I AM GOING TO REVIVE THIS FIC…. I AM GOING TO ALTER THE FIRST THREE CHAPTERS TO MATCH MY VISION FOR THIS FIC…
I FINALLY KNOW THE DIRECTION IN WHICH THIS FIC WILL GO…..
SO PLEASE ENJOY THIS AS I REVISED THE FIRST THREE CHAPTERS….
Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei: Infinite Stratos Style
CHAPTER 0.5: BEFORE THE PROLOGUE
Disclaimer: I don't own IS: Infinite Stratos OR Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei but I own this fiction and any other OC's in this story
That substance had been my greatest weapon in my days as a bounty hunter.
I could not help but let out a weak chuckle as my greatest weapon slowly leaves my body. It's strange; I hated my blood because it was the very thing that gave me strength, it was the thing that gave me power, it was the thing that made me a legend in Asia.
I hated my blood because of the unwanted things it gave me.
But as of right now, as my blood slowly flows out of my body, I could not help but mourn my lost.
My blood, my strongest weapon and the thing I hated the most about my magic, is abandoning me as well, just like Madoka and Chifuyu-nee.
It's so sad I almost cried.
I would have cried if I had the energy.
I am dying, an irony considering who I am.
I am, after all, Sin the Immortal.
Funny, I never cared about the many nicknames I received in my career as a Bounty Hunter.
Let's see; I am known as Sin the Immortal in Taiwan, Bloody Sin in Afghanistan, Sin the Demon in most parts of China, Sinful Blade in Israel….Let us just say that I have at least five nicknames in every country in Asia, most of them not very endearing.
Where was I, oh yes, I was dying. My regeneration, although finally reactivating, cannot regenerate all the organs that I transplanted into my little sister. My regeneration may be impressive but it is still an ability born from a human being. Like all human beings and everything produce by a human being, my regeneration has limits and I am also applicable to death.
And after five years in living within the edge of a blade, the Grim Reaper, the Shinigami is finally going to claim me.
Strange, I can actually see a hooded figure with a scythe ready to take my head.
Well, there is at least a bright side of me dying. I finally discovered that the Grim Reaper does not have orange hair!
There goes my childhood!
Yeah right, what childhood? I did not have a childhood. I relinquish my childhood when I decided that I want my mother to love me.
Since I could remember, I think I was three and a half when my mind matured enough for me to remember things, my life had been dedicated in making those who mattered to me happy.
My mother, for example, for her, I learned how to design, build, and maintain weapons of every kind. I wasn't delusional; I know my beloved mother did not love me originally, so I thrive, I work hard to earn her love and I succeeded.
My mother loves me and I cherish the affection she has for me, even if it's conditional.
My twin sister, I've been looking out for her for the longest time, since I was born, so I've been told. I held back my strength so that she could feel special, so that she could feel less threaten, so that she could shine. Being related to Chifuyu the Ice Queen and Kana that Orimura Vampire will not do any good to the psyche of anyone, especially Madoka.
I tried to be a good brother to her; I tried so hard to give her comfort, to assure her that she does not need to compete with Chifuyu-nee and Kana. I truly tried to shower her with love and affection so that she could feel happy, like she is a part of a loving family, and also for her to realize that I would still care for her even if she's not the strongest. I will always love Madoka, no matter what.
But in the end, that thrice damn inferiority complex of her tore us apart.
Funny, I fought for Setsura; I fought a war for her to have a good life. I offered my body to Chifuyu-nee so that she could release her stress and be happy.
But for Madoka, I took lives for her; I killed dozens of people for her, to protect her, no more, no less. I fought for Setsura, I castrated myself of my dignity for Chifuyu-nee, but only for my twin, only for her did I take a life and she hated me for it.
And speaking of Chifuyu-nee, I would have given her the world if she had asked me to, I would have had given it to her in an instant. I love her, since I could remember, I had loved her. How could I not? She's beautiful, she's strong; she's kind, she is everything I want in a lover, she has everything I want in a wife.
I deluded myself that she love me too, after all, she gave me her first, something that a woman of Chifuyu-nee's caliber would give to the person she loves the most. She gave it to me and though the circumstances were questionable, she till gave it to me in a night of passion.
But in the end, my nightmares were right, she was just using me, and I enjoyed every second of it, regardless of how painful it was when I accepted that fact. I also did not regret our relationship, regardless of how it ended.
Well, at least I won't die as a virgin! That counts as something.
I laughed at this thought. True, I will not die as a virgin, but I would have at least wanted to experience making love before I die.
Oh well, at the very least, I was able to preserve the life of my pride, Setsura.
I chuckle weakly as blood dripped down my mouth.
My life sucks; I hated myself since the day I learned the nature of my magic. I did not live my life for myself; I lived my life for those I cared about for me to forget how much I hated myself, how much I hated my magic.
I cannot, I refuse to love myself but I want those who I cared for love me.
And that brought me excruciating pain that I barely endured.
And I did not regret it one bit, regardless of the pain that I experience.
And the person who became the reprieve to my pain was the person who I wasn't able to love properly.
I smiled sadly at the thought of Setsura, my half-sister. She is probably the most magnificent woman that I ever knew or have the pleasure of knowing. She was so strong, regardless of what life, what this world threw at her, she stood firm, strong, tall and beautiful, something that I failed to do in my life.
When her mother died, she cried but she recovered and became stronger than ever.
When I was training her to fight and teaching her how to use her magic, she mastered everything I taught her and endured the harshness of my training.
When I was teaching her everything that a person of her caliber should learn, she absorbed all my teachings, and developed her very own philosophy, beliefs, and justice.
When she was suffering from the backlash of her mother's stupidity, she remained steadfast and strong, willing herself to live when others would have given up.
When she was in the verge of death, she was unfazed and merely welcomed death with that angelic smile of hers.
I cannot help but admire her because of her strong will, and feel overwhelming pride because I was the one that raised her to be what she is today.
I suddenly laughed bitterly. Yeah right! I am giving myself too much credit.
