Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Odin
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Odin You Were Born a Leader, No Crown or Throne Needed

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Years of suffering at the hands of larger nations was supposed to come to an end with the Fourth Great Shinobi War, when the nations entered a shinobi union and agreed to split all the missions and clients among the union members, removing what was perceived as the prime reason for warfare from the equation and, thus, ending all warfare. This was the intent, and this was the end result. But unions built on the backs of giants such as Uzumaki Naruto and Uchiha Sasuke are bound to the lives of these giants, and when they ultimately join their father, the Sage of the Six Paths, it is only expected that such a union follows their example, and dies.

Although the kage's of the Five Great Shinobi Nations no doubt had their own villages' intent in mind when they recklessly abandoned the accord, it could be said that the nations like Amegakure no Sato, the Village hidden in the Rain, were ignored and treated as trivialized secondary nations, only useful as battlefields and puppets.

Thus, the years of suffering that were meant to be repaid by the Great Nations were only made worse, and the power vacuum left by the death of Uzumaki Nagato and his orphan brother and sister, Yahiko and Konan, only served to fuel this chaos. For years the people of Amegakure have elected warlords, demagogues and snake-oil salesmen as their leaders, hoping for a positive change, and each successive leader only worsened the matter with political warfare against their internal enemies, opening the gates to foreign entities to exert their influence within Amegakure.

Hoshiyo was the end to this, and he introduced an era of repeated isolation -- an isolation maintained until this current day -- in order to stabilize the nation. To this end he was succesful, securing political powers after his predecessor had introduced a better political system, where the leader of the Rain was elected by multiple parties, rather than elected based on power. Using the Arekuruu created by himself, he wiped out any political resistance, and though this was not entirely ethical, sacrifices were to be made to secure the future of the Rain. To this end too, he was succesful, and his passing left a stable recovering nation to the new leader, elected only five months ago, namely Kaguya Yogensha -- rumoured to be a woman from the famed Kaguya clan that had long been thought dead, but whose existence is shrouded in secrecy and rumours. Public appearances from her end were limited to speeches at the Shinobi academy, which was reformed by her own predecessors and which she continued to reform.

In truth, her visits to the Shinobi Academy were meant more as tentative evaluations of the shinobi-to-be in the flesh, rather than having to rely on statistics and reports alone. For the first time in years, Yogensha herself would create the teams rather than allowing the senseis to pick and choose their own teams. Besides.. it wasn't entirely unlikely that the students that saw her were unaware of her position as the leader of the Rain -- she had made it a point to remain hidden from the public eye, and it was uncertain what her capacities as a shinobi even were. Just that she was really strong. Rumours circulated, saying that she was capable of destroying armies, to more reasonable ideas that she might possess the kekkei genkai of the Kaguya clan. Regardless, Yogensha allowed these rumours to be spread, and despite their isolation, word eventually did spread to villages around the world -- word that Amegakure no Sato had a new leader, and that their intel divisions would have a hard time discerning any information about her. Was this a new leaf for the Rain?




Location: Amegakure Shinobi Academy courtyard | Interaction: all academy graduates.


As the graduates were all lined up, their exact locations and the expectations of their behaviour drilled into them by their homeroom teacher before the event, Yogensha would make her entrance right on time, appearing from inside the school, flanked on either side by a member of the ANBU. As she stepped down the flight of stairs leading up to the entrance, the ANBU stopped, and though they looked forward, it did not take a sensory nin to feel their prying eyes glancing over the group of soon-to-be genin momentarily, as if they were scanning them for a threat, a danger, anything that could potentially harm their leader. The next point of their focus was on the relatives and other visitors that had been given permission to attend the ceremony, who were all standing behind the group of students, under a small roof of metal extending from the academy perimeter walls.

Yogensha wore a traditional kimono, her hands hidden from sight inside her sleeves, and though most her movements were hidden, it was clear she moved deliberately and with grace, smiling gently at the group, with a hint of sincerity on her lips, as if she was truly happy that they had graduated. “Students,” she said, taking two more steps before she reached her final position, standing about five meters from the front row of graduates.

“.. if I can call you that, still.” she then added tentatively, her slight smile then widening slightly. She moved her right hand to the side and gestured towards a shinobi that was holding a box with unknown items inside of it, though as the students who had elder siblings that had graduated before them would likely know from visiting a ceremony, this was the box that held their shinobi headbands.

“Today marks the end of your career as a student, but it's only the beginning of something greater,” she proclaimed, the shinobi with the box slowly moving down the line of shinobi, handing each one a shinobi headband -- their homeroom teacher had no doubt instructed them not to put it on immediately, but rather wait for Yogensha to finish speaking and give them the command to do so.

“And as cheesy as that sounds, it is most certainly the objective truth. Now that you have graduated, the dynamics of performing assignments will change. Taking a wrong decision, filling in the wrong answer.. it will no longer be the difference between passing and failing, it will mean the difference between life... and death.”

The tone and expression on her face changed, becoming more grim and dark, her smile disappearing and her eyes losing their shine, dulling at the thought of the reality of being a shinobi. She paused briefly, allowing the students to soak in these words -- though, she had half expected them to ignore her, given the giddy state their graduation must have put them in -- and then continued, her words slow and drawn out, as if she were trying to make a point. “It is also the mark of independence. You will earn a wage with every mission you bring to a succesful end. You can provide for yourself now, and be a productive member of Amegakure no Sato. Do your best early on, and you will rise through the ranks, and receive the opportunity to perform harder missions.”

Again she paused, but this time the pause made way for a small grin on her lips, before she proclaimed, “but I am sure you are all well aware of how the world of shinobihood works. Remember what being a shinobi means -- you must bear the burden of sacrifice so that others do not have to.”

As she spoke her last words, the shinobi handing out the headbands reached the end of the line, and stepped aside, giving everyone a good look at Yogensha. For a brief moment, the leader of the Rain looked up, peering into the sky, which was dark but had not yet released it's tears. Then, Yogensha clasped her hands together and formed the tiger seal. “Ukojizai no Jutsu,” she calmly said, and after a very brief moment of respite, the rain began pouring down.

Everyone but Yogensha and the students would be covered by a roof, leaving just her and the graduates standing there. Yogensha's hair clinged to her face as she lowered her hands again, smiling at the group in front of her as she had done before, before she continued, “congratulations, shinobi. You can put on your headbands now, marking you as a shinobi of the Rain.” And then, when everyone was no doubt busy putting on their headbands, she softly spoke up again, this time barely audible to anyone that wasn't paying specific attention to her, “the Rain weeps for you and the suffering you are to receive and cause.”

It was almost as if she was anticipating a period of hardship rising on the horizon, and though she had not wished to alarm the young genin already, it seemed almost an expectation that they would at some point in the near future be forced to show their true mettle to themselves, their team, and the rest of the village.

While they stood there in the rain, putting on their headbands, they were allowed a moment to rejoice, to talk among themselves, and to look back at their parents and other relatives. The shinobi that had handed out the headbands glanced at Yogensha, and she nodded at the man, giving him a signal of sorts.

“Shinobi! Attention!” the man bouldered, his voice far overpowering even the sound of the rain clattering down.

“A shinobi can act alone, but preferably acts with a team. And though you have learned well at the academy, the time to stop learning is not yet there,” she said, her voice now louder than before -- she was no longer addressing children that were playing shinobi in the academy courtyard, but she was now addressing soldiers, shinobi that were armed and ready to face any task they were commanded to face.

“Listen up! Yuganori Takashi, Furaribi Akane, Shiru Metsumi! You have been assigned to Kazami Miyako-sensei and will henceforth be known as Team 3, or team Miyako!”

“Sakamoto Isami, Shinjo Tsubasa, Kajiya Tatsuya! Uragiri Sakana-sensei will be your new teacher. Your team is team 7!”

“Team 12 will be lead by Iyokan Koko-sensei, and she will be joined by Sakamachi Sadako, Miraskuni Kasumi, and Hoshiyo Asashio! Make the rain proud!”

“And finally.. team 18. Igarashi Aoi, Minashigo Gareki and Anohana Hikaru! You will be guided by Kawaguchi Bunko-sensei!”

The sensei that had been listed off would be standing in with the crowd, voluntarily or not, watching the ceremony, and as luck would have it, the shinobi that had graduated today were given a period of a week of free time, to collect themselves after the stressful period of their graduation, before they'd be contacted by their sensei and told where to meet them, and at what time.

Shinobi life... begins!
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Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Odin
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Odin You Were Born a Leader, No Crown or Throne Needed

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Location: Uragiri Clan Compound [Koi Breeding Pond] | Time: 9AM [9:12] | Post Theme: WEB_INK - The Rinnegan
Interaction: Team 7 [Sakamoto Isami -- @Shizuochan, Shinjo Tsubasa -- @McHaggis, Kajiya Tatsuya -- @Raijinslayer


Watching the graduation ceremony had been a big snore to Sakana and, if he had been given the chance, he'd have avoided the duty of visiting it. Understanding the purpose of his visit -- the presence of higher ranking shinobi to give the ceremony some form of accreditation -- did not inherently improve his opinion on the whole 'being forced to watch these kids put on a headband' but, ultimately, he'd volunteered to lead a team pending his reassignment. He had nobody else to blame but himself. Atleast they got to stand under the metal awning extending from the metal wall, which was useless at first, but offered a degree of cover from the rain that Yogensha pulled from the clouds above. Ahh, Amegakure no Sato as they were used to. Although the crowd was relatively large for an otherwise small amount of graduates, Sakana still stood out, given his peculiar appearance, black sclera notwithstanding.

His eyes trailed over the backs of the lined up genin-to-be, trying his best to figure out who were going to be 'his.' Make no mistake, Sakana was far from an ideal sensei-figure, and the only reason he had volunteered was to fill the time between assignments pending a temporary lack of missions for jonin level shinobi. In those cases, there were typically three options -- perform genin or chunin level missions, perform standard activities such as patrols and barrier-response duty, or.. well, leading a team of snot-nosed kids.

Reading the files on these kids prior to the graduation didn't help him much. The information was lacking and, despite his best efforts to create a mental image, none of these kids matched his imagination. The team essentially boiled down to a team consisting of 'weapons guy', 'taijutsu girl' and 'lava guy.' But there was no guy with twenty weapons strapped to his person, there was no buff titan of a girl, and there was no guy whose limbs turned to lava, so Sakana was out of ideas. “Tsk,” he hissed to himself, pulling in air through his teeth, “whatever, guess I'll see them when they come to my little meeting. Guess I'll go and pick up that mission scroll now.”

A week later the team would've received a message deliver to their home, their jonin nowhere to be seen upon delivery, leaving them in the dark about who he actually was lest they had seen or heard of the 'famous' Uragiri Sakana, the barely average prodigy that had become jonin at his 16th, but somehow had managed to convince everyone else that he was just average. In reality, he wasn't famous at all, though that didn't stop the Uragiri clan from praising him like he was. In fact, most people were probably happier to see him leave than come, given that his straight-forward, somewhat rude demeanor didn't rub off well on people for the most part, and his creepy appearance certainly didn't help him in that regard.

The message they received did not spill any clues either, only marking a location and a time. "Uragiri Koi Pond, 9.15." Not a place most people knew of, and those that did might not even know where it was, just knew it existed, somewhere. Sakana wasn't one to play around, so he didn't perform any "bell test" or whatever those moronic Konohagakure shinobi had come up with to fuck around with their students, but the new genin should make no mistake -- this was their first test, and it was painstakingly simple. Find out where the Uragiri Koi pond was, and be there at exactly 9.15. Timeliness was the mother of all military operations, at least in Sakana's mind, as a second too late or too soon could mean the death of entire squads, platoons, battalions. Better to be precisely on time.

Finding out where the koi pond was would be a challenge on it's own, though once the three genin had, individually or all together, figured out that the koi in the large pond in the village center came from the Uragiri koi breeding pond, they would've perhaps been able to ask the local tradesmen at the market surrounding it where to find the koi pond. Someone must've bought these koi, right? Once they'd figured it out, it'd be a straight line to the Uragiri koi pond -- where they'd find their new sensei waiting. And since they had had about a week to figure it out and piece the clues together, it was expected that they'd all make it... or face disbanding of the team, and getting sent back to the academy. The stakes would already seem higher than they were in the academy, even for simple tasks like meeting the sensei.

He was sat there, squatted on the edge of the pond, his hand in the water aimlessly moving around in circles. It seemed he was enthralled with something, and upon closer inspection, the genin might've found that in the pond itself, two fish were swimming in circles, following closely the pattern that Sakana was making with his hand. They were black, with a white dot, and a white fish, with a black dot. The famous yin-yang koi that had lived for much longer than any other koi, specifically bred by the Uragiri clan as their image -- the Uragiri clan symbol that was sewn into the back of Sakana's jacket.



“So-so...” he spoke up, his face not lifting from the pond as he focused on the fish intently. “You made it? I'm surprised.”

His calm demeanor made him seem a bit more calm than he truly was, and perhaps that was planned. Regardless, he continued on, the hand in the pond slowing down slightly, and so did the fish in the pond.

“Tsuboso,” he then continued, purposely messing up her name, “what do you think of fate? Do you think it was your fate to be assigned to my team, or was it just sheer.. luck? Unless you think it's unlucky.” Hidden by his long black hair, though visible through it only slightly, he cracked a wide grin, amused by the prospect of his new student's answer.

“And you, Sakamoto boy. What's the purpose of a shinobi? You swing around weapons, so you must know the answer.” The grin widened, as did his eyes ever so slightly, still peering into the dark water.

“And... finally, Tatsu-tsu. If you could make me a weapon, no matter how high the cost, what would you make for me?”

The questions were all pointless, and weren't even styled as an impromptu exam meant to test their skill or knowledge. It wasn't a bell test. It wasn't even a written exam like you'd expect from a chunin exam, or a pop quiz. It was just.. Sakana, asking random questions that he seemed to want the answer to. Was this what their team would be based on? Random pieces of information, brought together only by a sensei that seemed more inclined to ask random things than actually form a team? Surely not right?

“Ah, anyway, I almost forgot. Here,” with his free hand he reached to his back pouch, lifting the top of it and reaching for a scroll. He pulled it out, let his hand veer down and then upwards, before releasing the scroll, tossing it towards the trio of genin, expecting one of them to atleast step forward and try to catch it, since he threw it way too soft for it to land close to them if they didn't move. “That's our mission, take a look.”



Bored of his own shenanigans at that point, Sakana stood up and waved his wet hand around a bit, the drops of water flying around before he turned to his team. His grin had disappeared and he seemed more serious now, stepping closer to his team. “It seems our 'friends' hidden in the grass have stopped letting our people through. Tatsuya, I expect this will be of particular interest to you, since your clan probably trades a lot of weapons to these grass-chewers. Anyway, we're just observing apparently, because fighting these guys to force open their borders will probably be a bit too hard for some new guys like you. So... are you ready, or were there any questions burning on your mind that you just have to ask?”
Hidden 9 mos ago Post by schadenfreude
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TEAM 12 SENSEI

TIME: 9AMish | LOCATION: BBQ Restaurant | INTERACTION: Miyako @MesuOkami, Team 12 @Syn@Odin@j8cob


Is it possible to fall asleep while standing up? Koko had thought it improbable before, what with innate shinobi paranoia and need for constant vigilance, yet she was swaying on her feet. The Amekage was powerful, had an aura, but Koko really was not interested in the whole charade of the ceremony. She was of the mind that every academy sensei should personally plant a boot on an arse and kick the students out into the real world, without all the theatrics.

It almost felt like fingers were dragging her eyelids down, it was so hard to keep them open. For a second, Koko had relented and let herself sway into a fuzzy place where she vaguely knew what was going on but was still drifting off somewhere else. A startling series of thunk, thunk, thunk niggled in the aware part of her brain and when her shoulder knocked into Miyako’s, Koko snapped back into attention.

It’s raining. Natural or did the Amekage do it?

Miyako might have an inkling that she was falling asleep. How irritating. Koko summoned the last dredges of energy in her body and tilted her head in the general direction of Miyako. “Lovely ceremony, isn’t it? Yogensha-sama has such a way with words, it was like I was hypnotized.”

Koko doubted that would trick Miyako into thinking she hadn’t fallen asleep, but the insincere words were worth a shot. If Miyako replied, Koko would side-eye her and perhaps leave it at that. The redhead pressed her lips together and readjusted her straw hat, her fingers instantly being drenched in that single moment.

Which students were hers? Koko wouldn’t even have a hint at who would be under her questionable tutelage, considering the information regarding them was currently untouched on her coffee table. She didn’t bother sticking around after the ceremony.

Later that night, Koko hunkered down on the floor and scratched out notes to her genin. Surrounding her in her little apartment were crumbled slips, rejected versions that were deemed too aggressive or too callous. Koko would like to be perceived as polite and perhaps a bit affectionate to her genin, it would be easier in the long run for them to see her as a nurturing person. If they trusted her and she appeared understanding, they would be able to confide in her and that would solve a lot of problems right off the bat.

“Polite and affectionate, polite and affectionate,” Koko murmured like a mantra as she wrote her sixteenth draft. “Pet names? My precious genin? No, too affectionate.”

In the morning, the now official Team 12 would wake up to a nice, decorative scroll on their pillow. An obvious misstep for Koko in her attempts to be affectionate and erring into slight creep territory. Whether they were unnerved or impressed or perhaps even irritated, Koko wouldn’t know – honestly, the thought wouldn’t have even crossed her mind that they would react in any way other than surprise. Mostly, though, she hoped those little fuckers appreciated her efforts because she wasn’t going to try that hard again ever.

My Sweet Genin,

In a week’s time, meet at the Academy grounds. Please be there around 9:00 am sharp or you will miss me! It would be a shame to miss your first meeting with your sensei who is looking forward to meeting you very much.

Sincerely,
Koko-sensei


On the day of their first meeting, when they arrive at the Academy, they will find their Koko-sensei nowhere to be seen. However, if they are observant enough, they would find a trail of small orange origami cranes. The trail would lead the genin to Koko’s favorite barbeque restaurant and they would be greeted with the sight of their great and powerful sensei stuffing her face with beef.

Her little trail trick was less of a test and more to keep them busy while she ate. Afterall, it shouldn’t be too hard to see the orange cranes – even if they are the size of a coin. When they arrived, it would be way too early for her. She expected to see them around this time, but it didn’t mean she wanted to see them anytime soon. Still, Koko gave them a smile that crinkled her eyes and caused her cheeks to bulge from the beef still in her mouth.

Koko gestured to the other side of the booth with her chopsticks, silently telling them to sit while she finished chewing. While they were shuffling into the seats, Koko took the distraction to peak at her palm which had their names and kekkei genkai painted on it. Damn it all, the ink smeared. She couldn’t tell if their name was Kasumi or Kazuya, Asashio or Atsuko, Satoko or Sawako.

The jonin shuffled the meat that was cooking on the grill in front of her, and grinned again at the genin. “I hope the cranes didn’t get wet. I tried placing them where they would be relatively dry if it rains.”

