The hustle and bustle of the outpost was new to Vocado. Usually when he arrived, things quieted. His reputation as a Saiyan Grim Reaper was local legend; anyone who signed up for the Shredder Corp, especially during the absolute height of the war, was guaranteed to die. Now though, with the war over, there was elation across the streets. Saiyans clinking mugs outside taverns, Kabochans and Tuffles singing in unison in the alleyways. It was surprisingly cheerful considering one of the main points of commerce for the mercenaries of the area was now gone, but there was another layer to it now.
No war meant less prejudice. Both sides could hire anyone they wanted or needed without judgement. Saiyan soldiers, tied to the job, were now free to trek across the galaxy and take odd jobs anywhere they wanted. Vocado couldn't help but crack a smile.
He wasn't here for long, though. It was just a pit stop. He had somewhere to be. Far, far in the wastes. His family home was out there, among the rubble and ruins. Being there so long ago made it hard to remember where it was precisely, and the march of time made it even harder to find. Even so, he knew he needed to return.
For now, though, he enjoyed the scene before him. Drinking in the revelry that came from Taori's actions.
Post by Captain Kabe on Jan 28, 2022 0:07:20 GMT -5
The Rustbucket Cantina was just as sloven and dusty as Kabe had remembered. Recent events had seemingly had no bearing on the demeanour, hygiene standards or drink quality of the place, and had only really served to enhance the saiyan presence there. But here, in this lawless land on the outskirts of saiyan territories, is exactly where Kabe needed to be. As he finished the last swill of his whiskey and pod fuel cocktail, he mused over the previous day's happenings.
He'd departed from Namek, halting his search for his crew as their trail had gone cold. He'd followed an invitation from his father, an offering of food and wine and time with a man he had barely known his whole life, the only family he could remember that he knew was still around. He'd been hesitant, but open to that experience. It had cost him - he had been betrayed, and his rival had been given a chance to kill him.
He didn't really remember how he'd gotten out of it, but he did remember that he wanted revenge. An outpost filled to the brim with soldiers of fortune who had come for a war that just spectacularly ended, leaving them out of the job, was exactly the sort of place to be. As he slammed the cocktail glass on the metal bench, shattering it, he shucked a few zeni onto the counter to pay for the damages, waving it off and getting ready to order another he noticed someone walk past outside the bar.
"Vocado!" Kabe called, waving down the familiar figure as he stepped out of the bar. "Where have you been! I thought you were dead, or at least half way there. Where's Pitt?"
It was almost too good to be true. A whisper on the wind that caught his ear despite the cheers. Through the crowd he saw him. His tufts of hair poking out over the countless aliens. There was a brief pause. It felt like a lifetime.
He screamed out a laugh, rushing forward and scooping his nephew into his arms. He hugged tightly. Saiyan sentimentality was rare, but when they cared they cared with their whole self. This was no exception.
After he got his grip, and made absolutely sure this wasn’t a hallucination, he dropped the boy, a big dopey smile plastered on his face.
”I could ask the same about you, jackass!” Vocado gave a playful punch on the arm. Perhaps a little too forceful. ”It’s been… it’s been crazy! So much going on. I got my ass kicked by Azoth, then he died to Taori the new king! The war’s over— or at least that’s what they’re saying anyway!”
Kabe’s mention of Pitt was met with a involuntary hitch in Vocado’s throat. A tear found it’s way to the man’s eye, but he blinked it away.
”Pitt uh— uh… Hey! You’ve never met Ise! She’s your sister! I bet you didn’t even know you had one huh? I’ve gotta introduce you two!”
He flipped through some contacts on his scouter. Ise was set to ‘Do Not Disturb’. He’d just leave her a message.
”What say I buy you a round of drinks, huh? We can share war stories?”
Post by Captain Kabe on Jan 29, 2022 23:50:49 GMT -5
Before he could make steps to approach his uncle, he'd been hoisted up in the tightest hug he'd every experienced in his life. As he whinced, rasing a finger to signal he needed to breathe, he was released and dropped to the ground, leaving him to just sort of... take in Vocado in his fullest. He looked stronger than before - a big dopey smile on his face, and a lot less sure of himself - but stronger.
As Vocado began to answer his question, a heavy thud struck his arm in the form of a playful jab. Yeah, he was definitely stronger. Kabe thought about that as he simultaneously rubbed at the forming bruise on his arm and listened to Vocado briefly run over everything he'd been doing over the past few months, before hitching on his other uncle's name.
