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Raiden Yamato: The Samoan Samurai Part 5
“Over two generations passed since the fall of Temple of Tusitala. Half of Samoa was ruled by the Samoans; the other half ruled by the Oni through traitors of mankind. Our warriors of average strength served our people and defended our land, but they stood little chance against the mighty power of the sworn enemies of the Heavenly Emperor. Mere mortals could never defeat the Oni by their own hand. So by His mercy toward us fornicators and sinners, the Heavenly Emperor granted the select few the power and title of Raiden Yamato. With the armor and sword from Heaven, the warriors given such rank and abilities could strike down the Oni Emperor’s forces, giving Samoa and all other nations hope. But with this power came the inevitable drawbacks.” – Kenji Minamoto
On the isle of Lukua, the Juvenis [Latin for Junior] Seau Coliseum was filled to capacity. All 2,000 seats were filled by both Samoans and foreigners visiting Lukua; many were of the working class, still dressed in their work uniforms, and middle age. The rest were millennials and tourists of varying skin pigments, though Samoans made up the majority, with Maori and Oriental Asians composing the majority-minority. The stadium, built nearby a white beach and just a few stories tall, was roofless and built in four sections representing north, south, east and west; the north and south sections had gates connecting the dusty sport field with the structure’s interior.
Inside the gates were flame-lit tunnels; the light bulbs hanging off loosely bind wires along the ceiling often failed, as the stadium’s power grid was out of date, repairs constantly delayed by impractical ‘red tape’. The floors were covered in old straw [an obvious fire hazard], usually wet by mist lightly sprayed just above the ground along the walls. With the torch flames being primitive, it was usually difficult for on duty guards to see where they were going, as the tunnels were composed of numerous intersections that were poorly lit; most guards, often traveling in threes, carried pocket-size flashlights to slightly improve their vision.
The tunnels of the South Gate Tower housed the changing rooms, reserved for professional athletes, mainly rugby players and football [soccer] teams, and samurai warriors. The southern gate also housed the medical exam area; when the stadium was first built under tribal rule, if a fighter was deemed unfit or impaired by the physician, that warrior was killed by an executioner on command by the chief military guard. However, since the Samoan Reformation, such practice was banned [as of driven underground into the black market].
On this particular day, the spectators came to witness a scheduled headline samurai duel between Daimyo Minna, a feuding lord from Miyako, and Emperor Kenji Minamoto. As part of a long-standing peace treaty, the state of Miyako would send a fighter to Samoa to battle Samoa’s best samurai to ensure peace between the two feuding sides. Daimyo Minna requested two of Kenji’s best samurai for the duel, Pua and Tua.
Kenji fetched two guards to his chambers, with Daimyo Minna and his entourage present, and asked if Pua was ready for the match. The two Samoan guards looked at each other, neither of them knowing about Pua’s whereabouts, and admitted as much, leaving Kenji annoyed while Minna smirked and began bragging about how his warrior was prepared. Kenji ordered the duo to go to Pua’s changing room in the southern gateway tower.
The guards went to the South Gate Tower’s tunnels and arrived at the changing hall, where warriors stationed themselves to dress for combat and check their weapons; Pua was last seen at this hall. The guards found Pua’s room number and knocked on his door, informing the warrior of Kenji’s summoning. There was no response. The guards knocked again, and no response followed. One guard grabbed the doorknob, realizing it was locked from the inside. The other reached underneath his uniform belt and pulled out his universal key. He unlocked the door and the duo entered the chambers; the room was empty, leaving the two speechless.
At a distant location in the tunnels, well hidden in a basement stairway with a few flame torch weakly lit in their dim surroundings while loosely nailed to the walls, passionate soft moans and deep breathing could be heard, even though no one was present other than those making such sounds. Scattered male clothing – shirts, shorts, underwear and socks – surrounded a bright electric lantern on the floor. Against the wall were two bulked men, Pua and his Asian friend Kwan, fully nude and embraced in love making.
After a long session of thrusting against Pua from behind, Kwan gave out an ecstasy-enthralled moan and nearly collapsed from his intense climax, breathing heavily on his consenting partner Pua while softly kissing the Samoan. Soon Pua reached his completion, achieving the same sensations as Kwan. Worn out from their love-making, the two moved away from the wall, shared a few kisses in a hug, and proceed to put their clothes back on.
The two guards got the basement stairs and spotted Kwan walking up the steps, followed by Pua, both tucking their shirts in while smiling. The two saw the guards and froze; Pua’s face blanked. One guard, seeming indifferent to Pua, while slightly annoyed with Kwan at the same time with his eye shifts, said to Pua, “Lord Kenji summoned you. You’re late.” Kwan quickly spoke up, taking responsibility for Pua being late. The guard replied, “I don’t care what you two were doing – just don’t make him late again. We can’t waste time chasing samurai.”
