Chapter 12:

He who by the sword wounds, by the sword perishes

The Divine Punishment

We got into position: on one side was us, on the other was Acuro.Bookmark here

"Okay guys, are you ready?"Bookmark here

"Yes," we replied in unison.Bookmark here

"Good, then let's get started!"Bookmark here

Acuro dashed towards us, I was scared, but I had to do what he had taught me. I put my katana against his and managed to parry his hit; behind him was Evan who was ready to hit him.Bookmark here

"FIREBALL!" He screamed with a fireball bigger than his hand, he had bent his arm as if he was going to throw a punch.Bookmark here

Acuro jumped up to dodge it.Bookmark here

"I'm still here," Emmy said trying to use the Susanoo, by then, she had almost taken total control of the float.Bookmark here

"Dear, look down, now Evan has taken the charge, he can't stop. He's going to hit Tenkei!"Bookmark here

"That's their problem, I trust their strength and I know they will come out unscathed," Evan replied.Bookmark here

Immediately after this sentence, Emmy threw a "delayed" punch at Evan using the Fujin technique.Bookmark here

"Ahhhhh" she screamed as she fell to the ground, standing up.Bookmark here

Meanwhile, Evan realized that he was close to colliding with me, so he committed to interrupting the technique. He didn't extinguish the flame, but it was enough to make me parry it (not because the blow was too strong, but because it was so sudden it had to be a little less strong than normal for me).Bookmark here

With the katana, I managed to stop it.Bookmark here

"Yes! We did it--"Bookmark here

Behind me Akuro tried a lunge.Bookmark here

"Never let your guard down."Bookmark here

I turned and defended myself as quickly as I could, just in time. We were with our katanas slightly tilted against each other, behind the opponent I noticed that Emmy was floating with a fairly large trail of fire. I could tell that Evan was helping her.Bookmark here

"Let's see if you fall back on your feet again," Emmy said.Bookmark here

"You have to hit me, though!"Bookmark here

Acuro jumped into the air, it was just a distraction, and then snapped to my left. I had to do something, their attack was going to go up in smoke they were going to hit me if I stood still. So I concentrated...Bookmark here

"Kaiten!"Bookmark here

I decided to use this move because it was not high-demanding, it was the one I discovered the night against Dario, but without a katana, it was a simple stream of lightning swirling in my hand. I jumped on him and knocked him, then, after stunning him, I also tried to hit him with the katana, making him think it was a faint, but it wasn't; with an electricity-laden kick, I threw it at Emmy, who was hit hard.Bookmark here

"Ahhh! You guys are bra--"Bookmark here

"Ahhh!"Bookmark here

Behind Acuro was Evan with the chainsaw (his ace in the hole that he can use in a limited way), it was on fire, he was about to hit him; he backed away and the attack went wrong.Bookmark here

"It's not over yet! You have amazed me! But now I'm going to work harder to get you to a higher level while we're at it."Bookmark here

He snapped at me, wanting to attack me... but then, we heard some screams. There were so many of them.Bookmark here

"Mah, I must have imagined them. Now I just have to think about fighting--" I thought.Bookmark here

Out from behind the house came countless of Clark's zombies.Bookmark here

"What the fuck?!" we all thought to ourselves.Bookmark here

We were all distraught, a man came in too.Bookmark here

"Uh?! But you're..." said shocked Acuro.Bookmark here

After this sentence, he also missed the shot, fortunately, since I would have to fight with those beings later.Bookmark here

I took a closer look at the man as well.Bookmark here

"B-but that's... the guy from last night," I thought in my head.Bookmark here

"Hello, Acuro. Hello to you too Tenkei." said Dario.Bookmark here

"What are you doing here?" asked Acuro.Bookmark here

"I have to do a task for someone."Bookmark here

"And by the way, didn't you just say Tenkei's name? How do you know him?"Bookmark here

"Didn't he tell you? Let him explain it to you."Bookmark here

"Well, do you remember last night, when you had come to check on me? This man had come over and we talked for a moment."Bookmark here

