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Firaga

Soul Eater: Total Bedlam

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|| INTRODUCTION ||

 

The layout of a large school campus decorated with skulls and other gothic architecture is showcased as an unidentified voice speaks:

 

"Shinigami Buki Shokunin Senmon Gakkō... or in simple terms: 'Shibusen'. Though regarded as a powerful organization, its more well-known purpose is as a school, where young hopefuls who have been gifted with the power of transforming in the Death Weapons may come to learn how to control their powers and partner with Meisters, those who can utilize their weapon forms."

 

The voice is slowly revealed to belong to a young boy with black and white-striped hair, wearing a black cloak and standing directly in the center of the main entrance of the school facing the arduous stone staircase in front.

 

"Most students attend simply for the chance to better themselves through their knowledge of Meister and Weapon capabilities, but others are assigned specifically as combatants who protect the world from the dangers of Madness by collecting the souls of evil beings. There was also a policy where Death Weapons could transform themselves into a special blade called a "Death Scythe" if the Weapon and Meister pair could collect 99 souls and the soul of a witch, but due to recent events, this has been abolished. I would go into further detail, but it is quite a long story really..."

 

"Uh, Kid, could you hurry this up, this is getting kinda boring," said a young woman standing a few steps from the boy's right.

 

"Yeah, nobody wants to sit through this stuff, they just wanna get to the action!" said another young woman standing a few steps from the boy's left.

 

"Liz, Patty, I've already told you, this information has to be present so that nobody gets confused..." Kid said, at first speaking firmly but then growing noticeably irritated. "And anyways, why is that you two are off position again? This speech can't be right unless you stand at least 3 inches at both of my sides!"

 

"Alright, alright, yeesh!" Said the woman on the right, moving into position.

 

"Whoopsie! Sorry Kid!" Said the woman ont he left, doing the same.

 

After dusting off his coat, Kid began speaking once more: "Now then: the world as we know may be living in a period of peace ever since the defeat of the Kishin and the truce made between Shibusen and the Witch Order, but there will always be new challenges that arise for the world, and the existence of Madness is eternal in the hearts of even the purest person." Kid raised his arms up as the two girls transformed into a pair of guns and fell into his hands.

 

"However, the biggest question is: are you ready to undertake such a challenge? If the answer is yes..." Kid spun the the two guns in his hands and pointed them both towards his front. "Then let's get busy," he finished, grinning.

 

- - - - -

 

|| "SPARTOI INITIATION" Arc -- START ||

 

A typical, brisk afternoon of training, learning and fighting arose for the students of Shibusen's EAT Class, and all seemed to be going exactly as they always did as the students settled down for the next class with their usual teacher Marie Mjölnir. However, after settling into their seats, they noticed that their teacher Marie was running late.

 

Before many could ponder the reasoning for this, they were interrupted by the sound of what seemed like the screeching of wheels on a wood surface, and through the door came the source: a gray, heavily stitched man with a giant screw in his head riding an rolling chair backwards only to promptly hit his wheels on the edge of the front door and fall directly onto his butt. The man said nothing, proceeded to enter the door in the same fashion once more.

 

Though the students were familiar with the man in question, as well as his chair antics, most of them could not help but blankly stare at the man in both unimpressed confusion. He, of course, was Frank N. Stein, one of the best Meisters to ever graduate from Shibusen and a semi-active teacher and direct affiliate to the headmaster Lord Death, while also being regarded as an overall oddball for his eccentric and downright horrifying obsession for experimentation.

 

After repeating his folly, Stein quickly got back on the chair and rolled down towards the teacher's desk, adjusting the glare of his glasses while also cranking the screw lodged into his cranium.

 

"Good afternoon class. For today's lesson, I will be stepping in as your instructor in place of Miss Mjölnir." Various mutters from the desks emerged, some merely surprised by Stein's appearance and others now frightened at the possibility of Stein making them dissect another endangered animal as he regularly did for his impromptu lessons.

 

"I'm sure you're all wondering why, so I'll let you know right away: this lesson isn't going to be part of your regular curriculum. Instead, it is going to be centered around a very important aspect of Shibusen's structure, something we like to call... 'Spartoi'."

 

Even more murmurs arose, but none of them were laced with fear, and instead all were composed of pure wonder and excitement. One such student, bearing a head of white-hair and a scar across his right eye, grinned feverishly at the words of his teacher.

 

Spartoi, huh? This is perfect. Looks like all my years in the Academy are gonna pay off in the biggest way possible... he thought.

