I mentioned this last chapter, but I just recently published a book on called A Fox's Love. For those of you who enjoyed Girls Bravo, To Love Ru and other ecchi anime and manga, this is something you'll love to read.
I know I'm asking a lot, but if you guys could support me by ordering a copy, either the Kindle edition which I would recommend (I read all my books on Kindle now) or the paperback copy, I would be very grateful to you. If you've already ordered a copy, read it, and want to let me know what you think about it or how you feel I could improve, do not hesitate to PM me. I'm always willing to talk to you guys.
To all those who have bought my book and all those who plan on doing so, thank you very much. Hopefully with your help, my dream of becoming a novelist will become a reality.
And now, onto the chapter you've all been waiting for.
Chapter 32: Bloodstained Hands
Standing on top of the large clock tower, the Headquarter for MBI in Shinto Teito, was Minaka Hiroto, the mastermind behind the Sekirei plan and a man whose sanity Takami had long since stopped questioning years ago. As per the usual, Minaka was looking down on the metropolis, his city, with a smile of unabashed glee. Smoke rose up in several quadrants of the city and still he smiled. Fires raged, buildings were felled and chaos reigned supreme.
And still Minaka smiled.
"It looks like it's starting," a thoughtful hum escaped the man with white hair and the ridiculous cape.
And speaking of his cape, it was flapping about wildly, even though there was no wind blowing.
Absently, Minaka rubbed his chin with an expression of deep contemplation, or what passed for deep contemplation with him. It was hard to tell whether or not he was actually thinking or just trying to look like he was thinking.
"I wonder how I can make this moment more exciting...oh! I know!"
Pulling out his cellphone, Minaka quickly typed in a short message and then hit the send button. In just a few short seconds, every Ashikabi and Sekirei pair aside from a select few―two to be exact―would be receiving a very interesting text message. Then...then this surprise stage of the game could truly begin.
"Hehehehe...hahahahahaha, yes! Show me what you can do Uzumaki Naruto! Show me your real power!" Throwing his head back, Minaka let out a laugh that resounded across the city, or it would have, if it weren't the explosions and crashing sound of buildings being toppled. "MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!"
Yeah, his laugh went something like that.
Talk about creepy.
While Naruto was starting his battle with Karasuba, Musubi and Tsukiumi were beginning their own fights with Benitsubasa and Haihane respectively. Akitsu and Homura were also continuing to deal with ground and air support, and Uzume was taking Haruka to the exit point where the young man and his Sekirei would be leaving Shinto Teito.
Said young man in question was currently being carried by her piggy back style as the cloth using Sekirei hopped from one building to another. His arms were wrapped tightly around her neck as he tried not to freak out at the fact that they were literally a couple dozen meters above solid ground, which was passing by underneath them in a literal blur. Haruka's eyes could barely make out anything as they crossed the city at a pace that had to at least match those of most high performance vehicles.
Trailing behind them were Hikari and Hibiki. The two Sekirei of Seo's were moving just as swiftly as Uzume, as they leapt from one building to the next. On their backs were Kuno and Seo respectively.
"Dammit, Seo! If you keep groping my breasts, I'm going to fry you!"
"It's your own fault that I'm groping them at all. Maybe if they weren't practically staring me in the face I wouldn't be so tempted!"
"My fault!? You're the one who can't keep his hands to himself, ya damn pervert!"
"I don't see why you care. I grope you all the time!"
Seo's words earned him a healthy dose of lightning.
"Not in public you don't!" Hikari shouted at the now smoking body that was barely hanging onto her back. With his arms flailing limply in the wind and his entire torso flapping about just as uselessly, the only reason Seo was still attached to the girl was because she had a firm grip on his legs. "Idiot!"
Uzume shook her head in amusement at the pairs antics. She had often wondered about those two. They were almost like a comedy routine, and she could not help but wonder if they did that on purpose because they enjoyed interacting like that, or if Hikari was just into blasting her Ashikabi with lightning because he acted like a typical male.
Well, whatever. It wasn't any of her business.
Surveying her surroundings with a keen eye, Uzume realized they were nearing their destination. All of the buildings were becoming smaller and wider. The once tall skyscrapers they had been hopping across had changed to the more squat looking warehouses. The material the structures were made from was changing as well, moving from glass and steel to brick and steel. Judging from the salty scent on the wind they were nearing Teito bay.
"I think we're close enough," Uzume said mostly to herself. She then turned her head back to address Hikari and Hibiki. "Let's set down and go the rest of the on foo―"
Uzume was unable to finish her sentence, for in that exact moment a shadow appeared on top of her. Looking up, the cloth using Sekirei had just enough time to see a staff swinging down to bash her skull in.
"What the hell!?"
The cloth using Sekirei was just barely able to dodge the blow by leaping backwards. She skipped along the metal roofing until she had put a good distance between her and the staff, which had blasted a large hole in the warehouse.
Uzume glanced at the damage the staff had done, and was tempted to wipe the sweat from her forehead as she realized how close she had been to possibly being deactivated. It was a very good thing she had not been in the air when the person wielding the staff had decided to attack or she wouldn't have been able to dodge it.
Behind her, Hikari and Hibiki were about to send a blast of lightning towards the Sekirei who'd just appeared before them and attacked their partner for this mission. And they probably would have succeeded too, had they not been forced to jump backwards and split apart in order to avoid getting struck by several objects that were tossed at them. The objects, small, innocuous looking balls exploded violently as they struck the roof they were on.
When the two stopped dodging they were able to see the damage done to the structure. Aside from the fact that there was a large, gaping hole in the middle of the roof, the metal around the edges had turned a violent red with tinges of yellow and blue. It hissed as steam rose from the warped material, showing that the area of that structure had not been blow to bits but the metal had also been superheated to the point where it was melting off.
The three Sekirei, Uzume, Hikari and Hibiki, leapt to the ground below. They were quickly followed by the two Sekirei who'd attacked them. The trio who had almost been done in by the surprise attack were finally able to get a good look at their attackers now that the ambush had failed.
The one who'd attacked Uzume was a girl with long black hair that was pulled over the left side of her head and draped across her shoulder. She was wearing a traditional kimono without sleeves and had an obi wrapped around her waist that was tied into a bow behind her back. A flower was also tied around the front. On her left shoulder was a tattoo and in her right hand was the staff she had used to almost break Uzume's head in.
The other Sekirei was a girl with large, doe-like brown eyes and short, messy raven hair. She was a very lithe girl. Not necessarily tiny, but she didn't have the voluptuousness of someone like Uzume. Her clothing consisted of a sleeveless turtle neck shirt with the number 44 on the front in bold lettering, two arm bands that went all the way up her arm and stopped just as they reached her shoulders. Around her hips was a skirt that revealed a healthy portion of her milky thighs.
"What luck, who would have thought we'd run into these three so soon," the staff wielder said as she pointed her weapon of choice at Uzume. "I am afraid you're time is up! Prepare to taste defeat!"
"Oh great, this is just what we need," Uzume muttered under her breath. She then addressed Haruka. "I won't be able to fight with you on my back. You might want to get off me right now."
"Ah, okay," Haruka said unsurely. He got off the girl, nearly collapsing due to how badly his legs were shaking. He really didn't like heights. The explosions and nearly having a staff cave his skull in had not helped either. Not at all.
"So what do you think we should do, Seo?" asked Hikari as she glared at the girl across from her. The Sekirei with doe eyes simply stared back with large, carefree smile on her face.
Seo, who had miraculously recovered from having a couple dozen volts of electricity shoved through his body, hummed to himself as he took stalk of their current predicament. His eyes scanned back and forth across the street, observing not just their possible opponents but also the environment itself. The streets were completely abandoned at this time of night, which was good as it meant his girls could let loose if this did end up becoming a battle. From his position behind Hikari, he could see several alleys between the various warehouses located in this section of the south.
He looked back at the two Sekirei apparently belonging to Mikogami. Being one of the few with insiders information he knew who they were. He was surprised to see them so far out this way. While the south was considered Mikogami's territory, it wasn't often his Sekirei traveled to Teito bay. Mikogami's mansion was located in the center of southern Shinto Teito.
Not that this changed the facts, and those facts were that he and his Sekirei had run into some of Mikogami's. At least it was only two of them.
After a moment or two he rubbed the back of his neck an sighed. "I guess we've got no choice. We were paid to make sure the kid got to Shinto Port safely, so we need to make sure these guys can't go after him and his girl."
"Now that's what I like to hear," Hikari grinned as lightning began sparking from her fingers. Without ceremony the woman in the purple bondage outfit dropped her Ashikabi on his ass. She ignored Seo's "Ouch! What the hell was that for!?" and instead looked at her sister. "You know what that means, don't you Hibiki?" she asked as her look alike let Kuno down much more gently than her twin had their Ashikabi.
"It means we get to cut loose, right?" Hibiki said as lightning began coalescing around her hand as well. Unlike her sister, who had lightning shooting from her fingertips, Hibiki's entire arm from the biceps down was covered in blue lightning that crackled several times every second.
