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No title.
(2013-01-25 - 2013-01-26)
No description.

The second qualifying event seems to be just that. A mess of sandbags have been set up at the center of the colliseum. OWIE TRANSMITTORS have been set up by a Professor Norton Nimmul, who appears to the judge for this event. "Hehehehe..." He cackles lightly to himself, rubbing his bald head. "Little do these heroes know but my transmission devices will transmit their POWER DATA to my handy dandy robomouse, that will boost its strength to three or maybe four times the strength of a normal mouse! Ha! HaHA! HAHAHAHA!"

"Wait...was my mic on?" He asks, tapping the side of it. "Nevermind that! All entrees. I mean entrants--go to the center of the field and pound the sandbags to your hearts content, Eheheheheh!" He rubs his hands together maniacally. This really is probably the worst guy to hose a Tournamnet of Strength. At least get Monterey Jack or something. But as it stands, he's what you've got.

The sandbags look to be bags made out of sand along with the OWIE TRANSMITTORS--but otherwise seem perfectly normal! Surely this event will just be a pure tournament of strength wtih nothing unusual happening.
Faruja Senra Faruja is on one knee with the rest of those who are participating in tonight's event. Admittedly, strength isn't the rat's best quality, but he figures he'd stack his odds of actually qualifying after his real forte proved a bust. It's not like he has to win, either. Just qualify.

"Lord grant me strength, that it may lead me to victory." He prays, before rising. Squint. After yesterday, he's well aware that there's more than meets the eye here.
Tom Magnusson Is there anyone who's actually surprised that Tom Magnusson is here today?

He strides out onto the colliseum floor, his coat flapping magnificently from his shoulders. Underneath that coat, there is nothing. Nothing at all. Just his bare chest, his rippling muscles, his sweat-drenched skin! You could reflect a laser off that body! You could /cut diamonds/ with those muscles!

On his head, as Tom approaches the series of sandbags, is a small blue mouse-- there are tiny red punching gloves on its forepaws. It shadowboxes.

It's completely adorable.

"SO!" Tom grins, flexing hard, "It's time to party!"

And then, Tom flexes.

He flexes /at/ a sandbag.

Faruja Senra And then? Without further ado, the rat leaps forward! Not yet drawing his weapon upon his back, he settles into an opening jab with gauntleted fists, followed by a winding back, hard right hook!
LEXUS A tournament of strength?

This isn't quite LEXUS' specialty, but it's worth testing themselves nonetheless. The aged man stands there, quiet, as his Identity Disk flips and sweeps around him as if it was an additional method of sensing.

Maybe it is.

"Of course I would choose to participate when all of these neanderthals are present." LEXUS comments to himself.

The Dark Virus looks upon the sandbags, and frowns. "Is this really what we're going to work with?" LEXUS gestures, and the Disc flies out, emitting spikes of corrupting neon green light as they fire out with bright flashes.
Count Valos Today, Count Valos was adorned in full plate of silver, on account of not knowing what exactly he'd have to endure to win the day. As though being akin to a golem comprised heavily of stone was not enough to start, a greater assurance of triumph was guaranteed if he could enhance his defensive capabilities beyond the norm; atop that, he needed his armor to facilitate flight.

Alas, being so abundant in poundage meant his acceleration would be decreased, and mass multiplied by acceleration equalled force, so attending the tournament of strength with the hopes of winning may have just been a pipe dream, and his fears of losing along the lines of a much more realistic junction nightmare. Walking up to the target with his signature vacant expression, he delivers a few jabs at the thing.
Rinoa Heartilly Well, punching bags weren't exactly Rinoa's forte either, however she did come here to practice and improve upon her skills. Fortunately, Tifa had given her a crash course on martial arts, so she at least knew the basics.

She rushes at one of the punching bags, assaulting it with quick jabs.
Will Sherman Will stands in the arena! A Tournament of strenght...well, it's not his thing, but well...He'll have to try /ANYWAY/. He has to get in to get the Manhattan Shard at any cost. Will gives the scientist a odd look...another one of /those guys/.

Whatever...he's gota qualify, be damned whatever he's doing.

He dives right for a sandbag, it may not have fate, but he strikes at the bag both physically and metaphysically, ignoring the fact that the breaker of their world is here too.
Brooklyn A tournament of strength. That seems like Brooklyn's sort of thing. He doesn't trust Hades, but he doesn't really trust /anything/ magical. So it's not really Hades' fault. But the fact he doesn't trust Hades is the reason he wants to enter the tournament. To make sure there is no shenanigans going on.

For now, he bounces back and forth between his feet, trying his best to focus on the tournament, because he can't go off the handle and attack those who attacked Manhattan, at least not here.
Cirra Constantine Cirra Cosntantine looks up at the announcer's booth as Dr. Norton Norton goes on about robotic mice. She will deal with him and his obviously illegal robot mouse later.

Taking the field, The Judge swings her scythe in one hand and sets her stance wide as she consdiers the sandbag. This shouldn't be hard. Just like practice in Archadia.

Steping in siftly she swings the scythe upwards diagonally and steps around backwards to follow it up by slamming the sandbag back down with the back of the weapon and then lunges forword to stab at it with the pike blade on the end of the shaft.
Isaac Hanlon Isaac is amongst the competitors in the arena. This is a little weird, at least to anyone who knows him, considering that this is a contest of strength and he's... he's kind of a wizard.

He steps up to the sandbag. Isaac has with him a baseball bat (aluminum, not wood), held one-handed, with his tablet in his other. He mutters a few things under his breath, leaning on the bat, and then swings the bat onto his shoulder and walks maybe a dozen paces back. Isaac turns back to it, licking a finger and apparently judging the wind.

He promptly tosses a ball of blue and violet light underhanded at the sandbag. It splatters like a paintball and pushes down on it with crushing force. He frowns a little and adjusts where he's standing, tapping the bat on the ground. Hmmm.
Percival Percival doesn't know exactly what to make of this competition, but he fully intended to rise to the challenge.

Taking the field, he unsheaths his blade from the scabbard upon his back, and hooks the straps of the heater shield upon his arm. Circling the sandbag for a time, he treats it as if it were a training exercise against an actual foe of which he was taking in its measure.

After a short time, he quickly charges towards it and slams his shield into the sandbag before circling around to buffet it upside its imaginary head with the edge of the sword.
Pumpkinhead Tom flexes at the sandbag.

The sandbag looks back at Tom. The transmitters make it look like it has little eyes.

Tom flexes harder.

The sandbag is unaffected. It's a sandbag. Flexing doesn't damage things you idiot!! Tom's mouse it helpfully supplies a powerful boxing glove punch to the sandbag, though, doing basically no damage to it but at least it counts as points.

Faruja helps Tom out, at least through showing that the proper way to hit a sandbag is to properly hit it. He plugs his fists into the sandbag. The devices make ringing noises of happiness, but also sadness because pain hurts. Doing this to an innocent sandbag, for shame!

Sandbags don't have fates!! They're bags of sand!!! Will can still punch it just fine. He actually outdamages Tom's mouse! Rinoa also plugs away at it...and actually seriously slams it with her strikes! If she could pace herself this way for the rest of the event, she might have this in the bag!

Cirra Constantine and Isaac perform an admirble showing next. Cirra rips open a hole in the sandbag with her scythe only for Isaac to literally set the bag on fire with MAGICAL PAINTBALL OF PAIN--the bag crunching up into a more dense form, more sand spilling out.

"Ha ha ha! Yes! Yess!!! Hit the sandbag more! MORE!!" Professor Norton cackles wildly but then... SUDDENLY!!!

"Ahh, if it isn't my dear friend Professor Norton!" A voice shouts from the sky, it is... a young woman with brown hair, spectacles, and a dowdy appearance. Some of you know her as FEIGE ABRAMSON... IN A GYROCOPTER! "Your little sandbags are very quaint, indeed! But my GYROPOWERED ELECTRON DESTABILIZER will show you the power of TRUE evil science! I hope you are ready for DISINTERGRATION! HA HA HA HA!!!" A cannon pushes out the front of the gyrocopter, charging up dangerously... BUT SUDDENLY!

