SNF 2005.11 - Chun-Li vs Rose

Description: Chun-Li straps on her Women's Championship Belt and heads to the arena (read: amusement park) for a title defence. A scary level of awesome ensues, and it comes down to a breathtaking finish. What will happen when next our heroines meet?! Tune in next week, same Chun-Li time, same Chun-Li channel!

The amusement park. It wasn't that long ago that Rose was having a battle of a rather different kind here, and as she wanders the alleys and byways that booths and rides create in the crowded place, it is impossible to get the results of that fight out of her mind. She'd known Vega was powerful, but had completely underestimated how powerful he truly is. She would need... allies. And soon, if the things he said were any indicator.
And thus it was with great amusement (and no small amount of joy) that she discovered her tactic of placing herself in Saturday Night Fights in order to discover fighters of great ability who might help her had finally paid off. The psychic had known Chun-li's name for many months now, but had been unaware that the (arguably) mightiest woman in the world had been frequenting Southtown. And now Geese Howard had rather haphazardly landed her right in Rose's lap.
Finally finding the cordoned-off arena near the Viking ride, the fortuneteller slips into the ring and then closes her eyes, waiting. Patience is a virtue which she has in great supply. All she needs to do now is test Chun-li's reportedly prodigious strength...

The Strongest Woman in the World is not a great distance behind her opponent, making her way through slender valleys in the amusement park crowds - concealing the figure that is steadily growing in fame through use of a long trenchcoat of the traditional detective variety. A matching hat pulled over her eyes, she comes to this bout in good humour and with a definite spring in her stride, despite having been accosted once already. More to come on /that/, later. For now, she is attempting to focus on the battle before her, having heard very little of this 'Rose' and with scant time to discover anything further thanks to Howard's rather frantic booking arrangements. Ironic then that this Italian mystic is exactly the stranger she has been searching for since returning to Southtown.

"Excuse me." Chun-Li murmurs to a huddle of youths scant meters from the stage, gracing them with a small smile barely visible beneath her broad-rimmed hat. As they drift apart muttering annoyance at being moved from their prime positioning, the Tai Chi mistress steps forward and mounts the makeshift arena with a graceful hop, striding out to the side opposite Rose before spinning upon her heel. In a flurry and a swish of material, hat and coat are flung aside to arc away into the gathering bustle. "You must be Rose, it's an honour to meet you."

Gaze lifting to her newly acquainted foe, she brings her hands to her chest - palms together - and bows swiftly, an analytical eye swooping over every nuance of the psychic's curious form. A light frown mars Chun-Li's brow at something she cannot entirely comprehend, a trace of some aura that concerns her - and for the first time, though likely not the last for today, an alarm bell is sounded. The effect on her expression is fleeting however, as the woman drops into a casual position and shifts her attention sidelong

Did we mention being accosted? Because there's the offending party hot on her heels, and a slight smirk goes out to the... witch... following the world's strongest woman. Barely able to stop herself laughing, she lifts her voice to address any nearby officials in addition to the audience. "Ladies and gentlemen, I bring a special guest star with me. Her name is Naerose Delphine, and she's here to call my match! Put your hands together!" Pausing long enough for cheering and heckling to die down, she raises her heels and begins to move in a light rhythm, dropping below a veil of focused calm and presenting herself to Rose in ready stance.

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li has started a fight here.

COMBATSYS: Rose has joined the fight here.

This was awesome! Spendiferic really. Something she read in a book, supposed to be one of those hybrid words like blog, only not. So here she was, calling a match, with permission from a fighter and maybe, just maybe she won't be faced with another pistol loaded with one or more barrels of Reppuken! So, was she going to call the match? Yes! Giddily following Chun-li, she climbs up on the ermm stage? Well where they plan to pummel each other, stays out of the way, winks, adjusts her shades, pulls out her co-announcer, Silvester the bunny, from under her hat, unplugs the Howard commentators and plugs herself in!

"Laaaadies and Gentlemen! Welcome to once again another addition of Saturday night fight! Today we have for you a One on one match up between the worlds Strongest! and a very mysterious opponent. Yes in this corner we have the renown and respected, Master of the Tai Chi style of combat, Chun-li! Some of you call her the world's strongest woman, but I have to say gender qualifiers won't get you props with this woman.. Anyway, her opponent, a woman whose hair dresser knows how to defy the laws of physics, a style all her own, the fortune teller and apparently warrior known only as Rose! Err.. I don't have a stat sheet for this woman.. I don't think. . Silvester, onto you!"

The witch passes the megaphone over to her bunny who nibbles on a cord while she herself digs through her SNF trading cards.

