Date: August 28, 2016
In preparation for the erection of Iwagakure's clock tower, a Toujitakumi crew shapes the bedrocks with explosives while Kiyoshi is discovered by a foreign shinobi leading to possible disaster. Especially with Doihara Ishino's presence in Iwagakure.
"A Monument to Progress: Breaking Ground"
Iwagakure, Yotuna Square
It was in a small property in the Yotuna Square that was of great interest today. A quarter of Yotuna square was sectioned off by yellow tape, with shinobi guards posted to keep people safe and away from the blast zone, there is still quite a following. It was only recently announced, publicly, that plans were being made to install a fine piece of machinery known as a 'clock tower'. Though probably not the first tower that was made to tell time to a variety of people, Iwagakure has many clans that can make such amazing works of art a reality. All it takes is a little smooth, smooth money to grease the gears and get everything working together like the industrious nation Iwagakure ought to be. Many people must have been waiting on the outside of the yellow tape, wanting to witness a Toujitakumi blowing something up. Honestly, the crowd numbered in the hundreds, all spread out and getting ready for a thrilling event.
It likely wasn't going to be -thrilling- per sey. It's a big occasion, but it's a little bigger for Watanabe Hotaru. She was standing outside of the caution tape, pocket-watch in her hand and a cane in the other helping to hold her weight as her legs were having trouble doing so. Part of doing this was her attempt at 'growing up' knowing that she would never actually get to do so should she not find the cure to her disease. It pleased her that there was actually a large amount of curious people. She might have to make a speech. Wouldn't that be wonderful? In the meantime, however, her golden eyes look out into the crowd as she slips her pocketwatch back into her vest before taking that hand and brushing her hair behind her shoulders in short order, wishing to look pleasant for the occasion.
"It's almost time… Thirty more minutes until we start the charge sequence, fifteen minutes before we're ready to blow." A Toujitakumi said from behind the young Watanabe. A smile almost appeared on her face when she heard that progress was getting near. It almost appeared on her face but then disappeared as quickly as it formed. "Very well. That should be plenty of time."
With the crowd gathering, and the event haven been announced all over the city, it wouldn't exactly be strange to find even foreign nationals interested in the event.
Itami decided to fly into Iwa and didn't give much prior notice, but she understands this might cause some problems later. Many, if she guesses correctly. Best to be safe with these estimates. While she was permitted entry, she understands that her manner of visiting was particularly frowned upon. She agrees entirely! What would it be like for someone to just fly in and come straight to your village gates? Not very comforting. Still, she had the decency to at least enter through the village gates instead of flying over them.
Once inside, she took a look at the letter she received and followed its directions towards the gathering place where the demolition was to commence. Along with her is Hango which she begins to inquire how safe he felt on his ride here atop a dragon. "I hope I didn't discomfort you too much. That is my primary mode of travel if I need to get to places quickly. Still takes some time, but it's much easier to be able to sail along than to take the paths that lead to the different lands at times. So, how would you rate the flight experience?" She chuckled.
Hango spent the entire ride upon his Kazekage's back in mortal terror, frozen in position as he stared straight forward into the desert winds that slowly parted ways for the cooler muted breezes of the Land of Earth. It was an unusual experience, riding your new boss's back miles and miles on a business trip, but then again, being a shinobi was always a learning experience, from your first day in Academy to your eventual death in an obscure battlefield or in a bed somewhere far away from your past.
As Hango followed Itami inside, staying to her left flank and moving as a pair so as not to mark her importance to a casual observer, he flusters at the question, with a nervous laugh and a cheek to cheek grin. "I prefer to grade on the curve, Kazekage, and you would be my only test on the topic," he replies off the cuff, more casual now that they're outside their village and in a presumably safe place. He pushes his glasses up as they near the site of the event they've been invited too, slowing his breathing and half-lidding his eyes. His Sensor Style expands from his consciousness as he sacrifices some personal awareness in the literal world for a sixth sense of chakras, watching out in case of treachery, both for a Kazekage recently attacked by the Storm Brigade and himself, a Missing Nin from Grass Village.
