This is a fanfiction I finished a few months ago :) I decided to upload it here. If you're interested to read the rest the link is below. Please leave feedback if you like it.
The Phoenix Rises Chapter 2 - Unexpected News
The painfully hot summer day shone onto the warriors, their bald, old mentor paced back and forth in front of the group, deciding what the lesson would be today. Xiba couldn't muster a grin, let alone be enthusiastic about this at all. He couldn't stand the people around him; especially his fellow students. They were so hidebound and narrow-minded, if shallow and self-absorbed. All the boys cared about was getting the Kali Yuga.
The girls of course were just as clueless, at least the wild boy thought, admiring the boys and cooing and fainting whenever they flexed or showed off with arrogance. They would remind them of the ribald tales of the Rogues; saying that if they were to return, they would use all of the staff's power to protect the temple. Xiba would just roll his eyes. The monk looked at him in the eyes, startling him a bit,
"Men in the first three rows rise! Shirts off!" Xiba was in the first row, damn it. He unwrapped his fur coat from his waist and tossed his black shirt aside, as the others did with their tops. The last thing they needed were their clothes sticking to them from sweat. Some of the girls giggled and blushed; the boys weren't hard to look at. If anything, it was immensely pleasurable.
One girl in particular, Lea, with her dark brown ponytail beamed red; admiring the crimson haired boy now standing among them. "Demonstrations!"
The man would shout a command, and the boys would swing their rods according to which command he was giving them. They all tensed, squeezing their staffs. "Roundhouse Bo!" The boys, all grunting with force, whipped the rod in their opposite direction,
"Mountain Carve!" he yelled with more harshness in his tone, trying to make sure they were focusing, they whipped their rods to and fro, "Kong's Water Offering!" the boys were also taught the Kong Rod Style, it only became a required course a few years ago, some were still fairly new to it aside from the Ling-Sheng Su Style Rod. The boys stepped forward thrice, twirling their rod and ending with a mid kick.
Remembrance was a special stance; the men froze with heavy grunts, holding their position with their weapons. It was much more difficult than it looked, requiring much back and arm strength. "Quaking Remembrance!"
Getting out of position, they slammed their rods into the ground below. The monk was especially noting Xiba, who seemed to know these moves by heart…it was strange, "Rushing Bo!" the men pounded their rods into the ground twice, the monk then lost all attention in the other boys and only observed the red-haired monkey boy.
"Men down! Females rise!" the boys sat down, putting their shirts back on, some using to wipe the sweat, the women approached with their swords, "Muu Jian Retreat!" The females thrusted their swords forward, slowly whipping them back. It took great skill to perform that move without dislocating their elbow or pulling a muscle, "Yan Divide!"
Lea was among the group, as she made an effort to pay attention, she kept glancing at Xiba, who was wiping his forehead with his wrist. She got out of her battle stance, being careless. "Hua Carve!" She gasped, getting back into position, being no more than a second later than the other girls. The monk saw everything.
"Something bothering you, Lea?" he firmly asked, the other girls sneered at the Chinese Washu. She nodded, brushing her bangs from her face,
"Oh no! No problem at all!" She put a hand onto her fist, bowing as an apology.
"Well see that there isn't…unless you want overtime training."
She kept her head down, "Yes…I'm sorry."
After blushing from shame, the monk regained his distance from the group, "Alright, back in positions." Xiba was bobbing Three Karmas slowly up in his fist, bored. "Lian Hua Cannon!"
After a hard day's training, the class disbanded, leaving the arena. The chit chat of the final exams in two days swarmed the area as the students began down the steps to their homes. Xiba was the last to exit, not wanting to be forced to interact with anyone, "Xiba?" the monk called,
He turned around, trying to hide his irritation, "Yeah?"
"Could we talk for a second?"
Oh god, he didn't like that…he disgracefully stepped back in. Lea was but a few steps down from him, who turned around upon hearing his name, "So what's with you today?" Her good friend Su asked, "You were so…out of it today."