"W-what? Why didn't you tell me?"Bookmark here

"I-I didn't know if that was the best thing to do, I wanted to wait a while and see what would have happened."Bookmark here

"Tenkei, you should have told me right away. The next time something like this happens, talk to me. We're in an apocalypse, you have to tell me if a random person talks to you during the night!"Bookmark here

"Y-yeah, sorry. You're right."Bookmark here

"Never mind, there won't be 'a next time'. Why don't you give me your kamien?" said Dario.Bookmark here

W-what?" asked Emmy, Evan, and I.Bookmark here

"Who is this guy, Acuro?" asked Emmy.Bookmark here

"He is Dario, an old friend of mine. We've known each other since we were kids, but we never mistreated each other or fought. Except for one time: the downfall of our friendship; it happened about a year ago. He met two guys from the U.S., they had come to Italy for a "business trip, they had seen that he was strong, so they decided to propose him to join their gang. At that time he was in an economic problem, and he needed money, he couldn't miss this opportunity that would have saved his life.Bookmark here

However, I disagreed, our Sensei (we were trained together) had taught us that the sword should be used only with those who deserve it, one should avoid using it with those who do NOT deserve it. Joining a mafia gang would surely break this rule, but he didn't care; I told him that if he didn't want to follow Sensei's teachings, I would never see him as a friend again, and that's what happened."Bookmark here

"That's right, that's exactly what happened. And I don't regret my choice, I would have died even before the meteorite if it wasn't for my new boss; since you were friends with one of his victims, I guess you've heard of him, Clark Anderson."Bookmark here

"Uh?!... C-Clark... Anderson?! The man who along with Reid Regan killed Senator Weber?" The three of us said.Bookmark here

"Yes, him. I told you that last night didn't I?"Bookmark here

"That's told me, but I let it go thinking I was imagining it or dreaming it...I'm going to kill you!"Bookmark here

Screaming this sentence, I jumped at him, but Acuro stopped me by putting his arm in front of me.Bookmark here

"Tenkei, I know you're angry, but I know his strength. I have to solve this myself."Bookmark here

"No, we can deal with it safely!"Bookmark here

"Hey, brats. My goal right now is to kill Acuro to get an enemy out of the way, otherwise, with him alive, I wouldn't be able to get your kamiens. He'd be able to kill all of Clark's zombies with ease. Oh also, be careful they are starting to advance."Bookmark here

"..."Bookmark here

All the beings that were in the house we had stopped at began to run at us.Bookmark here

"Don't worry guys, I'll take care of killing them" said Acuro.Bookmark here

"No, I'm sorry. I told you that you will be my opponent" he said starting to launch an attack.Bookmark here

He struck the sword at Acuro, he parried it.Bookmark here

But Dario didn't give up and immediately retaliated on the other side, then retried again and again.Bookmark here

"As I remembered, you are resistant."Bookmark here

"Am I mistaken, or have you become a little stronger as well?"Bookmark here

"Could be, since I'm not you, loser!"Bookmark here

He tried to hit him again, this time with a much more powerful blow, enough to break his guard. He was about to hit him, but he moved, planting his sword on the ground. Acuro immediately took the opportunity to try to stab him, but he kicked him, which gave him enough time to pick up the katana and go back to fighting.Bookmark here

This time it was Acuro's turn to try to attack, he ran against Dario, attacking him from the side, parried the blow and the opponent responded with an elbow in the belly and an attempt to lunge.Bookmark here

The sword almost entered his body, but he defended himself by throwing himself to the right, trying to get back on his feet. He was on his knees, Dario countered the lunge and then was hit by the sword.Bookmark here

The wound wasn't too deep, but it wasn't too shallow either.Bookmark here

"Ahhh!"Bookmark here

"Ahaha, you asshole! Did you make this wound to me? And I'll make you a bigger one!"Bookmark here

Acuro tried to attack him again to keep him from getting back on his feet, but unpredictably Dario struck a lunge that entered his belly.Bookmark here

Fortunately, he seemed not to have taken any vital points, but he was losing a lot of blood, he couldn't close the wound at the moment though, he was full of zombies that I and the others were dealing with and his opponent could still hit him at any moment.Bookmark here

