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Old 03-12-2007, 05:13 AM
Eidolon Eidolon is offline
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Default [11th/11th] Week 99 Mynar/Kyuu: Eyes upon heaven

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He walked slowly along the grounds, taking in the sights and finding the visual stimulation as crisp and invigorating as the air he took in. The Shinigami Academy, from which he was all too recently graduated himself. Nostalgia is a queer emotion, for in Kyuu it possessed an inverse relationship with the time spent away from a memorable place. The longer he was away, the smaller the impact of his return to that place. Now, he was nodding to young students as they milled about the green lawns, expertly dodging the undue attentions of the young girls idolizing a full fledged death god. I might have been quite the sucker for that were it to have occurred while I was enrolled here. Musing aside, he came with an intent, and with Akuman no Fuchi at his side, he would carry that through.

Mynar Zibrinski was the name on his profile sheet. Walking slowly, he studied the profile information proffered by the Academy. His face contorted into an unpleasant expression, and his momentum stopped. Standing in a veil of sunlight, the pale skinned, dark haired shinigami lifted his blue eyes to the building before him, narrowing the sapphire stare as he envisioned something in his mind’s eye. In spite of the fact that Kyuu hated being a personnel officer, he committed himself to exemplary performance at his post. Honor, duty, and a life of good faith were a series of ideas deeply intertwined.

Walking slowly through the building, he imagined that he had kept the young woman waiting for at least twenty minutes. Fine by him, and a standard tactic used when one desires to make another uncomfortable. He even had the victim sitting in that uneven chair. Of course, the instructions were clear, stay in the room and sit in the chair, waiting for his arrival. Diega ran a very specific type of division, and heavens know he didn’t need another one like himself.

Opening the door, he didn’t hesitate a step as he moved around the outer perimeter and circle around to his desk. Taking his seat, he looked up to regard the applicant to the eleventh division and cocked his head slightly. “Good day, student, I am Arcadian Kyuu of the eleventh division. I am here to interview you in regards to your desire to join the Gotei thirteen’s heavy combat division.”

“Where the hell is he?” She pondered, sitting in Arcadian Kyuu’s office. He had invited her for an interview after hearing that she was interested in joining the 11th Division, and she was prompt, lining up the interview after her daily Tai Chi practice. A quick bath, and she was on her way again. Appearing on time, she sat in the seat and noticed off of the bat that one leg was shorter than the other.

Rocking back and forth provided entertainment for a while as she waited, but that could only last so long before it got boring. 15 minutes later, she got really angry, thoughts of a practical joke running through her mind like bullets.

“How could they do that to me?” She muttered, crossing her arms over her chest and sighing, anger quickly building inside of her. “They knew that I wanted in here, but the best they could do is ask me here as a practical joke!! The nerve!!” She got up and started to pace. “I should walk out right now, save myself the embarrasment of staying here longer.”

“But what if it’s not a joke?” She sat down again, anger deflating as she realized that the personnel director might just be late. As if on cue, he walked in, a folder under his arm and an arua of superiority around him. Sitting down quickly, he wasted no time with the interview.

“Good day, student, I am Arcadian Kyuu of the eleventh division. I am here to interview you in regards to your desire to join the Gotei thirteen’s heavy combat division.” He said quickly, not looking up from his papers.

“Thank you, Kyuu-sensei. I am honored to be here.”

There was a long paused as Kyuu regarding the paperwork in front of him. Unmoving, like a monument to academia, his visage was cold and silent. Letting a full minute pass, Kyuu finally lowered the paper work and locked his gaze with the applicant. His expression somber, he spoke in a monotone voice.

“I am not your sensei, I am simply here to evaluate your capabilities and to see if you warrant a meeting with Captain Diega and entrance into her division. If you impress me in terms of attitude and mental faculties, I will continue by administering a practical examination of your retention of your school’s lessons. I hope everything here is crystal clear.” With the final utterance, Kyuu began to stare at the candidate once again, resuming his stoic and silent visage.

