Date: May 31st, 2010
Goh catches up with the Tao Shih team and confronts the mysterious Amuro for the second time — though only the first as far as Goh remembers. Is Goh overestimating his skills, or are the bad guys in serious trouble!?
Broken Memories Pt. 1 - Finale: Goh's Deception! Salamander Prison!
Grassy Plains - Land of Grass
The past few days have been a whirlwind of adventure! Travelling from Kumogakure to the Land of Waterfalls. Watching the Tower split open, and then, from out of no-where… nothing. His memory had been erased for some reason. Somehow. Meditating on such matters, Goh hasn't wasted any time in springing into action. Recovering his stamina, the blonde Jounin traverses the landscape in hot pursuit in what he believes must be the Second Stone. Or at least the owner of the second stone. His journey had taken him out of the Waterfalls to the Land of Grass, where the terrain had levelled out considerably.
It being late afternoon at this stage, with the sun setting behind the thick rocky mountains in the distance, stuff was starting to cool down. And yet, Goh ploughs on, dashing across the land where he cannot branch-hop. His own stone is out, but it seems that Goh is not using it! By his side, dashing across the ground as fast as it can, is Wanpo—the six foot long Salamander holding the Stone of Spirit in its mouth. It was much more safe in his hands than Goh's, after all! As such, he can keep a cool head whilst slowly yet surely approaching.
Traveling wasn't something that the young blonde-haired woman usually enjoyed. Traveling swiftly while trying to avoid pursuit was something she liked even less. Mush less, in fact, as it provided her with none of the comfortable amenities she usually enjoyed when she breezed through a location. But even Datura wasn't going to slow down so that she'd have time to complain as they were in the midst of escaping from Takigakure forces, as well as everyone else, that had come to try and take the second stone.
It just wouldn't be healthy.
But now that they had slowed down at some unseen order from their masked leader, likely because he sensed the blonde's growing discomfort with continued travel, Datura comes to a stop in the middle of a wide field, sneezing once as she kicks up a bit of pollen from a grouping of sun-yellow flowers. She's breathing harder than normal from the constant movement and running, a hand resting high on her hips as she shades her eyes with the other, looking back the way they had come.
"Can't we at least stop for the day? If they were going to catch us, they'd have done so by now." Fateful words, if ever anyone had ever heard such! "All this running isn't good for my skin. And what about lunch? I can't eat while we're moving, it makes me nauseous."
One could almost wonder why the group puts up with the prima donna!
The towering masked man calling himself 'Amuro' has indeed ordered a stop to the group's fleeing. Takigakure may be eager to reclaim whatever was taken from the Second Tower, but they are not so eager as to send an army into another country… Yet. After all, Kirigakure >did< invade the Land of Waterfalls and cause trouble, and the commander, Kakuzu, likely suspects other Villages being involved as well. The fact that they tracked people who did not look like Mist ninja forces at all indicated this suspicion is correct.
So it's probably a matter of time before Takigakure takes action against those who have wronged them. But for now, a small group of people, who were one person until the other three were Summoned to Amuro, are not as much of a concern as securing the country's borders and apprehending or killing any foreigners who remain within. That is not really Amuro's concern. He has expended a lot of energy, both Stamina and Chakra, to ensure that his allies and himself are safe for the moment. So it is not only for his team but also for himself that he plans to take a break for now.
Of course, he doesn't show any sign of being tired. Given how much energy he has compared to any one of his companions, he may even seem tireless. But rest assured, he is nowhere near his peak. "It is unwise to stop here for the day," Amuro responds in his rumbling, deep voice. "But there are few other places in range that will provide us with more cover than this. So we shall set up a >modest< camp and move on tommorow morning." He then bends down and starts to push the tall grass aside around him, apparently looking for a good place to set up. Though what he plans to set up >with< is anyone's guess. He does not appear to be carrying a backpack or portable tent or anything.
To the understanding of Kishi Mune, the plan had been not only to distract Hyuuga Yuzuna so that Datura could possess her and use her abilities to negate the nearby Uchiha youth, but also to inspire doubt in her Village's leadership and a hatred of those who had killed the girl's father. By revealing the truth, Amuro had hoped to drive a wedge between the girl and Konohagakure, and in turn send her fleeing right into his waiting arms, to be twisted and changed into an agent of the Tao Shih.