Dragonflight is one of the more amazing things in the shinobi world, and all Watanabe dream of soaring the skies yet many do not. Hotaru is a young girl, and though she certainly hasn't acted or dressed like a young girl due to the situation she is in, there is no doubt that deep within is someone who still wants to do all the things a young girl not burdened with death want to do. Like… Dolls, assumedly. Either way, the young Watanabe is fully prepared to meet and greet. It's not every day that the most famous member of the… Brown House… visits.
It isn't to say that the Brown Houses are full of uncouth militaristic Watanabe, but Hotaru has heard stories about both sides of her family. At the very least, Hango wasn't the only sensor… Hotaru was familiar with the particular feel of Itami's chakra, and thus just as the man who had warned her about the upcoming explosion had left her head raised as she started looking around the crowd. "That isn't right. Did I invite the Kazekage?" The young girl placed a finger to her lip as she thought. She wrote many letters, but not one was to the Kazekage… "I'm just imagining things…"
Either way, 'feeling' the Kazekage caused Hotaru to begin moving to her podium to give a speech! She wanted to make a good impression on her elders. A shame that as she reached the last step up the hastily made wooden platform that her legs gave out, and she stumbled forward, slowly bringing herself to a stand. How embarrassing.
Itami winced a bit at Hotaru's rush to the stage, but she can look past it. She rubbed her arm where bandages were wrapped around it. The result of that was also rather embarrassing. She moved forward in the crowd to get a better view of Hotaru so she could see her more clearly and in her special moment. So, about that invite…It was less of an invite and more of a letter sent looong ago, but heck, she kept it around for moments such as these.
"Well, we'll fly back and forth a few more times just to give you some points to plot. We'll see if I improve in my flight, but to be honest, I'm not used to having people fly with me," she replied to Hango followed by a chuckle. "I'm glad you're here. I think you could benefit from being around here."
Hango follows alongside Itami, sifting his way forward in the crowd with a gentle slicing forward with his right shoulder, moving into the crowd independently of Itami's position until she's at a comfortable point. Then, he slides up right beside her, appearing again. He adjusts his glasses as he opens his eyes back up, the Sensor Style sliding away and back out of his sight, so he can focus on the other Watanabe about to give the speech.
He frowns pensively as she stumbles, tilting his head to the left as he watches. He lifts his left hand to his nose, pushing his glasses up, and looking to Itami. "The Great Villages have long been a fascination of mine. This particular one seems to have a better counter assault capability in the event of a large force breaching the area," he observes, before looking back to the stage. His eyes shift downwards, head following his bespectacled gaze, observing the medical seals with a hint of pity, but much more feline curiousity.
Hotaru found it no easy task to walk to the podium with rather crude sound equipment hooked up to it to extend Hotaru's voice a fair distance away. She doesn't stand behind it, alas (Too short and she needs a hand on her cane at all times). She does, however, stand beside it. Taking a deep breath, she would begin to speak. "People of Iwagakure…" Hotaru began to get everyone's attention. With blue hair touching her shoulder and her eyes taking on a sort of seriousness you do not find in children her age often, she would begin to tell Iwagakure 'Why'.
"… Our land has been through many problems. We have been separated time and time again by rogue factions that sought to divide and break us, but what these rebels do not know is that Iwagakure thinks far differently than other nations." Hotaru brings a finger up to her temples, tapping them twice with her free hand. "We do not care for petty disputes, nor do we care about rebels attempting to preserve the status quo. We are a nation of progress. A nation of industrial aptitude. Each one of our clans has their purpose in bringing Iwagakure to greatness, and their hard work has propped our nation on it's feet time and time again. the clocktower created here is a symbol of what Iwagakure truly is. Progress.
Today is the first step of progress, and today I will reveal that this clocktower is simply not being created to tell time but to prove that together Iwagakure stands tall. The Toujitakumi here today represent the first principle of our peoples. To topple the old, and bring about the new. They will blow out the bedrock to allow the creation of the foundation The Murasame represent a second principle. To create a firm foundation and framework for our future to grow. The Murasame are truly the heart of progress, for steel and metal is truly the way forward in the world. Yet a foundation and framework is not itself a building. With the introduction of the Sasaki to Iwagakure, we finally have the last step to the creation of Iwagakure's future. The stalwart walls that protect what is within. These three clans working together to ensure Iwagakure's lasting presence and superiority in the shinobi world shall be the purpose of this everlasting monument."