"NO!" A fat multieyed alien with a laser pistol shouts from the stands. "You don't know the proper way to do mad scientist, ya? My experiment 626 would make short work of this event...!" He pauses for a moment and then says, "Oh wait, he's missing. Nevermind, nevermind." He sits back down...BUT SUDDENLY!

A gentlemanly voice from beneath the earth eminates eloquently, "Oh my, my my... gentlemen, gentlemen. There is no need to fight..." A trapdoor opens up from underneath the colliseum and an...ape with a light bulb on his head clambers on out and sniffs his armpit. "I am Doctor Frankenollie and I wish to inform you that despite your truly impressive subjects, that my experiment outdoes it all...and what's more, Lord Hades informed me that your quaint little sandbag show would be...parden the pun...Hellish for ratings."

"Bah!!" Norton shouts. "Nothing can surpass my sandbags! Prove it you little aaaaapeee!!! I kidnap you from zoos for breakfast!"

"Very well! I will prove it!" The ape says and snaps his fingers.

FROM THE SKY, a giant monster falls, crashing through Feige Abramson's gyrocopter (Feige Abramson ejects and cries out 'EVIL SCIENCE IS IMMORTAL' before fleeing with her personal subcopter). It lands near the sand bag and he bites into it, shaking it around vigorously before flinging it to the side, in tatters.

He sniffs his own armpit a few times, much like his master, before turnins his attention to the assorted hero wannabees...and BELCHES MOST FOUL at them, unleashing a mighty powerful odor.

"The new rule is to, ahem, do as much damage as you can to my dear Julius. He, of course, will not make it easy on you. Mmhmm..." The doctor then leaps into the stands where he can sniff his own butt in peace.

The scoreboard flickers on, showing total scores so far!
Tom Magnusson Tom wasn't trying to /hurt/ the sandbags! God. He was just /psyching himself up!/ It's a thing that Tom does, you see. He needs to have his muscles all warmed up before laying out a proper beatdown to a bag full of stuffing! Of course, he doesn't have much of an opportunity to do so. Instead, there is a giant monster. The giant monster just straight up tears that little bag apart.

And then- and then it belches at him.

He frowns, scrunching up his face. That- that somehow manages to smell worse than Will in the middle of summer! The mouse on top of Tom's head covers its nose cartoonishly and darts into the safety of one of Tom's pockets- one particularly close to one of his armpits.

Tom, unlike this monster, uses deoderant.

"Well!" Tom grins, hurling himself at the monster. He drops a knee into its side! Painfully! "I guess this could qualify as slaying a legendary beast! Let's /do it!/ WILL! ISAAC!"

"Let's /kick some ass!/"

Tom rushes forward, hurling a quick series of powerful jabs into the monster's awful, MONSTROUS hide! And He finishes by slamming his forehead right into its side.

Like some kind of... Muscle Jerk.
Faruja Senra Faruja is belched at by a monster. After witnessing the chaos caused by mad SCIENCE!!!, the rat decides to remedy this little problem by further application of the power of punch! Unfortunately, as he closes in for said punch, he sniffs. Pause. The rat immediate turns, losing his lunch and making other horrible wretching sounds.

Give him a second. When he's done, he squeak-snarls, drawing his spear. "How horribly rude, you vile knave!" Spearthrust! Cue a rising heated blade followed by light gathering over the monster's head. KABOOM!
Will Sherman Suddenly there is a XANATOS pile up. Except that it's Scientist instead of Xanatos, and Will looks from one mad scientist to another, before suddenly Julius bursts up, and unleashes complete and utter hell on his senses. Will coughts, gagging, and holding his face trying to breath some air in after a moment, before turning around and pointing right at him.

"PETE! Or rather, PEG LEG PETE! Your wicked plan fails here!" ignoring the fact that he's listening to a monkey for a lightbulb for a brain/head!

Will can't do what he normally does...The game was still in effect, which means they have to knock him BACK...or they lose.

THIS thing...however, has a fate. Will dives forward, aiming to slam his hands into the beast, once...twice, and then flips, aiming to try and kick it right across the head with a spinning kick. "You're in my way, Peg Leg Pete!"
LEXUS LEXUS sure as hell was trying to hurt the sandbags. He, however, is a methodical entity who augments his damage potential through crippling his enemies.

The arrival of the Mad Science contingent causes LEXUS to arch an eyebrow impassively. "Evil Science is immortal, eh..." He says. "This seems to be a collection of scientists. Interesting." He turns, and continues sbotaging the hell out of Julius moments before the wave of putrescence washes over him. LEXUS... actually coughs and chokes, staggring for a moment. "Gggghghk!" He says, his equilibrium destroyed!
Percival If he had doubts about the validity of this contest before, he had none now. After all, MONSTER! And it seemed to be from one of those idiots screaming that it was FOR SCIENCE! that seemed to be ever so common in the cinema. He had stopped being suprised by this world's antics long ago, however, and resolved to simply finish this quickly.

Percival treated this foe with greater severity as he circles about it for a time; before offering it a casual salute, then rushes in to plant a strike of his shield to the creature's ankle, before following up with a nearly blind strike to its kneecap, hoping for a lucky hit as he passed it by.
Count Valos ....And there was Will Sherman, the stinky kid who got bent out of shape after a discussion with Count Valos, but fortunately, when the hobo threatened the dark elf, he said he'd try to trounce Gidarch Valos if there was nobody around to maintain legality, so the nobleman dismisses the boy's presence as an unimportant variable in the tournament..... for the time being!

The sandbags are a much more important element, and ironically enough- they fall in line with the drow's element, earthen matter. Sensing that the contents radiate an aura that resonates with him, he has a revelation... everyone else is attacking the bags from the outside, but his ability to manipulate the interior substances could allow him to attack from within! Making it detonate from expansion would be more entertaining, at the bare minimum, than standing there slugging the thing repeatedly with his fist- however.... soon this idea becomes irrelevant, as they are obliged to prove their might by taking down some kind of.... putrid-breathed beast.

Wrinkling his nose uncomfortably and coughing as the noxious emission comes his way, Gidarch narrows his eyes as he tries to focus on the abomination. After waving his hand, three boulders of varying sizes materialize, and they go surging towards the ugly thing that he actually has no hard feelings towards, but is destined to try and subdue regardless..... such is life.
Cirra Constantine Cirra's Evil Scientist alarm goes of.

She has one to locate Dr. Bunansa.

She looks up at the Gyrocopter, thne immediatly down at the ground as the Ape appears, "What on Ea-" THEN A BIGGER APE FROM THE SKY. Cirra leaps upwards and lands on one of the pillars doting the collisuem and watches with a grimace a the creature belches across the other combatants. "This is clearly an unwarrented and illegal disruption to these proceedings."

The Judge turns and leaps across the tops of the pillars and jumps towards the monster's back, scythe held to strike the butt of the weapon at the back of the monster's neck. A twist of her body in mid air and she slams the weapon like a polearm at the base of it's skull before swinging the wicked curved blade down to try and cut through it.
Rinoa Heartilly Rinoa had expected this to be pretty straight-forward: Hit the punching bag..But suddenly..Weird critters pop up..And...A scary monster! Her eyes widen, calling her dog Angelo to her side. "What's this now? I thought we were punching bags!" She backs away, looking a bit scared, but at least she's not alone. "Angelo!"

Rinoa whistles, and her trusty dog is at her side in a flash. She's feeling a bit more confident now as she stares back at the monster. "Help me beat this thing!" With a bark, Angelo rushes at the alien monster thing, teeth bared, claws unfurled as she jumps and scratches and bites at the creature..
Brooklyn Oh great, more evil science. That is not good. When is it ever good. Brooklyn stops his warmup and glares at the creature, as it releases the massive belch into his face. He does his best to cover his beak with a paw as the gas washes over him. Once it ends, he clenches his fists, and moves to attack.

Brooklyn rushes in towards the creature, aiming to strike the creature with a flurry of powerful blows from his fists, followed at the end by a spinning elbow strike, looking to see if he can't find any weak points on the creature's body to strike at.
Isaac Hanlon "Evil Science--!!" exclaims Isaac. He'll get you one day, Immortal Evil Scientist Lady With A Gyrocoptor!

