Neo League 476 - #490: Maki vs Kurow

Description: A Neo League challenge pits two ninjas of different styles, Maki Genryusai and Kurow Kirishima, against one another. The result can only be described as bloody. (Winner: Kurow)

It's the early evening in the North Outskirts of Southtown, and even at night, there's still a lot of activity going on within the area. After all, with a place that's the size of Manhattan Island, there's always something to do at any time of the day. Which is why at a nearby shopping mall, a large area of the mall has been cordoned off for a special event that just so happens to be taking place there tonight.

A Neo League fighting ring has been set up with the proper displays and speakers so people can see and hear everything clearly. Many people are gathered around the ring watching, a lot of them eating or drinking reasonably priced concessions that are being sold.

"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to tonight's Neo League match. Introducing first, from Metro City, the official heroine of Metro City, Maki Genryusai!" As the announcer finishes, a spotlight falls upon Maki, who waves to the crowd and beams before resuming her warmup routine, waiting for the start of the match.

If there's one thing Kirishima has gone from loathing to appreciating, it's proper rings. At first, he thought of them as an artificial, somewhat boring distinction, but then he put Rock clean /through/ one. Seeing the kind of reaction that got from the crowd -- well, it certainly creates a certain degree of incentive to try to duplicate such feats.

Once Maki's taken her place in the ring and gone through her warmup, the mall goes pitch black for a moment. Is this an unfortunate outage, or a planned introduction? The answer becomes apparent a moment later, as every one of the mall's TVs near the ring start to play back clips of Kirishima -- at Ayer's Rock shutting down the Sonic Hurricane, at the Slam Masters arena pounding his leg through Rock Howard. The young man comes out slowly, walking to the ring at a nice, leisurely pace; sure, the dramatic entrance wasn't /his/ idea, but that doesn't mean he won't milk it for all it's worth to the crowd.

Stepping into the ring, he smoothly, calmly takes his position opposite Maki, flashing his opponent a small grin. "Shall we get underway?" he asks, slipping those clawed gloves on, as usual.

The grin is returned from Maki, her eyes narrowed with a look of confidence and determination. "I'm ready to fight whenever you are." At that, the referee steps in between the two fighters and explains the rules briefly, asking if there are any questions, of which there are none, before stepping back and signalling to the assistant out of the ring. At that, the bell rings, signalling the match has gotten underway.

Now Maki is not one to just rush into the fray and strike with just any kind of attack. She's a strategic person, which means she'll plan carefully for whatever might be coming. So rather than go after Kurow, she simply moves towards him slowly, keeping an eye on his every move.

COMBATSYS: Maki has started a fight here.

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Maki             0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Maki focuses on her next action.

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Maki             0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Kurow has joined the fight here.

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Kurow            0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0             Maki

If Maki's strategic, Kurow is downright robotic -- the younger man has a laser-like focus on what needs to be done in any fight, though it doesn't always translate to hanging back and planning the way Maki is. "Then let's begin," Kirishima says as Maki holds back, immediately stepping forward across the ring, getting ready to put the hurt on Genryusai. Unlike her, he doesn't have that steely determination -- it barely looks like he considers this any more important than training or even /eating/.

The youth doesn't go directly to Maki, though. Instead, he takes a step toward the edge of the ring, takes off one of the turnbuckle covers, and gives it a forceful fling right at Genryusai's head. It's more a distraction than anything -- though seeing the ring start to be optimized for raw injury to the fighters starts to get a reaction out of the crowd, a dull roar already beginning to build.

COMBATSYS: Maki blocks Kurow's Thrown Object.

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Kurow            0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0             Maki

Is that supposed to be a first attack? Well if it is, then Maki's not too impressed with the way this fight is starting out. She raises her arm to block the incoming object and simply lets it hit her forearm, which barely even fazes her. She then turns to look at Kurow and shakes her head.

"That's not what I expected to see from someone like you. Here, let me give you an example of the style I want to see from you," And with that, Maki backflips onto the nearby ropes, and then flies directly at Kurow with a very fast flying kick!

COMBATSYS: Kurow full-parries Maki's Hassou Kyaku!

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Kurow            0/-------/------=|-------\-------\0             Maki

Cracking a wide smile, Kirishima simply sidesteps Maki's flying kick; Maki, of course, gets to learn firsthand the downside of attacking a man by an exposed turnbuckle. Namely: you tend to get caught for a couple of seconds on that very turnbuckle. "Come on," he says, with a little grin. "I've seen better strikes from /beginners/ -- you're letting your impetuousness get the better of you."