"Yes, the benefits Iwagakure have are highly in their favor. It'd be foolish to attack them head on. They're pinched in here, surrounded by rocks and mountains..and unstable earth shattering events. Volcanoes? Earthquakes? Things that could be utilized in their favor, among other things. It wouldn't be wise, but they also have a number of clans that balance out their ranks. I'm impressed, to be honest. I'd like to truly get in and figure them out, you know? I wish to extend myself to them. I believe that's why having you here would be great for that sort of thing…."
As Hotaru begins her speech, she draws closer, but just a tad and relaxes her stance a bit to be a more careful listener to what she has to say. She never knew what the clock tower would represent, but seeing as how many of the subjects came up that she considered, she feels it more to establish better contacts with Iwagakure.
The Rankoro keeps his head turned slightly towards Itami speaks, as is polite, although his eyes are on Hotaru. He listens to her assessment, then slowly moves his right hand behind his back at the notification he's here as an analyst as well as merely a student. His left eye squints shut slightly from the bottom as he tilts his chin upwards, the speech and the subtle pastels of symbolism contained within pulled apart in his mind, as if he was an entomologist studying a specimen pinned to a felt.
Hango moves down sideways to reach into the thigh pocket of his fatigues, sliding out a tablet with a sheaf of plain tan parchment upon it. He shifts the tablet to his left hand, and withdraws a fine tipped calligraphy pen with a mechanical reservoir for pressure from the front pocket of his jacket. He begins jotting down notations on it, in clear view of Itami, should she wish to analyze his writing.
- Potential manipulation of geothermic processes via industrial techniques and Village jutsu.
- Highly superior weaponry.
- Offensive techniques via siege sapping, likely.
- Notion of village dominance sought instead of relationship of equals, potential uneven alliances with others.
Hango wrote down a fair point about the dominance part. After all, the next part of the speech was about their allies. "I would like to thank several people for the planned erection of this monument. I would like to thank Doihara Ishino, Head Ninja of the Land of Water for agreeing to create the final piece of the puzzle. To help create the machinery that will keep this time ticking for eons to come. Without out further ado…" She looked over at one of the Toujitakumi waiting for her speech to finish, and would promptly raise a hand, and beckon one of the Toujitakumi with her finger. He would come up to the stage and a slight exchange of whispers… "Are we ready?" - "We're primed, but we usually enjoy taking extra precautions before getting started." - "Nevermind those, we have a crowd… I… I don't want to keep them waiting." - "Watanabe-dono… Hrm…" - "Think of it as village prestige. When I drop my hand after raising it, pull the plug." The Toujitakumi rushes off stage.
"Without further Ado… Let us celebrate the beginning of a new era with fireworks, shall we?" With that, Hotaru dropped her hand and the Toujitakumi started placing their hands in a seal.
The ground shook, almost knocking a few people onto the ground. Hotaru included, except she actually did fall on her bottom. A little worry on her face as the ground behind her started to smoke. That was before a voice yelled the following…
"DEPTH CHARGES HAVE BEEN SET OFF! PHASE TWO, CONFIRM." A taskmaster yelled out, as more Toujitakumi started putting their hands into seals. Around six of them, in order. Within moments, a ring of explosions were categorically set off on the property. Each one spraying a cloud of dust into the air. A lot of people started to panic slightly, but it was all par for the course. Several wind-release users placed their hands in a seal as the dust clouded the air, and used their abilities to blow away the air-bound earth. Then, it was clear. The implosion was a success. What was once a flat lot of land was now a rather deep hole… A silence fell over the crowd…
"Success." The lead Toujitakumi put his hand in the air to signal a success, and a few people started to clap. That would lead to a few more, until half the crowd joined in. The other half was still a little shaken… Hotaru was too…
The quaking ground made Itami only slightly nervous, but she held her ground. Besides, if anything did happen, she'd hope she could jump to action quick enough to help the people out. She assumed all of this was controlled, given that she enlisted the help of Toujitakumi. She stared down at Hango and his notes, lofting a brow at what he's gathered so far. Impressive. "Looks like it's going down…" She pointed out to the building which…she expected much more explosion, but a controlled implosion was much more fascinating! A perfect hole! "This is much more than I was expecting. I really need to ask how they managed to do that. I hadn't any idea what the Toujitakumi were capable of, but this is far beyond just expert demolitions…."
