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Field Of Broken Dreams
Author's note: This piece is actually more of nonfiction, only because i anime roleplay (rp) as Mikio Nao on KIK. I have been him for nearly five years and have created his story deeper than i could have ever imagined. Mikio Nao is now a part of my person and every day life. He is like the Korein (Core-Rain) to my soul. (Hint to the story.)
The endless blood-churning cry for help, such as a wounded animal begging for mercy.
I awoke to the sight of death- all around me. My people. My friends. My family- they all falling victim to the cold demand of steel that was a blade.
“S-smoke-!” The seven year old me cried through waking moments, a storm of coughs cutting me off in mid-sentence. “Mom! Dad! Where are you!?” Nothing could have ever prepared a seven year old boy for what was to come the very moments he stepped foot through his family’s covered door to the small hut. “Yaji…? Ellie…? Mom? Dad!?”
And then it hit me. I had entered The Field Of Broken Dreams.
I awoke that night in a cold sweat, the ever-encrypted screams burned deep into my memories. I could never shake the feeling of disarray, my confusion being the binding chains to my lacking memory. All that could be done was to fluff my pillow and roll back on to sleep and hope for a dream that would take me away from this nightmare in which I lived, but tonight was different. Tonight was more vivid. I could more so feel the cry of my mother and my father’s final words.-
“Stop it!” I screamed into the night, cringing at the re-surfacing words.
This pain went on for nearly every night for the past twenty years.
“Sweetheart, it’s time to get up. Mikio, get up sweetie.”
A slight shaking sensation…what was it?
“Wake up, Mikio.”
Meicari. My Wife. Why can’t I wake up?
“Dad, come on, get up!”
Gen…My oldest son…What’s going on?
“You will remember Mikio. We both remember that day, now don’t we?”
“Korein…get out of my head and back to where you belong.”
Korein. The demon I was born to shelter. A reigning Lord in his own kingdom, but it had been a long Twenty Seven years since that time.
I am Mikio Nao, and of bearing the Nao name, it comes along with a price.
All strong willed fighters of the Naos are bestowed with a Demon, a link to a randomly selected partner. Figures mine would be a stubborn one, eh? (I HEARD THAT!)
All natural born healers are bestowed with Angels, the purest being. Ellie; my Sister, and Meicari; my Wife- were the only two Angels among our small family.
As for the Demons; myself, my brother; Yajima- or as he prefers- Yaji, my oldest son; Gen, my second oldest son; Kyron, my youngest son; Sky, Ellie’s oldest son; Koji, Ellie’s second oldest son; Dai, her youngest son; Tsu, and Yai’s oldest son; Shadow.
As you can see- the Naos enjoy a brawl every now and then. What can I say? It’s…in my blood. Get it? Bloo- okay.
“Gah!” I sat up- gasping for air, my lungs cringing and lapping up the sweet nectar that was oxygen.
“I’ve been trying to wake you for an hour! How are you? Did the nightmares come again?” Meicari pried as usual.
“No, no, nothing abnormal, Korein just submerged and…I slipped up.” I lied.
“Mikio, you need to keep Korein down. You know how badly he damaged our house last time.”
As the stereotype goes, yes, Korein is destructive, but after being locked up for Twenty Seven years, who wouldn’t? I mean honestly, the poor guy only submerges once a month to say a few words before being sent back down by me.
“Dad, are you sure you’re okay?”
“I’m positive, Sky.” I smiled and rested my forehead upon the Seven year olds head. “Dad will always come through, I promise.”
“Good morning, Father.” Kyron, my second oldest son, the most formal.
“Good morning my little man.” I rustled Kyron’s snow white hair, chuckling as I poked his belly, the nine year old boy grumbling.
“Mikio, why don’t you go give Gen his birthday present? I’m sure it would mean ore coming from you.” Meicari said with a low tone so that Gen wouldn’t hear.
That’s right. It was Gen’s Twelfth birthday; the day he would begin his intermediate training.
As I should have explained- the Naos all receive special combat training to prevent the near-extinction from Twenty years ago to ever happen again.
Each Nao chooses one single weapon of their choice at age seven-
Gen, as well as Sky chose a Katana; a single sided blade, sharp enough to cut easily through steel.
Kyron however was different. He enjoyed creating his own arsenal of weapons and is currently training to become a blade master; a fighter with skill of mastery for each blade, only a select few are capable of this.