Lea shrugged, "I don't know…I guess I was thinking about exams…" she fibbed. Su chuckled, crossing her arms,
"Are you sure someone's not hot for someone?" Lea blushed, cringing. She hated how well people knew her, "So tell me! Who is it?" they continued down the long steps,
"Um…well…" she hesitated; she slowly untied her thick ponytail,
"Come on!" Su elbowed her, "You can tell me anything!" Lea grinned,
Su could almost die of laughter, "You've got a crush on monkey boy?" she snickered uncontrollably, Lea frowned, "He doesn't talk to anyone!" Unaware it was because of attitudes like hers that made him want to avoid people.
"Well," She firmly replied, "I think he's pretty cute." She proudly stated. "And have you seen the way the monks look at him? He's really talented!"
Su pushed her bangs out of her eyes, "Alright, I can't argue with you there…but honestly, do you really think wild boy's gonna be the master warrior anytime soon?"
Lea paused, halting her step down the last stoop, "W-What?"
"You should really reconsider your priorities," Su emphasized, "A girl like you belongs with a real man, not someone who just gets by…"
That irritated her, Lea gained a cross expression. She began to stomp away to her home, "Hey! Was it something I said?" Su called, clueless. Lea didn't say a word as she continued down the block.
Xiba stood in front of his mentor, "Xiba…I think you should reconsider final exams on Saturday…" he crossed his arms. Xiba widened his eyes, more confused than anything,
The monk sighed, "You're aware of whose son you are…correct?" Xiba frowned with annoyance; he knew very well that his father was the preceding wielder of the Kali Yuga. "I just don't think it'd be fair to the other students if you were to compete…you understand, right?"
To be honest, Xiba couldn't care less…yet; he was being told not to compete. That he didn't like, "Sir, just because I'm my father's son doesn't mean the others don't have as much of a chance as I do."
"You're also Edge Master's most cherished disciple…" he reminded, only trying to make himself even more justified. Xiba knew arguing would only end up in humiliation, so he stood upright, awaiting for what he had to say, "You grew up under his wing; of course you have more of a chance than the others."
"So what you're saying is; I shouldn't compete because I'm at the top of the class?" it didn't make any sense to him.
"That's exactly what I'm saying." Xiba recoiled, muttering something under his breath. It was a weird state he was in; happy he didn't have to fight someone for some stupid staff, yet irritated that he was being rejected rather than skipping on his own accord. "Think about it…it'll give the others a fair chance." Xiba sighed, letting go of his irritation,
"Alright…I'll stay in the audience on exam day."
"Atta boy." The monk smiled, happy that he was more understanding than most. After making his way leisurely down the steps, at the foot of the mountain and entering his home, there was no greeting from his father. The wild boy slid the door closed behind him,
"Hello?" weird…normally his father was home by now from mentoring the beginning students, "Dad?" he called out into the house. Xiba shrugged, probably just running late. He decided to bathe, turning on the hot, burning water in their small wash room. After stripping and stepping into the shower, he began to scrub himself of the mosquito bites and dirt stains from training.
After a moment, he heard the sudden sound of a BANG! From another room, causing him to flinch. He quickly turned the valve, halting the water. The wild boy grew tense, looking around nervously. The door was shut, and he couldn't hear anything but a faint, mumbling noise of despair. "Dad?" He called again.
After quickly drying and redressing himself, Xiba quickly stepped out to see his father, next to a now smashed coffee table. "Dad!" He yelled in a panic, rushing over to his side. Kilik seemed to be having a mental fit; he was in despair, cold despair. Yet there were no tears,
"Dad, what's wrong?" Xiba never knew what to do in these situations. He tried to lift his head so he could look at him eye to eye. Kilik would be fine…it was breaking the news to his son that would be difficult,
"Xiba…" the buildup was driving him insane, as he began to shake from fear, "Something…something awful happened."
The brown eyed boy twinged in worry, "What? What happened?" was all he could muster. He tightened his grip into his father's arm, unaware that he was beginning to dig his nails into his arm. Kilik dreaded Xiba's reaction.
