|The Path Between Light & Shadow
Author: Riker Rayn PM
Sayuri Akimoto is a demon on the path of redemption. Akahana is a strange child with several secrets, many that she does not even know about herself. Many of those secret may have to do with who is chasing her. Akahana seeks help from Sayuri, however she may be more dangerous to the girl, if she can't learn to control her demonic nature at night.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Fantasy - Chapters: 2 - Words: 7,094 - Reviews: 2 - Follows: 1 - Updated: 01-07-13 - Published: 11-11-12 - id: 3073465
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Name: Sayuri Akimoto Age: 19 Family: (mother), (father), (sibling) Apprentice: Akahana Fujikage Occupation: Samurai Appearance: Silverish-white hair and gold eyes that give her somewhat of a demonic look. She also carries a large sword on her back and two daggers at her waist. She also wears a bracelet on her left wrist. The bracelet was given to her by her mentor to keep her powers under control. Bio: She is a young demon who is seeking redemption. Due to a dark event that happened during her childhood, she was sent away from her home with a demon slayer who taught her the ways of the samurai. Once her training was complete, she left her master to travel the land solitarily. Along the way she meets another demon, a young girl named Akahana, who has been orphaned under mysterious circumstances.
Name: Akahana Fujikage Age: 10 Family: Hajime Fujikage (father), Kanako Fujikage (deceased mother) Mentor: Sayuri Akimoto Occupation: None Appearance: Shoulder length black hair and blue eyes. She is also a demon but looks human since she has yet to grow into her demonic appearance. Bio: Akahana is a very young demon that has been orphaned; her mother having died seven years previously and her father's sudden disappearance. She was forced to leave her home when three unknown warriors burned it down. She wanders through many forests for almost a month before she meets Sayuri Akimoto. Akahana follows the older demon for a few days before being allowed to accompany her on her journey.
Name: Hiroki Akimoto Age: Early 30s Family: None Occupation: Samurai Apprentice: Sayuri Akimoto Appearance: Short brown hair and hazel eyes. Bio: At a young age, Hiroki began his training as a demon slayer. He travelled through Japan ridding the land of demons for several years until he found Sayuri. Instead of feeling contempt for the young demon he felt sympathy for her and decided to spare her and give her a second chance. Hiroki decided to take Sayuri in and train her as a samurai. To keep her from losing control he put a bind on her that will keep her from using her full power. Sayuri Akimoto is a demon who is seeking her redemption. She journeys across the land as she tries to find the answers to her life questions. When she meets a young demon girl named Akahana, her solitary life is suddenly no more. But, just who is Akahana and what purpose does she serve?
Ten years ago today Sayuri left her village with her teacher. She found it hard to believe that it had been that long already. That long since she nearly wiped out an entire village. As a demon, Sayuri is rather powerful, and young demons are known to often lose control of their powers. That's what happened to Sayuri. When she was young Sayuri lost control of her newly gained powers. The village that she called home had suddenly gone from peaceful to chaotic. Her wild rampage went on for two days and miraculously no one was killed. But, the other residents knew it would only be a matter of time before there was nothing left of their village. So, in an act of desperation the village elders called upon a demon slayer who went by the name of Hiroki Akimoto. He was a renowned slayer and was the only one capable of stopping Sayuri's attack on the village. Due to how unstable and vulnerable she was at the time, Sayuri could easily have been killed, but Hiroki could see that she was no ordinary demon. This interested him so he spared her life and was willing to give her a chance to redeem herself. And as a result, Hiroki became her teacher and taught her the ways of the samurai. Many people thought he was doing more harm than good by teaching a demon to be a warrior. In their eyes, he was only making her stronger and that she would one day turn on him and then proceed to cause the deaths of countless others. But, Hiroki trusted Sayuri and was determined to find more potential in her as he refused to believe that she was nothing more than a bloodthirsty demon. Hiroki was no fool, however. He'd seen for himself how much destruction Sayuri could cause, so he bound her with a special bracelet that suppressed her powers. The trick was that only he could remove it so Sayuri could never use her powers to their full extent.