Ten minutes passed. Dressed in a ceremonial military kimono, Pua arrived at the armor chamber, panicked, and was greeted by Seoul, who glared at the Samoan. Dressed in a military kimono, Seoul had his arms folded across his, his wrist watch on full display for Pua’s view. Pua, realizing how late he was, began apologizing, but Seoul interrupted him, “Save it! Just get ready for the fight.”
A servant boy entered the room, holding a basket carrying a luminous steel gauntlet dyed in varying shades of blue, mostly navy and coral, with gold and bronze fillings. Pua was in his combat briefs and strapping tape around both wrists and hands when the boy presented the basket to him. Thanking the kid, Pua attentively examined his equipment as Seoul approached him, appearing content with the warrior’s appearance. Pua asked, “Is this the new gauntlet you told me about?” Failing to hide his flirtatious grin, Seoul nodded and instructed him to hurry up.
In company of four spearmen and Seoul, Pua stood in his own space in the main tunnel of the South Gate Tower, facing the gate entrance, his body mostly in shadow with the torch flames giving little light to reveal his figure. They were about 200 feet away, though the light from outside lit brightly. Cheers from the stadium vibrated through the tunnel.
Pua asked aloud, still facing the tunnel entrance, “Why is everyone cheering out there?” One of the guards mentioned that Tua had already entered the stadium grounds, provoking the crowd into celebration. Pua replied, sounding unimpressed, “Tua loves the attention…typical.” Pua closed his eyes, waiting and letting his skin feel the crowd’s noise, and held his refurbished gauntlet with both hands. After his pause, Pua began his walk to the dual grounds. On his way he saw someone from afar looking inward in front of the opening, apparently spotting Pua heading toward them. Quickly that person vanished into the light.
On the stadium grounds, covered in saw and straw, Tua, also dressed in his military tights with redesigned gauntlet already attached to his right arm, slowly turned around in a settle wave of gratitude to the crowd, waving his armed hand to the spectators, winking at the women. A servant girl ran from the tunnel opening and picked up a microphone off the ground; she had placed it there a few moments earlier. The crowd went silent as the girl made an announcement, “Fellow Samoans and kind visitors to our kingdom! Pua Minamoto is finally ready!” Tua’s grin dipped into a sly frown, and the crowd’s sight changed from Tua to the South Gate Tower.
“Pua, Pua, Pua”, was shouted in loud repetition all across the stadium, fans waving their arms and jumping in excitement, vibrating the whole structure. Moments later, Pua, having heard the growing cheerful calamity, ran out the tunnel; the crowd exploded in excitement, becoming a wave of sound shouting his name over and over again. Once nervous with lingering shakiness from his incident, Pua displayed a large smile and started to pump his chest, gesturing a possible Samoan war cry. The fans shouted for him to do so, and he did. Hollering to the max limit of his vocals, Pua raised his right fist and yelled in Samoan, “Here I come completely prepared, my strength is at its peak! Make way and move aside, because this Manu is unique!” Tua turned away, looking at the North Gate Tower.
At one point at the bottom rows, where spectators could make out Pua and Tua’s faces on the enclosed field, three Caucasian women, brunettes in their early twenties, got on the edge of their second bottom seating section, immediately getting the attention of the predominately male audience surrounding them, and the tallest female whistled with both pinky fingers in her mouth, the other two calling Pua’s name. Pua saw the girls and looked baffled by their arm waving and spring break-like demeanor. Without warning, the three ladies, with wide smiles and shouting, “This is for you, baby”, lifted up their tight shirts and flashed Pua. The men across the stadium roared in aroused cheer, many of them shouting, “great t***!!” Uncomfortably confused, Pua froze as the crowd began pressuring him to approach the flashing babes; one fan yelled at the Samoan, “Don’t be a p***y! They’re flashing their boobs for you!” The three were [thankfully, considering the sheer number of excited men] led down to the very bottom stand nearest to the field by multiple ‘calm’ men. Caving to the mounting pressure, Pua approached his three fans and accepted their request for him to sign their exposed breasts. His hand quivered as he tried to write his name above each nipple.
Seeing all this commotion, Tua murmured to himself, “F***ing idiots. Don’t they realize he’s a fag?”
Horns blasted from the North Gate Tower. The crowd quieted down to a soft chirp. At the balcony of the northern gateway, Kenji and his cabinet ministers, as well as Jun Shisa, arrived to their seats, receiving applause from the crowd, as well as Tua and Pua. Once seated, Kenji, dressed in his ceremonial festival kimono, looked to the entrance to see Daimyo Minna take his balcony seat, accompanied by his entourage of several wives and concubines; Kenji rolled his eyes as he turned his attention back to the field.
The servant girl from earlier returned to the field with her microphone, carrying a black box attached to her device with several short cables. At a hurried pace, she announced in a loud voice, “The match can now proceed!!” A thunderous roar from the crowd erupted. Tua gripped his gauntlet, while Pua spread his feet apart for a battle-ready stance.
