Date: November 13, 2016
Yuriko gets some ANBU training from the masked 'Yari', passing a test to reap the rewards.
"ANBU Capture The Flag"
Forest, somewhere in Kirigakure
As night falls across the land, a rock is thrown at the door of the mansion in the Kaguya village. The person who would open it would find an envelope with Yuriko's name on it. It looked extremely official. The contents would be a list of instructions paired with a map. The instructions would read as follows:
1. Bring your special gear.
2. Follow the map to the marked location.
3. Do NOT be followed.
4.Find a new list of instructions at the marked designation.
The note was strange one. Rather suspicious. There was only one person she could think of that would deliver secret messages to her, but not like this. There wasn't any webbing involved after all. For the moment, however, Yuriko doesn't question it further. Quickly donning a fitted, armored suit. Much like the one she makes from her bone, though this was black in order to blend in with the night. The only exception to this being the smooth, featureless mask that covers her face.
She moves silently, swiftly across the rooftops of the village. The map seared into her head while it's kept in a ninjapouch. Yuriko keeps herself aware of her surroundings, ensuring that she's both unseen and unfollowed.
Once she reached the marked destination, Yuriko would find an intersection in the woods. It was a secluded area that was hardly used even during the day hours. Attached to one of the trees in view of the path was another note with another set of directions. These directions would read as follows:
1. Change into your ANBU attire.
2. While wearing this attire you have no name and will use no jutsu that can be traced back to a clan or individual.
3. Proceed down the path to the right. You will be playing a form of tag. This is a game of sensing and hiding. Your target will be wearing a red flag. Steal the flag and you pass. Fail to obtain the flag and you will be sent back to hone your ability.
Finding the note where it was marked on the map, she looks at it for a skeptical moment before extending her senses around her. Trying to get a feel if anyone or anything was already nearby. Luckily, she was already wearing her Anbu attire.
No name. No clan.
Yuriko repeats this silently to herself, taking the note from the tree and crumpling it in her hand just as she turns. Moving down the right path, she takes off through the treetops with utmost silence.
From high in the trees a dark shinobi waited in the shadows. The mask would mark him as the hunter nin Yari. The red flag flailing lightly from his pocket. His eyes watched Yuriko as she moved. She had followed instructions so far. That was good to see. Personally he knew sometimes she could be very bull headed. He shook his head lightly as he began to think of her more in a personal light. For this exercise, she was not family but a student. Going easy on her would do nothing to help her future in ANBU.
There was a short pause in movement, before the after-vision of her sudden speed abruptly fades. Disappearing entirely from view. Rather than go directly to offense right after finding her target, the masked kunoichi stealthily observes her target from a bit away. Carefully noting just where the red flag was on their person. Seen partially visible from the right hand pocket. Meaning this person was right handed. A bit of knowledge that may or may not be useful.
Yari noted Yuriko's new position as she landed. It had become apparent that she noted his location. Mentally he was kicking himself. He likely should have left this to someone else but it needed to get done. With a single motion of his foot the man falls from the tree. He plummets directly towards the ground for a brief second. At the moment that Yuriko should have heard him hit the ground, she would hear nothing. Yari had vanished once more. This was a game of tag. The first portion was to fight the target. The second was to actually tag them. It was time to see if it had been luck or if the student was that good.
Behind the featureless mask she tightens her jaw. He had spotted her spotting him, and of course he, she, whoever it was, reacted. Falling off the branch straight towards the forest floor before seeming to disappear again. Yuriko takes off through the treetops, her keen eyes following him. There was no use hiding now, since he knew that she was onto him. The kunai appears in her gloved hand, picking up speed to get closer. If she's quick enough, she'll slash at his right hip. Aiming to slice away the red flag and detach it.
Yari took note of the change in Yuriko's tactic. Now she was on the offensive trying to get at the flag. As quickly as she would strike, Yari would vanish. After the second vanish, he would attempt once more to hide from her. If this were a stealth operation, he would have taken off for the hills. However it was still a training test. Yuriko needed to show her ability to adapt to the situation and fufill the requirements of the mission. He knew this had to be torture for her. In a normal situation she could use her kekkei genkai and simply take the flag. Now she was forced to rely on lesser worked skills to achieve a similar outcome. It had proven hell for him once upon a time.
Both quick attempts prove to be fruitless, her target disappearing again, though this time managing to allude her completely. Behind the mask she tightens her jaw, but Yuriko simply remains silent as she too blurs and suddenly disappears. Fading away from sight as well. Now is not the time to rush. If she's impatient, she'll just waste time and energy. Starting from step one, locating the target.
