Rockpath (as Mai), Hanami, Keigo
Date: May 20, 2015
It’s Sand against Cloud in yet another match. With a puppeteer facing off against Hanami, who will win?
"Steel Soul Tourney - Kiddie Clash: Keigo vs. Hanami"
Dammed Arena - Kirigakure
Kaguya Mai watches as both Shemri and Akane take off from the arena in varying conditions. "Hmm…" Then her eyes turn to the screen as it's her turn to proctor the matches. The wheel spins round and round, eventually landing on two names. "Hougenka Keigo and Shinatobe Hanami, please come down to the Arena." A small smile touches the Kaguya's lips. "It's time to prove yourselves." The woman waits for both of them in the dead center of the arena, waiting to give instructions that they are probably already familiar with. They would know by now… That she does not intrude in a fight until someone is close to death. Therefore, they can go as far as they wish.
Both the brothers looked at each other, grinning. Keigo spoke first. "Shall we, Aya?" Ayamakki replied. "We shall, Kei." The pair of them jumped from the stands, sliding carefully into the arena off the wall and landing gracefully. The pair of them walked to the center of the arena and awaited Hanami to join them. Keigo looked nervous and excited… but Ayamakki just stood there, not really having any expression at all.
Keigo looks to the Proctor… then to Ayamakki. "Guess I've gotta drop your look."
Ayamakki shrugged. "Go ahead."
Keigo nodded, and made a handsign. Ayamakki erupted in a puff of smoke, and as it cleared, there stood a Mokujin. Humanoid, but definitely a puppet.
Hanami follows close behind the two 'brothers', quick and agile. Once in the arena again she turns to look at her opponents and tilts her head as the one expressionless boy suddenly becomes a puppet. She nods, "Oh, now I see. That makes sense…hmm. I've never fought one like you before. Should be a learning experience at least. I appreciate you being willing to participate in a match with me." She gives a quick bow then readies herself, drawing one of her chakrams while leaving her other hand free for other things. She breathes, working on relaxing herself. Whatever the outcome, at least she had signed up for this tournament and tried.
Mai glances between the two, watching them both. Hmmm… Both villages have such interesting shinobi. Though Suna was something else entirely. The woman shakes her head. "You can fight for however long you wish. Unless someone is going to die, I won't step in. Fight your hardest and do your best." With that, she takes off from her spot, allowing the two to duke it out however they wish.
Keigo nodded to Hanami with a smile. "And thank you for being my opponent. Now… let's make a show of it!" Listening to the rules, Keigo then prepared himself for the battle, re-doubleing his efforts in charging his inner-battery, as well as bringing Ayamakki to bear. "Ayamakki and I… we're a team! A tag duo! The two surviving members of the Hougenka Travelling Puppet Troupe! And now you'll see why we've endured so long! Let's go, Ayamakki!" Ayamakki's movements seemed to become more sharp, more focused, as if the Puppeteer was putting more effort into controlling the puppet.
Hanami nods curtly, watching. She starts moving, circling the puppeteer and his puppet slowly to the right. She doesn't want to rush in really, she doesn't know what his puppet could do. And having essentially two opponents in the arena with her probably will make things tricky. So she circles, trying to assess her opponent. For now, she'll wait and watch. Keep some distance but otherwise see what the puppeteer might do.
Keigo smiles a bit. "Never seen someone use that kind of weapon before… Is that a Kumogakure thing?" He prepares a stance. "Either way… if you're not gonna make the first move… I guess I'll have to!" Flashing his hands in a stylized motion, suddenly Ayamakki was off, shooting quickly towards Hanami! Bringing its left arm around as if for a left hook, it instead seemed to released a blade, ready to slash powerfully at the Kunoichi! He may not have wanted to come to this place… but there was no way he was gonna lose to a girl!
Hanami pauses as the boy speaks, and makes his move. She watches the puppet come at her, rather quickly she realizes. Gathering wind chakra around her she's off, dashing around the puppet and avoiding its blade though the quickness of the attack makes it a near thing. She wonders how to do this one, then decides to gamble a bit. Using her speed she dashes for the puppeteer though not ignoring the puppet behind her. Getting a little closer but not anywhere near the range of a weapon she whips out her hand, scattering a powder into that air that blows towards Keigo. If it hits, he'll find himself feeling drained. That done a quick twist and a wind laced kunai spears straight for Ayamakki.
That smoke looked menacing… and no way was Keigo going to get caught in it! Thinking quickly, he made a quick handsign and vanished, in his place being Ayamakki. The two switched places, so now Keigo was in the path of the wind-sharpened Kunai. Flicking out his pinkie finger, another Kunai animated out of his pocket, deflecting the attack… but not as much as it could have been, as the blow still went through his upper arm, catching the edge and dealing some damage. Keigo winced as the attack hit, and smiled. "Gonna need alot more than that to take me down!" More hand gestures, and Ayamakki was once more on the offensive as it basically started coming towards Hanami now, blade outstretched to attack with!
Hanami grits her teeth, the place swapping certainly foiled that plan. She doesn't put any stock in the trace slice her kunai managed to score, was only a paper cut really. As the puppet comes at her again with its blades she wraps herself in the wind once more ducking and dashing by without a scratch. She moves back, assessing and decides on three kunai laced with the slicing chakra of the wind. Two go for the puppet but the third aims a little out of the way, clearly meant to go past and hit Keigo.