"Right you are Silvester, " The witch breaks in, taking back the megaphone, "Lets get this party started, both fighters Ready...? " - Apparently it's a rhetorical question - "FIGHT!"

And there she is. A proud, confident stance... and good eyes. Rose herself can sense Chun-li's unease, but does not seem overly concerned with it; indeed, she'd be more worried if the Tai Chi fighter hadn't been somewhat put off by the psychic's own aura of power, which is not dissimilar to Vega's own, for reasons unknown to all but two people, neither of which are telling. "The honor is all mine, Inspector," Rose says confidently, inclining her head a bit. Bowing is not in her repertoire, even if deference is. "I had hoped to have a chance to meet you for quite some time, though perhaps I had envisioned..." And then she sweeps an arm out to take in the amusement park, the crowds, the cameras, Naerose... a gesture clearly intended to convey: "without all this".
Rather unlike Chun-li's skilled, form-perfect stance, Rose doesn't even appear to *have* a fighting stance; indeed, other than loosening the shawl on her shoulders somewhat and bringing one hand up in front of her, you'd almost expect she were there for a photo shoot, perhaps, instead of a fight. She circles her opponent somewhat, before lazily bringing up that hand and pointing it, palm out, at Chun-li. "While my own talents are meager, I do hope to provide a good challenge against your legendary kicks... let us begin!" And with no further ado, her shawl springs to life, charged with Soul Power and lashing out like a whip to catch Chun-li in the abdomen, a careful first blow.

COMBATSYS: Rose successfully hits Chun-Li with Aura Scarf.

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Rose             0/-------/-----==|====---\-------\0          Chun-Li

Much like her opponent, Chun-Li has little time for the pomp and circumstance of sanctioned matches. It might seem something of a puzzle just why she competes... given this dislike and no real shortage of funds... but the answer is obvious enough; she fights to test her abilities against those she might otherwise not encounter. Three editions of Saturday Night Fight have all provided their contributions to her character.

But the similarity of their feeling here is not what causes the eyes of the world's strongest woman to widen upon Rose, nor does it account for the strange emotion that swells through her. The psychic's words do that all by themselves, causing the stomach to churn just slightly and a quizzical tip of the head to come forth in expression of this odd confusion. Envisioned? That phrase alone seems to make all the difference to what otherwise might be just another famous fighter seeking a challenge. All but unaware of Naerose - except as a distant concern - of the yelling crowd, she simply stares at Rose for the time it takes for an energy-wreathed scarf to unfurl.

"Very well!" The exclamation comes much belatedly, and is almost cut off with the very twist of the woman's body as she attempts to evade the blow. Much too close already, it rips against one side of her body, channelling its power in a violent burst and sending her toppling to one side. "Ngh..." Righting herself by crouching and slapping a palm to the ground, Chun-Li keeps her attention on Rose despite the pained wince she gives. Meanwhile a shockwave of recognition runs through her. This is... Psycho Power. The very thing she has been seeking answers to these last few weeks, and on a level greater even than that exhibited by Cammy.

There's no time to ruminate on this though, and the intense curiosity and desire to learn is outwardly shown only as a fierce determination as the woman stands. "May the best woman win." She intones, rippling to her full height and then surging forward. Booted feet rip up the stage for a few paces and then she curls willowlike at the hip, extending a hand to brush the floor and then propelling herself around in an acrobatic display. Soon enough the Tai Chi mistress is in an aerial headstand, her legs snapping out to either side to form the basis of her trademark assault. "SPINNING BIRD KICK!"

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li successfully hits Rose with Spinning Bird Kick.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////////       ]
Rose             0/-------/--=====|======-\-------\0          Chun-Li

"Rose starts off the match with a sneaky surprise attack at the start of the round, it looked like to me she's hiding some sort of weapon in her cloths.. Or maybe some kind of energy, we're not quite sure and will be checking with the officials, Silvester any comments?"

-----------Bunnies don't talk -----------------

"Right you are Silvester, Rose certainly has some interesting techniques to use, but we'll see how it pays off showing her hand so early on. And here we have it folks, the Master Chun-li hammers back. This attack known as the 'Spinning Bird kick,' imitated by known fighters as.. " she begins flipping through cards, "Ryu.. just Ryu I guess, Ken Masters, Sakura Kasugano and Yuri Sakazaki, just to name a few, except they don't have the awe shown here by Chun Li.. Meanwhile it looks like Rose isn't out yet, how Howard enterprises chooses these match ups is a mystery to me, but this battle is just beginning!"

