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Mumen Writer

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Mumen Writer last won the day on November 18

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About Mumen Writer

  • Birthday 04/21/1998

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    negative zone
  • Interests
    ART! particularly visual and literary art.
    manga, animation and other weeb stuff.
  • RPG Profile
    name: Hizorashi Masato
    gender: male

    race: Human(Fullbringer)
    class: Tank - Brute

    reiatsu: 84k
    strength / reiryoku: 125/50
    power:79+10
    stamina:118+5
    perception:79+5
    speed:79+5
    ND: 6720

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  1. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    As Masato’s slash traveled through the rabbit’s body, it came to a sudden halt midway in its torso. The tensing cotton-innards of the toy, observed by Masato, were reminiscent of his own Fullbring. He prepared a second attack with his tail as planned, but the sudden behavior and speech of the girl took him aback. Her grey eyes were now widened and she tilted her head furthest to her right shoulder as she asked with whispers, “Why did you hurt Mimi?" as she spoke the mist that once seeped through the corners of her closed mouth, now poured heavily to the ground, like sand, from her opened jaw. Masato was certain that “Mimi” was the name given to the pink rabbit, whose body still held tightly to his purple weapon. But more importantly her unique speech and ability to empathize with her toy dispelled any doubt that deep down, the girl was still alive and human. “’Sorry, I can’t help you with—“Masato faced her and tried to earnestly answer her question, when she quickly pointed to him again. Mimi’s reaction to the little girls point was instantaneous, as it bent its head and long ears backwards and into ground, causing a brief tremor. “You made Lady Tomoe angry and you hurt Mimi. So now Mimi will hurt you back, it's only fair," she added, her innocent and inquisitive tone turning slightly malicious in her final clause. “Lady Tomoe?” Masato thought to himself, before the sudden shadow of an incoming Mimi, positioned to flatten him with a left elbow, alerted him to dodge. But not before he devised a plan to use the rabbits own falling weight against itself. He twisted to his left with an angular flip, whipping his tail with all his strength and flipping momentum from where he stood, and where the doll would surely land, and into the air. Again testing its density, Masato’s tail would either cut through, or slice beneath the surface of his pink opponent’s left arm. Next, he would continue with a second attack by increasing the size of his blade still wedged into the rabbit’s body and spiking it in every direction, with the intention of also binding the doll to the ground, long enough for answers to his following questions. “Who is Lady Tomoe, and where is she?!” he asked from the distance. ND: 6720-150= 6570 WC: 390 STATS ACTIONS
  2. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    “Don’t let go!” were the teens last words before he lifted his two allies by their arms from the ground with a jump, and into a steady flight. Beneath them and through the mist could be seen, the horde of hundreds of wailers that would’ve surely exhausted the trio had they chose to stubbornly fight. While aware of the ability to fly, Masato was still impressed to see the young Tengu doing so, especially considering he himself couldn’t--much less while carrying the larger bodies of two adults. With the gradual acceleration of the groups flight, Masato contemplated holding his tail in the ground or recalling it. Begrudgingly he chose the latter, as he refused to compromise the team’s safety by leaving a cyan trail. Now unhinged, his tail recoiled with haste into the coat of its origin. Noticing just how little he could see in the mist that only seemed to thicken, Masato instantly grew doubtful of his decision. Thankfully an observation of Connor made by Tengu would provide his with hope. “Connor, your Reiatsu was able to clear a bit of the mist for a short while. I'm going to try it, you guys keep your eyes open for anything that can point us in the right direction." Noted Tengu as he suddenly flared his bright orange reiatsu, swiftly pushing the mist away and clearing the sky for them to see. Masato was now in a mist free bubble and able to observe the vast hills of gravestones, however sightseeing was cut short when a loud screeching cry forced his eyes shut as he winced. The sound had no discernible point of origin, but its intensity felt focused behind his head and permeated down his back. Even covering his ears with his free hand and Fullbring, the obnoxious wails of what sounded like a grieving women still gave Masato a sharp headache. The disembodied and echoing cries would eventually cease and so too did the pain it brought. No longer distracted by the torture, the Tengu-masked teen tried to break the silence. “Connor, Hizorashi-san, we just passed…” Masato listened with his eyes glued to the landmark Shrine, which gave him solace to have some idea of where they were but the sudden pause in the teen’s speech followed by a thud and falling grey stone reminded him of just how grim and hostile the environment they entered was. The random stone had plunged into the only one holding them in the sky, Tengu, and understandably, he descended on impact with the rest of his comrades. The process of falling the trio would separate once again. By creating an inflated hand beneath him, Masato softened his landing before pushing himself into a standing position. He naturally worried for his teammates, especially for Tengu who trusted him to keep watch while he focused on flying. In Masato’s defense, the only outstanding strengths of the wailers the group had encountered thus far were their persistence and speed. Never did he suspect that their rotting and frail bodies contained the strength to throw larges stones with the accuracy, height, and speed of which the teen was attacked. The threads that he kept connected to his allies had been loosened, possibly a result of the trios decent, and Masato would’ve followed their trace had he not been distracted by the hints of pink he saw in the distance. He chose to inspect the suspicious object and, within only a few steps, was met with a large pink rabbit doll. Its only facial features were two buttons for eyes, a black nose, and sewn in smile for a mouth, but it still possessed a threatening aura, especially for a pink enlarged child’s toy. The height of the toy, roughly seven feet, and its bright saturated color contrasted greatly with short the little girl, who Masato was late to notice standing just next to it. Her messy hair appeared to be black and stopped after her shoulders, which carried the two blue straps of denim jumpers she wore. On her left foot was a single shoe and on the right only a knee-high and striped sock to match the other. Both she and the rabbit appeared to have been through a scuffle, indicated by the mud and grass stains all over their bodies. The little girl’s presence in such a dangerous place was somehow more suspicious to Masato than the giant, moving toy rabbit. He took a few more steps closer and to his dismay, saw the smoky substance emitting from her mouth, as well as her lifeless grey eyes and pale skin. As a father, Masato couldn’t help but sympathize for the little girl who undoubtedly still possessed life. The depravity of possessing empty corpses, while evil in its own right, didn’t compare to the exploitation and weaponization of a child, in his opinion. He protested internally against harming the girl and as such, the goal and method of disposing of the previous wailers was no more. The goal to stop the mist until now hadn’t been personal, but as he was forced to fight, what he presumed to be, an innocent girl, he vowed to personally ensure that who or whatever was responsible for the mist, suffered greatly before their death. The rabbit, with its button eyes locked onto the disgruntled father, plucked a gravestone from the grass covered soil, and with the pointing command of the little girl, threw it at Masato with a speed far greater than what Masato could produce. Thankfully in his fit of rage, Masato’s focus was not loss and the telegraphed movements of the girl and rabbit combined gave him enough hints to predict the attack. It was now obvious the rabbit doll was responsible for the gravestone thrown at Tengu, and furthermore who controlled it. Following the use of bringer-light to his left to avoid the grave stone, Masato sprint to the blindside of the girl, behind the body of the rabbit before using bringer-light again to appear to the rabbits left side, mid-swing with both hands gripping tightly to his large purple sword. The attack was intended to cut the pink doll from its left waist through its right shoulder, clean in-half. Depending on the resistance he felt from its innards he would either let go of the sword and continue the motion of his swing, impaling his foe through its still attached torso before creating distance, or lighten the blade after it successfully cut through and with a twist of his hips, drive it through the head and upper torso and of the rabbit with a downward slash. ND: 6870-150= 6720 WC: 1100 BASE STATS: ACTIONS:
  3. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    "Spike the hand again, I've got you covered on this end!" was the command Masato heard from his left, as Tengu emerged from the mist with a speed surpassing even the wailers that now had them both surrounded. Masato hadn’t the time nor incline to question the Teen, so with a slight nod he pulled the short spikes inward, and in a split second spiked them again. The cyan spikes were much taller than before, but being that his ability to sense his Fullbring the larger it was, Masato couldn’t tell if he hit anything. He noticed the second bat Tengu conjured from his orange reiatsu, and the sheets of fire engulfing it—and the metal bat he had seen previously. “Are sure you don’t need my help?” Masato thought to ask, but the rapid vibration that shuddered from his spiked hand and across his back pulled all his attention. In the direction the teen came, a large orange flare was observed and, after a quick delay, an audible whooshing sound accompanying it. By all the signs, Masato knew that quite the impactful explosion, concocted by Tengu, had just occurred. The fact that is was heard, seen, and felt in the mist that dulled his every sense spoke to its potency. But this wouldn’t be the last flashy display Masato would witness from the Tengu-masked teen. With the downward swing of his flame engulfed bats, followed by a second upward swing, every wailer they were amidst burst into flames. The wavering orange that consumed the eight zombies added a vibration to their howling cries as their bodies, one after another, dissipated to ashes. “Nice job,” Masato noted with a casual thumbs up to Tengu, while behind him the detonated hand returned into his fullbring coat. Masato would notice the char marks but elected to ignore them and put his focus on reconnecting with Connor, being that only his presence wasn’t accounted for. He pulled the thread from his right with haste, deciding to stop only if he heard a loud protest from the foreigner. The thread’s return was smooth up until a brief moment went it jerked his shoulder forward [5/8]. Masato stopped its pull and listened for Connor’s voice, but all that could be heard was the wailing mist. “Must’ve been a gravestone,” he thought to himself before resuming. ND: 7020-150= 6870 WC: 390
  4. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    Masato never completely dropped his guard, even as he panted to catch his breath, following the attack of five wailers. The unbearable stench of the rotten corpses was less damaging as, like the nauseating cries of the mist, he became used to it. He wasn’t sure of the best course of action given the ordeal he just went through. Had either of his allies needed his help, though he doubted so, who was he to assist first. With Connor as his benchmark, Masato knew his sensory capabilities were in desperate need of an upgrade, especially for his Fullbring. The threads he shared with Tengu and Connor were stretched afar from when he first gifted them, and given their relatively small size, he couldn’t sense any activity from them. He knew he wanted to close the distance between them but was unsure how. Should he shorten his Fullbring and pull his allies closer without their consent, stopping when the thread was short enough to leave the ground, or should he draw himself closer to either ally, decreasing the length of his Fullbring the more sure he was it wouldn’t inconvenience them. Paralyzed by indecision, Masato chose to compromise on the only two choices he thought he had-- by gradually recalling the threads, enough for his allies to notice, while walking towards Tengu, who was presumably on his right. The threads recalled into the coat of its origin as Masato paced slowly on the path they led him. The ghastly mist had kept a steady volume since the second deaths of five of its kindling by Masato’s hands. But as the Fullbringer cautiously explored for Tengu, the wailing mist would exact its revenge, this time with numbers greater than a measly five. Masato’s movements and the considerably shorter length caused the fabrics he shared with Tengu to raise from the ground much sooner than the ones on Connors side. He wanted to rejoice at the soon to be reunion, but a sudden toggle on his thread left only time for more caution. He crouched slightly with peered eyes at the thread as it seemingly disappeared after his six feet range of view; his steps somehow managing to grow slower than before. It wasn’t long until a second but less dramatic toggle was felt from his Fullbring. The familiar sound of wailers accompanied by more rapid activity from his thread were the last and only hits he needed to ascertain that more undead were amidst; this time taking a keen interest in the only links keeping the trio connected. Masato doubted they were capable of breaking the threads he reinforced earlier, but couldn’t be certain. He decided to swiftly take care of the distracted wailers, but not long after he created a large hand from his left waist side, the two wailers closest to him let go of the fabrics and leapt towards him. Their speed matched that of their fallen brethren, but with ample time to prepare, Masato intercepted their attacks with ease, in the process netting them in his palm. With the pushing force of his Fullbring, the wailers remained in place as one by one, another eight undead would be caught in his palm. With