Setsura would be the same person that she is today even without my assistance. That is how magnificent she is. She was born great, and she is destined for greatness.
My only regrets, the only regrets I have in my life was that I won't be here to see her shine anymore and that I wasn't able to love her the way she deserves to be love.
Setsura has been such a wonderful person and though our relationship wasn't bad, our relationship was never bad, I wasn't able to love and cherish her properly. The one person who deserves love and affection more than anyone I know, I wasn't able to properly give it to her.
That is my greatest and biggest failure of my life.
But still, at the very least, I was able to preserve her life. She would live a long life and she would be the greatest and strongest magician this country will ever have in its history. She has so much talent, she has so much skill, the power she wields is beyond anything a person as young as her should have, and her strong will is something to be admired.
I made the right decision taking her in and I will leave this world knowing that she would grow to be an even more wonderful woman in the future.
I smiled at this as I could feel my life slowly leaving me in the same pace as my blood leaking out of my body.
Yes, it is almost time; the time for me to meet my maker is closing in, fast approaching.
It is a real pity that Kurazakura-sama wasn't able to wound me during that fight. I would have enjoyed talking with her one last time before I turn into dust and I would die in peace knowing that I could entrust Setsura with the person that I trust the most.
But even without Kurazakura-sama, I would die in peace knowing that Setsura would have everything I have. Setsura would live luxuriously with my treasures and resources, she would be safe.
Yes, I can die in peace knowing that.
I could feel the last drop of blood leaving my body.
I can die know. I can finally have a well deserve rest.
I smiled one last time as my eyes slowly close. Yes, I would die with a smile that would tell Setsura that I did not regret dying. It would be the last thing I would teach her.
My last lesson for her is that a magician should not die with regret. A person should not die having regrets.
Yes, that would be my last lesson for Setsura.
I close my eyes as I waited for me to take my last breathe.
It is almost time for the last entry of my life…
I snapped my eyes open again as my body was suddenly filled with energy, the adrenaline giving me enough fuel to smile malevolently at the one person who I wish I treated with more affection.
Setsura entered my gallery; her legs were shaking, her body quivering, and a look of exhaustion gracing her features. Her body looks very frail yet it still maintained that figure that most girls would kill for.
As she slowly walks towards me, I could not help but admire her even more.
Her health was extremely bad for most of her life; she was in a pseudo-coma for almost a week, and she just went through the most gruesome and intense multiple organ transplants in the history of medicine (I had to transfer all of my organs into her, with the exception of the organs that make me a man and my brain) yet she is still able to stand, albeit barely.
She was so strong, stronger than I could ever hope to be.
"Hey there," I spoke weakly, my voice was very quiet.
Yeah, it's only a matter of time before I die and it seems that whoever is up there really hates my guts.
Really, Setsura is going to watch me die, really, really, REALLY!
What the hell have I done in my current and/or past life to be dealt with this kind of cards?
I watched as Setsura looked at me from head to toe and after a second, tears started falling from her eyes, a look of sadness and self-loathing gracing her beautiful face as she looked at the ground.
Looking at those tears made me want to cry as well. I don't want to make her sad.
"Y-Y-You went through with your plan." She started and I could only nod in reply.
"I was given a choice, sacrifice my life for you to live or gamble your life in hopes of my Regeneration beating your mother's Decomposition." I spoke sullenly, forcing myself to have this one last conversation with her. "As much as I despised Shirayuki-hime, I cannot beat her Decomposition-Magic, not at my current level. If I continue to gamble with my Regeneration, then you would have been dead by day's end…" Shirayuki-hime, I will see you in hell!
"You went through so much pain for me, again." She whispered ruefully, her voice filled with self-loathing and sadness, so much that it was heartbreaking.
"You were worth it." I told her softly, willing myself not to break down.
I am weak but in Setsura's eyes, I am strong. I need to maintain that image so that I don't disappoint her.
"I AM NOT WORTH THIS!" For the first time in our relationship, she yelled at me and strangely, that made me very happy. "I am not worth Oniisama forfeiting his life."
"Yes you are," I argued as I stood up and limp towards Setsura. I cannot feel any part of my body. I do not have a drop of blood in my dead body. I do not even have the necessary organs to have a body. My regeneration faded away seconds ago. The magical powers that I had developed through the years was already gone.
I should be dead right now, for all intents and purposes; I should be dead right now, I should be a corpse but I won't die yet, not yet. I need to tell Setsura something, something important.
I could only see a blur but I could still recognize that white hair anywhere in the world, and the sight of that beautiful white hair, brighter than any diamond that I have ever seen, that alone is the greatest send off a person like me deserves.
I stop a mere foot in front of Setsura before gently raising my arms, using every ounce of strength I have, I gently place my hands on her shoulders. I look at her directly in the eyes and though I could only see a blur that is enough for me to be saturated with awe with her divine beauty.
God, I don't deserve to have someone like her in my life.
"I'm a broken man, Setsura. I want to die, I want to rest. I am so tired of all the pain. I don't want to fight anymore, I'm sick of it." I began as I started breathing hard. It's taking me every ounce of my remaining strength and magic to will my body to move and to talk.
I do not want to die in front of Setsura and if I do die in front of her, I will die standing and with a smile. That would be the best way for me to die.
"I lost my will to live a long time ago but I did not want to die because I was taking care of you. You, the thought of you alone were enough motivation for me to continue living this empty life." I cannot thank Setsura enough. Her very existence was the one thing that pushed me into living this life for the past couple of months.
"You were dying, I had to save you, and I had no other alternative. Either me or you, I choose you because you were worth a thousand of me." I slowly move my hand and wipe the tears that were falling from her eyes. She should not cry, somebody as beautiful and as wonderful as her should not be crying.
"I am a use up, rusty sword that is already broken beyond repair. You are a magnificent work of art that would become one of the world's greatest wonder, dying for a person like you is an honor for someone like me." Every time I talk about her, I could not help but feel overwhelming pride and it showed in my voice.
I raised Setsura and although I'm confident that she would be an amazing person regardless of who raise her, the fact that I was the one to nurtured her made me feel so happy, so content.
