by Diamond Dazzler (ダイヤモンド・ダッズラー)
Art by ABBA Gold (アッバ ゴルド) and Diamond Dazzler (but mostly ABBA Gold)
Theme song: “Don Gon Do It” by The Rapture (right-click to save)
“Well, it looks like an immense crowd has gathered here today in Japan, where we’re proud to host the world’s greatest international fighting event. Folks, this is Asada Hiroyuki, front row, at the MMA* GO! GO! FIGHTING KING! East Meets West tournament sponsored by NHK Satellite Television! And with me is Takahashi Tsutomu, fresh from the women’s softball field. Well, isn’t this just amazing?”
“Now, now, Mr. Asada, it wasn’t so long ago that you yourself left the competitive world of high school basketball. Whoever it was that first came up with the idea of pitting the New World Fighting Federation against the Greater Eastern Co-Prosperity Fighting Association–well, they’re a GENIUS! As for the amazing, all I can say is WOW. The crowd is enormous. Everyone is pumped to the MAX, and after the last Legendary, Death Defying Battle For Dominance between Mr. Incredible and Kinniku-Otoko, well… I can’t blame them!”
Mr. Asada laughs. “Speaking of Legendary Battles, the next one that’s coming up will be sure to shake your foundations. Dios el Magnífico, Mexican God of Air and Space, will be pitted nail, tooth and claw with his eastern opposite–Master of Earthly Submission–”
“‘Earthly submission’??” Mr. Takahashi bursts out laughing. “I like the sound of that! And this Sanshou martial artist–”
“–Is a venerable monk from Tibet, come all the way to grace us with his uncommon fighting prowess. Why, he could possibly be sent by the Dalai Lama himself! Which by the way, is something special. His name is Sun–which in Chinese, I believe is also the word for God.”
“So Dios is God and Sun is God. We are truly going to be witness to a historic Clash of the Heavenly Titans!”
“Yes, yet another Legendary Fight. — Ah look, Referee Kaga has stepped into the ring and today’s vegetable appears to be PEPPER. I do believe the fighting will soon begin… Oh! And there he is now! Sun, the TIBETAN GOD OF WAR, is coming down the ramp with his Holy Singing Monks!”
“…Tibetan? Is it just me, or do they look a bit Catholic today?”
Sun’s technicolor dancing and singing monk display is interrupted mid-verse by the stadium lights suddenly cutting out. After a long, confused moment, a single spotlight comes on over the center of the fighting ring to blaze down over the referee who is… holding an orange bell pepper. Sun shakes his head from within his hood.
The single spotlight turns into a three-coloured, spinning strobe that bathes the referee in a several shades of pink and green. A piece of the rafter peels back and a long limbed, star-spangled man is lowered in through the gap on wires. Sun crosses his arms over his chest and makes the rest of his way down the ramp towards the ring as the theme music to some spaceship movie blares throughout the stadium.
The crowd goes wild.
Sun, giving up his entrance for lost, runs the few steps down the ramp and athletically vaults up the platform and over the ropes into the ring. He lands in a crouch, but is ignored as his opponent is occupied with both holding court and undoing his rig one-handed. Sun takes the time to slowly stalk the ring in a decreasing circumference.
The referee’s hair is large, his coat uncommonly sequined.
Sun shakes his head and turns his attention to Dios. Despite being larger in both girth and height, Dios is not a very large man. It’s something surprising as he’d thought a Lucha Libre fighter would be a bit heftier — especially as Dios apparently made his name wrangling in the heavy-weight divisions.
Dios mutters to himself in Spanish, while gesturing magnanimously towards the audience with his free hand. His translator howls from the corner, “Dios Is Pleased. Dios feels Great Pleasure in seeing that there will be many to Observe as he brings this False God To His KNEES IN FRONT OF DIOS.”
The crowd collapses into complete hysteria. Dios turns to Sun, gesturing with his fingers and pointing exaggeratedly towards the mat, or possibly his groin. Sun snorts in response. As if on cue, both men fall into similarly aggressive postures. Sun can’t resist and he lets go a little as pushes his hood back and thumbs his nose at Dios. He smirks so hard he can almost feel his facial muscles crack.
As they trade manfully contemptuous gestures over the referee’s shoulder, Sun continues calculating Dios’ postures, ease and surety of movement. He moves smoothly. Obviously, he is an experienced fighter; otherwise he wouldn’t have survived to reach the final rounds of the tournament. His costume is of a slick material– it would be difficult to get a handhold, despite all the gold stars emblazoned in glitter across the material. The tassels may be useful as a handhold or a distraction. The holes in Dios’ pants were there… primarily to display a thong? Sun squints. How… impractical. He shrugs out of his hooded jacket and tosses it out of the ring. Screaming men swarm the fallen bit of cloth, bloodying each other as they fight over it.
