Chapter sixteen: Kitsune Valley
It was no secret that this world was surrounded by Daemons who beings created by magic and guide humanity.
While some daemons do that, others did not have the best attendance for humanity they were after a crystal that was once inside Shiro's body but that wasn't their only target, a group of daemons known as the Galra empire. Wanted to conquer the planet and probably wanted the crystal to take over or possibly something else.
The canyons of sun-baked dirt and dunes combine the thick trees that blanket the valley beyond the bluff.
"Okay, Keith, I get it!" Shiro said. "Stop with the noises, already!"
"Huh?" he asked before he picked it up. "What's this thing?" He then sniffed it. "...It smells like there's food in there." He then tried to bite it into the plastic covering but found his efforts fruitless. "Dammit, what is this? I can't get the food out!"
"Ramen?" Keith repeated. "How strange, Is this from your world, Shiro?"
"Cook them, how?" Keith inquired.
"We have no idea where we going, do you?" Keith asks Shiro.
"Well, accordingly to Queen Astrid, she said we have to find the Kitsune". Shiro added
Suddenly the alarm starts ringing "Okay, three minutes are up" Shiro shouted, and immediately Keith slurps up a bowl of instant noodles ravenously.
"Tastes great! Shiro, this is good!"
"Oh yeah? I'm glad"
Shiro brought several things from Earth, including instant noodles that Keith find splendid. "Aren't you having some?"
"Sure, but I have been thinking," Shiro said
"Thinking about what," said Keith
"If we find the samurai, are you going to train with them," Shiro asked
"What, I thought that you were going to train you," Keith said
"No, I haven't forgotten but we train with them together," Shiro told him
"Please, only humans can work with samurai," Keith said
"What do I being a human have to do with be a samurai?" Shiro said, casts him an annoyed glare; irritably.
"Simple. Humans are better at causing problems than Daemons and Daemons are better at doing guidance and not fighting and stuff like that". Keith said. "Isn't that right, Stats"
Stats pause who on Shiro's shoulder eating fishcakes "Stats!"
"And you believe that," Shiro asked
"It's just the natural order of things like this aftermath of a battle?" Keith Answered
Keith pointed out an old battlefield, surrounded by a field of skulls robots, and crows in the background fleeing.
"Ok, but next time I'm picking the place to eat but seriously I think you do have the potential do something great, just like my commander said," Shiro said
"Oh, I never told you about my life on Earth" Shiro beamed. "The place I come from called the Galaxy Garrison and they specialize in outer space".
"The moon? How?!" Keith questions
"Using a rocket," Shiro answered
"A rocket? " Keith said.
Shiro stretches out his arms far apart to show how huge it is while makes funny gestures on the ground and fire shoots out from the bottom curls up and kaboom! raises his hand wildly in the air.
"What was that" Keith asked
"A rocket did I show the entire scene as I've described it, huge and all" Shiro explain
Not wanting to figure it out, Keith decides to continues eating, not listening anymore as he slurped up the last of the broth. "Ahh...hey, can I have some more?"
"Be interested in noodles rather than my space stories" Shiro said, folds his hands and sulks with annoyance. "But, Sure, I'll make you some more. Which flavor do you want? Beef or chicken?"
As it enlarges, it revealed several mini warriors clad in black Ninja kimonos descend from the swirl ambushing them.
The warriors quickly encircle Keith and Shiro and take them out.
Keith gets pulled back and knocked over. While Shiro is pulled by his arm. As he leans in to maintain his balance, someone pulls his jacket over his head and pulls him down.
Stats flies up from Shiro's shoulder, only to be quickly caught in a bag, only his head still protruding.
Falling from this humiliating thing, they fell into the ground, bound and blindfolded, surrounded by the warriors.
"Shiro, can you tell us more that space stories," Keith said.
"Show yourselves, cowards!" Keith shouted, still blindfolded but upon getting unblindfolded. Shiro and Keith were greeted by the same image. It looms high above the great hall, the main building of the village along with the rest of the village.
Below its tapered point, rows of ninja troops with identities obscured with hoods and masks, flank either side of the village, let alone with a group of people looking closely down to them.
"On your knees" The smaller of the villagers ordered him to do. "I am Samson, the leader of this village.
The man is equally intimidating. Despite his small stature "You three have some explaining to do and if you don't answer all our questions, we're taking you to the galra!"
"There are no men, well they are but we're the ones who truly ambushed you," Samson explained.
With gaps, the people fell dependent on Keith's comment, so much that the leader took Keith by his collar, all angrily and said "A bunch of tiny people, huh? The Galra have a field day with you!"
"Allow me to introduce myself, I am Shiro and I came from another world. And this is Keith who didn't mean what he said" with that said the leader released Keith, but still stares at him in dismay.
"How do we know you're not spies? The Kitsune stayed out of the war so far. And we intend to keep it that way!"
"Wait, Kitsune" Shiro starts. Looking at their appearance now, they did have the description that Queen Astrid told them, fox ears and tails. The whole thing.
"This place is home to the Kitsune?!, The same people that Queen Astrid told us about" Keith Whispers.
"I seriously doubt that because no way that is true," he said.
"Do we look like we're lying, Queen Astrid, told us about you, tiny idiots?" Keith said out loud.
"Keith, that was very rude," Shiro tells him, but he can sense the tension of him like embers awaiting the smallest spark to ignite.