Naerose drones, her dialogue doesn't seem as hot as the action, so she buys a hotdog from the nearest vendor and well, starts to eat.

"mhats this? mhuff mhh mhuuf m mmmhufff! Mmm mhfhf hhhffff mmhuu fmff mmmhhuff." Just imagine it was thought provoking and fascinating.

'May the best woman win' indeed. It's tit-for-tat night on Saturday Night Fights, without question; even as Rose's shawl unwinds itself, settling back on her shoulders, she finds Chun-li spinning at her with a signature technique that more than displays why her kicking technique is considered one of the most refined in the world. Frowning in consternation, Rose attempts to sidestep the incoming blow and misjudges just a tad, taking a pair of boots right to the chest and stumbling back a few steps, putting a hand just below her throat and taking a breath. Okay. That *hurt*. Of course, Chun-li didn't appear to get off easy on Rose's initial strike either, so. "Your reputation is well-deserved, Inspector," she says, with no small amount of admiration.
And then the psychic is on the move, closing the distance this time to get in and attack on a more personal scale. "This simply means I shall have to redouble my effort!" Ducking slightly as she nears the Tai Chi mistress, Rose makes a rising 'slash' with her hand, swiping it across Chun-li's torso in a diagonal from left to right. However, it's not the hand that is the real force of the blow, but rather the purple-blue 'knife' of Soul Power that forms around her hand as she makes the attack.

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li blocks Rose's Medium Punch.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////////         ]
Rose             0/-------/-======|=======\-------\0          Chun-Li

Chun-Li :unfolds from her successful flurry of strikes with every ounce of the grace she used to instigate them, legs completing their final rotation by setting booted feet back to the ground, her upper body curving around to align itself perfectly. Almost unnerving how comfortable the motions appear. "Thank you.. I-I've worked hard," the slight stammer puzzles even the Tai Chi mistress herself, though it's explained to an extent by the emotions ignited by Rose's power. Despite her power and skill she feels almost a girl again, so young and fragile. It's a disturbing familiar feeling and causes a frown to graze the woman's brow as she stands, guard raised and concentration heavy upon her opponent.

"!" A palm snaps out to catch the blow that comes in a moment later, Chun-Li struggling to remain focused as the accompanying 'blade' of energy soars past her guard and assaults her spirit once more. Teeth gritting she takes a quick step back, bends down into a half-crouch and then surges forward in an athletic rush of her own power. Both palms extended and bearing the focal point for her inner reserves, she aims to hit Rose in the gut and send the psychic backward - hopefully buying enough time that she can be prepared for any further onslaught. "HAAH!"

There's no doubt that this Italian is the person she has unconciously sought.

COMBATSYS: Rose dodges Chun-Li's Sou Hakkei.

Anybody watching this fight should find it painfully clear that the defense techniques in this fight are coming down to wire-thin margins. Rose's way of dodging attacks seems effortless, but only to the uninitiated; both she and Chun-li know that there's a hair's breadth only that kept Rose from being bowled over by the Tai Chi fighter's vicious palm strike. 'A little girl', indeed... "That diligence speaks well of you, however," the psychic says, soothingly. "Your strong technique bespeaks a strong heart."
However, Rose didn't come here to throw out compliments willy-nilly; she came here to test the extent of Chun-li's skill, and you can't do that lying down. In her experience, fighters perform their best when presented with adversity... and so the onus is on Rose to make this fight as challenging as possible so that Chun-li will use all of her strength. Thus, the fortuneteller does not attack, but rather begins to gather power, a power that becomes palpable in the air as she centers herself, drawing on vast inner reserves. Soul Power sparks in the air, but this is the only real outward show of force. The rest... is internal.

COMBATSYS: Rose gathers her will.

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Rose             1/-----==/=======|=======\-------\1          Chun-Li

Straightening from her overextended strike with a quick intake of breath, Chun-Li is at least relieved to see her attack have the desired effect. Responding to Rose's complimentary words with a small smile and a reaffirming of her battle stance, she begins to regather her own willpower. As with the last bout she needs to remain focused enough that the emotional onslaught cannot disturb me - needs to treat is as she would any other form of attack. This is hard enough without the energy control being as excellent as the psychic's.

Adversity indeed. Oddly though, the rush she feels at having finally found a person whose power rivals Vega's own should prove enough to carry her through. Some opportunities cannot be missed, and the Chinese beauty has missed far too many to allow this one to defy her. With this in mind she paces forward, beginning to circle Rose whilst scouting out the aura surrounding her.. attempting to unravel its implications, to feel it as she would that of any other warrior, and then she dances in with a few brisk steps.

