A/N: Sorry this took so long to get out. Writer's block and real life can be a real bitch at times. Anyway lots of thanks to all my reviewers and to my beta Kamen Rider Chrome for all his help. Now as this is chapter five the poll is officially closed and the winners are:
Soifon, Rangiku, and Hitsugaya.
Thanks alot to everyone who voted and to all of you upset by the results... YOU SHOULD HAVE VOTED!
Now with that out of the way... one moment... my attorny has told me to tell that Bleach is owned by Tite Kubo and Kamen Rider is owned by Toei, neither of which is mine so please do not sue me for playing in your sandbox.
Anyway... I now submit for your approval:
Ch. 5: Getting the Bird
Karakura Train Station
"Express Train from Yoshino now arriving on platform two, please watch your step," informed the station PA as the doors opened and two people walked out on to the station proper.
"Are you sure about this my dear? I mean you should check in with Hibiki-kun first. He is the Oni assigned to this area, he can help," said an older man around fifty or so years old. He was wearing glasses and was dressed in a sweater vest over a blue dress shirt and tie.
"This is personal, Oyadama (1). That monster destroyed something precious. I plan to see that he pays for it," said the brown-haired woman that was with him. She was in her late teens to early twenties and dressed in a simple blouse and jeans with a black overcoat. Around her neck on a silver chain hung a gold whistle with an Oni face on it and decorated with blue highlights.
"Amaki-chan, you mustn't give in to your anger. Remember what your sensei taught you," said the man fiercely, his eyes betraying his worry.
"It's for Ibuki-sensei that I'm doing this. I promised that I would protect them and I failed, the least I can do is see that they get justice," said Amaki coldly before she turned sharply and left the old man behind and only stopping to claim what looked like an instrument case from baggage claim.
As she left, the old man sighed. "This is fuka, very fuka (2)."
It had been a little more then a week since the incident with Orihime's brother and Hibiki had explained things to Tatsuki. Overall she had been very accepting of everything… Right after she had beaten the snot out of Ichigo for not telling her, "his oldest friend", himself.
"I said I was sorry!" yelled Ichigo as Tatsuki sent him flying into a wall with a well placed fist that was usually reserved for Chizuru.
"Oh trust me you will be sorry Mister Soul Reaper, right after I finish punishing you for keeping secrets from your best FRIEND!" she yelled back as she began stomping on him with her hard sole shoes.
"And you want to train her as an Oni," remarked Rukia as she and Hibiki watched this little tirade, neither one wanting to get in the middle of it.
"Trust me, I've seen worse apprentices become first rate Oni. Hell Shorty, I was worse then her when I began my training," said Hibiki reassuringly before checking his watch. "Five more minutes Tatsuki then let him… PUT DOWN THAT TELEPHONE POLE!"
Okay so the girl went a little overboard but it was necessary to get that out of her system lest it fester into something far worse. He still remembered the stories his sensei had told him about Shuki; an Oni that had been consumed by her inner darkness and became little more then a Makamou when she was finally defeated by her former student, Zanki, almost thirty-five years ago.
Prior to taking her on as his apprentice, he had observed Tatsuki during those first few days in Karakura and found her to be a little tempermental, incredibly protective of her friends, especially Orihime, and prone to charging head first without thinking whenever said friends were in danger. Such emotions were useful to Oni, but they needed to be reigned in by patience, serenity, and above all else focus on the task at hand. Oni who lost their focus… well they were not long for the world anymore, which was why he had Tatsuki training with Myu.
"Come on Tom-boy, how you expect to be an Oni if you can even handle a washout like me in a little one-on-one," taunted the TAKESHI Support Officer as she danced around the younger girl's fist easily.
"Remember, Tatsuki-chan. An Oni must be focused at all times. Don't let Myu goad into losing it," he cautioned calmly as he an Ichigo watched the pair go at.
"I never thought I would ever see the day when Tatsuki couldn't handle a fight," remarked Ichigo with a bit of shock. Tatsuki was always the better fighter out of the pair. He was more a brawler, with all the scrapes he got into there was never any time for technique to come into the equation. But by and far, Tatsuki was the best technical fighter in their class, if not the whole town. Now however, she was getting schooled by, as Myu put it herself, a hot tempered Oni wash-out.
"Come on Tom-boy, that brick-wall you call a chest slowing you down or something?" said Myu scathingly making Tatsuki go beat red and charge her opponent channeling large amounts of energy into her training Ongekibo forcing Hibiki to intervene before the girl ended up either knocking Myu through a wall or blowing up her Training Ongekibo … again.
"Okay that's enough. Go cool down Tatsuki-chan," said the Oni warrior as he blocked Tatsuki's attack with his Rekka.
"Yes Shishou (3)," said the Oni-in-training breathlessly as she backed off yet still give Myu a cold look.
