TLN: Hey guys, Reigokai here!
Whew, I somehow managed to finish all current extras of Tsuki. With this, I will be able to head to USA tomorrow worry free.
I will soon be updating the site to show the new story. Look forward to the first chapter of the new story :)!
With that said, enjoy the chapter!
A swordsmen festival that is done every year at summer.
It is divided in high school division and general division.
At a glance it has unreasonable rules, and in reality, it does have unreasonable rules, but this is a tradition that has continued till the modern era. It is that kind of kendo competition.
By the way, if you look back at the past, it was actually a swordsmanship competition, but for some reason, the details of those times are recorded in a vague manner, so no problems could be found and, since the time it was changed into a kendo competition, it was considered as the first Gyokuryuki competition.
This year, it was in its 150th competition.
It was created by Imperial idealists and has managed to bring out world competitors representing Japan, and it hasn’t failed to take place every year which attests to the fearsome dedication they have to their predecessors, or maybe because of their own passion.
Or maybe the existences called swordsmen actually possess quite the political power in this nation since the past until now, but it goes unseen within the bright front of these grandly opened event where swordsmen of the whole nation are gathered.
“…It is kendo, so there’s no doubt those kind of things would be best.”
The mutter of the man had a tone of resignation as well as slight sadness mixed.
There’s more than 2,000 teams and the schedule barely manages it.
The individual matches were finally scrapped last year.
The rule of girls being able to participate in the boy’s division has long since been gone.
For these man who had won first place twice in a row in a time when it could called be a chaotic competition where everything goes, there must be things he simply can’t agree with yet.
“Even though the roster of the old men doesn’t ever change… this might be my last time coming here to watch.”
This man, who still utilizes the katana in the modern era for its original purpose, is without doubt an abnormal existence.
Name is Ishido Genichi.
The man that won the Gyokuryuki in his second and third year of high school and then disappeared from the kendo world.
But well, it is not as if he had cut off all his connections to it. He still maintains a deep connection to the world of the sword.
“It is time, huh. In these few years, there hasn’t been anything interesting. Hm?” (Genichi)
“Sensei! Ibuki-san says he wants to greet you…”
“Ah, okay.” (Genichi)
“What is it?” (Genichi)
The disciple that Ishido brings around had come running to him at quite the speed and tells him what he had to, but then, he mumbled as if having difficulty to speak further.
“Right now the high school students are in their summer break, so uhm…I think it would be a good idea to go to Nakatsuhara to practice after you have finished your rounds of greeting.”
“Nakatsuhara? The city where Natsu and Makoto are, huh. And, training? Training who?” (Genichi)
Hearing the name of the city, he spoke the name of the two friends that immediately popped up in his mind.
But, how weird. From what he remembers, neither of those are even disciples of his.
He did try to recruit the boy called Makoto, but he has only taught him the way to swing.
There’s no doubt that he is interested in his growth, but there’s no urgent business that warrants him to hurry from Kyushu to there.
Seeing the state of his master, the disciple lets out a long long sigh.
“It is about Otonashi, Sensei. After last year’s Gokuryuki, Sahara-san and Yuki-san had introduced her to you.”
“Otonashi? At last year’s competition, you say…” (Genichi)
“Didn’t you make her your disciple under the introduction of the two? Since then, she has been pretty passionate in training in the places where she can go to, you know?”
“It was a request, huh. Those kind of things don’t remain in my memories for some reason. But even if I don’t meet her personally, you guys should be able to train her for the time being, right?” (Genichi)
“We were asked to have Ishido-sensei train her at least once personally. She is truly a zealous girl. It is rare to find those nowadays. I also ask of Sensei, please—”
“—-Ah, that girl, huh. She had consecutive victories as the vice-captain.” (Genichi)
It seems like Genichi finally remembered Otonashi, he spoke about the match she was in.
The disciple nods as if relieved.
“That’s right! The captain also had quite the ability, but I think that Otonashi was one head above everyone in the competition including the men. At that time, the Nakatsuhara high school was the eye of the typhoon.”
By the way, this year, Otonashi Hibiki didn’t participate.
Nakatsuhara high school ended up in fourth place.
They may not have gotten to the finals like in the last tournament, but it was quite the high result.
“Well, she did have talent.” (Genichi)
“…I am not saying this out of favoritism, but her potential was truly a head above the others. It is true that they got the better of her in the finals because of the exhaustion brought by the continuous matches, but her opponent was also quite strong. Even in the standards of women.”
Otonashi had been fascinated by the swordsmanship of Ishido. She became extremely diligent and took all the training that she could.
