Date: January 25, 2014
The visiting ninja from Kumogakure stop at a restaurant to experience Kirigakure culture…and get a particularly bizarre taste of it.
"A Strange Welcome for the Kumo Envoy"
Namami Restaurant [Kirigakure]
Owned not by a single person but a group, the Namami Restaurant lives up to its expectations of being the place to be for Kirigakure's Ninja. No villagers dare tread into this area without an escort. The Namami Restaurant is a place of food and drink and pleasant conversation amongst the arguments and fighting. Bar fights are common and often stopped by authorities wandering in.
The place is not kept tidy, dirty floors and wars gives it its traditional feel of The Village of the Bloody Mist. The barman and the employees of this establishment are all well noted Ninja who keep control over its patrons in order to avoid unnecessary damage to property. Those who grow accustomed to this place call it the place to be for ninja meetings.
From the moment he left the lightning ferry docks back in Kumogakure, Hiei had been on edge..and it did nothing for his sea sickness. He spent a lot of the time during the trip to Kiri laid over the side of the boat..but now that his feet was on dry land, the first thing he wanted to do was get some food in him. He asides to Nariko as they walk into the Namami restaurant. "If you tell a soul back home about how sick I was during the trip. I'll bury your body where no one will ever find it. I promise." He asides to his cousin as he pauses just inside the doorway to take a look around. "Now..this is different.." He smirks. "I like it!"
Walking next to Hiei as they enter the restaurant, while their assistants are going to get their rooms and what not, was the young Yotsuki heroine known as Nariko. She had her hands clasped behind her and on one hand she had crossed her fingers. "I will not tell a soul back home. Your secret is safe with me." She smiles sweetly to Hiei and then looks at the restaurant. "Definitely your style." She felt a little overdressed and if she were even wearing a dress she would be holding it up with all her might.
"Welcome~!" A chirpy young woman with glasses and twin braids pops up in front of the Kumo nin. n.n "Thank you for choosing Namami for your dining needs! Would you like a seat in stabbing, or non?" The girl laughs hysterically without waiting for an answer, ending with a couple snerks. X) She then turns around and walks between the scattered tables and chairs. "This way, please! Our special today is blackened catfish, caught fresh from the marsh! Careful though, those shock sacs in their gills make them a treat only for the adventurous gourmet!" ;)
A moment to consider is given just like the others. After that it is down the hatch for Onimitsu's third bottle of something not readily recognizable to those that didn't frequent Namami restaurant. For all his seeming lack of care when tipping back the drink, he did not waste a single drop. He would need as much as the fortifying stuff he could just to make it through the day. Tomorrow was another story all together.
The dark-haired young man bartending for the evening gave Onimitsu a dubious look. Reluctantly, he caves after the swordsman leveled his emerald eyes on him upon realizing that his next drink wasn't forthcoming. He snatched up the bottle the moment its set down and is just about to give it the same scrutiny as the last two when the duo arrives. He needed not hear them or see them firsthand to notice. The blade leaning against the bar — non-descript compared to others except for its lack of a hilt — gave him enough of a warning. He peers at them over his shoulder. Albeit with much less hostility than some of the other locals scattered about the restaurant. It seems some haven't quite forgotten old grudges with Kumo or may very well found a potential outlet for their latest woes and frustration that didn't involve the usual.
"…!" He blinked twice at seeing Koseitama pop into view. He knew he should probably do something about her, but he really can't find the will yet. So he watches and hopes the Shirayuki doesn't make things to… odd.
Hiei rolls his shoulder to adjust the sword harness on his back. He shrugs. "Stabbing." He then looks at Nariko and smiles. "Somehow I don't believe you." However, he follows the woman to a table and then settles his large frame into a seat. "I'll take the special with a pitcher of beer and a glass. Actually, make that order a double." He rubs his stomach. "I'm starving."
Nariko looks at Hiei and smiles, her eyelids fluttering. "Oh cousin, please believe me." She still had her fingers crossed. She looked to the girl then Hiei. "Uh, really? You are not making anymore choices." She shakes her head and sits down across from Hiei after they arrive. "Thank you. I will have to keep that in mind." To her anything outside Kumo and the Land of Tea was adventurous gourmet. "Two glasses actually. I don't think it wise to go with anything harder while we're here…for now of course." She winks at him.
