Description: Exclusive footage from inside Blazin' HQ! See their training facilities, see their edgy decor, see one of their fighters smacked around by their sponsor!
Hawksley is impressed with what he sees. The powers that be at Blaze have finally got themselves organised and found a place for the team to train together, and what a place it is. Standing at the centre of the bleak but beautiful urban landscape of Metro City, this once buzzing building has been breathed new life into by the arrival of the New Fighting Generation team. Not only will they be using it for their gym and fitness facilities but adjoining accomodation has been provided in the apartments next door. This time he doesn't even have to share with anyone. Not that Brian Storm was such a bad roommate to have, but privacy is golden for someone who grew up the youngest of six siblings.
The shadow of the boxer, Bison still hangs over the venue. The violence that haunts him and his legacy can still be felt in the air. Perhaps this is a good thing for the fiery fighters it now plays host to. There's no mistaking they've taken up residency at the place. Flames, volcanos, meteors and crater artwork adorns the exterior of the vast, warehouse style space and its adjoining community center.
From a fighting point of view, it's hard to find fault. As well as the sparring rings and mats, weights, training dummies and fitness equipment are provided to keep the young prospects at their peak peformance levels.
As he steps further into the space, the Irishman decides to put on some sounds. Setting up his portable speaker on a side table, he selects a playlist to stream and then puts it on shuffle. Fire by Kasabian fills the Blaze Headquarters whilst Hawksley puts on some boxing gloves and starts pounding a punch bag.
"The sound of a massive motorcycle can be heard rumbling its way through the urban landscape like some sort of approaching distant thunderstorm. Before long ithe vibrations of its approach begin to rattle the windows and walls of the rennovated gym before finally cutting to an idle and then an abrupt halt. It's not long before the culprit of this assault on various Metro City noise ordinance makes their presence known.
"Hn. I'm impressed.." growls Braun as he pushes open the large doors of the gym and steps in with the heavy tread of his clawed feet pounding their way onto the gym floor. His nostrils flare, taking in the scent of the place at which point he declares, "Still smells like a list o'things I probably don't want to start listin' off though."
In truth, it smells just fine but the massive beastman seems to have quite the talent with enhanced senses so it's probably best to just not ask for too many additional details.
He languidly moves past the front counter and steps into the gym proper, one hand carrying with it a set of some lowbrow brand of beer and an instant later he's tossed one can towards Hawksley, sending it sailing across the room. Lift weights while being drunk? Sure why not.
"'Ere. A reward for yer win..." he drawls out, "Team Blaze's champion horse to 'ere those commentors go onabout it." He gives a slghtly fanged grin, "...Deserved, I guess.."
"Jesus" yells Hawksley over the sound of the Leicester rockers. "Why don't you just break the fecking windows?"
He carries on jabbing throughout and it's only when Braun speaks up, that he realises his teammate may have been the source of the rumbling. "You like to make an entrance don't you, fella?" he asks with a grin. "The place isn't bad is it?"
He sniffs the air. "I can't really smell anything weird though."
The Cork lad catches the can with practised precision. Pulling the tab back, he takes a long and thirsty drink from it. "That's grand. It's the first one I've had today."
Considering it's only just gone eleven am, that isn't saying too much.
He laughs as Braun mentions the commentators. "Champion horse, poster boy. Something like that. I'm not gonna turn down a reward for my win though, whatever the label is."
"Naw, not likely you'd pick up on anything...the place just smells like its history. It's no big deal. Just an observation. Me bein' all...insighftful..." drawls Braun as he pops open a beercan of his own. COnsidering that he showed up to his match with Buford drunk, he's probably not too far off from Hawksley in his consumption of drink. Mind you, he's not about to try and compete with 'that' in regards to dinking games. Even Braun knows when to tread carefully when it comes to some competitions.
"'Ey well if it's earned it's earned yeah? Might as well own it. Gives the rest of us some motivation to crank it up I guess." he responds, deep voice still almost lazy and bored sounding in contrast to the savagry he's supposdly noteworthy for. "MIght even inspire us to drag this team o'hoodlums up in the placings. I sure aint lookin' to draw again." He sniffs abit almost as if the scent of Bufor'd's vaping stil lingers in his nose.
"Yeah. Don't plan on that happening again..." he affirms once more.
"History hm? Well that could definitely be good or bad."
Hawksley continues to drink from the can, his workout apparently abandoned for now. "You've got Kenzo next haven't you? That fella beat me. He's a grand fighter, so he is. He left me with a scar on my stomach for a while but it seems to have healed up along with the other stuff Ariastra helped me with. A shame in a way. It looked kinda badass."
