“Harutora!” The God Emperor’s voice echoed through the chambers of the Imperial Palace. Harutora immediately appeared and stared hard at Makron. Masaharta smiled gravely to himself. He could picture his four faithful friends still gathered around the door of the audience chamber, waiting for the results of his conference. He almost never had a private interview with a stranger.
“Summon the Imperial Council to the Council Chamber at once,” the God Emperor instructed.
Harutora bowed deeply and left the Audience Chamber. As soon as the door closed behind him, HongKongPhooey, Darkagma, and Akridd beset him with questions. However, Harutora held up his hand. “Oyabun Masaharta-San wishes the Imperial Council to meet him at once and there is no briefing,” he explained.
Gasps rose from the other three samurais. The God Emperor had never summoned an impromptu Council before. His Councils had always been marked by meticulous preparation.
“Something doesn’t feel right about this,” HongKongPhooey growled as he watched Harutora stride away to summon the other members of the Imperial Council.
“I wish this Makron was dead,” Akridd snapped as he led the way to the Council Chamber. “The God Emperor has not acted normally since he got here.”
Darkagma remained silent. When they reached the Council Chamber, he drew his sword and felt the blade. The others watched as he slowly swung it a few times before sheathing it. They could see the battle fire growing in his eyes.
The door swung open and Harutora entered with the rest of the Imperial Council. Each member had heard of the stranger’s arrival last night and their faces were very grave.
“HongKongPhooey, Darkagma, Akridd, Harutora, ChinggisKhaan, Hurrikane…” Harutora counted.
The door from the God Emperor’s Chamber opened and Masaharta walked to the head of the table. Each member of the council rose respectfully. “Please be seated, my brothers,” he requested.
“You all know about the strange being that arrived last night,” Masaharta began. “You all heard his tale about arriving from another universe.”
“That is very incredible, sir,” HongKongPhooey interrupted. “How can there be more than one universe?”
Masaharta placed a heavy volume on the table. “The Chronicles & Prophecies of The Great Kagura spoke of times before history where our forefathers had contact with other universes. This volume has been passed down from emperor to emperor. Many have studied it and I have no doubt that each of the prophecies in this volume came to pass.”
“What bearing does this have on ComradeMakron?” Akridd asked.
“On page 2015, there is a prophecy regarding the Sacred Kagura Script.”
At the mention of the Kagura Script, a low gasp rose from the samurai. “Sir, you have the Sacred Kagura Script?” Harutora asked breathlessly. “It has not been fully assembled in our universe since the time of the great Candlelight.”
Masaharta nodded gravely. “I have the Sacred Kagura Script in my possession. The prophecy states that a unique being like no other shall arrive in our universe from another one. However, it also warns that many imposters shall attempt to obtain the Sacred Kagura Script.”
Akridd, ChinggisKhaan, and Hurrikane leaped to their feet and drew their swords. “I knew it, Sir,” growled Hurrikane. “Comrade Makron is a foul imposter.”
“Stay your hands, brothers,” Harutora replied quickly. “Let us examine this matter further before we take any hostile actions.”
Before anyone realized it, another heated argument began in the Imperial Council Chamber as Akridd, ChinggisKhaan, and Hurrikane attempted to persuade Harutora and Darkagma that it was time to purge the imposter. To everyone’s surprise, HongKongPhooey joined Harutora and Darkagma in cautioning wisdom. As the argument peaked, HongKongPhooey and Hurrikane faced each other. From the signs, the others knew both would resort to swords soon.
“We will examine the circumstances thoroughly as it behooves wise men.” The God Emperor did not raise his voice, but his words quelled the storm in the room. “For many years, I have studied The Chronicles & Prophecies of the Great Kagura. Each prophecy points to a golden era in the history of our universe. Over the past few months, the circumstances of our universe have changed just as the prophecy states they would as the time drew nigh.”
“Sir, you think the hour has arrived?” Harutora asked as Masaharta paused.
The God Emperor heaved a great sigh and finally answered, “I do. All the signs point to it.”
“What do you intend to do then?” Akridd wondered.
“I shall pursue this adventure with ComradeMakron…”
“You must not go alone,” the samurais exclaimed, leaping to their feet.
The God Emperor’s upraised hand checked the torrent of objections. “The prophecy states that it will be an adventure that only I and the chosen one can pursue. I am sorry, brothers, but I will have to do this one alone.”
The samurais hung their heads and slowly sank into their chairs. Masaharta quickly designated their roles in his absence. As he closed the council, each samurai drew his sword and saluted him.
“Who is that woman?” HongKongPhooey snapped as they left the Council Chamber.
The leaders paused as a shadowy figure disappeared down a side corridor. Darkagma and Akridd instantly ran to where she had been seen while ChinggisKhaan and HongKongPhooey each posted themselves at the corridors connecting to the one that she had been seen moving down. Masaharta and Hurrikane joined Darkagma and Akridd and advanced down the corridor with their swords drawn. Makron emerged from his chamber and joined them. “What is it?” he whispered.
“A strange woman passed down this hallway,” Akridd whispered.
As Masaharta turned the corner of the hall that led to ChinggisKhaan’s position, he heard a shout. “Halt in the name of the God Emperor!”
A woman’s scream rent the air and Masaharta saw a shadowy form flew down the corridor toward HongKongPhooey’s position with ChinggisKhaan in hot pursuit. “This way, brothers,” that worthy warrior thundered.
They followed in a body and quickly gained on her. However, she managed to stay just far enough ahead so that, when she rounded the corner of this corridor, she ran almost into the arms of a man-at-arms who had emerged from one of the apartments. As he made a grab for her, she dodged and continued down the hall. Another piercing shriek erupted as the woman saw HongKongPhooey advancing toward her.
However, it was nothing compared to the howl of wrath that samurai gave when she turned and ran through the wall as if it wasn’t even there. “Damnit, Sir,” he roared. “Two more feet and I would have her.”
“Mobilize the guard,” the God Emperor ordered. “Tell them to keep their eyes open.”
“Understood” Darkagma called as he sprinted down the hall as fast he could go.
“You won’t catch her, Masa,” Makron panted as they stood catching their breath.
“Why not?” growled HongKongPhooey, still incensed at what happened.
“She is the same WHITE RUSSIAN GIRL who sent me here.”
“There is more to that foul fiend that meets the eye,” ChinggisKhaan snapped.
“There is a prophecy… page 39…saying that the ghost of Kagura’s greatest counselor will watch over the chosen one…” the God Emperor panted.
“You think this is her, Sir?” Harutora asked.
“Strange that she should appear as a Russian…” Hurrikane remarked.
“The Chronicles state that she will appear in many strange forms,” the God Emperor replied. “I have no doubt that this is her.”
Hours later, Darkagma reported to Masaharta and HongKongPhooey in the great hall.
“We have searched the premises, but so far, no sign of her.”
“As I expected. Well, Comrade Makron and I will start our adventure immediately. Farewell, my brothers.”
The door clanged on Masaharta’s private audience room. He quickly produced the stones containing the Sacred Kagura Script and placed them on the table. Makron opened The Chronicles & Prophecies of The Great Kagura and both men bent over it. After several moments of intense thought, the God Emperor gathered the stones containing the Sacred Kagura Script and uttered the following:
A wise man must travel the way of a simple man to learn knowledge.
As soon as Masaharta uttered the words, the room shook horribly and blue smoke rose from the stone table. A brilliant, yellow light flickered out from the table and enveloped both Makron and the God Emperor. They both vaguely saw the WHITE RUSSIAN GIRL pointing behind them and turned to see what she was pointing at. Then they knew no more.
Author's note: Here are the other chapters.