Date: March 27, 2013
Ataru and Satomi get send out to extract and protect a gambling addicted kid in trouble. Him being forced to participate in a tournament hosted by the man he owes money too.
"A fighting chance Part 1"
Land of fire
Ataru gets brutally awoken early in the morning (must be like 6am) by Satomi knocking on his door. "Wake-up.." Says her voice, knocking a couple more times… Now that's a sight… A Nara who's up at six AM. "We're up.." Says Satomi the moment she gets a sign of life, holding a scroll. "Two man mission, we're headed for a more metropolitain area of the land of fire." She explains, while simply entering his place (or where-ever she should find him at this time) without even requesting access. "We're to bust a criminal who hosts illegal fighting tournaments."
She explains, while leaning back against a wall, yawning. "We're going undercover, and since you're the Taijutsu specialist." She explains, grinning. "You'll be the fighter, and I'll be your manager!" She explains, handing him the scroll with the mission outline. "They asked me to run this mission because the enemy will likely be cheating. And if there's anyone who's smart enough to spot it, it would be me." She spares no expense on her cockyness, actually kind of proud she has received this mission, especially since confrontation is nearly inevitable. "When can you be ready?" She asks him. "The client is the father of one of the participants. The participants are forced to fight to the death, we're to get his son out alive. A bonus if we can put a stop to this whole thing. But not mission-critical."
She's glancing at Ataru with a slight interest. She had protested against working together with him, she's impressed by his combat ability but she's far too conservative. Not one to jump into things the way he does. "Well you'll just need to learn to deal with that, you're a team leader." The secratery of the Kage explained, sending Satomi off furrowing.
A hammering on his apartment door had Ataru groggily sitting up. He had shorts on, but his entire body, chest, arms, legs, everything from neck down was a mass of scars. Nasty and deep ones. Front and back. The scars that he's shown on his arms now and then by taking his coat off did nothing to truly hint at how badly he's been hurt and mended. He'd blink as Satomi just walks in his place. The walls actually have maps of different countries on them, marks on them showing points of mafia foci. Dumbly, Ataru would take the scroll, looking at it for a moment, before finally getting an idea to move his mouth.
Ok, so Ataru wasn't exactly the most coherent when he was woken up early in the morning. Generally he is up only a little bit later then now, but it's still hard for him to wake up hard it seems. Something finally registered in his head that it was Satomi in his room, he'd immediately grab his sheet and pull it up to cover his body.
"EEEEeee! Hey! Get out! I'll be out witcha in a second! GO!" He'd scoot into another room off to the side, slamming the door behind him. Sighing in there, he'd shake his head and start getting dressed.
Satomi giggles softly while he scurries away. She finds those reactions utterly amuzing. "Like you look any different at the beach." She says gingerly, glancing around the room a bit, pondering on his scars. She didn't flinch, she's seen worse. But it was something that caught her eyes, it's not a common occurence for Konoha nin to be scarred so bad. "What are all these maps?"
Satomi says, walking up to them slowly, eyes scanning them curiously… Another reason why she commited her little home invasion. She often finds that homes tell you a lot about a certain person. "You'll need to show some restraint. The criminal does't allow Shinobi into his fights for a reason. He wants them to be long, bloody and amateuristic." She says, glaring at the door he was behind. "And more importantly, we need to avoid hurting anyone."
She adds, glancing back at the maps, her mind starting to work the pieces of the puzzle. "Okay either you're going on a fabulous shopping spree, or I'm looking at a map of popular places to set up in as a criminal." She grins, waiting for Ataru to respond.
Ataru comes out of the room, dressed, with his normal outfit and that red coat. Tugging the glove into place, he'd give a small nod. "The mafia hunt me.. and I dun go swimmin at the beach.. fer a reason." Walking over to the fridge, he'd search inside it for a moment, getting some food to eat and wolfing it down real fast. "The maps are known mafia locations. relative strength per number of pins.. as well as potential ways ta hit em where it hurts.. I got three families after me.. well.. three main families. I'm sure there's lesser groups wantin ta take me down.." He'd eat the last of his food, Ataru looking at Satomi. "As fer lookin like a shinobi.. ya gotta realize.. I've been a brawler a lot more time then anythin close ta shinobi.. I dun look like one.. and ifn I dun bring my headband with me.. I'll just be a 'nother fighter.. so dun worry about that." He'd put his headband on top of the fridge, walking over to a closet to pull out a brown over coat, flipping it out to wrap about him, hiding most of his figure in the layer of cloth. A wide brim straw hat was next taken out, settled onto his head so that he could see out the thinner wrap of the top, but his face was almost impossible to see.
