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Mt. Myōbu was very calm today, with clouds slowly rolling by in the skies above. Several trainee's were hard at work, practicing skills in small spar matches. Standing at the edge of the ring where the trainee's were dueling, Hyōsube stood with his hands behind his back. "Keep your arms at an angle and let up, if you don't keep steady you will easily be succumbed to hour foes blade in a heart beat" he insisted from his spot. His eyes quickly shifted between the movements of his students and watched as the one on the right knocked away the other's blade and brought him to the ground.

A smirk appeared on his face and he called out "Atemi, good work... you listen well". He saw as Atemi assisted his defeated fellow student up and then turn to him.

"Thank you Hyōsube-sensei" he said, bowing to his teacher.

As Hyōsube nodded his head at Atemi, he motioned back at the large wooden building. "Both of you take a rest, your evaluation is done for today" Hyōsube said. Both complied and headed into the building, leaving Hyōsube to stand alone. "I guess I should head back too..." he said as he turned from his spot.

As soon as he lifted his foot, he felt a strong aura of spiritual energy around him instantly. "What was that..." he said quietly as his head spun around.

"Hyōsube!" called a voice, instantly appearing in a flash next to him. Instantaneously appearing next to Hyōsube, Kirikī Shihōin knelt with a worried look on her face. "Did you feel that spark of spiritual energy?" she asked.

"Yes I did" Hyōsube calmly said, gripping the handle of his Zanpakutō. "I'm going to investigate... keep the students in doors and out of harms way... If things get hectic, I'm trusting you to get them out of here" he ordered before Flash Stepping out of the dojo.

While Hyōsube searched the area for any sign of danger, a red-haired Shinigami stepped out of a rather large Senkimon, a smile on his face. "My, this place is beautiful. I should really come here for vacation." he said as he began to take a stroll in this new-found paradise.

Appearing on the ground level, opposite of the red-haired man, Hyōsube locked eyes with the "infiltrator". Not one to start a fight, Hyōsube quickly leaped in front of him and out grasped the handle of his blade. "Friend... or foe?" he asked promptly.

Naishō but his hands up, as if surrendering. "Friend or foe of what? You? Soul Society? What? I'm gonna need some more information before I give you any form of answer." he said, mocking the older man before him.

"Fine then, if you want to be technical" Hyōsube said as he disappeared in a flash. Appearing next to Naishō, his hand was on his Zanpakutō's sheath. "I don't care who your allegiance is to, what is your purpose here? Hyōsube asked. He didn't want to answer Naishō's question, as Hyōsube himself had no real answer to whom he was aligned.

"My purpose, eh? Well, I don't really have a purpose being here. I was exhausted from a huge battle I had just a bit ago, so I entered a Senkimon and it brought me here. It looked so peaceful that no one would mind me resting for a bit. I guess I was wrong..." Naishō said, his voice trailing off as he noticed his hostile host resting his hand on his zanpakutō.

After hearing this, Hyōsube removed his hand from his Zanpakutō and gave a smile to the man. "Your welcome to utilize my dōjō for anything you might need" Hyōsube said. "I'm known for my hospitality, so being rude isn't really my forte" Hyōsube said.

Naishō's face instantly lit up. "Why, thank you! To show my appreciation, I would like to have a spar with you, after I'm done resting, that is." he said, hoping his, now, hospitably host would accept his offer.

"As the head of this dōjō, I am inclined to accept your offer" Hyōsube said. "But go have some rest and I'll get you something prepared to eat" Hyōsube said.

"One thousand thanks, kind sir!" the red-haired man stated with glee. He then followed Hyōsube into the dōjō, glad he would finally be able to rest...

Entering the dōjō, Hyōsube noticed Kirikī standing with several students behind her. "Kirikī, everything is safe. Please prepare a meal for the three of us" Hyōsube said, nodding his head at the man. "My students, please return to the Soul Society. We will pick up training tomorrow" he finished.

The students complied and left the dōjō.

Kirikī walked over to the man and out stretched her hand. "My name is Kirikī Shihōin, a pleasure to meet you" she said.

