General Takata sits calmly sharpening his katana next to a makeshift campfire just outside the training tunnels. There's a cold and sinister gaze fixed into the heart of the cackling flames drowning from his face. As he is about to flip his blade over for another stroke of sharpening by the flint stone in his hand he hears light foot steps dashing towards him from the tunnel and keenly twists his body to bring his katana to the coming individual's throat. The person who entered Takata's presence was a fairly young man, no older than nineteen, dressed in light peasant's clothes and dirtied up from head to toe, possibly from the heavy training he was doing along with everyone else. The moonlight shining on this young man's face showed a dedicated and inspired individual, the glint in his eyes defined much respect for Takata and the Shinigami, there was no denying it. His brown hair whistled with the wind as he held his hands up whilst a blade touched his throat. The young wanderer was hoping he wasn't interrupting anything important seeing Takata like this.
"What brings you here Kyzo, you should be getting what little sleep you can like the rest, tomorrow I'll be pushing you all even harder to master evasive techniques. If you're here to tell me you wish to go home, get in line with the other tired fools, it isn't going to happen. I need everyone ready to help me, I mean….help our kingdom overthrow China and of course, rescue the king as well as soon as possible." Takata had a sternness in his voice as he said this, bringing his blade back down to his knees to continue tending to it. The young trainee known as Kyzo understood the current situation, but yet he did not leave Takata be. He had something on his mind and he wished to get it off his chest. He planted himself on a rock sitting beside his general ignoring the look in Takata's unwelcoming eyes trying to shove him away with a visual precaution. "General, I am here to ask you something, if I may…." Takata tilted his heard towards Kyzo making the perfect position for the fire to really light up the detail on the left side of his face as he stared down Kyzo beside him.
"As long as it is viable and not something I will want to castrate you for I welcome it." A lump suddenly eroded inside Kyzo's throat while he tried to speak. Overcoming the intimidating atmosphere that Takata is protruding, Kyzo asks what he feels he must express. "I…I see you sometimes out here while we train, tending to your arm, and sometimes falling into a daze. I'm worried there may be something wrong with you, and I would never want to see anything happen to you general, I want to make you proud. And if your sick, or not well, I want to be there to aid you. I know I'm not ready yet, but if you need me to, I'll ready myself to go to war with the other Shinigami to attack China, I will FIGHT…for you. For Japan." Upon hearing this, Takata leans upwards straightening his spine into a commanding position and his face grows very daunting. "Are you saying I'm weak child? Because if you dare test me, I shall rip that tongue of yours RIGHT out of that mouth!" Takata reaches for his knife but Kyzo quickly gestures for mercy. "No my lord, PLEASE PLEASE! I meant no such thing!" Takata slowly releases his grip from his knife, allowing Kyzo to state his reasoning to save his own hide. "I just meant….that I need you to know I am here for you. You can tell me anything, any need to know information, confidential or not, I won't ever tell a soul! I will always be by your side to protect you and the kingdom. And if you are sick my lord, I promise I won't tell any of the others. But I myself would like to know, to help you general." Kyzo had a deep honesty in his voice, and he wanted Takata to realize this.
Takata calmed himself down again and leaned into the fire clasping his hands in thought. "My brother, Goja, when he attacked me with that shuriken, it was tainted with poison…..the poison entered my system and it is eating me alive. I am desperately trying to find an antidote, I have found nothing yet." Takata locked in a threatening gaze into Kyzo's own eyes. "You tell a single person, soldier or not, I WILL kill you. Understand child?" Kyzo nodded silently and eventually said a response. "I promise my lord, not a single being." Takata nods and looks off in the distance while already on the path for a solution to his illness. "There's a shaman located in the Omaki Desert….he's a dirty and psychopathic individual, but he's my only lead. I hear he wields some powerful healing magic, if anyone can make me well again, it's that disgusting worm. I was aiming to go alone after this war is all over, but I may have to leave sooner. Tomorrow night, as everyone slumbers just like tonight, I wanted to seek out the shaman and return by morning for our march to Zhujong's palace. But it's very dangerous. I might be able to use your help my boy, that is, if you're up for the task." Kyzo's face lit up with excitement the moment Takata asked such of him. "I would wish for nothing more general!" Kyzo sprang to attention filled with eagerness. "I shall go pack my things for tomorrow to join you sir. Thank you so much for choosing me to get you well again my lord!" Kyzo now filled with joy and abundance ran back into the tunnels to scout his things and prepare for the journey ahead. Takata sighed and shook his head. It was now only him, his thoughts, and a dying camp fire. Quite stressed and fairly tired, Takata begins quietly murmuring to himself. "I wonder if Hinoru figured it out yet." Takata grins. "He's a smart kid, but there's no way he's surviving this war if I'm not there to hold his feeble hand." Takata makes a fist and sifts dirt through his fingers. "I apologize Hinoru, but both kingdoms WILL be mine. A small dose of poison, this chemical trickery, isn't going to stop my reign as proper ruler of both lands." Takata piles mounds of dirt within his palms and thrusts them into the dying flames until the fire is completely put out. As the smoke rises to the sky and a blackness consumes all around him, Takata takes a moment to stare into the moon with a look of glory in his eyes, then walks to his quarters near the tunnel entrance concealing himself in his small wooden office, and shutting the door tightly behind him. The general made his choice, and now his delusions have taken over completely. War has never been so dangerous to him until this very night.