I looked at Meicari, she looking back with a loving smile, her long snow white hair billowing from the draft exhaled from the open window of our bedroom.
“Why do you say that, Meicari? Gen loves you just as much as he does me.”
“It’s just that he enjoys praise from you, that’s all.” Meicari said with a smile, her crystal clear voice ringing like a symphony.
“Maybe so, but I still think we should do it together.”
“No, Mikio. I want you to do it.”
I knew better than to protest against my Wife. The woman was as delicate as a flower, but had a way about her that just made you want to obey.
Maybe it’s just me.
I decided it best to at least put a pair of pants on before presenting my son with a present to spare him the embarrassment of a weird father.
I strode down the long hallway, passing door after door
You see, the Nao’s own a shared mansion- split between the oldest remaining Naos- Ellie, Yaji, and myself.
Being I am the oldest, the main wing was granted mine- the center of the entire mansion.
Each portion of my wing was divided among my children.
Being there was a total of sixty rooms in the entire Mansion- each of my siblings and I received twenty rooms a piece- that was again divided among the children and will someday be divided between their children.
As for Yaji, he received the Left Wing.
Ellie, the Right Wing.
Knock. Knock. Knock.
“Gen, it’s Dad, can I come in?”
“Ya Dad, it’s open.”
I opened the door smoothly, the early morning sun hitting my face with a gracious splash. “Happy Birthday, son. This is a little something that Kelly sensei- my Master gave to me.”
I was standing before my Master, head low to show submission to the near thirty year old man standing in front of a twelve year old Mikio.
“Happy Birthday, Mikio.”
I dropped to the floor mat and bowed, my nose touching the floor “Thank you, Sensei!”
“Rise son, today you are a man. As a man, you will receive a gift that was given to me by my very own Sensei- Master Draco- of the Azet clan.”
Kelly Sensei withdrew from his pocket a single ring, complimented by a glowing green emerald.
“What is it, Master?”
“This here is the limiter ring, one of the most effective ways to become a full-fledged fighter. Once worn, you will no longer be able to use any means of spiritual energy. You will become a normal man until the time that you have learned the full means of being a ninja.”
“Master…will the ring affect...him?”
“No Mikio. The ring will not affect your Demon, for he is no human. Should you choose to allow him to show, then so be it.”
The flashback clouded my mind.
Gen’s words echoed to deaf ears.
“He’s coming. He’s coming, Mikio.”
I snapped back.
“Huh? What happened?” I was dazed. What was Korein trying to tell me?
“It’s just that you keep spacing out. Are you alright?”
I smiled and patted my son’s head. “I’ll be fine, Gen.”
I handed Gen the pulsating ring, it reshaping itself to fit exactly on the fingers of the young boy.
“Should I put it on now, Dad?”
“It is entirely up to you, son. When you decide to put it on, you will not be able to access your energy until the time in which you become a fully enlightened melee fighter.”
Gen knit his brow, obviously deciding whether or not it was worth it.
“Just take your time, Gen. When you’re ready, you’ll know.”
A searing explosion made its way through the entire center body of the Mansion, sending a shockwave through each and every room, debris and rocks speckling the path that the wind nipped at.
“Gen- GET BACK!”
Another explosion was sent directly through Gen’s bedroom wall, the glass shattering and flying toward the small boy.
Thump. Thump. Th-Thump.
The glass hit a hard object, rippling in sound as blood began to trickle in the faintest manner, a low grunt escaping from the bleeding male.
The explosion had come from the training field known as-
“The Field of Broken Dreams.”
Coughing? Is it me?
“Gen!-“ I was cut off early. The coughing really was me.
“Dad, you’re bleeding!”
The broken glass shifted in my back, ripping the muscle further as I pulled each piece out.
Why doesn’t it hurt?
“Dad, will you be okay?” Gen clung to my right arm like a baby does to a rattle.
I tried responding- the words won’t make it out. My mouth opened, but the important element of speech was missing- the voice.
“Mikio, you have to listen closely, get everyone out of the mansion. The hooded man is here again.”
“Korein… Why can’t I talk to my son?”
“Because your memories are resurfacing as we speak. You remember, Mikio.”
Pain. I can feel it now.
“Gen, Get everyone and get out of here!”
“Gen, you have to listen to me! I need you to get everyone out of here!” Why do I feel so much apathy? “Will you help Dad and be the man of the house?”
