do I have to sit out this year's
KOF alone, buddy boy?!"
"You said it! And why do I have to be Master Jhun
and Master Kim's lackey?"
The high-pitched wails and low bellowing of the two
echo out alternately.
Choi Bounge and Chang Koehan, who have continued their
program of rehabilitation for a number of years at
Kim's tae kwon do gym, are miffed. The two who only
a few years before did nothing but plan their escape
have become quite commendable citizens. It seems that
Kim's heartfelt program of rehabilitation has paid
off...then again, maybe not.
The abandoned Choi thinks:
(Not only do I have to do all the housework during
the Master's absence, I have to watch after his kids...and
boy they've really become a couple of brats recently.
Simply put, I've want no part of that babysitting gig!)
Meanwhile, Chang concludes...
(Stuck between the two masters constantly at each others
heels, being pulled this way and that....I won't be
able to take it!)
"Ha, ha, ha. I'm glad to see you working so hard,
Choi. But this time I have to give in to Jhun's earnest
entreaties. Well, make the best of it and watch over
"But, buddy boy!"
"I said, watch...over...the...fort!"
With his arms crossed, Kim bears his teeth, which emit
a blinding gleam.
One more word of protest, and Choi would be feeling
the full force of a Phoenix Kick in the name of rehabilitation."
"...O-OK. I got you, buddy boy!"
"Ha, ha, ha. If you express yourself with sincerity
all will come to see things your way."
"Yeah, and the bruises you'd give me on top of
your 'sincerity' are nothing to sneeze at either, buddy
The two whisper to each other in hushed tones as if
a pair of mosquitoes, but Kim doesn't fail to catch
"Did either of you have something to say to me?"
"Yeah, we were just talking about..."
"...how much we love our daily training. Yeah,
Chan and Choi answer unflinchingly.
Their faces beaming with forced grins are pathetic.
"Ha, ha, ha. You said it. You said it."
The two shrink away from Kim and let out a small, brief
sigh. Their humility and timidity would make one doubt
that they were once the evilest of the evil.
It is hardly necessary to mention, but Chang Koehan,
with his trademark iron ball and chain, is the escaped
convict with superhuman strength.
The guy with the charming iron talons is the former
mad slasher, Choi Bounge
Kim is the one who has devoted countless years to rehabilitate
these two through the discipline of tae kwon do and "return
them to the path of righteousness." He has yet
to complete their rehabilitation.
And then there's Jhun Hoon, Kim's rival who gets along
with him as well as a trench coat complements Mai.
It is Jhun who comments:
"I'm sorry, Choi. But I just have to take part
in this year's KOF."
"But Master Jhun, why are you so obsessed with
this KOF...just what gives?"
Chin draws in his sharp chin and closes his eyes.
(Hoo, hoo, hoo. Maybe it's got something to do with
the introduction of the new rules, like the free tag-offs!)
This is Jhun's scheme.
Even though tournaments up till now were 3-on-3 team
battles, contestants fought individually, but this
time there's the free tag-off Multi-Shift rule.
In other words, when Kim finds himself in a fix, Jhun
will gallantly jump in, and along with saving his butt,
make the world aware of the difference in ability between
Kim and him by magnificently mopping up the mat with
the opponent. But this, of course, goes against all
his professed principles.
"Look, somehow Kim's team is the only one to participate
from our country. So the members of this team must
be, more than anything, the best. Isn't that right?"
"Well, yeah, most indubitably."
"Choi, you've shown a lot of improvement these
few years, but you still can't hold a candle to me.
Chan's in the same boat, but his fighting style is
way different than ours, and it's just the right touch
to a diverse team."
"What is it, Choi."
"About this year's team line-up...It just may
be our big chance, buddy boy."
"What do you mean, chance? Given the personalities
of our two masters, there's no way I'll see any free
time, much less freedom, no matter how hard I try this
KOF. So naturally the odds of you and me both getting
out of this pickle is impossible, and I guarantee that
"It all depends on how you use your noggin, buddy
Choi's scheme is thus:
Everybody's a sucker when it comes to sports, sympathy,
So, when this KOF comes to a close, Choi, who everyone
believes is stuck at home watching Kim's brats, shows
up out of nowhere and gives them the old, "I was
frantic with worry and couldn't help but come to watch
over you buddy boys." If Chang plays along with
him just right, it'll be a cinch to pull the wool over
the eyes of that rube Kim.
"So, that'll casually make the point that we're
"Yeah, I got you. An appeal to the emotions, and
with the media there making a spectacle of it...That
just may work."
"It can't fail, can it, buddy boy? This time we'll
put these pious pinheads behind us for sure."
"If we decide to go for this, I'll really have
to go gonzo during this KOF."
Meanwhile, Kim is uneasy.
It is clear that teamwork will be a crucial factor
in this year's KOF.
With Chang and Choi, he would be on familiar ground,
but he can't seem to get along with Jhun. If other
teams take advantage of this, defeat will quickly follow.
Kim's scheme goes a little like this:
It's definitely difficult to take full advantage of
the team's maximum potential with Jhun thrown into
But this just might be able to be surmounted with the
efforts of the world's mightiest tae kwon do athlete,
the one and only Kim himself.
He'll conversely use the new tag-off rules to his advantage
and silence from hereon Jhun's grating criticisms by "saving
his backside and putting him at his service."
And by doing this in public, the effect will be amplified
because it will create an undeniable obligation.
But this, naturally, goes against everything Kim stands
"Well, if Jhun insists on joining our team..."
In spite of this team devoting their battles to justice,
each of it's members appear to entertain some fairly
wicked thoughts, but in a way they all seem unified
(?) in their intentions.
"Master, I have come to see things your way, buddy
boy. This time I'll root for you from a distance, buddy
"So you've seen the light, have you, Choi?"
"Most indubitably, buddy boy. Even if we're not
always together, we're still a team."
"Yes! That's the spirit that gives testament that
your long years of rehab are paying off!"
"And I'll make up for Choi's absence myself!"
"Chang's got the spirit too...If you put things
that way, I can't afford to lose either."
"Don't forget about me, buddy boys, because you
can count on me waiting for you at the awards ceremony."
"Of course we won't forget you. Ha, ha, ha, ha."
"Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha."
Four members, with four (rather sinister) motives hidden
in their hearts. The team sets out for the familiar
stomping grounds of KOF. Their entry into the competition
(barring a shipping problem with Chang's iron ball
and chain) apparently goes off without a hitch.