He sits down on the floor, continuing to chatter. "So what do you make of our sponsors so far then? Have you had a chance to meet any of the other fighters? I was kinda hoping to run into Genie. I don't suppose you've seen her around have you?"
Braun rumbles deep in his chest as he rubs at his hairy jaw, mussing the beard and light fur coating as he ponders Hawksley's words. "...I heal pretty fast.. Scarring tends to not stick with me. No surprised it didn't with you. Us sturdy types manage to deal with that sorta stuff well though there's exceptions.."
He takes aoother gulp from his beer and seems to have finished it rather quickly as a moment later the can cumples up in his massive palm and is then tossed over towards a trash can with dismissive but unerring effort.
"Aint met 'er." he says, addressing the question about Genie first.
"Everyone's battle schedules seems to 'ave 'em all over the place. Caught the big fella's world warrior match though."
He pauses as if mentally noting that he has to be more specific about the term 'big fella' and so notes, "Kongou. Pretty crazy stuff. Course he lost...." he seems mildly amused by that and then adds, "..against Athena. So.." as if that explains it.
"I dunno..." he finally concludes, "I think it's a bit too early to thumbs up or thumbs down 'em. Y'know? Alot hinges on us. They providin' the facilities and we got access to 'em. They aint our babysitters. We'll have to see. I get stronger by fightin' so that's what I plan t'do. If they point me in the right direction by example and tips then fine by me. Course we need some wins if we wanna get out of last place so I guess we'll see what our next match setups show us."
"I suppose I am a resilient sort of fella. I reckon that's just because of good genes though rather than anything special like what you've got going on."
Following his teammate's lead, Hawksley also drains his drink, aiming the empty can at the same trash can as Braun did. When it manages to land in it, a big grin appears on his face.
"Wasn't Kongou's match in Russia? I was gonna go and then I thought feck that. I can't be flying all over the world when I've got stuff going on. Was it worth the trip? Have you got any stories to tell me?"
He starts working the punchbag again, positioning himself so he can face Braun and still hold a conversation.
"Athena's a popstar isn't she, as well as a fighter? A bit like that Lucky Chloe lass that Storm is with. She looks harmless enough but I know not to judge these things. We've got plenty of teenage girls in the New Fighting Generation who could flatten most fellas."
The track changes to 'Hall of Fame' by Irish band, The Script and featuring will.i.am. Hawksley starts singing along, matching his movements to the music.
"Mmm.... You throw a punch and fire appears....Yeah 'nothin' special'.." remarks Braun sardonically as he leans against the counter and watches. "..Sounds logical.." he drawls out while dragging a claw across the counter ...already doing damage to their brand new HQ. Just a little light scratch..but still.
"I'm used ta travelling. I'm rarely in one place at once. Was no big deal t'go. I just told 'em I was part of the sponsor team but I dont' think he saw me or knew I was actually there... Didn't necessarily make a show of it just found a place t'watch from a bit away and then got drunk. Made the lgiht show a lot more wild.."
He allows a slight fanged grin before inclining his head and looking towards Hawksley, "THere's a lotta crazy things out there in th'world. You got a few on your team and a few of your sponsors that qualify. Yeah? So yeah....if ya look at it as a matter of experience a teenage pop star can get into a fight with a freakin' bus sized brawler and come out on top. Course..it don't make it any less wild to see or consider or be surprised by. Minute you stop bein' surprised by stuff is the minute the world's gotten boring I guess... Like ya said, our own competition's got that going on. I didn't exactly go in expectin' to fight a tubby samurai but he ended up bein' as fast as me..."
"Before the en eff gee, I'd only been outside of Ireland once and that was just to London. Since signing up, I've travelled to Southtown, Sunshine City and Metro City. Sometimes I have to pinch myself, so I do. I think this place is my favourite so far. The city has such a buzz about it and there's plenty of Irish bars. Although I've been mainly been sticking to just the one" Hawksley admits.
He nods along at Braun's telling of the tale of his trip to Russia. "Ah, that does sound grand. Maybe I'll make it there one day. There's lots of places I'd like to go."
The Irishman continues to listen as the German guy talks about the crazy things in the world. Yeah, my eyes have been well and truly opened in the last six months. I mean, I was no innocent but the things I've seen..."
He shakes his head. "You're right though. Surprises help stop things getting dull, so bring it all on. Even Buford" he laughs. "Who by the way, I've only ever met for about five minutes and that mostly consisted of him barging his way in front of me and Kenzo, so he could get closer to Chevy at the tournament wrap party."
"Yer a regular ol'neophyte eh? Fresh meat, literally. How'd ya manage to be like that and yet turn into th'prize stallion o'the whole thing?"
