The Tattered Knight

Sakuma, Paul
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University of Hawaii at Manoa
Ryosuke slid the shoji to a close and dropped his bokken on the tatami. His blade thumped on the mat and he nearly fell backwards against the paper screen. He stepped towards his futon, his feet heavy and his yukata as ragged as ever. Foguden sensei had been rougher than usual that day and his lessons ached in the boy's muscles whether it was learned or not. There was nothing to remember from last night. Dreamless sleeps were the worst for he suspected the visions had been too terrible to remember. He hated dusk. The sun spilled a tapestry of red and orange across the clouds, but at night he knew he'd see the same in his slumber. A restless sleep of days past. When the same hues graced the sky of his village, and splattered and burned its colors into soil and grain.
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