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A test of determination (Taku and Salzem, open to spectators)

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Standing in front of the assignment board, Takumen shifted his feet nervously. This was his first real taste of combat since he had arrived here at Syne Academy. Of course he had had plenty of experience before then, but always with his teammates. When they had gone their separate ways at the end of the last year it had left him feeling vulnerable for the first time. Now being thrust into one on one combat scenarios was not what he had in mind. Still that had there own ways of running things here and who was he to complain.

The list encompassed all the students who had just started at the academy, Takumen didn't bother counting, instead searching through the long columns hoping to see his name near the bottom. Sparring matches were done in order and as such would be conducted over the next couple of days which meant is he was at the bottom he'd have a bit of a reprieve.

His jaw dropped when he saw that not only did he have a first day match, his was one of the first to begin the day. most of the students would be there to watch his match.

"couldn't get much worse i guess, who's my opponent?" Takumen said out loud as he placed his finger on his own name and slid it across. "Salzem.... hunh." He mumbled as he stood up and turned to walk to the locker room. "Who knows, maybe i'll do great!" He said feeling a bit more confident.

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Salzem had seen the roster and saw who he was fighting and yet, it didn't really matter... He knew not the person he was fighting nor the abilities that came with that person's name... He was new to the school and, as such, he hadn't gotten around to getting to know everyone... luckily. Salzem walked into the arena, his dark flare-gun in hand and his cloak covering his body. He waited quietly for this... Takumen to step out before him, his finger running along the revolver-ammo-slot of his gun, spinning it lightly in anticipation. This would be his first real fight since he first arrived here at Syne and he was looking forward to this exercise.

Since this was training, there was no reason for Sal to be scared in the least! If anything, this was the equivalent of a friendly boxing match and he wanted nothing more than to knock his opponent flat on his butt. So, Salzem waited and such time was passing that he crossed his arms, growing frustrated with his opponent's lack of punctuality. Or maybe... he was early...? He didn't know, he didn't check a clock fore he was in too much of a hurry.

The hooded figure glanced down at his cloak, making sure no sun could pass through it's thick hide... He needed as much darkness as possible to work with so he could dominate this fight with his semblance alone.

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Steeping into the arena light glinted off his brass armor as Takumen strode in. His old battle master had always taught him to appear confident and true and eventually you would always be as such. On his right arm was strapped his weapon of choice, the shield-spear, a weapon exemplifying defense as offense. He noticed his opponent, Salezm, was already there and wondered if he was merely late. Looking around he noticed no stands or seats.

"Thank goodness..." He breathed to himself along with a sigh of relief. No need to go making a fool of himself in front of the school. He tightened the grip on his weapon and continued forward. A large screen on the wall flashed to life and a countdown timer began; 59, 58, 57, 56...

"Hello!" Takumen said to his opponent who was now within earshot, "My name is Takumen Hiori, it's a pleasure to meet you!" He shouted with enthusiasm. In reality it was both true sentiment and a test to gauge his opponents personality and by extension gain some insight into his fighting style.

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Salzem raised an eyebrow as his opponent walked into the arena on the other side, some... 20 meters away (50 feet), a guy with a wide smile and brass armor and a strange weapon that could only be described as a shield-spear in hand. Salzem withdrew his own weapon, his flaregun and let the hand that held it point in the direction of the man in brass, his finger off the trigger due to the timer still counting down.

"Hey!" He called back, a small smile hidden under the shadow of his hood. "Name's Salzem. Good luck!" His sanguine eyes flicked back to the timer which was now counting down from 15, his smile widening as he decided to show off his semblance now. Of course, he wouldn't attack with it quite yet, but he could still set it up, couldn't he? Salzem's shadow creeped up behind him, growing larger and larger, seeming to rise from the ground and manifest into the shape of a man. In a matter of moments, a massive 8 foot shadow-being stood with large, bulky arms, a ripped chest, it's lower body fading off into the shadow it was spawned from and a face of a skull, it's jaw strapped shut and it's eye-sockets glowing yellow ominously. The creature crossed its arms in anticipation as the countdown continued to lower from 5 to 4 to 3, the hooded hunter deciding to be reactionary in this fight.

He waited for this Takumen to make the first aggressive move so he could counter it.

(Since this is the first post of the battle, I'ma lower my aura per the cost of mah semblance.)

AURA= 175
-25 Summon of Shadow Avatar

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"......shit...." Takumen said as he stared at the creature lurking ominously behind the young man across from him. He had heard of summon semblances before but never to this scale. Shaking the arm with the shield on it, Takumen regains his composure for a moment and thinks it through. [i]He'll obviously want to keep me at range letting the summon do most of the fighting, if i can land a serious blow i might be able to end this quickly.. but i'll need to use my own semblance just in case." He said as he let his own aura flood his body. His armor, weapon and hair began to give of a green glow as he lowered himself to the ground.