 

"Spartoi? I don't think I've heard about that," said a girl sitting right next to the white haired boy, who chuckled at her response.

 

"Doesn't surprise me. You were probably too busy practicing some silly ball-lut act," he said.

 

"It is called ballet, Shiyu, and it's an important aspect of my choreography," the girl huffed. "So what is Spartoi anyway?"

 

"Only one of Lord Death's biggest faction of Meisters and Death Weapons from the EAT class, assembled directly for the purpose of taking on high-risk missions of utmost importance for the entire world. That same group had Lord Death himself at the helm, as well as his partner Mr. Evans and the rest of their classmates, including the Thompson Twins, Tsubaki Natsukasa, Maka Albarn, and my personal favorite, Black☆Star, the Warrior God."

 

"Wait, really? Wow, that is impressive. Ah, to imagine Lord Death in his prime, fighting alongside such other accomplished people. It must have been absolutely dazzling," the girl said, posturing herself as if she was going to break into song.

Edited by Firaga Sensei

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Two girls sitting towards the front of the classroom observed Dr. Stein's mishap with different reactions. The blue-haired one rolled her eyes, unable to believe that the teachers here could be so incompetent sometimes. Is this really what the world-famous Shibusen has for its staff? I thought that Dr. Stein was one of the most talented Meisters that this academy had to offer. From what I've seen of him, he seems like a bit of a joke... She hadn't been at the school for too long, but her exceptional talent that she had developed with her family allowed her to place into the EAT group with her sister. She was beginning to question if the people here were really all they were cracked up to be...

 

On the other hand, the pink-haired girl tried to stifle a giggle. Seeing the odd antics of the Meisters and Weapons at Shibusen amused her. Growing up in such a stuffy, uptight family meant that she never really got to see anyone act this way. It was a nice change, one that she liked very much. Upon the mention of Spartoi, she seemed to go deep into thought. "Spartoi... that's the elite group of Meisters and Weapons from this school, yes?" She turned to her sister, and asked her a question in their native language of French. This girl was still learning English, and while she could form basic sentences, she was much more comfortable using French when it came to a conversation with her sister.

 

"Yes, that's what they are. If we're learning something about Spartoi today, and on such short notice, there must be something important going on here." The blue-haired girl responded, pondering what might come out of this lesson.

 

"This should be interesting, then!" The pink-haired girl's eyes lit up. "Adrienne, do you think they might be looking for new members? I'm positive that the two of us could make it!"

 

Adrienne let out a sigh. "Henriette, we still have much to learn. We've only had three years of experience in each of our roles, while typically, the Weapon in our family has had much more than that. I'm not sure if we're at that point yet."

 

Henriette still looked hopeful. "Some of the students here have not had nearly as much training as we have. We are two of the best students in the class. I think that we would easily make it in." The two sisters continued discussing the situation while waiting for the doctor to speak once again.

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THe sound of rushing taps on the floor vibrate the halls of Shibusen. A black blur speeds down the hallways with another student trailing behind him. Once again, the two students were late for Prof. Mjornir's class session.

 

"Melody! Hurry up! We're gonna be late for Marie's class!" Markus yelled. 

 

The blue haired girl trailing behind Markus named Melody groans in frustration as she tries to pick up her pace. "Damn it Markus! If you would actually set the alarms, you'll won't be late all the time, and I won't have to get your lazy ass up all the time!" Melody yelled back. 

"That's the problem. . . Alarms don't even wake me up!" Markus talked back.

 

The students finally reached the EAT classroom. Unfortunately, Markus suffered the same fate as Professor Stein. "Hey Miss Marie! Sorry we're la--" Markus yelled before tripping over the front door beam as his face plants into the floor. Melody casually walks into the classroom amused with the scene in front of her. "At least I didn't have to use my Katana." she stated as she walks up the stairs to take her seat. "Why the hell is this beam down here!? Don't the builders know people can trip over this thing!?" Markus yells. He walks up the stairs and takes his seat next to Melody when he notices something different. "Hey. . . Isn't that Professor Stein? What's he doing here?"

 

Questioning Markus' observations, Melody notices that her normal professor is not teaching her class, but rather Professor Stein. "Professor Stein, where is Miss Marie? And what have we missed so far?" Melody questioned. Interesting. Either Miss Marie is late, or Prof. Stein has something important to announce. I wish that idiot wouldn't make me late often. Melody thought.

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"Ah, Mr. Neumann and Mrs. Mukizu. Arriving fashionably late as usual," Stein casually stated while once again cranking his screw. "Although, coincidentally enough, you're also just in time," Stein paused and took a drag from his cigarette before looking directly at Markus and Melody with a manic stare.

