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« BtF - Part IX

Before the Fire
Written by: FedeTkd
Published:
Part X: Unfortunate

BtF - Part XI »



Nikaho, Akita Prefecture, February 16th, 2022

Shun remain looking at them, revealing in his face anger and sadness at the same time. Miya appears just behind of him without saying a word, but he understands the entire situation and doesn't interfere.

“Shun…I…we…”

Shun he looks down.

Shun: “For how long?...How long how you two been shitting our relationship!? HOW LONG!?!?!?!?!?”

He raises his sight with his face full of anger towards both of them.

Sakura: “Shun…I…”

“SHUT THE FUCK UP. YOU SPEAK!”

He approaches Shun, tiring to not let him getting to close to her.

“Shun, I'm so...”

“DO NOT SAY IT! DO NOT FUCKING SAY IT. HOW LONG HOW YOU BEING HIDING THIS FROM ME?! HOW!?”

He looks down for a moment.

"Two weeks.”

“That's why you distance yourself from me?!”

“I couldn't look to you on the eye and lie...Not without regrets."

"And still, you did it!"

"Shun...you're my bro…”

“NO MORE! BROTHERS DON'T BETRAY LIKE YOU DO!”

Sakura runs to him

“Shun please hear u-"

He slaps her with the back on his hand on the face making her fall to the floor, but her head hits strongly the edge of the desk. Her eyes fell numb and the rest of her body fell to the ground, unconscious.

That makes the Blue Ronin extremly angry.

“DON'T YOU DARE TO TOUCH HER!”

“I CAN SAY THE SAME TO YOU!”

Shun advances on hi with his Shinai on hand, rising the wooden blade and lowering it as fast as he can. His adversary raises his left arm a bit stretched, and the blade just clashed and slipped through the side of his arm. With his empty arm, he pushes him back with his opened hand directly to the chest making him step back.

Miya attempts to get nearer to him.

“STAY FROM THIS! THIS IT BETWEEN HIM AND ME!”

Miya, reluctantly, stays his hand.

Shun advances on his former friend for a second time with a horizontal attack, forcing now to him to back off. His shinai blade was behind Shun, so he'd need to get pass him. Nothing easy considering Shun knew this. The Green Ronin makes other horizontal powerful slash which nearly hitting him. He backs off again, but his back clashes against the wall. He had nowhere to run. Shun raises his blade and makes it go downwards again, as he blocks with both arms in an X, entering a briefly struggle with his adversary, looking eyes as their breath was heavy. They remain for a moment doing this, as he was slowly succumbing to Shun’s wrath state but finally he manages to place a front kick right on the chest, forcing him back once again. He again comes trying to thrust the blade to his gut. The Blue Ronin can nearly avoid it moving his entire body laterally, as the blade was inches from his side. But in that moment he approaches rapidly and delivers a hit with the side of his arm to his friend's body, sending him to the ground. Shun releases his blade and grabs his head, locking it with his body, making both of them fall to the ground.

They end in front of each other in the floor. Shun rapidly places a punch directly to his face, making him roll and end with his back on the ground. He sits on top of him and tries to choke him out with both of his hands. They struggle for a second time as he tries to quit his hands from his neck, but after trying for some moments he also punches him in the face, and the impact makes him release the neck of his former friend. In the meantime, he manages to stand up and places a double strong kick to the chest, forcing now his Shun to the ground again. They look at each of them bleeding for a short while, but in he end they separate and grab their blades.

“I NEVER WANTED TO FELL WHAT I DO FOR HER! I NEVER WANTED ANY OF THIS!!!”

Without the will to speak to him, Shun attacks. He falls back, but the power of the strike hits a lighted lamp, braking it. Fire started consuming the wooden desk, as it rapidly advances through all woods or potentially inflammable thing on his room. The smoke alarm is set off, as all the students start to come out the dormitories.

They continue to fight nevertheless. Shun couldn't forgive him, neither he could stop him. Miya continues to stare to the fight as Sakura remained laying on the ground unconscious of what was happening. Shun raises his blade clashing it with his and as it slices down the edge, he punches him back, but Shun attacks by the other side. He could parry and afterwards, tries to hit his face, but Shun parries and the forces him backwards thrusting the blade to his chest. Shun attacks again, since now the Blue Ronin's back back was against the wall again. However, he quickly kicks him back with other frontal kick, but the blade continues on his path and hits part of his forehead. He could barely parry that move. If he hadn't, he could've lost an eye. Miya realizes the fight was already madness. He rushes and manages to grab both of his arms by the back.

