Chapter 7 - “Crouching Sabretooth Tiger, Hidden Dragon Punch!”
Ken and Wolverine made there way down a long corridor that looked like the insides of an ancient temple. Wolverine lead the way while Ken walked behind him with his fingers interlocked behind his head looking up with a gloomy expreseion. “Old man, do you even know where we’re going?” “Let’s just say my nose is leadin’ me to a few old friends. You better sit this one out and hang back rookie. Things are gonna get rough.” Ken stops walking and angrily yells while lowering his hands and clenching them into fists. “Hey, I’ve won lots of Tournaments this year including the U.S. Martial Arts Championship! Of all the luck, being stuck with a Mutie…” Wolverine stops walking as well and says without turning around “You better watch it, punk! Us so called ‘Muties’ ain’t allowed to compete in your Tournamens. You’re victories don’t mean squat!” “Typical Mutie. Thinks he’s better than all us humans. I wasn’t born with my fighting abilities like you, I had to train all my life. You wouldn’t last 2 seconds against a real Martial Artist!” Wolverine finally turned around to face Ken Masters. “You don’t know a damn thing about me Boy, but your scent tells me your whole story. Expensive cologne, vintage wine on your breath, you’re nothing but a spoiled brat who believes everything he hears about us Mutants on CNN and has his head shoved up so far up his Ass he has no idea what the real world is all about!”
Victor Creed, the Mutant known as Sabretooth yelled out, “Looks like the Newlyweds are fighting again!” Juggernaut chimed in, “Mommy, Daddy, stop fighting it’s Christmas!” Ken and Wolverine stopped arguing and ran towards the laughter they heard in the distance. This vocal trail of breadcrumbs lead them to a very futuristic looking chamber that looked like the inside of a computer, only monochrome silver. The floor was even riddled with wiring and microchips.
When our heroes entered Wolverine was facing Sabretooth who was standing near the left side of the room to the wall furthest from Ken and Wolverine. Behind Sabretooth to his left was a door which was obviously the entrance Juggernaut and Sabretooth used. Juggernaut was on the right side, facing off against Ken, in this very long room. As everyone began to speak, the entrance Ken and Wolverine entered had been sealed off.
“Sabretooth! Juggernaut! Where’s Jean Grey, the Professor and the others?” Wolverine’s arch rival joked, “Oh, I’ve been having a good time with red if ya know what I mean, Hah! Hah!” “And I just gave my baldy brother a well deserved noogie!” “I don’t have time for you jokers! Start talkin’ or I’ll start slicin’!” “Take it easy, runt!” said Victor Creed. “If you wanna save your loser friends your gonna have ta get past us!” “But these are one on one fights. Choose your exectioner!” added Cain Marko, Professor X’s wayward stepbrother who became the Juggernaut.
A wall rose from in between Sabretooth and Juggernaut and started heading towards Wolverine and Ken horizontally at a steady pace, splitting the big room into two rooms. Ken stood facing Juggernaut and if he remained there, he would have to fight him. “C’mon, I’ll take on anyone.” declared the heir to the Masters Foundation.
Logan, the man who is also known as Wolverine thought to himself, “Either way, this kid is toast. But Juggernaut can kill him with his pinky. I hate to admit it, but he has a better chance with that psycho Sabretooth. I should just let Juggs squash the Mutant Hater and take out Sabretooth for good but…”
Wolverine grabbed Ken by the arm and shoved him to Sabretooth’s side of the room while he went over to Juggernaut’s. Ken said, “What the?” “Listen up, rookie! Don’t try to fight Sabretooth, make a run for the exit. And watch out for…” The wall finally closed seperating them, and it’s loud slam signaled Wolverine that there was no point in continuing the conversation.
“You know, for someone who lives in a School, that was really stupid. Both of you should a ran to Sabretooth’s side. Neither of you has a chance in hell of defeating Juggernaut” Cain Marko claimed. “This wall that keeps us apart ain’t even Adamanium. You would of just broke through the wall and fought both of us anyway. But then again, it might of taken a Month for your Dumb Ass to figure that out.” “That does it! Be kind to Pipsqueak Week is over! POWER UP!” so stated the not so gentle giant as he began to glow with red aura.
