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Private/Closed Ambrose Academia

Discussion in 'General Role Play' started by kageyama, Dec 20, 2018.

  1. Areum searched Kenji’s eyes as he queried her. Don’t play the oblivious card, the girl mentally hissed. “You tell me,” Areum nearly spat, eyes narrowing at the male before her. She pushed past him and entered the women’s locker room that had been a few strides away. She stripped down in a stall and tossed the jumpsuit on, then tying on a pair of combat boots she had brought in a small drawstring bag. Areum shoved her belongings in a locker before sealing it shut. Before she stormed out of the locker room, she glanced at herself, taking note of the unfriendly exterior she was presenting. Then, she shoved the door open and found herself a seat in the hundreds of spots that adorned the pavilion.

    Hatsuo stepped out of the car and took in the size of the stadium before him. He whistled as he walked in, receiving his uniform. In search of the men’s locker room, he poked his head around a corner where a familiar pair stood, seemingly arguing. He retreated back a bit as not to be seen, recalling their faces from the article he had read so long ago. With a smirk, he turned around and headed towards the men’s locker room, which he spotted during his session of eavesdropping. “Trouble in paradise,” he murmured in a singsong fashion as he opened the door. Like Areum, he swapped clothes and pulled on his own combat boots. Rolling up the monotonously-toned sleeves, he stepped out and claimed a seat in the arena’s stands, slumping down in it.
     
  2. Upon hearing the cold response, Kenji's face contorted into one of exasperated confusion. "You tell me"?! I don't know either; why would I ask you? Is what he would have asked if Areum hadn't left right after. He let out a loud sigh of agitation and made for the locker room. Upon arrival, the teen dressed into the jumpsuit and put on the same sneakers he had been wearing. Afterward, Kenji emerged into the main area where the tournament was being held and found a seat. Areum was nowhere in sight, which was good for now; he didn't want the two to make a scene in public. However, the announcer tapped the mic to get the audience's attention before calling Kenji and Areum to Ring A. That early, huh? The teen got up from his seat and headed to the ring, where he would meet with her.
     
  3. The fields each match occurred on were big to say the least. Areum stood with her arms crossed in the ring, Kenji not far from her. A referee was carefully explaining the rules to them, but Areum paid little attention and instead focused on their opponents - a male and a female who both seemed uptight and intense. Areum scuffed her boot on the ground as the ref finished.

    Both pairs approached each other at the center of the field to greet each other. Areum glanced around the stands - they had grown fuller in the past few minutes. After several moments of one more rule explanation and more refs coming to judge the fight, a whistle screeched and the battle began. “I’ve got the guy,” Areum stated with extreme snark. They both sank back, lurching towards each other in a frenzy. Areum came to discover that the male had equipped himself with scales that shifted among his body, his appearance becoming lizard-like rather quickly. He threw a hard blow to her, but Areum ducked quickly and jutted her leg out to buckle his knees. It didn’t quite work, but it gave her enough time to hop back lower his awareness. In the very few seconds he stood dazedly, Areum conjured a bow and arrow to rest in her hands as she quickly fired a shot to the bridge of his nose.

    He roared, tossing himself at Areum with no hesitation. The tackle sent the pair rolling before Areum landed on her back with ‘godzilla’ above her. Her arms were pinned down as he knelt above her. With a pleased and toothy grin, he reared his arm back to knock her out. However, Areum took the opportunity of one free arm to summon a sword in her hand. Needless to say, the holographic blade shot up into his gut as it pixelated in her midst. The male groaned and gagged with agony as he toppled off of her, clutching his stomach and fading into unconsciousness. Areum scrambled to her feet, weapon disarranging itself as she stared down at him. He was quickly hoisted away as cheers and shouts began to deafen in the stadium. Areum felt cold and dissatisfied, feeling a trickle of blood run from her nose as she breathed hard.
     
  4. "Jeez, no need to be so cold," Kenji retorted as he faced the girl who would be his opponent for this fight. The girl, who seemed to be able to fire explosive blasts from her hands, lunged at him and aimed a blazing palm at his side. Catching the attack, Kenji grabbed her shoulder with his free arm and threw her to the ground, pinning her down by grinding his knee into her bicep. Groaning in pain, the girl yelled through gritted teeth and unleashed a massive explosion directly into his face. Although it didn't hurt, it caught him by surprise, causing him to stumble back. However, it was clear that that was merely a desperate attempt, and the real winner of the bout was clear. In a last ditch effort, the girl swung clumsily at Kenji, who sidestepped easily and aimed a quick and deadly spinning hook kick to the temple, his heel making a sickening crack as it collided with her head, knocking her to the ground unconscious.
     
  5. Areum looked around the stadium once more before turning on her heels and heading for the exit back into the lobby. Her hand drew up to her face, wrist swiping at the blood loitering down her face. It smeared to the side, leaving her a bit of a mess with a bad attitude. Areum made her way into the locker room with a grumble, washing her hands and face unhappily. She remained for a few minutes in a position that let the blood drip into the sink.

