Description: It's the battle of the boozers as Tamaki the Tanuki takes on John Doe. In a classic Sunshine City throw down, the stumbling strikers will have it out in the parking lot of the local Drive In, with every trip and tumble broadcast onto the silver screen. Let's just hope they remember the rules of engagement: No touching of the hair or face ... And THAT'S IT. Now FIGHT!
Dusk's purple fingers drag slowly over the horizon as the NFG's broadcasting crew put the final touches on today's event. It's a simple enough setup, with a section of the parking lot lit up like a beacon by shaded flood lights, their focused beams illuminating every crack in a 30-foot square of the two-toned grey cement. Beyond that area are the bulky silhouettes of cameras and crew, the latter hunched to their tasks as they work to bring movie magic to the huge silver screen that looms large in the background.
It's kind of weird, really, the perspective currently swapped to act almost like a mirror, though if any of the many other Cameras take focus they might be fighting in front of a top down perspective of themselves, or reverse mirrored, or looking up at giant kaiju versions of themselves shot from ground level. Someone clearly had a lot of fun putting their college practical's to work here.
At the moment, the only person taking advantage of the setup is a rather short, petite girl with spiky electric-blue pigtails who is cartwheeling back and forth from light to shadow, appearing from stage right to strike one dramatic pose after another. First landing in a full splits, then retreating only to return in a perfect hero landing, followed by a sultry look over the shoulder, then the infamous Jack-O pose.
A soft mutter issues from the darkness behind the playful showoff, followed by a couple of off-beat claps as a second figure shuffles into the light. Dressed in his usual layers despite the heat, John Doe glances around the space through an obscuring curtain of glossy black hair, absently patting the girl as she rises to skip over and glom onto his side.
"You're going to do great, Johnny," Titania Belle says into his shoulder, rubbing her face against the soft material of his hoodie in a manner not unlike a cat, which causes the actor to fidget a bit uncomfortably. "Just do what the Truckasauris Hands lady said. Pick your moment, then Kill her. Rip her hair out. Gouge out her eyes. K?"
JD sounds anything but confident in the advice, but soon enough his bloodthirsty personal trainer is releasing him, backing away into the darkness and leaving the staged slice of parking lot to the professionals.
Tamaki very rarely shows up early for her matches. She's not *late*, but since she needs almost no prep time and usually doesn't bother to warm up very much, she doesn't make a point of showing up early, either. Her grasp of short periods of time is a little loose (not because she can't learn, but because she doesn't care).
This was an exception. Mostly because she wanted to see the camera setup. If Titania Belle hadn't been playing with the stage, she would have been. Instead Tamaki was half out of sight, in the relative darkness where it's hard to see for all the lights pointed not that far away. She's chatting with a couple of the technical crew.
But eventually she slips off the piece of equipment she'd been sitting on and strolls into the light, her tail swooshing behind her as she uses it to brush dust off her leg. For one instant, it's her eyes that are most visible, as they catch the light like a cat's - then she's mostly normal again, aside from the ears and tail. "Hmm," she says, thoughtfully. "If nothing else, it's going to be a very *bright* match, I see."
Her gaze focuses on JD.
"Well?" she says, after a couple long, awkward moments. "Cat got your tongue?"
The question draws a soft sound from behind all that hair, somewhere between a snort and a grunt. Shaking his head slightly, he reaches up to pull it out of his face and tuck it mostly behind his ears, white teeth flashing in a brilliant grin. Grey eyes crinkled at the corners, dimple showing, he smiles in just such a way to convey nothing but happiness to be here and good intentions for the free spirit across from him.
"HEY!" The high, and very much not amused cry of Titania slices through the moment like a hacksaw, her lithe form just visible at the edge of the illuminated area. Fists clinched, posture rigid, she glares past JD with such hatred that it's honestly surprising her own eyes don't start to glow.
"No flirting! Seriously Johnny, you need to do some animal cruelty on this B--"
The booming voice of their fight official cuts across Titania's ferocious rant, though it does nothing to quail the very apologetic wince that has flinched its way across JD's face, pale hands coming up to press palms in a brief motion of forgiveness. Or, maybe he's praying. Either is possible with a girl like that in his corner.