The entrance of the North Gate Tower opened, its iron-glad barrier slowly lifting off the ground. The tunnel at first appeared more like a black hole, with weak flickering of wall-attached torch flames in the long halls. But following a loud bang, a sign the Iron Gate had fully retracted, a fierce growl pulsated out of the tunnel, then a settle mist quickly spread over much of the ground, discoloring whatever it touched; the field’s tan appearance changed to a faint black. Metal-chained footsteps then rang out in a steady pace, becoming louder with each foot hitting the surface. Red eyes emerged in the darkness, and soon an outline of the figure’s appearance took form as it neared the field.
Toto Tai [Blood Tide], a heavily armored fighter of brightly polished steel covering his body suit, received boos from the crowd. This warrior’s armor was as thick as an American military tank, his helmet designed as a gas mask with its mouthpiece attached to a metallic rickshaw hat and computerized visor. Attached to Toto Tai’s hips were uzies with two barrels each; one main funnel for the acid-carrying bullets, and a secondary top barrel for poison-mist plasma shots. Toto Tai also carried miniature grenades in his boots and wrist bands, some of them smoke bombs, others powerful enough to create 3 foot deep craters. On his back was a modern katana with a glass blade strong enough to slice through 12 inches of titanium steel.
On the North Tower balcony, Kenji [still and leaning back into his seat in his view of the stadium grounds] turned his eyes to Daimyo Minna, fronting a smile concealing contempt toward his [obligated] guest. Minna also shifted his eyes to Kenji, his smile wide while readjusting his sleeves. Breaking the long silence, Minna leaned sideways to one of his women, whispering loudly enough for Kenji to overhear, “Toto Tai will have fun smashing the s*** out of those Samoan twins. The fairy especially will be entertaining to Toto.” As he did before, Kenji rolled his eyes in annoyance.
The referee, a short Asian man in a purple kimono similar to that worn for sumo wrestling matches, entered the field and stood on top of a white circle perfectly centered on the ground. Using his small fan, he gestured the twins and Toto Tai to the central point, making them stand several feet away from the circle at their respective spots. The referee briefly explained the rules, and the three nodded. Pua offered his hand out to Toto Tai, suggesting a friendly fist bump to show respect; Toto Tai scuffed his forearm with his opposite hand, implying indifference to Pua’s peace gesture. The crowd booed.
The referee raised his fan above his head. Toto Tai pulled out his glass katana with his left hand; his right hand clinched to one the uzies. Pua and Tua reached for their gaunlets and activated them; bright blue metal fluid began coating their armed forearms, concealing their affected hands into a flexible mold that formed into gloves that sparked off bits of electric current. This rubbery fluid eventually covered the whole arm of each twin. Toto Tai aimed his katana at Pua, seeming to ignore Tua; the later brother appeared pissed at Toto’s focus on Pua. Seconds later, the referee threw his fan up over his head, not losing his grip on it, and shouted, “Begin!”
The crowd erupted in an ear-clogging roar of noise. Toto Tai, casting up a light wave of dust from his armor boots, hovered just less than an inch off the ground and propelled himself as bullet speed, aiming at Pua. He positioned his sword to strike Pua’s neck, and once within range, thrust his glass blade at the Adam’s apple.
A massive clear blue electric bubble barrier, covered in pulsing blood vessels, formed around Pua. Toto’s blade bounced off the shield, nearly flying out of Toto’s hands. Landing back on the ground, Toto lunged at the barrier, striking the pulsating shield with his katana, hitting it several times in circular motions, each impact harder and louder than the last; none of these strikes altered Pua’s barrier, while Toto Tai lost his footing and almost slipped. Spectators jumped out of their seats in jubilation.
Shifting his head to his right, Pua saw Tua kneeling, his gauntlet-armed forearm buried deep in the crusty ground with a glowing blue circle wrapped around his filled hole, and a zig-zag line had formed between him and the bubble protecting Pua. Tua used his free hand to draw out a short spear – and he quickly threw it in a haste-speed motion, the weapon aimed at Toto Tai’s head. Toto narrowly dodged the spear and further pulled back from Pua. The crowd roared in excitement.
Toto Tai viewed his glass sword, spotting cracks along its sharp edge. Furious, Toto Tai swiftly grabbed a grenade and threw it at Tua, but just when the bomb went airborne, a bolt of lightning consumed the explosive and vaporized it. That defensive trick was performed by Pua, the bubble barrier now gone. The crowd again cheered for the twins.
Tua walked up to Pua’s left side and nudged him, quietly telling him, “Let me do most of the fighting. Do not summon your armor. Just stay behind and back me up when I ask for your help – nothing more than that. Got it?” Pua didn’t respond; he glared at his brother and stepped away from him by a few inches. Tua smirked and advanced to their opponent.
