Date: June 28th, 2010
Suzume is training in the Black Forest and for some reason…Ibaraki Renji has been looking for her.
"A chat in the Dark Forest"
Dark Forest of Kirigakure
A mucher darker area of Kirigakure is that of the Blood Marsh. Seldom used by even the fiercest shinobi of the Mist, the Black Forest is a spot where you don't tread lightly. Heck, even some Jounin steer clear of it, simply because of the number it can do on your mind! With various deadly plants scattered about, in addition to the shadows cast by giant trees, it's not a fun place to be lost in.
For some however, it's an oasis. A place for some to retreat and to harmonize with their inner self. The Swordsman known as Suzume has found this spot to be very promising, considering the great many secrets that she carries. It's a nice way to get in a good practice session with her complete skill-set without anyone seeing it.
And thus she stands, with her hair tied back to reveal her full face. Her form is a dizzying array of spins and flips, feet kicking hard up in the air, followed by the massive swing of Samehada. It's quite aerobic, and almost hypnotic as she twirls about…but not perfect. She lacks the finger points of finesse, trading it for brute force it seems. Likely done on purpose of course, giving way to her own fighting style.
A low wind blows throughout the Black Forest and in a blink of an eyes, Ibaraki Renji is found standing on a branch… one found high in a tall tree. The stunning sea-blue eyes of the Jounin stare down at the woman, watching her train for a moment…with a half-lidded and lazy expression on his face. A single hand-seal is formed and the mist about the village seemingly appears in the surrounding area, hiding his presence, though his voice does ring out through the thick fog now. "Usin' this place as a trainin' area, eh? It definitely is left alone by most of the village's population." A moment later and the shinobi is heard landing on the ground, allowing the mist to disappearing in one quick swipe of his hands before adding, "Why were ya watchin' that trainin' session yesterday, Suzume-san?"
With the mists shifting and a voice echoing out, Suzume finishes off her routine with a swingle, mighty swing of Samehada. Docking the bandaged blade along her back, having it sit a bit more horizontally than vertically, she ensures to face away from the Jounin as he lands down on the ground. With her right hand, she comes up to grab the hair-tie and pull it out. The girls pony-tail falls lifelessly, covering the right half of her face again. It's at this moment where she turns around, peering at Renji through her left eye.
"Why are you here?" She queries, sounding almost a bit surprised. Yet also dissapointed. She thought that this place was top secret! "And why not? Am I not allowed to watch the Genin try and beat you up? Hee. I was just in the area, really. I liked your technique. The one where you went into the ground. Just sucks about Meruin's spiders that got you. Damn, that kid is annoying, huh?" There's a frown. "You're Renji, right? Sorry. No good with names." She seems civil enough, at least.
"I figured a member of the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist would have somethin' better to do… than watch genin train." Renji shrugs, eyeing the female ninja… his attention moving from head to toe… as if checking her out. "I was wonderin' if ya were there to watch them or myself, but I got my answer just now," he idly states. When she mentions his name, a lazy nod is delivered and he answer, "Ibaraki Renji. He ain't that annoyin'. Doesn't bother me, but he does have potential. So does that girl…" If one thing is noticed, the Jounin is laid-back and lazy…so much that things do not bother him much… but if she has heard anything about him then she would know he is brutal and merciless on the battlefield as well.
"Like what?" Suzume muses to the figure in front of her. "What would you suggest I do? I've been ordered by the Mizukage to hold fast right now. Actually, I lie." She corrects herself, bringing a slim index finger to her chin. "…apparently stuff in Kumogakure is going our way, so I'm free to head on in and kill some ninja like I did last time. But I was just given that instruction recently." There's an earnest shrug on her behalf. "But that place is ages away, and it's full of mountains. Making the trip is difficult. Not to mention I may have to cross next to the Fire County. When I do that, I just can't help myself! Gotta sneak in and kill a few Uchiha." Her teeth grind a bit.
A frown appears on her face, head tilting. "…yeah, don't flatter yourself, big guy. I had my eye on Meruin and Sekisetsu more than you. But I like to get a good look at various techniques. And trust me, when he and his clan pokes and prods at your face with their spiders, it gets annoying. Ugh." She shudders at the thought.
"So what brings you here, anyway? Come to enjoy the cold environment? It's lovely, right?"
Renji quirks an eyebrow at the female, finding her attitude to be amusing and attractive…for some reason. "The Mizukage gave ya that mission? Who are ya bringin' along?" The Jounin now seems interested, definitely wanting to head to Kumogakure for a few reasons…one is to see the girl he is secretly dating…but part of him might want to cut thoses ties. "I came here lookin' for ya, Suzume-san…" His hands slide into the pockets of his hakama pants, a slouch occuring on his shoulders, and a deep yawn escapes his lips soon after. "Aaaaah….I wanted to know how ya became a member of that organization for one…and what I'd have to do to be invited," he answers.