Hango's head looks up from his wood tablet as he observes the blast, taking a jerking step backwards at the blast despite expecting it. There's a slight stutter to his footing, corrected the next moment by a self-conscious step forward and turn away from the source of the previous noise. He turns back to Itami as the blast abates, before he looks where she's pointed. "It appears the Iwagakure's organizational skills seem to reflect a society of industry beyond the rest of the known world, Kazekage," he posits, shrugging his shoulders upwards with a quick bob, before he relaxes again and braces himself for the second stage. He adjusts his glasses, thrown slightly ajar by his startled response. "A combined assault inside this village would be a slaughter for any force." He looks around the square, then gesturing to the Stone Temple to the north. "That would be their primary point of organization at the stage of a counter-breach defense. Plus any sort of fervor they could manage from their ancestors' watching eyes. If that it a civilian use of combined Hidenjutsu, I shiver at the thought of a martial deployment."
Hotaru's hands glide over her legs, though clothed in dress pants, the seals would be easily seen by a sensor. Should Hango's senses be accurate, he would find that the chakra network below Hotaru's waist would look… deranged. Almost as if it wasn't a human chakra-network. The seals seem to be partially stabilizing the chakra network flow to some extent, which means they are drawing out Hotaru's chakra from them and distributing the chakra evenly into her legs. It might not be possible from the distance Hotaru was.
Nevertheless, Hotaru would stand up, dragging herself to her feet using her hands and her cane rather than relying on her legs. Blinking, she looked over at the applauding crowd. "Ah. Everything is okay! Next week, the Murasame will display their prowess! Thank you for coming, Iwagakure." Golden dragon eyes shifted to the Toujitakumi who seemed a tad worried, speedily running up the stairs to reach her. Hotaru-san… We have a slight problem. We breached the aquifer… - We breached the aquifer? I thought you said there was enough bedrock. - Our Kekkei Genkai is hard to control, but the result is that there is a direct access to our water supply that needs to be sealed. - Oh that's going to cost a fair amount… Please send the clan head to me as soon as possible for a follow-up… Hotaru would sigh as the man moved off. This was too much for a twelve-year-old to deal with. It's great to have money, but doing things with it is stressful. Hotaru would slowly begin to descend the wooden stairs to the bottom and the crowd began to clear out.
"You have very keen eyes and a good read of the field," Itami complimented Hango. "I can appreciate Iwagakure for all the reasons you've mentioned and hope that I can enlist some help from here soon. If possible, that is." She looked around at the crowd and then back at the final result of the explosion as the majority of the dust is helped to settle with the assistance of wind jutsuists. Now, there was only a thin, inconsequential haze left in the air to be carried off by the wind.
"Looks like this act is done. Now then…" She decided to move forward and weave through the dispersing crowd to greet Hotaru.
Despite the demands of a certain inner demon, Yoshi has been keeping himself out of the public eye for awhile now. Truth be told, he may not have left at all if not for an unsettling amount of quaking ground following a none-too-distant boom. While his perception of the event could be considered an over exaggeration, the ex-mercernary nonetheless found himself attempting to investigate the matter. Foolish or not, it was better to prove one's fears false personally than to leave things up to fate and ignorance. As the notion comes to mind, a separate feeling of being looked on by disapproving eyes turned a calm march into a more lead-footed and agitated one.
Yoshi arrives just in time to see most of the dust has settled, making it all the easier to see a massive crowd full of people applauding about… something. With diminishing worry but growning curiosity, the mummified genin strode to the edge and joined in the clapping, if albeit half-heartedly. "So… why all the clapping?" He tosses out over the shoulder to whoever happened to be standing next to him. All the while he kept his eyes trained on the forefront, and ears open for happenstance explinations. Alas, poor nose is forced to sit things out on account of the dusty haze. Otherwise, the man might've picked up a number of worryingly familiar scents. Fortunately, with the exception of an abnormal high chakra levels, the man wouldn't stand out too much.
