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War of West Blue Saga (KDAU)
Background
Chapter 2

Chapter 1

The Duel of Ascension

Open Ocean: Grand Line First HalfEdit

The stormy seas of the Grand Line were in full swing, throwing the Marine Ships from colossal crest to abyssal trough. The commander of the flotilla was sat on the bow of the lead vessel staring into out the storm. His vigil was interrupted by the approach of a young grey haired woman who came holding an eternal pose marked "Marineford".

Grey Haired Girl: Sir, the Log indicates this storm is driving us off course. At this rate we will be late for the challenge for your Vice Admiral's rank. They'll see it as a sign of weakness, sir.

The blonde man lazily stretched for a moment before turning to face Ericka.

Blonde Man: Are you afraid they'll take away my "privileged" position Ericka?

Ericka pouted in annoyance at his flippancy and wrapped him on the top of the head with her pen.

Ericka: If you want the world to remember Gabriel Iustita as the man who made the navy whole again, you have to deal with these minor challenges. If you refuse them or don't turn up they'll demote you!

Gabriel stood from his position on the bow and flexed his arms, before slowly walking towards the main deck.

Gabriel: In that case we'll have to create some clear weather. Geppo!!

He kicked off into the air stepping higher and higher until he was above the crows nest of his ship.

Gabriel: Time for a Sky Quake.

He punched up into the air and saw white fracture lines appear above him. Nothing happened for a moment, then as he began to fall back to the deck suddenly the cloud cover burst apart. The cloud evaporated under the force of the quake looking as if a giant hand had reached down to tear them to pieces. He landed on the deck once more and Ericka was by his side in under a second.

Ericka: I merely meant we should change course and make use of the engines sir.

Gabriel grinned and patted her on the shoulder.

Gabriel: My way was faster, plus we can see Marineford now.

He walked to the side rail as the cloud cover broke to illuminate the island in the distance.

Ericka: With the storm passed, we should make land fall in half an hour. Are you going to prepare for the duel?

Gabriel: I was prepared long ago Ericka. Send word to The Guardians, I want them behind me as we head to the duel. It's time we remind the Rear Admirals why they don't challenge the leader of the Guardians.

Ericka nodded and walked off to send the message. There was no need for further conversation on the matter, one look at the expression on Gabriel's face told her he was focused on the battle now. Gone was the happy go lucky leader and in his place stood the undefeated Vice Admiral of the 12th Battle Group.

Dockside at MarinefordEdit

The sudden disappearance of the storm had caused quite a stir amongst the Marines on watch. Hundreds of them had gathered to watch the approach of the famous 12th Battle Group. A Marine Captain came out of the office of the watch to survey the cause of the ruckus.

Marine Captain: Petty Officer, what's going on here?

Petty Officer: Sir, the 12th Battle Group appears to have driven away the storm and is approaching from the North, Sir!

The Marine Captain looked open mouthed at the Petty officer for a moment before running back into the watch office and grabbing the Den Den Mushi from his desk.

Den Den Mushi: Purupurupuru, Kacha. Report.

Marine Captain: The 12th Battle Group has been sighted. Order the main square to be cleared for the Ascension Duel.

Den Den Mushi: Order received sir.

Two Hours later the Marine Warships of the 12th Battle Group were pulling into port and mooring up. The crew were a buzz of ordered activity as they prepared to take on supplies for the next voyage. The captain of the watch made his way quickly down to the flagship, distinguished by the distinctive shield grasped in the claws of the Sea Eagle upon its flag.

Marine Captain: Where can I find Vice Admiral Iustita? I have urgent orders for him.

The captain pushed his way through the throng of non-officers knocking several of them over who were carrying heavy boxes as he went. However his progress was halted by the appearance of Ericka, holding her Jiujiebian.

Ericka: The Admiral is occupied with preparations. You will give the orders to me.

The captain sneeringly surveyed the lieutenant rank marks on Ericka's non standard uniform and carried on moving.

Marine Captain: I take no orders from a mere lieutentant, where is the Vice Admiral?

Ericka: I am the vice admiral's adjutant, you will surrender the orders to me or be ejected from this vessel.

The captain rounded on Ericka swinging a back hand at her face. However as his hand drew close he felt a wave of intimidating pressure wash over him and he froze.

Ericka: The orders, now!

The captain quickly handed over an envelope, before turning tail and practically fleeing from the ship. Much to the amusement of the crew who cheered at his departure. Ericka allowed them their moment of enjoyment as she read the orders.

Ericka: Silence on deck!

The crew fell silent and watched expectantly as the Vice Admiral appeared from his cabin, his Sasaho Yari resting across his shoulders as he walked.

Ericka: Sir, the time of the duel has been moved up. Fleet Admiral Condoriano orders that you report to the main square immediately.

