The two bowed as they prepared to start the duel. They each took their stances ready to attack both looking straight at each other.

”Hey, my name is Henry Agba. I just want to inform you that you can not defeat me. I graduated from the best academy in the country. At least, you can show me what can you do., ” a tall red-haired boy said with a smug face. ”Plus I graduated as the top 1 of the Kira Academy., ”

”Ohh. I guess you
e one of those kids that flex on their graduation rank. Okay., ” Chioma said as she threw her quiver into the air. The arrows in the quiver scattered around the duelling space. She kept one arrow with her. Henry moved his right leg backwards, clenched his fists and pushed his right arm forward. ”Sound Push!, ” A forceful wind gushed out of his hands rushing towards Chioma who had taken her arching stance. Chioma coated herself with lightning and jumped into the air completely dodging the attack.

Chiomas arrows had scattered everywhere within the duelling space. She switched places with an arrow 3 metres away from Henry. Henry image of Chioma changed to an arrow. He turned around to find Chioma about to shoot. ”Sound Push., ” He immediately attacked. Chioma dropped her bow and arrow and teleported to where one of her arrows were 5 metres on the right side of Henrys back. Chioma took the arrow and gripped its bottom.

Henry turned to his front but before he could do anything, Chioma teleported back to where she dropped her bow and arrow. ”Shock., ” she said as she touched Henry with the arrow she picked. She had coated it with lightning. The lightning shocked Henry who shaped vigorously before he fell.

”197 wins., ” the voice said. Chioma won effortlessly. She had blitzed Henry. Tobi was wowed at the turnout of the duel. It was short and fast. Tobi was elated that hed get to fight someone his age. He was going to show the commanders what he can do.

”232 and 172, come forward., ” the voice commanded. Two boys exited the crowd into the duelling space. One of them (232) held a spear and the other (172) seemed like a martial artist who specialised in hand-to-hand. They bowed to each other and took their stances. ”Ready, set, start!, ” the voice declared.

”I am Shina Ada. Whats ya name?, ” the boy who seemed like a martial artist asked.

”Andrew Akaze. Nice to meet you., ” the boy with the spear replied.

”Lets have a good fight., ” Shina said clenching both his fists. His stance was like that of a boxer. He jumped forward towards Andrew delivering a blow. Andrew blocked the blow with his spear. Andrew immediately pushed Shina back.

Andrew rotated his spear above his head with his two hands for about 3 seconds. Then, he held the spear at its near bottom and swung it downwards in a longitudinal manner. ”Swush!, ” he shouted. A longitudinal slash of air moved at a great speed towards Shina.

Shina saw as the slash of air approached him and clenched his fists. He punched the air scattering it. He then ran towards Andrew who also ran towards him. Shina threw punches at Andrew which Andrew blocked with his spear. Andrew also swung his spear at Shina which Shina blocked with his punch. Punch, block, punch, block, swing, block, swing, block. They both continued for two minutes after which they drew back from each other.

Shina clenched his right arm very hard revealing his hard muscles. He jumped high towards Andrew who was rotating his spear. Andrew swung his spear as Shina launched at him with a punch.

”Big Bang! Swush!, ” Shina and Andrew shouted respectively. The collision of the attack sent the two of them backwards colliding with the wall. Their collision with the wall created a hole in the part where their backs had hit the wall. They both fell on their chest to the ground.

The voice counted to ten. He ended the match after they had both failed to stand up. The match ended in a draw. The two were carried away by two guards who were called for from the inner building.

50 more duels were fought in under two hours. 17 ended as a draw while there was a winner in the other 33.

”213 and 196, come forward., ” the voice commanded. This time a boy came forward alongside Tobi. Tobi was 196. He had looked forward to this moment. He felt ready. He felt pumped.

He took his bow and moved a bit backwards. He unsheathed his sword and readied his stance. His opponent on the other hand did not ready a stance. He only took in quick breaths and immediately punch the air. ”Burn!, ” he said. What happened afterwards left Tobi in a state of shock and amazement. The attack was a fire attack.