You probably don't want to hear Braun talking about fresh meat. But at least he's on Hawklsey's side.
"Maybe I need to start tracking the steps of your drinkin' regime and see if that pumps me up and lets me catch up."
His tone remains that lazy, languid, rumbling drawl but somewhere in that growling baritone is what counts for humor.
"Mm..Buford. So you aint fought 'im then. Not even at the Rumble? Hn. He's kinda bizarre eh? Odd t'say given what we just discussed I guess but...strange in a different sorta way. Seemed like he was being underestimated cause of all that strangeness but...do that at yer peril I guess. I tore into him good but he kept up.."
He considers the thought of Kenzo again and then says, "Don't know much about that one either. I guess I'm about to find out.."
"Well yeah, if you mean to doing it professionally like. New to fighting though? Not a chance" Hawksley laughs. "I've been doing that about as long as I've been walking."
He grins at the mention of being a prize stallion. "I'm a fan of horses so I'll take that from you, fella. As for my drinking regime, it's fairly simple. If someone's asking, Im having."
There's more laughter. "Seriously though, it's not something I need or anything, it's just something I often want. It's good to have a bit of a buzz on, you know? It makes things a little fuzzy around the edges and the grand in life seem even grander."
"Should you ever fancy accompanying me to the nearest drinking establishment though, be my guest. It'd be grand to have the company, so it would."
On the subject of Buford, the Irish Inferno is shaking his head. "Never. I'd headbutted the bombs by the time he made his way in, so our paths never crossed in The Rumble. I'd never underestimate anyone in this contest though. We're all here for a reason and I reckon any one of you could give me a run for my money on the right day."
"Kenzo is smart. He's a thinker and he's fast. You two are very different but I reckon the match could be dynamic."
A beep goes off and Braun produces a phone from....somewhere. Probably the depths of that raggedy vest of his.
"Looks like that's my cue..." he drawls before stuffing it back into the depths of his vest.
He sniffs and rubs his nose with the back of his hand as he stretches away from the counter and starts heading for the door.
A few long strides later..and the giant beastman is gone.
"Good luck out there" Hawksley wishes Braun, as the big fella leaves for his bout with Kenzo.
Left alone, he turns up his music louder, by now the track having switched to Firestarter by Prodigy. Eyeing the punchbag with ill intent, the Irishman prepares to work up a sweat.
Just around the time that Braun makes his exit, there's a faint rumble as a large loading door at the back of the gym space starts to shudder. A couple of seconds later, there's a pounding sound against the metal screen. Then, finally, the door starts to groan in protest as it edges upward a few inches, revealing the shadows of two massive, tan-coloured humanoid feet. A set of pudgy sausage-sized fingers curl under the base of the door, and there's a screech of metal on metal as the owner of the enormous hands and feet forces the loading door open with a sustained, mighty tug.
"Y'know, I think there's a button there to open it automatically?" a high-pitched Southern voice points out from behind the giant figure.
"I don't know what any of that means, but the gate's already open, ain't it?" the rotund behemoth bellows from behind the wall before stooping down to step through the seven-foot-high gap, straightening to his natural nine and two thirds of a foot height once he's managed to make it inside. The figure of Zog is unmistakable, and upon entering, he immediately announces his arrival:
Letting out a relieved sigh, the ogre, clad in a pair of sagging sweatpants that appear to have been specially made to accommodate his size, rubs his aching fingers against his belly and looks around. Spotting the Irishman, he points a finger and addresses him directly.
"Hey, Hawkey, did you know that when you buy ten pizzas, they send a free cutie along with it?"
Peeking around the ogre, a blue-eyed girl in a disheveled yellow Hado Pizza t-shirt and red skirt straightens a red ballcap onto her unkempt, mousy hair and smiles awkwardly. "Oh! I didn't know there was anyone else here! Umm, I'd better get back to work!" she says, her voice clearly signalling 'displaced farmgirl.' She slings her empty insulated pizza bag across her shoulder and practically trips over herself as she hurries for the front door, turning around to mouth 'Call me' and make the appropriate hand gesture next to her face.
"What's that?? I can't hear you!" Zog shouts after her, cupping a hand to his ear.
"Umm, thanks for choosing Hado Pizza!" the girl shouts, before disappearing out the doors.
"That's Kassie, with a 'K,'" Zog informs Hawksley, before stroking his own scruffy chin. "I never figured out where the K was, though. What you doin'?"
"I'm the self inflicted, mind detonator, yeah. I'm the one infected, twisted animator" sings the late great Keith Flint from the portable speaker, competing with the rumbles, shudders and groans caused by Zog the Hammer's arrival.
