Date: February 27, 2016
Students were permitted to witness an execution during the midst of a spring storm, the crime at hand was the assassination of a Genin loyal to Kirigakure.
"Blood for blood, the mists always take more"
Land of Water
The weather was almost fitting for the mood that certain Okumo seemed to hold. Walking along the top of the cliffs looking over the coral reef, the skies would flash with light despite the thickened cloud cover only for the vibrating roar of thunder to rattle the rural landscape. Following or rather half dragged behind the young man were four bound adults, three men and a woman, bound in silk but their faces were well exposed. For those who looked upon them, their mouths were sewn shut and still healing wounds ran across their throats, along their arms before becoming different, some were wounded along their backs, some along what could be seen along their stomachs and even their shoulders.
Taking pause at the side of the cliff, Naoya lifts his left hand to his chest, patting a protected scroll pouch before turning to the bound group. With a raised voice, he doesn't seem to try and hide himself as he says "Make your piece now with this world.. I'll give you that. Soon you will be crossing to the other side for the crimes and insults you have leveled against the Mists. Have some hope, your kin and your allies that left you to this fate will know better than to bring the ire of the Mists." Taking his time, Naoya also waited for another to arrive, having given a direct message to Kiji, requesting her presence at the 'cove of finned soup', another play on words of a distant memory. Those near the village would unlikely notice the young man, those those closer to the southern port would notice him and his captives as they made the slow march.
Kiji had received the message and sighed. Not from any soft feelings toward the events sure to pass but because she had another job. She marched to the academy and asked the teachers for their top 10 students and if they were not among the ten, she specifically asked for Ren and Mizumi.
She ordered them to keep quiet and obey, remain in the group and if they valued their lives — or their hides — they would not break rank today. Silence enveloped them aside fro a few of the children whispering as they walked. Kiji was not in a mood for scolding them, this was actually quite a surprise field trip. However as they arrived at the reef she turned and warned them not to get too close to the water.
She was smart enough to keep a buffer of reef between them and the sharks just in case someone got stupid.. With firm golden eyed expression she turned. They had made it right before Naoya had spoken to the prisoners and as they made peace with whatever gods they believed in, Kiji turned to the students. "Today you will witness for yourselves the wrath of the mist. Do not dishonor your clans or your teachers."
Ren didn't argue. He followed Kiji with Mizumi at his side. He wouldn't speak much to Mizumi either as he wasn't stupid. It felt like it was serious by how Kiji was being, and so for that reason he decided he wouldn't speak and would listen to what he was told to do. He walked onwards and followed until they were warned to not get closer. His eyes shifted to Naoya as he spoke to these prisoners, and he frowned a bit. He assumed something must of happened to bring this on, but what could it be. Not something as simple as stealing when hungry was it? No matter…he would watch and wait to see. His eyes shifted to Mizumi a bit, and he even looked to see what Kiji was thinking based on her expression.
Mizumi wasn't a part of those top ten, she would imagine. It was probably only because Kiji had asked specifically for her that she was even here. A part of her wonders if the other students are whispering about hers (and possibly Ren's?) presence on this… field trip. The young girl wouldn't speak as they walked along, as Kiji seemed quite serious, though she did shoot Ren a glance of 'what the heck is going on?' every now and then. Like he would know… Eventually, though, they reached the cliffs… To see Naoya and four others. Mizumi was… a bit curious, so she extended her senses slightly to see if there was anything special about these individuals in terms of chakra. She was in no way as good a sensor as Kiji, but she could do that much.
Criminals, then… They were to witness a sort of execution or at the very least a punishment. She wondered if the punishment was already meted out since they had scars on their bodies. Well, regardless, she was to pay attention. And very close attention at that. She glanced over to Ren to see what his thoughts were, and they seemed to be thinking the same thing… 'What was everyone else thinking?' A swift glance to Kiji was spared before the young Shirayuki looked back to the five they were supposed to be viewing.