"Heee..." Letting the kiai build between her lips, on the fourth step Chun-Li lifts her right leg in a testing strike for her waiting foe's midsection, following up with a dramatic twist of her form and a punishing roundhouse from the opposite leg, her balance shifting completely. Risky, but she has been given the time she needs and sees an opening. "HYAH!"

COMBATSYS: Rose fails to interrupt Strong Kick from Chun-Li with Soul Spiral.

[              \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////          ]
Rose             0/-------/=======|=======\=------\1          Chun-Li

Anyone watching this fight would know..? Well Naerose is watching the fight, between eating her hotdog and reading her SNF collector's cards and seems to think that..
"Rose makes defense look easy! Her outfit clearly some sort of dancer thing, look at her sparkle and move and weave and wave and.. Oouuuu, Okay nevermind, that looked really painful, guess she took the dancing thing a little far."
Naerose says, going back to her munchies.

So, perhaps the power gain was a bit of a fake-out on Rose's part. However, she was not expecting Chun-li to be the one doing the faking out instead! At the very least Rose didn't grin before she attacked, her expression remaining carefully serious and neutral. As Chun-li makes a fulcrum shift-type of kick, Rose suddenly springs into motion, her scarf forming a blazing coil around her arm as she thrusts it forward. However... things do not always go as planned, even for a psychic. Chun-li's kick impacts on Rose's shoulder before she can connect, sending the psychic spinning away and leaving the Tai Chi fighter fresh as a daisy (such as it is).
Frowning in consternation for only a moment, Rose quickly collects herself and faces off against Chun-li again, taking a deep breath to center herself. Well, she was looking for a demonstration of Chun-li's power and that most certainly fit the bill. The coiled shawl, seemingly hovering in midair somewhere, comes to rest back on Rose's shoulders lightly as she faces her opponent, watching carefully. Just because she's not in it to win doesn't mean she's going to let Chun-li walk all over her!

Chun-Li's eyes snap widen open even as she executes the second of her kicks, espying in the corner of her gaze that raging coil of Psycho Power manifesting itself with a dangerous intensity. Though it never makes contact, the hard contact of booted foot to flesh assuring the Chinese woman of this simple fact, the eruption of energy is in itself enough to further unnerve Rose's opponent. Spinning about with the momentum of her landed strike, she falls into a low stance, breathing heavily and watching the fortune teller with a wary tension. "Who /are/ you?" She breathes, a jitter in her tone causing her to clear her throat once the words are hanging in the air.

Regardless of an answer, Chun-Li is already moving backward toward the opposite edge of the stage, a brief glance going out to the crowd before returning to Rose. "I've encountered this before, but.. only once has it made me feel like this," she explains, briefly pausing to adjust the spiked bracelets upon either wrist. Her hackles are still raised however, she simply appears to be biding time while she makes her query, tense and somewhat distant as she speaks. This battle is not yet over.

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li focuses on her next action.

"No one of consequence," Rose says quietly in response to Chun-li's question. Pithy? Yes. But also true. Rose is perfectly aware of what her role is, an in the grand scheme of things she doesn't consider it 'of consequence'; rather, she is simply an instrument of natural justice. "Your instincts are good," the psychic continues. "So many would ignore what their senses tell them. You do not."
And then Rose simply... stays where she is, gathering her inner force again. Perhaps not the smartest move -- Chun-li's got the momentum now, and playing to the defensive might not be the more tactically-sound option -- but something about her opponent's careful gaze deters Rose from attacking further... never mind the fact that Rose herself is hurting more than a little bit, and having the extra time to get herself in gear will not hurt a bit. "But... I am not an enemy."

COMBATSYS: Rose gathers her will.

[             \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////////////////          ]
Rose             1/---====/=======|=======\=------\1          Chun-Li

Meanwhile, Naerose who is fairly close tot he action, doesn't sense anything, or she ignores her senses or her senses are so dull that, well to her Rose just seems like, "A cheap fortune teller dancer? Well Silvester, that isn't a very nice thing to say about a very skilled warrior, but I must admit this is coming down to the wire, it looks like both fighters, Chun Li and Rose are ready to blow the top off this battle and give us some climatic beatings. Though I must say, with two beautiful women like this, it's a shame to see them beating on each other, from a veteran of Saturday night fights, " - she only did one, and that time because Howard enterprises forced her - " It's a tough thing to put your might on the line and get bruised up and hurt for it.. Today's fight is about one thing, Gusto! WHO has the Gusto?"