And just like that the perspective shifts, big screen showing a perfectly framed snap shot of JD in apologetic prayer position before pulling back and settling behind Tamaki in an over-the-shoulder view.
Someone is either going to get a promotion for this, or fired.
COMBATSYS: John Doe has started a fight here.
John Doe 0/-------/-------|
So JD really doesn't talk much. That doesn't really bother Tamaki, even though she's exactly the opposite; she gives him a little nod back, at least understanding his dimpled smile.
"Oh, that wasn't flirting." Tamaki glances past JD at Titania, and her lips curl into a smile. Which broadens, surprisingly far. "If you want to see some of that, I suppose I can do a little..."
She doesn't, though. "...though for a lot of fighters, I think this is more like foreplay?"
Tamaki does not precisely burst into action. She keeps her distance from JD; the signal from the announcers doesn't seem to have galvanized her all that much. She walks in a wide circle, changing the angle of her against the light. The camera moves to follow, effectively panning around JD.
The effect is that Titania doesn't quite get on camera; it's pointed almost, but not quite, in her direction. It also gives Tamaki a moment to turn, flicking her tail almost lazily at JD - which would be harmless, given the distance, except a sphere of chi detaches from her tailtip, moving slowly at first but increasingly speeding up as it approaches him!
COMBATSYS: Tamaki has joined the fight here.
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John Doe 0/-------/-------|======-\-------\0 Tamaki
COMBATSYS: John Doe blocks Tamaki's Swaying Tail.
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John Doe 0/-------/------=|=======\-------\1 Tamaki
The childish outrage that seethes within those words would be funny, if they weren't also full of a very real, very manic sort of jealousy. Though the camera doesn't pick it up, Tamaki can see the vibrating tension in Titania's form, the barely restrained rage as she shifts from foot to foot, as if contemplating jumping into that square of light herself. Something that, given her record, she might actually do.
Meanwhile, John himself has eyes only for Tamaki, sneakers scraping across the ground in a shuffling turn that keeps her in sight as she circles. Hands low, stance all but non existent, the actor waits, biding his time till the inevitable moment when the raccoon girl attacks and over extends herself.
Which, she doesn't do.
Best laid plan shattered into a million pieces, JD flinches violently as what seemed like a casual flick of the tail sends a glowy ball of, something, hurtling at him. Arms coming up, he turtles, energy smashing into his braced forearms and sending him swaying back onto his heels. Back, and then forward as he stumbles forward, his graceless motions seeming oddly familiar.
"She's a zoner JD! Charge, CHAAAARGE!"
Whether taking Titania's advice, or having planned to all along, the beautiful man Throws himself forward into a lunging grab, hands clawing for a double grip of whatever he can find. Whether that be upper arm, shoulder, or a fist full of top, he makes to latch on tight. Only then will he tug with surprising strength, long black hair flying out behind him as he aims to crash his forehead against Tamaki's with a brain-jarring THUD.
"WOOOO! Yeah Johnny! Use your head!"
COMBATSYS: Tamaki blocks John Doe's Brain Dead.
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John Doe 0/-------/------=|=======\-------\1 Tamaki
Tamaki's smile turns into a grin, and she raises two fingers, pressing them to her lips and then blowing a kiss -
No, not at JD. Past JD. Toward Titania. "Well, if you insist... I suppose I can find some time for you after the match, but I'm a little occupied right now! No offense," she adds to JD, afterwards. "You're just not going to be my first choice, here."
Having left herself open specifically to blow a kiss, Tamaki is a little slow on responding to JD's sudden shift from lurching defense to lurching offense. It becomes a lot more urgent when there is a head about to hit her face.
JD has managed to grab a fistful of shoulder and cloth, and Tamaki can't see any possible way to get out of it, so she doesn't even try; she turns slightly and lowers her own head, taking it on the hardest part of her skull and letting herself be pushed back and roll with the impact. She staggers back, having managed to push herself away in the chaos.
