The Descent - Round 3 - Unholiest of Holies

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Description: A Forgotten Temple in Japan's alight with the poisonous after-effects of playing host to not one, but two cruel divinities in the span of a month. Once-still and silent halls now crawl with stalking shadows and blood-curdling vibrations, even in the light of day-- even in the presence of a Thunder God and a rising star in the Librarium trained to manage phenomena just like this; even if they've only been brought together to determine which has the strength of will and arms to Descend.

"Holy shit, I fucking love this fucking tournament!"

That is the roar in the desolate temple. Scattered around the outside of it are wooden boards, remains from sacred altars that once sat within, and toppled gravestones. Those who sought to demolish this once peaceful sanctuary ransacked, plundered, and destroyed without restraint. Bare trees frame the structure, with stone grave markers peering out from among them. It was in Japan, and it was in the middle of a heavy storm. The storm that has blown in over Japan sheds buckets of water on the surface below, soaking the earth, pouring over the rocks and tombstones, and forming large, red shaded puddles on the ground. The sky is an unnatural dark crimson, its unnerving color made all the more visible by the frequent flashes of lightning arcing through the clouds. There is a massive stone bell, half sunk into the ground, with water pouring from the filled brim of its cavity. Shades move all around.

And in it was the low-ranked Craig Marduk of the NOL.

He was dressed in a bright yellow raincoat with strange jagged black stripes on it. There were a bunch of them around in the NOL HQ and you know, when it rains, it pours. Marduk himself was clad in basically little else; his NOL uniform was not surviving this tournament. He was clad in knee pads and elbow pads of purple and green, and with his purple Vale TUdo shorts. He was also sporting black nailpolish. A gift from his new friend Ash Crimson. He was holding an umbrella as he basically just gawks at the horrible shadows moving across the temple, all while the deep rumble of the thunder and the flash of lightning driving them away for only a moment. "I mean, I think this place is fucking haunted! God damn. I can't even think of what I am going to fight next." Marduk looks up at his umbrella, and shakes his head as the rain pours in from the roof. "I mean, it's so fucking creepy and shit." Marduk shudders in terror.

"How the fuck can it be raining -inside?-"

The Thunderer did not enjoy combat so much as his opponent. He has not enjoyed finishing the people he's beaten in combat, whether Raiden knows they had a second chance is up for all kinds of debate. But Marduk was in the storm.

Raiden himself was the eye.

He descends with the wind, a figure solidifying out of the chill and the rain. His harvester hat keeps him dry from the rain, while his robes gladly soak in heavens delight.

"You stand on holy ground."

Raiden comments, lifting his head to wisps of white hair can be seen, along with electric blue eyes. "those who remained still rest here, honoring my name even in death. Yet, you are my opponent, and they will witness."

Without another word, a blast of lightning emerges from Raiden's hand towards Marduk!

COMBATSYS: Raiden has started a fight here.

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Raiden           0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Marduk has joined the fight here.

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Marduk           0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0           Raiden

COMBATSYS: Marduk blocks Raiden's Lightning.

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Marduk           0/-------/-------|=------\-------\0           Raiden

"Shit, really?" Marduk begins, as he looks down. "I knew the roof had holes but if the ground has it too then-" Marduk comes short as Raiden lifts his head. As the eyes glow, Marduk's own eyes bug out. He had seen a couple of weirdos on the way here. But this guy, well. Marduk gives a sniff, and it smelled like the paper shredder at the NOL office. His jaw drops as he lowers the umbrella-

Right in time for the lightning to come.

As much as you might imagine, the umbrella does not to much work in stopping the lightning. Instead, it was dumb luck more than anything. As Marduk is zapped, he drops the umbrella, the electricity rising up off of it as it bursts into blue white embers. Marduk stares down, eyes gaping out, jaw slack as he shudders, stumbling backwards. Looking back up at Raiden, he swallows hard, giving a big glup. "Oh, oh shit. You're like a thunder priest or something. Okay, uh, I'm gonna be wrestling you here, but I don't want some thunderpope coming down to zap my ass because I tabled you through an altar or f- I'm gonna watch my language too!"

Marduk was going to do poorly watching his language.

Struggling to make his muscles obey, the towering titan starts thundering towards Raiden. Picking up speed, he flings out a swift right left combination, quick jabs that was getting his nervous system back online. Tossing out a kick to the gut, he would attempt to finish with a mean headbutt, forehead smashing down to bang his own head into the thundergod's.

