In the world I lived in, If you had nothing and you wanted to live. You had to survive through any means necessary. Like most people my age at the time, we had scavenge, steal, or beg for what we needed and wanted. The world looked at the poor and meak as vermin who were doomed to wallow on the streets, begging for food and shelter. Forced to give up our freedom for a comfortable life. Me. I couldn’t trust those who were like me. Despite us being in the same situation, we were still in this life for ourselves. And like so, I applied that to my own life. A life of solitude within the cold streets. This is a story of thievery to honor. My name is Yokuhashi Tojun. My story begins turn like gears.

Yokuhashi: *is sitting in his cell pacing back and forth until a security guard opens his cell*

I never knew who my parents were, but as my life passed by, I forgot I had to have come into the world somehow. When I was seven years old, I began pick-pocketing from the wealthy and the financial stable. For a good while, I was able to provide for the food part. Not so much for the shelter, but on the streets of New Vince, the cold was welcoming for me. I made a name for myself as one of the most notorious pick-pocket in New Vince, mostly referring to me as ‘slippery as ice’. For me it was abit overdone. Besides, I didn’t do what I did to make a name for myself amongst the vermin and wealthy, but to live. I kept this up for 5 more years until I got caught and I was arrested.

‘Come on out, Tojun. It’s Court time.”

Yokuhashi: *walks out of his cell and walks into the open courtyard with many other inmates*

The inmates in the courtyard only seem to be only talking and gambling

Yokuhashi: *looks around for a minute*

You lost friend

Yokuhashi: *looks down at a man sitting on the ground with both hands clasped together*

Well you certainly can’t get lost in a small courtyard like this

Yokuhashi: Who are you?

My name is Tokkan. I live in Cell Block A13

Yokuhashi: That’s my cell…

Tokkan: You know what that means.

Yokuhashi: *sighs* Cellmates..

Tokkan: Come now, I’m not all that bad. Despite me being a criminal in jail. Who knows? You might learn a few things from me.

Yokuhashi: I doubt it.

Tokkan: I doubt that you doubt it. *smiles*

Tokkan was a my cellmate and soon-to-be mentor. He was arrested for a mistaken identity.

Late at night

Yokuhashi: *is on the top bunk, staring up* Why do some lived good healthy lives and the rest of us are forced to rot?...Why do people have to constantly remind us that we're vermin?...We never asked for any of this... *feels a cold wind blowing through their cell. He rolls over trying to keep himself warm only to see Tokkan sitting on the bottom bunk with something glowing in his hands* What is that?

Tokkan: My way back home.

Yokuhashi: But you're behind bars. How can a small speck of light get you out of here?

Tokkan: Do you feel the cold?

Yokuhashi: Well..yes. Why?

Tokkan: It will set us free. For me it is my why home, for might be another chance at a more meaningful life. I am at the understanding that you are here for petty thievery, right?

Yokuhashi: Yes.

Tokkan: You can take all the materials you want in life, but it doesn't take care of you for long. Only you can take care of you.

Yokuhashi: I have been for 12 years.

Tokkan: Not like that. That's survival. Preserving. Not living life.

Yokuhashi: I don't understand.

Tokkan: You will. When freedom comes, follow this light, and there I will show you how to truly fulfill your life.Two days my fellow cellmate two days comes our freedom and your second chance.

For me, I thought Tokkan has spent too much time here in this jail, that the idea of freedom is driving him crazy, though he didn't act crazy, he sure talked it.

Yokuhashi: *is sitting up on his bunk*

Tokkan: *is looking down at his hands*

The security guard opens their cell door

"Come on out, you two. Court time."

The two head out into the court hard with their other inmates once again

The next day came and the same routine happened as the day before with only slight difference.

A teenage boy, slightly taller than Yokuhashi comes into the court yard. He has a brown skin town aswell as spiky,short, red hair.

"Another cold day in this pile of concrete. Is their anything here to do besides talking, walking, sleeping, and gambling. And I believe I left something out." He takes a look at Yokuhashi "Oh Sweet Art Goddess, It must be my birthday."

Tokkan: Here he comes.

Yokuhashi: Here who comes?

"Buroka's the name and breaking bones is my favorite game."

Yokuhashi: Glad to know?