But the Hyuuga girl had proven to be so bent on causing a scene and drawing down half of the Waterfall down on their heads that the opportunity had not presented itself. Mune felt that it was better this way. Anyone that was such a liability to her own allies was unlikely to be of use to the Tao Shih, unless it was as a disposable weapon that would be used once and then discarded. And they had escaped with what they originally came for anyway, so there was really nothing lost. Amuro had made sure that the tracks left behind by the three kunoichi were dead-ends for any trackers. And now they were in the Land of Grass, and apparently no longer being immediately followed. Mune has Chuunin-level stamina reserves, but she cannot run forever. Much like Datura, she is tired. So the dark-skinned Medic-Nin is glad to have a rest break.
"As you say, Amuro-sama," she answers to the explanation of why they're stopping. "Are you alright, Datura-san?" she asks as her red eyes scan the blonde girl. They are probably all four sweating at least a little by now, but Datura looks pretty exhausted. "I have some travel rations if you are hungry, but little else. My work on Stamina Pills was interrupted by our need to travel, or else I would offer one of those as well."
Kanami had used more than few Ninjutsu during their mission to the Second Tower. On top of that had been the rushed travel to that tower in the first place, and then the even MORE rushed journey back… And she is in no better condition than any of the others. She has no plans to use the Doujouji Mask that Datura finds so creepy, even if it would mean travelling faster with the aid of a snake's tail. Plus it would have been hard to leap from tree to tree with no legs. No, THAT Jutsu was best for ground-travel, and they had been attempting to avoid that, for fear of leaving tracks.
And now they're stopped! Kanami has about the same level of stamina as Mune, but she is much more reliant on Ninjutsu than physical strength to get around. So she's probably either the most tired of those here, or second-most tired, depending on how much energy Datura has spent on all her possessing and Genjutsuing and hengeing. So she sits down and fans herself with a paper fan while waiting for someone else to set up the camp. "Hm. Did anyone bring a tent? If so, I recommend the women get the tent. It would likely be too small for Amuro-sama to sleep in anyway, yes?"
"We must be nearly there, Wanpo." Goh encourages, the Pickler leaping from branch to branch as he goes. It's likely that only Amuro knows this, however. "The stone is really starting to react now. They must have stopped, or at least started to slow down." Moving as one person was always quicker than moving as a cell. In a cell, you have to keep everyone happy after all! Poor Wanpo though, who has been carrying the stone, grumbles. In a /very/ deep voice, like, Barry White deep, the Salamander speaks. "Y'better be sure that these bitches we chasin' got the stone, yo. If they aven't, then I'm gonna bust yo' ass all the way down to tha tunnels and there'll be Hell."
.___.; "Uh… yeah. Sure Wanpo. Look, I know you're grumpy cause you're holding that thing, but cheer up! We're nearly there." — "That's what ya said two hours ago, bra. But I ain't seein' nothin'. For all this effort, I better be gettin' dem Pickled Celery Sticks ya offered." Seems some summons like human sacrifices. Others like to be rewarded other ways! "R..Right Wanpo. Let's just keep going."
Spotting the edge of the tree-line ahead, Goh's eyes narrow. "Yoooshh.. Here we go, Wanpo!" Stepping hard off the final branch, Goh himself launches high up into the air! There's a rustle of leaves as the ex-Jounin makes no attempt to hide his presence, so much so that it should gather the attention of all gathered on the grass. If the team looks up and in the distance they'll find a black sioluette in the distance against the sky. It then lands on the grass, the figure heading straight for them. How was it able to track the group through everything? He's at least six-hundred meters away, but he's closing in. Fast.
The leader of their group is cut a confused look from Datura as he emphasizes the word 'modest', as if she couldn't possibly understand what he meant by anything else. But then, many wouldn't put it past her to carry a small three-bedroom cottage in a scroll just for her portable comfort, and those who knew her wouldn't buy any of the innocent acts she was continually putting on. The blonde simply shrugs her shoulders before toeing at the ground with the front of her sandal, as if trying to find a particular spot that suited her, making several circles, as if she were a prim cat about to bed down.
As she tamps down some grass with the soles of her feet, her head pops up as the medic of their foursome speaks to her. "You have food? Is it better than dried fruit and biscuits?" Given that her questions carried the unmistakeable hint of eagerness, it was unlikely she'd had anything /but/ the aforementioned items in a couple of days. Her stomach even lets out a traitorous rumble of discontent, as if to further explain the necessity of feeding.
Just as she's about ready to take her seat in the grass (Ugh, and get /dirty/.) and reach her hand out to accept the offer of food, movement catches out the corner of her eye. She'd missed Goh's initial leap into the area, but even the most unwary of shinobi can spot someone rushing up at them when they're making no attempt at stealth, causing the red-eyed girl to pop back up from her half-crouch to frown at the incoming enemy.
