Date: July 29, 2014
San Sara's new ground is under works and it couldn't be running anymore smoothly. However, the past of San Sara still reigns in this area as plenty of store rooms that housed numerous items of worth are still present. Dangers still lurk the grounds despite the best efforts of converting them into something that spawns life and pleasure versus its history of agony, pain, and death.
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
"Breaking New Ground - The Drug Bust"
Ruins of San Sara-Durata
It's later than usual to be starting anything significant in this area, but it's cooler at this time and much easier to work without any problems. There's no way a project like this could be completely hidden from view, despite it being far into the desert. People have taken notice, perhaps in no small part thanks to Juli. Even though she isn't supposed to be out here yet, she's arrived early and watches over the area carefully with the moon providing enough light to view the delta clearly.
There's still rubble to be cleared, but for the most part, most of it has been pushed away. There were shinobi helpers and normal people alike to aid in this process. Something that would have taken much longer has now been reduced to a mild workload that will be handled soon enough. Now Itami only needed a survey of the ground and what lay beneath it so that she'd know how to structure the village accordingly. It is for this purpose that Ayumu was called here. Shikoge would help to harden the damaged ground with his abilities. With it broken and cut up, it'd need to be resealed in order to ensure a strong foundation, perhaps even stronger than what it was originally.
Shikoge had been at the construction site for some time now as he had little else to do and with Itami being his team leader, he was sure to follow the woman to most places she went. Whether or not she knew it and she most likely did, he was always there; watching, following, stalking the woman for no other reason than to simply do so. Though once growing quickly tiresome of the site as there wasn't much he could do for now except be in the way, the boy had made himself a spot that was all his own, but still most likely in the way. Where most of the foot traffic was happening, Shikoge had stabbed his blade deep into the ground to allow himself to balance on top of the blades handle while his shirtless form glistened in the moonlight.
When Ayumu had agreed to assist Itami in her endeavours, he had not expected to be called during the eve for such. Not that he was complaining mind you, but… he really was kind of banking on getting some shut eye for a change. Oh well. From what he recalled the work load in mind promised a few opportunities in which he could sneak a few winks before the boss lady required his uptmost attention. Until that time he came dressed in business suit attire, hair trimmed roughly to shoulder length, and demeanor rather tame compared to his usual self. At least, that is the face he's shown up until and so for after they reached the moonlit delta. From start to then, he's also kept his senses open to the position of Shikoge in particular, wary of the kids "erratic" behavior.
As if he's one to talk…
"Seems things are already going off without a hitch… but where would you like for us to begin exactly, Itami-ch… -sama." He corrects, smiling foxily as he gave an apologetic though mocking bow.
"Especially him.." He adds, pointing over to Shikoge's general direction. Even if at the time it isn't clear because of all the workers passing through or some other obstruction.
"Hm, Shikoge? Yes, he's always unhinged. I don't know how he manages to function in life, but he makes it work…" Itami shrugged. "Well, things are going off without a hitch. I have some workers here already clearing away the remainder of the rubble. Now I just need the ground softened and searched through to observe what plumbing still lies beneath the surface. I think it was mostly protected due to only the surface taking the large majority of the damage from the destruction of this village," she explains. "Ayumu, I need you to look into the ground and tell me how the plumbing looks. If it's alright, we may just salvage it and utilize it as it is."
With her instructions finished, she walked over to Shikoge saying, "Shikoge, wake up. I have something I need you to do and you won't accomplish it by standing here and looking attractive to wild animals," she states. "Your skin is like using a mirror to flash the sun for signaling. They can see you…and probably smell you, from afar."
Shikoge would look slyly at Itami as she approached, unsure if she had just witnessed the glob of dirt he had retrieved from his pocket and thrown at Ayumu when the man was not looking. Though, he doesn't have eyes…"I'm not sleeping." The boy responded as he crossed his arms over his chest before jumping off the blade to land on the ground only to promptly lean back up against the sword in the stone. "I might accomplish it from here. What is it you need me to do?"
Ayumu allowed a chuckle to escape as Itami shrugged, then put back on his air of professionalism about as she moved on. His eyes may not have wondered from ahead (except to point out Shikoge earlier), but other senses, extraordinary and otherwise, remained attuned to the world at large; including the glob of dirt thrown at him from Shikoge. If he had been envoking the full power of his Kekkei Genkai, days would flit by for him whereas only seconds passed in reality, granting him all the time in the world to decide how best to retialiate. Alas, he was only sharp enough to simply deflect the glob of dirt to the earth with a barrier of wind erected without any visible signs performed.