Tobi swung his sword and slashed the fire attack. This was his rival, give or take. He had gotten some information from his study sessions about the other clan that uses fire like theirs. ”You are from Seiryou, right? I won lose to you!, ”

The boy unbothered about Tobis words spun himself and threw another punch. ”Burn!, ” he said without shouting. Tobi in turn slashed the attack. The boy then coated his hands with flames and threw a barrage of blows at Tobi. ”Burn Barrage!, ” The punch was hot and fast. Tobi swung his sword slashing each punch as it came near. The boy kept on punching and suddenly disappeared. He appeared in front of Tobi punching Tobi in the face. He blitzed Tobi.

Tobi flew backwards spilling a bit of blood. The punch was heated up. He stood up and tightened the grip he had on the sword. ”Fireball, ” he shouted as he shot the ball from his sword. The boy punched the fireball attack and scattered it. He immediately sped towards Tobi and delivered another punch. Tobi blocked the sword but he was pushed backwards.

Tobi gripped his sword and sped towards the boy. He swung his sword at the boy. Left swing, right swing, downward swing, upward swing and so on. He kept swinging and the boy kept dodging till the boy punched Tobi again in the stomach and immediately kicked him backwards.

”Why are you this weak? Shirin? You disgust me., ” the boy said. Those words enraged Tobi. Those words carried their weight but it was coming from a rival clan member. He immediately cloaked his sword with fire and activated a technique. ”Fire Whip!, ” he shouted. He swung his sword and released fire that moved in several directions like a whip. Tobi kept swinging the swords in the hope of hitting the boy. To Tobis shock, the boy dodged all of the whips movement. ”How is he dodging it like that? How fast is he?, ” Tobi wondered.

”Is this a joke? Do you think you have a chance? Burn!, ” the boy said punching away the whip attack. The boy was overwhelming Tobi. ”You seem more like a comedian to me. Can you entertain me more?, the boy smirked.

Tobi became infuriated. The fire coating his sword grew wilder. He tightened his grip as his sword was getting more heavy. ”Combo, Fire whip + Flowing Furnace!, ” he charged toward the boy. The whip moved in different directions homing in on the body. With flowing furnace added, Tobi moved diagonally aiming to jump to the back of the boy and slash him while coming back down. ”I will not lose to you!, ”

As Tobi was about to jump, the boy punched Tobi with a force twice as hard as the former. The punch sent Tobi flying. The part of the walk that welcomed Tobis body was destroyed. ”Slow., ” he said. ”How did you even survive in the forgotten world?, ”

Tobi could not believe what had just happened. The flowing furnace was supposed to predict his physical movement. ”He is faster than I can predict? How? Tch., ” Tobi thought to himself as he struggled to stand.

”You can go on, right? The show isn over you know., ” the boy said as he approached Tobi and kicked him from behind. Tobi couldn react to the kick and was pushed 5 metres forward. He had not been able to land a hit on the boy. He rose to his knees supported by his sword held with his left hand.

”You are weak! No wonder your sister died., ” he whispered to Tobis ear before punching him. Tobi collapsed face flat to the ground.

”213 wins., ” the voice declared.

After three hours, all duels were completed and it was time for the selection phase. Time was given to the kids that collapsed to recover and return. That time was also used by the district commanders to meet and select those who would join the army and importantly, their district.

The meeting took another hour to complete. The District Commanders returned and took their seats. This time all the 238 kids were now available.

”You all have shown great courage, abilities and survival skills. You all have done your best but not everyone will share in the cake. The district commanders met and decided on those who would join the army and their districts. I would call the name of the districts and then the numbers that were selected., ” he paused to look at the opened scroll before he continued.

”Ishiaka District – 122, 148, 166, 132, 110, 122, 65, 09. Congratulations., ” the voice announced.