Fuck, Koko doesn’t know what to say now. She reclined, placing one of her arms over the back of the booth and placing another strip of beef in her mouth, chewing slowly in hopes she appeared thoughtful and assessing. Maybe they would think she was sizing them up, or maybe they would assume she was thinking of their future plans. In reality, Koko was attempting to find a polite way to figure out who the fuck these kids are. If she left it alone, they were bound to drop each other’s names at some point on their first mission. The question is if she could bluff her way until then. There was always the solution of having them introduce themselves, but she would have to fluff it up with other questions and Koko couldn’t care less about their dreams and aspirations. What was more important to Koko, putting forth more effort to pick up their names due to her own improper studying of their files or having to listen to them talk about themselves?

The answer was obvious.

“Well, my sweet genin,” Koko started after swallowing, “here’s our first mission. Tada!”

Koko flourished the scroll she pulled out of her pocket, waving it emphatically but with a lazy tinge to her arms. Carefully, and politely, Koko placed it on the table and pushed it towards the trio. “Go ahead and read it. It’s always important to familiarize yourselves when presented with information.”

Unlike her, the poor sensei who didn’t even know the names of her genin.



“It’s at an onsen. Doesn’t that sound fun?” Koko readjusted her straw hat. “What do you guys think? You think you are up for the task?”

Koko would wait politely until all of them responded to her questions – whether they wanted to respond or not. If they wanted to keep quiet, she would stare them down and keep smiling until they answered her. Not because she cared what they said; because she asked a damn question and she’s the boss, she will be answered when she wants to be answered. No genin punk is going to defy her, even over something so small as that.

“Now, then, any questions?”
Hidden 9 mos ago Post by j8cob
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j8cob The Gr8est / The J8est

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It was a bittersweet day for one young girl. The dark skies brought no comfort to Asashio as she stood among her classmates before Yogensha, finally graduating from the Ninja Academy and becoming a true shinobi. Of course she was happy that this day had come. The first step on her path to greatness was graduating, after all. But she still had to hold back tears today for her father couldn't make it to see her. Her mother's betrayal meant it was no surprise that she didn't attend but Asashio would not weep for her. The generally strong girl would probably be mistaken to be holding back tears of joy by any classmates of hers nearby, which in itself was uncharacteristic of her in their eyes and surprising. A few tears escaped her as she accepted the headband and held it in her hands.

As the Amekage gave her speech the young girl hardly paid attention. She was prepared and already knew what becoming a genin would entail. The words about money meant little to her, as Asashio had more than enough already to survive on her own until she got her steady income as a shinobi so was never lacking. But the rain that came pouring down captured Asashio's full attention and she put her new headband on, letting her long bangs drape over it to keep her eye concealed. The naming of her team, henceforward Team 12, was the most important part to the young girl since she lacked family to celebrate with. She had a vague memory of her sensei's name, Iyokan Koko, but she was more familiar with her two genin companions. Sadako and Kasumi were classmates after all, but Asashio never spent time with them outside of class. She also couldn't particularly recall their skills or techniques as she never trained with them either. It was embarrassing but at least she knew their names and faces. So this is it, she thought, overpowering her tears and looking forward towards Yogensha. I'm a kunoichi now, father. I hope you're proud.




The next morning had arrived and she stirred in her bed and began to stretch she felt her arm bump something on the bed next to her. Something light but decently sized. This surprised Asashio, as she never brought anything to bed with her, and it forced her to jolt upright to see what foreign object disturbed her morning stretch. She found a scroll by her side, surprising her further. Someone broke in without waking me? A skill to be expected of shinobi but still a surprise to be on the receiving end of it. Opening it up revealed that Koko-sensei was the culprit, as judged by her awkwardly friendly letter detailing the meeting place. Did he have to do this in such a strange way? And a week early at that. With a sigh she let the scroll fall to the floor and she laid back down. "I'll be ready..."




And so she was. A week had gone by and Asashio arrived at the Academy grounds, timing her exit and trek perfectly to be there no earlier and no later than 9:00 AM. To her surprise she found only a paper crane. Or rather a long trail of them that she diligently followed to a restaurant. The culprit had to be Koko-sensei and Asashio wasn't surprised to find her there in the booth. "Good morning, sensei," Asashio greeted with a polite bow. "Suzuki, Asashio present." It hadn't been difficult to remember her fake surname in years, though saying it out loud this time made her wonder when exactly would be the best time to reveal her identity. But now was surely not the time. After the others had arrived shortly after Asashio they were given their first mission. "Onsen?" she said aloud after reading the mission scroll.

She looked back up to Koko, who had finished her meal finally. Asashio couldn't help but feel as if this woman was fake and lazy based on what little she observed. Her judge of character had always been accurate but in the world of ninja it wouldn't be a surprise if some were charismatic enough to fool her. Either way her starting impression of Koko-sensei wasn't very stellar. After a moment of awkward silence following Koko's last question, Asashio spoke up. "I am ready, sensei. Civilian thugs don't stand a chance." Her visible eye looked forward into her sensei's eyes, a passionate determination burning inside. This was her first official mission. Her first chance to truly stand out. Excellent grades and high marks meant nothing in the real world. She was more than ready.
Hidden 9 mos ago 9 mos ago Post by MesuOkami
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MesuOkami Graffiti Gremlin

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Early morning | Amegakure Shinobi Academy Courtyard | Brief interaction with Koko - Surveying Academy Students

The rain didn't stop Miyako from finding the beauty and blessing in today - Graduation day. Though, it wasn't her own Graduation - it was her future pupils, so excitement still raced through her. She had yet connected with them, but was already so proud of them for their first accomplishment and could only writhe in anticipation for what they would accomplish with her. The scene was that out of a movie as the rain befell the students, Yogensha had a knack for really putting the emotion behind this adrenaline filled moment. "Hmm, intriguing..." Miyako was adorned in a usual black kimono - this one would be laced with an elegant ivory obi to tie it all together. Aside from the families, she was probably the only Jonin dressed up for the cause. Well, what others saw as a lost one Miyako would see the light in it. No bad omens had been received today, or in the past few for that matter. She could only assume that her future team would be successful and flourish in the garden of life!

Miyako was slightly lost in her own theatrical thoughts as she pondered on what her students looked like, what they were already capable of, who they would become under her watch. A nudge on the shoulder would break her train of thought and her attention would soon turn to the old friend, their history dating back to before their own Graduation. Gray eyes took in the red head next to her, knowing that she was falling asleep from the boredom - a chuckle erupted past her lips. "It's rather beautiful, the way Lady Yogensha brought the rain down as they tied their headbands back. So graceful....such a deep meaning to it....Yanno, I remember our graduation. I was so excited that day," Miyako trailed off as she stared out into the Graduates, then looked back to Koko with a devilish grin, "But then me and you were teamed up and well...the moment was gone". Her hand shot up to her mouth as she chuckled, her humor mostly only amusing herself. The side-eye from Koko only added another element and cause her to have to stifle the remaining laughter that was bubbling up.

The ceremony was rather brief - getting down to the point whilst still retaining a proper stoic right of passing. She would stay briefly after Koko and the others. Instead of trailing off into the crowd to meet her team like some Jonin. Miyako would stand on the sidelines eerily, her eyes moving from freshly birthed Genin to Genin. Trying to decide which 3 could possibly be hers. After a few moments, she would disappear off back home to her Clan compound. Duty still called as she had to preform for a show that day.

But first thing was first - she would return to her home, promptly starting on a task that would be executed later in the week.

Kazami Clan Entrance. 0900.
Be prompt or you'll miss the show.


These 3 written notes, would all be strapped individually to their own messenger bird and flown out to the students homes the evening before their meet. So it is easy to assume that maybe some students would become worried as they hadn't heard from their Sensei quiet yet - while others had. But timing was everything to her, especially a dramatic one. The pouch carrying the scroll would have the clan seal imprinted in black on it. It may be recognizable to those who have entered the compound to partake in viewing a show at the theatre. Or maybe from just basic general knowledge of all clans in the Village - who knows. Either way, it would have a formality to it. Each messenger bird would also carry a small umeboshi (pickled plum) in a bag - another note would be found in the bag.

Enjoy with your breakfast.


What would seem like a sweet gesture - was really just the small first glimpse at her neurotic superstitious behavior. Believing a pickled plum eaten in the morning would ensure protection throughout the day. Though she didn't eat them every morning herself, it was frequent - and mainly on days that seem to require the protection.

0900 | Kazami Clan Entrance | Takashi@Tuujaimaa Metsumi@Terminal Akane@Anders


hey, listen~!


The rain would be mist this crisp morning - the weather would change its mind later for a downpour of course... But for today, it was a blissful and calm start. A slender and pale girl would await at the gate for the arrival of the brimming youth. She would be dressed in an all white Kimono - her black straight hair contrasting heavily off of it. The gate on either side of it - painted on the wall would be the same Clan Mon from the messenger bird the night before. A Traditional Edo feel would be noticeable immediately. Compared to the tall and steel buildings of Amegakure - most Villagers found a small solace in roaming the grounds that laid before the Theatre and Clan homes. The girl looked left and right, her fingers grasped tighter around the umbrella handle as the time neared the Team to gather for its first time.

tap, tap, tap

The young maidens foot would clasp against the stone as she sighed. Oh, the first one. The next. And the third. All arriving simultaneously. As they neared her, and all gathered, the girl would bow and smile warmly at the Genin. "Good morning, glad to see you all made it. So timely," She would compliment, giving a closed eyed warm smile - yanno, the typical head tilt thrown in there. A few patrons and Clan members would be active amongst the gate - ushering people inside the Theatre for a 5 part Noh show today. The first to start in a matter of 30 minutes. Scanning the faces, it seemed the lady would almost be studying them before breaking the silence after a few seconds - "If you'll follow me, I'll escort you inside the Theatre..." Turning on her heel, she would elegantly walk towards the Kazami Theatre Entrance - passing a gloomy looking Koi pond. One could fancy that it would be a bit more beautiful in the warmth of the sun, and light. But the gloomy overcast of Amegakure resonated so harshly - it almost took away from the beauty of it. Limbs of cherry blossom trees reached over it, giving shade to the few storks that waded proudly in the waters of their home.

Currently, they were all near the edge being fed by a few Clansmen. The snapping of their beaks, and happy screeches could be heard in the distance as they caught their breakfast greedily. What would also be noticed, the amazing arrangement of gardens placed before the Theatre. Adding another dramatic layer to the building before them. It stood wide, rather tall as well - clearly about 3 stories high. Above the theatre would essentially be a very small apartment system, for Clan members only. Apart from the storage areas. Miyako would reside above the Theatre, taking her first step away from her family.



The students would be led inside the Theatre, all eyes on the youth. Receiving a few bows here and there, and mostly big, warm smiles from the elders of the Clan. The girl would lead them up the stairs to a private booth, where they would take their seat, the maiden would take her leave. And well now, the students would just......wait.

Before the show began, there was a small opener. It was 3 girls, all with fans - whilst music was played on the side by two men. The dance of the fans would last approximately 5 minutes, and if the students memory served them right. They would recognize the women that greeted them in the center of the trio. It was an elegant dance, the movements fluid and gracious. There would be 5 different plays that day - the one the students would watch be of the tale of Shinobi from the past. An inspiring message could be pulled from the performance, if they so chose to pay attention, that of teamwork - trust - growth. I'll let you imagine as to the story, and details.

Fast forward, the show would end and they would be retrieved by an older gray haired lady. She was finely dressed in a very formal Kimono - and would ever so slowly with her old bones, lead them out of the booth, and up the stairs and to what appeared to be a library. In the center of the room was a table with 4 cushions on each side. "Please, take a seat. Your Sensei will be in shortly," the elderly woman croaked, as she slid the door shut behind her and took her leave as well.

The newly formed Team 3 would be alone for about 5 minutes, before the door slid back open. Revealing the same woman from this morning, She was now dressed in her traditional every day wear of her simplistic black kimono, crimson sash and obi, omamari could be seen tucked under the obi with a keen eye. Taking her seat at the table across from the Genin, she would delicately place her hands in her lap - her gray eyes looked at each face before another thin lipped smile spread across her face.

"Good afternoon Takashi, Akane, Metsumi - I am Kazami, Miyako. I will be your Sensei and guide you through this new endeavor. You have chosen quiet a rigorous path - but I believe it will be very fruitful for you". She paused for a moment as her smile faded "The life of a Shinobi is not always marvelous, we do not always get the sentimental moments we deserve. As a Team now, it is your duty to find loyalty amongst each other. A bond. In order to effectively finish any missions we must work as one - this is the utmost importance". She glanced around the room, which was filled with books ranging from newer to more ragged looking ones. "Out of everything I have read, it is notated that communication is key. Without this, the cell can fall apart and travesty can unfold right in your lap" Her tone had changed from pleasant, to a rigid one. The last few words held a different emotion behind them. As she spoke Miyako would stare at each student in the eyes for a few moments before moving to the next. Hoping the minor theatrics of these gestures, and her words would be instilled into them.

"But for now..." Miyako breathed, and looked to the door as it slid open again. A few clans members bringing in some plates of food. "Let us eat, and get to know each other. It is noon, and I do apologize for making you wait so long. This was my last show until I am done being your Sensei, I do hope you enjoyed the show. It is one of my favorites - so I watched in the crowd beneath you". Smiling widely this time, it dropped quickly and her attention turned to Takashi, "Please - send word to your family of the Kazami's pleasure to wear the finely weaved Kimono's during this show. Your clan never ceases to amaze us at the beauty of each work of art".

Rice, a fully cooked salmon, chunks of pork, vegetables, noodles with a savory pork broth to accompany the chunks, and tea were all placed as a spread on the table before them. "Thank you," Miyako acknowledged her clans members - giving a sharp eye to the students as to follow suit. Once they left, she looked back at the students, "Enjoy!" Her delicate hands opened up over the table of food, beaming with a warm aura that could be picked up on even if you weren't a Shinobi. "As we eat, please - Mestumi. Start with yourself, let us get to know you. Tell me a few things about yourself... Hobbies, what do you wish to hone in on, your end goal..." Miyako trailed off, making herself a plate of vegetables and salmon. After Metsumi's interlude, she would ask Akane, and then Takashi. Each having their own spotlight, giving her a chance to get a small glimpse into who they could be. Most importantly. Who they wanted to be.

After these questions were answered, and everyone was enjoying the spread - Miyako would put down her cup of tea, and turn to a more serious tone as she laid a scroll out onto the table. Sliding it sensitively towards Team 3. Whoever was eager enough to read it first - would be upon them. "We have our first assignment, and we will leave in 2 days. I would like for us until then, to meet every morning at the Academy Grounds. You three will spar, train, get to know each others weakness', and strengths before we leave..." Her voice mimicked that of a robot. "We will start today - and end mid afternoon the day before we leave, so you can rest at home and spend time with your family. Please, read the mission and address any questions you may have". Her hands grasped her bowl of rice, as she ate a few more bites whilst they read, and conjured up any thoughts on the task laid before them.



Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Syn
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Syn Arguably the Perfect Man

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Amegakure | 🚭/🚬| Genin

TIME: Present Day - Early Morning | LOCATION: Then: Amegakure – Ninja Academy, Now: Amegakure - BBQ Restaurant | INTERACTION:@Schadenfreude@j8cob@Odin


Some days never got any easier, life was tumultuous in that way. Kasumi had accustomed himself to the austere lifestyle he was granted once he was recruited by Ame’s orphanage. Like any weapon he was forged in the fires and tempered to shape a perfect mold. Once dipped into the waters he was baptized, both figuratively and metaphorically. One could say literally too, as the rain dropped down on him the first time he entered the rank of other blossoming shinobi, a rain that would one day cast itself down onto him again. Tomorrow was the big day, the day all of his hard work and determination would reflect the crucibles he went through paramount to this moment. It was hours before the ceremony, but the young shinobi was restless in his sleep. Was it fear? No. Anxiety? No. Somewhere deep down Kasumi knew the root problem of his insomnia, whether he wanted to face it or not was completely onto him. His fingers glided gently across his weak arm, each crevice and contour of his fingertips feeling the crusted and thick texture of several cigarette sized burn marks that lined his skin.

A life of shadows
Echo faint distant whispers
Of what once was real


The blank ceiling stared back at him as the burning sensation in his arms reignited the memory of his upbringing. Would his mother even care to attend his graduation if she was still around? Where was his father? Would he be proud if he stayed? No matter whatever road less traveled, none would have brought him the position he was in now. The memory faded like a cloud of smoke, his vision returned to the dim room sequestered somewhere off in the orphanage. With no end to insomnia in sight, Kasumi took it upon himself to ease his body with his friendly vice, the cigarette. Slinking over to open his night table, he reached into the depths of the top cabinet and retrieved his trusted lucky strikes. Slapping the pack against his wrists to activate the tobacco, with one slick motion the boy opened the box and flicked one cigarette up out of the sea of sticks. Pressing it to his mouth he pulled away, using the other hand to parade an open flame. With the two married together, Kasumi sucked in, smoke pouring into his mouth and lungs, Peace. Rain started to streak against the window, a slight drizzle turned into a stampede, Kasumi was finally transported to somewhere familiar…somewhere peaceful.

「 Fade to Black 」


Somewhere between the pattering rain and a plume of smoke, Kasumi managed to pass out. His cigarette had departed from his hand and now left a smug of black on the wooden floor below. He was lucky enough to not let his room go up into flames. All the trivial matters that plagued him before were now gone, Kasumi found himself in a state of zen or serenity. This is what he had been working for since day one, the cause for celebration. The young shinobi kindled with a fire inside, tore through his dresser to get dressed for the big ceremony. Rushing through the hurdles he was finally presentable for Lady Yogensha and the rest of the academy. A few minutes passed before he arrived and took his seat, just in time for the opening ceremony to begin. Today would be the first day of the rest of his life.

Tense nervous excitement
Some don't want to leave their school
For the unknown future


After being thoroughly drilled by his homeroom teacher, Kasumi was ready to act all prim and proper for the arrival of Yogensha. There she was, in all her grace and beauty. The Amekage needed not to display her power for it could be felt from just her presence alone, the ANBU were hardly necessary. Yogensha presided the ceremony, beginning the moment they all had been waiting for. Kasumi was lost in her words, she weaved them so seamlessly, captivating the audience with her power for extemporaneous speech. Her sweet benevolence turned nihilistic as the truths of their journey became prominent, they were child soldiers raised to kill after all. Kasumi would be different from his parents, he would be able to live on his own and provide for himself. No longer would he be burdened and judged by the sins of his parents, her excerpt on rising through the ranks particularly stuck with him. The endeavor he would most set his mind to.

Receiving his headband was almost too surreal, the weight behind it felt heavy and weighed down his hand. A surge of emotions titillated through his bodies. The sky became dark and clouded as Yogensha’s words and sudden rain broke Kasumi’s immersion. ”What a terrible day for rain” Kasumi thought, focusing his attention back on his Amekage. Without question he began to put on his headband, but hesitated as he caught the tail end of her solemn words. Pushing it out of his mind he finished finagling his head band on, their sovereign leader began to group the young shinobi into their teams. Like a sorting hat, Kasumi waited patiently for his name to be called, he was never really friendly with any of his classmates. A wallflower was a most apt description, but that didn’t mean he didn’t take note of everyone who had entered and left the academy. Regardless she announced two teams before she gracefully arrived at team 12, his team. Kasumi didn’t want to make any informal assumptions about his teammates so he would wait till later when they convened, shinobi life had now begun.

