Training Games

Apatite and Sailor Jupiter happen upon Signum and Zafira completely by chance, and a clash ensues that leaves neither side satisfied.

Date: 2019-05-23
Pose Count: 24
Kyouko Sakura 2019-05-23 23:27:46 105327
    Early evening in downtown Tokyo, the sun already mostly set behind the buildings. That doesn't mean it's dark though- it's never really dark in Tokyo, the lights from thousands of buildings and street-lamps bathing everything in a constant glow. It's Thursday, which means normally Kyouko and Makoto would be having their weekly training session, but that's not true this particular Thursday. There had been another attack by the Wolkenritter just the previous evening, and that combined with nervous energy spawned from her own personal woes had prompted Kyouko to suggest patrolling instead.

    Already in henshin as Apatite, she pauses on the rooftop of a four-story building, taller buildings all around, frowning down on the street below, packed with people, as she continues the conversation she's been having with makoto. "..and so, like, Jadeite starts talking like a lawyer, and I'm still just pretty stunned, like I honestly had no clue WTF was going on the entire time, but. Thankfully we associate with smart people and eventually they got Kyubey to agree to listen to counter-arguments or something. So now we have to do all this research. What a headache. But I guess it's better than dying?" She actually makes it sound kind of like a question.
Signum 2019-05-23 23:38:26 105329
Signum, leader of the Wolkenritter, General of the Raging fire... is not on the prowl.

She is not locked in combat, she is not stalking prey, she isn't even on the watch. For now... she's resting. Seated on the corner of a rooftop with the Book of Darkness held open on her lap in two hands, eyes peering at the almost undecipherable text for what must be the millionth time.

She feels... tired.


She sighs heavily and turns a page. "So close, yet so far..."
Makoto Kino 2019-05-23 23:40:06 105330
"Definitely better than dying," Sailor Jupiter agrees. She's kneeling near the edge of the roof, gazing down at the streets and alleys below. It's a decent vantage point, but honestly the lookout only has part of her attention; she's more occupied with tilting her face into the breeze, letting the brush of the wind around her tell her what it can as she and Apatite talk.

"Sounds like a pain, but you've got all of us on your side. We'll get it sorted out. No wonder everybody talks about that thing being bad news."
Zafira 2019-05-23 23:44:43 105331
The dog eared guardian beast in humanish looking form, sits nearby Signum, giving a small exhale through his nose. He offers a grunt and a nod of his head. He's starting to wish he and Signum could afford to tag out with Vita and Shamal for this at times. They've been working so hard yet have managed no where near as much as the work hopefully would have supplied... However, people have to care for Hayate and keep her from investigating into what they might be doing.
Kyouko Sakura 2019-05-23 23:50:21 105333
    "Well, I mean, he does have a point." Apatite points out, heaving a sigh. "He did grant my Wish, aas much of a mistake as it turned out to be, in exchange for me fighting as a Puella. Which I have since stopped doing. So I can see where he's coming from at least, but yeah.. I would prefer not to die. Naru would kick my ass."

    Her red eyes scan the streets below one more time, before turning to look up towards the nearby buildings, absently. Until she happens to spot a figure sitting on the corner of a higher roof, just a few buildings down. She pauses, eyes narrowing.. then widening slightly. "Holy crap!"

    She reaches down and grabs Jupiter's arm, using her other to point. "That's totally her!" She hisses, as if there was any way Signum could hear her from that distance. "Signum! She's right there! I dunno what she's doing but we can't let her get away!"

    Before Jupiter even has much time to react, Apatite is already leaping up to the next building in the line, her spear appearing in her hand in a flash of red light, twirling before settling at her side. Her gaze is focused on Signum, eyes narrowing as her anger flares- anger for not having been able to stop this woman the last time they fought. She blames herself for the victims accrued since then.

    Which is why she gives no warning as she coils herself, then launches from the adjacent rooftop straight towards the Wolkenritter, spear pulled back in preperation for a vicious opening stab. She hasn't even noticed Zafira, yet.
Signum 2019-05-23 23:53:35 105334
Signum nods once solemnly.

She closes the book, and closes her eyes.

She takes a deep breath.