    When it seemed to cease, Areum cleaned up the sink and departed once more from the locker room and into the waiting area. She sat herself at a table and drew her phone out, which she grabbed from her locker when she had the opportunity to. Their next match was after two different ones that were just beginning.
     
  6. In another ring, Ryohei and Hatsuo were called to face their first opponents. Making his way to the ring, the referee signaled for the two pairs to enter, read the rules from his piece of paper, and started the match. Ryohei gestured for his teammate to get one boy, while he took on the other. His opponent seemed to be able to control electricity, and he fired a blast of lightning at him just as soon as the match started. Ryohei barely managed to dodge, though the side of his suit was slightly singed from the attack, and aimed a swift knee to the other's gut. His opponent doubled over with a grunt of pain, and Ryohei quickly followed up with a two hand hammer attack, crashing both fists down onto his back. The boy fell to the ground, and the bout was over in an instant.

    "We have a lot to discuss later," Kenji sighed, audible enough for Areum to hear as he watched her leave. He then left the ring and went back to his seat in the stands, sitting down and beginning to read the newest volume of the Haikyuu manga, something he had bought the night prior.
     
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  7. Hatsuo’s opponent presented his ability of holding authority of fire, lighting his hands as if they were matches. Hatsuo almost chuckled at the advantage he had over the male. However, his opponent was oblivious to it and charged at him with blazing fists. Before any impact could occur, Hatsuo slipped away with his ability and emerged behind the male. His leg swung back before delivering a blow to his opponent’s knee. A confused groan escaped his lips as he buckled forward, immediately igniting his entire body as a self defense mechanism. Hatsuo jutted his hand out, extinguishing the boy with a forceful jet of water. Hatsuo then ended the fight by picking up his overwhelmed opponent by the collar and socking him in the nose. Fans roared as the match dissipated, sending each pair off the field.

    Areum stood in the waiting area as the fight before her and Kenji’s finished up. Eventually, the usual process occurred and Areum found herself standing on the field before two females. The whistle blew, and before she knew it, one of the girls threw herself at Areum, knocking her back. Taken aback, the wind blew out of Areum as she fought the girl from clawing out her eyes with a set of hands that were sharp and animal-like. Obviously in a struggle, Areum grunted as she tried to push the girl off of her.
     
  8. As the fight began, Kenji was about to take on his opponent before he saw the other girl pounce on Areum, pinning her to the ground and trying to claw her eyes out. Energy surging through him, he lunged at the girl, swinging his forearm and catching her in the stomach in a clothesline attack before flinging her back. Despite the fact that he had just saved his teammate from a dangerous struggle, he scoffed and half-heartedly helped her up with a dry look in his eyes. The other girl, who had been neglected in the exchange yelled a battle cry as she swiped at him in a frenzy with icy claws conjured along her fingers. Kenji avoided all but one attack as a finger managed to graze his left cheek, drawing a few drops of blood. Disregarding the lucky shot, he caught her arm in the follow-through and flung her over his shoulder, knocking her to the ground. He would have finished the fight right there, had the girl not gotten away with a kick to the stomach before jumping back. Kenji took a few steps back, his eyes narrowed. Clearly she wasn't like one of the other pushovers he had seen in tournament matches prior, so he would have to start taking the fights a bit more seriously.
     
  9. Areum felt a defensive sneer grow on her face as Kenji half-heartedly helped her up. “Well excuse me for not being perfect enough to catch up with her literal animal like features,” she hissed under her breath out of Kenji’s hearing. Areum sank back as she quickly examined her opponent, who was still very carnivorous. The girl launched herself at Areum, charging at her and then faking her out with a side step, then delivering a sweep to the legs. Areum was knocked backwards, but she quickly adjusted into a back somersault that left her crouching in a ready position. Quickly, Areum conjured a bow and arrow and began firing quickly and accurately. The girl, however, was swift to dodge. A glint was in her opponent’s eyes, and before Areum knew it, the girl was charging at Kenji instead of her. “Tch!” Areum scoffed in angry surprise. “She’s behind you!” she shouted to Kenji.

    Still crouching, Areum kept a distance and lowered the ice-girl’s awareness with all of her might. Then, as she was momentarily dazed, Areum sent bundles of arrows at the girl’s torso. She snapped out of it and writhed with pain, furiously turning to Areum. Damn, Areum mentally deadpanned as the girl took her as a target instead. Areum bounced up, engaging herself in the now physical combat that broke out between them. She narrowly avoided several icy swipes, countering them by grabbing the girl’s collar and thrusting her knee sharply into her gut. The girl eventually keeled back, grabbing Areum as she went down. The two girls hit the ground, and Areum took advantage by rolling on top and socking her in the nose. She finally fainted, leaving a breathless Areum rubbing her own nose with a sigh.
     