Setsura, you made my life fulfilling.
"You were always worth it, Setsura. All the pain I went through, all the tortures, all the battles, my sacrifices, you made them all worth it. You grew up to be a wonderful girl and you will become a magnificent woman someday…" This sacrifice of mine assured me of that. "Every day that you were under my care, you made my life worth living. From our training sessions to our outings, I had a lot of fun with you. You made my life so enjoyable." I squeeze her shoulders weakly before collapsing.
She caught me and held me in her arms; fresh tears started falling from her eyes.
"My only regret was that I wasn't able to care and love for you properly." I whispered to her, my grasp in life slowly slipping away. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry that it took me awhile to love you. I'm sorry that I did not give you the love that you deserve. I'm sorry for failing to see what your mother did to you until it was too late. Setsura, my beautiful Setsura, you were always there for me, you were there at my lowest, you were there at my highest. You shared my joy, you shared my pain. You were there whenever I cried; you were there whenever I laughed. Thank you Setsura, thank you, and I love you Setsura, I love you and I'm sorry."
"Setsura, my dear Setsura, raising you was the greatest honor that I could ever have. Live, be strong, grow even more beautiful. You never disappointed me before, you always surpass my expectation. I am so proud of you and I am incredibly honored that I was the one to raise you. You are my pride Setsura, I'm sorry that you couldn't be my life."
I smiled sadly at this as I embrace her one last time, her scent feeling me with wonder. "I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura." I admitted before losing all the energy I have left in my body.
Those were my last words to her as my eyes close for the very last time.
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
My brother said as his entire body went limb.
I froze as my brother died in my arms, his last words ringing in my ear.
"No, NO, NO, NO, NO, NO, NOT LIKE THIS, NOT LIKE THIS!" I look at the lifeless body of my Oniisama in horror and grief. "NO, ONIISAMA, YOU CAN'T DIE, YOU JUST CAN'T. I STILL NEED YOU!" I shouted as I proceeded to move my brother out of his personal gallery.
I feel very exhausted; every move that I made caused my body to ache in pain, every step that I took was quickly emptying my reserves, both my magic reserves and physical endurance. I just went through a very strenuous and life changing surgery and my body has yet to recover, my body still feels heavy and exhausted, each step that I took felt like I am crossing a ravine…..
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
But I will not falter; my Oniisama went through several hells for me to have a life. He even gave me his life, his LIFE!
He gave me his life, he sacrifice his own life so that I can live.
It's time for me to return the favor, it's the least I can do.
I stole a glance at my deceased brother. Even through death, he was still strong. He died standing up, with a beautiful smile on his face; his expression not showing the pain that he went through in his life.
I smiled at this as I redoubled my effort.
Magic, my brother taught me that magic is not just a scientific and technological phenomenon. Magic is also the will of a magician. My Oniisama taught me that magic would do anything it user wants it to do, as long as the magicians wills it.
My Oniisama calls me the most talented magician of this generation.
I am capable of performing magic that impress my Oniisama and awed his friends, all of them infamous magicians in their own right.
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
My Oniisama taught me many things that would allow me to do many amazing things with magic.
My Oniisama always tells me that whenever I use magic, I must display a strong will.
Magic and will, two things that will always come hand in hand.
And right now, I will use my magic to revive my brother because that is what I want, I am going to use my strong-will to fuel my magic and I am going to resurrect my brother.
I know this is impossible but I do not care. My brother had done the impossible before, many times in his life. I am his sister, I was raised by him. I can also do the impossible.
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
I can, I will defeat death, if it is the only way for me to have him back.
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
I didn't know how long it took me but I finally half-carried, half-dragged my Oniisama and myself out of the estate, and I continued until we were in the middle of the forest that surrounded Oniisama's estate.
This distance is enough for me to not damage Oniisama's estate.
I know the nature of my magic; I know what I am capable of with my magic.
With Oniisama's blood, not the Orimura blood, but Oniisama's and the magic that my mother left me, I can save him.
I can beat death because my Oniisama is on the line.
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
How could I lose?
I refuse to lose?
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
I gently laid my Oniisama's lifeless body to the ground before hovering over him
My breathing was shallow, very shallow and I am barely conscious, I am fighting to stay conscious in fact.
My body was still exhausted to the point that I am in the verge of collapsing.
But my magic is strong, unwavering. How could it not? My Oniisama finally solved my only weakness.
I cannot fail him, not now, not ever.
"I would have wanted you to be my life, Setsura."
I lean down, our lips inches apart.
"Don't leave me, I still need you." I was able to say before I captured the lips of my Oniisama before activating both the Orimura Magic and mother's Decomposition Magic.
And before I knew it, everything became white.
Death felt very strange!
I was swimming in a sea of darkness. I thought dying would feel cold. I thought that once I die, I would experience coldness beyond anything Chifuyu-nee's Freezing-type and/or Ice-type magic is ever capable of.
Yet, I did not feel cold, contrary, I felt very warm, warmer than I had ever felt in my life.
Strange, very strange!
Also, I died, my life ended, shouldn't I feel, I don't know, sad, mortified, even angry, and yet, I felt happy, warm, satisfied even.
I wonder why.
I know that I practically signed my own death sentence when I battled all ten Shoguns in a Ten-on-One dance, I gave my life willingly when I transplanted the majority of my organs into my half-sister, I died in Setsura's arms.
I'm dead but I don't feel like it.
Instead of feeling dead, I felt alive, very alive, more alive compare to the times when I was still among the living.
I find this strange and depressing, but I also felt a sense of endearment.
Wow, that's a depressing thought.
Yet, I don't care. I feel happy, very happy in death, yet I have the desire to suddenly want to embrace Setsura in my arms.
Something that would never happen again because I am dead and this darkness is the proof of it! I knew that there was no heaven or hell, just darkness, a never-ending darkness where I would spend eternity in.
Well, it's fitting for me considering my many sins when I was still alive.
Living in pitch black darkness for eternity won't be that bad. God knows I've experience worst.