After a few moments passed, he continued to speak, beginning to administer his tests. “Let us begin. First and foremost, when I entered this room, I was very disappointed. You will explain to me why this is. Secondly, you will answer the following question: The most important ability for a Shinigami to develop is?” Having begun the tests, Kyuu leaned back in the chair, regarding his as he awaited the response.

Mynar was slightly taken aback at the questions that the man asked. They were so unorthodox. She tiled her head and thought about them for a few seconds, really befuddled by them. Finally, she spoke up, pushing a blue strand out of her face. “Well sir, There are several reasons that you could be disappointed with me, Such as not changing my chair out, my uniform choice, or even my average marks in school. But, in all honesty, I couldn’t tell you. I can’t read your mind, and it is a shame that you ask me to do that. In fighting, you read your opponents manuvers to predict that is coming, but they always give hints as to what they are doing. You sir, have given me nothing, so I have to say that I can’t say.”

“As for your second question, the most important ability for a shingami to master is self-control. From that stems the ability to train yourself, gain experience, and to listen. Even in old age, self control is key for Shingami, as to listen to their students, always to keep and open mind and learn from their surroundings. Learning never ceases.” She sat back satisfied with her answer.

The proctor’s brow furrowed somewhat as he listened to the two answers, though his composure remained and not a sound was uttered until it seemed that Mynar had finished. “It seems you lack the confidence to decide on a option and carry through with it. This will be a crippling aspect in your future work within the Gotei. I suggest you develop the sense of immediacy needed to make an attempt at an action, even if it seems impossible from initial review.” A quick flick of his eyes down to the paperwork in front of him, and he addressed her once again. “I want an answer to my question, though as a hint, I will tell you to think back to your instructions as given.”

“As to your second answer, there is no definitive way for me to address your response as “right” or “wrong,” each shinigami will have their own moral and rational outlook on their lives. However, as I mull over your response I find concern welling in my own mind as to the result of all of this growth. You say self-control is important, yet you frame it around the pretense of continued learning and growth as a spiritual being. To what end this power? How is it applied, and why should one nurture it initially?” With this, Kyuu closed the manila folder and placed it down in front of him, keeping his sapphire stare locked with the crimson one opposite him.

“Lastly, your mediocre grades will be brought to definition in a more tangible sense when we progress to the practical application portion of this interview. For now, do not concern yourself with contingent, arbitrary values assigned to your while performing in this academy.” His lips twisting up into a feint hint of a smile he mused, “I imagine Captain Diega performed rather “marginally” in her academic work as well. Further, I have met few “geniuses” of the academy who have gone on to accomplish incredible thing later in their lives as shinigami. Perhaps the shatter physically or mentally under the pressure to perform with continued excellence, or perhaps, just as every other soul, they learn the lesson that not all battles are won and not all life is picturesque.”

“Regardless, please consider and respond to these inquiries shortly, Mynar.”

Mynar was confused now, looking into her interviewer’s eyes with a simmering puzzlement. She just said ‘I don’t know, albeit in a long-winded fashion, and he was docking her for that. But she could understand that, knowing that life and death decisions couldn’t be solved with a ‘I don’t know’ answer. HE was just making sure that she had the wits to make a snap decision and to take a chance. At least, that’s what she was venturing to guess.

“Well then, sir. If anything, in your position, I would be disappointed that I did nothing to fix the chair. That shows a lack of initative and also shows that I blindly followed your orders with no original thought what so ever. By not establishing the chair, followed your orders to the letter, but nothing further. A competent soldier, let alone a leader, must think past the order, to what it means and why the order was given.” thoroughly deflated and her ego crushed like a bug, she continued.
“Self control is taught with experience and fostered through trials by fire. It is something that people learn when they want to punch someone, but can’t due to social limitations. But this is an eternal process, because no one ever achieves it. It is a fruitless goal, forever banishing the person to work for something they will never receive. But though it is fruitless, the person still quests for it, striving to become calm and peaceful in every situation. Everyone had their buttons though, and eventually, even the hardest nut will crack.”