Gen nodded with teary eyes. “What’s going to happen to you, Dad?”
“For God’s sake, Mikio, we’re running out of time! He’s going to kill everyone if they don’t leave now!” Korein screamed into my conscious.
With a smile I leapt through the empty window pane, the remaining glass that was lodged into my back- cracking and taking it’s leave from my person.
“Dad!” Gen cried as he looked out the window, tears streaming.
I landed with a hard thump, my body low to the ground, but not touching it.
“Silhouette.” I grunted as my eyes snapped open, peering at the man dressed completely in black, hatred looming over my emotion. “I swore that one day I would kill you, and here you are before me now.”
I need to relax my breathing or else I’ll be useless for the fight.
“Oh, Mikio, is that any way to treat an old friend?” Silhouette crossed his arms and leant to his left. “And don’t call me by my title, Mr. Sage.”
“Now now, we mustn’t be jealous of one another’s power, Kiyoshi Cosei.”
Silhouette glared, his arms unfolding and dropping to his side, fists balled to the point where veins were clearly visible through the skin-tight black body suit. “You know damn well that you don’t deserve the power you have!” He cackled insanely. “I have far surpassed you now!”
“Silhouette… you shouldn’t be this way. Your talents are wasted on the rivalry you created about me, Kelly Sensei told you this-“
“Shut your mouth! That man has no right to ever call himself my master! After I’ve finished with you, I’ll kill that bastard as well!”
The air began to alter. A faint glow began emitting from the body of Kiyoshi, the energy he gave off was cold and full of hatred.
“Well, Mikio? No doubt you can already sense my energy, right? That’s what you’ve always been best at, correct?”
Damn, it’s no good. He still remembers.
“Oh you fool! Don’t tell me that you’ve stopped training!” Silhouette screamed, he losing his hold on his sanity as his energy- along with the ground beneath his feet began to explode and exhale upward into the sky above, his eyes fixated on my body- he able to sense changes internally, such as movement.
“Mikio, you need my help! Silhouette’s energy is much larger than yours! Please, Mikio!”
My eyes began to slowly drop, my eyelids calmly closing shut as the whirlwind that had been kicked up began whipping at my body, small nicks forming from the lashing gust.
“This is my fight, Korein. I will not lose. For my family, for my friends, for my enemies who I have yet to beat- I will defeat Kiyoshi Cosei… Sage Gate One.”
In a mystifying explosion of an orange-red energy, I tapped into the Nao birthright that was the power of the Sage Gate- a legendary ability in which the body and energy of the Nao is fortified and strengthened tenfold, increasing until the peak of the first of the eight stages.
The ground itself roared and shook as if it were trying to escape the Earth to release its suffering.
The two energies- Kiyoshi’s and my own seemingly attacked one another with unrelenting force. The cold, dark blue of Kiyoshi versus the life-filled orange-red of myself, we both fighting with intent to kill.
Kiyoshi’s energy shifted abruptly.
An explosion rippled through the air in a distorted path, forcing the dirt to be kicked upward into our faces.
“Trying to hide your energy will do you no good, Kiyoshi.” I muttered only moments before his fist had collided with my right forearm, only to force him backward to a skidded halt. “Lesson number seven from Kelly Sensei: never underestimate your opponent.”
“Mikio, this dust storm is limiting my vision, I won’t be much help to you for the time being.”
“I’ll be fine, Korein. Some people never learn.”
Energy shift to the left.
Kiyoshi threw his foot through the air, aiming directly for the right side of my face, his body on the left. With one smooth motion, I spun low to the ground, catching Kiyoshi’s leg easily before shoving it into his chest, sending him into the ground hard, the ground shaking from the massive force of where I had grabbed his ankle and thrown him.
“This ends now!” Kiyoshi spat from among the dust cloud, his body beginning to emulate high frequencies in condensed energy. He easily visible by the energy waves emitted from his person, Kiyoshi threw his arms behind his body, the sheer speed enough to clear the dust entirely, revealing multiple bodies of Kiyoshi. “Shadow Ability: Re-creation!” Kiyoshi’s body seemed to pulsate with a far greater energy than before, each of the energies shaking quick enough due to the frequencies to solidify and create what seemed to be normal bodies, but they lacking the ability to freely roam. Each of the bodies were controlled directly by Kiyoshi- he revealing why he was named “The Silhouette.”