"Ha ha...! People say that I don't use my head for anything, but really!" Tamaki's voice is clear enough that she's probably not badly concussed, but she does seem a little wobbly on her feet - though that could just be her fighting style, as she weaves back, then forward, letting her momentum deliver a more powerful open-hand palm strike than she ordinarily would be capable of.
COMBATSYS: Tamaki successfully hits John Doe with Medium Punch.
-* WILD HIT! *-
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John Doe 0/-------/---====|=======\=------\1 Tamaki
The force of the impact sends Tamaki one way and JD the other, camera pulling back to get a profile view of them staggering drunkenly apart.
"Ghruughk..." JD groans, pale fingers pressed to his brow as the skin there already begins to darken. And yet, he is beaming, seeming far too pleased with himself for someone who just failed to bar fight properly.
Titania, for her part, is near speechless.
Is that flattery in her tone?
Right hand falling away from his face, left hanging loose at his side, JD stumbles forward, eager to get right back into the fight. Right hand curling into a tight fist, he begins to draw his arm back, muscles shifting...
And gets slapped right in the mouth. Just, like, square on.
Forward momentum brought to a grinding halt, JD takes a moment to consider what just happened, gazing down at Tamaki as her hand comes away wet with a mixture of spit and blood. Casting an idle glance off to his left, he examines himself in the gigantic screen that looms above them, taking in his split lip and red-stained teeth. Blood oozes down his chin, splats to the ground between his sneakered feet.
Twisting back to face the Tanuki, the heartthrob brings his still raised arm hurtling down in a sloppy sledgehammer blow that threatens to overbalance him, stumbling forward into a drunken twist in the other direction that brings his left fist hooking around toward his smaller opponent's ribs. He's still grinning like a fool, but the expression is a touch less charming when his teeth are glistening red with gore.
COMBATSYS: John Doe successfully hits Tamaki with Bone Yard.
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John Doe 0/-------/-======|=======\=------\1 Tamaki
While Tamaki had not precisely been *aiming* at JD's face, it's not like it doesn't work out, and it's not like she's not intentionally aiming *away* from it either. Sometimes you just get smacked in the face, and that's life, especially because neither person in this battle is particularly steady on their feet all the time.
The sledgehammer blow comes down, and Tamaki actually manages to avoid that, swaying sideways - but she overbalances doing it, and while she doesn't fall over all by herself, the left hook coming in hits her ribs hard enough that she overdramatically folds over it, carried a step on momentum before she gets her feet down again and staggers.
Unfortunately that also makes it a little hard to get out a witty comment, unless "guh" counts as particularly witty, as that's the sound Tamaki makes. She momentarily debates taking a break for a quick drink - she does have her gourd tokkuri with her - but instead she steps in, planting one foot at an odd angle and pirouetting. It's like she's throwing another one of those chi-balls, but she's far too close to do that.
Instead what hits JD (hopefully) is her tail. Except it's several times its normal size, as long as she is tall and enormously thick; it feels more like being hit with a fuzzy beanbag than a tail, one coming in hard and fast enough to bowl someone over.
Tamaki finishes her spin and leans forward slightly, her still-gigantic tail curling up behind her and making a sphere a good three feet across behind her, resting against her back. She's leaning forward because it's apparently heavy, too, judging by the way she stands with it across her back.
COMBATSYS: Tamaki successfully hits John Doe with Art of Transformation - Giant.
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John Doe 1/-------/=======|=======\-------\1 Tamaki
Even for a raw beginner to the New Generation of Fighters, John Doe is light on technique. With piss poor aim and meh amounts of speed, the only two things he has going for him are that he's startlingly strong for his leanly muscular weight, and, as Tamaki has no doubt realized, incredibly durable.
Not too bright though.
"Hell yeah Johnny! Kick her ass! Choke her out! But not in a good way!""
The heavy impact of knuckles on ribs seems to have brought Titania back into the fight, the lithe cutie bouncing and thrusting her fists into the air just at the edge of the light. Apparently it'll take more than one promised date to flip her.
