I drew a feather from my winged back and lunged at the exorcist.

Surprised he parried with Mugen and lurched back

"You are not going to use the Lotis?" Kanda asked.

"How do you know?" I smirked. "I could be planning to draw it out. How would you combat it?"

"I would have to adapt." Kanda said.

Kanda landed a blow, driving me back a step. "Tell me about the Lotis."

"All..." Drive back. Parry. Dodge. "Creatures are born with a word on their tongue."

I swung and he ducked and jumped behind me, crossed sword with feather. I whirled and met his next blow.

"Some of us wait when we are born—" Thrust. Parry. Blow. "For want of tasting the word."

He drove me back again, and my feather crossed his sword.

"What word?"

I smirked, knocking his sword into the ground and pushing him back. "Your name."

He gained his footing, grabbed Mugen and attacked again. "Che. I know my name."

I spun my feather and cut off a bit of his hair, grinning again. "A person's name is sacred. A bit of their soul. Names have power. For instance, "Yu—" A flinch. Drive back, Parry. "Is a name that inspires great feeling for you."

"So if I discover my name then—"

He pushed me back, and I defended again. Ah, always on the defense.

"You will take the first step in the Lotis." I grinned, held up the feather to block, straight up, point in upward. "RII-YA!"

A rune glowed on my arm and struck the feather and a giant barrier exploded forth and drove him back against the wall where he fell.

Kanda, for his part, was pretty sporting and got up with renewed vigor and lunged for me.

I lurched forward to attack, and the weakness struck and then...all went black.


Kanda sheathed Mugen and caught Kuri.

He rushed with his amazing speed for the infirmary.

The Head Nurse quickly took her in and shooed Kanda out.

He sat outside the infirmary, his head in his hands.

Why had she done this? Set herself up to fail? Was she really an exorcist?

He looked in on her face drawn with sorrow.

She looked so peaceful and calm and...alone.

His fist clenched on Mugen.

He wouldn't let her be alone anymore.

If she wanted to fight he would fight beside her.

He was protect her and see her smile again.

She would live.

She had to live.

Kanda had found his reason for living.