"No one, just us, look it's clear that you don't trust us but we are not spies or liars we came to your village is so we can look for something, something about the samurai" Shiro answers.
"Because we're trying to find them so I can train to become one" Shiro answered
"Huh?! Priestess!" Samson said as he and the rest of the villagers bow to Shiro before untying him.
"We are sorry, you were right" Samson explains apologizing to Shiro "We didn't know who you are"
The Kitsune cheer and celebrate by hugging Shiro. But still, tie up Keith tries to leave but a Kitsune clings to him.
"I don't... usually hug strangers, but, uh... Man, you are cuddly." Keith said.
"Thank you." The Kitsune speaks in a contrastingly deep voice that shocked Keith.
Elsewhere on a plain, on a Battlefield, not too far from where our heroes were, a battalion of warriors, Orange, and white, face off against to fighting to the death, jabbing each other with spears and cutting each other down with swords. However, as the battle raged on, something appeared in the sky, where huge dark clouds appear and cover the sun. Soon the battalions are shrouded in semi-darkness. Thunder is heard in the background. The warriors of the red battalion lookup.
Listening to his commands, a group of men restarts the command. "Yes sir, restart simulation" suddenly the men reappeared, alive and well.
"They're all yours brother"
"You don't have to tell me twice," he said as opens his mouth and shoots out the fire...
Resulting in the battalion was annihilated by Martens' fire attack. "End training sequence" Hiten order the men.
The simulation turns into a big white square.
She is dressed very similarly to her two brothers. On her shoulders, she has two red shoulder plates. She wears a white and black shirt, with purple pants. She has a yellow sash tied around her waist, and a matching pair of bracelets on each wrist. She also wears a Black pair of shoes.
"looks like my new programming was accessing," she said looking on her clipboard.
"It sure was, sister Sōten". Hiten began,
"I have so much power left over. This new simulation was so refreshing, it must be so nice to have a smart sister like you"
"That's true, after all, we are commanders" Manten compliment as he combing his three strands of hair.
"Yes, We'll look high and low until we find the right one to eliminate," Manten said as he caressing a fox pelt around his waist
The three chuckles evilly as their base echo in the light.
"Wow, these people know how to treat someone!" Said Shiro as he was looking at the room, the room had a queen-size bed. A medium-sized window and the door to the outside.
"Why you sound like you sound like you don't want to be here," Shiro asks
"I don't...I just don't feel like being around annoying squirrels," Keith said
"They're not squirrels, They're foxes," Shiro said
"Not to me, they very annoying that's all" Keith said
"What, no" Keith said.
"I guess hunger wasn't a problem for you again!" Shiro added.
"Hello, how are you," she said "I'm Katara"
"Well, hello Katara, I'm Shiro and this is Keith" Shiro introduce
She leads them to a river containing hot water. Although Shiro felt disappointed that it wasn't a shower. Nevertheless, he needs it, he and Keith hadn't washed in days since they first left Arus, after all, they were the only place that has showers but it was still a place for cleaning so he wasn't bothered by it.
"Thank you," Shiro said
"You're welcome," Katara said, before leaving the crew with their own devices.
Setting aside the towel on a short bench just outside before going into the River. Shiro doesn't spare a thought for when he removes his clothes off himself, but he does pause, however, when he doesn't see Keith about taking off his clothes.
"What no, I just don't feel comfortable, into strange places, especially places like this one" Keith answered.
"How's the water, Stats," said Shiro.
"Okay, you got a point. Just give me a minute," Keith said
With that, Shiro continued to remove the rest of his clothes and to support Keith's privacy as he went to rock to change out
"Okay, you can do this, you're taking a bath with your ridiculously beautiful friend or user and hopefully get out of this place before you were hunted". Keith said.
With a quick movement, Keith joins in, completely into the water. "Oh wow this is nice, this is good," Keith said, joyful for the first time or at least to Shiro that is.
"Well kinda I just don't like talking about my past," said Keith
"Not like talking about your past," Shiro thought as he wondering that he has something to do with Allura again. He shouldn't be focusing on that, he should be focusing on the now.
"Hey, Keith," Shiro said, with a smile.
"Just come here"
"Is this better"
"Okay I'm getting closer"
But soon as he got closer, Shiro splashes him with the water, "Hey, okay it's on" Keith said as he starts splashing water and soon they begin having fun and laughing.
After a quick fun time in the water, the next batch of heaven arrives with the Kitsune serve grill fish and White rice combined with sweet and sour chicken with a cup of lime tea. At their great Hall where the Kitsune sit inroads of long tables, small but hold a lot of great food of biscuits and grill fish.
To Keith and Shiro's stomach, it felt like a spoiled kid's feast. During every single bite, when the sweetness hits the tongue right, it makes you give up on any pretense of restraint to gobbles the food down.
Everything seemed so different in comparison, and the mess hall he sits in surrounds by the Kitsune, rather than the boisterous din of spirited conversations. There were no officers ribbing one another, no cadets bragging to one another about their latest records. It made him so homesick, he misses his friends, he missed the cadets that are inspired by him so much, and he misses Adam, Matt, and Sam.
He misses him so much, so much and so lost in thought that he didn't notice that Keith nudge him on the shoulders "hey, what did with the sad look on your face".
"Worry about it, as soon as we get done eating and getting the information we are leaving," Keith said.