Sensing the prisoners would result with the feeling that something was unnatural. Their chakra was actually less than that of an average non combat trained adult, let alone a practiced student. The collective where seemingly healthy in body but each any of them tries to raise even a sound, the could only rasp out a sound, closer to rushing air than trapped words. Turning his gaze slightly to the side, Naoya offers a faint nod towards Kiji along with the students gathered. Stepping away from the collective, he pauses a meter away before projecting his voice. "These four have been found, captured and will now be punished for their act. During the beginning of the first stages of winter, a Genin hardly larger than most of you was isolated during their training and executed.. It was not during a mission, not even during a trial but there are those who fear us. Who fear what you will become."
Turning around, Naoya draws one of the blades resting behind his hips, though it was different. The blade, guard and hilt were fused, formed from a single piece of ivory that was rarely drawn. "So much so.. they will not give her chance or honor to any fight, to the point of four grown mercenaries assassinated one child just to make sure none were truly wounded before retreating." As one of the men shifts slightly as if to contest the claim, the blade swiftly moves, burying itself within the man's crotch until blood flowed easily. "The punishment for such I have deemed is to not be honored.. not to be remembered.. not to have their bodies taint this land. This one shall be the first.." Shifting his weight away, Naoya quickly side push kicks the man free from the blade but also the cliff, but he didn't fall into the coast below, caught on the silk bindings attached to the Okumo, he was left dangling over the lip of the cliff face.
Kiji was focused, paying close attention to the children, their chakra, their emotions. She would know if one broke. Naoya's words actually elicited a reaction from Kiji. The Jounin grit her teeth and her eyes shifted visibly into red, startling at least one of the students not used to her. Kiji slid those eyes toward the child ad made a motion with her hand. It was a kind of silent battle speak with motions and hand seals that the children were supposed to be learning, but in case they did not understand she spoke as well. "This anger is not directed at you, child." And made the motion again so it would make more sense.
Kiji turned back to the spectacle and spoke one word. "Watch." The first man's actions showed fear, perhaps he had no gods. No hope. Still she watched them silently, arms folded. Her chakra did not rise very far but it intensified, enough to where Mizumi would think her 'sharp' but not get a serious headache.
The man hung by Naoya's silk above the water, blood dripping.. and slowly the children would notice fins circling below the man in the water….
Ren watched closely as this event took place. He didn't react to the man getting struck in the crotch and didn't react to Kiji's shifting eyes. He simply stared with a blank expression as this took place, and his eyes seemed unwavering. When the man started to hang he blinked a few times at the fins before looking at Mizumi to see how she was handling this. Would she take it so easily. Or would she start to panic. He doubted she would panic as this was Kiragakure, but…still she may put on a look of discomfort. He doubted it would show though as she could show another form easily enough. His eyes would then move back to the prisoners and Naoya.
Mizumi's discomfort was only because of Kiji's spike in chakra. It made her wince a bit since her senses were already seeking out unusual matters. She was focusing particularly hard on the ones before her because they had so little … So the sudden burst was surprising. She would spare a glance in Kiji's direction again as if to make sure her other senses weren't betraying her. Once confirmed, Mizumi looked to the man hanging below. The Sharks were circling. Would they take the bait..? Mizumi couldn't help but wonder if that man was bigger or smaller than most of the Sharks' meals. But other than curiosity and the brief discomfort of Kiji's chakra, Mizumi showed little emotion.
"For those who are enemies of the Mists, you are to choose how you punish them if there isn't a clear order. While you are students, once you begin to wear the seal of Kirigakure, you are it's law. You are it's life." Shifting his weight slightly, Naoya flicker steps, disappearing and moving with a blur from body to body, cutting deeply into their tendons until his blade ground against their bone. In the next instant the following two men and the sole woman were left to tumble before hanging over the cliff's face.