  10. Upon hearing Areum's shout, Kenji whipped around to see the girl with an inhuman feral ability reach out with her sharp claws in an effort to rip into his throat. Barely being able to duck underneath, the teen landed a direct straight jab at her stomach, causing her to double over with a grunt. He then grabbed her by the throat and held her up before slamming her back down onto the ground, knocking the air out of her. Struggling to get back up, the girl wheezed for air as she got into a weak stance, as if she thought she could still fight. Eyes narrowed, Kenji lunged forward once again and swiftly kicked her in the side, knocking her back down and unconscious, ending the match.

    Once the victors had left the ring side-by-side, Kenji brought up the topic of the tension between them, saying, "I still don't know why you insist on ignoring me; you still have yet to explain what I did wrong and expect me to have it all figured out."
     
  11. Sharply, Areum glanced at him as they paced out of the ring. “Ask your other girlfriend why I’m so pissed,” she said under her breath, promptly speeding up her pace. As she stormed ahead, she tugged her hair out of her ponytail, combing through it with her fingers before braiding it back with impressive speed. She swiped her bangs to the side, tucking them behind her ear.

    Hatsuo was craving their next battle like a hungry snake to a mouse. He fidgeted in the waiting area by his partner, bouncing up and down with adrenaline. Their match started after the current one, which was drawling on far too long in Hatsuo’s opinion.
     
  12. Other girlfr-- Kenji was growing more and more aggravated by the second. As Areum stormed out with her now braided hair, he caught her wrist and turned her around, hands on her shoulders to secure her in her position. "Maybe you should drop the whole inference quips and just tell me what the hell is going on! It seems like every response you give me leaves more questions than answers; when are you going to realize that I'm completely in the dark about this whole situation?"
     
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  13. Areum slightly flinched as he demanded an answer from her. She searched his eyes, hurt filling her own. Keeping a steady gaze as best as she could. “A few weeks ago. In the hallway, a girl approached you and requested to go out with you. You said,” her voice cracked as she recalled the painful memory, “you would get your number for her.” Staring up at him for a moment longer, she pulled back and rubbed her nose with her sleeve, refusing to look at Kenji, but rather a tile on the floor. “I saw it happen,” she breathed quietly.
     
  14. ... Wow. This was dumb.
    Kenji couldn't help it. He attempted to keep his composure while staring into Areum's eyes before breaking away, a small chuckle escaping his lips. It soon grew to a bit of a laugh and continued growing until the teen was now nearly doubled over in laughter, an occasional wheeze or two in between. In between fits of laughter, he managed to say, "So.. this is all about that.. that moment?" He burst in laughter again and slapped the ground, accidentally making a large dent. Finally getting a hold of himself, he wiped a tear from his eye and turned back to his girlfriend. "Okay, okay, that was out of place; I'm sorry. I should tell you the truth about that whole ordeal." Kenji gently put a hand on her cheek and raised her head so she was looking at him before starting. "Of course I wasn't willing to give her my number; I electrocuted her! I just found the whole situation so laughable, I decided to play along for a few moments before shutting her down and found being sarcastic to be the best option. I'm sorry if that caused the whole misunderstanding, I truly am."
     
  15. Areum watched Kenji burst into a fit of laughter that went so far to cause damage to the building. All pain left her and was instead replaced by pure, unadulterated confusion. As he calmed himself from his fit and explained the misunderstanding to her, she blinked, making no attempts to portray any emotion. In fact, she didn’t quite know what she was feeling. All she knew was that she wanted to slap him right then and there, while also wanting to embrace him for all of time. But instead of doing either, she stood still and closed her eyes with a sigh, then pinched the bridge of her nose. “Okay. Alright,” was all that calmly slipped out of her mouth. “My fault for being paranoid.”

    Thoughts flooded Areum’s head mainly consisting of, “How in God’s name was I that stupid?” or “It’s not my fault I was afraid of being replaced!” The two phrases clashed at each other in her mind, leaving her to blankly stare at the floor and stand still.
     
  16. Kenji raised a brow upon hearing Areum's answer. "Is that all? I doubt that's all you're thinking right now." He sighed and pulled his girlfriend into a hug, wrapping his arms around her warmly. "Just let it out; I'm right here."

    Ryohei was fiddling with his thumbs on the other side of the arena, eagerly waiting for his and Hatsuo's match to start. He seemed to agree with what Hatsuo was thinking: this fight was progressing more slowly than continental drift. After a few more minutes, the fight was concluded, and the two were motioned to prepare for their fight. Smirking in anticipation, the teen cracked his knuckles, his eyes dancing with red and purple fire.
     
  17. Areum’s eyebrows furrowed as she leaned into Kenji. “Well, can you really blame me for getting upset? I mean, I trust you, but.. what I heard just caught me off guard and I couldn’t wrap my mind around the fact that it might’ve been a misunderstanding. I.. I don’t know,” she said softly, squeezing her eyes shut.