「 One Week Later 」


Kasumi opened the decorative scroll that was left on his bed and read its contents, the first inclination of what their time together would be like. The tone in her text was duly noted, a sweet persona stamped into every word. Fast forward to the academy, Koko was nowhere to be seen. A puzzle so early in the morning was far from what Kasumi had anticipated. Sparking up another cigarette, he bellowed some smoke that quickly sank to the ground. The smoke was a sixth sense, something he could discern anything within his realm that he couldn’t with his other five. Kasumi was familiar with every nook and cranny of the academy grounds, but his smoke had picked up a disruption. Casually walking to where his smoke gathered he bent down picking up what appeared to be orange origami cranes. The puzzle wasn’t that difficult after all. Like a trail of breadcrumbs as if the genin were Hansel and Gretel, Kasumi followed the path that would ultimately lead him to his Sensei….at a barbeque restaurant.

Lunch time meeting
Strategy and tactics
Then just desserts


Kasumi was the second to arrive, Asashio was the first. The girl was rather tall for a standard kunoichi, her demeanor was rather stoic and militaristic as accompanied by her wardrobe. Her replies were short and curt which reminded him of laconic speech. Their sensei on the other hand was rather…lacking in the department of grace as seen by her stuffing her face. The boy had a bad habit of paying close attention to detail, being empathic was also one his more positive traits. The two together made it possible for him to read people’s characters rather adeptly. If he was certain about anything it was that their sweet old sensei was actually faking it, not very convincingly either. Kasumi listened to her short speech which was the opposite of Yogensha’s, with conviction. Their first mission was to clean up an onsen and dispatch the unruly mongrels that had annexed it from the geriatric owners.

Kasumi brought another cigarette to his mouth taking a small series of puffs, “Well I do like smoke so steam is close enough. I’m up for anything really” Kasumi added, congealing with Asashio’s reply, but also adding a more lax aura. He exhaled and his sights narrowed as the floor was now open to question, “So Sensei, I only have one question. Why are you faking your personality?” Flicking the ashes off his cigarette in contempt. Kasumi would normally default to his reserved straw man like nature, but there was one thing he hated more than talking and that was liars. It should also be noted, shedding his introversion was one of his medium length goals/dreams.
Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Odin
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Odin You Were Born a Leader, No Crown or Throne Needed

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TIME: Present Day - Early Morning | LOCATION: Ninja Academy, BBQ Restaurant | INTERACTION:@Schadenfreude@j8cob@Syn


Sadako lacked the happy family to congratulate her during the period before the graduation ceremony and, although it was welcomed, the congratulations from her peers in the orphanage was hardly the same. Expecting any type of congratulations from her superiors was too much to ask for and she had not expected any, yet still felt dissatsfied and saddened when she didn't receive any, despite expecting it. "Becoming a genin is the bare minimum," they'd told her instead. They were right, every orphan was expected to pass the graduation exam with at least decent marks, and though she exceeded even that, it wasn't like they were going to treat her nicely just because she was a genin. It did mean they were going to say goodbye to her. She hadn't been adopted -- most orphans in the shinobi employment program were not even allowed to be adopted -- and could now provide herself with a living wage. The rent for her new apartment was paid before she even graduated and, before she knew it, she'd moved in.

This new routine of taking care of herself would get some getting used to and, during the period before her graduation, she'd often forget simple things like having dinner. It was this kind of freedom that was so hard fought for others but still felt strange to her. With nobody watching, she could do what she wanted, and nobody would chastise her for it. It was no surprise that she did pretty much whatever she wanted -- staying up late, eating bad food, and shirking off on her training.

Then came the graduation... The homeroom teacher made sure to drill into their heads the procedures for the ceremony. Stand up straight! Look at lady Kaguya-sama! Hold your head high, even if it rains! Do not put on the headband before you're allowed to! Then they went over the positions they'd be standing in at least a dozen times, with Sadako being stood between a random kid and Kasumi. Someone she'd barely known, outside of seeing him at the academy once or twice -- well, closer to 'every day,' but it felt like it was only once or twice. Unlike Sadako, who tried desperately to talk to people and become friends with them, only to retreat after making herself paranoid with the idea that her 'friends' didn't like her, Kasumi simply seemed to accept that he didn't belong and stayed on his own. That was her impression -- and damn, it was so cool. Secretly she wished she could be like him, someone who doesn't care and just does whatever he felt like.

When Yogensha appeared, Sadako swallowed some of her saliva, the presence of the leader suddenly seeming like a much bigger deal than she'd initially thought. Sure, she was not one of the five great kage but... surely, she was just as powerful. Right? Nobody really seemed to know, and those who did kept their mouths shut, mumbling something about 'great power' and 'awesome technique.' To Sadako, that seemed like things someone would say when they were just trying to shrug off a question, but still.. for them to say something like that, she must've been pretty powerful.

Yogensha's words seemed inspiring but took a rather drastic turn as she instilled in them the supposed wisdom that decisions they took, and mistakes they made, would now not impact their grade, but their life, or lack thereof. That was a prospect Sadako had often thought about but, in all honesty, it had never felt as serious as it did now. Never the less, Yogensha was right. She's.. right. Being a shinobi is about sacrifice. I'll sacrifice myself so the innocent don't have to! she thought to herself, her eyes lighting up temporarily as she was swooped up in an idealistic and perhaps slightly naïve way of thinking. But, for someone who had sought an identity for so long, who had sought for acceptance and to be acknowledged.. wasn't that the single goal worth striving for? To serve a greater goal to protect others, no matter the cost? Sacrifice?

While she was sunk in thought, the shinobi handing out headbands stepped by. Without realizing it, Sadako had forgotten to raise her hand for him to place the headband into, so with a strong and firm grip he reached forward, giving her a stern 'hmph' as he did so, grabbing her hand and pulling it forward. He pushed the headband into her hand, and only then did Sadako realize what happened. She felt like apologizing, but they'd been told specifically not to talk, so she just bowed her head ever so slightly.

The weight.. she thought, slowly moving the headband up and down, .. so incredible. Yogensha had continued, and finally gave them the order to put on the headband. And although there was nobody there to watch her, no clan members or other family, she felt a sense of pride surge through her. I'm a genin now, a real shinobi, she whispered to herself in her mind, her hands raising up and tying the headband behind her head. How cool!

With the teams being made known, she was slightly happy about the team composition -- that lasted about two seconds, before it dawned on her. Oh no, she thought, .. I'm in the team with Kasumi and Asashio! They're both so cool -- what if they think I'm some loser! I.. I bet I was placed on this team out of pity! As nobody around her could know what she was thinking, it just looked like she was having a slight existential crisis, which was strange given the otherwise joyous occasion.

Well, in truth, she was partially right -- Asashio and Kasumi both shared a trait, namely that they didn't seem to give a shit what anyone else thought and were both equally powerful in their own right. Besides that, whether it was true or not, they appeared like they had a certain degree of self-confidence, something that Sadako found incredibly cool. And, well, she was kind of the opposite of that.




The morning after the ceremony, Sadako rolled over, prepared to grab another four hours of sleep now that she didn't have some old-head instructor kicking her out of bed at 8AM sharp. But, rather than grabbing another four hours of sleep, she grabbed a mysterious scroll that had been placed there by a mysterious person. It took her a few seconds to open her eyes, desperately trying to ignore whatever was in bed with her, but when it started poking her in the face whenever she moved and prevented her from getting comfortable, she was kind of forced to deal with it.

When she did open her eyes, she'd have jumped backwards at least five meters, but because there was a wall on the other side of her bed, she backed up into the wall, bonking her head against it violently, letting out a yelp of pain. “Aiaiaiai...” she groaned, grabbing the back of her head. Who even placed that scroll there without her noticing? Who even got in like that! Was it a bomb?! Maybe when she opened it, a fire jutsu would come out and blow her up! Her mind went paranoid almost immediately, before she calmed herself. “Sadako!” she chastised herself, “you're a genin now! Act like a soldier!” And so, in true trooper spirit, she carefully lifted the scroll and slowly, very very slowly, opened the scroll. No fire jutsu came out, nothing happened, it was just a very sweetly worded note.

“My sweet genin...” she proclaimed to herself, reading the entire note out loud to herself while she sat up straight, crossing her legs. She gently rubbed her hurt head with one hand while holding the note with the other, and when she was done reading it, she stared at it in slight disbelief.

“Sensei...” she slowly said out loud, “why are you bothering us with this a week before the appointment... Why are you sneaking into our houses to scare us like that... Why don't you just come to our houses and knock on the door...” All of these things would've been better said when she actually, you know, visited her sensei, but it seemed she was sleep-deprived and once she'd tossed the scroll away into a corner, she let herself fall back into bed, pulling the sheets over her head and continuing her rest.




And because she'd thrown the scroll away, she'd completely forgotten about the meeting until she was already supposed to have left. Jumping out of bed, she grabbed whatever clothes were nearby and rushed into the bathroom, pulling her top over her head while furiously looking through her bathroom equipment looking for a toothbrush. “GOT IT!” she proclaimed, holding up a pink toothbrush before squirting at least half a tube onto the toothbrush, her other hand occupied with pulling on her pants. While furiously brushing her teeth, she used her other hand to comb her hair, and then finally jumped out of the bathroom, pulling on her sandals, and almost breaking the door open with sheer force as she rushed outside. Refusing to use the stairs in such a hurry, she jumped over the balcony rail and landed on her feet in the muddy patch of dirt in front of the appartments, splashing up mud on her just recently cleaned sandals. “Yatta! Let's go!” she yelled to herself, before taking off in a sprint, almost running over a nearby civilian.

She arrived about ten minutes after Kasumi had -- but she was only at the academy grounds at that point. She didn't realize it yet, but she was pretty much guaranteed to be late, and to make matters worse, she'd not managed to avoid the rain. As the skies opened up and began unleashing their tears, Kasumi looked around the grounds for her team. They already left, didn't they? she told herself, slightly disappointed with herself. But, out of the corner of her eyes, she saw some of the academy students playing around with what appeared to be a tiny, tiny orange crane bird -- origami, not live. “Wait a minute...” she said, rushing over to the kids.

“Hey-hey! Did you guys see some other birds like that?” she asked them, but the kids all shook their head.

“No, but we did see some older kid walking around looking at the ground, as if he was following a trail! He went that way!” they all said in unison, pointing at a street.

“Thank youuuuuuu!” she yelled, already running off. Koko-sensei might've hidden the origami birds well to protect them against the rain, but even the hidden birds couldn't withstand ten minutes of downpour and so, Sadako basically had to trail around, looking for any hints as to where her team had gone. These would be either droopy half-unfurled orange papers or Kasumi's footprints. After a while of trailing around she was honestly about to give up, her trailing around only taking her past the BBQ place her team was sitting at a few times -- they must've watched her walk by at least twice, if not more. She'd been clearly to engrossed by looking for random footprints to look up, otherwise she would've easily spotted her team through the window, and instead, she only wasted about ten minutes of running through the rain before looking up and seeing them. But, when she finally did, she sheepishly waved at them through the window before going inside, her hair clinging to her face. This problem she amended easily by shaking her head a few times before dragging her hand through her hair.

Approaching the table her team was sitting at, she waved again, this time managing to utter out some form of greeting. “Hey-yo! Sorry for being late, sensei, I uhhh.. the rain, you see?” she said, offering some form of apology in the process, before placing herself down in the bench, taking up whatever space was left. Jeez, they probably already think I'm a loser.. she thought, glancing at Asashio and Kasumi, and though most genin would likely become friendly rivals with their teammates, Sadako would probably take more to them as her rival-idol.

After listening to Koko-sensei ramble on for a few seconds, she tossed a scroll, which Asashio promptly took a hold of, opening it. Sadako leaned in, perhaps slightly too close, leaning against Asashio's shoulder slightly with her own. “Ohh, cool. I've never been to an 'onsen.' Asashio-chan, have you been?” she asked, trying to make some sort of conversation but, in the process, likely sounding somewhat over-eager to become friends. Right, Kasumi and Asashio were both super-cool in her eyes, but they also both seemed like people who... didn't really care that much about making friends. Seems like Sadako had forgotten about that.

“O-oh, I'm Sakamachi Sadako, by the way. I hope we'll make a good team!” she then hurriedly continued, realizing she hadn't even introduced herself. While her introduction seemed over-eager once again, her smile seemed genuine, as she quite literally beamed at both Kasumi and Asashio. Although she'd introduced herself, Kasumi seemed more interested in interrogating their new sensei, and while she didn't really understand why he asked his specific question, Sadako did turn to Koko-sensei to hear her answer -- if she had one. If she'd take too long to answer, however, Sadako would simply laugh sheepishly, clearly not a genuine laugh, before asking her own question. “K-Kasumi is just joking, Iyokan-sensei. M-my question is... uhh.. n-nevermind!” She interrupted herself, smiling slightly as if there was nothing going on, but really, there were plenty of questions racing through her head.

My question is... can we do this? Are we good enough? Am I good enough?

Hidden 9 mos ago Post by McHaggis
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McHaggis Spectrumized

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TIME OF DAY ▸ Morning
LOCATION ▸ Uragiri Clan Compound
INTERACTION ▸ Uragiri-sensei @Odin, Sakamoto Isami @Shizuochan, Kajiya Tatsuya @Raijinslayer
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“Thanks for watching them on such short notice, Auntie,” Tsubasa said in a low voice, barely perceptible to the terrible twins playing behind the front counter of the shop. It was closed to the public, it being six o'clock in the morning and all, but Shinjō Clan––at least those she was in contact with––tended to rise with the sun. Tsubasa was no exception, though it was her dreams of late that gave her pause: nightmares of a cloudy-skied graduation that she had attended, in front of the kage, but with a different ending, one in which she was barred from ever becoming a ninja and ended up working as a janitor in The Academy.

“I wasn't sure when I'd actually start, you know? And I only just got the message...”

Tsubasa's great-aunt, a large woman who was almost as wide as she was tall, looked fondly towards the Tsubasa's siblings, who were currently having a contest for who could blow the biggest snot bubbles. “Oh, it's no trouble at all. I've been watching you three for Tatsuko for years. Taking one out of the equation is going to make things even easier. Well––” Having spoken too soon, she descended upon Toriko's messy face with an embroidered handkerchief, breaking up the great gross-out battle. “In theory.”

“I wasn't that bad, was I?”

Auntie let out a sceptical 'hmm' and eyed her up and down. “I'm sure all the scratches on my hardwood floors are just wear-and-tear.” Tsubasa flushed red. It wasn't fair to bring that up! Her mother had given her kunai to practice with a few months before she was due to enter the Academy, and in absence of any proper instruction, she had used them for 'short, close-range practice' –– indoors. “And my poor flowerbeds! They were never the same after, what was it, espionage training...”

Before Tsubasa had a chance to defend against the very legitimate call out, the older woman interrupted herself. “You look so like your mother like that,” she observed. Tsubasa froze in place, a natural instinct when scrutinized by family members. It was telling that she couldn't decipher whether the comparison was intended to be good or bad.

“Uh. Cool,” Tsubasa said articulately.

Auntie's perfectly painted lips turned into a grin, and she ruffled Tsubasa's hair, leaving it full of static and sticking out at odd angles. The genin promptly readjusted her hitai-ate, unused to the physical and metaphorical weight of it on her head, but definitely attached to its presence already, given that she had slept with it on her pillow for most of the last week. “Well, off you go. You don't want to be late to the meeting with your team, do you? That would be rude.”

Hai, Auntie. Wish me luck.

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Whether it was leaning against the wall in front of Isami's house, waiting for him to answer the door, or heading towards Tatsuya's family forge with one introduction under her belt, meeting her new teammates was daunting. While standing at graduation (even before then, if she was being honest) and through the week's break before beginning her duties, Tsubasa had gone over her lines again and again, perfecting what she might say to the people she would be doing everything with for the next few years of her life.

Though she bowed more stiffly than in her predictions, and couldn't stop the occasional chuckle that was an instinctive reaction to not knowing what to say, she muddled her way through much like she imagined a real adult.

"Uh. Hi. It's nice to get a chance to talk, even though it's weird we haven't before," she ended up saying, as smoothly as anyone could hope an introduction might go. "Wanna come hunt down this place we're meant to meet up with Uragiri-sensei at?"

And so they did, working as a team for the first time. After a quick discussion of who on earth they could ask to find out where the vague meeting place might be, which led to Tatsuya's sensible suggestion of asking his clan or even the civilians, they set off (as a team) and found the right clues to lead them straight to their sensei (as a team).

The only thing that worried her was the quiet. Tsubasa couldn't quite find the right words to start conversations on her own, so she relied on the others, though the blacksmith seemed to be in the same boat. Silences were companionable rather than tense, at the very least, and allowed Tsubasa to collect her thoughts on her eclectic team, who were far flashier than her drab, mail-order ninja appearance. Taller, too, in the case of Isami, which was a surprise.

An unwelcome one.

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The anonymous note left in her apartment that morning had seen better days, crumpled and balled up several times over in Tsubasa's anxious grip until 'Uragiri Koi Pond, 9.15' was nigh-unreadable. She wasn't sure why she hadn't thrown it away yet, given that they had already discovered the location through fieldwork (read: asking around the neighborhood) and the process of elimination. Nevertheless, she decided to shove it into one of the deeper pockets on her shorts, one that wasn't overloaded with spare change or lined by forgotten strips of melted gum.

Maybe it would have some sentimental value, some years down the line. She'd file it away in a box of memories. Such a box didn't exist yet, but there was no time like the present to collect useless junk that may well turn into treasure. Though, for all she knew, she might end up hating her jōnin-sensei, in which case there was always the dartboard in her bedroom she could pin it to.

But here it was, the moment of truth. Outwardly, Tsubasa schooled her expression into one of stoicism, though nobody had ever told her that a complete lack of blinking was as much of a tell as too much blinking. Inside Tsubasa was dying. This was worse, far worse, than her first job interview had been. Her palms were much sweatier – she surreptitiously wiped them on her shorts as she and her teammates approached the dark-haired figure on the edge of the koi pond.

The jōnin didn't look much older than them, though Tsubasa did not look too closely at the face hidden by the long mass of hair. Instead, she shot Isami and Tatsuya a nervous glance coupled with something that resembled a reassuring smile: a combination of 'We're going to be fine!' and 'Scratch that, this is weird!' The latter was mostly because of his interaction with the fish in the pond. She could understand petting dogs and cats and birds and so on, koi not so much. Regardless, she had also yet to meet a good shinobi who was not eccentric. It did spark hope in her that they would learn something new and unique, some secret techniques or tactics that the other teams might not be privy to. This is the sensei I've got, she said to herself. He's the best one for the job. This team is going to be great.

And then, of course, he addressed her by mangling her name, seemingly deliberately. Tsubasa bit down on her tongue, more of a cringe than to stop herself from correcting him, and listened to the surprise question. A pop quiz? A test? She scrambled for a response.

“I don't think fate is the reason I was assigned here.” The genin paused for a few quiet moments, chewing over the rest of her answer until she was happy with it. Philosophy questions like these made her head spin –– it was something for old men with white beards and arthritic knees to discuss over a shogi board. Tsubasa could not see any use for it. Who had time to care about things like fate?