For JD's part, Tamaki's stumbling retreat seems only to embolden him. Pausing only long enough to wipe his mouth with his sleeve, the lurching terror staggers in unsteady per suit, an eager grunt working its way free of his chest. And, in fact, for a moment the whole exchange looks almost coordinated. Camera lifting for an angled shot, the handsome lad shuffles forward to meet his wily opponent, arms reaching as if to sweep her into his arms as she pirouettes into range. There is no attempt at all made to defend himself, which makes it all the more hilarious when the suddenly inbiggened tail slams across his body, sending him toppling sideways to impact the cement full-length.
Grumbling and groaning rises from the prone figure as he flails briefly about, flopping onto his belly like a landed fish. Head tilting up to peer toward the shortish woman leaning over him, he stares at her through the hair that has fallen forward to cover one eye, right hand reaching up with fingers splayed. There is little enough skill in the grab, fingers seeking to clamp down tightly just above her left knee. And if he can get that hold, he will drag himself up to kneel before her, licking at the blood that still darkens the gap between his teeth before staggering to his feet and heaving the unfortunate Tanuki and her tail free of the ground, body leaning into an unsteady wobble of a spin. With the strength of one arm he attempts to whip her around him in two dizzying orbits, gathering momentum only to send her flying off up and away. If all goes to plan, the camera filming them will get a very unexpected closeup of Tamaki as she is hurled directly toward it.
COMBATSYS: Tamaki dodges John Doe's Power Throw.
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John Doe 1/------=/=======|=======\-------\1 Tamaki
Tamaki fills the exact opposite role as John Doe does in this tournament. Where he's light on techniques, she has a surprising number for someone who's not much of an experienced fighter - it's just that a lot of her tricks she's more used to using in a less violent way, and she doesn't really put them together into a unified style so much as throw things out on instinct and see which ones work. Even what martial arts training she *has* is slapdash and erratic.
Which makes sense, given she's a bake-danuki - a kind of being that's more known for being a prankster, a thief, and a comical fool than much of a combatant - and that before the New Fighting Generation Tamaki didn't really get training so much as watch someone do it for years and decide that yeah, she could do that too. But it does mean that sometimes things get away from her.
But sometimes things just work out, too. Like right now.
When John Doe comes in for a grab, she has staggered to the side, which is the natural reaction when you try to perform a swaying step with a whole bunch of extra pounds of tail on your butt. Except when she realizes she *has* to dodge, her tail immediately returns to normal, and she's so off-balance she actually sways too far and ends up hopping on one foot for a step's worth of movement.
John's grab misses by centimeters, and since Tamaki already has one foot raised, she simply elects to jump up and raise the other, driving both feet at John Doe's stomach and ending the maneuver by flopping onto her own back, staying down for a few moments at least. It looks awkward, and slow, but it has power behind it.
"I'm not really interested in that kind of thing," Tamaki says, still sounding out of breath as she half-lies, half-lounges on the ground. "Choking? REALLY not my style, I'm afraid. And no leashes either; I'm no pet!"
COMBATSYS: Tamaki successfully hits John Doe with Lazy Day.
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John Doe 1/---====/=======|=======\==-----\1 Tamaki
With his grasping swipe deftly(?) avoided, JD topples clumsily onto his side, then back, rolling over until he gazes up into the over bright light with wide, staring eyes. Thus far things really don't seem to have been going his way, but if nothing else the actor seems doggedly determined to struggle on through grit and dumb spit, like some rugged cowboy of old. Except, you know, way prettier.
Lifting a hand to shield his face from the blazing illumination, there is a brief moment in which his sight is eclipsed, and it is into that blind spot that Tamaki leaps, both feet coming down upon his lean abs with an audible 'FWUUH' of exhaled air. Of course, John would never call any girl heavy, especially not one as cute as the Tanuki now toppling onto her back beside him, but if the slightly curled up posture and light grimace is anything to go by, that hurt.
"NO! Damn it. You are Not allowed to step on my Johnny. This is bullshit! She's cheating!"