Before Kabe could pry further though, he was blown aback by Vocado's next statement. "What?"
It wasn't often that Kabe was left absolutely floored. But as Vocado continued on to invite Kabe to drinks, he couldn't pull himself forward in the conversation just yet. A sister? He strained his mind, trying to remember if he had any siblings all those years ago when he'd wound up stranded on Duria in his youth. It was a very messy pile of scatterbrained half-recolections to comb through... but nothing was coming up.
"A sister..." He mumbled, still collecting himself, before suddenly snapping back to the world and processing the other half of Vocado's sentence. "Oh, sure! I could go for a drink, though I think you'll get a little more plastered than me." He laughed, jabbing Vocado's shoulder back for the bruise he'd just won. "We can dip back in here, if you like. You've gotta try the Power Ball special, it'll knock you on your ass. And tell me more about this sister? I didn't think dad-" his voice unexpectantly swelled with anger on that word, but he continued. "I didn't think he had any other children."
"Guess he was pretty active." Vocado shrugged. No other way to put it, disgusting as he realized it was. Brushing past it quickly as he could, he continued to explain. "I should temper your expectations, though. She's not like us. She was raised by Arcosians of all things. Not entirely alien, just... More polite." Was that the right word for it? He couldn't precisely find another one that fit.
"Also, she's blind. Stronger than both of us put together, too."
Kabe's suggestion of the bar behind him was ignored, a dismissive wave answer enough from the larger Saiyan. Nodding to his side, he offered an alternative. "I've got a better spot. Somewhere a little quieter. Further from the crowds. We can actually catch up."
He didn't wait for the boy's reply, instead walking backwards into an alley. He spun on his heel as he crossed the sightline of the crowds, and walked a peculiar path. Two lefts, a right and a left. He led them to a hole in the wall. The sign had been long-since torn off its hinges, and the name painted on the spot above the door had been scorched off by a stray energy bullet.
"This used to be a favorite place of ours when we were kids. Before everything went sour."
Without further explanation, he entered.
The innards of the tavern were unimpressive. Dull lights buzzed from the ceiling, flickering in and out with the rhythm of the fanfare some good few blocks away. Booths had springs popping loose, and the jukebox hung on every other note in the song.
Vocado sighed contentedly.
He snapped his fingers, smacked the wall behind him twice, and slid on his left heel, creaking the floorboard in a funny way. The bartender, who had been asleep under the counter, hopped to his feet with a start, and opened his eyes wide as they could.
"Vocado! Long time since you've shown your sorry ass here! Where's Perilla? She hasn't paid her tab, you know!"
The owner was a surly and greying Saiyan, his hair just as silvered as the tail swishing back and forth. His right arm was a thick metal implement, all crude and out of sorts. It seemed to have a special attachment for shaking cocktails, though he didn't seem well-stocked for such a thing.
"She'll be in next week, Toma. Promise. She's out on a mission, remember?"
"Ahhh yes. That lagoon scouting thing. Whatever. Just bring me her pay, whether she kicks the bucket or not!"
Toma turned around, swiped two bottles off the back wall, and tossed them at Vocado, who caught them with ease. A pair of glasses came soon after, snatched up in the Saiyan's tail.
Post by Captain Kabe on Jan 31, 2022 0:42:29 GMT -5
Kabe still didn't know how to feel about the idea of having a sister. He didn't say much, as Vocado told him about her. Simply nodded and took it in. He didn't even defend his favorite bar when he was waved off, following along at his uncles behest as they trailed somewhere old, yet familiar. There was something about the smell that made him feel as if he'd taken in the scent before, something about the sound of the rough gravel ground and the faded colors of the alley.
It was a nice sort of familiarity.
Kabe watched silently, a small smile forming on his face with a twang of sorrow as Vocado exchanged banter with the single-arm cybernetic senile old saiyan. The name rang hollow in his ears. Sometimes, he forgot her name was Perilla. She was always just 'mom' to him. An echo of a name on the wind, something buried deep on a planet he didn't have the guts to visit every again.
But it was nice to know that her memory was still being kept alive, even if it was just in the dumbed mutterings of an old fart with a cocktail shaker and no business kicking on any longer. Sliding into a seat at the counter, Kabe looked to Vocado. "So, you and mom used to come here a lot huh?"