    After what felt like ages, the whistle blew that signaled the match’s end. Hatsuo nearly sprinted out onto the field, but stopped himself after remembering that the occupants had to clear the field. When they slowly stepped back inside the waiting room, Hatsuo dashed out with a sharp grin on his face. Ryohei and his opponents, however, took their sweet time in walking up the field. They consisted of two males, both with nothing extraordinary about them, but giving off clever auras. When they lined up across from each other, the whistle shrieked and Hatsuo claimed the boy on the left.
     
  18. Kenji chuckled as the two continued to hold the embrace. "Of course not. Most of it was my fault anyway; I could have just flat out rejected her, but I chose to play around for some reason, leading to the whole thing." Suddenly, the loud roar of the eager audience rang out through the competition center, snapping Kenji back to reality. He sighed, reluctant to break away from the hug as he continued to keep his arms wrapped around Areum. "That's right; we still have a tournament to win, huh?"

    As the fight began, Ryohei immediately tackled his other opponent, sending the two tumbling through the ring. His opponent, a boy with the ability to harness the earth, kicked him off with both legs before sending a fissure in his direction. Ryohei ran directly at the male, avoiding any rubble that would incapacitate him and swept his feet with a leg, ending the fight with a punch to the nose.
     
  19. A wavering feeing of unsteadiness washed over Areum as he spoke to her. Not wanting to let go, she gently pushed herself out of his grasp and looked up at him with a smile. “Yeah. I suppose,” she returned, then turned off of her heel to find a seat in the arena to watch the current battle.

    Hatsuo practically dove at his opponent, who revealed to have manipulative and thorny vines sprout from his limbs. As he tackled him forward, the vines were quick to snag and twist around Hatsuo. However, he simply chuckled and faded out of grasp with the snap of his fingers. Perplexed, the boy slowly stood up and glanced around, unaware of the looming figure of Hatsuo that stood behind him. His arm reared back before sending a KO swing to the spine of his enemy. The male crumpled down and the match ended. Hatsuo sighed. “La~me,” he said in a singsong voice, basking in the roaring cheers of the stadium. “That lasted, what, a whole 2 minutes?” he breathed, walking off of the field proudly.
     
  20. Kenji followed Areum to the stands and sat down next to her once the two had found a seat. The current bout they were spectating was between two teams of boys, one with the abilities to control fire and water (is that right I kinda forgot), and the other with the abilities of ground and plant manipulation. The fire and water team had taken the match by storm, ending it in 2 minutes, give or take. Whistling in surprise, Kenji remarked, "We'll probably be seeing them in the finals." Suddenly, the announcer called Kenji and Areum to the center ring, where the semifinals would be held. The two would be facing a different team, while Ryohei and Hatsuo were on the other side of the semis bracket.

    Ryohei folded his arms, a slight frown of disdain on his face as he followed Hatsuo off the field. "I'm almost pissed at the fact that that was too easy; wasn't that the quarterfinals? You'd think we'd have some actual competition after we broke into quarters."
     
  21. Hatsuo stuffed his hands in his pockets. “Totally boring!” he mock-whimpered in agreement, but quickly smirked with sharp eyes. “That was simply a warm-up round, nothing else.” His voice was edged with a seriousness that was unfamiliar to most who knew him. Hatsuo glanced back at Ryohei with his usual playful demeanor.

    Areum stiffly watched as the matched dissipated in less than three minutes. She nearly choked at the realization that they’d likely math against them, but swallowed hard and calmed herself down. Their cue to go to the field was sent, and the pair made their way out of the stands to their match.

    Tapping her foot as to relieve her jitters, Areum listener to the referee explain thoroughly how things would go down in the semifinals. A couple minutes had passed before Kenji and she had been sent out to the field. Loud cheers filled the stadium as the other pair arrived as well. Two males, both finely built and serious looking. They had to have had at least seven inches in Areum as they looked over her with seriousness. Nevertheless, Areum would have to win, no matter how different her opponent’s physique may be. The whistle blew and one of the boys charged straight at Areum, muscled-arm swinging at her. She was quick to duck forming a dagger and dragging it across his shins as she rolled out of the way. A grunt escaped his lips as she stood up behind him, letting the weapon disappear. He quickly turned to her and closed his eyes for a moment before opening them again with a piercing gaze. Areum was quite literally paralyzed, despite her efforts to strain. Struggling to move, Areum braced herself as he charged at her once again. But the swing of his rippling arm took just enough time for Areum to regain her movement and hurriedly duck low. Due to the force in his punch, he toppled forward as he failed to hit Areum.

    She hastily formed a heavy club and jumped onto his back as he struggled to get up. Her sudden weight on him knocked the wind out of him, and then the consciousness after she delivered a blow to the back of his head with the weapon. Breathing hard, Areum tried to shake off the terrible feeling that the paralysis had provided.
     