Kiyoshi and I were playing beneath Kelly Sensei’s elder tree, his family’s tree in which the head of each generation had gained a special entity form.
“Whoa!” Kiyoshi awed at the twelve year old Mikio’s fists as they burst to life with a deep fluorescent black.
“Shadow Ability: Shadow Fist!” I said boastfully.
“Mikio you have to teach me that!” The twelve year old Kiyoshi cried out.
“Well, okay, sure! Since we’re best friends, I’ll tell you how I do it.” Kiyoshi leapt into the air with glee. “Okay Kiyoshi, all you have to do is allow your energy to flow directly into your hands, just like Kelly Sensei taught us to do with our bodies when he showed us how to release certain energy. Each part of your body has an energy regulator, which is how we can do this. All you have to do is let the energy flow from your core, and into your fingertips.”
Kiyoshi nodded to confirm. “Shadow Ability-“ a dark energy formed inside Kiyoshi.
“Recreation,” The final word uttered before Kiyoshi had forever become engulfed in the Silhouette in which his soul had become.
Silhouette thrust downward, catching me off guard due to my flashback. My body skidded backward against the grainy field, clumps of dirt along with gravel staining and ripping the dark forest-green color of my outer Ninja Gear.
All I have to do is place my palm down on the ground and thrust up into the air.
“Mikio, no,” Korein warned.
I thrust upward, only to be caught by my ankle in mid-air by Kiyoshi, he jerking abruptly downward, tossing me like a rag doll into the hard ground.
“Mikio, level out,” The demon screamed to my aide.
I tumbled backward, landing hard on my feet, skidding backward. Before I could respond, a barrage of bodies attacked with tremendous force.
Energy readings: One to the North-West, three to the South, one below, one above, two on either side. No way out.
“Hyeh!” I grunted loudly as I released a wave of energy- knocking the clones of Silhouette downward long enough to console Korein. “So what’s the damage, Korein?”
“So far, you’ve allowed Kiyoshi to advance, all the while your flashbacks have been getting worse, even further, you’ve locked my powers down so your Sage Gate energy is degraded quite a bit, don’t forget that that power derives from me partially. If you keep giving him openings to attack, he’s going to kill both of us, and if that happens, your ass is mine.” I could feel as Korein began shifting himself, trying to force his energy through. “Damnit kid, let me help!”
“On my mark, release all that you have, Korein. Okay?”
I Closed my eyes, mustering a massive energy buildup- challenging the release of Kiyoshi’s. The earth became still and nostalgic at this point.
“Now.” A slight whisper escaped my mouth, signaling that it was time to take the offence.
“Even in our darkest hour- we can find strength in the sunrise.” – Jurei Nao, Father of Mikio.
The constant flow of life through our bodies that shapes who we are, who we will be, and more importantly what we will be.
Throughout his life, Mikio has found himself more of an Energy Manipulator.
There are many varieties of manipulators, and beyond that, there are sub-class manipulators; such as what you have already seen- the Shadow Abilities that Kiyoshi and Mikio both use.
The definition of an energy manipulator is simply;
Any being (Human or not) that can alter,
move, stretch, or bend the energy to his or her will.
As you have seen already, Mikio is of a very specified sub-class that can not only feel energy around his body, but actually see it. This type of skill is known as “Sight,” the specification of Mikio’s Sight is energy.
Kiyoshi as well possesses the power of Sight, but his under-class (class below sub-class) is in the physical category, where body movement is predicted.
As we have seen, energy derives from emotions, the stronger the emotion, the more energy buildup. On the contrary though, the lesser control over one’s body could either result in one of two things,
One: the energy could prove too strong for the user as a result of improper training, destroying the body from the inside out.
Two: the energy could become tainted, or corrupt and inevitably turn even the purest of hearts evil by a simple characteristic of jealousy, hate, distrust, or misguidance, such as what happened to Kiyoshi.
All energies are of course dormant when not being used, but once triggered by a proper use; such as Mikio or Kiyoshi, the result could be catastrophic.
Each individual person’s energy has a different power/purpose. For some, they cannot make their energies clearly known, only because their energies flow directly into their limbs, then muscles and eventually their bones. This is known as Physical Energy. An example of this would be the Sage Gate. This ability is of course only used by the Naos, but it is one of the very few abilities that require both Physical Energy and regular energy. The physical aspect is that of the bodily strength magnifying itself tenfold. As you can see, the Naos focus souly on Energy Manipulation and Hand To Hand Combat (HTHC).
