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Thread: Revenant-Chapter series-Chapter 1

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    Revenant-Chapter series-Chapter 1

    Chapter 1

    The spring has just started and the cherry blossoms had just started to bloom. A young child not older than 10, with his long black hair hazel eyes and innocents of any kid his age, is seen under the cherry blossom tree playing with the falling pink flowers.
    “Jin come in for dinner.” He hears the soothing call of his mothers voice and rushes to the house. There his mother preparing stew in the massive metal Cauldron, then a large man in silk attire with two katanas strapped to his belt, sitting there at the table in what appears to be complete Zen. His father gestures him over to sit besides him. Jin looks into his father’s eyes and sees sadness. He then lays a hand on Jin’s shoulder and says.
    “ Jin I have to leave for awhile. You will have to be the man of the house while I am gone.” Jin starts to tear up and embraces his father with a hug. The physically imposing man stands, is handed a bowl of the stew and then perches on his horse and rides off to the city. Both Jin and his mother wait outside until the horse, and his father both disappeared into the horizon. “ Come Jin the soup is getting cold.” The both return into the house finish the dinner and head off to bed.
    The morning arrives and unfortunately, and he is not awakened by the chirping of the birds but the increasingly violent stomping of a horses hooves. Then the door crashes open and his father falls through, holding multiple arrow wounds and a large slash across his back. His mom runs to his aid, bringing him to the less than comfortable hay mattress they all sleep on. Jin runs to his father and kneels to his side.
    “Jin, it looks like you will have to be the man of the house for a little longer.” He sits up and whispers with his dieing breath “Protect yourself and protect your mother, and if you see the demon waving the red flag. Run, hide do anything to save your own life.” The glisten of a warriors fire in his eyes flickers then disappears and Jin sitting there, with the father who just died in his arms.
    His hearing defend from the sobbing brought on by his fathers death. His mom calls out to him breaking through his sound barrier and brings him outside. Now he can hear it the trampling of multiple horses roaring up the road to his house. And as soon as the waving shadow he saw in the distance came into sight his stomach dropped and eyes filled with horror. The flag his father had warned him about and who could have possibly been responsible for his death is heading right towards his house. He grabs his father’s swords. His arms felt weak, as if they would just fall off from the weight of the sword. Finally the horses arrive at the house, it was odd because the horses were so strong their gallops sounded as if a thousand men were riding in but to come to a surprise it was only five. The other four covered the last man but when he rode up to the front of the pack Jin had thoughts of ending his own life right there. It was a large man with the red flag mounted on his back with a devils mask protecting his face. It was then the other men unmounted their horses and proceeded into the house followed by the masked man. He peeked through the window, and it seemed as if his mother was going to be executed. With the promise he made to his father Jin wasn’t going to let that happen. He takes the swords of his father and ran in the house screaming for blood, but before he could make the first swing on the man he grabs the swords at the base and with one clench of his hands broke the sword. Jin then draws the other sword but is met with the same consequences. One of the men contains Jin and forces him to watch the execution of his own mother. The man squats down and says.
    “Let this face and the death of your mother be the last thing burned into your eyes.” He then takes the hot swords he laid on the fire when he first entered and then seared Jins eyes shut with the hot metal. “Let the swords who try to cut us down be the death to the ones it tried to protect.” The masked man said as he stabbed both swords into the wrists and up the arms of the child. The pain was so immense Jin passed out. He was coming to, just enough to hear the faint whispers of each of the five men. One was a whiny voice; the others seemed to be displeased with this one all the time. Another was calm and collective, unmoved by the slaughter of his family, and his own torture. The third man seemed to clinically insane, speaking as fast as his lips could spurt out the words and always talking about killing. The fourth was a massive bellowing voice. As if the man stood as tall as the cherry blossom trees he was playing under. Then there was the last man. Not as deep as the last, and not as insane as the one before, but you could hear the command in his voice. This man was the leader and he was responsible for what had just occurred. Jin passes out once again for what he thought was going to be the final time.
    Jin comes to not knowing how long he was out. The inability to open his eyes reminds him of that horrific day. He tries to feel the scarred tissue over his eye but is unable and is met with searing pain.
    “Hey, hey calm down.” With the sound of an unfamiliar voice Jin jumps out of the bed not caring about his pain.