Shiro pauses as he draws a sip from his half-finished tea. "What, you still want to leave."
"Yeah because why me when they start looking at me they're going to notice my eyes," Keith told him
"Oh come on Keith, I don't think that no one's going to care about your eyes," Shiro said
"Well they should I meant why do you still trust me if I am a dark daemon," Keith said.
"No. No, it wasn't, why do you enjoy twisting words," Keith said.
Certainly, before he can answer the rest, a figure appears, it was tall but hardly Kitsune or monstrous, Keith frowned inwardly as got out his dagger.
The figure looked very much like an old man with long hair and glasses. He was clad in a shabby cloak and loose robes hung with a few small straps, packs, and unrecognizable instruments. Shiro searched the human's wake but detected no evidence of a Kitsune, nor did the man appear threatened Shiro thought, he looked kind pleased even.
The man was impossible to tell the odd arrival's overlapping attire ended and his skin began, that aged visage blended into the dirt-stroked clothes and his beard appeared but an extension of the loose threads covering his upper chest.
Hints of extreme climates other than the forest, of ultimate cold and humidity, were etching into that seamed face, a questing beak of wrinkles and scars, the eyes bordering it were a liquid light Brown, the man smiled through sand dust and beard, squinting at the sight of the crumpled form lying quietly alongside the tables of Shiro and Keith facing them.
Convinced that to Keith had been some kind of enemy-completely ignored unnecessary caution to the wind, the fact remains that he had experimented it also and unlikely assured that this stranger meant to him is going to bring Shiro, Shiro shifted his position slightly, trying to obtain a better view.
The sound produced by a tiny pebble he dislodged was barely perceptible to his ears and sight but the man whirled as if shot. He stared straight as Shiro's alcove, still smiling gently.
"Hello there" he called in a deep but surprisingly cheerful voice as he removed his hood, finally showing the familiar face, "Sam," Shiro said, completely in shock but none the less, felt something forthright and reassuring was in that voice, the association of a familiar person was possible to remaining isolated in this world.
Leaving his seat, Shiro made his way over to where the man stood and enjoyable hug him, "I'm glad you're here Sam, I never see you again". The man's joyful body was overrun by tears as started he hugs the man so tightly. Whispers of concern came from within the Kitsune.
After a quick hug back, the old man let go of Shiro before explaining himself, "I think you got me confused with someone else" upon hearing that shortly, the unconscious Shiro has suddenly gone back to reality.
"You're not," Shiro told the man, looking at his appearance now again, his hair was long and shaped in a ponytail, and let's not forget his beard, it was a different counter from the Sam he knew.
As if to confirm this opinion, Shiro blinked, stared upward when he transforms into the same Kitsune that they encountered when they first arrived in the village, Shiro blinked, stared upward uncomprehendingly, and muttered "you're the leader I thought that you were a friend of mine".
"That's okay, son" Samson instructed him as he sat back on his shoulders. "We Kitsune can change into humans". Explaining before transforming back into a human.
"Why did you transform into a human" a sudden remembrance made him look around face. "Well after everything does happen, I thought to make you feel comfortable". A sudden remembrance made look around embarrassing as the Kitsune was looking at them, slowly he got back to his seat.
Samson takes a seat across from him, leaning back. "Good. Now that we're all friends here, I imagine you have quite a story to share. I would like to hear it, Shiro."
"My story?" Shiro said.
"Yes. How you came to be here so far away from your home, and no less holding a very surprising object." He said, holding up the quintessence Crystal.
He continues into his tales, started with that particular moment. Next, his first memory of mistress Centipeede, and when he first woke up Keith from his spell on the tree.
"Wait a minute," Samson said "saying you found this Daemon on a tree".
Shiro shakes his head "yeah I did, but I wasn't alone at that time, I met some friends Romelle, Stats, and Keith". He points over him who bridging out his dagger to an attack mode.
"Although Keith has been an attitude problem and can be can very untrustworthy at first, when you get to know him better, he can turn out to be a great friend"
Hearing every word that comes out from Shiro's voice was an amazement to Keith's eyes widen. he hasn't been called a friend in a very long time since he has been trapped in the tree.
Shiro goes on to give a cursory overview "and now I'm here looking for the samurai, I was hoping you could show me where they are".
An introspective frown did remarkable things to that sandblasted face. Samson appeared to ponder the man question, scratching absently at his scruffy beard.
"The samurai I haven't heard that name in a very long time" he answered
"Did you know them?" Shiro said.
"Well we Kitsune own the samurai our lives, a long time ago, a samurai saved our group from attack from wild animals and we promise if a samurai comes here, we would promise them shelter, but when I where I first heard the rumor of a reincarnated priestess, I could not believe it.".
Shiro hesitates. "I see."
Keith blinks, taken aback. "If that was the case, then why were you so adverse from the start?"
"Sorry about that, we've been getting attacked by the galra, many of our people have been lost including Shippo's father, Those three go around killing who stand in their way," Samson said
"Those three?" Shiro Wondered
"The Thunder siblings," he said
"The Thunder siblings who?" Keith asks Samson.
"Hiten, Manten, and Sōten? They are unruly, terrifying Galra, they happened targeting these lands ever since what happened to our previous group of Ninja". Samson explain
"I'm sorry about that" Shiro said.