A few seconds later he launched himself at his opponent taking a straightforward approach. as he neared he thrust his shied spike into the ground and hit the trigger unleashing the spring locked spear and launching himself into the air. Flipping he aimed himself at his opponent as he began his decent hoping for a direct blow.

aura 100/120 (+2 defense) health 180/180

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Salzem kept the barrel of his gun pointed directly at the guy before him before he suddenly leapt into the air, pointing his spear down at him as if an attempt to impale from above. Deftly, the shadow pulled him back several feet, the spear striking the ground where Salzem once stood. He was rather surprised how slow Taku actually was and how easy it was to dodge his direct strike... Perhaps this would be an easy fight after all.

The shadow took the initiative, quickly slipping past the spear's long range and point (and into Taku's shadow), cocking a fist back and throwing it directly at Taku's cheek while the other hand suddenly stretched out longer than it's natural shape would allow, it's fingers curled into claws, intending to wrap around the kid's throat and cut off his air supply. Finally, the shadow's free hand (assuming it managed to grab Tak's throat), would begin to pummel it's opponent with two quick blows to the guy's unprotected face while Salzem watched a good couple of yards away, his gun still pointed in the pair's direction.

(From what I read, Semblance summons ignore stats and armor (Summons deal semblance based damage as in not checking stats or armor) if they hit so... since Shadow has 3 in power and 1 point = 5 damage, if all 4 attacks hit, you'll sustain 60 damage. Also get 4 attacks since my speed is above average (which is 2) I think)

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"heh, you think...that hurt..." Tak said , staggered but not knocked down. His nose was bent slightly and his armor and two indents from the other blows, but in his other hand he gripped the shadows arm tightly. He lifted his shield from the ground, loose stones tumbling to the floor, and stood up straight. He looked down and then back at his opponent the creature had moved between the two of them, out of sight, slithering on the floor like a snake.

He turned, twisting the things arm around before striking twice with his shield. Once across the chest of the shadow with the tip of the spear, the second was a thrust aimed at the head.

"You don't get to just hold me down and beat me..." He said calmly as he lashed out at the creature, remembering his childhood and the Ursa in the woods.

aura 80/120 health 120/180

(if both attacks hit 26 damage)

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Due to the shadow's immense flexibility/stretching ability, thickness manipulation and superior speed, it was able to contort it's body in such a way akin to how a snake might slither up a branch, it's torso shrinking and bending around the tip of the spear as Taku lunged it at his stomach, wrapping around it's shaft with it's torso while its hand let go of his throat, taking an interest in the weapon instead. In such a position, there would be no point in thrusting at the shadow's head as it was already up the shaft of the weapon and therefore beyond the point's reach. Suddenly, it's neck would extend, it's forehead slamming into Tak's already damaged nose, retracting a bit before slamming into it again, intending to shatter it and maybe even give this guy a concussion. The shadow wanted his weapon, something he could use to further his damage output... But wait... It's master already possessed a weapon...

Salzem would toss his gun in the direction of Tak and the shadow, the creature's arm extending and stretching out, it's massive hand catching the gun in mid-air, though it's eyes were firmly locked on Tak's (possibly) busted face. It's hand shifted and shrunk, mutating into a model of it's user's so that it may fit in it's hand. The moment the shadow's fingers wrapped around the handle of the gun, the creature's arm began to contract at a break-neck pace, the creature's free hand suddenly and mercilessly back-handing Tak across the face to further stun him. If this attack went through, the creature would then point the flare-gun directly in Tak's helmeted face and wait, observing him as if asking a question.

"Give up?" Salzem asked, his arms crossed, though his legs were tensed, ready to move if Tak realized the shadows weaknesses.

(3 attacks (the 2 head-butts and the backhand) so 45 damage if all 3 hit)

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"yeah, i think i'm done....." Takumen said as he stood back up after the blows. "If i had known i'd be fighting shadows, i would have brought a torch with me.. " He said before giving a brief laugh and turning away from his opponent and heading towards the opposite door. He stopped by the door and turned back to Salzem. He thought about saying something but instead just turned back and walked out of the training arena.


(exit topic)

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Salzem was disappointed when his opponent actually gave up, regretting having given him that option. With a snap of his fingers, the shadow *blinked* out of existence, allowing Taku to walk out with no further resistance. The man glanced back at the hooded figure, as if he were going to say something before walking out the way he came in, leaving Sal less than satisfied.

"What... That was it...?" He muttered, shaking his head before walking up to where his shadow was and retrieving his gun. "That was... boring." Slipping his weapon back into it's holster, he walked out the side he came in as well, wondering if his next little spar would turn out like this... A big disappointment that would be....

(EXIT)

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