She bowed her head in reverence, deflated and seeming defeated from the questions. It was like her last final in the demon arts. She thought she did so well, having all of the answers and seemingly knowing it inside and out, but failing miserably when performance came. She was crushed, her knowledge failing her massively for the first time. As least in the other classes, she knew that there was some things she didn’t know, but this was like falling flat on her face.

She looked up again, the fires in her eyes very dim, eyes plunging into a dark red as she awaited her superior’s response.

The smile that was perhaps only hinted at previously grew as he listen to the first response, his visage betraying his obvious pleasure. I listened to each response and paused for several moments before speaking. The break leaving the echoing tick of the room’s clock, a steady and precise reminder of just how much time was passing, to substitute for the sound of his voice. Letting this setting entrench itself fully, Kyuu then shattered it with his response.

“Indeed, you guessed well as to the nature of the first question. Any number of answers may have served as the “right” one, including the one offered. Shinigami are often placed into new and unique situations, especially as their responsibilities in the Gotei thirteen increase. Eventually, if you serve well, you will have the lives of others under your control. Going by the book, following orders to a tee will not always be the best decision in a situation, and often creativity, ingenuity, and a healthy portion of luck will be all that separates your squad from the one who is slain.” With that, he nodded, his fingers drumming over the manila folder beneath them.

“As for your second response, you seem to reinforce that power should be controlled, and that power is innately a burden placed upon you by joining the ranks of the Gotei. I’m inclined to agree, Mynar. However, in addition to this, I would invite you to reflect further upon why you are here, in this very room, talking to me about joining the heavy combat division. How should you apply your power, and why? Obviously, this is not a question you can answer immediately, though I hope you will at some point relay it to me.”

“Moving along, there are some other questions I would like to pose to you.” With that, he spared a glance to the clock and nodded subtly. “What is more important to you, Mynar, duty or personal morality? There could be any number of possible scenarios you can and will face in time that will test this. I’m curious to see to what extent you have considered this conundrum and what your answer to it may be.” Cracking a grin, the tall man continued, “Finally, tell me what you know of hollows, and why you have chosen to hunt them down and destroy them.”

‘I pleased him?’ Mynar’s demeanor perked a bit, taken off guard by the seemly sudden flip of emotions and personality. She sat up a bit straighter as he went on, the explianations letting her see a little more of her interviewer than she knew before. He was a very handsome man, she noticed, his raven hair complimenting his dark, ocean blue eyes. But before she could pursue this thought farther, he presented more questions. Thinking a little more, she decided against another half-way answer.

“Both duty and morality have their places in battle, but the more important of the two is personal morality. There were many instances in war where duty overrode personal morality, the orders handed down completely against what they believed. The people who followed them were broken, shells of men after the fact, committing atrocities that changed them on a very basic level. But those that refused, died. That is the greatest achievement that a human can make, to sacrifice himself for his beliefs. I would rather die for my beliefs than follow and order that is blatnently wrong.”

“As for hollows, I know what the academy has taught me. Hollows are those souls that have not been released to Soul Society via a death god. They change into something far different than normal, craving souls to consume and change into Hollows as well. I have chosen to fight them because I cannot sit and watch my afterlife go by. I know Tai Chi, I am proficient with my zanpakutuo, I would rather be here, contributing to the fight than sitting on my hands.”

She clenched her fists a little, knowning more than she was telling, but other than a flare of fire in her eyes, nothing would have told Kyuu that she was hiding something. “Anything else, sir?”

“In my time spent in soul society, I noticed three typical types of academy entrants, of which, you fit none of these classifications. There are those who become death gods simply because their noble blood lines would allow them no other path. There are those who become death gods because they seek power, power to control their lives and the lives of others. And finally, there are those who become shinigami for the reason of seeking their moral reclamation. It is very unusual for someone to decide to fight for the Gotei thirteen simply because they didn’t have anything else to do.” While is face maintained a neutral expression, he continued. “This is not neccisarily a negative either, Mynar.”