his full strength, he whipped the cyan arm up and down once to create a wave. It traveled down to the hand causing it to rise off the ground briefly before slamming his palm in the ground, damaging the wailers within it [1/8]. The experience of fighting the wailers gave the Fullbringer a rough idea of what it took to kill them a second time and he opted to create spikes all around his cyan hand [2/8]. Masato was aware that he could’ve hit Tengu if the cone like protrusions from his hand were too long, so he limited their lengths to two feet. The voices of the wailers in his cyan palm couldn’t be heard but this was to be expected given their distance apart. Out of worry that they could’ve survived despite his attempts, he chose to keep his hand in place until he could ascertain that their cries had ended. Although Masato intended to proceed to Tengu as initially planned, the sudden but familiar toggling of the thread to his right was a more pressing matter, in his opinion. The thread hadn’t raised from the ground yet so the fact that their toggles could be felt meant that they were closer to him than they were Connor. The fragile nuisances that were the wailers began to bore the human as their threat became less and less with every encounter. With an almost dismissive fling of his right hand, a cyan tentacle emerged from his sleeve and slithered its way through the bodies of the wailers along the threads path [3/8]. As the tentacle pierced through the tenth and last zombie, its end morphed into an axe and retracted to the coat of its origin, cutting all the wailers in two [4/8]. Again the distance of their surely fallen bodies left room for doubt in Masato’s mind, but as they hand no legs to stand on he trusted the teen and foreigner were safe from them. Masato cringed at the black smudge the tentacle left on his sleeve when it returned, and attempted to fling it off. The childish distraction was just what the wailers needed to catch him off guard. Though their cries would still alert him, Masato hadn’t the time to raise a large enough defense to stave off the eight wailers that prepared to pounce onto him. He thought of using the hand that held the ten wailers from before, but the loud command of a certain Tengu-masked teen would caution him against that. WC: 950 ND: 7170-150=7020 BASE STATS: ACTIONS:
  5. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    Masato was pleased that neither Tengu nor Connor rejected his proposal. He felt the slight pulling on his Fullbring from Connors side and presumed he used his own method to attach the thread to his person. Masato never intended to inconvenience his allies with having to personally hold onto his fullbring and decided to be proactive with on Tengu’s side; allowing its strands to weave into the right shoulder area of the masked teen’s orange jacket. A quick, “that’s neat”, was heard from the teens direction, compelling Masato to smirk from flattery. He left Connor to carry the thread however he saw fit. Connor would share the information he obtained from the Shinigami’s private conversation, as well as some hypotheses of his own. “There is no known successful communication into or out of this mist,” suddenly the crunch of contacting Seito or Yuuto when he was in a pinch was no longer available. Connors other remarks about the Shinigami weren’t any less unsettling, “Second, a total of forty Shinigami have entered this mist during the last two years. It’s hard to imagine that they didn’t send anyone moderately powerful last year.” The point of reference for the Shinigami’s strength was Yuuto, the Kaido specialist. Did he fall under the “moderately powerful” category, or was his intimidating reiatsu the average for a balancer of the worlds. He wonder ponder much on it as following a pause, the foreigner continued. “I’m sure that you all have noticed by now that this space is shrinking progressively,” Masato, like everything else Connor seemed to observe, had no clue of this phenomenon. “Based on that, and other factors I have reason to believe that the reason this mist is filled with such a jumbled mess of reiatsu is because it possesses the ability to steadily devour energy and assimilate it,” finally, Masato could say to himself, “just like I thought,” as the mixed readings of reiatsu and the slight drain he sensed from the mist aligned perfectly with Connors presumption. “There isn’t any guarantee that a Fullbring can guarantee our location or prevent our separation,” were Connors final words, undoubtedly directed to the cyan-clad Fullbringer. His Fullbring withheld all the natural properties of regular material and was only manipulated through reiatsu. They may not have been able to send signals with it, but its primary purpose of keeping them connected couldn’t possibly fail unless an attack powerful enough to cut through it was employed, which would’ve surely alerted him. As of now, the threads only commands were to remain in contact with Tengu and Connor, as such, they would stretch and thin as their host willed. The eerie mist’s gradual increase in density went largely unnoticed by Masato, just as it did before outside the cemetery bounds. Similarly to then, the seemingly directionless mist began to twist around Masato, hampering his vision as the cries and whistles of the mist grew ever more intense. The motion of the mist wouldn’t last for long, nor would Masato’s blindness. Though he now was able to see, the disorienting spinning of the wailing mist left him uncertain of where he was, or in what direction he was now facing. Compounding His uncertainty further was the limited reach of his vision, roughly six feet. Masato had gotten more accustomed to the uncomfortable randomness of the mist and calmly focused on figuring out just how misplaced he truly was, if at all. He realized that the length of the threads he attached to his allies weren’t much longer than before. Knowing that he was still relatively close to Connor and Tengu put him at ease. But as the wailing of the mist left Masato’s hearing, so too did all the ease he had. The sinister silence lasted only half a minute, but being extremely on alert of his surroundings, he would’ve sworn it was hours. The rancid stench accompanying the silence didn’t help to accelerate his perception of time either. Masato’s anxiety only increased when the wailing of the mist resumed, louder and more refined than ever. He knew for certain that his teachers would’ve advised him against dulling a sense as vital as smell in battle, but the repugnant stench assaulted his nose and distracted his mind. The human’s only refuge from it was using his Fullbring to create a mask over his nose and mouth. His suspicions of his environment was enough to make him to increase the density of his Fullbring, this would slightly reduce the elasticity of the threads he shared with his comrades, but greatly increase their durability. Just as Masato heightened his defense, his right leg was suddenly caught in the grasps of what appeared to be a zombie. Filtered through its wide open mouth and the holes where its cheek muscles should’ve been, was a smoke like substance, not very different from the mist the being suddenly emerged from. Much of the creature’s skin was missing revealing its mushy and slightly green muscle strands, various bones, and craters filled with worms, maggots, and undoubtedly other bugs the human hadn’t bothered to analyze. The gruesome sight was enough to paralyze Masato, as when he looked at the face of the decaying wailer, his mind couldn’t help but project the face of Yoshida Tamotsu, the man whose death Masato still blamed himself for. The once focused and determined expression Masato bore was now that of horror and confusion; had Masato’s stomach contained food, he would’ve surely regurgitated it. Thankfully, he wouldn’t remain in his compromised state for long due only to the sudden impact of a second zombielike creature, whose appearance differed little from the first. It ran and collided into Masato’s right shoulder, pushing him forward and compelling his left leg to bear most of his own weight, in addition to the wailer’s. The second zombie stuck to Masato, with its arms wrapped over his right shoulder and under his left arm. It clawed and bit at his coat to no avail, for now it was only a nuisance for the now recomposed fighter to take care of. From Masato’s right side, a large cyan hand grabbed pulled the second zombie off his body, giving him space to address the zombie still binding his right leg. With the fling of his right hand, a six foot long and purple blade, made with his Fullbring, stretched from the palm side of his coat and into the first zombie’s head [1/8]. His efforts weren’t enough as with his blade still stuck deep in the rotten wailer’s skull, its cries never ceased. “So destroying their brains isn’t enough,” he noted to himself internally, disappointed that the only fictional way to kill zombies didn’t work in reality. With a short kicking motion Masato freed his leg from the zombie’s clutches, then turned away from it as he raised the second zombie in the hand of his coat roughly 7 meters. With all his strength, he smashed the second wailer atop the first [2/8]. The stone ground beneath the point of impact shattered under the immense pressure of his attack, though he could still hear wailing coming from them both. From beneath the ground of the zombies, the end of Masato’s tail swiftly pierced through them both, silencing their wailing at once before it whipped back into the ground [3/8]. Masato hadn’t the chance to relax as the tolerable voice of the mist suddenly grew louder from the direction ahead. At a terrifying speed and leaping from the mist and into the fighter’s six foot long range of view, a third zombie found its way to Masato’s Fullbringer hand. He was aware of the gradual increase in the zombie’s crying and what it entailed, making intercepting the attack much easier than before. However it didn’t prevent the third zombie from trying to bite and scratch at its target, nor did frighten a fourth zombie from charging. The speed that once surprised Masato was becoming less impressive with its every showing. The hint of louder wailing and its straightforward trajectory made predicting their approach exceedingly easy. Masato raised the blade in his right hand and cut down with it. His strike was timed perfectly with the approach of the fourth zombie, cutting it clean in half from its right shoulder down to its waist [4/8]. Due the wailers possessing frail and decomposing bodies, all of the human’s attacks met little resistance against them. The fourth wailer’s upper half plopped to floor, effectively ending its presence as a threat, though like its fallen brethren, it would take more to end its cries. Masato had neutralized four of the Rotted Wailers, but refused to drop his vigilant guard. The halved wailer crawled in his direction, but given its distance and speed, Masato ignored it until he was certain it was the last to attack. His wait for a fifth attacker wouldn’t be long as the mist’s cries grew louder, alerting Masato to prepare for another one. But unlike those previous, the warning cry was more ominous and directionless, making it nearly impossible for Masato to predict which way it would approach. The mist above Masato parted briefly as a decaying body, much larger than those before it, came falling from where he stood. Masato used a single Bringerlight to narrowly escape the incoming zombie, as mist quickly filled the hole its falling body created. The unique nature of this wailer was instantly apparent as although it was torn in many places, the costume it wore was certainly that of Jason Vorhees; the holes in its mask and dual machetes it wielded left no room for doubt. In less than seconds, the decomposing cosplayer had leaped with a swing from his left blade, that cut a great portion of Masato’s Fullbring hand, and completely through the zombie it held. Following the rhythm of the initial blade, the second continued at Masato’s hand, cutting even deeper and almost severing its thumb. As the bladed wailer landed, it didn’t let up its assault and in a crouching position, finished a full 360 degree spin with two slashes. The first, targeted Masato’s left leg just above his ankles. Masato evaded by simply raising his leg. The second, aimed at Masato’s left oblique. He blocked it with his purple blade, which he still held in his right hand. The connecting of their blades created a resounding clank and emitted yellow sparks, before Masato pushed his angled downward blade against the wailer’s. Though the human successfully repelled the wailer’s attack and obstructed its momentum, it still managed to make an attempt for the fighter’s throat with its left blade as it fell. It proved futile as Masato evaded by slightly pulling his head back. The chef wailer would continue its decent following Masato’s repel but, uncharacteristically of its kind, a graceful flip was performed before its landing. Masato didn’t watch idly as the wailer performed its gymnastics; He grabbed the halved torso of the fourth wailer and threw it just where the fifth landed. As the wailers connected and with the use of Bringer-light, Masato rushed in front of the stack zombies and with a charged attack, impaling them through their chests [5/8]. The crying of the halved wailer ceased while the other leaped back, freeing itself from Masato’s sword, but not before the human instinctively sliced upward, partially separating its right shoulder and everything it controlled from the rest of its body. The zombie was effectively one arm short, greatly decreasing its potential as a threat given its reliance on both its machetes. In light of its debilitating handicap, the wailer lost none of its persistence and charged Masato again, it’s right arm dangling at the behest of gravity. Masato reacted with no time to spare, blocking the series of quick slashes and stabs from the wailer. The onslaught kept Masato on the defensive and pushed him back to the initial corpses he destroyed. He waited for an easy counter, and that opportunity would arise when the wailer attacked at full force. The strike angled downward and Masato used minimal effort to parry the attack, allowing it to continue pass him and leaving his opponent vulnerable. With a swift and dismissive swoosh, the Fullbringer decapitated the corpse causing its severed head to tumble onto the ground; its final roll in sync with its last wheezing cry. Unmasked, Masato briefly explored the stone pathway he battled on, aware of all the dark spatters he walked by, until reaching what he was in search of. Upon meeting it Masato wasn’t uncertain which of them found the other, as the third wailer crawled with a single arm, also in search of its prey. Masato flattened the desperate wailer before recalling his Fullbringer weapons and defenses. By his assumption, had there been any more zombies immediately around him, they would’ve pounced on him sooner. “Are you guys okay?” He called into the mist and his new acquaintance, hoping that they hadn’t fallen by the hands of the zombies. In the distraction of his own battle, he failed to notice the ones that waged around him, and the pulling of his Fullbringer thread which they caused. WC: 2185 ND: 7320-150=7170 BASE STATS ACTIONS