Hotaru would have remained near the elevated wooden platform she had originally made her speech at, in her hand was a pocketwatch. She was clearly attempting to determine the time, as a certain chakra signature approached. There were… A few familiar chakra signatures. One felt like a fellow Watanabe's signature. A Watanabe's chakra signature is different than a normal human's, it wasn't difficult to pick out. Hotaru just hasn't focused on raising her sensing abilities. Then there was the clear and abnormal chakra of Yoshi. That caused her to raise her head. towards the crowd that was currently dispersing. Upon seing Itami approach, she closes her pocketwatch and slips it into a vest pocket as her cloak falls over her form once more like a shawl. Hotaru's eyes narrowed, and then opened in understanding… The Kazekage had arrived… Not far behind her, a giant approached. "Ah. Itami-sama did come! I suppose I did send her a letter!" She didn't send Yoshi a letter though, shame on her.
"We just witnessed a simple delight in life. A controlled demolition," Itami replied to Yoshi simply enough. "There's a certain level of skill required to do such a thing. It isn't easy to destroy something with such precision that the work is clean afterward. No normal explosion tends to do this, at least. The Toujitakumi were responsible for the dirty work," she smirked as she turned about and began to walk up to Hotaru.
"It's been a while since we've met. I came here on short notice, to be honest. I hadn't a clue this was happening, but I had an old letter of yours that I kept around and it got me to thinking. So…here I am," she smirked. "Accompanied by a fellow. You know how to keep yourself busy, hm?" She inquired of the girl.
Yoshi had begun to nod amicably in understanding, but some distant part of his mind gave him pause. The voice sounded familiar in ways that left him visibly tense for the most part. He kept on clapping until the crowd began to stop, and made a point of avoiding meeting the eye of whoever the speaker was until they left. Morbid curiosity and fear drove Yoshi to eventually look after the fact.
The sight freezes him, his heart began to race, and if not for the tumbled mess of emotions fighting within, the man might've bolted from the area. As things stood at present, Yoshi could only stand there staring with eyes open-wide to the truth.
«Be calm, Geki. Things art not so dire as they appear» A deep, calm, and masculine voice echoes from within. Its words are but a cold comfort. Even so, the ex-mercernary manages to drag his attention away from Itami long enough to note who attracted her attention, and frown a little.
What was going on? Was Yoshi not amused by the display? He just… Stood there. Well, the show must go on. Itami was approaching. THE Kazekage. Here. In Iwagakure. The most famous Watanabe in the known world, and one of three who have transcended. Hotaru would bow deeply, before raising her body and staring in slight awe. The fellow seemed to be busy taking down every little detail, so he didn't seem active… Itami, however, had her full attention. Hotaru straightened herself up, legs quivvering but not out of awe but simply of disorder. "Hetman-sama, Kazekage-sama, your words inspire. My time is ticking, and I wanted to show the world the nature of Iwa. This is part of why I am doing this, the other part… It's personal." Something she would be more inclined to tell someone more familiar and less repsected, like Yama. Regardless, Hotaru would turn her head towards Yoshi. "This is Shiyo, my Chuunin sensei." She points to the bandaged man, guessing that indeed he must have known Itami, and was worried due to his past. Hotaru sometimes has a good intuition. "He has loyally served the village all his life. I'm glad you could make it, Shiyo-sensei!" Hotaru would smile and nod her head, her explression quickly returning neutral. "Is there anything I can do to help you, Itami-sama? Housing arrangements? Will you stay for the clocktowers erection?"
"I am no Hetman, though I appreciate that you would consider me with such a title. I am only a Kazekage. Hetman belongs to those who lead the branches of the Watanabe, for me, well, I only lead a village," Itami grinned. "If this was your way of showing the nature of Iwagakure, I would say you have done so successfully. Iwagakure, since my last visit long ago, had always struck me as an industrious sort. Independent and never wanting in any outside help. They were perfectly capable of handling their own. The survival of their own inner strife proves that much," she nodded, only now looking over her shoulder to observe Shiyo. She turned around and faced him while he was described to her. "If all of those bandages are of any indication, I'd say he's done more than his fair share of work around here," she smirked. "But there is nothing you need arrange for me. Unfortunately, I will onyl be here for a short time. I believe my visitation just so happened to be fortuitous."