 

"I was in the middle of explaining how I was going to select two students to volunteer as my guinea pigs for a new dissection experiment I wanted to try out..." Any person with a soul and a deep care for their internal organs would be quaking in their boots upon the mad lust that Stein was expressing now, something also felt by the surrounding students. Even as one such as himself who allied with Lord Death, his fixation with the human body would never cease.

 

Suddenly though, Stein's expression reset to his previous casual one as he took a moment to chuckle to himself before putting his cigarette back in his mouth. "I'm only kidding, of course. Now please, take your seats. We have much to discuss." Also true to his reputation, Sten was also a fan of black comedy, especially among his peers and acquaintances.

 

Oh my... Was all Hannah could think at the moment as a droplet of sweat ran down the left side of her face. She mostly knew Stein for his work as a Meister and so seeing this side of him was relatively new to her. Her sensibilities were able to handle one such as Shiyu, but Stein might be a different story altogether. Even Shiyu himself was visibly showing some uneasiness at Stein's eccentricities as he himself too felt a pang of slight fear beforehand.

 

However, he as well as Hannah quickly calmed down once Stein began to go into more detail about the business regarding Spartoi:

 

"As I was saying: recent events have persuaded Lord Death to put together a new faction of Meisters and Death Weapons in order to help keep the peace in this time of new initiatives. I am of course referring to Shibusen forming a pact with the Witches Order and collaborating on the 'Witches Equality Act', as well as the matter involving the disappearance of the school's manuscript copy of the Book of Eibon."

 

"The Book of what?" Hannah whispered to Shiyu.

 

"Don't you know anything?" Shiyu harshly whispered back before sighing and continuing on: "It's a magical book once touted as the ultimate source of power belonging to the great sorcerer Eibon. The school kept a manuscript in the library and even used it in the infamous battle on the moon against the forces of the Kishin Ashura..."

 

"Correct assessment, Shiyu. Now would you please let me finish?" Shiyu heard from the front, as Hannah quickly straightened up and shut her lips tight. "My apologies, Dr. Stein. Please continue," Shiyu said, once again showing slight vulnerability.

 

"Thank you," Dr. Stein. "Your classmate Shiyu is correct, however. The Book of Eibon was a powerful weapon to those who could harness its power, and the manuscript is just as valuable. With the right skill in magic, one can access the contents of the original and all its original power, even now as the original remains sealed into the moon as we speak..."

Edited by Firaga Sensei

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Henriette and Adrienne both shivered as Stein's dark joke was made. They really weren't used to anyone acting that way... The people of America were a real shock to them. They were relieved once Stein said it was only a joke, then continued to listen quietly to his explanation. Upon the mention of the tasks they'd be doing in Spartoi, the two had very different thoughts. ​Helping the witches...? Hmph, I can't believe that Lord Death is still insistent on allying with them. They've brought nothing but trouble to anyone, what's to say they haven't changed from those days at all? I still don't trust them... However, taking on Spartoi's other tasks would be a good way to test my skills... Maybe I could put up with assisting that scum if only for the other jobs we'd get. Adrienne kept her thoughts to herself, though a bit of a scowl spread across her face.

 

Henriette, on the other hand, had much more positive thoughts. Helping strengthen the relationship between witches and our school sounds like a wonderful idea! If I end up as a part of Spartoi, I could speak with the witches and learn more about them, too... I hope that Adrienne and I can both participate! She smiled, content with the sudden change of events in the day.

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Hearing the cruel joke Professor Strain made towards Markus and Melody. 'typical of Dr. stein. Making cruel jokes to students. I wonder if he actually did dissect a student... Whatever. He needs to get back on track.'

 

Next to Melody, Markus was sweating bullets while shoken up. 'Crapcrapcrapcrapcrap. Melody and I are dead meat because of my latency!' After discovering it was a joking. Markus comically slumped down his chair under the desk. Almost like his soul left his body.

 

"Get up dumbass... Dr. Stein is beginning his lecture." Melody stated while grabbing his trench coat and pulling him back up the chair.

 

Melody listened intently while Markus tried to regain his composure while listening to Professor Stein. "Dr. Stein. Does Lord Death have an idea on how the manuscript of the Book of Eibon disappeared? It's possible that it may have been stolen." Melody stated.

 

"Melody, even if the manuscript is stolen, it probably does not have the original powers compared to the original sealed at the moon. Right Professor Stein?" Markus said.

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"On the contrary, the manuscript is capable of accessing the powers of the original... in a way that is," Stein said, taking another drag from his cigarette.