"So you have no intention of running away? How foolish," the girl with the staff scoffed, as if the very thought that they could beat her was idiocy at its finest. She spun the weapon in question around with ease. When she finished her flashy maneuver, she set herself up in a basic stance with her feet spread apart and knees bet. One end of the staff was pointed towards the ground while the other pointed towards sky. "In that case, I hope you're prepared to be deactivated."
"You're the one who better get ready for a pounding!" Hikari shouted back in her usual boisterous and angry manner. "We're going to fry your ass!"
"You'd better take Haruka and Kuno and get out of here," Hibiki said to Uzume. "We'll deal with these two."
"Right," Uzume was not going to argue with either of them on this. Even if she wanted to she wouldn't. This was a Sekirei battle, and Sekirei battles were supposed to be one on one anyway. She looked back at the two under her care and gestured for them to follow her. "Come on you two. Let's leave them to it."
"Hey!" The girl with the staff shouted at the trio that were trying to make their escape. "Don't think you can just run off like that! Get back here!" When the three didn't stop running, she started to make her way towards them. Kicking off her feet the woman launched herself into a quick dash.
She probably would have caught up with the trio before they managed to turn the corner, but a blast of lightning that scorched the ground in front of her forced her to stop moving. Her gaze soon traveled towards the person responsible for keeping her from reaching the three who had run away.
"Sorry bitch," Hikari said, her hands crackling as she channeled lightning through them, "but they're not your opponent. I am. Sekirei number eleven, Hikari."
"Tch," the woman in the sleeveless kimono tsked. "Very well then, I'll just have to deal with you before I get them." She spun her staff around her hand, twirling it about her body. Her movements were so fluid and quick that all Hikari could see was a blur. "I'm Sekirei number one-hundred and three, Juusa. Remember the name of the one who defeated you."
"The only one who's going to be defeated here is you!" Hikaru angrily raised a fist into the air and shook it at the other woman. Ominous sparks of lightning struck the ground and left black scorch marks on the surface.
Tsukiumi made several quick hops backwards, using her powerful legs to leap at least a meter with each "step" made. While she was not a physical type Sekirei like Musubi or one of the other fist or leg types, or even as strong as a weapons type like the one she was currently fighting, she was still a Sekirei and her body was still enhanced to levels far beyond those of a humans. She even had the advantage of being a single digit. While she had not been blessed with super strength or speed, she was still more physically powerful than the average double-digit Sekirei.
Of course, Haihane was not just any double-digit. She was a member of the Discipline Squad and had undergone a lot more enhancements than the average double-digit like Musubi had.
The woman in question swooped down from the sky like an avenging angel, her fluttering cloak made this vision of a fallen angel descending to exact revenge on the person who had wronged them feel even more authentic. Not even a second after Tsukiumi had jumped, the blue Sekirei crashed into the ground where the blond-haired water user had been standing. Her clawed hand dug deeply into the concrete, penetrating the dense and sturdy material like it wasn't even there.
Realizing she had missed, Haihane pulled the claws of her gauntlet covered hand out of the ground and turned to face Tsukiumi, who was already preparing her attack.
Proving her worth as one of the first nine Sekirei to be released, Tsukiumi reacted quickly. Her left hand shot up, palm pointed towards Haihane. Calling out the name of her technique caused a large wave of water to burst forth almost as if it were being summoned from the nether and rush towards Haihane with the intent of blasting her into the nearest building.
Unfortunately for Tsukiumi, defeating Haihane was not going to be that easy. Despite her sluggish and lackadaisical appearance and personality, she was actually quite quick. Long before the rushing tide of water reached her, the so-called Blue Sekirei leapt into the air. Her powerful thigh muscles carried her far above the raging torrent of water down below, which tore apart the street she had been standing on with ease and sent large chunks of debris blasting down the thoroughfare. By the time the water had finished rushing over the spot she had been stationed there was a large trench that had been created due to the constant pressure of the incredibly powerful blast of water eroding the pavement and a good portion of the ground underneath it.
Haihane didn't waste time gawking at the destruction visited upon the earth down below. She had seen Karasuba at work, and while the attack her enemy had just used was certainly powerful and destructive, it was nothing compared to what the Black Sekirei could do.
Her giant leap off the ground took her several feet backwards. With her body flipping and twisting in mid-air, Haihane was able to plant her feet on the side of a building. She did not stay there for very long. Using the wall as a sort of kick off, the Sekirei with the gauntlet covered claw launched herself at Tsukiumi with incredible speed. The water using Sekirei's eyes widened slightly when she saw her enemy coming at her with one thought on her mind.
Her surprise did not last long. Her wide eyes narrowing into a fierce glare filled with determination, Tsukiumi made a swiping motion with her hand.
From her hand a crescent shaped wave of water formed. It flew through the air at incredible speed. Haihane's eyes widened as she saw the attack coming her way. There was very little time to do anything against the incoming wave. With her options practically zero, the gauntlet wielder realized the only thing she really could do was take the attack head on and whether the storm. With that in mind, she raised her gauntlet covered arms in front of her face to try and protect herself from the worst of the damage.
Then the crescent of water struck.
Haihane was sent flying further into the sky as the crescent blade of water tried to sheer her in half. Thankfully, Sekirei were made out of tough stuff. She was more than strong enough to withstand an attack of this level. And even if she wasn't, the gauntlet on her hand was made out of a very special kind of alloy with unique properties. It was more than durable enough to withstand the crescent blade of water.
Gritting her teeth, Haihane pushed against the crescent blade as it continued trying to eviscerate her. With a loud shout of effort, she finally managed to push the water blade's trajectory enough that it slipped by her. As the crescent disappeared into the everlasting sky, Haihane fell back towards the ground. The moment she landed it was to hear a loud shout from Tsukiumi.
Turning her head to her left, she saw a large raging dragon composed entirely of water towering over her like something from a Godzilla movie. Haihane's eyes widened. The monstrous looking creature speeding towards her like a raging hurricane was at least four times larger than she was and ten times longer. It rushed towards her, tearing the ground apart with impunity, its mouth open in a roar.
"Talons of Execution!"
With a battle cry, Haihane called out the name of her attack. At the same time she thrust both of her gauntlet covered hands forward just as the dragon smashed into her head first.
The water was split down the middle as Haihane enhanced her gauntlets cutting power with her own Sekirei powers. The tips of her claws began to glow brightly as the water parted around her, traveling several meters on either side before splashing against the ground with a loud rumble. When the water dragon finally dissipated, Haihane looked behind her to see the devastation wrought by Tsukiumi's attack.
Her eyes widened. While the water dragon had been split in half that did not mean it didn't cause a lot of damage. There were two very large, very deep craters gouged into the concrete. Each crater was about twice as large as she was.
"Hmph! Of course!" Tsukiumi scoffed as she flung her blond hair over her shoulder. With her feet spread shoulder width apart, her hands on her hips and her chest thrust out, the water using Sekirei gave the very image of a haughty princess. "I am the strongest, after all."
"Yes! That is correct! I am the strongest Sekirei!"
"Hmhmhmhm...hehehehehe...she thinks...she's the strongest..."
"Are you laughing at me!?"
"Stop laughing, dammit!" Angry, Tsukiumi stomped her foot on the ground. It would be inaccurate to say she looked mildly put out. The blond woman was practically steaming. "How dare you laugh at me! Grrr! I'll show you!"
Before Tsukiumi could actually show Haihane how angry she was, a loud explosion sounded out nearby. Along with the explosion came a deep and violent rumbling as the earth shook with a fierceness that had most of the inhabitants running around in a panic...more than they already were from the explosions and super-powered battles at any rate.
The explosion also served to knock both Tsukiumi and Haihane cleanly off their feet.
Lying on the ground as she tried to regain her bearings, Tsukiumi looked off into the distance where a large cloud of dust was slowly rising into the air.
"W-what the hell was that!?"
A little ways away from were Haihane and Tsukiumi were ducking it out, Musubi was finding herself in the fight of her life. Loud bangs rang out as she and her opponent fought each other. Each time their fists met they created a shockwave that caused the air around them to burst. Their fists were mere blurs as the two wove their way around each other, constantly moving and seeking that opening that would allow them to win.
A fist came screaming in at her as her opponent launched a straight jab at her face. Musubi's hair whipped about her with reckless abandon as she dodged the attack by stepping to the side. As the fist flew past her face, Musubi reached out with a hand and attempted to grab it. If she could just yank Benitsubasa towards her...
Unfortunately it was not to be. Benitsubasa was far too experienced to be caught off guard with such a simple tactic. When Musubi's hand came up to grab her forearm, the pink-haired fighters other hand rose up to meet it. She smacked the arm away, then with the same arm, launched a blindingly fast punch towards Musubi's face. The attack missed, but only because Musubi had stumbled backwards when her own arm was knocked off course.
"Did you really think such a simple grapple would work on me?" Benitsubasa asked with a glare on her visage, as if she were insulted by the mere fact that Musubi would attempt such a pathetic technique against her. "Such a simple trick won't work on me."