Yoshi visibly tenses up once more, but manages to recover quicker the second time around. The threat of recognition left no room for half measures. Still, against perhaps his better judgement, the so called "chuunin" steps closer to the two, offering a just barely polite bow to Itami. His tongue is kept firmly in check while assessing the situation. One that grew more perilous the longer he remained bound to it.
«Calm thyself, Geki.»
Yoshi narrows his eyes slightly and opens his mouth, yet just barely refrains from falling back on an old habit. 'We should've left. She'll catch our scent. And don't bother bring up the dust! Even with that, you know we can't exactly mimic—-' The mental complaints go and on, drawing the man ever further from the present. A fact that becomes increasingly obvious as his eyes take on a glazed look to them. Whether or not it is the mention of her intent to leave sooner rather than later, or some other unknown reason, Yoshi jolts to full alertness, losing idle concentration on keeping his arms folded across his chest. "Indeed… most fortuitous… But why is the kage of another village here?" He asks flatly and huskily (in a none sexy way… this time).
Hango gives Itami her space as she does business with the other Watanabe, aware that diplomatic discussions are probably out of his sphere of interest considering his unusual status within Sunagakure.
His own chakra, according to Hotaru's sensor style, is irregular, his hands flushing occasionally with strong tremors of chakra flowing from his arms to his fingertips, while his head appears to be flickering in terms of its chakra, flowing from the eyes he has behind his thick eyeglasses. His eyes turn towards Hotaru as her sensor style scans him, briefly aware of her with his own before he turns his attention to Yoshi, as he slips his tablet from his left hand to his right and slips it back into his thigh pocket on his pants, the parchment and writing still present upon it. He idly closes his portable calligrapher's pen, and slides it back into the pocket it emerged from, lingering near the conversation as Yoshi comes close. A simple leveling of conversational balance.
"Really? I was sure that you… The Brown House… I see… My apologies. My father does not even know who the current Hetman of the Brown House is…" Why not just recognize the strongest of the clan Hetman? That seemed a very Brown House thing to do. Hotaru's legs have finally decided that she has indeed rested upon them for too long, and she slowly slips down to her knees, wincing in slight pain as she clutches her cane tightly. Her breathing picks up lightly. She was overdoing it again it seemed. At least there was no blood this time. "Are you sure Kazekage-dono?" Hotaru asked as she closed her eyes to half-lids. "It would be rude… Not to let you… Pa-sama would gladly let you stay at the manor. Pa-sama would love to see you…" Watanabe Kohaku is likely some distance cousin, after all. Hotaru is brought great joy that Itami praised her work so much. It was knowing that someone was influenced by something she did that will make the end less difficult to swallow. Yoshi, who has accepted the monicker of Shiyo thanks to Hotaru, seemed rather questioning of Itami. Perhaps it is just because Hotaru knows Itami that she doesn't see the problem.
"You can feel too, ne?" Hotaru asks as she turns her head towards Hango. "From birth?" She asks. Hotaru can't remember when she first started feeling emotions or feeling nauseous when she felt a great source of chakra…
"I'm uncertain who the current Hetman is myself, but perhaps I can write my father and see…" Itami extended an arm to assist Hotaru up and relieve some of the stress on her legs. "I could perhaps come for a visit, but I am limited in my ability to stay. I will have to see if I can have an audience with the Tsuchikage. To my knowledge, there has been a change in leadership here, one that I haven't had the pleasure of speaking with," she explains.
"That was my primary reason for being here, but we'll have to see." She smiled as she observed Shiyo for a few moments. "How long has it been?" She inquired cryptically. Certainly, high chakra signatures can happen commonly enough, but in the midst of a greater population, they tend to be few and far between.
Yoshi had ever intent of keeping a close eye on Itami. Any voice inflections, any tics — nothing could go ignored when his very freedom rested upon a foolhardy attempt at fooling a Kage of all people. But then, Hotaru's old symptoms reared their ugly head. He paid no mind to it at first, so intent was he on the private, self-assigned mission. It took having the focus of said mission offering assistance to really take any notice. Once he did, then… Yoshi hesitates to act.