Before we return to turn to the fight, allow me to explain Kiyoshi’s ability, “Re-creation.”
Kiyoshi was raised by the same master; Kelly Raven, until the age of twelve. Kiyoshi being the exact same age as Mikio meant that one of the two would fall victim to an evil darker than black; Silhouette.
As you know, Mikio created the Shadow Ability, but Mikio’s first ability was Shadow Fist, an attack that covers the fists in black fames and copies moves instantly, repeating movements twelve times, hence the name; “Shadow Fist.”
“Re-creation,” on the other hand, takes the energy buildup of Kiyoshi and expands itself like limbs of his body, creating what are known as “Shadow Images,” the exact replicas of Silhouette, and to the untrained eye; is him. “Re-creation,” was a move meant to counter Mikio’s Sage Gate energy buildup, but, soon after the emergence of “Re-creation,” Mikio developed Sight, followed by Kiyoshi’s development of Sight, the first edge that Kiyoshi had finally had on Mikio.
Mikio’s energy flowed like a river of life, it pulsating through the man with snow white hair.
“No! Your energy shouldn’t be this high! I’ve watched you from afar and to no extent is this kind of power able to lie dormant!” Kiyoshi screamed; a looming tone of hatred, speckled with terror.
“I believe it’s now time for me to end this, Kiyoshi.” I surged forward, trails of shadow images trailing seconds behind due to the sheer speed that seemed to fade away with the beating sun. I thrust forward with my body, hearing as the sound barrier shook and finally exploded with the wind behind my back as I hit mock 1. “A shadow...,” I reached my hand into the cold darkness as I allowed my body to become one with it, the atoms of my body breaking down until the point where my body had physically vanished, a backdraft rippling forward against Kiyoshi, a force that unrelentingly whipped him, throwing him off of his feet; disregarding his block against it. A low chuckle escaped my throat as my body re-formed itself from the under looking view of the airborne Kiyoshi. “This ends now! Mikio Nao Barrage!” With yet another blast of energy, my body began to emulate a quick vibration, seemingly increasing my bodily speed even further.
A gasp loomed over Kiyoshi, showing the fear that had crept over his body that paralyzed from the realization of what was to come.
A prolonged yell exited my lungs as I threw a single punch up into Kiyoshi’s back, initiating the barrage to start.
With the enhance speed, I began a whirlwind of punches, forcing Kiyoshi’s body to stutter and convolt quickly, but seemingly out of rhythm with the punches being thrown.
Kiyoshi gasped as I halted my onslaught, his body continuing due to the following after images that rang his body like a bell.
“I’m not… done!” I screamed with a fiery passion, appearing above Kiyoshi’s body, throwing my fist downward into his stomach with more force that a semi-truck “Mi-Ki-o,” I screamed as I threw three carefully aimed punches into Kiyoshi’s body, “Na-o,,” one more punch, followed by a front flip carrying a downward heel-kick, throwing Kiyoshi into the ground hard, the ground shattering under the man. “Barrage!” I flew downward, an energy mass in the center of my hand, aiming for Kiyoshi’s stomach. The energy glowing in my palm was as bright as the sun in the sky, canceling out any other light until the world itself turned white except for Kiyoshi and I. “Hyah!”I forced my palm downward only five feet from Kiyoshi, the dust storm clearing completely as time itself seemed to pause.
“You are not a killer, Mikio.” Kelly Sensei spoke into my thoughts. I could see the terror in Kiyoshi’s eyes as the time-frozen man screamed onto deaf ears of a still moment. I looked down at my left hand, the energy had already begun to release and surge around my arm, the silver colored blast seemingly exhaled my hand, the only visible point was the shadow of my extended arm. “You are not a killer.”
The heart monitor beeped in a blood churning manner.
Beep. Beep. Beep.
I looked up to the boy that lay dying in the hospital bed, the flowers in my hands had already been crushed at this point.
“Come on brother… I know you can make it,” said Kyron; yelling into the face of his elder brother; Gen.
“This is no memory… what is this? This hasn’t happened, so why am I having a flashback?!”