Having devolved into full on tantrum mode, Titania whirls on the spot and lashes out with her foot, punting an abandoned stool tumbling across the cement. Said stool collides with the leg of a tripod, knocks it out from under the precariously balanced camera it was holding up, and sends the whole mess of equipment and messily organized wires plummeting sideways. There is a brief stutter in its fall, a jerk, and then plugs are popping free of extension cords, lights and cameras dying with audible cracks as the carefully networked web of power is disrupted.
JD, surrounded by sudden darkness, slowly rises to a seated position, head falling forward so that the entirety of his face is hidden behind a thick curtain of hair. The one remaining camera provides a near pitch black closeup of the silent young man turning spookily to face his opponent, pale hand reflecting the dim moonlight as he reaches out to try and grasp her gently by the side of the head.
Voice coming somehow deeper, more insistent, JD begins to tighten his grip, motions suddenly smooth as he rises to his feet, attempting to lift the unfortunate Tanuki with him. To raise her high, gazing up into her face with silent intensity as a pulse of what must be supernatural fear radiates from the young man, making it clear that something has gone horribly, horribly wrong. Then, and only then will he bring her crashing back to earth, spiking her into the cement before pulling a foot back and aiming a vicious kick to her ribs as he makes to punt her off across the parking lot, much as his trainer did the chair.
COMBATSYS: Tamaki fails to reflect Evil Dead from John Doe with Ponpoko Beat.
- Power fail! -
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John Doe 0/-------/-------|======-\-------\0 Tamaki
Tamaki may or may not be cute (a lot of people think the ears and tail are a turn-off; a certain subgroup thinks they're a positive instead) but she *does* have powerful legs and when she applies them to John she is satisfied with the impact!
Tamaki can, in general, fight pretty well from the ground. She's still mobile enough that she can uncap her tokkuri and pour a swig of - sake, by the smell of it - into her mouth from about a foot up, without spilling any of it; and then recork it again with her thumb. Then she scoots away from JD slightly. She's planning something.
Swallowing, she asks thin air, "Is it really stepping if you do it sideways? I mean - hey!"
There's an electrical *pop* from somewhere out of Tamaki's line of sight, and most of the lights go out, one after another. There's still one lit, but it's not a very flattering one for her, as it shines basically straight down from above her - she's probably half-blinded by it anyway.
And then that one goes out, too.
Tamaki can actually see in the dark, when she's not seeing spots from looking up at one of the lights. Her eyes catch the darkness, reflecting faintly yellow and making it look even more unearthly for the cameras as JD swoops down to pick her up.
Her response to *that* - and the sudden pulse of supernatural fear, which she feels but also recognizes as something external to her, not that that helps her very much in the moment - is to try to drum up a burst of chi to get him to put her down; a sudden drumbeat *thump* as her hand impacts her own side. And while the chi does form, it isn't enough to stop JD from literally kicking her down the parking lot with a chained series of thumps and impacts.
"Ow," Tamaki groans, half-upside down from where she stopped, having rolled up against what she's pretty sure is a speaker. She reaches for her tokkuri again, but this time it's just to splash it on her face like water to rouse herself.
The steady slap of Titania's feet grows ever fainter as shadowed stage hands surge into frantic action. Short, sharp words in at least three different languages ring out through the darkness as the crew scrambles to put things to right, searching for lost plugs and heaving fallen equipment back into upright positions.
Meanwhile, the grim outline of John Doe stands alone in the center of the darkened lot, projected figure looming above the Drive In like some enormous necromantic construct risen from the unspeakable depths. A faint tingle of supernatural fear still radiates from him, causing shivers down spines and teeth to chatter even when viewed at a distance.
The single word emerges clear and sad from the actor's hidden lips, voice just a touch hoarse from lack of use. It is followed by a long, exhausted sigh, pale hands clinching into tight fists at his sides, before his head falls forward and his chin comes to rest against his chest.
He says nothing else.
Sneaker scuffing against cement, JD breaks from his frozen moment of distraction and steps fluidly toward where Tamaki lies. Leaning forward, he picks up speed, transitioning from walk, to jog, to run as he flashes across the distance, still far more coordinated than anyone has seen from him up to this point. Hissing out a breath, the pale young man plants his lead foot and leaps, sneakers swinging forward in an attempt to plant both heels squarely in the discombobulated Tanuki's gut, leaping atop her in a move not unlike that which she just used on him. Sloppier for sure, body wobbling on impact, but still recognizable as payback as he lands full weight, before tripping over the speaker she is slumped against and toppling ass over kettle to land with a flailing THUD on the other side.
