• Published 12th Apr 2016
  • 15,168 Views, 12,616 Comments

Three More Things! - Tatsurou

Uncle Chan tries to balance running an antique shop, fighting demons, and being a Chi Wizard with being a loving Uncle to his nephew, his somewhat removed niece...and three little ponies who drive him straight up the wall.

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The Direct Approach

Jackie, Jade, Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo sat alongside Paco - the boy who had been handing out flyers - as they watched El Toro's championship wrestling match, which he won quickly and easily. They then waited around until the arena was empty, El Toro having requested permission from the manager to use the ring for a private match unrelated to the championship. As it emptied, Apple Bloom and Jade worked on making a mask for Jackie under Sweetie Belle's guidance, so as to give him a good 'masked' identity for the match.

Once everything was ready, Scootaloo took the place of the announcer, clearing her throat. "Today we have quite the match lined up, folks!" she called out from over the ring on Cumulo. "In this corner, we have the reigning champion, El Toro Fuerte!" She paused as Paco let out a loud cheer and El Toro stepped away from his corner. "And in this corner, our favored challenger...El Mono Bailando!"

As Jackie stepped out from his corner wearing a brown and gold mask, Paco's peals of laughter nearly drowning out the others' cheers. "S-Seriously?" he gasped out. "That is your fighting name?"

"Am I missing something?" Jackie asked, confused.

El Toro suppressed his own amusement behind a smirk. "You let one of the girls pick it, didn't you?" he asked consolingly.

"What?" Sweetie Belle demanded irritably. "It suits him and his fighting style! Isn't that how you picked the name El Toro Fuerte?"

El Toro shrugged his shoulders. "Fair enough."(1)

"Now, this won't be a standard match!" Scootaloo called out. "Unlike in a normal wrestling match, any combat technique is allowed here. The only rules are nothing lethal, and nothing below the belt! The fight goes until one of the fighters is knocked out or pinned for 3 seconds by my count, surrenders, or is thrown out of the ring! Are you ready, fighters?!"

"Ready!" El Toro proclaimed quickly, taking his fighting stance.

"You are getting far too into this, Scootaloo," Jackie chided as he took his own stance.

"Round one...FIGHT!" Scootaloo screamed out as Jade rang the bell.

El Toro immediately rushed forward as the Talisman at his brow briefly flared, tried to pin Jackie to the corner pillar of the ring, but Jackie quickly rolled to the side, kicking El Toro in his butt to force him to overbalance forward as he came to his feet. El Toro quickly recovered, now approaching Jackie more slowly as he realized that charging strikes would not catch him off guard.

As El Toro attempted a grapple, Jackie knelt down, ducking under the grab and delivering two quick, powerful jabs to El Toro's gut, briefly winding his foe and letting him dance back out of range of the grapple. El Toro got back upright, taking a few calming breaths as he reassessed the situation. Closing the distance again, he began swiping at his opponent instead for a one armed grab.

Jackie swayed back out of reach of each sweeping grab, watching until El Toro overextended himself and then delivering a swift kick to the open side, aiming at the back of the shoulder, the hip, or the belly with each kick to weaken El Toro's ability to continue fighting. In desperation, El Toro performed a low dive, trying to catch hold of Jackie at his waist, but Jackie leapt into the air, kicking down at the small of El Toro's back with both feet as he leapt out of the way. Although this briefly knocked El Toro prone, Jackie knew he lacked the size or strength to keep El Toro pinned from that position, so he allowed his foe to recover.

As El Toro got to his feet, he began to think about the fight so far. As Sweetie had said, the name chosen for Jackie was highly appropriate, as he danced out of the way of each strike, conserving his own energy while letting El Toro expend his, and striking at vulnerabilities. No matter how El Toro tried to grapple, Jackie would move just out of the way, sometimes mere millimeters between El Toro's fingertips and Jackie's flesh or clothes, before countering.

That 'mere millimeters' thought gave El Toro an idea of how to change the flow of the fight. He could tell there was a great deal of cheering from those watching, but he put it from his mind as he focused. Getting to his feet, he charged Jackie, his left arm outstretched ahead of him. As he'd expected, Jackie swayed to his right, and El Toro brought up his right arm in a wide sweep, managing to wrap it around Jackie's waist in a grapple.

To Jackie's credit, despite his surprise, he didn't go down without a fight. Swinging his leg up, he caught El Toro a firm kick on the kneecap, causing him to drop to the floor on top of Jackie before reaching the edge of the ring. El Toro was forced to release Jackie to get to his feet, but the impact had briefly weakened him, enabling El Toro to get hold of his feet. With a quick swing, El Toro attempted to hurl Jackie from the ring.

Jackie let out a desperate scream as he flew through the air, managing to catch the top rope of the edge of the ring, pulling him back to it and bracing his feet on the outside of the ring. El Toro turned his head to Scootaloo, expecting his victory.

Scootaloo flew over to where Jackie was. "...technically, he has not touched down outside the ring," she pointed out. "So...it's not a ring out."

"Seriously?" Jackie gasped out in surprise.

"You are a challenging opponent!" El Toro called out happily as Jackie threw himself back into the ring. "I have not had this much fun in the ring for a long time!"

"See?" Jade called out, turning towards Paco. "I told you Jackie was grea-WAUGH!"

Hearing that scream, everyone turned to find Tohru holding Paco in the air in one hand, while another enforcer - one they didn't recognize - stood in front of Finn, Chao, and Ratso with a knife to Sweetie's throat.

"The Talisman," Tohru stated firmly, holding out his free hand. His intentions were made quite clear.

Jackie swallowed convulsively as he stared at the scene, knowing he didn't dare take action. El Toro, for his part, stepped forward, knowing debate would be useless against that impassive face. "You will release the children?" he demanded insistently.

Tohru nodded. "One Talisman for two children. A fair deal."

"I have your word on that?" El Toro insisted.

"I swear by the blood of the samurai in my veins," Tohru confirmed. "The moment the Talisman is in my hands, both children will be released unharmed."

Nodding, El Toro reached up to his face.

"El Toro!" Paco called out desperately. "No!"

Grasping his mask, El Toro pulled it off without hesitation. "Take it," he called out, tossing his mask to Tohru, the weight of the Talisman carrying it through the air.

As soon as the mask landed in Tohru's hand, he dropped Paco. Once he'd pulled the Talisman from the mask, Sweetie was released.

Jackie quickly lunged forward, trying to kick the Talisman out of Tohru's hand...but it flashed, and Tohru drove his clenched fist into the floor.

And everything seemed to explode.

(1) For those not using google translate..."El Toro Fuerte" means "the strong bull", and "El Mono Bailando" means "the dancing monkey".

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