Chapter 35: This Man, Raijuuta
Copyright© 2011 by Murasame
Raijuuta: Isuruji Raijuuta ... I want a match!
Maekawa (watching him calmly and thinking): His eyes are too muddied to reveal their secrets ... but he's strong!
Student: Get ... get out of here! This dojo won't accept challenges from other schools--
Maekawa (standing up): Wait! As you say, Raijuuta. We will have a match. As in a normal training match, two out of three hits win. Good luck.
Kenshin: Mr. Maekawa.
Maekawa: I know. He's no ordinary man. But I'm becoming arrogant. So it's time to test my strength once again. I may be old, but I am still Maekawa Miyauchi of the Edo 20th. (picking up a shinai) I won't lose easily.
Raijuuta: A shinai? I said nothing of this.
(The hooded figure appears at the door. He is a boy, about Yahiko's age, with blond hair and large eyes.)
Raijuuta: Yutarou, you're late.
Yutarou: I couldn't help it. Your legs are longer than mine. I ran as fast as I could. Well, never mind that, you have a match to fight. Which will it be, the real sword or the bokutou?
Raijuuta: A shinai.
Yutarou: A shinai. A SHINAI? You're fighting with those toys? And you call this a dojo!
Yahiko (kicking him): Shut up. Who do you think you are, anyway?
Yutarou: What was that for, you brat?
Yahiko: You're the brat!
Kaoru: You too, though.
Yahiko: I'm the best student of the Kamiya Kasshin school, Myoujin Yahiko! Remember that!
Yutarou: Well, I'm Raijuuta-sensei's best pupil, Tsukayama Yutarou! And that kick is going to cost you!
Raijuuta: Shut up and stay quiet.
Yutarou (silenced): Grr...
Raijuuta: Unfortunately I don't have a shinai. I'll borrow one. It doesn't matter--choose whichever you want, but afterwards the shinai will be worse for wear.
Kenshin (thinking): ... Now a win will be difficult for Mr. Maekawa. They'll each score a point, but who will take the final blow...
Kaoru (between the combatants): Well, for the sake of fairness, the judge will be from another school, the unworthy Kamiya Kaoru. First round!
(Maekawa gives his battle cry.)
Students: Wow, what a kiah!
Maekawa: Come. I'll teach you what you thought was beneath your notice!
Raijuuta: I already know it all. When you made it a three-stroke match with shinai, it became beneath my notice!
Kenshin: No! Run, Mr. Mae--
(Raijuuta smashes Maekawa across the shoulder. As he is immobilized, Raijuuta strikes him again to the head.)
Kaoru (thinking): I didn't see the jump at all. That terrible speed...