The referee raises his sequin-sleeved arm, and the crowd quiets minutely.
He takes a bite out of his pepper.
Dios and Sun leap at each other feet first.
“As to be expected, with a freestyle brawler and a wrestler of Dios’ type, they would go immediately below the belt! How exciting!”
Mr. Takahashi leans forwards towards his mic, adjusting a few papers. “Now, Dios, he is… what is the term, Loo-cha Ree-blay fighter? What can you tell me about him?”
“Well, as a Mexican wrestler, Dios el Magnífico has inherited his mask from previous Dios… many generations of them, and is heroically continuing the ‘family name’ so to speak. He is a master of–THERE! Take a look at that flying manoeuvre with his legs! It’s absolutely devastating to his opponents, and one of his most used moves. He has a very visually beautiful style, very smooth and he knows how to put on a good show for the audience.”
“Ah, see, Mr. Asada, that makes it interesting, because — Sun’s style seems to be the exact opposite. Where his opponent flies, he drops to his knees, where Dios spreads out and flies, Sun will pull in on himself and become a singular, central striking piston. His previous opponents have always been surprised and forced into submission because they were unable to counter his octopus-like grasp on their limbs. Sun, who is famous for this hold, has beaten every one of his past rivals by pinning them to the ground with his spectacular thighs until they were forced to give up. Dios, however, is not so unfamiliar with these techniques and, in fact, must battle such men every day in his home country…”
Mr. Asada excitedly adds, “And he has made a name for himself in his ability to do such fearsome things to much larger opponents! How do you think Sun will react to this?”
“I don’t know, but it sure is exciting to see it all revealed before our very eyes!”
Dios is fast, Sun has to give him that. And once the man wraps his cast iron legs around his neck, it is almost impossible to stop the following asphyxiation-full-body-flip-and-slam-out-o
Dios pivots and bounces himself off the ropes, sling-shotting himself at Sun like a projectile on a large rubber band. Sun rears up, fists blazing, punching first at the air, and then Dios’ face. Sun screams long and hard and with extended vowels, fists striking faster than he can think. He is dimly aware of Dios’ heavy fists striking back from the sides as they both fall down towards the ring floor.
“PIIIIIIIINK GREEEEEAAASEEE!!!!!” Dios howls, and Sun finds his world spinning. He loses his footing as he’s sent flying into a corner post. He quickly claws his way back to his feet again.
“Is that how it’s going to be?” Sun wipes at the sweat dripping into his eyes and leaps forwards screaming, “HEAAAAAAAAAAAD CLEANERRRRRR!!”
“And look at that, Takahashi. That was both brutal and beautiful. Aerial manoeuvres may be flashy, and you can’t deny that Dios is flashy, but somehow people tend to forget that beneath the glitter, tassels and spangled spandex, there is a hard, seasoned fighter. Perhaps that’s the genius of his strategy and the key to his high winning track record.”
“He’s underestimated by his opponents.”
“Exactly. And, out of all of the Dios’, he is so far on the longest undefeated streak of their collective career. That, and he has yet to lose his mask.”
“…Ah yes, which means he would have to reveal to the world who he is, like a superhero!”
“Exactly. Though, I would equate their superhero status to the likes of our old heroic giant robots and sentai stories. ”
“How classical! However, I foresee a small problem!”
“And what would that be, Takahashi?”
“Dios’ history is from a long line of showman’s-style wrestling. Clear-cut moves, scripted drama, moves made specifically so that the crowd may enjoy the beauty of a fully executed form from the best possible angles. Sun cut his teeth in the no-holds-barred small rings all over Asia. He may be trying to strictly follow whatever rules he can in a fighting stage such as this, but his mentality is a whole other animal. It would be like a tiger battling benignly with a cute puppy–eventually, the tiger would eat the puppy!”
“Now, Takahashi, only time will tell and right now–Oh, OH. What is happening?”
“It’s the sirens! The ceiling has opened up and look at that! The CAGE! The cage is coming down!!”
Both Dios and Sun barely notice the renewed frenzy of the audience at first, intent as they are on circling each other carefully. Dios’ mask is torn in the back, thick chocolate-colored locks spilling out–far more than Sun would assume such a tight mask would be able to hold. He mocks, “With all that hair, is there even room for a brain under there?”
Dios makes a slashing motion with his hands, but the response from his translator is lost as klaxons sound and the howling voice of the MC blares across every speaker. “THE CAAAAAAAAGGGGEEEEE!!!”
