Chapter 3: Intruders
I woke with a start, my fingers clutching the hilt of my Sakabatou with a firmness that made my knuckles white. I felt several unfamiliar Ki signals in the vicinity of Kaoru's dojo, up to no good, I presumed. The Ki signals were immensely hostile and hastily moving into the dojo, seemingly on the track to find someone…Kaoru-Dono!
With great haste, I leapt from the uncomfortable futon that I temporarily used, utilizing my god like speed to cut them off before they entered Kaoru's shoji door. My eyes now reflected an amber hue, narrowed in a dangerous manner. It appeared that there were 3 men, one huge man, about 6 feet tall with a stout build, face covered, along with 2 much smaller men of a rather thin build.
"Move aside boy!" The tallest man yelled his gruff voice surly and threatening. Sessha did not care how huge a man was, he would not budge, that he would not.
"Sessha will not allow you to harm Kaoru-Dono, that he will not." I was firm in my resolve to protect this overly friendly and trusting Miko with a heart as big as the wide star filled sky, yet still offering them a chance to flee. To my dismay, Kaoru's Ki began to stir within her quarters, causing her to shuffle sluggishly to her shoji door and open it in a rather groggy manner, yawning.
"Kenshin, what's going-"
"Go back into your room, Kaoru-Dono. There are some very unscrupulous men here. I will take care of them, worry not." I demanded sternly, my lithe and lean body moving to shield her in case they decided to strike with randomness.
"I don't know who the hell you think you are but her ass is mine!" The burly man hollered, lunging at me in a predicted manner in an effort to get to Kaoru, which I would never allow as long as I lived.
"G-Gohei?" Kaoru gasped in fear that was palpable just from her startled tone of voice, yet no matter her fear, she quickly erected a protective shield around us with her spiritual abilities, the shockwave of the force which he thrust himself at her causing Gohei to slam into a nearby wall.
"You know this man?" I was astonished that any such scum knew Kaoru, but my brief moment of weakness was our downfall, noticing the two other men surely breaking their way through her shield. Much to my ultimate dismay, Gohei emerged behind Kaoru, tightly clasping his large forearm against her throat, causing her to breathe erratically.
Quickly I brandished my reversed blade sword, letting the silver blade clash loudly with one of the thug's flimsy daggers for but only a moment before concisely I struck him with enough force to knock him into a thin paper wall, taking it down with a gaping hole in the process. The other man rushed me then, attempting to directly stab my chest with his cheaply made katana, rather than try to take on my superior blade. I interceded his blade with my own, with little effort; our swords clanging in a loud manner until I cut his Katana clean in two. Swiftly, I dealt with him in much the same manner as his friend.
Taking a brief moment to survey the damage I realized that it was extensive. The man had already torn through some of her walls, ripped doors from the wall and the two holes that I had just made will most likely make for some hefty repair bills if she desired it. Oro, Kaoru sure is going to hate me for all the repairs that she and I will most likely have to do…
Snapping back to reality, I noticed the fiend that Kaoru revealed as Gohei, crushing her to him with his forearm still firmly placed to her neck. She looked truly helpless, despite all of the strength she would have had if not caught so off guard.
"Get your filthy hands off of Kaoru, you scum!"
I readied my sword for another attack, not bothering to sheath it. The man held firm with his harsh stance, Kaoru apparently appearing to lose consciousness. Her petite hand reached out to me weakly, causing me to lose my patience with Gohei and become furious.
"Now why would I let her go? Her damned father and that stupid brat of a brother have made my life miserable. And since I can't defeat Soujiro, killing and defiling her innocent little flower is the next best thing." His wicked and demented smirk was enough to make me physically ill, running his calloused and dirty fingers up her ivory cheek and down her neck in a rather disgusting and perverse manner literally made me wretch over and over again. But more than that, my blood was boiling at the thought of his impure intentions with the innocent and beautiful Kaoru. I WOULD NOT STAND FOR IT!
"Y-you lying scumbag! Souji-Kun merely upheld the law, s-stopped you from raping little Tsubame-Chan! My father couldn't help that you weren't good enough to be in the work of the Daimyo, Even Lord Shishio wouldn't have you in his evil services, T-that means you are nothing but filth! How dare you defile my shrine! The gods will have your head, you heathen!" Kaoru spat, her clear ice blue depths filling with tears as he carelessly slapped her across her face, blood pooling from her new wound on her lip. How dare this monster harm Kaoru!
"Shut-up you miserable whore! Bitch!" He was screaming now, the corner of his lips white from the froth of his spit, tightening his hold significantly on her throat, unbeknownst to him, I readied myself in the traditional Hiten Mitsurugi battle stance, noticing that Kaoru had finally lost consciousness after being harshly denied the oxygen she required to breathe. The large fiend merely cackled at her pain, muttering nonsensical things to himself, something he wouldn't be doing once I was finished with him.
"Hiten Mitsurugi Style: Ryusosen!" I called out, dashing towards him with a quickness even the gods would envy, rushing as my blade connected under his jaw with so much force and raw power that his whole body was lifted from the ground, propelling into the ceiling, his head now firmly planted in an area where he could do nothing to dislodge it, his body dangling limply.
I procured the limp and seemingly lifeless body of Kaoru, gathering her protectively into my arms, my left hand checking her pulse simply to determine if she was still breathing properly. Successfully feeling her steady pulse, I strode out of the broken shoji doors, carrying a wounded Kaoru in my arms hoping to alert the guards of this man's wrong doings, only to find that they were already alerted and in the vicinity. It brought a smile to this weary warriors face to know that there was a person kind enough to hear a disturbance and actually alert somebody rather than ignore it.
They approached me, breathing heavily, obviously out of breath due to running here. Solemn looks of seriousness were marring their features. Then came the questions.
Watching over her sleeping form, something deep inside me stirred, something lost…or rather long forgotten, tucked away in some dark abyss never to be revisited. What, I did not know. I knew that I had to eventually ask Kaoru to exorcise this demon from within me, which meant staying a bit longer than anticipated, but I did not anticipate being so protective over her.
My amethyst hues scrutinized her slightly swollen and plump pink lip and the cut that lie just at the juncture of her lip. Her cheek was also a bit swollen as well; the milky skin there raised quite a bit, an abnormal rosy red hue to the wound which would soon start to turn purplish in hue. Surely it would bruise soon. She slept soundly as if she had not just been assaulted, like she had no worries at all. Sessha was jealous indeed!
Pertaining to the man named Gohei…Sessha believes that we have not seen the last of him, His purpose was clear and dubious, yet it seemed without proper motive, but even more perplexing or rather disturbing is that he knew to come when Soujiro was not present. This is an ominous issue indeed, which leads me to believe that he has been stalking her; he would most definately return to hurt her upon my departure. I must protect Kaoru no matter how long I must stay, at least until Soujiro is back for a more permanent time than just a few days. This Gohei character needs to be eliminated. I will not allow anyone to desecrate Kaoru's innocence and purity.