Much Later...

Kanbei let his hand fall from his feather earing, and he slowly stood, brushing off the snow that had accumulated on him as he knelt in the snow, unaware of the cold, or that it had even begun to snow.

"Such a sentimental fool," he murmured to the emptiness.

He let the tips of his fingers lightly brush against the hilt of one of the twin katanas in front of him, the chill a reminder of the past.

He stood there a moment longer, looking at all the other graves before him, before turning back to the one in front of him.

"We never told each other, did we."

The words he murmured were meaningless to all but the dead.

He turned around and as he walked away, in the reflection of the swords, one could almost discern a shadow of a smaller, slighter, but no less deadly form walking beside him.