Achilla Johnson has always been an adept martial artist. She could’ve won national championships in Achilla the Strong. In Angel of War, she was a lethal weapon. With every book, she adds something else to her repertoire that makes her more dangerous. In order to understand how she grows into the character you’ll see in Strike of the Mantis, it’s best to start from the beginning.
In Achilla the Strong, Achilla used a lot of principles from jeet kune do and muay thai. She used heavy striking, attacked weak points on her opponents body like the eyes and groin, and she gained the advantage quick. At this point in the story Ailina Harris’ brainwashing was at its strongest, so Achilla attacked with murderous intent as a reflex. Fortunately, she lacked Ailina’s sociopathic nature and learned to pull her punches until she fought Ailina herself. Unfortunately, she lacked the strength to beat her more experienced biological mother.
Achilla’s unparalleled work ethic paid off in Angel of War as she prepared to fight Ailina again. Striking was already her strength, but she adopted more creativity by adopting arts like tai chi and capoeira. She also improved her defense by incorporating the 52 Blocks boxing style.
Achilla proved too much for Ailina physically, but she escaped. Ailina’s experience and superior intellect saved her again by a slim margin. Achilla she could defeat her, but her father’s murder forced her to focus on Xerxes. In her quest for revenge, she ignored Ailina, vowing to deal with her in due time.
Achilla will make more improvements in Strike of the Mantis. She knows she must fight Ailina again, and she also knows her grandfather Ares will be a greater threat. So how do you make an already formidable character even stronger? You look to the strongest characters around.
Enter Dragonball Z. Scenes like the clip above inspired Achilla’s increased power. As she matures into an adult Nephilim, her strength multiplies to a level that removes all doubt that she is not a normal human being. Son Goku is a perfect example of someone with nearly limitless power and endurance who can take whatever you throw at him. Likewise, Achilla’s physiology will allow her to take punishment that no human can survive.
Dragon Ball Z is a great source for aggression, power, and grit, but Naruto paints a portrait of beautiful technique and creativity that will inspire Achilla’s new fighting style in Strike of the Mantis. She will be fast, fluid, and heavy handed. Her fighting acumen can counter nearly every situation, and her enemies will have to use unorthodox methods to stand up to her. Most will fail to do so.
Achilla’s fighting style will incorporate more than cartoon scenes. She will master real martial arts, combine them, and create her own style, but you’ll have to read on June 5th to find out which elements she uses and where she has improved the most. You’ll also have to wait and see if her hard work pays off. Enemies like Xerxes, Ailina, and Ares won’t go down easy.
Neither will Achilla.
Strike of the Mantis releases in 10 days! Stay tuned and pre-order your copy here!
Strike hard and fast, my friends,
Dragonball Z video: haloandavatar
Naruto videos: StudioMationix