Date: March 13, 2013
Tadashi and Banshi make a second venture into the cave where the Crawler is attempting to break through the seal that contains it.
"Darkness Revisited - Trial Run"
An island far southeast of the Land of Water
After the initial scouting venture into the cave to check out how many of the creatures have escaped and the survey the damage that has been done to the seal, Tadashi and Banshi sat down to strategize their next entry into the cave. While neither of them are seal masters good enough to repair this seal if it becomes completely broken, maybe they can figure out a way to make the creatures stop attempting to break it before the damage gets too far. The best idea thus far is to try offering the same type of deal Maikeru made to at least try to sate the creature's thirst. Whether it will listen or not is questionable. Theoretically, it should, but who says immortal bloodthirsty creatures formed of hate and darkness have to be logical?
With that plan in mind, Tadashi stands in front of the cave entrance waiting for Banshi to open up a hole large enough for him to get through and for his clones to follow in behind him. By the thunderous footsteps and other sounds coming from within the cave, one might deduce that more of the creatures have gathered and are preparing for combat. It's likely a good thing that he sent Ai to set up camp in one of the buildings. He and Banshi can handle surprises, but she's not quite ready yet. "Be prepared to make a path to the entrance again. If there are too many of them, we might have to pull out and regroup. Better to use this as another trial run than die trying to accomplish our goals this instant," he instructs as he grabs another of the burgundy pills from his coat and bites into it. A moment later, he has grown back to his insane physique and brings his hands into a seal, causing two shadow clones of himself to appear beside him. "Let's do this."
The figure would give a small nod. He was already focused himself, those 4 clones out and ready to work. The metal forest eventually faded away as it takes substained chakra to really keep such a massive structure in there. Wouldn't really be surprised if they hadn't adapted it to their own use either. Two of the clones were already gone, using that superior stealth to avoid detection as they blended through that underground. Once again the holster system was in place for Tadashi, the true figure feeding the metal chakra as the last clone went through those hand signs to manipulate the metal, causing the metal bars to bend fluidly, allowing that entrance for them to go through, while still allowing a quick close so nothing can get out.
Once the oening is there, Tadashi begins to step into the cave once again. As he does, the surge of darkness radiating from the place suddenly feels a lot stronger. The Children are ready for a fight. This also why he is actually wearing the holster himself this time instead of putting it on a Shadow Clone. That trick wouldn't likely work twice, and there's no telling what they'll have prepared this time around.
"Death beats its wings for you."
As he feels around and sees at least a small bit of the figures moving around, Tadashi can feel quite a few of the creatures walking around the area. Many of the man-like creatures as well as the ones that have possessed armor. Just as a few of them begin to rush him, his clones leap out from behind him and kick them back. "That all you've got?" the inflectionless voice rings out from behind the mask before he and the clones begin to move forward, and the creatures begin their swarm. As before, they begin striking which ever ones gets close to hold them at bay. "Now!" It seems the battle is starting quickly. Perhaps this run won't take as long, but what they need is for the creature to reveal if it has any more tricks up its sleeve. Once they get that figured out, it may be time to strategize again. Still, they are fighting valiantly as they attempt to break through the creatures to get back to the seal.
The two clones that had stealthed ahead underground got that signal and immediately did the seals required. As they'd merge out of the ground, so to would the massive flailing mesh of metal. Once again Tadashi and the tether were not effected, but everything else about them in a rather large circle had wires attacking them, trying to lock everything down as much as groping barbed steel could do. The figure was silent as it worked, not bothering to respond to the things as they'd whisper at him. No, his focus was entirely on the work it seems.
As Banshi begin his work, Tadashi and his clones' battle suddenly becomes much easier. They begin to fight further and further toward the seal, smashing through the creatures one after another until Tadashi finally takes a powerful leap to make it about half the length of the cave closer to the seal. However, it's then that it may become apparent that separating from the clones was a bad idea.
"The dark guardian shall come and protect us… and all that is flesh and light shall die."
With that, the thunderous footsteps of new creatures coming forward rings out. These appear to be giant scepter-wielding statues glowing with dark energy that have been possessed by the more powerful ranks of the creatures. They all raise their scepters and slam them into the ground simultaneously, sending waves of dark chakra through the ground at Tadashi that explode up as they meet in the center while he leaps out of the way.
The initial wave contained, the clones would move forward, pressed as they were to keep back the fight as it was three vs many. At least, until Tadashi found the big guys who all struck at once. In unison, red eyes narrowed contemplatively. If they were going to do that.. Both clones fell back a step, allowing Tadashi's clone to maintain the front line. That voice, still the crooning tenor, would be a bit louder, at least enough to reach Tadashi. "Get them to do that again. Strike the ground as one.. I will make sure it is regretted." Both clones said this in unison, the hand seals started. Yep, the plot was in place, now if they could pull it off.
Making a plot is one thing. Forgetting that these creatures aren't completely mindless is another. As the clones speak and reveal their locations, even more of the gargantuan statues step out. This time, they begin raining orbs of dark chakra from the top of their scepters as Tadashi and all the clones, attempting to take them all out. Tadashi himself manages to duck out of the way, though his clones do catch the brunt of it. Still, this gives him a moment to test something out. Leaping at one of the statues, he moves into a flurry of powerful strikes that eventually begin to break down the chakra-enforced stone.
"You have brought hurt! The children are angry!"
With that, more of the orbs begin flying at Tadashi, in unison with some of the statues using their ground-based strikes as well. "Pull out and regroup!"
Well, the plan got the results desired, they picked up the attack. Of course, focusing like that meant they got closer together. Ducking an orb, once again those twin clones would kneel, planting hands to the ground. As Tadashi pulled back, that metal spike would get launched upwards, aiming for the center statue. The real figure outside the cave started pulling back on the wire, merging it back into the ground and as soon as Tadashi was out, the clone left in reserve would bend the bars back into place smoothly. Inside, the spikes continued, lashing out at everything around them, the second ring wider than the first, those spikes launching outward would catch the clones, causing them to poof into non-existance, while aiming to impale as many of the 'children' as possible. Massive and bloody? You betcha.
"You can never escape darkness! It flocks to you always!"
Tadashi seems to largely ignore the voice as he is pulled out of the cave. The clones of Banshi's efforts do enough to keep the creatures off him until he makes it outside and the door is shut once again. "Well, that was eventful," he says calmly as he sheds the holster once again and withdraws the map he drew the last time he was in there. "Now to prepare for the next phase. This should be the final one if I can make it to the seal and actually talk to this thing. You said the last guy got pulled through the seal and was thought to be dead, right?"
Finished guarding that point of entry, the metal trees would eventually crumple away once again. That figure left the holster there, prepared for the next entry into the darkness as he'd nod towards Tadashi. "Correct." The soft tenor croon was there once again as red eyes stared at the things behind the metal grill. "He was pulled in through the same crack, from what I know. Did not hear from him for a long time, I believe a few months. Then he randomly showed up in a country. Not around here." Shaking his head, he'd look at Tadashi then. "I can not gurantee connection of the holster through the seal."