“THAT'S ENOUGH!”

“MIYA NOT GET INTO THIS!” the Blue Ronin shouts.

Shun manages to place his left elbow to his ear, partially knocking him and leaving him stunned. Shun attacks him with a downwards slash, but he manages to parry the blade. The Blue Ronin then changes the momentum and raises his sword to hit Shun it the face. But the Green Ronin manages to parry, placing his bade diagonally towards his right. The Blue Ronin's blade rapidly slices along Shun's, as then the tip of the blade clashes with the right side of Miya’s face, who was still stunned. The blade rapidly slashes downwards; from his forehead, across the eye and his right cheek also. Miya starts to bleed and scream in pain. He steps back clashing his back with his friend’s wardrobe. The power of the momentum suddenly turns back on him as the entire heavy thing felt to his back. He falls with his chest to the ground with him. He continues to place his hand on his face and tries to endure the pain. He couldn't get out of there alone.

They separate after this.

Both of them are tired, wounded and they can barely breathe because of the smoke, but especially Shun was on a bad state. They stare briefly t each other as he starts braking first braking silence.

“I'm sorry Shun just know that!”

“Liar!”

“END THIS! NOBODY WANTS THIS! WE CAN BOTH DIE BY THIS! YOUR LUNGS ARE STILL SENSITIVE! TO CAN'T BREATH SMOKE, REMEMBER!?

“FUCK THAT! TRAITOR!”

Shun attacks him but he parries the thrust of the blade and lowering his entire body, he places a hard thrust with his blade directly to the gut. The power of the thrust makes Shun lose all the air on his lungs and forces him to fall down to his knees. He briefly looks to his now former friend, before thrusting his blade through his belly with his remaining strength. Shun falls to the ground with both of his hands on his belly and passes out.

The Blue Ronin falls to his knees for a second, breathes for a second and regains a bit of oxigin. The smoke was already gathering on the room and great part of hit was already burning, including the entire desk, the wooden bookshelves, the books on them and the bed was about to share the same fate. He approaches Miya, still under the desk.

“Are you alright?!”

“I've been better.” He removes his hand from his face.

He shocks in that moment looked. Miya had a deep scar on the right side of his face, from his forehead, across his eye and it ending near the end of his cheek. He was bleeding a lot, but it seems that he could afford it somehow.

“I…I'm sorry.”

“Doesn't matter. Help me out of here!”

He makes an effort to raise the wardrobe but it was too heavy and Miya couldn't help him. He makes a second try stronger, but that pull makes himself aware that he can't raise the wardrobe. No matter how hard he tried.

For a second he looks back and realizes both Shun and Sakura unconscious on the ground right at his back, while Miya remains on the ground shouting at him to help him as the fire rises. He looks to his best friend he had betrayed and then to the girl he loved. He thinks for a moment, and realizes what he had to do...

He gets up and looks to Miya.

“I'm sorry Miya.”

He runs and grabs Saruka, placing her on his right shoulder, as he also grabs Shun in the same way, but with his left shoulder. He manages to get up even with all the weight both bodies meant. He looks back at Miya for a second, as Miya notices what he was about to do. “NO!”

He begins to leave.

“NO YOU CAN'T FUCKING DO THIS TO ME!”

He knows he'd regret that all his life. But if he stayed, all of them would had died.

He had no choice.

He continues walking and leaves.

“NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” Miya shouts from the room.

He runs across the dormitories as fast as he can with both bodies, until he doesn't longer hear Miya’s voice. Getting down the stairs, he opens the door, noticing every student outside the place looking towards him. He kneels leaving both bodies softly to the ground, as all his friends outside of the place appeared.

He succumbs to exhaustion immediately afterwards.

---

The Blue Ronin wakes up slowly.

He sees white light tubes on the ceiling, which dazzle him until he places his hand to block the light. One he could take the dazzling light, he looks around, realizes he was on a roon of a hospital shortly afterwards a doctor appears out place.

“You're awake already?!”

He sits donw on the bed.

"Easy champ. You've been through a lot. You had a lot of smoke inside your lungs. The only reason you're here is because of adrenalin."

“I'm fine. Where're my friends? Are they alright?”

“They are...”

