Inspecting the district he and three other Shinigami were patrolling, Yoshiro Kazuki let loose a sigh. His allies were all related to one another, save the only other member he knew, and that was Takeshi Shinjo, but he'd yet to learn the names of the others or anything at all about them apart from the fact they were new and that they were going to be a handful. The other two members looked skilled, though, so Yoshiro really didn't know what to think. It had been six months since Kenji left to travel the Human World, and since then, Yoshiro had been accepted into the 9th Division and given command over his own small Patrol Group within the Rukon District with three other Shinigami, one from his own Squad, Takeshi and two others from the Omnisukidō. Hollows had been attacking in greater numbers ever since that Arrancar, Shrieker, invaded with his army. Although captains Shinji Hirako and Kensei Muguruma drove them off, small pockets still remained and were increasingly difficult to hunt down and kill, especially with new waves appearing at the end of nearly every week.
"Yoshiro, we've received word from the scouts." Takeshi said calmly. He was a little off, because he'd recently forgotten his entire history down to his name. He'd only known who he was because Yoshiro had been paired with him back when the older Shinigami was an Academy Instructor. The only things he did seem to recall was his ability to use a zanpakuto, control his spiritual energy and that his Shikai was dangerous. Everything else was a blur; his dreams, his goals his family...All was as blank and as distant as the pale surface of the moon. He did know his job, though, and certainly knew how to kill off hollow. He'd made it into the Team because of that very reason and because he refused to work with anyone but Yoshiro, saying he had a feeling in his gut and that he always went with his gut. So far, that gut had saved their bacon more times than Yoshiro cared to recall. "There are small pockets here, here and here." The older Shinigami said.
A large map was spread out before Yoshiro on a table. It showed their immediate vicinity well and the outlaying terrain. This area of Rukongai was rough and hard to life in, but Yoshiro reckoned these people deserved protection as much as the lesser nobles in the higher districts. The areas Takeshi pointed out were close too and that helped. One was a forested area about a mile to the north usin' Flash Step, the second a less than impressive lake that barely deserved the name about half a mile in the same direction and the final area to the west, near the next Patrol Team. That area passed through a small valley, however, and had been known as hollow country to those among the Teams.
The tent Yoshiro and Takeshi were in was small and simple, and fit to be abandoned should anything go wrong with the plan. These hollow needed to be destroyed here and now, otherwise the Rukon Residents would be up in arms about how badly the Gotei 13 performed when defending them. Yoshiro and his Team carried what they needed with them, including maps, their meager rations and whatever other tools would be required so they could flee whenever they needed without counting loses. They could leave this lot behind for the next Team though."Takeshi," Yoshiro said, sounding more mature than he had before. It wasn't only his voice that matured though. He remained the same physically, but he looked more commanding and had an air of authority about him despite his low rank among the 9th Division. He was a seated officer however, but only ranked tenth overall. His skills, however, were easily a match for Lieutenant level Shinigami and that's exactly why Captain Muguruma had appointed him to this position. Out here on Patrol, you grew up quickly. He wore a black cape that had been given to him to show the other teams he was the leader which had intricate, light blue designs all over. Beneath he wore a slightly modified outfit designed for comfort. Instead of the normal shinigami robes, he wore an almost noble-like shirt with a light blue color scheme down the middle while the rest was black. "We'll head toward the forest and clear out the lake as we go. Tell the other two to head towards the next team."
Takeshi nodded and left the tent. His voice was briefly heard relaying Yoshiro's commands. "It's been done." He said, poking his head through the tent flap. "I'm ready when you are, Commander."
Yoshiro turned and left the tent, vanishing toward his goal using Flash Steps, Takeshi not far behind. "Commander, I know those two from somewhere." Takeshi said slowly. "But the memory's distorted...fragmented. I can't help but think I'm forgetting something important."
"It'll come to ya eventually, Takeshi. Don't force it, okay? Besides, I know 'em from somewhere to. Just can't place 'em for the live o' me. Oh yeah, we're on our own so call me Gray." A guy had mistaken him for someone else and called him Gray, and the name just stuck. "Besides, the whole Commander thing's only a title. I don't care much for titles. People are people."