  22. It seemed like Kenji's opponent, along with Areum's, had no superhuman ability and instead relied on their brute strength to win. He sighed. Wasn't this the semifinal? To be frank, he was expecting much more than some bodybuilder. His opponent lunged at him in a right hook, which was easily avoided. Suddenly, as Kenji stepped back, stanced up once more, his opponent glared at him, his eyes fading to a burnt around as his pupils swirled in a hypnotic pattern. Kenji found himself losing balance, as if the male had inflicted some kind of vertigo feeling on him by making eye contact. Hurriedly shaking off the feeling in time to dodge an incoming straight lunge, Kenji stepped back and took a black bandana from his pocket, tying it around his eyes in order to block his vision. If the vertigo inducing ability was harnessed through eye contact, all Kenji had to do was prevent it from happening. Taking off his shoes as well, the teen now stood barefoot on the battlefield, still in a fighting stance. With everything black, Kenji used his aura to heighten his sense of hearing and touch, things that would definitely be useful in the fight. His opponent scoffed and lunged once again. The sound of shoes kicking up dirt as he ran, the heavy breathing slowly getting louder, the sound of air being cut by an incoming fist; Kenji heard it all.

    It was over in an instant. In astounding speed, Kenji had blocked the punch that had been thrown, knocking the arm upward before jutting a fist into the male's ribcage. As his opponent stumbled back, the teen finished the match with a roundhouse kick to the face, knocking him to the ground unconscious. A loud roar went up upon the conclusion of the fight, exclamations of surprised spectators ringing through the air.
     
  23. Just like that, the semifinals concluded and the real test began: the finals. Areum’s heart fluttered wildly as they were ushered off of the field, deafening cheers filling the stadium. There was now a small period of time where the remaining teams could rest before going head-on for the champion title. Kenji and Areum were seated in a new area, a tent-like room with bottled water and cozy seats. A ref followed them in. “You’ve got 20 minutes to relax and regain any lost strength. We’ll notify you at the 18 minute mark,” he said before abruptly leaving. Areum grabbed a water bottle and paced around for a bit before stopping. “This is it, huh?” she asked gently.

    Similar to Areum and Kenji, Hatsuo and Ryohei were in a separate tent. “That duo we’re up against - they’ll be different from other teams we faced. I’m sure you’re aware of that, though,” Hatsuo breathed, flopping down into a chair. A devilish smirk formed on his face. “They’ll be especially stronger considering they resolved their interesting conflict from before. All the more reason to win though - more glory, amiright?” Truthfully his heart was pacing rather quickly, but he didn’t dare show any submission.
     
  24. Kenji sucked in a large intake of breath before letting it out in a sigh. "Yeah, I guess so." Those guys we're fighting; they dominated the ring in every fight, ruthless strike after another. If we want to fight them on an even turf, we have to be just as explosive as they are. I don't know if Areum can manage that, seeing as how it'll take a lot of stamina. "Apparently the fight is gonna consist of three sets. First team to land 3 clean hits on each opponent wins the set, and first to three wins the gold." He shot her an uncertain glance. "Think you can handle this? Those guys-- they're not the pushovers in past rounds. No doubt, they're coming out swinging in the first second."

    Ryohei grinned, cracking his knuckles. "At least it'll be a challenge, for once." Scarlet and purple fire danced in his eyes, flames of the same color swirling around his fingers as he waited. "Opponents like those; they're the ones I like to fight. Not those pathetic others from the other rounds. I've never been more ready."
     
  25. Areum paused and shut her eyes, inhaling deeply through her nose. She was quiet for a moment before her eyes opened again, pupils undilated. A shift in her aura was noticeable as she nodded her head and said, “I’ll be crazy if I didn’t try.”

    The referee entered the tent, sweat drops decorating his forehead. He seemed as anxious as Areum had been. “You’re aware of the rules, correct?” When the two competitors nodded, he sighed. “Alright. This is the 18 minute mark. Please warm up, or do what you need to.” With that, he left the tent. Areum stretched her arms, then rolled her neck. She was fully conscious of the fact that she needed to be as calm as possible in order not the waste any energy or stamina.

    Hatsuo cracked his back and knuckles after the ref notified them. “All ends here,” he breathed with a whistle. “Internationals, here we come!” Hatsuo grinned.

    A whistle blew loudly and an announcer began wildly exclaiming the match’s begin. Before stepping out of the tent, Areum turned quickly to Kenji and promptly grabbed his face and kissed him. Then, she turned back without saying a word as she walked out with a stony demeanor. If the stadium was loud before, it was explosive now. Hatsuo walked out as well, soaking up all of the glory with a grin on his face. The pairs faced each other, tension sparking angrily between them. “I’ll get the little lady,” Hatsuo muttered to Ryohei. Areum glanced at Kenji with a simple nod. And then the whistle screeched.
     