With that, Kurow whirls around, and as Maki is no doubt familiar with by this point, goes for a leap toward her throat, extending those claws of his in an attempt to snag her by the neck. If he catches her, he'll whirl around her twice, creating deep gashes in her, before snagging her head with his entire /arm/ and dragging her down to the ground in a vicious bulldog-style slam that puts him on the opposite side of the ring's corner, barely in the ring -- a situation which he quickly remedies with a slide under the ropes. Maki, unfortunately, may not be so lucky -- her face, in the ideal scenario, will probably get planted right into the metal of the exposed turnbuckle.

COMBATSYS: Kurow successfully hits Maki with Circle Slash EX.

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Kurow            0/-------/-----==|======-\-------\0             Maki

Maki attempts to get out of the way, but it's no use. She's caught by Kurow and is, indeed, slammed face first into the exposed metal of the turnbuckle. Not exactly a clean move, which is why the referee issues a verbal warning to Kurow. Not that it really means anything right now, it's pretty much, like said, a warning. But for Maki that doesn't mean much.

"Oww... dammit..." Maki whispers to herself as she gets up, her hand coming away from her face stained with blood. The redness of the blood, however, seems to provoke Maki to strike back at Kurow. Dropping onto the tip of her tonfa, Maki spins around like a whirlwind. Kurow had better watch out!

COMBATSYS: Maki successfully hits Kurow with Bushin Senpuu Kyaku.

[     \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //////////////////            ]
Kurow            0/-------/---====|=======\-------\1             Maki

The quick kick catches Kirishima in the stomach and sends him staggering back a few inches, but thus far, Kurow seems to have a fairly commanding lead. Of course, no small part of that may come from the fact that Kirishima's rapidly making a name for himself as one of the dirtiest players in the game. "Getting better," he says, with a little smirk -- but that smirk betrays that the youth sees himself as 'just getting started'.

The youth brings his fists up in a boxer's stance, causing a few members of the crowd to call out "D! GOT! ROBBED!" The youth bounces for a few seconds, before suddenly coming in toward Genryusai with a hard boxer's right, slightly mitigated by the fact that his claws prevent him from making a real, proper fist.

COMBATSYS: Kurow successfully hits Maki with Medium Strike.

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Kurow            0/-------/--=====|=======\==-----\1             Maki

As the blow comes at Maki, she braces herself to absorb the impact of the blow, seeing how it's not going to be easy to get out of the way. But it doesn't matter, since she ends up getting hit harder than she expected, causing her to get the wind knocked out of her as she staggers backwards up against the ropes.

"Ugh... dammit..." Maki mutters under her breath as she takes a moment to catch her breath and hopefully get a little more fight into her.

COMBATSYS: Maki gains composure.

[    \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////////             ]
Kurow            0/-------/--=====|=======\=------\1             Maki

Once again, Maki takes a moment out of the fight to try to put herself and her strategy together -- and once again, Kirishima decides he's going to capitalize on it. Even as he just starts to step toward the heavy-breathing Maki, the color commentators begin to speak.

"Genryusai's one of the rising stars of the Neo League, and has a ton going for her, but I gotta say... right now, it really looks like she's meeting a little more than a match up against this kid from Justice High!" "That may be, but at the same time, I'd say Kurow's just getting lucky -- that trick with the turnbuckle was just a lucky cheap shot, pure and simple. I wouldn't call a match one way or the other just on something like that."

The youth keeps coming full-speed forward, and flares out his claws; with a quick, low whirl, he swings his whole body around, trying to leave a deep, wide slash right across Maki's stomach. If he can land /that/, in the split second it buys him, he'll proceed to step in and drive her down to the ground with a quick foot to the stomach, then slam both hands' claws straight down into her gut in an attempt to put a quick, messy end to the fight.

COMBATSYS: Maki interrupts Deep Strike from Kurow with Weapon Jab.

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Kurow            0/-------/=======|=======\====---\1             Maki

As Maki sees the strike coming right at her, she braces herself for the right moment to counter, and then brings her tonfa up to jab Kurow in the chest, which should send him back a little. But unfortunately, the flipside is that the strike still hits, and it sends Maki backward, leaving her a bit on the dazed side.

Just because Kurow doesn't land that final crushing blow thanks to a well-timed tonfa hit to the torso doesn't mean the initial slash-and-kick don't do precisely what he intended to do -- Kurow seems pleased, even as he stumbles a step or two away from Genryusai. "I... /almost/ felt that," he says, still wearing that smile.

He decides, at this point, that he can afford to take a breather; he could certainly strike Maki down easily if he /wanted/ to, but at the same time, the youth feels he would probably be better-served by a quick tactical reevaluation. Stepping away, Kurow narrows his eyes just slightly, scanning slowly up and down Maki's body with a piercing gaze that tells the fans that something big just might be coming. The less determined might find the gaze unnerving, even piercing -- it really does seem like the way a snake looks at a mouse, more than anything else.