With a smiley tune, Samson says, "don't blame yourself. They have been here for a very long time and if we have the samurai but last I do not know what happened to them"
"So what you're saying is we came all this way for nothing," Keith said, furiously
"Well no, the last time I heard about it they have been hidden them, they can only come when..." Samson said.
"Samson," said a Kitsune.
Running off from the Great Hall, Samson and the others start going outside. While Shiro and Keith stay behind.
A dark storm cloud appeared in the sky, to the Kitsune it rather is something dangerous, it turns out it was as a certain figure arrived.
"Hello," Manten said as he was examining his reflection in a mirror "so who wants to play," he said, showing off his lightning power.
The Kitsune looked on in horror, they have seen his terrifying power, more times as they can count, it's so powerful in back none of their ninja were able to stand against it.
"No one, I wonder if it has something to do with my hair", he wonders as he looks at his hair strands "If only I had a little more hair. I'd be popular like Brother Hiten.?"
"All right" Looking at down at the people, almost forgetting about his mission. "So who wants to become the next 'visitor' to visit our base".
"Y-You...! Hah! Don't make me laugh. You know the rules, for those who don't follow the rules, get skin" he said this, slaps the pelt will look like a fox.
"Very well, we will send you one group" he said, defeated.
"Very good, only one of you are willing to apply" with that out of the way, Manten left the village in peace for now anyway. Upon hearing that request, the Kitsune ware weary by quite the panic.
"This is the fifth time they asked us to do this" one of the kitsune
"My sons never return from us," said A middle-aged woman kitsune
"My daughter is next," said a middle-aged man kitsune
"What are we going to do," another kitsune said.
Shiro had a bad feeling about this. He and Keith had seen the scene through the mess hall, looking at Manten sent shivers down the spine as they felt like their troubles were beginning again.
Unlike Twyla who was already proven to be a dangerous enemy in the past. Manten had already proven to be an enemy of the state. Who knows what his siblings are like, those who witness them never returned. The Kitsune were proof of that, no wonder they didn't trust Shiro or Keith in the first place, they witness loss at the hands of them. So what to do. What to do when.
"Hey, Keith" Shiro whispers to the next side of the room, where Keith sleep, but no response, because of course there isn't, Keith is laying on the floor. Restless, he pulls himself out of bed and out of the room.
The mess hall is dark, idle, as silent as a mountain top, going outside he plops onto the dirt-stroked steps.
"Can't sleep?" A certain figure says, in his human form.
"Samson, yeah" He slumps back, settling down next to Samson, "I can't stop from thinking what happened in the day"
"Don't be, we made our choice to live like this, in war, we have to make hard choices" he said.
Shiro scoffs that, "yeah I don't remind me". Rethinking about his situation back to Alderaan, when he was dealing with the possess Queen Astrid, he had a choice to finish her off but didn't, looking back to it, it was the right call but there comes a point where he has to take a life again. When he finished off Twyla with the help of Keith and Romelle.
"You don't know what I'm thinking, and besides you kind of remind me that person that I was talking about from the moment we met," Answered Shiro.
"Is this person, like very special to you?" said Samson
"Yes very much, he was like a father to me and it's hard I might never see him again," Shiro said
"So how do we defeat them!" Keith said, appearing on the porch".
"What was that?" Keith asked.
"You are a half-daemon, right?" Shippo asked. "I can smell the human in you."
"...Excuse me?" Keith asked, his voice dangerously low.
"Oh, no..." Shiro muttered.
"My father was a real daemon!" Shippo boasted. "If he couldn't defeat the Thunder Brothers, what can a stupid half-breed like you-"
"Shippo, that's enough!" Samson shouted, causing Keith and Shiro to look at him. "You have no right to say that about them!"
"Keith," Shiro said.
"Fine," he said. "I'm sorry."
"There," Keith said. "Was that so hard?"
"Keith, stop playing around!" Shiro said.
"Try telling that to him, I can't get it off!" Keith said as he was struggling to take his hand from under the jizo statue.
"Forgive me, Samson, I don't like better than you do, but I need you and your friend to sleep for a while!"
With that said, Shippo leaps up and hits the back of Shiro and Samson's necks in hopes of putting them to sleep, however, he was able to get Samson to sleep, seeing him transform back into his Kitsune. But Shiro was unexpectedly by it.
"Okay that was unexpected but think fast "he conjures a foxfire that pushes Shiro away before departure "I finally stop the Thunder siblings"
"Hey come back" Shiro shouted as he was going to his room to get his sword and chases Shippo.
"Shiro! Can you Peel off the charm first? Keith called after him. "Come back! Take the sutra off the statue, then chase that little runt! Shiro!"
It was too late, for he was already gone.
"...I hate my life..." Keith grumbled.
"Oh, what have we here?" he asked. "You are the son of the fox that my brother and I had slain!"
"Your father's fur is sooo warm!" Manten said as slaps the pelt.
"Why you...! How dare you do that to my father... Why...! WHY!!" Manten hits Shippo, which sends him flying off.
Shippo looked back, only to gasp and ducked down as a sword flew through the air, hitting Manten right through the nose!
"Don't move! Or else I'll cut your neck" Shiro warned.
"Hey, I heard about you, you're the one who attacked the swamp base over on Balto, the samurai" cried Manten as he glared at the cut stuck on his snout before he snarled and glared at Shiro.