And when her eyes open again, she says, simply, "Rustungsgeist." <Armor Spirit> with one hand on Laevatein's hilt.

All at once a pink dome of energy springs to life around her the instant Apatite's spear collides it, creating a sparking, squealing wracket of magical spear digging and drilling against a dome of solid magical energy, suspending Apatite in mid air for as long as she sustains the attack.

Signum stands slowly, looking at Apatite through the pink filter of her shield. "... You healed up well." is all she says, flatly.
Makoto Kino 2019-05-24 00:03:13 105335

That's about as far as Jupiter gets in asking before Apatite is already gone, launching into attack. Without further hesitation, the Senshi of Thunder vaults off the edge of the roof and into the air, calling up the wind to carry her in Kyouko's wake.

Questions will have to wait. She didn't come out tonight to let Apatite jump into a fight unsupported.

"Flower Hurricane!" Even before she's touched down, she's already spreading her hands at her sides, scattering petals into the rush of air that answers her summons and kicks into a dizzying whirl of color and fragrance and wind around and against Signum's shield.
Kyouko Sakura 2019-05-24 00:32:59 105336
    Apatite's spear slams into Signum's pink dome-shield with an impressive spray of magical sparks, halting her in mid-flight. Teeth gritted, she glares at the General through the haze of pink energy between them. She pushes, applying her strength, but it doesn't seem enough to penetrate the barrier despite her best efforts. "Yeah well," She grits through her teeth, "I'm not as.. easy to kill as everyone seems to think!"

    Jupiter lands to the side, and surrounds the shield with magical wind. Casting her friend a grateful look, Apatite suddenly drops down, cutting off her attack so her feet hit the rooftop, but only for a moment. She pulls her hands apart, and her spear fragments into segments of haft connected by glowing chain, seeming to grow in length indefinitely as it whirls out and wraps around the pink dome.. completely entrapping it in a net of spear and chain.

    "Time to crack an egg." She snarls, as all the spear-haft bits suddenly grow sharp, triangular heads, all pointed inwards against the dome.. and as she snaps her hand back, the entire construct begins to rotate at high speed, sawing the spear-heads against the dome, the entire chain-link-spear turning into a massive chainsaw chain as she tries to use it to crack into the dome and give Signum nowhere to run when it breaks, assisted by the vortex being created by Sailor Jupiter.
Signum 2019-05-24 00:44:55 105337
Signum actually flinches a little when Jupiter's blast hits her dome, making it shimmer and warp, a grimace coming to her face as she realizes that Apatite's attack was not as reckless as it first seemed. She closes her eyes and takes a deep breath. The scent brought about by Jupiter's attack is somehow... nostalgic.

She draws Laevatein from its scabbard.

"I confess to a disadvantage." Apatite's attack lashes out and wraps around her dome. "I know... so little about all of you." Sparks begin to fly, the dome warping violently, "But I'm afraid... against the Wolkenritter..." The shield cracks, spiderwebs spreading across its surface, the dome losing its light and obscuring all but Signum's two glowing eyes. "... surprise is your only hope."

CRASH! The dome shatters into a million glowing pieces that begin to sparkle and fade out of existance, but the long snare of Apatite's attack cinches around empty air as Signum leaps high into the air through the shattered fragments of her shield, and reaches her hand up. With a flash and a subtle muting of the world's color, she erects a barrier around the area.

Then she looks down, eyes blazing.

She starts to come down towards her two enemies with the force of a meteorite, glowing with purple fire that centers and swirls around her blade before she brings it down with a roar, hitting the roof with enough force to cleave it and the next two buildings in a line in half with the wave of energy that fires out from the point of impact.
Zafira 2019-05-24 00:52:44 105338
Zafira narrows his eyes as he stands to his feet. "...this one again..." he murmurs simply as he gets a look at Apatite. He peers toward Signum as if silently asking if she'd perefer him to fight her, or if she'd like a round two. At least, that's what he's intending until Jupiter's presence is made obvious. He'd instead try to help Signum draw down upon the two of them by calling his signature attack of Steel Yoke in thier direction. Normally he'd be a lot more reserved with this ability, but after what Apatite managed last time... He's not goofing around here. As such, a group of compressed mana spikes start to force at a downard and at an angle at the two of them, trying to push them back or ensnare them.
Makoto Kino 2019-05-24 01:18:25 105339
There's about half a heartbeat's time in which to register that Signum has jumped clear of Apatite's snare, before the Wolkenritter's assault comes crashing down on them both. In that split second, instinct takes over: Sailor Jupiter tenses and leaps, shearing up and away from the charge before it hits.