  26. Upon the blow of the whistle, Ryohei immediately lunged at Kenji, fists ablaze with fire. Kenji stepped back, eyes flaring to life with his aura. I knew it; you two are easy to read. He blocked the pyrokinetic's jabs easily, aiming a blow in between blocks. The teen currently on the offensive began to wince before stepping back and aiming a blast of flames from close range. Kenji cursed quietly as he jumped back, clothes slightly singed. He dusted himself off before turning to face Ryohei, eyes narrowed. "You're pretty good, I'll at least give you that." Ryohei evenly matched the gaze, fire lacing his fists. "I could say the same. For the first time in these boring tournaments, you and your little lady friend are actually competent opponents." Kenji nodded in agreement with a slight smirk, allowing the tension to fade for a short moment. "Tell me about it." He reverted back to his fighting stance, tightening his knuckles once again. "Anyway, on with the show."
     
  27. With immense speed, Areum had already projected numerous different versions of herself to surround Hatsuo - a trick she had kept in the dark for quite some time. The male looked around hastily before sinking into a portal and briefly shimmering out of the physical world. Each Areum looked around before he revealed himself in the air, firing a boiling jet of water from his palms among each clone. One by one, they faded away. He landed on the ground, about to whip around to the real Areum, but she had already clobbered the back of his head with a bat.

    Swearing loudly, Hatsuo turned and charged at Areum with rage, but she hopped to the side and grabbed his collar, swiftly thrusting her knee into his gut. He thrashed under her with a moan, nearly toppling over but regaining his balance but stamping his feet out widely, conveniently sweeping Areum back. She scrambled back, Hatsuo looking down at her with glittering anger. Seizing the moment, Areum lowered his awareness to the longest extent, hurriedly propping herself on her feet. Just as Hatsuo regained consciousness, he was met with Areum’s fist socking him in the eye. “Damn!” he croaked as his hand flew up to his face.
     
  28. Ryohei and Kenji had been locked in a breakneck paced exchange of jabs, kicks, and blocks, their arms and legs a blur as they blocked and attacked faster than the eyes could see. An excited roar arose among the crowd as the two males continued to lunge at each other until Kenji finally grabbed an incoming wrist and swiftly jabbed the solar plexus. Ryohei grunted as he stumbled back, gabbing his stomach for a brief moment. The referee blew his whistle and announced, "Clean hit for Kenji, clean hit for Areum." He blew his whistle again, signalling the continuation of the match.
     
  29. Hatsuo exhaled sharply, catching his breath. He slipped out of reality, giving Areum a second to realize his plan. With the assumption he would reappear behind her and deliver some sort of jab, Areum waited until he did just that. She ducked in time, causing Hatsuo to stumble from his miss. Areum quickly bounced up again as he faltered, taking for granted the vulnerability in his neck - which was slightly outstretched. She delivered a rough chop to the open area, making him cough and trip forward. “Second clean hit for Areum,” the ref said after blowing his whistle. Screams erupted as the battle went down. One more hit, Areum reassured herself. Hatsuo was visibly losing steam as he slouched in his stance, chest gently heaving as he sputtered an occasional gasp for air. His eyes were filled to the brim with fury.
     
  30. Ryohei saw that Hatsuo was crumpling and flicked him on the head in an attempt to calm him down. "You better not lose your control, muscle head. Regain your composure and keep fighting. We can still turn this around." He then turned to face Kenji, eyes narrowed. This isn't good. They'll control the momentum if they win this set; we have to make a comeback and win the mental battle first. The teen lunged at his opponent, who was a few meters away. As he ran, Ryohei conjured flames that swirled around him, lifting him into the air and taking the form of a giant, winged, four-legged dragon. Looking up at the new conjuration in front of him, Kenji clenched his fists. "That's convenient; I'd been wanting to try this out." With a sudden, sharpened gaze, Kenji's aura flared to life in a black and blood red hue. The energy tossed and turned in a frenzy around him until a winged snake soon materialized out of pure aura, the teen controlling the beast from inside the head. Ryohei cursed under his breath, seeing as how his new trick had been equally matched, but quickly disregarding the thought, he let out a roar, sending a blast of fire from the dragon's mouth. However, the flames seemed to have no effect, as they appeared to "bounce off" the serpent. With a thrust of his arm, Kenji concentrated the collective mass of energy that formed the dragon and focused it into a dense sphere within his palm before firing it at Ryohei. The serpent reappeared and tackled the fire dragon, pinning it to the ground and dissipating the flames. Ryohei fell to the ground with a groan, unable to get up in time. Kenji landed with both feet as the serpent dissipated on his opponent's stomach, knocking the air out of the pyrokinetic and thus rendering him unconscious. The referee blew his whistle and called out, "Clean hit and knockdown! 5 out of 6 points for Kenji and Areum."
     