"Okay, that's enough talking" Shiro shouted as he releases his sword at Manten's head.
As Manten pulled the reeds away, he found Shiro lying in the grass...but no Shippo insight.
"There you are you're still alive," Manten said, examines Shiro's face and instantly blushes, "you are so... pretty! you probably make all the girls straight up dead with your hair and body"
"Let go of me," Shiro said, attempting to let go of Manten.
He attempted to run after them, but then he stopped right in his tracks. "Shiro! You willing to help me, yet I abandoned you and ran away! Shippo said as he clenched his fist.
He then gasped quietly in realization.
"That's it!" he exclaimed before he turned and ran off.
"Hey you're finally awake, can you peel off the charm!"
"Ok!" With that Samson trying to peel off the charm off the jizo statue. "Ohh... It's not working! Keith, I can't peel this charm off, I'm sorry".
"Well no duh, I mean you willing to give up your people to them". Keith said. "Just like the others, just like the others that I have seen who enjoy hunting down other half-breeds like me"
"I'm sorry that happened to you but we are not like them," Samson said.
"Listen to me," Shippo said, still trying to act proud. "I'll take the statue off...but only if you promise not to hit me! Got it?"
"Wait a minute," Keith said. "Where's Kagome? Why didn't she come back with you?"
"I already told you, Shiro got taken off by Manten!" Shippo cried as he held the bump on his head. "And You promised You wouldn't hit me!"
"Then we go and hurry" Said Keith as he was going back to the mess hall.
"I had to do something, our people have been suffering at the hands of the Galra for too long," said Shippo
Samson and Shippo lookup and finds Keith carrying Shiro's backpack over his shoulder.
"Now that you're both done talking, I need one of you to take me there!"
"Yes, you were right you know, I have given up on my people, they have been suffering for far too long," said Samson
"Thank you," Shippo said, hugging Samson "need for the hugs but you're still getting punished after all this is over"
Whatever it was, it sure smelled putrid.
"Red spice," Sōten said in confusion.
"No, forbidden" corrected Manten, Still reading at a face clip, "it's an annual forbidden spice that came from Aolalx"
Misunderstanding, Sōten lifted to one of the shelves to get the spice that he wanted.
"Found it" Grumbled Sōten.
Manten sighed, rubbed his eyes, and said, "The flesh and blood of pretty, young women or men promote healthy hair, this man appears this-, this-"
Manten searched for a word until Sōten helpfully guessed, "this guy you have tied up" pointing over Shiro who was tied up and mouth covered, on a table which behind him was a giant cleaver lies next to him.
"That's right, as soon I'm going to boil him down into a potion and apply to my head"
"Wh-what? I'd rather be eaten than put on your head!!" Shiro thought as he clenches his fist.
"Well I heard that they been working on something, very powerful, something that could turn the tide of the war" Manten added
"Well, that would have been swelling, as long as we keep the foxs in line, our hold on them will be excremental to the war?" Sōten said
"Yes, don't you think so," Manten said.
Yes, he could not believe it, being all tied up he is, Shiro felt so much rage in him. Being forced to be taken onto experiments, that's something he has experienced before in the short while at least, he got himself a monster arm and now he's a trap into another situation that he might be killed.
"Yes, Lord Hiten," the woman smirked.
Upon looking at him, Hiten walks to Manten, leaving the vixen at the doorway.
Manten rubs his head and bows "Sorry, Brother! I...I found something interesting on patrol, but...
"But what? Don't tell me that you were more interested in fixing your hair" Hiten said that, clenches his fist and swings it backward, "failed to make sure no enemies make toward our stronghold"
Light emits from Hiten's palm in the vixen's direction. Loud noises and sparks fly. The vixen, now charred, plops on the ground backward.
"Brother! Sorry!" He said
"You're so hopeless! If you weren't my kid brother, you wouldn't have enough lives to survive!" Hiten said
"Who is he?! He's so frightening!" Shiro thought
A short while later, Samson changed into his human form while Keith carries Shiro's backpack over his shoulder, running onto a rock surface, then across a few pinnacles.
"We're getting close" Samson grinned. "We're this close to saving the people and your friend"
"Yep," said Keith, looking around. He and Samson were the only guys going into the base which was probably a good thing because the last time they need is another person getting taken.
"Because of your friend, I once told him what we're doing and it probably made him think we're cowards," Samson said
"Well, I don't think in you're all cowards I meant, Shippo was willing to stand up to them, even Shiro". Keith said.
"Well, I suppose you're right," Samson said, he studied his thoughts on the matter, "we're almost there, over those edges, the base is nearby"
Back at the base, an alarm set off on schedule.
"What are we going to do, Hiten" Manten nodded.
"What do you think!? We're going to deal with this mess ourselves, let's go" asked Hiten as he turned to walk away.
But just he starts crawling away, "Wait!" Manten shouted as he picks up the giant cleaver and swings it at.
But Shiro dodges "What're you doing?!" Shiro yells.
"What I'm I doing?! I'm gonna kill you so you can't escape! What else? I need you to make my hair potion!" asked Manten.
"Wait! If you kill me, you won't..." Shiro said, being completely thought.
"Won't what?" Sōten demanded.
"Well..." Shiro pauses "Won't be able to stop the armies of the samurai"
"...Go on," he said.
"Yes, in fact, he's strong! He defeated daemons from high and low and has most of Galra base and he's my apprentice" Shiro began.