Now that there is no sandbag and there is instead a giant monster, Isaac can stop messing around. It's like someone out there recognized that the world of the Hades Cup needed a giant monster or something. Not that there'll be any such thing in it later, nope, of course not, never.

BELLLLLLLLCH. Isaac's hair blows back. He shuts his eyes and his nose crinkles in distaste. He waves his tablet-clutching hand in front of his face for a second. "Phew. Rank. Still not as bad as Will. I'll totally give it a seven, though, for effort."

Isaac lifts the bat to his shoulder. He pulls out headphones and slips them on, poking at his tablet for a second. Then, he murmurs incantations and takes the bat in two hands, and with a mighty swing, hammers a spark of blue hovering in front of him. It goes spinning off toward the monster, warping weirdly and tumbling end over end, flying up over it --

-- and then it turns into a VW Bug and gravity promptly takes it's course.

Isaac frowns. "Must've gotten the incantation a little muddled," he says to himself. "Was it 'pergon' or 'pargon'?" But how, dear readers, could he even get it at all if he didn't look at it like usual? Well, it's quite simple. Isaac just used his tablet's

(Isaac inexplicably produces and dons a pair of sunglasses.)

speak and spell.
Pumpkinhead "My beautiful sandbag!" Professor Norton wails.

Julius doesn't care, Tom dives in quickly and starts clobbering at the monster. It's irritating, so the monster counter attacks--smacking Tom back up into the air with a big hand and then smacking him up a few more times so he has to stay up there for a while.

Faruja lashes out with his spear, tearing open some of Julius's stitches. He blasts him with holy the face!! Julius stumbles back roaring before spotting the mouse. He charges forward and attempts to just slam his fist into Faruja so hard he is submerged underground. This guy makes Pete look like a tiny kitten, he's huge!

Julius doesn't react to the name Peg Leg Pete. Why do people keep calling him that? Will's strikes are blocked by Julius's hand but he manages to get out de way before he is able to submerge him underground, or throw him at Tom, he's basically a mindless brute.

Lexus has better luck, his technowizardry making Julius so sick that he turns green in the face. Or maybe he just does that normally. Either way he thwaps at Lexus with a hand.

Percival dives in with a strike towards Julius's knee cap. Squealing, Julius grabs his leg and hops up and down repeatedly, actually in fact jumping and landing on Percival a few times in the process. He flails his arms about, smashing the boulders Valos sends his way and tries to uppercut Valos into the air--he fails however because Cirra dives in and stops Julius cold. She thwacks Julius about with her spear but Julius snags her out of the air and says, "Preeeeetty!" But Rinoa's dog manages to bite into his arm before he accidentally crushes Cirra and he says, "YOWWW!" before grabbing RINOA. "BAD PRETTY."

But then BROOKLYN dives in, plowing his fists into Julius so hard that he is actually knocked off balance. Pete tries to swipe back but he whiffs!

Isaac then summons a car over Julius's head, it crashes into his skull and her flops forward, ALMOST fallin flat on Isaac. Little gyrocopters spin around his head as he's dizzied.

"HA! HAA!!! Is that the best your monster can do?!" Professor Norton is now, apparently, on the side of our heroes.

"No, of course not." Dr. Frankenollie says, pushing a button.

AND SUDDENLY JULIUS IS CHARGED WITH LIGHTNING. "RAAAAAAAAGHH!!!!" His eyes shoot thunder. Julius hops up to his feet, reenerged as he flings lightning bolts everywhere, smashes his fist at anybody he can reach, unleashing deadly shockwaves, and then grabs for that car isaac summoned and swings it about like a maniac. He really wants to hit Isaac with that thing.
Count Valos Although Gidarch's boulders miss, he's not daunted- the only thing at stake for him was some kind of shard, which for all he knew, might've been no more interesting to him than a chunk of basalt. Not having been terribly enthusiastic, initially, he experiences an equal proportion of disappointment as he realizes the other combatants are fairing much better than himself, and inwardly shrugs it off as he continues with a predisposition rivaling that of a person on auto-pilot. The Count is pretty much mindless until he's struck by an electrical onslaught, which, being enveloped in metallic armor, sends him soaring towards Faruja; did you think that the Burmecian dragoon was the only one able to reach a nigh-transonic rate of motion?....

That theory is disproven as the drow surges towards the innocent rodent with enough force to do some serious damage.... if they both meet; depending on how sturdy the lancer's mail is, there may be yet more backlash intended for the dark one.
Tom Magnusson Tom grunts as he's knocked bodily into the sky! He stays there for a long moment before he opens one eye to give the giant monster an awful, defiant grin. And then, there's lightning. Electricity and blunt force trauma merge to slam Tom right back into the ground, creating a vaguely Tom-shaped crater in the ground.

It takes a second and a half for Tom to pull himself back to his feet. Even when he's up, he still wavers, wobbling on his feet for a fraction of a second, before he shakes the addled cobwebs out of his head. "Ugh. Mad science never hurt so much. But I ain't done yet. It'll take way more than that, you abomination of man's work! Have at you!"

And then Tom has at it. There is much punching involved. /Tons/ of punching! Ahahahahaha!

Will Sherman Will shakes his hand as he meets the brick wall that was Peg Leg Pete!

"Holy crap OW..." he complains, shaking the hand a few times... and then leaps back as a fist aims to smash him into the ground!

"Holy crap! This is bad! VERY BAD!" Will channels BOB today, rolling back before dancing around the lightning that rains down on him. Once more, Will just seems to be moving at random, a step ahead of the attacks or just simply is saved by random circumstance!

Will turns, however, to find Valos attacking Faruja! "HEY! THE HELL!?! That's it! I was going to ignore your <GOOSEHONK> but screw it!" he says, raising a hand up and reaching out to grasp at strings, both on Valos and the monster. His hand grasps those strings, the strings of fate connecting all things to each other. He then tears them DOWN, causing ripples of some unknown magic to tear throught both Pete and Valos.

LEXUS LEXUS considers his opportunities, and the sudden offensive of the massive beast opens up new chances. LEXUS smiles, even as the massive beast slams towards him with lightining and FISTS. LEXUS is not weak vs. fist. He raises a barrier, the hexagonal force field repelling some of the assault even as the rest knocks him back, and he looks upon the House of Mouse. That is, the resident zealot. With a laugh, LEXUS directs his Disc towards Faruja, lightning cascading outwards towards him, while corrupting neon green crackles outwards in an attempt to crush Faruja. Ice spires erupt upwards as well, threatening to freeze him in place!
Cirra Constantine Cirra gets grabed, then electrocuted, then probably slammed itno the ground. To say this knocks the wind out of her would be an understatement. She spends a good few seconds insensate before her head lolls forward again and she blinks. Relizing she's in a monkey's paw sitiuation, she inhales deeply and shuts her eyes tight, pressing her arms outwards untill the monster's hand is pried away from her body.

Staggering out and away until she can regain her footing, Cirra takes up her scythe again and looks at the monster. She runs, and leaps over the monsterous arm and runs down it's side, Scythe held up high to come down, trying to damage it's ankle to keep it from standing again.
Brooklyn Well, honestly, if you asked Brooklyn right now, he'd tell you that there's no way that he should have been able to pull that off. But he does. He dodges the lightning, and blocks one of the fists as it swings towards him. Then out of nowhere he leaps up onto the car as it's being swung around, and uses it to gain some momentum, before he flares his wings and pops into the air.

Once up in the air, he uses his newfound position to drop back down on top of the monster, talons first, in order to dig into the creature with them and push it down to the ground with a flap of his wings and a strike of his tail, trying to topple the whole thing over to the ground.
Rinoa Heartilly Rinoa yelps as her dog is easily swatted aside by the scary monster. "Angelo!" She yells as she rushes to her dog's side. Angelo whines and whimpers but she's not out for the count yet! Rinoa glares back at the monster, about to assault it when it savagely attacks them again, blasting them with lightning and fierce flurries of punches.