Still not entirely sure -how- one fights divinity.

COMBATSYS: Raiden blocks Marduk's Gut Check.

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Marduk           0/-------/------=|==-----\-------\0           Raiden

Something like that.

The luck on display was not amiss to Raiden as the man's umbrella blocked much of the lightning, at least that which was not endured by Marduk. Though it was a strange sort of praise that Marduk didn't want to cause too much damage to be attacked by a 'Thunder pope'. Amusing. Raiden's expression remains neutral. Firm.

"You talk much." Raiden is used to more arrogant types, but Marduk seems almost excited.

The beast of a man powers through pain and throws jabs at Raiden, the first striking clean and causing his head to turn to the left. But Raiden is moving out of the way of the other strikes, using his hand to move his blows out of his path. The kick to the gut hits Raiden's hand and makes him slide backwards.


Raiden moves forward, a palm strike aimed for Marduk's face, followed by another with the left hand. Lastly, he steps in sharply, aiming an elbow for his chest!

COMBATSYS: Raiden successfully hits Marduk with Sudden Energy.

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Marduk           0/-------/----===|==-----\-------\0           Raiden

"Shit, I do don't I?"

Marduk gives a grin, as he reaches the end of his combination, his head smash coming in hard to the palm strike. Staggering backwards, the elbow is fired into his chest... sorta. Marduk seems to be refusing to lose his ground, refusing to get bullied by Raiden. As the elbow comes in, he turns, keeping himself steady as he lets out a groaning grunt. "But you too! God damn, I love the folks in this tournament." There was a crack on his rib; bruised or broken. But he wasn't off balanced now.

No, he was leaning in -hard- now.

Lunging in at Raiden, the wrestler attempts to clap both of his hands together, trying to catch Raiden. Should he grab him, he would scoop him up cleanly. And then, promptly, fall to one knee as he would -slam- the electric one back-first across his leg, before tossing him away to the sodden altar.

All as the wind roared, as the storm began to intensify .

COMBATSYS: Raiden dodges Marduk's Back Breaker.

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Marduk           0/-------/-----==|==-----\-------\0           Raiden

Raiden's never heard of anyone loving the kind of people in this tournament of souls, of champions, of worlds. This is a tournament where one can experience death. Real, death.

It's enough to inspire fear in even the most dangerous of individuals. In Marduk? it inspires excitement. How strange. Yet the fight goes on! Raiden is grabbed by the wrestler, but the knee misses target completely! Raiden rolled his body out of Marduk's grip and had landed in front of him, lifting his knee to try and sharply connect with his nose, followed by two punch-strikes to his abdomen and an electric blast aimed for his face!

Raiden will not underestimate his opponent. In fact, he wants to take him down and not let him breathe a single moment to counterattack.

But intentions and facts are two different things...

COMBATSYS: Raiden successfully hits Marduk with Divine Power EX.

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Marduk           0/-------/-======|====---\-------\0           Raiden

Marduk didn't even recognize the death.

Oblivious to the mortal implications, for him it was another opportunity of blood sport. Even as Raiden slips out of his grip, the knee to the nose actually gets a burst of laughter from him. Blood coming down his face, that chuckling comes to a sharp close as Raiden explodes with the punches. It wasn't the blows themselves; more or less he could just keep up with the martial artistry of the thunder god. It was the thunder god part that jolted the mirthful chortling right out of him. Face blasted, he staggers backwards, moaning as he stumbles. Grabbing his face, he gasps for air, the howling wind pouring buckets of water over him from an opening into the temple. Steadying himself out, he draws in a deep breath.

And roars.

Bellowing like a war god, his body tenses up. There was no supernatural magic, no indescribable power. Just noise, human noise as he tears out. Ripping at his raincoat, he tears it off, blood coming down his broken nose. As the rest of the sound leaves his throat, he opens his stance, breathing hard as brings his hands forward. He gives Raiden a nod. He wasn't playing either.

But he was giving his opponent some respect for the bloody display.

COMBATSYS: Marduk gathers his will.

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Marduk           1/-----==/=======|====---\-------\0           Raiden

A roar of the worthy.

Marduk shouts like a war god to charge at the god of thunder. Raiden looks upon Marduk as he gathers his energy. He was a mere grappler. A fighter for entertainment and sport, for the thrill of the fight itself. He cared not for death, for the mortality of it all. Yet...the Thunderer had struck true.

And he still stands.

"You are more than you seem." Raiden observes, but this was not the end...