"Edge Master…" he looked down, trying to avoid anymore eye contact. Xiba arched his eyebrows in worry, Kilik gathered himself, trying to be strong for his son, "Son…Edge Master…he…" he paused; Xiba couldn't make sense of it,
"He what? Is he missing?" no one in the Ling-Sheng Su temple was allowed to leave; once you were born in there, you died in there. If you weren't within the temple's gates, you were assumed missing. Kilik's eyes gleamed, looking away from Xiba yet again.
It finally hit him, standing up, "Dad…did he…?" the pitch in his voice raised slightly, Kilik then knew he had to remain calm, standing up.
"Xiba…he was old…but he lived a great…wonderful life-" he tried to hold his son, but Xiba smacked his hand away,
"No! He-HE CAN'T BE DEAD!" He panicked. Tears couldn't seem to form, which only made the agony swelling up within his chest even more painful. Why was he so attuned by this? So devastated? Kilik then tried the honest approach,
"Xiba, it'll be alright…" Xiba turned around, a bitter expression in his face, "He was only a teacher to you anyway. You were just another student to him."
"He raised me!" Xiba turned around, remembering that it was always Edge Master tucking him into bed at night when he was a child, Edge Master teaching him how to tell time and read, Edge Master cooking his meals. Kilik was the one who treated him more of a student than a son.
Kilik was now irritated, groaning, "You idolized him too much Xiba…"
"I needed someone to look up to!" The enraged warrior balled his hands into fists, trying to contain from punching a hole in the wall. There was a dead silence between the father and son. They angrily glared into each other's eyes. Xiba even forgotten of the news he was supposed to mention to his father. Xiba then walked past his father and slid the front door open,
"Where are you going?" he yelled, but the door was slid shut, leaving a loud slam. Xiba plodded through the grassy plains near his home. Bitterly mourning for his beloved master. As a child he even called him "grandpa". He felt guilty for not being able to cry at his absence…yet why should he? He lived a good life.
A long, joyous one at that…Xiba then recognized the familiar area where he was, looking to his left. He saw a small tree, the sunbeams striking through its branches. Xiba began to reminisce, he saw a small child there, crying softly to himself. Holding his knees. A wise, old man approached the boy,
"Xiba?" the man rubbed the child's back, he sniffled in response. "Xiba, what's wrong?" The sorrowful boy only nodded a 'no' refusing to respond. His nose was both runny and clogged, salty tears ran down his face. "You're not going to talk to me?" the bewildered man gasped, "I thought you told me everything!"
The ten year old boy finally sighed, he felt like he was swallowing a knife, "Why is everyone around here so mean?" he whined, trying to gather his emotions. Edge Master tried to turn the boy's head to him, but he quickly raised an arm, hiding his right eye. After giving him a cross look, the child lowered his arm, revealing his bright, brown eye surrounded by a black bruise, a scar ran across his cheek.
Edge Master sighed with sympathy, "Xiba…"
"These boys were picking on this girl." He began, "I tried to tell them to stop…but then they grabbed me and…one of them just kept punching me." He shuddered, remembering his struggle to try and worm out of the headlock.
Edge Master nodded, "You shouldn't get involved in other people's problems, Xiba." It was the only way he could tell him to avoid getting hurt.
"But why? The girl was crying…" he explained, finally calming down.
The elder could only smile, "You're just like your mother…" he ruffled his red, spiky hair, "Compassionate…yet strong willed." The boy halted his tears. He then heard the sound of beads jingling when the old man before him lifted a pendant, "I came to show you I found this…it belonged to your mother."
Xiba then put the long necklace on, looking at the blue, studded beads. "How come my mother's dead…grandpa?" the elder frowned, "Dad said she got sick…but, for some reason, he has this look in his eyes, like he's lying." Xiba was an expert at seeing past tricks. It was a strange skill he had.
The master of blades then stood up and up, towering over the small child, "Xiba…it does not do one well to dwell on the past." Was all he could say to the innocence below him, "But live for now, and anticipate the future." The child wiped his eyes with his forearm, smiling at the elder above him. He then got back to his usual, energetic self, excitedly grabbing his arm and the two walked back to their home…
Xiba then in present time grabbed his necklace. Staring bitterly into the endless path ahead of him.