"You look convincing." She says, while tugging her bag over her shoulder. "You should tell me about those mafia's on the way to the city…" She says, while exitting his house. "Ever considered asking the Kage for help? If not, would you take mine?" She asks him, her voice is sincere. Her motives however, quite unclear. "Why are they after you anyways?" She asks, turning around to let him catch up, before walking to the edge of the village, hands in her pockets to shield her body, mainly her arms from the cold morning wind.
Once they reach the gate things are a little different. She sits down on a tree-stump and slows down significantly. Carefully checking all her equipment. "I think we're complete." She says, while looking at Ataru, waiting for him to check his equipment, crossing her arms even if he doesn't. "There's something you should know." She says, while crossing her arms. "These kids fighting these tournaments. Gamblers, petty criminals who stole from the wrong guy.
All of them are in debt or in trouble one way, and by the end of the day, half of their bodies get dumped somewhere, forgotten about. Like trash. Now I realize you have a history in this circuits, I want to be certain that you can keep your emotions out of it. We have a mission, we'll try to help more people, but if we can't. One thing is mission critical… the rest…" She pauses, she finds these things far harder than a lot of team leaders she has met, almost mumbling. "Collateral damage." She whispers, looking away, it's clear that she's quite literally ashamed of herself for saying it. "Lets go."
"Now ya know what the mafia wants me fer.. now ya know why I'm so messed up.." Ataru would put his own hands in his pockets. "I got suckered inta a gamblin hall.. and once I lost it all I was in debt.. I started workin fer em.. small stuff.. til I figured out they were bad.. then I tried ta run.." He'd pause at the front gate, waiting for her to check her stuff with a calm look through that hat. "I got away.. I defied the family and lived. I'm an afront ta their rep and they want me dead fer it.. So.. I hit em first.." Ataru shakes his head as he'd start walking once she was ready to go. "As fer collateral damage.. well.. it's the mafia.. or one a the sub families I'm sure.. it sucks.. but it happens.. the mission is ta save the one kid, end the whole mess ifn possible.. Trust me.. it's possible."
"But if it's not doable while discrete you won't do it at all without my go-ahead… got it?" She says, in a more firm tone than he ever heard her use. Regardless, she gets up, smiling. "The city is about two days walking, figuring they won't pit you against the stronger opponents at first, I thought it would be a good idea to somewhat tire you. It's hard to fake being weaker than you are, so it's a start." She says, while grinning. "That and I'm lazy." She adds, while taking a small sprint, jumping onto Ataru's back. "So you're carrying me from now on…Unless you want to protest?"
She's kind of light, far lighter than the boulders he usually carries. Satomi seems to have no trouble balancing comfortably, she spend most of her youth sleeping in trees, so balance comes naturally to her. "If you're ready then lets go!" She says, while grabbing a map, holding it out in front of them, leaning over her shoulder. Pointing at a city north of their location. "Right…there." She says, then pointing down the road.
Ataru would pause for a moment. Kyouki screamed in his head. He'd take a slow breath and let it out. "We'll see.. It'll also be based on my own judgement of the situation at the time it's happenin. I ain't gonna jepordize what we're there fer.. eh?" That at least got Kyouki to calm down to a dark mutter. He'd chuckle then, shaking his head slightly. "I know how ta hold back.. I did with you, afterall, huh? I won't break no one.. other than mebbe the guy runnin the whole thing.." Ataru would shift his feet as she jumped on his back, looking at the map. "We'll get there in a day. And.. ya ain't heavy enough ta tire me out, Satomi. That simple.. Now.. hold on.." Not that he was trying to get fresh, Ataru would reach back, grabbing onto her on his back and take off running. With her on his back, he'd go full tilt along that road, giving Satomi a true sense of his speed. There was a reason why he could do the run from Kadomi to Konoha in under 13 minutes. Ataru was fast. Even running as he was, it'd take a little while, but this was rather close to that body flicker ability that most people could do with ninjutsu.. he simply just ran that fast.
"Well it means I can sleep regardless, she'd yelp for a moment as he speeds off, actually having to hold on. "Okay faster than I expected." She says, while he rushes ahead. It takes her a couple of minutes to get used to the curves, but her muscles begin tensing and stablizing her steadily, at one point enough for her to close her eyes and doze off… yes, she's truely that lazy. Though she herself doesn't care to admit it. "You know, I should bring you along more often." She says, followed by a light giggle, apperently trusting his sense of direction completely.