  6. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    Following the awkward excuse for introductions by the group of three, Masato observed in astonishment as Tengu began to speak in clear English, "With introductions and language barriers at least somewhat out of the way." Masato in no way perceived himself as competent in the English language, but thought he would at least try to communicate to Connor in his mother tongue. However, being completely outclassed by the masked teen’s fluency, Masato decided to stick with Japanese, while Tengu could as a translator if ever required to. Tengu continued, “I was just asking Hirorashi-san if he was here because he heard about the mysterious mist. That doesn't seem to be the case…” His words were not completely untrue, Masato was only ever given the instructions by his mentor to, show up prepared for fighting hollows. Never once did Seito mention a strange mist responsible for the missing lives of so many. “Was he trying to surprise spook me with this mist? Would he really put us in that kind of danger just for laughs? Masato questioned the intentions of the only man responsible for his arrival at the cemetery. Thinking of how dismissively he bailed on the expedition, Masato concluded that perhaps his mentor didn't take the rumors seriously. “…I'll be speaking to Hizorashi in Japanese, if you get lost at any point or have questions just let me know and I'll do my best to translate for you,” were Tengu’s last words in English, directed to the foreigner, as with a slight nod, he redirected his attention to Masato and spoke in Japanese. "Eh, how do I say this, Hizorashi-san... I hope you aren't here because of the news reports about the human-traffickers. You know those aren't true, right?” this wasn’t a surprise to Masato, as the news often used wild animals and criminals as the perpetrators of what was obviously hollow attacks -- the cover up of his wife’s death and Tamotsu’s being no exception. Tengu continued to explain the nature of the haunted mist, as well as his personal opinion and purpose for being there. Lastly he gave Masato an opportunity to leave, “You might want to leave if this isn't your sort of thing." Masato had mixed feelings about the young man’s last comment. On one hand it was certainly the polite thing to do, while on the other, Masato wondered if he appeared that clueless. He came looking for hollows, but was now amidst something, potentially, much more important, and had no intention of bailing as did his mentor. He wasn’t sure where’d he fit surrounded by so many capable individuals, but figured the least he could do was watch and learn from the sidelines. “Yeah, I know about the misinformed news reports. I expected hollows but as I’m sure you know, they’re a total no-show. I’ll stick around and see if I can assist with the mist.” Masato replied clearly, tilting his head slightly to the gate as he mentioned the mist. Not long after his reply, Connor would speak up once again, clarifying his intent to speak Japanese. This was a great relief to Masato, though the foreigner’s next inquiry would make him wonder, if perhaps already– there was a linguistic disconnect. “Would you happen to be aware of the strongest person who has disappeared? I'm sure it would be beneficial to know since that would serve as a minimum strength necessary for anyone who wishes to enter.” The literal meanings of Connors words were understood, but how Masato was to know the identity of the missing Shinigami was beyond him. Thankfully the teenager’s quick response “I don't have a clue about that,” Spoke for them both. Connors next question was much easier to comprehend and answer. “Will we move together inside or do you all wish to separate?” Masato had doubts in his ability to survive alone in the mist, being that even Shinigami failed to return in the years since its emergence. He thought highly of the Shinigamis strength, as the only one he had ever met was immensely powerful. For his own safety, he would at least stick to one other person. “I'm fine with sticking with you guys until then. I just need to let my comrades know." Tengu responded before excusing himself from the group to presumably speak privately to his Team, who were still out of sight. Seeing that Tengu and Connor approved of remained grouped, Masato thought he’d sate his decision aloud, lest either of them thought he wanted to operate alone. “I'll like to stick with you guys too; wouldn’t want to end up lost.” He answered confidently with a lit chuckle. Though his face didn’t show it, his words behind the façade of a confident tone, admitted to his concerns of becoming another statistic. Following his answer to Connor, Masato finally acknowledged the presence of the latest pair of Shingami to arrive, only to see an array of levitating orbs, flying with purpose to different ending points of the cemetery. As all orbs settled, they each glowed and created a string of yellow reiatsu; connecting with each other to form a large rectangle. the white lab coat of one shinigami stuck out from the rest, it wasn't a stretch to assume that it signified a higher status. just how high? that, Masato couldn't tell. All the action in the sky distracted him from the realization of a fully set sun, and the mist which slowly gained on the group of three. Connors eye’s seemed already fixated on the Shinigami, but Tengu, with his back to the orbs, couldn’t have possibly seen what was happening. Masato turned to him, hoping to get his attention, but quickly saw the frustration in his body language, and thought he would make sure the teen was alright before adding more to worry about on his mind. "Is everything alri…” before Masato could finish his sentence, a black room, confined within the Shinigami’s orbs, formed above the cemetery grounds and by extension the group of humans. Not long before the black rooms creation and with little time to react, masato found himself completed wrapped in a thick mist, briefly robbing him completely of his vision, and his ability to sense the individual reiatsus of his new acquaintances. over the course of a few seconds Masato's vision began to improve, and with it, he could just barely distinguish Tengu, who was much further away than what he remembered. The foreigner however, was much easier to recognize, he and the mist-less pocket of air surrounding his body. Masato wanted to test his sensory capabilities in the mist on Connor’s reiatsu. “If my vision cleared up, maybe the ability to sense reiatsu did too,” he thought, but try as he did, only weak and unrecognizable reiatsu signatures could be read. “Well, it seems like we’re going to do this together.” A voice matching Connors quipped. A brief pause followed before it continued, “So, did either of you catch what the Captain among the Shinigami said?” Masato wasn’t sure if the question was rhetorical, “as if I could hear what they were saying up there,” Masato wanted to reply, but didn’t as the sudden rumble silenced him and he listened diligently to ensure it was real, and perhaps not just his stomach. "Seems so. I can't reach my guys at all." The voice matching the masked teen commented. The worry brought by the rumble was pushed away by Masato’s interest in how Tengu would respond to the notion of hearing the Shinigami from so far away. "No. I didn't hear anything…” Masato sighed with relief, glad to know he wasn’t the only “normal” person present. “I wasn't paying attention. What about you, Hizorashi-san?" Masato was now again on edge. “No I must've missed it too,” he responded dishonestly, hoping to move on from the topic. the inability to detect reiatsu in the mist gave Masato an idea of how he could be useful. “Since we can’t sense each other’s reiatsu, we can stay connected with my Fullbring.” He proposed while extending two long cyan threads from his coat, roughly four centimeters wide, to Tengu and Connor respectively. “With this I can tell if we start splitting too far apart,” he paused before creating his tail and sticking it into the ground and adding, “and retrace our steps.” _________________________________________________________________________________ ND: 6720+600(Fullbring release)=7320 7320-150(Baleful Mist)=7170 WC: 1390
  7. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    Masato passed the question on to the teen simply to be courteous of his presence. In truth, he had no intention of sending the foreigner away, nor the authority. Contrary to what his age might’ve implied, Masato saw himself as, at most, their equals. Furthermore he wouldn’t want to tarnish the young man’s perception of the Japanese people, by excluding him for no real reason. "No objections here. Nice meeting you both,” The masked youngsters reply gave Masato some relief, and dispelled all the negative opinions he had of him. He was undoubtedly, a Japanese local and his welcoming gesture of a handshake to the foreigner gave masato a sense of cultural pride. “Call me Tengu. I'm with the WILD'S faction,” The teen now known as Tengu added, causing masato to raise a single eye brow in confusion. “You’re seriously giving him you vigilante name?” Masato was living vicariously through Tengu’s actions and noting internally at how he would’ve done better. The foreigner accepted the handshake firmly before he spoke again, "My name is Connor Knight, naturally you all can just call me Connor. I'm the current head of the Long Clan Faction, as well as the Fifth Seat on the Council of Power." First Tengu and now the foreigner, Connor Knight, both described what factions they belonged, which to masato’s knowledge, was not a part of the formal Japanese introduction. He had many questions for his new acquaintances but abstained from speaking too much before introducing himself. With Tengu now approaching, masato thought it was a great opportunity to educate Connor on Japanese culture. Tengu’s greeting handshake was of course accepted, but not without masato uncharacteristically bowed slightly shortly thereafter. “Nice to meet you,” He added, making sure Connor could see clearly, what he was doing. Masato was never this formal in his day-to-day life, but wanted to make a positive impression, and maybe make up for Tengu’s concealed faced introduction, polite as it was. He followed their lead and introduced himself last, “my namu iz Hizorashi Masato,” in English as best he could. He extended his right hand out toward Connor, with the intention of combining it with a slight bow should Connor accept. As he held his hand out, the sudden sensation of more Shinigami appearing from above did not go unnoticed, but the harmless Shinigami were important enough to interrupt his greetings. WC: 395
  8. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    Masato stood with his hands tucked into his coat’s pockets, peering through the gates at the vast field of gravestones. His face failed to express just how disappointed he was with the expedition, as of yet. The decision to investigate alone was much easier than devising an actual plan to proceed. He had trusted all the planning to Seito, who couldn’t attend due to unforeseen circumstances, and now stood at the one of the many gates to the cemetery, brainstorming what to do next. “What am I investigating again?” He thought to himself – a sign of just how unprepared for the mission he truly was. This night was intended to serve as his first, supervised, hollow hunting experience. Following his last encounter with a hollow, Masato was ready to prove he had what it took to assist in the exterminating of ‘the Quarter’, and any other hollow that threatened the serenity of Karakura. But though he tried, he failed recall or sense the presence of any hollows, let alone roaming spirits. Masato’s interest in staying began to wane, and the thought of returning home crossed his mind. “By sunset, if nothing happens, I’m leaving” He decided to himself, as the sun had already begun to hide behind the earth’s horizon. However, as the father counted the seconds, in the sky not too far away, a sudden vertical string of white light appeared, catching his attention as he looked towards it. The glowing string then expanded horizontally, forming a standing rectangular shape before its light subsided, revealing traditional Japanese sliding doors, from which a flock of Shihakusho clad individuals emerged. Masato recognized the uniform from the only Shinigami he had seen up and until now, Yuuto, and concluded that they too were Shinigami. He couldn’t make out their exact numbers as from where he stood, they appeared to be no more than a bundle of black. Masato’s personal interest was now piqued, and he was no longer in a hurry to leave. To find out their exact numbers he tried to read the various Reiatsu signatures, pushing his perception to its limit. He counted mentally, the differing Reiatsus, but upon the interrupting inquiry, “You here for the spooky mist thingy, too?” Masato lost his count. He directed his attention to the masked person, whose tone gave an estimate of his age. The hidden identity and aluminum bat lead to Masato’s initial misjudgment, “Must be one of those thrill seeking delinquents the news was on about”, He thought, but the boy’s presence at this gate implied he too made it pass law enforcements vigilant hurdles. What’s more, the stranger’s foreign dialect and body language didn’t fit the stereotypical ones of gangster. “Uh…” Masato attempted to reply to the boy, but a second inquiry would come to interrupt his thought again, and with it a tremendous source of energy, numbing that of the Shinigamis’. ”Excuse me, would you all mind me joining this conversation?” the second stranger asked from behind as he approached, carelessly flaunting his “power level”, so to speak. His Japanese pronunciation left much to be desired, but was otherwise loud and clear. Masato was advised against attracting others with his spiritual pressure, especially around Shinigami, so the actions taken by this man were a testament to his hubris. Masato wasn’t sure why the man took an interest in their “conversation”, but given the aura he felt from him, it was obvious he wasn’t there for sightseeing. “I don’t mind. Do you?” masato replied, directing a question to the masked teen, ensuring he was fine with the other stranger joining in. WC: 600
  9. Mumen Writer