Uncertian brown eyes focus on the younger watanabe, only to ultimately return to her elder as a question gets thrown his way. Bemused, Yoshi squints his eyes, and frowns a little before finally daring to speak again. "… Come again, Kazekage-sama?" He asks with a hint of trepidation behind the tone.
Hango watches the discomfort apparent in Hotaru's disability, his hands flicking up briefly in an instinctual gesture, as if he's going to catch her, before he pulls them back down with his rational mind. As she turns her attention to him, he adjusts his glasses, before nodding. "Yes, I am a Sensor Nin also. Mine is from training since childhood, we developed a technique to perform chakra scans during a war within the Land of the Sea centuries ago."
Itami would help the little Hotaru off the ground. "O-okay… If you cannot stay, I will inform my father you were near at the very least." She won't force the subject, and once back on her feet, her legs once again quivvered. It was no wonder she stopped being a shinobi given she could barely walk. While Itami was clearly talking to Yoshi, Hotaru seemed to purposely redirect the conversation, given that she could almost feel Yoshi becoming slightly more tense. "I think it has been three months, actually, since my father and I were with the Watanabe looking to help rebuild Sunagakure (Again)." Safe? It wasn't sure. Yoshi couldn't have had a background with the Kazekage… It was sparking a sort of curiosity that Hotaru might have to dig into later. "You and Hango-san will have to join me for dinner, Kazekage-dono. I insist… Pa-sama… I mean… Watanabe Kohaku taught me that such activities are in good manner. You can both tell me about the war between Sunagakure and the Land of Sea…" She had never heard of that, but Hango did admit such.
"I think you understand the meaning of my question. Let me be frank…" Itami points out. "Your livelihood here will not be affected by the ecounter I have had here. I stand not to benefit much from whatever it is you have to share from me. I am simply expressing curiosity. I've met others like you, clearly, they're all still living their lives," she chuckled. "So, how long has it been? I ask again," she states to Yoshi.
"It's alright, Hotaru. I have no ill will here. Consider this my own personal account. It's rare I have the opportunity to run into such unique figures. I only wish to get to know these people better," she hummed. "The Watanabe are still present in the village, but I haven't met with them lately. They've been busy with helping the village in their own way. Thankfully, their work hasn't run against the grain. They've been rather helpful, perhaps overly so at times."
Rankoro Hango waits quietly in the wings as Itami speaks to Hotaru and Yoshi, moving his hands behind his back in a neutral 'at ease' position, his hands clasped very loosely behind him. His eyes glide towards Yoshi, studying the discomfort the man displays with non-threatening curiousity, before looking away a few moments after the polite length of time to watch somebody has elapsed. He cocks his head to the right as he observes the two Watanabes interact, watching their eyes and mouths, the most inhuman aspects of each, and studying the gestures between the reptilian-influenced shinobi.
Once again, Yoshi had begun to lose all focus to anything and everything beyond the Kazekage. He truly had not understood the question fully, but knew well enough that its significance could extend beyond the simple. It is in part because of this the man struggled to piece it all together before an answer could be given, only to abandon the effort in response to Hotaru's intervention. Further confused more than anything, the man glances in the little watanabe's direction, wondering for the first time if the question had been actually meant for her.
Eyes widen from an epiphany, then quickly jerk back to the Kazekage, a barely masked question held within them. Hope dies in the face of her response. Yet, Yoshi held enough composure to stay his hand long enough to hear Itami out. If her words had any other effect beyond this point, few if any would be able to discern the truth beyond the current "mask" of the ex-mercernary. "You say that, but we both know that isn't quite true." He states, glancing briefly at the crowd nearby. "And…" He snorts, and then looks away. "And I only got myself to blame for it…. Either way, 'less you tend to go back on your word already, I don't have anything for ya. So… Let's leave that at that, shall we?" Yoshi asks, feigning nonchalance at this point. Though his arms fall to the way side as if to leave himself unguarded, at least one of those limbs was close to an obvious weapon now…
GAME: Save complete.
