Date: Unknown (log received January 6, 2015)
"A Break in Prison"
Having escourted Kaido and Hige back to Konoha to face judgement from the Inuzuka clan, Hiei had been hanging around the village since the charges the two faced have been officially announced. His personal feelings conflicted with his duty. He knew that once Kaido talked about desertion that his fate would be sealed. Perhaps Taiki would show the shinobi mercy, but Hiei knew that being a Clan Head was difficult under normal circumstances and he sympathizes with the Inuzuka Alpha, silently glad that he never had to deal with something like this during his stint as Head of the Yotsuki clan. He had asked to visit the two Inuzuka, going through the proper channels to do so. He was clad in his shinobi gear, complete with duster and weapons, though he willingly offered his weapons to security when showing up to the jail to show that he had no plans of interfering with their internal matter. He just wanted to make sure that the two were alright.
Hiei had yet to speak to Taiki or Daisuke about the situation, but made it known to both that he was available to talk should they want to. As he moves into the complex where they're being held, he waits patiently to be allowed to see them.
It hadn't exactly been the best of times just hanging out in a cell but then what choice do you have? Hige is sitting on his bedroll, leaning against the wall and looking up and out the bars, about the extent of any kind of activity he can have. When the guards inform the boy that they have a visitor he pushes himself to his feet silently wondering who would be visiting. Unless it was the guards way of informing them that the Elders were coming to chat. When he sees Hiei the boy blinks in surprise, "Hiei-sama." He says with a small respectful vow. It's followed quickly by, "What are you doing here?" Like, visiting. He really hadn't expected anyone to come down, especially the Raikage.
Michiko is accompanying Hiei. Not because she has to, but because she wants to. And she has no weapons on her, though she has promised not to use any jutsu while visiting. And so OOC Hiei knows, they were likely going to meet up with Taiki and whoever once Taiki has his own meeting with his council. She may grumble just a bit about the lengthy procedure to get to the Inuzuka, but she knows it's needed. And, of course, the girl keeps her grievances to herself. "Hiei-San isn't the only one here, you know," she says, stepping out of the giant's shadow. She's still a pipsqueak compared to him.
Kaido himself knows just how deep he's in, he knows he's going down, as long as he can make sure Hige is taken care of and cleared then his execution will be worth it. That said, he does have a plan, he's going to need to Raikage's help to pull it off, provided he'll go for it. If not, then he'll give it his best shot on his own. When informed that the two have visitors, Kaido looks up and says, "Hiei, Michiko… good to see you." He has the look of a man who's awaiting final judgement and knows what it's likely going to be.
Hiei glances over at Michiko as she moves to stand beside him. The girl comes up to around his waist, their size difference isn't that noticeable unless they're side by side. He clasps his hands behind his back and offers a nod in return to the two leaf shinobi. "Kaido. Hige. I wanted to come see how you were holding up." He pauses and looks around. "I know the Inuzuka clan well enough to know that they wouldn't be mistreating you, but still. I know this can't be easy for either of you." He stares at Kaido for a long moment, looking at his body language and spends another moment looking into his eyes. He had the eyes of a man who has been defeated. Hiei had that same look the last time he faced down Yuuma. His pride had been destroyed and it took awhile for him to get his confidence back. He clears his throat. "I don't think that your death is assured, Kaido. I suggest you be open and honest with your clan head. Tell him you made a mistake. Spend the rest of your life serving your clan and attempting to prove your loyalty. That is the only option I see that would allow you to live." He looks off to the side, speaking as though it's from personal experience. "Sometimes, in order to be successful, we have to give up the things we want the most."
Another look of surprise as Michiko pops out of the shadow of Hiei. "Michi-chan," he actually smiles when he sees her. "Glad you came to visit." When Hiei speaks the boy steps closer to the entrace of his cell so he can make himself more easily seen since the two Inuzuka aren't exactly /in/ in the same cell. While he doesn't look like his world is ending, there is no hiding his concern in general. And fear, an emotion not usually seen on him since his fear is usually consumed by his anger. The boy says nothing more for now as he isn't going to interrupt the Raikage talking to Kaido.
Michiko is likely by Hiei's side, so the height difference is quite noticeable. The girl has nothing to add to Hiei's statement. It was the truth. Keeping your head down when it's needed is important. And maybe someday Kaido and Hige can visit Kumo again if they're cooperative.