Again she goes flying and slamming into the ground, screaming out in pain, bleeding and bruised now as she struggles shakily to her feet. "Ugh..It's powerful..."

But she cant give up now..This time, Rinoa steps back, choosing to strike back with magic instead. It must have a weakness, somewhere...Angelo glows in magic as she imbues a spell on the dog as she rushes and leaps at the monster again. At the same time she summons a furious windstorm, coupled with blades of energy to slash at the monster.
Faruja Senra KER-KRACK! Faruja is pounded into the ground like a nail. A golden-armored, robed mouse-nail. Only a quickly thrown up Protect spell saves his noggin from being smashed open, the spell shattering with the force of the blow. The Templar's left with his shoulders and head above ground. Yank! Yank! The rat manages to pull up his spear! Point!

Light will once again gather around Julius, Judgement of the almighty made into physical force bearing down upon the product of mad science-related HERESY, attempting to open body and soul to further damage by the element.

Then, the rat has the fun job of digging himself out of the ground. Thankfully, he's small and flexible, and his plate mail is designed to give a touch when it has to. Wiggle struggle! Pop! Like a rabbit out of a hole, he's on his feet.

Why is there an ominous feeling? Turn. There is a gigantic, armored elf flying his way at very dangerous speeds. With antlers on his helm! Antlers! "Oh, <GOOSEHONK> me!" Incantation, go!

"WARP!" White light swirls around the ratling just as the tip of Valos' armored body begins to impact him. Swallowed in the swirling light, he's spat out by a similar counter-swirl high above. "Oh, thank Faram for white magic!"

"Worry not, Ser Sherman! 'Twas a trivial assault! Qualifying means more than vengeance here! FOR FARAM AND MANHATTAN!"

Laying his spear upon his back, the ratling holds his arms to the sides, claws open. White light flows in the palms of his hands, before spears are drawn forth from wherever the heck the rat keeps his spares! Javelins, to be precise! Yanking both out of the mini-Warps, he tosses both as gravity slowly reclaims him. As they're sent down, streaking missiles aimed for the beast's vital points. AGain and again the rat summons them: spears, javelins, tridents. Fun fact: Faruja's marked a significant portion of an armory back in Mullonde. Just in case of...


Then, the ratling falls, calling forth one more spear. He raises his arm to throw and....wham! Lightning and neon wrack his body. "Fah! Fine. /One/ of you deservers a touch of vengeance!" Chuck! That spear's aimed for Lexus' head.

Oh, right, Julius. Drawing his spear, he plummets, attempting to crash spear into monster!
Isaac Hanlon Julius almost crushes Isaac by falling on him. Isaac edges backwards and clocks him with the baseball bat for good measure. BONK!

And then he gets hit by a car!?

Isaac goes flying. He skips across the dirt ground of the coliseum, tumbling to a halt. Isaac pulls himself to his feet and wobbles comically, then shakes it off a second later. He brushes dirt and dust off his coat, frowning, then pulls his tablet back out. It's undamaged. Must be made of tougher stuff than it looks.

"Alright, no more Mister Nice Mage. First, something more appropriate." Isaac mutters a few words. He gestures grandly, and the arena shakes, the ground trembling at his terrible arcane might. He lifts his hand, sweeping it upwards to his left and his right, and pillars of rock erupt from the coliseum's floor, springing out at the TERRIBLE MONSTER. They're pillars of rock... and roll.

Isaac's CONJURED SPEAKERS change the background music. Local Tartarus TV electronics do the same. It sounds like a familiar tune for fighters and training montages, but it isn't quite the same. Isaac frowns. "Wait, that isn't what I was -- dammit." He starts fiddling with his tablet again.

Percival Stunned from having been stomped on, and then shocked by the ELECTRIC APE, the arena was spinning; he barely made out the form of another Gargoyle attacking the monster. Percival was pleased as punch to see that another Gargoyle had survived, and was in fact battling the creature alongside him. He'd have to make a point to introduce himself later. Well assuming he lived of course. Allowing his wings to unfurl to their full wingspan, he climbs the edge of the arena, before kicking off the the side of it.

Gliding along an air current, he makes it a point to try and spear the creature in midair with his shield upraised to fend up against the inevitable counter attack. It wasn't unlike jousting after all, horse. Who needed one of those things anyhow? Anyhow, he'd make a mark on its hide, HUGE SUCCESS, for its master. As he glides on by, he raises a salute to Brooklyn, before making for the other side of the arena.

Noting the cowardly attack upon the mouse knight, he snarls, as his eyes begin to glow with a white luminescence as evidence of his rage. He resolved himself to punish the two perpetrators and take down the monster forthwith.
Pumpkinhead Tom still has THE WILL TO POWER.

"I take offense at claiming he is man's work." Dr. Frankenollie pulls a flea out of his labcoat and stuffs it in his mouth. "Mmm succulent!"

Tom uses his one great skill. Punching! Julius counterattacks with a smack of his hand. Will's unknown magic rips into Julius's fate. He wails, sensing something unpleasant, before he smacks his hand not at where Will is, nor where Will is going to be, but in a totally random location that just so happens to be where Will dodges into.

"Whaaat!" Professor Norton says. "Some of these people are fighting against the heroes too! Well I'll be!" The ratings soar to HEAVENLY heights DOH HO HO. "Is this against the rules?" He flips through the rulebook. Since this is a rulebook from Hades, it's on fire. Norton is instantly set aflame and he yelps and rolls across the ground in a panic. "HEELLPP!!" He wails. "FIRE FIIIYAAAA! WHY DID I TRY TO OPEN THAT BOOK???"

This seems to be a 'no, killing each other is not against the rules why would it be?'.

Julius tries to give Cirra a hug, she evades this with her tsundere power and rips open his ankle. He howls in pain and decides that maybe Cirra is not so pretty? A dog leaps on his face and starts a clawing but he keeps stomping forward and gives RINOA a hug. "Prettty?" He says. But he is forced to drop Rinoa AGAIN when Brooklyn claws into him and succeeds!! at making Julius tumble over again.

Unfortunately Julius tumbles over right on top of him.

And as he tumbles, he also happens to guide his elbow right over Faruja. SMOOSH.


Juilus rolls across the arena, jumping up once more, leaping for Isaac and landing at him with an electrically charged butt! "GURRGHGHH!!!"

This done, Julius blinks faintly before that yucky feeling from before hits him. Percy makes it worse with his blows, Julius thwapping him away. His stomach gurgles and then suddenly. He farts.

He farts powerfully, directly into Isaac, but nobody is spared from the fumes shortly after. He spins through the air, the fart explosion operating not unlike a nuclear weapon before he twists his body around and belly flops towards...

...everybody. And anybody not in the direct line of fire will have to deal with the shockwaves.
Count Valos Applying the term friendly-fire loosely, Gidarch /did/ attack Faruja, but not exactly voluntarily. The lightning that had struck him was what had thrown him on a collision course for the mouse. Will, undoubtedly having been distracted by the bombardments that are causing chaos amongst the populace within the arena, may not have realized this.... but it makes little difference, for inevitably, Will and the dark one were going to exchange blows on some day- given the boy's distaste for Gidarch Valos; today just happens to be that day. While the Burmecian evades the living silver-bullet, said projectile doesn't get off that easily, as Will sees fit to release a furrowing of strange magic through the medium of reality itself, ultimately causing Valos to suffer from peculiar impediments he wasn't experiencing prior, in defiance of the horrific status anomalies invoked by the monster's foul breath.

Sprawling along the ground, the dark one raises a hand to his head, which is spinning- he is by no means traumatized in any way by the pain of what has befallen him, because of his ability to resist the natural influences of that particular sensation.... but he's undeniably disoriented. Wobbling as he stands, he peers over at Will, trying to discern /why/ the stench-emanating hobo just assaulted him; and reassesses the situation. Will is now a threat, and Gidarch ponders whether or not it's even worth staying in the fight; an event that he personally perceives as being disorganized to the degree that it is in which he is taking part is losing allure quickly. Then again.... Valos was not a patient individual when it came to tolerating the company of others, and when order fell to the wayside, it was time to find greener pastures.