Takeshi grinned at that and nodded. "And that's why I serve you, Yoshiro. You are fair, kind and strong to boot. And you knew the old me..." "Sure thing, Gray. Now, what about these 'ere hollow? I mean, didn't Captain Muguruma give 'em a good beating?"
Yoshiro smiled and stopped as they came up on the lake. "Yeah, that's what I though to, Takeshi, but life ain't always as clear cut sadly. Keep your eyes open, 'cause I've got a gut feelin' that somethin' ain't right." The area was rank with the stench of hollow. "This place fells wrong." Yoshiro said calmly. "Takeshi, check the right side of the lake. I'll go left."
"Hey," Takeshi said quickly. "I thought I was the guy who got the gut feelin's, but I hear ya. Watch yourself, Gray."
No sooner than both men had taken a single step apart, than several hollow leapt from the water of the lake to descend quickly towards the two Shinigami. Yoshiro's cloak spun as he did, revealing his zanpakuto that flashed from the sheath in a wide, cutting arc. "Takeshi, you know what to do!" Another seven fell as he constricted them tightly with Hado 9: Tsurukusa.
Leaping high, Takeshi slashed one across the chest and another in the face, instantly purifying both. Turning, he outstretched his hand and took a breathe. He quickly fired off a Shakkahō followed by a Kongōbaku without even needing to say the name or number. he may have forgotten his memories, but his body remembered how to perform the abilities, even if he himself had forgotten the names. He flowed through such complex sword and body movements, Yoshiro couldn't help but be envious. Takeshi couldn't remember any of it, though, and did all that through instinct.
Yoshiro grinned and moved quickly enough to strike down three hollow in the space of two seconds. Landing lightly on the surface of the lake, he turned. Several hollow burst from the surface of that clear, seemingly beautiful water that reflected the stars and descended in a close knit group. "Water is life's maker and matrix, mother and medium. Free flowing might of the ocean ensnare any who walk an unjust path! Bakudo 32: Mizukouchisho!" Water formed around the hollow and encased them tightly as Yoshiro held the flow and rotation of the sphere together with his left arm. "Takeshi, take a look around. The forces will keep this lot in check as they drown."
Looking around quickly and scanning further with his senses, Takeshi appeared beside Yoshiro and ran his blade through the water sphere, killing all the hollow trapped within easily. "Even if they are hollow, we shouldn't make sport of this," He remarked calmly. "I didn't see or sense anything else, but I have been wrong before..."
Yoshiro withdrew his now wet hand from the sphere and allowed it to dissipate as he slapped Takeshi lightly on the shoulder. "We all make mistakes, pal. Now, we've got a forest to clean out." They flashed away as one and arrived at the edge of the forest a few minutes later as one. "Remind you of anything?" Yoshiro asked in a whisper. There was something in there, he could feel it.
"No," Takeshi replied just as quietly. Moving forward, he looked through the trees and nodded for Yoshiro to proceed inwards. Putting his back to a nearby tree, Yoshiro waved Takeshi in and then forward. After hiding and making sure he hadn't been spotted, Takeshi repeated the pattern until they were both a good way into the forest. "Hold it." Yoshiro whispered.
"I know." Takeshi replied. "Somethin's watchin' us. Has been since we entered in fact."
"Well, keep moving regardless. Pretend we know nothing and let it watch us. We'll get it by surprise..." The two continued walking through the dense forest, avoiding roots and pot-holes as they found them. Their hearts were beating from adrenaline and anticipation because one thing Yoshiro hated was being watched by something he himself couldn't see. He squinted through the darkness and picked out a small, cave-like opening that tunneled through the ground. "Our watcher's den?" Takeshi said with an annoyed look. "Can we please kill this thing? It's creepin' me out."
"Wait until we check out that cave. If anything, I bet it lives there. That'll draw it out." Yoshiro replied.
"And crush our advantage to boot. I'll go along with it, but I'd prefer strikin' it now." Takeshi said with a sigh.
As they neared the opening, a large, truly hideous creature dropped from the tree's above to guard the entrance! The two Shinigami leapt back and looked at one another strangely. "Damn are you ugly." Yoshiro said truthfully. "Now, even a mother could love that face."
"I hear ya, Gray. That things on a whole new level of ugly."