After all, they had so few friends.
"How the /hell/ could someone still be chasing us!?"
Amuro finally finds a good spot. "Right here," he says as he points at the dry dirt in the middle of a circle of grass. Whether he is answering someone's question or speaking to himself is not necessarily obvious. He places his large right hand flat on the ground, and after a moment, he begins to gather a large amount of Chakra. Goh and Wanpo are charing across the field and are noticed by Datura, and likely the others. Amuro either doesn't care or is oblivious. He says, "Earth Release:" Just as Goh and Wanpo are almost upon the group, the masked man finishes. "Protected Fort!" Immediately a circle of stone walls erupts from the ground, sending dirt and grass flying into the air. The walls encircle an area about 200 feet across (what is that in meters? Dunno'). Further, thick stone plates of some kind also rise out of the ground, standing straight up, before falling over and covering the grass and dirt. They're tiles, each with the kanji for 'Protect' engraved on their upwards-facing surfaces.
Two small, stone buildings, with carved pillars holding up the roofs, also emerge from the ground, making the earth tremble all around. A well made of stone bricks has replaced the ground that Kanami was sitting on. She is now resting on the edge of a water supply that probably draws its source from deep underground, where it has remained untainted by humans or anything else. All of this is very impressive, but more immediately, it presents a physical barrier for Goh and Wanpo to overcome. Because if they don't slow down, they're liable to run right into the outside of one of the walls! Amuro breathes out a heavy sigh, and remains where he is, now crouched on a platform of solid stone, rather than the ground. That wasn't nearly as easy as he made it look. He'll need sleep after his next Jutsu.
"I have beds and food in storage, and will retrieve them shortly," he finally answers Kanami, after all the dust has settled. Did he even >hear< Datura's comment about being chased!?
Mune blinks her crimson eyes at Datura. "I have cheese, bread and some meat… The meat is fresh, and I've preserved the bread in certain leaves that can be sealed tightly to prevent premature aging." She is already rooting around in a pouch inside her longcoat, when Datura eagerly holds out her hands to accept the food. But then there's the noise of something galumping through the woods and approaching them. Sounds like an animal… So it might not be anything to worry about. But someone who would make such blind assumptions probably wouldn't live very long as a ninja. So Mune changes what she was originally reaching for and instead seizes some vials of various chemicals from where they are strapped into the garment.
Before she can react properly to the incoming target, catching only a glimpse of some kind of giant lizard with someone riding on top of it, the ground begins to rumble and shake beneath her. Amuro calls out his Jutsu name, and then… WHOOSH! Walls burst out of the ground, cutting off her view of the pursuer(s?), and the ground beneath her turns into tiles, and she has to leap into the air a couple times as other things rise into the air from below the surface of the earth.
When it finally settles down she has no clear idea of where the enemy is, unless he continued charging in a straight line. And Amuro seems not to even be aware, or perhaps not care. Does this 'Protected Fort' have special defenses or something? "Amuro-sama… There was someone charging at us from the forest. He may be planning to attack. Is this a good time to be resting?"
Kanami is watching Amuro more intently than she is her surroundings. Even with the warnings from the others, she continues to discretely peer at their leader without moving her head to face him. Even finding herself sitting on the edge of an old-fashioned well seems not to phase her. "You should take some time to recover, Amuro-sama. We can wait to eat and rest until you have more of your energy back. Beside that, the three of us should be enough to handle the one that has tracked us." She then turns her head to look in the direction that Goh was approaching from, as one hand reaches for a Noh mask of a woman's face, hanging from her obi by a thin chain.
"There they are." Goh intones, his mood growing slightly more serious. "Alright. Wanpo, at my signal, you go back underground." Indeed, he chases and certainly comes close! But… eh? Eyes widening a little, the blonde reels to a stop, glaring up at the two stone towers. "Woah… an incredible amount of chakra would have been used to create this." Moving up to the edge, he taps it faintly. Hard as a rock, no doubt. But did it contain chakra? Unlikely, as that would require a constant source to fuel it. Which means that this is simply solid stone! "…I must be being underestimated." Goh intones to Wanpo, who by now has already swallowed the Stone of Spirit. "Alright Wanpo. Let's go with our usual routine." With little hesitation, the ex-Konoha shinobi bends his knees to try and brace, before.. leap! Pushing up, he jumps up high, uses one foot on the outside wall to run and jump a bit more, before landing on the top of the outside wall in a neat crouch. How ninja-y! For now, his form just sort of looks down at the contents inside. Somewhat in bewielderment, that much is sure. Since the group has yet to go inside the two buildings, all of them are on view. "Three girls… one guy." Goh deduces, peering everywhere in case he might have missed one. "You guys have led me on quite a chase." He speaks loudly, before landing on the inside of the wall with a soft thump. "This will only end up as bad as you guys make it. First off. Who are all of you? My name is Goh. Konoha's Number One Pickled Vegetabler." Pause. "..soon to be the World's Greatest."
