her. The air is heavy, stifling. Choking. For some, it would be terrifying. For Morrigan, it is terribly familiar.

That doesn't make it any more pleasant to have her vitality sapped out of her. That'll take some time to replace.

But suddenly, there are two Morrigans. The first in Demitri's grasp, and the second rising from his shadow, her wings shaped like a pendulum blade as she launches into an uppercut. The second Morrigan unleashes are a flurry of rapid punches, kicks, and wing-blade stabs as the first struggles in his grasp.

COMBATSYS: Morrigan can no longer fight.

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                                  |-------\-------\0          Demitri

COMBATSYS: Demitri dodges Morrigan's Darkness Illusion.

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                                  |-------\-------\0          Demitri

Of course, the best thing about Morrigan is that there are two of them. And Demitri isn't even counting her sister. With the woman's entire shoulder engulfed by his now feral and demonic jaws and face, the vampire is of sound mind enough still go issue a 'hrr?' when he senses something coming at him--Morrigan's illusionary double!

"Just in time for dessert~!" the vampire's vocal chords are thick and barely functional thanks to all the blood still coursing down his throat, making his voice sound nearly underwater, something from somewhere dark and molderous.

As Morrigan's doppleganger zoomed in Demitri suddenly reaches out and grabs her by the wrist as she uppercuts--somehow avoiding her spinning wing blades and she too disappears beneath the cape.

Then from the dark shroud over them there is an EXPLOSION of blood, and then silence.

"Well, it has been a lovely evening, but I fear it is time for me to depart, you are looking a little pale, never a good thing to let the night get away from you," Demitri, now fully in his human guise again, leaves Morrigan propped on one of the nearby park benches, two large trickling divots in her neck, very likely vacant eyed and still.

Demitri departs as a cloud of bats--he'd been worn down by the bout with Akuma before, and Morrigan had nearly had him dead to rights. It was time to recuperate. The travel back home was slow and ponderous, like a leech heavy from a slow swimmer.

Morrigan groans as her shoulder is clamped upon, the succubus struggling weakly as her doppleganger does the work for him. Despite her attempts, however, the two are drawn into the cloak, eventually leaving one Morrigan again, who is sat on a parch bench with surprising gentility for a predator of the night.

And she lays there for some time, as if dead, her eyes glazed over as if dead. It is here that the ganger from before finds her, coming across the seeming cadaver in the night. The man panics, fumbling for his phone as he reaches to check Morrigan's pulse.

He shrieks shrilly when her hand suddenly grabs him by the wrist.

"Do me a favor, would you, cutie?" Morrigan sits up, her neck bent unnaturally. She reaches up with her free hand, plants it on her neck, then pops it into place with an unsettling crack. "Stay with me a while?~ No, no, let's be alone. No need to call anyone...I did tell you we'd hook up later, right?"

Some time later, Morrigan, back in her wardrobe from before, straightens her hair and tugs at her top to adjust it. "Mmm. Demi-demi is so serious lately. I didn't even get a chance to tell him about Jedah," Morrigan sighs. "Perhaps I shouldn't tease quite so much. Ah well." Morrigan pulls out a compact and checks her lipstick. She snaps it closed. "We'll cross that bridge later."

Behind her, a skeleton in the clothes of the ganger sits propped on the bench. It's head droops over with a rattle.

Log created on 20:29:43 10/16/2018 by Demitri, and last modified on 23:23:17 10/20/2018.