“As for your other answer, you will find such a tenuous relationship strained on a day to day basis. Some of what the Gotei does is glorious, in the eyes of the patriot and the naïve, while others are obviously required yet deplorable to the hearts of many. I hope that as you travel along your path in this, the life after life, you find yourself holding true to your own beliefs.” Rising up from his chair, the tall death god strode to the door and opened it casually, pausing in the hallway with a beckoning gesture. “Follow me.”
Kyuu lead through the academy with ease, remembering the corridors from his time as a student, so recent in the relative span of his life in soul society. He led to a green, where numerous students were sparing, from first all the way to sixth year. “Very well Mynar. Here we will conduct a practical test of your skills and abilities, so I might advise Diega-taichou where you would best fit in her troops.”

“The first few things I wish for you to do are simple. Perform a training excersize with your zanpakutou, using hakuda, use a simple kidou spell, and finally show me your speed by lapping the green as rapidly as you are able until I bid you yield. Any questions?”

“No sir.” She said simply. The walking helped her calm down a little, past memories going away with each step, listening to Kyuu along the hallways that she walked not too long ago. Coming to the training green, she saw a few faces she recognized, and one she really recognized. Her eyes brightened alittlle as she saw her longtime friend Toshi sparring in the grass with a classmate. Turning and seeing her, Toshi waved until she saw who Mynar was standing with. A quick thumbs up from Mynar behind Kyuu’s back, and a smile made Toshi turn around and continue sparring, a quick glance every now and then toward the pair.

Looking back toward Kyuu, she watched as he turned around and gave her the assignment. Her face turned pale at the mention of Kidou, but quickly getting in under control, she nodded and walked out onto the grass. She closed her eyes and focused on her stance. Sliding a foot forward and placed her hands out in front of her, the muscles of her body lose and flexible. Breathing slowly, she began a very simple Tai Chi routine, moving her hands back and forth like the wind, but keeping her feet firmly on the ground, like rocks. Her movements made her look somewhat like a tree swaying in a heavy wind, the roots never moving, but the limbs flying all over.

Picking up the pace a little, she started to move faster, moving in large circles, pushing away bad energy, blocking invisible enemies, focusing her attentions on the movements, becoming one with the routines that she memorized. As she got quicker, the movements became more focused, more firm in execution, and seemingly harder. The movements started to look more like actual martial arts skills instead of a simple middle aged woman’s hobby.

Starting to venture kicks and punches, the movements were coming lightning quick now, flashing to her left and right, but never losing the fluid motion that is representative of Tai Chi. As her routine came to a close, she pulled back into a neutral stance and breathed slowly, claming her heart down. A small layer of perspiration could be seen on her forehead.

Not even thinking about it, she pulled out her Zanpukuto, the light of the morning gleaming off of the black Onyx it was made of. Pulling it out, the Pilipino machete was definitely her style. A large cutting weapon, it was wielded like a medieval sword from England, the blade pointed outward with malicious intent behind it. It was a chopping weapon with a large point on the top of it for stabbing motions. But, after many training sessions, Mynar seemed to get the impression that her sword liked to chop, favoring heavy, crippling blows to the deft, quick motions of the katanas in her class.

Pulling it out and holding it like a rapier, she stood still for a moment, trying to decide what maneuvers she wanted to practice with the blade. So far, she had covered some of the quicker, more nimble techniques, but only to fall on her butt most of the time and start over. The more heavy-handed positions and tactics seemed to pull more out of the sword. Thinking of a perfect scenario, she pulled the blade back until it almost touched her shoulder and focused on the techniques she would need.

Swinging in a large downward arch, she cut a large swath into the air, the black onyx gleaming in the sunlight of the morning. She continued on for a little like that, using the momentum from her larger strikes to link for combinations of strikes that many would not see coming. Hard strikes and leaping lunges comprised most of her attacks in the beginning, moving toward thrusts and horizontal slices as the practice progressed, wrapping up with a set of flips and strikes with a final thrust toward Kyuu, which most people would have flinched from.

Pulling back into a neutral stance, she opened her eyes, looking toward Kyuu.

The large man watched with a somber expression, his attention on Mynar over any of the students who may have been watching, at least on the surface. Silently, he gathered information on how the other students regarded Mynar as she performed her routine. A strenuous mental activity, attempting to both accurately critique a performance while gathering social information, but a needed one. Kyuu committed himself to performing well for his captain.

