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#1 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Sun Jun 23, 2013 2:41 am


Mutsuhito continued to lead the way through the dark place known as the hole. Hotaru, defenseless and without a physical body was left reluctantly following Mutsuhito's lead. Mutsuhito, constantly looking back was unsure if Hotaru wanted to be trained, however doing so with a smile every time just to reassure the boy. As a former lieutenant, Mutsuhito made quick work of any hollow which managed to block Mutushito's path.

"Kid" Mutsuhito said "The place we're currently headed to is called the Heaven's Door. It used to be a special training area for the more advanced members of squad four. In fact, it was the same place where the captain, we bless her soul, had trained me to be the big muscle man that I am now." Mutsuhito stopped to flex his apparently unimpressive muscles.

"Heaven's Door was once located inside of the Squad Four barracks, however, after some strange event which I've yet to grasp myself, destroying the world, Heaven's Door seemed to have migrated on its own- with me inside it. Where it moved to was this place, the Hole. More specifically though, it's moved to the thirty six chambers, once a popular 'breeding' ground for hollow" Mutsuhito said.

As the couple continued walking, the ceiling gradually rose until it could not be seen again and before them laid thirty six passages, eighteen on each side. Mutsuhito continued on until finding a specific one then entered through it. The flesh-like ground turned into what looked more like wooden floor board. Then, as the name "Heaven's Door" suggested, there stood in front of them a plain white door with a golden door knob, something which would seem disappointing to a person who heard its name before seeing the inside.

Mutushito did not grab the door knob, instead, he unsheathed his zanpakuto and pierced the center of it. The door knob turned on its own, the door opening inwards, Mutsuhito walking in then gestured Hotaru to follow.

The room had a wooden floor, but this one was small unable to fit more than about five people comfortably. At the center was a bowl of water. On one side of the room was Heaven's Door, and on the other side a double door. "The first test checks if you are a strong shinigami. The second test checks if you are part of squad four." Mutsuhito told Hotaru as he dipped his hands into the water. His hands glowed green- his kaidou. First, Mutsuhito's hands began to glow a more white color, then eventually the water. Light slowly began filling the room, until it suddenly stopped and a click was heard.

Mutsuhito opened the double doors. It was a large room, and at the center was a wide pit, a pillar standing at the center of it with the top at the same level as the floor. A single rope bridge connected the two.

"Welcome to the ultimate secret of squad four!" Mutsuhito smiled to Hotaru "Hell Climb Pillar!"

Walking close to the edge, Mutsuhido pushed Hotaru into the pit. It would not kill him, the bottom being filled with oil to break his fall. Covering the pillar was also oil. "Here, we tested a squad four member's control over their reiryoku! The pillar will accept no means but the channeling of your own spirit energy!"

#2 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Sun Jun 23, 2013 3:40 am


Hotaru followed the strangely clothed man not sure where else to go. He felt a little uneasy, though he knew now that he had to actively pursue getting stronger, otherwise he wouldn't make it. In this new form Hotaru felt a bit more free, like there wasn't so much baggage weighing him down, though it also felt strange because he had no physical body to communicate to the environment with.

While Hotaru was panicking at first, Hotaru remained silent through the rest up of the trip with the robed man who had yet to introduce himself, though he assumed that this was what Snoop Dog meant when he asked if Hotaru wanted to get stronger. While there were tons of questions in Hotaru's head, he didn't have the will to ask any of them, fearing that he may distract the captain who didn't look much more physically stronger than Hotaru. Of course, he was killing the monsters like they were flies, each disappearing into white light.

All the way, Mutsuhito was discussing something about a "Heaven's Door". Most of it seemed pretty boring, Hotaru zoning out through the entire lecture which the man was giving. He didn't care to catch phrases or anything, like the bit with the world being destroyed. Hotaru just turned, smiled, and nodded. Then, when Mutsuhito wasn't looking, he would sigh. Hotaru needed power and he needed it quickly. That's what Mutsuhito seemed to be talking about- training Hotaru. If that were true, maybe Hotaru might be able to make it outside.