Tua briefly starred at his gauntlet. Then he pressed his lips against the metal surface and whispered, “Manu Samoa”; the gauntlet turned pure white in radiance. He pointed his right arm to the sky and shouted, “Raiden Yamato Manu Samoa!!” A sudden pillar of lightning blasted out of the gauntlet, while in that same moment a separate lightning bolt came down from the sky, clashing with the gauntlet’s energy. A large katana appeared from that surge, hovering right above Tua’s hand. The sword was decorated with a golden, Shinto-style serpent dragon stretched along the blade’s back edge; the blade itself was cold lava gray with a sky blue line in the curved center, with tiny clouds moving inside of it.
Armed with his new weapon, Tua thrust his gauntlet-wielded arm to the sky, his hand clinched to his katana, and shouted, “Raiden Yamato Manu Samoa!!” Everything suddenly went black, absorbed into something of a black hole for a split second. Coal-colored clouds hastily formed and an inky funnel slammed into the stadium field where Tua stood; the crowd was left dazzled by the visually indescribable power they witnessed. This celestial energy quickly faded into a thick plum of watery mist that settled all over the field. As the mist subsided, Tua was visible to all, though his attire had completely changed.
Tua had become Kuro-Sa [Blackness] Raiden Yamato Manu Samoa. His entire body was concealed in holy samurai armor, its steel dyed in black and blue. The suit perfectly matched his physic, giving Kuro-Sa flexibility to move his body freely. His samurai helmet featured a mouth guard-based mask that covered his face, except his eyes, and long yellow antlers with black ends stuck out of the helmet’s headpiece. His torso was shielded underneath a single chest piece of made up of steel plates molded together by micro fibers that carried a constant, self-sustaining electric current; his arms and legs had the same protection, though his boots had their own unique fibers that enabled agility that rivaled a bullet train speed-wise.
Kuro-Sa’s katana that he summoned his armor with had become two katanas, both tied to his back in separate sleeves, one gray and one black. They were tied together by a golden chained attached to the armor suit.
At first, the crowd cheered Tua/Kuro-Sa’s name, but bit by verbal bit among many spectators, Kuro-Sa heard Pua’s name shouted, the volume getting louder. Tua’s name continued yet declined steeply.
Pua, partly surprised by the crowd’s chant, though still focused on Tua’s transformed armor, stood with unease, replaying Tua’s words in his head in repetition. His fists shook in his visible annoyance. A few seconds passed, and without warning, Pua’s gauntlet began glowing. The radiance was initially dim, but soon the flashing glow grew brighter on its own, followed by soft electric sparks flying off the metal plate shielding his knuckles. He stared at his weapon anxiously confused. “What the hell is happening?” Some of the spectators in the stands noticed Pua as he stood there unsure of what to do, looking ahead like a deer in headlights.
Toto Tai pointed his glass katana to his left side, letting it glow a neon green light. In haste with his right fist engulfed in a faint grey energy sphere, Kuro-Sa took off running for Toto Tai, his fist behind his back. Toto Tai swiped his glowing sword just as Kuro-Sa thrust his fist through the air in an arched hook. An explosive flash followed the sword and fist slamming into each other, the resulting flare temporarily blinding both warriors. Kuro-Saw withdrew by a couple of feet, escaping the blinded Toto who erratically swung of his sword, his eyelids burned blister red.
Pua, his gauntlet still illuminated, ran for Kuro-Sa, calling to him offering to help. Kuro-Sa shouted back, “I don’t need you yet. Don’t get in my way!” Pua stopped and watched his brother march toward Toto Tai. Kuro-Sa unchained the sleeve coating his gray katana from its gold-cast shackles.
Out of nowhere, deep in Pua’s ears, a soft fatherly voice spoke to him, “Call out the Samoan war cry. Use your gauntlet.” Looking around perplexed, Pua tried to figure out where the voice was coming from. The voice came again, “Worry not my presence. Call out the gauntlet. Fight alongside your brother.”
Toto Tai, his eyes fully opened despite appearing bruised, aimed his uzie at Kuro-Sa and pulled the trigger – and nothing happened. A second later, Kuro-Sa appeared right behind Toto Tai, his gray katana consumed in a heavy smog of black smoke; Toto’s uzie had begun melting, scorching his hand as it split in two like it had been sliced opened by a blade. Kuro-Sa spun his katana in an upward swing, clashing against Toto’s forearm, sparks flying everywhere from impact. Toto reached for Kuro-Sa’s neck, but narrowly missed, creating an opening for Kuro-Sa to sneak underneath him and thrust his katana through Toto’s chest. Toto dodged the attack and rolled on the ground away from Kuro-Sa, casting up a dust shield to vanish out of sight.
Kuro-Sa directed his gray katana at the smoke ridge, and the dust vanished in a spinning curl; Toto Tai was gone. Frustrated, Kuro-Sa shouted, “Are you kidding me?! You come to my land only to hide?! Coward!! Come out and face me!!”
Pua felt a rush of hot air from behind him. A glass blade animated itself against Pua’s throat, and Toto Tai revealed himself holding Pua captive. “You should’ve summoned your armor, stupid fag”, Toto whispered into Pua’s ear as the crowd reacted in a mix of boos and panic, many calling for Kuro-Sa to save his brother.