“What I mean is, someone chose to put me here, whether it was you or the teachers or Kaguya-sama,” she said with little eloquence but careful decisiveness, sticking only to facts she could be sure of. “Unless our names were picked out of a hat, which doesn't seem like a good way to make up a team, I don't think there's anything lucky or unlucky about it. It just is.”

She smoothed down the stiff fabric of her shorts, folding her fingers underneath the hem at the bottom, and hoped that she hadn't failed the strange personality test as she listened to the others answering their given questions. Perhaps it was bias from being picked to go first by some cruel twist of fate (or, to avoid hypocrisy, Uragiri-sensei's unfortunate decision), but the others seemed to have an easier go of it. Kind of. Tsubasa wished she had been given one of those questions instead, and morosely considered the merits of drowning herself in the koi pond in between repetitive thoughts of 'Why did I say that?'

Tsubasa made no move for the scroll, but once it had been unfurled and she had scanned it over the others' shoulders, she did have a question. “When do we leave, sensei?"

As soon as possible, she hoped.


Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Raijinslayer
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Raijinslayer .

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Location: Uragiri Clan Compound [Koi Breeding Pond] | Time: 9AM [9:12]
Interaction: Team 7 Uragiri Sakana -- @Odin Sakamoto Isami -- @Shizuochan, Shinjo Tsubasa -- @McHaggis,


I'm finally here.

As the kage anointed the newly minted Genin with the rains of Amegakure, Tatsuya's amber eyes turned skyward, a small smile tugging at his face as he let himself feel a sliver of accomplishment while tying his headband. The weight on his forehead was unfamiliar and strange, but far from unwelcome and something he'd grow to hardly notice as he grew into his own. Kaguya-dono's final words were faint and a little strange, but the meaning of them was clear. The road ahead was full of hardships that would serve as a crucible for everyone here today, and these challenges would no doubt change them down to their core.

For better or for worse.

His ponderings of the Amekage's words were cut short as a man suddenly called them all to attention. The kage's words were now strict and demanding, as was to be expected of a commander speaking to her soldiers. As she belted out the names of fellow classmates, Tatsuya couldn't help but wonder how some of these combinations of personalities would mix. While not really a fan of interacting with people, the Kajiya boi did make a habit of studying them from time to time. Sometimes for inspiration when stuck in a creative rut and other times for his own amusement when people clashed with one another.

His ears perked slightly at the mention of a Shiru, wondering what they'd be like considering the . . . eccentric nature of their secretive clan. In the few times his father had brought him along to observe the (rather boring) business discussions about sealing paper deliveries and what not, he'd only ever seen a glimpse or two of any kids his age in the clan. While not really broken up about not having to be forced to play with others at the time, it never ceased to strike him as odd. What could the Shiru possibly be doing with their children that required so much secrecy?

Tatsuya let the thoughts stew for a moment more, but ultimately reached no answer that could really satisfy him and bin that train of thought in favor of listening to the kage once more. Soon enough, he heard his own name called amongst a group of others that sparked only a passing familiarity in his mind. Isami only really stood out because he was even taller than Tatsuya and, more importantly, he was the heir of the Sakamoto clan. Just the thought of getting a closer look at even one of their ancestral arms made the Kajiya feel restless with anticipation. What ideas could he glean from such storied artifacts?

As for the other one, Tsubasa, Tatsuya couldn't really recall anything about them aside that they practiced taijutsu and had always seemed to be in a rush to be elsewhere after they got out of the Academy. They seemed like a nice enough guy, however, so there shouldn't be too many problems between them. A thought did occur to him as he thought about the other boy's friendliness.

I wonder, did they ever try talking to me before? I probably blew them off if they did so . . . hope they aren't one to carry a grudge. That'd be really irritating to deal with at the start of my ninja career.

Tatsuya was drawing a complete blank about their sensei, which mean that they were either A)they were no one special, B)they were a newbie sensei or C) both. Tatsuya wasn't sure which one he thought to be the most likely, in the end deciding he'd make his judgment when he met the guy rather than go in with an assumption already built into his mind. He glanced towards the area where the Jonin sensei arranged, wondering who in the crowd was going to be his teacher for the next few years.





Getting to Tatsuya would be a bit more of a process than either of his two comrades to be had likely expected. After being led to the forge where Tatsuya was currently helping out with a Furaribi shipment, his father Hibiki would engage them in some light conversation in a waiting room locate near the entrance to the forge that, while significantly cooler than the inside of the forge proper, would no doubt feel almost stifling to the Tsubasa and Isami, especially given how Ame was a place the usually required one wear a fair amount of layers to remain comfortable. Another Kajiya, who introduced herself as Tatsuya's aunt Saya, would go off to fetch the young heir, as any other attempts to gain his attention were unlikely to succeed while he was in the middle of a project.

Hibiki himself, dressed in the usual Kajiya smithing attire(with the addition of a light haori so as not to make the two teens feel awkward) proved to be a much more gentle and sociable man then most would expect if they'd interacted with any of the other Kajiya clan members, well known for being a group as loud and boisterous as they are honest and welcoming. He offered them some waters and discussed simple topics, wanting to get to know his son's teammates a bit, until the door to the waiting room suddenly burst open, with Saya dragging Tatsuya inside by the ear, much to the young heirs displeasure as he let loose a rather long chain of curses, talking about how he was almost finished with his work and how much the others needed him for those final finishing touches on the shipment.

Saya ignored all of his complaints, depositing the boy in front of his teammates with an irritated look on her face as if to say 'he's your problem now', before turning around and heading back into the forge. The doors would slam shut behind her. Hibiki would take this moment to excuse himself, giving his son a nod of encouragement before heading outside, mentioning something about having clan business to take care of and leaving the 4 teenagers to themselves.

Tatsuya, still covered in soot from the forge, looked the two over with a passive glance as Tsubasa spoke up, his hands fiddling with his imprint hammer as he thought the offer over.

"Sure. 3 heads are better than one and all that." Tatsuya cracked his neck a little to sort out the stiffness in his spine from the last 2 hours spent going over and polishing the Furaribi's special weapon shipment. "Got any ideas?"





As the team made their way to Uragiri pond, Tatsuya couldn't help feeling both pleased and irritated by the events of the past week. While he was glad that they had managed to figure out the meeting place, and that his two teammates seemed at least tolerable, but the entire ordeal of asking around the village for the information had been a headache. He'd gotten the gist of the exercise, of course, but that didn't mean it didn't still piss him off a bit for having to spend so much time talking to people. Pulling useful information out of any of the villagers he'd talked to had been the most mentally exhausting thing he'd ever done, and often left him needing to sit down with his design book in order to cool off before he punched another villager in the face.

Ugh, I'm feeling tired just thinking about it. By kami, I hope our sensei isn't the chatterbox type. I don't think I'll be able to survive if they are.

As he and the others arrived at the meeting place, the Kajiya heir's eyes narrowed as he looked at the guy who had forced him to participate in that week of hellish interactions. He . . . wasn't really much to look at, honestly. Looking not that much older than those he was assigned to teach, the Jonin only stand out tait to Tatsuya was that he looked kinda creepy and shady. Then again, from a clan whose name meant 'betrayal', that was probably to be expected. All in all, Tatsuya wasn't that impressed with the man yet, was even a little disappointed that they didn't get someone at least a little more. . . well, more than this.

Tatsuya's lack of enthusiasm probably showed on his face as he walked up to the water's edge himself, curious to see if what the man was looking at was more interesting then the man himself. Amber eyes followed the circling motions of the koi fish in the pond, finding their behavior rather relaxing, all most to the point of being hypnotic. He paid the bare minimum attention to what was being said for the most part until he heard the young jonin call out a rather irritating mutation of his name. If he was trying to get the boy's attention, he had succeeded.

The irritated look in Tatsuya's eyes gave way to deep thought, however, as he thought over Sakana's question. Looking the man over a few times in contemplation, the apprentice smith would scratch at his chin a little before he came up with an answer he liked.

"I'd make you two, actually. Matched set of Tanto or maybe some kind of short sword. Small blades, good at slashing and stabbing, but also rather plain. Unassuming, like you are Senpai. Maybe with a surprise or two hidden beneath the surface. Maybe just good, reliable blades. Guess that'd be up to you and the impression you make on me. Tatsuya finished his answer with a shrug, dipping his own hand into the water as well as he seemed to be trying to get the fish to come his way, to seemingly no avail.

Unfortunately for him, that also meant that he didn't see the mission scroll that Sakana tossed their way until it hit him in the head, causing him to cry out more in surprise than any real pain from the impact. However, due to the impact, the scroll was looking like it was about to fall into the pond. In a rare burst of motion, Tatsuya surged forward to smack the scroll behind him, hitting it with enough force to ensure it landed on the ground behind him. Tatsuya, unfortunately, lacked the balance required to avoid falling into the water in its place, having overextended himself in his dive to save it.

It was probably the most embarrassing moment he'd ever had to deal with, and part of him wanted to drown then resurface to the looks he was sure to receive from those present. He chose life in the end, however, surfacing after a moment or two, sputtering, coughing out stale fish water, and looking rather red in the face.

Rather than try to excuse his lack of attention, he chose instead to not even acknowledge the incident, waiting for someone to open the scroll before he read the details of the mission. His face and mind quickly cleared as he did so, Sakana's explanation being unneeded as he quickly grasped the consequences of Kusa's sudden embargo and radio silence meant for him and his clan personally. He'd been wondering why his father had been looking so anxious as of late but had put it down to the usual political anxieties that often plagued him from time to time. When Sakana opened the floor for questions, Tatsuya simply shook his head, any questions he likely had been ones that he doubted the young jonin had the ability to answer.

Why would Kusa suddenly close itself off like this? I sit only doing it to Ame, or are other nations also being turned away as well? Did something happen to put them on edge? These questions and others chased each other like huntings dogs in his brain, going round and round in circles but never reaching a satisfying set of conclusions.

Whatever the reason, Tatsuya decided with a rather grim-look on his face, his father's words on the instability of the shinobi world coming to the fore. Something big is either about to happen or already happening. Hmph. . . what a time to start my ninja career. A slight shiver ran through him at the thought of what was to come, though he could tell if it was fear, apprehension, or just plain old excitement. Honestly, it was probably some combination of all three.
Hidden 9 mos ago 9 mos ago Post by Terminal
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Terminal Rancorous Narrative Proxy

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Team 3


Location: Amegakure Genin Academy; Graduation Ceremony | Time: 9:15 A.M.
Interactions: Team Miyako | Furaribi Akane | Shiru Metsumi



You puny ant, I knew you could stick it to these softies!” Subaru Furaribi glowered, wait no, beamed from ear to ear rather scarily down at his son. His hair was tightly kept in ponytail, though a few rebellious strands kept bouncing into his vision, annoying the man visibly as he stated down at Akane with glossy eyes. The towering Furaribi dropped a heavy hand upon his son’s head releasing a loud reverberated thud throughout the nearby location, an echo.

Akane maintained his indifferent expression he typically had towards his father, squinted eyes to match the nicks and burns along his face. The boy’s eyes veered to Ichika whom was also thankfully there at the graduation, only thankfully because she worked at this day and hour, and that’s typically more important the to clan than some ceremony. “Subaru, should we reward him? He’s been working hard. He hasn’t broken any bones in the past few months.” The frail woman seemed to quietly mention this, as if not to arise suspicion in her son.

Akane remained silent, he expected his father to continue with hi- “Yes! Woman, what kind of father do you take me for?” Subaru had no awareness or volume control, announcing charismatically was the usual but Akane guessed that this was his father’s way of showing excitement that didn’t seem, weak.

“Of course, dear, express to him what you have in mind.” Ichika quietly goaded Subaru, a bemused smile painted across her tired face. She stood comfortably close to the red-haired giant of a man, like a mouse next to an elephant. Subaru cleared his throat and removed his large right hand from Akane’s head returning it to the hoist of his belt. His chest is puffed out as he withdrew a large intake of oxygen, and then releasing it in a low grumble. His face became stern, the features of his face tightening with his expression. “As soon as we go home, boy. I’ll be giving you my share of ashes.. and you know big of a deal that is.

Akane widened his eyes, golden irises aimed solid on Subaru’s face with a mixture of confusion and excitement. “Really, why?” He asked as he paced closer to his mother, hands sinking into each pocket and shifting his weight in preparation for his father’s words. The towering Furaribi instead flashed his teeth at his son, crossing his arms at his chest and snapping an eye shut to wink at him. “Can’t have you being shown up by two girls can we? Make the satchel last and I’m sure your sensei will fear you yet, boy! Fires below, I’m excited for you! Once you get home we are sparring!

Over the hubbub of the crowd of muttering Genin and clansmen, the two heard a high, chiming voice calling out in their direction, rapidly growing in intensity and proximity.

"Akaaaaaaaane~!" Out from the crowd wriggled a familiar, slender, dark-haired figure wearing a sleek, silky-black kimono, clutching an opened, lilac parasol in one hand to ward off the rain. Shiru Metsumi, the eldest daughter of the Shiru clan's main family, had been a close friend of Akane's since early childhood - when Subaru had unexpectedly encouraged him to stick close to her. She had never attended the Genin academy, as the reclusive and solitary Shiru clan preferred to homeschool all of their Shinobi, and she had only come to the academy in order to pass the Genin exam and of course to attend the graduation ceremony - and so many of the other Genin surrounding them were giving her confused, unfamiliar looks as she shoved and squirmed her way past all of them.

Akane and Subaru quickly veered their sights to the girl in a synchronization almost supernatural. Akane seemed bothered by the Shiru girl’s outburst, though Subaru on the other hand welcomes the girls bombastic timing. “Ahhh! The little Shiru girl, not surprising that you graduated alongside my little shit of a son.” The Furaribi Giant barked, a sinister smirk aimed down towards the much smaller girl. “How’s your parents, I haven’t spoken to them in a few days?” His words were friendly, oddly lacking his typical hostility as he leaned down towards the girl, reaching his hand into his red facial hair to scratch his chin in genuine curiosity.

"They're fine! They're here too, mother was a bit - oh, here, hold this please Ojii-san!" She thrust the opened parasol into Subaru's face for him to hold abruptly before then turning to Akane and engulfing him in her arms in a gleeful hug. "Did you hear the Amekage Akane?!?" She said excited, pulling back while still clutching his shoulders with her hands, eyes beaming brightly at him. "We're on the same team! What were the chances of that? I was really afraid we would never see each other again!"

The young Furaribi’s eyes rolled, exhuming a large sigh as the girl taller than he, spouted her high energy words at the rather exhausted boy. “The odds were stacked against us. We got a member of my mother’s clan in our midst too. Stacked against us. Pa’s rather happy about it though, it seems.” Akane slowly peeked up towards his father, whom was chuckling down at the girl and shaking a conscious head. “You runts, the sooner you start working together the faster you’ll be helping out the village. Though I know someone doesn’t really care about that, I know you will Little Shiru.” Subaru turned serious for a moment, a cheerful smile slimming down to a flattened expression with a fixation turning towards Metsumi’s family. He kept himself in character however, quickly looking down and firmly grasping the parasol like a twig. “You two discuss what you must, me and Ichika will be speaking with the Kizan fellow in your class. His mother asked us to give him some lessons.” He offered the two a friendly nodded, winking once again to his son before pacing off with a slower Ichika behind him.

Metsumi, who had been listening attentively to Subaru - if with veiled politeness - rapidly turned back to Akane and confirmed his darkest fears. "You said our other teammate was from Ichika's clan? That's amazing! The Yuganori make the very best dresses! Maybe we can get free clothes from them!" She was practically jumping up and down with excitement as she began to pull Akane by the neck of his shirt towards the academy gateway through the crowd of bemused onlookers. However, she then abruptly stopped in place with a faintly confused expression as she looked all around them, before realization struck her face.

"Wait a minute. Your father stole my parasol!" She exclaimed, turning dramatically and pointing a finger at Akane, having it alight scant centimeters away from his nose - giving him a perfect view of the unfathomably complex lines and sigils of the intricate seal borne upon her palm. The lines almost seemed to squirm and writhe, and almost consciously hurt to look at. "Do you know what this means?!?" She declared, the question clearly both exigent yet rhetorical in nature. It no longer mattered how Akane actually answered, Metsumi already had some notion in her head and was just going to pretend that was what he had said after the fact.

”What does it mean, Metsu?” Akane unapologetically asked, eyes squinting with visible agitation as he had a finger waggled in his face. He had seen the seal marks on her hands before, they were curious, but today was a long day and he was already soaked from the rain. A trait that he had inherited from his father was a short temper, and god forbid this girl eat away at Akane’s shortened fuse even more. Or she would feel his wrath once again. He could feel the knot in his stomach welling up once again, he clenched his fist and swished his tongue around within his mouth.

"It means that in addition to going out to celebrate us being on the same team, we also need to go shopping so I can get a new umbrella!" Metsumi squealed, turning again and continuing to drag him back towards the gate. "Oh, this is going to be great! We should splurge on something nice, maybe ice cream and dim sum, perhaps some shrimp, restock on explosive tags, maybe get some obi in matching colors-oh! I can have my headband sewn into a sash-" She chattered on.

“Or we can just get the dim sum. And then go home and relax before our genin careers take effect entirely.” Akane retorted almost aggressively, taking a few steps back and lifting his right hand adjust the Amegakure band upon his arm, fiddling with the new accessory annoyed with it at the moment. “Do you know anything about our sensei, I’ve ever even heard of the person? I can’t even recall her name, probably some nobody.” He sneered with a flash of pristine whitened teeth, aggressive sights staring back towards Metsumi for a moment. He was a young wolf who had just joined a new pack, and one of the she-wolves was already totting him around like an accessory.

Metsumi stopped in her tracks again to pause, her gaze becoming faintly distant for a moment. "The Amekage said our sensei was Kazami Miyako, and that we were team three!" She declared after a moment. "I have also never seen or heard of her before! But I bet my parents would know! They know everyone, even if it's only because they see a lot of the reports the Amekage keeps on everyone! Want to go ask them?" It was one of the few times Metsumi had actually bothered to ask whether Akane wanted to do something, and as was always the case, it pertained to speaking or interacting with her parents. Akane was not sure what the issue there was; he had been around them with Metsumi plenty of times and them seemed alright, as far as parents went. They did not even beat her at all and they clearly doted on her terribly, so what was even the problem?

”Or we can just meet her in person ourselves and save the surprise for ourselves? But if you want to ask your parents, you go right ahead.” Akane clicked his tongue, glancing back towards his own folks before stopping his march abruptly and spinning on his heels. “Better yet, why not just find out beforehand for ourselves. Let’s spy on her, or you could dig up some info from your family archives.” Akane showed genuine excitement in his words, his steps quickly accelerating towards Metsumi as he made a stance at her left. “And then we can come to her with information and blow her mind, and then we are on top.”

"Asura and Indra, yes!" Metsumi's quivering voice redoubled upon itself. "Forget the dim sum, let's go out and just get everything we'll be needing to discover everything there is to know about her..."