They continued walking until coming across what Hotaru assumed was "Heaven's Door". He followed Mutsuhito through it, and into the double doors, a bit intrigued of all the things he did with his sword and his hands. It was almost like magic- no. It was exactly magic, or at least what Hotaru could see from his point of judgement.

Something was a bit relieving, until Hotaru had layed eyes on the pit. Perhaps he would duel with Mutsuhito to figure out the strength he had. With that thought in mind, he followed Mutsuhito... who pushed Hotaru into the pit. Panicking, Hotaru flailed his arms and legs around "Wait! What are you doing!"

Hotaru landed with a splash, the oil with too thick a consistency to make too big of a splash. "Climb!" Mutsuhito told Hotaru. "How am supposed to climb? The walls and pillar are completely covered in oil!"

Hotaru hit the pillar multiple times, unsure of what to next.

#3 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Sun Jun 23, 2013 5:31 am


Mutsuhito sighed a disappointed sigh. Seeing how the boy took down those hollows so easily gave the lieutenant a bit of hope that the Hell Climb Pillar would be easy for him. That hope was too false for him, unfortunately. Sooner than he had expected, Mutsuhito had to jump in and give the boy a hint- perhaps he should give Hotaru a set amount of hints so it isn't like he just helps the boy up the entire way through- that would make the training too easy and Hotaru wouldn't be learning a thing.

"Alright!" Mutsuhito said jumping into the pit. He landed at the tips of his toes, some kind of energy rippling through them keeping his body from sinking into the oil. "I'm gonna give you one hint" Mutsuhito said, raising a finger. He put the same finger on the wall, extending his arm out. A bit of energy came through it as Mutsuhito brought up his other hand to reach upwards. He continued up the pillar using the same climbing motion until he eventually reached the top.

If Hotaru were paying close attention, he'd have noticed the rippling energy of Mutsuhito's spirit energy channeled through the wall, allowing him to stick to said wall. He would also have noticed that instead of using his palms, Mutsuhito clung on using his fingers, looking almost as though he were about to fall off.

Upon reaching the top of the pillar, Mutsuhito shouted back. "Many squad four members have died through this training! The ones who survived were what once gave squad four their amazing reiryoku power- the same skill which allows us to heal others!"

It was true. Under the guise of simple laborers, the true squad four was a group of hardened masters trained to a great degree in the control of reiatsu, honing the skill so that they may save the lives of millions. The pole itself though, was about twenty meters high- it made sense why a person would find it difficult to climb, but hopefully Hotaru would figure it out. Hopefully.

Mutsuhito had already decided. Should Hotaru use anything to climb the pillar that wasn't his reiryoku, Mutsuhito would stop the boy. The one thing he was worried about though, was the multiple booby traps set on the pillar for the  trainees who were lazy or not too bright. Hotaru looked like a smart kid, but Mutsuhito couldn't be so sure about the boy's actions and if the ones he takes are the correct ones or not.

#4 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:19 am


Hotaru attempted to climb the wall mimicking the robed man. He lacked knowledge, and from the perspective of an outsider, one would think that he were simply slapping a wall. Actually, said outsider would be correct. Any normal human wouldn't be able to climb a pillar of such length and height- especially if it's covered in oil.

Hotaru slapped the pole again, moving his arms as quickly as he could to hopefully push himself up or at least be quick enough to somehow swim up the pole as a carp would a waterfall. Carp were pretty frail fish and oil is much thicker than water. So how couldn't Hotaru climb up the wall as easily?

He began scratching at it, getting a bit of the oil on his hands. It was when he realized how slippery he was, covered in organic material, was when he realized that he had gone at least eight hours without food. Looking at the now spectral watch, Hotaru was correct. It had been almost seven hours since he had eaten something. Perhaps it was the spiritual form which allowed him to go without eating.

His mind was distracted for a bit, though his body was for whatever reason still panting. IF he continued to advance up the pole to with no avail as he was doing, it would simply be a waste of energy. Hotaru thought long and hard, stroking the ghostly fabric he was wearing. It was like his normal cloth.

It was then when an idea came to the boy. He removed his jacket- it would be unnecessary in his plan. Hotaru then took off his shirt, plucking it by a loose seam. It was an old shirt, so Hotaru knew he could easily find a way to unwind it, changing into a viable rope, hopefully long enough to reach around the pillar. His plot was to push himself against the pole as to keep himself from sliding off.