Kenji leaned forward watching the twins, glaring at a still Kuro-Sa staying put while viewing his entrapped brother. Daimyo Minna laughed in a loud burst watching the fight, slamming his hands together in amusement. Turning to Kenji, Minna smirked, “Looks like your twins’ winning streak will end in one of them getting killed! I hope you’re not too pissed off!” Kenji was quiet and his eyes angrily squinted.
Toto Tai taunted Kuro-Sa, “Well…aren’t you going to try to save your uso? Your only sibling is about to die and you stand there doing nothing! I thought Samoans protect their own – perhaps you’re not Samoan, or you don’t love your uso!” Kuro-Sa did not respond to Toto’s taunts; he continued to stand there, squinting at the two while slowly pulling a knife out of his belt strap on his left hip.
Pua, noticing Toto’s fixation on Kuro-Sa, lifted his gauntlet to his mouth and muttered, “Manu Samoa.” His already lit device flashed a bright ring-shaped ray of light; the flash irritated Toto’s swollen eyes, causing him to loosen his hold on his sword and allowing Pua to drop his head below the blade. Pua thrust his right leg and kicked Toto’s stomach in a swift strike, bouncing the enemy swordsman off his feet. The glass sword landed right in front of Pua’s feet while Toto Tai landed over ten feet away. The crowd blew up in a joyous collective shout.
Kuro-Sa shouted at Pua, “Don’t summon your armor yet! I told you to let me handle this fight!” Pua ignored him
Toto Tai regained his composure and noticed his glass katana stepped on by Pua. Infuriated, drew out another uzie, pointed it at Pua and fired multiple plasma shots, all aimed at Pua’s head. The gauntlet throbbed out a clear shock wave and the airborne plasma spheres were, to Toto’s dismay, pulled toward it in a sudden gravitational shift. Pua’s gauntlet absorbed the spheres, converted them into a swirly energy ball, and blasted it back at Toto Tai as a humid funnel of hot air. The wind tunnel concentrated on Toto’s uzie, overheating and melting the gun, burning Toto’s hand in the process. He dropped his ruined gun and held his reddened steam-consumed hand, screaming expletives in pain.
Pua nervously stared at his activated gauntlet, but after looking at Toto Tai, his nerves settled and, in a confident tone, shouted the summoning words, “Raiden Yamato Manu Samoa”. Out of the sky, a sudden lightning bolt crashed down on Pua, covering his body in a blanket of white-lit sparkles. Seconds later, a large katana hovered right underneath the palm of Pua’s right hand. Similar to Tua’s summoned sword, the katana had a golden Shinto dragon snaked along the blade’s back edge, and the blade itself was a layer of coral blue air with moving clouds inside of it.
His hand still sizzling, Toto Tai activated his visual and sensor scanners; a blazer covered his eyes and begun tracking Pua’s biological data and info on his gauntlet. The quick scan failed, reading an error message to Toto. Frustrated, Toto ripped off his rickshaw hat and converted it into a small katana. His newly formed sword glowed crimson red and he aimed to the sky; a stretchy matter of the same color shot out from the blade and roared through the air for Pua.
Pua grabbed his new katana and shouted again, “Raiden Yamato Manu Samoa”, in a fast pace, seconds before being hit by the moving matter. Everything suddenly went white, followed by a brief ‘black hole’ that swallowed the strange matter before vanishing. The whole sky turned thunderous gray as the clouds swirled together into a dark mass, and a twisting luminous funnel crashed into the stadium field at lightning speed, striking Pua directly. The funnel quickly spun out into vanishing vapor, leaving behind a blanket of watery mist that settled, unveiling Pua in his new form.
Daimyo Minna stood up from his seat in shock, screaming at Toto Tai, “You idiot! You could have killed that one! Your slow ass had a chance to slit his throat – and you didn’t do it! Damn moron!”
Pua’s eyesight blurred for a few seconds, his balance unsteady as his feet quivered. A headache pounded his forehead, the throbs pulsing in strong rhythms. The pain slowly subsided, and his vision regained clarity. He looked at his hands, his whole body below his head, and the headache was slow to die, “F***!”
Pua had become Konjo Raiden Yamato Manu Samoa. His entire body was suited in holy samurai armor of steel, pigmented gold and blue. His armor perfectly fitted against his muscular physique, giving him full flexibility. His helmet had a full face mask with a top open space for his eyes, and black-ended yellow tail-like antlers that stuck out of the helmet’s headpiece. Beneath his armor, his skin was covered by a body-hugging sheet of fibers that were as strong as his steel armor, yet micro in size with an active electric current that acted as the armor’s blood, similar to the armor suit of Kuro-Sa. His boots had additional electro fibers for agility, and his gloves also had their own additional fiber layer for raw strength.
