Hit Points I- Player vs. Snakeman
Player had been to gyms before, but this one was different. A good different. It smelled like blood. Sweat. Anger. It had free weights for power, bags for technique, and a sweet little honey named Charm to ease the aches away. But most importantly, it had just the right clientele, as far as Player was concerned. Everyone Player had a reason to hate in this town was here.
An upcoming tournament would allow Player to inflict pain on his tormenters. And if he did it right, he would even get paid for taking his revenge.
Tonight's draw was Player against a punk cocky enough to call himself Snakeman. Snake in the grass, Player muttered. His memory was still fresh about how he and Kotomi had been jumpèd by Snakeman and his partner. He had fought him off enough for the punks to give up and run away. There was nowhere to run in the ring. He wondered if Snakeman remembered that night.
He will, thought Player. He will.
The bell for Round 1 rang. While Player assumed the proper stance, the punk jiggled his hands to his sides.
No technique, huh? Player wished he'd known that on the night he got jumped. He weighed his options. Should he try to knock him out, or play with him a while?
He had ignored Snakeman's trash talk at first. Now it was time to join in.
"A tough man, are you?" he menaced his opponent.
"You could say that. Tougher than you."
"Where did you train? Who was your dojo?"
"I don't need some fancy coach."
Amateur. "I see. So you're a street fighting man?"
"Best in this town."
"Oh, you own this town?" Player threw a jab. Snakeman didn't so much defend it as avoid it.
"Do you? I bet they shake in their boots when they see you." A jab. A combo. He blocked a couple of Snakeman's wet noodle returns.
"Yeah that's right."
"I bet they put their hands in the air." Player moved his hands about his face. "Oh, don't hurt me. Don't hurt me. Do their hands go this high, Mr. Tough Guy?"
Snakeman hadn't caught on. "No, higher."
"How high?"
"This high."
Snakeman put both his hands in the air, leaving himself completely defenseless. Player saw his opportunity. One haymaker right to the jaw, and Snakeman was on his way to the canvas.
Player backed away for the count, but he knew his opponent was out cold. He looked in the corner to see his opponent's accomplice.
"Tell your buddy when he wakes up, that Snakeman is a good name for him. Because a snake wouldn't be able to lay a glove on me, either."

As he walked over to get his prize, he saw Ryuji off to the side, flanked by his goons. Ryuji returned his stare. Neither man nodded, or blinked. 
Player collected his thoughts. The next challenge would not be so easy. But things of value rarely are.