Buroka: So if I can get this straight, you must be new here, due to how unfamiliar you are to me. I think it has something to do with your white hair or maybe something else about you, I don't know.

Yokuhashi: Ummmm...Ok....What is it you want from me?

Buroka: Not much of a want, more like a need. See you're new here, and like every other newb, you need to know whose in charge.

Yokuhashi: Aren't the wardens in change?

Buroka: Heh, they wish they were. But I'm the head honcho in this here vicinity. Don't ask me how I'm speaking spanish in a world that's basically Japanese-oriented.

Yokuhashi: Then what is it you need from me again?

Buroka: You know, that is a great question. What was that one thing I left out? Oh there it is. *decks Yokuhashi in face causing him to stumble back* Fighting.

Yokuhashi: *stumbles back some and wipes the blood from his nose. He gets into some kind of stance*

Everyone in the courtyard crowd around them

Boruka: *seems unconvinced by his form* You've never fought before, have you.

Yokuhashi: *simply keeps in his stance*

Boruka: Oh, I can see you'll last looong here. *gives him a wicked smile before he knees Yokuhashi in his side, causing a loud crack*

Yokuhashi: *yells in agony before falling to on his hand, wrapping his other arm around his stomach. He spits out some blood*

Buroka: Well maybe not as long as I thought. At this rate you'll just be another snapped twig.

The crowd jeers, but the sound of rapid gunfire silences them. The guard make their way through the crowd.

Yokuashi: *is trying to catch his breath*

Buroka: *kneels down in front of him* Atleast you know who's in charge now. *smiles, then stands up* Hey cops, help this dude out, he started throwing up blood all of a sudden and I tried to see how he was doing.

The guards drag Yokuhashi and puts him in his cell.

"All right, all of you, get back to your cells!" The guards begin to escort the inmates back to their designated cells blocks

"We'll come back with some medical supplies to fix you up" Closes their cell gate.

Yokuhashi: *is wailing silently in pain*

Tokkan: *sits on the bottom bunk* You have my attention. I'm not really impressed by your display, but you did have some fight. Though you only have the look, not the drive. The fact you didn't even toss a punch shows how much of a problem you're going to have. Not just in jail, but in the outside world too.

Yokuhashi: Why didn't you stop him....*coughs*

Tokkan: Most battles are better fought alone. It is the only way you can move on in this journey of life. You're so used to flying under the radar, when all things done in the dark come to the light. When you are spotted, all you can do is fight. Not everyone can stay in the shadows forever. One more day.

I got fixed up a few minutes later. Afterwards, I had time to think about what Tokkan had told me. And he was right. I always got away without being seen, but what will I do when I get caught?...I already have been. Tokkan is still convinced that we're all going to be free, but I still don't see how. That night, the wind was colder than the night before and it was nearly unbearable. I looked over the side of my bunk to check up on Tokkan. Unlike me, he was sound asleep, unbothered by the cold. I guess when you've been here as long as he has, you'd get used to it too. Assuming he's been here that long. The next day was boring. I stayed in my cell today because the guards said I needed to walk off my injury. I mostly paced back and forth all day thinking to myself, aswell as fighting against the even more brutal cold. No matter how much I cover up, I still shivered. Does Tokkan's "freedom" have to do with this cold? How can a cold wind get us free?

Tokkan: *enters the cell* We're close, cellmate. Tomorrow is the day.

Yokuhashi: Great...

Tokkan: I need to ask you. What will you do with your freedom?

Yokuhahsi: Disappear.

Tokkan: Man, I figured with as much time as you had today, you would've came to a better answer than that.

Yokuhashi: I just...didn't expect to think this far.

Tokkan: Or think at all. I know you must not believe that we will be liberated from this prison, but I can assure you 100%, we will get out. Tomorrow my, cellmate.

Yokuhashi: How do you know that we'll be free?

Tokkan: Do feel it?

Yokuhashi: *can only feel the cold wind* Feel what? The cold?

Tokkan: Yes, that.

Yokuhashi: Is your plan to freeze the prison?

Tokkan: You have an extreme lack of faith in the logical. Is it logical for a bee to fly, much less the world we live in exist? You must look past what makes sense and expound on the impossible. It only keeps us down from achieving greatness. The impossible, is what drove us to this great day and era. The impossible saved lives. The impossible will get us free.