Sabretooth was very disapointed. “What a waist. I wanted to settle things with the runt. Now I gotta fight He-Man’s dorky little brother with the Kung Fu Grip?” “That does it Mutie! I’ll show you what fighting a real Martial Artist is all about!”
Ken ran towards Sabretooth and attempted to kick him in his right oblique, but Victor just wrapped his right arm around Ken’s leg with force to soften the blow. “Hah! Hah! Hah! You’re just a Tourney Fighter. When’s the last time you’ve been in a Street Fight? This kinda crap only works in Karate Kid Movies. Let me show ya what happens if ya try ta kick someone in the mid section in the real world.” With his free hand while still holding Ken’s leg, Sabretooth punched Ken in the balls, as Ken screamed in pain! Once again with the same free hand, Creed clawed Ken’s left breast with razor sharped claws as Ken went hurling back.
Ken remained on the ground as he was bleeding from his chest and holding his family jewels. After recieving this rude awakening, he thought to himself, “He’s right. After leaving Japan, I haven’t had anymore Street Fights. Still, even the lowest yakuza scum has enough honor not to punch someone… there!”
Sabretooth yawned. “Fighting this Flatscan’s a waiste of time. Birdy!” he called out as he snapped his fingers. Birdy came through the same entrance Juggernaut and Creed used earlier, but remained in the doorway never fully entering the room while saying “Yeah Boss!” Sabretooth already turned his back to Ken and proceeded to head towards the doorway since he figured after Birdy turned Ken into swiss cheese they’d be on their way. And yes, Birdy lurking about was one of the things Wolverine tried to warn Ken about since he also picked up her scent. Right after Birdy spoke, she fired multiple shots from her oversized machine gun at Ken, just like she does in Sabretooth’s Super art. While Birdy wanted Zangief to grant her freedom, she knew that it was best not to cross Sabretooth for now so she would have to kill for him once again.
But Ken Masters’ legacy doesn’t end at the wrong end of a firing arm, for he leaped up thirty feet in the air as all the butllets missed him. His reaction was so fast and unexpected that Birdy didn’t even have time to use her Psi powers on him. Ken came raining down on Birdy and kicked her in the side of her head, thrusting it to the doorway’s side and knocking her out! She dropped the oversized machine Gun, as the Street Fighter turned around to face the Mutant with the weapon at his feet.
“Go ahead and pick up the gun, Boy. It’s the only chance you got ta high tail it outta here.”
Ken kicked the gun far away from him and assumed his fighting stance smiling, “Looks like kicks to the head work better in Street Fights!”
“Heh, I’m startin’ ta like ya Boy. Just for that, when I rip your head off and use your body as a toilet, I’ll go with number one instead a number two.”
Ken dashed towards Sabretooth, but the Mutant jumped up and slammed the top of Ken’s head with two fists folded together. When Creed’s feet touched the ground, Ken’s face was heading towards Sabretooth’s foot, so he just kicked Ken’s face like a Soccer Ball. Next he tried to claw Ken, but the man who trained under Gouken ducked and performed a Crouching Roundhouse to get Sabretooth on his feet. Before the villainous Mutant hit the floor he performed a hand stand with his right hand and attempted to kick Ken with his left leg, but Masters managed to block with his elbow joined vertically on his knee. This blow caused Sabretooth to thrust back and fall from his hand stand since the block ceased his leg from extending all the way and threw off his balance. But all it took was a back flip for the catlike Mutant to land on his feet. From Ken’s blocking position it was very easy for him to segway into his “TATSUMAKI SENPUKYAKU!”
Getting struck with the Hurricane Kick angered Victor Creed to no end. He sliced Ken once again with his “BERSERKER CLAW!” as he dashed past Ken and sliced the other side of his chest!