"These people do not have their act together; it is self evident that my time is being depleted needlessly here. I am no longer amused by this dog and pony show...." Promptly, Gidarch magnetizes his armor and ascends, followed in suit by his departure from the vicinity.... Conveniently enough, by virtue of being in the air while the shockwaves surged through the general area, Gidarch isn't struck by the most recent attack. Perhaps some will call him a coward after this day, but those who know him might think otherwise; now, being that nobody really knows him, that might just mean that everybody in the World of Ruin will revere him as craven!
Faruja Senra BELLYFLOP OF DOOM! And a fart. A horrible, disgusting fart. Even all of that horror doesn't compare to Faruja's hate. Screaming up towards the Professor, the rat snarls as he tries to not lose his lunch twice!

"I AM NOT A RODENT, YOU RACIST, HERETICAL WRETCH!" Someone's not had their rabies shot. Either that, or fart-stench from horrible monsters is mildly mind-altering.

Speaking of which, time to avoid that thing known as death! Leaping back, the ratling avoids being squished, even as he pulls out some nose plugs. Pop! This time, he merely gags and wishes he was puking instead of /actually/ puking.

Landing neatly, he sighs. "I have had quite enough of this." Spear-thrust! Holy energy lashes down upon the monkey-beast. HOLY KABOOM!
Tom Magnusson What is even happening in this arena? Friends are hitting friends! Up is down! Down is /GRAVY!/ Then again, that LEXUS jerk- he's the guy from back under Manhattan! And he's attacking the Mouse. Tom was willing to wait until after the tournament to deal with him, but--

Wait, what's that smell!?

There's an awful, awful stench in the air. Tom sniffs, once, twice, and then there's a shadow, growing over the ground.

Tom looks straight up as Julius comes back down.

There is a shockwave. A shockwave of /farts./

"Oh--" Tom sniffs, "Oh my /God/ that is about the worst thing-- Ugh! UGH!"

He moves over, and then punches it, once. His eyes are twitching with barely restrained rage, "You! You're SUCH a sick dick! Oh my God!"
Will Sherman Will narrows his eyes as the Dark Elf Leaves...

His gaze slowly turns back towards LEXUS...but he's wasting time right now. It's time to start doing damage...he reaches deep into himself...and then...

A red mist like energy radiates off of him, as he dives right towards Peg Leg Pete. "GET DUNKED!" he shouts, aiming a single strike into the monster. He flips up, aiming to try and drive it straight up, before trying to jump up right above it...not caring if it' out sizes him by several catagories!

His hand comes down, aiming to drive right into the monster...but this time, fate CRACKS around it, aiming to litterally kill the very strings of fate itself, before he crashes down ontop of it... and aims the shotgun of leadership right into it.

"How does Mercade do this...I CALL SHOTGUN!"
Rinoa Heartilly "Aaah!" Rinoa shrieks in pain as the monster proves too fast for her. It grabs her suddenly in a bear hug, nearly crushing her to death before it is distracted by Brooklyn enough to drop her. She rolls to the ground, hacking and coughing, trying to put some space between herself and the awful monster creature..

And then it attacks with a most putrid, earth shattering....FART! "Eww! Gross!" She staggers back, trying to cover her nose as best as she can, but still gets blasted by the disgusting odour.

Ugh, maybe she shouldn't have come. She certainly did not expect it to be this deadly! Struggling to her feet, Rinoa pulls out a hipotion and quickly drinks it, as it heals some of her wounds and gives her some strength to stand on her two feet.

She brings her hands skywards as she summons powerful winds coupled with holy magic that causes her blaster edge to glow brilliantly as she launches the magic-infused sawblade from her weapon at the monster. It arcs around, striking twice, surrounding in a blast of wind magic before she catches it again.

"Please let this hit!" And she summons the last of her strength to launch the still-glowing blaster edge into the sky, leading a trail of holy energy behind it. When it returns, it seems to burst into hundreds of holy arrows that rain down upon the monster in a flurry of wind and light and a burst of feathers.
Percival The sudden stench, followed by the shockwave knocks the wind right out of Percival, the glow fading from his eyes as he JUST CANNOT TAKE THAT AWFUL SMELL! And down he plummets, until he hits the ground, hard. And then the world just keeps continuing to spin. He tries to rise once, before pathetically doubling over, coughing. If he could remove his lungs from his body, he'd do it in a heartbeat.

LEXUS suddenly seemed so very far away, and Percival couldn't find the strength to cross the arena and take him on. He could not believe he was doing this, but he could not take the thought of the monster besting him with FLATULENCE! Gripping his shield with one of his hands, he tries to strike a lucky blow by THROWING it in the general direction of the monster. He had high hopes that noone would mistake him for an American as a result.
LEXUS LEXUS at this point is wondering why he manifested himself with a sense of smell.

The Virus reels in the face of noxiousness, staggered in the face of hideous scents, only augmented with the horrifying shockwave of ape-y death. He does, however, launch his Disc towards another target of opportunity in the form of Rinoa. LEXUS backstabs for optimal timing.
Cirra Constantine Cirra is pretty on the outside.

The state of her inner prettines is clasified top secret.

When Julius goes running around with his electrically carged posterior, Cirra sort of gets this...bad feeling and runs off to the otherside of the arena and grabs a packback she had left that, that has some how survived until now.

Then, Julius notably noxious assualt on the arena leaves it filled with an obnoxious, oderous miasma, Cirra stands still.

As the foul gas cleaers she is wearing an archadian gas mask: Judge Equipment kit number eight: anti-chemical warfare aparatus.

Less then pleased by these turn of events, the Judge holds her scythe as she runs back into the fray. She leaps up at Julia, and the pike point attached to her scyth jabs out in a flurry of blows, trying to run down the giant's defenses before she comes down and swings her scythe around to slice at the monster's shins.
Brooklyn YES! His plan worked! ... Oh crap. Not the way he wanted it to work! Brooklyn tries to scramble off of the beast as it falls down on top of him, but to no avail. He barely manages to roll away as the impact of the ground happens, but the shockwaves throw him for a loop. He rolls across the ground several more times until he comes to a stop on his back. He lays there for a moment, and then he kips up from his back onto his feet, and drops himself into a position to launch himself back at the monster.

Once he's in midair again, Brooklyn has put all of his focus into this attack, aiming right for the head this time. Both hands come together, to bring a clubbing blow down upon the monster's face with both fists clenched together. The blow comes down like a meteor crashing to earth, and then is followed up by a front flip, to bring the back of his talons down across the creature's head as a followup blow. As soon as his feet make contact, he pushes back off and flips backwards away from the creature, to put some space between himself and the beast.
Isaac Hanlon *pttthhhhhfffffffrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrt*

"/UGH/, WHAT was TH --"

Isaac goes from 'on the ground comfortably' to 'trying to get away from the ELECTRO-BUTT unsuccessfully' to 'being farted on' to 'trying to get airborne again and getting bellyflopped' to 'getting airborne again and trailing stink-lines' in the span of like thirty seconds. He's basically butt-juggled by the monster. It is truly inconceivable.

Basically, it sucks.

Isaac looks suddenly ill. He stumbles left and right and forward and back in mid-air, his curious magical platform tilting dangerously. He struggles to get it straight, wiping his face and trying to get the smell away. He might be /stink-delirious/, or maybe just slightly thrown by the whole event. He's looking much more frazzled, that's for sure.

There is a moment where Isaac seems to be flailing wildly. He's really /gesticulating/ wildly. His platform straightens and the haze of gross sort of (kind of, maybe) lessens (a tiny bit). He coughs and pokes his tablet.


The music changes again. Isaac tries another funny conjuring thing, since he's got to practice those anyway. He manages to make a stick-figure that is vaguely horse-shaped and a stick-figure that is vaguely man-shaped, the latter wielding a stick that is probably a lance. They're only mostly three-dimensional, and the horse-figure rears and leaps, dropping to the ground and charging the monster while the knight- (errant) figure lowers it's lance.

Isaac might be singing along up there a little punch-drunkenly.