At first Hawksley thinks he's accidentally added a remix to his Spotafight playlist but then he sees the sponsor stood before him and he's got company.
"I can't say I've ever ordered ten pizzas" he claims. "I'm not sure you get cuties with them back in Cork anyway."
He looks Kassie with a K over, his expression one of sympathy. "I bet that was a load to carry. I hope he tipped you well."
As the All American pizza girl makes her exit, he starts hitting the punch bag again, his jabs harder than ever. "I'm just doing some training" he explains to the ogre. "I need to keep the momentum moving for my next match. I wanna make it three out of three in Metro."
As the sweat soaks his 'Team Blaze' t-shirt, he lifts the hem of it up to wipe his face and his stomach starts to growl. "I don't suppose there's any slices of those pizzas left are they? I forgot to have breakfast, unless you count the beer Braun gave me."
With Kassie with a K too focused on excusing herself to answer Hawksley's remarks with anything more than a hasty smile, Zog deigns to respond: "Oh, I tipped her good."
Waggling his eyebrows, he folds his arms across his gut and nods a couple of times at Hawksley's description of what he's up to. "Uh huh. Good job. You're really beatin' up that bag, too. You ever practice with somethin' that can fight back?"
Apparently, he hasn't been heavily involved with the prospect's training so far.
"Oh, yeah. I think I felt one before when I rolled over --"
Reaching into the back of his baggy sweatpants, he produces a peeling sound before pulling out a flattened slice of pepperoni pizza, the cheese mostly removed, and holds it out to Hawksley.
"There ya go, Hawkey. Don't say I never gave you nuthin'. So, ya already won yer fights so far, huh?"
"Not so much" Hawksley huffs. "I mostly save it for my fights since there's not usually anyone around when I'm training and yeah, I beat both Tamaki and Iris. I'm not sure who I'll be facing off with next. One of the Thunder lot though. Why, you offering to spar with me, fella? I'd be happy to give it a go."
His face lights up with a grin at the idea of tackling this traitorous titan. He's not expecting to come out of any violence as the victor but it would be a laugh and that Honoka woman from the bar had suggested he needed to take on some tougher challenges. This would be the perfect chance.
He's less up for the idea of pants pizza though. "I tell you what, fella. I think I'll wait and get some food after our fight. I'm fancying a steak come to think of it."
Stepping back from the punchbag, he lets it swing and then makes his way over towards Zog. "So you ready for me, big lad? You gonna give me a beating?"
Zog lifts his hulking shoulders several inches as Hawksley turns down the offer of free pizza, rolling the slice up before taking a bite out of the resulting cylinder.
"Suit yerself," he says with his mouth half-full, before finishing off the piece with a second bite and dusting his hands on his belly. He tilts his head to one side, then the other as he chews, his mitts shifting to the sides of his waist as he looks down at the Irish boxer. Swallowing, he says, "I can give you a beatin' if you want, shortie, but why don'tcha try seein' if you can even make a dent in me first, huh?"
He pushes his expansive girth forward as he makes the suggestion, the skin over his belly appearing to tighten as he lets his gut hang fully out over the waistband of his pyjama pants.
"Go on. Gimme yer best shot, Hawkey. I won't even hitcha back," he offers generously - or perhaps naively. Only the results will tell - if Hawksley decides to take the ogre up on his offer.
COMBATSYS: Zog has started a fight here.
COMBATSYS: Hawksley has joined the fight here.
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Hawksley 0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0 Zog
Biting down on his lip as he sizes up the big belly before him, the Irish brawler nods his head and then drops into a crouching position, making him appear even smaller before his enormous opponent.
Fixing his dark eyes on his dangerous foe, Hawksley leaps upwards, aiming an uppercut at Zog's chin(s).
Should he be successful or not, the motion will be accompanied by a loud cry at the effort it takes to push himself high enough to reach the ogre's considerable height.
Meanwhile the soundtrack switches to Fight Fire with Fire by Metallica.
COMBATSYS: Zog blocks Hawksley's Angel Interceptor ES.
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Hawksley 0/-------/---====|=------\-------\0 Zog
As magnanimously as Zog may present his tattoo-covered belly for Hawksley to assault, he appears perturbed when Hawksley decides to crouch down, dropping out of view for the ogre behind Zog's own titanic tummy. He leans forward slightly to try and get the fighter back in view.
"Hey! What're you doin' down th-WHA?!"
The sudden leap toward Zog's chin(s) has the giant throwing his arms up to protect his face as Hawksley avoids the much larger and more obvious target in favour of going straight for the jaw. The impact is deadened against one of the ogre's trunk-like arms, sending ripples down the limb that converge into bulging swells of muscle and fat as they go taut with tension.
