Devil's Tournament - DT R1: Ryu vs Maki

Description: Ryu versus Maki in the first round of the Devil's Tournament! Who is the winner? It is a mystery. (Hint: Ryu)

It doesn't seem that long ago that Ryu was sitting peacefully in a wooded park, meditating. Even if it was briefly interrupted by an encounter with Guile -- and not an unwelcome one -- the time to simply sit and reflect had been good for the wandering fighter. Much had been on his mind, and not just the intense training regimen that he'd been undergoing while other fighters walked the world stage. Something about this tournament -- the "Devil's Tournament" that he is here to fight -- is preying on his thoughts, gnawing at the edges of his consciousness, haunting his waking hours. Ryu is no stranger to odd, eccentric tournament invites out of nowhere -- he's a former King of Fighters, after all -- but there was something about this one that made his blood run hot. Something drawing him in. What was it? Well...

Even on its slow days, Cabaret Candide is a bustling, lively place. For the first round matches of a major worldwide tournament, and one featuring some pretty well known fighters to boot? Now it's practically a madhouse. Tables on the show floor filled up weeks ago; now people are spilling into the aisles, leaning over the balconies, and making it so that the only real stretch of available open space is the fighting arena marked off on the stage. This is Metro, too, so it's not a crowd that's quiet, either, and opportunistic businessmen wander around with small boxes and carts, selling -- to match the competitors -- inflatable Maki Genryuusai tonfa or authentic red karate hachimaki like the one currently tied around Ryu's forehead. And the crowd's getting antsy. It's time for the fight to start, soon... and these people want blood.

Of course, this is not the sort of environment Ryu enjoys; the Ansatsuken Wanderer is much preferred of quiet meditation than loud shouting. Still, he's been fighting in venues all over the world for years, and in places much less... nice... than this one. His eyes are closed as he stands on his edge of the ring, fists clenched and held inward toward the center of his stomach, eyes closed. Soon, the fight will start... and Ryu is an expert in throwing all of himself into battle. Once Maki arrives, the show will get underway.

Metro City. The place where Maki Genryuusai is considered to be a heroine. For awhile she was merely a street fighter who wanted to prove her toughness all over the world. But times change, and so does Maki. After time to herself, she's realized that even though her longtime friend and rival Guy is the next in line to be the master of the Bushin-Ryu art, Maki has decided to prove that women are just as capable of fighting as men, and has now set out to improve herself in hopes of becoming the newest master of her family's style.

Of course, this occurred after Maki joined the tournament, but nonetheless, Maki is willing to use this as a chance to perfect her skills and become a fighter worthy of being considered a master of the art. Of course, a place like this isn't quite the style of arena that Maki was thinking of for her first match. A cabaret has to be one of the least likely places that Maki would intend to have a fight like this in. But the biggest surprise is yet to come.

As Maki makes her entrance, waving to her fans as she does so, she stops and stares at her opponent. She has heard of him but has never encountered him once before. "That man... it's Ryu! One of the most legendary fighters in the world!" Knowing how Ryu continues to travel the world to improve himself and become a perfect fighter, Maki knows she is looking at quite an impressive challenge, as well as a truly prominent fighter. "I am Maki Genryuusai, your opponent," Maki says formally while bowing to Ryu. "I am honored to meet you, and I hope that this fight will truly be one to remember."

Fighters have presence, even those that are just starting out. It may be because so many subconsciously control their energy; even those that don't throw impressive gouts of fire or whatever are in control of their bodies to explain their tremendous strength. This means, though, that if you are attuned to your surroundings, you can know when one enters the space, and that's the real secret behind the World Warrior's uncanny ability to open his eyes and stare you down the *second* you show up. And so it goes that when Maki makes her way to the arena, Ryu in fact does stop his meditation, look up, and give the blonde Metro heroine a glance and a nod.

