Shulato #24

"Farewell, Raitei Indrah"

synopsis by Arcadia

Indrah's projectiles pin Shulato and Hyuga against the ceiling. Shulato tries to attack, but Indrah grabs his arm and flings him away. Hyuga casts a TenOh Goumakou, creating a wall of crystal around Indrah, but Indrah breaks out easily.

Even though his attack didn't work, Indrah is still impressed with how much stronger Hyuga has gotten. Before, a single strike would have defeated him. Hyuga demands to know how Indrah could decieve not only Vishnu, but everyone in Tenkukai, for 10,000 years. Indrah had claimed to love all of Tenkuukai, and said he would die to protect it, but his apparent kindness was all just a lie to decieve them. He was their general and Hyuga and the others had admired him greatly. Hyuga cannot forgive his abusing their trust like that.

Indrah says he never decieved them. What he'd said was true- he really did love Tenkuukai then. When the Idoukyuu and the Asura gods drew nearer to Tenkuukai, the black Sohma in him awakened, and he realized his true mission as an Asura god. Even though he's loved Tenkuukai, it was his duty to destroy it.

Shulato demands to know how he will apologize to their friends who died trusting him. Indrah says he does not apologize for anything. He was doing his duty, no more, no less. Indrah calls more projectiles, and they tear the room to shreds. Shulato and Hyuga have nowhere to run.

Outside the palace, Lakshu is awakened by a thunderstrike. She tries to run after Shulato, but finds the bridge to the palace in ruins. Desperate to get to Shulato, she begs Mii to carry her over the lake. Mii argues, but eventually gives in.

Indrah's projectiles knock Shulato and Hyuga through the chamber wall and into the next tower. Indrah teleports into the room and Shulato casts a Shura Mahaken as soon as he seems him. Indrah wasn't expecting them to still be alive, and the spell almost catches him off-guard. He shields himself, but just barely. Indrah is impressed by Shulato's strength. He says that not killing Shulato before he had a chance to get so strong was his only mistake. But he's going to fix that mistake now with his greatest technique, Raitei Jikuuretsu. As Indrah chants, the room blurs into darkness around them.

Shulato and Hyuga awake to find themselves floating in space. How did they get there? Suddenly, a fireball shoots out of nowhere, heading straight for them. Shulato gets out of the way, but the fireball shoots by, taking Hyuga with it. Shulato sees another one coming, and fires a Sohma bolt at it. It doesn't make a dent in the fireball, but it does propell Shulato away from it. However, getting away from the fireball doesn't get Shulato any close to getting out of Indrah's spell. As he floats helplessly, he hears Indrah's laughter echo around him.

As Lakshu and Mii fly over the lake, tidal waves wash away the remains of the bridge and the islands in the sky begin to fall to the ground. Lightning strikes the giant stone statue of Vishnu, causing the head to break off and fall in front of a cave where the residents of Sati's village have taken shelter. Mii notices Reiga still lying on one of the last pieces of the bridge and they go to help him. Lakshu tries to wake him up, but with no success.

Shulato is ready to give up. There's no way out of Indrah's spell, and he's not strong enough to defeat him. Then he hears the voices of Ryouma, Sallas, Mayuri, Dan, Kuuya and Renge. They tell him to get up and fight. He's the only one left who can defeat Indrah. If he doesn't, who will? With their help, he breaks out of the spell and reappears in the palace. Calling on his lost comrades to give him power, he staggers toward Indrah and casts a Shura Mahaken. Indrah sends a Sohma bolt at him, but Shulato's spell blasts through it and slams Indrah into the wall. But Indrah isn't dead yet. He pulls himself to his feet, readying another spell.

Hyuga sees that Indrah is completely focused on Shulato and takes his chance. He charges at Indrah and impales him with his staff. An explosion of black Sohma escapes from Indrah's body, leaving the white Sohma that was there all along. He congradulates Hyuga and says that if he is reincarnated, he wants to be a real Deva god, without the mission that controlled him. Without the black Sohma controlling him, Indrah was back to being the kind-hearted person he was, if only for a few seconds. He dies as the general Hyuga knew and loved, not the villain he hated.

Now that Indrah is gone, the spell on Vishnu must be broken. Tenkuukai is saved! Shulato and Hyuga run to Vishnu's chamber, expecting to find her back to normal. To their shock, they find her still stone! Why didn't she return to normal? Wouldn't the spell be broken if the one who cast it is dead?

A flash of black Sohma appears overhead, heading for Shulato. Shulato is too distracted by his frustration to notice. Hyuga sees it and jumps in its path, only to be impaled by Gai's sword. Hyuga dies while a very shocked Shulato looks on. Gai appears behind Shulato. Now he's the only one left.

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