"You can't just try and punch a fella in the face when he gives you his belly to wallop! That's attackin' an ogre's honour!" the super-sized sponsor growls as his hands ball into fists at his sides. Then, he lurches like a drunk as he swings his weight to draw back a fist before hammering it down in an angry smash toward Hawksley's upper body, apparently having decided that the promised policy of non-relation has been voided by the Irishman's offense.
COMBATSYS: Hawksley blocks Zog's Hammerblow.
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Hawksley 0/-------/-======|=------\-------\0 Zog
He misses his target, but nevertheless, Hawksley is looking pretty pleased with himself.
"You were expecting a punch to the gut, fella. So you'd have been tensing yourself up to prepare. It made much more sense for me to punch you in the jaw. It's a shame I missed but I'm honestly happy to have hit you at all at that height" he explains to the ogre, shrugging off his objections.
When Zog comes looking for revenge, the Irishman is expecting him. Turning himself to the side, he avoids taking the full force of the fist to his chest, blocking the blow with a soon to be bruised bicep.
From here, Hawksley slips forward and twists into a left snap elbow to try and put Zog off-balance. He then aims to pivot into a devastating right-handed haymaker towards the center of the giant's gut. Should it strike, there's a pretty good chance it will send the burly sponsor backwards.
COMBATSYS: Zog interrupts Detonator from Hawksley with Belly Bounce.
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Hawksley 1/----===/=======|====---\-------\0 Zog
"Well, yuh! It was a free hit!" Zog protests in a booming basso buffo as Hawksley tries to justify his insidious tactics to the tribunal of a single angry giant. In the primitive behemoth's culture, presenting one's belly to receive a punch is a common formality, whether as a show of respect or a display of bravado, and is considered a sign of ogrish machismo. After all, opening oneself up to the might of a fellow ogre is typically a riskier proposition than to do so to an ordinary human.
Of course, to accept that offer is not without its own risks, as the ogres of Ignarok's tribe also possess a certain unusual talent...
Hawksley's elbow smacks into Zog's ribs - or at least the layer of blubber protecting his ribs - and does seem to set the monstrous man slightly off-kilter, his belly swaying like a sea of flesh. And when Hawksley throws his full force into the haymaker, he finds the ogre's mountainous middle giving way beneath his fist, arm sinking deeper and deeper through layers of fat until finally impacting against solid muscle, his extended limb enveloped in the ogre's skin.
That's when Zog grins.
A moment later, there's a surge from within the gurgling ocean of flesh, and suddenly, the ogre's belly comes expanding back out like a time-lapsed tidal wave, the power of Hawksley's punch visited back on him as Zog's belly forces his arm back out before smacking into the Irishman's full body with enough force to send him staggering if not flying backward.
As it does, the ogre's roiling guts will offer up a release of air as another belch will echo around the chamber.
"Ha, ha! Gotcha after all, shortie!" Zog gloats as he flexes his arms and wiggles his belly from side to side.
The arrival of one particular gigas is preceeded by a sudden pressure that washes into the room as if a passing storm had settled in directly above the gymnasium with the appropriate shift in hmidity and atmosphereic pressure. It's a quick change and one that lingers just before that sudden humidity shift solidfies into a warbling of the air like the effect of a mirage, rippling over the walls nearest to the very rear of the place not far from the battered and broken back entrance.
From this distortions emerges the titan. Kongou lurching in as if dragging himself through some sort of invisible tar to eventually stagger free into the room with the heavy -TOOMS- of his footfalls sending vibrations bouncing up and down the length and width of the training facility.
He looks...well...drunk isn't the right word but there is a certain lethargic set of movements here. The cadence of somebody who has just been through it and then some. A look not often seen on this gargantua with his gaze likewise distracted as if his thoughts aren't quite all here yet either. There is a brief scent of fire as well. A scorching in the air that drifts in as if carrying the smell of some far away forest fire of all things. But that is here and gone.
In this state he takes a seat, spreadig hislegs out wide as he brings his bottom to the floor of the place. His gigantic body settles, blocking the way out to the busted up garage entrance but also facing the bizarre..ah..training session happening in the middle of the open area of the place.
"Hrrrrn...." he finally grunts, eyes refocusing and then settling on the mammoth Zog and the burly Hawksley before him. "Oooh!" he adds, perking up abit. "Great!"
He manages to get his senses about him just clearly enough to seeddd Hawksley get slammed into by Zog's immense belly, "Hmmm.. Not so great..."
Feeling his fist force its way into Zog's flesh, Hawksley has hope. Briefly. The belly bounces back and the brawler finds himself frowning, just as the giant starts to grin.