"Bringing along?" Suzume questions, opening her mouth to laugh. "I'm not bringing along anyone. This is a solo voyage! Teaming with someone for that span of time sounds like an even worse fate than staying here for the rest of my life. Ha!" She smirks. "Mitsuo offered me some of his Death Hand guards as backup, but they'll just slow me down." As if reading his thoughts, her head tilts to the side as she looks down to the ground. "If you want in, it's not with me. You'll have to talk to the Mizukage directly for that stuff. Obviously we want our best and brightest on the field to do damage. So it's his call always." Arms fold loosely about her, her attention going back to Renji.
"You wanna become one of the Seven? Well, good luck with that." Seems this isn't the first time someone has come to her asking for this. As the most recent addition and thus junior member of the team, she gets this question a lot. How she joined, what she did, who she slept with (lul no not really!). All that jazz. "When a member of the Seven dies or retires, a new one gets picked. Not by the Mizukage though, although he does have some say in it. It's primarily up to the Damiyo of Water. If you're worthy, he'll pick you. It's sort of a… don't call us, we'll call you thing." A pause. "…but right now, we aren't hiring. Do you even have a sword of any sort?"
"I'll speak with the Mizukage then." Renji shrugs. "I want in on this mission. I have… business in Kumogakure," he explains. When she goes on to explain the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist, a smirk lifts on his lips and he begins to laugh in a very hearty manner. "Die or retire?" The laughter continues for a moment before dying down, adding, "Are ya sayin' I could kill one of the members and take their sword? Then become a part of the organization…I mean, that'd be the best way in my eyes. Survival of the fittest. If ya ain't strong enough to protect your position, then ya deserve to die." His sea-blue eyes dangerously shine for a moment, though his attention snaps back to her when she asks about a sword, causing him to quirk an eyebrow for a moment. "What's that on my back? It's a chigatana."
"It better be slaying the Raikage or one of their ninja." Suzume intones seriously. "If you have any other sort of 'business' in that place then you're in trouble. But! I have no reason to doubt you. As a Jounin, you surely can't be stupid." At his proposition, her eye lights up a little.
"…ha! I guess you could do that, for sure. I'm not sure how the Water Damiyo would react to one of his chosen being slaughtered within the village of Kirigakure though. Remember, he isn't bloodthirsty like the Mizukage. He's actually quite sane. The Swordsman exist to partly watch over the village and ensure that Mitsuo is doing the right thing. If he's not, then we can throw him out. What you suggest sounds like a sure way to get in if it were up to the Mizukage. The Water Damiyo, though? I dunno." She pauses a little bit, "…to be honest, it's never happened. Most of the Swordsman are at a level so high above even Jounin that you guys wouldn't have a chance. It'd be suicide. Why do you want to get into the Seven anyway?"
"I am a tool of destruction, Suzume-san. What other business would I have on the battlefield?" Renji smirks, but soon after he yawns, quite bored…since he is not tearing someone apart. "That's a shame. I knew the Water Damiyo and Mizukage didn't see eye to eye all the time… Oh well." He shrugs his shoulders, looking up toward the clouds that are somewhat covered by the canopies of the trees within the Dark Forest. "The question is why wouldn't I want to be part of the Seven? I've all but reached the pinnacle of advancement in this village, but I could grow even stronger and see even more action if I joined ya within their ranks…" This is explained, the tone of his voice excited and somewhat lazy at the same time, though he adds in a quiet voice soon after, "…Plus…I've heard of a rumored sword that I would like to wield for myself. It has the same shape as the one strapped to my back, but…it is completely different at the same time." His head lowers, the eyes of the Jounin back on the female along with a somewhat charming, yet sadistic smirk on his lips.
"Right." Suzume intones, lifting a hand to scratch her head. "You're welcome to search and get this sword if you like. No-one is stopping you. But just because you have a fancy sword doesn't mean you're one of us." Turning about, she begins to suddenly stride away. "It's all politics when you become one of us. You would likely see more action as a Jounin than as one of the Seven. But I won't hamper your dreams. If you're good enough, you'll be picked. When that is, I have no idea." And just like this, she's gone amoungst the shadows—having exited the scene. Had somewhere to go? Who knows!
Renji listens to what has to be said, and as she disappears into the shadows…he too disappears from sight…most likely heading toward the Mizukage's office to discuss things.