”Kitakawa District – 111, 225, 238, 142, 03, 157, 172, 201. Congratulations., ”

”Usumi District – 43, 96, 120, 119, 75. Congratulations., ”

”Kirikara District – 213, 86, 41, 230, 153. Congratulations., ”

”Kotakure District – 100, 55, 32, 78, 47, 184, 61. Congratulations., ”

”Yosuma District – 12, 49, 29, 66, 79, 35. Congratulations., ”

”Makekatwa District – 77, 10, 101, 141, 177, 109, 84. Congratulations., ”

”and finally, Saikyu District ” the voice paused. There was a look of worry in his eyes. ”Saikyu district has not picked anyone for 10 years now ”. The voice opened the scroll. The expression that followed was startling. ”W-W-What? I certainly do not expect this. Saikyu and their non-standards., ” he said to himself. The crowd started to murmur and were feeling nervous. Saikyu was the last district to be called. Tobi was thinking of what would happen if he was not picked. His months of training would go down the drain. He had lost his duel. He was more negative and nervous. He wanted a miracle. He needed it.

”Ahem, Saikyu District – 197, 232, 105, 13, 07, 30., ” the voice announced. ”For those who were not picked, you can try again in 6 month time. The examination has ended. You are hereby dismissed., ” the voice declared.

Tobi shook where he was. He was cold and bitter. He didn make the pick Chioma saw him and went over to console him. ”There is always a next time. Maybe this just wasn your time. Cheer up. You are strong. I can feel it. It is just not your time., ”

Tobi was moved to tears. He could not achieve what he had trained for. He wondered what his father would say. ”You are a disgrace and a disappointment. Get out of my sight., ” he thought as he felt another person hug him. ”Youll be fine. Maybe being a warrior wasn meant for you., ” the voice mentioned. It was Ini.

”Ini? How? I thought you had failed the survival test when I couldn find you. Where were you?, ” Tobi was surprised. He wiped off his tears. ”Oh, about that. Its just a little trick. Don bother I won tell you. Hehe., ” Ini replied.

The crowds who didn get picked exited the venue and Tobi was about when a loud voice commanded everybody to stop. It was the examiner.

”There was an unintentional omission that was brought to my notice by the Saikyu District Commander. My apologies. I read again. Saikyu District – 197, 232, 105, 13, 07, 30 and 196. Congratulations., ” he announced.

Tobi did not realise anything until Ini called his attention. ”Tobi, you made it., ”

”Made what?, ” Tobi was baffled. ”You made it. 196 was called. Are you not 196?, ” Chioma asked.

”Yes, I am 196. Wait. What? I made it?, ” Tobi asked more confused. He wasn listening when the examiner recalled the list.

”Yes, you did. The examiner recalled the numbers and 196 was called. You made it plus we entered the same district- Saikyu!, ” Chioma answered. ”What?! Really?!, ” Tobi became excited. Ini, Chioma and he jumped together in celebration. ”Wait, Ini. What district did you get into?, ” Tobi paused to ask.

”Usumi. I was 119. Hehe., ” Ini replied.

They all waited at the examination space until their District Representative came to separate them. Tobi looked up to the elevation. He saw one of the commanders look at him and smiled before turning away.

”Hey, follow me., ”


Somewhere beneath the Earth, a dark space which contained eleven concrete chairs cemented to the floor was a mansion that had many poorly lit rooms. The concrete chairs were arranged five on each side with one at the front – like a board room with no round table.

A man whose only his back was seen sat on the chair at the front facing the ten chairs. In front of him was a man on his knees with his face bowed to the ground. He wore a black cloak and a black inner dress with two swords strapped to his sides- one on the right and one on the left.

”Master, I have returned., ” the man on his kneel said.

”Go, on., ” The master replied.

”The mission has been completed and everything is working as planned, Master.,,

”Good. I knew I could trust you with such mission., ” the master commended. ”Summon the others. We have a lot to do and discuss now that that mission has been completed. Dismiss., ”

”Yes sir., ” the man said before he vanished.


”Hey, follow me., ”

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