“Mikio, if you let Silhouette live right now, this is the inevitable furture,” Korein said, a melancholy tone hindering his voice. “If you spare him, the second inner gate will open and your entire family will fight to protect one another. During the fight, you will lose Meicari, Sky, and Yaji. Meicari and Sky will be surrounded by demonic shadows and eventually, overpowered and murdered. Yaji will die shielding you, but I cannot be certain of the cause. Gen is hospitalized and dying slowly for defeating the entire army after your energy had been depleted, leaving you… and I dead. Gen will become the family head, but die soon after.”
I could feel the tears streaming down my cheeks, their hot, salty feeling making me worsen with grief for the near future. “This can’t be! I would never let this happen!”
“Trust me, Mikio… you don’t. You fight for five weeks straight against a being who does not rest, before running yourself to death. The only reason the others survive is because a being merges with Gen, his demon form; Kantanto… my second in command.”
“Korein… Why are you doing this? Why are you showing this to me?!” I fell to my knees, the pain hurting too deep.
“Mikio, you and I are one in the same. These people mean just as much to me as they do you. Their deaths crust me more so than my own comrades,” his voice was low. I could hear the sadness as the demon bowed his head. “But, this doesn’t have to be.”
I looked up from the ground in which I clutched, “What?”
“If you can kill that man now, this can all be avoided.” The heavens began to chant their battle cry, a full string cortex playing in a tone that hinted a historic battle was about to emerge. “If you can kill Kiyoshi Cosei, this world will not fall to darkness, the Naos will survive!”
Kiyoshi held his arms perpendicular in an “X” shape, blocking against the energy blow, my hands grasping his arms tightly as the heavens continued their battle chant.
“Your time in this world, Kiyoshi… is done!” I spread his arms wide open, pulling his body to mine before my knee hit him hard in the chest, followed by my knuckles colliding hard with his jawbone, my opposite hand clutching his throat as I lifted him into the air. “I will never let you threaten the ones I love! Divine Power: Sage Gate Torment!”
With a mystical emulation, my right hand exploded with a great blue aura, a ball of energy the size of a baseball forming as a vortex formed from the spinning energy mass, swirling from the ball and out horizontally.
“What is this power?!” Kiyoshi clutched my left wrist with his hands tightly.
“This is my hidden power, the one that was meant to defeat you,” the Earth seemed to pause in anticipation, “your life ends now!”
I thrust my hand into Kiyoshi’s chest slowly, forcing the man to feel the turmoil that I had felt all my life, the pain, the sadness, the hurt, the letdown, and most of all, the acknowledgment of losing a friend.
“No! This can’t be the end! I can’t be defeated by you-,” Kiyoshi was cut off short, his screams echoing to the whipping wing that gargled in his throat as the skin quickly broke. His terrified cries crept into my ears as my palm began to slowly push its way into his chest, blood being thrown at random as his skin dissolved under the force of the catastrophic energy that exhaled from my hand. I could feel as Kiyoshi’s energy pushed back against mine with a weak, useless effort. Kiyoshi was dying, and there was no stopping it. My fist was only inches from his faintly beating heart, creeping closer as my energy penetrated the bone and flesh like a spear. “Free me from this Earth, Mikio! Let me feel the glorious pain of death! I’ll only come back stronger than before, Hinatai told me so!”
I paused momentarily, remembering that Kiyoshi had once tried to merge himself with an angel, without realizing that it was an Archanglel. “Kiyoshi, you didn’t!”
He began to gargle with a devious smile, the blood making its way into his throat as he was only moments from death.
I screamed with powerful confidence, thrusting my left hand’s palm onto the back of my right hand, increasing the power enough to break Kiyoshi’s energy.
Kiyoshi fell to his knees, leaning backwards as the force of the energy pushed him down. I screamed once more, louder than before as I pushed a final time, forcing Kiyoshi’s body to disintegrate into the wind, the body slowly burning from the inside out, forcing the darkness that surrounded Kiyoshi’s heart away, leaving him the ability to die with the light.
I withdrew my hands, the residual energy sparking all around me as bits and pieces of rock and debris fell back down to its environment.
I looked down at the near 100 foot wide crater that I had created, the only sign that Kiyoshi had ever existed being pieces of black fabric.
I felt as the drain fell over me like a blanket of fog.
“Mei… car… i,” I fell forward into the rubble, allowing the exhaustion to wash over me as I slipped into unconsciousness.