Naishō, preferring to be more traditional, bowed, ignoring the woman's hand. "It is a pleasure to meet your acquaintance. I may seem forward, and forgive me if I'm wrong, but are you two together?" he asked, his curiosity getting the best of him.

Kirikī quickly blushed at the comment and lowered her head. Thankfully, Hyōsube came out, being his very simple self with "Nope, but we are good friends! I was a very good friend to her cousin, Yoruichi Shihōin." Hyōsube motioned for Kirikī towards the next room. "Prepare some tea, I'll make our guest comfortable" he said.

Kirikī complied and said "Oh I forgot to tell you, Rey went out for a stroll- so he won't be back till later".

"That geezers gonna get himself lost out there" Hyōsube said. He shook his head and looked back at the man. "Oh how could I forget. My name is Hyōsube, and yours?" he asked.

"Naishō Kawahiru, at your service." the young Kawahiru replied, a slight chuckle within his voice.

While Kirikī was shocked at the man's status as a Kawahiru, Hyōsube showed little interest. "After Kirikī brings your tea, go ahead and rest... in the morning we can get that challenge going" Hyōsube said.

"Thank you. I shall wait for my tea here. How 'bout we conjure up some small talk?" Naishō asked, hoping he wouldn't have to sit alone while he waited for his tea to arrive.

Hyōsube didn't want to make conversation, but he wasn't one to be rude to guests. "Then I shall join you" Hyōsube said. Motioning to the small table at floor length across from them, Hyōsube walked over and sat at one side. The sound of Kirikī pouring tea in the next room filled his ears.

As the red-haired shinigami took his own seat, he paused, attempting to think of idle conversational topics. "So... how 'bout that weather we're having?" he asked, quite embarrassed that he didn't have anything else to say...

"So... you say you're of the Kawahiru Family. The Royal Family, huh, thats pretty prestigious. I've heard many tales of several Kawahiru's triumphs. What is such a man doing on my desolate mountain?" Hyōsube said.

He watched as Kirikī came in and placed a cup of tea in front of both Naishō and himself. He then proceeded to nod at Kirikī. She understood this was a motion for her to leave the room for now. This meeting had something behind it and Kirikī understood that.

"Well, I just finished a battle with Kenji Shiba. Perhaps you've heard of him. Anyways, it was a pretty brutal battle, and I came here so I could rest my eyes for a bit. Nothing like a good ol' smackdown to make you appreciate a bed." Naishō chuckled, amusing himself with his rather lame joke.

"Hmm.. the out come of this battle? Were you beaten by this man?" Hyōsube asked. He was curious to the out come of a battle with a Kawahiru.

Naishō laughed. "Luckily, no. While we were battling, my wrist was broken and I came here to rest. I won't take long for me to heal. It usually takes me less than a day to do so." the red-haired man said, laughing a bit.

Taking a breath, Hyōsube wasn't sure what it was about this man, but he didn't like him. "Then finish your refreshment and take some rest, we can't have a guest walk around hurt" Hyōsube said. He looked contently at Naishō, unsure of how he would respond. There was a touch of unnatural harshness in Hyōsube's tone and Hyōsube was aware of it.

Naishō's laugh died down, with him giving Hyōsube a slight glare. "And his problem with me is... ?" he thought, taking a drink from his tea. Deciding that this rude man would not get an answer, the red-haired Kawahiru turned to Kirikī. "Thank you for the tea, Miss Shihōin." he said, a large smile on his face.

Standing from his seat, Hyōsube had finished his tea and motioned at Kirikī before walking off. As she heard Hyōsube exit the room, she bowed to Naishō and said "I'm sorry for Hyōsube's rudeness... he's never like this".

"If he's never like this, then why does he suddenly have a problem with me?" the red-haired shinigami asked, quite annoyed by his rather rude host.

Kirikī thought for a moment and finally came out with. "Maybe it is because of your lineage as a member of the Royal Family... I'm unaware of his past beyond this Mountain" Kirikī said.