"By your leave, cap'n." He says before crouching down and taking a deep breath, then forming a single seal. A mass of flesh comes rolling out of his mouth and lands wetly on the ground. Sensory organs he had scattered about following them up to the point begin a patterend and more focused search of what lies beneath.
"I need you to break up the ground and soften it. Once all the survey work has been performed by Ayumu, then I'll need you to harden it. The ground is already wet as the workers have wet it down to make it more manageable," Itami offered. "Then I'll need you to bake it all back into place after it's been smoothed out so that it will be nice and solid. If you can accomplish all of this over this vast expanse from here, you have my respect…" she grinned.
What lies beneath the ground is probably not always the best of sights, but it's something, none the less. Not only is the plumbing largely intact with the exceptions of a few places that have damage, there are a number of hidden areas that have yet to be looked into. They could be storehouses or just plain basements that have little to nothing in them. Considering the nature of San Sara, it's likely these are filled with some sort of find.
As Itami spoke, Shikoge couldn't help but look away, watching Ayumu as the man took up a position before making movements similar to a cat coughing up a hair ball. "Ojii-san's a mom?" He asked with the mass of flesh that plops on to the ground. "That's uh…What?" Shikoge's focus finally shifting back to Itami, "You want me to do what to this place? That's gonna take forever! Heating the ground up, that's easy, but tearing the ground up is a job for Tsurure. Shouldn't he be out here?"
Ayumu absently fishes out a notepad to print the mental map slowly forming from his sensory organs scans. He even goes as far as to mark rooms and crannies that held the possibility of offering more than just a mildly interesting corridor to explore and what have you. If he can find a faultline of some sort, Ayumu would go so far as squeeze in a few for a closer pre-emptive examin— "Ojii-san is an Iga, and soon to be a dad." He corrects curtly, well, tries to in any case. Only the Kami knew how much the boy could really process or even how he would go about taking such news as. Chances were high that he would later regret having said anything at all soon enough…
Itami looked back at the very last moments of seeing that organ plop down on the ground. She winced and focused back on Shikoge. "No…he's not a mom," she spoke blandly as she raised her hand to rub her face. "I want you to soften the ground. You told me you could do that from where you sit, so go ahead and make it happen," she smirked impishly. "I'm sure you're skilled enough to make it all work out."
She didn't stay in the boy's presence long since she needed to get a report back from Ayumu. "What have you taken note of around here? Does all seem well?"
"That was before I knew what you wanted me to do!" Throwing his arms up in defeat, thinking Itami has lost her marbles. Probably one too many run-ins with the desert creatures and baking in the sun too long for her own good. "Does the Kazekage know you have his number one swordsmen out here doing this?" Shikoge asked as he reached for the handle of his blade and began slashing it into the ground from one side to the other while walking about. The resultant movement sending the wet dirt flying about, even splattering against his now bare legs. The comment about Ojii-san being a dad goes unnoticed.
Ayumu's answer is not worse so much as words, but his simply handing over his map to Itami. Some excavation would be required to confirm his findings in full, but the multi-layered was accurate to a T. Well, relatively accurate, seeing as how Ayumu could only fit so many innotations denoting what one was and how large it was before running the risk of running out of paper. Unless prodded further, Ayumu would first make sure to keep up a relatively passive current of wind surrounding him to make it easier to deflect any 'incidental' incoming dirt clods from flying in his direction. He may not be 100% successful, but he was going to do his crunchiest to keep his suit clean!
That matter aside, there was still a matter of finding his way in…
"No, he doesn't know, but he probably suspects it. Just start work on what I've asked. You're being utilized to the benefit of the Land of Wind. I'm certain that he'd want nothing more than for you to improve this place," Itami spoke while guarding herself from mild splashes of wet dirt.
Taking Ayumu's map in hand, she looks it over and takes note of the shapes that he's drawn out. "I see… It appears there's been some things left behind afterall. We should probably look into that, but not right now. I need Shikoge to finish his cutting of the land."
Being utilized to the benefit of the Land of Wind? Shikoge thought that sounded like smash. He's a shinobi and should be used as such, not a tiller that cultivates some land. It upset the boy that he was being used this way as he'd rather be out there on an adventure, discovering something new or finding some treasure. How he felt about this was apparent in the way the boy used the blade to cut through the earth, twisting the handle to use the flat side to smack against the wet ground and sending a massive glob of the 'mud' at Itami and Ayumu before spinning the blade back around to cut through the earth as he continued on with his 'progress'.