First his arm is jerked backwards, then follows his whole frame. He flies through the air and then hits the floor hard.
"Ah Jesus. You feel like a tank" he grumbles to the gloating ogre.
He's about to rise when the air starts to ripple. He recognises the strange sensation. He experienced it at Drippin' Style and before that, he now recalls, at The Rumble.
He turns his head to seek out the suspected source and sees before him another of his sponsors. Kongou seems drunk and the Irishman detects the distinct scent of fire about his form. Both things are familiar to him.
"You alright there, fella?" he checks, observing the new arrival as he settles himself in the space. "Zog here is just throwing me about a bit. I reckon he wants to soften me up before having me for his tea. Don't you worry though. I'm not gonna be eaten without a fight."
The Cork lad clambers to his feet and then takes a run at Zog, aiming to jump towards his midsection and wrap his legs around his wide waist. If he gets a grip on him, he will make a grab to try and grapple with his opponent and force him into a side headlock before punching him repeatedly in the head.
COMBATSYS: Zog blocks Hawksley's Submission.
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Hawksley 1/---====/=======|=====--\-------\0 Zog
Is Kongou's answer to Hawksley while giving the burly irishman a thumbs up. It seems that should be enough of an explanation. He's not simply 'drunk' as much as his form of 'punchdrunk' perhaps. That scent of fire as if he'd just finished walking thorugh a forest fire. Whatever happened must have been quite the tussle given his state though he seems to be sobering up rather quickly as if simply taking a moment to resettle himself is enough to allow the giant to draw upon some invisible reserve of energy.
"I am afraid, I took a....how do you say ..an 'L'.." he rumbles in a trademark 'Greetings fellow high schoolers' sort of moment.
"Twice now.. But both of my opponents were remarkable! I have never so enjoyed losing!" All this is said as his glowing eyes flicker back and forth over the sparring match before him and he then holds a single finger up, grinning as he declares, "Ah hah! The infamous girth of the warriors of Ignarok in action! I'd never thought to see such a sight again and with that degree of immensity and reverb no less! I am grateful to see such a thing but I fear, Hawksley, that you must dance more and run into it less."
An easily-distracted ogre at the best of times, Zog has his head easily turned by the arrival of Kongou. It seems that Hawksley may have suddenly found himself in the world of Mike Bison's Punch-Out!, another example of merchandising forever tarnished by the boxer's dark history (the decision to include fatalities felt, in retrospect, to be in poor taste). He does resemble the protagonist Little Jack next to the likes of Zog's King Elephant and Kongou's Super Macho Dude.
"Hey! Whatcha talkin' about? This is real good!"
His attention is drawn back to Hawksley as the Irishman approaches anew.
"What's a tank?" he wants to know as he lowers his upper body toward his center of gravity, arms at the ready at either side. "And how d'ya know it don't feel like /me/?"
The attempt at grappling with the giant doesn't go quite as planned for the Irish boxer. He might manage to clamber his way up and get a punch or two against the ogre guardian's head, but Zog shakes him off before he can make the eight count, shaking the cobwebs out of his head and snorting.
"Quit crawlin' around like a skull monkey and fight me, manling!" he bellows. His right palm is already drawn back and held at the ready when Hawksley hits the floor, and the Irishman will have to be quick to avoid getting slammed into by the flat of his oversized meat-mitt!
COMBATSYS: Zog dazes Hawksley with Palm Smash!
- Power hit! -
* Attack Of Opportunity! *
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Hawksley 2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=====--\-------\0 Zog
"Oh yeah, the thing you went to Russia for" Hawksley recalls. "You've been at it again then? I'm sorry it's not been working out for you, fella but you keep at it. It sounds like you're having a ball, so you are."
As Kongou shares his wisdom with the young whippersnapper, the Irish lad considers his words. "I'm not a bad dancer, so I'm not and my da and Uncle Liam always told me to keep moving more. Maybe I'll give that a go."
Now would probably have been a good time to put that plan in to action but alas, he's already falling to the floor and his fate is not to be a fortunate one. The mighty mit of the man mountain that is Zog comes close to crushing him as he's slammed into the ground. He swears he can see stars and he's barely had any booze today.
He pushes himself onto his hands and knees and blinks at his dance partner with bleary brown eyes. "You play rough, fella. I like it." There's a cheery smile on his face though, even as he's spitting some blood from his mouth.