Pumpkinhead "Close enough to a rodent! Nyah!" Professor Nimnul sticks out his tongue out. His tongue is also on fire. But he manages to pinch this one out. "None of you came to help me!! I WAS ON FIRE! This is why I hate do-gooders!!!"

Violence happens. The only one who actually misses anybody is Tom. Tom makes a solid attempt to trying punch (again) but Julius just punches his fist in a great show of a fist bump. The force is enough that Tom flies to the other side of the arena.

Julius snorts once, and then nods, crossing his arms.

But it's at this point that the bad starts happening. Faruja holy explodes the hell out of him, Cirra rips around his ankles, Rinoa's terrifying winds blow it back, beating about the monster! Percival clobbers Julius upside the head with a shield. It stumbles about dizzily even as Will's blows suddenly grow in power, smashing him in the legs, and then SHOT! right in the stomach. He bowls over, stumbling back further and then Brooklyn strikes him in the head, he flails on one foot only for Isaac's Don Quixote.

"TO DREEEAAAM THE IMPOSSIBLE DREEEAAAM!" Dr. Frankenollie sings from the stadium, fanning arms from side to side in a wonderful tenor. And then he scratches his butt.

The lance slams into Pete, it's like a man charging a windmill--but it's just enough to tilt Julius so he falls flat on his back.

He is dangerously close to losing his second lifebar. Only a few lifebars left!

Julius flips to his feet and with a road swings his electrocharged fist all around his body, knocking back several. And then he leaps into the air once more for a FINAL STRIKE!! Spraying lightning bolts everywhere, he jumps down about, spraying lightning around his body, smashing and pummeling everything he can reach!
Percival The lightning bolt onslaught takes Percival fully off guard, as he only can feebly raise an arm to defend against it, he is nearly torn asunder by the assault. ....Nearly.

Opening his free hand into a taloned fist, he digs it into the ground. His eyes become white hot with rage, and all thoughts of honorable combat and discipline flee his mind. In fact, all rational thought leaves it entirely, replaced by base instinct. A low snarl escapes his mouth which then becomes a bestial yell. Charging at the creature on all fours, he's barely cognizant of the blade still gripped into his hand. Once he reaches Julius, the sword becomes a bludgeon for his first strike at the creature's groin, before it is discarded entirely. The Gargoyle leaps onto him, grappling, and just begins to pound the creature. Talon, fang, fist, tail, foot.

It does not seem to matter to him anymore what tactics are used, so long as the creature dies. He doesn't even try to evade the creature's return blows, he just continues his mindless onslaught. The onlookers can swear they can see flecks of spittle emerging from his mouth.
LEXUS The colossal beast strikes LEXUS again with collateral damage. The Virus has abandoned any attempt at trying to win the contest the 'right' way.

The best way, however, is to be the last one standing. His inhuman eyes turn towards Isaac, weakened from his battles with the mega-ape. "You think you're going to escape, do you? You've left yourself open!" LEXUS hurls his Disc towards Isaac, and it explodes into a crackling mote of void, crashing into the ground below Isaac. The Disc plunges into the ground as if it was water, beginning to spread inky blackness outwards in a widening, rippling puddle, before branching violet light streaks upwards, stabbing hungrily towards Isaac and perhaps others (I'M LOOKING AR YOU, FARUJA) nearby. Here, have some delicious heresy. It tastes like evil!
Rinoa Heartilly Eek! More vicious attacks! And lightning everywhere! Rinoa cant dodge magic nearly as well as she can dodge physical strikes and so she and Angelo get blasted quite easily, even cutting through her high magical resistance! "Ow!!" She whimpers, staggering back and really wishing she hadn't signed up for this! She was expecting it to be a little less...Deadly..

Still, it must be at least starting to weaken. She darts back, and takes a breather as Angelo rushes at the monster, attacking with claw and teeth again. She adds her own magic, trying to help out Angelo.
Tom Magnusson Tom didn't connect. Did he expect that? No, not really. There's certainly something to say be said for this creature's awful, awful smell. He grunts, eyes watering as his fist hurtles forward and meets--

Another fist!?

"Wh-" is all Tom has left to say as he's suddenly sent flying across the arena! Tom turns into a veritable To-meteor as he slams, hard, into the coliseum walls. There's a soft, quiet /whud/ as Tom falls into the dirt.

It's a mercy, however- because by virtue of being all the way across the arena, he completely avoids Julius' awful /lightning bolt/ strike. Julius may or may not live to regret that.

Because there's a saying, do not shoot a bear unless you're sure you can kill it.

While Tom is not a bear, this saying certainly applies.

He rises, plaster sloughing off his shoulders. He grunts, clenching his fists. A pair of gloves has mysteriously reappeared on his hands, as a tiny blue rat skitters back into his pockets. "Alright," Tom frowns. "/Alright./"

He takes in a breath. A pulse of raw sunlight pours out from his body, corsucating about his shoulders in a solar wreath. Tom tightens his muscles. He tightens his fists--

And then, he launches forward. Electrical leftovers surge across Tom's flesh, but it doesn't deter him--

He approaches the monster like a rocket. A rocket made of man. A /MAN ROCKET./ His voice erupts into a massive, devastating crescendo. "YOU!" Tom throws his fist forward, hooking upward in an attempt to knock the monster straight into the sky. He pulls his fists back as if he were cocking a gun. "ARE!" Thunder echoes across the arena as Tom presses his fists forward. The might of the Gigas multiplies his own prodigious strength, ripples of distorted reality flickering through the interim space between his knuckles and the monster's flesh. For a moment, the fabric of the world holds, and then it rutpures, and Tom's fists blast through--

And hopefully, blast the monster right into the stratosphere!?
Faruja Senra ...Did a stick figure knight summoned by a wizard just attack? Faruja is forced to stare a bit at Isaac. And try to not sing along. Really, the man's not too bad in the rat's estimation.

"Your singing is excellent, Ser!" The rat compliments. It helps the wizard isn't backstabbing him. Unlike a certain Program!

The great monkey leaps! A spinning monstrosity spewing lightning and the power of FIST. Faruja is not dumb enough to stick around, desperately leaping backwards, Dragoon matrix-dodging out of the way of FIST. Lightning, however, scorches the rat heavily and draws the smell of fried rat. Fur everywhere stands on end. Floof!

Faruja is not a cat. He lands on his back with a thud, vision swimming. Coughing up blood, he struggles to remain conscious, the Templar's armor cracked and his everything tore up. Reaching out, he picks up his spear, and uses it as a crutch to get up. From the horrible ache in his side, he's certain he has several broken ribs.

And then, that horrific disc comes the rat's way. Corrupting violet light pierces throug him, drawing blood and ripping away the armor to his chest. Beneath, blood streams down the horrible wound inflicted by LEXUS' disc. A lesser Burmecian would be dead. Faruja stands, pushed back by the force of the blow.

He has to qualify. He /has/ to. With the others' attacks connecting, the rat knows he must risk it all. And besides, a Templar is trained to not retreat, but to advance. Charging, spear glowing with holy energy, the rat is a leaping blur of holy fury as he tries to skewer the monkey one more time!
Cirra Constantine Julius launches into a furious display of frantic power. Leaping and smashing, sending thunderbolts across the arena!

The display of anger sends cirra sprawling across the arena floor, ending on her side as she convulses from a strike of electricity. THe Judge curls into a fetal position as she struggles with the effects of the electric shock for a moment, and grasps something from her belt, crushing it in her hands to produce a light blue glow that seems to heal her, or at least let the convulsions pass.

Standing back up slowly, Cirra grasps the scythe, dragging it up as she stands. Taking it in both hands she points the business end down at Julius nd takes several deep breaths.

Taking off at a run, Cirra leaps to the side of one of the half ruined columns and with a heave of effort pulls herself up to the top and runs along the collapsed half of the pillar, jumping up to the top of the complete pillar it rests against.

Turning with a sharp twist the Judge leaps up and over, performing what a figure skater would call a triple lux in mid air, the scythe spining around her as she comes down, slicing into Julius' side over and over.

Cirra hits the ground and keeps running, leaping upwards and flipping over as she sings the scythe to dig the point into Julius body over and over.

