La Melena Brilla Con Acero Vacío

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Ryoka Leon

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The cloud that had descended upon him had wrought his heart, the very marrow in his bones, with a deep frost far too cold for the young man to handle.

The reiatsu that had swept forth to ensnare him and the surrounding area was unmistakably one of the Arrancar...probably a Privaron, at the very least, given that it was on par with both of the Gotei members he had left behind. The presence alone was enough to freeze the Ryoka over, such that his body continued to dash towards the 1st Division Headquarters while his spirit remained locked in place.

-Well, there you have it, my worry-ridden wielder...you and your incompetent band of wannabe heroes have been led on like lambs to the slaughter. I suppose there's the miniscule possibility at this point that the Espada just happened to be coming over here with the intention of fighting the lovely Captain and your last bash buddy, but I know that you were never the type to be a slave to the pathos of human denial and the like.-

Leon did not respond to the exceedingly malevolent Seikan...although he hadn't really figured out whether the zanpaku was malevolent or not to begin with. The abomination's rationale and ruthless vehemence had saved him from certain failure many times over the past several months, but that didn't mean that he felt comfortable with the rather immoral sentiments driving the advice.

Of course, right now, his mind was upon more dire notions...namely, just what the hell was he supposed to do? If the Espada were assaulting Soul Society with the Sine Qua Non, and he was just a big ol' puppet caught in the middle of some feud between larger powers, then, well...well...

...well, what?

Was he ****ed? He could turn around, go and wupp up the ******* Arrancar together with the two Gotei members, or go hunt down his friends and get them the hell out of there before anyone else could taken advantage of their strength (that's how it'd always been, after all), or go straight up to the blasted Black Mask and...and...

**** on a stick man...**** on a stick!

The Ryoka felt his teeth grinding against one another, and knew that his thoughts were culminating to one of those things he despised in all shapes and sizes: an impasse. So what was going to tell him what to do when logic wouldn't?

"Remember, intelligence is instinctual too. The drive to learn is the axiom, that maxim of man, such that we are never content without knowing the 'why' and 'how'. At some point, the body, the heart learned to aide the mind...so don't forget that the mind is part of the body...the most developed part, yes, but a part nevertheless."

"So? Respect the body?"

"Respect the body and the heart for having made something worth more than their self...and remember that when thinking will not work, you may fall back on the heart, which came up with thinking at the beginning of all things."


And so he glanced down, and noticed something funny, so funny, he laughed out loud in a rambunctious manner, as if a man had told an astonishingly witty joke...and when he had finished laughing he felt the calm, the collected quality, the fearlessness momentarily creeping into his veins.

-...seems you figured out something on your own, for a change. There's hope for you yet, little one.-

He didn't know what would happen when he saw Amagawa Sougen. Or perhaps it was more accurate to suggest he didn't care. Because all he knew was that even when his spirit had withered, his legs had never stopped in their rhythmic procession towards the Taisho he'd been approaching for the past two weeks...and the friend...or the foe...who he would have to see sooner or later.

Enough of this B.S., Seikan. I'm so tired of putting up with the ****...I want to see my buddies' faces again. All I've seen here are white walls and frail men who draw my pity and not my fury. Let's begin the end of this.

Thus it was that the Ryoka, without worrying about the implications of announcing his location, made a mighty shyunpo and materialized at the foot of the 1st Division Headquarters.
 
Mar 19, 2005
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~​



And no less, the shaded interloper's unannounced arrival was met with a sulking air of iron shame. In the night-soaked battlefield, there was peace, manifested in the ubiquitous pall of lavender dusk that seemed to dim progressively as the Ryoka's presence persisted. There was not a single motion, not a single stir from the one-hundred Shinigami that had lined up into two even files, starting from the shut entrance of the citadel to the open gates innumerous paces down.

But, surely, the Ryoka would not find a fair-temperature'd welcome here, for every single one of Gods of Death, every single face and back and posture and gait... were synchronously turned away from the direction of his presence. Disgrace, dishonor, disesteem, all of it were spelled out and injected with horrific reality in this very scene, yet none of them, none of the warriors who intimately preserved that waning fire in their hearts (Pride!) dared neither to act against him, nor to brazenly stand in his path.

It should have been painfully obvious right from the time of his arrival: the way was shone to him, laid out for him, a figurative road whose cobblestones were mortared with Humiliation. And such a road led to shut doors. No, the crystalline court grounds were enough. The breath of fear need not pervade the winged sanctuary.

But Amagawa Sougen was nowhere to be found, not amongst his virtuous women and men, not at the steps of the auric and argent foyer. As if in time for the invading Shinigami's advent, the nights tidally blushed with nocturne ebony and lunar lapis, ushering in the silvers and the pearls of the full moon dress. Leon Valiente Simeon would not find his seemingly fated opponent on the same plane as his feet were upon at that immediate moment, no. Rather, the Commander of the Thirteen Divisions of the Court of Pure Souls of this Society of Souls... stood somberly upon the rooftops of the grand citadel, his visible silhouette but a mere, starkly insignificant speck in the pallid face of the magnified moon.

No man could tell from such a height what sort of expression, if at all, was wrought upon the lone warrior's countenance. But, one thing was made clear, even without words: to face Heaven's River, one would need to climb Heaven itself.



[389]​
~​
 

Winduril

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The hundred soldiers found their backs reflected in the dark sunglasses, and slowly, very slowly, the shades lifted upwards, until the black facets held the miniscule point that was Amagawa Sougen, waiting atop his crest in a manner that seemed simultaneously patient and impatient.