Kaido simply smiles at Hiei sadly and says, "The problem is, if I do that, then neither I nor Hige will ever be trusted again, nor allowed to leave the village. Hige doesn't deserve that, he had no knowledge of my intentions or actions, but that's not going to convince the vast majority of the Clan if I turn around and say "My bad, I've reconsidered wanting to be a Kumo-nin."" He looks down for a moment, and then eyes hardening, looks back up, "I do however… have a plan, but I'm going to need your help for it, if you'll give me it… And no, I'm not going to ask you to break me out of here. It's something else." He leans against the bars, "There's an obscure, hardly ever used part of our clan's code that states that a member of the Inuzuka clan may, in order to prove his innocence, choose trial by combat against whoever the Clan Head chooses as his champion. If I win, then the clan lets me go, removing my name from it's records as if I've never been born. If I lose… well, I'll be dead anyways."
Hiei frowns. "Stow that talk, soldier. You're speaking as if you've already given up. I thought you were made of sterner stuff, Kaido?" Hiei shakes his head slowly. "That's not the man I've come to know at all. Though you have gained my respect by coming back here and facing your fate instead of running like a coward. I knew a man once…" He sighs. "…instead of working out his issues with the Raikage, he ran from the village to become a missing Nin. I have one of my best out hunting him as we speak. I can't promise that I won't string him up by his feet once he's returned to Kumo." He waves a hand. "But that's not the point. The point is, Taiki is a fair man. People speak highly of him. If I were in your position, I would invoke the trial by combat. I would rather die by my superiors hand, than rot in a cell for the rest of my life."
Hige features tighten into a grimace as he hears Kaido's plan. It's not to the boys liking very much at all. There's that chance of death which tends to foreshadow the good and Hige has had enough death in his young life. Though more is likely to come the way things are looking. He just thinks this is a stupid reason for it. But true to form he says nothing, though he does turn away from the bars and walk to the back of his cell, closing his eyes and resting his forehead against the wall so his face is hidden. Just stupid…
Kaido simply smiles, "Oh I'm not giving up… I'm planning on winning, but to do so… I need your help. I need you to spar Taiki and try to draw out what his skills and jutsus are, and then let me know what they are. I'll need to come up with a strategy to overcome them. That's the only way I'll be able to succeed." He looks at Hiei and says, "Will you do this for me, as a friend and comrade who's helped you and Kumo?"
Hiei thinks about it. Kaido is a good strategist. So good that he asked him to plan the attack on the yakuza compound back in the Land of Lightning. Hiei exhales slowly. "I will do this. But I see a couple of flaws in this plan. Once, suppose Taiki doesn't fight you himself, but instead names a champion? And second, if I do spar him or whomever he names.." He points to the bars. "How do you plan on getting out to watch it?"
Hige listens to the conversation as it continues, unmoving. It might be a good plan but he still doesn't like it. There's too much risk for his liking. With Kaido fighting someone, whether or not it be Taiki, there is risk of death to his mentor and what about the person he goes against? If the risk of death goes one way then it goes the other. Is this really something to do when a war is about to start? But Hige is the silent one and doesn't voice his opinion. What would it matter with two far above him in skill and knowledge anyways no one would listen.
Kaido shrugs, "I never said it was a perfect plan, it's just the best I got, a lot is going to depend on circumstances. I'm almost a hundred percent positive that Taiki will fight me himself, it's a matter of honor for him. He thinks I'm a dishonorable and traitorous coward. It would make him look bad and weak if he didn't fight me himself." He takes a breath, "Since I'm the challenger, I'm going to ask for a month to be able to train, during that time… that's when you spar him. I'm also going to ask that it be held in the arena and invite all of Konoha to observe." He smiles a bit, "That's as far as I've got so far… I'm working on the rest as I go along. A lot is going to be based on Taiki himself, how he acts and reacts when he comes with Atsuro to question me and Hige before the trial. It may be that I'll be able to convince him to drop everything. That's my backup plan at least.