Nothing's getting her clear of that shockwave, though - it catches her in mid-air, drawing a startled yelp that's swallowed by the cacophony the moment it leaves her lungs. "Seriously--?!"

Just what kind of fight has Kyouko picked for them?

Grabbing at the wind around her, Jupiter manages to steady her tumble into a crouching landing on the pile of wreckage a rooftop over, just in time for Zafira's mana spikes to thrust into existence. The gloves are definitely off. This time, though, Jupiter plants both feet in a wide stance and slams her palms together around a sphere of crackling energy.

"If that's how it is--"

The ball lightning splits into two as her hands part, one in each fist, hauled back and hurled against the spikes of the Steel Yoke with a thunderclap of impact.
Kyouko Sakura 2019-05-24 01:26:06 105340
    Apatite shouts in triumph as her sawing blades, combined with the assault of Jupiter's wind, shatters the dome of protective magic that had been sheltering Signum, only to curse, eyes widening, as Signum seems to vanish from within the dome, somehow managing to leap upwards out of the magican debris before her spear can snap closed around the General.

    She sneers upwards at Signum as the general taunts her. "Is that why you go around attacking little kids?" She shouts, as her spear snaps back into its original shape in a flurry of contracting chain. "Seems to me like you all are afraid of matching up against real warriors, so you pick on defenseless children who can't-" At just about this point in her rant, Signum starts to descent again, her sword glowing as it prepares to unleash devestation. Apatite's eyes widen, and she goes to throw herself aside-

    Just as Zafira's Steel Yoke bursts up from the ground. She twists, managing to dodge most of the spikes , but one catches her ankle, stabbing straight through. Although it's not exactly a physical wound, the spike of mana locks her foot in place (and hurts anyway), trapping her right in the path of Signum's oncoming attack. She yanks at her foot, to no avail-

    Until Jupiter's ball of lightning slams into the spikes. The impact jolts her free, and Apatite manages to hurl herself out of the way of Signum's arc of energy just as it lands, debris raining down as the building is torn asunder. Rolling back to her feet, Apatite shouts over, "Hey, thanks Jupes, I owe you a drink for that one!"

    Then she snarls up at Signum again. "I guess we're done playing around." She can't fly.. but she has other means. She jumps backwards, then falls off of the building.. only to re-eappear a moment later, a rumbling going through the surrounding neighborhood, standing atop an enormous spearhead, easily the side of a city bus. A huge spear, segmented like hers but many times the size, rears up like a serpent, coiled to strike, with Apatite (normal-size spear still in hand), balancing atop its head. "That's fine.. I've had enough games for one week already." The giant spear rears back, then strikes at Signum like viper, it's tip glowing red as Apatite rides on it, drawing her own spear back to snap out towards the General when she gets close enough, red lightning crackling around the tip as she channels her strength.
Signum 2019-05-24 01:35:04 105341
The plume of dust and smoke that erupts from the devasted building at ground zero of Singum's attack obscures her presence until she gives one swing of her blade, holding it straight outward at her side as the motion seems to send the cloud swirling away with a rush of air. Seemingly ignoring Apatite's accusations, Signum instead replies to Apatite's next line with, "That would have killed you, then?" she gives the barest hint of a smile. "Noted."

Singum inclines her head slightly and says "Zafira. I entrust the green one to..." Signum is forced to look ahead again as Kyouko reappears with a giant serpent of a segmented spear, breathlessly finishing, "... you."

Surprise, indeed.