As he steps forward to greet her, some long-winded and loud-voiced announcer begins to describe both competitors in lurid and bombastic terms to the crowd, trying to amp their hype even further; for Ryu's part, he ignores it, stepping up and sizing Maki up. He grips the tails of his cloth belt and tightens them, before giving a stiff bow. "I haven't met another Bushin-style fighter, other than Guy," Ryu offers in response to Maki's own introduction. "It should be a formidable challenge. I'm looking forward to seeing what your take on the style has to offer."

And then the crowd cheers; it appears the intro is over. Slipping into the loose Ansatsuken stance, hands coming up to torso-height, Ryu nods at Maki, inviting her to take the first move of the bout. "Let's make the most of the opportunity, Ms. Genryuusai."

COMBATSYS: Ryu has wandered into a fight here.

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Ryu              0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Maki has joined the fight here.

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Ryu              0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0             Maki

"So you've encountered Guy?" Maki asks. "Well, I'm not sure I'm on par with him, but I do intend to succeed him in becoming the next master of Bushin-Ryu. All my life, I've seen how it's always men who become the master of their style. It's never women." She grips her tonfa tightly in her hand. "I'm seeking to change that. I'm going to become the next master of my family's art and prove that women are equally capable!" Her sneaker-clad foot slides forth a little.

After her speech is over, Maki assumes her proper fighting stance, ignoring the announcer being longwinded and things like that. The only thing that matters right now is the actual fight. Whether she wins or loses, Maki will still definitely learn more about her style and where she needs to improve. She stares at her tonfa one last time, then looks up at Ryu.

"Very well, we'll make this truly a fight to remember!" Maki smiles a little as she approaches Ryu. "Whether one is armed or not, it's irrelevant. As long as you know how to fight to the best of your ability is all that matters!" Maki then attempts to do a spinning attack, turning around away from Ryu, then coming back forth with a swinging strike of her tonfa.

COMBATSYS: Ryu dodges Maki's Medium Strike.

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Ryu              0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0             Maki

"The true fight knows no gender," Ryu says, in response to Maki's assertion of her motivations. Wanting to prove that she's as strong as any man is admirable, perhaps, but something about the reserved tone of Ryu's response suggests that he has a different way of thinking about it, something that the man's typically guileless expression bears out. But it's not his place to judge Maki's motivations... only her power, determination, and skill. Once she swings those tonfa her way, Ryu enters the moment of the fight, and until one of them lies exhausted on the ground, unable to continue, that moment is all that matters to the Wanderer.

She is clearly testing him, judging the waters, and so Ryu backsteps away from the twirling strike, letting the weapon slice the air between the two. A good, solid opening strike, and perhaps telling about Maki as an opponent; no cagey battling, but good old fashioned directed aggression. "I agree," is all Ryu says to the commentary on weapons -- for the World Warrior is certainly unarmed -- before lunging forward.

If Maki is testing the waters, then so too is Ryu; his right leg snaps up high, a kick designed to impact flat on Maki's shoulder and send her stumbling backwards at best, but a kick designed to give Ryu a lot of information: how fast Maki can respond, the effective range of those tonfa... a lot can be learned from a simple, straightforward strike.

COMBATSYS: Ryu successfully hits Maki with Medium Kick.

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Ryu              0/-------/-------|====---\-------\0             Maki

Maki "Uno Bao" Genryuusai says, "Ooopsie!"

A lot can be learned from one attack. Just like Maki's tonfa helps Ryu learn something, Ryu's kick can also test Maki as well. Namely, how well he can strike her with his legs. Maki has always depended on her agility to get her out of situations, but unfortunately it's not always the best course of action. In this case, Maki attempts to duck underneath it, but her timing is off a little, and Ryu gets her right in the shoulder, just like he intended to. Maki lets out a grunt of pain as she is hit, sending her stumbling backwards, and causing her to land on her rear.

"Damn, I'm glad Guy wasn't here to see that," Maki thinks out loud as she pushes herself back up, rubbing at her shoulder a little while gritting her teeth through the pain. "But wow, Ryu sure knows how to hit hard." Maki takes a quick deep breath and then blows it out a little. "But this isn't over yet."