Chun-Li frowns once the answer arrives, the lack of defined identity not in the least aiding her focus. "Wouldn't that be subjective?" The near-whisper comes in response to the initial response, but the woman's quiet expression is soon replaced with a smirk when the latter arrives shortly afterward. That much she may have derived of her own accord... in fact, with her knowledge of Rose this far the Tai Chi mistress would hazard that neutrality would be her role... she would never place her as a direct opposition to her hated nemesis. The truth as it is could never be assumed, or even believed at this stage. "But I understand your caution."

Perhaps that causes a little confusion, as Chun-Li equates Rose's manner of response with that of a younger user of Psycho Power. The ability to stir an opponent's innermost thoughts and feelings to a whirling maelstrom is hardly one that can be openly accepted by all. The very opposite. Pausing to draw breath as she forces thoughts of allies and enemies aside, the world's strongest woman gracefully allows her hands to flow to her hips, fingers curling around an imaginary ball, before she rejoins the fray. "Prepare yourself, Rose!"

"Ki-" Suddenly the surge of Rose's own power is mirrored with a golden flash from the blue corner, a brief flood of light encompassing Chun-Li until it coalesces momentarily into a beautiful pinpoint held between her palms. Flowing in a smooth and beautiful motion she then thrusts her hands forth, palms spreading wide to convey the small burst of energy, the woman's focused power enshrouding it in a sheath of blue-white - the completed projectile surging forth in a flash with a speed belied by its aesthetic nature. "KOUKEN!"

COMBATSYS: Rose blocks Chun-Li's Kikou Ken.

[               \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////////////////           ]
Rose             1/--=====/=======|=======\==-----\1          Chun-Li

This time, there is no fakeout; instead, just before Chun-li's Kikouken would impact, the psychic throws up her shawl, and in a flicker of Soul Power all but dissipates the attack with a burst of her own energy... not completely vanished, but the impact instead turned to something less deadly. "I apologize," Rose actually says, collecting herself. "I was not meaning to dictate; rather, I simply am sharing my belief that I am not working at cross-purposes to you." Taking a deep breath, the psychic closes her eyes briefly, then opens them again, homing in on Chun-li with her dark purple gaze, pupils for a moment seemingly nothing but dark, bottomless pools. "As you say, it is up to you to make the distinction for yourself."
Leaning her head back slightly, exposing a pale expanse of throat as she does so, Rose once again loosens the shawl about her neck... and now, the 'background' feeling of power from the psychic is all but gone. Instead, Soul Power whirls about her in motes of light and other, less... obvious ways, but which should be discernible to someone of Chun-li's sharp perception. Still... it is not the overwhelming angry power of Vega's dark force, but something altogether different... brighter. More clear. "That you are such a challenge to fight does my heart glad," she says quietly, her head snapping back into place. "I shall choose to honor your skill thusly!"
And with a flick of the wrist, it all comes to an anti-climactic close. The shawl springs out parallel to Rose's extended arm, a glowing violet sphere of Soul Power trailing gold lashing out at Chun-li with fairly intense speed. While the sphere itself is nothing of consequence... there is a much more powerful, invisible piledriver blow of sheer psychic force riding behind it. "Soul Spark!"

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li slows Aura Soul Spark from Rose with Kikoushou.

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Rose             0/-------/-------|==-----\-------\0          Chun-Li

After she unleashes her trademark 'ball' of chi, the world's strongest woman remains extended only for an instant. Watching the energy shatter against what is clearly a far superior form of power, Chun-Li sucks in a blast of air and retrains the earth's natural force back into her opened palms. Fingers curl slowly inward as they withdraw to her hip and the woman assumes a powerful stance, not far shy of the traditional Horse school. "Then honour me, and let us both be tested!" She calls over the summoned energies, blueish fronds already coating her pale fingertips and warping into a dust devil of force about her hands.

Breathing in and out steadily through her nose as a low cry begins on her lips, the Tai Chi mistress could not be more well prepared once the psychic onslaught is upon her. "Kaaaa..." Turning her body to one side to catch the whipping scarf, weathering the brief streak of pain it causes, and only barely faltering in her call, she then swings her arms around to meet the incoming blast with her own. "KOUSHOU!" Calm and focused rage meets calm and focused rage, the two colours thrashing about in a dramatic skirmish that floods the stage with dissipating lashes of chi and Psycho Power.

The display lasts for nearly half a minute, the Chinese woman standing firm with her face turned away from the threatening power bubbling a scarce distance away, her fingers feverishly twitching to maintain sway over Rose's assault. But then, there's an almost blinding flash of extremely bright light, causing spectators to cry out and drop to their knees clutching at their eyes. When it lifts a few moments later... Chun-Li is upon her knees, hands limp at her sides and eyes bloodshot, breath coming in ragged gasps. "...just like him..."

