Chapter 142: The Third Amakakeru Ryuu no Hirameki
Copyright© 2011 by Murasame
The final secret sword--Kagu Tsuchi.
(Houji glances at Yumi, who shakes her head.)
Houji (thinking): Something even Yumi doesn't know--truly a secret sword! Probably Lord Shishio's greatest technique...
Sanosuke (thinking along similar lines): Kenshin hasn't used his greatest technique yet either!
the Hiten Mitsurugi succession technique Amakakeru Ryuu no Hirameki!
Aoshi (thinking): But after all he's been through, does he really have the strength to use it?
Saitou (thinking): Whatever happens, this could be the final attack.
(Kenshin gets to his feet and slowly sheathes his sword.)
Yumi (thinking): Battou-jutsu stance! Then he is going to use the Amakakeru--
Houji (thinking): Don't lose your head! With those wounds, even if he takes the stance, it doesn't mean he can use the technique! And even if he can, thanks to Soujirou the secret's out! The Amakakeru Ryuu no Hirameki hinges upon the left foot! Right or left ... it's the difference of an instant, but Lord Shishio won't let that instant slip!
Shishio: It's been a good fight. I haven't had this much fun since the Bakumatsu. But I have a country to conquer. I don't have time to play with you any more.
Kenshin: Though I can't say I've enjoyed this, your skills are truly admirable. But, Shishio, if you speak of time, it ran out for hitokiri like you and I long ago.
Shishio: It isn't over yet. Not as long as I hold the Mugenjin.
Kenshin: It ended the moment I took up the reverse blade...
(He pushes his sword out from the sheath.)
Kenshin: En guarde.
Houji (thinking): Right? Left?
(Kenshin takes the fatal step.)