Startled, both men pause momentarily to look up as a cage made of steel mesh is lowered to encase the ring. The audience flares up again, the Dios contingent bursting out of their seats to scream in Spanish and flail about with star-studded, pink tassel-whip things.
Frowning, Sun switches his full attention to Dios and is startled to see the man attaching what he’d thought was a decorative chain to the grommets at the wrists of his gloves. Dios stretches his strongly muscled arms out in front of himself, pulling the chain taut. Sun limits his surprise to a quick blink. The man has effectively handcuffed himself.
Dios’ translator is climbing up the outside of the cage. He waves his megaphone, screaming, “DIOS is now willing to be serious! Dios has found the little man worthy of his attentions! The little man will be going down now!”
Dios bounces forward with a distinctive rhythm, weaving from side to side and setting his tassels into a bouncy flounce. His pecs bounce independantly in time to a song only he can hear. Left, right, left, left, right.
Sun grimaces in recognition and falls back into a low, half crouching stance. “Oh, I see. Capoeira, is it? That’s not going to be enough!” He rushes forward.
Dios inverts himself, spinning on his hands and creating a whirlwind with his legs and tassels. “STORMY PINKNESS!”
Sun retaliates, “GOGOL BORDELLO!!”
“Is there some sort of economic depression regarding the sales and manufacture of jockstraps or something? I can’t see how wearing a thong could be in any way advantageous in a fight… And, oh… well… I suppose now he doesn’t have to worry about whether a thong will impede his motions or not. One of the medics appears to have fallen while trying to dodge out of its landing path.”
“Ahhh… Takahashi, and there is what you call ‘otokorashi’! Look how Sun went down–and lost his pride and still continued to battle while Dios is reduced to thrashing about on the ground!”
“Yes, though, from the looks of it, losing his pants didn’t remove his pride, but given him more things to be proud about! And he doesn’t appear to be wearing practical underwear either.”
“…Or any… er… right. And now *ahem* with the battle field levelled…it appears that they have fallen to some old school grappling, which is exactly how we like it, folks! Fancy fighting moves with fancy names is all good and fine, but sometimes it’s important to return to the basics.”
“…I think I know what advantages wearing impractical-yet-strangely-attractive undergarments in the fighting rin–”
“Don’t say it! This is an all ages broadcast–” Asada hisses to his co-announcer.
“And that’s a very interesting tattoo Sun has on his–”
“Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!” Asada cries, a hand covering his mic. Then, loudly, “We now go to a commercial break! Puri Puri Puri!”
Accidents happen in the fighting ring. Adrenaline, heat, full body rubbing… It is generally understood that in the event of a jockstrap malfunction and in-ring embarrassment, there are several procedures that can be followed. First, everyone can politely pretend that they didn’t see anything. Or secondly, if the audience hasn’t noticed anything yet, then it would behove the other fighter to kindly smash the offending fighter’s face into the nearest corner post so the pain may wipe away any latent arousal.
It would only be polite. The problem is, things are a little difficult to hide when all you’re wearing are a few tattoos and a mask, or in Dios’ case, a mask, gloves and a tassel.
Sun squints as he pins Dios down and shields the innocent television cameras from Dios’ groin with his knee. Dios squirms, incidentally rubbing against Sun’s leg. Sun contemplates simply punching him in the face several times, but the mask’s expression is so pitiful that he leans in and hisses, “Stop that! You’ll make it worse and it isn’t as if you have anything to hide it with!”
Dios babbles something incomprehensible in Spanish. Both his legs and arms rise up, catching Sun in a lock, though there is very little strength behind the movement. Sun plays along, twisting and settling his arms against Dios’ in an approximation of a counter. From somewhere to the side and above, the translator screams, “Dios is defiant! Such a little man cannot compare to the greatness that is DIOS!”
Sun’s brows twitch as he eyes Dios. From the neck down, the man’s toffee-colored skin darkens under his gaze. Sun frowns, gritting out, “I’m getting a bit tired of this ‘Little Man’ business. And here I am trying to be helpful too.”
Dios grunts out something with a lot of gutturals, gloved fingers grasping at Sun’s neck. The translator screams, “Dios says the little man is very, very small!”
Sun’s brows twitch even more, and a vein throbs in his forehead. He tangles his fingers in the hair escaping the rip at the back of Dios’ mask, pulling the man’s head back. Sun growls, hips shifting and pressing against Dio’s backside in emphasis, “I think you know that I’m not.” He is disconcerted when Dios’ only reaction is to relax into Sun’s hold. Long, muscular legs wrap around him in a more suggestive manner than mere grappling intends, the arm lock becoming less of a restrictive hold and more like Dios is resting his arms about Sun’s shoulders. If Dios’ thighs felt like a steel trap before, Sun now feels as if he is falling further between them like a man sinking into warm quicksand.