Lifting up his left hand, he flicks his wrist outwards, sending a trio of shuriken forward, each guided by a binding of silk, The motion causes each blade to hook back and cut into the sides and stomach of the woman before ripping back, leaving the wounds messily. After being performed a second time, her flesh weakened until it couldn't contain her intestines or lower organs, causing them to start to spill from the line fine slits. "This is also the punishment for traitors and those who turn their backs on the mists.. You are not to honor those, you are not to remember them. Those who betray and leave the village, died the moment they made that choice.. even before they actually did such a crime."
Kiji continued to watch, keeping her face severe and serious. She did not seem to revel in the torture nor to disagree with it. She stood as a kind of witness, as the children should. However, the evisceration of the female got to one student near Ren. Kiji's blood shot out and moved the child to a further off point as she vomited. Another almost covered his eyes but seeing Kiji's expression managed to just bite down on his fingers instead. Each would be reported to their teachers. Kiji was also keeping a close eye on Rena and Mizumi. So far they seemed to be alright, though she could tell they were perhaps unsure, a mask was good but this was a test of their inner minds as well.
Also, they might remember the bonfire and the burning of the bone sword now. How she called it a funeral. Naoya's words might click there, but they might also see Enbu's issue with it. A funeral was usually for remembering. And Kiji was remembering. She was remembering before Kiyoshi had 'died'…
Ren looked between Kiji and Naoya for a moment. His eyes were a bit blank as everything went through and he shook his head slightly as he looked around. The girl next to him being moved before they vomited had him frown a bit. Not because of anything that had happened besides just him knowing she might be punished for simply reacting. Same for the other one who tried to hold back, but still showed signs of being not at ease. Ren's own eyes moved back to Kiji and he looked up at her with a small frown still apparent though it faded away as his vision went back to Naoya and the now gutted woman. He was sure the sharks were hungry now.
Mizumi listened as Naoya spoke, and her mind flashed back to the bonfire briefly. She glanced over to Kiji again, this time with a bit of alarm. Was that was Enbu had gone on about? She didn't actually know about Kiyoshi and Kiji… So she didn't realize that it might have been for him. Mizumi frowns a bit and looks back to the display. She was not really thinking anymore of the punishment, but trying to puzzle out why the Mist worked as it did. The history behind the tradition.
"Gender not faith matter. Those who cause the mists to bleed.. will not die quickly, they will not die in a blaze of glory to be remembered. They are little more than fodder." Ripping his left arm across, Naoya draws his blade from the woman who sadly was very much still within the land of the living as her body began to spasm, though if it was from pain or if it was from shock wouldn't be easily known. Twisting his fingers rapidly, the blades begin the fly through the air at close range to him, staying in constant motion. "Each of you will become the law in the coming years, each of you will become the blade to protect the person on your left while encouraging the person on your right."
The next victim of the blades would be a unwounded man, a blade costs him his sight while the others burrow into his knees, working and grinding within the joints, only slowly worked free the more he ended up struggling. Looking towards the student that couldn't maintain their stomach let alone their constitution, he nods faintly towards them. "This is disgusting and vile, as much as the sharks enjoy it with hunger as their blood and pieces already chum the waters. If the enemy sees you as weak.. this might be your fate, not by my hand.. but theirs. If they fear you.. your kin will be safe. While all of you are young, answer this silently.. do not share your answer. 'What would you do to keep your kin safe, to keep safe those you favor? What would you do if you found out holding back risks their lives?'" Turning around, Naoya moves closer to the cliff's edge and looks down towards the four hanging below and informs them, "While you have taken one 'monster', you have only sharpened the fangs of their generation." Lowering his tone, 'May your kin pity you when they meet you on the other side.. pray they find the one they truly should curse before they curse you.'