Again she lands on the ground and keeps running, straight up the arena wall. Pushing off with powerfull legs, she holds the scythe up so that the long wickedly curved blade wil intercept Julius as she goes.
Brooklyn It doesn't seem to phase Brooklyn. He's entered some kind of zone, somewhere that he rarely ever gets to. His eyes glow with a type of fierceness that is hardly seen from the gargoyle, as he counter-attacks his opponent by running up his arm and slamming a fist into his face as he runs and leaps past.

Once behind his target, he flares his wings to shift direction and swings back around for a second blow, and repeats the process, quickly rushing around the beast's head to deliver a third, hopefully finishing blow. No witty banter from him, no attempts to exchange words. Just pure, unadulterated violence.
Will Sherman Isaac might have let himself open, but Will didn't leave Isaac without some aid.

Will turns, keeping his eye on LEXUS ever sense he started attacking other people, and even with fighting the giant monster who doesn't stop SMASHING the ground, he turns back...

The fists of Peg Leg Pete miss Will, the force of the explosion sending Will sailing right at Isaac. The Disc flies, and Will turns, his fist ringing out aiming to strike the light disk with his bare hands. The force of Will's fate manipulation and LEXUS darkness clash for but a brief moment before the disc shoots off towards Faruja...he can only protect so many people at once, unfortinately.

Will lands, his hand HURTS like hell, and he does his best to hide the fact as he stares down the Program.

And proceeds to do a motion /NOT ALLOWED ON DISNEY/.

Before he turns right towards Peg Leg Pete, and proceeds to Jab punch it right across it's ugly face.


Isaac blinks up at the sky. He finds himself flat on his back, indented in the dirt. His hair is all standing on end. Little arcs of electricity jump off his glasses. He sits up, coughing. He's pretty sure he just got hit by a truck. He should've tossed up his shield instead of relying on the fact that they're not using things like bullets from a gun. He can take some blunt trauma. And, uh, fart trauma. He hears Faruja, and throws a thumbs-up his way. He gets a lot of vocal practice. He's not bad at the singing thing, but he's better at dramatic speeches and stuff.

Suddenly, LEXUS. Isaac turns and sees Will interpose himself, which probably kept him in this. "A hero can always count on his friends, you poor excuse for a batch file!" He probably shouldn't taunt the happy fun LEXUS, but there is just this terrible urge to kick his ass deep down. He quashes it -- FOR NOW.

Instead, Isaac retrieves his baseball bat. He taps it against his heels, taking a second to compose himself, and then takes to the air again. The wizard reaches into his coat and pulls an honest to goodness baseball out of his pocket. He rolls it in his hand and lightly tosses it up and down, then throws it into the air, a hazy blue aura surrounding it and the bat on the way.

Isaac hits the ball. There's a shockwave. It flattens Isaac's sticky-uppy hair perhaps conveniently, preventing an animation error. It rockets at the giant monster of the night with astounding speed, leaving a blueish trail and screaming like a jet engine.

The speakers may have begun broadcasting tinny, 8-bit baseball game sounds.
Pumpkinhead At this point matters get a bit brutal. Lexus goes for the kill on Faruja and Isaac, and frankly he probably would have succeeded. The first issue is Will Sherman, being heroic(ish) and diving in the way of the attack, blocking it with his mysterious power. Faruja is not so lucky.

Isaac risks his own standing in order to improve his standings. He could've been DQed but he went for it anyway. This may not be heroic, but it's certainly sportsmanly. Isaac hits a ball so hard it slams into the monster's chin, sending it flying up into the air. Tom, seeing an opportunity, comes down hard on the beast. Now that it's so weakened, it's childplay itself--he doesn't actually knock the monster into the air--the trajectory of Julius forces him to do the opposite, send him smashing to the ground. Holding the monster down, the creature thrashes, trying to bash away as many people as it can with its flailing, but Tom keeps it from rising once more.

The others strike wtih great force, some getting thwapped and bapped for their troubles. Cirra rips open some of his patches, ANgelo bites at its feet. The two Gargoyles slice at its body--missing the groin but still getting good hits along the legs and face.

But perhaps most notable is Faruja. Faruja risks it all for a chance to qualify. He charges into the creature, spear glowing with energy and piercing its chest. With a howl, Julius smashes him into the ground, hard.

And it's enough that Faruja doesn't immediately get up. If he doesn't stand in six seconds...

Professor Norton counts down. "Six...five...four..."

"My monster! Julius!!! Nooooo!! There must still be bugs in his design, yessss?"


Julius's eyes roll up into its head and he flops still.

He starts snoring.


But has Faruja managed to stand once more?
Faruja Senra There's no energy left in the rat to dodge. The blow comes, and smashes him like a rag doll into the ground. The armor upon his back shatters, shards of gold-plated metal jamming into back and his limbs. Blood swiftly begins to pool under the Burmecian, staining the arena floor. Vaguely, numbers filter into his hearing alongside a horrible buzzing. For a moment, his very heart stops. No longer is the rat simply fighting to qualify for a tournament. He's fighting for his very life.

To others, it's a handful of seconds that Faruja is knocked down. To him, it's an eternity, mind spinning as the cold grip of the grave touches his soul. Tugging, pulling into the grasp of a certain God he had declared false. It would be so easy to give in, to quit, to sleep...

Screams ring in Faruja's ears. The city streets crumble. Falling pirate airships, and that horrible laughter heralding the end of an entire city. In his mind, Manhattan falls. Those whom they couldn't save die again. All due to the weakness of the defenders. His weakness.

Faruja's eye opens, and he utters a single word. "...No."

Hand reaching forward, he grabs his spear, pressing it's tip into the ground. With a scream of utter agony, bones audibly creaking, the left leg making a telltale snapping sound from the stress Julius and LEXUS put his body through, the rat stands just in time.

Bleeding, gasping, and barely conscious the ratling stands tall. He has perservered. A clawed hand, fresh with a shard of armor straight through the palm, is raised.

"With Faith, even the WEAK may be strong!"
Percival The haze of rage fades from him abruptly, so abruptly that Percival realizes he was about to bash the sleeping creature's brains in. Standing up, and noting the blood upon his talons, he doesn't seem to care that he qualified. In fact, quite the opposite, he looks ashamed, and dazed. He scans the arena for his discarded sword and shield, and walks over to each, recovering them in turn. He sheathes the sword within its scabbard, and places the shield upon his back, gazing upon each in turn. Nary a moment later, he begns to leave the arena by walking away, all thoughts of introductions to the other Gargoyle forgotten.
Brooklyn Although his blow struck true, Brooklyn gets knocked for a loop by the uppercut for his trouble, and winds up landing hard on the ground. But at least the fight is over. The gargoyle picks himself up and brushes his shoulders off, as he peers up at the scoreboard, and tilts his head slightly. Fourth place? That's a lot better than he expected to do. He seems pretty happy about that, especially since it seems to be enough to get himself to qualify for the Hades Cup.
LEXUS LEXUS doesn't dignify Will's gesture with a response. He turns away, chuckling as Isaac calls him out. "Is that so, wizard?" LEXUS states. "Then you are certainly no hero, you pitiful excuse for an ape. Keep letting others take the slings and arrows meant for you, and you'll find yourself alive... and all of your 'friends' quite dead. Efficient, really. I applaud your dedication to self-preservation."

The Dark Virus, however, approaches Faruja, walking slowly. Methodically. He held back all battle, he has little to worry about from these tired and beaten heroics. "And you." He chuckles, looking down at @emit LEXUS doesn't dignify Will's gesture with a response. He turns away, chuckling as Isaac calls him out. "Is that so, wizard?" LEXUS states. "Then you are certainly no hero, you pitiful excuse for an ape. Keep letting others take the slings and arrows meant for you, and you'll find yourself alive... and all of your 'friends' quite dead. Efficient, really."

