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Crouching Gym Manager, Hidden Mercenary

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Post by SicilianDragon July 22nd 2023, 7:48 am

Chie had just regained her footing, just returned air to her lungs, when she saw Nicole advancing swiftly at her. Had she not had impressive eyesight she might have missed the sudden barrage of punches, but Chie's body was not nearly as impeccable. The first few punches she managed to stifle, covering them by blocking with her forearms and shoulders. As the attack pressed on, however, Nicole seemed to know everywhere to strike, slipping past Chie's guard with expert precision. At first, it was glancing blows, Chie being tagged before she stumbled away or swayed from the impact, but soon Nicole was releasing a relentless beatdown on the protege-to-be. Each strike hammered her in the face, or stomach, slowly wearing her down and making her all the more vulnerable to the next strike.

Seeing things were only going to get worse for her in an outright brawl, Chie jumped back, hoping to get distance between her and her foe. Normally, a tactical retreat like this would include a barrage of her deadly namesake, but the young hero had not brought her Shurikens into the battle. It was a sparring session, not a true fight. Instead, she prepared herself for a counter attack as she leapt back multiple yards. Her eyes stayed locked on Nicole's, fiercely staring her down, watching for any change in her disposition.

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Post by Sage August 2nd 2023, 10:24 pm

Chie clearly wasn’t built to sustain an onslaught. And rather impressive was it, in Nicole’s opinion, that Chie clearly knew this, given her disengagement. Nicole deduced that Chie had some sort of perception ability from the first instance where she managed to hold out, but it wasn’t strong enough yet. Nicole often discovered powers before asking about them, she found it the best way to gauge someone. They had a hidden advantage she didn’t know about, and it helped her gauge how someone dealt with an opponent they knew nothing about. Charging in headlong with zero information was a suicide mission.

When she jumped back, Nicole knew that it was for a reason. That counterattack, she could tell, was going to have everything she had backed behind it. So, naturally, Nicole was going to give Chie as much force as she thought that stance could handle. Nicole broken into a dead sprint, and leapt off of the ground. She twisted in the air, and her leg came forth in a flying kick, aimed straight at Chie’s chest. She could block it, try to redirect it, or dodge it if she wanted.

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Post by SicilianDragon August 12th 2023, 10:28 pm

As soon as Chie landed and her eyes locked on Nicole's, she saw the blur of the seasoned warrior leap from the ground and soar towards her. The kick was coming in fast, and Chie could tell that the speed and power behind the jump would be too much for any defense the teen could muster. She had to dodge, a counter was too risky, for now, Chie was on the ropes.

As Nicole neared, Chie dove low and the two of them flew past each other. Chie landed in a roll but was on her feet again in seconds, her guard up and much tighter, prepared to move and dodge as she would need. Chie was panting now, the blows to the chest and stomach had taken their toll. Having been exerting herself to dodge and move with such tenacity, she began to feel the effects of exhaustion creeping in. Luckily, she was a youthful hero, and this was only to start her reserves. She was hoping that if she couldn't compete with Nicole's skill, she would just have to let the older woman tire herself out on the offensive.

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Post by Sage August 18th 2023, 10:32 am

Nicole soared over the girl’s head and landed with the grave of a swan. Chie was getting exhausted. Nicole could see it in the way she slouched a few millimeters lower- The sudden air of weariness she gave off. Nicole rarely met a fighter who could stand up to bouts of combat as long as she herself was used to, she looked no different now than when the two started their match. Nicole was, by all accounts, perfectly full of energy still. This was a normal thing due to how her powers allowed her to do this for as long as she could possibly need. Though, Chie didn’t need to know that part yet. The girl couldn’t take much more of this… If she pushed herself further she’d risk an unnecessary injury- Something she’d have to learn to avoid on her own.

She spun around on her heal and ran directly at her… And then she curved to one side, and then to the next. One minute, Nicole was coming up from Chie’s left, the next she was on the right. Just one second later, she ducked low and swung her fist aimed straight at Chie’s abdomen with just enough force that it wouldn’t cause and significant damage to Chie’s body.