Yokuhashi: Hm. *looks up at the ceiling* The impossible, huh?

Tokkan: Yes, the impossible. Maybe tonight, you'll come up with a better life alternative....Actually, I want you to take this. *shows Yokuhashi the small blue light, he's been holding in his hands for several days now* This will guide you to your new life. No longer stealing to survive, but rather giving just to let others live.

Yokuhashi: *slowly closes it into his hands* What is this?

Tokkan: Your way to a second chance. Tomorrow, release it and follow it and there your new life shall begin.

Yokuhashi: How are you going to get back?

Tokkan: I'll find my back. The colder it is, the closer I am. The light was just to make it easier for me.

Yokuhashi: Not sure if that makes any sense, but I'll take it I suppose. *looks back up at the ceiling and looks at the light in his hand. He holds it close to his heart ad goes to sleep*

The next morning should pt this...very impossible. I know it doesn't make sense but-

Yokuhashi: *is woken up by an immense gush of cold wind, aswell as other commotion coming from outside* W-what's h-happening?!

Tokkan: *is standing in front of the frozen cell bars* Freedom, my cellmate...Freedom. *Door-stomp kicks the cell bars, thus breaking them* Now's the time. You know what to do. Make it far enough, outside the prison and release the light, then follow it. *steps outside into the blizzard*

Yokuhashi: I seriously can't believe this. *steps out of the cells behind Tokkan, and all the other prisoners are running about, while gunshots can be heard throughout the cause*

Tokkan: Remember, get as far as you can away from here before releasing the light. Try not to run into any trouble. I'll be seeing you soon, Yokuhashi. *runs off and disappears into the wind*

Yokuhashi: Uuuuuuhhh...*is slightly confused* Okay? *begins running through the corners and walkways until he finally finds a loose opening under the fence and goes under it. He then runs out into the brutal cold*

I walked into the blizzard for about 5 minutes until i felt like I was far enough from the prison. I felt like this was the right time to release the light, until from the corner of my eye I saw faint orange light behind me. I didn't know who it was, but if it were a guard, he would've had a flashlight...unless one of the cellmates mugged it from him. As the light drew closer, I simply stood there and waited. Holding on to my light.

"Well, look who it is. Getting as far away from the hotel I see."

Buroka comes into clear view. He is holding a lighter in his hand

Buroka: Wher you going, freshy? New Vince is two miles back from where you came. Well three with how far you've gotten. Isn't it amazing? I only been here for 4 months and something like blizzard comes out of nowhere and freezes the damn prison. Hallelujah!

Yokuashi: *simply holds on to his light and looks at him*

Buroka: *notices the light coming from in between his fingers* Whatcha got there?

Yokuhashi: ...

Buroka: You ever heard the term, 'sharing is caring'? But for a thief like yourself, you used to 'taking and eating'.

Yokuhashi: Word must've spread fast about me. I wouldn't be surprised with the lack of activity back at the prison

Buroka: *slowly begins to walks up to Yokuhashi* And with the kinda person I am a 'breaker'. So what do I break you may ask, well that's sort of easy to guess. *puts his lighter away.*

Buroka punches Yokuhashi in his bruised side. Once Yokuashi bends over in pain, giving Buroka the chance to knee him in the face, causing Yokuhashi to fall, face-first into the snow and the light leaves his hands.

Buroka: *sees the small light floating in mid-air* Hey now. What's this? *walks towards it*

Yokuhashi: *tries to reach for it, but Buroka steps on his head, burrying his face in more snow*

Buroka: *captures the light* I've seen one of these things. I believe they're called Were Lights. Pretty things. They show the essence of all life in this 'loser-artist fantasy'. Is this your way back home to your dead mummy and daddy? Or are you just waiting to turn into a mancicle? *removes his foot from on top of Yokuhashi's head*

Yokuashi: *slowly gets up, with blood dripping from his nose. He simply gives an angry look*

Buroka: You want this light? *lets it go and the light begins to float away*

Yokuhashi: No! *reaches for the light only to be decked in the face by Buroka causing him to fall back down*

Buroka: Man, you are just one stupid bastard, aren't you? You show no likeable emotion except you like getting beat alot apparently. Cause if you were a smart person, you should've just ran. But you stood here like your foot was frozen in ice. You better catch your light before it leaves.

