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Jin and the Solstice of Blood (Part 21)

“You…” Shi Fan said with a cold venom in his voice. “So this is the secret behind ‘samurai Jin’ huh? An old ghost who doesn’t know how to die.”

“That is more than I can say for you Izanagi,” Ikiru answered, placing his hand on his sword.

Just what the hell… is going on? This was far more than I had expected. Izanagi? As in the god? What the in the world did that mean Ikiru was? My questions fell on deaf ears as the group sprung into action. Ikiru charged first, drawing the sword and slashing at Shi Fan, or rather Izanagi with a single strike. Izanagi was expecting this, however, and spun sideways on his heel, avoiding the attack. Meanwhile, Ooruchi circled around behind and began whispering under her breath.

Following up on his charge Ikiru pivoted and struck again at Izanagi, unable to dodge this time his swiftly drew a dagger from under his robes and deflected the blow. Ikiru sidestepped and attacked in a series of quick strikes at Izanagi, who deflected all but one which cut into the side of his robe. A small trickle of blood began to emerge. “You skill has grown Ikiru. But regardless the stage is set. I will retrieve my sister from Yomi, and have my revenge against this foreign empire.”

Ikiru attacked again. This time trying to move towards Ooruchi, but Izanagi blocked his path, deflecting his strikes again. “You will only harm your own people,” Ikiru growled, “This path you’ve started down will only doom this country and destroy its people. Your sister must stay in the underworld.”

This time Izanagi was on the attack, moving swiftly and skillfully with his long dagger he slashed towards Ikiru’s face, making him off balance and followed up with a series of slashes which landing home on my leg. Pain from the cuts coursed through me. I could still feel all the pain.

Hey! Don’t get me killed! I yelled to Ikiru, frustratingly inside my own head. He ignored me and looked over at Ooruchi again. Her chanting had gotten faster, and a dark shadow had begun to fall over her half of the room.

“You can’t stop it.” Izanagi grinned. We will reclaim her, and this Jin’s body you’re inhabiting will be blamed for the ritual. He should take heart, he will become a martyr for his people in bringing back his queen from the underworld to overthrow Xi’an.

“While causing millions to die in the process,” Ikiru growled again and leaped forward with a slash at Izanagi’s head. Izanagi managed to deftly dodge the brash attack and countered with a jab to the abdomen, which thankfully Ikiru managed to avoid in a deft riposte.

“A thousand die every day, and two thousand are born every day,” Izanagi said, “what matters then? The future, and my sister.” He said still blocking Ikiru’s advance towards Ooruchi who had finished speaking. The pitch black shadows around her began to give form in the shape of a torii gate.

She opened her eyes and smiled. “It’s finished.” She said and stepped through the gate. Izanagi jumped in behind her with Ikiru close on his heels, but the portal closed before he reached it and we were left in darkness.