Then, suddenly, I saw something glimmering just above me. It was a star…no…a diamond shape like a star. It was a pure white diamond and it was of high quality.
I extended my arm and grabbed the star.
And darkness disappeared and was replace with the most dazzling and mesmerizing light.
Mother, regardless of what other people say about you, I love you.
I love you Mama, even though you left me and Oniisama a lot of things to contend with, I still love you.
And thank you for the wonderful gift that you left me, Mama.
I think I understand now why you left me your prize Magic.
[Decomposition-type Magic], according to mother, is a very basic and common magic, yet it is also a cruel, complex, and volatile magic. [Decomposition-type Magic] allows the user to breakdown everything to anything to its most basic substance.
[Decomposition-type Magic] allows me to treat everything as psion. With this magic, I am able to disassemble not just Magic Sequences, but Activation Sequences as well.
Identify the design, decompose the design.
As long as it's an object, I could translate the physical object into signals, and then rewrite or erase the base design at my leisure.
If it was an Information Body, then I could directly disassemble the design.
This was one of the most difficult magic imaginable, able to directly interfere with the design information.
And it was only because of Oniiisama's teachings, tutelage and hard work that I am able to do something this complex and advance so easily.
At the moment, I am using [Decomposition-type Magic] in tandem with my [Mirror-type Magic].
I am using one of my mama's signature spell, [Material Burst], a spell that made my mother a walking atomic bomb in her days as a soldier.
[Material Burst] is the spell that decomposes matter into energy. The matter is converted into energy so fast that it will disperse an explosion that would decimate anything.
This is a dangerous spell because matter is made out of a lot of energy.
For example, a water droplet, 50 milligram worth of matter is capable of unleashing 1 kiloton of TNT worth of energy, and 1 kilogram of matter is equivalent to 20 megaton of TNT of energy.
According to Oniisama, my mother decimated and leveled a lot of cities with this spell alone.
I am not using [Material Burst] the same way Mama used to use it. There will be a time and place for that.
No, I am using [Material Burst] in a way that the dispersion of energy during the decomposition will not result into an explosion. I am using [Material Burst] in such a way that the speed of the released of energy is manageable enough for me to manipulate it with [Mirror Magic], with my [Luminous Illuminate].
I am using [Mirror-Type Magic] to change the state of the energy that is being disperse from the decompose matter. From pure energy to [Blaze Luminous] to my psion energy to Oniisama's psion energy, I converted pure energy into three states, something that I have never done before, something that I must accomplish for the sake of reviving Oniisama.
It is impossible to ingest one's psion into somebody else's body because the psion signature varies among magicians. Every Magician has a different psion signature and if a foreign psion is injected into a magician's body, well, let's just say Oniisama did not depend on his [Blood-type Magic] too much in the closing years of the Asian War.
The only reason I was able to properly and perfectly convert my psion to Oniisama's psion is because of our bond. The one thing that I have that his full-blooded, thankless, sisters did not have is the pleasure of knowing Oniisama's magic.
I have been train by Oniisama, I have been exposed to his magical aura, I have been saturated with his magic to the point that I know his psion signature by heart.
That alone allows me to convert my psion into his psion flawlessly and perfectly.
Now, the only way for me to inject my psion that I converted to Oniisama's psion into Oniisama's body is via kiss (insert blush here, don't look at me). Because of Oniisama's many battles, his magic developed an instinctual defense mechanism against magical attacks that damages the body discreetly. Also, Oniisama being an Anti-mage had developed quite a magic resistance together with his excellent mental barriers.
A kiss is the only way for me to transfer the psion into his body.
I felt kind of disgusted kissing my Oniisama. Not because he is my brother, I love my Oniisama more than life itself and it has been my dream to kiss him. It is just that I felt dirty kissing him without his consent.
I am not that grimy slut that broke my Oniisama's heart. I despised her; I loathe her for taking advantage of Oniisama's kindness and love.
One day, I am going to cut her to ribbons.
My train of thoughts ended when I broke the kiss to catch my breath and then took note of my surroundings.
Everything around me was white! White colored energy encapsulated me and my brother and I noticed that the energy was being absorbed into my body.
I've never felt so powerful in my life.
But the energy around me isn't for me; it is for reviving my Oniisama.
"I was enjoying that kiss you know."
My heart, the heart that my Oniisama gave me, soars at the sound of the most beautiful alto voice.
I looked down and I smiled at the sight of my Oniisama's eyes.
Although the coloring of his eyes change from brown to red, they resembled the most immaculate, dark rubies I have ever seen, but that doesn't matter.
What matters was the fact that he had open his eyes, and instead of having a broken, defeated, and lifeless expression in his eyes, his eyes were now shining with life, something that truly and greatly satisfied me.
Those wondrous eyes are back.
Eyes filled with love…Eyes filled with passion…Eye filled with power…Eyes filled with genius never before seen… The unbreakable eyes of my Oniisama, they are back and they look even more beautiful, even more vibrant.
Oniisama opened his mouth and spoke, it was barely audible but I could hear it very clearly.
"You want me to live!?"
I smiled before nodding; I am not even attempting to hide the tears of joy that was falling from my eyes. "Yes, I want you to live, I need you to live." I exclaimed softly as he slowly raised his arms and his hands suddenly started caressing my hair.
I trembled at the feeling of those hands. The bearer of those hands have defeated countless warriors, destroyed many armies, yet they felt very gentle.
I love the way Oniisama touches me, so gentle, so relaxing, so pure, no lewd and/or malicious intent.
If we are not siblings, I would love to have him as a lover.
In fact, who gives a damn if we are siblings?
We are a man and a woman first after all.
My musing was interrupted when Oniisama's hand caresses my cheeks, and I vaguely notice that the white light that surrounded me and Oniisama suddenly developed red outlines.
I smiled at this as I felt out power intertwining with each other in perfect harmony.
I looked at him and I felt relief when the incision that he made finally close, leaving a scar.
"Thank you," My brother told me with a sincere and sweet tone as white and red energy dance around us in perfect harmony. "For saving me from death…and from myself."