Gabriel merely nodded and proceeded to the gangway. He was met by the waiting forms of the remaining members of his Guardians. Commodore Raphael Beauchamp and his adjutant Amii Kolachova were sitting on supply crates on the dockside, whilst Commodore Julia Aitken paced impatiently in front of them.

Julia: You took your sweet time getting here, I was beginning to think you weren't going to bother.

Gabriel: Enough playing around, I want everyone using Haoshoku Haki all the way there. We're sending a message today.

Gabriel walked past his guardians his Sasaho Yari still resting across his shoulders. The Guardians felling silently in step behind him, the pressure in the air around them palpable. The guardians were on the move.

Marineford SquareEdit

Fleet Admiral Condoriano stood surveying the open space in the square surrounded by the garrison of The Ascendant Headquarters. The challenger for the rank of Vice Admiral stood in center of the square awaiting the arrival of his foe. Condoriano recalled his name was Rear Admiral Hake and had won some impressive victories of late. However he still believed that the Rear Admiral's choice in challenging the Vice Admiral of the 12th Battle Group was foolishness. His musing was interrupted by the sudden scattering of the garrison on the square's north side, he saw the approach of the five figures. The Vice Admiral was sending a message that would not soon be forgot. As they reached the edge of the square four of the group stopped and a single figure advanced into the open space. The time for his speech had come.

Condoriano: The Duel of Ascension is our most sacred rite, it is what makes this navy strong! Duelists, show us your strength and ascend to glory!

In the square Gabriel stopped facing his opponent from 30 feet away. He could feel the pressure of the man's gaze burning into him from where he stood, it was both impressive and yet feeble to Gabriel's mind. It was far more than most were able to do and yet nowhere near enough to be threatening. Gabriel stabbed his Sasaho Yari into the ground and began his advance towards the enemy.

Hake: Soru!!

Hake vanished from normal sight careering towards his enemy sword drawn back ready to be brought down in a slashing arc. As he stepped into range Hake brought the sword down at blistering pace. Just as the sword came into withing a few centimeters, Gabriel stepped to the right and the blade cut naught but air. The skin of his arms turned black as in the same motion he punched out with both hands as Hake's momentum brought him close.

Gabriel: Rokuogan!!

The Hake's body was folded in half by the forced of the blow and he landed in a crumpled heap 10 feet away. Gabriel stood and waited as his opponent quickly recovered his feet.

Hake: Damn you Iustita! I'll finish you today!

Gabriel: You waste my time with weak words. Attack or Yield!

Hake's anger showed on his face as he lashed out with a kick.

Hake: Rankyaku!!

The ground before him was scarred with the passage of the attack and to the shock of all who watched, Gabriel did not move an inch as it approached nearer and nearer. At the last moment Gabriel raise a hand which glowed white and placed it in the path of the attack. As it struck the air around it fractured and it stopped in placed before him. For a second all was still and silent, then the sound of another crack and the force of the Rankyaku was scattered in all directions.

Hake: Fall damn you!!

Hake had not waited for his attack to land and was charging in the aftermath of his Rankyaku. To the shock of all who observed Gabriel retreated from the charge, dancing back whilst keeping his eyes on his opponent. Hake sensed victory was close if he could just land one close range Rankyaku. He chased Gabriel down, speeding through the dust of his previous assault. In moments he was mere feet away from Gabriel, a look of triumph showing on his face as he brought his leg round to deliver the winning blow.

Gabriel: Fool.

As Hake's leg came around to launch his attack Gabriel swept around with his Sasaho Yari, its point and upper shaft glowing white with the power of the Gura Gura no Mi. The weapon stuck Hake's flank with full force and for half a second he appeared to jerk towards the weapon. However a moment later with deafening crack Hake was launched 40 feet into the air, before falling the ground with a dull, wet thud. Gabriel raise his Sasaho Yari up into the air and gave the traditional shout of victory.

Gabriel: I shall Ascend!!

There was a moment's silence, then raucous cheering from the Garrison surrounding the square. Gabriel had delivered his message loud and clear, his position was not up for the taking. Gabriel's revelry was quickly interrupted by the fierce whispering going on between Fleet Admiral Condoriano and the Admirals. After a few moments they all nodded and Condoriano stood, raising his arms for silence.

Condooriano: Victory is yours today Vice Admiral Iustita, I require you and your presence at Headquarters immediately. Guard Captains, return these men to their duties.

The Guard Captains began ordering the men away from the square, whilst medics came and attended to Rear Admiral Hake. Gabriel signaled for the guardians to follow him. His curiosity was peaked by the behaviour of the Admirals and Fleet Admiral, so he lead his followers under the great gateway of Marineford. It's giant Sea Eagle statue watching their passing.

Background
Chapter 2
War of West Blue Saga (KDAU)


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