    Egriffiend's Night of Wailing [Event Arc]

    October 31- Noon Masato lounged in the living room of the Hizorashi household. He was visiting his Daughter Reina and mother Fuyumi; usually the only occupants of the house. But as the night of Halloween was soon to come, the entire Hizorashi family was present. Through the bustling chatter and movement of the house, masato tried to enjoy a luxury he couldn’t from his own apartment, television. He gave up on pleading with his family to not cross in front of his view and became content with what little of the news he could gather. “Police have barricaded all the roads leading to the cemetery, as reports of kidnappings and gang activity have grown all too common on the nights of Halloween. Now, although…” Reina turned off the TV remotely from behind the couch masato laid on. “Papa you’re supposed to be helping me with my costume.” She said while playfully stretching his cheeks. Masato stretched his neck over the back of the sofa to face Reina, upside down. “I thought we finished it last night?” “Nah ah, we still need to make the wand.” Reina shook her head with her father’s cheeks still in hand. “Sailor moon doesn’t have a wand.” Masato informed her. “Well this one does.” Reina rebutted loudly, just as her grandmother walked pass. “Give up dear, she won’t listen to reason.” Fuyumi exclaimed as she carried a bag of candies to the main entrance, left to the TV. She too, had assisted with her granddaughter’s costume, and wanted to stay faithful to Sailor moon’s original look, much to Reina’s disagreement. “Alright we’ll make you’re wand. But you have to promise me you’ll listen to auntie Azami when you go out trick or treating”, Masato proposed to Reina. His recent encounter with the hollow Charles, and the unsettling information he just heard from the news was enough to end his daughters trick or treating; had he not want to rob Reina of her fun, it certainly would have. If he couldn’t keep Reina inside, at the very least he would give her a hollow slaying babysitter, Azami. “Again?!” Reina asked in shock, being that her father had emphasized listening to her nanny on multiple occasions since his visit. She wanted to ignore the proposal she had already agreed to, but when her eyes met her father’s, the sincerity and concern in them compelled her to answer, “I promise.” Masato and Reina finished the wand at sunset, not long before Azami arrived, dressed as a werewolf and ready for trick or treating. “I still don’t see why your date couldn’t come over for supper.” Masato’s mother inquired as he was leaving the house. “Mom, we coin flipped the decision. If you want I can cancel on her”, Masato replied, certain that his mother would never tell him to cancel on a date. Not surprisingly, his words gave her face an expression of disbelief, and ended her pestering. Shortly after closing the house door he shouted, “Save me some leftovers please!” Dusk Technically, masato wasn’t lying when he said he was going on a date, but he certainly misled his family’s perception of what he was doing. How was he to explain to his family, “investigating the cemetery that dozens have gone missing in”, without worrying them. He would’ve normally stayed away from trouble, but this expedition was spearheaded by Seito, his mentor. He rode his bike nearest to the meeting point before running the rest of the way. The barricaded roads and heightened security weren’t difficult to surpass with his bringer light and the cover of the buildings. Upon reaching one of the six gates of the cemetery, masato called his mentor to inform him of his arrival. “OH that, I thought I cancelled?” Seito responded through the phone. “WHAT?!” “I’m up to my neck with work man, Sorry.” “So what am I supposed to do?” “I think Yuuto is on his way. If you want you can wait for him to go in. anyway I gotta go, call me if there’s an emergency, later.” Seito ended their call, leaving masato unsure of what to do next. He stood at the screeching and rusty gates leading to the graveyard. Upon some contemplation, masato removed from his backpack and put on his cyan coat, preparing to investigate. _________________________________________________________________________________________________________ WC: 715
  10. Mumen Writer

    Not down enough.

    Midnight In Masato’s apartment were, save for himself, four figures. Azami, sat closest to Masato to treat his wounds. “There, I’ve finished my part. Do your thing Shinigami.” She exclaimed proudly with crossed arms, looking down at her handiwork. “You know I could’ve done this without your bandaging?” Yuuto responded as he switched places with her to perform his own method of healing. “You can't her mama bear instincts to help a dying child” Seito jested. Azami turned to him quickly after she placed a cigarette in her mouth “FUCK YOU SAY?!” she shouted. “Um… Should you be…” Asuna tried in inquire about smoking next to a recovering patient, but her low voice could not compete with the couples bustling chatting. “Babe, I was complimenting you.” Yuuto was all too familiar with how they bantered and learnt to ignore it. “Here goes.” He said before tending to Masato’s severely injured body, with a green and spherical light of reiatsu, which formed at the palms of his hands. He hovered the light over an unconscious Masato. Azami pointed to Yuuto’s glowing hands before asking, “When are you going to teach us that too?” “Oh, I’m not sure if I can teach healing kido to non-Shinigami. Besides, you two don’t seem like the healing type.” Yuuto turned to her and replied, eyes closed and smiling as usual. Azami didn’t like what the shinigami’s words suggested. “What’s that supposed to mean?” she question with peered eyes. Yuuto wanted to focus on the healing of Masato’s reiatsu and by extension, his wounds too. “Uh…” he struggled to find words that would satisfy Azami, so she wouldn’t distract him. All the responses he came up with, he was sure Azami could misconstrue into something negative. The minute he hesitated to speak felt like an hour, so Masato’s sudden groan was a great sign of progress from the topic of their conversation, and of course his healing process. With the pace of the conversation much slower, Asuna was finally able to be heard. “Should I still be hiding?” she asked the Shinigami, who swore to assure her safety until she passed to the spirit world on her own terms. The Shinigami was quick to respond with a nod. “please, he’ll be awake any minute now.” “What if seeing me is enough for him to...” she couldn’t complete her question before Yuuto interrupted, clarifying the intentions of his words. “I understand what you’re going through, but I don’t think he’s mentally prepared to give you the closure you need to move on. In fact his close encounter with death could’ve set him back further than he was before. I won’t force you to do anything, the decision to stay or leave is and always will be yours.” Asuna stood and quietly contemplated what to do. “I leave him in your care.” she said with a voice of defeat while bowing, before leaving through the walls of his apartment; a privilege reserved only to spirits. Moments after she left, Masato winced in discomfort as he regained his consciousness. “Welcome back. How are you feeling?” Seito and Azami rushed to look over a still laying Masato. “Give him some space guys.” Yuuto requested as the light around his hands dissipated, only to be dismissed by the couple. “Nice work. ‘Was worried we’d lose you.” Seito commented as he extended his right hand to help Masato up. Azami delivered a playful but hard jab to Seitos ribs. ”Ouch” “Don’t ever doubt my disciple. Though I would’ve never advised him to fight before he could fully use his fullbring.” Masato accepted Seito’s assistance, with his wrapped up right hand, and rose from his back. Save for his pelvic area, face and hair, Masato was entirely wrapped in with bandages; certainly the work of Azami he thought. To his surprise, he felt rejuvenated for someone that was so close to deaths door. The light atmosphere and his good mood left when he remembered why he confronted Charles. Over the banter of Azami and Seito, his resounding inquiry silenced the room. “Did you save that watchman too?” The room remained silent with disheartened expressions. Despite how familiar the humans were with death, the guilt of losing a life within your reach didn’t get easier. Yuuto however, was unfazed death, yet empathetic to the humans emotions. He realized only he was capable of consoling Masato, and to some extent, Azami and Seito as well. “Are you lot sad for his loss or your own? He is in the care of the most capable Shinigami, in the spirit world. This is the cycle of spirits you are all familiar with. So I ask again what are you lot sad for?” Yuuto spoke loudly with a confident and firm tone, deviating from his joyous and whimsical self. The questions were rhetorical, but had they not been the status of the room would’ve remained as it was, dead silent. The swelling eyes were wiped before Yuuto continued. “Completely shattered arms, dislocated shoulders, blind in his left eye, every rib broken, fractured skull, and much more. Do you think our friend here slacked when he confronted that hollow?!” his question was first directed towards Azami and Seito before he turned to Masato again and asked him the same, “Did you?!” Masato lowered his gaze to his bandaged hands and replied softly “no”. “You’ve fought your hardest and given your all, what else could you have done? His blood isn’t on your hands.” Masato raised his head and disagreed with Yuuto’s notion. “But it was my reiatsu that brought him there!” “Then we’re lucky!” Masato’s face became more distraught hearing Yuuto speak, but before he could respond, Yuuto continued. “What If that hollow decided on a different victim and walked away alive. How many more do you think would’ve died by its hands? We can't prevent every hollow attack. admittedly we've been on damage control ever since that dreaded war. As far as outcomes go, tonight was undoubtedly a success.” Humbled again, Masato couldn’t deny Yuuto’s claims. but pragmatic as they were, the shinigami's words still didn't alleviate his guilt. He clenched his fist in disappointment, not noticing Yuuto slowly walk to his kitchen area, before a cold can of beer flew suddenly into his lap. Yuuto had extracted a bag of alcoholic beverages from Masato’s refrigerator. “I understand your feelings but that man has moved on in life, and we all should too. Let’s celebrate his life and honor his passing with joy.” He tossed beers to Seito and Azami before cracking one open for himself. “To Yoshida Tamotsu!” he proceeded to down his drink. “Bottoms up!” Azami cheered before she and her boyfriend began to drink. “This doesn't taste that bad .” Seito remarked as he was already showing signs of drunkenness. “psh, what a lightweight. You embarrass me.” Azami joked as she sat cross-legged, patting Seito on the back. As always, their conversation turned into lighthearted banter, which returned the intense air of the room to its jovial state. But Masato hadn’t touched his drink and continued to wonder how the Shinigami knew the name of the watchman. He wanted to ask how but with some thought, he assumed Yuuto spoke to the man’s spirit in the time he was unconscious. But as if his mind was read, the shinigami’s next words left no need for assumptions. “He wanted me to thank you.” Through all else, Masato heard the words clearly and faced a Yuuto who smiled reassuringly. Masato was finally comfortable smiling slightly and began drinking with the crew. They drank and ate until sunrise, in memory of the human known as Yoshida Tamotsu. WC: 1280
  11. Mumen Writer

    Not down enough.