Once more Yuriko changed her tactic. Yari realized he had lost her for the moment. She was making the correct play. Stay calm and return to step one. His eyes focused on her. She was still trying to sense him. Her skills were easily better than most, especially given the age. Now it was simply the luck of them working out properly while on the mission. Half of him wanted to encourage her. The other half wanted to scold his the former half.
Yuriko takes a moment to pause, remaining silent in the treetops. Wherever he was, she couldn't sense or see him, so he was hiding well. Her weight shifts subtly before moving to another tree several yards away, repositioning herself to maybe get a better angle. That and she couldn't afford to be in one spot for too long. He might as well be hunting her as well.
Yari was hunting her. It was more of a teacher watching a student to assess their progression in a subject instead of some form of harmful intent. It did not seem that she was in a panick. At least not yet. She did not seem to discover the current hiding spot, so he'd remain still for the moment. He did ponder how she had done so well earlier, yet she was unable to find him currently. Was it that he was simply hiding better or was it that she was insecure in her skills?
Yuriko keeps her breaths slow and even, narrowing her gaze behind the mask as she watches everything, anything for the smallest indication of where her target might be. But there isn't even that. There was no denying how skilled he is. Right now she needs to move again, keep circling to get a hint of where he might be hiding, while keeping herself hidden as well.
The eyes followed Yuriko until suddenly she vanished. There is a low grumble from Yari. He hated when his target vanished. That gave Yuriko a slight advantage. No matter the results of the test, she had already shown patience and dedication. The kid had heart. Now came the waiting game. He would either wait for her to find him, or for her to accidently reveal herself. Either way, he assumed one would happen rather soon.
This time, Yuriko won't let him get away. She kept to the shadows as she moved with increasing speed, narrowing in on Yari until the exact moment she strikes. Hard and fast, she aims to disorient him enough to snap up the red flag at his pocket.
As she struck, her attack would hit nothing. Yari vanished only to appear behind her. "I have seen enough." he states. His hand moves quickly across his body, pulling a katana from the sheath on his back. "In the shinobi world nothing is usually as stated. Despite your lack of being able to touch the flag, you have shown that you are capable of being able to track a target and being able to hide from one. Despite your Kaguya nature you have proven you can remain calm when the odds are against you. For these reasons you have passed this test. Your reward is this katana. It is of an extremely simple construction. It is very hard to trace should you lose it in battle." Yari then presents the katana to Yuriko. "You will only carry it while being trained for the ANBU forces. I will not see this on you while you operate under the name Yuriko. Understand?"
The kunai slices through open air, unfortunately. She was sure that her target would have struck back in retaliation as they appear behind her, but there wasn't a time to react. Twisting in midair, Yuriko slides to a stop, kicking up more dirt as she braces her weight through her legs. Preparing to take off or defend herself. Instead, Yari concludes the activity, pulling out the katana from the sheath set on his back. Warily she straightens, for a moment she's thankful for the mask. Hiding her expression at the words 'despite your Kaguya nature'. She felt that was a little unneeded, but whatever. And while she passed the test, Yuriko didn't feel satisfied. Not fully.
Narrowing the distance between them, she bends with a bow as she accepts the katana, though when she straightens, she holds the blade in one hand and the red flag in the other. Now she felt satisfied. "I understand. Only in those circumstances, and not before."
Yari grinned beneath his own mask as Yuriko decided to quench her own desires by grabbing the flag. "The tests will be getting harder from here out Yuriko. Do not make me regret my decision by putting yourself before the village." With that last set of words, Yari turns and walks down the path. "When one wears the mask, they have no true name. They need none for they are not a person. They are a weapon of uniformity. They do not look or act different from any other that wears the mask. They are uniform and the same as the one next to them. One ANBU operative is able to hide within ten operatives because they are no different. This is the difference between your enemies coming for those you love and remaining clueless as to who struck against them." These words were spoken as he walked away. He was not sure if she listened or if she would be busy being upset about him scolding her.
Yuriko narrows her gaze at Yari's back as he walks southwards, along the path, and it's only when he disappears that she exhales a longer breath. Anonymity, it was a tool much like anything else. The mask protected her, the village and her loved ones. She understood that, so it didn't really effect her. However, she didn't ask anyone to put her before the village. Wasn't that the point? Again Yuriko breathes a faint sigh, tucking the flag in her pouch while keeping the katana carefully level at her side. Pushing off, she disappears into the treetops, on her way southwarrds home.