One Step Forward

One girl who went from grins to tears is on a journy to avenge her suffering, but not just her own, the ones that suffered along with her. Follow her journey with Furra and see if she prevales.


4. Day one and back to hell

          Alright, your challenge today, or I should say, this week, is to survive seven days in Higure, or the nightfall dimension. You have to work together.” Said sensei. Furra and I looked at each other. “Do I really have to work with him/her again?” asked me and Furra in sync. “Of course, there is the option of giving up and not getting to train with me.” Said sensei with a sarcastic tone. “Fine.” Said me and Furra, once again in sync. “Get ready and bring only what you need. Oh, and I have something important to show you.” Said sensei.
                I went into one of the bathrooms and took a long, hot shower. When I got out I looked into the mirror. My hair had gone from black to a dark, purplish blue color, and my eyes had turned a brighter shade of red. I can’t believe those idiots didn’t tell me. I put on a black tank top, dark blue shorts, and then I put on a green sweatshirt, and then put my short hair into a ponytail. I got out of the bathroom about the same time Furra got out of his. Like me he was wearing a black tank top, and had tan shorts, as well as a red headband on his forehead. “Hey, Kushimo, do you know how to cook, because I don’t.” asked Furra. Wow, looks like Mr. Smart-ass is asking for help. I’ll help him, but then I’ll make him owe me sometime. “Yeah, I know how to cook. Anyway, what do you want?” I asked. “I don’t know, eggs or something.” said Furra. “Alright, it’ll be done in five minutes.” I said.
                I cooked. I only knew how to cook because Rozu had taught me, since I lived alone for the past seven years, I had to learn to take care of myself, and amazingly, it paid off. “Here” I said as I handed Furra a plate of eggs. “Yeah, uh... thanks.” Said Furra as his face turned red. Is he… is he blushing? “Um... is something wrong?” I asked. “Oh... uh... no. Im just not used to having a girl cook for me.” Said Furra. “Yeah, well don’t get used to it, I’m not doing this forever, so you should probably learn.” I said. We ate in silence.
                “Alright let’s get going.” Said Furra. “Yeah, but to where, sensei never said where to meet him.” I said. “Good point. It probably one of the challenges. We need to try to use our shinteki to sense him out.” Said Furra. He sound pretty sure, and the plan made sense to me, so, why not? “Alright. I think I can do it, the ability of sensing out a presence has always come easy to me.” I said. Furra looked at me strangely. “Same here.” He said. Why do I have to share abilities with him? “Well, let’s both try to sense him and see what we get.” He said. I hope I can do it though, I’ve never tried more than about 20 feet.” I said. “Yeah, same.” Said Furra. I concentrated on sensei’s presence. I stood for about half a minute until I felt a faint yet strong presence of sensei. “A mile away, due north.” I said. “Yeah, that’s what Im getting too.” Said Furra.
                We headed north. It didn’t take us long to find him. “Im impressed you too. I knew Kushimo could sense life, but not you, Furra.” Said sensei. “Yeah, I was surprised too.” I said. “Alright, I would like you two to find the portal to…” I cut sensei off. “There.” I said, pointing. “But how did you…” I cut him off once more. “It’s easy, there’s a distortion in the air, and it has a slight purple hue.” I stated. “I know, but how did you know that’s what it looks like?” asked Kasen sensei. “I didn’t. I knew because, I mean, how many purple distortion in the air are you gonna find that aren’t abnormal, or at least something different." I said. "Good point...." Said sensei, looking liked I had just crushed his dreams of something. "Well anyway," he continued. "Before you two enter, I'm going to show you how to summon your sword spirits." He said. Sword spirits? Sounds interesting enough. Sensei pulled his sword out of its sheath.  He held it straight in front of him. I could sense that he was flowing his shinteki into it. What looked like a black orb came out of the end, then it quickly shaped into a panther. "This is my sword spirit Yoru no owari. Call him 'Runo'." Said sensei.  "Master, are these your students? They show great promise." Said Runo. He had a very polite tone. "Yes Runo. The girl is Kushimo, and the boy is Furra." Stated sensei. I did a polite smile, whereas Furra rolled his eyes. He looked like he was trying to act cool or something. I laughed to myself a little bit. Runo looked me in the eye. He tensed. "Demon...!" He growled ferociously. I didn't do anything or react at all. I was used to it and I knew nothing was my best option. "Easy, Runo, it's tame." Said sensei. I got a little irritated, and Furra laughed. It? Was he referring to me or the demon... Or both. I regained my temper. "So, girl, you're tame?" Asked Runo suspiciously. "I may be mostly demon, but I have a name, so do to refer to me as girl, thank you. And yes, I am tame, I've never lost control of my power, but then again, I haven't had much reason too either." I stated calmly. "Intersting. Kushimo, are you aware of the fact that people will be hunting you down from the ends of earth, and that nobody will trust you easily? Are you willing to take the risk?" Asked Runo. "She strives for revenge.." Said sensei. "Shut. Your. Mouth." I said angrily. "I just want answers. Why me? Why my family? Why? I will only kill for revenge if what is deserved is not given by another. I'm sure I will get punishment for being demon, and for all I know, that has begun. The sorrow of my family's death is a heavy burden, so for me, depending on the way you think, it's either a gift or a weight." I said quietly.  Runo backed down and sensei looked at me approvingly.
     "Well you two, to get back on track, I'm going to teach you how to sumon your sword spirits. Kushimo, I'm sure you saw what I was doing. And Furra, how about you." Said sensei. We nodded. "Alright, try it." He said. Me and Furra unsheathed our swords and held them in front of us. I flowed my shinteki into it aswell as Furra. Slowly, a black orb began to emerge from both the tips of our swords. Furra's materialized very quickly. It looked like a coyote. Mine however, was taking much longer. Is this good or bad? The orb moved off the tip of my sword and materialized. It was a wolf. While Furra's coyote was dark and light brown with blue eyes, my wolf was black all over with a white circle over both eyes along with some white specks on the cheeks. Furra began to talk with his sword spirit, but I didn't listen, I was paying attention to my own. "Hello, master, my name is Seishin shoseki no koroi kiri, but call me Seki for short." Said the beautiful wolf. I was a bit surprised at the word master. "Uh.. Can you call me something other than master?" I asked. "How about princess, or mistress, or maybe dutches." She contemplated. "No. I don't want anything fancy." I said. "Well then, do you want me to call you by your name?" She asked. I nodded. "What is it?" She asked. "Kushimo." I said. "Very well then, Kushimo. I am your loyal sword spirit and you are my weilder. You have unlocked the power of the Hinotori clan." She said. I flinched at the thought. I remember the words my father had told me.