This might be the first time Rose has ever spoken in such a tone to another person, but there is no mistaking that She Means Business when she said it. Usually quiet and neutral, Rose's denial is forceful, blunt. And perhaps even she recognizes this, for her face softens shortly after. "Your perception is even better than I gave you credit for. But we are not the same. Where he is dark, I am light. Where he is cruel, I am merciful. Where he is constricting, I am liberating. All he is not, I am. All I am not, he is." And here, the psychic's eyes narrow. "And for that reason alone, forever will he and I struggle against at each other."
In a show of that mercy -- despite the fact that it is not in her best interest as an SNF opponent -- Rose does not attack, instead watching Chun-li carefully, taking her measure once again, letting her recover. Perhaps what the Tai Chi fighter does not know is that the technique Rose just unleashed is not simply a 'throw it and forget it' measure; each moment Chun-li's Kikoushou held out was a moment that the Strongest Woman in the World's very will held out against Rose's assault. The fact that it was able to do that at all is most impressive... and the act of attacking with it in the first place has left the psychic somewhat... fatigued.

COMBATSYS: Rose focuses on her next action.

Blink blink blink.

"Well Ladies and gentlemen, the pair seem to be talking about something or someone, about .. hmmm politics! They're talking about the prime minister of Japan, if that's what you people have here. I think they need to focus more on the fight, but lets talk instead about the various tactics they are using. Rose we still have no stats for, but she seems to use this strategy of waiting for the right moments to strike, meanwhile Chun Li is all about determination, strength and this just in, confusion! What is up with these two Silvester!?"

----------The rabbit nibbles on the coat Chun li came in----------

"Aww crap, Li Fei is never going to forgive me, stop that stop that! " She knocks over something onto said coat and makes an 'EEEK' sound, " Aww crap... ermm, quick, lets destroy the evidence."

She shoves said coat into her hat, "Right, so Chun Li and Rose, squaring off again. This fight has been colossal impacts followed by brief rests, but will it continue?"

The Chinese woman struggles to keep her eyes open, to keep her senses alert while she listens to Rose address her conclusion. Darkness and light, a never-ending struggle that she knows only too well - in a shallow sense, in her very actions but also within her own heart. This parallel only increases the surreal sense of discovery that suddenly marks this match-up, somehow not made a mockery by the gaudy location or high fees on offer to whoever may prevail. None of that matters anyway, let alone in the face of such a perspective-shifting moment.

"Then..." Chun-Li pushes herself to her feet, shivering briefly with the forced movement and only forcing herself through sheer willpower - using the very source that has been targeted by Rose. "Then you know him." The wording is simple, the tone quiet, but the impact of it falls like a lead weight, her expression telling so much that mundane phrasing cannot convey. Every emotion of times past and present floods through her in an instant - her life story on offer to any who would care to peel it wholesale from her mind's eye, though Rose likely knows this already. "Please, let's finish this. We need to talk..."

The request barely easing itself from her throat, the Tai Chi mistress is already starting forward with a violently enforced stoicism, determined and tight-lipped as she darts forward in swift motions of her famed legs. Covering the distance to Rose in a blur, she spins in on the final approach to gather momentum for a series of rapid palm strikes - aimed for gut, chest and finally an uppercutting thrust to the chin. "Hah, hah, YAA!"

COMBATSYS: Rose blocks Chun-Li's Medium Punch.

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Rose             0/-------/------=|==-----\-------\0          Chun-Li

Ah, and there we have it. At least Chun-li believed Rose's spiel, though perhaps that's not giving enough credit to the Interpol inspector's instincts, because for all their similarity, Vega and Rose DO 'feel'... different. As Chun-li drives in with punches, Rose loosens her shawl, holding it taut with both hands and using the Soul-hardened cloth to deflect the palm strikes, seemingly to no real effect, though the psychic herself takes a bit of damage in the form of backlash; conservation of energy says it must go somewhere, even pure kinetic force. "Yes, I know him," Rose says quietly, staying in close to Chun-li so she can speak without being overheard by most of the crowd. Because, you know. The Prime Minister of Japan might be watching. "Better than any other."
And with that cryptic statement, the fortuneteller simply... puts out a hand, attempting to get it in line with the Tai Chi mistress' stomach. "But you are right in that this is a conversation for another time." If Chun-li doesn't get out of the way, or somehow deflect what's to come, Rose simply uses her hand to 'guide' Chun-li through the air a bit, then hurl her away with the momentum-enhancing pseudo-psychokinetic Soul Power that many of her techniques use.