Signum barely leaps out of the way of the attack as it smashes into the space she was standing, flipping forward once and landing in a sprint, moving towards Kyouko and putting the flat of her blade between herself and Kyouko's spear. Signum grunts sharply as the two collide in a shower of sparks before angling her blade to push the spear downwards as Signum leaps up and over Kyouko and stops, suddenly, behind her, hovering upside down as begins to relentlessly swing Laevatein at Kyouko.
Zafira 2019-05-24 01:42:31 105342
Zafira gives a nod toward Signum as he narrows his eyes. A crackling of energy happens as he slams a fist into the opposite palm. He offers a nod toward Makoto, giving her a sort of silent 'bring it' gesture...before flying at her and attempting to throw a punch toward her stomach area as thanks for dismissing his spikes.
Makoto Kino 2019-05-24 02:06:58 105343
"Divide and conquer?" In response to Zafira's wordless challenge, Jupiter slides one foot back, shifting her stance and bringing both hands up before her - poised and ready.

"You can try."

She'll have to trust Kyouko to handle Signum for the moment - for now, Sailor Jupiter focuses on the threat in front of her. When Zafira charges at her, she pivots sharply, sparks flaring from her fingertips and along the backs of her hands as she grabs for his arm in a bid to shift all that momentum and redirect it, in one massive wrench, up and over and onto a collision course with Signum.
Kyouko Sakura 2019-05-24 02:08:13 105344
    Apatite grits her teeth yet again as she finds her speartip stopped by the flat of Signum's blade, the two grinding together in a shower of sparks. "Well, I wouldn't say killed," She quips, "But it certainly wouldn't have felt great." She glances over her shoulder as she hears Signum tell Zafira to handle Jupiter, checking that the senshi is on her feet and ready, but she can't take her attention away from Signum for more than a moment.

    And a good thing too, becauze Signum suddenly breaks the stalemate by leaping over her head and then slashing at her with her sword.. while hanging upside down in the air. Apatite's spear flashes up, spinning in her hands. Each blow is blocked with a dull thunk of wood or a clash of metal on metal. This is where all that training comes into play, the years of daily practice both in henshin and out, with spear and staff. Like an extention of her body, her will, she counters each slash and strike of Signum's sword and replies with her own, her spear dancing between her hands in twists and arcs as she moves. Her blood sings with the exhiliration of it. It's all good to trade huge magical attacks but this, the song of true combat, blade to blade, is what sings to her soul.

    But while Kyouko has had years of practice, Signum has millenia. Apatite is holding her own, but slowly she's being forced to give ground amidst the flurry of blows. However, let's not forget about that giant serpent-spear.. it's still there, slowly circiling in massive coils around the entire battlefield.. seemingly of its own volition, although Apatite must be exerting some form of control over it. Waiting until just the right moment, when the two are exchanging a further flurry of blows, to suddenly strike in again, straight at Signum's back, slightly from one side, coinciding with Apatite catching and deflecting a blow from Laevantin. Whether or not it manages to hit Signum, the giant spearhead flashes in front of Apatite, missing her by a hair's breadth before slamming into the rooftop hard enough to shatter it, sending dust and debris flying in all directions with an enormous crash.
Zafira 2019-05-24 02:24:17 105345
By luck or completely on purpose, Zafira is slung into Signum. He has been having a bit of crap luck lately between last night and now this. That's fine though....he just has to get back up...right? Maybe...
Signum 2019-05-24 02:29:32 105348
A flurry of clashing weaponry may be a bad time to try to read facial expressions, but in this relentless attack, Signum - cold, businesslike, slightly sardonic Signum - seems like she's come alive, eyes blazing with excitement like her heart's trying to leap into her chest. Each swing - blocked, dodged, or deflected - seems to simply transition fluidly into another attack, as if she has a backup plan for every possible way her attacks could be averted, leaving little to no room to think, only react. That is, of course, impossible; it is simply millenia of experience, the instincts and muscle memory of a relentless killer.

So why hasn't she killed anyone?

Even when she blocks one of Kyouko's attacks it's done in a way where the impact rotates her clockwise until she's right side up again, her attacks now coming from a different height and angle until she suddenly notices the giant spear's presence behind her, her head turning at the last second, her eye seeming to shrink as she shouts "Rustengeist!"

Once again her energy shield flares to life, but it does so AFTER the spear has passed its perimeter, forming AROUND part of it and halting its moment, yet not in time to keep it from hitting her. So it is merely with the force of a few good jackhammer blows - rather than the possibly fatal crushing force that was intended - that it strikes Signum in the back just as the shield forms, causing the shield to instantly shatter again as Signum goes flying with a grunt of pain.