 

"However, the only way that is even remotely possible is that if a witch uses Magic Calculation to create a link between the two books. From there, a being on one side of the link can access the contents the object on the other side, and vice versa. This same method was used some time ago by Shibusen in order for Spartoi to access the contents of the original Book of Eibon and rescue Lord Death from the inside. As for how all of that relates to our current situation... well, you'll just have to wait. For now, we must focus on more pressing matters."

 

Dr. Stein rolled himself towards the entrance of the classroom. "Now then... we are going to decide who is worthy of joining Spartoi. Each and every one of you will be evaluated for your skills. Only a select few will succeed, as we will only accept the best of the best to serve under Lord Death."

 

"Everybody form a single file line and follow me towards the school's dojo. We'll begin your first trial there," Stein said before rolling himself out the door, only to once again have his chair flip back and pull him towards the ground with a thud. Stein simply got up and brushed himself off before dragging the chair nonchalantly down the hallway and out of the students sight.

 

"Hannah, I'm going to be frank with you... we need to qualify for Spartoi. At any cost," Shiyu stated, speaking a very firm tone.

 

"You really seem interested in this whole Spartoi thing. Oh, but I'm sure that's it only because you so desperately want to meet Mr. Black☆Star," Hannah giggled, making Shiyu tense up while hiding a light blush on his cheeks.

 

"S-Shut up! ... I mean... maybe I do... but I also want to prove my skills to Lord Death. The entire reason that I even joined this Academy was to serve a great purpose just like this."

 

"Yes, I know. I'm only teasing." Hannah then put her hand on her heart while outstretching her hand towards the front of the room. "In any case, I as your wonderful and graceful partner will support you all of the way, as my own goals of dazzling the masses as a heroine of good and a master of ceremonies will be fulfilled as well! Oh, what a beautiful and elegant future that lies ahead!" 

 

"Yeah... uh, sure..." Shiyu commented. The two then joined the rest of their classmates as they began moving from their seats and forming their line. However, many students found themselves crowding up against he entrance, some peaking out into the hallways and looking around.

 

"Hey, what's going on? We're supposed to be a line," Shiyu said.

 

"Uh, yeah about that... Dr. Stein's gone," said a student in the front, scratching his head in confusion.

 

"Gone? Can how can that be?" Hannah said.

 

"Dunno. He's just nowhere to be seen. Why would he just disappear like that?" said another student.

 

Shiyu and Hannah then made their way outside the classroom, along with a bulk of their classmates while most of them stayed inside and pondered what to do next. Shiyu observed the hallway that Stein was walking down previously. It was completely empty, with not even a sign of possible struggle or other occurrence present.

 

"This is strange... and also a little unnerving," Shiyu commented.

 

Suddenly, the air felt heavy as the floors began to rumble. "What the-an earthquake?" Shiyu said, before several cries emmited from the inside of the classroom. There, the students were no longer alone as they were joined by strange, ugly looking black creatures with cartoonish skull masks for faces. They appeared to be hostile and were aiming to attack the students.

 

"What is going on?" Hannah asked.

 

"Not sure. But-" Before Shiyu could finish his thought, the black creatures began spawning in the hallways as well, cornering him, Hannah and the rest of the students in the hallways as well.

 

"Whatever's going on, now's not a time to ask questions. Now is a time to fight!" Shiyu said, outstretching his hand towards Hannah.

 

"As you wish. Let's put on a show!" Hannah said, twirling around before being engulfed with a white light and transforming into a fairly long, stainless steel chain whip, the black handle landing square into Shiyu's hand as he gripped it tightly and began swinging the chain around his body before gripping and holding the chain's middle with his other hand, settling into a fighting stance and ready to face his opponents.

 

"Shiyu's got the right idea. Let's go, everyone!" said a classmate behind Shiyu, inspired by his determination. The rest of the class followed suite, meisters pairing up with their weapons and attempting to drive back the hordes of monsters. Scythes, swords, guns, gauntlets, and other weapons were put to use as the students showed their might.

 

Meanwhile, Shiyu already began sicking Hannah on the creatures, whipping the pointed blade at the end of the chain towards the crowds, cutting into their flesh with precise strikes as well as using the chains body to knock them away.

Edited by Firaga Sensei

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Henriette and Adrienne both stood up and calmly walked over to the line of students, speaking with one another about the upcoming test. "It's obvious that we will be selected to join the group. We've had much more experience than most of the others here, and our fighting style is graceful yet deadly. I think we'd be perfect fits for Spartoi. What do you think?" Adrienne glanced at her sister, keeping an elegant form as she walked ahead. Of course, she still spoke in French. It would be a disaster to mention that in front of the other students.