COMBATSYS: Kurow focuses on his next action.

[      \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /////////////                 ]
Kurow            0/-------/=======|=======\====---\1             Maki

If that's supposed to be a snake looking at a mouse, well then this mouse is a mutant mouse, since Maki's really got the fighting spirit flying through her at this time. She's bloodied and bruised, but she's not giving Kurow the win that easily. Instead, she's going to show him why you never mess with Maki!

Rushing towards Kurow, she jumps into the air and attempts to grab him while in an inverted position!

COMBATSYS: Kurow counters Ajara Tengu from Maki with Double Slash.

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Kurow            0/-------/-======|=======\-------\0             Maki

Kurow doesn't move the way he usually does, doesn't try to dive out of the way of the aerial grab attempt; instead, he stays stock-still, right until Maki tries to grab him with that hard, inverted grab. What Maki finds is not Kirishima's head, oh no -- instead, the youth shoves a claw straight up into the air, digging it deep into Maki's arm and pulling her right out of the air.

"This is already over," he says, shoving his other claw into her body, lifting up slightly, and then pulling both out to either side, letting Maki fall to the ground with his claws no longer keeping her up.

What Maki was going to do was attempt one of her favorite aerial throw techniques. What she ended up getting was a very sharp pain in the arm and the stomach. She lands on the canvas facedown, and the referee rushes over to count her out, but she just barely makes it up by nine. She clutches the wounded arm as best as she can, but from the look of things, it's obvious she's not going to last much longer in the ring. However, that doesn't mean she's giving Kurow the victory just yet. She glares at him and proceeds to swing her tonfa towards his head with a downward strike.

COMBATSYS: Kurow dodges Maki's Genkou.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ////////                      ]
Kurow            0/-------/-======|=======\-------\0             Maki

And it looks like it's back to typical tactics for the Justice High student, as he takes a quick sidestep that narrowly pulls him out of the path of the tonfa; it glides just down the side of his modified fighting uniform's sleeve, and he glances out to the crowd for a second. Everyone seems to want the big finish -- and, well, who is he to deny them?

The youth, seeing his opportunity in that extended tonfa arm, goes for a quick grab, trying to pull Maki toward him and unbalance her for the no-doubt spectacular finish that is to come...

COMBATSYS: Kurow successfully hits Maki with Medium Throw.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  //                            ]
Kurow            0/-------/=======|=======\==-----\1             Maki

... and from there, Kirishima hefts Maki high into the air, giving the crowd a wide smile as he utilizes a move that Clark of the Ikari Warriors is quite well-known for. Tossing Maki up into the air, Kurow lets her land squarely on his back in a fierce backbreaker rack, then slams her full-force into the center of the mat. It does not buckle and shatter, like it did in his fight with Rock Howard -- but the ring /can/ be heard to crack.

There was no way Maki was going to get out of the way of that one. It was just not possible to avoid. And unfortunately, it looks like she's out for the count as she hits the canvas hard. The referee runs up and starts to count her out...

COMBATSYS: Maki takes no action.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///////                       ]
Kurow            0/-------/=======|=======\==-----\1             Maki

COMBATSYS: Maki has reached second wind!

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Kurow            0/-------/=======|=======\==-----\1             Maki

But suddenly, just before the referee's hand comes down for the ten count, Maki springs onto her feet again. A sudden burst of energy has formed from within her. She turns to face her opponent with a look that seems to say, "I'm not finished yet!"

The youth's expression becomes somewhat cross as half of a second denies him his victory; he wonders, briefly, what it is about Metro City that makes its heroes focus to such an extent on getting up from taking tons of punishment. Wouldn't it be better, he wonders, to just avoid it in the first place?

Even if she's back /up/, Maki can't have much in her; as such, the youth reasons, he only needs to focus on scoring one solid blow to end the match, and that's precisely what he tries to do as he steps back toward the turnbuckle again as Maki gets all the way up -- and then rushes forward, swinging his leg up in a forceful kick to the woman's head.

COMBATSYS: Kurow successfully hits Maki with Strong Kick.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  /                             ]
Kurow            1/-------/=======|=======\=======\1             Maki

Unfortunately, the kick hits Maki before she can dodge, and this time it looks like it's the end of the line for her. But before she can go down for the count, a surge of energy goes through her body and she dashes toward Kurow, attempting to strike him with an insane flurry of tonfa strikes and kicks. But either way, once it's over, she's going to be down and out by TKO.

COMBATSYS: Maki has reached third wind!