Sun tunes out the translator. Whatever it is the silly megaphone man thinks Dios is saying, he is now almost certain it has nothing to do with the liquid sounds coming out of the man’s mouth. Intonation alone is clue enough for Sun; he isn’t a brick-for-brains idiot.
Fascinated despite himself, Sun mentally shrugs and contemplates the bizarre habits of those crazy Westerners–but then, he thinks, it can also be a strange sort of genius. It isn’t as if anyone would be able to tell what was going on, locked together as they were in a very classic wrestling manoeuvre. The illicitness sends a tightening curl of pleasure through Sun’s belly.
It’s like grabbing the proverbial bull by its horns, Sun thinks as he eyes the glittering twin horns protruding from Dios’ mask before turning his attention to the much larger one squashed between them. Like grabbing a bull’s horn, except literally! Sun does so, stroking Dios’ little ‘el Magnifico’ with calloused fingers and, for an awestruck moment, he thinks he sees a glowing light. A cone of heaven. Shimmering starbursts and a sun’s supernova. Dios bucks and howls loud enough to rival the grudge cage’s sirens. Stunningly entranced, Sun holds on for dear life.
‘Look ma, I’m a cowboy!’ Sun thinks hysterically.
Neither quite notice when the cage is lifted.
“…Was that Sun’s famous finishing move, the famed Yellow Cosmos?”
“Idon’tthinkso.” There is a small rustling of papers and several awkward coughs. Mr. Asada clears his throat and mutters, almost as if he is unaware that the mic is on, “Oh, well. That was interesting.” Then, louder, “Back from our extensive commercial break! The referee appears to have made the call that Sun has…won. Uhm. I suppose because he was the one on top…”
“A-are you sure? I mean. He was physically on top–”
“He was sitting on him.”
“Are you going to argue with the referee, Mr. Takahashi?”
It is Mr. Takahashi’s turn to clear his throat. “Ah, no. Not at all. Anyway. ON to our next fight! Where, instead of other bodily fluids, it will be blood that is spilled!”
“…you didn’t just say that.”
In the ring, Referee Kaga neatly sidesteps a puddle, and both fighters climb to their feet. Sun manages to find the remains of his trousers and pulls them on, while Dios only crosses his arms over his chest. Sun focuses on the bit of tassel stuck to Dios’ shoulder.
“Well, that was interesting,” mutters Dios in accented English. “Though, I’m thinking that referee is sniffing the crack. I might have to demand a rematch.” Sun stares.
“Wait. What happened to ‘Dios feels satisfaction.’ Or ‘Dios is perturbed.’? You don’t need that translator of yours?” Sun feels strangely outraged. He tries to interpret the faces Dios is making under his mask.
Dios eventually says, “Eh, no? Hey, it’s not as if I’m making an issue of you talking like the BBC, si?”
Sun continues to stare at Dios. “I have an excuse. Hong Kong was a British col–and you’re the one advertising that you can’t communicate!”
“Hong Kong? Aaah, so that is where Tibet is from. I was wondering.”
Sun gives Dios a look. The look eventually shifts downwards and stays there for a little while.
Dios twitches, and his arms lower a little towards his stomach before sliding back up to his chest, an interesting flush spreading across his skin. “So you win. It was a good fight, no?” Then, after a long moment: “Eh. You’re on to the next round, yes?” There is an even longer silence. Then, Dios says awkwardly, “What will you do with the money if you win?”
Sun supposes that maybe they are on a somewhat more personal level now and wonders if this could be considered part of the awkward morning after. Or five minutes after. It would be a little late at this point to attempt distance. Wordlessly, Sun turns towards his brother who is standing red-faced and uncertain in his corner of the ring, a bottle of water in one hand, and a pair of sweat pants in the other. “Pay for my brother’s sex change surgery,” Sun says truthfully.
Dios turns as well, takes in the incredibly well-defined musculature, strong jaw and greater body mass of the man in question. “That him?” At Sun’s nod, his mask takes on a puzzled look. “That’s a man?”
Sun laughs and claps his hand on Dios’ waist, where he firmly tells himself not to move it any lower. “Want some pants**?”
Dios El Magnifico’s heartfelt ‘YES’ makes Sun laugh again, and together, in front of all the lights and the strangely silent audience, they leave the ring.
* MMA = Mixed Martial Arts — for fighters who go at each other with a variety of fighting styles.
** pants as in underwear. Well, he is…was British schooled.
Note: Dios’ chaps are fake. They’re really pants. Which is why they come off so easily. Uhm. Yeah. Pretend they’re tearaways. Someone needs to speak with his tailor.