"Hmm, as far as I know, the royal family did nothing to this man. I'll have to ask him before our spar." the man replied. "Well," he continued. "I guess I best be getting to bed. Thank you for your help today." He then retired to his bed, wondering why Hyōsube had such a strong feeling of dislike for him...


In his room, Hyōsube contemplated as he sat on his bed. A pipe sat in his mouth and his mind had drifted. He contemplated the image of the man... Naishō. What was it about him that made him cringe... what was it that Hyōsube feared and detested. Only time could tell... when morning came, decisions and answers would come.

Deciding Day[]

The morning was warm and a lofty breeze wafted into Hyōsube's room. After a night of contemplation, he had decided that he would bring it all against Naishō. Unsure of how Naishō would react to this idea, Hyōsube grasped his Zanpakutō which rested on the wall and slipped his brown haori on. Making his way out, a look of vigor sat in his eyes.

Much like Hyōsube, Naishō had been contemplating whether or not to teach this man a lesson on detest, or just have what they had planned the previous afternoon: a friendly spar. After spending hours thinking about it, unbeknowest to his opponent, the red-haired shinigami planned on taking this fight incredibly seriously. As he left his room, he silently weeped, as this room may not exist in a few hours...

Standing amongst his training field, Hyōsube looked on with a serious face. He heard footsteps behind him and motioned at the person. He turned his head, so that his eye was directly on the figure. "Did you have a good night's rest?" Hyōsube asked as Naishō came into view.

"Yes, I did." he lied, "Thanks for asking! How was your night?" he asked nonchalantly, not particularly interested in what Hyōsube had to say. With his false smirk in place, the Kawahiru boy hope it was enough to fool this powerful man...

"I had some time... to think" Hyōsube said. He nodded off into the distance. "We're both quite powerful... I suggest we move away from here. This dōjō is precious to me..." Hyōsube said calmly. He glanced at the smile upon Naishō's face, and gave a smirk. "Even this man's smile is fake..." Hyōsube thought.

The Kawahirus look was cold. "I agree," he said, hinting at their all-out brawl that'd soon begin. Without another word, Naishō appeared in a large forest about a mile from the dōjō.

Smirking at Naishō's speed, Hyōsube followed and appeared opposite of Naishō in the forest. "This area is fairly vast and makes a good battlefield... perfect for the both of us going all out" Hyōsube said. He nodded towards where they just were.

"See the edge of that forest?" Hyōsube said. He saw as Naishō nodded at the comment. "Thats our boundary... this forest... this ENTIRE forest is our battlefield" Hyōsube called.

"Excellent," the red-haired shinigami remarked, beofre instantaneously appearing behind Hyōsube and sending his elbow towards the man's cranium.

Back stepping the attack, Hyōsube smirked. As Naishō swung at the air in front of Hyōsube, the latter quickly drew his blade and sliced horizontally towards his combatant.

"He's a little speed demon, no isn't he?" Naishō thought to himself as he quickly unsheathed his own blade and blocked the attack, sending a shockwave across the entire mountain. "Well, how 'bout we start getting serious, eh?" he asked, jumping back to create some distance between the two shinigami.

"Will do." Hyōsube said, giving a smirk to Naishō. Forcing onto Naishō, Hyōsube swiped his blade and knocked his combatant away. Grasping the hilt with two hands, Hyōsube took a fighting stance. "Shunkiri..." he said, electrical energy pouring from his body after he said so.

But Naishō was already gone.

"You're a little slow," he whispered, a mere inch behind Hyōsube. Suddenly, the Kawahiru clansman quickly let out a burst of spiritual energy, flattening out part of the forest in the immediate area. As the dust from the shockwave of reiryoku cleared, he signaled for his adversary to come forth.

"Naïve Kawahiru, don't underestimate my skills" Hyōsube said. Disappearing from sight, he quickly appeared opposite of Naishō. Flickering on and off, he slowly appeared closer and closer as he flew through the air. His aura of electrical energy flickered with his movements. As soon as he appeared in front of Naishō, he gave a sarcastic smirk before disappearing once more.