"Yeah, she's right. You'd better not be lying!" Hiten said, sits down next to Shiro.
"Well, Keith had a lot of potential as a leader and in fact, we're both samurai," Shiro said as he looks at Hiten sideways, in a conspiring but kind tone.
"W-why would I lie?" Shiro asked. "If you ask for an exchange, I'm sure he'll gladly exchange the quintessence Crystal for me!"
"Hiten, he's gotta be lying!" Manten said.
"I think I'll believe him". Said Sōten
"You man! Take us to this Keith" Hiten said as picks up Shiro by his collar.
"However... If you've been lying, your pretty face will end up black and charred." Explaining himself as holds up Shiro's face, forcing him to see the vixen.
'Repair the troops for battle" Hiten order.
With that out of the way, Shiro hopes that his bib was enough, meaning by telling the siblings to believes they have an army, a big one, that's crazy but then again it's will have to do. Meanwhile back at the outside, Samson and Keith have arrived at the base.
"Oh he is fine! he's got a tenacious streak in him". Keith asked
"Well, that kind of what worries me," Samson said.
Keith kneels on the ground and shields Samson and himself with his hand as the bolt hits the ground they were on before.
The ground shatters into pieces. Keith let go of Samson. They look up into the dark clouds.
"Humph, so you thwarted me! For someone yapping out loud in front of someone's front yard, you move fast. You must be the one...Keith the half-daemon". Hiten said. On top of the base with soldiers behind him.
"Keith, that's the older Thunder Brother, Hiten". Samson said.
"Relax, we haven't anything to him yet. Manten!"
Under his orders, Manten floats next to him on a cloud, holds up Shiro "Tadah!"
"Shiro!" Keith exclaimed as he stands up suddenly and yells his name. "he's still alive!"
"My...my master?" he repeated before he glanced at Shiro, who grinned sheepishly.
"Uh...okay," Keith replied. "I think there's been some big misunderstanding here. Shiro's not my master!"
"Um...maybe...?" he asked.
"What, You intend to abandon me?!" Shiro questioned.
"Abandon?! You make it sound like you and I are a weird item or ship!" Shiro questioned.
Which is more important?! Me or the quintessence Crystal?!" Shiro points out If you dare choose the Crystal, I'll rip your guts out!"
"Whatever! One thing seems true... You have the Crystal. I'm gonna kill you and take it" Hiten said, flies towards Keith.
SLASH! With a powerful swing, Keith managed to throw Hiten back into the air!
"Hah! Of all the fools who said the same thing, none are alive today!" Keith said.
"Should we attacked," a soldier Wondered.
"My brother has got it on his own," Manten said.
"Yes he does" Sōten looking at her screen, but one by one the screen suddenly shows static, "what the", trying to figure out the problem Sōten gets up from her chair to confront whatever problems within the base.
"Excellent" Shippo said, right after Samson had left with Keith, he had riled up the villagers and they plan an attack.
"The only thing that's left is to rescue Shiro," Shippo said.
"Eeheeheehee!" laughed Manten as he clapped his hands. "What joy, Hiten! Allow me to assist you, brother!" He then opened his mouth, preparing to shoot out a lightning blast.
"Hey!" Shiro shouted. "That's not fair, ganging up on him!" he then pushed Manten over, causing his lightning blast to hit the ground...and not long after, he fell over, making a small crater in the earth!
"Oh, no, you don't!" Hiten shouted as he attempted to hit Keith with his Thunder Pike, but he blocked it with his dagger. "Don't you dare turn your back on me!"
"Darn it!" Keith cursed. "Shiro! Just hang on, okay?! I'll be right there!"
"Hang on to what?!" Shiro questioned as he fell, only to bounce off of something and land on the ground on his rump. "Ow! Ugh...well...at least I landed on something soft...for a moment, anyway."
"Shiro" Keith shouted as pauses at the sight.
"You can't afford to worry about him now!" Hitan said as he attacks Keith who blocks his attacks.
"Shiro! Hang on until I get there!" He said to himself
But surrounded by soldiers isn't a good idea as they started to fire their guns since luckily, remembering his training back on Arus. Shiro twirled his sword to defend himself from the Galra troops' laser shots in a shower of sparks as he attacks the soldiers at high speed with impressive speed and agility with the sword.
So much in fact, that he doesn't need Keith to protect him. He can handle himself just fine. Jumping off the base Shiro landed on Manten in the hole and bounces off.
"He's alive!" Shiro trips and falls resulting in him approaching him, stomping.
"Fox magic! Spinning top!" Samson said as he releases the top, which lands and spins on Manten's head. It gets bigger and steam comes out as it digs into his head. Manten collapses on the ground.
"Samson!" Shiro said, climbing out, "you know such great magic!"
"Well..." Samson closes his eyes as sweat appears on his face. "You can't let your guard down yet, Fox magic is trickery but useful for fighting"
"Trickery? Then what's that?" Shiro turns to look at Manten in the hole with the top still spinning on his head.
"Owweee!!" he cried. "W...what is this?! Get it off!"
The top becomes smaller till its original size and falls off Manten's head. He picks up the top and gets up. "Damn! That foxs"
Suddenly, where the top spun was the spot was at Manten's last remaining strand of hair is. The strand quivers a little and falls off.
"Huh?!" Standing up.