There's a shrill, high-pitched squeal of alarm one of the members of the group as the make-shift stockade and buildings pop out of the ground all around them. Which one of the group made this sound would forever be up for debate, as Dautra would for all time deny that she had been the one to scream like a frightened six-year-old.
"Yeah, for real! We can't just /sit/ here while there's some kind of… of… /maniac/ outside!" Even though she seems to be agreeing with Mune that this was no time to rest, much less to get comfortable (a rarity for her), she's still holding her hand out for some reason. After a moment, she looks directly at the dark-skinned woman with her eyebrows uplifted in expectation. "…Where's that cheese?" She really was a girl of one mind.
Thankfully, food is finally driven out of her mind once and for all upon the reappearance of the shinobi that was pursuing them. For a moment, she almost looks apprehensive, yet this expression is dispelled almost as soon as Goh opens his mouth. Datura just stares disbelievingly with a slightly open mouth.
"They certainly sent their, uh, brightest, didn't they? You can't just run into /our/ camp and start demanding things. Hmph, I can see the manners haven't improved any in Konoha."
Amuro just goes, "Hm?" as Mune and then Kanami warn him of someone outside the walls. Rising to his feet, the masked man turns around to face the same direction as everyone else. "Someone charging at us? I hadn't noticed." Is he being sarcastic or is he serious? His voice sounds the same all the time. Deep and bored. Then Goh comes leaping up over the wall, landing on its top, and peering down at them. Amuro offers, "…." as he recognizes Goh. Then he sighs. "…What a bother."
Unlike the last time that Goh faced Amuro, even if he doesn't remember it, the Stone of Body is not physically present. With the Stone of Spirit nearby, Goh and Wanpo could have tracked its location even in another dimension, as long as they are close enough to each other. But now the Salamander has swallowed the Stone, and Goh is not touching Wanpo anymore. So the sensation of the Stone of Spirit whispering to Goh of the 'other' is gone.
Amuro watches as Goh leaps down and lands within the walls. After Datura finishes protesting, the masked man says simply, "I know who you are, Goh. I know what you have done, where you have been, and what your dreams were. But what I do not know is why you are chasing me. I also do not know what your new dreams are." He crosses his arms over his broad chest, and looks down at the ground (presumably. Kind of hard to tell with that mask), hmming in deep thought, and generally not paying any further attention to Goh's presence.
At least for now.
Mune focuses on the top of one wall as Goh leaps onto it, and just stares at him with her crimson eyes. When Goh leaps down and starts demanding names, Mune waits for Datura and Amuro to speak, and then crosses her arms under her chest. Though her mouth can't be seen due to the high collar of her coat, her eyebrows turning down and a vein twitching on the side of her forehead indicates she is not too happy. "My name is Nunya Business. Please take a flying leap into Hell at my earliest convenience." Apparently she's not as quiet and unassuming as she appeared to be until now. Must take irritation to bring out her snarky side.
Concealed in one hand are the vials she grabbed. In the other is some cheese, which she suddenly holds out to Datura without looking. "Here's your cheese."
Kanami is standing, facing towards Goh. On her face is a Noh-mask of a woman, concealing her true features. Her hair has somehow become tied up in a traditional Japanese-style bun, and her kimono is now deep purple, with a red obi about her waist. The long sleeves conceal her hands too. She says nothing to Goh, not knowing him from Adam. Instead she just waits. Clearly Amuro does not intend to fight, or else he would have given some sign for the three kunoichi to do something. Maybe he's just too tired right now.
Well, Kanami is not feeling too great either, so she would be glad to avoid fighting for now. A night's rest would have made all the difference in this encounter, but without that she is simply not ready for a prolonged engagement.
