By Walter Nwaokolo
“An assassin, after me!?!?”
“Do not concern yourself my Lord, me and Ayame will do everything in our power to protect you.”
“And Princess Kiku.”
All of Lord Gohda’s subjects including Rikimaru and Ayame had gathered in Lord Gohda’s main living chamber.
“Tell me Rikimaru, did you see the face of the assassin?”
“No.she had pinned me down face first into the ground so I could never catch a glimpse of her, all I know is that she is a woman and she said her name was Black Lotus.”
Lord Gohda shook his head.
“It seems I shall never have peace, I lost my wife and nearly the castle, I will not lose my daughter.”
The young toddler, Princess Kiku stood beside Lord Gohda.
“Don’t worry Lord Gohda, you’re in good hands, we’ll find this Black Lotus and kill her before she can do harm to anyone, I swear my life on it.”
As day turned to night the security around Gohda Castle was strongly enforced, Rikimaru stayed on the ground with most of the guards while Ayame stayed inside the castle in Kiku’s bedroom with Princess Kiku.
“I’m scared, Ayame.”
“Don’t be scared, Kiku. I’m here to protect you against anyone who tries to harm you.”
“I miss my mother, my father said she went up to heaven.”
“Yes, she’s in heaven where everything is good and peaceful and no one ever dies and she’ll always be there waiting for you to come up there one day.”
“Will you go to heaven, Ayame?”
“I don’t know Kiku. I don’t know.”
All of a sudden, Ayame hears the clatter of swords falling and small groans coming from the rooftop.
“Kiku, whatever you do, just stay here, okay?”
Ayame hurries over to Kiku’s window and opens it, she uses her grappling hook to grapple the main top roof of the castle, her body is thrown up as the rope from the grappling hook retracts and brings Ayame to the edge of the main top castle rooftop, she grips the edge and pulls herself onto the rooftop, she sees the carnage of the dozens of dead bodies of castle soldiers that were once guarding the rooftop, Ayame saw a figure hiding in the shadows of the rooftop.
“Who are you intruder!”
A slight chuckle came from the figure as it emerged from the shadows revealing the curved robust figure of a young female Ninja that looked just a few years older than Ayame, she wore a black shinobi shozoku (traditional Ninja garment) that covered her whole body except for her hands which were exposed, she had face mask/mouth guard that was similar to that of Rikimaru’s, her black hair had been kept in a tight ponytail and her cobalt blue eyes seemed to glister in the moonlight.
“So you wish to know who I am, do you?
“I am worst nightmare, I am your Grim Reaper, I am.the Black Lotus.”
“So you are the mysterious Black Lotus Rikimaru said about, at least I get to see you in person, prepare to die!!”
Ayame unsheathed her twin Kodachi and got in fighting stance, the Black Lotus acted as if nothing had happened.
“So the boy told of me after all, in case you don’t know I’m here to kill Lord Gohda but I’m gonna torture him a little bit before I kill him, first I will start by killing all those close to him and my first victim will be his daughter!!”
“You dare touch her and I will-“
“Save your threats, for your words are useless unless you can actually kill me, which you wont.”
Black Lotus pulled out a long Nodachi from a sheath that was strapped behind her back, the sword was in fact very beautiful in craftsmanship but the taint of blood on the blade severely detracted its beauty.
“Are you ready to taste my sword?”
“I will fight you but you wont kill me!!”
The two female Ninja charged at each other and began their bout, Ayame was having a hard time finding an opening for an attack of her own for the Black Lotus was surprisingly faster than even Ayame, Ayame held her breath and took a stabbing slash of her sword aimed at Black Lotus’s chest, Black Lotus evaded Ayame’s attack by doing a front flip over Ayame and kicking Ayame in her back as she landed. The force of the kick hurled Ayame to the roof tiles but using her speed Ayame was able to get up quickly before Black Lotus could pin her down.
“Good, you have managed to survive this long, none of my enemies could ever stand at least 2 seconds against me, but enough playing around with you, it’s time for your demise.”
“Playing around! You mean you have just been toying with me the whole time!!”
“I could of killed you easily 2 minutes ago, but you and your friend are such good playmates that I had to keep you alive, for a while. So once I’m done with you I’ll get your friend, Rikimaru, next.”
“NO YOU WONT!!!!”
Ayame charged head on at Black Lotus; Black Lotus used the black steel of her hilt and hit Ayame’s stomach right in the navel. Ayame coughed up blood as she thrown back from the impact of Black Lotus’s attack.
“Hurts, doesn’t it?”
(BLACK LOTUS): (*scoffs*)
“Yes, I am.”
Black Lotus began beating down Ayame mercilessly.
Rikimaru heard the sounds of cries and blows coming from the rooftop, it sounded like two people were up there, Rikimaru concentrated to find out the ki of who the two people were, he recognized one of them as Ayame the other was anonymous which could only mean.
Rikimaru used his grappling hook to grappled upon the main top roof of Gohda Castle, his body was thrown up by the rope retraction and he grabbed the edge of the main top rooftop he pulled himself onto the rooftop, he saw dead bodies of rooftop guards and then he saw Ayame who had beaten down to bloody pulp, Rikimaru ran beside her, her usually cute face was mangled with blood and bruises, he checked for her breathing, she was still breathing meaning that she was still alive, but barely.
“Ayame, if only I had been here to help you, I-“
Rikimaru noticed a letter on Ayame’s chest, it was written in rather fair Kanji characters, it said:
BY NOW IF YOU ARE READING THIS
YOU SHOULD HAVE ALREADY SAW
YOUR FRIEND, IF YOU THINK YOU
CAN POSSIBLY TAKE ME ON THAN JUST
YOU TRY. I HAVE TAKEN PRINCESS KIKU
AND I WILL BE WAITING FOR YOU IN
CHERRY HILL TEMPLE, IF YOU ARE NOT
HERE IN THE NEXT 2 HOURS I WILL
KILL THE PRINCESS. THE BLACK LOTUS
“There is going to be bloodshed tonight.”