Chapter Three

Instigation

Tetsuo spent the rest of the day thinking about what Sayu had told him that morning; already he was planning his first move very carefully. He was considering going for a level 2 or level 3 player, to try and rack up a decent lead, while still being able to accelerate to recover his points in weaker ranked battles if he lost.

He had arranged to meet up with Sayu later that evening outside the school gates so he could be introduced to her legion and possibly taken in. She had explained to him all about the different legions, how they worked, about the Kings of Pure Colour and about the non aggression policy they had with each other, all except Nega Nebulous; the Black Legion headed up by the deadly Black Lotus and her trump card, Silver Crow, the only flying avatar in all of Accelerated World.

They day seemed to crawl by, and Tetsuo was resisting the urge to take an 'acceleration break' and find a match during class to break the day up a bit, though he decided against it, he had promised Sayu that he wouldn't. The hours crawled by, class after class, time seemed to move slower now that he had felt the thrill of accelerating for the first time, and he hadn't even been in a real match yet.

Finally the day was over, Tetsuo raced home to complete his homework so it wouldn't be looming over his head later. When he got home, he dashed straight into his room and began to power write his home work for Classic Japanese Literature, it was a simple 1,000 word essay on the book they had been reading. Within an hour and a half he had finished it, which meant he still had an hour before he had to be at the school gates.

He decided to shower and freshen up, trying to clear his head so he'd be ready for anything when he met up with Sayu. Tetsuo was trying as hard as he could to fill up time before he had to leave, frantically checking the time until it was reasonable to leave. Just as he was about to leave, Tetsuo's mother called him into the kitchen.

"Tetsuo, where are you heading? His mother asked sternly

"I'm just heading out to meet some friends mum." Tetsuo replied nonchalantly

"Which friends?" His mother enquired

"Just Sayu and a couple of her friends, she made them on summer break and wants me to meet them." Tetsuo said

"Okay, they had better not be in some kind of gang, I don't want to trouble we had during middle school all the way up to freshman year."

Tetsuo's mother said warningly

"No mum, it's nothing like that, we're just getting together to play a new social game. I've made sure to do all of my homework and I'm doing well in class. I don't want to be a good-for-nothing mum, I promise." Tetsuo reassured her.

His mother gave him a nod of approval and a kiss on the forehead before he ran out of the door. He got into the lift and took it down to the ground floor before walking out of the lobby and running down the street. Fifteen minutes later he arrived at the school gates, a little out of breath.

"Tetsuo-kun you made it. This is Kuno, Ishida and Gekki. Guys this is the new recruit I wanted to introduce you to." Sayu said introducing everyone

"Hey guys, how's it going?" Tetsuo greeted the group

"Not bad newbie, so are you ready to meet the legion?" Gekki asked

"Sure, I can't wait" Tetsuo replied

"Okay then, well on 3, ready; 1...2...3" Gekki counted down

A collective yell of 'Burst Link' was audible, then there they were, in the warped version of the area they were standing in. Tetsuo looked up at the names of the people he had just accelerated with; Jet Shinobi, Lylac Dancer, Tan Bull and Blood Basher. The three new avatars looked intimidating. Tetsuo looked at the match-up list Shinobi was a level 5, Dancer and Bull were 6 while Basher was a veritable powerhouse at level 8.

Welcome to the Purgatory stage Booster. Basher said in what sounded like a menacing tone.

Don't bother taking in the scenery, after tonight, you won't even be able to remember Accelerated World. Bull laughed

Sayu, what is this? Tetsuo shouted angrily

Sorry Tetsuo, there is no legion; we were all kicked out of ours for breaking the non aggression pact. That doesn't stop us from picking off newbies who aren't allied with anyone. I recruited you so Basher could reach level 9 by taking all your points. Sayu said, loosing her innocent tone

Why? Why would you tell me about this marvellous world, introduce me to it then take it away from me? Tetsuo yelled

It's nothing personal, you were just a sucker who came along at the right time. It was either you or me, and personally, I like it here. Once we're all powered up, we're going to take on the legion kings, reach level 10 and become gods. You should know what we want, you yourself used to be the most feared delinquent in the area, it kinda made me hot for you when you were like that, now you're just a boring nerd. Sayu goaded

