Ryan had enjoyed his break at the beach but now it was time to get back into action. It was a cool spring's eve in the human world. Ryan had come to come and find Echo for their mission against the Order. He was waiting on a large water tower in the middle of the city.
Instead of seeing Echo he noticed a figure around Echo's age with blackish brown hair and light brown skin walking up to him.
Ryan glanced over to the boy, wondering why he was approaching him. "Who are you?" he asked almost yawning. He was obviously tired.
"You really should pay attention to the reports Seikyo gives you... especially when it's about Sydonay..." said the figure who quietly stood there staring at the sunset along with Ryan.
"I fight Sydonay on my own terms. Seikyo isn't my captain, nor is he affiliated with me anymore. Not since his father defected and turned the Order into a revenge lusting group." he explained to the boy. "Seireitou is my friend and mentor and my objective is to bring him back."
"Ah I see you didn't read the report before you became a Kinenbuke member... well in that case I guess I'll tell you my names Kai... I was wondering if I could join Kinenbuke actually..." said Kai who was still straing at the setting sun.
Ryan thought for a moment, "I will allow this, but before I do, I must read your intentions in combat. After all, our zanpakuto are the extension of our soul, so it is only fair we let them in on this decision by allowing them to clash." he said standing up and unsheathing his blade.
"I wouldn't have it any other way," replied Kai, a silver and black sword appearing from thin air.
Ryan wasted no time, flicking his wrist upward, he made an upward slash that slammed into Kai's blade which caused an explosion of reiatsu that rocked the surroundings and blasted off a part of the water tower they were close by. He then used great force to shove Kai backwards into the hard earth below.
Kai stopped himself by slamming the hilt of his blade into the ground with enough force to stop the fall. Kai was stunned by the amount of power Ryan had exhibited but charged at him, striking at Ryan, though he was neatly blocked. They both traded blows, Ryan using his scabbard for blocking mainly, while Kai used countering forms to turn each parry into a strike, making it impossible for either to gain the upper hand.
Instantly, Ryan's hollow mask materialized on his face as he blocked yet another blow from Kai. Then from his fist he charged a green cero with a black outline, and fired it point blank at Kai, causing a rather large explosion to engulf the surroundings.
As the explosion cleared, Kai was seen unscathed. He looked at Ryan quietly, "I must say I haven't seen a cero that powerful for a while..." Kai's eyes than began to turn black, with yellow irises and a hollow mask appeared on Kai's face, shaped somewhat like Ryan's mask, though there was no trace of red and was simply black and white. Kai charged at Ryan and as Ryan blocked an explosion shook the area as they clashed.
Ryan half-smiled through his mask, "Heh, that cero I fired just now was half assed." he explained as he deflected another of Kai's swings. His free hand began to make a static-like noise as a red energy gathered around it. "I am one of two Vizard known to be skilled enough to use bala." he said before firing the quick and hardened cero variant. The blast was just the distraction he needed to escape from the close range combat enough to charge his very own cero. He charge one from his right eye, and one from each fist. "I am also the only vizard, known to charge cero from more than one place on my body." he said before launching his assault, "Cero Trio!" he declared, letting the dark green cero loose at full strength at Kai, the explosion created was enough to rip steel off of nearby buildings.
As the dust cleared Kai's mask was almost entirely torn off, though he was still standing. "Huh guess it's time to turn it up a notch..." He charged at Ryan once again, his mask reforming, but this time he tapped his palm to Ryan's stomach and shot off a bala of his own. He then stabbed Ryan clean through chest and his right lung.
The bala caught Ryan off guard, but he was quick enough to block Kai's blow to his chest, "Ugh...another one with bala?!" he thought out loud in shock. Ryan swapped his blade over to his left hand as he charged kido in his right, "Hado -68, Jaō Ensatsu Kokuryūha!" he declares as a black flame dragon erupted from his hand, crashing into Kai causing a truly massive explosion of black flames. He then places his sword back in his right hand and uses shunpo to quickly get over the flames and fired his potent, full charged cero into the flames while Kai was still inside. The ensuing blast decimated the city around them.
Unbelievably, the flames disappeared with Kai in the center of the destruction, unscathed but without any sign of a hollow mask... except for the black eyes. "You can do better can't you?" Kai was instantly behind Ryan and blasted him with another Bala. However Kai also shot a Cero, which intertwined with the Bala, causing a massive explosion, with Ryan in the center.