Yokuhashi: *wips the blood off his face and gets up, getting into some awkward fighting stance*

Buroka: *gives a wicked smirk and gets into a boxing position*

They both run towards each other, but it's Buroka who gets the first strike, by punching Yokuhashi in his stomach, then socking him in his jaw. Yokuhashi steps back and throws a punch, only to dodged. Buroka chuckles and slugs him directly in his face, causing him to stumble back.

Yokuhashi: *kneels on one knee and has one hand covering his face* The so severe...

Buroka: There's not hiding in alley ways anymore. *slowly walks towards Yokuhashi* No more bleeding into crowds or hit'n'runs. *he squats down and turns Yokuhashi's face to where he's facing his* Here, you have to confront your problems, face-to-face. Or my favorite: Face-to-fist. *shows Yokuhashi his fist then uppercuts him in the chin*

Yokuhashi: *falls back. His faces is bruised and bleeding. He's about to loose consciousness* I-I can't do it...

Buroka: *stands over him* Well, freshy. You fail. and for your punishment. a makeover. *begins to repeatedly punch Yokuhashi in the face, as if he were boxing a punching bag.*

After I was beaten...I lost consciousness from the pain...and the loss of the second fight...Didn't even touch him...The feel of simply loosing and not putting up a good enough fight...I was a thief...i knew nothing about fighting or anything like that, not even street-fighting or fighting dirty...I was defenseless in this new world where you can't hide for ever, and that a battle comes to you and you must be willing to fight for what you want...I lost what I wanted...I remember his last words before he left me to freeze...'Shame...You didn't fight hard enough." I never fought for anything, I just took without anyone seeing me and now that I've been seen, there's no way for me to return to the shadows...but I think...That's for the best...

The Werelight slowly floats down to Yokuhashi and lands on his chest.

Yokuhashi can feel the small presence coming off of it. He slowly opens his eyes, and sees the the light resting on his chest. He takes his hand and covers it over his chest. Yokuhashi gets up and follows the werelight.

But something greater has given me another chance. And this time, I would take full advantage of it. After and entire day of walking, The werelight took me to a village and beyond the village lied a monastery. I decided to head straight for it, passing through the village.

Yokuhashi: *enters through the front entrance of the monastery and slowly walks into the dark-litted room*

Before he knew it shinobi warriors descend from above and surround him with their katana's drawn

Yokuhahsi: *looks around him in anxiety*

A familiar figure fully dressed in gi walks past the warriors and reveals himself to be Tokkan.

Tokkan: *smiles* Cellmate. I'm glad you were able to make it. When I arrived here before you did, I feared you ran into trouble or returned to your former life as a thief. It pleases me that you've made the right choice, though you do look abit battered-up. I'm guessing someone gave you several licks on your way out.

Yokuhashi: Yea...You could say that...

Tokkan: Now that you're here. *tosses a folded gi at Yokuhashi* Your new life shall begin.

Yokuhashi: But...I have a few questions.

Tokkan: Ask away, but no more than 20.

Yokuhashi: Who are you?

Tokkan: We are the Aizu Sukaru. Protectors and watchers of Echo's wilder regions, especially to those who live out here.

Yokuhashi: What will be my purpose here?

Tokkan: As if you had to ask. You are here to rehabilitate yourself. Your whole life, all you've done is taken from others. Now you will learn to give back to them. By giving your life serving them. You will be their protector.

Yokuhashi: One more. Why me?

Tokkan: If you had one chance to change yourself for the better and die knowing you did something good. Would you do it? Ofcourse you would, cause you just did. Destiny, dear Yoku. That is why it's you.

Yokuhashi: *looks at the gi*

Tokkan: You were meant to be here, but only you can decide if you truly want this. No more taking for yourself. But giving back by watching out for others.