Maki approaches Ryu again. "I'm impressed with your skill," Maki says with a slight smile. "It appears I must learn to properly time my evasive actions better. So, let's continue." Maki attempts to deliver a foot-sweep style attack with her right foot.

COMBATSYS: Ryu just-defends Maki's Light Kick!

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Ryu              0/-------/-------|====---\-------\0             Maki

It says something that Ryu takes every fight -- no matter the opponent -- seriously. To do otherwise is, in his eyes, disrespectful to the opponent. Thus he prepares for Maki's counterattack even as his leg is retracting from delivering that kick; his weight shifts heavily onto that right leg as it comes back and he leans up and off his left, so that when Maki's sweep attempt comes around he effectively interposes his left foot onto her kicking leg and diverts the force aside, letting his leg move with hers and relying on his planted right foot to keep him from tumbling over. Perhaps a bit elaborate, compared to simply leaping out of the way, but he wants to test himself against Maki's moves.

"I'm glad you have strong resolve," is all Ryu says in response. He isn't the chattiest fighter in the world, which is perhaps why he isn't as much a crowd favorite as fellow Ansatsuken practitioner Ken Masters, who is more than happy to throw out jibes and glib jokes to his opponent. For Ryu, that's a very strange way of approaching things indeed... but it is just one of the many differences between the two rivals that Ryu has come to appreciate.

"Be ready!" is all Ryu offers, before he spins, apparently turning away from Maki... but only long enough to suddenly drive back toward her, leaning his torso back and striking with his left foot this time, a slow but devastatingly powerful front kick intended to connect with the ninja girl's stomach and send her flying if she's not careful!

COMBATSYS: Ryu successfully hits Maki with Joudan Sokutou Geri.

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

"Resolve is an important thing to have," Maki comments as she gets back into her fighting stance by rolling to the side a little and then pushing herself back up onto her feet. "As are other things," She adds. This seems a bit odd for Maki since she's never been like this before, but between her new resolution and the fact she's dealing with Ryu, things are a bit different right now. Of course, Maki still needs to keep her mind in the fight.

"I'm ready!" Maki yells as she brings her tonfa and forearm towards her stomach. But the force is too much for her to absorb. Ryu pretty much negates her defense and hits her directly in the stomach, causing her to actually go flying across the area, landing in a sideways position. Again, Maki grits her teeth, but this time she focuses on regaining air into her lungs, having gotten the wind knocked out of her just now. Even with a hit like that, though, Maki still refuses to give up.

"You found a weakness in my defense," Maki says as she gets back up slowly. "It appears I must learn how to properly position myself when defending. I'll definitely remember this," She adds as she gets back into her fighting stance, albeit with her free hand holding her stomach. "It seems there is definitely more to this fight than either of us have anticipated."

COMBATSYS: Maki focuses on her next action.

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

Getting back into stance after his attack, Ryu finds that his opponent has opted to re-evaluate the situation... a little unexpected, given his read of Maki as a gung ho, aggressive opponent, but not outside the realm of possibility. The early match has gone to him but as far as he's concerned, that could change at any moment. After all, it's when someone's situation is at their most dire that people can sometimes shine the brightest. He nods at Maki's words, acknowledging them, but has nothing in response to say just yet. If she asks his opinion later, there'll be plenty of time to offer it.

As it is, Ryu decides to continue pushing the offensive. Bringing his hands together, a white-blue glow all too familiar to fighters the world over begins to form into a glowing sphere, and then a fiery bullet of chi as Ryu extends both palms toward Maki, shouting -- as is traditional -- the name of his world-famous "Hadouken!"

COMBATSYS: Maki blocks Ryu's Hadouken.

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

The traditional attack of Ryu. Maki has heard about it and seen images of it, but to have it coming right at her, Maki can only brace herself and plant her feet into the ground as the projectile comes at her. As the energy hits her, she grits her teeth and closes her eyes, trying not to let it faze her. But an attack like that hurts even when defended. Maki comes out of her stance looking a little winded. But her determination still remains strong.