"Ooo, daring!" Koseitama 'writes' on her hand with a spoon randomly picked up from an abandoned table. "No entree for you yet, miss, or were you just going to steal some of his extra? No worries, we serve big portions here!" Koseitama shrugs and heads off. "I'll get your drinks while you're thinking it over." Koseitama walks by Onimitsu and claps a hand on his shoulder in passing. "C'mon buddy, we've got tables waiting! Won't get good tips without a little hustle!" Koseitama then strides off into the kitchen. A moment later shouts can be heard from within. "Hey, what're you doin' in here?! Employees only!" There are a couple of clangs and crashes, and Koseitama ducks back out and holds the door closed. "Sorry sir, looks like we're out of catfish already!" Koseitama calls out across the restaurant. "Could I interest you in the house steak instead?" n.n
Absently, Onimitsu turned more in his seat for a better view of the proceedings as he got to nurse his latest beverage. "Aoi-san." The bartender perks up in surprise at first, then turns to look at Onimitsu with apprehension. "That woman serving those Kumo folk — " He casually gestures to Koseitama. "She substituting for Shi-chan today?"
"Huh?" Aoi glances over and squints his eyes at the woman in question. So plain, so ordinary, and… familiar, but in a good way. Not exactly in a bad way either, but still…
The answer isn't forthcoming, but it is obvious nonetheless. Onimitsu closes his eye with a sigh and a weary shake of his head. He ends up jolting to alertness a few seconds later thanks to Kosei clapping his shoulder all of a sudden. "Huh? No, w-wait a sec — " He stutters and reaches out to her, but of course by that time she has already disappeared into the kitchen. The clangs and clangs that soon followed prompted a sweat drop out of just everyone near; including Onimitsu. As soon as she returns and starts going on about the house steak, Onimitsu spares the Yotsuki only a brief glance before hoping out of his seat and going over to try and gently clasp Koseitama's hands.
"N-neh, Shirayu — mm — Koseitama-chan? Isn't it time for you to be on break right now?" He asks, smiling nervously and yet with as much bishie power he could muster!
Hiei blinks as he watches the girl and then he frowns. "You..don't work here..do you?" He runs a hand over his face as he sighs as he rises to his feet. He glances over at Onimitsu and does a double take at his sword. Hiei's eyes widen slightly. "Hey. That is an insanely cool sword. You know I hear Kirigakure is famous for it's swordsmen. I was hoping to meet a couple of them while we're here." He ahems. "Pardon my manners. I'm Yotsuki Hiei from Kumogakure." He motions back to his table. "That's Yotsuki Nariko." He offers Koseitama a wary look. "I'd better place my order to a real server. Excuse me." He walks over to do just that while giving Koseitama a wide berth. He recognized crazy when he saw it. She wrote on her hand with a spoon for crying out loud. He mutters to himself. "Guess I'll have to get used to the culture here."
Koseitama pffts at Onimitsu. "Break? Who's got time for a break with all these customers waiting around? Oh, I get it, you're trying to get all the good tables for yourself, ain'tcha? Nice try, rookie!" ;) Koseitama gives Onimitsu a good-humored elbow nudge to the ribs, then moves around behind the bar. "Pardon me a second Jo-san," she remarks to Aoi while grabbing a pitcher and filling it with beer. "Things are crazy in the kitchen right now, so I gotta grab drinks from here. Nice going on the employee of the month thing, by the way!"
Try as he might, Onimitsu can't keep focus on Koseitama for long once Hiei started speaking up. Heck, he nearly dashed back to retrieve the blade before the Yotsuki — a sturdy and strong will young man from what he can tell — might think to get to close to it. He sighs mentally in relief. "Manji Onimitsu… and this one is Shirayuki Koseitama." Onimitsu replies in kind, hesitating at little however when it came to Koseitama. Was it really proper thing of him to give her name so freely? As luck would have it he is saved from pondering that exact quandary thanks to Kosei speaking up.
"N-no, I — " Then she ribs him, breaking his concentration. Both Onimitsu and Aoi can only helplessly stare at the Shirayuki lass as she went about her business… which was technically not her business. He really needed to do something before things got too far out of hand! But what? It wasn't as if she was like — "*clears throat* M-my dear, I really must insist you let Mr. Aoi handle the drinks, and that we go about enjoying our evening again as we planned." He says in his best westerner impression of a high-society gentleman.
He's not all that good at it though. Maybe…
Hiei leans in towards the bartender. "Two beers, please." Then he takes one of them and turns with his back to the bar. "Pleasure to meet you, Manji-san. You as well, Shirayuki-san." He murmurs. "Shirayuki…that surname sounds familiar, but I can't place it." He shrugs. "Anyways.." He looks at Onimitsu before glancing back at the now quiet Nariko. "Say..is she alright? I'm pretty sure that guy knows that she doesn't actually work here." He hooks a thumb back towards the bartender.
