Shulato #6

"The Fight of Love and Sadness"

Synopsis by Arcadia

On the Mahava, the remaining Hachibushu can't believe that Reiga switched sides. Gai says that the Asura have magic they've never heard of, and that Reiga must have been bewitched. Renge swears that she'll kill them with her own hands. Because Vishnu was turned to stone, Tenkuukai is falling apart. There's even a fatal plague called Sekishuuhan sweeping the land. Everyone is shocked to hear that- there was never any disease in Tenkuukai when Vishnu was around.

Gai says Indrah would be happy to hear her now. He calls KumaraTen Muhra and Dahra. A huge giant and a tiny old man walk into the room. Gai places them under Renge's command and tells them to kill Shulato.

Marichi staggers across a desert, vultures circling over him. There are brown spots on his arm- a symptom of Sekishuuhan. He collapses, and one of the vultures dives toward him, only to be impaled by Marichi's dagger. Marichi gets up and continues on, determined not to die until he sees Hyuga again.

Shulato and his friends are walking through a jungle. Reiga gives Lakshu make-up tips and tells her that she'll be so beautiful that every boy that sees her will instantly fall in love. This makes Shulato jealous.

They find a man lying against a tree. They go to help him and see brown spots on his arm. The man whispers to take him to Vishnu, but dies soon after. Ryouma can hardly believe it, since there was never any disease in Tenkuukai before. Hyuga says it means Tenkuukai is falling apart without Vishnu.

Suddenly, a rain of throwing stars comes from another tree. Everyone dodges. They see Renge standing in the branches. She swears to kill them. Reiga tries to explain, but she doesn't listen. Muhra and Dahra ride in on a giant centipede. Dahra attacks with his chain and sends everyone flying. Shura calls his Valuda and catches Lakshu.

Muhra flies at them and slashes Ryouma's shoulder with his claws. Shulato and Renge fly at each other on their Valudas. Renge throws several throwing stars and Shulato manages to deflect them all, but he's so caught up with that that he runs into a tree, knocking both himself and Lakshu to the ground. Renge moves in for the kill, but a mysterious figure intervenes.

The mysterious figure turns out to be Marichi. Both Renge and Marichi are shocked to see each other, too shocked to move. Marichi recovers his senses first, summoning a fog that traps Renge, Dahra and Muhra. He picks up Shulato and everyone runs away.

Hyuga punches Marichi, knocking him to the ground. Marichi asks if that's how he greets everybody. Hyuga and Marichi are childhood friends, but Marichi disappeared without a trace. Hyuga is mad because he made him worry so much. As Marichi tells his story, Hyuga notices the spots on his arm. Marichi is dying of Sekishuuhan and wanted to see Hyuga once more before he died. Shulato insists there must be a cure, but Marichi tells him to shut up. Marichi says he never thought he'd fight Renge, and Hyuga asks if he still loves her after all this time.

Flashback. Renge is practicing punches against a tree. Suddenly, a flower falls into her hair. She sees Marichi sitting on a tree branch above her. He says she looks beautiful and winks at her. Renge acts angry, but blushes. She says he's in the way and throws a stick at him.

Hyuga tells Marichi that if he still loves her, he should go see her.

Flashback. Marichi is lying in a field of flowers, whistling. Renge asks why he called her there. Marichi says he loves her. Renge thinks he's joking, and turns to leave, but he insists he's serious. Renge says that she is a warrior and she doesn't need love. Marichi doesn't believe it. He tells her he's going on a journey and won't get in the way of her training any more. A snake comes up behind Renge, but Marichi throws a dagger at it before it can hurt Renge. When Renge turns to look, Marichi is gone. She stands alone in the field, with pink flower petals blowing around her.

Marichi says to forget it, but Shulato objects, saying that if he really loved her, he wouldn't forget it. Remebering a fight with Gai, he says friends shouldn't fight, and Marichi shouldn't find Renge. Marichi collapses, coughing. Shulato runs to find Renge, thinking that if she heard the truth, she'd believe him and come see Marichi. Marichi says Shulato reminds him of Hyuga.

Shulato flies through the jungle on his Valuda, calling for Renge. Dahra's chain stops him. Shulato tries to tell Renge what really happened to Vishnu, but she doesn't believe him. He tells her about Marichi. She is visibly shocked, but tries to act like she doesn't care. Shulato transforms. Renge attacks, but is stopped by one of Marichi's daggers.

Marichi, now in his panther Shakti (way cool), and the others have caught up with Shulato. Renge sics Muhra and Dahra on them, while she fights Marichi herself.

Renge says she won't hold back. Marichi says he won't, either. He says he's betting his life on this fight, and dares her to take it.

Hyuga suggests that he and Shulato combine techniques. The two together should have enough power to destroy Muhra and Dahra. Shulato casts a Shura Mahaken, and Hyuga launches a bolt of Sohma. The two combine and easily disintegrate Muhra and Dahra.

However, Renge and Marichi are still fighting. Their duel has moved into a field of flowers, like the one in Marichi's flashback. Pink petals float around them with every move they make. Marichi remarks that Renge has gotten better, and she says he has, too.

Shulato runs toward them, yelling for them to stop, but Marichi tells him to stay out of it. Hyuga says that Marichi is determined to die here, fighting against Renge, rather than let Sekishuuhan kill him.

With the flowers, and the two warriors silhouetted against the setting sun, it's a very pretty sight, one that's not lost on Lakshu.

Marichi creates another fog and Renge starts to see hands coming out of the ground, grabbing her. She realizes it's just an illusion, and stabs herself in the hand to snap herself out of it. Marichi starts to say that the fight isn't over yet, but suddenly coughs, spitting up blood. Renge hesitates, finally realizing the truth.

Marichi drags himself to his feet and charges at Renge, shouting "Take it, Renge! Take my life!" At first, Renge can't move, but she casts a Nahra Musouka, which hits Marichi head-on.

Marichi staggers toward Renge, lifting his dagger as if to stab her with it. Renge just stands still, looking at him with tears in her eyes. Marichi drops the dagger and embraces Renge, whispering that he'd wanted to do this at least once, then collapses. Renge takes him in her arms. Marichi lifts his hand to touch Renge's face one last time, then dies.

Shulato runs toward Marichi, but is distracted by a blast from Renge. When it clears, she's gone. With tears in her eyes, she flies back to the Mahava.

Lakshu cries uncontrollably, but Hyuga tells her not to. Marichi was always smiling and would want everyone else to, too. The five of them watch as Marichi's body disintegrates and his Sohma is dispersed.

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