Yokuhashi: *lifts head up at Tokkan and nods his head*

For 12 years I have trained with the Aizu Sukaru. I trained my mind, body, and tongue. They trained me in the ways of an honorable swordsman and Tai Chi masters only told int history books. I learned their techniques while shaping my body. I learned to channel the power of rage and obtained the will to fight for the good, until I die. The one lesson that stood out the most to me, is that that everything is in your mind. No matter the limits of the body, the mind will push you further if you let it. That the impossible, no longer exists. Leaving the possible to be achieved. I learned the philosophies of life, death, Hell, pain, and responsibility.] to further enhance my understanding and perception of the life I know live. I accepted the clan for what it stood for and Tokkan my teacher and friend. He tought me to combat 2 men in my first year, then in my second I learned to combat 6 me, then in my third I could fight 30, then in when I reached my 12 year I could easily take on 600 men. And that was when the day had come. The day I official become a Shinobi Warrior of the Aizu Sakaru. But what I didn't know...was that my 12 years was going to pay off more than I knew...

Both Yokuhashi and Tokkan and sitting onf their knees side by side. All of the Aizu Sukaru warriors stand behind them in columns. They all are facing towards the Grandmaster, who is sitting on a wooden throne with a bowl with visible vapor coming from it. The Grandmaster gets up, takes the bowl, walks up to Yokuhashi.

Grandmaster: Drink of this and you will bind yourself to the clan and the people we are sworn to protect. Fight against the pain and if you succeed, I gladly welcome you to the clan.

Yokuashi: *looks in the bowl to see some kind of crystallized salt, yet the bowl is freezing. He slowly raises the bowl to his lips*

Grandmaster: We will revolutionize ourselves to great purpose. To last forever beyond the flesh.

Yokuhashi: *stops* Beyond...the flesh.

Tokkan: The world is ever changing and flesh alone will only make us weaker for it. This world is growing more hostile and soon, there will be no more humans to preserve. You may never know what might about this world or who will continue our legacy if we were eradicated.

Yokuhashi: That will never happen.

Tokkan: Nothing's forever, Yokuhashi.

Grandmaster: But the Yokan Zaibatsu can make us last forever and ready for this new world. Once we align with them, we will be far more advanced tenfold. With our new found power, we will have a better chance of eliminating the threats before they come around. We can no longer wait for danger to arrive, and this will ensure the saftey of the county livers and our legacy. All at the cost of our flesh once we side with the Yokan Zaibatsu.

Yokuhashi: But you'll be giving up what we stand for. To protect, not to destroy. Our legacy will not die if our mind is willing. We can do this without giving up our humanity just to live forever. *looks at Tokkan* You can't be onboard with this.

Tokkan: The Grandmaster has given us our new lives. Before the Aizu Sukaru became the clan you know now, it was a gang called the Ice Skulls, a despicable gang of drug deals and users. But once he came into the picture, you took those druggies and reformed them into something better, and he didn't just stop with just them but everyone who found themselves in dark. We are forever grateful and if this is what he desires for this clan, then we have all to oblige. This is your choice, Yokuhashi. And like the choice you had 12 years ago, now is the time to make another. Join us or die with the cold. It's your choice.

Yokuhashi: *slowly looks back into the bowl of salts and pulls it up to his lips once again*

Without thinking twice, I thinking threw the bowl at The Grandmaster. He dodge and the bowl cracked against his thrown instead, and the dry salt begins to start freezing the monastery.

Tokkan: *looks at Yokuhashi in shock* What do you think you're doing!?

Yokuhashi: Making my choice. *hits Tokkan square in his face knocking him out. He then draws his katana*

The shinobi warriors draw their weapons

Grandmaster: No wait! *he draws his own katana and charges at Yokuhashi*

The Grandmaster came at me with a great rage and all I had was my determination. I've only been around for 12 years, while everyone else stayed longer and yet out of all of them, I was the only one ready to stand up for this clan for what it stood for, and he and the rest of the aizu Sukaru was so quick to sell them out just to do what The Grandmaster believed was right. We clashed blades while the monestery was freezing up around us. The Grandmaster fought with much furocity, putting me on the edge. He was a much more skilled fighter than I was, gaining his power from his rage and I from my determination; but his effort proved to be ble to trump mine. For the most part I was only able to evade him, only confusing him for only a mere second until he would catch up to me.

Yokuhashi and the Grandmaster are in a sword clash.

Grandmaster: What do you think you're fighting for, boy?