"I don't represent Konoha," Goh grins, jetting a thumb to his chest. "I just said that I'm the best Pickler there. I run my own ship now." Bending his knees, he glances around momentarily. "Hey, I introduced myself first. It's only polite that you guys introduce yourselves back." A glance goes to Dautra, looking her up and down. Then to Mune as she talks, then to Kanami. The masked one in the back gets a glance too as he speaks. "Right.. you know who I am. And there's no use hiding it. I know the stone is here. I know you guys have it somewhere." True, whilst he did no longer feel it, he's pretty confident that it hasn't changed locations too much. "I have no idea what you plan to do with it, but I just can't let someone have it. People might use it for evil purposes. But.. as far as I know, you guys haven't actually killed anyone. Least not out of defense. So for now, I have no reason to doubt your sincerity." He pauses, standing up a little straighter. "So. Are you all the bad guys? Or are you good guys? If you can convince me, I'll let you keep the Stone. It's better you have it then the Mizukage."
"You know this guy? Then tell him to leave! We could be eating right now."
The glare that the Konoha-nin receives from the outcast Yamanaka is vile, and if looks could kill, if a little petulant, he'd have probably spontaneously combusted by now. As if she had a point to prove about how unwelcome Goh was, Datura snatches the piece of dairy out of Mune's outstretched hand, taking a vicious bite out of it, before making a point of turning up her nose, as if Goh were just a rude and unwelcome in-law who'd interrupted family meal time.
"A thief then, come to steal what doesn't belong to you." The estranged shinobi lets out a mild snort, even as she chews her cheesy treat. After swallowing, she points back up at the top of the wall, where Goh had jumped into their camp to begin with.
"You invade our camp and just expect us to believe /you/ aren't here for the nefarious purpose of trying to gather power for yourself? You are without a doubt the absolute worst liar I've ever heard of. Now kindly leave so that we may eat in piece!"
Popping the rest of her morsel into her mouth, the young woman known as Datura turns away, still without so much as giving her alias, much less her name, taking several steps away. Really, she was turning away to put distance between herself and possible danger, even as she withdraws a small silver case from her belt, containing a deck of slightly elongated cards, snapping a poutingly disgruntled glance over her shoulder.
Amuro continues to hmmmmm deeply to himself. He doesn't appear to be paying attention to anyone. In response to Goh's request/demand to 'convince him', Amuro lifts his head briefly, and then tilts it to the side, apparently still concentrating on something. "Hmmmm…" Datura gets to keep on talking. And anyone else who has words for Goh too.
Finally, his head comes upright fully and he lowers his arms to his sides. "Ah. You want my stone? Well, I would really rather not. I have only recently reclaimed it after three generations…" He then slowly starts to reach into his black and red robe with his right hand. Is he going for a weapon!? He roots around in the garment for a moment, before suddenly withdrawing a large deep-blue, multi-faceted sapphire about the size of Datura's head.
Amuro holds it in both hands in front of his chest. "It is rather valuable, to say the least. But if you feel it would be safer in your hands, then I submit to your wishes." Then he begins to stride forward, walking right towards Goh.
Mune snorts. "'Good guys'? 'Bad guys'? Are you sure the world is really that simple? Is a mother who steals some bread to feed her starving children 'good' or 'bad'? Is a doctor who experiments on a handful of live subjects in order to help save thousands of others a 'pioneer' or 'inhumane'? You just entered our camp, as my companion has so eloquently pointed out, and begun demanding things of us. We are under no obligation to tell you anything or even talk to you. And if you keep on pressuring us, someone is liable to ram those pickles of yours right up your—"
Mune breaks off when Amuro begins to speak. She watches him closely when he reaches into his robe, and then when he withdraws the sapphire, she rolls her eyes and shrugs. With a sigh, she turns and heads towards one of the buildings, apparently done with this conversation.
The masked Kanami remains right where she is, and doesn't budge an inch. Finally, when Amuro begins to approach Goh, the Nogakujin raises a sleeve-covered hand to her mask's mouth and giggles slightly. "Such rudeness. Perhaps if you had asked more politely you might have received a warmer response, Goh-san. You are fortunate we are not 'bad' or you might have been assaulted for trespassing."
"Eh?" Goh's eyes look over to Datura lazily. "..you're the one who trespassed into a country and stole the Stone from the Tower in the first place. By all rights, that Stone belongs to the people of the Waterfall. Why they even let you in is beyond me. Unless they didn't. Calling me a thief is rich coming from you guys." A small chuckle. "And right. I'm not here for the power. I got plenty of that already. I'm here to stop it so that the bad guys don't get it. I don't even carry the Stones around on me because of what might happen." A look goes to Mune, where he simply looks at her. "…you're really very angry, aren't you? No need to be so antsy. You'll drive the boys away." What an odd thing to say.