    “Who, Who are you!” Jin continues to knock things over with his new blindness.
    “I’m Alice and me and my father found you lying outside our village. You were in awful shape, it looked like someone tortured you and left you for dead.” This was all so much to take in. His fingers ran across the newfound scars over his body. Then the sharp pain as if he was being stabbed shot through his arms.
    “What, What happened to my arms?" He said shaking. He could hear the drop in her voice.
    “You see the swords that were embedded in your arms were blocking all the veins so if we were to take them out you would of died from blood loss.” Even though his eyes couldn't express emotion the fear displayed on his face was enough to even scare Alice. Trying to reassure Jin she sits next to him and rubs his arm next to the blade.
    “Well when you get big and strong you will be able to bend your arms again.” The kindness in her words slightly brought up the sinking heart that was in his chest. Crashing of the doors breaks up the touching moment of the two. The next thing to follow is a cart full of supplies and small meek man.
    “Oh has our visitor finally awoken.” At this moment Jin is backed up in the corner scared out of his mind.
    “Oh sonny there’s no need to be scared. You have been out for a week. If we didn’t find you when we did you would of been dead meat.” So many things happened so fast. His father and mother murdered. Being brought into a foreign house.
    “ I appreciate the hospitality you two have shown me but I do not want to be a burden.” The old man grabs his shoulders and presses him down on the bed. “ Now you see here I’m not going to be responsible for your death by letting you go. Get comfortable around here, cause you will be with us for a while. The uneasy feeling of losing his family will always be with him, but the fact of knowing that there are people here to take care of him for the time being is reassuring.
    Over the next few months Jin focused on working to heal and grow accustomed to the handicapped forcibly place on him. He managed to get around the cottage with out tripping over anything. He then moved on to getting around the field and memorizing where each stone and blade of grass was. His arms slowly grew accustomed to the blades within his arms. Jin also grew accustomed to the two people he was staying with, Alice the young girl with the voice of an angel, then crazy little old man who he later learned his name was William. He might even be beginning to love them.
    As depressed Jin ever got, Alice always had the ability to turn his frown upside-down. The sun was disappearing from behind the field and Jin finds a flatten area where its obvious the cattle has been. Feeling the warm ground under him and the cool breeze across his face. It’s the cut off by a bandanna landing on his face across his face. It feels incredibly soft and is glad it landed on his face. He feels the dust plume up as Alice drops next to him.
    “You like that do ya?” Startled Jin flips over on his side acting as if she doesn’t exist. “You know this is my favorite bandanna? It was my mothers. She got really sick and passed away.” He could hear the teardrops hit the grounds splashing against the soil. Jin, hearing the sadness in her voice, grabs the fallen bandanna and puts it in her hand and clenches her hand for her.
    “Never let go of this. Treasure it for ever.” He then flips over once again as if what just happened never did.
    When Jin turned 16 the blades in his arms almost were completely gone into his forearm and with just a little of the tip poking out of the wrist. Now that Jin has almost every acre of the land he was living on memorized he was put to work to harvest the food and take care of the chickens, but it was this day that the happy days he was having were about to come to an end. Alice runs out into the field screaming Jins name.
    “JIN, JIN, there is a man here to see you he is in the house.” The two return to the house, and are met by a large man with long black hair and also carrying swords.
    “Jin it’s so nice to see you again.” The man hugs Jin like he hasn’t seen him in years.
    “I’m sorry but do I know you?” Jin asks questionably.
    “ Where are my manners? My name is Julius. I was second command under your father; you were only a year old when I saw you. My have you grown.” Questions fill up Jin’s head. What happened that day that were those men, why did they kill his mother, but he didn’t know where to start.
    “We best leave these two alone.” William says as he pulls Alice out the door.
    “So I want to know.” Jin says in a low voice. “What happened that day?” Julius’s excitement for seeing Jin was suddenly shot, and the face of grief overcame him.
    “The lord ordered us to defend an incoming attack. We didn’t know it was going to be led by the five generals of the apocalypse. The entire army was slaughtered, your father and I barely made it back with our lives.” Julius says with sorrow lining his voice.
    “Well my father didn’t make it out with his!” Jin shouted in frustration. “I apologize, continue.” Julius takes the lash out to heart, and continues with the story. Before Julius could continue with the story of the men who almost killed him screams were heard outside in the fields. The two move to their feet and run outside to find Alice as a hostage to a large man with a beard just as large. He was not alone along with 5 other degenerates that pray off the weak.