Konjo’s sword from earlier transformed into twin katanas, chained in a gold rope to his back in their own individual sleeves. One and blue and the other was red.
While the crowd gasped in excitement before bursting in cheer, Toto Tai was unfazed by Konjo’s transformation. Instead, he drew out a new steel katana from underneath his arm sleeve; though the unveil was smooth, once he gripped its handle, his hand started to quiver, the shaking caused by his growing fury towards the twins. Toto quickly took off running for Konjo, swaying his blade for Konjo’s neck. Konjo dodged the attack and vanished out of sight; Konjo reappeared ten feet behind Toto. Infuriated, Toto spun around and threw two grenades at the Samoan; before the explosives crossed half way through their directed path, Konjo snapped his fingers of his left hand and a sudden burst of electricity struck the airborne devices from below, disabling them to dormant duds that dropped to the ground. Konjo snapped his fingers of his right hand, and the duds exploded. The crowd roared, rooting for Konjo.
Daimyo Minna, leaning against the balcony of the North Tower Gate with a twitching nerve on his forehead, screamed expletives at Toto Tai. Then he told one of his concubines, “Toto isn’t using his head! He has to find those damn coconuts’ weakness!” His concubine appeared skeptical and kept quiet.
Kuro-Sa approached Konjo, putting his hand on his brother’s shoulder and leaning forward to say something, but Konjo, focused on Toto Tai, brushed off Kuro-Sa’s hand, “We fight together, that’s all I have to say to you.” Konjo threw his hand up above his head and, conjuring streams of static currents, summoned a third katana, its blade pulsing energy. Seconds later, Toto Tai burst out of the smoke from his duds, his steel katana positioned for an attack from the right at Konjo’s chest. The fast attack failed, as Konjo blocked Toto with his third katana, their blades locked together. Toto Tai pulled back and swung his sword again at Konjo; again, Konjo blocked his blade from striking, this time their blades bounced off each other. The force of the second steel clash caused the two warriors to slide across the field away from one another, their boots casting up dust in their trail.
Kuro-Sa ran past Konjo and went airborne, blasting himself to jump across the field midair for Toto Tai. Toto jumped to the air as well, and their respective swords clashed in a deadlock collision. After repetitive strikes of their steel blades hitting each other in spark-flying draws, Toto, in light speed motion, got within Kuro-Sa’s personal space and slashed him across his torso, piercing through his armor. However, in that same exact moment, Kuro-Sa dematerialized; negating Toto’s successful slash, and in haste rematerialized right behind Toto Tai, his armor intact. The next second, Kuro-Sa, his sword’s blade consumed in a large girth-sized beam of light, struck Toto Tai; Toto managed to use his sword to block the attack, but the force from the impact caused Toto to crash to the other side of the stadium field. Toto plowed into the wall, debris cast all over the area; spectators around that spot covered in debris dust.
A swarm of plasma orbs shot out of the debris; Toto Tai emerged from the aerial wreckage firing a cannon-size automatic shotgun with laser capabilities, a weapon he kept hidden through an invisibility-cloaking device attached to his suit. The energy spheres flew toward both Konjo and Kuro-Sa. In one powerful swoop, Kuro-Sa swung his katana, creating a massive wall of gust carrying lightning sprites. The sprites tracked and ate up the plasma orbs, preventing them from reaching the twins. The gust continued its advance and struck Toto; Toto withstood the wind, but his shotgun soaked up dust bits, causing it to overheat and spark. The tiny antennas all over Toto’s body also malfunctioned, several of them popping, and his electronic sensors short-circuited, sparks flaring out of his armor and headgear once covered by his rickshaw hat.
All three samurai had their katanas drawn out, and in haste, they took off running, the brothers aiming themselves at Toto Tai. Toto gestured his sword to strike one of the twins’ neck, while the siblings showed no specific aim with their swords. Seconds before they collided, Konjo vanished. Kuro-Sa preceded and rammed his sword against Toto’s sword, forcing themselves into a standstill with their blades glued together in a tight bind, neither warrior giving up their aggressive deadlock.
A flash of horizontal light appeared out of nowhere, racing past Kuro-Sa and Toto. Seconds later, Konjo reappeared behind Toto Tai, his blade stained in dripping blood. The crowd gasped; sprinkles of blood scattered all over Konjo’s mask and armor. Toto’s feet wobbled suddenly; the warrior quickly backed off Kuro-Sa, leaving behind a blood trail between them. Toto twirled with his katana angled to slit Konjo’s throat, but before he could strike the Samoan’s neck, Konjo blocked Toto’s attack with his gauntlet-armed wrist, bouncing Toto’s blade off. Toto staggered from the deflection and tried to charge back at Konjo, but his body halted itself, his stomach struck with a sudden sensation that confused Toto. He looked at Konjo and realized that it was an illusion; Konjo’s body turned into a ‘mirror’ and he split into a fading row of clones that eventually vanished into the air.