As the final movements of the swinging weapon came towards him, Kyuu did not move, rather, his eyes narrowed as he studied her form all the more acutely, letting the blade get as close as she dared it to. “Both a sufficient demonstration of zanjitsu and hakuda, Mynar. But you most demonstrate now kidou and hohou. Further, your control of the zanpakutou is notable. However, you should know that if you limit yourself to a single method of attack, both overall or specifically in the motions you use, a keen enemy will detect and take advantage of this. But this is not a class, so let us continue.”

“You may begin your hohou or kidou demonstration now, if you so choose.”

‘Oh crap.’ She thought, slowly putting her zanpukuto back into it’s sheath. Taking a deep breath, she noticed her hands had started to shake. Clenching her hands, she tried to focus on her spell, pushing all other thoughts out of her head. But, she kept getting nervous, not remembering the incantaions or the raitsu focus she needed for it.

Pulling her hand back, she took a deep breath. It was now or never, she had to do something, Kyuu was getting impatient. She pulled back her hand and focused her ratisu on her hand. Breathing deep again, she spoke the incantation. “As God molded the Earth, may I mold your Flesh. Hadou #1, Yakekoge.” She threw her hand out in front of her, index and middle extended, palm outward. A small spark erupted on her hand and she smiled.

But the next instant, she was on her back, looking up into the sky, a small pain in her hand. Bringing it to her face, she extended it to the sky and looked at her fingers. Burns. Wonderful. Just what she needed. Letting her hand flop to the ground, she sighed. “I am so screwed.” She muttered as the form of Kyuu entered her vision.

The result was just as anticipated. However, the fact that Mynar put forth her best effort was the important factor here. Regardless, he found himself drowning in similar memories of his days at the academy. He has been essentially hopeless with Kidou, yet back then he did not know why he had been so terrible. This, he suspected, was simply a matter of needed personal instruction.

Pull his head back slightly at the delayed release of the kidou energies, Kyuu couldn’t help but crack a smile. It was not a smile meant to degrade Mynar, but rather a product of his own experience. Walking over, he offered her his hand and waited for her to gain her feet. “Very good, first, before we proceed to speed tests, allow me to assist you in learning kidou.”

“The first step to using kidou is to summon forth the appropriate amount of spiritual energy. Come, walk close to me and place the palm of your right hand on my forehand, the palm of your left on the palm of my right. This should assist you feel the steps I’m utilizing. And yes, before you do so, to reassure you, one of the training regimens I pursue in my free time is the use of team kidou.” He cracked a grin before getting down to business.

“You will say the chant when the time is right, for it is your focus we shall use, though, I will help regulate the power and control. My hope is that if you feel how to properly channel spiritual pressure into kidou, you will better be able to utilize it. Diega-taichou would agree with my position that, even if you do not typically use Kidou, no one should completely ignore its uses.”

Focusing his spiritual pressure, yet taking care not to bring forth enough to be smothering to the students in the area, Kyuu channeled his reiatsu to the forthcoming casting. “Do you feel this manipulation of spiritual pressure? Now, as you chant the words we shall pour it forth into the forming kidou at our finger tip, then we shall fire it.”

Waiting for Mynar’s chant and guidance of their combined hands, Kyuu stood prepared to assist as best he was able with her kidou use.

Mynar placed her palms in his hands, still a little sore from the burns on her hand. She breathed lightly, focusing on Kyuu’s pressure building up. She felt a little lightheaded as the sheer force of it imposed on her mind. But keeping her focus on the spell, she started to chant.
“As God molded the Earth, may I mold your Flesh. Hadou #1, Yakekoge.” She felt the sparks flame again, but this time there was no boom, or explosion, and definitely no hurting. She cracked open an eye and looked to see a flame licking at her fingers, encompassing both hers and Kyuu’s fingers in a painless flame.