"I'm truly impressed to have experienced your signature attack in person. It shows me that I must learn to better prepare to handle projectile attacks like yours," Maki comments. "I do not have projectiles, but I still have my own array of attacks. Observe!" Maki drops to the ground and then begins a spinning whirlwind kick while balancing on the tip of her tonfa. At the same time, she calls out the name of her attack, "Bushin Senpuu Kyaku!"

COMBATSYS: Ryu blocks Maki's Bushin Senpuu Kyaku.

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

There's a resounding *WHAM* as Maki's glowing, spinning foot slams into Ryu's guard, a testament to the amount of force that the Bushin fighter's spinning maneuver puts into that blow; he's forced back a step or two, but the timely defense spares him the brunt of what would probably have been a very painful blow. Shaking his head, Ryu glances at Maki, and decides to venture a comment after all. "I can already see the differences between your type of Bushin and Guy's... it is an interesting variant, but many of the core ideas of Bushin are maintained." It sounds like a somewhat cold and clinical evaluation of the scenario -- and it kind of is -- but there is no disrespect intended in the Wanderer's words.

Deciding to take it a little slower, Ryu circles around Maki for a moment, before deciding to test the waters once again. This might not be the safest, now that her fighting spirit is definitely starting to show, but to the World Warrior it's worth it to continue seeing what Maki has to offer. What follows is no frills, nothing fancy; a simple straight punch forward. The basics are often the best, after all.

COMBATSYS: Maki dodges Ryu's Medium Punch.

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

The basics are the best sometimes, indeed. Even a simple punch can be useful in a fight. And while Ryu might be intent on striking Maki, the blonde-haired Bushin-Ryu fighter sees the timing just right and ducks underneath it with a swift motion. Without missing a beat, Maki rolls to the side of Ryu as well, getting back up quickly.

"You are not perfect either, but that is why you continue to train," Maki comments as she gets back up. "We both have a lot to learn." Maki then attempts to grab Ryu and throw him across the room.

COMBATSYS: Ryu parries Maki's Quick Throw!

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

"That is true," Ryu says calmly, even as Maki makes a grab for him, His hands, wrapped in his trademark red hand guards, come up and interpose themselves with Maki's, the two martial artists exchanging quick motions and shoving aside, trying to keep the other off-balance, but in the end, Ryu retains the advantage, managing to defuse Maki's attempt to take him down and conveniently putting himself right inside her guard, rather than at a distance, and it's an opening that Ryu finds he can't stop himself from taking advantage of. "But with every fight I get closer and closer..."

And then he's in the air, hopping up and twisting his entire body. One leg points flat, staying perpendicular to the floor, while the other extends almost a perfect 90 degrees out from his body, the World Warrior's entire frame doing a quick, powerful spin in place, wind whipping about. " my goal! Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku!" the wanderer finishes. Well, she showed him her spin kick... now she can see his.

COMBATSYS: Maki blocks Ryu's Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku EX.

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

A spinning kick from Ryu, although this one is faster and more powerful looking. Maki knows she has to do something, but with speed like that, she'd never get out of the way in time. So she takes a deep breath and closes her eyes, focusing on her guard as she stands strong. As Ryu comes into her, Maki blocks his every kick, and surprisingly, it's more efficient than she thought it would be. She doesn't take as much damage as she thought she would.

Opening her eyes, Maki looks at Ryu. "You have shown me here that I can truly achieve something if I focus deeply on it." She steps back and continues to look at Ryu. "You have fought well, but the battle is not over yet. I will keep fighting!"

COMBATSYS: Maki gains composure.

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

Despite himself, Ryu is flashing back to his training as a youth, recalling how badly he wanted Master Gouken to give him everything, to just teach him and let him have at. It took patience, and time... and a lot of getting beat up by his sensei... to make him realize that things he thought he'd perfected were in fact things he was just beginning to understand. Perhaps whatever it is that Maki is fighting for, it's something bigger and greater than just being stronger than men. "Good," Ryu says, nodding, before bringing his hands back and taking a position similar to that from before. "Then take this..."