"Wow...you're so strong," Musubi was wearing one of the biggest, brightest smiles anyone would ever see. Unlike Benitsubasa, who was scowling and looked like she had swallowed something vile, the brown-haired fist-fighter in Shrine Maiden garb appeared to be having the time of her life. "I've never fought such a strong opponent before! This is so exciting!"
Benitsubasa stared at the young woman with the largest tits she had ever seen, a large drop of sweat trickling down the side of her head. "You...really are an idiot, aren't you?"
"Hey!" Musubi's cheeks puffed up in childish anger. "That's the second time you've called me an idiot!"
"That's because you are an idiot!"
"I am not!"
"You are too!"
"Are―gggrrraaa! This is so stupid!" Benitsubasa glared at the girl in frustration. The idiot of a Sekirei had to be the dumbest, most annoying person she had ever met! And she knew Haihane! "That's it! I'm going to pound you into the ground!"
"Does that mean we're going to be fighting some more?" Musubi asked with a brilliant sparkle in her eyes. She looked like Christmas had just come early. "Yay!"
Benitsubasa's right eye twitched violently for several seconds before she just decided to ignore the girl's stupidity. She was better off just pretending the last few seconds of this conversation never happened.
Bending her knees, Benitsubasa blasted off the ground with an earth shattering bang. She put so much force into her kick-start that the pavement she had been standing on cratered to form two small, perfectly shaped indents of her shoes.
Her form moved in a blur, her body traveling so fast that no human would have any hope of seeing her. Musubi, as a Sekirei, was more than capable of seeing her, even if her body was nothing but a blurry outline on account of how quick she was.
She was on Musubi within seconds. Before the vivacious fist-fighter could even think of launching her own attack, Benitsubasa struck out at her with a right hook.
The fist connected with Musubi's face before just as quickly retracting. The kinetic build up of energy caused the number forty-eight's head to snap back. With a jerk, Musubi stumbled backwards, dazed and frazzled by the powerful punch. There was a slight ringing in her ears and she could sworn stars had exploded in her vision for a second.
Not wanting to give Musubi any time to recover, Benitsubasa began launching a dozen combination attacks in just as many seconds. A jab to the stomach had the brown-haired Sekirei nearly doubling over. She didn't, but only because of the cross she received to her face, which caused her entire torso to nearly bend backwards as her head snapped up.
Over and over again Musubi found herself on the receiving end of a number of powerful attacks that connected with her body at blinding speeds. She tried to guard against the other Sekirei's vicious assault, and even managed to succeed on occasion, but it was becoming increasingly clear who the better fighter was. Despite the training she had received at the hands of Miya she still wasn't at the level of this girl.
Not that this meant anything to Musubi. There was no way she would let herself lose to her junior. Especially not since Naruto-Sama was counting on her. For him, she had to win this.
Fortunately she did have at least one technique that she might be able to use. It was one of the only techniques Naruto-Sama had been able to teach her thus far, though he promised he would begin training her soon. Now if only she could find an opening to use it.
Doing her best to keep the pink-haired girl in her vision―which was much harder than it looked because everything was beginning to look like one big blur―Musubi did everything she could to keep from getting her face pounded in. She received a swift jab to the shoulder, but managed to avoid the bolo punch to her face that would have more than likely knocked her out cold. A cross nearly did her in, and it probably would have had she not seen it coming and brought her left arm to bare in order to block the punch. Despite managing to get her arm up in time, she was still sent skidding several feet backwards simply due to the amount of power her adversary put into the blow.
"You're pretty sturdy, I'll give you that," Benitsubasa said, her eyes narrowing into a glare as she stared the naive Sekirei down shaking out her now sore arm. She was sure the girl would be feeling that in the morning. At least she would if Benitsubasa had any intention of letting the girl go. "All the other Sekirei I've dealt with would have been deactivated by now."
"I told you before, I won't let myself lose to my junior!" Musubi declared as she got into her own fighting stance: a sloppy approximation of an orthodox stance, with her left foot further in front of her right foot, thus presenting her weaker side to Benitsubasa. "I'm going to win!"
Benitsubasa snorted as she took in the girls fighting stance. "Not with the crappy brawler style you won't." The pin-haired female smoothly slid into her own combat stance. It was a Southpaw stance, which was a mirror image to the orthodox stance with the exception that southpaw led with the right hand and right foot as opposed to the left. "You're nowhere near strong enough to beat me."
Musubi puffed up her cheeks and glared at the other girl. Because she was so naive and childish, the glare ended up looking too cute for it to actually be effective, but that was neither here nor there.
"I will beat you! Just watch me!"
"Keep dreaming, loser!"
With a burst of incredible speed, Bentsubasa launched herself at Musubi. She was next to the girl in a split second, so fast that Musubi had to blink before she realized her opponent was stepping into her guard. Her eyes widening in shock, the bustier Sekirei of the two tried to backpedal to put some distance between them. Too bad Benitsubasa wouldn't let her get too far.
Sticking to the girl like glue, the member of the Discipline Squad launched a straight jab with her right hand, or so it seemed. Musubi didn't even realize her mistake when she raised her arm to block until all the air was knocked from her lungs as something plowed into her stomach with enough force to launch her away from her opponent. Gasping in asphyxiating pain, Musubi stumbled backwards, her hands automatically going to her stomach.
Doing that proved to be a rookie mistake, one she would soon regret.
With her guard no longer up, Benitsubasa managed to land several powerful blows to her opponent's face. Two right-handed jabs followed by a powerful cross had the girl seeing stars. Musubi tried to gather her wits about her, but the other girl didn't appear to have any intention of letting her recover. Several more powerful blows impacted against various locations of Musubi's body. Each one was powerful enough to rattle her bones and force her to stumble back.
Shaking her head, her breathing heavy, Musubi blinked as sweat began stinging her eyes. Benitsubasa was coming in again, and fast. Two steps brought the pink-haired girl into her guard. She raised her arm as her opponent sent another jab at her. The loud thudding of flesh meeting flesh was drowned out by the powerful shockwave the block generated. Musubi's hair was uplifted and whipped about her face, waving about in front of her eyes.
Perhaps that was why she didn't see Benitsubasa's fist come screaming at her. Regardless, she certainly felt it when that same fist dug fiercely into her stomach.
Pain flaring like she'd been struck by a bolt of lightning in the stomach, Musubi doubled over the fist imbedded in her gut. Sweat flew off her hair as it made a forward whipping motion, and bile and a bit of blood was coughed up as a result of the attack causing blood to well up in her throat.
"Do you get it now?" asked Benitsubasa, her fist still implanted into Musubi's gut. She glared down at the naïve Sekirei. "You're no match for me."
"You're the one who doesn't get it," Musubi coughed. Benitsubasa's eyes widened. She tried to pull her fist out of Musubi's stomach, but the girl had grabbed onto her arm with both hands and was holding onto it in a vice grip. Despite it being clear that Benitsubasa was a much better fighter, it was equally clear that Musubi was physically stronger. And while the Sekirei with pink hair was glaring at the girl with wide eyes, Musubi looked up from where she was doubled over, blood trickling down her lips and a surprisingly bright smile on her face. "I refuse to lose to my junior!"
Musubi's left foot slid back so as to give her better traction. Her right foot bent and her torso began to twist as she liberally lifted Benitsubasa off her feet. Unable to do anything in time, the pinked haired member of the Discipline squad not only found herself being hauled off the ground, but also spinning in a dizzying circle as Musubi began to spin around and around like some kind of out of control carousel.
Exactly three full rotations and a loud shout later, Musubi let go of Benitsubasa's arm. With a surprised cry her opponent was sent flying high into the air. With the amount of strength she had put into her swing, the apex of Benitsubasa's ascent was far above even some of the taller buildings that towered above the ground.
Not wanting to lose her advantage, Musubi's legs bunched underneath her as she crouched down. Her muscles tensed before, with a loud shout, she launched herself into the air like some kind of human rocket. As gravity began to take affect and Benitsubasa started falling back to earth, Musubi continued climbing towards the girl, her left fist extended.
Despite being in the air, Benitsubasa was not defenseless. Using her incredibly strong arms and liberal use of her abdominal muscles, she twisted her body around so that she was facing Musubi, who was coming at her like superman.
The two soon crashed into each other. Musubi's fist still hyper-extended in a punch. It was only after several seconds in which time seemed to stand still that she realized Benitsubasa was not injured by her attack. In fact, the girl had managed to catch it in the palm of her hand, though the wince she was giving at least indicated that catching the attack hurt.
"Didn't I tell you..." Benitubasa grit her teeth as she struggled to keep a firm grip on Musubi's fist. How strong was this girl? "There's no way you can beat me!" With a loud roar, she launched a fist at her opponents face. However, because she was in the air, the attack was not as effective as it would be otherwise. Musubi was able to dodge the blow by tilting her head.
"And I told you, I'm not losing to my junior!" Using her own powerful stomach muscles, Musubi began to twist her body around. "HAAA!" With an exertion of effort, the busty young woman threw her opponent back towards the ground. As Benitsubasa soared through the air, her body coming closer and closer to the earth, she managed to twist and reposition herself so that when she hit the pavement she landed on her feet.