Once her training was complete, Sayuri left her master's side and set out to travel the land alone. Before her departure, her master set her to one last task; that she must become an even stronger warrior, find her purpose in life, and overcome all the obstacles life was sure to throw at her. That had been two years ago yet Sayuri knew she was far from accomplishing her goal. Which was why she never stopped her training. Somewhere, there was an opponent that would truly test her skills and that reason alone was why she never looked back.
"Master. You sent me on this journey to become stronger, to find my purpose in this world. Two years have passed and I am no closer to finding the answers I seek. How do I find my rightful path?" Sayuri sat alone on the riverbank, gazing up at the rising sun. She'd asked that question many times before but had never received an answer. What role did she play in this world? Did she have a part in it's future? Or was she just some insignificant creature? No. Sayuri knew she was more than that. The answers she sought were out there somewhere and she would find them, no matter how long it took. She was a demon after all, so she had plenty of time. A soft rustling on the edge of her hearing pulled Sayuri from her thoughts. Without moving her head, she spied a rabbit emerging from its burrow. The brown furred animal paused cautiously at the mouth, testing the air for foreign scents. Sayuri was downwind so the creature won't have caught her scent. Satisfied that there was no immediate danger, the rabbit began moving about its territory, scavenging for it's morning meal. Sayuri watched it for a moment as it contently ate at the spring flower blossoms. She wondered how such a small creature could be so confident out in the open. It was a living, breathing target for predators, yet it sat amongst the grass as though it didn't have a care in the world. Such fragile creatures, yet they appear in abundance. In one swift movement Sayuri was standing with a dagger in hand. Like this rabbit, she needed food as well. She pulled her hand back, locked her sights on the small creature, and released the dagger. It all happened within seconds. The rabbit hadn't even been given the chance to register her presence. She briefly gave thanks to the Earth for providing her with another meal before skinning the unfortunate animal.
When she'd finished she buried the remains of the rabbit, which was nothing more than bones and fur. Her master had taught her that if she respected the creatures she killed for her own need, then life would become somewhat simpler. Sayuri wasn't sure if that was true, but she did it nonetheless.
She rose to her feet again and surveyed her surroundings. She shouldn't stay in an open space like this as there were bound to be humans around. Even though humans couldn't really distinguish a demon from their own kind, Sayuri felt it best to avoid them. After what happened ten years ago to the mountain village, she refused to try her luck amongst the humans.
So turning away from the river, Sayuri made her way back through the forest. As a demon, she preferred to keep to the shadows, away from the prying eyes of her enemies. The path she walked along now was a natural tunnel created by the tree's interlacing branches. Sayuri pondered over where she would go now. She had no permanent home, but then very few demons did as they often caused trouble wherever they went. It was early evening when Sayuri came to a human village. One would think it was abandoned at first glance as almost all of the houses had fallen into ruin and the ones that still stood provided minimal protection. A single strong gust of wind could all but knock them down. Sayuri stopped just short of village, gazing around in curiosity. What could have happened to leave this village so devastated? She quietly made her way through the village, glancing to either side. As far as she could tell there was no life present here. Perhaps whatever had destroyed the village had killed all the humans as well. Sayuri had no doubt that one of her own kind had been responsible for this and had probably done it for sheer sport. She couldn't say that it disappointed her. She had almost done the exact same thing ten years previously and if it weren't for the bind on her wrist, who knows what she would have done by now.
"You." A voiced rasped from the shadowed remains of a cottage. "You are a demon slayer?"
Sayuri stopped and glanced at the building. A human in tattered clothing stood in the doorway. Sayuri had never seen a human in such a condition before. He was extremely thin and pale as though he hadn't eaten for some time and his eyes were red rimmed and sunk into his skull. All the humans she seen on her journey's, with and without her master, had been healthy and rather plump. To see one in such a haggard state was new to her. "Are you a slayer?" The human asked again after Sayuri failed to answer him. "I am not. I'm merely a samurai journeying the land."