At this point Ken realized it was time for the tiger to bleed externally as well. He decided to strike him in the eye in order to temporarily blind and confuse his opponent. Ken attempted to Karate Chop Sabretooth in the eyes as the man Birdy calls Boss performed his Crouching Midpunch claw strike. The problem being that Ken miscalculated how low Sabretooth would crouch given his enormous size compared to Ken, So he wound up chopping the area above Creed’s right eye with his left hand. With Ken’s right elbow, he pushed the claw strike away by jamming it in the area between Victor’s right forearm and bicep. Ken however wasn’t that unlucky for the chop did cause a cut above Sabretooth’s eye, and as any boxer will tell you this has to be eploited to it’s fullest! Ken then gave the cut three lightning speed punches all with his left fist making the blood flow into the ‘eye of the tiger’ making it difficult for him to see. The Mutant growled like an angry wilderbeast as he swung his claws wildly, but Ken had no problem dodging for his blows were no longer accurate due to him being temporarily blinded in one eye.
Mr. Masters went for a Shoryuken, but before his fist struck Sabretooths’s chin, he grabbed Ken’s forearm and sunk his razor sharp teeth into the area between Ken’s left shoulder and neck. Our fellow Street Fighter cried out in pain as the Mutant working with Apocalypse tackled Ken down so he was kneeling down with both knees on either side of Ken’s obliques. Sabretooth removed his teeth from Ken and licked the blood from around his own mouth. You see the problem with Ken’s plan was because of Sabretooth’s Healing Factor the wound above Sabretooth’s eye healed quickly. Sabretooth now on top of his prey rubbed the remaing blood out of his eye.
“It’s been fun kid, but now it’s time for me ta floss my teeth with your intestines!” Creed was just about to slice Ken’s jugular wide open, but before he could connect and disconnect Ken from that little place we refer to as the land of the living, Ken wrapped his right leg around the front of Victor’s left shoulder blade and slammed him to the ground! Usually at this point most would try to go for a leg lock of sorts, but Ken decided to leap away for he did not know what to expect from his unpredictable advesary. He tried to strike Sabretooth with a “HADOUKEN!” but he missed entirely as Sabretooth leaped to pounce on him with his Weapon X Rush Super Art! Ken’s blood painted the room red as he got sliced up like a turkey on Thanksgiving. Creed finished the Super Art with an X like Strike while yelling “DIE!” Ken fell down and laid in a massive pool of his own blood, as the top of his gi was torn to shreds. After his Super Art, Victor Creed landed a few feet away from Ken with his back turned to him. Like the jungle cat he resembles, he turned to pounce on Ken to shred him to peaces. In Ken’s mind, this all seemed to play in slow motion but it was actually only a few seconds that it would take for Sabretooth to begin the slaughter.
In what seems to be the last moments of Ken’s life, he recalls Wolverine’s words to him. “Us so called ‘Muties’ ain’t allowed to compete in your Tournaments. your victories don’t mean squat!..you’re nothing but a spoiled brat who believes everything he’s heard about Mutants on CNN and has his head shoved up so far up his Ass he has no idea what the real world is all about!”
Then he remembers Sabretooth’s words, " Hah! Hah! Hah! You’re just a Tourney Fighter. When’s the last time you’ve been in a Street Fight?"
Ken thinks to himself, “They are both right. Since my fight with Gouki, I’ve only participated in Tournaments and safe fights. Deep down I’ve been scared to engage in another Street Fight to avoid coming across soeone like Gouki, who is too strong to compete in Tournaments. I am hiding from the real world. There are many strong fighters and even strong Mutants out there, if I want to be the best I must seek them all and challenge them, but it is too late now…”
Next he remembers Gouki’s words to him when he defeated Ken after killing Gouken. “You will never become truly strong. You have too many emotional attachments to this world. You lack the courage to give your life to win a fight, thus holding back your true potential.”
Ken continued to think to himself, “No. I will no longer hide from the world. I will give my life… to win the fight… and one day… I will avenge my Master Gouken!”