She also gained quite the high evaluation from the best pupil of Ishido.
‘There’s no complains in regards to her attitude’, is what his disciple was trying to say in his expression.
“Your eye for people is bad.” (Genichi)
“That’s a by-the-rule sword. You should have been able to clearly see that in the preliminaries and the finals.” (Genichi)
“…Even if you tell me that…”
“Those kind of people that swing their sword with that kind of attitude are boring. Specially the finals. If it were a person that pushed their all in those circumstances, no matter if they had been a man or a woman, I personally would have gone there to recruit them.” (Genichi)
(That girl seems to be adept at surviving in the world. Probably from the same cut as the old man Ibuki. Ugh, nope nope. At that time…it was nice until the point when she properly fought back even when she knew that her opponent was half a head better than her, but the moment she saw that it was a difference that could be filled up in a few months, she seemed to have lost all interest and purposely lost. Maybe she doesn’t like to stand out too much, or it might be because something happened within the club; whichever it is, that cold attitude, she is not interested in victory through the sword. Leaving aside her talent, she is boring as a swordsman.) (Genichi)
“No way… Even if she is cold or not, her talent is the real deal.”
“I get it, geez! I just have ta go to that Nakatsuhara place and train that Oto…Oto-chan, right?” (Genichi)
This could be said to be Genichi’s way of favoritism.
What he is talking about are the types that would learn the way of the sword while having a gun in their pocket for emergencies. They would also be attentive to bullets themselves, and they would actively try to avoid swinging their weapons.
‘They are simply polishing their sword style as a mean’.
That’s why they won’t be interested in winning or losing.
And in reality, at the finals of last year, when she lost at the finals, her opponents raised a shout of victory and were happy about their win, but Hibiki simply smiled at her comrades as if feeling sorry and apologized to them.
She didn’t feel frustrated a single bit, and showed some tears when their second place was decided simply to match her surroundings. She only looked like a fake.
“Sensei… In my opinion, the one I don’t understand is that Makoto guy though. That guy doesn’t even do kendo.”
For some reason, his disciple gave his personal opinion about the boy that his master was interested in.
It is true that, in terms of sword talent, he is a commoner compared to Otonashi Hibiki. No surprise in that.
“You can’t get how interesting that guy is? Hmm, it is to be expected. Now then, if we are going to Nakatsuhara, let’s finish the greetings quickly.” (Genichi)
“…Please do. Ibuki-san and a few others are waiting at Waiting Room B while having a chat.”
“Ibuki… Ibuki, huh. That Youkai old man is also from Nakatsuhara, right. Why do we have to go to that den of thieves?” (Genichi)
“Because they are sponsors that are contributing greatly in the kendo society! Let me say this, I don’t know why Ishido-sensei tries to bite the hand of people that are practically the very representation of filial piety! There’s a limit to being rebellious!”
“…True. You are a good person.” (Genichi)
“This may be a good opportunity. How about it? I can talk it out with the Old Man, I mean, with Ibuki so, how about trying your hand at opening your own dojo? Well, in this era, it will mainly be a kendo class though.” (Genichi)
He doesn’t have any dissatisfaction in his current position of being the disciple of Ishido.
But as he accumulated training, he did begin thinking about his destination as a swordsman.
There were some within his seniors that would work as mercenaries, and some that would work as instructors that teach soldiers close-combat.
Both are jobs that require to be overseas.
On the other hand, the majority would make dojos at their homelands or cities.
There’s difference in balance between kendo and swordsmanship depending on the land, but being a bit over his thirties already, he has been thinking lately about wanting to settle in a position of being the owner of a kendo dojo.
He knows that he is not fit to move around battlefields like his master.
Ishido doesn’t force his disciples to take a predetermined path in their sword.
He lets his disciples decide their position on their sword and themselves, and their position towards others.
If they were to ask for advice, he will respond but, for example, in the case of this man, Ishido wouldn’t go preaching to him about the exaltation of the battlefield and cutting down people, and also the happiness of overcoming death.
(In terms of sword ability, this guy would be within the top five of the most talented disciples I have had, but…rather than cutting down people, he is overwhelmingly more fit to raise the next generations of swordsmen. He is not suited to be in the world of deceive or be deceived where the Ibuki old man stands in.) (Genichi)
“I will soon be getting work overseas. I wouldn’t be able to apologize enough to your parents if you were to get hit by a stray bullet by making you tag along with me. You are plenty strong to shoulder the Ishido name. Moreover, we will be passing by Osaka on our way to Nakatsuhara.” (Genichi)
It is true that they will be passing Osaka on the way.