    “I’ll tell you one more time old man. Give us the land and what’s ever inside your house and the girl lives!” The Bandit demanded. William not wanting his daughter hurt, but also not wanting to give up what he spent his entire life obtaining, but before he could say anything Julius places a hand on his shoulder reassuring him that he will take care of this. “HA, one man is supposed to beat us?” The Bandit boasted. He then draws a knife and throws it aiming straight for Julius’s head, but in one fast motion he draws his sword, and before anyone could see anything he had the spinning on the tip of his swords. “What are you morons standing around for?” The Bandit says with a timid tone in his voice. “Get him!”
    The men hesitantly unsheathe their axes from the spectacle but it’s obvious they fear their leader more than the mysterious man. All five of the men attack at once. With what seemed to be just one slash all of the men halted. Then simultaneously as if it was planned all five fell face first into the dirt. It wasn’t until the blood of each man started spilling from under their bodies did it guarantee that they were all dead. The head bandit drops his weapon. It was a miracle he held onto it for that long because he was shaking as much as a tree in a storm. He takes off down the road but he unfortunately crossed Julius who has no tolerance for those who pray on the weak. His sword splits through the air and before gravity even has a chance to act on it Julius is up in the air, and with one kick the sword becomes a missile and pierces the bandit almost making it completely through his sternum. After retrieving his sword he comes back as if he wasn’t sole the reason why everyone is safe. The sites displayed were breathtaking for those who could see, but Jin could hear every slash of the sword, and every movement of the wind as it was spread by the blade, even as each drop of blood his the ground. It wasn’t the killing that interested him it was the control, of the blade and of himself. It also helped that he had his fathers sword embedded in his arms. With the other two still in awe Jin runs to the side of Julius. “That was amazing, do you think you can teach me that?” Julius had a small smile across his face. He bends down and looks Jin right where his eyes would be. “I failed to protect your father, but I will teach you the ways to help yourself. We leave tomorrow.”
    As Jin packs his things that night he thinks to himself that this feels like the second time he’s leaving his family, but he’s doing this for himself and the ones he loves. It’s then Alice walks in with a sad face that stretches from one end of her jaw to the other. Jin knows Alice so well that the slug in her feet leads him to believer that something is the matter.
    “What’s wrong?” Jin asks with concern. But before he could finish his question she already had him in hug that was cutting off every bit of oxygen to his brain. It felt as if a raindrop hit his shoulder but he then realized Alice was crying. “I’m going away so we will never have to worry about anything happening to us.” Jin brings Alice in for a much more gentle but reassuring hug then hers. “I can’t lose anyone else.” The way he said it brought Alice to more of a calmer state, knowing that he was coming back and he would do anything for Her and William.
    Alice wipes away the tears. “ You best be getting some sleep, you have long journey ahead of you.”
    The next morning comes rolling around and Julius and Jin are at the front door, being sent off by the Father and Daughter that he has been living with since he was a young boy. After their good-byes he quickly turns away and starts walking down the road, believing the shorter the send off the better he will feel, but by the time he reaches the gate Alice already has a hand on his shoulder. “Hold out your hand.” Jin’s hand opens up and is met with what feels to be some sort of trinket. “This is my good luck charm. Bring it back to me ok!” Jin then smiles, turns and begins walking next to Julius, his new sensei. He runs his fingers over the necklace and finds it to be a bat. How strange of her to have a necklace of a bat but it is shrugged and kept closely to heart.
    After days of traveling the two finally reach a massive hill with a large drop off ledge, waves crashing into the piercing rocks below. Little to Jins knowledge this place has much sentimental value to Julius.
    “So Jin, why is it you want to learn what the ways of the sword?” Julius says with his back to Julius and facing towards the thrashing ocean.
    “To protect myself and the ones I love.” Jin says proudly knowing that it was the best and truest answer he could have given.