Gasp! :o Using a memory cue to try and trigger a previous personality that's more advantageous to the situation? How clever! …Though unfortunately not very effective. X) Koseitama only responds to Onimitsu's impression with that high-pitched laugh. "Kid, you got the funniest voices! We oughta start a little stage act to bring in more customers!" Koseitama crouches under the bar. "Now where do we keep glasses here, ah, here we g — ouch!"
Koseitama comes up with a glass in one hand and the other rubbing her head, apparently having bumped it. She peers at the glass for a moment as though confused…then she slaps it down on the bar and scowls at Aoi. "Mister, I can see the sediment marks in this glass with my naked eye! It's like you don't even try to wash them! This health inspection's off to a lousy start already!" >/ Koseitama strides back over to Onimitsu. "So, what've you found so far?"
Hiei sighs at Koseitama and downs his beer. Then he immediately downs his second glass. He closes his eyes and tries to remember Nariko's lessons on diplomacy. He exhales slowly and looks at the girl. "I..uh..have no idea what you're talking about Shirayuki-san." He looks around the bar for help. He mutters under his breath. "Someone please help me." He's never dealt with insanity on this level before.
"EXACTLY!!!" Koseitama waves a hand around the restaurant. "The noise level and acoustics in this establishment make communication next-to-impossible! If there was a fire, you could shout a warning and people five feet away would be oblivious! We'll have to report this to the fire warden as well!" Koseitama sits down at the bar. "All right, this is your one chance to redeem yourself, barkeep. Hit me with your best shot, and it better be sanitary technique!" Koseitama glances at Hiei again. "I heard rumors they actually serve those electric catfish here, if you can convince 'em you won't rat them out. Insurance nightmare." :P
Hiei sits down slowly at the bar next to Koseitama. His expression is one of utter confusion. "Ah..sure. Whatever you say." He looks at the bartender. "Another beer, please." He turns so that he halfway faces her on the stool. "What can you tell me about Kirigakure? For example, is there somewhere people hang out? Like a marketplace? Also, where would I go to get some training in?" Maybe if he tried to engage her in normal conversation she'd snap out of her 'episode.'
Koseitama scrutinizes the bartender intently while he pours her a drink. "Fingers away from the rim, good, fine…using a cloth would be ideal, but I guess I can't expect that in this kind of joint…ah-ah! Careful how you handle that cork!" After accepting her drink, she eyes it suspiciously for a moment, then takes a reluctant sip. "Hrmph, you get off for now. Still have a lot of things to inspect around here." Koseitama turns back to Hiei. "Sure, there's a marketplace. Crawling with vermin, though. Can't tell you how many times I've tried to get a warrant to shut it down, somebody up the chain of command must be getting kickbacks. Then there's the Boneyard Gardens, surprisingly clean place. For training, a lot of people use the cold springs. Or there's always the beach outside of town, if you don't mind the possibility of sea parasites." :P
Hiei listens intently. He realized that once he got past the insanity, she was surprisingly well informed. "Arigato, Shirayuki-san. I appreciate the information. I believe I'll visit the marketplace.." He quickly adds. "..and I'll keep my eye out for the vermin." He offers her a small salute. "Though I'd like to hear more about the sea parasites. Like how good are they in a fight." Aaand thrill seeker Hiei comes out. If they were dangerous, odds are he'd try to go toe to toe with one of them. That was his kind of crazy.
Koseitama gives Hiei a strange look. "Parasites, boy! Y'know, critters so tiny y'can't see 'em, that get in your food and drink and establish a colony in your guts? They don't fight, they sneak! Sneak into anybody foolish enough to skirt food and drug regulations!" Koseitama takes another suspicious sip of her drink. "Talkin' to a crazy man," she mutters. :P
Hiei blinks. "Parasites..right." Like what Misaki claimed got ahold of her and made her bijuu go all wonky. He still had trouble believing a little bug or whatever it was could do something like that. But then again that kind of stuff was for Hiroyasu and Amani to figure out and deal with. "So..stay away from them, then. Got it. Do you have any local legends? You know..areas that are supposed to be haunted..or some sort of monster that lurks around the land?"
Koseitama snorts. "There's enough monsters in the Blood Marsh that none of them can be legends anymore. If you ask me, the Okumo are releasing their experiments there. Flagrant violation of wildlife population codes." :P Koseitama blinks, then peers up at a corner of the ceiling. "Wait…is that…IT IS! PLUMBER'S BLIGHT TOADSTOOL!!!" D8 Koseitama claps an urgent hand on Hiei's shoulder. "Quarantine the building! I'll go alert the health department!" With that, Koseitama races out of the restaurant and down the street. "THE FUNGUS ARE AMONG UUUUUUUS!!!"