Appearing in the air, behind Naishō, Hyōsube went down for a vertical slice; charged heavily with Shunkiri's aura.

However, the blade was stopped in it's tracks. Naishō merely chuckled as his opponent's sword was seemingly stuck. "Heh, it's funny to watch people when they fall for such a weak technique." he remarked as he turned to face his opponent. As he rotated his body, he mouthed the words "Bakudō #8 - Seki" to Hyōsube.

Sliding backwards from the Bakudō, Hyōsube smirked. He motioned to the traces of Shunkiri emanating from his Zanpakutō. Sparking from the blade, the Shunkiri's traces had scattered around Naishō. "Shunkiri is pressurized Kidō, I invented it to make up for the small nicks in the Shunkō technique..." Hyōsube said. The static from Shunkiri began to envelop around Naishō.

"Well, let me get rid of this parasite." the red-haired Kawahiru replied, a slight chuckle in his voice. Instantly, he released a small portion of his reiryoku, sending the kidō technique away. Without another word, Naishō took a defensive stance, believing he should wait before he starts his battle strategy.

"So cocky... I expected nothing less then a Kawahiru" Hyōsube said, spinning his Zanpakutō. "Your spiritual energy far surpasses mine, I've assessed that tid-bit when we first met... I will make sure that this doesn't hinder our battle" Hyōsube said, pointing the sword at Naishō.

Instantly, Naishō was in his opponent's face, visibly angered. "Now, what is your problem with me and my family? What did I ever do to you?" he demanded, about ready to stab Hyōsube in the abdomen...

Effortlessly slamming his blade downward, he locked Naishō's blade under his own. Giving the man a stare, Hyōsube let out a sigh. "The lineage you stem from doesn't necessarily entice me to befriend you..." Hyōsube said, finally revealing his inner truth. "The one known as Kamui... he has done much wrong to this world. Then there is "Silver-hairs Seireitou"... I have heard his legacy but believe he is a mere poster child to what we Shinigami are... when he obviously isn't" Hyōsube spoke up louder this time.

"My problems are not against you Naishō... I just am lead to these views from looking at the Royal Family's past." Hyōsube announced.

"You..." the red-haired man said, his voice full of rage. "You know nothing of my family! Yes, Madara is a notorious man, but you can't let your view of one member be your view of the entire clan. That's like saying you hate Soul Society because of one of the Central 42 members. That is just stupidity." Naishō said, so distressed that we found himself not making sense.

"Why do you think I proposed this challenge Naishō..." Hyōsube said calmly. Lifting up his head, a frown sat upon his face. "I did it to prove myself wrong, you Naishō are the deciding factor" Hyōsube said.

And the Kawahiru clansman froze.

"How... dare you! How dare you treat me like I'm some kind of test subject, shown to prove you wrong or right. I will not stand here and be insulted like this." he yelled, appearing behind Hyōsube, his zanpakutō's tip mere millimeters from the small of his opponent's back.

Glancing back, Hyōsube's aura had shifted. "Test subject..." he said, quickly swiping his Zanpakutō backwards. A blend of black energy from Shunkiri and Hyōsube's spiritual pressure added incredible force and cutting power in this strike. The resulting attack was enough to clash against Naishō's own blade and cause him to skid back a few feet.

"My judgement is not without reason Naishō... you are not a Test Subject... you are a Redeemer!" he called.

In a blind rage, Naishō slammed his blade down on Hyōsube's own, causing a titanic shockwave to explode from the point where the zanpakutō had clashed. After the ensuing explosion of power had ended, the red-haired shinigami's were a black colour, with his iris being a sharp goldenrod. "Let's play," he said, appearing above his opponent just before slamming down towards the self-exiled shinigami.

"Alright, lets play" Hyōsube said lifting his Zanpakutō up. Spiritual energy surrounded him in masses, overwhelming even that of his Shunkiri. "Kōdai... Kōjaku" he said, swiping forward. An arc of spiritual energy the size of the entire forest. "The strongest of the Kiri-otoshi! The Swallow will shred him of his sins!" Hyōsube thought as the attack fired forward.