The immense distance separating the two combatants seemed to shrink, and suddenly, Leon felt the distinct impression that the white speck at the apogee of the headquarters had leapt straight into his heart and torn it asunder. This notion was powerful enough to cause the Ryoka to grasp the left side of his chest following a sharp flinching motion.

When he had materialized at the foot of the destination, there had been a small lapse of time in which the cool composure appeared to have fully secured the rights to his facial expression. The transformation that ensued, however, was horrifically fast: his body suffered great palpitations, hurtling into a cold sweat, and he could feel the marrow of his bones shriveling up in terror. His teeth chattered violently, causing one of the canines to perforate the inside of his lip, and the blood that trickled out was swallowed by his fluttering throat. His limbs were shaking with the vigor of a trapped rodent, and he tried to clench his muscles together as an instinctual reaction to the fear and as an attempt to prevent it from fully taking over.

It's...it's just like...

To the scent of nostalgia, the smell of horses hooves, of swelling thunder, dark eyes that did not see, but rather, reached out and grasped with cold, rough hands....and a spear that called out to the tempest, and received an answer.

And just as the aroma lit his memory, he exhaled with a snort and his own eyes flickered.

It's the same. It's almost exactly the same!

He stamped his foot and took a step forward...only to fall on a knee and cringe as if he had been whipped. A large amount of sweat splashed across the white tiling, having flung from his short hair in his loss of balance.

-...-

He swore...the ****ed sword at his side seemed capable of voicing an insult without any words...or perhaps he was just letting it do the insulting for him.

God****it! I don't remember feeling this scared in ages! It's all I can do to just not piss my pants! His mere presence...I dunno what the hell it is about him! It's not the promise of his strength...there's something else...

-It's the inevitability. He promises inevitability. Amagawa Sougen promises that Everything will go the Way it was Meant to go. Are you scared of the helplessness behind inevitability, after boasting to Shouyuu Yasougin like an arrogant *****? No, you know you're not. Tell me what you're so scared of about meeting destiny, little master, and in explaining as such, tell yourself as well.-


Leon did not respond; his hand had stopped shaking.

In his lair, Seikan stopped talking, stopped, stopped, stopped. This was different. What was this?

"Inevitability," the Ryoka breathed, and his hand stood still, stood frozen in place. Then he was gone, standing behind Amagawa Sougen several meters away, facing the opposite direction of the Commander General. Seikan growled...his master's hand was shaking again. But for a second...for one second...

Leon turned towards the 1st Division Captain, the culmination of all his time spent in Soul Society, the ultimate objective of the hours and hours of spilt blood, of bitten flesh, of tearing steel, of solitary tears, of shame, and then of determination, of resolution, of victory after victory, victories so closely tied to defeats. His sunglasses did not seem capable of bearing the whole of Amagawa's back across their lenses, and the Ryoka turned with the sluggishness of a marathon runner realizing he has reached the finish line.

"QuÁƒ © conquista el inevitable? Ah sÁƒ­, por supuesto, el Tiempo hace. Para, a pesar de tiempo nos tira hacia ese momento que tememos, nos debemos dar algÁƒ ºn espacio para reflejar y pensar calladamente. Recuerda ahora? Si ningÁƒ ºn tiempo le separa del inevitable, Seguramente no es inevitable ya."

The Spanish tongue had rolled off with unusual eloquence, giving off the profound tone regardless of understanding on the part of the listener.

"Huh...I didn't think I spoke Spanish," Leon mused aloud.

The darkness of the moonlit sky did not create the most favorable of climates for wearing sunglasses, but he adjusted them all the same.

"I didn't really remember what I wanted when I came here. The guys on Earth...they told me you've been plotting the End of the World. I'm no fool. It's obvious now I was just being used. I probably should be angrier, but..."

He extended the gloved hand to the 1st Division Captain's back in a reverential manner.

"...I thought about it, and I think I finally remember what I want. From what I was told about you, you probably don't give a flying ****. You're cold, emotionless, and the perfect kind of man for giving himself to war. I hate guys like you. Most of the guys serving you have issues with themselves, and a newb like myself managed to burn through quite a few vets before getting here. But..."

He sighed, looking at his shaking hands, and then clasped Seikan at his side.

"...there's something about you that's respectable, sir. I have no ****ing idea what it is. Maybe I just think it's kind of amazing that a guy with your personal qualities could end up being the ultimate representative for 'good' in our world. That's definitely something to nod to. And then, last time, if that was you...you looked at me...looked at my humanity. I knew then...that thing, if it was you...it wasn't a monster. Monsters have the same emptiness in their eyes, but they never see the human side...they just see things that talk and breathe and get in the way. I don't know if you're the guy who attacked earlier...I can't even feel your reiatsu...it's just intuition. Either way..."

The tachi glided forth from the scabbard with nary a sound, illuminating the roof beneath them with the lunar incandescence.

"...you've got the Mark, Amagawa Sougen. The Mark that I fear most. And all this time, fighting for the universe, fighting for the human race, fighting for my friends...I had gotten ****ed tired of it all. I wasn't going to fight you, Amagawa Sougen, but you have the Mark, and I remember what I want."

Respectively, the Ryoka bowed to his Enemy.

"Fearless. I want to be completely fearless. You scare the bejeezus outta me, old timer. So even now, with everyone in the middle of their battles, I want you to attack me. I just won't be able to fight for everyone else until I've taken sometime to fight for myself, Amagawa Sougen. Talk comes later...beating back Evil comes later...first, I have to beat back Myself. That's ****ed selfish...but most battles are."



[1,154]​


I told myself I was not going to get chapter length turns going, and lookey here. -_-; This should be the only one. Really, it ruins the **** when I do stuff like this.
 

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