The pavement cracked underneath her feet as she struck the ground. Her knees bent to absorb the shock of the impact. Several spiderweb-like cracks spread out from where she landed.
A battle cry alerted her to the fact that she was still in battle. Looking up, Benitsubasa caught sight of Musubi descending towards her, her right fist pulled back into her torso. Her actions made it clear what she was hoping to accomplish with this. Well, Benitsubasa had no intention of letting the other woman hit her with an attack, especially one so obvious and easy to dodge.
Several hops backwards took Benitsubasa nearly two meters from where she had been previously standing. She looked up a second later to see Musubi descend on the spot she had been standing. The large explosion of earth, pavement and debris flew out from the center of impact, clogging up the area in dust and making it impossible for Benitsubasa to see anything. Large cracks spread along the street, outpacing the expanding cloud of dust.
Benitsubasa glared into the makeshift smokescreen. It only lasted for a second, however. When the dust cleared and revealed the large crater Musubi's attack had created, her eyes widened in surprise. That crater had to be at least four meters wide! And she couldn't even see the top of her opponent's head, which meant it wasn't just wide, but also deep.
"What the hell!?"
She hadn't even used a special attack of any kind to create that crater! Granted, she had been falling from the sky at near terminal velocity, but Benitsubasa knew that even with that there was no way she herself could have created such a large crater without using one of her special earth attacks. Just how strong was this stupid bimbo?
A hand reached out from within the crater and grabbed a hold of the ledge. A second hand soon appeared, followed by a head, and then a body, as Musubi slowly proceeded to pull herself out of the large hole in the ground her attack had made.
Upon finally exiting the giant several meter crater, Musubi sat down on her backside and began rubbing her sore hand, which had swelled up enough to almost look like a balloon. That had really hurt. Maybe she wasn't ready to start making craters like her landlady...or maybe she should just not pound her fist into the ground after falling from a height of several dozen meters.
She was so intent on soothing her poor hand that she didn't even notice the way Benitsubasa was glaring at her. The younger looking of the two (on account of her breasts being so much smaller) stared at the other Sekirei for several seconds, as if waiting for the idiot to finally remember she was still in combat. When it became abundantly obvious that Musubi had pretty much forgotten about her, the pink-haired Discipline Squad member exploded.
"Oi! Did you forget we're supposed to be fighting!?"
Musubi looked up, her eyes blinking as she focused on Benitsubasa. She put a finger to her lips as a contemplative expression crossed her face...or at least as contemplative as someone like Musubi could look.
"Oh yeah," she mumbled, "I almost forgot, we're supposed to be fighting." Knocking her knuckles against the top of her head, Musubi poked her tongue out from between her lips. "Sorry about that."
Benitsubasa palmed her face. "What an idiot..." She had never met someone as dumb as Musubi. Ever.
Straightening out again, Benitsubasa fixed a narrow eyed glare on the girl. "This battle has gone on long enough! I'm ending this right here and now!"
Musubi stood to her feet. When she stood, she gingerly flexed her hand and, upon determining that she could still fight with it, focused a look of determination on her opponent. "Good! In that case I'm going to finish this fight too! I won't lose to you!"
Benitsubasa's right eyebrow began twitching and a vein pulsed on her forehead as she stared daggers at the busty brunette. She didn't say anything though, she was through using words. It was time to end this!
Raising her clenched right hand, power began crackling from her core and up her arm. A deep earthen glow covered her fist.
Calling out her technique with a loud shout, the girl pounded her fist against the pavement.
At first, nothing seemed to happen. A second past, then another. It was only after the third second that something happened. The world exploded violently. From the point where her fist impacted against the ground, a massive and violent outpouring of energy caused the ground to literally burst outwards like someone had planted several plastic explosives underneath the ground and detonated them.
The large blast of green energy tore up the ground around it as it traversed the space between Benitsubasa and Musubi at speed. The brown-haired Sekirei wearing the shrine maiden outfit was unable to do anything as the destructive power smashed into her with all the force of a level five hurricane.
"It looks like this is where we part ways," Uzume told Kuno and Haruka with a cheery grin. How she could grin so broadly when in such a situation was beyond the Ashikabi/Sekirei pair. The girl just seemed way too cheerful for someone who was essentially sneaking a couple of wanted criminals out of the country.
The group was standing in front of a large crate, which would be loaded onto a cargo ship tomorrow. There was a small doorway that could be opened to enter the crate. It was currently unlocked and wide open, allowing those outside to see the interior, which looked like a very sparse bedroom complete with fuuton, table and a fridge filled with enough basic foodstuff to last two people for a week.
"Yeah, looks like it," Haruka said. His left hand came up and absently rubbed the back of his neck as he looked at the young woman with an awkward air about him. "Listen, could you tell that Naruto guy I said thanks for getting us out of Shinto Teito?"
"I could," Uzume grinned mischievously, "But I don't think he'd really care."
"Probably not," Haruka grimaced, "That guy seriously confuses me. One day he says he won't help Kuno and I, then the next he changes his mind and decides to help us escape. I really don't get him."
"Yeah," Uzume snickered, "To tell the truth, I don't think even bro knows why he agreed to help you. Anyway," deciding a change of topic was in order Uzume stuck her hand in between her cleavage. Haruka turned red while Kuno began crying in envy. Uzume ignored the two as she rummaged around. "Let's see...I know it's in here some...ah ha! Here it is!" The busty cloth using Sekirei pulled her hand out of her cleavage, as well as a folder of documents that came with the hand. She handed the documents over to Haruka, whose blush had yet to recede. "This is for you."
The young man, in an attempt to get over his embarrassment, opened the folder to see what was inside.
His eyes widened in surprise.
"These are passports!" Not just passports, but also alternate identification, a bank account in his new ID's name and a Drivers Licensee. Everything someone needed to restart their life was located inside that folder.
Naruto had literally given them a new lease on life with this.
"I...I really don't understand that guy at all," Haruka murmured as he flipped through the folder. There was even contact information letting him know who would be meeting him on the other side complete with physical description and what Haruka should do when the man found him. "He acts so adamant about not helping us and then he does something like this."
"You're probably better off not trying to understand bro and just accept the help," Uzume told him informatively. "You'll be better off that way...and it's less likely to cause you a massive headache."
"You're probably right," Haruka mumbled.
"I'm definitely right" Uzume replied adamantly. Just as she spoke an explosion occurred outside. Kuno screamed as the lights began flickering. "Damn, looks like those four are really getting into it." The cloth user looked at both Haruka and Kuno. "You two should hurry up and get in there. I'll meet up with the bondage twins and help them drive off Mikogami's forces."
"Right." Haruka and Kuno quickly stepped into the crate. The young man turned back to look at Uzume and raised a hand. "Thanks again," he said before shutting the door closed.
With nothing left for her to do there, Uzume turned around to face the entrance where she could see several explosions and bursts of blue lightning coming from outside.
"Ha...those two..." Uzume sighed, "Looks like I've got my work cut out for me."
Hikari growled in anger as she shot another large blast of lightning at her opponent. Unfortunately, the girl with the staff was not only quite nimble, but somehow seemed capable of negating her lightning by rotating her staff at high speeds. Just as the lightning was about to reach the other Sekirei, said female spun the staff in front of her. The long, cylindrical object moved so quickly it was nothing but a mere blur in front of her. The lightning struck the staff, only to bounce off harmlessly and strike the ground around the girl.
"Grr! Stop blocking my attack!"
"Yeah, that's not going to be happen," Juusa declared as she spun her staff around some more before setting herself up in defensive stance. "And you're an idiot for thinking I would just let you attack me."
"Did you just call me an idiot!?" Hikari raged, "I'll show you an idiot! Eat this!"
While Hikaru was trying to ineffectively deal damage to the staff wielding Sekirei who expertly twirled her weapon around and deflected each bolt sent her way, Hibiki was having her own problems.
Sixteen small spheres came soaring towards her as the girl that did the throwing jumped back several feet to put some distance between them. Each small sphere was destroyed by a very precise blast of lightning. Upon each sphere being blasted into subatomic particles they exploded violently. Hibiki sent several more bolts of lightning at the girl, which barreled through the smoke the explosions created, but the lithe figure dodged each blast with ease and then lobbed several more of those explosives at her.
"Tch!" Hibiki grunted as she fired off enough lightning to fry all the explosives in a single shot. "This is getting me nowhere." Every time she sent a blast of lightning at the girl, she would either dodge or throw those explosives, of which she seemed to have an unlimited supply of. Worse still, whenever those spheres exploded they created a powerful smokescreen that made it impossible for her to see through.
Not even bothering to try and see through the large cloud of dust and smoke Hibiki sent a powerful blast of lightning at the other Sekirei's last known location. The smokescreen parted as the lightning blew through it. However, when it got to the other side, the lightning simply continued on to strike the nearest building, the wall of which was destroyed by the powerful attack. The girl she had been battling was nowhere to be seen.