The blue-white glow starts up, again, but rather than a tiny sphere, now it's a cotained inferno of eye-searing chi. Above the roaring sound it makes Ryu finishes his line: "...with all of your resolve! Shinkuu... Hadouken!" The result is a massive burst of white-hot energy tinged with blue, and it's headed Maki's way!

COMBATSYS: Ryu successfully hits Maki with Shinkuu Hadouken.

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Ryu              0/-------/----===|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2             Maki

"I'll take it! Come on!" Maki screams at Ryu, her heart racing as a surge of adrenaline begins to flow through her body. She watches Ryu, breathing fast, bouncing on her heels literally, watching as that energy comes at her. It gets closer, closer, closer...


Maki goes flying again, crying out as she does so. She lands in a crumpled position, looking almost like she's out for the count. But somehow, that last bit of resolve seems to come into play again. She groans as she pushes herself back up onto her feet, not wanting to collapse. She lets out a cry of pain as her body attempts to resist, but she finally gets back onto her feet. She doubles over, trying to catch her breath.

"All right, you have shown just how far resolve can send one. Now, I'll show you what a wounded fighter is capable of!" Maki glows with her chi as she jumps onto a nearby table, knocking someone's meal onto the ground and resulting in them cursing at her. Ignoring that, Maki pushes off of the table with one foot, flying directly at Ryu with her other foot extended.

COMBATSYS: Maki successfully hits Ryu with Tesshin Hou.

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

And Maki has been pushed too far. Ryu raises an eyebrow at the sudden invasion of the diners' personal space, but all's fair in love and war (and fighting)... plus the sudden acrobatics are useful in distracting Ryu from predicting the line of Maki's attack. All that, combined with the ferocity she's bringing to bear, makes the chi-empowered flying kick well outside the range that Ryu could defend against easily; Maki's kick impacts with his chin, sending the World Warrior flying backwards a few steps (and eliciting no small amount of applause from the audience.

If he were a certain kind of fighter, Ryu would be jumping all over the place now with phrases like 'See what resolve can do?' or 'Now we're talking' or similar such nonsense. Instead he simply nods, waits a moment for Maki to get back into stance, and then comes sailing in at her from his side of the stage, looking to grab Maki by the collar, slam her onto the floor, and drive his fist into her stomach. A judo move, by the look of it, but adapted to work with Ansatsuken maneuvers.

COMBATSYS: Ryu successfully hits Maki with Combo Grapple.
- Power hit! -

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

Maki has no chance against this, despite her best effort to try to estimate the maneuvers and what they will do. Maki is caught and is unable to protect herself against the attacks that Ryu is using against her. She winces and attempts to gather her resolve again, but it appears she's run out of resolve. As Maki slams to the ground, she lies there, motionless...

COMBATSYS: Maki takes no action.

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

COMBATSYS: Maki can no longer fight.

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

He hadn't quite expected to hit her THAT hard, and so even as Ryu draws back and the announcer -- seeing Maki on the floor and not getting up -- begins the knockout countdown, the Wanderer stares down at the blonde over the top of his fist for a moment, contemplating how the fight went down, evaluating things. Ninja fighters are usually not so aggressive, preferring to be much reserved, but in ignoring that, Maki also gains something valuable and unexpected. In the end, a few of the many things that he could say whirl through his head and at last Ryu does a small saluting bow and says, simply, "I'm grateful for the match. I will be looking forward to your next bout in the tournament with interest."

The announcer seems bound and determined to interview the enigmatic Ansatsuken fighter, but Ryu has never been one for interviews. The next match will be soon, and he has to prepare for it. Finding his white knapsack where he left it at the stage's edge -- and to the boos of a cabaret crowd who wanted more flash than he would provide -- Ryu wanders off to the next battle.

Log created on 15:49:02 04/29/2012 by Ryu, and last modified on 10:16:19 04/30/2012.