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///                           ]
Kurow            1/-------/=======|===----\-------\0             Maki

COMBATSYS: Kurow dodges Maki's Bushin Gou Rai Ha.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///                           ]
Kurow            1/-------/=======|===----\-------\0             Maki

As Maki goes past, though, her energy returns for one last go...

Once again, Kurow simply sidesteps out of the way -- though this time, it takes a lot more effort, and he ends up taking himself all the way around behind the Bushin-ryu ninja, cracking his knuckles as she struggles on in spite of impossible odds. He studies her for a split second, trying to figure out exactly how much pain he'll need to inflict to put her down --

-- and finds the answer to be 'barely any,' and decides to go for what'll please the crowd. Perhaps in an attempt to show his contempt for the other fighter, Kirishima actually /stops/ for a second, reaches down, and pulls a silver pocketwatch -- a birthday gift from his sister -- out of his pocket. He glances down at it for a second, then puts it away, retrieving the /other/ important item in his pocket: a flute.

Dashing in at Maki, Kirishima starts to whirl that flute around in a near-perfect mirror of the motions of one of Maki's tonfa during her gutsy final strike, perhaps showing some mixture of respect and contempt for his opponent's technique.

COMBATSYS: Kurow successfully hits Maki with Random Weapon.
- Power hit! -

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >                                ]
Kurow            1/-------/=======|=======\-------\0             Maki

Maki's luck has finally run out. She's hit hard and she collapses to the ground. There's no getting up here. She's officially knocked out.

COMBATSYS: Maki takes no action.

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///                           ]
Kurow            1/-------/=======|=======\-------\0             Maki

COMBATSYS: Maki has reached fourth wind!

[       \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  < >  ///                           ]
Kurow            1/-------/=======|=======\-------\0             Maki

Yet somehow she gets back to her feet one last time. But this time, it's the final time.

What /is/ it, he wonders, that keeps her getting up hit after hit after hit? Kirishima's opponent is /tenacious/, even if she isn't very forceful; that lack of aggression may yet cost her, though. After all, if there's one thing Kurow knows, it's ruthless aggression, and that becomes apparent when he lunges forward.

This is a high-risk technique, and one that draws a sudden roar form the fans; Kurow speeds forward toward Maki, trying to spear her forcefully just below her center of gravity with his shoulder -- but that, of course, is only the beginning... especially as, in a variation of the move that only a few fans have really noticed, he starts to move /upward/ as he nears Genryusai.

COMBATSYS: Maki fails to interrupt Kirishima Kyoujuu Reppa from Kurow with Bushin Senpuu Kyaku.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Kurow            0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Maki can no longer fight.

[        \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\  <
Kurow            0/-------/-------|

And the crowd bursts into full-on roaring as the young man catches his opponent with that vicious spearing tackle and starts to climb into the air, dragging Maki along by a long series of chi claw-marks in the air, each keeping her suspended just long enough for the next one to propel her up a little farther, and in turn into the next one...

Kurow hangs in the air for a moment after the last chi-claw manifests, using the power of his chi to keep himself locked there for a split second; what comes next isn't pretty. No matter what Maki might try, Kurow swings a leg down full-speed, giving her the same forceful aerial axe kick that he gave Rock in /that/ debacle, only prompting further yelling from the crowd.

It is very much a reenactment of the previous occasion -- especially with a somewhat hastily-constructed Neo League ring, rather than the solid, immovable creation of the CWA. Maki's body flies downward from the kick, and when she inevitably impacts the ring, the whole structure just collapses in on itself. The turnbuckles fall, the ropes go slack, and the wood splinters -- it really is a sight to behold.

Let's cut right to the chase, shall we? Maki's signature attack backfired, and she was the victim of a really powerful attack that she really shouldn't have tried to deal with. As a result, she's lying bruised and bloodied... and unconscious for real, on the mat. The referee almost instantly stops the match by a TKO, and medics rush over to the unconscious fighter in red and carry her off to the hospital. The fans who like Maki are booing Kurow, but other than that, there's a roar of applause for him.

The ruined mat is of no concern to Kurow, nor is his opponent's bloody, bruised state; when he lands from his split-second aerial hangtime, on the bare edge of the ring, he doesn't even show the slightest bit of worry. He walks along the unstable structure like it was nothing, reaching the stairs and casually walking off, giving the crowd a large, cocky smile.

As usual, the curious mix of cheers, boos, thrown beer, and autograph requests barrage the youth as he goes, but he just keeps on walking. After all -- that's what the sport is about. It's not about fame or infamy -- it's about fighting, pure and simple.

Log created on 21:11:38 09/19/2007 by Kurow, and last modified on 07:59:40 09/20/2007.