"A warrior?" A light of hope came to the man's eyes. "Then please, you must help us. Our village has nearly been wiped out, destroyed by that demon, Balam as he calls himself." At this Sayuri raised an eyebrow. She'd known a demon was responsible for this destruction, but what puzzled her was that this human knew the name of the demon. Her kind never gave their names to humans as they knew a slayer would most certainly be sent for them if they did.
"Balam, how has he managed to cause such destruction to this village?"
"A terrible beast he is. A three headed serpent that lives within the chasm in the forest. A poisonous substance he spouts from either of his three fanged mouths melts our homes within seconds."
After hearing his description, Sayuri gazed around the village once again. So that was how the village had been destroyed. A poisonous substance, acid, had been used to make such disastrous work on the human homes.
"You wish for me to rid your village of Balam?" Sayuri questioned, returning her gaze to the man.
"Yes, I beg of you. My people won't survive another assault. We've lost so many already."
Sayuri paused for a moment. She was no slayer and thus had no right to help this village against a demon. Not only that, she would be turning against her own kind. Even though some demons held no sense of loyalty to one another, she did. But she also wanted peace between the humans and demons, for them to coexist equally. That wouldn't happen if the humans were constantly living in fear of them.
"Very well, then. When do his attacks regularly occur?"
The man visibly relaxed and the glimmer of hope in his eyes grew brighter. "At midnight, when it's darkest."
Sayuri nodded. "And the chasm? Where is it?"
"In the forest beyond here. It appears as a mass of stones towering well above the ground."
Sayuri turned away from the man to face the forest. "Your people shall no longer walk in fear. Your village will be returned to you on this night."
"Thank you, blessed savior of the Tai Shao village. If I may ask, what be your name?"
Sayuri glanced back over her shoulder at the man.
Such a sense of curiosity, this one.
Midnight came quickly. Sayuri had made her way to the forest shortly after agreeing to help the humans of the village. She'd found the chasm where Balam resided an hour ago and was patiently waiting for the moonlight to fade. Her eyesight was ten times better than a human's at night so she needed no light to see by.
A few moments later, the small clearing was plunged into total darkness. Sayuri stood from her spot underneath a tree, unsheathing her sword as she did so. She had no intent of killing this demon, though she would if she had to. She was hoping to persuade him to leave this village and its residents in peace. But, at the back of her mind, she knew that wouldn't work, so it was best she was prepared.
She entered the dark tunnel that led to Balam's lair. She half expected to be attacked as soon as she set foot into the cave, but nothing happened. The cave was large and cold, certainly not a place humans should be. The path, worn by Balam's constant comings and goings, sloped downward at such an angle that Sayuri had to use the rock walls to keep her footing. She could tell that the path led deep underground where life could not be sustained. But, just how far down did the path go?
Just as the thought flitted through her mind, the ground evened out and she emerged into an enormous chamber. It was quite an impressive space. The roof of the cave soared far above her with glittering stalagmites protruding from both ceiling and floor. A perfect environment for a demon snake.
"Greetings, sister." The voice came in the form of a hiss, a sound that would send a simple minded human running in terror. "It's been quite some time since I last saw one of my own kind. What brings you here?"
Sayuri watched as Balam made his way down from what she would call a throne of stones. His black, slithering body wasn't as massive as the human had described, so she guessed he was able to regulate the size of his body to accommodate whatever space he occupied. But, the man had been truthful when he said Balam sported three heads, each one as monstrous as the next.
"You've been terrorizing the humans of this village." Sayuri said, being very straightforward. "I've come to ask why."
She tightened her grip on her sword as Balam moved closer, peering closely at her. "The same reason any demon appears before a human; to strike fear within their hearts. Seeing the amount of terror I am able to cause pleases me to great measures."
"So you frighten them for sheer sport? To simply amuse yourself?"
"You speak as though that is wrong. You are of my kind yet you receive no pleasure from the fear of a human?"