Raiden's hand lifts and lightning descends from the heavens, attempting to strike Maruk with divine wrath!

COMBATSYS: Marduk blocks Raiden's White Lightning.

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Marduk           1/--=====/=======|=====--\-------\0           Raiden

Marduk was ready.

Well, mostly. As Raiden makes his compliment, he just nods, ready for almost anything as the rain pours on him. As the blast of lightning comes down, he looks up. "Shit, and there's a lot of me too." Marduk grins, as he reaches up. There is a blast of wind around him, swirling like a tornado. And driving his hands into the bolt of lightning, he rips apart the energy. It doesn't do much per say, obviously he is -struck-.

But the wind manages to break it apart.

The howling wind blows over him, the sheer gales surging around him wildly. Marduk's eyes are wide, confusion crossing his dim features. "What the-" He states, before the whirl of the cyclone sends him hurtling straight at Raiden. Should he connect, he would break into a tumbling roll, ending with Marduk on top of Raiden's chest, punching into his head with lefts and rights before rolling off in dazed confusion. "Have I become..."

"THe Windbreaker!?"

COMBATSYS: Raiden blocks Marduk's Melon Masher.

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Marduk           0/-------/<<<<<<<|======-\-------\0           Raiden

He dares send the cyclone towards the God that commands them?

He. Dares?!

The cyclone rips through the air as the wind powering it tears through the entirety of the space between them, yet, Raiden lifts his hands and /catches/ the tornado with all of his might, taking effort for even the thunderer to successfully manage! He frowns as he looks upon Marduk, straining as he dispels the tornado.

"You dare."

Raiden suddenly vanishes.

He reappears behind Marduk, attempting to grip him by his spine and channel the Godly lightning through his body! Then, to lift him into the air and throw him HARD against the nearby wall as if he were one of the thunderbolts Raiden commanded!

COMBATSYS: Raiden successfully hits Marduk with God's Rage EX.

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Marduk           0/-------/<<<<<<<|-------\-------\0           Raiden

Marduk didn't even fully understand what he dared.

Thus, he states in a measured, but insightful way on the powers beyond his comprehension: "Hell yeah I dared!" As he struggles to get a grip on Raiden, the full forced cyclone itself seems to do most of the work. Exposed, Raiden makes a clean spinal tap as he raises him up. As he is shocked, he roars in agony. Hurled away, he smashes through the temple wall, out into the rain.

For a moment, there is silence.

Suddenly, the temple shudders, as Marduk throws himself through a different section of wall. Covered in soot, blood, water, and what looks like a piece of wood through his shoulder, he bellows in blind fury as he hammers his hands against the frame of the great building. The temple begins to collapse, as Marduk throws himself at Raiden. Should he manage to get a grip, he would lift him up by his knees, and slam the thunder god on his back. And there, he would start slamming the man skull into the ground and again, nearly attempting to rip Raiden's head from his body, before giving up with a punch to the face and rolling off.

But only if he misses the grab.

COMBATSYS: Raiden dodges Marduk's Skull Crusher.

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Marduk           0/-------/=======|-------\-------\0           Raiden

He dared.

He's going to find out!

Raiden throws Marduk through the temple wall into the open rain. The temple shudders in response to Marduk rising from ashes (literally!) and charging through the wall like the vengeance of some sacred spirit that dwells here. Though suddenly, He's charging Raiden as his fists hammer against the frame of the building, causing the building to start to collapse!

As if spurred by hatred and rage, Marduk manages to grab Raiden and lift him into the air, but he rolls again, avoiding the backbreaker that was coming to try and shatter him, but the hand reaching for his face is avoided completely, Raiden moving his head out of the way, though in response, Raiden lifts his hand up to try and grab Marduk by his throat and lift him high into the air, only to slam him back down to earth!

Wrestling fans would call this a chokeslam, if not for the follow-up attack of lightning coming down straight from the heavens to try and strike him!

COMBATSYS: Raiden successfully hits Marduk with Almighty.

[               \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////////   ]
Marduk           0/-------/=======|==-----\-------\0           Raiden

Fast as, well, some energy resulting from the existence of charged particles, statically as an accumulation of charge in the atmosphere.

As the temple steadily begins to collapse from the wrath of two titans, one physically and one spiritually, Marduk's blind rush is unable to secure the thunder god. And yet, as Marduk is grabbed by the throat, he doesn't seem to be slowing down either. The unstoppable rage and spirit of the grappler was refusing to break, refusing to acknowledge the sheer damage to his nervous system and body. Seriously, his brain stem was beginning to look the snapped tip of a celery stalk. And as the slam comes?