    In a sleeping neighborhood, lit only by a full blue moon, Masato stood before what he recognized as a hollow, almost doubling him in height. The appearance of which could be briefly summarized as a muscular human and owl hybrid, coated in brown feathers. He was fortunate to bring his coat with him before leaving home that morning, but all the running and walking had him exhausted and not in the best condition for a fight. Despite the disadvantages he knew he had, Masato was confident in his ability to if nothing else, run and survive. Because of the stretching capabilities of his fullbring, and the large amount of energy the hollow must’ve expended to carry its weight, Masato planned to keep a medium to long distance and tire the beast before delivering the killing blow. His only mistake was applying the logic of reality with a supernatural being. The hollow, who identified himself as Charles, within seconds spread his arms out wide and bent his knees to an almost deep squat position before jumping straight for his prey, broken pavement and dust burst from where he stood as he leaped. Charles, though drooling like a baby and deranged for human flesh, was not ignorant of the potential threat Masato posed, it was after all what brought him here. He wouldn’t waste time as he did with the watchman and intended to clothesline Masato with his right forearm with a strike powerful enough to instantly knock him unconscious, if it didn’t take his head off first. In nature, larger bodies equated to slower and more telegraphed movements. That was the assumption Masato followed until he was suddenly facing a large brown arm and the pressure of wind its mass created. With split seconds to react and not enough time to attempt a block, Masato, through fullbringing, created a tail protruding from the upper area of his back and into the ground. With it well anchored, he pulled himself to the ground, ducking to narrowly evade Charles attack successfully. Thankfully Charles needed time to break the momentum of his lunge, time Masato used to recollect his composure and reevaluate his strategy. He was no longer confident in tiring his opponent, nor interested in gambling with his own life. Missing his target, Charles was pleasantly surprised, especially of the cyan tail his prey sprouted. He wasn’t aware of the superhuman capabilities of fullbringers, nor their existence, but chose not to contemplate it. He was focused and didn’t need unnecessary thoughts clouding his objective. He raised both hands to the right of his head then, with tremendous force, thrusted his arms to his left and at a downward angle, producing enough wind force to spin himself clockwise and break his momentum. As his feet hovered over the ground preparing to land, Masato’s tail wrapped around Charles’s ankles. Masato concluded in his strategy that infighting with such a behemoth was the best strategy to success. Charles needed to build up his attacks for the speed and power they displayed, so a fast onslaught to take that opportunity was Masato’s new plan. He pulled Charles’s ankles, causing the hollow to fall to the ground, then using the shrinking ability of his tail, he pulled himself towards a floored Charles with a front spin kick, leading with his heels. The revelation of just how far the tail stretched caught Charles off guard, but didn’t faze him in the least. He looked over his chest to see Masato’s oncoming kick and chose to block with his right arm. With his left hand he intended to grab the tail binding his ankles, which would grant him some control over Masato’s movement, and a handle with which he could swing his opponent around with. However, atop of the speed created from the pull of his tail and the increased strength attained from training, Masato had two other tricks to increase the potency of his attack; Coating his leg in reiatsu and bringing the air above his foot to boost his heels downward trajectory. As a result of Masato’s loaded kick, the moment his heels reached Charles's arm, the strength and weight of the kick was heavier than he anticipated. The force of the kick sunk Charles’s once raised arm, deep into his chest, his carefree expression turned enraged. He endured the pain until the pressure of the kick letup, before swinging Masato off and into the sky above him. The priority to stand was greater than getting a temporary hold of his foe. He turned the swing into a roll, which he used to move off his back, though having his back turned to Masato wasn’t the most ideal position to be in. Off the ground again and facing the back of his enemy, Masato looked for the place that would best hurt Charles, and decided on a bringer light empowered front spin and landing with a dropkick to the nape of the hollows neck. The execution was a success and the soles of his shoes connected, pushing Charles’s neck inward and his hands slightly into the pavement. He was happy his strategy to fight up close was working, but the strange movement from the hollows neck worried him. Charles grunted in anger. “Can I get a turn to move?” he thought to himself and as the dropkick and the pain subsided, he knew it was his opportunity. It took some adjusting and twitching of muscles but Charles rotated his neck clockwise, a full 180 degrees. Charles counted on the twitching muscles and sudden neck rotation to startle and divert Masato from his slowly rising arms. Masato would eventually catch on to the hands surrounding him, but was too slow to escape their grasp. What’s worse, the rotating head was more than a simple distraction. Charles's beak opened wide before a black orb, with a red exterior, formed directly in front of his mouth. The orb increased in size between Masatos torso and Charles's beak, its heat not going unnoticed by both parties. Masato attempted to escape the obviously threatening energy blast, known only by Charles as a cero, but his movement was constricted by his opponents grip. Even the pulling of his tail proved futile and Masato jerked his body in a panic as his face grew pale with fright. The blast was finally released at an upward angle and pierced the sky with a thick pillar of red and black energy that tapered at both ends. Its brief existence gently lit the street and surrounding neighborhood in red light, before it shrunk horizontally and broke into segments of thin red strings. Smoke emitted from Charles's target, who miraculously still stood atop his back. The hollow expected to sacrifice a good portion of his hands in his own cero, and yet he could still feel their presence. “This can’t be possible.” He thought at the surprised realization that Masato in fact, still had an upper body. The smoke cleared and blocking most of his chest was a shredded cyan arm, which had taken the brunt of the blast, though it wasn’t completely successful. A glaring weakness Masato was now aware of, the endurance of his fullbring left much to be desired, and where the arms width was thinnest, he sustained a considerable amount of damage. His opponent knew this only by observing the purple burn mark that stretched just above Masato’s left eye and across the side of his head, a chunk of his hair and coat's hoodie were also missing. Charles grinned and his yellow eyes bent into a crescent once more. He pulled the human from his back and into a horizontal spin before releasing him with a throw, into a nearby concrete wall. The impact kicked up dust, which blew away quickly as two consecutive swooshes of compressed air cut at Masato’s chest. Masato attempted a block but was too sluggish from the cero and throw to conjure a full arm of defense fast enough. The slashes cut what little resistance the coat made into ribbons before finally reaching their designated target, leaving an x shaped, and bleeding injury between Masato’s chest and abdomen. He yelled in agony as the wind force buried him deeper through the brick wall and into another. The blades of wind were created from Charles by flattening his arms and sharpening his fingers, to mimic the shape of bird wings. However unlike bird wings, light and feathery they were not, but dense and heavy. The back edges of his arms and tips of his feather-like fingers were as hard as steel, with which he created the slashes. Charles stood a few moments at the black hole as the dust cleared. He peered at the hole he expected to see Masato in but saw nothing. This put him on alert quick enough to detect a bloodied Masato approaching from above, with to giant clasped hands intended to flatten the hollow. The attack was powered by nothing more than his raw physical strength, as such, Charles found evading it easy, leaving Masato to only hit the ground, and himself an opportunity to counter. With the desire to capitalize on the opening, Charles prepared a direct diagonal cut with his right arm. As the attack drew closer Masato remained still, waiting for Charles to realize the trap he had set. Rushing at the opportunity blinded Charles to the thin but abundant strands of thread he was running into, only catching on once he was stuck. Masato stood in the face of Charles and raised his tail to show the abrupt stop, from which Charles understood, the tiny strands came from. “You’re strong, but not very smart.” Masato, with heavy breaths, teased the hollow, hoping he would try again to come closer, and tighten the hold of the threads. It was unsuccessful as the only reaction Masato’s taunt garnered was an angry growl. “Had you not killed that man, I would probably let you off the hook.” Masato said with a slight smile. Although he didn’t intend this time to taunt, these words insulted Charles more than the former. “Tsk” Charles, in the blink of an eye, cut himself free with the arms for blades he had. Now more enraged than ever and shouted. “YOU, A HUMAN SHOWING ME MERCY?!” Masato knew it was possible to cut free from his confinement, but not with such ease. He stared at the falling shredded threads, glinting from the bright moon, in despair. The shocked left him unprepared for the next attack – a continuation of the diagonal cut, only this time landing. The attack was aimed for Masato’s left shoulder and would’ve been strong enough to cut him into two had he not blocked the cutting arm with two cyan arms of his own. Though successfully keeping his body attached, Masato was still pushed to the ground from the force of the cut. “To conceive that mere yawn could constrain a being such as I, Charles Quillton, for your hubris, you will suffer the same death that poor bastard laying there did.” The shouting had ended and Charles returned back to his composed gentleman self. His arms regained their sturdy and muscular form, as they were when the two first met, and he tightened his fists to pummel the human with. Masato witnessed the change in Charles’s arms and fists and raised all four of his arms for defense. The first punch was bearable, the second punch pushed his arms to his chest, and the third crushed him under his own fullbring. The punches gained speed as they rained and by the first dozen, Masato lost consciousness. His guard was punched away, leaving his face and torso exposed for the flurry of punches, which Charles did not hold back with. ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “I’m home.” Masato announced his arrival through the door and into the house he recognized as the one he once shared with his wife and daughter. It was the first day he wore the coat Asuna made for him, and it was during summer. As expected, he was sweating smelly. “Mom, dads back!” Reina yelled as she stopped scribbling with crayons to rush and hug her father. “Oooh! If only mommy was this excited to see me.” Masato joked as he lifted Reina up from her armpits and hugged her tightly, before moving her to his side and carrying her through the living room and into the hallway. “How was school, did you use my secret technique in art class today?” “Yesh sir! “ She replied and saluted with pouted lips. “I used pershpective and beat everyone in...” *sniff* “you stink!” “whaaat, it’s the coat, not me.” Masato rebutted with whispers, as to not be heard by Asuna. They both laughed in the hallway as they approached the kitchen on their right. “No, don’t come in the kitchen that smelly. Go wash up, I’ll have dinner ready when you’re done.” Asuna exclaimed while standing at the stove, before a steaming pot of rice. “Not even a small kiss?” Masato extended his head out with puckered lips, waiting for a kiss he knew she wouldn’t give. “I’ll kiss you papa.” “Thank you sweetie.” Reina said before pecking her father on the cheek. “pleh, saltyyy.” She stuck her tongue out and cringed. “That’s enough of you. Get outta here. Go clean up your crayon mess.” He put Reina down and sent her off, before entering his bedroom and preparing for a shower. From the living room he could hear “my art is not a mess!” which caused him to chuckle. Following his shower, the family of three sat at the kitchen to eat dinner, rice topped with chicken and potato curry. The drop light directly above the table they sat at, emitted the kitchen in warm hues with the yellow light it created. They ate and chatted about their days and other lighthearted topics before Asuna’s mobile phone rang, interrupting their conversations. “NO ELECTRONICS AT THE DINNER TABLE.” Masato and Reina berated playfully at Asuna, at the rule she herself made. “Quiet yous.” She leaned forward, angrily pointing her spoon and staring at her critics. “It’s work.” She stood from the table to take the phone call in the hallway. The atmosphere was suddenly slightly tense. A phone call from work this late implied it was something serious and as she always did in the past, Masato and his daughter suspected that she wouldn’t stay for dinner. The field she worked in was competitive