"If they haven't wronged me in any way, then no, frightening them does not please me."
Balam studied her over momentarily. Sayuri knew she had confused him by saying that she got no enjoyment out of causing humans fear. In truth, it was unusual for a demon not to amuse themselves by torturing humans. As creatures of darkness, they fed off of fear.
"Tell me, what be that on your wrist? A bind?" Balam questioned. A smile came to his center head when Sayuri didn't reply. It was chilling sight to see a smile on a creature of his stature. "Ah, now I see why the fear of humans doesn't affect you. You've been tamed by one."
Sayuri tensed. "So what if I have?"
"You poor thing. It must be infuriating not being able to utilize your full powers. Demon slayers are such cruel creatures. Tell me, what is the name of the slayer that has done such a thing to you? I shall punish him for you."
Sayuri let out a low growl and whipped out her sword. "You shall bring no harm to my master!"
"Master? Foolish child, demons have no masters. If anything humans should serve us since we have allowed them to prosper for this long."
"No one would serve a creature as vile as you! I have no wish to kill you, but if you refuse to leave this village then I shall!"
Balam hissed furiously. "Insolent child! You've been tamed too well. You can no longer decipher between your allies and enemies. Very well, attempt to slay me! Just know that I shall show you no mercy when you fail!"
Before Sayuri could speak again, Balam lunged toward her, all three of his mouths open to reveal sword sharp fangs. Sayuri was faster though and leaped away just as Balam's left head crashed into the ground. And before he could pose for another strike, Sayuri brought her sword down in a lightning fast arch to sever the head from the rest of the body. Balam recoiled in pain, his fury filled screech reverberating off the walls.
Sayuri used that distraction to race to the other side and do the same for his right head. Again Balam hissed in agony, but this time was able to strike back at her. Sayuri just barely escaped being stabbed by his fangs, and was instead grazed on the arm. She scowled as blood began running down her arm. Now she had a wound to dress later.
"I'm going to make you regret doing this!" Balam threatened and lunged again.
"My only regret is that I couldn't persuade you not to take it this far."
Sayuri raised her sword to deliver a final blow, but before she could, Balam's tail slammed her to the ground. She gasped in pain as her breath was knocked out of her. She should have known he would use his tail to pin her down. Now he towered over, his face occupying her entire field of vision. His forked tongue flicked in and out in anticipation of delivering a fatal bite.
"You're helpless now, little one. But, don't fret. I'll make your death quick."
"The only one dying here will be you." Sayuri snarled.
"Even when faced with death you still run your mouth. Perhaps I should make you suffer before allowing you to-"
Balam's words were cut off as bright orange flames exploded in his face. He reared back with another blood curdling screech as his flesh was scorched. The sudden flames had come Sayuri, using what power her bind would allow. With Balam weakened drastically, Sayuri pushed away his massive tail and delivered the final blow as she sliced through his burning flesh. The massive serpent collapsed to the ground in a heap of charred skin. Dead.
Sayuri stood over the remains of Balam with a frown. She hadn't wanted to kill him, but he'd left her with no choice. At least now the village would be left in peace, leaving the remaining humans to rebuild their lives. And now that her adrenaline had subsided, Sayuri felt the pain in her arm and realized that she'd lost more blood than she thought. She had to tend to her wound before she bled to death. So, resheathing her sword and clutching at her arm, Sayuri trekked back the way she'd come, leaving Balam's body to fade away into nothingness.
Note:Hi this is my first story on here so please go easy on me. I will accept some friendly advice but please do not try to dictate me on how I should write my story. Anyway I am collabing this with my friend RoyMustang18 (she's on Fanfiction) and she wrote this chapter. We will be taking turns writing chapters since thi is my first FictionPress story. Anyway I hope you like it, I'll try to have chapter two up a soon as I can. Since we're both still in school I hope you guys can understand that this story can't be updated all the time. Thanks for taking the time to check out our story, we hope you guy will enjoy it!