"I should say the same as well…"
Oniisama smiled at me before pulling me closer. Suddenly there is no space between us and I can feel his lips on mine. He kisses me softly, and slowly, but I can feel the eagerness behind them.
This is the kiss that I always wanted! A kiss that Oniisama initiated, a kiss with his content, a kiss filled with love and passion.
I did not hesitate and immediately returned the kiss with as much emotions as my Oniisama was giving me. I want more too. I want to feel more of his delightful warmth on my mouth and more of the pleasure that sparks just under my skin. I move my hands and place one on his shoulder and the other on the back of his head. I press down with my hand and up with my lips. The result is an even deeper kiss and the loss of all sense except radiant joy. Fireworks are going off in my head and all my nerves are humming in contentment.
I am an eleven year old girl, and this is my first kiss (the kiss that I gave my Oniisama to revive him doesn't count for obvious reason) but even I know that is not just an innocent little kiss, these are hungry kisses. The years of pent up emotions and the need to express my love for the man that gave everything to me, the years of pain my Oniisama endured, everything culminating into this kiss.
And as we kiss and shared our passion, I cannot help but feel that I am in heaven.
(Scene Change)(Shinonono Ryuuin POV)
"Ryuuin-sensei, so good of you to visit." Ichika greeted me with a friendly tone as I approached his bedding chambers.
I was very surprise; I thought that he went through with his plans. The stunt that he pulled two weeks ago was the indication that he went through with his plans.
My daughter, Tabane, is still nursing the wounds that she received from him.
Although, I was quite glad that he is alive. I like Setsura-chan, she spent roughly four months in my dojo and I really gotten to know her quite well through the years. She is quite an endearing girl, a nice girl that would become a phenomenal woman.
Unfortunately though, fate has been cruel to her
This may be cruel, but I am glad that Ichika allowed Setsura to die. Ichika has a long, fulfilling life ahead of him. He has a promising future and it would be a pity for him to forfeit it because of an obligation.
Also, Setsura's life would be torture with the knowledge that her beloved brother killed himself for her sake. That alone would kill her inside.
I entered his bedding chambers and I almost stumbled at the sight before me.
Ichika was in his room, but he wasn't alone. In his arms was Setsura, alive and well and that alone was shocking. Setsura was sleeping peacefully, hear head resting on Ichika's chest while he played with her hair tenderly and lovingly.
Last I heard from Ichika and last I check on Setsura's condition, neither would live while the other survives but before me right now, both Ichika and Setsura are alive, identical smiles plastered on their faces.
They are both in the same bed, something that is new for me because as far as I can remember, Ichika never slept in the same bed as Setsura before. True, Ichika would lie down on a bed with her, but he will never stay for long.
I can tell that they slept together because of Setsura's head resting on his chest and I also, by the look in Ichika's face, I could tell that he had just woken up.
What's strange about this was the fact that Ichika shared his bed with Setsura. Last I check, Ichika only shared his bed with his twin, when they were young and close, and Chifuyu, I am under oath to not speak my personal feelings about that and I do not want to face Ichika in a straight out fight.
Also, I took note of their expression. Both of them have a blissful and please expression, and the look in Ichika's eyes was unsettling.
No matter how much a brother loves his siblings, a brother must never, should never look at his sister with that much love in his eyes.
This bothers me slightly because Ichika was now looking at Setsura the same way he looks at Chifuyu…
No, there was a difference. Yes, Ichika was looking at Setsura with eyes filled with love, the same amount of love he has in his eyes whenever he looks at Chifuyu, but there was another emotion in those eyes that wasn't there whenever he looks at Chifuyu.
That emotion was something akin to passion.
Ichika admires Chifuyu. Ichika idolizes Chifuyu. Ichika adores Chifuyu. Ichika loves Chifuyu.
Even after Chifuyu broke his heart, he never stops loving her.
With that said, he never, ever looked at Chifuyu with any amount of passion in his eyes.
But now, in front of me, Ichika was looking at Setsura with eyes filled with burning passion.
I know how Ichika felt about Setsura. Ichika is fond of her. Ichika feels responsible for her well being. Ichika feels obligated to take care of her.
Ichika never loved her outside of being a sibling or a daughter.
But at the moment, that did not appear to be the true.
The way Ichika was looking at Setsura reminisced the way a man would look at his lover, at his wife.
Only a man deeply and faithfully in love with a woman is capable of looking at someone with that amount of love and passion.
Also, I noticed that Ichika did not even look at me when I entered his personal chambers. His eyes were fixedly on the sleeping form of Setsura. I also noticed that he was holding her in a way that showed another emotion that became foreign for him.
Ichika, in his years as a bounty hunter and because of his regeneration, had lost the capacity to fear.
He doesn't know fear; he doesn't show fear, yet the way he was holding Setsura, the protectiveness behind his gentle embrace, tells me that he was frightened, terrified even of losing her.
"Sensei, you should not stare." Ichika told me as he regarded me with a narrowed glare and I almost stumbled.
His brown eyes that were filled with warmth were now replaced by crimson ruby eyes with the same shade as Isane's cold, lilac eyes.
That is disturbing and unnerving in so many levels.
"I apologies," I was able to say while calming my nerves. For some strange reason, those crimson eyes sent shivers up and down my spine.
Also, the power behind those eyes was more intense than before.
Ichika did not reply and merely shifted his gazed to Setsura once again. "Why are you here?" I noticed that his gazed turned from cold to gentle when he shifted his gazed on Setsura.
This is an interesting development.
"I am here to talk." I told him with a serious tone. "You left the country a lot to deal with after the stunt you pulled two weeks ago."
"Civil unrest or Civil war?" So he is already aware of the aftermath of his plan, I must say that I am impress.
"Civil unrest going into Civil War." I answered as Ichika looked at me once again.
"I gave the Shoguns and the Emperor enough evidence to condemn those that will harm the country. The loose ends should have been dealt with already."
"You speak like you don't know about politics." I rebutted.