Without so much as a gesture, the red-haired Kawahiru placed his palm in front of the black, the very same palm that possessed the man's gauntlet. "Too slow," he remarked as the powerful blast was turned to stone before Hyōsube's eyes. In an instant, Naishō crushed the large boulder, shattering it into billions of dust particles. "Now, I was expecting something more powerful, or at least faster. Is this the extent of your powers?" he asked, his voice having a dual-tone to it.

"Pretty much" Hyōsube said. "You have not come close to redeeming your clan's name... such a technique... is not something you should take pride in. I have worked, practiced and mastered my blade... you take it easy by relying on a gauntlet to do your work." he called.

"Whether you believe my clan to be worthless or not means nothing to me. I'd much rather die than care about what someone else thinks of me or my family. That is your problem, not mine." Naishō replied, making obvious that this wasn't the Naishō Hyōsube had met the previous day.

"Then you aren't deserving of the name, Kawahiru... a true man takes pride in his name and his being. I don't care about your feelings towards me, but I deserve at least the respect to see a true man!" Hyōsube called.

Naishō usual smirk began to fade. "When did I say I didn't take pride in my name? Like I said before, it is your choice to not see eye-to-eye with my clan, not mine. I truly love my clan, but I don't feel the need to defend it to someone that judges one's family solely on one member of said family." he remarked, eyes narrowed. Hyōsube was trying to upset the Kawahiru clansman, but it wasn't working; at least not a lot...

Hesitating for a moment, Hyōsube let out a sigh. "I do not see eye to eye with your clan, you are right in that Naishō" Hyōsube said. "But you were right, I should not determine your pride solely on one of your family members." Hyōsube said. Raising his Zanpakutō up, Hyōsube waved it in a taunting gesture.

"Naishō, let me apologize for my actions with this." Hyōsube said. He had seen the error in his judgement, but knew that Naishō wouldn't forgive him so easily. Gripping the handle of his Zanpakutō tightly Hyōsube announced "Shikai". A large column of spiritual energy engulfed Hyōsube and took shape around him as a fiery veil. Wielding Momoyo, in its Shikai form, Hyōsube bowed his head.

"Let us fight like men, this battle may not be much to you, but I regret my actions since I met you. You are a man whom I should have respected from the start... this is my chance at clearing my conscience and my soul" Hyōsube announced.

"Perhaps you will redeem yourself. However, I have yet to see that." the Kawahiru clansman replied, his anger dissipating.

Lunging at Naishō, Hyōsube smirked as they crossed blades. "Its ironic, isn't it..." Hyōsube said. "I went on a warpath trying to redeem you, and here I am trying to redeem myself" Hyōsube said.

The red-haired Kawahiru merely chuckled. "Irony? I call it karma." he remark, his eyes reverting back to their natural blueish-green hue.

"Sounds about right" Hyōsube said, glancing off into the distance. "So, what are you looking at as my punishment?" Hyōsube asked. He was embarrassed of his "blow-up" and tried his best to hide it.

"I don't punish people." Naishō replied, his voice very stern.

Hyōsube sighed. "If your not looking for a chance at revenge against me... save my life... I think our battle is done" Hyōsube said.

With shock in his eyes, the red-haired Kawahiru spoke. "Done? And why should this battle not resume? Yes, your views of my clan are rather subjective, but it doesn't mean I'm seeking revenge. Your life is in no need of saving, if that's what you think." As he spoke, Naishō re-sheathed his blade, quite upset that this battle wouldn't meet it's intended end...

Hyōsube lowered his head. "Don't think of this as me giving up... I simply need time to think" Hyōsube said. "I have dreams Naishō, whether or not you care doesn't matter... but I hope to close this dōjō. This world doesn't need the likes of me, Kirikī or Rey... I have goals Naishō and I hope we can battle again when I achieve these goals" Hyōsube said, before Flash Stepping away.

End
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