Hiei crosses his arms over his chest. "You may not have a month. War is coming to the hidden villages. We should be focused completely on fighting the Silence. Kaido, I'll say this flat out. I am reluctant to involve myself in an internal matter. I will not do anything that might damage the relationship between Kumogakure and Konohagakure. No one person is worth that." He pauses. "That being said, if Taiki goes for it, then I will attempt to do as you ask. However, if he forbids such a thing, I will abide by his decision. I am a guest here and I have no power. I must respect the Inuzuka ways. I hope you understand that." He runs a hand through his white hair. "I will hope for the best, though."
Still silent, Hige is at least glad to hear that Hiei has some sense with what else is going on. The boy may not be the smartest but he knows that when it comes down to current circumstances the impending war is likely to take precedence. The boy lifts his head from the back wall and walks to the back corner closest to Kaido's cell before sitting and drawing his knees to his chest, laying his forehead on his knees as he only continues to listen. From here it's unlikely he can really be seen unless someone walks over to his cell. Which is kind of what he wants since the fear and concern he feels has tripled with Kaido's plan and he's barely holding himself together.
Michiko blinks at Kaido's plan. She's been silent for the most part, though occasionally glancing Hige's way to make sure he's alright. The girl peers at Kaido. "I know a bit of Taiki-sama's abilities. Obviously not all of them, considering he was severely wounded when he used them. But…. Well, I might be able to help a bit. And if it's someone else, then…" She shrugs, but doesn't look hopeless. Maybe the crazy plan will work. And maybe it'll fail horribly.
Kaido simply nods and says to Hiei saying they should be focused completely on fighting the Silence, "That's what I'm counting on…" Maybe he does really have a plan that will work, but again, it's a plan that hinges on a lot of things going his way. Which is why he's working on several other plans at the same time. He does say however, "If not, then I said back in Kumo, it's been an honor serving with you, you've been a very good friend and I can't ask for anything more." He offers his chakra bound shackled hand through the bars, "Whatever happens, it was worth it." Privately though, his plan really hinges on Taiki accepting the combat challenge and letting him have some time to train and then hoping the Silence attack which would allow him to fight to protect Konoha, thereby proving that he isn't a traitor.
Hiei reaches his hand through the bars, grasping Kaido's forearm in a warrior's grip. "The same. I wish you had taken my advice and left well enough alone." He sighs heavily. "Don't worry so much about Hige. I'm confident that his part in this will be forgiven." Releasing Kaido, he moves over to Hige's cell. "I can see the worry in your face about your sensei's fate. Hold up your head young shinobi. If Kaido's destiny is to die at the hands of your Alpha, then you should celebrate the fact that he died as he lived. As a shinobi. There is no dishonor in that. It should make you proud." He looks back over at Kaido before looking Hige. "How are Bandit and Konsho holding up. Are they being held in a separate facility?"
It's not until Hiei says it that Hige raises his head slightly from his knees. It's enough to see that his cheeks are a little wet from tears he's fighting like a crazy boy to hold back. "Death is nothing to be proud of," the boy practically growls, using the anger to try and cover his other emotions much as he normally does. And if Kaido loses what would the boys fate be anyways? That's not really on the kids mind however. He wipes at his cheeks with a sleeve, "I don't know, they haven't let me see him." Just something /else/ he's fairly well worried and freaked out about. Sure he knows that his companion is being treated okay but he hasn't been away from him for this long ever.
Kaido pulls his hands back and says to Hiei, "They're in a secured kennel in the opposite side of the building. Bandit's probably making sure Konsho's ok, and the Inuzuka aren't going to do anything to our nin-ken until they decide on our fate so they should be fine." He then says to Hige, "Don't worry, I'm not that easy to kill, besides, I do have a plan and I'm pretty sure it's going to work… there IS a method to what the Raikage and Michiko thinks is my madness at not leaving well enough alone." Yeah, that sounds really good, but again, a lot of what he's planning relies on perfect timing and being able to read certain people and situations perfectly and for them to do what he expects them too.
Hiei hmms and then nods. "Forgive me, Hige. That's probably not the way you were raised. But in my family the highest honor is to die for your village. Or die in combat against a worthy opponent." He nods at Kaido. "I'm sure your partners are fine. Though your plan is..well..actually well thought out, it hinges on Taiki being a proud man. I don't know him well enough to comment on that or not. The only Inuzuka I've ever fought was Atsuro…and he was NOT an easy opponent. And he was going easy on me at the time." He looks over at Michiko. "What do you think his chances are?"