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li dodges Rose's Soul Fade.

'Better than any other'? This causes Chun-Li's eyes to flicker even as she spins from her final thrust, hands retracting from their guarded attacks to mount defensive positions around her upper body as her feet set to accustomed positions and form a solid balancing point. Her palms itch slightly with the energies used for deflection, and match well with the burning curiosity she still fights to suppress. Thankfully she is becoming more successful and watches Rose come in with that deceptive motion of her hand. The prickling sensation is noticed in a flash and Chun-Li spins upon her heels, executing a pirouetting evasion that carries around to her opponent's flank.

"I never thought there would be another like him. You say you've been waiting to meet with me?" The question comes quick and slightly breathless, as she steps in under the overextended psychic's guard and lashes out a hand of her own. This is aimed to firmly grip a shawl which the Tai Chi mistress then uses to pull herself in with a rising knee strike, her other arm drifting back behind for balance. "I believe I've sought you, too! YAAAH!" A kiai for her final motion, as she pushes Rose backward and angles her upper body back with a sharp twist, both legs setting to the floor for a mere half-second before the other rises in a massive thrust kick.

COMBATSYS: Rose dodges Chun-Li's Strong Throw.

"Chatter chatter chatter, fighting is boring when it includes talk, but I can't help but wonder if political television would be more fun if the politicians throw balls of chi at each other during the debate. I'm kind of wondering though and I'm sure you're wondering too, how will this fight end? Hopefully we'll see one fighter over take the other instead of just over talk to the other."
Naerose says, into her megaphone.

"Such a force is called 'destiny'," Rose says quietly in response. Chun-li's throw has nothing wrong with it; execution, power and speed are all excellent. What is really the problem is that when she goes to grab Rose (or, more accurately, Rose's shawl) neither of the targets are even there anymore, having blinked out in a twinkle of golden sparks to appear just slightly to the left. Apparently, ninja aren't the only ones who can pull that trick off.
Using Chun-li's probable disorientation to her hopeful advantage, the psychic simply... flips upside down, attempting to get her hands on either side of Chun-li's head (watch the buns, pal), and if she can, simply pouring a dose of Soul Power into that space, sending psychic shockwaves manifesting as blue flame throughout the Tai Chi fighter's body. "Many factors drew us together. That is 'destiny', and it is unavoidable."

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li endures Rose's Soul Drain.

[                  \\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////                         ]
Rose             0/-------/----===|======-\-------\0          Chun-Li

"And and and and it's a stat for Rose! She has a move called 'Destiny' apparently, will Chun li's token thighs be able to counter this powerful force? More over, how come she gets hit if she can see the future, can't she like, see the attack before it happens and know what will happen and therefore dodge? Apparently Chun Li can't she goes right through that crazy wave of pretty rainbow bright and right on toward her opponent, will this dancer see her last step? Does she only have Billy Madison's carrier to look forward too? Find out, in just a second!" Naerose exclaims, getting more excited with the growing excitement of the match.

Disorientated and assailed by the revelation of destiny, Chun-Li is most assuredly caught well off her guard by the strange motion Rose instigates. Attempting to strike for a body that dissipated in a scintillating mist of golden motes, her overextended posture is enough that she is gripped and then assailed by a barrage of power. Perhaps destiny is unavoidable, but as a woman consumed by her own fiery determination to succeed, a stubborn urge to never surrender... the Chinese beauty believes in her ability to change her destiny. To achieve a new one for herself, against all the odds.

"NO!" The cry comes loud and desperate as she struggles through the searing force of psychic energy, senses threatening to break underneath Rose's power and Chun-Li's all rebelling against what she attempts to do next. But she does it. Wrenching herself into a sidelong spin, down into a crouch, she forcibly breaks the grip of her opponent and flings her off in a wild motion. As the woman falls back to earth, she is then abruptly met with the rising force of the destined loser...

"TENSHOU KYAKU!" Right leg leading in a thrust off the ground, Chun-Li aims to catch Rose beneath the chin before twisting at the hip, opposite limb lifting to aim another identical blow. Should any of this succeed - carrying them each higher into the air - a final strike comes with a burst of chi, blue-white haze flooding around her white boot as it makes a third contact to launch the psychic forcefully away. With all going to plan, the world's strongest woman lands in a tight crouch below and watches Vega's other half crash down a short distance away.

Can a new destiny be forged?

COMBATSYS: Rose dodges Chun-Li's Spinning Bird Kick EX.