He looked around the room, noticing little bits of damage and rot that had been etched into the building, with no plans to remove them any time soon. A little etching on the back wall in old saiyan, the language his mother had taught him as a kid, clearly displayed the names of his uncles and mother. "Seems she sort of never left." He gestured to the scratching and the damage with his drink, then to Toma offhandedly before knocking it back.
"So," he started, pausing for a moment as he reached down his throat like a sword swallower and pulled out a bottle of viscous green that he tapped into his newly poured glass of liquor. "you got beat up by Azoth? Like, the emperor of Arcose? How'd you manage to be that unlucky?"
”Yeah. She and I used to come here a lot when I was really little. Pitt wasn’t even born yet the first time we came.” The Saiyan slid into the seat next to Kabe. That was so long ago. He couldn’t have been more than a toddler when Perilla lead them here. Sadala was a little cleaner back then, and this outpost a little newer. Funny how a couple of decades can change things. ”Toma never changed. I think he actually looks younger now then when I first met him.”
Vocado watched, eerily silent as Kabe produced a bottle of liquor from his stomach. Somehow, in the last year, that wasn’t the weirdest thing he’d seen. Go figure.
Pouring his own glass of the stuff Toma offered, he sipped at it quietly. The murky brown was an indescribable booze. Some burning mixture of whiskey and rum and absinthe from across the galaxy. The cheapest stuff possible all shoved into one bottle and shaken hard.
”Yeah. Azoth. See, he killed Ise’s father. Adopted father, I guess. When I found out I got pissed. She and I tried to take him on, and to keep her safe I might have… implied I was going to genocide the entire Arcosian race if he didn’t kill me right then and there.”
He took a longer drink, eyes shifting back and forth. Even Toma chuckled at that story.
”The bastard nearly tore me in half. Keyword being nearly. Even with how absurdly strong he is, he couldn’t kill me. And now Taori’s gone and gutted him.” There was a tinge of jealousy on those final words. ”Im glad Hibernal is avenged, just wish it was me or Ise who’d done it… at least if I’d have been there to see it.”
Rolling his eyes, his thoughts turned to the girl. Azuki. He’d find her. He was sure of it.
”So. How about you. What brings you back to plant?”
Post by Captain Kabe on Feb 2, 2022 16:58:53 GMT -5
Woozing a little as he felt the kick of rocket fuel mixed with cheap alcohol swirling it's way into his wormhole of a stomach, Kabe listened to Vocado's incredible short story. That explains why he'd be ballsy enough to do something like that. It was nice to know his... sister- it was still weird thinking that- had people looking out for her, even if they nearly got themselves killed doing it.
"Holy shit, unc. Look at you going and getting embroiled in the affairs of the greater powers. You might wind up with a bounty bigger than mine some day!" He chuckled a little, hoping he could get away with avoiding answering his next question, but after a moment of paused sucked it up and pressed on anyway.
"Well, it's a long story. Basically I went to the Namekian homework following a lead on where some of my crew had wound up after we split to escape the galactic patrol a while back. I got into a few little... skirmishes there, and lost that lead. I was moping around when I got a letter from dad!"
He took another deep swig of his drink, widening his eyes and waving a hand in a very sarcastic 'woo-hoo' at that point. "He invited me home for food and wine, you know, a nice family dinner. And I haven't really gotten to see him, or dine on some rich people food for ages, so I got excited and headed back here. Lo and behold, he's hired my favorite bounty hunter to bring me in cold, surprising me when I get home. Got out of dodge real quick, now I'm here. I was gonna scrub up some bounty hunters and go give him a taste of his own medicine, but that can wait. Family that aren't pieces of shit are more important."
Vocado listened to the story with great interest. Namek didn’t seem the type of place that a pirate would go, which, in turn, made it a great hiding place. A shame that the trail had gone cold. Maybe one day Vocado would get to meet this band of marauders and thank them for keeping Kabe alive.
”Callion, huh?” He spoke the name through grit teeth, partially thanks to the burning booze running down his throat at the time. In truth, their contact had always been brief. What use did Vocado have in talking to the bastard back then, and what use did Callion have with an exiled, disgraced royal in the current day?
Still though, the story of the ambush brought a burning sensation to Vocado’s stomach. Anger and patriarchal intent balled into one. He had half a mind to rip Callion in half right now. Nobody would miss the bastard anyways.