Marduk actually scrambles back up for more.

"YEAAAAH!" He bellows, as he gropes blindly for Raiden even more. Should he manage to seize the thundergod, he would drag him down to his level, all while the storm blows through the tumbling temple. Marduk would attempt to slam Raiden down head to the floorboards. Should he get him slammed down? He would finish with a brutal knee to the brainpan, slamming it brutally on the top of Raiden's skull.

Even as he was beginning to smell like a cross between roast pork and ozone.

COMBATSYS: Raiden blocks Marduk's Ultimate Knee.

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Marduk           1/-----==/=======|====---\-------\0           Raiden

The temple crumbles around them like a mountain taken down at it's base.

Marduk cracks against Raiden when he bellows out a battlecry suitable for the Kool-Aid man, dragging Raiden down to his level and manages to slam Raiden straight through the floorboards! The knee that comes for his face is blocked with his forearm, but the impact still pushes him deeper into the fllorboards.

Though Raiden's eyes glow blue.

He suddenly starts to burst outwards with divine power. His eyes narrow as he lunges upwards, trying to tackle Maruk out of the temple and into the air! When they've reached a high altitude, he'll try and smack him back down!

Assuming he could get him in the air at all.

COMBATSYS: Marduk fails to interrupt Supercell from Raiden with Deathbringer.

[      \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Raiden           0/-------/--=====|

COMBATSYS: Marduk can no longer fight.

[      \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Raiden           0/-------/--=====|

As Raiden's eyes glow blue, Marduk's out of his battlefury.

"Oh. Wait. The wrestling... the chokeslam... the lightning..." Marduk's eyes go wide. He winds back a fist, as he attempts to throw all his weight into the oncoming Raiden. Throwing out the strongest fist he could fissure- "You were the thunderpope this entire tim-"

Raiden connects with Marduk's chest cleanly.

Marduk is sent up into the air, carried on into the sky. "Oh shit I am sorry about your temple Thunderpope-" Marduk begins to apologize, before he is struck down hard. Flailing his limbs, he quickly corrects himself. "I got to tuck and roll! Anybody can survive any fall from any height as long as you tuc-" For the third time, Marduk is interrupted, this time by the great and heavy -whoomp- that comes when he craters into the remains of the abandoned temples, obliterating it. Marduk lays prone, slightly crooked in his crater. Staring upwards, eyes wide, he lets out a groan.

"Oh -shit-"

COMBATSYS: Raiden has ended the fight here.

The thunderpope was in front of Marduk the entire time.

Throughout the entirety of the battle, Marduk's realization spurred Raiden to strike with his full fury, placing Marduk in a prone crater in the ruins of the temple. When his eyes open, he may see the Thunderer standing above him.

Raiden stares at Marduk for a moment, analyzing his wounds, and realizing he will bleed out. He was...different from others he had fought. Innocent, in a strange way. He was a fighter true and true, he knew the consequences. But he is not one that Raiden seems to have intention to kill.

Even as the lightning sings in the heavens like a thousand birds, Raiden lifts his hand in the sky and like that....Nothing happens.

A voice on the wind seems to whisper in Marduk's ear. "Friendship....mercy."

Raiden looks upon Marduk as the lightning in his eyes dim to show the beautiful blue eyes of the Thunder God.

"You were a worthy opponent. Rest here. You will be found and your pain put at ease."

Raiden turns to leave, unless he's stopped.

Marduk lays there, the rain drizzling down on his fate. Did he draw the fury of the thunderpope? Did he draw the honor of battle? Did he just blow up his temple? Marduk was not entirely sure. Looking up at Raiden, he winces, but nods his head. There was supposed to be fatalities, sure. Apparently. Maybe he'd be okay, like, he didn't fully understand what a fatality was but- but when the bolt of lightning comes, he shuts his eyes anyways.

And what comes was a whisper.

Slowly, the injured brute opens his eyes. He looks at the god, blinking his eyes in dazed pain. Friendship? Mercy? Marduk didn't quite understand karma either, but there was a feeling in his heart. A strange feeling. As Raiden walks away, there was a glimmer. A divine presence. He remembers the power bomb. "Was that thunderpope... Was that really..." Marduk murmurs, before collapsing into unconsciousness.

"... Really a pro wrestler all along?"

Log created on 16:13:47 08/15/2022 by Marduk, and last modified on 09:31:59 08/24/2022.