 

"Yes, I would agree. You and I are a good team." Henriette smiled, walking in the same form as her sister. In fact, their steps were in unison. "I just wonder who else would join us..." As she finished saying this, word of Stein's disappearance began to get to the two. They exited to the hall, only to be met by the odd monsters that were outside.

 

"Henriette, get ready for battle!" Adrienne ordered as she looked over at her sister. Henriette nodded, then in a blinding flash of light, transformed into a rapier that found its way to Adrienne's hand. Weapon in hand, the young woman sped off towards one of the monsters and got into a fencing stance. She quickly stabbed at it with her rapier, dodging out of the way of its attacks and retaliating with deadly precision in her own moves.

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Markus would have attempted to respond back at Dr. Stein's response, but he decided hold his tongue and allow Dr. Stein to continue his speech. Melody and Markus stood up along with the students and followed them to the hallway. "Interessant (Interesting)." Markus claimed. "This could be our big break Melody. Being picked for the Spartoi will allow us to train with the elite and travel the world performing difficult missions!" Markus stated with Enthusiasm.

 

"Only if we pass the trials at top performance. That means no slacking off." Melody said to Markus. "Hey. . . Chill out. We got this." Markus replied as they came to a stop when the line stopped moving. "Now what's going on?" Markus questioned. Melody scouted ahead a bit to see the commotion. "It seems like Professor Stein has not showed up yet." Melody said.

 

"I don't like this. Something's off." Markus stated as he got his guard up. With a moment, black creatures with obscure, cartoon masks, appeared from thin air. Melody got into her fight stance as she opened her hand. "Markus! Let's go!." She yelled. "Ja!" Markus replied as a bright flash of light appeared with Markus transforming into a black katana appearing in Melody's hand. As one of the creatures jumped and attempted to claw Melody, she slashed the creature down as she cut it down in half. With her eye on a group of creatures, she lances towards one and throws it towards one of the creatures. While the two were knocked out, she swings her blade around and slices through another creature.

 

"Melody! Two of them behind you!" Markus yelled. She unsheathes her katana she inherited from her former master and brings the katana and Markus behind her and stabbed the creatures that nearly clawed into Melody. "Not too bad." She calmly spoke before throwing the creatures towards the other creatures that were knocked out.

Edited by Kaneki Ken

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"These things aren't stopping for even a second. Where are they coming from?" Hannah inquired as Shiyu continued using her to ward off the creatures in question.

 

"Whatever they are, they'll have to quit eventually, but sure won't!" Shiyu responded.

 

As the battle raged on and the students continued to fight, the hallway once again began to shake.From the left side of the hall, giant walls began poking out from spots on the ceiling and the ground before jutting up and mashing together to form a full fledged wall that blocked access to that side of the building.

 

"What the-? Where did that come from? All of these random events are happening so quickly, I--" Hannah flustered, Shiyu telling her to quiet herself as he and the rest of the student body juggled reacting to the wall and continuing to drive back the monsters.

 

Soon, another wall began forming on the other side of the hallway. "If that one goes up, we'll be stuck here!" Shiyu cried. He quickly shot his weapon through the open space between the two walls, angling the shot so that the sharp end would hook into the wall facing horizontally. Shiyu quickly ran on then jumped off the side walls adjacent to him, launching himself through the gap and onto the other side of the room. Many students followed him in order to escape the monsters, the walls quickly closing in and the open space between them becoming thinner and thinner...

Edited by Firaga Sensei

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Adrienne managed to avert her attention from her foes long enough to notice the closing wall. "That just makes this more complicated..."

 

"What now, Adrienne?!" Henriette asked worriedly. Given that her life literally rested in the hands of her sister, she hoped that there was some sort of a plan. Even from her current position, she could tell they were in danger.

 

"I can handle this, don't worry!" Adrienne called back. She dodged an attack from one of the odd creatures, and using the opening, sprinted over to join the students that were escaping through the slowly-closing exit. She leaped through and managed to make it over in one piece. She walked over towards the other students and began to speak in a loud, commanding voice. "We need to keep moving and find Professor Stein! While we hunt him down, we'll need to stick together. I'll lead and keep us all in order, got it?" She would have liked to give a better speech, but they were in a bit of a rush. "Now then, let's go this way!" She exclaimed and began running down a hall, not waiting for the others to respond.

