365 Writing · Stories

Jin and the Solstice of Blood (Part 38)

Inazagi still had yet to draw his blades and was standing over Ikiru. He had somehow knocked Ikiru’s sword from away and was poised to deliver a blow with his fist. Acting as fast as I could, I rushed towards them, my sword swinging in an arch that would be most difficult to block. Inazagi, however, seemed to possess almost supernatural agility and bent his body back into a spin to avoid the blow.

I scooped up the sword on the ground and kept my eyes on Inazagi. “Are you alright?” I asked him.

“Never better,” he groaned, as he pulled himself to his feet. I handed the sword back to him, and we both shifted into a ready stance.

“I’m surprised that a mortal was able to best Ooruchi, you must truly be the swordsman they make you out to be Jin.” Inazagi now placed his hands on the pommels of his swords. “Ikiru’s skill with a blade waned a long time ago, but you might be a worthy opponent for a change.”

I looked into his eyes. One could tell an entire fight by staring into his the eyes of his opponent. Move, counter move, block, parry, dodge, the entire battle played out before us, Ikiru would be a distraction, but he would go down, either unconscious or dead shortly after our blades were drawn, my own short sword would make Izanagi’s rapid attacks with both swords a challenge, but, I would have the upper hand with mobility and land a blow on both his upper up and cheek. No vital damage but enough to set him off balance. He would manage to cut me in my torso with a deep slash, however, rendering my ability to fight limited. This would put me in place to take up Ikiru’s blade and mirror Izanagi’s dual wielding style back at him. I could tell he didn’t expect this and here we both exchanged wounds, though their nature now was less certain. Lastly, a final blow was struck.

Upon this revelation, we both jumped into movement. Like a well-choreographed dance we moved and struck in the manner we had seen, move, counter move. Upon having both swords I slashed and parried, I knew he would have the final blow, but I chose to make an intentional mistake, one he could not have seen. His blade found the opening in my defense and ran me through. A glint of victory shown in his eyes. “You truly are a great swordsman Jin. A greater master than many, but still you cannot best a god.” He whispered close as I took the opening and struck with my wakizashi at his exposed throat. Blood spilled all over the ground, and we collapsed together on the blood-soaked floor.