"Hmm… If Taiki-sama doesn't go all out, the chances are much higher. And of course, it also depends on how much stronger you get within the time frame. At your current level, you obviously have a very low chance. Ten percent at best. Three percent is more likely. And this is assuming an all-out fight. I suggest hoping that Taiki-sama underestimates you," Michiko says, frowning a bit. "And don't forget that he has two Nin-ken at his back." This was more thought-out than Kaido's last plan, though, so there's better chances.
Hige shakes his head at Hiei. "No, death is a stupid choice. Sure, you die defending your clan or your village that's at least a better reason. It's still not good." He hears Kaido's words, but then hears Michiko's assessment and the boy closes his eyes again trying his best to force all of his emotions back. He shouldn't even be talking to Hiei that way but there's too much there for it all to be held in and so the anger is the one that he lets make it's appearance. But as he knew the others wouldn't listen to his words anyways except try to dismiss them. At least Konsho is likely okay, that's about all he has to look forward to at this point. "It's stupid." The boy mutters into his knees as his head goes down again. The whole situation is just bad.
Kaido just shakes his head and smiles, "That's why I hope you'll help me train Michiko, he's a water user, which isn't much different from earth in only that he has to have ready access to water. I also need you to see if you can't get me my notebook from my gear… it has all my notes on Taiki and I'll need to study it as best I can." He then turns to the wall where Hige is, "In the worst case scenario… I want you to have my notebook… it contains all my training methods, my philosphy and all my notes I've ever written. They include sketches, maps, diagrams and as much information on any and every nin from the five villages I've ever come across. I want you to have it, if I fall."
Hiei understands that Hige is emotional. It's mostly why he doesn't take offense to him calling his family mantra stupid. He's scared. Hiei could almost smell it on him. Instead, Hiei attempts to keep him talking. "Alright. So it's stupid. What would you suggest? You have my attention, Hige." Hiei then smirks towards Kaido. "The infamous notebook. I do believe I am also an entry in that book, if I'm not mistaken." It'd be accurate though, not complete. It's rare for Hiei to show his full strength during training, or even most of his techniques. Though is fighting tactics would be well documented.
"Well, so long as you don't use fire, you'll be gold. Earth jutsu might help you, I think, and then… Hmm… I have a feeling Taiki-sama would use fire at some point, no? A member of the Land of Fire, after all." Elements tend to line up with origin. A few cases they don't, but usually they do. Michiko listens curiously, tilting her head. "Hmm… Now I wonder what you have on me, Kaido-san. But that's another conversation."
Kaido's notes. No, that was crazy. He wouldn't need to take those because they were Kaido's and Hige will find someway to make it all work out so nobody dies. He's just not sure how. "No, those are yours. You'll still need them for a long time." Hige says, his voice carrying shakily from one cell to the other. As for Hiei's question, well…it's a good question. "I…don't know." He admits. "There has to be a way to talk to the Elders and make them understand…with everything that might happen soon this isn't the right time for something like this. Not for inner battles if there's a war coming. There has to be a way." It has got him thinking, and his head is raised a little. Baby steps.
Kaido tosses off a salute and says, "Of course, a lot of it is mostly conjecture, and from what I've observed of you when you've trained and how you fought The Crow." He says simply, "I take nothing for granted, any nin could one day be an opponent, even a friend or ally. The person with the most information and ability to utilize that information can beat anyone. I truly believe that, it's been my philosophy since I started being a nin, and I've seen nothing up until this point to dispute it." He settles back down on his bedroll and continues, this is mostly for Hige's benefit, training him as fast as he can "Every single technique can easily be broken down in the 4 things we learn as a Student in the Academy, Chakra Control, Taijutsu, Ninjutsu and Genjutsu… everything else is a variation or enhancement on those 4 things. If you can understand the theory of a technique, you can beat it, because every technique has it's strengths and weaknesses, even a technique that is S-ranked." He leans back against the wall, "Most nins never learn more then rudimentary strategy and tactics, they rely on using their most effective and strongest attacks to overwhelm. It's also extremely wasteful of stamina and chakra. It's why I use the minimum amount of chakra and stamina and stick to as basic attacks as I can. I also aim for a long battle, because in my experience, the longer it goes, the more it benefits me as I conserve my stamina." He looks over at Michiko and quirks a smile, "Wouldn't you like to know?"