Yokuhashi: It's obvious what I fight for. I'm fighting for all those years of trainging and philosphies aswell and this opportunity that was given to me by this clan. You have a good thing going here. Why give it up now to live forever?

Grandmaster: We all have the freedom of choice. In the end, I'm only doing what's best for the Aizu Sukaru! *pushes Yokuhashi back. He pulls the handle of his katana, extending it out until its as long as a staff. His katana is now a halberd.*

Yokuhashi: *regains his footing and his form*

Grandmaster: *charges at Yokuhashi*

We both continued our fight as the monastery froze and began to fall apart. I was still on the defensive as the Grandmaster constantly pursued me. He was quick no doubt, but now he had range on his side aswell. This made it even harder for me to even get a hit on him, though there was no sign of any armor on him; I doubt he needed any. He finally overwhelms me and has his halberd pointed at my neck

Grandmaster: You chose rather unwisely, Yokuhashi...

Yokuhashi: I think...the foundation you've built...says differently...

Suddenly one of the ceiling supports comes aloose and falls on to The Grandmaster.

Yokuhashi: *gets up. He looks over at Tokkan's unconscious body, makes his way over, picks him up, and makes his way out of the crumbling monastery*

Grandmaster: Yokuhashi...There is nowhere...for you...or anyone else to hide...I curse you with the days of unrest...that you shall fight until the end of your days...That you will be hunted like a dog on the streets...And may you get the death you deserve...for betraying the Aizu Sukaru...

More frozen debris falls ontop of him.

I made it out of the monastery with my mentor and friend over my shoulders. I took a look back one last time, and soaked in the result of my choice...You grieved my see my real home fall over what I decided...I can only live with that burden on my shoulder now, as it is done. But then missiles came from above and completely leveled what was left of the monastery. I was surprised at the sudden occurrence, but even more surprised when I heard screaming from the village. I ran all the way into the village only to see fires and people screaming. I slowly made my way into the village and saw a few villagers making their way out into carriages. I heard loud 'zip' noises, and every time I heard those, someone fell down dead. I put Tokkan in the back of one o the carriages and covered him up before the carriage went on it's way. With that, I turned and headed into the blazing village to see what was going on.

Yokuahshi: *slowly skulks around the village, until he catches a glimpse of movement on the rooftops* Hm? *slips into an alley and stays to the side. He waits silently, for any movement with his sword drawn*

He hears a slight breath and immediately turns around and engages a soldier wearing a cesious color suit to a sword fight.

Yokuhashi: I didn't know who I'm fighting but, his sword skills were on par with my own. *he hears a click sound and immediately ducks*

A 'pop' noise goes off and the soldier instantly falls over

Yokuhashi: *looks at the body and sees a gaping hole in the soldier's chest. He looks behind him and sees another cesious colored soldier with a sniper in hand. He get's up and sprints off*

I ran in between burning houses trying to loose this unknown assailant, but while I was running another assailant was running right next to me, holding under his arm was a baby boy. Not knowing what I was doing I snatched the baby boy out of his hands and tripped him. I kept running until I was almost out of the village

As Yokuhashi almost makes it to out of the village, the houses collapse blocking the way out and the sides are blocked too.

Yokuhashi: Damn!

The baby boy begins to cry. Figures appear ontop of the burning roofs.

Yokuhashu: *doesn't know what to do with the child, but set him on the ground behind him. He draws his sword read for anything*

These soldier that I never knew surrounded me from above with snipers in hands. We stood their for a steady moment until a few descended and drew for their own blade and came at me. Left and right, atleast 4 at a time came at me and I barely held my own for I could barely handle myself against one of them. They tried to reach for the child, making it more difficult for me to fend them off. What made it even worse, was that a few of them began to shoot at me from above. I got cut from their edges and burned from barley missing a single bullet shot. I was getting. I only managed to kill 15 of them, but there were still more left. The child wailed in terror of all the commotion. My focus was being diverted between fighting these soldier, guarding this child, getting out of this burning village, and keeping myself alive. I was loosing blood and my body was weak. I felt dizzy from the constant alert that soon turned to paranoia and the smoke began to get to me. I only had one other option: Take the boy and run for it. As far as I knew the other exit wasn't blocked but I couldn't hold off against these soldiers forever. So I snatched up the wailing child as fast as I could and tried to run for it, but I was immediate shot. The crying had stopped. I looked down and saw blood on the baby boy. Not only that, the blood was his. We both had been shot. That day... Innocent life died in my hands...I fought so hard for what seemed to be like hours...Trying to protect this boy...But he died anyway...