Gasping and drawing her hand back, the spell promptly ended, the flame extinguishing into a source that she couldn’t track. Looking at her fingers, she examined them quickly, holding them close to her and looking for traces of any more burning. She noticed a smile from Kyuu over her fingers. “What are you smiling at?

”Typically speaking, I prefer to smile,” was the only offered response. This is good to see, perhaps this will instill the confidence needed to challenge what lies ahead. “However, we do not have time to simply stand around and chat about what is making me smile. You will continue with your demonstrations. Run around the perimeter of this green for thirty seconds, attempting to complete as many laps as you are able to in the given time.”

Before giving the order to begin, Kyuu slowly paced to the center of the lawn, gazing about and smiling up into the sunlight for a moment. His fingers ran along the edge of his zanpakutou’s ribbon. If there are no further questions, you may now BEGIN.”

Watching Mynar begin her speed demonstration, Kyuu waited patiently as he mentally counted down from thirty. However, upon reaching twenty seconds, he drew his blade and slide in front of Mynar with a rapid shunpo, presenting an obstacle to her progress. His intent was simple, block her progress and, if she left herself open while passing him, to reward her with a hard slap of the flat of his blade. Then, to repeat until she learned her lesson.

Mynar took off around the yard, her long legs pumping furiously around the green grass. Mergering her Riatsu with her leg muscles, she sped up a little, adding a small afterimage to her wake. She made it about halfway around the large yard when suddenly, Kyuu appeared in her way. She had a good couple of inches on him, so she tucked in her shoulder and kept running forward, aiming for Kyuu’s chest.

Through, eh? Interesting strategy, but its tactical value is questionable. He had anticipated this as one of the many responses she might have elected, and knew the appropriate counter. Sliding slightly as he changed his profile to show her his side he jabbed out his arm and attempted to hook under her arm, performing a simple hip toss to turn the momentum of his aggressor against her.

She realized a second too late that if he appeared that quickly, then he could go away that quickly, and before she knew it, she was flying through the air, a hip toss using her weight against her. Landing hard on her butt, she rolled to lessen the impact a little and found that the momentum was enough for her to keep running. Turning back and sticking her tounge out, she continued to sprint, heading toward lap one.

Good dedication, to continue running like that. I suppose I’ll have to mention tactics when the time is right. When the tongue poked out to goad him, he couldn’t help but feel a spark of good humor. Reminds me of Diega-taichou. I almost regret what comes next. While Mynar finished her laps, Kyuu strolled slowly towards the other student who had been showing her encouragement to the applicant. With a few brief words exchanged, he waited for Mynar to finish her movement test. “Very well, time is up and your talents are verified, meet me at the center of the field.”

He strolled briefly to the green’s center, and put the tip of his zanpakutou on the ground.
“Your decision to charge me was the incorrect one. Even on the instinctual level, you should realize that as an opponent, I am beyond your current ability to defeat. Your best option would have been to avoid me with minimum loss of momentum, using a roll similar to the one used after I threw you. Remember, that a direct attack is rarely the best option. Train yourself to function otherwise, or you will live a very short life as a shinigami.”

He cocked his head slightly, saying “However, your roll afterwards was an impressive maneuver. Perseverance can win you the day, if appropriately applied. Now, let us continue to one last thing.”

“This is your final test, and its rules are very simple. This friend of yours here will also participate. As it turns out, I know some very talented healers from the third division. So, here is the final test, simply put.”

“You have thirty seconds to spar with me, using whatever means you choose. If you land a blow during this sparring match, you will be guaranteed entrance into the eleventh division. However, if you fail to strike me, I will turn and chop the right arm off of this student immediately. Even if this is the case, you will be judged on your other merits. The other options you may choose is to decline this offer, and you I will submit a negative review.”

“If there are no questions, then you may choose.”

“Wait….what?” Mynar’s mouth dropped open as the words left her mouth. “You would chop the arm off of a student to interview me!!??!! That’s just wrong!” Mynar said, gaining her composure, with a hint of indignity. But a blank look from Kyuu just made her sigh. Walking over to Toshi, the girl was a pale shade, even for her asian heritage.