They plan on using the railroads to travel after all.
“Actually, there’s talk about wanting to make a dojo in Osaka. Moreover, with quite the good conditions.” (Genichi)
“But there’s no hurry here. If I remember correctly…you are from Niigata, right?” (Genichi)
“Then think about it from now. About where you want to have your dojo. Well then, let’s go.” (Genichi)
“Hoh, so you will finally become independent! This is something to celebrate!”
“Y-Yes, thank you very much! This was something that my master suddenly told me just a few moments ago though…”
“A few moments ago? Meaning that, aside from you two, you have granted this old man the honor of being the first one to hear this news?”
“Yeah, that’s how it would be. And so, I was thinking about whether it will be in Osaka or in his homeland, or who knows, somewhere else he would like. Then, he would hang the Ishido signboard. And if possible, I would like it if you were to give us a celebratory gift.” (Genichi)
“Hahaha, a really straight ball as always.”
A loud cheerful voice reverberates.
At the point of attention, there’s Ishido Genichi and his disciple, and there’s also the biggest sponsor of the Gyokuryuki, Ibuki Kaname.
The Ibuki household doesn’t even come from Kyushu, but they support kendo and its growth to a great extent, and in the kendo society, there’s practically no one who doesn’t know his name.
“Well well, congratulations. The number one disciple of Ishido Genichi, Tanaka Yoshimi! If it is you, you will be able to succeed no matter the place! Right, how about choosing Nakatsuhara as your place to open the dojo?” (Kaname)
“Ah, to think Ibuki-san would know the name of someone like me…I am moved. Just that, about the place of the dojo, I am thinking about opening it at my homeland.” (Tanaka)
“…Umu, if I remember correctly, Tanaka-kun is from Niigata, Nagaoka, right? As a governmental designated land, Niigata stands out, but no worries, the Niigata prefecture overflows with uniqueness. Nagaoka is also a splendid place!” (Kaname)
It is true that the homeland of Ishido’s disciple, Tanaka, is Nagaoka in the Niigata prefecture.
But it is not as if they have met each other many times in the past, and yet, Ibuki knew about his background in a truly detailed manner.
The conversation bloomed when the topic moved to Nagaoka.
Tanaka was pulled by this individual called Ibuki even more than before, and with just a few words, he began to think it wouldn’t be that bad of an idea to have a dojo in Nakatsuhara rather than his own homeland.
(This old man, time and time again. Cajoling people in an instant. Tanaka is not suited to be a manslayer. He hasn’t touched the strings of this old man, so he won’t be seeing his hidden face, but this old man would go far with just the fact that the other party is my disciple after all. No matter how many times he does this, I can’t simply brush him away. Such a troublesome person, seriously.) (Genichi)
Ishido looks at the face of Kaname that seems as if he were truly happy from the bottom of his heart.
He has a vague idea of what will be happening after this.
He will say things like: ‘leave the search for a plot of land to me’ and ‘I will have a friend advertise your place’ as if it were not a big deal.
And he smoothly operates it.
As a result of this old man called Ibuki Kaname swimming splendidly in the economic world, the Ibuki household that was simply a local rich family had become one of the most prominent assets of Japan after Kaname had taken the helm.
That influence rung through the whole nation.
He also continuously yet abundantly scatters out money to things like sports, cultural activities, and charity projects, while saying humble stuff and increasing his own stock.
(Even though he should be close to 80, he still has a voice that rings clearly and can still speak well. Don’t they understand that he is scattering money here and there because he is profiting even more? Can’t they at least think for a bit about how he gets that absurd amount of money?) (Genichi)
Ishido felt drained at the sight of Ibuki’s name rising rapidly in the industries it is connected in.
There’s no way Ibuki is a pure and kind soul.
The representation of filial piety, a hobbyist; there’s no way that’s the case.
Ibuki Kaname is a youkai.
A legit youkai that managed to fight and outperform the politicians in the Showa era.
And yet, Tanaka and the many soft people sing praises about how kind he is.
Ishido wanted to sigh.
“But it is a surprise. Ibuki-san is knowledgeable of Niigata, huh.” (Tanaka)
“It is simply from word-of-mouth. In my times, there was a big politician that was called as Old Man which I was involved with, and I naturally had to go there a number of times. Aah, how nostalgic. Do the young ones know about the Mikuni ridge’s explosion?” (Kaname)
“Yeah, of course!” (Tanaka)
“In the present, it has become more of a funny story, but he was actually a pretty interesting person. Yoshimi-kun, your family name is Tanaka, so maybe you are related?” (Kaname)
“None, none! I am just a Tanaka!” (Tanaka)
He managed to naturally go into calling him by his first name in a truly smooth manner as the conversation of the two continued.
