Another blade in a second

HotelKatz

Well-Known Member
Been a long time since I've typed a chapter for this. I hope that writing will somehow destroy the writer's block I have for planning any chapters beyond 24.

A little bit before the fight began, Keitaro asked, “Does anyone know of the Terms of the Duel?”

“Yeah, Tsuruko told me. If Motoko wins, she stays. If she loses, she goes back to Kyoto,” Haruka said as she lit up a cigarette.

“Tomoko made a change to the match then,” Keitaro replied, not looking away as the fight began down below.

“To what? And does Motoko know about it?” Haruka asked, some concern entering her voice.

Keitaro's eyes slightly narrowed. 'Motoko gets in trouble and Haruka shows some concern...' “Tomoko said that she'll try and talk Motoko into becoming my retainer if she loses...”

“You're joking, right? No way Motoko would accept those terms!” Kitsune said with a chuckle.

“Nope, he's telling the truth and Motoko agreed,” Su said while wearing some odd-looking headphones and holding a megaphone towards the fight.

Kitsune slowly turned towards Keitaro as she said, “Yeesh.... You think you know a guy....”

“For the record, I only agreed because Tsuruko and Tomoko told me that if Motoko goes back, she would get into trouble because of her actions towards me! I wasn't even allowed to fight alongside Motoko!” Keitaro loudly said, surprising the others with the amount of anger in his voice. It wasn't anywhere near Motoko's or Naru's, but still enough to make the others step away from him.

“If you say so...” Kitsune quietly muttered with disbelief in her tone, too low for anyone to hear.

No one else spoke much, than than a cheer or two for Motoko to win for the rest of the match.

-oOo-

Before Motoko could get up, Tomoko held the tip of her bokken under Motoko's chin and asked, “Will you surrender?”

Motoko glared as her body tensed up to roll away... Until Tomoko's bokken started to glow. At this distance, most of the attacks that Motoko thought that Tomoko could do would either really hurt or worse.

“I... I surrender...” Motoko said.

Tomoko said nothing as she looked Motoko in the eyes. After a few moments, Tomoko's bokken stopped glowing as she put it away at her side.

“And now you will become Mr. Urashima's retainer. I will stay here to ensure that you will keep your end of the deal...” Tomoko said before she began to walk away.

“And now I am at the whims at the hands of a pervert...” Motoko muttered as a look of terror on her face started to form.

Tomoko seemed to overhear that. She paused as she said, “If it helps any, he was against this. He only agreed when I told him that some of our relatives would try to use the events here to remove you from being the Shinmei-Ryu heir.”

Motoko started to get up as she stared at Tomoko. “Are you serious?”

“Yes. And your actions towards the Urashima heir could even have you banished,” Tomoko replied.

“You mean that he-” Motoko asked, nearly falling down in surprise.

“Yes, Hina made him the heir, though I believe he doesn't know it... yet,” Tomoko answered before she walked away.

Motoko was unable to speak as the thoughts of how close she came to losing the position of being the Shinmei-Ryu heir came, even though she sometimes either didn't want it or resented it.

-oOo-
As the group made their way down to where Motoko was, Kitsune thought to herself, 'Better make sure Motoko doesn't do anything stupid before she cheers up.... hot springs it is then...'


Kitsune grabbed Su's shoulder and walked slower than the others. Su looked back with a curious glance. Kitsune mouthed the words 'We need to talk'.

Once they had enough space to talk without being overheard by the others, Kitsune said, “Su, let's take Motoko to the hotsprings...”

“You sure about that? Wouldn't she want some time to be by herself?” Su asked.

“Look, we need to let her know that we're supporting her. If we let her go off alone, she's liable to do something to herself that she might regret!' Kitsune answered with a slight glare at Su.

“And if we don't give her some space, she'll keep pushing us away,” Su replied.

Kitsune opened her mouth to make another retort, but another thought came up. “Su, what if I give you some Bananas later? I think about..... six or seven?”

Su glared at Kitsune in a childish way. “You're ebil... “

Kitsune smiled as they then caught up with the others.

“Motoko, is everything alright?!” Shinobu asked with tears forming. Tsuruko and Keitaro were keeping their distance. Both wanted to go over and help, but knew that their presence would set Motoko off.

“I'm... I'm fine...” Motoko weakly replied.

Sarah then noticed Su and Kitsune catching up. Once the inventor came close enough, Sarah asked.,“What were you two talking about?”

Su was about to reply, but Kitsune covered her mouth. Kitsune said, “Just something that might cheer up Motoko.”

Sarah stared at Kitsune for a few moments before she said, “If you say so...”

“Hey, Motoko! Let's go relax in the hot springs!” Kitsune said, grabbing a hold of one of Motoko's arms before she started to drag the swordswoman off.

“I-I don't think I need-” Motoko uttered, staggering a bit as she was being dragged.

“Trust me, it'll help,” Kitsune said.

-oOo-

Kitsune and Su were making sure that Motoko was going to the hot springs. Motoko seemed a tad listless as she was sorta-dragged. Shinobu and Sarah followed along, but were keeping their distance. Keitaro followed them back to the Inn, but decided to go and spend some time at the front door to ponder his situation.