Akane and Metsumi then spent the better part of the week up until the arrival of their sensei's messenger birds, canvasing the entirety of Amegakure trying to unveil the hidden details of what, to them, appeared to be their Sensei's extraordinarily boring and uninteresting life as revealed by examining copies of her records obtained through connection of Metsumi's parents to the Secure Archives Library. The extent of their adventures in this short breadth of time do not bear repeating in great detail, with nearly everyone involved other than the two themselves bearing immense regret and shame over what transpired. Not exhaustively inclusive of this series of events were several fist-fights with eight-year old children, the attempted ritual sacrifice of a silver-furred cat, blackmailing a night-club owner, burning down a haunted outhouse, the kidnapping of a pet rock, and a staged assassination attempt by way of lavishly undercooked pork laced with laxatives and anabolic steroids.

The conclusion of the two Genin upon the closure of these affairs was either that their sensei was the single most skilled, discrete, and subtle Kunoichi to have ever lived, exceeding even S-Ranked Missing Nin in sheer ability as far as deception andconcealment went, or else she was the single least interesting Jōnin in Amegakure's employ.

Having returned home in disappointment, Metsumi had returned to her private rooms on the fifth day of the week. She slept, woke up grogily the next morning bound hand-and-foot, in a completely different room with no exits, and blearily sleep-worked her way through the exceedingly clever Fūinjutsu trap fire-drill scenario that the clan's shinobi were regularly put through as children.

Each scenario was devised from scratch by the family's group of elders in accordance with their evaluation of a student or Genin's skill - but, given the expertise and specialization of the Shiru clan, most of the scenarios they devised would haveconfounded and resulted in severe embarrassment of most A-Rank Shinobi. The various Fūinjutsu-themed traps and exercises were designed in order to test familiarty with sealing theory and technique as opposed to any kind of physical obstacle or trap that could be overcome with strength or chakra. The punishment Genjutsu triggered by failure would have left most of the village Shinobi panicking from the perception that they had been covered head to toe in permnanetly adhered snails.

Today's exercise was an exploration on manipulating, bending, and reworking the function of an existing seal without breaking it. Predicated upon simple principles of overlapping seals and the infamous eight-trigram sealing method, Metsumi burnt a series of chakra mandalas upon a concentric labyrinth seal that had been physically engraved upon a sheet of tempered steel, imbalancing rings of the overall seal's construction without disrupting its function, while simultaneously balancing the flow of chakra in a new manner. Since the original seal was engraved in solid metal the original structure could not be altered in any way unless she had access to tools other than a nightgown and two lengths of braided wire cord, and a single mistake would cause the seal to destabilize and release the punishment Genjutsu stored within it. After completing the final circuit in the labyrinthe Metsumi saw that the final structure contained an odd number of sequences, but required an even number to unlock. The practical solution would have been to physically alter the original seal or else to utilize a method requiring more chakra than she actually had at the moment, she she instead cheated her way past the quandry by utilizing the simple principle that two odds make an even, running the flow of chakra through the palm-seal on her right hand. The sheet of metal slid sideways into the wall, permitting her to pass.

The exercise, which would have driven most Jōnin to despair, involved principles that were so rote and ingrained in Metsumi that she was still not even halfway awake by the time she stumbled out of the concealed room's confines and fought her way through the cluster of small children from the branch families arguing and fighting with each other in the hallway as they started milling out of their own concealed rooms in turn.

Settling down on a long bench in the Shiru clan's communal family commonroom to await for breakfast to be served, still blearily blinking sleep from her eyes in the midst of chattering children and other older clan-members, Metsumi was broken out of her stupor when a clan footman rushed to immediately serve her with a glass of near-freezing chilled orange juice accompanied with steaming-hot catfish tempura with warm soy, and what appeared to be a pickled plum on the side for some strange reason, all served on a carved wooden cutting-board. Accompanying the promptly delivered breakfast was a note. The absence of any kind of envelope and needlessly complex wax seal complete with Fūinjutsu trap immediately signaled that the note was not from her parents or anybody else in the clan. Seeing the time written in the message, she then chokingly forced her way through the sumptuous meal (althogh she snubbed the inexplicably presented plum, letting one of her smaller siblings from a branch family claim it instead) and, now fully awakened, ran to her private rooms to get dressed. She threw on her training shorts and, remembering that the note had specified there would be a show and now knowing more about the Kazami clan now after a week's worth of shamelessly awful espionage than she had ever wanted to know, she then also threw on a long black haori with several internal pockets for discrete items and left her room running while still tying it up with a salmon-colored obi. Grabbing a brand new turquoise-colored parasol from near the entrance of the main family's house, she had more or less accounted for her appearance and rushed out through the raining streets of Amegakure towards the village outskirts where the Kazami theater was located.

Deciding that time was of the essence, she abandoned all pretense of propriety and used the Shunshin technique, hopping up and along the rooftops in order to reach her destination on time - though she stopped a block short of the theater and descended back down to ground-level, taking a moment to collect herself and unruffle her haori so as to appear she had been walking along calmly the whole way. She then strode out into the street, parasol in hand and opened despite the rain only misting lightly rather than being a full downpour, and approached the gated entrance of the theater where a figure that Metsumi instantly recognized as Kazami Miyako from her profile picture from her record, tapping her feet somewhat impatiently. Metsumi approached at the same time as Akane and Takashi, barely having time to register the third Genin's presence before they were all ushered inside.

The opening performance the Genin were forced to sit through was, to Metsumi, rather boorish and not to her taste - but, knowing full well that the performance itself might be part of some kind of test, she did her utmost to memorize every part of the scene as it played out, down to the colors and patternings of the fans used by Kazami and the other two women. The entire performance, she sat fully upright, seemingly wholly entranced by what was transpiring on-stage.

After the performance, the Genin were escorted to a library. Metsumi greeted both Akane and Takashi cheerfully in full the moment they were alone.

"I hope we can be friends Takashi-san! Almost everyone in my clan's main family has dresses made by the Yuganori, it's such a privilege to be able to work with somebody from such a distinctive clan of such shrewd and urbane vendors!" As compliments went, it was the very nicest way somebody could have complimented the Yuganori for being notorious crooks. Metsumi spent the remainder of the time until Miyako appeared once more to carefully inspect the surrounding library.

"As we eat, please - Metsumi. Start with yourself, let us get to know you. Tell me a few things about yourself... Hobbies, what do you wish to hone in on, your end goal..."
Kazami Miyako

"Well..." Metsumi began, thinking carefully. "I suppose calligraphy was a hobby of mine, sort of? Everyone in my clan practices regularly though so I am not sure if that qualifies! Uhm...hm. I suppose I would like to get to know more about other cultures and their history, maybe? Since as a Kunoichi I might have to infiltrate them, disguising myself and posing as a local! Maybe I should take up a common trade as a hobby I can develop into cover later. Maybe dancing or singing or playing an instrument - like in your clan's shows, Sensei!" She declared brightly. As she spoke, she seized upon a bowl of the pork broth and some of the provided meat chunks, and use a pair of chop-sticks to mix in several clumps of rice.
Hidden 9 mos ago 9 mos ago Post by Anders
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Anders #CharacterDeath2018

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Team 3


Location: Furaribi Estate - Team Meeting Location | Time: Morning - Evening
Interactions: Team Miyako @Terminal@MesuOkami




Hurry over here before I change my mind!” Subaru spewed, squatting before a dimly lit fireplace scooping ashes with his bare hands. He was barely clothed, tanned skin fully exposed other than his brown-white undergarments. His golden sights slowly turned to his son who sat close to his right, quiet and respectful as his father gathered the chakra-filled substance into a medium sized leather pouch. They remained red hot, fueled with the remnant energy of a life offered to the flames beneath them.

You don’t have to do this pops, I’m sure you’ll be in action before me.” Akane chimed in as his father sprinkled in the last few pinches of the gray powder and tossed it toward him. The boy reluctantly caught the pass, widening his vision and shaking his head in quiet submission. “Take it as you’re told, and make your family proud you ant.” Subaru barked before pressing his digits against the wood below to prop himself up and walk back to his room quietly.

The bird came shortly after bearing the message of when he would meet his sensei, Ichika was the receiver of the parcel. “Akane, you’ve got a few days to prepare before you meet your sensei. Would you like some help gathering your necessities befo-“ she would be cut off by an embarrassed son who snatched the paper from her grasp walking off as quickly as he appeared. “Nope I can handle it myself. And what I don’t get, I’m sure whoever this person is will help me gather what I need. Thank you though, I appreciate your thoughtfulness.” He retreated back to his room, a mixture of excitement and anxiety boiling in his blood.

The next day begun a week long venture or rather, the tale of Metsumi and Akane’s Investigation on Sensei. Or something like that. Metsumi was more of the researching type, Akane typically just found some dark crevice to wedge himself inside of to spy on people whom they decided it was worthy to gather information on the person of interest. The first few days were quite fruitful, not much juicy information on their sensei by Akane’s standard, but if he ever wished to hold some information on people for blackmail he had an excess of now. Though Metsumi did find a few things out, quelling some fears within Akane, making him a little more excited than before about meeting this person.

As the week came to its conclusion, he would find himself with a somewhat friend and a second or third cousin as teammates standing before the structure that was the location for the meeting they were called upon. Akane had never personally been to the location, but he took mental notes while being guided into the compound and kept his mouth shut.

To blossom into a proper functioning and earning ninja as I’m supposed to, and in the process earn some money for the family.” Akane responded with a dry hiss of words, he would however partake in the feast before him. His family had strict diets, and while they did eat a lot, this was an opportunity to try some food he hasn’t before. “Maybe distinguish myself from others than in the-“ His words were cut short with a swift chomp into a skewer of shrimp and vegetables. The fire-haired boy would visibly pause in joy immediately after, seeming to dwell on what he was experiencing before he finished his sentence. “-clan. Hey sensei, how old are you? You look a little young. And while that’s not a bad thing, I need someone who’s fully capable of pushing me so I can char my father down to crisp and bone in a few years.” Golden irises dinked down towards the hefty satchel of ash tied to his right hip, a small pout developing on Akane’s lips.

Akane didn’t seem to put much emotional weight into his words, glancing to his mates for clarification on if he had said something wrong or not. Akane has a bad habit of not articulating his words carefully, and people sometimes got offended, he wasn’t trying to be mean or start anything, more so he just wanted to get his message across as quickly as possible. There was an air of insecurity about him, his eyes averting the two nearby eating with him, lack of communication even with someone he was familiar with. And now two people whom he had little knowledge on were going to be spending time with him extensively, it was sort of justified, but that didn’t mean he had any say in the new chapter of his life that was going to begin.
Hidden 9 mos ago Post by Shizuochan
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Shizuochan

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Sakamoto Isami



Location: Uragiri Clan Compound [Koi Breeding Pond] | Time: 9AM [9:12]
Interaction: Team 7 Uragiri Sakana -- @Odin Kajiya Tatsuya -- @RaijinSlayer, Shinjo Tsubasa -- @McHaggis,


“Before you go…”

Suisen’s voice had reached for him, across the bleak and dreary of the dim hall, as it often did. Only today an anxiety tinted the feverish boredom, the drifting melancholy. For a brief moment, it made Isami forget to wonder, made him forget to think to himself: when is he going to stop? Will he ever stop? When those thoughts did indeed surface, Isami fought to suppress them, admonishing whatever part of him was brash enough, irresponsible enough to muster up such insolence.

He turned, ever the dutiful son, to face his father. The backdrop of the archaic hall, the black folds of Suisen’s haori blurred as Isami’s eyes honed in on his outstretched hand. It was quaking.

“The Chukabocho…” Father was pointing, Isami knew, pointing at the scrolls upon his person, one of which held the second of the family’s ancestral weapons. He was pointing, and yet each of his fingers remained outstretched, refusing to give way, to fold, to obey. “The grip is…”

Suisen laughed, tone like bitter-melon, at the juxtaposition of it. ‘The grip’, his own trembling hand. His was the blackest humor, Isami knew, and it helped him be reminded of his plight everywhere he looked. Isami interrupted, unwilling to bear the self-imposed cruelty of his jibes.

The grip’s tricky, I know. The trick is to loosen the wrists. To give.



His new teammate’s beckoning, taking Isami away from his father, had been a prayer and a blessing in one, sent down from the rains. Tsubasa’s mere being too, had been a welcome distraction for his troubled mind. Isami had become accustomed to looking down when speaking to others his age, and the change was… interesting, perhaps even welcome. More notably: had she always been a girl?

How had he not known this? Had he been so absorbed in his own affairs?

Those were the disquieting thoughts that carried Isami on the path towards the Kajiya forge. The stifling heat of the forge entrance, and the thought of melting within the forge proper, were thoughts that congealed with the rest. The Kajiya were swordsmiths and sealing specialists in antiquity, Isami recalled, which meant that the two sons had a strange amount in common. It was unlikely, he concluded, that such details failed to inform their arrangement.

Yeah, I just might,” Isami found himself compelled, by the satisfying crack of the blacksmith’s neck, to stretch the length of his back, “Elderly folk know everything; let’s ask around.

He could already feel the vivid, pounding headache resounding between his temples, just remembering the Sakamoto elders drilling stories of legacy along the walls of his skull.



Isami had found their initial task liberating, acknowledging its almost childlike novelty; a scavenger hunt, flanked by new ‘friends’. The pessimist in him expected to be given recompense for the relative ease of the task, paid back with trials and tribulations, each one vastly more horrific than the last. As if accepting the expectation as reality, he steeled himself, expression as rigid as Tsubasa’s own.

He allowed himself to soften upon seeing her smile of vague reassurance, meeting their new sensei with an awkward gait, as if desperately attempting to keep his spine perfectly upright.

Vague recognition dotted Isami’s mind as he glimpsed upon their sensei’s eyes, linking them to the stories of the ‘Uragiri’ they had learned bits and pieces of during their hunt. He was young, too, to what must have been the point of unfathomably so, considering his rank. A prodigy perhaps, who did as strange prodigious folk did; played with fish and asked strange questions.

Isami bristled at Sakana’s wording - you swing around weapons - and questioned why the phrasing caused him such distress. His family would doubtlessly retort in the most excruciating of ways, delving ad nauseam into their artform, their craft, honed by time. He shared no such sensibilities yet…

He composed himself, and offered his own answer, intoned in the most lifeless, sterile of ways, “To bring honor and glory to one’s village and clan, to take on their burden and provide for their legacy.” Even he had to give pause, wondering if their eccentric sensei would accept the platitudes, “... and, and provide victory, of course.

Already, he could feel doubt and shame, and braced himself for mockery and admonishment.

What instead followed was the doubtlessly-soon-to-be-fabled debacle regarding Tatsuya and the Slippery Scroll. Somehow, it made Isami like the boy better, as if thankful for the reprieve from his own feelings. He knew better than to offer the situation a word, but if he could, it would have been: thank you.

The thought of the transpirings warmed him, and he barely even registered the matter of the Grass.
Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Tuujaimaa
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Tuujaimaa Loyal Retainer of Lord Odin

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LOCATION: Amegakure - Shinobi Academy | INTERACTION: @MesuOkami @Anders @Terminal


Today was the day.

As Takashi left the world of dreams behind, that was her most immediate and frantic thought. Today is the day.

Her heart raced and her pulse quickened and her breathing intensified and then she couldn't contain her excitement any longer and she was wide awake and some unholy cross between a giggle and a scream had left her throat and her lips before she had even realised that she'd spoken. Today was the day that she graduated, and became something more than she was now. She walked further along the path that she'd set for herself, following gradually behind Kinuko and catching up to her and being one day closer to seeing her again.

Then, she took a deep breath in. She gathered up all of that excitement that was roiling around inside of her and balled it up and with a slow, purposeful motion exhaled and let it all out of her body. Each breath in to gather that energy, and each breath out to remove that which could not be focused and disciplined. It took her a good five minutes of breathing exercises before she was ready to even consider what she actually had to do in order to prepare for the day ahead of her. She went through her usual morning routine with a vim and vigour so rare among the Yuganori clan's household that many of her female relatives made a point of asking if she was really that excited to become a Genin--to which she responded with an exuberant "Yes!" each time--and continued about her business of getting ready. For most of her classmates, she imagined that presentability was at the forefront of their minds. It was a special occasion, so they had to look special--full formal ninja garb for the first time in any meaningful capacity without so much as an errant hair on their head. They dressed this way not so much to convince the academy or their sensei or their parents or even the Amekage that they were fit to take this step on their journey, but to convince themselves. To will their perceptions of their shinobihood into reality by finding the right garb, the right actions, the right words--and taking that rightness for themselves. The graduation ceremony was as much an assignment as any other day in the academy, but it was one that took place entirely in the mind.

When Takashi had gotten herself ready, she held her scarf Omoiyari in her hands and pressed it close to her chest. She had debated before today whether or not she should wear it to the ceremony, flitting back and forth between yes and no, and in truth she still wasn't certain whether or not it would be appropriate to wear it. Not in an official sense, but for her to claim her own sense of purpose--for her to draw her perception into reality. Kinuko had been the one that had set her heart and mind on being a shinobi in the first place, and this scarf was the physical manifestation of that commitment. It was her path forward, in a metaphorical and literal sense, but the doubt that weighed most heavily on her mind was whether or not it was holding her back from achieving her potential. Kinuko had always told her to live in the present without regretting the past or anticipating the future if she wanted to be happy, and she felt like she was still too stupid to understand exactly what that meant. She had never really felt like she could apply it to herself at a moment's notice like her sister had always been able to.

If she was to become a shinobi today, she would simply have to make the choice and live with its consequences. She wrapped the silk around her neck, adjusted it so that the large overflow on either side draped itself around her body in a helix for convenience's sake, and waited patiently in her bedroom for two hours and forty-six minutes until it was time for breakfast. Breakfast was, as usual, a dull affair. Rice with furikake, a bowl of miso soup, and as a little bit of a luxury a grilled fillet of salmon--she enjoyed the meal with as much focus as she could manage between the fussing and grooming of her mother and the other various women of the clan, and the silent resentment of the clan's elders - each reminded of a person they would rather have forgotten, and each not bothering to even thinly veil their contempt of the eerily similar situation. Takashi paid them no mind as they all ate, but took some time to discuss the upcoming events with her mother. Kaori had only ever offered Takashi the utmost support and love, so it came as no surprise that she offered her most sincere well-wishes and beamed with joy as the prospect of attending the graduation. Her father, Yuuto, gave her a firm handshake and told her to represent the Yuganori well and return to them as a more fully realised asset.

The actual affair of graduating proceeded exactly as Takashi and her classmates had been taught that it would, and Takashi listened to Yogensha's speech intently. Their cohort was the first to have its individual groups selected by the Amekage rather than by the jōnin who traditionally chose their own teams. As she listened, it made Takashi think of how this was more of a beginning than an end, as Yogensha had stated, and she had to fight the urge to get lost in her thoughts in order to maintain focus. Takashi was surprised at the Amekage--even in their own village, little had actually gotten around about her, and being addressed by her personally felt like stealing a secret glimpse into an enigma that had been hidden from everyone. The more Takashi listened and observed, the more she thought it was a good thing that Yogensha had hidden her presence from the world. There was something so compelling about her--the quiet confidence with which she spoke, the grace and authority with which she moved. Even to one as uninitiated in the wider aspects of combat and the potential scale of ninjutsu, Takashi was utterly awed by what she imagined the Amekage capable of. She was reminded, in some ways, of her departed sister - and that mental connection served to plant the seeds for further admiration and respect in Takashi's mind.