Encounter in the Cave: The Meeting with an Adjuchas!Edit
The hollow-like thing shot forward with such speed, Yoshiro couldn't even get his zanpakuto out of his sheathe by the time it was upon him! Ducking quickly, he grinned and laid his left index finger upon its chest. "Hado 4: Byakurai." The beam of blue light tore completely through and Takeshi mobilized then! Cutting one of it's thorn-like appendages, Takeshi made shape to follow up, but was thrown into the wall of the cave as another ugly looking hollow smashed into him.
Yoshiro flashed towards his friend and turned his gaze towards the two hollow. "Hmm, let's see here...The roof of this cave is completely black. There must be nests up there, and judgin' by how fast that other hollow landed, the roof can't be that high."
A large grin spread across his face. The two hollows were soon joined by others of their kind, all snarling and growling like hungry, rabid wolves. "May the spiraling flames of hell rise now and become my weapon, striking those who stand upon my path. Disappear in the raging flames of Purgatory! Hado 68: Unsō-hi!" A large cage of searing hot flames surrounded the group and slowly began to close in around them. It brushed the ceiling and drove the rest out of hiding, but there was something that was off among the group.
Takeshi was on his feet again. "Gray, I sense something stronger than a hollow. It shouldn't be a threat...but."
"We should be careful anyway." The spoke calmly even though the entire cave was now moving toward them to strike. "You? Me? Or twin attacks?" Yoshiro asked calmly.
"Let's show some team muscle, eh? Show this thing we mean business." Takeshi began with an impressive Kidō assault, striking out with Hado numbers 4, 5, 9 and 22 before finishing them off with Hado 31. As the attack went on, Yoshiro made his way towards the group, attacking between the gaps in Takeshi's Kidō and refusing the hollow any escape from the flames, water and stone's of Takeshi's Kidō. "And now, here it comes!" Yoshiro's blade flashed through the hollow ranks, dispatching roughly four with a single strike. Spinning to keep his momentum, Yoshiro fired another Byakurai through his cape, penetrating a hollows face and killing it out right.
Takeshi turned, avoided a hasty Cero that almost brought the roof down, and dispatched three more with calm and silent swordsmanship that left no room for error. Pivoting on the balls of his feet, Takeshi moved to a reverse grip style and began waving his zanpakuto in sweeping arcs, felling anything that came before him, but his eyes were opened wide when something managed to block his swing!
It was mostly humanoid with a chain running up its right arm and flame coating the chain. It held a wing-like sword in its left hand that almost mimicked the Shikai form of a zanpakuto! "Takeshi, get back!" Yoshiro put himself between his ally and the creature. "You're an Arrancar, aren't you? Don't worry, I won't tout on ya, but I'll hafta shut you up!"
The thing suddenly began laughing in a rumbling tone. "An Arrancar? If only I were so lucky. No, fool Shinigami, I am an Adjuchas, and this is my lair! And this my sword!" He shot forward with Sonido and slashed Yoshiro on the shoulder, but he kept his calm head and turned to meet its second strike. "That isn't a zanpakuto." He said with a grin. "That's why I let you cut me. There is an aura comin' off that sword, but it's far from unique or even remotely close to matchin' your own. Just what is that thing?"
"A glorious gift from my master that makes me stronger!" There was an eye-like thing on the weapon's pommel that glowed and the weapon attached itself to the Adjuchas' arm, and its spiritual energy took a jump! "That's interesting, but I can't let this go on any longer! Number 1: Nadegiri." His sword was free in a sweeping, killing arc! As he made the movements to sheathe his sword, blood exploded from the Adjuchas waist and the blade's aura died.
Looking toward the weapon, Yoshiro felt this undeniable urge to destroy the thing... but he found himself hesitating. Why? He had no idea. The blade called to him, it's voice resonating in the wind to his ears. As he went to pick it up, Takeshi looked worried. "Gray, you should destroy it. I don't like the look of it to be honest. Not one bit."
Yoshiro knew his team-mate was right, but he couldn't destroy it. "... No, we'll take it back with us. I know a guy in the Rukon who may know what this is." Taking the weapon in hand, Yoshiro inspected it's design and coloration. It had a wing-like design that resembled the wing's of a demon and had a black edge and red outer edge with no real hand-guard to speak of and a creepy, eye-like piece in the pommel that glowed blue. The handle was plain, with a triangular base and could be easily wielded either one-handed or by both.