From above, Hotaru could see the man watching intently. The boy looked back and smiled a sneaky smile, as he reached with his hands to the other end of his rudimentary rope. "Ha! Whoever died from this challenge must have done so out of stupidity!" Hotaru proclaimed as he put a foot onto the pillar. He began pushing himself upwards, making his way up the pillar slowly but surely. "Here I come!" the boy said confidently.

#5 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Wed Jun 26, 2013 5:00 am


"Aw" Mutsuhito thought "He's smiling. It must mean he's having fun." With  a sound mind, the lieutenant walked away from the pit for a second. He was a bit scared that the boy would not figure out the pole. Perhaps he would use his shirt to transfer spirit energy. That would be an interesting idea. Maybe it'd be like a jump rope or one of those ring toy things that shoot upward- if that makes any sense.

Mutsuhito continued walking until he reached the corner of the room. There, it smelled of something... rotten. It was a corpse, and by the looks of it the corpse of a shinigami. How ironic that something known as a death god had died, especially one supposedly specialized in the art of healing. It was unfortunate- however, while Heaven's Door was moved to the hole, whatever was originally there did not move.

Unspeakable horrors were met by the unprepared minds of the death gods, all caught unexpectedly. Most were eaten alive. What was important though was that only a single survivor remained- the lieutenant Mutsuhito Sato. It spend over two decades to get over the deaths of his fallen comrades.

The man shed a single tear as he reached down to grab the sword of a once honorable companion. It was an assauchi. Unfortunately, the man died before becoming a true shinigami. How sad. Mutsuhito walked back to the piut and unsheathed the sword.

He threw the blade, splitting the 'rope' which Hotaru was using to climb instead of his spirit energy. He threw the sheath to where he expected Hotaru's fallen body to land. "I told you!" Mutsuhito said in a sing song voice "The pillar accepts spirit energy as a means of climbing! Can't break tradition, or tradition breaks you!"

Mutsuhito waited a second to hear the splash. It was a nice plopping sound which rang pleasantly in the lieutenant's ears. He giggled. "By the way!" Mutsuhito said, the sword falling from the pillar and into the oil "Keep that sword with you at all times! That's what the students at the academy were required to do! I expect you to do the same!"

#6 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Wed Jun 26, 2013 7:49 am


Looking down, Hotaru saw that he was already about half way up the pillar. A goofy grin spread across the boy's face as he slowly but surely went up an oiled pillar- but something was wrong. He felt that one side of his string wasn't giving off as much pull- but then he realized that neither side did. He tugged on his string to find parts of it in the air, the truncated ends slowly drifting down. At one side, he saw a sword which barely cut the string but did not pierce into the pillar.

Falling into the oil was not a new experience, in fact the first time he had fallen farther. However, it always hurt to land on ones back. Hotaru reached an arm out to the robed man who was apparently smiling. "You...bastard..." Hotaru shifted his weight, trying to get his head where it should be and his feet where they should be. Following the mysterious man's orders, Hotaru dipped his hands into the oil, reaching for the sheath, doing the same with the sword. He sheathed the sword, slightly cutting the sheath before successfully inserting his long, hard blade. It was lucky that Hotaru did not remove his pants either, otherwise he wouldn't have a belt to holster the blade to. He thrust the sword into position, hoping it wouldn't come out.

Hotaru looked back up, once again seeing the robed man simply kicking his legs back and forth as he watched Hotaru. "Spirit energy?" Hotaru said. Suddenly, a spark ran down Hotaru's arm. He finally got it, he was supposed to channel spirit energy through his arm! It was like when he used the Overdrive to take down Snoop Dog.

Hotaru rubbed his oily hands together. It seemed the oil, being biological, conducted spirit energy rather well. His hands glowed with an awesome power. It was like he were about to perform CPR. Hotaru gave another slap to the pillar.