Konjo then rematerialized behind Toto Tai, his sword-wielding hand flexed and pinned right on Toto’s lower back, his sword plunged deep into Toto’s stomach with little damage to his suit. Blood rushed out of Toto’s mouth, spilling along his neck and armored chest. He remained conscious for a few seconds, but after that, his eyes rolled up, and when Konjo pulled his katana out, blood briefly sprayed out of the wound, and Toto dangled and then fell flat on his face.
Spectators shouted, “Pua, Pua, Pua, Pua”, in a glee-driven chant, their cheering so loud it became noise pollution well beyond the stadium. Daimyo Minna dropped his jaw in shock, then his head, slamming his fists on the balcony. Kenji grinned looking at the daimyo reacting in frustration, though most of his attention was at the field, pleased with the twins [seemingly] defeating Toto Tai.
Konjo took possession of Toto’s glass katana; the sword had cracks all over, most of them leaking liquid plasma. Konjo’s swords reacted, their blades giving off faint smoke that rose as small puffy pillars. The smoke swirled around the glass katana and began glowing neon light. Soon after that, the smoke took the form of a serpent dragon, fangs out, and it inserted itself into the glass blade, possessing it. The leakage stopped and the spilled fluid began converting into gas and bonding back with Toto’s weapon. Konjo tipped the possessed weapon forward onto his shoulder; his shoulder padding gave off a short buzz and afterwards his whole suit dimly lit up, including his swords. The smoke from earlier then seeped out and split itself into several streams, each one merging with each of Konjo’s katanas.
Kuro-Sa approached Konjo, “Aren’t you going to check to see if our opponent’s dead first?” Konjo walked passed Kuro-Sa, his body still processing its energy transfer. “I’m talking to you, Pua!”
“I thought you only wanted help on your terms.”
The referee and two assistants with medical rags ran to Toto Tai. Kneeling down, the referee checked Toto’s head, yelling his name and calling him to move his hands and feet; he got no response. One of the assistants called for a stretcher.
Daimyo Minna, oddly calm, pulled out a little red bag with a yellow string tied on top. Unraveling the knot, he unveiled a craven jade doll of a Hang Dynasty solider with Toto’s name inked on it. He clutched the figure in his fist, squeezing to the point of skin-breaking pain, talking to himself, “This fight is not over yet. Only I get to decide that. These fools will see Toto’s true form – as a demon.” Kenji and several others noticed Minna’s intense expression and odd hand gesture; Kenji ordered two guards to examine him, as the Samoan chief spotted blood dripping out of Minna’s hand. Before the guards took a step, Minna tossed the bloody doll over the balcony to the field.
The object landed near Toto’s head. The referee’s assistants, having seen the thing airborne before it landed, approached it to toss it away as trash. It violently trembled. Hot air suddenly rose off Toto’s back, quickly becoming thick smoke; the sudden heat forced the three men away from Toto’s smoke-engulfed body. The thickening gas expanded and towered over the stadium. Back on the balcony, guards surrounded Daimyo Minna’s entourage; Minna was unfazed.
As some in the panicked crowd began to leave, fearful of the unknown, the smoke started to recede. An enormous half-lizard, half man demonic samurai emerged out of the fading smoke, armed with a massive sword and round metallic shield the size of a boulder. The Oni bore a kimono dragon’s head on a man’s body, the latter resembling a Roman/Greek god statue. His hands and feet had razor sharp nails, and his body covered in oily scales reflecting natural light. The demon wore little clothing, merely a gladiator’s kilt and leather straps on his forearms. His fanged mouth covered in a cage-like mouth guard, and he had a long, girthy tail that wielded the strength of five legions of soldiers.
The Lizard Oni immediately stormed for Kuro-Sa and Konjo; despite his towering height and wide frame, he quickly took off running, his speed nearing that of a cheetah. The crowd moaned in panic for the twins to run away; Kuro-Sa slipped out a small, foldable sensu [fan] out of his wrist, snapped it open to unveil a wide-spanning silk screen arch, and began spinning it to create a circular wall. Electric currents sparked and a horizontal column of electricity launched out toward the demon. In response, the demon spun around to swing his tail, casting up dust in the air; tiny scales flew off the tail and collided with the electric field, absorbing Kuro-Sa’s attack. The dust still airborne, the creature spun back to his original direction, inhaling a lot of the debris in his spin, and exhaled a fireball. The flame ignited the aerial soot, spreading everywhere the dust covered, consuming the brothers.
Suddenly, a sonic boom erupted from inside the flames, ripping the blaze apart and flattening the flames to smolder; the blast nearly knocked the Oni off his feet, forcing him to dig his shield into the ground to keep balance. The crowd could then see that Konjo had summoned the sonic boom, his hands consumed in white smoke. He then positioned his arms and body to form a cross; he summoned two sparks-riddled spheres of energy in each hand. The Oni attempted to inhale leftover dust still airborne, but in that moment Konja slammed his arms together, aiming his opened palms at the beast while his spheres formed into one larger plasma ball, and fired a neon blue lightning bolt at the beast. The bolt exploded on impact, striking the Oni’s chest; the explosion shook the whole stadium.