Insanely, she takes a swing at Kyouko as she passes.

Sailing and spiralling through the air, Signum begins to gradually slow to a stop, glaring daggers at Kyouko as she begins to lift her blade again, only for Zafira to collide into her, sending the both of them spiralling into the street.

The blandness of Signum's expression is almost comical in it's repressed indignity as she lays on the ground, arms sprawled out on either side. "I thought you had it."
Kyouko Sakura 2019-05-24 02:37:49 105350
    From Apatite's point of view, whether or not you've killed anyone is besides the point when you're attacking and incapacitating little kids. That's just not cool dude, not cool. Signum's skill with a sword, however, is pretty cool, even Apatite has to admit. It's almost a shame to go for that sneak-attack with the giant spear, but then again- nothing's cooler than winning. It's with some satisfaction that Apatite observes that shield spring into existence just a moment too late, and while the impact of the attack is significantly dulled it still sends Signum flying..

    Which is why she totally isn't expecting the woman to actually slash at her as she is sent hurtling past. The blow catches her across the side, opening a shallow but painful gash, and she snarls in pain as she flinches away. "Sonova!"

    She's gathering herself to launch at Signum yet again as the General steadies herself after recovering, only to have the bulky form of Zafira slam into the General from the side and then them both crashing to the ground. She looks over toward Jupiter, arching an eyebrow. "Nice one." She grins, raising her hand in a 'fistbump' gesture though too far away to actually complete it.

    Then she turns, leaving the giant spear impaled into the building, and throws herself off the side of the building. "Let's see if we can still make it home for dinner!" She starts to spin as she falls, red energy crackling over her form, glowing from the tip of her spear, as she turns herself into a scarlet meteor streaking down towards the fallen pair in the street.
Makoto Kino 2019-05-24 02:46:40 105351
The breath escapes Makoto in a half-voiced bark of almost laughter as she straightens, briefly raising one hand to echo Kyouko's gesture. "After you--!"

Not that she needed to say anything. Apatite's already in motion, and there's only one thing that's going to catch up with her at this point.


Thunder snarls overhead, dark clouds swirling as Sailor Jupiter once more brings her hands together and grasps for the power of the storm. Threads of electricity crackle along her tiara, over her shoulders and down her arms as the energy builds - and, with a terrific ka-THOOM that reverberates throughout the barrier, releases.


Lightning splits the sky, coursing down in a torrent of searing voltage that traces Apatite's path and merges with the scarlet energy around her as she charges Signum and Zafira.
Zafira 2019-05-24 02:51:54 105352
Zafira winces and lets out a very short whine in turn. "I thought so too..." he manages, his voice strained a little through the damages he'd taken last time. "Sorry..." He gets back to his feet before noticing the incoming meteor Apatite as well as Jupiter's attack. This time he grabs Signum and, blasting upward, throws her further upward and brings up his Panzerschild with one hand in attempt to block both of them from any further incoming damage he might not have moved fast enough to avoid from them his OTHER hand sparks with energy again and, should anyone be closing in on them fast enough, SWINGS toward the most accessable target of them.
Signum 2019-05-24 03:07:29 105353
Grimacing as the two meteoric forces come down on them in a grim inverse of Signum's opening attack, something catches Signum's ear.

"Dinner?" She mutters incredulously.

Suddenly Zafira is lifting her up in the air, electricity singing Signum's body before she's lifted up and away. Her eye followes the arc of Kyouko's spear before she pushes Zafira up and away for his own attack. To all appearances, suspended in the air and starting to drop again, Signum seems to take the brunt of both attacks. But once again Apatite's spear is lodged in the air - stuck, this time, rather than clashing - and as the smoke clears, Signum is visibly disheveled, her coat frayed and blackened. Her Armor Spirit dome is up again, having once again caught a spear in mid lunge. It's tip is touching her forehead. Blood is dripping down her face, though it doesn't appear to have done more than broken the skin.

Singum's eyes are glowing.

