Scattering Cherry Blossoms

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Hijikata gritted his teeth as he backed up to stand with Sumiko and the others.

"At present, all of the rasetsus in Japan are gathered here inside this one castle. They will be our ultimate weapon when we stomp out the Imperial Army," San'nan said as Koudou moved to stand beside him.

"Come. Lend us your hand, Chizuru," Koudou said, holding his own out to her. "We need you to be our leader. Let's use these rasetsus to revive the Yukimura clan."

"Tou-sama," Chizuru said regretfully, staying where she was, "if you refuse to change your mind... then you will no longer be my father."

"Kuh!" Koudou gritted his teeth and let out a low growl of frustration as his eyes flicked from his adopted daughter to Sumiko. Not just one, but both... Sumiko must have been bad influence on Chizuru. She was never this strong-willed before. Chizuru had always been such an obedient and faithful daughter until now...!

"What say you, Hijikata-kun?" San'nan asked. "Care to lead these rasetsus in a fight against the Imperial Army?"

"We don't need a Rasetsu Unit to fight our wars!" Hijikata declared sternly, furrowing his brow. He'd rather lose than allow Japan to become overrun with these bloodthirsty monsters!

"Then you leave me no choice..." San'nan said gravely. He removed his sword from his side, pulling it from its sheath so that he was holding his sword in one and the sheath in the other. Hijikata gritted his teeth and raised his own sword, preparing to strike the moment San'nan came at him. "We rasetsus can do nothing but fight. If you say we no longer have a place on the battlefield..." San'nan gritted his teeth and furrowed his brow as he raised his sword and struck down the rasetsu standing beside him.

"!" Hijikata's eyes widened slightly in shock as he and everyone in the room gasped. No one had been expecting that.

"Yah!" the rasetsu on San'nan's other side yelled as he tried to strike him down, but San'nan was too quick. As he spun around to face his attacker, San'nan blocked the oncoming blade with the sheath of his sword and struck the rasetsu down with a slash of his sword. San'nan furrowed his brow and gritted his teeth as he thrust his sheath straight through the heart of the one that had been standing directly behind him, jumping back as their bodies hit the floor.

"Then it would be an act of mercy to put them out of their misery now!" San'nan finished determinedly.

"Heisuke! Sumiko!" Hijikata said.

"You got it!" Heisuke answered as he and Sumiko stepped up to join them.

"W-Why, San'nan-kun!?" Koudou asked, startled.

"I must apologize, but the Shinsengumi Commander's orders are absolute," San'nan stated coolly he stood together with the others.

"Heh. Were you planning this from the start?" Hijikata asked with the hint of a smirk, eyeing his old friend out the corner of his eye.

"'To fool the enemy, first deceive your allies,'" San'nan quoted slyly as he adjusted his glasses.

"Heh. I see... Well, you certainly had me fooled," Sumiko told him with a rueful smile. She had never been so glad to be wrong before.

"San'nan-san, you're actin' way too cool," Heisuke said with a grin. The remaining rasetsus gritted their teeth as they tightened their grips on their swords.

"Fools!" Koudou snapped. "Now that the Shinsengumi has lost most of its forces, how will you go about fighting?" None of them answered. They were all too busy cutting down any and all rasetsus who dared try to attack them.

"Yah!" Sumiko yelled fiercely as she decapitated one and stabbed another through the heart.

"Nng!" San'nan gritted his teeth as he pushed back against his latest opponent. His eyes glowed red, and his hair faded white. He overpowered and slayed the other rasetsu in an instant. Heisuke and Hijikata soon followed suit.

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