The lizard formerly Toto Tai stood tall as the debris soot settled, though blood poured out of his mouth. His shield was badly cracked and covered in black ash, despite the manner of it being unused since he was caught off guard. His body also bled in various spots from his shoulders down to his feet, but unfazed, the Oni took off running for the twins, his steamy sword above his head as he ran, each footstep causing the ground to shake to the point of small objects bounced off the surface.
In range, demonic Toto drove his sword at Konjo’s head, attempting to split the Samoan’s head in half. Konjo quickly shielded his face with his katana, flashing a bright light – then a sudden bolt of lightning shot out, striking the lizard’s blade. The lightning strike shattered the blade into millions of puffy pieces. In that moment, Konjo jumped off the ground toward the beast, in lightning speed bypassing the monster’s head, and landing on the beast’s tail. His katana drawn out, Konjo plunged his sword deep into the tail, inflicting tear-jerking pain to the Oni. Two streams of light encircled the tail – then those light streams ripped the tail off the Oni. Blood splattered everywhere, spraying and nearly burying Konjo in a thick shower of the lizard’s fluids before he jumped away.
Landing back on his feet, while covered in a heavy guck of demonic blood, Konjo appeared on the lizard’s right side, his katana lowered to his right side and legs spread apart with the left pushed forward. The beast roared and frayed around, but then spotted Konjo. Enraged, the Oni charged for the Samoan samurai, completely ignoring Kuro-Sa. Konjo kept his position, waiting for the monster to get within range; the beast thrust his crawled hand for the samurai, coming within inches of snatching Konjo, much to the horror of the screaming spectators. All this happened within a span of seconds.
Many blinked. Those who blinked or covered their eyes were left dumbfounded by what they saw. Konjo was midair many feet over the lizard’s head, his katana pouring bloody raindrops. The monster’s hand, once close to enclosing around Konjo for a fatal squeeze, slid off his wrist, sliced off in a neat sever, blood shooting out like a water sprinkler. The Oni had no time to raise his head to see Konjo; at light’s speed [in long pauses for Konjo’s perceptive], Konjo dove right for the beast, his body posed in a bullet position. Many people blinked again. After that moment passed, the demon’s head flew off in a spiral fall, the neck consumed in a boiling lava-like moss of fiery bubbles eating away the flesh and bone down to the shoulders.
The crowd erupted into a deafening rumble. The people waved their arms and yelled, some losing their voices in their widespread excitement. Others’ arms went numb, and many more ears bled from soreness by the noise. Daimyo Minna, witnessing his warrior’s death and the crowd’s reaction, buried his face in his hands and turned away, his head dropped and demeanor sluggish and dewy-eyed.
Kuro-Sa stood about 20 feet from where the beheaded Oni collapsed. The demon’s blood oozed out and formed a slow moving pool, spreading outward in all directions. The crowd erupted in a roaring chant of Pua’s name, ongoing in repetition; Kuro-Sa dropped his sword, visually indifferent to what the spectators did, and turned his back away from the demon’s body. He headed for the entrance tunnel he came from.
Konjo stood about 20 feet from the deceased demon at the opposite direction, and most of the demon’s blood slowly flowed toward him. Initially he was standing after landing perfectly back on earth, his posture flawless to the crowd. However, Konjo, at first appearing normal, kneeled with one knee dug into the ground. He tried to stand, but his body felt heavy, forcing to kneel in that way.
Any small movement or gesture Konjo’s body could make was instantly followed by a surge of numbness that crept through his arms and legs. Underneath his celestial armor, hot sweat flooded along his burning skin, making his suit more like an overloaded damn nearing its burst. The little amount of sweat that escaped drenched his eyes, stinging them. Whatever body part not going numbing was profoundly sore, including his back that felt the sensations associated with whiplash and an old man whose back was about to go out. His lungs expanded beyond their usual size, and his heart rate went up drastically. Seconds later, his hands and ankles began going numb. Surges of electric power went through his body in random directions, the numbness progressing with each pulse that deceptively seemed to fade.
He was still kneeling in his frozen statue pose. Spectators began to notice, some shouting at him to get up. At first Kuro-Sa ignored the crowd’s seesaw roars, but the fans overlooking the brothers got louder in yelling “Pua” repeatedly. Pissed off, Kuro-Sa turned around and looked at Konjo, baffled by his stillness.
Konjo’s eyesight blurred. Dizziness consumed what was left of his vision. He swayed side to side, his body going limp. His suit began dematerializing, dust bites floating off his slow-fading armor; he was transitioning back to Pua. To quick haste, his holy armor vanished in a whimper, exposing his bruised barefoot naked body. He went [temporarily] deaf, unable to hear the shocked crowd’s horror. Pua leaned forward and crashed face down, passed out.