It only took Ichika a moment to decipher my words as he sighed in resignation. "It seems that I overestimated the Shoguns." I raised my eyebrow at this. "Please leave and wait for me in the common room. I need to freshen up." I nodded before exiting the bedding chambers.
The small conversation I have with him was enough for me to know that Orimura Ichika has change.
How much he changed, I don't know.
I don't think I want to know.
(Scene Change) (Ichika POV)
"You are leaving again, aren't you?" My Setsura asked me in a sullen tone as I reluctantly remove my arms from her body. The absent of her addictive warmth made me feel empty.
I never noticed before but Setsura was quite warm.
"Somebody has to prevent a country wide Civil War." I answered her as I sat up in the edge of the bed. "Unfortunately, the Shoguns are not adept in preventing something as meager as that." In my four and a half years as a bounty hunter, I prevented at least seven civil wars all throughout Asia.
I cannot believe that the Shoguns are unable to achieve such a simple feat. It is such a disappointment.
"How long will you be gone?" My back was facing her but I could feel her moving.
"Three days, a week at most." I answered her truthfully. Setsura and I are still recovering from the aftermath of our respected resurrection. Setsura is still trying to get used to her new healthy body while I am trying to control my magic.
I know how Setsura resurrected me; it was such an ingenious process and for to be able to pull it off was a testament at how great she would become in the near future.
She defeated death, that feat alone eclipsed every accomplishment that I had done in my career as a bounty hunter.
Still though, after my resurrection, Setsura finally fainted and remained unconscious for at least three days and in that three days, I noticed something strange with my magic. My magic that I wasn't able to develop properly became more volatile, more erratic, and more intense.
Yes, I can still flawlessly perform all my spells but I had to put more effort with the manipulation and control of the spell.
Something happened to my magic during the resurrection process, something that I would have to study in the near future.
"Oniisama…" My train of thoughts was interrupted when Setsura called me and I looked over my shoulder and smiled at her as I look at her.
She truly is very beautiful.
"I'll be back soon, I promise, and after I deal with this problem, we will continue your rehabilitation." I told her while she slowly approaches me.
I close my eyes and relish the feeling of warmth and comfort when Setsura wrapped her arms around me. I don't know why but being embrace by her felt so nice.
Her touch is different from Chifuyu-nee's, so very different, so much better.
"Can I come with you? " Setsura whispered to me meekly. "I don't want to be alone."
"Tempting, but I must veto that idea. Preventing a civil war is both politically and militaristically complex." To prevent a civil war, one must compromise with the two opposing sides as well as appease the military. Or plan B, wipe out the opposing faction.
"I won't be in your way." She defended herself and all I could was to pat her on the head.
"I know, believe me, I know, but I can't risk you, not now that I am finally realizing how precious you are too me, how much I need you." I told her and for once since I started being a bounty hunter, I felt fear. Fear of losing the one person who loves me unconditionally.
"I don't want to be separated from you." She told me with a voice that made my new heart skip a beat.
She has such a beautiful voice.
"Then I will end this in two days and then I will return by your side." Preventing a Civil War in two days would probably be a new record for me.
"And also," I shifted my head before leaning towards her to capture her lips.
Kissing her was probably the most heavenly feeling I have ever experience in my life. She tasted like the sweetest wine that I have ever tasted in my life, sweetness that cannot be rivaled by anything. And the kiss itself was enjoyable. Every kiss that we have is filled with so many emotions, emotions that were always absent whenever Chifuyu-nee and I kiss…
I broke the kiss as the thought of Chifuyu-nee flooded my mind.
This is not fair, for me and for Setsura; this is not fair at all.
Why does every time I held Setsura in my arms, why does every time I kiss her, why do I think of her?
Why am I remembering her touch and her kiss whenever I do those acts with Setsura?
"Because she is your first love." Setsura answered me with a tender tone while caressing my cheeks.
"Sorry," My voice was filled with shame.
Setsura deserves someone better than me.
"I'm willing to wait." Setsura told me gently. "I willing to wait until you're over her."
"You don't have to wait long."
At that moment, I made a decision that would affect me more than I could ever imagine.
(Scene Change)(Ichika POV)
"So let me get this straight." Ryuuin-sensei's voice was filled with disbelief as he massages his temples. "You transplanted most of your organs into her to neutralized the negative side-effect of Shirayuki-hime's decomposition magic, that much I know but you mean to tell me that she was able to bring you back to life by using both the Mirror magic and Decomposition magic in tandem to keep you alive long enough for you to regenerate your organs!?"
"When a magician dies, he will lose his bodily functions first but the magic will always be present in the body. The amount of psion would diminish but there will always be residue. Setsura with the use of Decomposition, converted matter into energy, and with mirror magic, turned the energy into [Blaze Luminous] and from there, turned the [Blaze Luminous] into psion with her signature before converting the psion with my signature that fuel my Regeneration Magic." I smiled a bit as laid a hand on my heart.
"My new life, Setsura gave it to me."
"You gave her a new life as well."
"I merely repaired her body; I did not give her life." I corrected Ryuuin-sensei as I smiled fondly at Setsura. "I am not capable of giving life, my magic does not allow it, but Setsura is truly capable of many feats with her magic."
"You taught her well."
"I cannot teach talent, I cannot teach power, Setsura always have been powerful, a Goddess in the body of a mortal." I chuckled a bit as I remembered the way I raised Setsura. "She was always the epitome of perfection; I merely dusted away the dirt."
"You would make a good father."
"That is the best compliment you have ever given me."
The two of us shared a brief laugh at that before we started discussing business.
"So, what is the situation?" I asked rather curiously, feeling slightly vulnerable considering that I always knew what is happening in the country before I pulled that stunt two weeks ago.
After the resurrection, I was unconscious for a day, I had to gained control of my magic for four days, and I spent the majority of last week teaching Setsura how to use her body (no perversion intended) and bonding with her. I was so busy that I did not even bother to check the state of the country.
"You left quite an expression." Ryuuin-sensei answered grimly. "Some people considers you a monster for doing what you did, some people considers you a hero for attempting to destroy the filth in our country. You may not be interested in this but your reputation is now public knowledge."