The road there doesn't pose any resistance, and it would indeed take them nearly a day to get there. "You going to run through the night?" She asks him, while twelve hours passed and it's starting to get dark. "I mapped out two days for this, so we can camp out if you like… don't want to tire you too much." She says, already utterly impressed by his stamina.
Ataru wasn't even breathing hard. While yes, fast, he wasn't pushing himself at top end it seems, simply just a blur to most people, things like sharingan would keep up to him. Chuckling, he'd glance back at her with a shrug. "ifn I don't, ya gonna keep droolin on my shoulder?" He'd flash a grin that was only half-seen under the hat, before a nod was given. "We'll stop. THere's a camp spot up ahead, we'll use that, since we ain't shinobi. 'bout another 10 minutes run." Breathing and talking while running would actually wear him down a little, small huffs taken to get himself back into that proper rythem for running. It was indeed about 10 minutes that he'd finally start slowing down, dropping to a walk as they approached the spot he had. "A'right.. rides closed fer the night. Hop off."
"Thank you." She says, while hopping off of him, stretching a little herself. "Running all the way from the village to here, I mean I can do it no problem. But by now I would have been at least a little beat." She says, while glancing up into the sky. "It's going to stay dry tonight." She says, deciding not to roll out the camping equipment. "And don't ask how I know, because I just know." She says, it's more of a calculation than a hunch. Animals, patterns… how the sky looks, how the wind sways and all of them calculated in with previous patterns of camping out in her life. That equation added up with variables run through her subconsious mind. She has no clue that she even does it, so she calls it a hunch. She plants down her bag against a tree, stepping into it before picking out a thick branch, laying down against it. "Sleep tight."
"Huh? Oh, yah, sure." Ataru seemed distracted when she climbed down, pondering for a moment. He'd look up as well, shrug, then wave towards Satomi with a small smile. Walking off to the side, he'd focus himself, a flash of light occurring and where his hands were empty before, he suddenly had a rather wicked looking spear. The tip was sharp and it had a decorative blade along one side as a carefully scrolled out work it seems. This detailed blade was also sharp, allowing Ataru the freedom to both pierce and slash it seems. Ataru would hold it for a moment, then.. well the talking began. "Lookit Kyouki. I know ya ain't wantin ta hold back.. sure, we could level the place.. ain't soundin like it's that hard.. but that ain't the job.. No, I ain't losin sight of the justice of the whole thing.. I've been there! But we still gotta work within the definition of the parameters, huh?"
Satomi opens up an eye while looking down, actually startled a little by the light. "You starting a fire." She asks, while one leg hangs down the branch, she only then notices the spear… and him talking. "Hmm." She says at first, assuming he's talking to her, only then widening her eyes. "I didn't know you knew any scroll mastery." She says, while gazing at the spear. "Sure is a pretty weapon." She says, gazing at Ataru talking to it. Perking an eyebrow, followed by her shrug. She's seen her father talk to his blades plenty of times… boys and their toys probably, who knows…
"Oh.. guess ya dun know.. Satomi-san.. like ya ta meet Kyouki.. he's an oni of justice. This is just his main form.." Ataru would glance back at her with a chuckle and a shrug. "Sorry, didn't mean ta keep ya awake.. he's just a bit upset we ain't turin the whole thing upside down from the start.. would be what justice would dictate ta happen.. end the whole thing and do it from the start, insteada bein sneaky.."
She perks another eyebrow. "Met….the spear?" She says, pausing for a moment to let him explain. "Oh an Oni… I thought you were going nuts there for a second." She giggles, glancing at the weapon. "Pleasure then Kyouki." She says, not sure what to say. "Justice would prefer a fair trial for everyone in there, tearing the place up will allow the true criminals to go into hiding, which makes them harder to find for the local authorities. Being sneaky is a good way to deliver justice… you tell him that. I don't think Justice is interested in taking down the people who are stuck there not by choice, but by mistake. Even the grunts that are running the show can be under coercion." She says, hoping that her little speech is convincing enough, she's actually quite worried about Ataru going on a rampage. Even more so now.
Ataru chuckles with a shake of his head. "I dun gotta tell em.. he can hear ya.. and he said he ain't wantin ta go after the small fry.. Lookit.. ya just saw what I can do.. and that was me pacin myself.. full out? I could take down the leader and probably his body guards all within 6 seconds. That's me pushin myself.. For Kyouki, justice would dictate I do such. It's a strike against the one who's makin the trouble, ta balance against those they use.." Ataru would look at the spear then with a shrug. "But.. that ain't the main parta the mission. We're on rescue.. not on removal…" He'd look back at Satomi then. "Basically mate.. Ya wanna help me with the mafia? This is the kinda thing I'd be goin fer.. only I wouldn't be goin subtle.. and I would do my best ta stop colladeral damage.. but.. the main focus would be endin it."
