The plan worked.
Before Marisa could attempt more than a kiss -- Garrett was fairly certain she would have attempted more had she been given time -- she had threw herself to the side. In response Garrett rolled to the opposite side. It was a good thing they did; the moment the duo parted a figure, looking exactly like Kentaro, had smashed his fist down atop the stone roof!
Garrett, despite a storm of emotions threatening to spill out, sounded calm. He pointed right at Marisa, who had dropped low into a ready stance, and signalled that she was not to attack. The fierce look in those eyes brokered no argument and Marisa opted to stand down. With that done he wasted no more time. Before Marisa had even fully backed off Garrett and the Kentaro-lookalike had closed the distance!
"Fine, but don't cry to me if you get your ass kicked."
Garrett, however, was struggling. His guard was weak, his counters were slow, and his punches lacking in what one could call "oomph". He had barely done any training in the last month, and while he hadn't completely ceased fighting Hollow, the only time he had stepped forth to do so had been in defence of his young brother David and sister Jenna. And now he was fighting a life-or-death battle for revenge! He was woefully unprepared. When they parted from their initial exchange Garrett was winded, and a gash had been cut into his left arm.
"Okay, warm ups over, bitch." Garrett exclaimed.
The Kentaro-lookalike was growing into a wild frenzy. The blood drawn from Garrett's arm was visibly affecting it; it was almost as if the scent was driving him somehow. The subsequent attack was fiercer than anything Garrett had faced in his life to date!
Yet Marisa did not intervene...
Lloyd had been sitting in the waiting room for some time before he was approached by a middle-aged woman with long tied-up brown hair and a lithe figure. Lloyd knew her as Randy's mother and her sudden appearance, with tears in her eyes, turned Lloyd's blood cold. He feared that his best friend -- his brother -- was dead. She shared a brief moment with Lloyd before returning to Randy's surgery room.
"My sister says she'll visit you soon."
Kentaro, despite all his bluster about sending Tiffany away, actually looked sad to see her about to go. He had come to trust the girl during the short time she had been in Nishiendo and he knew that he was losing a valuable ally. There weren't many left who could claim that they had inherited the techniques and fighting abilities of Kenji and Anika after all. The Collapse had thinned their number considerably after all.
"... As soon as I determine if Ries is Shinrei or not, I'll be back." Tiffany vowed. "What happens here in the Reikai will affect us in the World of the Living as well."
It was fair reasoning. And it was only then she realised that she meant what she said.
"Go or you'll never leave!"
Akiye had torn herself away from her duties to see Tiffany off. The two girls exchanged a quick hug and whispered words before Akiye lightly slapped Kentaro on the chest.
"... When I see you next hopefully you'll have good news about my brother."
"I hope so too."
And with that Tiffany felt Kentaro's spiritual power surround her. A mark unknown to her that appeared like three black tomoe flashed briefly beneath her feet, and she was suddenly engulfed in a flash of intense light. When the light vanished she found herself on the roof of Grat highschool, where the same mark had been inscribed. She breathed the fresh air in and extended her senses outward where, to her surprise, she found that Garrett was releasing some wild power.
"Who or what is he fighting!?"
As "Dracula" -- as Garret refused to belief that he was fighting Kentaro -- lunged straight for Garrett's throat with bared fangs, Garrett's body suddenly crackled with electricity! He seized Dracula by the jaw tightly enough to jam its mouth closed and with that done he proceeded to trail it through the air before rapidly leaping into the air with it still held tight. He impacted it in the chest with his other hand before quickly moving around to its back. Garrett kicked it squarely between the shoulder-blades and proceeded to dive after it when it tumbled to the ground!
"Get back here!"
Garrett smashed into its back and rode it all the way to the floor! Dracula crashed into the street, where a flash of electricity rose from them like a beacon! Garrett's attack had cratered the very earth and thrown cracked stone everywhere. Marisa, meanwhile, was flash-stepping throughout the area. The brief flash of a memory erasure device followed by a swift strike to render the nearby citizens unconscious soon followed.
"That fool boy won't be happy until he's destroyed the whole city!"
The fact remained however that Garrett was being forced to bring this level of destruction to bear just to keep his head above the water in this battle. Dracula was so much stronger and faster than even Marisa had expected. If she didn't know any better she would've sworn that Dracula was actually as strong as Kentaro was when he fought Shinzō's Imawashi. He certainly moved like Kentaro, even if their fighting style was as different as night and day.
"Garrett's approaching his limit. He's at his breaking point." Marisa thought.
But Garrett sensed something that Marisa missed. Randy's reiatsu had almost completely vanished.
"... Please, Randy. Don't be dead. Please."
Garrett was overcome with pure instinct; the kind that was purely primal. The resultant war-cry from Garrett shattered Dracula's momentum and allowed Garrett to retake the offensive, where he physically blitzed his opponent with a series of quick punches and kicks! His breathing was laboured from the effort however. Which is why Marisa was shocked when Garrett's reiatsu soared like never before! Electricity coloured Garrett's spiritual power cyan and his reiatsu began to coil around his limbs like a snake. For the first time Marisa saw how similar Garrett was to his teacher. Kenji's Byakko stance was essentially identical to what Garrett himself was now demonstrating in his own Battle Aura. The young man was literally glowing! Power flowed from him in waves and for the first time Marisa truly felt that Garrett could win.
"... I meant what I said, you fanged freak. I'm going to kill you. You killed my friend. And for that there'll be no forgiveness!!"
Lloyd's tears fell unhindered but he was snapped back to reality by Randy's mother.
"He'll be okay." She looked off towards where Garrett's reiatsu was raging wildly. "Although it was nothing my husband and I did. Randy sensed Garrett. It's the only explanation we can think of. Randy had flat-lined... we had accepted that he was gone. But the second Garrett's reiatsu flared, Randy's heart started beating, and he rallied back."
Lloyd could only smile. "That's our Randy!"
By the time Tiffany had arrived on-scene Garrett was lying on the rooftop unconscious. Whatever he had been fighting was lying across from him, its skin smouldering, and it too was unconscious. Why it looked like a slightly younger version of Kentaro was unknown to Tiffany, but she got the same vibe from it that she had when she had fought the Soulless. She approached Marisa who was standing between the two.
"Is he alright!?" Tiffany demanded.
"He'll be alright with some rest." Marisa answered, voice strained. "Now let me go."
Tiffany hadn't even realised that she had grabbed Marisa by her collar and was currently in the process of strangling her. She let her go and stepped towards Garrett, who was chuckling to himself quietly. "So he isn't unconscious!" She fell in beside him.
Marisa walked off towards the sword earlier wielded by Vamp and knocked from his grasp by Garrett. "As I thought. This is a Bakkōtō...!"
"Are you alright!?" Tiffany asked of Garrett.
"That's not important." And he actually laughed! "Randy is. I sense him."
"... What about this guy?" Marisa asked, flicking her head towards Dracula.
Something in Tiffany snapped. She was a quick judge of events and she had pinpointed Randy's spiritual pulse the moment Garrett mentioned that he was fine. While he certainly was alive he was far from alright. He was barely clinging to life. Only something threatening Garrett's close friends or family could spur him to produce the level of reiatsu he had.
"Is that thing responsible!?"
Tiffany slowly drew her Zanpakutō and used it as a focus for what she intended. "A drum roll sounds, the wind that ignites the embers blow. Spinning wheel, orchard sky, dancing daggers! Fluttering wings, bloody sacrifice! Unify and converge brightly when fired! Hadō #94. Shiden!"
The rooftop was engulfed in a vibrant and destructive display of violet-coloured lightning!