Fallen Guardian: The Last Shadow - CHAPTER-5
The flames in the furnace went out and silence filled the room. They could hear the sound of their own breathing. Ryu took a peek at Ken’s serious face and started walking towards a Katana type soul sword.
“Do you remember the history of this Soul sword? It might be rusty now but it was forged by our ancestor, Ray Takahashi seven generations ago. It has been 182 years since it was forged. He was a master blacksmith, an S-Rank protector with a Griffin spirit and also the man who stood by the first Shadow guardian. This sword was forged here, in this very own workshop. This isn’t only a shop, it is an antique, it is our family’s history and I for one, cannot close it or abandon it.”
“I shall protect it till the very end, till my last breath.”
Ryu got up from his seat while his eyes fixated on Ken with a doting expression as he put his hand on Ken’s shoulder slowly.
“But the times are different. The balance that was forged by the seven guardians is no more and I as a father can’t let my only son die trying to preserve history, disregarding his future. It is my job to protect it or die trying. But you must survive and continue our blood line. So, when that day comes take the soul sword and your mother and run. Be careful never to unsheathe it ‘cause you are not a ranger.”
Saying this he looked back at Shin as he said slowly,
“And Shin, we have been living together only for a month, but I know Ken looks up to you as a brother. If the day comes and you are still here living with us, I want you to run along with them. If you care about them even a little bit, look after them for me will you.” Ryu’s expression softened further as he turned his gaze from Shin to Ken, who was struggling internally.
“I know you want to argue with me Ken, but this is something you must do. Let me die in peace, knowing that you won’t follow me to the other side and our ancestral history is safe with its own bloodline. It’s your responsibility as a son and a carrier of our bloodline.”
Ken had only silence to offer his father. He didn’t utter a word while a single question kept running in his mind, ‘Isn’t there another way?’
As the silence continued and Ryu thought that the topic had come to an end, Shin stood straight as he lifted his head to stare at him.
“Sorry, but I don’t run when darkness comes my way. Let’s just say, I can’t.” Shin interrupted the silence.
“Ken has a responsibility as a son just like you said, Mr. Takahashi.”
“But I have a vow to fulfil. A vow that extends till my last day, my last breath. Just like how you have a reason to stay back, I have my own reasons to stay back as well.”
“In that case, allow me to alter the plan you suggested a little bit Mr.Takahashi. Ken will take his mother and run with the soul sword and he would do so only if the city’s defences have lost.” Shin was looking out of the window towards the sky in the direction where the great city stood, guarded by the sixth guardian, Tristina once laid.
Shin’s words were surely something neither of the father and son pair that were in front of him expected. But they were dumbstruck after hearing that a person such as Shin who always emitted an aura of despair and loneliness, announced that he had a vow to withhold, a reason to live.
Ryu and Ken tried to avoid bringing up Shin’s past as they predicted something traumatic might have happened with him. The family had decided not to engage further and that they would give him time to unfold his story to them willingly when the time is right. But this came out of nowhere for the pair.
Shin didn’t utter anything else regarding his vow. Ryu and Ken were always in confusion thinking about what could the story of a man who always traveled alone could be. They were now perplexed beyond their threshold point as they had another mystery in their heads to ponder on.
“I know you have always had questions about me and my past, it’s only natural that you would. But you never uttered a word about it and for that I am grateful. If the need to talk about my past ever comes, I will reveal it. Thank you for never doubting me and my nature even though I maintained a shady profile.”
Even though Shin’s words seemed to be filled with gratitude, his eyes were still that of a dead man’s.
“Why are you saying it like you’re going to die tomorrow?” Ken asked slowly with an uneasy feeling in his heart.
“It’s just that I didn’t want to regret not telling you and part with you suddenly for whatever happens later.”
“Just like how it happened back then,” he whispered to himself.
“Well, sudden circumstances are a part of life, but try to fight the odds as much as you can Shin.” Ryu closed his eyes slowly and shrugged as he tried to come back to reality from the shock he received.
“I can’t breathe in this heavy atmosphere anymore dad, why don’t we take the day off? We’re in no hurry to finish any order today, Mr. Wakanabe’s sword is finished anyways.”
“Sounds good to me, and Shin, you don’t need to work on any of the swords tomorrow morning. I need you to look after Mr. Wakanabe’s 6 year old daughter. His wife died a month ago and the little girl is frantic thinking she is going to lose her father too, so Mr. Wakanabe decided to take her with him wherever he can, until she calms down. I know you are not the best option to keep a little girl like her company but I need Ken to run some errands tomorrow.”
“It might take around 2-3 hours for us to discuss about the shipments as he alone is supplying us all the materials for our shop. Just tell her a story or something while me and Ken take care of the business.”
“A story, huh? Got it Master Ryu, I’m guessing we’re going to start forging the soul Sword after lunch then?”
“Yes, it has been quite some time since I forged a soul sword and I’m getting grumpier everyday. I need you both to help me out with the energy transition phase, understood?”
“Got it.” Both Ken and Shin answered in unison.
If you like what I make, mind helping me out?
Shady’s patreon: https://www.patreon.com/lastshadow009