COMBATSYS: John Doe successfully hits Tamaki with Improvised Kick.
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John Doe 0/-------/------=|======-\-------\0 Tamaki
In the dark, this is a very different battle.
Tamaki feels the pulse of supernatural fear and lets it wash through her. It sucks. It sucks a lot! She wants to run away and, most of the time, she'd probably just let her instincts have their way and bail.
But... She wants to see how this ends. And perhaps her fighting spirit isn't THAT easily quenched.
JD speaks, and Tamaki tries to break the aura of fear by talking right back: "Oh, you CAN speak! I guess the cat doesn't have it after all," she says, and though her tone is the same jocular one she often uses there's an edge of tension to it. The tension is mostly gone when she continues: "Oh, I don't think I'm THAT trapped. There's always a way out, after all."
Not that she finds it fast enough. JD does something Tamaki didn't think he was likely do: run. She's never seen him move faster than a quick lunge before and she wasn't expecting to be charged, an equally powerful two-footed kick as her own.
He tumbles over the speaker; Tamaki remains firmly on the side she started on, rolling a few feet away. There's no light at all here, the haphazard scatter of shadow completely concealing her aside from her two faintly yellow reflective eyes... and even those fade away after a moment as if she had never been.
But it isn't that she left. What Tamaki did was change her eyes... and everything else!
Lunging out from where Tamaki was hidden in shadow is a second JD, though he (?) has Tamaki's tail, as she either isn't skilled enough or isn't spending enough effort on hiding it. With a low rumbling growl, Tamaki-JD comes in with a low strike at the hopefully-still-fallen actual JD, smashing downwards with both fists in a pair of crushing blows.
That's as long as she remains JD, though, as Tamaki returns back down to her usual height a few instants later with a swirl of wind that obscures her for a critical few instants... not that anyone can see her clearly in the dark, anyway. "Uuuugh." Apparently she didn't like mimicing him very much... that or her voice is still stuck in JD-speak.
COMBATSYS: John Doe blocks Tamaki's Art of Transformation - Mirror.
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John Doe 0/-------/------=|===----\-------\0 Tamaki
Having landed in an ungainly tangle of loose hoodie and discarded cables, John Doe wastes several precious seconds flailing his way free of the mess. By the time he has flopped free to land on his back, there is a very unsettling growl emerging from the other side of the speaker, followed soon after by a snarling copy of his own face.
The startled grunt that escapes him is part surprise, part warning, features wincing into something close to sympathy behind his heavy curtain of hair. He, more than anyone, would know the sad truth of how shitty it is to be him, and he wouldn't wish that upon anyone. Even someone who is trying to bash his handsome face in.
Head bowing, he flings his guard up to catch the first descending blow on crossed forearms, impact shuttering through him as he is driven firmly down against the cement. Turtling harder, he covers his skull and takes the second blow on a tensed bicep, shrugging past the sloppy bashes into an unsteady sit.
"BRRRF." He grunts, tone now caught between apologetic and accusatory.
What does he mean by that?
Regardless, he gives little enough time to ponder, as in a burst of effort he levers himself from butt to crouch, right hand bracing against the ground for balance. Head remaining bowed, he leans toward the recovering Tanuki, breath huffed out in one explosive gasp as he springs sloppily forward and up, right hand curling into a fist as it is swung up from the pavement and off toward the heavens, the young actor doing his best drunken monk version of a flameless SHORYUKEN. If he's lucky he might catch her in the gut, or the chest. Maybe even the ear. If fortune really smiles on him he could actually get her in the chin. Stranger things have happened.
COMBATSYS: Tamaki blocks John Doe's Heavy Punch.
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John Doe 0/-------/-----==|===----\-------\0 Tamaki
It does seem to take Tamaki a few moments longer to recover than it did when she performed the mirroring in her other battles, and she isn't laughing about it this time, so maybe it really *is* shitty to be JD.