Splat! His own spirit energy had betrayed him- repulsing him into the oil. Then, once again, Hotaru remembered a hint from the robed man. Hotaru breathed, then once again rubbed his hands together, charging his energy. He focused the energy into his finger tips, then began to latch onto the pillar. Slowly but surely, he was able to stick to the pole- he looked almost like a frog. Though, there was quite a bit of strain on his arm muscles. Surely it would make for a great upper body workout!

It was about two hours later when Hotaru made it up half way at the pillar. He continued to climb, though he began to feel the pain on his shoulders and chest. Then suddenly, it was relief- or so he thought. Hotaru noticed a small crack in the pillar, apparently large enough to fit his hand through. Perhaps it would be a break for his poor fingers. Hotaru reached his arm over feeling for the spot, finally getting to it- but as he did, he felt something click. Droplets of oil fell over Hotaru's head.

Looking up, there was a whole spinning disk of oil swirling above him. THrough the screen, he could barely make a out Mutsuhito taking something from his dress and dropping it. The sound resulting was like a plastic toy cut by a chainsaw. Hotaru looked down, seeing two halves of something drop into the oil.

This would spell bad news for him.

#7 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Thu Jun 27, 2013 8:30 am


The lieutenant laughed as the boy fell into the oil. It would have been a bit funnier had he fell head first, but then Mutsuhito would have to worry about healing him- except it was his job. The pillar was slippery though, and it made sense that one would easily fall. Still, Mutsuhito thought it would be more fun walking a man crawling through oil half naked would be more fun.

Mutsuhito sighed. It was times like this when he would remember the simpler times back when he was no more seasoned than his subordinates that have died in the very chamber he's stayed in. There was a really nice song that Mutsuhito had loved since before he became even a third seat. It was more than five decades from then, though. How sad it was that he could not return to those times. No, there was a menace outside of which Mutsuhito could hardly get rid of alone. He needed allies, like the one he was training for the time being.

Still, that wouldn't stop him form enjoying himself. Mutsuhito opened a closet filled with all sorts of things neatly organized. He turned the combination on a safe then took out its contents, a bunch of records. Among him, he found his favorite. It featured a simple red back ground with a complex design at the center surrounded by a circle apparently part of said pattern.

Then, Mutsuhito walked over to a record player which he dared not move closer to the pit. It was after all, loud enough, the acoustics of the room good enough that the sound should be heard from quite far away. The first song on the record was alright, a four minute song accounting the experience of elephant talk. It was a good album, but Mutsuhit's favorite song was the third track, which seemed like it took forever to play.

A little less than ten minutes in, the song began playing. Mutsuhito sang along, though a bit off beat and out of key. "She waits in the air" he sang "Matte kudasai..." When were the nights so long? Long like the notes he was sending. Mutsuhito never knew the experience. His mind was too simple to- having lived so long it was natural to have very few worries.

But before he knew it, the song changed. As it did, he began to hear a whirling noise from below- it appears as though Hotaru set off a trap. Mutsuhito took a pen from his pocket and dropped it. The pen split into two clean halves. He remembered setting off the same trap.

"By the way, my name's Mutsuhito, Sato! I used to be a lieutenant!"

#8 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:58 am


Oh hey, the man in the dress started to play music. Wait- lieutenant? Who would let such a crazy man be a lieutenant? Well, at least Hotaru knew his captor's name. It made sense that Hotaru revealed his own name. "Kujo!" He yelled, hoping his voice would reach out of the pit. "The name's Hotaru Kujo!"

Hotaru waited and listened as his voice echoed through the chamber. It was then when he recalled he had a wall to climb. While he wasn't hungry, Hotaru knew he would get hungry soon and if he didn't escape, he would eventually starve to death. He wouldn't die, not after trying so hard to stay alive. His life had changed and it had changed since Hotaru left his home through the portal Snoop Dog made. Hotaru intended on committing to the change, which meant making himself stronger.

Then suddenly, as his mind was distracted, Hotaru felt himself lose grip- slowly falling into the oil once again. Things were beginning to become tedious.

Perhaps he could use the sword to help him climb! Hotaru used his thumb to push the blade from its sheath. He held it out in one hand and attempted to stab the wooden pillar using his blade. Against Hotaru's will, a spark emerged from the tip of the blade, pushing Hotaru back a little.