Yokuhashi gets shot in the calf, dropping the child. He then gets shot in the shoulder, then through his torso, then through his left leg. He yells in pain from the constant barrage of sniper bullets until he falls down on his back. He begins to black out as he looks to the smoke-layered sky, then he hears a loud whale-like sound as he takes last glimpse, he sees something descending from the sky


Yokuhashi slowly wakes up and finds himself in a tube filled with water. He's only wearing short tights and has some sort of breathing device over his mouth. He begins to look around and sees many others in tubular capsules wearing only undergarments and breathing devices on, but all of them seem to be asleep.

Yokuhashi: Where am I? Where am I, where am I, where am I?! *begins to get panicky as he swims about in his capsule*

Yokuhashi looks down at his body and sees that its been completely stitched up, as if he was cut in pieces.

Yokuhashi: *begins to punch the glass until it brakes and falls out unto grated walkway. He slowly gets up only to see two cesious colored soldier pointing their snipers at him. He slowly gets to feet*

The soldiers escort Yokuhashi from behind, having their snipers pointed. As they walk out of the chambers, they into some kind of training stadium. Men and women learning standard ninjitsu. They make it to the end of the walkway, where they enter a one-way see-through elevator. As the elevate upward the can see multiple labs and screams of torture and mercy followed by strange ominous sounds of machinery. The elevator stops as they make their way into a small lab that has a metallic look to it. Yokuhashi sees a metal-slab table.

Soldier: Lay on that table.

Yokuhashi: *slowly makes his way to the table and lays on his back*

A scientist walks in with a clipboard tablet. The scientist takes a look at Yokuhashi

Scientist: What is this?

Soldier: We were patrolling the Subject Chamber Vault until we saw him break out of his capsule. So we decided you can continue the project at hand. Since you're already half way done

Scientist: Hmm. We must have not sedated him when we put him in the capsule. I guess he'll have to do. Do you know who he is?

Soldier: Yes sir. He is a shinobi from the Aizu Sukaru. He was seen at the village we were raiding. We had cornered him and engaged. He took out 15 of us all on his own.

Scientist: Hm. Fairly interesting.

Soldier: But the thing is, he's the newer acolyte the Aizu Sukaru had. He took us all on why protecting a baby boy.

Scienitist: Hmm. Even more interesting. I think this will suffice The Director's needs. For a time that is. * walks over to a switch and almost immediately, Yokuahshi is stuck to the table, not being able to move. The scientist pulls another switch*

Some kind of oval-shaped device lowers itself down to Yokuhashi

Yokuhashi: *begins to slightly panic*

Scientist: Close your eyes and don't open them until I say so.

Yokuhashi: *closes his eyes*

Scientist: Now open them.

Yokuhashi opens his to reveal he's in a completely dark expanse, standing on what looks like a red grid that is just was vast as the darkness. He takes his first on on a square and the square lights up red. He continues to slowly walk on the squares.

Yokuashi: What did they do to me...I can't...Feel anything anymore...I can touch my face, but my figures feel so cold...My body...Feels abit more stiff...My entire body feels cold...I can't even hear or feel my heart beat...It's like...I have a whole new body...

Yokuhashi can see some sort of red figure just ahead of him, as he continues walking he finally reaches the figure. Upon reaching him, Yokuashi instntly is brough down to his hands and knees, as if some force is pulling him down.

Yokuhashi: *shocked* What the...What the he-...What's going on!

The figure he sees before him is a man wearing some sort of armor with torn fabric hanging from the long rectangular shoulder guards. He has blade in front of him with both his hands resting on the hilt. Yokuhashi notices the man's left arm is completely cybernetic. His face shows of age and his left eye hails a wound in the shape of a star.

Yokuhashi: Who...Who are you?...

'Hello Yokuhashi. My name is Rayne. General of the 3rd Steel Keep Legion and Captain of the weaponized aerial fortress, 'Thunderer'

Yokuhashi: But...How?

