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This article, Genius Beyond Their Years, is the property of Another Poetic Spartan


As the clouds in the night sky passed, a red-haired shinigami stepped out of a rather large senkaimon. "Ah, what a pleasure it is to be back!" he exclaimed, with his signature smirk covering his face. Before he could take another step, however, he felt a rather powerful presence to the north. "Hmm, it feels like an Espada, or perhaps a Captain. I best check it out." the man thought as he began his journey to the north.

Kei was walking to his quarters with Vice-Captain Ui besides him, while holding an enormous amount of paperwork. "Honestly Ui. Why do they have to give me a lot of paper work? I should be having you do that." He complained with a frown.

"But Sir. You're a Captain. Its your duty. And if you gave it to me, I'll probably have done something wrong." Ui answered with a grin.

Kei slightly chuckled as he continued to walk. He stopped when he felt a powerful energy signature appear. Ui noticed and turned her head. "You felt it too. Right?" He looked at her and nodded. "I'll be right back. Take these and place them on top of my desk. I'll check it out," He said as he handed her the paperwork. He turned around and was gone in an instant. Ui looked off at the distant and resumed walking.

While making his way into the barracks for the Gotei 13, which he wasn't suppose to be in, the ginger could feel the pressure of the spiritual energy baring down on him. "It's close," he whispered, casually looking behind him, making sure no one was following him. As he searched every corridor, he let out a sigh, believing that this was just some wild goose chase. However, as he started to give up hope, he felt the reiatsu he had felt before inches from him. "This feels like... Kei Yume." he said, turning to face the man who was producing such a strong aura.

He had pinpointed the location of the disturbance, appearing right behind the stranger. However, just as he arrived the intruder turned around, revealing their true identity. Kei stood in surprise; the person in front of him was Naishō Kawahiru, an exile who was the previous Vice-Captain of Squad 3. "..What brings you here Naishō?" Kei murmured, carefully observing the man.

"Nothing. I just found myself drawn to this spiritual energy, which I now know is you. I presume that you felt mine as well, or you wouldn't have appeared behind me." the Kawahiru said, his voice quite acidic.

"I know we didn't really know each other for long but you didn't recognize my signature at all? Of course I felt it. It stood out. A lot." Kei remarked, his lips pursed.

Naishō's eyes widened. "Did you expect me to? I mean, we met once, and I saw you very few times while still in the Third Division. I'd also like to thank you for such a compliment." he said, his smile returning.

"As a matter of fact yes, I expected you to. I recognized yours almost immediately. And you know, we didn't really end on good terms especially after what Shuten Tamane had done." Kei said.

The exiled shinigami squinted his eyes. "Shuten Tamane? I have an eidetic memory, so it's harder for me to remember people by name. If I had a face to match, I'd know exactly who it is. And, to satisfy you, I did know it was your spiritual energy I was feeling. I simply played dumb. But I must say, I congratulate you on remembering my spiritual signature, even after such a long time has passed."

Kei found himself chuckling. "An eidetic memory you say? At least I can remember the faces of the people in question when asked. Shuten Tamane. White hair. Tall. Brooding. Traitor. Thank you. I take great strides in remembering everyone. As everyone is worth remembering."

"I never said he wasn't worth remembering; I said it was difficult for me to remember someone with just a name. I can't help it. Anyways, may I ask why you appeared behind me? Before that, you were still somewhere in the Third Division barracks." Naishō said, realizing he was in the Thirteenth Division barracks. The Third Division's headquarters were at least two miles ahead of the two men.

"I never said that. I said that its worth remembering their faces for future references. As for your answer. I have improved greatly. No longer do you see a seated Shinigami. What you see now is the Captain of your division." Kei answered with a sly smile.

Naishō opened one of his eyes. "Well, someone seems a bit cocky," he replied, a hint of cockiness in his own voice as well. "But, I'll have have you know that if I hadn't defected, I could be where you are now. It would be best not to forget that." he continued, the cockiness in his voice increasing considerably.

Kei couldn't help but smile to Naishō's remarks. "Me cocky? Hardly. If you want cockiness, go to over to the 11th Division and my Vice-Captain, she's quite a handful if you ever meet her." He countered. "And I don't forget things. I always remember," Kei continued on.

"Good to know," the red-haired death god remarked. Within a moment's notice, Naishō had appeared behind the current Captain of the Third Division. "Now, let's see if the Captain of my former home meets my criteria." he said, his palm resting gently on Kei's shoulder.

"What are you trying to do there Naishō?" Kei asked, his head over Naishō's shoulder. "You realize nothing is there right?" He commented.

Naishō simply smirked. "Some things never change, do they?" he thought to himself as he had done the same thing. "So far, you're failing my test, you fake manifestation of Kei." the Kawahiru clansman said, slashing through the dream Kei had created.