"Dang, where did she go?"
Hibiki frowned, her brows furrowing intently as she searched for her query. While trying to determine where the Sekirei she was fighting was located a shadow came upon her from above. Looking up, the Sekirei in the S&M costume was granted the sight of the girl she had been fighting descending from the sky and prepared to launch her attack. Situated between each of her fingers were four small explosive spheres, which she soon threw at Hibiki.
Reacting with a quickness reminiscent of the very lightning she wielded, Hibiki began backpedaling. The explosive spheres struck the ground with earth shattering force. Six different explosions combine into one, the blast of which created a large shockwave as all the air was pushed outwards to make room for the giant conflagration the detonation caused.
Raising her arm to her face, Hibiki winced as several large chunks of pavement bashed against her arm and body. Those were sure to leave a couple of bruises come the next morning.
"You've left yourself open!"
Eyes widening behind her arm, Hibiki looked past the appendage she had used to shield herself to see her opponent leaping over the smoking remains of the explosion. Yosuga tossed several more explosives at the lightning user, who bit back a curse as she sent her lightning out in a large wave even as she began jumping back to put some distance between her and the soon to be explosions.
A good thing too because less than a second later, the spheres, which had been nearly upon her, detonated with concussive force. Hibiki did her best to ignore the heat from the blast and focus most of her attention on her enemy...
...Or at least she would have...if it weren't for the fact that her opponent was currently wrapped up in several sheets of cloth like something out of an S&M movie.
"What the heck?" Hibiki stared at the girl as she struggled and squirmed in surprise. It was only after several seconds of staring that she realized there was someone behind her.
"By the veil of my contract, my Ashikabi's nightmare will be dispelled."
There was a bright glow from the base of Yosuga's neck that lasted for several seconds. In that time, before the glow vanished, the Sekirei's movements slowed. As her eyes began to dim, Yosuga called out to her master in desperation, "No...Mikogami...sama..." her voice whispered pleadingly before her head dropped and her body went limp.
"Hey there," Uzume peered at Hibiki from around the body now in the grasp of her cloth, "Looks like I made it just in time."
"He heh, not a problem." Uzume grinned brightly. "Now lets get that sister of yours and get out of here. We'll take the deactivated Sekirei with us. Wouldn't want MBI crawling all over this place and finding Haruka and Kuo."
The two suddenly paused as a loud wail of "it's Kuno!" resounded from the building Haruka and Kuno were in.
"Did you hear something?" asked Hibiki.
"Nope. Not a thing."
It hurt everywhere. Every single muscle fiber, bone, bit of flesh and organ was screaming at her. Her flesh felt like it had been flayed alive. Hundreds of cuts littered her body, small enough that on their own they would not be too detrimental, but the sheer amount littering her flesh was more than just a few. Her bones felt like they had all been broken at the exact same time, healed, and then broken again. Her organs, particularly the one that pumped blood through her body, felt like they had been compressed by several tons of concrete closing in on all sides, or if she had been dropped in the Marriott trench. And her muscles, her muscles were crying out in agony, like someone had taken a hot knife and used it to slowly carve through her muscles with torturous slowness.
Her ears were ringing loudly. The noise bounced around her head, giving her a headache unlike anything she had experienced before. It was a wonder she could even hear the sound of footsteps over the din of that loud ringing.
Blinking several times, Musubi's unfocused eyes cleared enough that she could see more then just a bunch of vague blurs and outlines. And what she could see was a girl, a familiar looking girl with pink hair and pink eyes. This girl...Musubi knew this girl, even if the name escaped her at the moment.
"Not so tough now, are you?" Benitsubasa asked as she stared down at the girl laying limply in the large crater her last attack had caused. The crater was at least four meters across and two meters deep. She crossed her arms and gave the busty shrine maiden a superior smirk. "I can't believe a wimp like you actually thought they could beat me."
"What was that?" When Musubi didn't say anything, or maybe couldn't say anything, Benitsubasa glared at her. "Hey! I'm talking to you!" Growling in anger when the girl's mumbled reply didn't reach her ears, the pink-haired Sekirei swore before sliding down the crater. She skidded to a stop right next to the brunette and leaned her torso over so that she was directly in front of Musubi's eyes. "What was that you said just now?"
"I said...I'm not...not a wimp..."
"Tch!" Benitsubasa scowled. "Still think you're hot shit, huh? Well, I know just how to change that!" Without warning, Benitsubasa kicked Musubi in the stomach, not just ellicting a scream from the busty Sekirei, but also forcing her onto her stomach. She then jumped into the air, her fist raised near her head. "This is the end for you!"
The incredible pain caused by having a fist smashed directly into her crest was intense but short-lived. Not even a moment after the unfathomable pain struck did it begin to disappear. In fact, now that she thought about it, everything else was disappearing too, not just her sense of touch, but also her sense of smell and vision. She couldn't...she had to...
Her last thoughts were of her Ashikabi. And then everything went dark.
Like the swelling of the ocean water rose up from the ground in front of Tsukiumi as she pulled the very water molecules from the air to help form her attack. The wave, which took only seconds to form, was at least twice as tall as Haihane and several times as wide. The moment it was fully formed, it rushed towards the Blue Sekirei like a tidal wave of absolute destruction.
Many of the surrounding buildings on either side of the street not only became drenched in water, but several were also felled as the wave crashed into them, eroding the walls with several thousand gallons worth of high speed water pressure. These buildings toppled to the ground with a loud crash, and would have kicked up massive amounts of dust were it not for the water washing them away.
Haihane leapt into the air, over the wave as it descended upon her. Using the many chunks of wall from the destroyed buildings as springboards, she hopped across the wave and towards Tsukiumi who, upon seeing what her adversary was doing glared at the woman.
"Why won't you go down!?"
Haihane did not answer, of course, at least not verbally. Upon reaching the last of the brick walls she could use as a springboard, the gauntlet wielding Sekirei leapt high into the air, at least twenty feet. Her body spun like a top as she extended both clawed hands and descended upon Tsukiumi like some kind of human sized dradle.
Seeing the woman bearing down on her from above, the water wielder sent several very small, compressed balls of water at the other Sekirei in the hopes of deterring her from her current path. Despite the numerous bullets hitting their mark, they did not even leave a scratch and merely splashed harmlessly against Haihane who was spinning so fast the for from the water that struck her was negated. She continued descending towards Tsukiumi, whose eyes widened a bit before narrowing into a teeth bearing glare.
Backpedaling, Tsukiumi was able to avoid getting struck by Haihane's gauntlet covered hands. The ground wasn't so lucky. When Haihane struck the earth, a terrible, ear-splitting sound erupted as the claws on her gauntlet sheered through the ground like it was made of paper. As Haihane stood to her full height after realizing her attack had missed, Tsukiumi caught a glimpse of the damage done to the street.
Eight large, deep slash marks had been gouged into the pavement. The ease at which those claw marks had been created was startling. If those had hit her...she shook her head. It was best not to think about that.
Raising her left hand, Tsukiumi made a swiping motion.
A crescent-moon shaped blade of water raced towards Haihane at speed. The Blue Sekirei did not run, but stood her ground and dug her heels in, both figuratively and literally. Raising her gauntlets into the air above her head, she brought them down just as the crescent blade of water reached her.
With impunity, Haihane sliced through the crescent shaped water attack with ease. The water, unable to hold its form and consistency after being so thoroughly sliced apart by eight different blades, dissipated and splashed against the ground behind her.
"Grr! Quit dodging and blocking my attacks!" Tsukiumi glared at her opponent. So far this battle had been a stalemate of the worst kind. None of her attacks seemed to work. The larger, more powerful attacks were simply dodged while her smaller and more concentrated attacks were cut apart by those gauntlets. In return, Haihane was unable to land a single blow on Tsukiumi, who had so far proven to be very adept at keeping her distance.
"Uhuhuhu...I think I'd rather keep dodging."
"Fine!" Tsukiumi growled. "Then let us see you dodge this! Hydra Blast!"
A rush of torrential water sped towards Haihane. As it blasted its way across the street, the water began to take shape; a large, reptilian head formed, followed by a streamlined body with two clawed front legs and two bulkier but just as deadly looking hind-legs. The body grew smaller upon reaching the back, from which a long, pointed tail emerged. The reptilian sea beast raced towards Haihane, the roar of the rushing waters that composed it sounding almost like the angered roar of the very creature it was molded to look like.
Haihane's eyes widened as her entire vision was filled with the giant monster.
"That...is one big snake."
It wasn't a snake, but Haihane didn't know much about Greek Mythology. All she knew was there was a giant monstrosity gunning for her.
Leaping into the air, the Blue Sekirei was just barely able to dodge the head that lunged at her. It missed her, but ended up hitting the street instead. It tore through the already destroyed ground and pavement without a hint of resistance.
Letting gravity pull her back down to earth, Haihane lashed out with her gauntlets, slicing into the neck of the creature. With a grunt of exertion, the Sekirei with shock white hair managed to behead the monster.