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Melody continued to strike the creatures down with Markus and her katana until she felt rumbling. "Melody! Look!" Markus yelled. "The walls are being formed. We need to get across now!"

 

"On it." Melody replied. She slashed the last creature and sheathed her katana and started running towards the closing wall. Holding Markus' weapon form in tow, Melody slide across the floor just before the walls closed. "That was close." Melody sighed.

 

She heard Andrienne give her rough speech and saw her dart down one of the hallways in hopes of finding the Professor. Melody ran down the same hall and caught up with Andrienne. "any idea where Professor Stein may be located at?" Melody asked.

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Tch. Looks like Little Miss Princess is trying to get all bossy again. Shiyu, fairly aware of Andriette's reputation amongst his follow students, at least from a distance, did not take kindly to her suddenly trying to take control of the situation at this time. Regardless of what force was controlling the current circumstances, he felt that the most important thing for all of them to do was focus on survival instead of bossing each other around.

 

Having sat through her speech, Shiyu paid no heed to her instructions and simply ran ahead of her and the others, zipping and dodging through the enclosing walls ahead while simultaneously ripping through the monsters that still continued to pop up.

 

Finally, the students, or what was remaining of them, reached the end of the hallway, the final wall standing behind them with no way to turn back, with the large door leading into the next section of the school ahead. Seeing as the monsters had stopped spawning for a brief period, the students took advantage of this and rested their bodies.

 

"Oh my, that was certainly a rapid chain of exciting events. I'm still wondering what exactly caused this intermission," Hannah said, returning to her human form. "Maybe this is all part of the test that Dr. Stein mentioned?"

 

"Possibly. What it was trying to test us on, I'm not really too sure. It certainly wasn't teamwork..." Shiyu said, his snide comment obviously referring to a certain classmate of his.

Edited by Firaga Sensei

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Adrienne fought the urge to shout at the boy that had just shot ahead of her. What's his problem?! I'm trying to pull us all together in the midst of this chaos, and this arrogant kid thinks he can just go off on his own? She glared as his figure became more distant...

 

Henriette, on the other hand, had a very different reaction. He's so cool...If she was in her human form, she'd probably be blushing.

 

 

Once the Meister finally reached the rest point, she slumped over against a wall, too exhausted to care about keeping up a good poise. Henriette transformed back into her human state and began stretching. Once the two had a moment to rest, Adrienne stomped over to Shiyu, closely shadowed by her twin sister. "If it was a test of teamwork, you'd have certainly failed." She spoke in a commanding tone. "Just what gives you the right to ignore the group leader?" Adrienne began interrogating her fellow Meister. She studied him more closely. He didn't even seem to be older than she was, or anywhere near her skill level. He certainly wasn't suited to Spartoi.

 

Henriette stared at the boy from behind her sister. Should I step in and help him out...? I don't want to get on Adrienne's bad side, though...

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Melody and Marcus took notice of Shiyu running off ahead of the group. "Verdammt (Damn it) Shiyu! Freaking show off."Marcus said. Melody, however, didn't bat an eye as she started running after him as the group took chase. Melody darted down the hallways slashing down the creatures while dodging the enclosing walls along the way. 

 

The group arrived at the resting point. Marcus returned into his human form and stretched his arms and legs. "Being a weapon can sometimes feel very cramped." Marcus groaned as he sat down. Melody leaned against the wall as she begins to take notice of the conversation between Shiyu and Andrienne in front of her. She remains silent while eavesdropping their conversation. 

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"If it was a test of teamwork, you'd have certainly failed." She spoke in a commanding tone. "Just what gives you the right to ignore the group leader?"

 

"Bug off. You're not my leader, and you're never going to be my leader," Shiyu simply responded, back still turned to his classmate as he walked closer to the door before them all, Hannah in tow.

 

Checking the door for any abnormalities, Shiyu and Hannah were surprised to learn that nothing was out of place. They simply walked through the door to the next room, the other students following behind.

 

Then, on the walls and floor of the next hallway, they found a various posters with arrow signs, all pointing in various directions, possibly leading to another room in the school. The students made haste, all while still keeping guard in case there were still some surprises left in store.

"It seems quiet now... we're probably getting close," Shiyu said. "And that means I'm that much closer to joining Spartoi," he added, his signature smile returning.

 

"Now now, let's not get ahead of ourselves. There's other performers here who would like to bask in that limelight," Hannah said.

 

"Well, of course you're coming. You're my weapon."

 

Hannah sighed. "No, Shiyu. I meant our class. Surely, Lord Death wouldn't just pick all of us to be in Spartoi. It'd be much too big a crowd on such a tiny stage."