    “But I ask you, what if you can not protect them? What if you can not protect yourself?” Jin didn’t know how to answer. He figured Julius would teach him everything to defeat every opponent. Now he is second-guessing all this. Julius turns from the mesmerizing waves. “Jin, you have something no other samurai has. It may have been a burden, but up until now you’ve hadn’t had someone to truly unlock your potential. With out your sight you can feel the movements. Give way to the unruly sight and use every sense you have.” Jin now realizes why his father had trust in this man. Julius then grabs Jin’s arms with a forceful motion. “And you have your father always with you.” Jin could feel the cold steal everyday, reminding him of how his father died in his arms and his mother dieing before his eyes, but he never thought the torture he endured that day to be a reason to fight back against the evil in the world. “Never give into the darkness of revenge. You will never be able to climb out of that hole.”
    As the sun sets on the first day of arrival the two set up camp with nothing but the soft grass beneath their heads. The calm sleep was broken as Julius gouges the ground by Jin's eyes almost splitting the bridge of his nose with the sword. Jin feeling the brush of the wind and the moving of the earth Leaps to his feet. He runs his hands across the cold steal that could of ended his life if the wielder so chose. “I thought we would at least start with training swords.” Jin sputtered.
    “You are a long way from even grasping and picking the sword up, let alone slaying anyone. Now stand up and ready yourself.” Jin jumps into what he thought was a fighting stance, and with one quick swift blow Julius knocked him right on his back. Julius bends down in front of Jin. The breath of the imposing man was warming yet scary. “Never think of where the opponent will come from. Just feel it.” Jin pushes him self up and gets back in the same stance. Julius inspects the stance and with multiple strikes to each joint to correct the young mans fighting style. “Remember where you are. Without this knowledge you will never be able to wield a sword.” Not after one second after finishing his sentence he strikes Jin once more. He feels the pain but he was not laid flat on his ***. Instead remained composure and was ready for another strike. Julius lunges for another strike but this time was different. Jin felt the displacement of the air. He anticipated it was coming straight for his collarbone and adjusted accordingly. Julius misses and with that a smile of satisfaction scrolled across his face. He then comes with a sweep kick under his legs. “ I couldn’t be out done by my pupil on the first day.” Julius grabs his arm and lifts him up. After training the body he must train his mind, to be completely disciplined and never second-guess his action. Balance, meditation, and stamina. All to be one with mind, body, and spirit.
    As the rest their weary bodies by the campfire they prepared the night before. Julius looks to Jin with a concerning face.”You have yet to speak all day Jin. Is something the matter? Jin shifts in his seat unknowing if he wants to answer.
    “I’ve been wanting to ask you this question the day I met you.” Jin says as his voice trails off. “Who were those men who killed my father?” Julius’s expression went from happy to concerned to dreadful. He knew this day was coming and was not looking forward to the explanation of them.
    “They were the fiercest warriors of the clan. They were friends of your father and I. That was until Jax entered our ranks. He was the sun of an imperial lord who thought he could join the samurai and expect to be handed everything. I was never right with him. I could tell he had blood lust for power and was going to get it any way he could. He then used the incredible fortune he had from his parents to buy everyone in the militia off to help aid in the attack on the capitol. Except for your father and I. We were loyal till the bitter end.” Jin breaks the story with another question.
    “Julius, was my father a good soldier?” Julius liking the idea of the change of subject moves closer to Jin and starts to poke a stick in the fire, thinking the rearranging embers would some how heighten the story telling of his father.
    “He was one of the best samurai you would ever know. He knew where to put his troops and what to do with them, but I was always better with a sword” Julius joked.
    “Did you ever have a family?” Jin asked thinking the story of his family would help him knowing his has past away. The unbridled look from talking about a great man of his past quickly faded.
    “How about we head off to bed we have another long day of training tomorrow.” After the intense conversation they had that night the sleep they had was anything but peaceful.
    As the months went on Jin’s mastery of the sword was slowly becoming nothing less than extraordinary. This is a man that Julius would easily lay his life down with in the heat of battle. He truly became a man. Long ago of the little naive boy who Jin found living on the farm but true and noble swordsmen. As the two gather around the campfire once again the two talk as two would after spending an entire year together, but all jokes stopped as Julius acquired a very serious look on his face. Jin could feel the tension in the air and stopped as well.
    “ Jin I have taught you everything I know about the way of the sword. No longer can I call you my student but my equal. Now my debt to your father has almost been fully paid.” Fully paid? Jin thought to himself. What could he possibly owe his father? “ The day of the attack. I was the one who led the five into the castle gates which resulted in the destruction in the castle.”