The two Kunai headed for Ayamakki were deflected easily… but Keigo was in the line of fire still from the attack, and kinda got hit by the two deflected attacks! "Gyah! That smarts!" He groans… "Watch it, Aya!" Then that third Kunai. "Welp… this again." Another handsign, and suddenly Ayamakki was replaced with Keigo, the Kunai hitting the puppet weirdly and deflecting off harmlessly. Then Keigo took a knee and smiled. "Dodge this!" Suddenly, Ayamakki raised its RIGHT arm this time! It sprung open into a crossbow-type firing mechanism, firing 3 Kunai in rapid succession at the fleeing Kunoichi!
Hanami keeps a calm in the face of her attacks again being blocked. Glancing blows aren't going to win her this match, which is frustrating. Then the puppet unleashes a crossbow at her and the rapid fire kunai streak for her. On the wind she dashes but that first shot got her in the leg as she makes her escape. The second was an easy dodge but the third gets her arm, and she really doesn't like the pain from them. More than simple kunai. Breathing a bit she looks at the boy and his puppet. Well, it's not like she has any fancy tricks up her sleeve. But that move may work in her favor if she can catch the puppet in it. Taking a deep breath she swirls the chakra inside her moves forward some before exhaling a quickly growing cyclone headed for both of them. The cyclone whips up any debris in the area, flinging it around as it spirals in. With that going she zips a wind chakra kunai at Keigo amidst the hopeful confusion.
Suddenly, there were several copies of both Keigo and Ayamakki, which the vortex seemed to only hit the copies, leaving only the real ones unharmed. Aaaand then another Kunai straight for Keigo. Again, a handsign and Keigo was suddenly not there, Ayamakki's body in a position to deflect the attack at him. Keigo smiles. "That was new… let's see how much more punishment you can take, then!" Waving his hands forward, Ayamakki then dashed towards Hanami, firing a Kunai first at her, then waving the blade to attack with right after, hoping to catch her going one way, so as to be unable to dodge the other way!
Hanami grits her teeth then. Not much is working right, this isn't going to go well for her in the end at this rate. The oncoming attacks don't catch her by surprise and at least her speed is favoring her at the moment as she moves away from the attacks, dodging nimbly. With some distance between them, she catches her breath, drawing in chakra. Waiting and biding her time at the moment, trying to figure out if she has another plan.
Keigo smiles. "Charging your Chakra in the midst of a battle? Come, now! You can't be THAT low on reserves, can you? I can keep going for a while longer!" And to prove it, more Kunai firing was shot at Hanami, each of them dripping with that purple poison that would definitely do some serious potent over time damage if it hit! Even if it weren't hitting as often as he'd wanted… even a few hits amongst several would help him, and every hit that lands increases his confidence by quite a bit! He didn't want to admit it… but he was having fun!
Considering a gesture less than polite, Hanami keeps her silence and just tries to move when the attacks aim at her. But maybe it was gathering her chakra or something, she finds herself only able to dodge one before the two strike her. Bleeding, she winces and eyes her opponent. Fine then, lets do that why not. She inhales, exhaling another cyclone at the puppet as she uses the wind to carry more of that weakening powder in the air, sending the cloud to try and surround Keigo.
Keigo was getting a little TOO cocky now… and failed to notice the vortex in time to make his handsigns… and that's where disaster struck! The vortex was powerful enough to cause his lungs to lose some of their oxygen, which caused him to inhale sharply… but sharply enough… that he actually inhaled some of that smoke from before… being released from the vortex finally, he coughed and sputtered as he tried to get back his bearings… he glares at Hanami. "You know… that wasn't cool… I feel a bit weaker from that attack, now… and I don't like that feeling… it's just as bad as feeling helpless…" Buried emotions on that one… his eyes fixed directly against Hanami now, focused and determined… he was going all in now! Moving his hands forward, he sent Ayamakki charging in, rapidly swinging its blade at Hanami several times while she would attempt to dodge them!
Hanami doesn't take much joy in successfully hitting him. Since Keigo's retaliation land their mark, her speed diminishing as she's sliced again and again. She stumbles back, watching the boy. Though she's not afraid of him, that much is clear despite his angry assault. She sighs, reaching for her kunai again and sending them whizzing straight for Keigo this time.
Keigo was looking rather ragged now that the blows were coming in faster than he could deflect them… then again, his determination to win was overriding his will to defend… so it was a tough call. He was able to successfully have Ayamakki take one of the hits effortlessly, he wasn't nearly fast enough for the other two, trying to replace a second time and failing, catching a Kunai in the arm… then trying to pull Ayamakki over to him to defend him from the last attack, which hit the same spot as the first, dealing more damage that time… he yowled in pain as he gritted his teeth… this wasn't over yet… she seemed to be a Ranged fighter… he'd have to make sure to keep Ayamakki close to her to make her unable to easily attack him… and with that, his mind was made up. He sent Ayamakki back into the fray to make more blade swings dangerously towards Hanami, the blades still dripping with potent poison.
Keigo wouldn't have to worry too much anyways, cause it ended up how Hanami knew it would after that last attack. She tries defending with her chakram but the previous wounds and poison slow her. Slashed across the arm, chest, basically just done. She tried holding off against the attacks but she wasn't surprised when darkness invaded the edges of her vision. She falls back with a grunt and is out, barely conscious but alive.
Mai decides to step in once Hanami goes down. "Winner: Hougenka Keigo, Genin of Sunagakure. Congratulations." The woman gestures for some medics to come over and make sure Hanami is still alive (no need to have death in the tournament, right? It's supposed to be 'friendly') and she shoos Keigo off to go find some medical treatment or just to flatly get out. "And now for our next match…" she continues without much delay, knowing the crowd, even after their cheering for their respective sides, would want more entertainment.