"Ouch," Blood trickled down his finger as he tested the blade. "This thing's sharp. It ain't a zanpakuto, Takeshi. Any ideas?"
"Yup, and all of 'em are bad..." He said, eye suddenly twitching as he shook his head. "Where the hell are we this time, eh!? Ah, c'mon! You drag me off to a goddamn cave? Yosh, what's up with that?"
Yoshiro sighed and greeted the new Takeshi. "Good to see ya again, Shinjo." Takeshi had dual personality disorder and could switch from one personalty to the other at the drop of a hat. The quieter more reserved personality simply called himself Takeshi, while the stronger, foul-mouthed, womanizer now in control simply went by the name of Shinjo.
"Cool sword." Yoshiro was probably the only Shinigami in the entire Gotei 13 that got on well with both personalties. He trusted both Takeshi and Shinjo with his life because Shinjo had saved him more times than he cared to remember in the last six months. "C'mon Yosh, ya flashy wearin' git. We got 'ollow's to kill!"
Following his friend out of the cave, Yoshiro lead the way towards the next Patrol Team. he wouldn't be able to find out what the strange sword was until he was passing through the on Patrol later in the week, but he'd hold onto it until then and try and find out if it could do anything special.
Throwing his belonging's on the floor, Yoshiro walked through the apartment he shared with Momoko Misaki. Unlike the other members of the 9th Division who lived in the Barracks or at their own place, Yoshiro and Momoko got a place together so they could chat after work. She wasn't back yet and he took the opportunity to wash up and change into a leisurely white kimono. Kicking off his shoes, he laid back onto his bed and breathed out slowly. "Sometime's, I wish I'd have left with Kenji. I bet he's kickin' back with a drink right about now..."
The door opened and closed almost silently and Momoko walked in. She was pretty much the same as she had been before Kenji left, although she had grown a little bit. She'd also grown more as a woman. "Oh, you're already back. Sorry If I woke you."
"Naw, I was awake anyway." He didn't move from his position though and yawned as she kicked off her sandals and sat beside him.
"You really need to take it easy for a bit. You spend weeks patrolling the Rukon District and train with Ryouta when you do come back." She said that in her normal, musical tone. Rising to sit beside her, Yoshiro kissed her on the forehead and grinned. "That doesn't get you off the hook." She said stubbornly.
Sighing, he got to his feet and paced the floor. "...I know I spend too mjch time on patrol, but I just hate the idea of the damn hollow comin' and goin' as they please. And that's not the worst of it either."
She got up and took his hand, leading him back to sit on the bed. "Stop pacing. It's annoying. Now, what could be worse than hollow?" She said calmly.
"Adjuchas. They control the weaker one's, meanin' they've got some kinda hideout around here somewhere. I've got the two new guy's workin' with a few other Teams to try and track it down, but no luck yet." He shook his head and growled. "Ah enough about this. How was you're day?"
She spoke (well, more like complained) for the better part of an hour before kissing him and going off to bed. But Yoshiro couldn't sleep and simply stared at the ceiling until the first ray's of morning light beamed through the open window. Rising with a sigh, he donned a fresh uniform and left silently, taking the mysterious sword with him and keeping it hidden among a bundle of clothing.
He wasn't needed today until noon, so he set off with a quick Shunpo towards the fellow he knew in the Rukon District. Shaking his weariness off as he moved, Yoshiro soon touched down in the old, battered district he knew so well. This old fellow, called Old Man Dylan by some, and the Senile Old Bat by others was the best source of illegal information within the Soul Society that Yoshiro knew. Entering the fellow's flea ridden home, Yoshiro released a freezing aura that froze the insects buzzing around him in their skin.
"Dylan? You in, old man?" He called.
"Did sha hafta go and kill aff me insect's, boy? They 'elp keep 'em ol' Society braggart's away. Now, what shan ol' Dylan do for sha?"
Uncovering the wing-like weapon, Yoshiro set it down on the table Dylan was sat at. "I want you tell me what this thing is. I tore it from the dead finger's of an Adjuchas-class hollow yesterday."
