Far across the sea, in a remote, and enchanted land, there lived in harmony among the dangers and beauties of the region, an old master and his young son, who found a very special boy abandoned in the wild. The father took the wild boy in, giving him the name of Goro, and raised the two boys as brothers. The man marveled as the power of light grew strongly within the two boys. Now, at the ages of ten and eleven, the man takes the two boys down to the city below the mountains in which they live, for reasons he refuses to reveal. This is where our story begins.
"Boys, boys, stop fighting!" Otoko Ōkami yelled at his two sons, futilely attempting to hold them apart.
"He touched me!" Chamchi yelled, flailing at his adoptive brother.
"Did not, did not!" Goro yelled back. Otoko sighed, throwing Goro over his shoulder and scooping Chamchi up under his arm. Everyone they passed gave them a funny look as he struggled to carry them down the street, kicking and screaming. He gave them each an embarrassed grin as walked by.
He sighed again, inwardly this time. He knew no one could mistake them for a normal family. A tired, fat old master, carrying two young children down the street, one tall and rotund like his father, the other short, with bright red hair down to his shoes. Each wore a faded old red gi and white belt.
Finally, after long minutes of walking, Otoko threw the two boys to the ground, and rested his hands on his hips. The boys rolled over to look up at him, rubbing their sore back sides.
"There!" The man proclaimed triumphantly, "we're here!"
"Where's here?" Chamchi asked, looking around and scratching his head.
"Your new school!" The man said, gesturing grandly to the building behind the boys' backs. They whirled around.
"School?" Goro asked in confusion.
"School?!" Chamchi screamed, incredulously.
"School!" The man replied, beaming.
"Oh, father!" The portlier boy exclaimed, latching himself onto his father's leg, "Don't make me go! Please please please don't make me go!"
"Now, now," Otoko said, shaking his son off his leg, "All children need to go to school. You wanna be stupid when you grow up?" The boy looked up at his father and, unable to think of a good response, let his eyes fill with tears.
"Excuse me?" Goro asked, tapping his brother on the shoulder, "What's school?" Chamchi rounded on him, and was about to say something nasty, when his father grabbed him from behind and covered his mouth.
"Goro, school is a place people go to become better versions of themselves. You two will be going every day from now on." Chamchi let out another wail, but was silenced by a stern look from his father.
"And that is non-negotiable. Besides," He said, picking them up by their collars and turning them to face the building, "I think you'll like this school. Boys, welcome to the New Turtle School."
Chamchi stormed into the school, grasping the pack his father had given him under his arm. Goro followed, his own pack slung over one shoulder. He looked around in wonder. Then, realizing with a start that his brother was already walking down the hallway, he ran after.
"Chamchi!" He said, once he caught up to him, "are you angry?"
"Of course I'm angry," He grumbled, "And if you had any sense, you would be too. Father just abandoned us here!"
"I think he'll be back this afternoon..." Goro mumbled.
"Yes, but only after we've been completely brainwashed! I'm telling you bro, this place will be the end of us." the smaller boy's eyes widened at this revelation.
"Of course, really!" he said, staring stonily ahead, "That's what schools are for! Now where's the office?" They turned a corner and Chamchi kept looking. Something occurred to Goro.
"then..." He said, thoughtfully, "Shouldn't we not go to the office?" Chamchi stopped in his tracks, thinking.
"Erm... no... maybe we should just go along with it for now," He said, grinning and scratching the back of his head, "Dad seemed pretty dead set on us going." With that, he continued down towards the office. Goro shrugged and followed.
They walked into the office, and Chamchi slapped the note his father had given him onto the main desk. The old woman sitting behind it picked it up and squinted at it.
"Ah, Okami, Chamchi and Goro!" She said, once she'd figured out what it said. She typed something into the computer in front of her, and then began squinting at that.
"Here we are," she said a second later. She scribbling something down on a scrap of paper and handed it to Chamchi. She did the same for Goro. "Those will be your homerooms for the next year. Just tell the teacher your name and you'll be able to begin." The brothers mumbled a thank you and bowed slightly. The woman adjusted her glasses and peered at them.
"Are you two really brothers? You don't look very much alike."
"He's adopted." Chamchi replied, shrugging. The woman nodded in comprhension, privately glad she hadn't finally lost her mind. The two brothers walked out into the hall.