 

"He'll pick us. I guarantee that."

 

Reaching the end of the path laid out for them, the students entered the school's dojo. The dojo was empty, or at least for a few moments, before the air was once again filled with the sound of screeching wheels as Dr. Stein came rolling in from the door on the other side... and once again, he tripped.

 

Deciding not to spend anymore time with the chair, he simply left it at the door and came walking into the dojo. "Congratulations on making it this far. I'm sure you're all aware by now that the test had already begun some time ago..."

Edited by Firaga Sensei

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Adrienne was infuriated by Shiyu's response. She nearly cried out in anger, but wanted to remain calm and elegant. It would be unbecoming to publicly lash out against Shiyu, so staying quiet was her only option. However, she did glare at him. Henriette, on the other hand, seemed stunned by his cool departure. After a few moments, Adrienne realized something. "Henriette, we can't let him get ahead of us!"

 

"Y-yes, you are right!" Henriette bowed, and the two chased off after Shiyu and Hannah.

 

The two girls remained cautious as Dr. Stein entered. Adrienne spoke up in response to Stein's deduction. "Yes, we figured that out. What's next, though?" She asked, eager to move along. She already knew she'd get a position in Spartoi; this was just wasting her time.

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Melody sensed Adrienne's anger flare as Melody watched the conversation.  She understands Adrienne's theory about the purpose of the test.  Melody allowed the others to get a head start before turning to Marcus who got up and starting looping his yoyo.  "Adrienne's right by the way. While we are performing well in our physical side, the cooperation side I find to be lacking." Melody said.

 

"Shiyu's headstrong for sure, but his brawns make up for it.  Black Star's the same as well."  Marcus said before looping an around the world before returning his yoyo in his pocket.  "Still. . . This could be a problem." Melody and Marcus started walking with the other students. If the test is based on cooperation, would Soul Resonance come into play here? I don't know how this is going to work. Just take it as it goes I guess. Melody thought.

 

After reaching the dojo, Marcus checked his surroundings for Dr. Stein, but he could not find him. "Where the hell is he?" He said quietly. The students were greeted by the usual performance of Dr. Stein falling off his chair. "Should you reconsider your transportation Doc?" Marcus joked. Melody crossed her arms as she groaned. "Yeah. We are aware of the test already beginning and may know the purpose, but what's next on the test Professor Stein?" Melody questioned.

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"I think it would be better if you let me explain things from here, Dr. Stein," said a voice from behind the eccentric doctor.

 

Shiyu, Hannah and their fellow students recognized the voice as the figure who it belonged to, walked out from behind Stein's tall figure: a young man wearing a black suit under a long, black cloak. His hair was also black, but adorned with a set of white stripes that circled all the way around his head.

 

This was none other than Lord Death, formerly known as Death The Kid, the son of the original Lord Death and current holder of the Shinigami mantle, as well as the headmaster of Shibusen.

 

"I'm glad to see there are still so many faces left after that last sequence. There's certainly a vast sea of potential before me today," Death spoke.

 

"W-Wait, what about the others? Are they gonna be okay?" asked a student from the crowd.

 

"Pay it no mind. I assure you that everyone who was left behind is now secured and safe thanks to the Shibusen staff, and have all been sent home for the day. The monsters will no longer appear and the hallways have been fixed as well. But as for you, your trials have only begun..."

 

"You see, the first half of your test was meant to test your survival skills, your ability to think and act on instinct during a mission. The tribulations you face in the outside world are all far beyond comprehension for a normal human being, and as such, your abilities must reflect as such. And now, the second half of the test begins, for instead of working alongside one another, you will be competing each other in a combat tournament."

 

Now, that sounds like something up my alley. Shiyu said, grinning. Hell, maybe I'll even get a chance to take down Frenchie a peg or two in the process.

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A tournament? That's not quite what I'd expected... I suppose it would be interesting to see who the best fighters in the class are, though. Adrienne thought to herself, remaining stoic and serious despite her inner thoughts. I'm sure that Henriette and I will face no issues, given our experience... I wonder who else will make it to the top? She turned her attention over towards Shiyu, noticing that he looked as confident and cocky as ever. If I'm lucky, maybe I'll get to punish him for not listening to the leader, too...

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​"Interessent (Interesting)." Marcus emphasized. "Some Meister vs. Meister combat. I like where this is going" Marcus grinned while cracking his ring finger. Melody tingled a little bit hearing Marcus crack his finger. "Very annoying Marcus." She looked around her surroundings to scout out potential combatants. "However, you are right about one thing. This is a test to see where our skills lie and whether we are made for Spartoi or not." she said. Marcus puts his hand in his pocket and smirks. "Heh. . . gotta stay cool though." Marcus remarked.