  31. Taking note of the ended battle beside her, Areum took a deep breath and regained any lost composure. Hatsuo’s eyes widened and narrowed again with a heaved breath. He carefully watched her movement before sinking back and lunging at her, hands incredibly hot - as if submerged in boiling water. As his fist swung at her, Areum flinched back, avoiding the attack but feeling the sudden temperature shift surround him that could very well leave a nasty burn on her face. He skidded to a halt and whipped around, met with the grueling fist of Areum to the vulnerable area near his neck and shoulder. With a choke, he fell forward and spat. Struggling hard to get on his knees, the referee blew the whistle and declared the set’s end. Areum felt cold with adrenaline, hands twitching as she looked down at her opponent.
     
  32. As the set came to a close, the referee directed both teams to their corners for a five minute break. Ryohei, having regained consciousness, cursed under his breath as he stormed off to his chair. After wiping the sweat off his face, the teen threw his towel to the ground in anger, having completely forgotten about the advice he had given to his teammate. "Great; now I'm pissed." He glared at the ground, fire quite literally in his eyes as he sat in his provided chair. "We'll take the next set; we have to."

    Kenji sat down and took a large gulp of water before wiping his face with his towel as well. "We managed to win that set, but the next one won't be easy. That round alone took a lot of energy, so I'll probably have to use my auxiliary source for the next two sets." He sighed and leaned back, aura still flashing in his eyes.
     
  33. Hatsuo pressed his face into his towel, head pounding. Removing the cloth revealed to him that blood was smeared down his lip - courtesy of the pressure and punches he underwent. Sighing once, his lips curled up and he chuckled. “No doubt about that,” he breathed.

    Areum looked down at her boyfriend as he sighed. Her eyes traveled to the stadium as she took a swig from her bottle, then wiped her mouth and tossed it aside.

    The two pairs were summoned on the field again within minutes. “I know his tactics better, so I’ll stick with blondie,” Areum directed towards Kenji before the whistle blew. Hatsuo stifled a snort. Cocky, are we? he thought maliciously. Then the whistle blew and the set began.

    Areum quickly summoned a sword and stood low, awaiting an attack. Hatsuo fired a jet of boiling water at her, which she deflected and sent back to him off of the blade. He ducked and chuckled, sinking into his own portal. Areum immediately figured he’d attempt an attack from behind, so she whipped around the counter. However, Hatsuo was a step ahead reappeared in the same spot as before, delivering a sweep to her shins. As she fell, she rolled over, met with Hatsuo’s fist to her cheek. Screams filled her ears as onlookers cheered. “Clean hit for Hatsuo,” came out of the referee’s throat. The male teen smirked, confidence growing.
     
  34. Taking the offensive upon the start of the match, Kenji lunged at Ryohei with a quick straight. Just as the fist came close to his nose, the pyrokinetic took a deep breath and stopped the jab by sidestepping and grabbing the wrist. It had all happened so fast, and Kenji was on the floor before he knew it and had just received a quick hook to the ribs. "Clean hit for Ryohei," The referee called out as the audience erupted once more. Kenji got up, dusting himself off before glaring at his opponent. He would need to be a bit more careful this round.
     
  35. Another clean hit for Hatsuo was issued after he promptly tripped her after a series of blocks and counters. Breathing heavily, Areum now stood several feet across from him. Hatsuo, as well, delivered heaving breaths before a frosty feeling crept up his fingertips. A sharp glance notified him that and ice addition to his ability was growing. A cruel grin on his face, he threw Areum off guard by firing rapid icicles at her, barely missing her with each whiz. Taking advantage of her surprise, he iced the ground around her, throwing her balance off. To finish it off, he harshly grabbed her by the collar and tossed her down to the side. “Final clean hit for Hatsuo!” the referee exclaimed, receiving loud cheers and boos from the stadium. Areum lay on the ground, head pounding and body aching wildly.
     
  36. It was almost as if Ryohei had changed completely; Kenji hadn't any space to move or land a hit. The referee blew his whistle, calling "Clean hit for Ryohei, Ryohei-Hatsuo team wins the second set!" The audience erupted upon the conclusion of the set, and the two teams headed back to their corners. Kenji helped Areum up and helped her to her chair before sitting down himself, hunched over as his gaze darkened.

    Ever since Kenji and Areum had gotten together, Kenji had been much more.. "human", having acted more light-hearted toward people who, before his relationship with his girlfriend, he would have avoided with a cold stare. Such an attitude had even carried into this tournament. Kenji had taken more risks during a fight because he knew he'd win, and that was what likely contributed to his first loss. As the teen sat, his aura visibly emanated around him, growing into what looked like flames of both jet black and blood red hues. The outcome of the second set had been a result of his humanity... so maybe it was time to abandon it.
     
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  37. Areum sat with her head hung and hands folded over her knees. Her heart was pulsing loudly in her head, strategies coming and going in her thoughts. She took a deep breath before relying on pure instinct and the basics of fighting.