Once he's confident he can actually walk again, Hawksley quickens his pace but what's this? Is he walking away from the fight he was just claiming to enjoy? He ducks down and grabs a dumbbell that's been discarded by one of the mats. Checking the weight and deciding that twenty kilograms seems reasonable, he weaves his way back to where the bout was taking place. Holding his weapon in his hand, the rookie rises upwards, seeking to smack his sponsor in the face.
"A tank is an armoured combat vehicle" he explains, trying to educate Zog at the same time he's aiming to land one on him.
COMBATSYS: Zog endures Hawksley's Random Weapon.
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Hawksley 2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\1 Zog
Having successfully barreled over his Irish charge, Zog thumps the same palm he's just struck Hawksley with against his stomach, following up with the other in a rapid-fire drum celebration using the cushiony percussion of his belly to fill the room with a flourish of sound, as if someone were dribbling a basketball.
"You're right, I do like playin' rough. But I ain't playin' rough with ya yet, tiny!"
He stoops down to try and hear what Hawksley is explaining as the young fighter comes swinging at him with the dumbbell.
"An armoured wha-"
Zog's head snaps back as he wobbles unsteadily on his feet, ears ringing from the blow. Scowling, he turns around and looks for a similar weapon - settling on a barbell with hundreds of pounds of weights on them.
"Don't come tryin' to swing your weight around at Zog, pipsqueak!" he bellows as he hefts the scale-equivalent improvised weapon above his head with both hands before hurling the bar straight at Hawksley!
COMBATSYS: Hawksley auto-guards Zog's Huge Thrown Object.
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Hawksley 2/<<<<<<</<<<<<<<|=======\-------\0 Zog
"You've got more to give have you, fella? Well bring it on then!" Hawksley encourages the ogre, as the sound of the dumbbell hitting his sponsor's skull sounds out.
He's rather pleased with himself for a brief interlude before he sees that revenge is coming for him and it's served in a much bigger portion than he can dish out. The deadly looking dumbbell comes soaring in his direction. Reacting rapidly, he reaches to catch it, plucking it out of the air with perfect precision
"Jesus, that's fecking heavy" he shouts, releasing the weight and sending it clattering noisily across the gym. "It probably weighs more than two of me."
Flexing out his fingers, the fiery fighter looks towards Zog, seeking eye contact with the colossus. Stamping his foot on the ground, he ignites it, creating a ring of fire that spreads outward to surround the two males and Kongou too, if he's close enough to be in its path! He then delivers a devastating lightning-fast punch to try and send Zog flying through the wall of flames.
COMBATSYS: Zog reflects Burn Baby Burn ES from Hawksley with Giant Belly EX.
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Hawksley 1/------</<<<<<<<|-------\-------\0 Zog
Zog gawks at Hawksley as the much less meaty man manages to catch the flung weight out of the air without harm, any sense of smug satisfaction wiped off of his face for a few merciful moments. His expression turns more serious as the blazing brawler meets his eyes and sets the mats alight with his igniting stomp. Something that could almost pass for respect glints in his gaze for a flickering moment as he utters reverently, "Looks like maybe you got the blessin' of Ignarok after all. Lessee what you can do with it!"
Zog stands his ground with his arms at his sides and hands balled into fists as Hawksley focuses toward his impending blow.
Then, the lightning-fast punch flashes forward.
What happens next is almost too quick to see; in the aftermath, the crimson stripes that cover Zog's belly and shoulders and biceps are left glowing magma orange as the primitive wards engage, triggered by the blazing energy colliding with the ogre's gut. Instead of Zog being sent flying backward, though, it's Hawksley who is sent flying back into the ring of fire, the ogre's mystically-imbued belly having turned the fighter's own might back on him. Only what appears to be a harmless black soot mark is left on Zog's lightly undulating stomach, and he dusts it off lightly, snorting.
"Guess Ignarok still likes me more, huh?"
He folds his arms across his belly.
"Not bad, though, Hawkey. Not bad. You and me should go partyin' more! You're more fun than I thought! Huhuh!"
The broad smile on the ogre's thick lips curls slightly downward after a moment.
"Hey, uh, you okay, Hawkey??"
"Ugggggh" groans the little Irishman as every bone in his body screams out in protest at the pummeling he's taken.
"Jesus, fecking hell" he groans, curling up into a ball as he brings his knees up to his chest.
"Don't worry, I'll be grand in a moment" he assures Zog but that seems unlikely given the state of him.
Sure enough, several minutes later and the plucky pugilist has still not gotten up. "Who's this Ignarok fella anyway?" he wonders, his breath sounding somewhat wheezy.
"We can go out sometime if you like. You too, Kongou. We might need a bigger venue than The Dead Squirrel though. Speaking of partying, get that fecking keg out that you have" he suggests to Zog. "I could do with a drink or ten after that bloody beating. Then the three of us could sit and have a chat about me getting my act together before I have to thrash it out with whichever member of Team Thunder they throw my way."