"Your justice is short-sighted." She says, leaning back against the tree, suddenly her urge to fall asleep has faded. She meditates a lot, and debates are always an interest to her, philosophy is something her father taught her to appreciate. "You can cut off a tree her pettals, who had no choice on where they bloom. But you had to, to expose the evil branches. you cut those down as well, realizing while looking at their origin that they're stuck to a stump that dictates where and how they grow. Without the stump they wouldn't exist, with a different stump they would exist otherwise."
She pauses for a moment. "So then you saw down the tree, and it falls over. Surely you erradicated all evilness?" She says, before pointing at the ground. "But you don't realize that stump must have come from somewhere, it too, had no choice where and how it grew, it was its veins hidden deep beneath the ground that dicatate that. And you can't see those. You can't hear those, and you can't sense those. You will have let the true - root - of the issue slip away between your fingers. If you call this justice, then your Oni is closer to its evil counterpart than you and I are daring to admit."
She concludes, closing her eyes, she's clearly quite fearless, she's always been naive in her theory, mainly because she's more often than not right. Though her bluntness and lack of finess has gotten her into trouble more often than not.
Ataru cracks up laughing at that. He'd shake his head slowly. "Newp.. 'cause the true root of the evil is people. Ifn some guy came along and planted said tree ta cause said trouble, then that's the source. However, ifn that person is parta a group? How many do you remove? 10? 50? 100? They are parta that group 'cause they want something others have.. It's a never endin job, Satomi-san.. it doesn't stop.. it's why I fight.. ifn it did end, then I'd be happy ta give up fightin and go grow apples with my family." Ataru would plant the spear against the ground, leaning into it lightly. "But.. I know I can't end that tree. I can't cut it off. 'cause I'm only one guy. Heck.. that's the reason I'm a shinobi ta start with. I came ta the conclusion I ain't gonna be able to do it alone." He'd nod towards Satomi then. "However.. I can trim as much of it down as I can, within my life time.. and just try ta be satisfied with what I do.. That is where the justice comes in at. As it helps with the proper prunin. So what good parts can be comin from that tree ain't wasted in the process."
"Then I expect you to follow my lead tomorrow." She says, closing her eyes. "Not that of the spear, Oni or not… Justice or not. If there's a way to take them down without causing a mess I will know, and I will let you know. But if there isn't, then we're going to stand down, complete the mission, and walk away. I'm taking the call out of your hands for a reason." She sighs, closing her eyes. "And that's final, now get some rest." She turns around just slightly, closing her eyes. She might have dozed off most of the day, but she's the last person who would decline a bit of extra sleep.
The next morning she wakes up early, sliding off the tree silently. She gazes around, before going for a small walk, finding a creek a little further away from the path. She gets down a little, washing her face, before looking up, spotting a rabit. "Breakfeast…" She whispers to herself, while sliding out two shuriken from her pouch, moving carefully, before quickly throwing them the rabit's way. She has quickly calculated its trajectory. He's fast enough to dodge the first one, but he'd inevitably dodge into the second one…. She walks up to it, simply walking up and over the water, grabbing the rabbit by its ears, before filling her water pouch with water, walking off back to where Ataru was sleeping, collecting some firewood while on her way.
He was resting when she got up and left, but he was gone by the time she got back. A simple search would reveal him off to the side a bit. Ataru was going through his morning exercises, using a tree branch to do the reverse sit ups that he'd crank out. He was going fast to be efficent. There was still plenty of run left and then he knew he'd be fighting. So he wanted to be ready. Once she got closer or went looking for him, he'd wave back to her. The spear of course, was gone. Part of the night had been spent practicing and today it was no where to be seen. He didn't show any other scrolls either. go fig on that?
Satomi glances around while arriving, only spotting him a minute later, shrugging. "Going to make us some food." She says, while glancing around, grabbing her kunai. She jumps up onto a tree, breaking off some twigs and branches, adding them to her pile of firewood, sitting down next to it. These are the times she wished she had any fire manipulation, reaching into her pouch for the next best thing, using a lighter to get the fire going. Putting the rabbit the rabbit down while the fire whells up, using her kunai to skin it. It's not something she likes doing, but she hasn't got a major issue with it either. It takes her a good ten minutes to completely clean the meat. Spitroasting the good pieces above the fire. It smells amazing.
