Callum Lynx

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Chapter 25

Callum got down on his knees and set his swords aside. He clasped his hands together and took a long deep breath before exhaling and closing his eyes. The samurai felt the cool air brush against his skin, and could hear the wind whistling around him. The only thing Callum was focusing on, was keeping a steady breathing pace. The upcoming battle, the rivalry with Phoenix, and Jerall's betrayal ceased to exist in Callum's mind. Even Ketra didn't cross his mind. Callum could faintly hear Vilija's breathing to his right. The two samurai were sitting in an isolated area from the training yard. This area is commonly referred to as the "Patch of Mindfulness" by the samurai, as it contains a patch of grass large enough to fit four warriors.

The twenty minutes Callum and Vilija spent meditating seemed to go by very slow, since the two of them didn't have anything on their minds. Before they began, Vilija asked for one of the sentries guarding the training yard to keep track of time for her and Callum while they were meditating. Eventually, the sentry came over to tap them out of the mindful rest. Callum heard the samurai's approaching footsteps.

"It's been twenty minutes." the sentry spoke in a calm and polite voice. Vilija opened her eyes and looked at the sentry with a smile.

"Thank you." Vilija said as she stood up, giving the sentry a bow. Callum stood up and followed suit. After the sentry left, Vilija turned to face Callum.

"Thank you for meditating with me, Cal." Vilija said with a smile.

"Anytime, I'm going to head back to my dorm. Do you want to train later?" Callum returned.

"For sure. I'll be down here whenever you want to start training." Vilija replied. Callum nodded and turned around to head back to the temple.

Dzin donned his black cloak and garb again after giving the armor back to the samurai and made his way over to where the other Shadowcloaks were. Four of them were camping out on a large structure made of rock and each were looking in different directions. Dzin climbed onto the structure and crouched down with one of the assassins.

"Have you guys seen anything yet, Fuljir?" Dzin asked.

"So far, nothing. I don't know if they plan on coming here first though." Fuljir replied. Fuljir Wolfgang's second in command.

"What do you mean?" Dzin questioned.

"I don't know if Kaz is going to attack the villages they come across first, or if they are coming straight here." said Fuljir.

"You have other units around the whole territory, right?" Dzin said.

"Yes, and I told them all if they see Kaz's army, then they need to send one of them to spread the word around with the other units." Fuljir replied.

"Do you want me to stay here and keep on the lookout with you?" Dzin asked.

"No, go back to the village and stay in that temple. If we see an approaching army, I will send someone to tell you, and then you can say something to the shogun." Fuljir ordered.

"Gotcha." Dzin replied, standing up and climbing back down the rock structure.

"Can I have all of your attention, please!" Shogun Kaz shouted from the second story balcony of his temple. All three hundred of his samurai minus the shogun's generals, who stood behind him, feasted their eyes on Kaz from the training yard.

"Today is the day we claim our first territory. I've been waiting for a long time to do this. We should have absolutely no problem wiping out Shogun Lekkyu's force. He has the same amount of samurai as us, so it will be a fair battle. I want you all to fight strong, hard, and be the first to strike. Cut all of your enemies down to ribbons, if that means getting blood all over yourself in order to kill your opponent, than by all means, do so." Kaz started. Every now and then, a samurai from the crowd would pump their fists in the air or shout in excitement, even though they were supposed to remain silent in respect of the shogun.

"The only rule I have for you guys, is to leave Lekkyu for me. I want to kill him myself." Kaz continued. Phoenix smiled to himself. He was excited to fight his rival, Callum Lynx, once more.

"As soon as I am done here, I want all of you to get on your horses, and get back in formation. I wish you all luck. Hei!" Kaz finished.

"Hei!" Every samurai shouted in unison. Phoenix and the other generals could actually feel the vibration of the samurai's shout underneath their feet. Kaz turned around to face his generals.

"Torl, Jet. Help them get back in formation after they get on their horses. Phoenix, come with me and get the other general's horses. And Malakai, you watch over Torl and Jet and make sure the formation looks right." Kaz ordered. The general nodded and turned his head. Phoenix followed the shogun into the temple and then back out on the main floor, exiting and heading over to their own stable with their horses. Kaz jumped on his horse and waited for Phoenix to hop on his after gathering the other generals horses. After the army were back in formation, the other generals climbed onto their horses and Kaz got in lead.

"We're going to Felshire first. Keep behind me. Hei?" Kaz said to his generals.

"Hei!" All five returned. Kaz spun back around and pulled the reigns, getting his horse to move in a steady trot, with his army right behind him.

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