Goro knocked twice on the door. A few seconds later, a tall man in an orange gi opened it up and looked around for whoever had knocked.
"Hello?" He asked.
"Hello!" Goro replied happily. The man looked down in surprise.
"Oh! Hello!" He said, "Who are you?" Goro handed him the paper the woman had given him. The man looked at it.
"Ah, Mr. Okami. Nice to meet you, we're just about to begin." He stepped out of the way and gestured for Goro to go into the classroom. He did.
The inside of the room was strange. At the front were two big blue mats, like the ones Dad had back at the house, but newer and thicker looking. The rest of it was filled with lecture-room style seats on steps towards the back of the room. Each had a child of about Goro's age sitting in it, and each child wore either a red, green, blue or yellow gi. The man led Goro over onto the mats.
"Class," The teacher said, adressing the children, "This is our new student, Gorun Okami. He'll be filling the remaining slot in the blue-"
"Goro." Goro said, looking up at the man. The man glanced back at the paper he had been given.
"Hmm. Yes, Goro, my mistake. Anyway, Goro will be joining the green team after today. Everyone, say hello to Goro."
"Hello Goro." the class chorused, boredly. The young boy waved back at them, nervously.
"Now," The man said, returning his attention to his newest student, "we're going to need to get an assessment of your basic skills. Class, would one of you please come down here and give us a little sparring match?" Instantly, the class perked up, remembering the assessment they'd been put through on their own first days. Jumping at the opportunity to subject another child to that, all their hands shot into the air. The teacher grinned.
"Let's see... ah, Nobuo, please come down here." A boy in a green gi in the third row stood and, grinning toothily, swung himself over the railing in front of him and pushed himself off, flying through the air and landing theatrically on the mat. The class lowered their hands, but didn't look upset. They knew Nobuo would provide an entertaining fight.
Suddenly realizing what was happening, Goro's eyes lit up. He still wasn't quite sure what school was, and who all these people were, but he definitely knew how to fight. He lowered himself into a fighting stance. His new opponent did the same.
"Oh, you already know what to do?" The teacher asked, stepping off the mat, "Alright then, you may proceed." He blew his whistle, and the boys started to circle.
"You're an unlucky kid, y'know that?" Nobuo whispered, smirking wickedly. Goro blinked in surprise.
"Really? Why?" He asked, dropping his guard a little.
"This is why!" Nobuo exclaimed, suddenly launching himself at the smaller boy, his arm pulled back for a punch. a second later, he hit the ground, having collided with nothing. The class gasped.
"...Aren't you going to tell me?" asked Goro's voice from behind him. He whirled around and leapt to his feet, angrily.
"That was luck and you know it!" He yelled, his face turning red. Goro looked around in confusion.
"What? How can I be lucky and unlucky?"
"Shuddup!" Nobuo screamed, "You're gonna get it!" He charged at his opponent again, and again, Goro dodged easily.
"Why do you keep doing that?" He asked from the boy's side, perplexed.
"I'm just..." Nobuo said, desperately trying to come up with an explanation for his failure to hit the boy, "I'm just... determining your fighting style!" he yelled, jumping to his feet. The students in green let out a sigh of relief. They had known all along that this newbie couldn't really be beating their team captain.
"Now," he said, wiping himself off, "you're going to really get it." The class cheered. The teacher frowned. In a flash, Nobuo slapped his hands down on the smaller boy's shoulders.
Finally, Goro thought, he's going to fight me. To his surprise, his opponent leaned in and whispered,
"I giwwup." Goro recoiled in surprise.
"I giwwup. You win." it took Goro a moment to understand what was happening. When he did, he let his guard down, disappointed. A second later, Nobuo's hands shot down to his opponent's armpits and flipped the surprised boy over, slamming him onto the ground on his back as hard as he could.
He held him down for three seconds- the allotted time for a pin in their class- and jumped to his feet, holding his arms high. The class cheered, happy in the knowledge that the new kid was a little weakling. Before he returned to his seat, he leaned down and whispered,
"I said 'giwwup', idiot. That's called strategy." With that, he jogged back to his seat, giving high fives all the way. Goro continued to stare up at the ceiling, trying to understand what had happened.
"Well," The teacher said, helping his new student to his feet, still frowning, "I suppose I got what I needed from that. Goro, please take your seat in the back row."
The little boy complied, feeling that he had just been thrown into a world he could never hope to understand. He sat down in the empty seat and class began.