Kei appeared somewhere close to Naishō's side, clapping loudly. "Bravo, bravo my dear friend. How could you have known? He was an exact copy of me afterall." Kei said with a smile, his eyes observing him.

"Even though we haven't actually fought or anything like that, I've seen you in battle, so I just thought that you were like most people. If something works, they continue to use it until it becomes ineffective. I guess this technique hasn't failed you yet?" the red-haired answered, curious if he had been correct in his hypothesis.

"This technique will never fail me. It has served me for many long years and I have no plan of stopping its usage." Kei replied, his face in a grin.

He had been correct. Without so much as a getsure, Naishō slashed through his adversary. "You shouldn't have said that."

"I chose to say it." Kei replied, appearing in front of him.

"But, you just told me that this is another dream manifestation. If it hasn't failed yet, then that means that the first dream was merely a distraction; so that I wouldn't think that'd you'd be just another manifestation." Naishō remarked, proving why he had said what he did.

"The thing is Naishō. Why would I tell you that it failed? There is no point to do that; it will accomplish nothing. They weren't distractions. They each had their purpose." Kei said.

Naishō glared at the now Captain of the Third Division. "I never said they didn't have their purposes. In fact, I commend you on the fact that you were so prepared for this fight." he said, but hostility was the only tone you could hear in his voice. Slowly, the red-haired man walked towards Kei, a fake smile on his face. "How 'bout you reveal your real self, or I'll just be on my merry way." This was a terribly ploy, but it was the best thing he could think of at the moment.

Kei observed Naishō, aware of his movement. "And I never said that you didn't say that, I'm merely pointing it out. Even a distraction has a purpose, don't you agree? Expect the unexpected Naishō. Remember that." He said as walked for several moments. "But I am real. Haven't you realized that?"

"No, 'cause you have failed to prove it." the Kawahiru clansman replied, apparently not pleased.

"You can't tell if I'm real unless you try." Kei said.

Naishō's glare intensified. "Okay then," he whispered in Kei's ear, having appeared behind him several moments later. As he spoke, the afterimage of the young Kawahiru clansman disappeared.

Kei smirked at Naishō's actions and patted his head. "Strike me. And you will realize that I am not a false image or avatar. I am the real thing." He said, beckoning.

"You don't have to tell me twice," the red-haired ex-Lieutenant said as he elbowed at his opponent's head, still convinced that it was just another dream.

"That's because you don't believe me," replied the 3rd Division Captain, catching the red-haired ex-Lieutenant's elbow with his gloved hand.

The red-haired man just continued to glare. "I must commend you on your intellect, as most can't read my emotions during battle." he said, seconds before the Kawahiru clansman appeared above Kei, his blade ready to smash down the Captain's head.

A sheathe appeared above Kei's head, catching the blade in mid sequence. "My intellect is not noteworthy in my opinion. Your emotions are very easy to read, given the correct circumstances and observation." the brown-haired Captain said in a nonchalant tone. He slightly moved to the left, directly facing the ex-Lieutenant and in an instant, fired a spiritual energy blast from inside the sheathe.

But Naishō was gone.

"Woah there, Kei. Let's save some of that for later." he remarked, just as he fired a kidō spell; Hadō #88 - Hiryugekizokushintenraiho, the royal family's signature spell. Even though he had done it without its incantation, the Kawahiru boy was confident that it would still pack a powerful punch.

The kido spell,Hadō #88 - Hiryugekizokushintenraiho rushed forward at the Captain, it cackling with energy and power. Kei stood directly in front of it, his head down and hands at the side.. Slowly he raised his head and looked directly at Naishō, a smile appearing on his face. Kei brought his left hand up, the sheathe intercepting the spell, causing it to bound upward. The energy soared high into the sky and dissipated, creating a booming sound similar to thunder.

Kei then focused his attention on the red-haired man and murmured, "Gaki Rekkō".

Quickly, Naishō whispered the words "Bakudō #40 - Mukō", which caused a large, translucent barrier to erect itself from ground, easily protected the ex-Lieutenant from the powerful hadō spell. "My my, what a clever man we have here. I haven't fought such an intelligent man in quite awhile..." he said as he voiced trailed off, remembering his fight with Kenji Hiroshi. However, he immediately returned to reality and took a defensive stance, awaiting his opponent's next move.

Kei chuckled at Naishō's comments as he casually walked towards to his opponent, firmly holding the sheathe in his left hand. "Oh Naishō, you didn't think that I would not be a clever man at all? It took more than Bankai and power to reach this position you know." He said as he stopped a few feet away from the red-haired ex-Lieutenant, giving him a warm smile. "I doubt that you had fought many with an intelligence like yours and mine. For me personally, this is one of the battles I had partaken in with someone of your caliber. And I must admit, this is quite fun." He continued, raising his sheathe to fire Hadō #88 - Hiryugekizokushintenraiho at the man.