She's not telling what it felt like, anyway.
Eventually she manages to shake her head and dispel the lingering cobwebs - and just in time, because by this point JD is on the move again, springing upward. Tamaki sways backwards, leaning awkwardly far back - it looks, in fact, like she should have fallen over, except she's got that tail beneath her, pressing against the ground like an extra limb and helping prop herself up while she is tilted almost forty-five degrees backwards.
It's harder to hold yourself up with muscles in the small of your back than she'd like, and Tamaki is pretty wiped by this point anyway, breathing hard just to stay in it. She has to push off the ground, angling herself just so. The SHORYUKEN (minus fire) impacts - but it impacts her raised arms, mostly deflected past her. It's close, though - he ruffles her outfit with his passing.
But as his fist passes, Tamaki grabs at his arm. "I'm tired, and I think you are too, so perhaps it's time to put this battle to bed? It IS night." Even as they set up the lights again, they're being lit mostly by moonlight.
With her grip, Tamaki tries to flip JD, partially on his own staggering momentum, partially on HER staggering momentum of a slightly different sort, and possibly by raw strength. If she does manage to flip him onto his back like she intended, she follows it up with a stomping kick - sorry, Titania, but this one IS a step!
COMBATSYS: John Doe fails to interrupt Fierce Combo from Tamaki with Grave Mistake.
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John Doe 0/-------/----===|===----\-------\0 Tamaki
With the majority of his punching force directed up and away, John Doe is left even more off balance than usual. Collapsing against Tamaki, the two of them present an accidentally almost romantic silhouette on the moon lit big screen, feet scuffling as they stagger two and fro in a swaying little dance. It could be awkward, even unpleasant, but he isn't sweaty, and even has the decency not to breathe in her face.
On the other hand, she can feel as he begins to turn, sense the shift in his 'balance' as he struggles to square up with her. All he has to do is get his feet beneath them, and then he can leverage that unnatural strength of his to take control of their dance. So it is fortunate that she is so much better at this than him, the tug of their tango shifting, tipping, then shattering apart as he is flipped up and over the shorter fighter, back impacting the cement with yet another heavy THUMP. There he lies, dazed and confused, as she stamps a foot down squarely upon his face, probably by accident, driving the back of his head into the ground with a THONK that she feels as much as hears.
Titania would be pissed, if she hadn't bailed on him. The brat.
It could be worse, but it could be better. The movements of a battle are a dance, but in this case one of them is half-drunk, one of them is JD, and both of them are half-dazed and concussed. It looked more graceful closer to the beginning.
Tamaki does smell. Mostly, right now, she smells like sake where she splashed it on her face to try to rouse herself after getting smashed. There's a faint undertone of wet fur, even though she doesn't appear to have any fur besides her tail right now.
But JD goes down, breaking the moment (involuntary as it might have been) and Tamaki stomps. She wasn't really aiming for his head, more of his chest, but she feels it as soon as her bare foot makes impact. There's a moment where she considers letting up on him - but no. This is still a match, and though she's usually a goofball she does want to see how well she can do. It's like she said to Ariastra: what's the point if she's not just being herself as big as possible?
"Mmm... I think we may be coming to a close. I'll buy you a drink, after! If you drink."
Tamaki turns her body slightly and follows it up with another kick, aiming more at the torso this time as she tries to keep him down. If it worked once, it will work twice, right? But she doesn't really want to keep stomping on his head.
That would be weird.
COMBATSYS: John Doe blocks Tamaki's Strong Kick.
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John Doe 0/-------/----===|====---\-------\0 Tamaki
Though neither fighter is aware of it in the moment, a small but extremely vocal minority will later clip the grainy moonlit footage of Tamaki stepping on John Doe's face and circulate it through Fightchan boards forever more. This night, they have made history.
That is little comfort to JD as his nose crunches beneath the Tanuki's heel, a surprisingly tame trickle of blood oozing in a thick smear across his cheek. Planting both hands to either side, he begins to rise, shoving himself half to sitting as the offer of a drink is made. For his part, he is barely listening, something in the air making his gut rumble with a craving for hearty game stew. Something with lots of meat. Grey meat, stringy and tender, plucked right from the skull.