Just before the bala and cero mix hit Ryan, Kai heard the faint words of his opponent, "Kick back and show your true form, Mirā-Fōsu Doragon!" As the blast struck him, it was returned back towards Kai. Ryan now held in his hand a giant two sided axe with a large black chain wrapped around his arm. He stood and studied Kai for a short moment, "Huh...it seems as though nothing is happening to him. No....wait, I have a theory!" he thought to himself as he fired a cero from the tip of his axe towards Kai, slamming into the young boy at full force.
Just before the cero hit, Ryan heard the words from Kai, "Begin, Ukiyoiwaku!" As the blast hit Kai redirected the cero into a building, and Ryan saw a Japanese longsword, and stared at Ryan and charged, but this time he used Shunpo and was instantly behind Ryan, his blade through Ryan's gut. Ryan suddenly felt all of his energy fade away, and realized with horror it was being drained by the blade, rejuvenating Kai at his expence.
Ryan suddenly grinned, "Heh, just as I thought." he said as he flooded Kai's energy system with his hollow's energy. "You absorb vital life energy with that sword of yours. An interesting power, but what if I don't give you life energy?" he asked mockingly as he began to resist Kai's energy suction, instead allowing him to absorb the foul hollow energy within him.
Kai looked at Ryan, grinning, "My blade is also a purifier, turning hollow energy into life energy... you really should consider trying to get off the blade if you don't want to pass out." Ryan continued to feel Kai's strength grow, and knew he should take his advice.
"Interesting." Ryan said ignoring Kai completely, "Hmmm, mind if I give it a shot?" he asked as his zanpakuto's ability kicked in. Instead of Ryan's energy being sucked up, Kai's own energy was being drained, causing Ryan to rejuvenate completely before he removed the blade and healed the wound with kido. "You see, my zanpakuto can reverse my opponent's abilities back at them." he mused as he turned to face Kai again, "It's hopeless to continue fighting me."
Kai continued grinning, "I'm not one to think situations like this as hopeless... you see... life energy is a powerful source of power... not just anything can handle it without damaging itself..." As he said this Ryan noticed his axe was corroding, and at an unnaturally fast pace.
Ryan cocked his head, giving Kai an unnaturally evil glare with his hollowified eyes. "I know that quite well, however, the same my friend, goes for you. You are still hundreds of years younger than me. My experience alone is enough to outwit you, and my strength is quite enormous." he explained to the still grinning Kai. "Kindo -84, Utsuro Seishi" he muttered. Immediately, Kai's Inner Hollow began to surface and fight for control of Kai's mind. Ryan used the opportunity to launch his zanpakuto by the chain causing it to slam into Kai's blade, knocking it free from his hand, disarming Kai as Ryan reeled his axe back in by the chain.
"AGGHHH.... Just kidding..." said Kai, continuing to grin. "I've never actually had to fight my inner hollow... it's very convenient I must say..." He then simply flicked his wrist, and his sword rematerialized in his hand. "I'm sure you're tired and I'm tired... so let's just end this now... Bankai..."
A massive explosion occured, and as the smoke cleared, ryan saw Kai's blade back in it's unsealed state, but he also notice small senbon shapped objects made of a glowing energy rotating around his hand.
"Here he comes." Ryan thought to himself. "Eh, I hope you don't expect me to use my bankai. I don't like it. It's far too destructive." he yawned. "But just in case, I'll make a few preparations." he mused as he flicked his free hand, releasing a strange kind of kido energy into the air.
Kai chuckled, "I expect you to use your Bankai... what I don't expect is for you to use it's other forms... But enough... I was reckless going straight to Bankai and I admit that... but we were going weren't going anywhere using our Shikai... you know as well as I do eventually we both would have resorted to Bankai anyways, even though you'd rather not. It's simple really I have information that I want to show you, but if I wait too long I'll have so much info it would take a long time to show it to you..." He grasped his blade and extend his senses in all directions, "Hmm kido energy huh? I can purify any energy but I know you know that... huh perhaps I should show you something I haven't shown anyone else..."
Kai then began sucking in all energy in a small area, including Ryan's kido energy, and Ryan's life energy as well. Then he pointed a hand at Ryan and half- whispered, "Ukiyokousen..." the senbon of energy on his arm glowed, and a blast of life energy slammed at high speed into Ryan, piercing straight through his side, leaving a large chunk of flesh missing. The blast was exhilarating, yet terrifying for Ryan, who had felt himself suddenly bolstered with energy levels he hadn't ever had before, but was then drained away with a huge pain in his side.