When the rain began to fall, and the graduates instructed to don their headbands for the first time, Takashi wrapped hers around her scarf--causing the symbol to show just above her solarplexus--and looked back up at Yogensha.

“the Rain weeps for you and the suffering you are to receive and cause.”

Takashi heard the words echoing in the back of her mind as they were granted a momentary reprieve from the ceremony. Others around her chatted to one another, basking in the glory of their accomplishment, but Takashi's mind was sobered by the words. Suffering was integral to a shinobi--for every sacrifice required suffering by virtue of its nature--but there was no reason that the sacrifice could not be made sweet. Takashi resolved in that moment to use her burden as a way to focus herself, to focus not on the hardship ahead of her but on what that hardship preserved and protected. She lifted her head up to the rain and let the droplets of water run down her face, her smile broadening as she exulted in the feeling of her dedication. Was this how Kinuko had felt, when she had graduated? Was this how the others were feeling? Did they look past the fleeting moment of the now and into the uncertain future, as she was? Did they consider the gravity of what had just happened, of what they were now?

'No,'

'and neither should I.'

As the male shinobi's voice abruptly ended her reverie, Yogensha assigned to them their teams. Takashi did not even try to hide her giddy excitement at the fact that her name was spoken first--despite knowing that it was simply coincidence--and listened intently for the names of her new teammates. Furaribi Akane and Shiru Metsumi were spoken just after hers, and she impressed those names into her memory. There would be time to become acquainted with them later, however, as Takashi's next focus was on the gleaming smile of her mother from beneath the shelter. Takashi bounded over to her and wrapped her arms tightly around her midsection in a quickly returned embrace. It was an intimate moment of bonding, free from the judgements of the other Yuganori, and it was rare. The pure, unconditional affection that she received from her mother gave her her first tangible reason to bear the Rain's hardships, her first real consideration as a shinobi of the Rain, and she only hoped that that resolve would be just as warm and strong within her in the years to come as it was now.




Takashi had spent the better part of the week of free time she'd had weaving with her father, helping to fulfil commissions and practicing her technique for the upcoming meeting she'd be having with her sensei and her team. Yuuto had congratulated her sparingly upon her return, choosing to acknowledge her graduation as a sign that she was ready for more responsibility whenever she was at home and not on a mission. Takashi happily accepted all of the work that he gave her, both wanting to please him and wanting to improve her technique, and was taught new and interesting weaving techniques for her troubles. On the sixth day, in the evening just before she retired to bed, Takashi received the message from her sensei asking her to be present at the "Kazami Clan Entrance" in the morning. Takashi recognised the name--vaguely, at least--and spent the better part of an hour wracking her brains trying to work out where she'd heard the name before. Now that she was a shinobi proper she didn't want to just ask someone else, wanted to work out this enigma for herself, but as she paced the halls of the Yuganori clan compound muttering the name "Kazami, Kazami..." beneath her breath, one of the Elders shot her a disparaging glance and asked: "Kazami? Are you working on the order for the theatre?".

The moment of epiphany hit Takashi like a metaphorical truck--of course! She'd seen the name and the symbol when she'd gone over the clan's ledgers with Yuuto. She couldn't believe that she hadn't recognized the name earlier - though a modest clan by even Amagakure's standards, the Kazami had long been customers of the Yuganori for the various outfits they required for theatrical performances. Many of the articles they provided were only loaned, as the Kazami would not be able to afford the Yuganori's frankly extortionate prices for the entire outfits they produced, and as it was so easy for the Yuganori to repurpose any garment they created into any other garment, the outfits usually ended up being comprised of the various scraps and cutoffs of their more elegant and refined pieces. Of course, even with this practice in place the quality of their goods was so high compared to any other potential vendors (none of which had even remotely been competition in the past decade) and their ability to manipulate fabric was so proficient that fashioning the remnants of better materials into bolts of high quality cloth was something they did regularly. She immediately went to the clan's ledgers and looked up the relevant information for the Kazami clan's compound, taking a moment to recognise her sensei's name and her measurements.

Somewhat on a whim, Takashi decided that she would make a kimono for Miyako. She knew that the performers at the theatre typically performed elaborate dances, and that the weight of a kimono--especially the type that the Kazami could afford--was significant. It would be a labour in and of itself to get used to the weight of such a garment--Takashi knew from experience that it was a great strain over time--and that was the reason that she preferred to wear a men's kimono. She took the cloth she needed, infused it with the requisite Wind-natured chakra necessary to render it virtually weightless, and stayed up for a few extra hours putting the finishing touches to the garment. While she was by no means a master weaver by the Yuganori clan's standards, Takashi was more accomplished than any mundane weaver could ever hope to be and the creation of what was, by all means, an exquisite kimono was fairly standard fare for her. She slept knowing that she would have a gift that her new sensei would appreciate, and knowing precisely where to find her.

Over the course of the week, her family had bothered her less and less at breakfast time. Now that she was a shinobi proper she was afforded a degree of respect she simply hadn't as a student, and she ate her breakfast in relative peace for the first time she could remember. The usual breakfast of rice with furikake, miso soup, and a salmon fillet was on the menu - but her sensei had sent her an umeboshi (which she generally did not eat with her breakfast due to having miso soup) and requested that it be eaten, and so Takashi partook. It was a different kind of saltiness that tasted good, in small bites, with her rice and salmon. She ended up drinking very little of the miso soup, but found herself more satisfied with the change than she thought she would be. After the meal she made sure to box up the kimono she'd made, slip it into a backpack, and leave the clan compound bright and early for her meeting with Miyako.

Takashi wandered to the entrance, vaguely recognising one of the other two ninja as a distant relation (a second cousin, perhaps?) and not recognising the one he was walking with at all. They didn't get a chance to be properly (or even improperly) acquainted before they were ushered in to witness a performance. The theatre wasn't exactly somewhere Takashi had ever been, personally, but as the show started she felt a certain sense of homeliness from the outfits the performers wore alone. She recognised them individually, having assisted in some regard with all of them, and found herself focusing less on the symbolism of the play and more on it as an aesthetic device regarding the outfits. If nothing else, it was certainly a beautiful display--and Miyako herself was particularly resplendent. She was possessed of a fluidity and a grace that even a lot of shinobi could not boast, and she gave off an easy confidence that Takashi took a shine to. Even if the nuances of the performance were lost on her, she watched with rapt attention and fascination in her eyes.

Then it was over, and she was escorted alongside Akane and Metsumi to a small lounge where they proceeded to have a few moments to actually introduce themselves to one another. Metsumi gave her a formal and cheerful (if a little disingenuous, in Takashi's mind--she knew precisely her clan's reputation and relationship with the Shiru clan) greeting, to which she responded in earnest:

"I hope so too, Metsumi-chan!" Takashi started, opting for a less formal honorific than Metsumi. They didn't know each other at all at that point, but given the earnest desire they both seemed to have to get along, it seemed appropriate to remove any unnecessary formality.

"I'm so glad you enjoy the products we make! I know that we're certainly... urbane," she repeated in her closest approximation of Metsumi's tone, "but I'm confident in their quality! If I can help you with anything at all, please, let me know."

Akane didn't greet her, so Takashi didn't greet him either. From what she remembered of him (or more accurately his clan) they tended to be firebrands in the most literal sense possible, so she was certain that he'd do something to initiate a conversation around sooner or later. Until then, she was happy to take a seat and reminisce about the earlier performance. When Miyako arrived, Takashi immediately stood and gave her a quick but respectful bow before resuming her seat. As Miyako surveyed her three students and spoke to them, Takashi listened to what she had to say with a look of intense focus. She nodded along gently with every word, eyes bright with understanding, until Miyako had finished. She blushed a little at the compliment paid to her clan (and indirectly to her, she supposed), though the same look of understanding darkened her otherwise bright features as her clan was mentioned. It was exactly the same look she had given Metsumi with her earlier compliment, and though it was largely hidden behind a bashful smile this time it would not take a great deal of acumen and insight to recognise Takashi's simultaneous pride and resentment towards her clan--particularly when complimenting them was concerned.

She took a breath in as if to begin speaking, but was interrupted by the door opening and a few of the other Kazami bringing in plates of food. As each dish was set down Takashi offered a gleaming smile, a nod, and a quiet murmur of thanks. Takashi waited until everyone else had taken a portion of the available food for themselves before taking a steaming pile of rice and a few ladlefuls of thick broth and mixing them together in a bowl. While everything looked and smelled wonderful, Takashi had eaten salmon earlier in the day and did not feel like doing so again, and decided that leaving the meat for Akane seemed to be the wisest option given his apparent voracity. As Metsumi began offering insights about herself, Takashi took a cup and the steaming pot of tea, and nodded to Miyako first to see if she wanted any, then did the same with Akane and Metsumi respectively. After pouring tea where appropriate, she picked up her own cup and took a tentative sip before lifting the bowl of food in front of her to her mouth and spooning the gloopy mixture of broth and rice into her mouth with her chopsticks, barely taking the time to chew the homogenous mixture before shovelling more in with her chopsticks.

When it came to her turn to divulge information about herself, Takashi put the bowl down and took a sip of tea to cleanse her palate and throat before speaking up.

"Well, Miyako-sensei, I'm Takashi of the Yuganori clan! I'm sure I don't need to touch on my clan and their reputation with you. I enjoy learning about anything and everything, really, and of course I'm interested in weaving... I'm not sure how much I can really tell you about myself, sensei, when it's going to be easier to just show you as we get to know each other! I don't think you can really simplify a person down to a collection of hobbies and desires and expect to know them, you know? I want to improve my mastery of my clan's kekkei genkai and learn the secrets of the silken scrolls that have been lost to us for hundreds of years, and just... Generally improve as a shinobi? I'm not sure I've experienced enough to really tell you what I want to focus on specifically right now! I guess I just want to follow in my sister's footsteps." Takashi beamed as her turn came around, her thoughts flowing out in a steady rise until she realised she'd talked too much and tapering down.

"Oh, and I made something for you, Miyako-sensei!" Takashi exclaimed as the memory of her gift camr crashing to the forefront of her mind. She took the package out of her backpack and handed it to Miyako, taking the lid off as she did so to reveal a sheer black kimono not unlike the one she was currently wearing. The tailoring was, compared to an ordinary garment, stunning--but it fell short of the majesty of traditional Yuganori clan garb. Still, it was perfectly proportioned and clearly made with a great deal of care - which, in this situation, counted for more than quality on its own.

"I know how heavy the full kimono are, so I infused this one with fūton for you! It weighs basically nothing, so you should find it easier to dance in it when you next get the opportunity!" Takashi smiled bashfully, hoping that she'd appreciate it for its practicality if not its craftsmanship.

Regarding the mission, Takashi read the scroll and shrugged. It didn't seem like there were really any questions that she needed to ask--it seemed simple enough.
Hidden 8 mos ago 8 mos ago Post by Darth Shadow
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Darth Shadow Watching you from afar...

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Time: 1 month prior graduation
Location: Tadayoshi's house



Today is going to be an important date, Tadayoshi thinks before inserting his hand into a glove. The sound of the medical gloves stretches and contracts contradicted to the sound of the rain seeping through the cracks in the walls. Rain, for the inhabitants of Amegakure, is not something to be amazed to. They are used to the fact of being cold all days and how the humid would make the clothes to never stay dry. And for Tadayoshi, rain is just an ordinary friend. It is something that had never ceased to declare its existence in his life. It is everywhere, literally. From the cracks on the wall to the molds at the hallways, the rain feed them. But rain is not the only inhabitant in this house.

Outside, not far from his home, there lays a small ecosystem that Tadayoshi had recently made for his test subjects. Inside, 15 pairs of rats had been given a narrow area of a 300-meter square. They were strong, relatively quicker than its peers in the sewers, and have a much darker skin tone. But more specifically, their fast breeding rate is what makes them ended up here.

When the rain begins to pick up its tempo, Tadayoshi could hear the squirming sound coming from the rats' den. The image of 30 or more rats all in one place, climbing on top of each others' back might be a horrific image for those with a weak heart. But today subject is not about how visitors might be scared to their death by the messiness of the place nor how this house is falling apart. Today, Tadayoshi will attempt to take another being’s life.

Now, the idea of taking another’s life is not something that Tadayoshi felt alien from. After all, training in ninja school means earning prospect in others’ lives and safety. But to think he would have to do it so soon, one more month until graduation is insane. Personally, Tadayoshi is afraid of death which reaches its heights after his mother died. To him, death is all that he stands against. The idea of nullifying all identities and utter destruction of one’s existence should only belong in a scaredy book for children. But death is real. And because of that, one of his greatest nightmares is always deal with death.

Here he is, standing under the luminescent lamp, hands placed on his heart as he tries to calm himself but prove to be a futile act. His eyes lock on the beings that are secured on the medical table, whose body is struggling to break free from the chains. Its muscle tensed. Its disorganized breathing patterns. Its tail whipped everywhere it can. ” It is futile,” Tadayoshi whispered to the rat before placing his hand over its spine while the other hand moved the medical knife into proper position.

Before the rat's eyesight was taken away, all it could see is dead. It muscle tensed. Its heart beats become even faster, racing like a young and wild horse on an open plain, quickly distributing blood across its body. And with each action the boy take, a loud and clear noise of the chain smashing against the metal table, its deathbed, echoes through the fallen house. Like a war drum, its belly rises and falls in a short tempo of quick and sudden rhythm. Break it, and I will be free is all it could think of as its eyes follow sharply with every moves that the boy made. Faster, it thinks. Faster.

Capturing the mouse reactions to his touch, Tadayoshi begins to fear what he is about to do. It is not death that he is facing. Not the natural death that he is dealing with. No, he is witnessing an intentional death. Worse, he is committing it. The fact that he himself is accompanied by death begins pulling out his empathy for the mammalian. For this being, whose soul is trembling as it is chained to the table, he must be nothing more than a monster. An incarnation of death. The ender of happiness. The period to the present and the beginning of a sea of memories. The one that puts an end to its bored existence. In a sense, Tadayoshi wondered to himself, is he a god?

The idea of wielding such power frightened him, causing him to hesitate about what he might do. And doing what it must, empathy begins to kick in mind as Tadayoshi starts to give himself reasons for not to follow this path. Maybe I could do it tomorrow. Maybe I should ask the teachers for aid before doing this. Maybe I should release it. Maybe it also has a son to take care of. Maybe, it has a home to return to. Maybe, it has a wife. Maybe it has a twin, waiting for it to return home. Maybe, they are just outside the gate, waiting for his shadow to cast upon them and say that “there is no demon under their beds.” Maybe, his wife is sitting at a table with hot meals ready for him. For all one knows, it is worth to be released.

Tadayoshi glanced at the rat on the table, who has not stopped its attempted in breaking free from the chains. Free…, Tadayoshi thinks longingly as he still tries to grasp the idea of dying for freedom. And that struggle for survival brings softness in his heart.

Reaching for the shackle, Tadayoshi eyes came to a stop as he meets his mother picture. She was there when he is sad. She was there when he is happy. She was there, witnessing her son grow. Doesn’t he want her back? Did he want the memory to continue? Didn't his vow to bring her back mean to him something back then? Then, for what reasons cause him to flinch?

Struggling for what to do next, a sense of anger and confusion begins to appear in the boy’s mind as he looks for clues. The open note, the wet ink, the glimmering knife, all was prepared for this day. The subject had been secured. And there will be no consequence if he conducts his research on it. The being is unable to display any specific emotions. It does not even count as a conscious being for Christ’s sake. But still, something inside Tadayoshi held him back.



Tadayoshi didn’t know how long he had stood there, staring at the rat while placing the knife on its neck. But he didn't slice it open. Instead, he was hoping it would die on its own so that he would not feel so guilty in doing so. But against his expectation, the mammalian before him proves its impressive vitality. It has been too tired for this, after maybe half an hour or more of struggling to break free. But still, the rat shows no sign of giving up despite the shackle had carved some gaping wounds into its carpal bones. I shouldn’t have tied it so tight, Tadayoshi thinks as his body begins to slump against the wooden pillar. This noise. This stress. This builds up emotion in his chest. More than ever, Tadayoshi thinks he needs a rest. And so, as his eyes begin to close, the boy tiredly murmured to himself before falling asleep with a small sense of guilt in his mind.

“I will do it tomorrow.”

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Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Odin
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Odin You Were Born a Leader, No Crown or Throne Needed

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Location: Uragiri Clan Compound [Koi Breeding Pond] | Time: 9AM [9:12] | Interaction: Team 7 [Sakamoto Isami -- @Shizuochan, Shinjo Tsubasa -- @McHaggis, Kajiya Tatsuya -- @Raijinslayer


Sakana's black eyes shifted left to right across the faces of his new students as they answered his questions, one by one. He grinned at Tsubasa's answer, the corners of his lips curving upwards as if he was amused by her answer. “So someone putting you here isn't fate? Hmmm. I think it was fate. The Sage wills it.” He was going to say more, but he paused long enough to give the impression that the next person should speak, which caused the Kajiya boy to pipe up about his weapons. The upward curve on his lip curved up even more, his grin now beginning to show his teeth -- the corner teeth were particularly sharp and seemed to have been filed to this state, which was a trick usually reserved for Kirigakure swordsmen of the mist, but had seemingly been adopted in part by Sakana. It seemed that he intended to embrace the scary looks his clan had in full and utilize them as best as he could.

When the boy spoke of smithing him two weapons, Sakana rapidly pulled out the two knives that were slung across his shoulder, spinning them in his hands, before holding them out in front of him. “Like these? Good choice. Even if it's a bit standard. I suppose that's what I should expect from you -- standard, no innovation, just another Kajiya. Right?” His grin seemed to disappear momentarily and the enjoyment in his eyes made way for something a bit more sinister, something more serious. Was he trying to harp on the Kajiya's feelings? To hit the snares that would sollicit a response from the boy? Maybe he was, but before anyone could even think of that let alone question him about it, he sheathed the knives again, turning to the last student.

Sakamoto Isami. Just like Tatsuya, he gave a standard answer, something that seemed to irk Sakana, a corner of his eye twitching slightly as the boy spoke. Was this the caliber of students they had nowadays -- pansies that just said whatever they thought the teacher wanted to hear? He gave no response at all to Isami, ignoring his answer in favor of pondering the quality of shinobi nowadays.

The awkwardness made way for the spectacle of watching Tatsuya run into the koi pond, as if on purpose, and though it might've been humourous to his peers, as a laugh erupted from the clan compound just a few meters away from an on-looker who happened to catch the scenario, Sakana just peered over at Tatsuya with a disapproving glare. “I see,” he just said. They can't even augment chakra to stand on water yet, he thought to himself. This would make the upcoming mission harder than it should be.

“Okay, listen up. We're leaving in five minutes, so I hope you all brought everything you need. You can read the scroll, but it's not that interesting. You'll be paid a thousand ryo, and our mission is to go to the border and just observe what is happening. Basically, we're running an errant to collect information.”