Rayne: Imagination, Ambition, and Effort. Years of it.

Yokuhashi: But you would've-

Rayne: Been shot down. We've been told. Your dialogue is so predicable. And here I thought there was something special about you.

Yokuhashi: You think...You'll be safe...?

Rayne: Safety? Safety is an illusion. The idea of a safe haven is only an illusion. There is no place on Earth or anywhere else is safe. This world is not exempt from that. The only way they claim it's safe, is becase of the rules the set up for us. to limit us, because they fear what we are capable of doing to this world. They were very selective with the people they decided to let into the "safe haven". They only let commoners in. Those who were bystanders during 2nd World War. They made us dependent on them and them only by limiting our usage of technology, keeping a tight grip on us for years. Keeping us in one capital. I call it jar.

Yokuhashi: *is still breathing heavily* Get me...out of here!

Rayne: I can't give you your freedom just like that, Yokuhashi. Only you can do that. But...I will give you...empowerment. We are sacrificing human life to to truly make it safe for ourselves by riding ourselves of our "superiors". We are ruled over by foreign gods who occupy our new home. Ask yourself this, Yokuhashi. When the world dies and this is all that they have left to go two. Do you really think their going to accept living in another world filled with mythological creatures of a non physical kind? I don't think so. They are deadly. Gods can be anger fairly easily. And death comes unintentionally. These spirits, shape-shifters, elementals, yokais. They have the ability to wipe us out without having to do much but raise a finger. Their potential of mass destruction is just as deadly as hours. The only reason it's like this, is because of them and it will only be better if they are gone. We must ensure our future by sacrificing our present.

Yokuhashi: What gives you the right...To take what's not even yours...You're sparking a conflict that's not even there!

Rayne: That's where you're wrong. The reason they are distant from each other, is because they are aware of the tension. We will be in the crossfire if one eventful day one of those creatures take the first shot. The beings are temperamental and it won't take long for them to do away with us, even if it's the most trival of things. Our early fathers of Israel where promised a land that flowed with milk and honey. But the people had sinned by worshiping a false God for their lack of faith in their heavenly father and were commend to wander the desert for four generations. From then on, life would not be easy for them. Instead of walking into the land unscathed, they had to spill blood for it. God allowed their enemies to fall before them even though they were all giants, but the people of God prevailed because God let them. The same applies here. We want our true paradise, we're going to have to take it. *gets done on one knee* Look at me.

Yokuahshi: *manages to get eye contact with Rayne*

Rayne: Do you understand what I'm trying to get with you, Yokuhashi?

Yokuashi: Yes...You're insane!

Rayne: Hm...We're all abit insane, some would say 'more than others'. But insanity can't be greater than the other. Like sin and sin. All sin is the same. They have equality, something the human race lacks here.*a needle pops out of his cybernetic arm and he stabs Yokuhashi in the shoulder, then pulls it out*

Yokuashi: AAAHH!....What was that?!

Rayne: Your empowerment. The foreign gods label Echo a safe haven because they have us controlled. Obedient to their will. You will help us liberate ourselves and take this land that is ours. The gods will do what they will, but this will land will be delivered unto us. This is our promised land. Hajimeru!

Yokuhashi begins to yell in pain as an infuriating itch affects his body. He begins to fight the force keeping him down as he slowly grabs hold of his stitched up skin and begins to violently tear it of. Bit by bit he begins to tear off more and more of his skin all while bleeding and yelling angrily. Almost eight minutes have past and Yokuhashi is breathing tiredly as he is surrounded by bloody patches of his skin. He slowly looks at his hands and arms, showing his blood-covered exoskeleton body.

Rayne: From this point on you #1 of the False Ninja Project. We will begin your one year training in the Mental Virtuality Simulation. From here, you will test your instinct to see how long you're willing to survive. With this, I leave you your weapon. *he stretches out his hands and drops a tech sheath with a sword handle sticking out of it*

Yokuhashi: .....*slowly reach for it and pulls it towards him*

Rayne: Get up.

Yokuhashi: *slowly stands to his feet*

Rayne: We were, We are, We will be. What about you? *he fades away, leaving Yokuhashi alone*

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