Not that this did much good. Almost as soon as the head was chopped off, two more heads grew in its place. The two heads swerved around for a moment, as if they were sentient creatures taking in their new surroundings, before their gaze landed on Haihane.
The Blue Sekirei barely had time to dodge as one of the two heads charged her. She managed to roll out of the way, but just barely. Seconds after vacating her position the head smashed into the ground and destroyed even more of the already ruined earth.
Just because she missed getting struck by the first head did not mean she was out of harms way yet. Not even a second after dodging the first head by rolling along the ground did the second head crash into her. Unprepared for such an attack, the only action Haihane could take was to raise both of her gauntlet covered hands in the shape of an X across her chest. Seconds later the attack crashed into her with the power of a maelstrom.
Haihane's body slid along the ground as the reptilian head did everything in its power to crush her. Because much of the street was destroyed and the ground beneath her was wet thanks to Tsukiumi's water attacks, her feet created deep trenches in the muddy earth. She continued sliding and getting unwillingly pushed back by the powerful creature Tsukiumi had created.
A roar from above alerted the blue Sekirei to another problem coming her way. Looking up her eyes widened when she saw the second Hydra head bearing down on her from above. Unable to dodge thanks to the first head threatening to blast her into a wall should it be given the opportunity, Haihane could do nothing as the second head fell on top of her.
Tsukiumi watched as the two-pronged attack crashed into her opponent, one from above the other from the front. Colossal amounts of water exploded out in all directions as the attack made it impossible for the hydra to keep its form and consistency. The water, unable to remain where it was, rushed outwards from the center of the collision point. When it reached her, the water was forced to divert from it's path as Tsukiumi used her powers over the water to force it away from her. The water split, flowing around her on either side and leaving both herself ad the ground she was standing on completely dry.
When all of the water had flowed by, Tsukiumi was finally able to see her opponent. Haihane was lying face down on the ground, her body indented into the mud. She was spread eagle, her arms and legs splayed out on either side. She was completely inert.
"Hmph!" Tsukiumi huffed in satisfaction at seeing her opponent finally beaten. With haughty elegance, she flicked her long blond hair over her shoulder, set her hands on her hips and glared at the downed Sekirei. "It was foolish to think you could beat me, the strongest Sekirei in the Sekirei Plan!"
Whirling around, Tsukiumi began to walk away. There was no more need for her to stay there.
"Cough. Cough. Cough."
She froze after only making a couple dozen steps. Turning her head to glance behind her, Tsukiumi's eyes widened.
Her body twitching like some kind of marionette whose strings were being jerked around by an amateur puppeteer, Haihane slowly began to move. Her hands twitched, the muscles in her arm spasming as she pushed herself off the ground. She slipped a couple of times, causing her to face plant in the mud. But each time this happened she would just wipe the mud off her face and continue pushing herself up. Eventually, the Blue Sekirei managed stand up on her own two feet, though her legs were wobbling like nothing else. It was only due to her incredible willpower that she was even conscious.
"How are you still standing!?"
"Ha...ha...that attack...it was powerful..."
Haihane breathed heavily as she turned to face her adversary. Her body was hunched over, more so than usual, and her arms were hanging limply at her sides. Much of her clothing was gone by this point. In fact, only her panties, boots, gauntlets and a little bit of her tattered cloak remained. Her bandages were gone, having been soaked thoroughly enough they had simply dissolved, leaving her breasts exposed to the world.
Her body heaving from the effort she was putting into standing, Haihane looked at Tsukiumi with half-lidded, tired eyes.
"I won't...be defeated...so easily..."
Tsukiumi scowled. "So be it then! This time I will make sure you stay down!"
Despite her words, Tsukiumi would never actually get a chance to follow through with her threat, for in that moment both she and Haihane were crushed by an overwhelming force the likes of which neither of them had ever felt. Along with the pressure came a sickening sensation that nearly had them both vomiting.
If asked, Tsukiumi would be unable to truly describe how it felt. It was like all the world's hatred had suddenly invaded her body. And it wasn't just hatred she felt either, but pain, never ending anguish coupled with a sense of indescribable loss. Were it not for the bond she shared as a Sekirei, Tsukiumi would have never realized where this feeling was coming from.
As Haihane fell flat on her face, drool leaking from her mouth as her mind found itself unable to cope with the incredible sense of hatred combined with the overwhelming pressure that had been pushing down on her, Tsukiumi's head turned in the direction she could feel where this power, this loss, this unending, undeniable hatred was coming from.
What was going on?
The moment Naruto's Kubikiboucho met Karasuba's blade, a powerful shockwave erupted from between them. The wind buffeted Karasuba's hair, her ponytail whipped around behind her in a frenzy. Her crazed grin was easily visible on her face as she pushed her katana against Naruto's oversized blade. Sparks flew between them as she stared into the strange purple eyes of her opponent.
"Those are some interesting eyes you've got there," she said. Naruto did not respond to her words. The smile on Karasuba's face widened as her irises flickered to the sword. "Are you overcompensating for something?"
"Wouldn't you like to know," Naruto's eyes remained impassive as he pushed Karasuba away from him. His muscles flexed and his strength increased exponentially, forcing the woman with silver hair to skid backwards for several feet. Dust kicked up in her wake and a slight trench was formed out of the black concrete.
"Ooh, seems like you've got some strength to you," Karasuba gazed at him with half-lidded eyes. Her crazed grin seemed to gain a new level of insanity as she raised her blade near her head. "I hope that means you'll be able to show me a good time!"
Karasuba came at him again, her feet kicking off the ground and pushing her to incredible speeds. Her body became nothing more than a series of flickers as she crossed the distance between them. Naruto had to admit, out of all the Sekirei he'd fought so far, Karasuba was definitely the fastest.
But she was still too slow.
As the woman appeared within his guard, her katana flashing out like greased lightning as it sought to severe his head from his shoulders, Naruto's blade rose to meet it. Kubikiriboucho accepted the attack head on with a loud clang and another shockwave. Seeing her attack had been effectively negated, Karasuba continued her assault with even more ferocity and speed.
Strikes came at Naruto with greater and greater speed as the woman sought to penetrate his defense. She focused primarily on thrusting motions. Each time her the sharp end of her katana was thrust forward, a whistling sound emerged as it literally cut through the air. Naruto avoided being impaled by the many piercing attacks that came his way by making minute adjustments to Kubikiriboucho's position and angle. Whenever an thrust came at him, he simply adjusted the large head cleaver and let the sharp side of Karasuba's katana simply slide off the oversized sword, creating a bright shower of sparks.
As he continued battling defensively, the blond-haired shinobi began to backpedal. Karasuba followed after him relentlessly. The Black Sekirei looked like she was having the time of her life. Naruto was actually positive the woman was getting off on this.
"I hope this isn't the best you can do! I'm just starting to have fun!"
Naruto sighed as he almost gently moved his blade to the left. Karasuba's sword struck the edge of Kubikiriboucho and slid off in a shower of sparks.
He took exactly one step to the left. At the same time the massive sword in his hand came down as Karasuba broke her own rhythm and made a full rotation before bringing her blade up in a diagonal slash that would have carved his flesh from his left hip to his right shoulder. Instead of slicing his flesh, her sword met his in a loud clang as steel clashed against steel.
"...Is just so..."
Deciding to up the ant, Karasuba began to increase the speed of her thrusts until her arm was moving so fast it almost appeared as if her blade was in multiple places at once. It was still too slow, as Naruto proved when he aptly deflected each blow using the minimalist movement approach he had taken to using while defending against her assault.
The heel of his left foot met air as he found himself standing on the very lip of the building they were fighting on. Karasuba came at him again, this time deciding to change things up with a powerful overhand slash. No doubt she was hoping to meet him in a contest of strength.
Instead of letting himself be drawn into a battle for supremacy, Naruto took one last step back and allowed himself to fall off the side of the building. He heard Karasuba's shout of "get back here!" as he dove headfirst towards the ground. When he was only a few feet from bashing his head against the pavement, the immortal shinobi twisted his body around and let his feet strike the ground. Despite the speed at which he had been falling, not even a crack appeared on the pavement. It was a testament to how talented Naruto was at landing lightly on his feet.
Hearing the sound of whistling, Naruto looked up to see Karasuba bearing down on him, her face wearing a rather maniacal looking grin.
Naruto backpedaled several feet as Karasuba crashed into the very spot he'd been standing on. The pavement around her feet shattered, several cracks spread out from the two places where her boots hit the ground. Her legs bent, not only absorbing the shock of the impact but also transferring all that built up kinetic energy to her legs so she could use it to launch herself towards Naruto at incredible speed.
She reached Naruto in seconds. Her blade came screaming in at him.
Reacting with a swiftness that would shock most people, Naruto spun around a full three-hundred and sixty degrees. Kubikiriboucho soared upwards from the bottom left, moving diagonally across his body. It struck Karasuba's katana with a loud "clang!" that was soon followed by the equally powerful "boom!" of a shockwave being unleashed. The attack served not only to block Karasuba's attack, but due to Naruto making the full rotation, it also had enough force put behind it that the katana in the Black Sekirei's hand was knocked backwards, out of position and high overhead.