(7 years ago)

"Daddy, where are we going?" I asked as I skipped alongside his wide steps. "I'm going to show you something. It's been passed down our family for generations." He responded kindly. "Oooooh!! What is it." I asked excitedly. My father pushed through a curtain of bushes. "A sword." He said simply. As we finished pushing through the bushes, we came to a shed. You'd think a shed thats 1/2 a mile into the woods would look pretty dumpy, right? Well not this one at least. It looked almost brand new. It was pretty small though.  My father came up to the door and pulled out a key. He unlocked the door as the lock fell the the ground with an ear-ringing clink. We walked in. As new as it looked on the outside... Well, forget that. The inside was full of spider webs and the pungent scent of decaying oak wood. My father began to rummage through all of the useless junk. "Ah! Here it is!" My father exclaimed. He pulled out the sword. "Only your grandfather, Utagai, has been able to unlock the spirit within this sword, and you, as it's heir, and as you're my daughter, I have faith that you too will be able to gain a spirit worthy of you." He said. I had been so excited, thinking that being who I am in the family was going to make my life the happiest I could be, but I was dead wrong, as you already know.

(back to present time.)

"...Kushiiiiimoooo? Are you there." I began to realize that an unfamiliar voice was talking to me. I looked down to see the brown fur of Furra's coyote sword spirit. "Ugh. What do you want?!" I sighed. I can already tell that he is going to be annoying, especially because he's Furra's sword spirit. "Just wondering if your still here with us, Kushimo." responded sensei. "Yeah, I just remembered something, that's all." I said quietly. "Like what?" Asked sensei. "Oh... Uh, it's nothing. Something stupid, that's all." I spoke down to a whisper. "Oh, well anyway," Sensei began with a worried look toward me. "Why dont you two hop in the portal and get going." Sensei continued with a smirk.  "Wait, we're just gonna go in? Just like that?" I asked. "What," Furra laughed. "Are you scared?" "No, idiot. It's just that I figured sensei would give us a heads-up on what we're dealing with here, but I guess he's just that much of an a-hole." I replied sarcastically. His smirk disappeared and we finaly got serious. "I'm not surprised that you would bring that up, Kushimo.  Normally, I would, but this is a test. You have to do this all on your own. You could live or die depending on your actions. If you want to live, you must get along, work together, and think fast, otherwise, you'll be dead in minutes. There are passive creatures in there that will help you, and then there are the most cold blooded creatures in there that won't think twice before tearing your heads off. This is living hell." He said. Although I wasn't scared, I felt a chill run down my spine. Could I actually die? I mean, I always thought I was brave and could do something like this, but now, I actually might die if I make even the littlest skrew-up. I could see that Furra was a bit tense too. "Now you two, do you have everything you need?" Asked sensei. I double checked my bag. Food, water, clothing, wire, medicine, gaw bandaging, and a few other things. I had everything I need. Furra checked his too. He packed mostly the same things I did. "Yes" said Furra and I. We walked toward the portal. "Be carful you two, but no need to take your time." Said sensei as he pushed us in. 
     All I could feel was the sensation of falling. Out of impulse I screamed. I looked to my side to see that the sword spirits had returned to our swords and Furra was knocked unconcious. I looked down to see the the ground was quickly approaching us. At this rate, we'd hit it in about half a minute. I had to think fast. Uh... Uh... Of course! My shinteki! If I can power up enough in the next 20 seconds, I can stop us from hitting the ground at a rate that could kill us. I began to concentrate. 15 seconds. I began to gain power. 10 seconds. I started to sweat. 5 seconds. My heart skipped a beat. 4 seconds. 3 seconds. 2 seconds. 1. Everything went black.

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