And once again... it is not that there is anything wrong with Chun-li's attack. Form and power, speed and grace... the Tai Chi fighter embodies all of these and more. But as her kicks rise to take Rose out, the psychic fighter is simply... no longer there, having sped her own descent to just miss Chun's attack on the way up. In fact, what happens next plays out in excrutiating slow motion as Rose literally passes within a fraction of an inch of her opponent on the way down, Chun-li's powerful kicks shearing mere centimeters from Rose's diving form.
There are no words at this point. Whether Rose loses or not is, to her, immaterial. Chun-li is powerful, one of the strongest fighters the psychic has ever encountered. There are so few who can challenge the man neither woman can seem to bring herself to name, but Rose is now confident that the Interpol inspector is among that number. "Thank you for showing me your very best," the Italian woman says quietly, lashing out a hand to catch Chun-li in the shoulder as Rose falls past her, hopefully landing gracefully on the arena floor afterwards.

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li fails to interrupt Jab Punch from Rose with Strong Kick.

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

COMBATSYS: Chun-Li can no longer fight.

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

Chun-Li does not land as she intended, nor does she gain the mixed pleasure of watching with a blurring gaze as her mysterious opponent falls to the floor. Instead she is graced with a shrouded fist drifting toward her to slam the last vestiges of conscious thought from her brain, and with one last acrobatic manuever the world's strongest woman attempts to reverse her situation, feinting the last pivoting kick into one that will instead crash down onto Rose and carry the two of them down in a bundle of pain. It is not to be. The incident passes as destined, with a last lick of Psycho Power ripping through the Chinese woman's system and sending her on a jagged downward spiral, her powerful form crashing to the stage where it rests after bouncing once into the air.

Though it likely comes as no surprise to Rose, Chun-Li somehow remains awake - certainly astonishing herself - and manages to roll onto her side, lifted slightly on one shoulder and looking across to the Italian with lips parted as she sucks in sharp breaths. Finally she gathers herself enough to offer a weary smile, eyes closing as she speaks in a surprisingly clear tone, "No. Thank you. When..." she opens her eyes, gaze burning bright through the haze of fading adrenaline, "When can we meet again?" Direct and to the point, springing from a hunch that the other woman may favour a mysterious exit from her battles.

Ah, if Chun-li is a regular watcher of SNF, then she has backup for that theory about mysterious exits. Still, out of respect for her opponent's great skill Rose sticks around, though she makes no move to help the other woman up; that might be perceived as more insult than favor, after all. "Hopefully soon," she says calmly, wrapping her shawl about her a little tighter in the crisp autumn air. "There are things in motion now that can't be stopped. We rare few who have the power to stand against that tide must be unwavering and united in both purpose and dedication."
And then Rose half-turns away, actually looking off into the distance at the ferris wheel... the very same ferris wheel Vega nearly sent her ricocheting off like a pinball not many nights previous. "But at the same time, haste invites carelessness. And I am wary of saying too much here, in this public forum." Oh, right. The TV crew and the SNF referees, all of whom are scared STIFF of approching these two powerful women, both of whom are wearing such a serious mien that mere mortals are cowed. "The House of Mysteries," she finally says at last. "It is not hard to find, especially for a resourceful person such as yourself. Seek me out there. Hopefully some of your questions will be answered."

Things that cannot be stopped...? The comment tears down a fair amount of the confidence recently built by Chun-Li toward her mission, though logic prevails in overcoming any momentary loss of resolve - after all, as Rose has proven there may well be such a thing as destiny. That does not mean the situation is hopeless, rather certain things cannot be prevented... a thought less than comforting in many respects, but welcome in others. "The House of Mysteries." The affirmation comes with a nod of the beaten woman's head, and a mental filing away of this name - though it sounds somewhat familiar.

"Until we meet again then, Rose, and..." the so-called Strongest Woman in the World smiles again, lifting one hand to raise two fingers to her forehead and then outward. A casual salute toward the psychic. An odd gesture done in place of anything more formal. Of course, with her knowledge of Chun-Li perhaps Rose knows where she might have picked up such a thing. If not, then she will come to, in time. "Congratulations. I've faced few as strong as you."

Aware of how hollow that must ring to someone of Rose's abilities, the speech is accompanied with a slightly sheepish glance to one side. Unnecessary on many levels, offering such a thing eases the Tai Chi mistress' sense of politeness and makes her feel more comfortable as she settles down against her shoulder, head resting to the boards of the stage. Curiously relaxed, she may be have been assailed body and soul this evening... but suddenly the course of her life has taken an optimisitc turn.

Log created by Chun-Li, and last modified on 18:59:45 11/15/2005.