Shulato #35

"The Future! Through the Deep Darkness"

synopsis by Arcadia

Gai has finally beaten Shulato, but he's too shocked to believe it. Shulato didn't even try to defend himself when Gai stabbed him. It didn't make any sense- why would he suddenly give up after fighting for so long? Shulato explains that he finally understood what Shiva said- if he'd killed Gai in anger, that would mean giving in to the black Sohma inside him. He'd rather die than do that. Shiva orders Gai to finish the job and kill Shulato, but Gai can't move.

Shulato collapses to the floor and a bright gold light suddenly surrounds both him and Gai. Gai screams and struggles against it, as if in pain. Unable to stand the gold light, the darkness that had possessed Gai is driven out of his body and disintigrated.

Shulato wakes up to find himself healed, and Gai standing over him. He looks in his eyes, and is surprised to find the Gai is back to normal! Shulato bursts into tears and embraces Gai. His friend is finally back! Gai tries to apologize for what he's done, but Shulato says it wasn't his fault.

Shiva interrupts their reunion with a burst of black Sohma. Shulato and Gai decide to fight her together and try to attack. Shiva drives them back and buries them under a pile of rubble.

Gai bursts out of the rubble. With his Shakti glowing gold, he charges at Shiva. Shulato follows close behind. Gai manages to cut Shiva's face, but it's only a scratch and Shiva heals it in a matter of seconds.

Shiva lets loose a volley of Sohma bolts, pinning Shulato and Gai to the wall. Gai steps in front of Shulato to protect him and tells him to use the Brahma Shakti.

Shulato manages to call the Brahma Shakti this time, but Shiva still isn't impressed. She starts chanting and gathering black Sohma around her. All over Tenkuukai, the Asura soldiers start to disintigrate as Shiva draws their Sohma back to the Idoukyuu. As the power accumulates, the scarf around Shiva's head tears away, revealing a third eye in the middle of her forehead.

The darkness spreads around Shulato and Gai. It's as if Shiva were absorbing the energy of the univers itself. Shulato refuses to be afraid. As long as he has the Brahma Shakti, it doesn't matter how much energy Shiva has. Shulato charges. As he does, Gai notices Shiva's third eye start to flash. He yells for Shulato to get out of they way ans throws his sword to distract Shiva. The sword lodges in Shiva's shoulder, but doesn't stop her. She launches a ball of black energy right at Shulato. At the last second, Gai throws himself in front of Shulato, taking the blast himself.

Shulato tries to help Gai, but his body disintigrates in instant before Shulato reaches him. However, his Sohma doesn't disperse like the others' did. It gathers around Shulato in a gold mist. Shulato hears Gai's voice from the mist. Gai says that it's better this way. He couldn't face everyone after all the suffering he caused. Shulato tries to tell him that it wasn't his fault, but Gai says there's something else. He finally understands why they had to be enemies, why Brahma has to have two successors.

Realizing that Gai is still alive, Shiva tries to fire another energy ball, but the gold light around Shulato deflects it.

Inside the light, Shulato see a vision of Gai in front of him. Gai says that where there is light, there must be darkness, and where there is darkness, there must be light. He and Shulato are two sides of the same coin, two opposite forces that make up a whole. Neither light nor darkness alone can win. That's why there were two successors. Gai's Sohma merges with Shulato's, and the two forces are in balance once again. Brahma's true successor is born.

Shiva sends out another wave of black Sohma, shattering everything within miles of the Idoukyuu. Shiva exults in the resulting destruction, but Shulato is unmoved. As far as he's concerned, Shiva has already lost. True, everyone has black Sohma within them, but everyone is also capable of resisting it. Shiva gave in to the black Sohma, she sold her soul to it. That weakness means Shiva has already lost, no matter whether or not she beats Shulato.

Shulato calls on the Brahma Shakti to give him strength and fires a ball of light at Shiva. Shiva fires an energy ball at Shulato. The two energy balls pass each other and both hit their targets. Shulato's ball destroy's Shiva's throne, and Shiva's ball shatters the Brahma Shakti.

Shulato drags himself to his feet and casts a spell for Gai- Gai's Shippu Marouken! GaI's sword is still lodged in Shiva's shoulder and the spell heads straight for it.

With her energy drained, Shiva is forced to fight with physical force instead of spells. Shiva grabs Shulato by the neck and tries to strangle him. Shulato grabs the Gai's sword out of her shoulder and plunges it into her chest.

After breaking free, Shulato summons all his remaining energy and casts a Shura Mahaken at Shiva. At first, it appears to have no effect. Shulato, having exhausted all his energy, collapses. Shiva gloats, thinking she's won. However, Shulato's spell wasn't quite done. Only part of his spell has hit Shiva the first time. The rest of it overwhelms her, and the black Sohma starts to drain from Shiva's body. Without the black Sohma that kept her alive, Shiva's body withers and crumbles. With Shiva gone, the Idoukyuu soon follows, imploding in a glow of blue light. All that's left is a large crater.

Lakshu teleports to where the Idoukyuu was and finds Shulato lying unconscious in the middle of the crater. Shulato wakes up and they make their way back to Tenkuuden. One by one, Renge, Hyuga, Dan, Kuuya, Ryouma and Reiga climb out from under the ruins of the Idoukyuu and join them. The eight of them watch the sun rise, knowing that it's the beginning of more than just a new day.

In Tokyo, Yumiko is watching the sunrise from her window. Yutaro joins her, surprised to see her up so early. Yumiko tells Yutaro that she dreamed about Shulato last night. She's sure something very good has happened to him.

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