Artist: SOUND HOLIC - Song: Extend Ash & Reach for the Moon, Immortal Smoke - Word Count: 1,629
A darkness had descended over Karakura Forest that day. Not from any actual source of darkness, such as an eclipse or the sun dying or something stupid and asinine of that nature. No. This darkness originated from a person. A being whom had swept into the unsuspecting place like the hurricane of madness and violence that he truly was. The Mad One. Eric Zarathos. Many had heard of this walking slaughterhouse by the current time. At least, those wary enough of the destruction he had left in his wake. He was a force to be reckoned with, that much was obvious, and if he was in Karakura Forest, that could mean nothing good for either the forest or the city nearby. Even if someone were to come to its aid, there was no guarantee whatsoever that the resulting battle wouldn't simply level it anyway.
It was for this reason that there were countermeasures in place for this kind of thing. Karakura was, more than likely, the most heavily defended town on the entirety of earth's surface. The Yuudeshi clan had it under their wing, so to speak, and those who might threaten it were always swiftly and efficiently dealt with before they could even reach the city in some cases. The forest was a hotspot for conflict, as many a defender has met with many a challenger for the fate of the town in which so much was at stake. There was a multitude of extremely powerful beings.. just waiting to take their shot at glory by defeating another of Karakura's would-be invaders.
Whether or not Eric's plan was ultimately to end up within the city walls itself wouldn't matter. The fact that he was in such close proximity to the city itself labeled him as a threat. With his power and his damage potential, it wouldn't be long before someone came out of the woodwork to try and repel him from the border, regardless of any hapless trees or bystanders might get caught in the crossfire. It was almost assured. So long as Karakura stood, there would always be those around to defend it from the evil that sought to level it.
...But every now and again, there was a lesser evil, who sought only to kick some ass.
This lesser evil wasn't someone who was here to save the day, nor was this lesser evil someone who was bound to the city and its well being. No, this person was not one with noble intentions in the slightest. They sought not the defense of Karakura, nor did they seek justice of any kind for those who were slaughtered in the forest. There were no higher values, morals, code of ethics, feeling of nobility, or any sissy conduct rules in that regard with this particular evil. This lesser evil wanted only one thing... to have some fun. And god help the poor bastard who got in the way of that.
Said evil came in the form of Nemain Calliope, who was currently positioned above the forest, looking down at it with head inclined like the curious devil that she was. Her blue hair swished back and forth around her ankles in the two long braids she kept it in. Her red, reticle-like eyes focused downward as a wide grin spread across her features. Slowly, crookedly, like a crack in a windshield. It took only a moment of pause for her as she watched the scene unfold. The massacre, the Mad One's power, the uselessness of attempting to defend against it, the challenger who had no idea whom he was facing by the looks of it.. It was all so beautiful. And yet... Nemain couldn't have him killing all of these people.. that's what SHE was here to do. And ooooh she hated when people took her kills. She giggled. It was a good thing she had come without her seal, otherwise this might last too long!
Nemain hummed to herself as she plucked a couple of the bullets from her chest piece. Three in total. She rolled them around in her hand before kneeling down into a crouching position. She pushed herself off of the cushion of reiatsu she had been standing on, flipping backward in a magnificent arc, arms-extended, before quickly releasing all three of the bullets mid-air and spinning her body like a top. She came out of the spin as the bullets began to fall, the back of her left hand smacking the back of one of the bullets as it screamed downward toward The Mad One, followed immediately by the second bullet sent careening toward the same target by her right hand as she once again entered the spin, her incredible flexibility allowing her to turn herself sideways and bring her right foot out of her tornado directly atop the third bullet, launching it downward directly at the unsuspecting man in the armor who had challenged Eric. Each of these bullets was now traveling at speeds high enough to break the sound barrier several times over. Nemain's staggering strength put into only moderate application where ejecting these bullets downward was concerned. Upon impact, each of the three shells would detonate with roughly the force of a gran rey cero. Regardless of whether or not either of the targets dodged or blocked these attacks, the explosive force alone was enough to level a good portion of the forest around them, enough to where any hope of finding cover was eradicated as trees, bushes, grass, and small wildlife were all torn asunder and turned to nothing but ashes in the wake of that explosive force.
However, Nemain wasn't done yet. Even as her spin continued, her speed increased further.. further.. as she blitzed down to the burnt forest floor like a lightning bolt, colliding with the ground with enough force to make a crater roughly the circumference of the sea of tranquility, and roughly the depth of crater lake. This crater took all of that ash and debris from the explosion and sent them upward in a massive dust cloud. One that should've taken longer to dissipate, but was sent flying in all directions by the aftershock of the collision. After but a moment, Nemain walked out of the crater, standing on the edge of the hole she had made and smirking at whatever was left of Eric and the other opponent at this point. While she knew that assault, however formidable, could probably have been dealt with by The Mad One, she had no idea the fortitude of the other opponent, or where he would've ended up by now. Even if he was still nearby somehow after that, he would more than likely be feeling the pressure as Nemain brought her full spiritual pressure down to bear on the area, a truly terrifying and chaotic force that made the very air tremble, and was like the removal of oxygen for anyone not near her league, power-wise, with the sheer enormity of it. She cocked her head at Eric, standing a fair distance from him as she jabbed her hands into the small pockets of her cut-off shorts. She yawned in mock-boredom and stretched, folding her hands behind her head as the grin on her face only grew farther."Normally.. I wouldn't interfere with the killin' of any mindless, nameless, filthy vermin such as the ilk you just took out.. but.. as it is.. I had my eyes set on murdering that lot, so uh.. I'm gonna have to kill ya out of principle, 'kay? Nothing personal, I just REALLY don't like having my kills stolen! You can understand that, right?"
She questioned, her twisted grin giving way to seemingly genuine concern for a minute before distorting again as she cackled, holding her stomach from the force of her laughter. "FUCKIN' BRILLIANT! I knew you could. Now. Hold still, 'kay? Cuz this is REALLY gonna hurt otherwise!"
And with that, Nemain would all but disappear from sight. Her sonido wasn't the top of its class by any means, but the sheer raw strength she possessed allowed for tremendous speed through leg power alone. Nemain used this speed to travel behind Eric, crouching before launching herself up in a spinning, tornado-like kick straight for the back of Eric's head. If it connected, there was enough force behind that kick to drive Eric straight outward and toward whatever tree might've been nearest that wasn't evaporated if nothing else. Following this, Nemain would disappear from sight once more as she pushed off of her own reiatsu to travel down, staying low to the ground as she would then attempt to get underneath Eric if he was traveling from that last attack, and directly in front of him if he wasn't. From this position, she would push herself directly upward, using the ground as support as she directed all of her force through her body into her right fist, bringing it up in a spinning-uppercut aimed smack-dab for the bottom of Eric's palette. If this attack connected, he would at least bite his tongue, if not simply get launched straight up toward the upper atmosphere. Nemain followed this attack with a wicked grin as, whether or not either of the previous attacks connected, Nemain would then pull her left hand back, rapidly charging her trademark blue cero in her hand before tossing it like a discus directly for The Mad One's face no matter where his location might've been after that onslaught. Nemain used a quick burst of sonido to gain some distance, her laughter resuming from before as she cocked her head back, eyes widening as the malicious mockery carried into the sky."Ooooooh Eric~ You and I are going to have so. MUCH. FUN!"