The damage to his body was starting to take noticeable effect, as Sun winced and stumbled for a split second. However, the battle-hardened mad lad would need more than just three bullets to put him down for good. He only showed signs of pain through a frown and the short-lived stumble, as he quickly dressed his wounds from more pieces of his shirt and continued his die-hard pursuit to rescue Elizabeth.
Afterwards, his maddened, full-out, dash returned. Sun ran through the nights streets, rain drenching his body and droplets of blood slipping slowly through his makeshift shirt-made bandages. He came across the end of the block where he had seen the two remaining kidnappers and found that one trail of Martial Qi led down a path going left and another going right, right after the stretch of road was cleared.
Sun cursed under his breath as he saw the trails of Martial Qi slowly dissipate before his very eyes; a sign that the practitioners passing through here had minimized the use of their power to conceal their tracks at the cost of speed. He wasn't one to think things through anyways, so he chose to go right and hoped that Elizabeth would be at the end of the trail.
Not thirty seconds passed before Sun could see a solitary figure running away from him. He failed… He had chased after just the man; a decoy. Now entering a true rage from the fact that Elizabeth status could effectively be considered genuinely kidnapped, Sun didn't even turn back in hopes of finding another trail to follow.
He knew that the chances of finding Elizabeth would now be virtually impossible, thus all his anger was redirected at the fool that caused him to fail. Sun practically flew over to the fleeing man and dealt him a truly crushing blow. The man could barely even react as Sun had caught up to him after he had turned the corner of a block. Thus, he had no time to pull out any long range weapons and try to slow Sun down.
After Sun was done with him, squirming and pleading screeches of mercy rang across the entire block. Sun only stopped after the man begged him, as he wasn't a sadistic fellow. He only let himself drown in anger too deeply this time, so as soon as he cooled off a bit, he knocked the man out cold before turning to search for Elizabeth through luck.
Elizabeth, just a couple minutes after being knocked out, suddenly woke up once more while she was still being dragged. The first thing she could do, was panic and scream for Sun instinctively, as his figure fighting that Level 10 man left her a bit traumatized. She couldn't imagine her savior beating the Level 10 enemy, as she had confirmed right before fading to unconsciousness that Sun was only Level 5…
Elizabeth screamed instinctively, making use of her Inner Strength without realizing it, as this was a potentially life-threatening situation. She squirmed and fought her way off from being carried by the hostile woman before her, and managed to stand back on her own two feet after moment.
She backtracked a couple paces to distance herself from the Level 5 hostile woman and all sorts of bodily limits were broken as Elizabeth galvanized her Inner Strength, not for the purpose of training, but to fight for real.
In direct contrast to the tame and pearly white sheen of Inner Strength that covered Elizabeth, her Level 5 opponent was of stark contrast as she also took a fighting form and let her Inner Strength ignite. However, instead of the usual white energy Elizabeth associated with Inner Strength, what she faced now was a light violet spark of chaotic energy.
Elizabeth looked on in concern at her would-be kidnapper, a bit worried over the large gap in their stats. She didn't exactly know what stats the woman before her had, but given her classification of Level 5, the woman at least had her five base stats over 18. After Elizabeth's day of training, her stats had all increased to at least fifteen, but a difference of 3 points this early on in her "career" was still brutal; it was a difference of 16.6%!
Elizabeth took her Muay Thai stance and cautiously observed her opponent with unprecedented vigilance. It was around this time, that she remembered her lack of training geared towards defense, so her mood further devolved in a pessimistic direction. With nothing but her offense being trained by Jane today, she could do nothing except run away or abandon any thoughts of defense.
Remembering that her Speed stat was at 22 points, the idea of running away seemed feasible enough. But, given that her enemy definitely had a larger pool of Inner Strength when compared to herself, and probably a higher Endurance stat as well… Fleeing didn't seem to be an option. With nothing be survival on her mind, Elizabeth abandoned all thoughts of running away and took the gamble to fight head on. She hoped her Speed Stat would be enough to net her a solid blow before the enemy could react.
Her strategy to wait and fight head on naturally involved waiting in concealment of her true speed, thus she took her stance and stood her ground. Moments passed, and the two ladies under the night-time rain just stood there standing, yet the pressure coming from the tense atmosphere around them would suffocate any normal person.
Eventually, Elizabeth noticed her Inner Strength start to wane as she was unrestricted in her use to counteract against any sudden movements. She guessed this was a part of the enemy's plan and that wasting more time would just lead to a increasingly worse position for her. Thus, taking the initiative became a priority and Elizabeth consequently start a "fast" stride over to the enemy's side.
Elizabeth barely used even 80% of her max speed as she approached the woman. But as she closed in on the last couple feet, a frighteningly sharp spike in Inner Strength led to her appearing right in front of the woman. Her speed certainly come off as an unexpected variable, but this hostile woman was no new fighter, and as a result she didn't panic. Instead, by the slightest margin Elizabeth could imagine, the woman somehow managed to prop her leg up in time to check Elizabeth's roundhouse kick to the jaw.
Instantly, waves of pain assaulted Elizabeth as making contact with the purple aura of Inner Strength the woman emanated caused her to feel like countless sharp spines were prickling her foot and leg. A new notification popped up within Elizabeth's mind and the pessimistic outlook she had been cultivating throughout the night to a deeper dive still.
[Danger!! Hostile Lightning-Type Inner Strength Detected]
'What the fuck?! Why me???' Elizabeth somehow had time to curse through the pain of being electrocuted, as she used its —its, referring to the act of cursing itself... — masking powers to dampen the pain and split away from the woman. Though it hurt terribly, Elizabeth knew it was either do or die in this situation, so she didn't turn tail and run; especially considering the large drain she had already imposed on her Inner Strength reserves.
She backed off once more, and became a bit surprised that the woman didn't follow up a counterattack when she had the chance. Still, being given this chance, it would be a crime if she didn't take advantage of it and fight with her all. So, Elizabeth, upon redoubling her resolve and accepting the consequences of further pain, returned to continue fighting the woman.
Elizabeth send kick after kick, knee and elbow attacks in barrages of two to three per burst, yet all she got in return was more and more pain. Well, that's not entirely true… Her Muay Thai Skill was being rapidly developed from this high stakes battle and the pressure it put on her, but at the moment any and all notification from the status functions might as well have turned to air.
Every attack Elizabeth threw had intentions of survival and battle behind them, with only the thought to come out on top, if only once, being the main goal. And every time her attack landed only to be blocked and for her to experience another rush of pain, that battle-born intent to succeed at any cost, to push herself beyond any reasonable limits, caused the pain to leave her mind; at least temporarily…