Kiji watched and listened. Naoya's words to the children perhaps surprising to Ren or Mizumi. But when Kiji moved again it was to go over to the girl finally unable to fetch any more and offered a hand on the back ad a wet cloth to clean her mouth. As naoya said, it was vile and disgusting. Once returned to the group, though embarrassed, the girl was treated no rougher than the others.
"Naoya-san is correct and you will think on this before you speak individually with your teachers. If one of these threatened your family or your friends, what would you do? What would you refuse to do to protect them? Even while we in the Mist are a grouping of Clans, we are together a family of the Mist as well." She had o intention of punishing those who had been unable to deal, in fact they had done so themselves simply by embarrassing themselves.
Ren frowned a bit at everything that happened. He knew what his answer was, but he didn't really have anyone that fit that role. Not even his actual family. Closest person was probably Mizumi honestly. He didn't answer obviously, and just looked at Kiji as she helped the girl who lost what little lunch she probably had. He would've done the same if it wasn't for Kiji telling them to not break rank. He would protect all of them if he could, but it obviously depend on the situation. When you have to choose between doing one thing at the risk of others and doing another at the risk of something else possible unknown… what do you choose then. It was something he hadn't decided for himself yet.
Mizumi is jolted back to the present when Naoya speaks again, and she nods slowly. She had to protect people… And make sure that they grew. Well, when she herself could ensure that would happen. Mizumi looked over once at the girl when she returned to the group, looking sympathetic briefly before she would start turning her thoughts inward once more. What would she do to protect those she held closest? She wasn't entirely sure. She wanted to protect, but right now she couldn't at all… That is why she needed to grow. Mizumi knew that she wanted to protect everyone she treasured, and at the top of that list was Ren and her family. Only recently has Kiji been added. Mizumi glances over at Ren a moment, trying to read his thoughts.
"Kiji-san, if they wish to stay they may.. These four will be dying of blood loss and organ failure over the next hour. I have a scroll for you though.. one that will need to be reviewed for a time, but then it will be put on display." Moving his sword into the air, he slashes downward, letting the speed of the sudden stop and the rainwater whip free most of the blood before letting it settle back into the woven sheath it normally rested. Moving a hand to his hip's vestment, he withdraws a slender scroll and held it out for the young woman. "This is for yourself.. you don't need to put it on display." Using the yet to be taken scroll, he points at a few of the students gathered and says, "Those ones have permission to leave even if they don't initially ask it. They others may ask when they follow you to the village.. They won't likely stay well staying in this storm even for the following hour."
Kiji looked up at Naoya, moving over to him with a 'stay here' motion of her hand. It had yet to strike her that she was uniquely capable of teaching hand signals. Ah well, perhaps later. She nodded and took the scroll, slipping it into her pouch to protect from the rain.
Once back with the children she nodded. "Alright, lets return you to Kirigakure. You have the afternoon off today, HOWEVER…" She raised an eyebrow. "I had better not hear of any of you getting sick because you failed to properly go to the bathhouses."
Arranging them so that she walked with Ren and Mizumi, she would continue on, not willing to leave the children alone outside the walls of kirigakure. However, they WERE allowed to talk. And Kiji's chakra had mellowed a bit.
Ren didn't speak however. Even now after they started to leave. He had just stayed quiet through the whole thing down to the words from Kiji about having the afternoon off. He would simply nod to her and carry on further for now. It wasn't like he had anything to speak of right now. As even the recent event was something that could be kept quiet about for now. His eyes drifted up at Kiji though and he frowned a bit as he wondered what her thoughts on everything was, and where her head was at.
Mizumi glances at the scroll when it is exchanged, and she would then move to follow after Kiji when told such. The Shirayuki was trying to think and answer the questions that were posed by Naoya, but she didn't have any sense of certainty. Thankfully, she sensed that Kiji's chakra had calmed a bit, so that had less pressure on her brain and let her thoughts flow. Mizumi glances to Ren when he glanced to Kiji, then her gaze went to Kiji… Hmm… And finally back to the path ahead.