and cutthroat so there was an understanding, however the negative feeling of being unable to eat dinner with the mother of the house was still felt. Asuna sat back down at the table and returned to eating, leaving the rest of the table confused. “Wasn’t that work?” “It was.” Asuna responded dismissively as she sat upright and chewed her food, eyes closed. “You’re not gonna go in?” “You’ve been cooking dinner all month and the one time I get to, they call me in? Not a chance.” Asuna responded proudly before grinning and poking her tongue out at her two awestruck spectators. “I married a badass.” “LANGUAGE!” Reina exclaimed. “It’s true.” Asuna agreed proudly with Masato, dropping Reina’s jaw in disbelief, as her mother would’ve normally reprimanded cursing. The atmosphere resumed to its bustling state of chitchat and explosive laughter, until the eating was complete and cleaning began. Reina assisted briefly before being sent to bed, Masato cleaned the dishes, and Asuna wiped off the dinner table. She couldn’t stay for long as despite her confident display, she still had to go to work, just later than she was demanded to. Putting her shoes on, Asuna wasn’t happy about leaving that late and her expression greatly showed it. She placed her hand on the doorknob and hesitated to open it. She stood with her head down and defeated, tears swelled in her eyes and before she could let out a sob, Masato called from behind her. “Babe, is everything alright?” He asked worryingly, as although he didn’t see her teary eyes, he sense something was off. Asuna turned towards Masato to reassure him, but not before wiping her tears. “Everything’s fine. I’m just a little tired.” Masato approached her with a hug and wrapped his arms around her. “You don’t have to go if you don’t want to.” He said in an attempt to comfort her, but his ignorant words only increased her need to work. His family was economically upper middleclass; her family scavenged the slums until her father was employed by Masato’s. His job was guaranteed and inherited, with a salary much higher than others in the same position; she had to attain a higher education to be in her underpaying job. When her family joked about relying on the Hizorashi’s forever, and arranging her marriage for status, she vomited inside. Her love for Masato was evident without her family’s meddling and she loved spending time at home with her daughter… but her pride couldn’t stand being, what she viewed as, a “leech” on her husband’s wealth. She was determined to prove her self-worth and independence from handouts, but perhaps more devastating than leeching, was being a slave to a job that dictated when she could or couldn’t see her family. The decision was her pride or her love, but she chose to bear the weight of both and it crushed her every day. As Masato hugged her, the memories of the next day flashed before him and he recognized exactly what day it was. This triggered a mental breakdown and he bawled his eyes out as he tightened his grip of her. “Why...?” he asked. The question confused Asuna as the decision to abandon her family the very next morning was an impulsive one that she herself didn’t know she would make. “w...What do you mean?” she asked, now more perplexed than sad. “YOU DON’T HAVE TO LEAVE. I WONT LET YOU.” His hug grew even tighter. “Stop… you’re hurting me.” She pleaded to no avail. “TELL ME WHAT YOU WANT. ILL DO ANYTHING JUST DONT-” “She doesn’t have the answer for you idiot.” Exclaimed a disembodied voice, as Masato’s surroundings turned into a white room, with all surfaces consisting of large tiles. “She hasn’t made that decision yet and ‘only way you’re finding out is if you ask her yourself, in the present of course.” The voice spoke again, giving Masato the opportunity to register its tone and accent. It resembled closely to Masato’s only much older, with a slight scratch added to it. “I have to survive against Charles, if I'm ever going to get an opportunity..” “Uh-hum.” “Which isn’t likely.” “I wouldn't say that. You still haven’t used me to my fullest potential.” “As I thought, you’re my coat. Do you have a name?” “That’s for you to decide. I’m just a bundle of thread, a sentient one, but a bundle of thread no less.” “So what else can you do besides the arms and tail thing?” “Well you can use my head.” Just as the voice responded, its once directionless voice was focused behind Masato. He turned around to see a giant dark purple and black wolf with yellow eyes. “The wolf emblem!” “Exactly.” The wolf spoke, but without any movement of its mouth. “What does your head do?” “Mostly bite, hear, smell, talk, y’know, head things.” “I can’t block or cut with your threads, they’re too weak.” “Well arms are convenient, but you can shape them into whatever you’d like. Don’t blame me for your lack of creativity.” “….” “Didn’t he condense his arms and turn them to blades? Imagine doing that without the worries of bones and muscles, or a limited mass. C’mon man use your brain.” “I got it. So what’s the plan now?” “Don’t die.” -Back in reality- Masato rested in both of Charles’s hands, being held upright with the purpose of getting a clean bite to his neck. He was soar beyond comprehension and could feel his broken left fingers, arm and several broken ribs. The skeletal exterior of his left eye socket was cracked, and his eye swelled purple, like much of his face. Charles fingers constricted his arm, leaving him with only his fullbring to resist the beak of certain death. He used his tail as a bladed whip to cut the fingers binding him, and Charles in the process. No longer asleep in the grasp of his enemy, and with some new abilities to test, Masato faced Charles standing once again. Masato’s sudden awakening was more than enough surprise, but the ability to now cut was infuriating, especially considering the method by which Masato did. In their entire fight Masato only used blunt force attacks so the cutting possibilities were unfathomable, especially this far into the fight after he had suffered so many injuries, and yet it was. He lost both his thumbs and obtained a deep cut across his body, from Masato’s escape, all in an instant. This infuriated him and now more than ever, he wanted to rip his opponent to shreds and paint the town with his blood, but his experience cautioned him against it. He raised a finger to Masato’s tail that bore a sharp edge. “Why are you mimicking me; have you no decency?” He asked with regained composure. Masato wasn’t interested in conversing and as such, remained silent. “Have it your way.” Charles flattened his arms into their thin, wing like form and swung them repeatedly, sending a barrage of wind slashes at Masato to avoid. With the wind attacks keeping the human preoccupied, he charged Masato with both arms at his front. When he got close enough, he intended to use his arms as one would use scissors to cut Masato’s head clean off. Masato deflected the wind attacks with ease as he could now turn his fullbring sturdy enough to withstand most of what Charles could throw at him. He saw the charge the hollow made and decided to match it with one of his own. Charles’s forearms met the palms of Masato’s fullbring hands and their clash broke the pavement beneath where they stood. With Masato holding Charles's large arms crossed, he decided to use his tail and human fist to jab and cut at the hollow’s stomach multiple times. Spatters of blood flicked from his tail and fist to the ground in rapid succession until Charles couldn’t endure it any further. “DAMN YOU!” Charles screamed before charging a cero from his opened beak, aimed directly down at Masato, who kept at the tearing and bruising of his stomach. The cero charged quicker than last time and Charles was certain of the options Masato had. “You either fuck off, or get burned to a cinder.” He thought smugly, wincing slightly with every hit he took. “I’m on it.” From the back of Masato’s coat emerged a wolf’s head of the same color, bearing its fangs with jaws wide open. It bit Charles’s beaks closed before it could set off, resulting in an internal explosion within the hollows head. The cero, due to its rushed and incomplete creation, wasn’t nearly as powerful as the former, but did significant damage no less. Its creators vibrating screams filled the night as he panicked with a head set ablaze. Masato watched from a distance as Charles raged and crashed into objects maniacally, perhaps searching from Masato for retaliation or a liquid the quench the flames of his own making. The panic lasted for a good five minutes before Charles collapsed to the floor and the fire subsided. Masato stood victorious and limped to the watchmen, just to ascertain that he was beyond saving. He reached the building entrance and saw up close just how far gone the mangled man was. “I’m sorry.” He said under his breath. His victory over Charles suddenly felt less gratifying knowing that it was his presence that brought the hollow here from the start. “NOT YET YOU AREN'T!” “WATCH OUT!” Charles appeared behind Masato with a punch, breaking his right arm at the elbow, and sending him flying. Masato broke the momentum of his involuntary flight with a new tail, and grunted at Charles who somehow survived the explosion. Upon regaining his balance, he noticed the hollows naked and featherless head, and the absence of yellow light in his eye sockets. “Have you noticed now human? I no longer have functioning eyes.” He pointed to his own face. “I apologize for the sucker punch, but as you can assume, I need all the advantages I can acquire.” Charles walked from the sidewalk and into the street once again, carrying the watchmen over his shoulder before dropping him. With his index finger, he drew a circle in the asphalt with himself standing in the center. “No more cunning tactics, no more tails, and no more bites. We shall settle our fight here in this circle fist to fist as gentlemen would. If you do not accept, I shall flee with this man’s corpse and feast on what’s left of it. And Upon my eventual recovery, I will kill more innocence in your name. Do wish to have that on your conscious? Masato brought his tail back into his coat and wrapped his broken arms with condensed yet flexible cloths, which kept his muscles and bones together so he could fight once more. As he walked into the brawling circle glaring at the hollow, Charles grinned with delight for Masato’s decision. “I expected no less.” Charles cemented both of his ankles into the ground to keep himself in the circle. “I suppose with this regard, I’ll allow for your tails assistance.” Masato quickly dug his tail into the ground, anchoring himself as Charles did. “Shall we… BEGIN!” Charles threw the first punch, a left hook to Masato’s head. Masato raised and blocked with his right shoulder, and delivered a quick jab to Charles chin. The punch blew Charles’s head back but he came back in with a double jab. The first jab Masato bobbed and dodge, but the second scraped the left side of his head. Before he could collect himself for a counter, Charles executed a successful right cross, hitting his opponent square in the face. This left Masato with a blurry vision and unable to retaliate. Charles attempted a jab cross combination to take advantage of Masato’s weaving head, but the jab brought his opponent back into the fight and gave him an opportunity to dodge the cross with a duck. With his right side exposed, Charles expected a gut punch, but received two from Masato’s double uppercuts. The hollow instinctively reacted with a wince that opened up his left guard, giving Masato the clear for an overhand right, blasting Charles left of his head and chipping his mask. The tactical fighting lasted only briefly before their punches became random and thoughtless, prioritizing power over technique and speed over accuracy. Their knuckles drew blood from each other’s flesh and they cried for dominance, silencing their doubts and aching bones. The circle they stood in turned red with blood and after a twenty minute pummeling, the fight was over. Masato looked down at an exhausted Charles on his back. “You’re not going to beg for your life?” Wheezing from a shattered mask and drawing his last breaths, the hollow responded. “No. though would you have let me live, even if I didn’t kill him?” Charles countered with a question of his own. Masato recalled the face of his wife who died by the hands of a hollow. “....Yes.” “Heh, liar.” Masato pierced Charles from beneath his chin and through the top of his mask. The hollow disintegrated into the wind, taking all traces of his existence with him. *Pant* "hey… you there?” “Yeah. What’s up?” “This is the end isn’t it?” “Looks like it. but you did good kid.” Masato collapsed to the ground, his eyes swollen shut, still managing to squeeze some tears. “I really wanted to know why.” “Me too. But you can’t die crying man. You don’t want to go out like a bitch.” “Ha-ha yeah.” Masato grinned revealing all his teeth, save for the missing canine he lost to Charles’s punches. He tried to hold it in but the tears running down his face wouldn’t obey. He sniffled with his runny nose and his cold body stopped its shivering. “I…” *sniff* “should’ve seen my mom and Reina when I went to their place” “I guess your old crybaby self is a fitting way to die too.” Masato coughed blood instead of releasing his intended chuckle. “You’re not helping.” “I’m just a bun…” "Bundle of thread" *pant* "So I should call you Ōkami no taba.” “Sounds good.” Masato relaxed himself and chose to accept his death with grace. A lesson he learnt from Charles not long ago. Bearing a large smile, runny nose, and teary eyes, Masato flat lined in a puddle of his own blood. ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ W/C: 4820
  12. Mumen Writer