COMBATSYS: Hawksley takes no action.
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COMBATSYS: Hawksley can no longer fight.
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Zog's already just got his grog barrel out by the time that Hawksley suggests it, having just taken a sloshing swig from it himself.
"Yeah, okay, little buddy. You earned it," he says, before tipping the keg to pour a drink out toward Hawksley's mouth from above - though the Irish boxer might not be expecting it. "Yer right, we need somethin' bigger than a dead squirrel or we're all gonna be hungry. We could use the magic talky box to get them to send more pizzas! And more cuties!"
Zog sits down on the ground next to Hawksley, causing the ring next to them to shake.
"I can't believe you never heard of Ignarok. He's the god of fire! He lives in the mountain my tribe comes from, and he turns rocks to lava when he's angry!"
He pounds his belly with a fist.
"I'm the strongest, so he gave me his power, too! I'm the guardian of Ignarok's heart!"
He deflates just a little, before adding, "Or I was, anyways. I'll tell ya about that later. For now, we gotta party to get goin'."
COMBATSYS: Zog has ended the fight here.
"Are you training him or are you squahing him?" asks Kongou after a moment of silence with one hand curling against the underside of his chin as he watches this all play out before him.
"Is this a spar or a decimation?" he asks again when Hawksley is once again hurtled to the ground..
"Was that a punch or a flail?"
Okay he's probably just doing his version of 'trolling' now, perhaps. Ironic given the Ogre in the Room.
His eyes widen a bit when Hawksley finally goes down but there is a slight toothy grin on his face as well, betraying his lack of true concern though he curiously studies the runic magic that emenates from Zog and then casts his eyes about the area as if looking at the threads of weaving fire chi and aura that drift about from the two fighters expressions of power. "Huh. Impressive Hawksley!" he finally declares. "I think that most would have backed away from that but you took it head on! You are stupid but such stupidity is born from boldness and breeds a sturdiness that the wise and cautious lack!" There was a compliment and word of encouragement in there somewhere. "And it's done you good so far.I do believe our ability to emerge from last place has rested on your performance!"
With that, the colossus rises, his body seeming to literally inflate slightly as if his recharge is complete and some sort of invisible surging pulse of strength has rumbled into him. The air itself trembling slightly with his movements as his physique creaks and then relaxes like a landslide coming to a stop. Super Macho Dude indeed.
"These ones...know little of Outworld." he adds to Zogas he approaches the duo with rumbling footfalls, "It is no surprise they don't know Ignarok anymore then you can name Earth Realm deities." He pauses to consider and then ammends with a, "..Or can you?"
It seems that Hawksley has an instinctive feel for when alcohol is heading his way, because he opens his mouth at the exact moment the liquid from the keg reaches it. Gulping down the grog thirstily, he then sits up, remarkably restored, and wipes his mouth with the back of his hand.
"Yeah, get on the blower and grab us some food. You can have my share of the cuties if they come with, Zog."
"So Ignarok is a fire fella huh? I'm not too good on learning stuff but he sounds like an interesting one to know. It'd be grand to hear your story sometime about the guardian shite. He must have really trusted you to give you that responsability."
Hawksley looks across to Kongou, his eyes sparkling at the somewhat salty commentary the sponsor was giving. "I reckon you said more good to me than bad, so I'll take that" he grins. "Let's hope I can continue to keep up my record, so I don't let you lads down."
Spar over, he seems to be settled in for an afternoon of bonding and beer. Any further training will have to wait till tomorrow.
"Outworld? Earth Realm?" Zog looks uncertain of what Kongou's referring to. He may be a denizen of Outworld residing in Earthrealm, but to an ogre whose tribesmen spend most of their lives with nothing but jungle trees as far as they can see, with little interaction outside the tribe, such concepts are unfamiliar.
He does catch Kongou's drift enough to have an answer for the titan's question, though.
"Yeah! There's Lyraelle, and, uhh..."
The ogres scratches his head for a moment before lifting his shoulders. "...all the rest of 'em! Duh!"
He turns two thumbs upward before dismissing the subject.
"Uhh, I'll just use the magic talkie box and they'll send it to us," Zog assures Hawksley, "but, deal. And I can tell ya about Ignarok! I ain't the shaman, but you don't get to be guardian without knowin' a thing or two. Now, where'd I leave the talkie box?"
He starts waddling off to fetch the phone, pulling up his sagging sweatpants as he does.
Log created on 11:09:45 09/21/2023 by Angelina, and last modified on 09:29:12 10/02/2023.