“C'mon, Motoko, As bad as a pervert as he sometimes was, he comes through in the end for us!” Kitsune said, as she , Su, Motoko, Sarah, and Shinobu entered the Hot springs. “Who knows? Maybe he'll find a way to get you outta.... Why do we have only have half the hot springs?”

Su hit herself on the head, playfully sticking out her tongue. “Half-guilty! Tomoko asked me to fix the hotsprings to how they were when the place was an inn!”

Kitsune's face went into a snarl as she childishly stomped the ground. “First she enters and wrecks the peace here, then she makes Motoko into Keitaro's slave, then she takes half the springs away!? She needs to pay!”

Shinobu was about to say something, but the realization that she'd be sharing the same hot springs as Keitaro at the same time came to her mind, making her a bit conflicted about their share of the hot springs being reduced to half.

“Kitsune...” Motoko uttered, getting the angry fox's attention.

“You agree with me Motoko, don't you?” Kitsune asked, grabbing Motoko's hand in hops of some form of solidarity.

“Let's just soak. Most of the room was unused before...”Motoko said, slipping away from Kitsune to rinse her body.

'Thought for sure she'd support me... Maybe Su was right about leaving her alone for a little bit.... Too late for that now...' Kitsune thought with a glower as she and the other girls went to rinse their bodies before entering the hot springs.

As the girls were rinsing their bodies, Sarah asked, “So whatcha gonna do, Motoko?”

“Serve Urashima as his retainer until Tomoko says otherwise. Those were the conditions of the duel...” Motoko muttered in a depressed tone as she finished rinsing and began to head into the hot springs.

“Yeesh, don't be so chipper about it,” Kitsune muttered.

“I meant something else other than that...” Sarah said with a bit of a glare aimed at Motoko's back as she, Su and, Shinobu also headed into the Hot springs.

“Hope that Urashima allows me to still train? That he allows me to keep my clothes on most of the time?” Motoko asked, a little bit of anger seeping into both her voice and expression as she and the others sat down.

'That's a bit of an improvement, but gotta be careful of how one of our resident hotheads react,' Kitsune thought as she finished rinsing and headed into the Hot springs.

“I think S-sempai would allow you to still train...” Shinobu said.

“And there's no point in him trying to keep you naked. He probably already sees enough of you, Kitsune and Naru naked when he walks in on you all,” Su said as she leapt into the hot springs to make a big splash.

“Yeah, as dumb as the dork is, he isn't gonna do anything to keep you pissed off for a long time,” Sarah finished as she slipped in.

“That's what you think...” Motoko grumbled.

'Aw crap, she's using her anger to cope...' Kitsune thought. “Look, even though you are gonna go through with this, isn't there some sorta rules or something to protect you in case he gets outta hand?”

Motoko went silent for a little bit to ponder that. She looked at Kitsune with an angry glare that was slowly dimmering as she said, “Perhaps... But Tomoko would either step in to protect me or to contact my sister or The Shinmei-Ryu...”

“Do you want one of us to? It'll help keep your pride and if Shinobu or Su does it, their concern proably would be better accepted by your sis...” Kitsune asked.

After a few more moments, Motoko's reply as she looked down at the water was, “I'll think about it...”

Kitsune nodded as she thought, 'That's all I wanted...'

“Hey! What about me?!” Sarah loudly asked as she hit the water in a little bit of anger.

“No offense, but you tend to give off a bit of a mischievous feeling and Tsuruko might see it as you trying to get our landlord in trouble,” Kitsune answered.

Sarah's response was to splash Kitsune. Kitsune slightly glared at Sarah before a smile appeared on her.

“Two can play that game...” Kitsune said before she splashed Sarah back, hitting Su as well.

“Hey!” Su uttered before she and Sarah splashed Kitsune, as well as hitting Motoko by accident. Motoko was surprised for a moment before a childish grin faintly appeared on her face. She and Kitsune looked at each other for a moment before they nodded. The two of them then splashed the three others, thus officially starting off a water war where everyone was splashing each other.

They all frozen when they heard the faint pit-pat of someone stepping on stone. Looking over at the entrance, Kitsune and Motoko saw the two people they did not want to see leave the door.

“Is it alright if we join you?” Tsuruko asked. Kitsune noted that Tomoko seemed like that she had been forced to come, judging by the reluctant look on her face and the way she was trying to avoid looking at everyone.

Kitsune was about to say no, but she was surprised at who quickly spoke up.

“You may, just don't cause any trouble...” Motoko said seeming a bit calmer from the splash war.

“I thank you, Motoko. Tomoko here was worried that you wouldn't want us here,” Tsuruko said, seeming a tiny bit relieved, going by how her shoulders relaxed a little bit.
 

HotelKatz

Well-Known Member
I'm starting to think that I should throw out the previous plans for future chapters of this fic, as those plans stray from the intended focus, which should be Motoko, Tomoko, and Keitaro.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1c0GPHri9OrJWbnR5g3O71OSMLGWHCKCLvhSPysncVmo/edit
 
I have to say I think your doing a good job with the fic, its got all the necessary plot and the characters a very much in canon as they can be. :yay:
 

HotelKatz

Well-Known Member
Thanks! I'm still writing chapter 8. Unlike the last chapters, it isn't a flashback chapter.
 
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