His opponent was wide open.
At the apex of Naruto's swing, the oversized sword stopped, the blade reversing course and traveling back towards Karasuba in a diagonal overhead slash that would tear her body apart if it connected.
If it connected.
Showing just how quick she was, Karasuba spun to the left and back, avoiding the swing. Her sword was soon coming in to counterattack, a quick, piercing thrust that would impale Naruto through the heart. It was diverted when Naruto brought Kubikiriboucho back up and used the massive head cleaver to deflect the katana away from his heart and over his left shoulder.
The two jumped back after their last exchange, eying the other in interest. While Naruto's visage, what could be seen of it, remained impassive, Karasuba was grinning like a madman.
"You really are good," she complimented. "This is the most fun I've had in ages!"
"I'm so pleased you're enjoying yourself," Naruto said dryly, "You don't know how happy that makes me. Now, if you could hurry up and start attacking me again, that would be appreciated. I've got things to do and I can't accomplish them if you just stand there looking like a lemon."
"So impatient," Karasuba chided, "Don't worry your pretty little head. I have no intention of letting this battle grow cold. Now let's see what else you can do!"
And just like that Karasuba was attacking again, with renewed vigor it seemed. Her swings began coming in harder and faster than they had been. Her moves began to get more elegant and her blade became nothing more than several flashes of light.
As their battle pressed on, Naruto continued analyzing his opponent. Karasuba was a damn good swordswomen. Her moves here fast, elegant and deadly. Her strength and speed were some of the fastest he'd seen so far. There was also something else, something that surprised Naruto, though it probably shouldn't have.
Karasuba was better than him. He was faster, stronger, and had better reflexes, but Karasuba was better at using a sword than he was. The only reason he had yet to actually receive an injury was because his physical prowess was far above hers.
Ah, the benefits of having a regeneration factor that allowed him to train ten times harder than even the strongest of Sekirei.
An overhand strike was blocked by Naruto bringing his sword up from his left hip. The two attacks clashed, but only for a second as Karasuba pushed her blade off her opponents and used the build up of energy to launch her body in a spin. Her blade shot out as she spun around. In return, Naruto raised his sword, the tip of the blade pointing down, and when the two attacks clashed he redirected Karasuba's weapon over his head.
As he and Karasuba continued fighting, Naruto reflected on his reasons for being here. This battle, more than anything else, was the reason he had agreed to help Haruka. Beyond the strange emotions that boiled out and forced him to contradict his own actions previously by agreeing to help, this fight was the main reason for his decision to help. He could have used the Hiraishin to simply teleport Haruka and Kuno to one of the many locations outside of Japan, but that would have not only meant revealing a power to someone he didn't trust, it also meant this battle would not have taken place.
"More! More! Give me more!"
Naruto raised an eyebrow as Karasuba began chanting what sounded almost like the kind of mantra a woman would give when they were orgasming. It was only after his nose caught of whiff of something he only ever smelled on a woman after he finished ravishing them that he realized his opponent was really getting off on their battle.
"Did you just orgasm?"
"Come on and show me a good time!"
"And she's ignoring me."
Disengaging from their latest contest of strength, Karasuba hopped backwards for several feet with three large leaps. She slid along the ground on her last jump, coming to a stop with her sword raised above her head, the tip of which was pointing towards the sky.
"This battle is getting so exciting! Let's take it up a notch!" With a shout of effort, Karasuba swung her blade down. "Razer Storm!" As her blade severed the air in front of her, several hundred razor sharp shockwaves screamed towards Naruto. In response to this new attack, the blond-haired Uzumaki held Kubikiriboucho in front of him, the massive sword running parallel with the ground.
A brilliant green glow surrounded the blade.
The razor sharp shockwaves were almost on him.
Naruto swung his blade in a sweeping arc.
A fierce wind kicked up, creating a powerful crescent shaped blade of green energy. It sped towards the shockwaves. The two respective attacks met in the center and detonated. Like several dozen military grade explosives going off at the same time, the explosion that went off howled with an unbelievable fury. Thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands of tiny blades of wind shot off in all directions, striking the streets, sidewalks and walls of buildings. Several buildings became so perforated with holes their structural integrity was no longer strong enough to hold them up.
Dust soon kicked up as a number of the buildings around them were destroyed. It settled over the battlefield like a thick cloud, obscuring everything from sight.
This did not stop Naruto or Karasuba, who charge into the dust and met each other in the middle. The shockwave from their clash blew away the dust with ease. Soon enough the two were mercilessly battling it out, their blades flashing and their bodies moving as they kicked the fight up another notch. They moved across the battlefield that was Shinto Teito, attacking and counterattacking with enough speed and power that each time their blades met the very air in front of them exploded.
Naruto soon found himself backed against the wall of a large skyscraper. Rather than attack Karasuba as she bore down on him, he spun around and lashed out at the wall behind him. His blade flashed. At first, the attack did not appear to have done anything. It was only after Naruto had rolled out of the way that something unfathomable happened.
The building began to tilt.
Karasuba only had enough time to widen her eyes as the building toppled over with a suddenness that was startling. Before she could even move out of the way, the entirety of the large skyscraper fell on top of her.
Of course, saying it fell on top of her was a misnomer. It didn't just fall on her, but on the next building over. That building, another skyscraper that was several dozen stories high, was ripped from its very foundations as the skyscraper Naruto liberally sliced through with his sword hit it. Like a set of dominos that had been lined up in a row, that skyscraper ended up hitting the next one, which hit the one after that and so forth. Soon enough, sixteen towering structures were felled, leaving a gaping path of destruction that could be easily seen by anyone with a birds eye view.
The building that Naruto had cut, and the one that had crushed Karasuba, soon exploded and the Sekirei in question jumped out of the hole her power had created. She landed on the wall, now the roof, of the building. Her face was lit up in a grin so joyous she looked like a child who'd just been told Christmas had arrived early.
"Yes! Yes! Yes! This is exactly what I want! This is what I crave!" The Black Sekirei crowed in delight. Her clothes had been partially ruined. There were several large tears in her uniform, including one that exposed a good deal of her underbreast. "Give me more of this wonderful feeling, won't you!?"
She ran towards the edge of the building and leapt off, her body making a perfect parabolic arc as her jump took her towards Naruto. With her body corkscrewing and flipping around like some kind of acrobat, Karasuba, her blade being held perpendicular to her body, lashed out the moment she reached Naruto. It was an attack that was bound to miss.
Naruto leapt backwards, his body moving so fast that he simply seemed to blink from one place to another. His feet slid across the ground, stance widening as he hefted the large blade over his head. A green glow began to swirl around the Kubikiriboucho as he used "Chakra Flow" to channel wind chakra through the blade. With a minor grunt, his muscles tensed as he swung the sword down.
The attack unleashed from that single swing was incredible. A large blade of wind in the shape of a crescent burst forth. Easily twice as tall as Naruto, the wind blade sliced a deep trench through the pavement like it was made of butter as it shot towards Karasuba at the speed of a high-performance vehicle.
Grinning madly, the Sekirei with long silver hair widened her stance and held her ground. Her blade was sent into its sheath and her hand gripped the handle tightly as her fiercely grinning face glared at the incoming attack. While not as skilled as Miya in Battojutsu, she was more than good enough for this.
When the attack reached her, Karasuba drew the blade a single, quick and fluid motion.
Her blade was nothing more than a flash of light as she used it to sheer straight through the wind blade. Now separated in two, each blade veered off course. The one on the bottom struck the ground, tearing the street apart even more. The other one struck the wall of a building, cutting straight through that wall, reappearing outside of the wall on the other side, and then traveling through four more buildings before it ran out of power.
Neither opponent paid attention to this. Before the wind blade had even struck the first wall, Karasuba had reached Naruto and was engaging him in a sword fight unlike any other. Had anyone else been around to see it―provided their eyesight was accustomed to high speed movement―they would have been astounded by the level of skill, speed and power being displayed. The two fighters, Karasuba and Naruto fought with styles that were very different from each other, but that did not diminish how awe inspiring―not to mention terrifying―the battle between them was.
Karasuba was a whirlwind of activity and fancy footwork. Her blade was everywhere, striking out at perceived gaps in Naruto's defenses. Her feet were constantly moving. She never stayed in the same place for very long. She moved, left, right, back, she spun and danced and flipped, never letting herself stay in the same place for more than a second. Her sword style was very acrobatic, relying on God-Impulse speed and airborne assaults to wear her enemy down at strike at their weakest point.
At the opposite end of the spectrum was Naruto. It was abundantly clear the immortal shinobi had no set style like Karasuba. His sword skills were a patchwork of hundreds of different styles that he switched on a whim when the need or desire suited him. One moment he was moving with grace and speed that matched Karasuba, the other he was battling with choppy, half-hazard motions that disrupted the flow of battle but had enough strength to send the silver-haired Sekirei flying should the attack connect.
In spite of the many different styles Naruto had at his disposal, it was still clear that Karasuba was the better fighter. Not that this made much of a difference. Naruto's superior physical traits allowed him to easily keep up with his current foe.