Tetsuo glared at the four bullies encircling him, he knew nothing about how they fight, their strengths or weaknesses, only that even one-on-one they'd be a near impossible fight. Then before he could react, Dancer came charging at him, jumping and spinning, her razor sharp blades looking to be coated in his blood. Tetsuo tried to dodge, but he was simply too slow, an agonising pain tore through his abdomen as Dancer's scimitar tore though his gut. He looked up at his life bar, it had taken a huge hit, however, the yellow bar beneath it had almost filled. Dancer landed away from him, and then Bull came charging at him, Tetsuo thought quickly about what Sayu had told him about his form, he was vulnerable to piercing but immune to impact damage, if he could time it right, he could avoid Bull's horns and nullify the damage. Quickly as he could Tetsuo shuffled slightly to the side, nanoseconds later Bull collided with him, Tetsuo didn't even flinch, but Bull's arm had been torn off, using this against him, Tetsuo followed up with a drop kick. Bull had lost a huge chunk of his health, and Tetsuo's yellow bar was full, he thought about his special move, and decided the time wasn't right. He knew he was going to loose, but they'd have to work for every last one of his points if they were going to get them, he wasn't going down quietly. Tetsuo landed a final body slam on Bull depleting the rest of his life bar.

The sound of clinking metal behind him told him Dancer was going in for another attack, Tetsuo wondered what had taken him this long to continue attacking, all he had been doing was destroying random items on the field. Dancer charged in, this time Tetsuo was ready, he could see the movement pattern, it was choreographed for speed, but choreographed none the less, as the scimitar came at him, Tetsuo stepped back enough to dodge it, then countered with an elbow to Dancer's back, putting him on the floor, Tetsuo didn't hesitate, going for a clean headshot with his foot, as the two connected, Dancer's life bar instantly became almost empty, this was quickly followed with an elbow drop, finishing off Dancer.

Tetsuo counted two down, however, Sayu looked quick, and Basher was a brute, weighing up his options, Tetsuo realised he could kill two birds with one stone. He turned to face Basher and pointed at him, saying nothing.

You think you can take me newbie. I'll admit, I'm impressed you took out Dancer and Bull, but you don't stand a chance against me, see while I've been standing here, I've been slowly taking damage from the environment, just enough so it tickles, but it's been filling my special move bar, and let's not forget, there's still innocent little Sayu to deal with. Basher bragged

Tetsuo began walking towards Basher; the brute also began moving to him, steadily gaining speed, his giant-like feet crashing into the floor damaging it, with each footstep gaining him more and more on his special gauge. Basher started to glow, increasing in size with spikes starting to protrude from him. Tetsuo suspected one hit from Basher would end it, but he had a plan, a plan to end basher's attack and deal with the backstabbing Sayu.

Basher was almost on top of Tetsuo, and he knew Sayu was rushing in for a sneak attack to finish the job. Tetsuo took a step back and suddenly flew into the air, the jets on his body working at maximum capacity to send him skyward. By this time Basher had started his heavy swing, as he started to sow his ascent, he heard Sayu cry out in pain, her life bar was almost depleted. Tetsuo began to rotate in the air so he was facing the ground, Basher had stopped moving, and looked like he was recovering stamina, and Tetsuo saw his opportunity, he engaged his boosters to max and began his special attack, Boost Rush, the additional panels on his knuckles opened out, as did the ones on the side of his arms, Spikes were now protruding from his fists and blades from his arms, he crashed into Basher at near terminal velocity. Basher hit the floor in a slump; his avatar had been reduced to a large puddle of gore. Tetsuo crashed into the floor moments later unscathed. He turned to face Sayu and walked toward her.

Repent now and keep your Burst Points Tetsuo said in an unmistakably powerful tone.

How, how are you so powerful? You should have lost already, and yet here you stand, almost the victor. Sayu asked, confused.

A sharp pain drove itself into Tetsuo's spine, Sayu faded out of sight. Tetsuo turned around to see a near dead Sayu standing a few foot away, giggling.

A newbie is still a newbie. You honestly didn't consider my name enough did you? I can duplicate myself, as well as throw an array of assorted weapons, and heads up bad boy, that kunai in your back, has a added surprise. Sayu goaded again

The kunai in Tetsuo's back exploded, taking another large chunk off of his life bar, as Sayu vanished from the match leaving only a simple note on the floor. 'It's been a blast bad boy, next time we meet; I'll end you, Shinobi.' A notification appeared in front of Tetsuo's face.

WINNER: 98bp 278bp

The sound of cheering erupted from the surrounding rooftops, apparently Tetsuo's ambush match had caused quite a stir. However the cheering quickly stopped, as four figures emerged from the horizon...