Dylan's old rat face lit up instantly and he crushed out his cigarette quickly. "Hmm, the designs new... and extremely complicated..." His slur vanished as well. That was something he done to keep people away from him. Only a handle of people actually knew the real Dylan. "Gray my boy, I do believe you've found yourself an ol' black market type here."
"So it is illegal, then? Thought so. A sword a hollow could use to increase it's spiritual energy wouldn't be thing's to leave lying about." He said calmly. "Is there anything else you can tell me about it?"
"Let's see, let's see... Oh yes!" He channeled a small amount of spiritual energy and directed it into the weapon's eye-like area. It quickly turned into an intricate gauntlet with sharp claws and a bronze colored finish. "As I thought... This, my dear boy, is no ordinary sword. This is called a Bakkōtō and they are parasite's! Feeding off their user's life force in exchange for power."
Taking the gauntlet in his hand, Yoshiro inspected the fine runic symbols, the sharp claws that could easily rend flesh and crush stone and the smooth grip that would easily allow one to fight with their sword should they choose. Channeling a small trickle of energy, the gauntlet became a sword again, but he returned it to the gauntlet form and grinned. "Tell me more, Dylan. I wanna know everything there is to know about these things. Where it came from, what's parasitic about it and how the hell it made it's way into the hands of a bloody Adjuchas."
"Very well. I know little about their creation, mind you, but it's definitely made by...If i was hazarding a guess, the upper-nobility, and I don't mean the little houses. I'm talkin' big here. The Four Noble Clans are the only folk's I would put my money on. It's to well made for any other conclusion." He knuckled his forehead and took a deep breathe. "Bakkōtō, especially their special abilities, are fueled by the owner's spiritual energy. If you feed it to much..."
"Then it'll turn on ya and devour you whole. Lovely thought. Dylan, I know you're an inventor...or was at least. I've seen some of the thing's you've made and have even used some of 'em." Yoshiro took a small, silver medallion from his pocket and tapped a button hidden on the back. "You know that this completely erases the wearer's spiritual power, right? Can you do anything to lessen the effects?"
Dylan began stroking his long, stringy beard and furrowed his forehead as though thinking. "I may have just the thing...But how much it lessens it is another thing." Getting up, he rummaged through the back of the room, muttering loudly and stringing the occasional curse or shouting angrily when he dropped something on his toe. He finally returned, however, and gave Yoshiro a small, bracelet-like accessory. "I've known about these Bakkōtō for a while now, you understand. I developed this when I learned of their abilities...but never perfected it. Wear it on the arm you intend to use the Bakkōtō with and it will lessen the devouring abilities. Don't ask me to explain it to you, because this thing's more advanced than it looks. I'll continue working to perfect it, so come back from time to time."
Walking out quickly, Yoshiro heard someone grunt, and before he was aware, Takeshi appeared before him. "Thought I'd find ya around here, boss man." Shinjo then. "We're free, ain't we? Then c'mon! I wanna fight you!"
Taken aback by the request, Yoshiro shook his head and began to walk away. "Gray...That wasn't a request...pal." A torrent of spiritual energy struck Yoshiro in the back.
Clenching his fists tightly, he beat down the feeling's of anger and instead continued walking. "Keep your cool, Yoshiro. Don't let Shinjo bait ya."
Chuckling evilly, Shinjo caught Yoshiro by the collar and dragged him a good distance until the two stood alone upon a grass plain. "I said I wanna fight you...ya third-rate fraud! Everyone knows I'm the real strength behind the Patrol team, and yet you get named the leader!?" He exclaimed with a mad grin. "I'll prove it you, Gray...that I'm stronger than you!" He flashed forward, zanpakuto swinging down at an incredible pace!
Hand gripping his zanpakuto, Yoshiro struck out instinctively and the two clashed with truly devastating might! Drawing his blade back and himself along with it, Shinjo landed on the ground and Yoshiro charged him, delivering a powerful punch to his gut that sent him flying!
But Shinjo slowed himself and grinned all the more evilly. Shinjo stopped himself and regarded Yoshiro calmly, leveling his zanpakuto at Yoshiro's head. "You think you're so high and mighty! Look at that cloak you wear, as if it made you better than me."
"Shinjo, I'm gonna count to five. And If you aren't gone from my sight when I'm done counting...!"
"Oh, the boss-man's gonna count to five. Here, I'll do it for you. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. There, what happens now?"