As the battle reached a new level of destruction, Naruto's mind thought back to why he was testing this woman. Musubi. It was Musubi's desire to do battle with Karasuba. No. She wanted to do more than just fight. When she and Karasuba finally did battle, they would be putting their ideologies on the line. Musubi wanted to prove to Karasuba that love was not a weakness, that it was only when you loved and cherished someone else that you reached your true potential.
Naruto did not believe in Musubi's idealogy, not anymore. He had once and it cost him everything. Love was not just a weakness, but an invitation to pain when the people you fell in love with died. It was better to not love and never feel that pain again than it was to love and constantly end up getting hurt.
Or so he used to think. He really wasn't sure what he thought anymore. His mind was a jumbled mess.
Regardless of all that, of his beliefs, Musubi wanted to prove to Karasuba that having an Ashikabi to love was not a weakness. Naruto, in spite of his own beliefs, could not bring himself to tell Musubi that her ideals were unrealistic at best and self-destructive at worst. Despite himself, he wanted Musubi to prove Karasuba wrong. Or maybe he wanted her to prove him wrong. He could not longer say with one-hundred percent certainty why he was doing this. All he knew was that he had decided to help Musubi. It's what a good Ashikabi would do.
Naruto had spent his entire battle with Karasuba analyzing the woman; her fighting style, her physical prowess, her strength, her speed, her reflexes and ability. He studied her and compared what he saw of her skills to those of Musubi's.
As things stood right now, if Karasuba and Musubi were to fight, his Sekirei would lose. No question. Karasuba was stronger than Musubi, much stronger.
That was okay, though. Musubi might not be able to defeat Karasuba right now, but she had the potential to do so in the future. Naruto had just finished his latest project a few days ago. He would use it to help Musubi reach her full potential. By the time he was done with her, the overly enthusiastic fist fighter would be more than capable of defeating Karasuba.
Two steps back. Move to the left. Sword up. Block. Sparks flew.
Naruto's mind was brought back to the here and now as Karasuba changed tactics. Her once elegant swordsmanship became sloppier, but also much more powerful. He wondered if she was getting impatient, or maybe her enjoyment of the battle and her lust for blood was beginning to affect her swordsmanship.
With a fearsome roar, the woman swung at him. Naruto raised his sword to block, and became mildly surprised when the attack sent him flying backwards.
As his feet skid across the ground he tried channeling chakra to the bottom of his feet. This didn't work, not because he couldn't get right amount of chakra to his feet, but because the moment his soles stuck to the concrete of the street they ended up ripping a large chunk of the stuff off and it merely became a piece of debris that flew with him.
Disengaging the chakra on his feet, Naruto moved himself into a series of back handsprings. He kept a firm grip on Kibikiriboucho even as he placed both hands on the ground and began using them to flip himself backwards.
"Not so fast!"
Karasuba followed him. Her speed easily letting her catch up with him. Or it would have, but by the time she reached him, Naruto was handspringing himself up the side of a wall. The woman with silvery-gray hair watched him literally flip up the wall as if he were standing on a horizontal surface. When the blond stopped several meters up, his body crouched, she grinned.
"Oh hoh, now there's an interesting trick. I've got a neat trick to, wanna see?"
Without giving Naruto time to respond, Karasuba let out a powerful yell and jumped vertically up the wall. Her sword was angled near her feet, until she reached the last Uzumaki, after which she slashed her sword upwards at Naruto. The attack cut a deep gouge in the surface of the wall and also sent several larger than average chunks of debris in the spiky-headed blond's direction.
Or she would have if he was still there. Naruto had already moved.
Karasuba looked around. It took her a minute to find Naruto. When she did discover his whereabouts, it was to see him behind her, falling to the ground.
"You won't be getting away from me that easily!"
Letting go of the ledge she had been using to keep herself attached to the wall, Karasuba used her powerful legs to blast off the building. She ignored the way the entire wall crumbled behind her and focused the entirety of her attention on the male whose entire face was covered except for those freaky eyes of his.
Within seconds she had reached her quarry. Her sword flashed out, but it was blocked by the several times larger Head Cleaving blade the man swung around with ease. Over and over again Karasuba's katana met Naruto's blade as they descended towards the ground. When the pair finally struck concrete they jumped away, only to reengage each other a second later in a flurry of fast paced sword strikes.
When they disengaged again, Naruto was the one who jumped away. He leapt high into the air. His body began to rotate. As it spun about like some kind of mad top, his sword lashed out at the air in front of him. Each time the Head Cleaver sliced through the atmosphere, a blade of wind was launched towards Karasuba.
Ever the one up for a challenge, Karasuba did not even bother trying to dodge. Instead she held her ground. When the wind blades reached her, her own sword came into play. Using God-Impulse reflexes, her sword sliced through each wind blade with ease. When the attacks subsided, she threw herself into a run at break-neck speeds.
Her goal? To reach Naruto before he descended back to earth.
Unfortunately for her, Naruto saw this and used his control over wind to push himself towards the ground faster. At the same time, he angled the giant blade in his hand at the ground.
He reached the ground before Karasuba could reach him. As his body crouched low to absorb the impact of falling, his sword sank into the earth almost up to the hilt. The results were devastating.
Smashing Point, or Hasaiten, as Mutsu called it, was the act of creating a small-scale earthquake. To use this attack, the Sekirei in question would tap the end of his scabbard against the ground while channeling the power from their tama. The ground front of them would tear apart, creating a miniature yet powerful earthquake that would cause anything in its range to become uplifted.
Naruto's attack was like that, except on a scale far beyond what Mutsu was capable of. The earth in front of him was rent. Large cracks appeared, as if Satan had decided the time had come for him and his legion of demons to take over the world had arrived. Large chunks of earth became uplifted, including several buildings that were in his immediate path. The cracks soon became gaping chasms that looked like someone could fall for miles before reaching the bottom. Really, the only thing the scene needed to look like something out of a hellish nightmare was fire, brimstone and a legion of devils crawling up from the fissures.
And Karasuba was caught in the middle of this attack. Despite her shock at seeing such a powerful and destructive ability being used, she still managed to react with efficiency and speed.
She leapt into the air before the giant earthquake that looked like it would easily be a level ten on the rictar scale could reach her. As she soared over the attack, her body spun as her jump took her to Naruto.
Or it would have, had she not been blasted backwards by a powerful tornado being launched from her opponent's left fist. The attack slammed into her with more force than anything Kazehana was capable of. It tore apart what was left of her clothes easily and began to grind away at her flesh. Karasuba could do nothing but grit her teeth as the attack launched her away from her opponent.
She did not hit the ground, at least, not at first. Instead, the tornado smashed her into the wall of a building, then through the wall and into the next wall.
She then went through that wall too.
And the wall after that.
And the one after that.
It wasn't until she had plowed through nearly six buildings that the tornado dissipated, its chakra spent. With the powerful attack no longer pushing her back, Karasuba plowed into the ground, where she smashed her shoulder against hard concrete. She rolled across the street several times, her body jerking and tumbling about like a doll that had been tossed aside by an angry god. She only came to a stop after smacking into a street light.
Groaning, the woman stood up. Her body was pretty battered. There were a number of cuts on her skin, as well as numerous bruises. Not to mention her clothes were pretty much gone, even her panties had been ripped apart. The only article she had left were her boots.
She was definitely going to be feeling the effects of this fight in the morning.
Despite the pain she was in, Karasuba was grinning.
The sound of footsteps coming towards her alerted her to the fact that her opponent had arrived.
She looked over to see the man who had pushed her to her absolute limit and beyond. He was walking towards her with calm, measured footsteps, as if he were not in a hurry and just out for a stroll.
"You..." Karasuba rasped. Her throat was sore for some reason. This did not bother her, though, as she could care less about her physical condition. "You are strong..."
He stopped several meters away from her.
"I am," Naruto nodded in agreement.
"You beat me..."
"Aren't you going to finish the job?" she asked curiously.
"No," Naruto shook his head, "Your defeat will not come at my hands, but those of someone else. I've got everything I came here for."
Karasuba frowned. He got everything he needed? What did that mean?
She opened her mouth to ask him to elucidate her, but Naruto did not hear what he said. Mind rending agony tore through his body and seared his soul in a way he had never felt before, not this acutely anyway. The pain was unbearable and almost caused his knees to buckle. Only the fact that he was used to pain kept him from falling to the ground.
This did not stop him from feeling shock. Or fear. Or emptiness. There was a hole in his soul, a feeling of indescribable loss the likes of which would have caused most minds to shatter into a million fragments as they tried to comprehend the incomprehensible.
His bond with Musubi, it had just vanished.
So, kind of a long chapter, eh? I hope this one had enough action for you guys. The next one will have a good deal more.
Just a reminder, if you want to order a copy of my book you can either go onto Amazon and look it up by typing in either A Fox's Love or American Kitsune. There are also multiple links on my fanfiction profile page that will lead you directly to the books Amazon page based on which country you live in.