"I have to go help Tela anyway, see you tomorrow… Brick-chest," said Myu finally as she slipped out of the dojo just Tatsuki made to charge at her angrily.
"Calm down Tatsuki, it's over for today now go cool off," said Hibiki as he held his student back.
"KUTABARE (4) MYU-AMA (5)!" yelled Tatsuki angrily as she struggled against Hibiki's grip.
"No choice then, Laughing Pressure Point!" said Hibiki as he jammed his thumb into Tatsuki's neck. The girl froze for a brief moment before she broke out into peels of laughter and collapsed into a heap on the floor.
"HA-HA-HA… SHISHOU NO BAKA HA-HA-HA!" she said as she rolled on the floor as she laughed loudly.
"If you kept calm Tatsuki-chan I wouldn't have done it," he said chidingly before turning to Ichigo. "Give me a hand and then we can get started."
The Substitute Soul Reaper nodded in understanding and helped his teacher move Tatsuki off the training mats. "That pressure point thing didn't hurt her or anything did it?" asked Ichigo as they set her down as she continued to chuckle heartily.
"Don't worry. She'll come out of it in a little bit. It's designed to incapacitate and placate a victim," said Hibiki reassuringly as they returned to the mats as the senior Oni pulled out his Onsa and flipped it open and nodded for Ichigo to do the same. The pair then tapped their respective Onsa on their watches and placed them to their foreheads making their Oni crests appear before they were both engulfed in Oni Fire.
"HAH!" cried Ichigo as his dispersed his white flames revealing an incomplete Oni transformation. His body was a dark silver color with gold trim and seemed to hang loosely on his form and was far more bulky then Hibiki's transformation. The big thing about his transformation though was that his Zanpakuto was strapped to his back.
"Okay, lets begin with sword training before moving on to Rekka practice," said Hibiki as he brought his Onsa forward. "Houshutsu! (6)" with that his Onsa was enveloped in purple flames and extended into a full katana style sword called Onsaken. Most Oni who used the Onsa to transform usually didn't have this feature and considered it outdated. Hibiki though saw using this function as a way to honor the past, that and it cut up Hollows better then any Zanpakuto he'd ever seen. "Now, DEFEND YOURSELF!"
He then charged Ichigo just as he pulled his Zanpakuto to block his Shishou's overhead strike. He then parried and made to slice him across the chest only for Hibiki to bend back to let it pass over him before rushing him and forcing him into a wall. "Good adapting Ichigo but you need to improvise more" said Hibiki as he took a shot at Ichigo with his fist only to be stopped by a solid blow of Ichigo's own to his stomach that sent him staggering back.
"Kinda like that Shishou?" asked Ichigo as he fought to catch his breath and smiled cheekily.
"Don't be a smart-ass," coughed Hibiki as he released his face transformation to reclaim his breath. "Just for that we're moving on to Ongekibo practice."
"Come on Hibiki, can't we continue working on the Ongekishingen?" pleaded Ichigo.
"We did that yesterday, besides a good Oni has at least a basic understanding of all forms of Ongekido, and with summer upon us you will need to know how to use the Ongekibo techniques more than ever," said Hibiki seriously as he pulled out a pair of training Ongekibo and handed them to Ichigo.
"What is so important about the summer?" as Ichigo as he reluctantly took up the offered weapons and faced a training drum to begin practicing the basic moves.
"The Summer Season Makamou are a lot smaller then their cooler weather cousins. But what they lack in size they make up with sheer numbers. A single one can duplicate itself exponentially if left to mature. Pull your arm back more on that strike," Hibiki explained as he adjusted Ichigo's form. "The duplicates are however very susceptible to the high concentrations of pure sound Ongekibo users employ in their attacks and their Progenitor is only susceptible to Taiko based finishers unless they are severely weakened first. Follow through on your strikes, that extra oomph behind your hits can be the difference between a quick finisher and getting blindsided by a claw or a tentacle."
Ichigo nodded as he made the adjustment and continued to pound the board, by now Tatsuki had regained her senses and had calmed down somewhat from Myu's barbs and began practicing her own katas. Hibiki was about to suggest an adjustment to Tatsuki when Tela came in looking concerned as she was reading a report printout. "Hibiki, can you look at this?" she asked handing the Oni the printout.
Hibiki gave it a cursory glance before doing a double take. "Tela you sure the sensors are aligned properly?" he asked as he reread the printout.
"They were within parameters so I ran the scan again, when it came back the same I had Myu realign them. This is what came out," she said sounding confused.
"Right, check the data logs. See if any of the other districts have come across these reading" said Hibiki handing back the printout.
"Hai" said Tela and moved to leave the Training Hall when her phone went off. "Moshi moshi? Adachi-dono!... Yes sir… Yes sir… He's right here," she said before handing the phone to Hibiki, looking nervous.