'Break throughs, Break throughs, Where are breakthroughs~' The Iga singsonged in his head as his rogue sensory organs continued to explore the ruins. Naturally having so many bodies moving about made their movements difficult, but Ayumu was determined to see his venture accomplished. So much so he almost didn't note the Shikoge's frustration get turned upon both him AND Itami for no good reason! And even when he does, well, kind of too late then. While he does avoid the worst the glob of 'mud' had to offer thanks to the passive barrier of wind, some passes through a turns into a nice healthy coating along his right arm, torso, and parts of his leggings.
"Hmm… Not exactly my color," He muttered deresively, as he careful shifted about to dig out some sort of cloth to wipe himself down.
Itami formed a seal with her hand to block out the mass of mud with a shield of wind. She then retaliated by summoning a column of air to slam down on Shikoge for his attempt at spite. "Do you want help Shikoge? I wouldn't mind, but I felt it was a job for the number one swordsman. You are the number one swordsman, right? Or are you number two?" She questions. "A number one could do this easy," she nodded and decided to take the opportunity to copy the boy by jamming her blade into the ground and taking a rest against it. "Just let me know when you're done, Ayumu. I think we'll get to this sooner than we—" She's cut off when a few workers shout at the top of their lungs. It seems they hit a weak spot on the earth and fell through into a hole in the ground. In response, Itami rose up and ran towards the hole. She then notes that the rest of the ground continues to crack, leaving little time for people to think about how to react. "Everyone, clear the area now! Move away from the cracks! Go! GO!" She gestured with her hands indicating for them to move elsewhere while she tries to pick up some stragglers in the process.
The wind easily finds Shikoge's almost nude form and force him into the dirt. "Ugh…" The boy utters as he rolls over onto his back, staying there as he doesn't feel the need to get back up. "A number one might be able to do this, but instead the number two swordsman is stuck doing this while the number one is out some where else." The teen sighed while looking up at the sky, imagining himself some where else completely. This causing him to miss the instructions from Itami to clear away from the area.
Ayumu may have felt the tremors long before anyone gave voice to them, but either he dismissed them outright or miscalculated the amount of time was on their side. Regardless of what the case may be, he pauses in his muck scraping long enough to real let the message sink in. A muttered curse is followed by tossing the rag aside and forming a single seal, summoning shadow clones. Wordlessly, the trio depart to assist Itami with the stragglers. The original is just about ready to move out away from any nearby cracks when he notes Shikoge staring off into space. "… Don't do it, Ayumu." He muttered. And yet despite his words, Ayumu stormed over to the boy, attempts to take Shikoge by the wrist and drag him along, hopefully with his sword still in hand.
Itami would have responded to Shikoge, but this wasn't the time for that. The workers were in need of being cleared out of the way of the ever lengthening crack. Before long, it finally settled and any rocks, sand, and or earth that would pose a problem has fallen into the crevice.
"I'm going to need some help to get the workers out of this hole." She approached it carefully and looked down. It was less of a hole and more of a room. She pulled out her map and marked it off so that she'd have other areas marked for safety purposes. "Are you all alright?" She questioned. She didn't receive an immediate answer, but one of the workers answered indicating their health. The others were knocked out it seems and possibly suffered some broken bones.
She didn't linger much longer in efforts to rescue the men and women that fell into the room, but she was driven by light curiosity to know what was in here…"
"Whoa!" Shikoge exclaimed as Ayumu began to drag the boy by one hand, glancing up from his prone position, "What are you doing?" Asking while also surprised at the old mans strength seemingly making it look easy enough to drag not only himself, but the blade Shikoge still clung onto with one hand. To his question, he didn't expect an answer so if given one wasn't listening. He simply waited for his wrist to be released before rising to his feet and moving over toward Itami. "This is more my style. I'll help." Without waiting and assuming Ayumu didn't grab his wrist again, Shikoge had taken flight. Jumping into the air with plans of landing in the area below.