    “What?” Jin yelled barely grasping the information presented to him. This happened all to fast. The man he just spent a year with was the reason he had to do it in the first place. He was a mixture of confused feelings. He hated him for killing his father, but he regrets hating him for all that he has taught him “Why, why did you do it?” The serious tone of the air quickly shifted to a darker sadder one.
    “ They had my family Jin. They were going to kill them if I didn’t do what they said.” Tears started to claim the strong, and wise man. Something Jin never thought he would lay witness to. “But after I did what they ask I come to find my family laid on the ground with blood filling their shallow graves.” If Jin had the ability to cry he would have. It was then Julius drew the small blade hidden away under his clothing. A small dagger usually used in the honorable sacrifice of samurai, the act of seppuku. Jin's new heighten sense of hearing could hear the crunching of the grass below Julius’s feet as he walked towards the edge of the cliff.
    “To replace the life for another I give my life for your father.” He then plunges the knife into his chest and falls to his knees. Unable to hold his lifeless corpse up any more he plummets to the cold embrace of the ocean below. Jin rushes to the edge of the cliff expecting to find him clinging to the edge, but he was not met with voice of his mentor. He lost another person to those awful five. He questions the fact if he will ever be able to recover from the suicide of his sensei. He then felt the charm left in his pocket from Alice. A slight amount of solace entered his heart knowing Alice and William are waiting for his return. He packs up the few items they brought with them and he felt the solid wood used as the sheath of a sword. The handle feels familiar. It was Julius’s, he must not of had it on him. He slides it through his sash, essentially binding to his side for all of eternity.
    As he walks up the all to familiar road it doesn’t seem like a year has gone by since he’s been here. Nothing on his body but the scars, and the blades that cause him so much pain in the beginning has become a part of him, and a mentality of a true man. Al though in a matter of seconds his face ends up down in the dirt. He tripped over untended weeds. That’s impossible, as William never let a single weed live in fear it would ruin his crop. That’s when he smelled the torched wood. He bolted up the road to where he once lived. He knew when he was there. The faint smell of the burning crops did nothing to rest his worries. He ran into the doors but it met with a roaring flame that has engulfed the door. He draws his sword and slashes the door as if the fire turned it into butter. The small distinct cough of a girl is heard across the small shack. He leaps over any burning debris to rescue this poor girl. He throws her over his shoulder like a piece of wood and sprints through the door. The feeling of the thin hair let him know who it was. It was Alice. So William must be in there too. He turns on a dime and tries to enter the house once more but was unable to. The fire had burned through the main support beam causing the small homey shack to be the coffin of the man who took him in. After the first few minuets of awe that a true friend just died. He runs to the girl he’s cared for since he was ten.
    There was nothing he could do for her. He ran his hand across the fair maiden, only to cause her pain by touching the open burn wounds she had just suffered. Then the screaming of agony began, he couldn’t take it any more. He once more drew the sword of his teachers and used it to lie to rest the only other woman to truly care for him. The only thing that broke the crackling of the wood was horse gallops. These sounded so too familiar. It was undeniable, the same trotting horses he heard that day were the same exact ones that were riding off into the sunset at that very moment. Out of pure fury and rage Jin threw his arms to his sides and that’s when something he thought could never happen. The Blades that were forcefully injected into his forearms so long ago sprung from his wrist. With one last desperate effort before the men rode away for good he used the swords from his arms to cut open the over lapping flesh of his eye. This could have worked and restored his site if he had not cut so deep to destroy the retina of his eye. He was finally able to cry. Crying for his family, for his teacher, and for both William and Alice. Once more he ran his hand along her neck and felt the bandanna he felt so long ago. He folds it into a thin band no bigger than 2 inches and ties it around his head to cover the butchered eyes of his. The men had not gotten away. With his heighten senses he could tell each one of them had a distinct smell of the blood of both William and Alice. Something died inside him that day; the idea of protecting himself and he the ones he loved was long gone. Disregarding everything the man he once called sensei. Long gone was the kid who loved everyone and everything. A new Jin was born that day, one filled with pure anger and fury for the ones who killed the ones he held dearest, and with his fathers swords he is going to exact his revenge.

  2. #2
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    Sep 2011
    Profound story of the needy-greedy of ancient times. Needs a lot of editing, not to change your meanings, but to flow a little smoother for the reader. I thought it was redeeming.

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