Sighing Hibiki takes the phone, "Yes Oyadama… Hai… Hai… Hai. I will get right on it, see you tomorrow," he said and hung up before turning to Ichigo and Tatsuki. "That will be enough for today you two, something has come up," he said resignedly as he left the Training Hall with Tela motioning for the two to follow.
Screamer snickered evilly as he watched one of the humans that had come into possession of the little gaki and blocked the girder he had dropped. "Looks like another morsel has taken the bait" he said as his forked tongue licked his lips and stepped back from the ledge. Best to let the two stew a bit, it made things all the sweeter when he finally ate. He was so enthralled that he didn't notice the shadow behind him until it fired. "ARRGH! BASTARD!"
"I have you at last you monster," said a female voice as an Oni stepped into view. She was a dark blue almost black color with blue gauntlets and a small vest that seemed to be made of brass tubing, the kind used to make trumpets. Her face was dull silver with blue kabuki style markings which tapered off to become brass horns near the top of her head with a third horn rising out of her Oni Crest. Her belt was shaped like a propeller with a small TAKESHI symbol in the center. In her hand she wielded a brass gun that looked like a trumpet without a horn.
"Well well… here we are again. I thought I got rid of you that night in Higashikurume. Still upset that I killed your precious Aunt and that lil' gaki of hers," he said with a dark laugh.
"SHUT UP!" yelled the Oni as she fire at the Hollow forcing it back into the shadows only to vanish into a portal laughing. "COME BACK HERE YOU BASTARD!" she screamed in anguish and frustration. She then looked down as saw one of the civilians that Screamer had attacked was walking off with the Parakeet. With a throaty growl she followed him. She knew Screamer would appear again and as long as the boy had that bird with him, it would only be a matter of time.
"So there is a rogue Oni stalking the area?"
"Not exactly. According to this Official from TAKESHI that Hibiki talked to, she is out for revenge against the Hollow that took something from her. Hibiki wouldn't say what it was, only that if we run into her or the Hollow to alert him and to stay as far back as possible," clarified Ichigo as he sipped from his juice box.
Rukia just looked at her substitute curiously. "And Hibiki didn't think to tell you what was so important?" she asked as she turned her own juice box over in her hands, trying to figure out how it works. "How do you open this thing?"
"You use your straw and poke it through the little hole," said Ichigo with a sigh as he finished off his own juice box at tossed it out. "And Hibiki didn't know either; he was just told that the situation was classified as a personal matter for the Oni involved and to only keep track of the situation and intervene only if necessary."
"And just what are we suppose to do while he's keeping track of the situation?" asked Rukia as she turned her juice box over several times looking for it's straw.
"Tela picked up strange reading. Seems that a wayward soul somehow got itself trapped in the body of a Parakeet, he figured tracking it down and giving it a Konso would be a good training mission for Tatsuki. He wants us to keep an eye on her and if things go south to step in," answered Ichigo who then sighed heavily as he took the juice box from Rukia opened it for her as he couldn't bear to see her struggle with it any longer. He was sure he had already cracked two ribs to keep from laughing.
"Thank you," said the recovering Soul Reaper rather meekly and took a sip. "That's good," she said in shock, surprised that something kept in a glorified cardboard box would taste so good.
"You're welcome," said Ichigo gruffly when he felt a strange sensation attack his senses.
Tatsuki was fuming silently at the first mission she had been given as an Oni apprentice. "I can't believe Shishou no Baka! Making me Konso a stupid soul that probably just got lost or separated from its reaper; it's probably so weak that a Hollow wouldn't consider it a midnight snack," she thought to herself only half listening to her friends gossiping and making sure Chizuru did not try to do anything perverted to Orihime. If she did, given her current mood, she would punt her straight to the moon.
At that point a strange sensation assaulted her senses. Since her encounter with Orihime's Hollowfied brother she had begun to see more of the world behind the world. Sometimes they were merely half there images or fuzzy outlines but they were always accompanied by this feeling that raised the hair on the back of her neck. A sensation she was feeling now as she saw Ichigo's friend Yasutora "Chad" Sado, a huge guy by any standard at nearly six and half feet tall and seemed to be made of steel reinforced muscle. He was also the quietest and gentlest guy ever. Ichigo had told that the first time they had met; he had taken a 2x4 to the back and shrugged it off like it was nothing. And at this moment he was carrying a cage with a white rather forlorn looking Parakeet, a Parakeet that currently held a very lost soul. At that moment the young apprentice Oni knew that this task was not going to be an ordinary first mission.
(1) boss or chief
(3) teacher or master
(4) Frak you, if you don't know what that means please consult the BSG 2004 section of Wikipedia.
A/n: As always please R&R and all reviews, critiques, flames, threats against my life, threats to do me bodily harm, and crititisms are welcome. Any SPAM will be microwaved and enjoyed with a hot bagel and eggs.
Until next time true believers... DISMISSED!