The Dark Virus, however, approaches Faruja, walking slowly. Methodically. He held back all battle, he has little to worry about from these tired and beaten heroics. "And you." He chuckles, looking at the weakened Burmecian. "You think faith sustains you? Your country burns, your people are being slaughtered, and your world is crumbling around you. You believe in a God who does not spare your people, nor do they give you the capability to save them from their foes. You shriek hymns and kill for a God that you believe delights in the destruction of others. You scrabble like a rat on a sinking ship, praying to those deaf ears and bloody hands, beliving that salvation is at hand."

There is a flare of light in those eyes, a violet hissing growing around him. "Your power does not come from any god. You're dragging it, kicking and screaming, from your own mind and soul. That delightful, twisted, hateful soul. You are brittle, Burmecian. You are nothing but a facade. A sham..."

LEXUS reaches uJust like me."

There is a cracking noise, and LEXUS pulls open his face. It swings open, cracking like fine china, to reveal a roiling endless abyss of blackness shot through with choatic spirals of bright violet... That then explodes outwards with a shrieking noise, roaring towards Faruja with all-consuming hunger.
Pumpkinhead "Juulliuuuussss!" Dr. Frankenollie runs up to Julius and leaps onto his back, pressing a button--that causes giant springs to burst out of his feet, sending the two jumping to their next misadventure.

"Thank you for the wonderful testing!" He doesn't seem to be the mad scientist that holds grudges. "If you're ever sick of your brains, give me a call, ho ho ook ook!"

Professor Norton says, "Ha! Your creation wasn't so tough! Anyway, with that miraculous recoevry, we have our winners! Isaac Hanlon gold, Percival silver, Tom Magnusson bronze, and Brooklyn and Faruja for qualifying ribbons--my poor sandbag, boo hoo hoo!!"

He pauses as Lexus does his thing.

"...Well, asusming he isn't about to be dead! Criminey!!"
Faruja Senra The words from LEXUS shear at the Burmecian's soul. They attack every insecurity, every hatred, and every dark corner of the rat's very being. Violet, inky blackness surrounds and floods over the ratling, utterly engulfing him. There's no way to move. He falls, long and hard.

No response. Nothing from the Burmecian. Has LEXUS slain the Burmecian? A long moment passes.

A soul burns. The Light within Faruja flares, made all the more dangerous by how close death lurks. All of those feelings manifest: hatred, anger, LEXUS' dark power calling to it's opposite...and it's kin amongst the Light. The Light turns against the Darkness, pushing back with every ounce of Faith, zealotry, and believe in a broken, shattered body and soul held together only by that very element. That burning, shining pyre of the Templar's soul hungers as well, defying against all of LEXUS' logic.

When both Light and Darkness fade, the rat is on the ground. Body smoking from the interplay of Holy and Unholy, wounds cautered, yet made all the more tenuous for it, the rat's eye is barely open.

Slowly, the Burmecian smirks at LEXUS. It's predatory, that of an animal trapped, starving.

"...I believe in a God that gives strength to those whom need it. in /OUR/ hands! I may be brittle. I may be hateful, a sinner, mayhap...even damned. But I am not YOU. /YOU/...are naught but a shadow, seeking to slay with its chill. However wretched I may soul has its warmth. I pity you, empty, frozen-souled daemon." That eye closes.

His heart beats. Faith truly sustains this one. And beneath even that, his dreams. Golden spires fill his mind as Faruja rests, broken and bloody upon the arena floor.
Will Sherman Will slowly turns towards Lexus, narrowing his eyes as he assaults Faruja. Will stops lamenting for a moment, he'll have another chance, but moments to spite LEXUS are few and far between. He turns, his hands tearing at the strings of fate surrounding LEXUS...

"I am getting sick of you. Leave my friend alone you sick pathetic thing." Then he tears them out, aiming to litterally strike at LEXUS existance.

"You've mocked my friends, attacked my friends, DESTROYED MY HOME! And you know what? If you don't leave now, I am going to do /worse/ to you." Will's rage bar is filling up, as he starts approaching Lexus.
Brooklyn The fight may be over, but another fight is just begining. Brooklyn spots Will going after LEXUS, and while he may not get along with Will after the stunt Loki pulled, LEXUS is one of the main reasons Will even wound up with that Loki issue.

The gargoyle sweeps his wing over himself and moves around, positioning himself behind LEXUS, until he finds the right position to strike. Then like a creature made of shadows, he decends upon LEXUS, "First chance I've had to get my claws on you. You think you can just unleash the Heartless on my home and get away clean!"

The gargoyles eyes flare white as he unleashes a flurry of blows, hands like lightning as he rains the blows down upon the program, "I may not have been able to save Manhattan, but you can bet I will avenge it. Starting with you!"
Isaac Hanlon Isaac lands, and then thrusts his fist into the air at the victory. That's about all he's got.

"Yeah, sure, whatever, Animal," Isaac replies tiredly. "You got nothin'." He trudges away while his friends and acquaintances handle this. He'd like to do something for Faruja, but he quite literally has nothing he can do... except call for the paramedics when he gets to the door, anyway.
Percival Percival's departure from the arena is cut short by Lexus' cowardly attack upon Faruja. Despite his shame and the melancholic mood, he certainly couldn't allow that to stand. Snarling, he charges at Lexus, his sword drawn and his shield borne reflexively. Slamming the aegis into the dark virus, he follows it up with a strike from the pommel and a near blind flourish which would only strike if he were truly fortunate.

"You will leave now, creature! Run like the coward you are! Or stay, and face justice, it matters naught!"
LEXUS The torrent of Darkness ends, and LEXUS's visage seals. "You love your God so much... You will be sent to meet him soon enough."

He does not turn as Will strikes at the Fate around him. The Disc, however, swings around and interposes itself, taking the strike with an explosion of sparks. "With what power, child? You're afraid of what's inside you. Without it, you can't beat me. With it, it will destroy you. Only the /mercy/ of one of our number allows you to stand here today and spit your /impotent/ ranting. Go home and hide, cry in fear and loss at what you could have been."

He spins, raising one arm to take the initial blow from Brooklyn, the assault raining down upon him. He stands, his clothing shredding into sparks of light, wounds opening across his form as parts of him begin to break away in fountains of blocky sprites, derezzing. "You expect to avenge Manhattan? Your Clan is weak. The remnants who seek to remain relevant in a world that's passed them by. You think your rage is going to save you in the face of a man who is going to supplant you and call himself your master? Hah!" He staggers back. "But without cost... No. Never without cost. Everything demands its price. You just can't comprehend what that cost is. You're a small, feral thing, barely better than the Daemons I command."

Percival strikes at LEXUS, opening another wound in his shoulder. "Coward...?" He says, looking over his shoulder. "I bring a siege upon your world, and you call me a coward? I stand upon the fallen millions of Manhattan, and you call /me/ a coward?" There is an explosion of motion, and LEXUS reaches out, Percival suddenly being pulled towards him as LEXUS seethes with energy. "You pathetic, insolent, puling /thug/. One such as you has no right to cast aspersions upon the valor of another." He releases Percival, letting him drop away as he steps back, his hand rising to pull his Disc out of the air. "IF you fools seek justice... you will have it. In time. And we will see if you have learned the lessons of the destruction of Manhattan. You lucky, stupid few."

A Corridor of Darkness opens, and LEXUS walks away, his laugh echoing through the air as he vanishes away.
Will Sherman Will's eyes widen at LEXUS' words...

There is a moment, a twinge as something stirs...but it is gone, will biting his tongue and forcing his anger down.

He comes swinging, he doesn't say anything besides a gutteral howl, but it is too little too late, LEXUS is gone...and Will isn't dumb enough to jump into the portal after him. He breathes...raggedly, and turns away, visibly shaken and upset.
Brooklyn When LEXUS manages to get away, Brooklyn slams one fist into his other hand, "I'll get him soon enough." He growls, as he turns to look to the scoreboard, double checking that he's in. With that, he turns and heads for the exit, looking for a nice place to roost. He's beat up and needs some time to recover.

This scene contained 69 poses. The players who were present were: Faruja Senra, Will Sherman, Pumpkinhead, LEXUS, Rinoa Heartilly, Cirra Constantine, Brooklyn, Tom Magnusson, Count Valos, Isaac Hanlon, Percival