The Last Samurai: Souls and Memories

Memories can be forgotten, but the past is set in stone.

Tamashi Takahashi, a 12 year old boy robbed of his family and village by the tyrannical Emperor Kuno Satsugai, sets out to avenge his people. Along the way he is reunited with an old friend and warrior, Kenji Kotai.
Life is put on the line as they venture to-and-fro, meeting new friends and enemies along the way, and strive to bring justice upon the oppressors, and liberation to the oppressed


12. To Unveil Wisdom

Tamashi slowly opened his eyes. He found himself in a room, morning sun shining through the windows, his head pounding as he winced in pain. He slowly looked around the room, exhausted. He peered over to the doorway, seeing Kenji leaning against the doorframe as he rested his eyes. Tamashi slowly sat up in the bed, with a wince. Kenji was sipping tea as he looked over to Tamashi.
“Where am I?” Tamashi asked, holding his head a little bit, his head still pounding.
“The Clearwater INN, I brought you here while you were unconscious.” Kenji said, sighing.
“How long was I out for?” He replied, moving his hand away from his head. He looked up to Kenji. 
“Mm...About a day.” Kenji said, shrugging.
“I see..” He muttered, slowly standing up. 
“Stay resting Kid, it’s better for your health, fighting did a number on you. I aim to fix that later today. For now, rest.” Kenji said sternly.
“I don't need rest, I'm fine. I can handle it.” Tamashi replied stubbornly.
“Kid, you were leaking blood like a pig in a slaughterhouse, if you really are going to tell me you have the physical capability to stand after fighting a fully grown general on your own, the blood must have drained from your brain as well, now sleep, I’m not asking.” Kenji said curtly, yet not meaning offense.
“Like I said before, and I'll say it again. I don't need rest and I'm perfectly fine, and therefore I will be fine.” He replied still as stubborn as before.  
Kenji sighed heavily, walking over to Tamashi, leaning down to his eye level. He stared Tamashi directly in the eyes for a solid fifteen seconds.
“Look at me and tell me you are capable of walking, if you die because of stubborn behavior, it’s your fault.” Kenji said, very serious.
“I am capable of walking.” Tamashi spoke in an annoyed tone of voice. 
“Then stand.” Kenji said, partially smiling.
Tamashi slowly stood up, feeling the pounding of his head worsen a bit. He didn’t show his pain, however he felt a little nausea, but acted as if nothing was really affecting him.
“Good to know you’re alright Tamashi.” Kenji said, grinning.
“Yeah, yeah.” He muttered feeling as if he was gonna throw up from the nausea, trying to put that feeling aside.
“Why don’t we get some fresh air, hm? The INN owns a courtyard for traveling knights or soldiers.” Kenji said.
“Why not.” Tamashi replied with a shrug, he looked over to see his mask on a night stand, ripped from the fight. He gave an annoyed sigh disliking the thought of showing his face to the public. 
Kenji and Tamashi walked outside, heading towards the courtyard. Tamashi felt like his legs wanted to give out because of blood loss. He continued to walk, looking up at Kenji. 
    “Something wrong Kid?” Kenji said, looking down at Tamashi.
    “No, just thinking.” He replied with a shake of his head. 
    “Then you’ll be fine in this test, hold out your right hand and focus on the thought of lightning, and nothing but lightning.” Kenji said.
He nodded and did as he was told, he held his right hand out and began to focus on the lightning. He tried to make the lightning work but nothing came out of his hand. 
“It's not working..” Tamashi muttered.
“As suspected, here.” Kenji said, reaching over to Tamashi’s arm and placing his index finger on his wrist, a white rune appearing, it appeared to be the shape of a wolf.
“Now try.” Kenji said.
“Fine..” He muttered, trying his best. The only best thing that happened was a spark. 
Kenji snapped his fingers, the spark immediately grew, a rod of lightning arcing into the sky, then vanishing.
Tamashi looked up at the rod of lightning in awe. 
“Kenji, I never really seen any others with this ability. Why is that?” He asked, tilting his head.
Kenji sighed heavily, looking at the ground.
“Your father told me a few years after you were born...That you were gifted with the ability to harness the wrath of the skies itself, lightning. I asked him why I haven’t seen any others in our village use any form of magic, and he revealed the shocking truth to me.” Kenji said, pausing.
“Kimohama had mages everywhere, ones even I didn’t know about, but they kept their powers a secret to keep us safe from being exterminated, the armies of both the Emperor and the previous Emperor feared magic, it holds great power.” Kenji looked back up, turning to Tamashi, “You were born with it, it was my task to make sure you never knew of it, for all our sakes. Leo knew it would be dangerous, he truly cared for you, Tamashi.” Kenji said, biting his lip.
“Why would we have to hide it? Isn't magic part of who we are? Why would they fear a part of who we are?” Tamashi asked, his head pounding slightly worsening. 
“Magic has four capabilities, it always has. To heal, to change, to destroy, and to protect. As humanity waged war, healing was used only to keep life in balance, change was used to build our kingdoms and villages, protection was used to defend against these vile wars, and destruction...was used to reduce our enemies to ash.” Kenji said.
“Humanity’s goal has been to destroy what opposes us, it always has been, no matter who we are, that is the main goal. So, as we all grew, destruction became more common, and became a threat to all of our lives, so it was kept under watch by leaders and governors. Should the level of destruction, or magic as a matter of fact, grow too high...It must be wiped out…” Kenji clenched his fists in anger.
“Destruction used to reduce enemies to ash? Wasn't that what you already do to the Bitāzu?” Tamashi asked in a teasing tone of voice. 
“So, Kimohama didn't know that we possessed these abilities? And they had abilities but never used them?” He asked. 
“Correct. Our village was in actuality a central meeting place for mages everywhere. Ever wonder why the Emperor really chose to wipe out Kimohama? Because our power combined could destroy him in minutes.” Kenji said, grimly smiling.
“I see…” Tamashi muttered, he remembered that village and all color was wiped from his face.
“Don’t let it bring you down Tamashi, these things happen all the time...That’s how the world works.” Kenji sighed, remembering his family.
“If this is how the world works, by having a village burned down by an Emperor, and having a seven year old watch his parents get murdered in front of him then this world is hell!” Tamashi spoke, his voice raising in sheer anger and hatred.
Kenji spoke quietly, “You’re right...It is...And I aim to burn away hell itself...No matter the cost.” Kenji turned to Tamashi, an expression of nobility on him.
“I’m going to teach you magic from now on, if you wish to avenge our brothers and sisters, then you will listen with the most rapt and unrelenting attention, understand?” Kenji said, slowly grinning.
“I understand.” Tamashi spoke with a nod.
“Good. Then let’s get to it.” Kenji said, laughing through the end. 

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