Now it was woefully clear that Itami was not making a mistake, and that Yoshi was indeed someone from Itami's past. What the heck. As Hotaru manages to get enough strength to stand upon her own, the blue-haired Watanabe witnesses the white-haired Watanabe make Yoshi uncomfortable… Hotaru would suddenly hiss lightly. Hiss like a lizard. Very un-dragonlike behavior, but she felt it necessary. "What is going on?" Thankfully, it appears as if the crowd is moving off. "Do you two know each other?" Yoshi has the protection of a hidden village at his side right now, but Hotaru wouldn't have suspected he was defecting from Sunagakure or something. How little did Hotaru know, and how wrong her assumptions were. Even if it was the Kazekage, however… Yoshi has Hotaru on his side (As little as that actually means).
No blood would be spilled today, fortunately. "… Itami will keep her word as a Watanabe, Yoshi-san…" The young girl, perhaps naively noted, in her dull, and emotionless voice. "I trust her to do so… Please, there is no need to fight. There are common enemies that would enjoy feeding on our discourse. Sunagakure and Iwagakure both need to rebuild before we think about war between each other." If Kiyoshi attacked Itami, Sunagakure would declare war on Iwagakure. If Itami attacked Kiyoshi, Rune hates Sunagakure enough that she wouldn't care if the life taken was an Ex mercenary turned genin. Hotaru wanted neither to happen. Young girls like dolls and building clocktowers, not war.
"Whatever gain I would have is minimal. No rewards, no honors, distinctions or decorations. Nothing. You'd just be another casualty. That's not very beneficial to me, at all," Itami shrugged. "The gates to my village have been open, despite our inherent need to be to ourselves. All this largely at the cost of my own people and you think I stand to gain something out of you?" She chuckled. "No, I am extending myself because I know others who are in the same predicament that could stand to know they aren't alone. A community can be beneficial and again, it really comes to no benefit to me other than knowing that those I know are secured," she folded her arms before her.
"If you wish to discover others like you, the doors are open. Now," she turned her attention to Hotaru. "I don't know him, no, but I know others like him. I was only seeking to offer him a means to find comfort in the midst of his…self created storm, if I am to take his word for it. I am inclined to believe that much."
While Yoshi watches Hotaru exchange intrigue with Itami, Hango sets his face forward, so he can freely look at both of the Iwagakure members without having to move his head because of his glasses, at the expense of having to follow Itami's signals by hands alone. Or, as he notices Yoshi's hands move down to his sides, watching the other nin's body language. He hears the hiss, and gently moves his eyes to Yoshi's hand near his weapon. A faint, polite smile moves to his lips as he moves his attention to Hotaru, quietly moving his arms to his sides as well, and then to his hips, pushing his jacket back as he does so. Along his belt are a pair of kunai on either side, secured into position with their rings within range of his long scribe's fingers should he need them. He watches Hotaru, noting her care and becoming aware that she is in command of this particular inadequacy of clear politics that such diplomacy can cause.
Yoshi did not answer, or for that matter offer so much as a glance in Hotaru's direction. This may have further cemented just how on guard the man was in regards to Itami. But at the time, he could care less. Whatever concerns his senpai had could be — would be addressed later.
Assuming there was a later…
"… *sighs heavily*… You both misunderstood me." He states wearily, tension easing; especially in the hand closest to a blade. "Call me paranoid if you want. I don't care. But we both know there are a lot of eyes on you, Kazekage-/sama/. And not every one those eyes belong to folks as… nice, as you are try'n show yourself to be." He adds, canting his head slightly and briefly near the end. "Don't believe me. Fine. But… We're done compromising ourselves. Your offer is appreciated, but unnecessary. IF we ever feel so inclined to look into that matter, we'll find. Our own. Way."
None of it had been intended, and yet it happens, nevertheless. For a few scant moments those sensitive enough to chakra would feel not only a spike in the mummified shinobi's signature, but a change in the nature behind it as well. It is almost as if the weird mix became suffused in a heavier, more deadly, and — for all intents and purposes — ancient feeling chakra source. Anger blinds Yoshi to the change, both internal and in speech.
Yet, if given a moment to calm down, he instinctively glances over to Hango. The painted smile might've fooled others, but the subtle threat in stance is clear enough. A weak threat on the surface, but no less noteable one. Clenching his jaws, Yoshi takes a deep breathe through his nose before regarding the two Watanabe. "Now if you two will excuse me." He doesn't wait around for a response. Yoshi curtly bows fully at the waist to the Kazekage, then stormed off towards the northern section of the village.