He'd raise his hand and scratch the back of his head a little bit, seemingly bored with the prospect of the mission. It was simple, and even though it would be considered slightly too politically charged for genin in most cases, it wasn't like they would be able to fuck this up unless something really went wrong. “As we may deal with foreign shinobi I suggest you stay close to me. Neither side will be allowed to engage the other -- atleast, unless Kusagakure has decided we are enemies now -- so it's not like they'll kill you. But I don't want you kids starting a war just because you got provoked.”

And though that concept seemed exaggerated, it was certainly in the realm of possibilities.

“Let's go.” Sakana departed almost immediately, leaving the genin behind to follow him. The traveling must've been an arduous task for them, especially for Tatsuya, who was now forced to work in wet clothing. Thankfully, in Amegakure, almost everyone was always wet. Perhaps he'd gotten used to it by now.




Within an hour they had reached the border, jumping from tree branch to tree branch before Sakana would land on the ground, placing them on top of a hill that overlooked a nearby valley, and with that, the road that was the primary entryway in and out of Kusagakure no Sato. Where there had previously been a steady stream of traders there was now an empty road with a set of two jonin standing near a border house. While team 7 was still out of sight, Sakana pondered the situation at hand momentarily. “Set up in this area. They probably know we're here, but try to be somewhat hidden. We have to wait for a trader to try and go into Kusagakure to see what is going on.”

So, they had to wait. It'd take well over another hour, meaning they'd have to sit around doing nothing for at least that duration of time. The realities of being a shinobi weren't as exciting as they might've been lead to believe in the academy, though Sakana seemed largely unphased, his eyes constantly scanning the area. Finally, a trader appeared on the horizon on a horse-drawn carriage full of barrels with weapons in them. Probably one of Amegakure's exporting traders, and lacking any indication of clans on the barrels or carriage, it seemed he was just transporting 'regular' weapons. “Psh,” Sakana hissed to his students. “Pay attention.”

As the carriage pulled up to the border checkpoint, the two jonin stopped the cart and made the man get down from it, glancing over the cart and the weapons. The watchful eye would notice that one of the jonin was grabbing a few of the wares and pocketing them, and at one point even the untrained eye would've noticed that he grabbed a batch of at least five swords and pulled them away, turning his body slightly and throwing them into a nearby ditch before continuing.

The other jonin, meanwhile, kept the man occupied by going through his papers and talking to him, which at some points almost seemed like an interrogation. Clearly the man wasn't being treated as nicely as he should've been treated, though that on it's own wasn't worthy of intervening for. Admittedly, the act of theft wasn't exactly something Sakana would go to war for either.

It seemed like the two jonin were done, as the man was pointed back and told to leave. At that point Sakana was satisfied with the info they had obtained so far - namely that the Kusagakure shinobi were just stealing the wares instead of paying for them - and he moved to turn around and leave the area to report back. As the trader threw up his arms in anger and turned around, though, the nearby jonin kicked him in the leg, causing the man to kneel forward, at which point the jonin pulled out a sword and made ready to decapitate the man. It seemed they intended to steal the entire cart full of wares.

“Team,” Sakana piped up, his voice now louder and more commanding than before. “I'm going to go in. Technically our mission is done, but letting our traders be killed will weaken the village. Wait for the right moment and then move in to help me, so stay hidden for now. Tsubasa, since you gave the least stupid answer to my questions, you'll be in charge of the other two while I'm down there. Understood?”

They couldn't even answer, as Sakana used the shunshin no jutsu to body-flicker down into the valley, appearing between the jonin and the trader precisely when the man brought down his sword. With a rapid movement Sakana pulled out one of his two knives, holding it diagonally to the right, up into the air, and blocking the strike with relative ease. “Atsui!” Sakana promptly yelled, and inside of his mouth a seal unfurled, before Sakana blew out air forwards, shooting a big fire ball out towards the jonin.

Despite catching him off guard, it seemed Sakana's attack paired with the blocking of the sword was slightly too predictable. The jonin jumped backwards, evading the fireball with some ease, while his buddy jumped back to stand behind his comapanion. “That's Amegakure no Sato property,” Sakana told them, his eyes scanning the two of them. While he knew the first one of the two was watching him, he also noticed that the second jonin was eyeing the hill they had been positioned on. “Bodagado,” Sakana quickly clarified -- it was a lie, because if he was bodagado, then the team on the hill would be a squad of three chunin at the least, if not jonin. In reality, it was a team of freshly graduated genin.

Never the less, the man bought into the bluff, and shifted his eyes to the jonin in front of him, namely Sakana. “I'm the only one authorized to cross the border. The rest are here to observe. I'm afraid I'm alone.” Yet another lie, meant to draw the men into the trap that Sakana had set -- although perhaps the genin didn't even realize that this was a trap. If the two jonin could be convinced that Sakana would have to fight alone, then it would confuse them even more when a squad of three genin appeared suddenly.

Expecting to win this fight would be foolish -- but saving the trader and his wares, while fighting off the two jonin would be sufficient enough. The two Kusagakure shinobi seemed to realize that they'd be better off killing Sakana quickly, and although that'd be an act of war -- killing every witness would remove that problem. “You made a mistake coming here if you're the only one allowed to fight. I never understood the weird Amegakure authorizations and border-guard, but I don't think I care. It's what's gonna get you killed today. Temei, lets go!”

Without warning the two shinobi rushed forward, one of them drawing a katana from his back while the other weaved handseals, for a technique Sakana didn't even recognize. In response, Sakana moved forward too, raising his blade to counter the man's katana - relying on his genin to see that now would be the right time to move forward and engage the other jonin. One genin versus a jonin was not even close to an even fight, and even two genin together would be useless, but three of them might be just enough to overwhelm him and force him onto the defense.

But, would they realize?
Hidden 8 mos ago Post by Shizuochan
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Shizuochan

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Sakamoto Isami



Location: Kusa-Ame Border | Time: 11-12am~
Interaction: Team 7 Uragiri Sakana -- @Odin Kajiya Tatsuya -- @RaijinSlayer, Shinjo Tsubasa -- @McHaggis,


Isami had not been near foolish enough to disregard the words Yogensha had spoken amidst the weeping of the rain: of entering into the world where each step navigated the fine balance between life and death. He had perhaps inwardly winced at the theatre of it all, but aspiring shinobi were intimately familiar with the prospect of death, ever waiting to welcome the young into its unforgiving domain. Even by the standards of his understanding, however, this had been sudden; an inter-village mission from the very onset of their shinobi career. Combined with the seeming dispassion sensei had shown him, it seemed to Isami a terrible portent: what if he was trying to drive them into death to free himself of his burden?

The hour or so of nothingness had almost convinced Isami of otherwise. Safe, stagnant. He had taken to passing the time staring at the… black of the Uragiri’s eyes, as if he could gleam some hidden knowledge from it. When he considered the possibility that Sakana had noticed (and, summarily, thought all the less of the creepy genin), he reverted into staring ahead, mind almost vegetative in its blankness.

The ruffle and clink of the trader’s barrels were almost so very glorious a sound.

He had narrowed his eyes, as if it were some forbidden technique that would allow him to glimpse upon the inscrutable - yet the shinobi of the Grass had little intention to mask their ill-doings from prying eyes. This, Isami thought he understood, was the most ill-done of shinobi work; shinobi as tyrant, and corrupt oppressor. He seethed from some pit of his being that he felt was not entirely his, infuriated by airily spoken platitudes.

And suddenly there, there he was - their sensei within their midst- sensei?

The body flicker, it must have been, yet Isami had scarce noticed even the hint of it. Isami looked on, incredulous, as Sakana engaged the two in verbal warfare, locked in place. He was also capable of the body flicker; should he have moved? He hadn’t been given the order… but there were two of them. Was the Uragiri truly so self-assured in his prowess.

Time compressed as words were exchanged.

Then, it began.

Blade, katana. And the other, engaged in his hand-seals. Sakana… was Sakana going to die?

The thought drove him, as he expertly wove a short sequence of hand-seals, nerves fading as adrenaline consumed him. The white of papyrus, the black of ink, and the red of Sakamoto stamp flashed as a weapon scroll unfurled, and a Yumi bow unveiled itself, laying in the shadow of a quiver.

He notched and pulled, the muscles along his arm almost numbed to the Herculean effort.

A single arrow hurtled towards the second jonin.
Hidden 8 mos ago 8 mos ago Post by Raijinslayer
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Raijinslayer .

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Location: Kusa-Ame Border | Time: 11am-12pm
Interaction: Team 7 Uragiri Sakana -- @Odin Sakamoto Isami -- @Shizuochan, Shinjo Tsubasa -- @McHaggis,


"If you want something more interesting, you should either ask for it or be a more interesting subject, Uragiri-senpai" Tatsuya didn't even look in Sakana's direction as he responded, electing to instead go over his supplies and make sure everything was still in working order after his little dip in the pool. Stepping away from the group as Sakana went on to give himself an impromptu quick dry by partially activating his Lava Creation jutsu to form an area of really warm earth beneath him. At the very least, the heat would serve to dry of his bare skin, and at least half-way dry the fabric of his clothing.

Despite his seeming lack of interest in the situation, a trained eye would have little difficulty telling that he was acutely paying attention to everything that was being said though whatever his thoughts he had were difficult to decipher due to his neutral body language. He did let out a bit of a grumble as Sakana set off with barely any warning, picking himself up and following a bit behind the rest of the team due to his waterlogged clothes, but not too far. When one lived in a place like Ame, you quickly became accustomed to such things.





When the team first arrived at the hill overlooking the valley, Tatsuya's eyes immediately fell on the two border guards, recognizing their uniforms as that of Kusa Jonin. . . though he found it odd that there seemed to be just two of them. If Kusa was in such a state that they'd be willing to close off their borders to trade, he thought there would've been an equivalent increase to their border security as well.

Then again, the fact that two jonin are handling basic border duty instead of chunin could also be considered an increase in security. Curious. Tatsuya kept quiet about his observations, doing as Sakana bid and keeping an eye on the situation in silence. The hour-long wait didn't bother him as much as it might've bothered the others, keeping himself busy by fiddling with the sealing paper from his forging kit, forming an idea for if the situation did turn sideways. He'd just finished fiddling with his 10th seal when the jonin called his team to action.

Tatsuya himself couldn't help the clinch to his jaw as he saw the Kusa nin stealing the weapons from the trader, treating them with such a callous disrespect that made him want to take his fuinjutsu hammer to their faces personally. Still, he kept himself mostly calm and watched as the situation unfolded. . . and then rapidly deteriorated. He offered only a brief nod to Sakana as he gave his order, smirking a bit when Tsubasa was dubbed the one in charge because of her giving the 'least stupid answer', as Sakana had put it.

As Sakana engaged with the two jonin, Tatsuya prepared himself for battle, attaching his 'special' seals to several kunai as he kept an eye on the situation. It was when the two jonin began to take a more offensive stance that he took action.

Quick as a flash, he'd nab 2 explosive tags from Tsubasa's pouch with a quick "gonna borrow these" being all he said as he activated his Subterranean Voyage jutsu, diving into the ground and rocketing towards the battlefield. He wouldn't stay underground for too long, popping a short distance behind the hand-sign jonin to launch a brace of kunai with burning tags attached to them. The goal wasn't really to hit the Jonin but to distract him and if possible separate him from his ally by making him think the seals were explosive tags when in reality they were just his sealing tags that had been overloaded with fire chakra to make them burn in a similar fashion. Unknown to Tatsuya, this maneuver could possibly lead to more damage than he realized, as his sudden appearance and attack could possibly draw the jonin's attention away from the arrow that Isami had just launched their way.

Soon after launching that initial attack, he dived back underground, his path going deep into the earth in order to help throw off the Jonin's predicting where he'd surface, which would be somewhere a few meters away from where ever they were when he did. He launched another brace of kunai at him this time, but mixed in with the remaining duds were both of the two real explosion tags he had 'borrowed' from Tsubasa, set with a slight delay so that they would seem to be duds just like the rest, hopefully luring the jonin into letting his guard down enough that he'd get caught up in the ensuing blast, or at least get clipped by it. He'd aimed the two explosive tags so that they'd end up on either side of the jonin, thus increasing the range at which he could get caught up in it. After that, Tatsuya backed away a bit, drawing out a kunai and readying himself for a possible attack. He didn't want to risk turning his back on the jonin, knowing that just one little distraction could lead to his swift end.

Despite that fact, however, a wide and eager grin was plain to see on his face. The adrenaline rushing through his veins, the lingering feel of death wrapping around his throat, it all culminated in Tatsuya feeling more alive than he ever had during any of the sparring matches he'd taken part in at the academy. This was for keeps, and Tatsuya was loving every second of it.
Hidden 8 mos ago 8 mos ago Post by MesuOkami
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MesuOkami Graffiti Gremlin

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Mid Afternoon | Kazami Theatre | Takashi@Tuujaimaa Metsumi@Terminal Akane@Anders



The edges of her lips curled up into a heartfelt smile towards the Yuganori girl, the Clan well known and versed in making beautiful wardrobe. A small wish of hers was to own something fabricated from their most elegant fibers one day. The Theatre always made her want to wear traditional attire - but it wasn't exactly the best to wear during battle. The students settled in, clearly all had exchanged a few words before she arrived. Sitting across from them, she had placed her hands in her lap, Miyako waited patiently for all of her students to grab a plate, and feed themselves before she began eating herself. Watching their movements, how they interacted with each other, body language towards each other. After nothing this Miyako moved her attention to actually notice their features - noticing the way each dressed, how they carried their weapons, etc. These qualities didn't exactly linger in her mind though, it was their dispositions that she was fully interested in. It would be as Metsumi began speaking that Miyako would notice the Yuganori Kunoichi offering her tea - holding her cup delicately with two hands, she would accept the offer. Nodding her head in a grateful thank you, and returning her ocular attention to Metsumi.

"Uhm...hm. I suppose I would like to get to know more about other cultures and their history, maybe? Since as a Kunoichi I might have to infiltrate them, disguising myself and posing as a local! Maybe I should take up a common trade as a hobby I can develop into cover later. Maybe dancing or singing or playing an instrument - like in your clan's shows, Sensei!"

Metsumi appeared to possess a variety of interests - one even being in her the Kazami Clans theatrics. Metsumi held a determined demeanor about herself, one that Miyako was pleased about. It was always great to see the youth hold such joy and wonder about their future - hopefully that light wouldn't dull in the future. Miyako nodded, and exuded a warm smile towards the young kunoichi - "Well, perhaps one day in the future I can walk you through the Theatre. You can maybe find something you're interested in, many of the Clansmen would be overjoyed to teach any of my students, thank you". Her eyes lingered on Metsumi, watching as she grabbed herself some pork. Her attention turning to the ever so dainty Akane as he began to speak up.

"Hey sensei, how old are you? You look a little young. And while that’s not a bad thing, I need someone who’s fully capable of pushing me so I can char my father down to crisp and bone in a few years".


Her gaze paused upon the child, well in reality he was only a few years younger than her. Miyako sipped from her tea cup, and placed it down gently onto the table "...as I'm supposed to..". It sat in her mind heavily and she wondered what that meant, but after a few seconds - she perked up and realized she was taking too long to answer the question placed upon her. "I'm 19 years old - actually, my whole team became Jonin right around the same time. I'm sure you, or your clean leaders may have some doubts - but the Village would not give me the title of Tokubetsu Jonin, if they did not see fit...". She responded, and continued after another quick sip of tea. "I believe it is your teachers who can set you in the right path, but you who should push yourself to the goal that you ultimately desire, I'm only but a stepping stone and I will reinforce any of your decisions. Unless of course you decide to go against the village, then I will 'burn you down to crisp and bone'". Smiling again, this one was different from the hospitable one's she had produced before.

Of course, the Jonin was serious upon making this remark. She would defend her village against anyone, even if it were one of her own students. Amegakure gave her Clan refuge during a hectic time. This Village would always be her home, and she would always protect it - especially the Lady Yogensha. Who Miyako found to be a stoic, and respectable Kage. Akane seemed more interest in making sure he would be the one to get what he wanted. Unless she was hearing this wrong, and pondering to much over the few words he gave of himself - Miyako would note this in her mind. Making sure to keep an eye on how his teamwork skills would be in the future, but on the upside it appeared Akane would be a very hardworking individual. Which would mean plenty of training and Miyako would not detest to. Miyako's eyes stayed on Akane's face for a moment, advancing next to Takashi - who began speaking promptly after Miyako gained Takashi's attention.

" I'm not sure how much I can really tell you about myself, sensei, when it's going to be easier to just show you as we get to know each other! I don't think you can really simplify a person down to a collection of hobbies and desires and expect to know them, you know?"


This response was a delightful one, she agreed with the young girl and nodded as she spoke. Takashi seemed to be malleable and this would be interesting for Miyako, as the young Kunoichi would probably flow with what suited her best and hone in on those skills. Which is essentially what Miyako did herself, until she gave herself the challenge - and succeeded at understanding the basics of Scorch Release. But again, this was also still a path she was on and probably wouldn't detour from for the rest of her life. Takashi then surprised her with a gift, Miyako's hands rose to her lips covering them - her eyes wide with surprise. "Oh my, thank you Takashi!" Miyako beamed, her hands grasping the package and laying it in front of her on the table. Removing the lid, it would reveal a black kimono similar to hers - upon removing it out of the box she would instantly notice the texture was different in some way. Miyako couldn't place her finger on how it felt different, but it would be. Takashi then stated she infused it with futon, Miyakos eyes would snap back to the Kunoichi. "Yuganori Clan...such skilled individuals. I believe you will follow in your sisters footsteps amazingly....and I might just wear this off the stage as well" She chirped happily. Miyako carefully place it back into the box, and stood up from the table. Carrying it to an empty spot on the bookshelf, her hand traced over the gift and to a small book that laid beside the open spot. Her tendrils grasping it and placing the book in her bag behind her. Miyako then turned back to the trio that were still eating, or possibly finished.

"Well, we have some time before the mission. As I stated we will take this time to see how you all work together - see where your teamwork is at. Communication is very important, and I have no problem in halting your missions if I see a lack of it. Without the cell working in accordance with each other, a member could get hurt, or worse...die," Her eyes slowly locked with each students face - of course her mind flashing back to that of her original teammate and his death. "But I'm confident you three will be able to work together fluidly, so....let's head out to the Academy Training field. Hopefully you all didn't fill yourselves up too much".

Gesturing to the door, the Genin would exit first - and Miyako would follow suite, closing the door behind them. She would then take the lead, and flow in front of the youngsters as she led them out down the hallway, down a staircase, and now they were coming out the side of the entrance. Her hands stayed laced in front of her at all times, she carried an elegance about her - one that some saw as too proper for this day and age. But it was the theatre that made her this way, cradled her from her birth to be so dramatic in the way she exposed herself. Upon actually exiting the front doors of the Kazami Theatre, Miyako would open the door allowing the students to exit first again. Her attention would turn to a messenger bird that was sitting, and waiting - for her it appeared. As the sight of her caused it to launch forward and flutter in front of the slim black haired Kunoichi. Raising one hand up, the bird landed and she quickly unstrapped a frail note from the bird. Upon completing its mission, it promptly flew off into the sky to return back to headquarters.