"I-it's nothing... I-I can still fight."Bookmark here

"Yeah, I can see that," he said in a sarcastic tone.Bookmark here

"If you don't believe it, I can prove it to you."Bookmark here

"Alright, then let's continue."Bookmark here

Darius took the initiative, he started by throwing a broadsword from the front, Acuro parried it, but that alone was already a bit tiring. But he didn't stop there, he tried to make it hit from the left, then the right, up-down, all over. But Acuro was leading him, fortunately. He then got tired of parrying and decided to try to hit him, he managed to hit him in the left arm, but this cost him a lot of energy, given his wound. It wasn't over yet, he continued to throw swords again and again, but Dario parried them all. They almost alternated, one hit, the other parried, one hit, the other parried. They were now almost exhausted, with fairly serious wounds, whoever gave the last significant blow would have practically won.Bookmark here

"Ahhhhh!"Bookmark here

"Ahhhhhh!"Bookmark here

One scream after another, one attack after another, they were losing too much blood, they were about to pass out, and if they didn't get treatment soon they would have also died.Bookmark here

"Cough... I can't die here, I have to kill you to save these guys... it may cost even my life, I don't care, the important thing is that I only use the katana to defend those who deserve it..." said Acuro spitting blood.Bookmark here

"Enough of these fucking morals of yours... the teacher was just talking bullshit... cough" replied Dario also in a bad way.Bookmark here

"N-no..., I will prove to you that what the teacher said was right, and if you had not used the sword for selfish reasons, you would have lived much longer."Bookmark here

"Even if I were to kill myself, you would still die, and yet you used the sword correctly, as you say."Bookmark here

"Mine is a sacrifice, that will leave my honor alive which mustn't die, not material life."Bookmark here

"Ahahah... then kill me. I am here."Bookmark here

"O-ok. now... you will die!"Bookmark here

Acuro, who was kneeling on the ground, scrambled back to his feet and snapped at Darius, delivering a blow so powerful that it took off his guard.Bookmark here

"Cough" Acuro spat blood.Bookmark here

Then he hit him hard without using too much force, to knock him down. He kicked his legs to keep them locked for a few seconds.Bookmark here

"And now... DIE!"Bookmark here

Acuro jumped into the air, gripping the katana as if it were a dagger, he fell sticking it into Dario's chest.Bookmark here

"Ahhhhh!" they shouted in unison.Bookmark here

"Illusion! It won't be enough to kill me, now I can hit you with my katana, and win this fight!" said Dario.Bookmark here

"Are you sure about that?"Bookmark here

"Huh?"Bookmark here

"This is a technique of my invention, which uses a lot of energy. To do it you need to have a lot of precision, to hit the right spot on your opponent, and have the right speed, neither too slow nor too fast. When the sword sticks, it's like your body starts to crack, like a wall."Bookmark here

"Ahhhhh!"Bookmark here

Branches were created from the sticking sword that went on all over his torso, they were quite deep cuts too.Bookmark here

"Y-you can't escape anymore... with this technique you'll soon bleed to death, Dario."Bookmark here

"I-idiot! You'll die too, with the wounds you have!"Bookmark here

"I don't care, I've done my job of protecting my people."Bookmark here

"I-I can't die because of this asshole!" shouted Dario.Bookmark here

He then grabbed his katana and cut off his leg.Bookmark here

"Ahhh!"Bookmark here

"Ahahah, now you'll die before me!"Bookmark here

"B-bastard!"Bookmark here

And so Dario got back on his feet, though destroyed. He needed to escape as soon as possible.Bookmark here

"Acurooooooo!" I shouted.Bookmark here

I noticed his fall.Bookmark here

"Where are you running? Now I'm going to kill you!" I continued.Bookmark here

With electricity pouring out of my body from the anger, I killed all the zombies that stood in my way, and then I got in front of Dario. Acuro was still on the ground, bleeding to death.Bookmark here

"Now you won't run from me!"Bookmark here

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