“Where're they?!”

“On other rooms. But you should right now care about yourself. You spent like two hours unconscious.”

“Fuck that. Take me them! NOW!” He shouts.

“Well alright. Follow me.”

The doctor gets out of the room and he swiftly follows, after putting on his jacket.

“How did we get here?”

“An ambulance arrived shortly afterwards alongside the firefighters to the dormitories of Nihago Middle School. You three where brought here that way.”

“Wait! Three?!”

“Yes. Why?”

He grabs the doctor by the neck.

“Why there was a forth! One of my best friends was there! Where is he!?”

“No one else got out of there. The rest of the students were already out. You three were the last to come out...No one else came out and no bodies were found.”

He looks down, really sad.

He may caused the death of longest-time friend. All what happened was his fault. If he had never grew feelings Sakura that would had never happened. He felt tears almost flowing out of his eyes, but he holds them inside and breaths heavily trying to do so.

He lets go the doctor.

“I'm sorry.”

“Yeah…sure…”

They continue to walk.”

“Where's Shun?”

“Here." the doctor says, pointing to the room. "His lungs are weak to fire, but he'll be alright in a day so. He's already awake, so if you want to talk to him. But not for long.”

“I want to.”

They rapidly enter a room where Shun was alone, helped to breath by a mechanical respirator covering his nose and mouth. He was awake, but was tired.

Upon seeing him, his eyes again show anger towards him.

“Leave us...”

“Alright. I'll wait for you outside. Not more than some minutes.”

The doctor gets out of the place, closing the door.

“I'm here only to talk to you.” He lays on his right knee while leaving his right foot on the ground. This lets him place his face near to Shun's.

“You really think that a simple conversation can explain what I saw?” Shun asks.

“No. But it's the least you deserve. This started when we went to the festival together. I knew that you two had a fight. She was all teary, and it wasn't for what Shinji and his shits had done to her. It was for you. She brought me to a small lake, and there we kissed. We knew what we were doing with you was wrong, but we couldn't tell you.”

“Why was she this night with you?”

“Kirei discovered me in the gladiatorial games and after I beat Shinji. If I lost to you, I was going to remain here. She was there to speak once again to me…”

“The only reason?”

Shun stares directly to his friend’s eyes, but he could not do the same, not after this. He still did not have the strength.

“Whatever happened between us…” Shun stops looking at him. “I'm the guilty. Not her. NEVER HER."

“I loved you as if you were my own brother.”

“And I you.”

“No. You're just a man that lives only for himself. You'd betray anyone and anything, to get what you want. ”

The doctor enters.

“Time's up.”

He looks to his friend once again.

“I've been an idiot, to have ever believed otherwise.”

He gets up and leavges the room, closing the door behind of him.

“Where's Sakura?”

“Next room. He suffered a contusion, she isn't awake.”

He opened the door, and looks to her connected to the machines.

“She will be alright?”

“She's struggling. The strenght with wich she hit his head was a lot, and right now she is struggling. She can live, but there are possibilities for her body will never be the same it was.”

“What do you mean?”

“She may have deficiencies…”

His facial expression immediately changes.

“…like problems to speak, to walk, even to think...”

“Don't continue...Leave us.”

“Alright.” After noticing his expression the doctor left without complains.

He sits down a chair next to her and grasps her hand with both of his.

“I'm here...” He stops for a moment, looking to sleeping girl, peacefully resting “Please. I need you; we still have to offer our apologies to Shun. No, it isn't just that. I want us to be together, it is the thing I most want to. All of us. Izumi, Ikuto, Takeru, Yamato, Daisuke, Tai, Shun...and Miya.”

He stops for a second closes his eyes, saliva gulps down thought his throat, and he continues.

“I'll win my own battles here. But you must do the same. So that we can make this possible.” He places his hand on her cheek. “Sakura…I…”

The machine pulse rate stops and makes a constant beep. He freaks out the second afterwards, getting of his chair and grabbing both of her shoulders.

“Breath! Breath! BREATH!” He grabs her head with his right, as doctors began to came in by the noise. “BREATH SAKURA! BREATH SAKURA! BREATH SAKURA!”

Four doctors are necessary to hold him from her, as other begin to try to revive her. He keeps on trying to get to her but she remains the same.

He still tries to get to her, as security appeared inside of the place.

“NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!”

He's knocked out by a strong hit to the back of his head.

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