Hiei nods to Hige. "I would think so, too. But I know clan Elders can be short-sighted. I know mine are. Did you know they contested me becoming Clan Head? They thought I was too young, even though I had the experience." He shakes his head. "At any rate, wasting time speculating what /might/ happen is a waste. Nothing wrong with planning, of course, but don't stress yourself out by imagining the worst possible scenario. You'll defeat yourself before you even begin."
"What Kaido says holds a ring of truth. Though his style of fighting differs from my own, it is no less effective. Whereas he wants to drag his fight out, I like to finish mine in a decisive way. With a dangerous enemy, I seek to end them period, and wipe them from the face of the earth." Hiei's eyes go dark briefly. "Such is the fate of the Silence."
"Well, of course I'd like to know. I'm not asking for your plans to defeat me, but I /do/ want to know what you see me as, in terms of ability." It was always nice to know what people viewed your strengths and weaknesses as. Michiko offers a shrug to Kaido. And by the sounds of it, they use similar tactics. When she isn't being impatient and wanting to finish things quickly… Like, for example, on D-ranked missions. Those can get tedious… She can't help but look a bit skeptical when Hiei talks about the Silence. "Because that worked so well last time, Hiei-san." Her voice is calm when she says it, not a joking tone to it. Perhaps slightly sarcastic, though…
Hige listens to all that's said, not saying anything at all for the duration. Although as first Kaido, then Hiei speak on rather important learning things he does raise his head again. When all is said and done he does look thoughtful, but it's still overshadowed by his other emotions. "Everyone has their own way. Just depends on how you are." It makes sense really. He looks over at Hiei when the Raikage mentions the silence and his hands clench briefly. That's where their concern should be in his mind. Not with all of…this. But he not only has no say, he's the lowest ranking little punk around. "Then we shouldn't worry about Kaido having to fight. We haven't even talked to the Elders yet."
Kaido smiles, he's proud of his teammate and student, the boy is starting to learn, he'll go far someday. He chuckles to Michiko, "Well, truthfully I see you as a mirror to me, except that you're more focused on using elemental attacks rather than poison and traps like I do." He says to Hige then, "It'll be fine, you just relax and don't worry, I do have a plan and it will work." But again, that plan depends on Taiki accepting his challenge, giving him the time he needs and for the Silence to attack, allowing him to come to the defense of the village, thereby proving his innocence in wanting to commit treason and insurrection by leaving the clan for Kumo.
Hiei comments almost immediately towards Michiko. "I seem to remember someone hiding inside of an earth dome last time too, but I don't suspect that will be happening again, will it?" His voice is devoid of emotion as he speaks, before he turns back to the leaf shinobi. To Hige, he comments, "True. But at the same time I can't blame Kaido for trying to come up with backup plans. It's in his nature, and it's one of his strongest assets. You play to your strengths, afterall." He doesn't comment on Kaido's plan. There were too many unknown variables in it for his taste. But he did mean what he said. If anyone was going to figure a way out of this, it'd be Kaido. Hiei rolls his shoulder before looking over towards the guards. "Michiko, I think our visiting time is up. Kaido, Hige, I wish you luck with the Elders. I will speak on your behalf if my opinon is asked. Let's go, Michiko." He then turns to walk out of the compound.
Michiko says, smoothly and without hesitance, "I did all that I could during the battle. And there's no point in me advancing far considering the brothers thrive on chakra users." She eyes Hiei. "Of course, I'll be working to last a bit longer so I can cause more damage. Dragging zombies back into the ground is difficult, though." To Kaido, she says, "I hope this all works out. And it's unfortunate this issue arose now, of all times…" Because there's going to be an attack on their doorstep any day now, likely… She offers a slight now to both Inuzuka. "I'll try and visit again, Hige-kun. Kaido-san. Please try not to get too down." With that, she follows after the Yotsuki.
"It better," Hige responds to Kaido after taking a deep breath to help calm himself down some. "Because if you do something else stupid I might kill you myself." That death is, apparently, acceptable. He glances back to the entrance when the two others leave and he offers them each a nod in silent farewell.
Kaido just chuckles and waves to Hiei and Michiko and says to Hige, "If that happens, you're welcome to do so…"