“Are you sure you want to do this, Toshi-san?” Mynar said in a hushed tone, placing her head against the other woman’s to block their conversation from prying ears. A shaky hand was placed on Mynar’s arm, comforting, yet scared witless at the same time.

“I think you can take him. You are the best fighter our class had.” Toshi said, eyes portraying more confidence than her body.

“You are not very convincing…” Mynar said, half chuckling. Placing her hands on Toshi’s head, she smiled and walked back to Kyuu.

“I will fight you, and Toshi-san will be able to use chopsticks tonight.” Mynar said, pulling her machete out, letting it hang at her other side. “Nothing personal, sir, but I am going to get at least one hit it, even if it kills me.”

With eyes flaring, she pulled the sword up into a ready position, waiting for the man across from her.

His face stern, Kyuu stared solemnly at Mynar for several moments before stating in a monotone voice, “No, I’m afraid you will not. What’s more, it seems as if you are in need of a very important lesson.” Picking up Akuma no Fuchi by its hilt, Kyuu lowered his center of gravity and scowled deeply. It was only a moment between that grasping of the hilt and the flooding of his reiatsu into the area.

The spiritual pressure was raw and vicious, filled with intent to kill, matching the seething temperament of its master. To sacrifice one’s comrade for personal gain, there is no graver mistake. With this thought in mind, Kyuu launched forward with nothing short of his full ability. The standard method of engagement when using a weapon of superior reach was to capitalize upon just that fact and keep the opponent on the defensive. Kyuu had no intention of letting Mynar have the moment of offense required to even begin launching an attack.

Leaping forward, he thrusted the tip of his odachi zanpakutou at the left shoulder of Mynar, and followed by beginning his left circling, pumping his legs furiously to hold the edge of both ground maneuverability and blade speed. Focusing on the furious set of thrusts, he attempted to land several disabling blows. The difference between this encounter and that of her previous matches, is he fully intended to strike. In spite of his large frame, the shinigami possessed a staggering speed, his body flowing akin to a great river, and striking with the fierce wrath of a sweeping wave.

Mynar brought the machete to her left side, using the short sweep of the blade to knock the attacker’s blade off center. She was a little slow on the uptake, due to the staggering power of Kyuu’s spiritual pressure. She had never felt anything like this, and her body rebelled for a second as it hit her, loosening her grip on her sword.

But the pressure itself, it felt murderous, like he really wanted to kill her. With the first strike, she felt the strength behind it and she started to worry. He wasn’t holding back, he wasn’t just going to block and sit there, he really wanted to kill her!

She was scared as the next few blows came, parrying the first few, but quickly losing her focus under the blows, fear creeping into her defense. The very last blow she just barely managed to push away, but not before it cut into her side.

Pain flashed in front of her, but the flesh wound was not deep, so she pushed it out of her mind as she saw a slight opening. The last push had left him pulling his sword back upwards. Pulling her machete into a horizontal slice, she aimed at his midsection, following it up with a low roundhouse kick, and pushing the machete’s point toward him again, the knee in her sights.

Great instincts. The single active thought in his mind was to admire his opponent. He had no intention of letting her land a blow, someone who would sacrifice a comrade to advance their own position had no place in the eleventh squad of the Gotei thirteen. This resolve in mind, he allowed himself to be cleared of active analysis and fell into the moment of the battle, flowing like water, striking from every direction the enemy did not defend, moving his body to every location but to where his enemy would strike.

Her defense began to crumble, and his offense grew to compensate for the weakness. However, his technique was not one that was committed to holding a certain front against a foe. As she launched her counter attack, he pumped his legs furiously to dart out of range of the shorter blade, ignoring his attack completely for several moments as he changed the direction of his assault, darting clockwise and moving to a series of hard high-aimed slices before suddenly closing range and slamming downwards with his blade, collapsing closer to launch a backhand at her face. An immobile opponent always held the disadvantage, even if they were launching a counter attack. They left their legs, the hardest portion of the body to defend, exposed.

To stop moving in a fight is to die.