Ayumu's brow knit together in frustration. The genin weighed a lot more than he — Oh, right, the blade… Well, a little chakra reinforcement takes care of the added weight, though he /is/ still sweating a little from the initial extertion put forth. As soon as the tremors seemed to stop, the boy is released. It was a bad idea, to say the least, but it was either that or waste even more precious energy on a danger confined to a specific area. A sigh escapes from the collective lips of all Iga as the boy dashed past them. Two of which break away to answer Itami's call and hop down to check out the injuried. Meanwhile, their creator and the Ryoji-esque one stays up top. The former staying near Itami while the later saw to keeping an eye on the workers that did manage to escape the roof's collapse.
Itami followed after Shikoge, if it could be said she followed. She'd jumped, but he caught up with her quickly enough from where she was before. When they hit the ground below, the room would appear largely unassuming, but a quick survey would reveal that this room was packed with drugs reinforced in boxes to keep them protected from the elements and other people. It's these reinforcements that likely did the most damage as they're stacked across the room in different arrangements.
A few boxes had broken open due to the rocks that dropped on them and caused problems for those who landed on top. They were now dealing with potential splinters in their backs while stones pressed them down against the battered crate wood.
Overall vitals were good with the exception of high rate heartbeats and signals of pain shooting through their bodies causing moaning. The room was not very deep, but that didn't spare anyone from danger. At the least, they were alive and well.
"Itami" Shikoge called out while tugging on the womans arm as if to flip some sort of switch, "It's dark in here. Fix this. I'll see to the wounded. Ojii-san, don't pull anything. We don't need another victim to have to deal with." After finishing barking out orders, Shikoge himself moved over toward the injured to see how serious their injuries actually were, but the problem was he's not a medic so didn't know much of what he's looking at. "Are you faking it sir?" Poking at a splinter that went through one of the workers arms that prompted the man to scream in pain. "Ah, yes. Not faking it. Don't move." He'd then move on to the next to see how the others were, pushing things out of the way as he went.
All is well atop so far, though some of the more emotional workers did seem keen on trying to press the point that they could help to Ryoji's clone. Ayumu would've laughed at his misfortunate clones predictament if not for the fact he needed to find some place quiet and stable to properly coordinate his clones (and by extension the others) recovery efforts. This of course only occuring once whatever on site medics Itami managed to rustle up are ready to take over his last patient.
The clones pause mid-step and turn to look at Shikoge, then at the victims moaning nearby, then back to Shikoge. One starts to open his mouth, but is caught off the scream of a man in pain thanks to Shikoge's treatment. 'Ryoji' would have probably laughed and made some smart aleck comment before looking for a place to observe the kid's antics further.
They did not quite take after that persona…
"If any is said it shall be ignored." They muttered in unison, shook their heads, and went back to work /carefully/ freeing the victims and using their first aid training to see to it that they were comfortable and moved if possible to a more stable position.
"Understood," Itami remarked as she put efforts into lightning up the area with some sustained fire. She kept the fire going up until Shikoge asked one of the workers a question that caused her to choke and the flames to sputter. Faking it? Really? She caught herself and returned to using her flames up until she wandered over and grabbed a piece of wood to create a makeshift torch.
The workers would be handled with care as they were freed from the debris and rubble that trapped them. This was going to be a problem and Itami was certain that Juli would document this. Not that she was particularly bothered by this. She just feels it'll be a bit problematic, but this was the nature of the former San Sara.
Shikoge continued doing his thing; moving debris out of the way and poking wounds as he went to find those that were trying to get out of work, yet none were. They all seemed pretty seriously injured. "Alright, I've done my inspection. They need some help. Let's hurry up and get them out of here before the rest of the place collapses." Quickly Shikoge stabs his blade into the ground, grabs the nearest victim and using the blade for leverage hurls the wounded out of the hole and on to the wet ground above. "Alright, who's next?" Peering around for those that are willing, but based on the reserved looks he was given, there weren't any volunteers.
"Hmm… Not sure why you are here, but you'll do." Ayumu states before hoping up atop a broken stone column away from the general chatter, folding his legs beneath him, and closes his eyes. Seconds tick by before the seemingly meditating (or sleeping) probationary genin seems to transform. A subtle change at first that made it seem as if the Iga had turn to stone. Then, his skin began to 'crack' into minute blue pulsating lines. Envoking the state was foolish to say the least, but it provided the much needed clarity he desired. Next, he dug out a handful of ears from his pockets (a secret gift from his clones) and began to whisper…
Ryoji jolted twice over. The first from the words and the second when a body comes flying out of the whole. Whoever it was had some ties to one of the workers because the clone was brushed aside in the man's rush to reach his fallen comerade. The clone bites back a growl, and refocuses on his orders. Orders he would've very well dismissed if not for relief from his duty begining to make its way forward…
"Shikoge-san. Please do not manhandle any more victims. They will die, otherwise." It wasn't a lie, but neither was it a solid truth. In either case, the clone that spoke up hope the boy would actual listen to once. Meanwhile, his brother finished using what makeshift supplies gathered, and turned to regard Itami.