    Not down enough.

    Masato sat with his back against the wall in the living space of his apartment. He was famished, as anyone going on almost twenty-four hours without food would be, and prepared in his hand was a bowl of cereal for breakfast, with a carton of milk and box of cereal next to him awaiting on standby for the inevitable seconds, thirds, and possibly fourths. He was sensitive to sweet foods and grew caution of his diet since the time he began training, as such, his choice of cereal consisted of oats and dried fruits. The glass bowl in his left hand grew cold from the refrigerated milk he poured into it, the sensation wasn’t pleasant to his wet hands, which had just rinsed the cup Yuuto, his recent visitor, drank from. Nevertheless, the feint smell of cereal kept him focused on its consumption and following the clanking sound of his spoon meeting the bowl, he scooped and took his first mouthful of cereal. The cold milk irritated his teeth, perhaps from the hot cup of tea he had not long ago, but a meal was a meal and the irritation wouldn’t stop Masato from quenching his hunger. After briefly chewing and swallowing his second mouthful, he abruptly stood, and walked towards the cabinet wherein a container of sugar lied. Upon retrieving the sugar he returned to where he sat and poured an estimate of nearly half a cup of sugar into his bowl. Leaning against the wall once more, he took his third spoonful but to no avail. His cereal, sweetened with a heap of sugar still tasted like cardboard. Knowing now that his meal wouldn’t be as tasteful as he anticipated, Masato forced the remainder into his mouth, no longer chewing. Since the departure of Yuuto, the talk of souls lingering around people their closes with taunted him. The idea of getting to see Asuna, and potentially communicating with her flooded Masato with mixed feelings and thoughts. “Would she not linger around him, had she still thought of their relationship as close? He hadn’t seen her spirit so obviously not. But according to Seito she was on her wait to reconcile their marriage when she was…” Masato sat in contemplation of what to do and how he should feel about the new information Yuuto presented with. In his thinking, he did not ignore the events of the day Asuna left him. It was a cold and grey morning, much like the one he was currently in, and he remembered it as if it were yesterday. He remembered the last text she sent him when he was at work and remembered leaving work just as he read it. The running in the pouring rain, meeting his wife just outside of their home, her in a yellow raincoat while carrying her packed luggage. The memories of that fateful day were embedded deep in him as nothing but grave psychological trauma and had the opportunity been given, he would’ve surely erased them. So it was with great irony that those memories, with all their sorrow, were the ones that compelled Masato the most to move. He showered and dressed himself with haste and left his apartment, wearing of course, his cyan coat. He needed answers to the suffering Asuna caused him and made the resolve to find them before it was too late. “Maybe she was lingering around her sweetheart”, the words of Yuuto hinted Masato on perhaps why he hadn’t seen Asuna. Perhaps the “sweetheart” for her was their daughter Reina, so he rushed to the Hizorashi’s household, where his mother, and most importantly, daughter currently lived. He arrived at the home he lived his entire childhood in, the nostalgia of it all did not escape him. He slowed his pace from a comfortable jog, to a speedy walk, allowing him to catch his breath and cool his temperature. The grey sky brightened greatly since leaving his apartment, but the humidity didn’t, leading to a very sweaty and hotter than he should’ve been, Masato. He stopped at a corner across the street from his old home, and scouted in the shade that the wall he hid behind provided. He gave special attention to the few spirits he observed during his jog, but of course with none of them being Asuna, he chose to wait outside in case she showed up. In his wait he did patrol the surrounding area, but grew impatient with every passing minute in the sun. in total he waited two hours before giving up, by then it was nearing the evening and Masato was ready to leave with nothing to show for his day, but he would make a final stop on his way home; a hail-Mary stop at Asuna’s work place. Since the destruction of his bicycle at the hands of Azami, jogging was his primary mode of transportation, and asuna’s former workplace was far enough to guarantee he would arrive at his apartment pass midnight if he decided to go by foot. He took the three hour bus ride to the office studio a good number of towns away, all while gazing at the slow sunset. The red sky was turning purple when he finally reached the lobby of the building her studio resided in. it was of course, after regular working hours so only the building’s watchman was there to greet and chat with him. It wasn’t their first meeting but neither could claim that the status of their relationship was anything more than just “acquaintances.” Nonetheless, Masato did enjoy his brief chat with the middle-aged man, who expressed his condolences for Masato’s loss twice, at the beginning and end of their conversation. By now the sun and any signs of its direct light were no longer visible, and only the blue light of a full moon kept Masato out of complete darkness. He gave up on making it home before midnight, in an exchange for a peaceful and lonesome walk, to make his already wasted time, worth it. Besides, with no other soul around, the moon was his personal nightlight to stare into and lose track of any thoughts in the process. He planned in his head to do a single walk around the block of the studio, then return to the bus stop and catch a ride leading straight to his neighborhood. The walk, as Masato hoped, was quiet and uneventful, and the gaze into the moon until he was thoughtless worked too. He approached the starting point of his patrol around the block completely relaxed, with knees blissfully worn out from all the running and walking; it felt as though had he stopped moving, he would’ve fell asleep standing. Thankfully he didn’t fall asleep as he would need to be awake to fully comprehend and believe the sight he witnessed. At the entrance of the building lobby, where he was chatting, no more than forty minutes ago, a brown, approximately seven feet tall, muscular and feathered figure stood, horizontally holding the watchman’s corpse, stomach side up, with both its hands. Spatters and smears of blood all around the pavement and building walls conveyed the intense struggle and resistance the man held up before meeting his demise. Its arms and hands combined, were long enough to reach the ground standing, or its legs were entirely too short for a creature of his frame, the possibility that the large arms were for flying did exist, but its stocky frame contradicted that logic. The bird/bodybuilder hybrid possessed a white and black mask resembling an owls head, atop its long and thick neck, and its eye’s buried within circular holes in the masked, glowed a bright yellow in the dark. The gnawing on the flesh of the corpse he held created more blood spatters on its sharp beak. The sight of the blood, the lifeless and shredded corpse, and the monster, all hit Masato simultaneously and he froze, unsure of what to think, do, feel or say. Unfortunately for Masato, the monster wouldn’t wait for his introduction and began to speak to the paralyzed man, a good twenty feet apart from itself. “Oh, hello there young one. I knew I was mistaken this man for yourself. His spirit energy was just too meager to be the one I was tracking.” The monster turned to Masato and eloquently spoke. It’s perfectly pronunciation, and gentlemen like dialect contrasted heavily with its horrific and brutal face, covered in blood, and the vibrating deep tone of its voice that shuck Masato from his paralysis, though his fear still remained. The bird-man turning to face Masato, revealed the hole in its chest, clearing all Masato’s suspicions, it was indeed a hollow; the first he had ever seen. *gasp* “how rude of me. My name his Charles Quillton. It’s a pleasure to meet you. Your appetizing aura brought me here.” Charles continued before awaiting a response from his original prey, but through dead silence he sighed with disappointment in Masatos lack of speech. Masato's gaze was fixated on the man he had just gotten to know better, and the wave of negative emotions, not barring anger, were too strong for him to think of anything coherent to say. Charles noticed the distraction and switched his glance from Masato to the watchman briefly, before redirecting it back. “There’s no need to be jealous young one.” He claimed while discarding his old meal in preparation for a new one. The seven feet estimate didn’t account for the forward tilt Charles made, to consume the watchman’s innards. Standing straight with his back fully extended at ten feet tall, and now fully facing Masato, Charles’s grin stretched to the outermost part of his mask and his cheeks pushed against the bottom of his eyes, giving the yellow glow for eyes he had a crescent shape. “YOU HAVE MY UNDIVIDED ATTENTION!” He sadistically exclaimed as saliva gushed from his mouth and the vibration in his voice grew heavier. W/C: 1660 OOC: Time to earn some of those scars from my character sheet bio. :3
  13. Mumen Writer

    Not down enough.

    -Masato’s Apartment- Masato fell on his back to his fully spread-out futon mattress, exhausted. His scheduled run home was no longer as challenging to him, repairing walls with an ability he had attained that very same day however, very much was. The task of tirelessly stacking bricks made him more comfortable controlling the new pair of arms and tail he discovered he could conjure and control from his coat, his Fullbring. The weight of the bricks, gifted by construction workers neighboring their warehouse, weren’t heavy enough to pose that big a challenge, but the Reiryoku and concentration required to perform such meticulous small motor skills drained everything out of him. Though it shamed him to admit it, he walked home from the warehouse for the first time since he began his training. Azami never forbade walking but Masato imposed the ban himself, just another personal failure to stack to the pile of disappointments in his life, not that they bothered him anymore. “Burning to quench”, the title of Azami’s Fullbring, I need a cool title too, “One-tailed Chakra Mode? Nah.” He pondered with his fingers clasped and the back of his head in his palms, and periodically raised his head to gaze at his coat, hanging from a coat hanger behind his door. He unknowingly fell asleep, empty stomached and in sweat, a tradition not uncommon for him as of late. -2:17 AM- Masato remained sound asleep as two figures crept into his apartment. They conversed through whispers and took exerted efforts to not wake him from his slumber. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Later that morning, Masato awoke with a mild headache, and a dried throat and lips. He rose from the futon and peered around his apartment drowsily before the sound of his toilet flushing emerged, from the thin walls between his bed area and the bathroom. The realization of an intruder shuck him from his daze and he rushed to his coat for self-defense. He wasn’t sure if wearing the coat was a necessary requirement for Fullbringing its ability, the man that exited the bathroom however, wouldn’t present him with a chance to find out. “Woah there, if you put that coat on you will regret it.” The dark-skinned man with an orange afro threatened, with a deep, calm, and confident tone. From where he stood, Masato could tell that they didn’t differ much in height, with the stranger surpassing him only slightly. He was dressed in Masato’s clothing, fitting blue denim jeans, and a black and white T-shirt, striped horizontally at the center. The man’s glare demanded Masato’s reconsideration to resolve his problem physically and Masato did. His reaching for his coat was instinctual and so was his decision to step down. His gut was sure that had the stranger wanted to, he could’ve taken his life, and if his gut was wrong, the suffocating pressure he suddenly felt, hacking at the constitution of his knees certainly wasn’t. Masato decided in his best interest to deescalate the tension. Through his slight sweating and heavy breaths he posed some obvious first questions. “Who are you and what do you want? Just as he spoke, the pressure he felt weighing him down lifted as the stranger let out a long sigh in relief. The stranger walked out of the bathroom doorway to face Masato directly before introducing himself. “I go by Fujimura Yuuto; just Yuuto is fine. I’m an acquaintance of detective Kakaabi. He’s had only good things to say about you, Mister Hizorashi Masato. ‘Pleasure finally meeting you.” Yuuto grinned to his eyes completely closed, bearing his perfect pearly white teeth, he extended his right hand out to Masato for a shake. Masato, though still suspicious of the man, couldn’t stop the feeling of relief of knowing Yuuto was familiar with Seito, the lifting of the atmospheric pressure he created may have also contributed. He stared the man down, only now noticing why his clothes looked familiar and after his long observation, rudely declined the handshake. Far be it from him of all people to lecture someone about cleanliness but even he wasn’t that much of an animal. “You didn’t wash your hands.” Masato said embarrassingly to a grown man, who appeared to be much older than him, in his mid-thirties. He felt like a nerdy child preaching of hand sanitizing in the playground. “Hmm? Oh so sorry.” Yuuto took a single but long stride back into the bathroom, then reemerged with wet hands in no more than ten seconds- Masato counted. “No soap?” he thought to himself and wanted to ask, but felt Yuuto, for someone uninvited, had already overstayed his welcome, and wanted to end their business as soon as possible. Thankfully Yuuto didn’t extend the handshake for a second time. They sat on the floor about four feet away from each other, each with a cup of tea to drink from. Yuuto took a large sip of his tea and sigh greatly from joy. “Sheeeesh, this tea’s great. Human taste buds are definitely superior. That or you just need to give my squad some tea making lessons. Anyway congrats on the Object infinity thing or whatever. Azami told me you were the clad type and grew a tail. I think you should name it, one-tailed chakra mode.”“No thanks.” Masato noticed the “human” remark his guest made, and questioned if he somehow wasn’t. He could distinguish humans from hollows, and Yuuto didn’t fit the descriptions of a hollow Azami and Seito taught him. There was no point awaiting answers, Masato thought, Yuuto was too comfortable and distracted by tea to be proactive in their discussion “so You’re not human?” “I’m normally a Shinigami, but I’ve done some errands for that bastard to get this vessel. I don’t wanna admit it but his works pretty amazing.” Yuuto glanced around his own body, acknowledging its likeliness to his Shinigami form. Masato, through exposure from popular fiction, was familiar with supernatural concepts like spirit hosts and the like. With the “who and what” of his visitor now answered, he was now steering the conversation towards why. “I see. So what business do you have with me? “ Masato’s response was blunt and brief. “What, you get me already?” Slightly Impressed by Masato’s quick understanding, Yuuto almost spat his tea out. “I guess this much should be expected.” He restored his composure before continuing. “I’ve tasked Seito with helping me slay a hollow you know as the Quarterer. As a Shinigami my obligations are split with slaying hollows and granting pure spirits safe passage to the spirit world. Unfinished business keeps them attached to this world and I’ve vowed to help them with that business. You get me?” “Yeah.” “I’ve come here to connect with you, well I was hoping I would come across your wife, Asuna’s, spirit here; maybe she was lingering around her sweetheart.” The thought of Asuna’s lingering spirit never occurred to Masato. He’d seen and ignored roaming spirits but didn’t think of communicating with them, let alone granting them safe passage to the spirit world. If Asuna was one of those roaming spirits and she hadn’t shown herself to him then he must’ve not been her “sweetheart", but this realization wasn’t new for him. “Then you’ve come to the wrong place.” “C’mon dude, we all need our space sometimes.” “If that’s all you’re here for you can go.” Yuuto paused and contemplated talking further in an attempt to mend Masato’s still clearly broken heart, but concluded that it wasn’t his place to do so. “….yeah.” Yuuto rose from where he sat defeated, and walked to the exit. As he put his shoes, in a square ditch just before the door, on, he threw a business card similar to Seito’s, to Masato. “Ring me if you see her around. Karakura’s hollow activity is becoming more frequent.” Masato was tired of Yuuto showing more concern for Asuna than he did. He had no intent on reconnecting with him in the future and chose his next words to convey that clearly. “Don’t bother returning the clothes.” Yuuto got the hint and chuckled with pity. “Heh, alright man. Goodbye.” He exited the room and paused just outside the door. “I’m sorry. He doesn’t seem ready yet.” He claimed sympathetically to the tune of sobbing from his left. Covering her mouth to not be heard, in the form of a spirit, Asuna cried. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ W/C: 1395
  14. Mumen Writer

    Not down enough.