"In other words, my reputation as a bounty hunter is revealed so that those I included in that video can save face." You know what so sad, I already know that this would happen. "They are trying to discredit me then?"
"Yes, and that pissed a lot of soldiers in the arm forces. You are quite popular with the war veterans and some generals." I smiled at this. It seems that some people appreciate me. "You seem to be quite well liked by the 57th and 78th battalion."
"57th is a navy fleet while 78th is a military unit that specializes in desert warfare. If memory serves me right, those two battalions had a lot of green horns and weren't expected to survive in the war." And I lead them to many victories, some of them memorable.
"I know you this but the evidence that you provided is questionable because you were the one who gave them to the Emperor. It doesn't matter how legitimate those evidence are, the fact remains that you were the one who gave it to the Emperor and that made those evidence very questionable." Ryuuin-sensei stated and all I could do is brush this off.
I already have a plan to end this but I need one thing. "What house is preventing the Emperor to execute a full blown investigation?"
"The majority of the House of Councilor and a minority of the House of Representatives." He answered me and this baffled me.
"Why? I mean only a few members of upper house and lower house have dirt in their name. They should actually be using this to further their influence and power."
"They cannot handle seeing you as a hero."
"Ah yes, that." I forgot that the parliament frowned upon my vigilantism during the war and I did attack the popular member of the parliament, my father. I can believe that guy is likable.
"I see, and I would guess my father is spearheading this."
"Give me two days and those who deserve to be in prison would be imprisoned." I told Ryuuin-sensei before sparring him a glance. "But first things first, we need to visit somebody."
"Who, your grandfather, your mother!?" An incredulous expression then graced Ryuuin-sensei's face. "Please tell me you are going to visit your mother. Isane has become more insufferable without you in her life." If he doesn't look so pathetic while he said those words, I would have laughed.
"There will be a time for me to meet my mother for now; I have to talk to the empress."
Ryuuin-sensei was surprised by this. "You know the Emperor's wife."
"Second wife, and yes, I know her. She's the mother of Kurazakura and Shiroshiki and the best Outersystematic-type magician during her time." I answered as I leaned back on my chair. "You and the empress, you two are the only ones who knew of Setsura's existence and pedigree."
Now that surprised Ryuuin-sensei, not that I blame him. He knew better than anyone how hard I kept Setsura's existence a secret from the world.
"You have an excellent mental defense."
"Setsura doesn't, regardless of her telepathy; her mental defense and barriers is not as strong as mine, not strong enough to prevent someone like her to break through her mind and extract information about us." I close my eyes as I remembered the first confrontation I have with the Empress. It was not a pleasant experience.
"She was your mother's teacher." Sensei reminded me before adding something. "I'm surprise that she kept her mouth shut about this."
"She owes me many favors." I told Ryuuin-sense, hoping that he doesn't press any further.
The second wife of the Emperor was the person who taught my mother everything she knew. My mother's sadistic ways, she learned it from her.
For some reason, the Second Empress likes me and sees me as a grandson that she never had and that is the one of the two reasons why I was able to negotiate a deal with her.
The second reason, I am quite useful to her.
The Second Empress met Setsura when I was nine.
The last two years of my Bounty Hunting Career revolves around eliminating those who she deems a threat to the country.
The last three years of my life revolves around assisting her with her many experiments.
Japan is a beautiful and peaceful country, and for it to stay that way, necessary evil must exist.
Mother and the Second Empress are one of those evils.
And I am going to join them.
But not because I love the country, no, that is not my reason.
I am going to become a necessary evil because it is the only way for me to finally give my heart to Setsura without any regrets and hesitation.
It's the only way.
(Scene Change)(Ichika POV)
"Seeing that you are alive and breathing, can I assume that my granddaughter is dead?"
"Setsura is alive and well." I never understood the Empress' taste as I entered her personal study in the Imperial Castle. Her study room is a traditional Japanese room but there was no design, there was no furniture, the room was devoid of anything, even lights.
The room was completely dark, devoid of any light. The only reason I could see her is because of my spectacular eyesight.
She was sitting behind a curtain, obscuring her from my view yet I could see the outline of her body. She was wearing a kimono, that much I am sure.
"That is very pleasant news. Tell me, did you find an alternative path."
"No, I proceeded with the transplant surgery. I died but Setsura revive me." I smiled a bit as I knelt and bow in front of the Empress of the country, my head touching the wooden surface. I respect her as magician, as an empress, and as a protector of Japan, and I like her for being one of the few that can understand my mother. "She gave me a new life."
"She defeated death for you." I could tell that she read the surface of my mind.
It seems that her technique is still better than Kurazakura's. Kurazakura maybe the more powerful Outersystematic-type magician than her mother, but the Empress is still more skilled than her. Kurazakura was never capable of reading my mind without touching me, unlike her mother, the second wife of the Emperor.
"How romantic, you went through hell for her and she defeated death for you."
"I would feel flatter if you put some emotions in your voice." I replied nonchalantly before sitting up, still kneeling to show my respect. One thing about her was that she is quite an emotionless woman, rarely showing her emotions in front of anyone.
"Yes, I shall work on that." Not bloody likely. She likes me, but not that much too actually put any emotion in her tone of voice. "Why are you here? I would have expected you to stay beside Setsura-chan's side." The Empress inquired me, her tone emotionless but it has an edge in it that tells me to state my business immediately.
"Apparently, there are some loose ends that I have to take care of." I stated as I reached for something behind me.
"Yes, the aftermath of your plans did expose some trash that my husband has yet to dispose of." She replied with a drawled tone, yet, there was slight sense of irritation in her voice.
"Politics is a complex bitch to tame."
"Agreed, but being a vigilante, you are immune to the law."
That translates as: 'Don't get caught, brat'.
"Of course, I'll be discreet." I assured her calmly while trying to prevent her from further invading my mind.
"That is what I like about you. You are very efficient with your kills; quick, fast, and no evidence, unlike Isa-chan who makes such a spectacle whenever she executes her victims." She learned that from you, your highness.