Ishido simply replied with gestures at times.
(You were actually the one who blew up a hill in Brazil and left garimpeiros <gold miners> in tatters though. Or more like, my disciple, if you continue to be swallowed by the conversation, you will end up being pushed a wife as well, you know?) (Genichi)
Genichi remembered one past deed of Ibuki Kaname.
He decides on asking the Ibuki youkai for some concrete assistance before his disciple gets swallowed even more than this.
And just as he was about to speak up.
“Yoshimi-kun, this was truly a fun time. Thanks for keeping company to this old man. And so, this may be a rude topic for a man that is trying to take a path on his own, but…” (Kaname)
“I have taken a liking to you. I am also incredibly indebted to your master, Genichi-kuni. And, I have heard that you were mainly the one who trained Hibiki-chan.” (Kaname)
“Hibi…ah, Otonashi?” (Tanaka)
“That’s why…how about leaving all matters of your dojo to me? Of course, I will be taking care of the plot of land, the establishment, and a place for you to live as well. And I would also be grateful if you were to allow me the advertisement of your dojo too.” (Kaname)
The one who leaked out his voice unconsciously was Ishido.
The contents of his assistance are better than usual.
Kaname wants Tanaka Yoshimi as his protege because he is the disciple of Ishido, so it is totally different from matters like working as a manslayer.
Without even trying to change him, he brought out quite the good offer, which naturally made Ishido get cautious since the one doing the offering is someone you can’t lower your guard on.
Tanaka himself had lost the ability to speak due to how big the matter was.
It was as if he were saying ‘I will be looking after everything in your life at Niigata’.
Combined with the surprise brought by the mention of Otonashi Hibiki, Tanaka had become a scarecrow that could only absentmindedly stand in place.
“What’s the matter, Genichi-kun?” (Kaname)
“Nah, I was just surprised at how excessive that gift was. Also, I didn’t expect the name of Otonashi Hibiki coming out.” (Genichi)
“It should be natural for it to come out.” (Kaname)
Kaname was truly disappointed that Ishido hadn’t arrived at the reason to why.
“That Yuki, can’t even do a job as a messenger properly? How troublesome. Otonashi Hibiki-chan is an important girl for the Ibuki household. This may be the first time you hear about this though.” (Kaname)
“It is indeed a first. I think she is a bit too young for her to be a mistress of yours.” (Genichi)
“S-Sensei?! How can you say something like that?!” (Tanaka)
The two didn’t really mind the confusion of the disciple.
“Now now, Yoshimi-kun. It is true that she is way too young to be a mistress. I would say it would require about 2 years more~.” (Kaname)
Even with that, he would still be more than half a century older than her.
“I am joking. That girl is the fiancee of my grandson.” (Kaname)
“Wa? Fiancee?” (Genichi)
“Yeah. Hmm, when you are out overseas for too long, you can even forget the historically profound japanese language huh. Here, let me spell it out. I-NA-ZU-KE.” (Kaname)
For an 80 year old man, he was truly a playful one.
“I understand what it means. The question is not that. Having a fiancee in this day and age, old man, are you serious?” (Genichi)
“Serious as serious can get. I have been telling you since long ago, right? An older court lady… blah blah.” (Kaname)
The old man looks back at his past wives and avoided speaking out a popular saying that didn’t really fit.
“…I have something to talk about with you later. Is that okay?” (Genichi)
“Of course it is. If it is a conversation with Genichi-kun, I would go anywhere. The presents I would get in hell would increase.” (Kaname)
“Uhm, Sensei, I…” (Tanaka)
“You taught the future wife of the Ibuki household about the sword. Getting at least this much reward should be okay.” (Genichi)
“Umu, I expect Hibiki-chan to properly support Masamune in the future!” (Kaname)
Leaving aside the possibility, in the end, there won’t be a future where such a thing will actually happen.
The disappearance of Otonashi Hibiki and Misumi Makoto that would happen soon after this had made the plans of Ibuki Kaname slip off heavily, and when Masamune heard the talk of cancelling the arranged marriage, he unintentionally shouted a ‘lucky!’, and ended up receiving the iron fist of his grandfather he hadn’t received in years.
And then, Ibuki Masamune would end up struggling for a long time between the friendship he has with Makoto, and the budding love inside of him.