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daveb63
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Slow Fist - Prologue

Down in the Weeds - Ep1
slowfist-prologue.doc
Keywords deer 12882, cheetah 9892, sloth 544, martial arts 353, kung fu 88
Slow Fist - Prologue

 
"When you strike with speed, you give your fist and your arm momentum, the velocity of the strike multiplying the force it transmits to your opponent."
 
The voice speaking to the dimly lit room was slow, measured and slightly accented. The room was roughly square, the benches around the walls crowded with figures of various sizes from which could be felt a curious intensity, even though they could only be partially seen in the low light. Amongst them glowed many pairs of reflective eyes as they paid respectful attention to the figure standing in the center of the mats that dominated the floor space, more brightly lit than the peripheries of the room but still less so than one would expect from a training hall, for that is precisely what this was.
 
"My good friend Sensei Ikawa has taught many of you that. Others have learned from different teachers, along varied paths. It would be ridiculous for me to attempt such a thing, would it not?"
 
A pair of amber eyes slowly opened and scanned the room. Dressed in the typical uniform of the Chinese martial artist, his heavy claws folded back into its sleeves, the figure in the center of the room radiated not so much power as serenity. The figure in the middle of the training mat was a sloth.
 
"One thing we do have in common, however, is a principle that the advanced students among you train hard to achieve. To have the force of your techniques focused into a moment, a single instant, not wasting any of your energy and yet transmitting devastating amounts of energy into your target, because it all arrives in that single instant. That is fundamental to Slow Fist Kung Fu and is the reason Sensei Ikawa has invited my students and I to join you this evening."
 
As he spoke, the sloth was slowly uncurling one of his long arms and resting his clawed paw on a board supported by two piles of bricks to his right.
 
"If the force arrives in a single instant, before or after that instant does not matter. What matters is the moment and in Slow Fist, a moment can stretch to an eternity. More than enough time to focus one's energy through a relaxed body to where it needs to be."
 
The sloth paused for a half second, and then the board beneath his apparently motionless paw cracked violently in two, the stacks of bricks tumbling to either side as the two pieces of wood bounced off the floor.
 
"It is a privilege to be invited to join you tonight and I am honored to extend a reciprocal invitation to Sensei Ikawa and his senior students."
 
As the sloth finished speaking, he bowed as a short and wiry fox stepped onto the mat and into clearer view. The fur was greying on his muzzle, giving his rich red fur a somewhat faded look. His white gi was absolutely pristine but the black belt around his waist was worn yet perfectly functional. With a fluid grace, he returned the sloth's bow before speaking.
 
"Thank you, Sifu Li. This dojo will be honored to accept your invitation." Addressing the assembled watchers, he continued. "Before we proceed with tonight’s training session, I invite you to show polite appreciation for Sifu Li's presence tonight and his kind demonstration."
 
A polite ripple of applause passed around the room as the lights slowly brightened.
 
-----------------------------
 
"Tea, Slo? Or would you prefer something stronger?"
 
"Tea would be fine, thank you, Hideo. Your students were a credit to your training tonight."
 
"As were yours, my friend." Pouring the tea, Hideo Ikawa chuckled quietly. "It was rather amusing to see the look of surprise on a few faces - either 'why didn't that connect?' or 'where did that come from?'"
 
"They all learned something tonight. Many of yours taught mine that perhaps they are not as secure in their center as they thought. A success, I think."
 
"Your schedule is probably more crowded than mine. When should we do the return visit?"
 
"Not for several months, I am afraid. I have a script in the works. I do not have the shooting schedule yet but I will shortly have to travel. They are shooting this one in Hong Kong."
 
"We've come a long way since we were both young and foolish, haven't we?"
 
"All that is long forgiven, my friend. It is late, and I do not travel as quickly as most. I should head home."
 
"Sachi has missed you. We should at least get together for dinner before you have to leave."
 
"I would like that. Thank you."
 
--------------------------------------
 
Nine weeks later

 
“Sifu, I need your advice.”
 
“Of course, Michael.”
 
“We have a student application that I do not feel qualified to handle. The student is… unusual.”
 
“And you are not saying how ‘unusual’ because you do not wish to prejudice my opinion. Correct?”
 
“Yes, Sifu.”
 
“Then I have caught you again, Michael. You would not have been so careful if you had not already formed a negative opinion. No ordinary student would knock you so far from your center, so this one is at least interesting. I shall interview this ‘unusual’ applicant. I believe the director is mostly satisfied with the shooting at this point so should be back in LA within a week. How would you have handled this if your tranquility was undisturbed?”
 
“Yes, Sifu. Sorry, Sifu. I should have simply scheduled the interview for after your return and said nothing more.”
 
“It is becoming very rare that I catch you thinking too quickly, Michael. Leave this in my paws. I am now needed for a meeting in the screening room. As soon as they are finalized I will let you know my travel plans.”
 
------------------------------------
Eight days later

 
Across the street from the converted warehouse, Eon Volker fidgeted. He looked down at his watch for about the third time in five minutes but its message didn’t change one bit. He was at least half an hour early for his appointment with Master Li. He’d been worried about finding parking so had left extra early and for once the LA traffic had been kind, bringing him here just in time for a parking space to open up at a meter just across the street from his destination. He could either possibly give offence by walking in early, perhaps disrupting a class, or he could hang around outside and give an equally bad impression from showing up all sweaty from the afternoon heat. Looking up and down the road he spotted his salvation. A coffee shop. Perfect place to kill half an hour.
 
Walking up to the vacant counter he caught the eye of the barista, a curvy cervine girl.
 
“Large iced mocha, please.”
 
“Coming right up, Hon.”
 
They chatted as she brewed the espresso, Eon discovering that her name was Brianne, that she was an Art and Photography major at UCLA, where Eon was studying Engineering and Architecture. That, like him, she had elected to not leave town for Summer Break, that both of them had been fortunate enough to find nice places to live off-campus.
 
The coffee shop remained deserted so they ended up sitting at a table together, continuing to chat. Eon was finding himself seriously enjoying her company and was slowly finishing off the last of his coffee when he looked at his watch again.
 
“Oh shit! I’ve got to run right now, I’ve an appointment in less than two minutes!”
 
“Well…”
 
“I’ve got to go! Now! I’ll see you later, ok?”
 
“Ok, I guess… “
 
Eon had already grabbed his bag and was half way out of the door, barely avoiding it swinging shut on his long tail as he ran for it. Fortunately he could run fast.
 
------------------------------------
 
Hearing the front doors open and shut, Slo Li halted the light exercise he was working through and spoke clearly.
 
“If that is Mr. Volker, please come straight ahead and join me in the main training hall. If not, please have a seat and I will be with you shortly.”
 
As the scrawny figure stepped hesitantly into the training hall, Slo Li reflected that it was just as well a lifetime of training had taught him not to show surprise. This was indeed “unusual” and he could understand his most senior student’s hesitation.
 
The prospective new student was a cheetah.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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by daveb63
Slo Li
Last in pool
Introducing Slo Li - a master of the "Slow Fist" style of Kung Fu. He's about to be presented with a bit of a challenge...

Keywords
deer 12,882, cheetah 9,892, sloth 544, martial arts 353, kung fu 88
Details
Type: Writing - Document
Published: 2 years, 3 months ago
Rating: General

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