"My mother likes to send messages to her enemies, something that I find very amusing." I answered, defending my loveable mother.
"You are probably the only one who considers your mother loveable."
Get out of my mind, your highness! That is the only warning that you will have from me.
"Now, let's get to the main issue at hand." I adopted a very calm and serious expression when she said this. "I know that you will not visit me just to ask me permission to clean filth, you are better than that. The only reason you visited me today is because you want something from me."
"Perspective as ever, good, I'll be quick and blunt." I then took a small box from my packet before gently sliding the box towards the Empress.
The box disappeared from my view and it only took a moment for her to realize what was inside the box. The tension in the room quickly doubled after a minute.
"Are you serious?"
"How many artificial magicians have we created in the past three years? One dozen, two dozen, three dozen, creating another one will not be hassle." I told her bluntly.
"Why?" There were some emotions in her voice which slightly delighted me. "True, you have been instrumental in my creation of Artificial Magicians for the past three years, the magic-processing device that you make is unrivalled, but you are against this experiment."
"Also, you do not need to be an Artificial Magician, you are strong enough and useful enough as you are right now and I doubt if this processor is a match to your natural calculation ability."
"This is not me wanting to be strong or me wanting to be able to perform other magic outside of my specialty." As far as I am concern, the only magic I need is my [Blood-type Magic] and my [Regeneration-type Magic]. My psion manipulation is also enough for me to be considered an anti-mage. My knowledge in many ancient magic is also extensive enough to cover the weaknesses of my affinities and my Pushion base magic is developing well.
I already have enough in my arsenal to be considered an accomplish magician and I don't have any desire using magic outside of my specialties and affinities.
"This is not me wanting to be stronger. This is me wanting to be selfish for once in my life." I stated calmly.
"Selfish, are you even capable of that?" The Empress as me is a dismissive manner behind her emotionless tone. "You are the most selfless being I know." The Empress added and all I could do was smile bitterly.
"I know but this time, I want to be selfish for my sake and Setsura's." I told the Empress with the pleading tone. "After Setsura revive me, we shared a kiss and it was the best kiss I had in my life. The kiss I shared with her was filled will all the emotions I want in a kiss. After that, I shared my bed with her and I held her tight, I embrace her and she embraces me, and it felt right. For the first time, I felt love in the arms of someone and it felt heavenly." I then looked at the Empress, a bright yet forlorn smile plastered on my face.
"And you know what, in the two weeks that I was with her, we shared more kisses, each sweeter than the last, and we held each other every night, and I relish every single moment of it but you know what, I wasn't able to completely enjoy her embraces and kisses. You know why? Every time we kiss, every time we held each other, a vivid image of Chifuyu-nee comes to my mind. Even though I felt more love with Setsura than the two years I was 'with' Chifuyu-nee, I still can't stop thinking about her whenever I am being affectionate with her…"
"And those lingering feelings prevent you from giving your all to Setsura-chan." The Empress interjected and all I could do is nod in shame.
"It is not fair for her and for me. I want it, she wants it, us being siblings is not a hurdle for us, but the feelings I have for Chifuyu-nee had been the ultimate betrayal to the two of us." I chuckled sadly as I fight the tears that were threatening to fall from my eyes. I cannot show weakness in front of her. I can show desperation but never weakness, not in front of her.
"So what is being an artificial magician have to do with you being able to completely love Setsura-chan? Like I told you, even you cannot design a magic processor strong enough to surpass your natural calculation ability." The Empress pointed out firmly. "If I make you an Artificial Magician, the benefits will be nonexistence. Yes, you may be able to cast spells outside of your affinities but the casting time would be extremely slow." The Empress added and I could already tell that she is worried that I would handicap myself, which is unlikely because the two of us already perfected the procedure in creating Artificial Magician.
"Did I not tell you, this is not me wanting to be stronger, this is me wanting to give my heart to the one girl who had loved me with all her heart from the get go." I took a deep breath before I stared at her. "Your Magic is Mental Design Interference. Mental Design Interference is a forbidden magic that forcibly alters the area of a person's consciousness. We created many Artificial Magicians because you are able create strong emotions in the limbic system with your Mental Design Interference while I implant a Magic Processing device to increase the magician's Invocation Speed, the scale of the Magic Sequence, and phenomena rewriting ability, thus creating an artificial Magician."
I am confident that she will understand what I want with just that explanation alone.
And after a minute, she spoke. "You want me to remove your emotions?"
"Yes and no. I want you to remove my emotions with one exception." I narrowed my eyes at her as I allowed my magical aura to flare. "My love for Setsura; that in the one emotion I do not want to lose."
"You want me to modify your mind so that the only one you can value is Setsura-chan, am I correct?" The Empress inquired with an interested tone. "Do you know what you are asking me?"
"I know what I am offering." I answered her calmly. "I'm giving you a chance to access my mind. You know how good my mental defense is. You cannot completely read my mind, even your daughter struggles in reading my mind even when she is touching me. The only person who has ever read my mind unhindered is Setsura and that is only because I allowed her access to my mind. I am giving you this chance, this one and only chance, to have full access to my mind. You can discover all my secrets and the secrets that I hold. I even know some secrets that not you or your husband is not aware of and some hidden secrets that the past rulers of this country have."
I could feel a sudden shift in her aura. Good, I have her attention.
Time for me to go for the kill.
"I am also allowing you to modify me." I clutched my fist as I looked at the ground. "I don't care what you do to me. You can make me your puppet, you can make me a monster, I don't care, I don't give a fuck anymore, just as long as I will only love Setsura and Setsura alone in the end, I don't care what happens." I offered her as fiercely as I can.
The silence was deafening after I told her my offer.
After a while, she spoke again.
"You do know that you are selling your soul to the devil."
"You can have my soul. My mind and my spirit already belong to Setsura. I just need your help to give her my heart."
"Love can make us do many crazy things." The Empress commented off handedly.
"Love can make us the most beautiful monster." I replied with a small smile.
The Empress finally relented with my wishes