Ryan fell backwards, but only from recoil, he was, at the last moment, able to block with his zanpakuto, which redirected and slammed into Kai taking off his entire right arm. "I was once told that this zanpakuto suited me because it had the power to protect my loved ones. The reason I will not use my bankai, is because it's release alone puts every soul in this city in danger." he explained wincing. "Besides, as long as you attack, no matter it's type, I can use it against you with devastating results." he said in his dual hollow voice.
Kai's right arm regrew a few seconds later, but he still winced, "I can utilize life energy for healing... and I thought I told you not to try reflecting stuff with your zanpakuto... as you can see it isn't too good for him..." As he said this Ryan heard a cracking sound, and as he looked down he looked in horror as his axe cracked in half, and the bladed part fell off, spiraling down to the ground below.
Ryan laughed, "Heh, you have a lot to learn about my zanpakuto. You see, he is the only zanpakuto I know that will force his own release in order to defend me. Besides," he stopped as his zanpakuto regenerated, "My zanpakuto is resistant to all forms of energy. Therefore he overrules your power." Ryan glanced up, his determination gleaming, "Besides, I'll feel bad for you if you force his release."
"I've had friends die before... it isn't exactly something you can take lightly... but eventually I realized something... No one you love really ever has to die ― not if you don't want them to... All you have to do is hold a place for them in your heart."
"What kind of talk is that...?" Ryan said gritting his teeth, "So what your saying is I should just give up on them?! Because all that statement tells me is that whether they are alive or dead, as long as you think about them, you can go about your business! Well I want to protect them, I want them to know I love them. That's why...I'll give every last breath I have...to.keep.them.ALIVE!" he shouted releasing a huge amount of reiatsu.
"This isn't advice to give them up... it's advice to Always hold them in your heart, and never let them go even if they die."
Ryan let the words sink in, "I guess I can respect that." he replied quietly, "Why are you telling me this?"
"It's a simple thing really... you can never judge anyone by age... and also you have to remember something... never let them go like Sei did... he gave into revenge and let Senka go away from his heart..."
"Nnnnn NO! Sei still loves her, he must. That's why he's doing this right?! I have to bring him back. I have to show him that Senka's love didn't stop at death and that he's hurting us, others that care for him." Ryan stuttered, tears falling from his eyes, "He taught me to protect and to never give into the darkness, so where does he got off doing this?!" Ryan screamed, the pain was evident in his voice.
Kai lowered his blade, and in a burst of spirit energy, his bankai disapated along with his sword, causing the aura of a dragon to be seen behind him before fading away. He then walked up to Ryan and told him, "He loves her... but that's different from holding one in their heart... he instead made room for revenge in his heart... and he couldn't take Senka and revenge... but remember that he can always switch revenge with her... and then perhaps his suffering won't be as deep..."
"I see." Ryan replied, "Then I'm gonna need you to help me make him see. Please, join us and stay as long as you please."
Kai smiled, "Sure... oh and I forgot to tell you something... have you heard of Riku no Hatsu?"
Ryan gave a confused look, "Nope, never heard of it." he replied truthfully.
"It's a place where I've lived for quite a while... almost inaccesible to anyone even Sei... I was thinking we could use it as a safe haven and base..."
"That would be amazing." he said as he breathed a sigh of relief. "But I have to find Echo first. He is apart of this too." Ryan said remembering he was suppose to meet Echo soon.
"No worries if you're looking for Echo... leave him a note... Echo knows how to get to Riku no Hatsu... in fact he's one of the few beings that knows how to get there at will..."
Ryan nodded, "Than lead the way." he said deactivating his shikai and removing his hollow mask.
Kai gestured at nothing in particular, and a portal composed of life energy appeared. Kai then said, "Realize that we have to traverse the entire land to open the way to the castle... sorry but since you're new to the land it will teleport you to the who nows where so this one will send us to one of the places it might pick... Echo will probably meet us at the castle..."
Ryan nodded and followed Kai through the gap in the dimensions.
As they journeyed through the dimension both Kai and Ryan knew that their fight had not been pointless, and that their fight had changed the future, and hopefully, had made it a little brighter.