"Freeze Aisumēkā!" Anger and frustration were laced thickly in Yoshiro's tone and the aura of ice that surrounded him upon the dissolving of his zanpakuto as he initiated Shikai just added to his now hostile posture. "I warned you, Shinjo. Takeshi, forgive me...!" An ice sword formed in Yoshiro's hand and cut a deep wound in Shinjo's shoulder, but as he turned, Yoshiro delivered a resounding kick to his chest!Stopping himself, Shinjo growled in his throat and held his zanpakuto out in front of himself. "Let me Rage! Hakai!" Shinjo's blade completely changed. Instead of a sword hidden within a cane with a curved handle, it now had the appearance of a straight-edged sword, with a black and white color scheme. The guard looked like two small wings curving upwards, with a small green gem in the center. Yoshiro had begun to lose count how many times he'd seen this blade. He'd even seen the transformation it allowed Takeshi or Shinjo to take and the power that form brought would test his own abilities to the max.
Shinjo surged forward quickly, their blades clashing, but Shinjo dropped to his stomach and lashed out with a low strike, intending to cut Yoshiro's ankles clean off!
Leaping backwards, Yoshiro watched the gem centered in the guard of Shinjo's Hakai. It was glowing a pale green, meaning it was already absorbing spiritual energy at an alarming rate. He needed to end this battle quickly, otherwise...!
Flowing his arms through a series of movements, ice began sprouting from the ground, forming complex shapes like spears, axes and swords that Yoshiro sent forward as one, each one he controlled with his mind. "I need to defeat him quickly... otherwise he'll transform and hurt Takeshi in more ways than he already has. No more holding back, then!"
Shinjo avoided those weapons well and even managed to shunpo to Yoshiro's back, "You'll need to do better, boss! I still haven't broken a swe-"
His words were cut off when his sword tore through a solid block of ice in the shape and consistency of Yoshiro. The real Yoshiro suddenly appeared holding the medallion that hid his spiritual energy and ran his blade through Shinjo's chest! Blood flowed, but the wound wouldn't kill him. Only incapacitate him until he could be dropped off at Squad 4's medical bay. "Forgive me, Takeshi."
"Yes," The smaller and more lean-built individual answered. "He uses Ice as a means of deception and offense. But he will be no match for me, as my abilities will destroy him utterly." The sentence was ended with a low, excited laugh.
"Be patient," The other replied. "He is only a 10th seat, but possesses power beyond that of a Shinigami Lieutenant...maybe more." The two turned on their heel and vanished through a small Garganta. "We will return soon...Yoshiro Kazuki!"
Later That Night...Edit
Yoshiro walked through the darkness, his team members around him. Shigeru Yuudai was a tall man standing at a full height of 5ft 10in and was dressed in a tight fitting black outfit with wildly spiked black hair. His zanpakuto was resting in his right hand.
Teruo Yuudai was shorter than his brother by two inches and wore a similar tight-fitting black outfit. His long white hair seemed to dance in the wind and spilled like a waterfall down his back. Unlike Shigeru, Teruo's zanpakuto was threaded through his belt by a piece of black cloth.
"Yoshiro," Teruo said calmly. "It's good to see the district's so quiet for once." His tone was quite, his posture cautious. Both had spent time in the Omnisukidō, so patrol was second nature to them.
"Yeah, it is a rare sight nowadays." Yoshiro replied quickly. "There are normally hollows jumpin' 'round the place like nothin' half normal."
"But it's unsettling." Shigeru interjected. "I mean, these hollow are appearin' all the damn time, right? And yet, we haven't been able to find their bloody base. And the news you delivered about the Adjuchas bein' in control didn't help the blockheads back at HQ." His left eye was scanning the area intently as he spoke.
"We'll find 'em when we find 'em, Shigeru." Teruo said with a smile for his brother. "The other Teams are gonna do fine. Sojiro Kori and his team have been scourin' this place day and night. If anyone can find something, it'll be him."
That brought a smile to Yoshiro's face. "Sojiro, eh? I completely forgot that he had his own Team as well. I hope he's careful. He's supposedly found some promisin' recruits when he made that visit to the Human World..."
"Hey guys," Yoshiro said quietly. "You hear anythin' about the recruits he found in the Human World?" If anything, it would give them all somethin' to talk about.