Ataru chuckles lightly, finishing up the rest of his exercises within that 10 minutes. Hopping down off the tree, he'd join her by the fire, donning his over coat on top of the red one and that hat. He'd sit cross-legged and once the food was ready, would quickly eat what he could of it. Pondering, there was a dozen things he'd like to say.. but in the end he knew what would or wouldn't happen. A small nod was given then as he'd finish picking a bone clean. "So when they toldja ta come haul me outta bed.. did they tell ya what rank I was?"
She glances up at him, shrugging. "I told them I didn't care. You're more capeable than I am, I won't lie about it nor have to. Though I'm here to call the shots for a reason. But you're a genin correct?" She asks him, though it's clear that she must be like, one of the only shinobi in Konoha who couldn't care less. "I don't even care what you rank is, I trust you to be good at the things you're good at. And I'll cover the rest." She smiles at him quite warmly. Finishing her own food before getting up. "Lets go." She says, stretching for a moment. Apperently she's planning on running along this time, while she kicks out the fire and collects her stuff.
Ataru chuckles with a small shake of his head. Finishing his food, he'd help her with clearing the camp area, including scattering the fire spot so that it'd be hard to tell from at least a semi-through search that someone had been there. "I'm a chuunin now.. they decided I'm good enough at what I'm doin, ta know what ta do and when ta do it right." Ataru would grin towards Satomi then. "So.. yah.. ya lead the mission.. but that dun mean that all the shots gotta be from you either." He'd make sure everything was set, then set himself to be ready for her to hop on. "Come on. I'm faster, we'll get there in 'bout 4 hours my way."
Satomi grins, while climbing up on his back, not having to think twice about it. "As you wish." She says, while tracking along, having a far easier time balancing now she's used to the dynamic. "Four hours huh?" She says, waiting about an hour while contemplating what he said. "Congratulations, a well deserved promotion." She says, while pausing.
"Regardless, I'm team leader on this, while I trust and respect your judgement, and in the and you will always make judgement call…" She pauses. "I won't allow you to make a call on the progress of the mission, as team leader, and that's an order." She waits another minute. "Because of that Oni… and some other factors. Just focus on doing what you're good at, and I'll do what I'm good at." She smiles, though he probably couldn't see. Trying to put him at ease. "Trust me, if there's a way to solve this optimally I will find it."
Ataru chuckles, getting her settled, he'd take off. Once again that ground eating stride used, without pushing himself. She may or may not notice that he's going a little slower than he did the day before. Conserving more strength. "Well then.. I'm guessin we'll just have ta see how it goes.. since we'll have ta agree ta disagree.. mebbe.. Afterall.. it may just all work out anyways, fer sure." Chuckling lightly, he'd shrug and keep up his running. It was going to be the first job since he did make chuunin. It was going to be interesting considering that she was trying to be that hard ass leader.. and he wasn't going for it?
"I'm serious.." She says, while glancing into the sky, lost for words. "After this mission I need to file a detailed report on how you did… I wasn't supposed to tell you." She lied, but she's starting to feel the pressure now they were getting close. "We don't agree to disagree, I'm team leader. And you went through the genin stage. You know how these things work, you follow orders. Period end." She shuts up for a moment. "Listen I don't distrust you, I distrust that Oni… they can be irrational and shortsighted." She did distrust him.. or rather, his emotions.
She knew how confrontational things are going to get. "So don't make this hard on me, I'm trusting you, all I'm asking is for you to trust me. And at least talk to me before making a decision if you're going to make one at all, unless it's impossible. Can you please do that?" She says, while lifting up his hat, ruffling through his hair. "Partner?"
Ataru chuckles, glancing back at her with a smirk as he kept running. "So.. do ya normally say one thing, when yer feelin another there mate? Probably works fer most people.. but I've been dealin with that type most my life.. eh?" Grinning, he'd keep running on for a few moments. "Agreed.. we'll do our best ta discuss any decisions ifn possible. Ifn it ain't a snap thing, I'll definitely check with ya, fer sure. fair enough?"
She sighs, trying to maintain her pokerface, though feeling like a kid being caught trying to steal candy. "Deal.." She says, while damning herself. She really felt like she should just ruffle him up and show him she's better on all grounds. But she knew she'd be in for a nasty beating up herself. She used to pull that off with genin who wouldn't listen. Make them do the chicken dance or whatnot through a shadow-imitation. Enough to get them considering that maybe listening would be a good call. "I'm calling you partner for a reason." She smiles back, while the skyline of the city they approach becomes visible.