"Yes, please don't throw the injured around, Shikoge. They're already injured so there's no need to bring them further harm." She approached one of the workers and offered them up to their feet. She then grasped hold of them and proceeded to jump up the crates to carry the individual to safety. "There are a few more down here, so let's make sure we don't cause problems. This may have been the first accident and it certainly won't be the last, but we need to account for these scenarios for later. If more of these occur than progress, we'll be in deep trouble," she explained.
Shikoge rolled his eyes while grasping for his blade and attaching it to his back before moving over toward another worker that looked more terrified of the boy offering to help than staying down in the tunnel and dying. The boy paid it no heed while he cradled the worker and made his way out the same way Itami did while mumbling under his breath, "You'll be in deep trouble." Kazekage doesn't know we're out here and Juli is here to watch Itami. Shikoge and Ayumu are here to help the woman without getting anything out of it…Well, Shikoge at least. Ayumu was probably still infatuated with the woman. "Here you are." Dropping the worker to the ground before sitting down beside him to take a break himself.
With the clone's guidance, some of the workers were able to position some ropes for the least injuried victims to grasp or be strapped to so that they can be pulled up to safety. The pair of Ayumu still mingingly about underground divide the task of securing the more able bodied workers and carrying those that cannot take such a route.
Ayumu, as always, observes their progress. He is not content however to focus the entirety of his enhanced focus on the task alone, so sensory organs will drop in the hole unseen to investigate the room and any adjoining corridors or rooms nearby. In a sense, the opportunity to stretch under more extreme conditions was the whole point of his accepting Itami's offer. The secondary being to pay her back for all of his antics over the years..
"I already told you once not to harm the workers. If I find out he's taken extra damage due to your carelessness, I'll see to it that you are punished justly," Itami sharply regarded Shikoge as she went to inspect the damages of the person. "We'll close off this area and work around it in the coming days. For now, I think we can call this and see everyone home and the injured into the hospital." She inhaled deeply and sighed. She expected problems, but she certainly hopes they don't continue on this route.
"I appreciate you all for your help out here and dedication. Rest well when you arrive home. If there's anything else that you have concerns over, please feel free to speak to me regarding them." The workers don't have much to say other than wanting to head home. It's well understood. They've spent the required time out here and now it's time to go.
Shikoge doesn't even give any regard to Itami's threat as either he's a bit fed up with the womans antics lately or is just off in his own little world. Whatever the reason, the boy simply does his own thing, waiting until his break is over before clambering to his feet and making a few hand signs that finish with him bringing a signle curled finger to his mouth and blowing out a stream of fire that create a clone. "Alright, everyone clear right?" The boy was sure they were, which is why his fire clone jumped into the hole with plans of exploding to prevent anymore damage from happening. Assuming the clone isn't exploded before hand, considering how unstable it is.
"Wait…" No, no, he isn't about to do that. "Everybody, make—Oh, forget it," Itami decided she'd remedy this problem by covering the hole with a large glass dome so that the blast would be contained. An explosion that big is bound to set things back a bit if it causes the ground to further give way. On top of that, she supposes she'd have to suck up this loss. What was in that hole could have been used to generate a bit more revenue, but alas, it's likely for the best…
Shikoge yawned, growing rapidly tired after using a bit of ninjutsu, but shook off the sleep before turning to Itami, "You're welcome." He'd offer before preparing to walk away. They were done for the day right? Their work halted and progress impeded. What was there left to do but retire for the evening, get a big meal in the belly and try again the next day. Though the boy is rather surprised considering the shape this place is in, no bandits have shown up yet. Perhaps another time.
"…" Itami sighed and watched the glass turn black and smoke within as some of it exited the vent at the top. She didn't think she'd need to utilize that ability much, but it would seem it was going to become more commonplace in time. "At least no one was hurt…" She looked about at the workers and gave them the go ahead to be dismissed and leave the area. That was enough action for this evening. With her work finished, she turns around and flanks the crowd of workers with Juli very close by. Guess she wanted to discuss some things that Itami wasn't in much of a mood for, but a commitment is a commitment.