Her fingers unfolded the note out of muscle memory it seemed, so many missions had passed by that these small notes from higher ups were nothing more than stale news for her. Sometimes it was good, sometimes bad, but it never caused her anymore excitement these days. Reading the note quickly, she let out a small sigh - her right hand would bend back with the note in her palm. For only a second it would remain there, the next it would be engulfed in flames and reduced to ash that blew away in the wind. Her charcoal eyes moved to the students - "It appears we are being summoned far earlier than expected. Your first lesson I suppose - expect anything. I'm going to assume you all have your necessary equipment....as it would be foolish to travel without it..." She trailed off as her hands reached down and adjusted the sash around her stomach - loosening the Kimono ever so slightly for her legs to have more room. "Lets go, we don't have much time to meet them".

Swiftly, she would run and jump to the Kazami Clan wall, bounding across the town until they hit the exit and would eventually leave Amegakure as a distant memory, for now. The team would travel at an alarming rate to rendevouz with the traveling merchants in time. As they traveled to the Ridge out West, Miyako would unveil that the traders felt a sense of urgency after hearing rumors of bandits being seen around the area. Instead of waiting around for them to nestle into the ridge and wait - the Team wanted to move quickly.

This was one of the few times that Miyako felt a sense of urgency herself, she now had three lives to look after instead of just her own. She wasn't with a team of skilled ninja who knew how to protect themselves and each other, she was working with well....children. Tree limb to tree limb the cell bounded forward to their first mission, Miyako was sure the three behind her were fueled with anxiety and excitement at the thought of this. She gave no apology at the sudden onslaught of the missions begining, it would be something that they would have to get used to. Being a shinobi meant nothing came timely or easily for this breed of beings. They always had to be ready for the worse outcome. Though, sometimes some things did have a happier ending than some would guess.





Late Afternoon - Sunset | Tsuki Ridge | Takashi@Tuujaimaa Metsumi@Terminal Akane@Anders




It would be within the hour that the team would meet up with the Traders, Miyako doing all the talking with the man that contracted them. "Thank you for trusting us to get you across the ridge safely, I'm very proud of these Genin and am sure of their abilities. I am Miyako - behind me are Takashi, Metsumi, and Akane," Her hand would move to each individual as she revealed their name. "Please, if you have any questions, or feel as though perhaps you have seen something. Feel no worry in calling out any of our names, though again, I am certain and confident in their abilities as well as mine". She gave a small bow, to which the man named Atsushi would give a grunt staring at the children, before turning around and facing his own fleet. They would be guiding two carriages drawn by mules, each possessing one driver - he being the second one. So only two people they had to look after, and ensure their safety to their end goal - but their lives were just as important as what was contained in the carts. Though Miyako could care less to ask, she was instructed and would do her job without further questions.

Turning on her heel, and folding her arms into her sleeves - she peered down at the students. "I am going to assume that from the theatre you all have no questions...since none were asked. This is a pretty simple mission. Yes, bandits have been spotted - but it is possible for us to slip by. I would like for Metsumi to be more towards the front of the caravans, Akane you will be on the right, Takashi the left side. I will walk behind to survey the area and take any attacks from the rear. I will also have a solid view of everything in case we have an attack from the front of either side that you three may miss. Please, do not feel discouraged. Remember, I am here..." Another warm smile was produced from her usual rigid demeanor. She then perked up, her eyes opening wide. "Oh no! I almost forgot!" Miyako exclaimed reaching into her bag and gifting three Omamari's, all carrying the same 'Luck' Totem inside of them. Holding the three in her hands towards the students, "Please! Take one, and tie it around your bag". Miyako cooed to the team. What came off as a small sentiment, was actually the start of them seeing first hand how superstitious she could be. She reached behind her on her bag and showed the two tattered ones that she carried, "These have been with me ever since the Academy..." - and as she trailed off into thought, Atsushi would signal for them to begin to move forward through the cloudy and rocky path towards their goal.

The first hour of the trip would yield nothing, the seemingly easy escort through the hazy ridge would put them ahead of schedule. The Team would have to help the traders pull the cart wheels out of holes in the road occasionally - as others stood by watching the treelines and mountains around them for any signs of movement. But so far, nothing. The sun was setting, and this set Miyako's stomach to churn a bit. As she did not like traveling after dark, again this would lead into her superstitious ways. Though, she refrained from piping up after the man told them they would be arriving soon - she would just pay for somewhere for the Team to stay instead of traveling through the night and possibly getting lost.

It would be a shriek from Miyako that would set the team onto high alert "Renga no Jutsu!" , her hands would clasp together and a wall of earth protruded from the ground behind the caravans. A small explosion could be heard on the other side, "Quickly, you three continue moving along....I will catch up shortly Miyako demanded of her Team. Swiftly jumping to the top of the 10 ft tall wall she had crafted and leaping down on the other side to face the enemy. Though, the young girl should have known better than to leave her team to move forward on their own...this could be a set up after all.....

Miyako would be dealing with her own battle, that ended quiet quickly unbeknownst to the team, as the Genin would deal with their own. The carts would move in a quicker motion as they all would with them, the Genin at this point having to make sure the Carts weren't getting stuck or bothered by any obstacles along the way. A clearing would open up ahead and Atsushi would proclaim that "Its just over that hill!, he pointed ahead to what seemed to be another mile stretch. But it was closer than expected, maybe a sigh of relief - but the battle was just beginning. The team would move forward, ensuring the carts of any relief needed - the thick haze around them and setting sun would create a scene maybe something similar to that of a horror movie.

As they continued forward with no sign of Miyako or enemies - in the mist before them a girl would unveil herself. She looked sweet enough, but something about her randomly being in this treacherous ridge alone should send the Genin into high alert. "Have you seen my brother? He might actually be looking for you guys....You all are so young....This is going to be easier than we thought!" She exclaimed, a wicked grin spreading across her face. Reaching into her bag, she produced two handfuls of Kunai - some with tags, some without. Throwing them towards the carts and Team it would be up to them to hopefully deflect the Kunai leaving no damage behind on the convoys. During this explosion, she would jump back into the mist, and flicker to Takashi's side "BOO!" She exclaimed and disappeared again, a shuriken flying forward at Takashi at an alarming rate would be noticed by her once the girl flickered away again. It would meet its fate with a kunai disabling its path towards Takashi and both would fall to the ground a mere few feet away from her. Miyako appearing again, her face held no warm or welcoming smile - surveying the area again. The female had now disappeared out of sight. They were using the fog around them for cover. Though Miyako felt uneasy about the situation, she refused to let her face show the slightest bit of worry she had.

A figure walked forward on Akane's side this time - the presumed brother the girl was talking about. The bottom of his staff smacked the ground a few times, before he wrapped an arm around it and leaned against it for support - "I'm not fond of taking the lives of children....but you have what I want". His tone held no remorse, no excitement, just dread and boredom - and slightly muffled from the mask he wore. He then swiftly flung the staff around a few times, rolling it down his arms and in the air in a performance style. If this hadn't been a fight - Miyako would probably applaud him for his fluid movements. But she had no compliments to give to those wanting to hurt her students.

The female appeared opposite to her brother - both of their demeanors were confident enough to take the Cell down, just the two of them. She was now armed with a katana and taking in her appearance you would notice she was riddled with Kunai, shuriken, and other miscellaneous weapons. One could maybe pull that she was strictly a bukijutsu user, probably close range. As of for the brother, it appeared for now - he was the same. But this would quickly change "Look...I can make this real easy...you give us the stuff...we kill you quickly....or you do the complete opposite and still meet your fates. Either way, one will be quick - the other I'll make you watch their deaths..." Quickly, he performed handsigns jumping back - releasing small fireballs towards the caravans and team - Miyako would combat these quickly with a large gust of air. Some of the fireballs diminishing, others falling short into the ground and smoldering away. His face hidden by the mask he wore would show no change in his emotion, but body demeanor showed his hand gripping his staff tightly. Immediately he would lurch forward to Miyako and the two would become intertwined in a close ranged battle via her metal fans and his staff.

The team was now left with the female, who watched her brother and Miyako fight on the otherside of the caravans. The two moving at an alarming rate - both combating fire against air and coming dangerously close to scathing the other. Miyako not once being slowed down by her Kimono as most would think. Miyako's goal was to keep him away from the children and hopefully take him down alone. For now it seemed the three might be able to ward off the female until Miyako was finished. If anyone from the team wasn't paying attention to the sister - this was her chance, and she took it. If a first move was made against her the female attacker dodged it effectively and continued to launch shuriken tagged and untagged in a frail ruse. "Lets see if you runts can really play..." Flickering towards Akane, his gut would be met with a her knee - only enough to really knock the air out of him and bring him to his knees momentarily. Clearly, she could've knocked him out in one swift move, but she was toying with them. She would then look to Metsumi - "C'mon, lets see if you can use that" Her Katana extended and pointed to his Tanto, her devious smile had never left her face. Only becoming more toothier as she played with them like cat and mouse. Looking over her shoulder she would call out to Takashi "You can try too scarf girl, two against one is nothing for me!"

The three were now left to figure out a way to combat the girl, keep her from the carts - and hopefully keep them mobile towards the end goal....

Hidden 8 mos ago Post by McHaggis
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McHaggis Spectrumized

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—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————
TIME OF DAY ▸ Late Morning
LOCATION ▸ Road to Kusagakure no Sato
INTERACTION ▸ Uragiri-sensei @Odin, Sakamoto Isami @Shizuochan, Kajiya Tatsuya @Raijinslayer
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Tsubasa brushed a hand through damp hair. It had been a miserable trek towards the border, and though she had kept up with relative ease (as she was no wilting flower of a kunoichi, all charm and no stamina), the sweat of exertion mixed with rain as it beaded on her forehead. Thankfully, there was an opportunity to rest once they reached a suitable spot. In the following period of observation, in which she was frozen like a statue at the base of the tree while waiting for something, anything to happen, a realisation suddenly struck her: the life of a ninja was one of sore limbs, stiff backs and complete and utter boredom.

Already she loved it more than the monotony of studying from textbooks by day and burning the candle at both ends to grind away at long, laborious courier jobs. Why couldn't she have been one of those prodigies who graduated early?

She looked up at Uragiri-sensei's sudden authoritative tone, and before she could mutter so much as a, 'Hai, sensei,' he was gone. Tsubasa was surprised by the fact that she was put in charge more so than she was by the violence of the foreign shinobi against non-combatants, which was just a drop in an ocean of brutalities gone unseen. Surprised, and troubled. Part of the reason why she loved the lessons where they got to fight practical opponents was that she didn't need to worry about anything but her own bruises, and often not even those. When the blood started thundering in her ears, it became difficult to think of those tactics that had been prepared ahead of time.

"They're at least jōnin. How are we meant to fight proper jōnin?" Tsubasa muttered as a pit settled at bottom of her stomach with the flavor of 'responsibility'. She shifted her weight from one leg to another as the Kusa-nin focused in on the encroaching threat who just breathed fire at them. Far above our paygrade. Had they been chuunin, it would have been a fairer fight, but in the absence of any advanced training in the week since they had graduated, or even any practice working together as a team––

Tsubasa shook her head, clearing it to better observe the two adversaries in the valley below. She was a genin now. Others were not to blame for any of her shortcomings, not even their strange teacher. Besides, the added danger of the mission might increase the rank of it, and by extension, the reward. All she had to do was think of the new wardrobe she could buy if they succeeded, and if they didn't succeed, she wouldn't be thinking of anything for much longer. Fear was for civilians.

One of the Kusa jōnin looked towards the hill they were situated on. Shit. Could they see them? Although their focus shifted back to the main threat, it unsettled Tsubasa more than the situation at hand did. Neither had attacked yet, but conflict seemed inevitable. A border dispute resolving peacefully was unlikely. They had history books in the Academy.

Tsubasa toyed with kunai in the pouch on her hip. As far as taking full advantage of their initial position once the fighting started, she was drawing a blank. Hers was more of a reactive style; she had no preemptive strikes in her arsenal beyond what was taught to all genin, which, quite frankly, was not much. Additionally, there was little time to come up with some semblance of a strategy. Time was in some kind of unnatural, in-between state, passing both too quickly for Tsubasa's liking and at such a slow speed that she could count each individual heartbeat that thundered in her ears. We have to distract one of them for as long as it takes for Uragiri-sensei to clean up went unspoken, or at least she hoped it did when Tatsuya charged in with some of her exploding tags. A flare of irritation followed, but now wasn't the time.

She turned to her bespectacled teammate who remained on the hill, a weapon specialist––or rather, generalist––hence the bow. "If we can just slow him down, or trap him..." she said, and departed from safety before waiting became loitering. She supposed there was no better way to find out if they were all compatible than in the thick of it.

In the valley, while Tatsuya was beginning a series of attacks from below, Tsubasa pushed through a short series of hand-seals. A patch of ground beneath her feet turned sodden, a dull pool of water reflecting the clouds, but she stepped over the trap, and crossed the gap between her and the jōnin with a flash of shuriken, an aborted charge and a quick hop backwards to avoid the exploding tags already in play.

She raised her fists. How long would any of them last versus this guy? Mind blank, she willed the opponent to focus on her rather than the more threatening, flashy members of her team and awaited an attack, any attack, to begin drawing him backwards. Though they may have squandered the element of surprise, and an opportunity like that did not often knock twice, the only thing that could be changed now was the outcome of this battle.
Hidden 8 mos ago 8 mos ago Post by Odin
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Odin You Were Born a Leader, No Crown or Throne Needed

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Location: Uragiri Clan Compound [Koi Breeding Pond] | Time: 9AM [9:12] | Theme: Boruto: the Movie OST - Spin and Burst | Interaction: Team 7 [Sakamoto Isami -- @Shizuochan, Shinjo Tsubasa -- @McHaggis, Kajiya Tatsuya -- @Raijinslayer


The incoming attack was aptly disarmed by Sakana, whose knives shimmered as they reflected the dull sun bursting momentarily through the rainy clouds. With the flash came the clang as his knife stopped the blade, but there was still the lurking danger of an incoming shinobi who had been preparing some jutsu. For a moment Sakana felt the rush of adrenaline surge before it made way for the realization that an almost whistling sound was now audible, coming from the hill behind. The Kusagakure shinobi that had been preparing the jutsu was now forced back, noticing the arrow coming in before Tatsuya even made his appearance. Obviously, the team of genin had underestimated the awareness of the two jonin - even something like a shuriken made a noise and could be dodged by a jonin. Then Tatsuya burst up, but his attack would be easily deflected, as the jonin simply jumped back even further.

Then came the secondary attack -- this time with real explosive tags. Paired with Tsubasa's shuriken thrown in his general direction, this would be a sure hit. Wouldn't it?

As the explosive tags went off, it was clear the shinobi had been caught in the blast -- in fact, he was basically standing right on the tags. Despite this, the shuriken that flew into the large cloud of debris and dust would be deflected, though it was unclear how. They simply flew back out of the cloud.

Rather than be worried about his companion, the jonin that was in a clinch with Sakana simply grinned at the young jonin, whose face was stern and serious. Then, the jonin jumped back, leaving Sakana standing near the cart with his team a short distance away from him.

The jonin caught in the cloud of dust slid backwards then, joining up with his companion. He definitely got hit by the explosive tags - but he had made no attempt to dodge them. The watchful eye would've noticed that he even stepped closer to them despite clearly seeing them. Smoke rose from his body, and a heavy burn mark was visible on his right eye that had not been there before. He had been hit and even took damage from it, but if the genin thought that a simple thing like an explosive tag would be enough to clear the job, they would be sorely mistaken.

The lead jonin, the one that had been fighting Sakana, dropped his fighting stance and gently pushed his katana into the soil, before crossing his arms. “I see. It was a ruse. You're not border-guards at all. You're just a sensei with a team of three useless genin. And you planned to take out my friend here in one go... then you could take me out. It's a good plan.. in theory.” The analysis was more or less a hundred percent correct, but the rather rag-tag execution of this plan made it all fall apart. It made sense -- they'd done no practice, no training, no synergized battle organization. They went into the fight, academy-style, and just did their best while trying to support each other. It's a shame that the real world didn't work like that.

Sakana glanced over at his three genin, who would no doubt be standing together. Now that the enemy had seen through the plan, there was no way they were winning this. His eyes trailed back to the two jonin in front of them, and as he looked at them, he realized they were severely outmatched. Fighting them on his own would be a hard fight, but not impossible, but if he had to watch these three genin at the same time, his attention would have to be too divided to properly do it.

The best bet here was to fall back, but the trader was still trying to get his carriage turned around, egging on an uncooperative donkey to keep moving. Leaving now meant the man would surely die. Though Sakana felt no real duty to help the man, he had to admit that leaving now would make this all useless. Besides.. he'd felt compelled to move earlier, so clearly the Sage had intended for him to. This was his fate. Perhaps his fate was to die here?

The jonin with his katana in the earth would suddenly for handseals, before leaning back and then moving his head forwards, exhaling a large fireball just like Sakana had done earlier. But, rather than aimed at him, the fireball was rushing towards his students. Relying on them to take care of the danger themselves was simply put not done, and so Sakana had no choice other than body-flicker to right in front of them, being forced to expend even more chakra simply to help his students. As he appeared, he rapidly formed handseals, before planting his two outstretched hands into the earth. “Doton! Earth Shelter!” he proclaimed, and within a few seconds two slabs of earth came out of the ground, forming a round, half-shelter around them, leaving the back open.

As the fireball impacted on the earthen shelter, the fire extended all the way behind them, simply arching over the earthen shelter. The lick of the heat would be all they could feel, luckily, as the actual flames came nowhere near them. But there was not much time to ponder that fact. “Jump back, now!” Sakana ordered, and where as his previous orders had been somewhat lacking in authoritative intonation, sounding more like a man that didn't really care, this time he was stern, and it would take some serious balls to stand up to him this time.

If it wasn't clear why they were moving back, the incoming footsteps paired with a screeching sound made it overly clear. Someone was using a raiton technique, and if his ears were correct, then the technique was the famous raikiri. Without a sharingan, that was a big risk, but if it hit it's target, it was one of the most devastating techniques possible, capable of ripping out entire pieces of a body.

The fireball had been merely a cover to set up the technique, no doubt used by the other man. With such a strong technique coming in, the genin would most likely expect their sensei to step back and evade the attack, but rather than doing that, Sakana simply stepped up from his crouched position, and stepped towards the incoming attack, which would no doubt come through the earthen shelter. Raiton was strong versus doton, after all. When the footsteps came awfully close, and the screeching of the raikiri burst through the earthen shelter, Sakana proclaimed his next technique. “Ura Shishō Fūin!”

Despite the relative obscurity of this sealing technique, the man performing the raikiri seemed to realize what it was, and his hand charged with electricity stopped mere inches from Sakana's chest. Had his hand reached any further, the seal would've activated with Sakana's death, likely killing him in the process. With the smoke from the previous fireball jutsu clearing up a little, Sakana could clearly see the face of the man in front of him, whose expression no longer had the arrogant and confident features from before, and instead, simply seemed unenthused by Sakana's sealing technique. Sakana, on the other hand, looked serious as ever.

With a fast movement, Sakana reached out and grabbed the man's arm, who's hand was still charged with raikiri, though it was fading at that point. Holding him in place, his team could hopefully capitalize. “Team 7! Go!” he yelled at his students, and if they had recognized the opportunity, could capitalize to deal with this threat -- hopefully for good.
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