”The hell would buying a chump from here accomplish? You’ve got a Shredder Corp Captain staring right at you!”
His glass slammed the table, denting the bar and somehow keeping the glass pristine. ”Why don’t we pay this punk a visit? I can handle some mercenary. Bet he doesn’t even know how to read Ki.”
Was it boozed-up bravado or genuine confidence? He couldn’t quite say. Even so, his currently fresh scar made it likely he’d be a bit rusty in a fight. It ran down the length of his left, from shoulder to wrist. Despite being deposited into a healing tank so soon after, it was doubtful the scar would ever fully heal.
”Come on. We can track ‘em down and give the bastard a once-over. Bonewood style. It’d be a good bonding experience!”
Post by Captain Kabe on Feb 3, 2022 3:41:05 GMT -5
Vocado was really protective of his family. Kabe envied that. He wasn't sure that he'd react so passionately so quickly to Vocado, Pitt or this newfound sister being wronged or betrayed like that. He'd always stuck up for his crew, and been there to kick ass and rock house if one of them were in danger, but he'd never really been the sort to protect them with all of his heart... right?
Sure, he sacrificed himself and got stuck on Plant for a while so they could escape, and had been spending all his spare time looking for them, but he couldn't see in himself that twinkle of family strength that he could see in the eyes of his uncle. And though inspiring, and quite endearing, Kabe knew he had to put that down. The idea of Vocado crushing Zhalla to a pulp for just doing her job was not an agreeable one.
"I appreciate the enthusiasm, but we really don't need to do that. Zhalla- she's the merc that dad hired - she's pretty cool. I don't think we should go and beat her up for just doing her job. Besides, I think you'd like her if you met her!" He tried to give a fun little laugh to curtail Vocado's battle spirit into something more friendly.
"Let's go blow off some steam though. That could be good. Is there anywhere you've been wanting to go, somewhere away from all this hustle and bustle where we can beat eachother up for a bit and then relax?"
Vocado paused for a beat, swirling his drink as Kabe explained. Rivalries that turned into friendships weren't uncommon, especially on Saiyan soil, but this seemed a little extreme. Zhalla was trying to outright kill him; hired by Callion no less! Surely her morals were less than upstanding to take such a vicious gig.
"Sure thing, kid. I'm sure she's a real knockout. Easy on the eyes or somethin'?"
He poured himself another glass, downed it, and poured another.
"Yeah sure. The wastes are pretty... Wasted space. Lots of places to toss eachother around. You sure you're up for it, though?" He gave Kabe a crooked brow. His Battle Point was a little lacking. Admirable for your average Saiyan, but Vocado was a few classes above the average. "Don't mean nothin' by it but you might come out of the exchange with your fair share of bruises."
Regardless of Kabe's response, the Saiyan would toss a handful of coins on the bartop. Gold and silver, chipped and bent. Currency from a handful of different civilizations. Toma protested, scooping up the payment in his good hand and jostling it to grab the captain's attention. "This ain't a charity, yknow! I need REAL payment you sorry sack!"
"Put it on Perilla's tab, Toma. You know she's good for it."
With that, Vocado walked out to the street, and waited for his nephew.
Post by Captain Kabe on Feb 4, 2022 20:40:06 GMT -5
Kabe wasn't sure how to answer Vocado's casual remark. Like, in a literal sense she was a knockout, in that she had knocked him out before. But he didn't really see her that way? So he wasn't sure. He let Vocado have his drink, shrugged at the idea of him getting beaten and bruised by their encounter since he already could tell Vocado was stronger than him, and watched his encounter with Toma.
After his uncle left, he reached down his throat and pulled out a leather sack, withdrawing a handful of zeni and a few random coins from other places, as Vocado had, dumping them on the table. "That'll cover it," he hoped, heading out the door, now fiddling with his scouter that he'd fitted to his face. "Til next time, Toma."
Coming out into the streets to meet Vocado, he found what he had been thumbing through his scouter for, and clicked a button to project an image into the air. The image showed a selfie Kabe had taken maybe one or two years ago when the two were both younger, with a trail of gold and other goods scattering into the distance, and a helmetless Zhalla in all her fierce, ginger glore baring down on him behind. He was a little blurry in the image, but there was clear shot of Zhalla. Though Kabe had never recognized her, Vocado might - as Rhubi Spinespear, Callion's niece that Vocado would have met at some point during Callion's early relationship with Perilla, from some family event or another.