"Right, the pillar only accepts the climber's spirit energy as a means..." Hotaru thought to himself. He sheathed his sword and once again attempted what he had done before. He put his fingertips onto the pillar and lifted himself from the pool of oil. Once again, he began climbing.

An hour later, Hotaru found himself back at the whirling oil. He would ask for the lieutenant to stop it, but Hotaru doubted the man knew how. He had to think. "What am I going to go passed this thing without my head being chopped clean off?"

Then he realized- his blade and its repulsing abilities. Perhaps if he took advantage of that, he would be able to ride the disk and propel himself upwards. Yes! It was a genius idea! Hotaru slowly let one arm part from the pillar- the other arm barely hanging on. Fortunately, one hand was enough to unsheath his sword. Then, he strongly thrusted the tip of the blade into the hot wet oil.

Hotaru shot forth, putting his other hand on the hilt. Then, he began swinging his legs back and forth to the point where he had enough momentum to push himself upwards. Hotaru's feet touched the surface of the disk- the spirit energy channeled through his feet allowed him to fight the cutting power of the oil as well as take advantage of its properties.

He heard a snapping noise, but Hotaru was able to push himself up to the edge of the pit- but he had not made it all the way up yet.

#9 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Sat Jun 29, 2013 1:58 am


Mutsuhito walked over to Hotaru's edge of the pit. Mutsuhito was actually quite impressed at how- similar to what he had done when he set off the same trap over a century ago. Nonetheless, he found the boy to be quite inventive and had he not tried something similar himself, Mutsuhito would have given him some kind of reward. Of course, being a lieutenant, Mutsuhito had seen a little bit more than that, especially having trained others using the same test.

Mutsuhito waited a bit to see if Hotaru had the strength to pull himself up, however, after a little bit, Mutsuhito thought Hotaru had done enough. The lieutenant squatted down and held out a hand, grabbing onto Hotaru's wrist and pulling up. Despite Mutsuhito's bishonen-esque outer appearance, he was actually quite physically strong.

Mutsuhito managed to pull up his pupil from the pit, dragging his body onto solid not-oiled ground, taking him far enough away so that he didn't fall back in from being so slippery. "Not bad!" Mutsuhito remarked. He felt a bit ill inspired however, not sure what to do next.

There should be a whole lot more things to try- he had to find some way to fill a training montage- just like his movies. Or maybe his Japanese animes! But first, food. Mutsuhito had to feed his trainee or else he would pass out.

"Alright kid, you could wash yourself in the showers over there. I'll prepare you a change of cloth." Mutsuhito told Hotaru "And by the way, you have to keep that sword with you as you shower as well.

Thinking about it, Mutsuhito himself hadn't taken a shower in ages."Oh! And by the way, we ran out of hot water about... a decade ago! So I hope you don't mind cold showers!" Mutsuhito, even after a decade, still dislikes cold showers.

#10 Re: 36 Chambers CLOSED COMPLETED on Sat Jun 29, 2013 10:07 am


Hotaru felt himself being dragged upwards. Looking up, he saw the lieutenant, Mutsuhito. Hotaru was actually quite glad he had someone helping him up. By then, Hotaru's muscles were very very sore. There was pain, especially in his arms and fingers which were difficult to move over his head. Hotaru groaned and panted, feeling as though he would die while also knowing somehow that it would be a long journey before that happened.

"T-thanks" Hotaru said as he limped his way to the shower. He had recalled some time that he had taken one before, he just never remembered when. Perhaps it was before he was left alone. Was he left alone? By whom was he left alone by? Hotaru's head ached but he was able to slide open the paper screen door and let himself inside.

It was a simple bath carved into the ground made of wood. A wooden pipeline ran down from the ceiling, though Hotaru was not quite sure where it ran to. Perhaps there was some kind of ground water system seeing as how they were possibly underground.

Putting his mind off all the trivial matters, Hotaru disrobed and turned on the faucet, laying down in the tub. He sighed with the oiled sword laying next to him. He had no idea why the man insisted so much that Hotaru keep it with him, though it must have been important. Regardless, for whatever crazy reason, Hotaru trusted the man.

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