 

Melody rolled her eyes away from Marcus and laid them on Shinigami-Sama. "So what are the rules and how are you judging us?" Melody asked.

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"Each match will be held under the same standard protocols as a regular Weapon/Meister spar: attack at medium strength, and do not attempt to kill your target. Any sign of malicious intent will earn you a disqualification and the match will end with your opponent declared the winner. Other than that, all I ask is that you give it your all," Death spoke.

 

Soon, the remaining students were organized into three brackets, with each round alternating into the next bracket of matches. The students, as well as Death and Stein, all stood on the sidelines and on the various bleacher seats set up against the walls of the room. In the center of the room where the dojo mat was placed, a newcomer had arrived: a tall, sickly looking man with dreadlocks and a white sleeveless shirt. To most people, this man would appear strange, but to the Shibusen crowed, he was simply the man known as Sid Barrett, an off/on instructor for Shibusen as well as a member of Shibusne's intelligence division.

 

"Alright, let us begin! Our first match of the first bracket will be: Henriette and Andrienne Bellrose versus Tom Barber and Jerry Han," Sid announced.

 

Joining the twin sisters on the mat were a pair of boys, one was fairly tall with black hair and forehead lining bangs and the other was fairly shorter with brown hair and bangs that covered his entire face.

 

"I hope that we can have a good match together, and I assure that a gentleman like myself will be careful with such delicate ladies as yourselves," Tom said in a polite yet condescending way. "Jerry, transform please." He commanded his partner, who did not move. "... Jerry? Jerry!"

 

Jerry was not paying attention as the skull themed headphones on his ears were blocking out the noise. Tom quickly waved his hand in front of Jerry's face to get his attention. Jerry responded with an small "Huh?"

 

Tom sighed. "Weapon form, Jerry," He said. Jerry let out a "ah" and then transformed, appearing as a sharp foil in Tom's hands. "There we go. Now then, to battle!" Tom said, setting himself up in his fighting stance.

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Adrienne glared at Tom. "I hope you don't underestimate us. We may not look it, but we're certainly not frail little ladies." She glanced over at Henriette. "Let's make this quick."

 

"Yes!" Henriette nodded, determined to win this fight. She wasn't terribly pleased with Tom's condescending attitude, either. She transformed, now appearing as a rapier in her sister's hand.

 

The second that she had her weapon in hand, Adrienne sprung into action. She stepped ahead and thrust her rapier at Tom, aiming for his stomach.

Edited by Shulk

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She stepped ahead and thrust her rapier at Tom, aiming for his stomach.

 

Being the proficient swordsman that he was despite his slight ego, Tom effortlessly parried Andrienne's blade and immediately shoved her backwards with his own.

 

"You'll have to do better than that. Now, for my attack!" Tom said as he quickly set back into his stance and, surprisingly enough, as Jerry the foil began sparking...

 

From the stands, Shiyu looked on with interest. "What, he's already using a technique? I guess Mr. Gentleman over here wants to finish this as quickly as he can."

 

After Jerry's edge was now fully electrified, Tom began his own series of strikes, aiming in various directions on Andrienne's body with slick precision and blinding speed...

 

And... yadda yadda yadda, the twin maid sisters win.

 

|| ONE BUTTLOAD OF OTHER FIGHTS LATER... ||

 

Eventually, the tournament was concluded with three remaining pairs of finalists: Shiyu with Hannah, Andrienne with Henriette, and Marcus with Melody. All three pairs stood in the center of the dojo with Death and Stein.

 

"Congratulations to all of you. You are now official members of Spartoi. Please, join me tomorrow morning in my office for an important debriefing. We'll need to get you working on our little problem as soon as possible."

 

|| "SPARTOI INITIATION" Arc -- END ||

 

- - - - -

 

|| "MONOTONE PRINCESS" Arc -- START ||

 

|| THE NEXT DAY... ||

 

Following Death's instructions, both Shiyu and Hannah were up and ready waiting at the entrance to Death's office. Unfortunately, since they were early, that meant they had to wait on their classmates, as well as a couple of "special visitors" that Stein had mentioned to them on the way there.

 

"Man... what's taking them? All that work to get into this group, and I have to wait even more for some action? What a drag..."

 

"Hush now, Shiyu." Hannah scolded. "Not everyone has your sense of, well, enthusiasm for throwing your fists around."

Edited by Firaga Sensei

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