But the red-haired shinigami was already behind the Yume clansman. "I never said I thought you weren't clever, I merely stated that you're more clever than I expected." Naishō whispered, the tip of his zanpakutō positioned on Kei's back, ready to strike on command. "Now, I'd like to see the newly-appointed Captain of my favorite division to show me something that proves why you got said title."

"Ah but it was your choice of words that had made me say that. Cleverness often leads to success you know." Kei calmly said, well aware of the tip of the blade was touching his back. "However, this newly-appointed Captain does have some tricks." After he had said the word "tricks" Kei immediately turned around, pointing his right finger at Naishō and fired.

And Naishō was prepared for such a trick. Releasing his zanpakutō from his grasp, he thrusted his palm up, letting it make contact with the gauntlet attached to said palm. As the attack touched his petrification tool, the blast was turning into a large boulder. After being fully petrified, the Kawahiru clansman crushed the former blast of energy into billions of dust particles. "C'mon, Kei. I've come to expect more from the likes of you." he said, his smirk still covering his face.

"Hmmm. Quite an interesting feature I see." Kei softly said, glaring at the red-haired shinigami. "Like I said, don't make assumptions Naishō." Kei turned his back towards the man, his body apparently dissolving as the wind started to pick up. Just then, he appeared at his side, a glowing finger touching his ribs.

"Shit!" the red-haired Kawahiru thought as he had been unprepared for such an attack. Unable to fully protect himself, he attempted to use his gauntlet, which was trying to rest after being used. Thrusting out his palm again, Naishō forced his petrification tool to awake, showing the invention that he was incredibly desperate at the moment.

"I'm sure you didn't expect this my friend." Kei said in an ironic smirk as he fired. But the red-haired Kawahiru's gauntlet caught the blast barely in time, petrifying the spiritual energy into rock. However, the brown-haired man was prepared for such a response revealed his other hand, it glowing a green color. "Gaki Rekkō".

Deciding he wasn't going to use up all of his spiritual energy on something so minuscule, the red-haired shinigami took the full force of the blast. After the dust settled from the energy-based attack, Naishō could be seen with tatters in his clothing, the entirety of his left sleeve gone. "Nice little trick there, Kei. However, this is a game, and I always win at games." the Kawahiru boy remarked, over three dozen clones of him surrounding him and the Captain. As they enclosed in on the duo, the Naishō that had been standing next to Kei had faded away into the air, a smirk plastered on his face.

Seeing the three dozen clones diverging onto him, Kei brought his hand up and a Zanpakutō suddenly materialized in his left hand, its blade glistening. And without much of an effort, he swept his Zanpakutō from left to right in an arc, a wave of white spiritual energy appearing and swarming over the copies. "Whose game is it Naishō? Yours or mine? And I do enjoy games." Kei commented, returning his smirk.

"Mine," the red-haired Kawahiru demanded, appearing next to Kei as he swung his blade down towards the youthful Captain.

"You really think so?" Kei said, raising his blade to catch the red-haired shinigami's Zanpakutō.

And Kei had only caught an afterimage, who attempted to hold down the Captain, while the true former Lieutenant appeared before Kei, his blade reaching for the ground. Whispering "I want to become," a torrent of spiritual energy enveloped Naishō, sending a surge of reiryoku to the surrounding landscape. As the energy dissipated, Naishō returned his opponent's smirk and gestured for the young man to attack.

"How interesting," Kei remarked as he broke into a smile, quickly breaking away from the grasps of the afterimage. He grasped his Zanpakutō tighter with both hands and raised it up his head, with it facing Naishō. He rushed forward at him.

Naishō mirrored his opponent exactly, thrusting his zanpakutō into the air and charging towards the captain of his old division. "Let's see just how powerful you really are." the Kawahiru shinigami thought as his and Kei's blade connected.

Their blades clashed, creating a shock wave between the two. Kei eye's became focused as he delivered his movements against Naishō. He moved to the side and brought down his left hand against the shinigami's arm.

Caught by surprise, Naishō was cut by his opponent's blade - a small gash in his right arm. Appearing a few meters away, the red-haired Kawahiru held onto his arm as he attempted to quell the bleeding. "Well, that was a rather good move. I just need a bit more evidence before I declare that you deserve your position as captain of the third division." he said, nonchalantly.

"I promise you my kind sir. I have no intention of disappointing you." Kei replied, appearing beside him, his back turned. "Lets continue, shall we?" He finished, turning around to reveal a slight grin.