"There, that's her. Decide for yourself how she looks."
After the image was in the air, she gave a little shrug, and then blipped it away and heel turned toward the barren wastes, expecting Vocado to follow him there.
Vocado glanced at the image, nodding as his eyebrows propped up. ”Not bad. Reminds me of someone though…” The name was on the tip of his tongue. They’d met at some gala or another as children, surely. Throwing rocks at nobles or sneaking drinks from the adults tables. Something like that; but if the memory existed at all, it was fuzzy at best. Vocado had done well to stomp out any recollection of that time in his life. It was traumatic remembering what he’d lost.
”You should ask her out. Hire her as your date— I had a Kabochan girl who was a mercenary all her life. Pina was her name, I think. She was all about that. Said it made her feel important I guess.”
Shrugging, he walked to the outskirts alongside Kabe. ”’Course, soon as the money dried up, so did her love. Guess I’m not a good judge on that stuff.”
Not far from the town proper was a collection of deep craters. Thick and old, the time-worn holes served as proof of battle long-since past. Squashed quarrels and decimated rivals usually found their homes here. He beckoned Kabe to one of the shallow ones, intending on deepening it.
”I’ll warn you, I’m a tad rusty. Been in a healing tank for about a week after the last battle for Hatchi.” He shook his head, hiding the true story. ”Damn Arcosians, man…”
With that, he hopped in, tossing his scouter at the lip of the makeshift arena.
KP: 6/6 MP: 0/6 HP: 0/260 PL: 53,250
Resources: Sparking, Burning Ki, Self Sacrifice, Arm Blaster, Dyno Capsule Status Effects: Armor Lining (+10% HP) Used Resources: N/A
Post by Captain Kabe on Feb 6, 2022 2:26:30 GMT -5
Kabe grimaced at the thought of that situation. Both Vocado's recollection of that long lost kabochan lover, and at the idea of hiring Zhalla to date him. He thought that she was pretty cool, and he respected her and her skill in battle a great deal, but she just wasn't... his type. Involuntarily, he choked at the suggestion, and then laughed it off. "Nonono, it's nothing like that. Trust me."
He was glad when they arrived at the deep bowl craters sunk into the earth a few minutes from town, and the talk turned toward their coming battle. Kabe followed him into the bowl, taking the scouter he'd used to fish up pictures and shoving it back into this pocket. It was more of a hinderance anyway- he hadn't even scanned Vocado and he knew that he was severely outmatched. That didn't mean he couldn't try his damned hardest.
Withdrawing Wildefang from the sheathe that was his body, he figured he better lead with his best foot forward. Vocado may have been rusty, but with the gap in their power there was no way he'd be so easily cut down by the katchin blade. "Don't go easy on me just because I've been slacking!" He shouted, leading the battle with a bound forward and a mighty swing of his blade, aiming for the torso.
Power Level: 15,000 KP: 2/6 MP: 2/6
-4 KP for Wildefang Strike! 6,000 (40%) damage with piercing headed your way!
The battle was underway quickly, starting with Kabe's unique way of storing weaponry. Vocado made no moves to evade, instead puffing out his chest as a thin sheet of Ki enveloped him. The blade struck his pectoral, sparking against the shield far harsher than the Bonewood expected. Eyes wide, he nodded in appreciation, before bringing his hand up to knock the blade off course.
"You're stronger than I expected!"
Vocado's words were genuine approval, but they were a tad undercut by the other arm coming up and loosing an energy bullet from a wrist-mounted blaster. It tore through the short distance between them, aiming to pop Kabe in the chest and send him tumbling back into the deepest part of the crater.
"Bonewood blood definitely courses through you." His stance changed, shoulders rolled and center of gravity lowered. "Not that I ever doubted it, but at least I've got proof now."
Despite his surprise, he'd decided internally to take it slow for these first few exchanges. Strong as he was, he'd have to pull his punches to ensure this wasn't a single-exchange brawl.
With a dash, he approached Kabe's right side, peppering him with jabs to keep him too busy to strike back.
Used [Medium] Rally Point Sigma! 30% Defense = 15,975! This has the Taunt Variant! If 20% or less of this barrier remains after clashing, Vocado gains +20% to his next Standard Offensive Technique!