Canto 30: Final Round!
King has had some hard fights, but I don't think any of them were too difficult, up to her last one. Cham-Cham, with Puku-Puku, I think, could be annoying, but nothing King couldn't handle. As for Rimururu, I wouldn't have expected so much from her. Then again, I hadn't seen her fight before, and the ice attacks she uses are--hard to anticipate, and counter. Garia, big guy, lots of power, but I think he's not much more than most big guys. Galford--now he's a challenge, with or without Poppy...although the extra help makes him harder. He has some nasty moves, especially that electric slam of his.
I don't know, but I think I may have said this stuff before. I think I'm repeating myself, again! Oh well, it happens to the best of us! Based on how far I've come, I'd say that I'm one of the best. After this round, I'll be the best!
Jan, thank you, little brother. And thank you too, Ling. You've been a great help to me, as well. Before each of my matches, you were always reminding me of my little brother that I am fighting for. I'm fighting to not only help him, but his friends he made there as well. Once we get back, things will get better, thanks to her motivation.
First, I'm going to have a little talk with Ducky. With some winnings, it'll be time for some redecorating. Then, we can work on Ling's suggestion for the fund raiser idea. Everyone else has already agreed to it.
People will bet on fights, and half the money goes to the kids. Joe, Terry, Mai, Andy, Mary, Kim--all of us. I'm sure that when we come back, Robert and Yuri will help us too. Who knows, maybe we can even get Kyo in, and I know Shingo would love to help out with the younger kids. I think I heard that Leona and her team were in the neighborhood. That might be a challenge. It's hard to get Leona to...I'll leave that to Jan. If anyone can do it, he can!
"Hey! Kim! Where have you been? I haven't seen you around in a while."
"I've been taking some time, to think. I may have lost, but I'm still fighting. I was also thinking about my two--students. I'm not sure what to do about Chang and Choi, Terry."
"I know it's hard to except, Kim, but maybe they aren't what you like. Some people are too much like Rugal and Geese, and just can't be changed, no matter what we try to do. Maybe, you should try and work on something else."
"There is one idea. I have an old friend of mine...he tends to be more, hard. Perhaps, if the tournament ever allows for teams of four, you shall meet him. You'd like him, he's a good fighter."
"Coming from you, he must be good!"
Kim smiled, as he joined Terry on his way to the arena.
"King? Have you left yet? I wanted to talk about the team and...oh!"
Mai was surprised, as she saw King talking with Mary and Ling. King stood up, and welcomed her friend.
"Yes, Mai? Come on in. Don't look so stressed. Whatever you want to say, you can tell us. We're friends, right?"
Mai looked around at all of the faces. Ling and Mary were all from the same part of Southtown as she was, when she was visiting Andy. She was Andy's girl; Mary was Terry's; Ling was now Joe's. Yet she still felt guilty. They had all heard the rumors of there soon being thoughts of teams of four for the next KOF. She had so wanted to be with Andy and his team. Now, she wasn't sure.
"You've all heard the rumor of the next KOF?" she asked, trying to remain calm.
"Yes, we have. That's why I've been talking with these two. Billy took a hard hit here, and probably won't be in for the next one. As for Yamazaki, who knows where he's at. After this, Mary doesn't want to team up with him, if she can help it. So, I offered her a spot."
"As for me, this will be my first time. To even be offered a chance is something I couldn't pass up."
"King was just telling Ling and me that Chizuru had been feeling better. With Kyo, Iori, and her resealing Orochi, she doesn't really feel like fighting that much. So that leaves us with all that we need."
"But, if the rumors are true, I was, wanting to, if I could--I don't want to break us up..!"
"We understand, Mai. You want to be with Andy. After all this, you deserve that much. Ling was just telling me, that before we left, she had, uh, run into Kisame. I had just briefly seen her at '98. I'll bet she's hungry to get back into action. So, I think team UK's as good as ever! Don't worry, I'll make sure the next gen does us proud!"
"Ah, now ain't this a touching, Kodak moment!"
"Yes, it is Joe. What's a `Kodak,' Joe?"
"Never mind, Galford."
"Come on! Everybody's waiting!"
"So am I, Haohmaru. Ya ready, King?"
"You know I am, Terry. Let the final round begin! Time to kick ass!"
"Final Round: King v Terry!"
As each entered the arena from opposite ends, the noise faded away to little more than everyone breathing, and the animals making their own sounds. There was tension in the air, but it was different.
Geese, Amakusa, Krauser, and Zankuro were all defeated. No one had seen Ryuji, or Genjuro for a while. Mizuki was now at Kyoshiro's side, free from control of the demon. It seemed to good to be true.
There was some sorrow, for the friends that had died. Some died in combat, while others died in The Riot Of The Blood. Now, it was all over, with only a match to show who the strongest fighter alive would be.