"Is this a *GAME* TO YOOOUUU?!!" She shouts, raising her voice for the first time outside of a battle cry. With a loud *FWOM* The shield expands in size, pushing Apatite further away and remove the spear from Signum's skin. *FWOM* it grows again Apatire is now suspended over the street. Raising Laevatein with one trembling hand, Signum growls. "I have..." she aims it towards Apatite "... *to much to lose*..." she points the blade up into the air, "... to play *war* with children! Schlangenform!" <Snake Form!> she cries, and like Kyouko's spear before, and an inverse of her opening move, the blade splits into what looks like thousands of bladed segments on a chain, stretching out impossibly long and filling the energy dome, wallpapering the inside until it's possible to see Signum through it.

The moment hangs in the air for a beat until the shield shatters and Signum flies straight up into the air amidst a swirling mass of blades, miraculously reaching out to grab Zafira and pulling him into the center with her without cutting him, until they're high above the city streets.

It's then, glaring fire, that Signum retracts the whirling mass back into one blade, and shouts <Bow form!> Bringing her scabbard and the hilt of her sword to together. In a flash of light they both meld and change until Signum is holding an enormous bow in one hand, and a rather terrifyingly large glowing arrow in the other.

Then she pulls the drawstring. Energy swirls around the arrow until it coalescees around it, seeming to encase and enlarge it into a glowing mass of power... and then Signum releases it, straight down towards the street, towards Apatite and Sailor Jupiter.

Whatever happens next... Signum doesn't see. Whatever happens next, Signum *barely* cares. She grabs Zafira and she flies away, clearly not in a talking mood, looking to simply get away so their mission can go on.
Kyouko Sakura 2019-05-24 03:19:06 105354
    Apatite feels Jupiter's lightning-energy strike her, merge with her own into a crackling mass of power that only works because they've practiced this and she knows exactly how to handle it. Of course, the problem with ridiculously choreographed spectacular attacks is that they're rather easy to see coming. Zafira, less stunned than he initially looked actually tosses Signum up towards the descending Shitennou, then takes a swing at her, Apatite dodging instinctively even mid-descent by twisting to one side-

    Which blunts the angle of her attack as it strikes Signum's shield with a deafening crack that sends a shockwave and crackling spirals of red and yellow energy out in all directions, windows shattering on the buildings all around. Then the smoke clears, and Apatite finds herself suspended above that shield, her speartip just touching Signum's forehead.. and she growls, baring those sharp fangs of hers. So. Close.

    And then she gasps as the shield expands, pushing her away, her spear still stuck in it. She could just abandon the spear but she doesn't even have time, as Signum explodes her sword all over the inside of the shield, then shatters it. She has no choice but to hurl herself away or risk being eviscerated, which is actually something she's experienced before and is in no particular hurry to repeat. Some of the blades catch her, but she manages to escape with only a handful of cuts to join the slash on her side in giving Mamoru something to tut over later.

    Of course, that is if she manages to survive what comes next, because just as she's turning back to glare upwards at Signum hovering in the air, she spies that huge bow.. and the glowing arrow heading straight towards her, much as she was moments before heading towards Signum.

    "Jupes, watch out!" She cries, probably unnecessarily, as she throws up both her hands, the spear vanishing. A square barrier, large enough to intercept the arrow's path but not much more, made of lacey black and red diamonds, springs into existence, hovering in mid-air. It probably won't stop the arrow, but it will hopefully be enough (combined with whatever Jupiter's reaction might be) to blunt its impact.
Makoto Kino 2019-05-24 03:37:26 105355
"Oh sh--" Yeah that looks bad. There's no time to act on anything but instinct; digging in her heels, Sailor Jupiter throws both of her hands up in nearly the same moment that Apatite does. The wind answers, a torrent coursing in from behind them to whip wildly at hair and loose clothing as it rushes to meet the arrow's blast in a wall of air and tumbling petals and electric sparks.

It'd never be enough to stop that attack on its own. Bolstering the small barrier that Kyouko made, it does the job - barely. For a long, breath-stealing moment the pair of them are all but swallowed in the blaze of energy that came off Signum's bow--

--but when it fades, they're still there. Scorched, smoldering, and eye-dazzled, but standing.

Jupiter sucks in an unsteady breath, blinking hard a few times in an effort to clear her vision before her head turns toward Apatite. "Okay," she manages. "Who the hell are these guys?"