    Hatsuo’s breath hitched as adrenaline surged through his body. He sank back in a chair, rubbing his dirty face with a towel. “Set three, huh?” he breathed. He ran a roughed up hand through his messy hair, a smirk curling on his lips. “We’ll give ‘em hell,” he said, sharp eyes meeting Ryohei’s.

    The pairs were ushered onto the field for the final time. Tension heavily hung in the air, anxiety rising among the crowd watching. Both pairs were visibly toiled with various scrapes and bruises on their bodies. As soon as the whistle blew, Hatsuo lurched at Areum, sending both of them tumbling on the field. In a moment of fatigue, Hatsuo’s guard flickered, causing Areum to instantly seize the chance and deliver her knee into his gut. He nearly keeled over as the hit counted for Areum. However, he was quick to swing at her in rage as she was standing up. She blocked it with her forearm, but was knocked back from the counter. Hatsuo angrily sent blades of ice whizzing at her, to which she rolled out of the way and summoned a set of throwing stars.

    Before she could use them, the icicles from before pinned her down through her jumpsuit, giving Hatsuo the opportunity to sock her. He took it, and a hit was issued to him.
     
  38. Kenji slowly got up as the referee motioned for both teams to return to the ring. His demeanor had become rather cold, and his aura continued to emanate from him in wisps of black and scarlet. Ryohei approached his opponent, a confident grin on his face considering the dominating set a few minutes ago; however, his smug look changed immediately upon coming face to face. A chill was sent down his spine as what looked like Kenji Miura stared back at him with icy intensity. After explaining the rules once more before the set, the referee blew his whistle, signalling the beginning of the final round.

    Not every final of a tournament is as dramatic as it seems. One could defeat the other by a large deficit, and it would still be considered a final. In the span of a minute, the previously roaring crowd dropped to a chilling hush, filled with whispered exchanges as Kenji stood over an unconscious Ryohei, having connected several hits into a knockdown lasting for 10 seconds, which automatically gave Kenji the victory.
    "Did you just see that?"
    "It was over in an instant."
    "What just happened?"

    Kenji stepped back and sat down cross-legged, spectating the match between Areum and Hatsuo as he allowed his aura to dissipate. He didn't particularly care about the outcome; if Areum lost, he was still there to finish the match.
     
  39. Hatsuo was doomed to lose after Ryohei was knocked out. Not necessarily because he’d have to take on two people if needed, but it felt unusual and empty without his partner. His stance drooped as his gaze met the unconscious boy several feet away from him. He was shocked, to say the least. Areum’s adrenaline didn’t allow her to recognize the sudden severity that just occurred, but instead pushed her into uppercutting the distracted Hatsuo.

    The match finished with Areum sending a knuckle-ringed blow to the spine of Hatsuo, sending him down quickly. Everything was silent and tuned out for several seconds, but as her breathing steadied, Areum came to realize that deafening roars filled the stadium. The next moments were nothing but a blur - hundreds of camera flashes, heavy medals hung around the victors’ necks, and referees ushering them into their tent from before. An interview was conducted, Areum idly answering phrases she paid little attention to.

    Meanwhile, Hatsuo and Ryohei were being tended to frantically. Hatsuo’s eyes fluttered open to view that they were in something along the lines of a nurse’s office and a hospital room. A sliver medal was placed on the bedside tables that either male lied on. Dozens of minutes passed by before nurses stopped bustling throughout the room and bandaging them up. Now, the room stayed quiet, with only Hatsuo and Ryohei to occupy it. “...Damn it,” Hatsuo manged, voice cracking with strain. His eyes burned with tears as his head pounded aggressively.
     
  40. Kenji remained monotonous throughout the course of the events following their victory. It wasn't as much him being numbed by the whole experience as it was him just not giving a care. In one of the questions asked in the interview, the man interviewing them inquired of Kenji, "Going into that last set, what were you feeling? Especially after having seen such a dominating performance by Ryohei in the set prior, how were you able to come back and return that set almost tenfold?"
    "It wasn't much, really. I was merely doing what was needed to ensure my victory."
    "Oh.. um.. well, it seemed that in doing so, you seemed rather cold-- which also went noticed by the audience as well as myself-- even when you had won."
    "However, isn't it because I was more human in my efforts during the 2nd set that I was so easily defeated?"
    After leaving Areum to tend to herself, Kenji walked into the men's dressing room and changed back into his regular clothes. He left a text sent to Areum before walking back to his house, reading, "Gonna head home a little early; sorry. I don't think practice will be necessary anymore, but if you want, I'll leave the internationals registration to you."

    Ryohei was lying on a bed across from Hatsuo, eyes closed tightly. His own silver medal was set right next to him, but it felt like he couldn't even move a finger to pick it up. He had overheard the nurses as they tended to his wounds, talking about "multiple contusions on his abdomen, neck, and head", and "a minor concussion". A few tears managed to find their way out of his eyes as Ryohei muttered, "Sorry; I don't think I can console you with this one."
     

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