A woman's footsteps were light, splashing in the water from an earlier rain as she ran through the narrow streets. She moved with the street turns, sliding in the corners on the water. She looked over her shoulder, looking for the men that were chasing after her. She looked forward seeing a man spinning a chain over his head. She viewed her surroundings in a few seconds and saw the man throwing the chain towards her. She dodged it, heading down a side alley. She cursed as another man jumped from above her swinging his sword down. She just escaped it, knocking the sword out of his hand with a well-aimed kick. She ran forward and grabbed the man's face. He screamed for only a second before he was tossed to the side, his face severely burned.
The woman left the alley, checking behind her shoulder. She turned forward and her eyes widened as she slammed into a man. The man stumbled back from the impact while she landed on the ground away from him on her back. She coughed before using her whole body to jump back up. She glared at the man who had caught himself.
"Watch where you are standing!" She noticed a cloth with some sort of object at his feet. He bent to pick it up for her, but she snatched it up before he could do so. Scooping it up in her arms, she turned to see a group of men rushing towards them.
"I'm sor-" the man started before being cut off as daggers came flying at them. The woman blocked the one she could, realizing the man would be hit if she didn't. He started to move to go to one side, but she pushed him back, getting stabbed with the knives. The man landed on the ground, looking at the girl slightly surprised. She used her body to shield him, rather then focus on the ones coming for her. He quickly shook it off and got to his feet, stepping out into the middle of the bridge. His hand rested on the katana that hung at his hip, ready to draw.
"Look what you did," she hissed, spitting up some blood. He looked back at her as she growled. Her hand caught on fire. She threw a large fireball down the alley. The man barely got out of the way from the surprise fireball. Strange how the girl, a minute ago, protected him. Now, she didn't care if she hit him in the cross-fire, or not. She glared at the man, one more time, before jumping over the bridge. She disappeared into the forest. The large group of men became a few from the woman's fiery blast. The men that remained tried to follow, ignoring the man existence. The man blocked their path.
"What is this about?" he asked in a calm voice.
"This has nothing to do with you," one man stated, but another put a hand out.
"That woman is a thief, and stole something very important to the village. If you have anyone you love in this village you will let us pass, or we are all doomed," the other man stated, eyes narrowing. The man relaxed his guard. The thing that she snatched up at his feet so quickly came to mind.
"I see," he said, stepping aside. "Good luck to you." The men ran by him, after the strange woman.
The woman had a good distance by now, but the dagger wounds had done more on her body then she originally thought. As she moved she felt the cuts become deeper.
"Damnnit all! I should of let them hit him." She hadn't thought; only reacted. That man obviously had to be a swordsman. He could have easily dodged them, but what if he hadn't? It would be her fault. She already hated killing as it was. Soon she found it nearly impossible to keep walking. Blood rolled out of the wounds in her leg, shoulder and side. She stumbled next to a cherry tree, leaning against the trunk.
She sat there, pulling out the item from the cloth revealing a beautiful golden fan. When just closed, gem stones sparkled. The carved Japanese symbol for the north seemed to burn her eyes. She opened it and gasped. The fan depicted a battle between a monk and a demon warrior. The demon warrior pushed into a fan. Her fingers traced the delicate artwork. Her eyes looking over it like some royal treasure. She looked up quickly however, feeling the presence of another swordsman. She wrapped the fan up carefully, before hiding it in her black and red rimmed sleeveless top. She leaned back, staring at the top of the trees with her one good eye.
The man from before found the woman and watched for a moment. He knew she got injured, and from the looks of it if she wasn't helped it would be bad. He remained cautious as he approached her.
"You need help," he stated simply.
"Obviously!" she snapped. She winced as she sat up straighter. "Why are you following me?" He stopped a couple feet away.
"You have been wounded. You need assistance." He looked her over. She was losing too much blood. At this rate, she would be rendered unconscious soon. He took his cloak and began ripping strips from it. Being so close and not having anything to do with the battle, the woman ripped her gaze off the trees and onto him. She tilted her head, getting a better look at him.
The samurai looked like a member of the shogunate. She observed his white kimono and a his long sleeved dark blue jacket he was ripping apart. He had a black sash around his waist where his sword rested with. She looked into his blue eyes carefully to see if she could trust him, but already her vision started to blur. She could barely see his face, only his long brown hair.
"I don't.. need help.. from the likes of you," she mumbled fading in and out of consciousness. She fell forward, onto the ground. The man shook his head as he dressed her wounds. Being right at the edge of the forest, he had been placed in a terrible environment to help her. He picked her up and carried her into a part of the forest with a bit more tree cover. Those men would still be after her. He pulled out a small box, an emergency aid kit, and got to work.
He pulled the red sash off her waist and loosened the top. He swallowed hard. Her body looked rather fit. She had a nice-sized bosom and nice hips for baring children. He shook the thought off, undoing the red scarf on her neck. He pulled her shirt open, pulling the scarf down to cover her chest. He started to wrap her wounds, cleaning and bandaging them.
Once he finished, he looked down at her. One of her eyes covered with a black and red eye-patch. He wondered what happened, fixing her brown hair. He let her rest, standing watch while she slept to be sure they would not be found out. She rested for a few hours before her eyes darted open. She reached for her sword and glared at the ground when she couldn't find it. She looked up at the man, grinding her teeth together, quietly.
"You again..." she trailed off, looking at her bandaged wounds. "You did this?" she asked. He nodded.
"I did what was necessary. You would have died, otherwise." His tone soft, but firm. "Are you feeling better?" he asked her.
"I'm feeling pretty crappy, and my body still hurts, but I'll live," she told him. She sat up straighter, coughing softly. "Return my things," she commanded.
"All of your things are there," he said pointing to a spot on the ground behind her. "That being said." He held up the wrapped item. "You have been accused of stealing this," he stated flatly.
"Thank you for taking care of my wounds." She grabbed her weapons and returned them to the correct places. She looked at him afterwards. "I would like that back. It belongs to me, now." The man did not move.
"Why is it so important to the people of that village?" he asked in a calm voice.
"I really don't care. They will be fine without it." The woman eyes narrowed, walking closer to him, holding her hand out. He smiled, taking a step back as she began to approach. "Why is it so important to you?"
"Because it will change my destiny," she simply stated. The man sighed.
"Tell me why I shouldn't take this back to the villagers."
"Because that would be breaking this girl's heart. I need it, for something very important, now give it back. Now." He tilted his head.
"What is this something? I might just hand it over."
"It's none of your business!" Fire heated the fan causing the man to drop it from how hot it got. She swiftly caught it. Her touch cooled the fan before she place it in the safety of her clothes, right in her bosom. She turned to get closer to the entrance of the cave. "Now, I will be leaving. Unless, you want to stop me," she hissed, a hand resting on the hilt of her sword. The man did not move for his weapon.
"You are already wounded. I do not wish to fight you. I cannot simply allow you to leave, either."
"I am leaving. You can't stop me if you do not draw your weapon," she trailed off before snapping. Flames erupted from the ground. A wall of fire stood between him and her. She ran off. The flames grew taller.
He let out a frustrated sigh when she left, and headed back towards the town. He hurried to the Dojo to inform his Sensei of what had happened. Maybe he would know more about this stolen item.