"N-no!", rubs his head where the hair was "Gone! It's gone! My hair!"
Saddened by the loss, a ball of bolt starts gathering in his mouth as he looks to the sky "How dare you take my last strand of hair?!"
Shiro hides behind a mound with Samson "It's as though we added fuel to the fire..."
"Where are you?! My hair potion candidate...and that old fox...!" Manten, stops near the mound where Shiro and Samson hides.
Where'd they go?!, Manten walks off
"What'll we do? If we're found, we'll be killed". That's when he spotted the sword cut that was still lodged in Manten's snout.
"Shut up, you skinhead!" Shiro said as he opens his eyes.
"Look, hair that you love!" As two bundles of Shiro's hair floats out and twirls around Manten's wrists as Another Shiro runs toward Manten.
I'm here to finish you!"
The Shiro who just appeared with his sword above Manten's nose. The hair of the Shiro that Manten is holding turns white. "Why, you're...a fox!"
"I'm gonna avenge my people suffering!" shouted Samson
"Samson, hold him down!" Shiro shouted as she thrust the sword toward his neck.
"If I can cut his neck...", he thought resolutely. "I can beat him!"
However, as he raises the sword, Manten blocks Shiro's attack which sends him to the ground and throws him down, grabbing the former by the throat while he pinned the latter under his foot.
"Keith...!" Shiro gagged, weakly "L...let me go!"
"Shiro" Keith shouted as he turned in his direction, only to cry out in pain as he felt the blade of Hiten's Thunder Pike stab into his left shoulder!
"What the heck! Are you looking away for"
Hitan drags his pike downwards forcefully, sending him to the ground, resulting in the dagger to falls out of Keith's hand. Sticking into the ground a distance away from him. Keith, wincing in pain, tries to get up but is stopped short by Hitan who points his pike in his face.
"Hah! You're not what they said about you. I expected more of a fight! Weakling! How about I kill you slowly, one limb at a time?" Hitan said
"Shame of all these distractions, I have to take care of Shiro first." Keith thought, thinking about his injury
"Look, Manten...at this half-demon! He's given up!" Hitan told Manten.
"Ha, haha! Mortifying isn't it you Kitsune shit, just you want, after I kill this boy you'll be next" He patted the fox pelt around his waist. "I'll fleece you. Just like I did your old friend".
It was Shippo and several villagers from the valley.
"Shippo" Shiro choked out. "Runaway...while you can...!"
"You fools! Manten shouted as he grabs everybody's head, trying to pull out.
"Damn! I may not be the nicest guy around but you two are making me sick!" Keith stands and digs his fingers into his shoulder wound, "Daemon blood art, blades!!!"
Luckily Titan has taken aback but blocks the Blades of Blood with his pike handle.
"Fool! Where are you aiming?"
"Are you sure about that?" Keith said as he runs and grabs his dagger, which he throws at Hiten, who dodges but the dagger gets thrown to Shiro, with Keith's dagger in hand, Shiro sliced the daemon's neck?
"Father..." Shippo said, holding onto the pelp
"Yes...I must get Shippo's father's body." Shiro said to himself.
While he was getting it, Hitan zooms towards Shiro who is holding Keith's dagger, Shippo's father's body, and his sword.
"Shiro! Hurry and get away from there!" Keith yells anxiously
"Hey, are you alive?" he asked.
"I guess so" Keith said
On that, Using his long nails, he digs through to the remains of Manten, getting through the heart, removing it.
"No. Hiten is synthesizing his brother's magic into his own body. Shiro, Keith you must be very careful. He now has the power of tenfold now" Samson said.
A huge light appears behind them. Keith picks up Shiro, Samson, and the pelt of Shippo's father and leaps out of the way. It was Hitan's mega-bolt attack at them, which created a hole in the ground they were on.
"You...dared...to kill my dear kid brother. I won't let you get away with it!" He said
"Lord Samson, are you all right," Shippo said coming up to the crater.
"Don't worry, the Ninja are protecting them, all the people that were taken" Shippo Answered
"Wow, I guess I was wrong about you guys, I think that I owe you an apology," Keith said
"That's okay, we thought you were a half-wit," said Shippo
"Shippo," Samson said.
"Keith, no" Shiro started.
"Hurry! And besides these people need someone to protect them!" Keith said
"Okay!" Shiro said, taking Samson with him.
"I'll avenge my kid brother! Prepare yourself!" He said as he swings his pike which sends a huge orb of a lightning bolt at Keith who staring at the incoming orb "It's too powerful! I can't repel it!"
Keith leaps through the orb using his defense. He prepares to attack Hitan but he suddenly cringes and yells in pain. Hitan had attacked him in the spine from the back.
Shiro gasped in horror before she looked to where he had accidentally dropped Keith's Dagger!
"You're right!" he cried. "He doesn't have his weapon!"
"Don't be, Manten is destroyed, Sōten is who knows where, and Shiro and Keith help us. But now, his brother Hiten..." Shippo said.
"Stay here, Keith getting tired". Shiro said.
"Hiten can hover... that's it, all I have to do hit the target," Shiro said, looking at Hiten's hover shoes. "Everyone, I need you to stay here"
"Wait, take my father's skin," Shippo said
"Are you sure, Shippo?" Shiro asks
"I'm sure, it will protect you and I already pay my debts to my father" Shippo hummed, thoughtfully before his eyes went wide.