Teruo nodded and put a clenched fist to his heart. He did that when followin' orders. "There both young with Shinigami powers, although I did hear they're Humans...The guy's supposed to have that much spiritual energy that it's comin' out his ears and the girl's supposed to have some advanced Kidō skills, despite no formal trainin'."
Shigeru scoffed loudly at his brother. "Human? That can't be right, Teruo." He said definitely, poking his ear with his middle finger. "Humans having that much spiritual energy? It doesn't seem possible."
"Oh, it's possible all right." Yoshiro stopped and extended his senses outward. "Now that was interestin'. Someone - two someone's, in fact - just disappeared." The previous posture was replaced by a ready stance as he looked skywards. "Shigeru, Teruo, get ready."
"Yeah, someone was just watchin' us." Shigeru replied with such excitement, Yoshiro couldn't help but compare him to Kenji. Shigeru's hand gripped his zanpakuto, an anticipating smile covered his face. "Yosh, I see somethin'."
Shigeru had the unique ability to "see" energy trails and could track almost anyone. "Yeah, there's a small patch just above us. I can see...yup, footprints that simply disappear. Seems like we spooked 'em."
"Yeah, our stalker's can use a little thing the Soul Society call a Garganta. Annoyin' thing's that piss me off to no end. But that means they ain't here anymore, but keep yourselves poised regardless." Yoshiro reminded. "Let's not get complacent, okay?"
"That make's 'em hollow, right? Or maybe more of them Arrancar thing's you told us to be wary of." Yoshiro and Shigeru turned to look at Teruo, praying he wasn't right. The last Arrancar Yoshiro fought almost blew his head off with a Cero. He could still see that thing's crimson blast when he closed his eyes sometimes...
Laughing, Shigeru slapped his brother on the arm. "Don't joke like that, eh Teruo? We've got enough on our plate without worryin' about Hollows who think they're bloody Shinigami. Yosh, where to next?"
Yoshiro thought for a full minute before turning to look at his team-mates. "We're gonna find the location of this hollow base everyone's so worried about. Takeshi and I found a cave that we omitted from our report, cause it would cause a drop of morale among the Patrol Teams. Teruo, is this conversation secure?"
"It was the moment you said Takeshi, Commander." Teruo, in a similar manner to his brother, had the unique ability to create a barrier usin' a very small amount of spiritual energy that prevented others from listening in on a conversation. "Say whatever you want, Commander."
A smile spread across Yoshiro's face. "As I was saying guys, Takeshi and I found a cave. In it, we found a large number of incredibly ugly hollow and an Adjuchas. He wielded this," Yoshiro showed them the finely worked gauntlet. "This was used by the Adjuchas we found. I kicked its ass and stole the glove, although it was sealed as a sword instead. I don't know what it's capable of, but I know it's called a Bakkōtō and gives the user some new abilities. This one for instance, gives a boost to your spiritual energy."
Teruo scratched the top of his head, a sign he was thinking. "But wouldn't weapon's like that be considered illegal? We won't say anything, Commander, but wouldn't that power come with a price?" He sounded worried, but he raised an interesting point.
"Who cares!? If it boosts spiritual energy, I'd rather have good ol' Yosh usin' it that some Shinigami wannabe." Shigeru said, scratching his chin. "Besides, there might be more of these things, right? We'd need to find 'em and keep 'em out of hollow hands."
"Again, you completely miss the point, brother." Teruo interjected. "It sounds as though someone's been tryin' to make a branch off of zanpakuto. But zanpakuto are unique to the wielder, right? These sound like they can be used by almost anyone."
"And it can," Yoshiro replied sounding saddened. "These weapons, especially in the wrong hands, could cause tremendous damage. If an Adjuchas can use this, what makes an Arrancar so different? That's why I omitted it from the report. Takeshi agreed, but told me to keep the weapon a secret until we knew more about 'em."
Nodding agreement, the younger Shinigami brother walked forward and deconstructed the barrier to block someone listening. "Okay, we'll look for these cave's then." Teruo said. "Any idea where we're gonna start, Commander?" With a smile, Yoshiro took off in the direction he and Takeshi found the cave.
Next Story > Storming The Caverns: A Chilling Discovery