“Redemption” is a short story detailing the relationship between a student, Takashi, and his slain master, Yujin. Takashi wishes to avenge his master by killing his master’s murderer, Aku No. Along the way, he encounters Yujin himself.
I plan to write more short stories like this on my blog page, so feel free to tell me what you think!
With that, please enjoy reading “Redemption.”
At last Takashi had broken through the battle line and snuck into Aku No’s mansion. He stuck his katana into the garden soil and kneeled to rest. The sounds of battle could be heard not far off.
In the reflection of the water nearby he saw the fuzzy image of the moon, radiating beautifully amongst the abyss of the sky.
Takashi looked up. Instead of the moon, he saw the milky face of his old master, Yujin, grinning down on him from above.
The word floated through the air. It pained Takashi, knowing that his master’s name fell on deaf ears. His old master was no more. He had found the old man, crumpled, disheveled, in a dirty old ditch. Dried blood could be found surrounding a horrific gash in the master’s armor.
All Takashi knew was that Aku No was responsible for this. Him and his band of petty thugs. Had they not a shred of honor, teaming up against an old man?
Takashi looked down again. A tear trickled down his cheek, fell, and merged with the water below, never to be seen again.
“Oh Master!” Takashi thought.
“You did not deserve to die…”
A warm glow suddenly appeared nearby. When Takashi looked up he was shocked to see none other than Yujin himself. He was dressed in a silk white robe, resting lightly on a cane. His long beard adorned a worn face.
“Yujin! It’s you! I can’t believe it!”
Takashi ran towards Yujin but was quickly stopped by a firm hand on his shoulder.
Yujin looked at Takashi sternly.
“Takashi. Now is not the time for embrace. Muster your strength. You have come far and risked much to fight Aku No.” There was no sign of joy on the master’s face.
“I do not wish for you to suffer the same fate as I did, after such difficulty.”
Takashi faced the ground sullenly.
He understood what had to be done.
“I will avenge you, Master.” Takashi returned Yujin’s determined look.
Yujin let slip a satisfied grin. He wrapped his arms around Takashi and held him close.
“Takashi, do not worry for me,” he whispered. “Waste not grief on me. What happened is in the past.”
Takashi felt Yujin’s grip weakening.
“Focus on the now… Good luck, Takashi….”
With this last word Yujin dissipated into the air, gone as rapidly as he had appeared. Takashi slumped down to ponder upon his master’s words. The battle cries softly rang out in the distance. After a moment, Takashi, having found the calm, promptly stood up, snatching his blade and sheathing it.
At last, he was ready. Armed with his master’s wisdom, he was prepared for the fight with Aku No.