"Ok" soon, Shiro was off, planning to attack Hiten and save Keith from his rampage.
"Oh man, I can feel the pain and it's crazy," Keith thought, as he grimaces in pain as Hitan plan the final attack.
"Die, you excuse of a warrior" Hitan Shouted
However, his left wheel is suddenly broken by Shiro's sword.
"I got him!" Shiro shouted.
Hitan pauses in midair as he gets suddenly punch by Shiro. Who gathered all his strength to finish up that move.
"He did it, now I can't finish him off," Keith said.
"Are you stupid?!" Hitan said bolts from the pike surge at Shiro but Keith use his own sheathe to Dodge the attack
"Shiro, finish him off," Keith said
"There is no way you two are going to finish me off that easily," Hitan said as he shoots a burst of a bolt from his mouth at Shiro and Keith. A loud explosion is heard among the Kitsune and the air is filled with smoke with Shippo's father's body is tossed into the air.
"He can use Manten's power as well...!" Samson. "Both of you get out of there now"
But it was too late, Shiro and Keith are already consumed by it with Shiro lay unconscious amidst flames, with Keith as the witness and the survivor.
"Shiro, Shiro" Keith called as he looked to the flames.
"Serves you right! It Looks like he is dead, the one they called the samurai". said Hiten with a malicious smirk.
"Why you...!" Keith said, stands up and pushes back him "Unforgivable!" yells and punches Hitan.
"Why you...! You're just a half-demon! Yet he's fighting like a real demon!" Hiten growled.
"I refuse to die until I kill you!" Keith growled.
"Has the blood going to your head since the samurai has been killed? Stop acting so stupid over some silly man! I'll teach you the pain and sorrow of one who has lost his only dear, little brother!" Hitan said as he runs and attacks with his pike, who blocks with his sheathe but a crack is Forming
"It's going to break!" Samson said as more cracking sounds.
"I've won!" he yelled.
Keith struggles to hold back Hitan. Suddenly a throbbing sound is heard and his dagger flies towards them.
"The sheathe has summoned the weapon!" Samson exclaimed.
Keith throws the sheathe away and raises the dagger and swing it downwards at Hiten violently. Hiten holds up his pike to block, but he and his pike are slashed into two by Keith, leaving him stares at Keith in shock, and falls on his knees.
"I've lost...! To a half-demon... Lost" Hitan thought as his body disintegrates.
"Damn... If only I had defeated Hiten earlier..." Keith replied
"You did, you saved us" exclaimed Samson as he walked over.
"Keith..." A Mysterious voice said.
"Shiro..." Keith said as see Shiro became engulfed in the blue light and look at Keith with serene and contented expressions.
"Keith... Thanks for everything and I know that you were going to be okay."
"Ohh... Those are the soul of Shiro is bid a final farewell." Samson said
"What?!" Keith gasped in shock as the glow suddenly blows upwards
"Wait! Don't go!" Keith shouted as he runs towards to grabs Shiro's hand
Shiro is shocked by Keith's gesture as the blue light zooms upwards and twirls into the shape of a fox, stares at the disappearing light, "Shiro! Huh?!"
Keith is still holding onto Shiro's hand, Shiro is normal again.
"Huh?! You're alive?"
The blue glow finally disappears into thin air.
"Looks like father is going into the Afterlife," Shippo said
"Yes he is," Shiro said
Shiro notices Keith's hand on his, blushing "Umm..."
Keith scoffs and throws off Shiro's hand, embarrassed, "why'd you get so sappy on me?! If you're gonna die, die! If you're not, don't die! Just be clear!"
"Ok, where's Sōten? You guys have her, right?"
"No, she disappears right at the moment since her brothers died"
"Shiro, Keith our people are save that's all that matter"
Afterward, in a dark building, two soldiers were delivering Sōten to her fate. To the way a man, dress in a maroon armor accented with dark gray over a black space suit "Sir, I can explain"
"I don't want excuses! I want the samurai" Zarkon commanded
I found one, Lord Zarkon! I did! Hiding among the location that we were guarding.
"Get to the point!" He yells at her
It got away... Wait. Lord Zarkon, forgive me, please. I will not fail you again.
"No one fails me twice, take her away.
"No, no, no, no, no"
"Bring me, Haggar"
In the daytime, The village was finally back to his normal state. The people were finally free and reunited with their loved ones, however, it wasn't a happy time for a certain person.
"Keith...What's the matter? Why are you so angry?"
"I think he's embarrassed that he misunderstood something in the heat of passion. That boy is still very naïve". Samson said
"Is that it?" said Keith
"Well now everything is said and done I have something important to tell you, Shiro and Keith, you both have a difficult task ahead of you, as you all know our planet at war and the only way to stop this war is to defeat Zarkon" Samson Explain
"Okay, so how do we do that" Shiro asks
"You must train in your magic"
"Don't worry we will but before we go" Keith said
"Yes, anything that you need"
"Can I hit Shippo?" Keith said
"You want to hit him oh come on Keith, he saved us"
"Yes, yes! I'm a very good kid"
You only act as a good kid when it's convenient. Shippo?! Keith said, pronouncing him in a deliberate manner
"Shiro, Samson he's being mean!"
"Keith, we need to talk about this"
"Still so young...! Still young indeed"
Young or not, Shiro and Keith have made new friends on their journey continues.