Following this series, he performed a quick shunpo to move out of range, only prepare for a another series of blows, this time mixing height and style in order to best penetrate the defenses he witnessed.

She watched him run around her, and using the circular momentum from the roundhouse kick, she turned with his arch, keeping her front toward him. Quickly standing up after the maneuver was finished, she just managed to bring her sword up in a block when the cross strikes hit, pushing her back a little with each hit. Each one rang with steel on steel as the strikes never lasted long enough to fly off of the blade.

She saw the stab downward coming in just enough time to move her leg out a little, letting the blade glide under her. Bad move, but the best she had to work with. But a backhand to her face rocked her out of a bad position. Feeling the fist make contact with her cheekbone, she rolled with the unexpected punch, letting herself get pushed off of the sword and away from Kyuu.

She staggered back a bit, surprised that a follow up was not coming, and looked for him. Seeing him to her left, she ran at him sword pointed toward him, point at his heart. But before she reached him, she planted the tip into the ground, and used the momentum to push herself over her sword, foot extended into a leaping kick aimed for his head.

Pulling the sword after her, she landed with legs coiled and launched into a flip overhead strike, trying to cleave the man’s head in two with a single blow.

A incredible assault. Reverence for the potential of a student was not something that would cause hesitation in Kyuu’s steps. Moving into the oncoming kick, Kyuu slammed the flat of his blade into the leg of Mynar as she leapt forward. As she careened out of her plan of attack his body twisted viciously and he drew the edge of his blade across her back, leaving her incapacitated upon the ground as she landed. Walking forward, the tall death god gazed down at his opponent as the effects of his pressure abated, his sword sliding into its sheath.

“A warrior does not sacrifice his comrades for gain. One who cannot understand this has no place in the eleventh. Consider yourself rejected. I asked you earlier about morality or duty, and so soon the practical application of that question has proven your words deceitful and treacherous. Perhaps if you can come to understand just how important this lesson is, you can try again to enter.” His tone was cold, and his venom potent as he gazed down at her form.

“Five, four, three, two . . .”

Mynar, face down on the ground, had nothing left. Her friend was going to lose her arm, and it was all her fault. Mynar twisted her head to see her friend, pale faced and hand to her mouth, tears dotting her cheeks. Her vision got a little blurry as she felt tears start to well up in her eyes as well.

‘What am I thinking? I can’t give up!!’ Turning her head to look at the towering figure above her, he started to speak about sacrificing others for their own gain. Mynar could only put half of it together, because of the gash of her back. It went deep and long, tearing the large tattoo on her back clear in two.

She looked down at her sword and realized quickly that it was right next to his foot. She could still win this, still keep her word to Toshi. Lifting it up only a little, she pushed the hilt of the sword toward his ankle, hoping beyond all hope that Toshi would still be around.

Her vision started to blur then, the aim of the sword off. She was blacking out quickly, the blood loss from the gash on her back greatly affecting her. Giving a last push, she felt contact, and looked to see a razor-thin mark of blood begin to seep on his ankle. She smiled at the blood, never more glad to hit someone in her life.

“Tag, you’re it.” She said, and promptly passed out.

As he felt the graze against his ankle, his lip curled slightly in disgust. “It seems I shall have to honor my word, and welcome you to the eleventh division.” With that he turned and walked over to the other girl. “Your friend was willing to sacrifice your well-being for her own advancement. Is this someone you would want in your squad when facing a overpowering hollow? Think carefully on this, and speak to Mynar when she awakens. I will not tolerate this kind of mentality in the division. For her actions here today, she will have my eye upon her.”

With that, Kyuu turned and promptly left the academy. He knew the medics there were well-trained and able to handle the degree of wounds he left Mynar with. His pace was brisk, and his destination his writing desk. His letter to Diega would be specific.

“Captain Diega,

I regret to inform you that I recommend the applicant I was sent to interview for acceptance into the eleventh division. However, I suggest the following steps be taken to ensure the shinigami in question is able to understand the ethical nature of your division. I request she put into a field squad immediately.”

And so the pen sealed the fate of one who forged their way through the sword.
Diabolus vos servā́bit

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