As Ken thought this his right hand became engulfed in flames! Due to the speed of the human mind, his thoughts only took mere seconds, as Sabretooth still hasn’t landed on Ken yet! Ken put all of his remaining strength in his “SHIIIIIIINRYUUUUU KEN!” As this Multi hit Uppercut Super Art struck Sabretooth, not only did it blind everything in a white light but Victor Creed screamed in agony as his body was burned almost to a crisp! With most of his clothes, flesh, and hair burned off Sabretooth hit the ground looking like a rotting corpse! Ken fell on the ground as well for the loss of blood and the loss of all of his fighting energy was all any man could take. “I did it… I won… I gave my life… for the fight… Sensei… I will see you soon. Ryu… when we meet again…” and everything started to get hazy.
But before Ken could pass on to the other side, Gouki came walking towards the doorway, for he had witnessed the entire battle from a distance. He was the other scent Logan wished to warn Ken about. He grabbed Birdy by the top of the hair on her head.
“I see you’ve improved, whelp. But you are still to weak to challenge the likes of me, so just lay there and die.”
Ken, now with new vigor said, “…No… Gouki… Face me… I will avenge… my Master!” Gouki continued to drag Birdy by her hair. With his free hand he fired a Ki blast at the wall that seperated them from Wolverine and Juggernaut. “No… wait… we must fight…” uttered Ken. Gouki walked through the hole he just created with Birdy but Ken’s words gave him a slight smile.
Since his thirst for revenge against Gouki was so great, it gave him the will to manage to rise to his feet. He assumed the stance from the SF2 Animated Movie to heal himself from Vega’s injuries in the Movie. He also began to chant the same chant from the Movie as his body was engulfed in blue flames and his ponytail went flying up in the air. This wasn’t enough to heal all his wounds but it did help.
Gouki began to witness the fight between Juggernaut and Wolverine, and Logan was getting the crap beat out of him. With his two hands folded together Juggernaut rammed the top of Wolverine’s head three times driving his body into the floor like a nail, and then he kicked him far away. Wolverine came back to slice Juggernaut’s armor, but the cuts healed up almost as quickly as they were inflicted. Juggernaut grabbed Wolverine and slammed him so hard on the ground he bounced up twenty feet in the air. Juggernaut followed this by giving Logan a massive aerial headbutt to his spinal cord. If not for Wolverine’s Healing Factor and Adamantium skeleton, he would of been dead by now.
As Wolverine landed, he tried one last ditch effort. He extended only his middle claws on both hands and rammed both of them all the way into Juggernaut’s eyes! Juggernaut yelled in excrutiating pain as he powered up once again, and the red energy was enough to drive Wolverine back. At best this bought Wolverine some time for Juggernaut’s wounds would take a bit longer to heal.
“Do you want to win this fight?” asked Gouki. Wolverine turned to him to say, “Don’t think I don’t recognize your scent. Your one of the bozos who was at the Mansion.” “You did not answer the question, Weapon X.” Wolverine looked at him and remained silent. “Remove his helmet. I will take care of the rest.”
“That does it Old Feller! It’s time to put you out to pasture!” screamed Cain Marko as he charged at Wolverine. Wolverine Dashed toward him, Juggernaut’s punch missed as Wolverine performed his “TORNADO CLAW!” Uppercut and struck the area between the helmut and the armor, thus removing the helmet, as Wolverine went high up in the sky. Gouki lifted Birdy up and struck two pressure points on both sides of her neck with his thumbs. This caused her to open her eyes and use a telepathic attack on anyone in her point of view, and this happened to be Juggernaut, for Psi attacks are his only weakness and without his helmet he can not shield himself from them. Juggernaut yelled as he passed out. Wolverine landed on the ground, Gouki dropped Birdy and she continued to remain unconscious as well.
“Why’d you help me?” asked Logan. “I wanted to fight a worthy opponent” “You called me Weapon X. What do you know about my past?” “Defeat me and I will tell you, James.”
Next up - Don’t worry about Sabretooth. Healing factor and all, he’ll be okay! I’m gonna put Gouki vs. Wolverine on hold for a bit. Next time, Rogue and Chun-Li vs. Cammy and Vega! Let’s hope 2005 rocks! Peace out!