    Masato jogged in the rain which had severely calmed since he left the cemetery, where he recently buried four limbs, the only remains of his estranged wife. The summer was nearing its end while autumn gradually introduced itself with light rain. The heavy grey sky and clouds struggled to subdue the might on the sun which flaunted itself with arcs of light that peeped through holes in the clouds. Autumn was Masato’s favorite season, the literal in between of a stupidly hot summer and an insufferably cold winter. But like everything else that day, Masato felt indifferently towards it all. He simply jogged with haste to the only place he grew attached to in these past two weeks. He wasn’t dress for a prolonged run, and the black leather dress shoes suffered the most because of it. The repeated splashing in puddles or rain married with the occasional scrape of the tip of his shoes against the asphalt, did a number on his brand new shoes. His destination was the warehouse and training ground he spent most of his free time in. the various gym equipment for strength training, his instructor and sparring partner Azami, and the daily endurance training of a six hour run, were what his life became. He spent less and less time with Reina and at work for the sake of getting strong enough to assist with the extermination of the Quarterer. It took him just under three hours to arrive from the cemetery to the warehouse. He entered through the great sliding gate unannounced, a testament to how at home he felt, and unabashedly demanded to Azami. “Sorry I’m late. Let’s get back to work.” He couldn’t see her, but Masato was certain that she present inside. He could sense her strong presence “a mile away” and peered in the dark shaded corners of the warehouse to find her body. “I thought I told you to take the day off.” Azami yelled from behind the partition separating them both. Her words resonated slightly with an echo. It was clear from her disgruntled and tiresome tone, she was drunk and agitated. “C’mon, Seito said it himself, we need to be prepared for the Quarterer.” Masato countered as he approached the partition to get a look at just how wasted she was. “Besides even while drunk, I’m still no match for you.” He stooped to manipulative flattery to get her fired up, his words however weren’t untrue. In their first skirmish Azami greatly underestimated him, a mistake she wouldn’t make again in the time since. Though in terms of physical prowess they were equals, without the speed to react, Azami could quite literally run circles around him. As he crept behind the partition he locked eyes with her. Looking up to him from the bed she sat on, Azami responded. “Look, I think we…you need some time to cope. I don’t mind you staying over but no fighting today.” In her right hand was an almost empty can of cheap beer and beside her on a nightstand was a marble ashtray baring a still smoking cigarette. Azami drank alcohol the same way a sea sponge drank water, but never had Masato seen her this plastered, it must’ve been the five other empty beer cans scattered around the floor. She snorted briefly with rashes, from excessive rubbing, underneath and beside her red eyes. They were an indication that she had been crying before Masato waltzed in. Masato wondered if the tears were for his wife, a woman Azami never even knew; he presumed they were. He came to her for a distraction and opportunity to clear his mind, and perhaps also his conscience, but decided to put Azami’s needs before his own. “I guess we can’t all be heartless pricks.” He thought, referring to himself. He walked towards the small kitchen space and squatted before opening the mini fridge that contained what he was looking for, a cold bottle of water. He grabbed it and returned to Azami’s side handing it to her. Azami looked at him again and read his expression. “Drink this and get some rest”, she imagined an expression literally speaking and chuckled at that thought. *sniff* Masato cleared random objects and dusted off her bed for her to sleep. Their first encounter was rather rocky but since getting to know her and exchanging fist, he came to respect and treat her as a chain-smoking and alcoholic older sister- who occasionally cooked for him. As he prepared her bed she noticed the bright cyan coat, she never saw him wear. It called for attention, something Masato used to enjoy, but now contrasted heavily with how dull his personality had become. She rested her head down on a soft blue pillow, and faced toward Masato walking towards the exit. It was partially curiosity and partially her desire for company that compelled Azami to inquire. “That’s a pretty cool coat. What’s the brand?” *Sniff* She asked cooped up under her cover while laying sideways. Masato stopped and thought longer than he should have, for a name to Asuna’s Imaginary clothing brand. For all Masato’s effort he created an original name on the spot and turned to Azami to answer plainly. “Asuna brand.” “laaame.” She mocked not the coat, but Masato’s creativity or lack thereof. He using Asuna’s name for the coats brand made a connection that she didn’t bother to make in the past. She could recall him commenting about his wife’s fashion designing career dismissively, and she treated that information the same, just conversation filler. A metaphorical light bulb suddenly sparked above her head. “Do you like it?” Azami asked with a scheming smirk. “I mean-“ Masato paused the wonder. “The colors no longer my style but it means a lot to me. I think I embarrassed her wearing it everywhere. It was the first and only clothing she made for me.” As he spoke of and inspected his wife’s keepsake he unknowingly smiled. Azami was slowly becoming more confident in her assumptions and the plan she had concocted. “I’ve decided. There will be training today.” She sprung off the bed from underneath her cover. The once sickly master was now energized and determined to realize her hypothesis. “This won’t be like every other days training. It’s going to be intense. Are you still up for it? She asked almost rhetorically for she was certain he would say yes. “Alright.” Masato accepted as his smirk grew bigger. He gave up on convincing her to help him blow off some steam, so hearing her volunteer of her own volition was a pleasant surprise. “Don’t blame me if you die.” Azami was known to say bold and outrageous things as such, at times she was serious and others she exaggerated- this time Masato couldn’t tell. A few minutes later after some preparation, mostly Masato pushing the gym equipment further to the walls to clear the center of the warehouse, they began their unique training. Azami carried her beloved wooden sword, which she used to discipline and whip Masato in shape, over her shoulder with her left hand and smoked a cigarette through her right. Masato took off all his footwear, exposing his soles to the cold cement floor. He rolled the sleeves of his pants to his knees and began to unzip his coat. Azami stopped him before he could finish. “Leave it on.” She demanded while suddenly pointing the wooden sword to his face. This of course confused Masato, he wanted to keep his coat intact and contemplated questioning her demand, but decided against it. She taught him a lot in the past two weeks and refused to insult her teachings with doubt. Against the desire to keep his wife’s keepsake safe, he removed his hand from the coats zipper and glared Azami in the face before nodding slightly, letting her know that she had his trust. Azami lowered the swords tip to the floor and used her left hand to keep it standing. “You’ve learned how to pull the soul of the ground to perform bringer light but you kind of suck at doing it in the air.” Azami retorted with a small shrug of her shoulders, almost as if she couldn’t understand why herself. “Is that what we’re doing today?” Masato wanted to ask, but didn’t as it there seemed to be no connection between bringer light and the necessity of wearing a coat. He stood and waited for the point in her previous statement. “When controlling the souls of objects you can bring out their full potential. We’ve focused on pulling the ground, air, and some unfamiliar objects. Increased speed and strength are Important but only scratch the surface of what controlling souls entails.” Azami dug in the right pocket of her blue denim shorts, and pulled from them, a golden zippo lighter. She held it up in front of Masato before she continued her explanation. “Object affinity, that’s what we’re doing, watch!” Just then her lighter glowed turquoise and began to morph into a long but short rectangular shape, roughly a foot long, and two and half inches wide. It was Impossible for Masato to identify the object until the glow dissipated, revealing a folding fan with the color patterns and design of a peacock. “I have an ‘affinity’ for the lighter you just saw” "because your addicted to smoking” "And because of it, I can Fullbring its potential, turning it into this fan.” Azami unfolded the fan and displayed its feather-like leaves. Masato was Impressed and completely grasped why he had to wear his coat. The thought of walking around, dressed secretly in a sword, or gun, as ridiculous as it seemed, excited Masato and he couldn’t wait to find out what his secret weapon was. “So what can I transform my coat into?” Masato asked with a deadpan tone, trying his best to subdue his childish glee. Azami however could see it in his eyes and regretted to inform him. “I don’t know. It’s something we have to figure out together. So brace yourself.” The warning “brace yourself” was one Masato grew very familiar with from all the surprise attacks she used during their training. Her wooden sword was in no position to attack so the incoming move had to come from her right side, so he quickly guarded his left. As he predicted, Azami was swinging her open fan towards his left side and he felt proud to discern her strike and block it, at least he thought he did. As the tip of the leaves approached Masato noticed how far out of reach they were, furthermore strange was the lack of force Azami put in her swing. He lowered his guard in agitation. “Is she making fun of me?” he thought, peering disappointingly into Azami's cocky face. “Are you-“ just as he spoke, a concentrated gust of powerful wind pushed Masato to the furthest wall to his right. Although focused at Masato, the wind was still powerful enough to sweep weights and other lighter objects, towards the same direction Masato flew. Azami stood straight in the center of the warehouse, she grinned at Masato’s futile attempts to block air. She wasn’t really concerned for any injuries she could’ve caused with such a powerful attack. The wind of her fan, although having an unstoppable push, didn’t inflict much damage on its own. Still she wasn’t sure if he hit the wall headfirst, or maybe bumped against something in the wrong place, so she asked. “You OK?” Masato coughed in the smoke her fan, and his collision with the wall created. The brick walls that stopped his flight were completely shattered and probably a poke away from collapsing. “Yeah. That didn't hurt too much.” He stood to dust himself off. “You need to Fullbring the soul of your coat and block my next move. My fan ‘burning to quench’ has two main abilities. 'Blow and push- “ Azami dropped her wooden sword, bent her knees and twisted her torso. Holding the fan in her right hand and over her left shoulder, she held her pose in preparation for a second swing. “- and cut and burn.” “W-wait, what if my coat turns into like a bottle of gasoline? What if I can’t take your hit?” A now fearful Masato questioned his teacher and held up his hands in protest to stop her. “Just bring ‘it’ out. Don’t worry about failure. If this doesn’t work out, you won’t be alive to suffer.” There it was again, Azami's outrageous exaggerations, only this time it wasn’t. In that moment as Azami initiated her second swing, Masato’s two weeks of built up trust in her fled faster than he could, his only course of action was to attempt a block. From outside the warehouse a sudden and brief roar of crimson flames burst through the wall Masato stood behind. Smoking debris from the warehouse filled the sandlot and some of the road in her attacks path. The ground up to where Masato stood was charred and smoking as well. Masato’s eyes were closed and he held his arms in front of his face as a shield. He could hear the roaring and sense the burning of Azami’s demonic flame attack, but as they both subsided, he peeped at his arms then shortly after his torso. Despite the destruction and collapse of the wall behind him, he sustained no injuries, and as he lowered his arms to see Azami, he was aware why. There, laying between himself and Azami was two large cyan arms originating from the shoulder areas of his coat. They were still on fire and smoking with steam, but stood firm and protected him still, even after Azami’s attack was over. The realization of his ability made Masato even prouder of his wife’s keepsake. He expected some conventional weapon but was more than satisfied with this outcome. He laughed with joy in his accomplishment, and perhaps because he was still alive. He stood upright and observed the destruction to the warehouse before turning his sight on Azami. “I’m not cleaning that.” With his right thumb he pointed to the missing wall behind him, the matching cyan arm mirroring the same gesture. ______________________________________________________________________________________________ W/C: 2370 Achievements unlocked: Incomplete Fullbring
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