”You are now one of my students,” Nicole said flatly, while beating her up as if this was the same rite of passage all her students went through.

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Post by SicilianDragon August 21st 2023, 2:48 pm

Chie's guard tightened up when she saw Nicole charging at her once more. As the woman neared her, she lashed out with another quick jab, but Nicole was too light on her feet for Chie to connect. She tried backing up, preparing as best as she could for a counterattack, but Nicole was fast as lightning and seemed to know exactly where Chie's blindspots would be, always just out of rage of the young woman's protective guard. When Nicole suddenly hunkered down and swung her fist, Chie thought she had interpreted the attack right and lowered her elbows to absorb the blow, but she had overestimated her own speed and Nicole's hit sunk deep into Chie's gut before her arms could cover it. Chie felt the air wheeze out of her body and her legs buckled. Nicole had given her a beating during this match, and the toll was adding up. Defiant as ever, Chie kept herself upright and swung back at Nicole with fast straight, trying to retaliate as best as she could.

The news she had become an official student clearly excited her, and hearing this, Chie perked up a bit as if the fact she could get a second chance at this match had reinvigorated her.
"Does that mean we're done for the day?" She asked nervously as she backed up, her arms still up to defend herself as she panted heavily.

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Post by Sage August 27th 2023, 8:49 pm

Chie's sudden swing after getting her stomach rearranged was met with a rather snappy counter. Nicole's free hand flew forward and caught Chie's fist as if it were nothing more than a tennis ball.  She dramatically and slowly pulled Chie's hand off to the side at an awkward angle that was just a hair's breadth way from being uncomfortable. That seemed to be a running theme with this woman: She always pushed something to the knife's edge, and knew that going past would have lasting consequences, so she didn't. Perhaps Nicole had some way of calculating exactly what Chie's body could take. Well, it wasn't a question. She did, but Nicole wasn't going to say that right now. If Chie wanted to figure that out for herself, she'd consider it an impressive display of initiative. If not? Oh well. It didn't matter to Nicole one way or another what this kid really felt about her. They just met.

She didn't answer Chie's question right away. Instead, she locked eyes with the teenager. Nicole's eyes were like the eyes of a lion staring down a wounded animal, as if weighing her life against the effort it would take to silence her forever. Taking in the fire she had, studying her will to fight. To survive. If eye contact could have weight to it, Nicole's gaze was a mountain rested upon Chie.

When the silence was near to unbearable, she broke it.

"Yes." She stated, flatly, letting go of Chie. "Now, this is your sanctuary just as it is mine and Toxin's. One day, you will leave here at the peak of your potential. When that day comes, you won't need me anymore. But you are a long way from then, and you will learn to bend or break a thousand times. That is your first lesson: If you cannot adapt, you will be defeated. In the life where people wear masks, defeat means death. If you want to survive, you will leave your mask behind or find the will to survive. Think on this, and be on time tomorrow. We start at noon, five days a week."

Even with the bruises she'd have tomorrow, Chie would be fine. Nicole expected her presence one way or another.

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Post by SicilianDragon September 1st 2023, 11:11 am

As Chie's hand found itself grabbed and despite all her might trying to pull away or twist free, slowly and steadily Nicole made the point that she was not backing down. In a real fight Chie would have furthered her onslaught with her other limbs, but she saw she had been beaten and yielded. Thankfully Nicole let go just as her position was growing painful.

As Nicole stared her down, Chie did the same. Never one to back down she tried to fight the sense of fear she had developed for this woman who could so easily defeat her. If Nicole was a proud lion weighing the worth of its prey, Chie was a cornered wolf, desperate and snarling, looking back at her through fear with true tenacity. Luckily for her, Nicole decided enough was enough.

"Noon?!" She exclaimed.
"But what about sch-" she began to protest before she looked over to Toxin. No need to give these people any idea of who she was, even if they could infer it. Chie's high school records where gone anyway, what was the use of going now?
"Alright... I'll be there" she said slowly, stripping away the gloves on her hands and setting them in her bag. As she moved to head out she turned back again.
"And Miss Nicole. Thank you, I really appreciate this"

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