Lifting his left sleeve to wipe away the drool that is leaking from his open mouth, it is by sheer happenstance that he catches the heavy kick meant for his chest, jolting back onto his bracing hand as he shoves the offending limb roughly away.
Letting out a grunt of frustrated need, the battered actor shoves himself up to a kneel, limited brain power working over the problem of how to get the food he can smell so close to hand. And that is when he has it, a brain blast in which everything clicks magically into place. Working entirely on instinct, letting his body move in the way that seems most natural, he plants his right hand against the cement and begins a forward lean, drool dripping wetly to the floor as he reads himself to leap.
Uh...Didn't he just do this a moment ago?
Then, in a ferocious rush that is much faster than the last time she saw him do this, JD launches himself forward and up, fist swinging drunkenly toward the tip of her chin with at least 70 percent more accuracy and 200 percent more hunger than before.
COMBATSYS: John Doe successfully hits Tamaki with Dead Rising.
[ \\\\\\\ < > //// ]
John Doe 0/-------/--=====|====---\-------\0 Tamaki
Tamaki feels her kick caught this time. She pushes down, and the resisting arm doesn't move - until it moves upward, pushing her leg up and forcing Tamaki to hop awkwardly on one foot as JD shoves it away.
Something's different in the air and it's cut through even Tamaki's good cheer and joviality. She can feel the change in JD even though she doesn't know the proper words or the whole reason for it, and it's a form of supernatural energy completely different (and, honestly, opposed in some ways) to her own.
Whether that's what slows her or good old-fashioned lack of knowledge, when John comes in it's too fast for her. The fist comes in, connecting with her chin as Tamaki weaves to the side too slowly. It does not, quite, immediately drop her. She manages to stay up long enough to grab at John as she finishes her movement, try to pull him to the ground with her in an awkward arm-over-the-shoulders grip.
Whether he goes down or not, *she* does. And as soon as Tamaki hits the ground, something new happens: she vanishes.
Well, not entirely. There is a flash of brown-red and grey and black fur as a rather chunky tanuki, an actual raccoon-dog of Japan, is there instead; they look like nothing so much as a fat, very fluffy raccoon with a different, more dog-like gait. The cameras don't see it; the tanuki is too short, too camoflauged in the night.
The fluffball darts off, though it moves like it's hurting and it has a tendency to waddle anyway. Perhaps Tamaki has figured out that it would be a good idea to NOT remain around John any longer than she has to when he's like this...
Or maybe, this is just what she is, and as battered as she is, it's all she can manage.
COMBATSYS: Tamaki can no longer fight.
[ \\\\\\\ <
John Doe 0/-------/--=====|
COMBATSYS: Tamaki successfully hits John Doe with Everybody's Friend.
[ \\\\\ <
John Doe 0/-------/-======|
The struggle is brief but desperate as JD twists in Tamaki's grip, a quiet rasp grinding past gritted teeth. However, even now, with the need driving him and his more agreeable personality traits taking the back seat, coordination is not his strength. The drag of the Tanuki's weight pulls him down into one more collision with the unforgiving cement, hands reaching, grasping for the figure of a woman that is no longer there.
The lightest brush of cold fingers leaves the fleeing mythic with a last, intense jolt of artificial terror, shadows seeming to deepen around the still dark arena.
A voice groans.
Feet scrape across cement.
For the briefest moment, the lone camera still operating finds something to focus on, a single, dilated eye staring unblinkingly into the lens with fixed intensity.
And then, the flood lights are banging to life, filling the makeshift arena with blinding illumination. Unfortunately, there is no sign of either competitor. It will take careful review of the footage before a winner can be declared.
COMBATSYS: John Doe takes no action.
[ \\\\ <
John Doe 1/-------/=======|
COMBATSYS: John Doe has ended the fight here.
Log created on 15:02:38 06/17/2023 by John Doe, and last modified on 06:39:51 06/24/2023.