Regardless of who the final winner was, each would still have their respect for each other. Terry had proved that he was the best man, while King had proved that she was the best woman. Now, it was time to see who was THE BEST!
Each bowed respectfully to the other, and got into their stances. There could be but one winner of this fight. Each had already amassed an impressive record. Who would gain the final notch?
For some unknown reason, Terry sneezed. King was upon him with deadly accuracy, and the fight had begun. She caught him with the last part of her Surprise Rose. Just as it ended, she countered a fist with a Trap Shot, battering away at Terry with a blur of kicks, before a final punt to the gut sent him to the ground.
"First mistake, Terry!"
Well, I can't say she ain't an opportunist. Actually, if she had been the one, I probably would have Charged in, and went into a Tackle. Don't worry, King. You won't be disappointed in this fight, and I know I won't.
She caught him with another Rose as he got up, and caught him with two more, before he sent her to the ground with a Tackle. He knew it was pointless to fight fire with fire. She had her Double, which gave her the advantage. He had to keep the fight up close. His best bet was to close the gap, and to keep it fast and furious. Good thing he had enough matches with Joe. Thai Style's that way, and as it was King's style, it was good to have some experience.
King grabbed him, and was about to swat him with her hand, only for Terry to knock her back, slightly staggering her. He moved in, only for King to use the momentum, and throw him over her. It took him a blink of an eye, and he rolled back to his feet. He nodded at King, who merely looked back at him, never taking her eyes from him. He wasn't a fighter she could afford any mistakes against. Then again, Terry couldn't make too many more, especially like before. He was lucky to have gotten out of that mess. Another Rose, and he could have been set up for her Illusion Dance.
"Well, King. I think it's your move! Care to go? We ain't going to be getting any younger!"
"I admire your `ladies first,' but I think I'll let you go, Terry."
Each was thinking of their own motivations for this fight.
Terry was fighting to avenge Jeff's murder at Geese's order. He was also fighting for Mary, and their future. He had fought against Ryuji, an Orochi. He was one of the ones that wanted to destroy this world, and rebuild it in his own ideas. Well, Terry, and others, had their own ideas. Now, it was time to take the next level.
King was fighting for just as much. She was fighting to make sure that Jan could still be able to live. He wasn't a little kid, yet to King, he would always be her little kid brother. She would protect him from all odds, regardless of Mr. Big, or Orochi himself. As for Ryo, she would fight for him as much as he would fight for her, and as much as Mary would fight for Terry.
Not only would she make sure that Jan was ok, but that all of his friends were too. Maybe, in one of the fights, it could be her and Mai. That ought to attract some...what!?
Terry took a second to form the motion, and then drove the glowing fist into King's stomach, bringing her to her knees. He then smacked her with his Crack Shot, before he lifted her up with a Power Dunk.
She knew she didn't have time to go for her best shot, but she didn't have the time. King couldn’t let him use his Geyser! She saw the look of surprise on Terry's face, before she flipped over, snapping his head back. Just a bit more, and then she shot up, the kick snapping Terry's head so hard, his cap went flying off. This time, it fell. King kicked harder than Richard, and all Terry could hear was a ringing.
"Whew!" King exhaled, before she was on her hands and knees, breathing heavily.
"Now that was one Helluva kick, King! My head's still ringing!"
She couldn't believe it! There he was, standing! Well, he was rather shaky, but he was still standing! She didn't even seem to have the power to stand. Her last fight had taken too much out of her. She had thought, especially after that Raging Storm, that Terry would be too tired to last as long as he did.
He was kneeling, beside her. He was covered in sweat. He seemed to be nearly as tired as she was. She could feel that he could go on, but if she could match him...she wasn't sure. She felt so uncertain. Then, she felt an evil, one that Terry also felt...too late!
Before anything more could be said, two violent explosions ripped them up from the ground, throwing them with sickening thumps.
Everyone turned toward the source of the explosion, and an eerie silence succumbed them all. Floating a short distance away, was Ryuji and Genjuro. It would take a complete idiot to not realize that they were empowered by the forbidden Dark Power of Orochi. The power to reshape creation was about to be unleashed.
"Sorry to spoil such a touching moment, but we have more important business!"
Ryuji spoke, but he seemed--possessed.
"Our first duty, is to take out all of you! Then, with the power those fools left, will allow us to reshape all time to the will of Orochi! What fools! They have delivered the power to alter reality into the very power they sought to control!"
"Can we say game over, boys and girls!" Ryuji finished with his laugh, now sending chills across each and every soul there.
All right! Nice place to end this part. Next up, the final showdown between the forces of Orochi and, um, everyone else! Short, simple, and to the point! I think that sums it all up rather well!