With Amuro so willing to fork over what he is presenting as the Stone, the blonde's eyes widen a little in surprise. "..I see. This is a little different than what I was thinking." The blonde tilts his head a bit, peering at the sapphire. A mischievious smile coming across his face. "Strange. I remember it looking slightly different the last time I saw it." Did he remember something? Or was he just bluffing? Surely his memories hadn't returned, unless something else reversed the technique. "But you said that these Stones are yours? Do you have any proof that they were? Or am I just to believe you?"
From the moment it comes out, that sapphire draws Datura's gaze like a laser finding it's target, as if her eyes were trained to lock onto anything of a matching color to them. She even unconsciously licks her lips, just slightly, as if she were already imagining all the ways she could spend the money such a stone would bring as quickly as possible. It's a shock she hasn't launched herself across the distance and tried to tackle it out of Amuro's grip by now. Truly a testament to self-discipline.
Or maybe an inkling of fear of the one holding it.
With a disturbed frown, the young blonde watches their leader approach the other male with the seeming intent of turning the stone over to him, which was causing her a bit of internal stress. That might have been where her next paycheck was coming from! Regardless, she pulls at the hem of her skirt for a moment, fidgeting, before finally slinking to her knees on the mats that were covering the ground, sitting back against her calves. It felt good to be off of her feet, at least.
Amuro stops a few feet away from Goh, and holds the gem in his right hand, arm extended towards Goh. "Well, you can believe whatever you wish, but I can confidently state that no other has laid hands on this stone I now hold — at least not since it was formed by geological processes. But if you have changed your mind, and do not want it…" He begins to withdraw his hand, and the sapphire with it.
"Some things are malleable and can be changed. Others are eternal. The appearance of material objects is one of those things that can change," is all he offers as explanation about any possible previous sightings Goh may or may not have had of this stone.
Mune turns around the moment she is out of sight of Goh and waits, taking two vials of liquid and placing her thumbs on the corks keeping them closed. One in each hand. She then waits patiently. No way would Amuro just hand over the Stone of Body. Maybe the Medic-Nin hasn't seen what it looks like, but she is pretty confident that either Fuu has already drained all the energy out of what he's handing to Goh, or he's preparing to get rid of the Mad Pickler somehow. She doesn't think this will turn to violence, given the team's tired state, but she also doesn't expect for their entire mission to be scrapped just because one man comes in making demands.
Kanami hmms and says, "For someone so insistent on having what you wish, to suddenly change your mind like this is very strange. Goh-san, are you sure you know what you want? Are you really certain that you want to keep evil people from gaining power? I thought you wanted to pickle vegetables. To protect the world from devastation and unite the peoples within these nations seems a bit out of your league…"
Fortunately, Goh wasn't one for riches and fortune. He had other things that motivated him! Like … pickles! Salamanders! That sort of thing! The simple lifestyle for the win. Where it was all very fun for sure. "You guys sure don't behave like good guys. You just look like an angry bunch of coconuts." Goh says with a bit of a laugh. "Your little sidekicks seem to be pretty pissed about everything, stranger." His attention goes back to Amuro as he retracts his hand. "But you seem reasonable." Taking a step back, he shakes his head at the sapphire. "Keep the shiney thing. I have no need for it. I somehow get the feeling that… you might be more than what you reveal. In which case…" Stomping his foot down on the ground, it begins to rumble a little! The ground cracks, and out pokes Wanpo's head! Seems he has spent the last little bit burrowing under the ground. The head looks around, peering at the scene. "Wanpo," Goh says. "Time to let it go." The Salamander opens its mouth wide, and sure enough, puts the Fire Stone.. the Stone of Spirit, forth on the ground by unravelling its long toungue. It sits there carefully. What was he doing! "…The Mizukage will be hunting me like crazy, and when he finds me, I won't be able to securely protect it. I'm strong, but even I wouldn't be able to beat him. It may not be yours, but you're the best one to have it. I'm a pretty good judge of character!" He laughs heartily, beaming white teeth. "I can't trust myself with it anymore anyway. Not only is it changing me, but it's starting to hurt the creatures who are looking after it."
Peering at it carefully, the blonde lifts up a hand. "..Just. Uh, promise to try and get the girls to lighten up next time, hey? And don't let them touch it." A glance goes to Kanami where he flicks a thumb up. "You hit the nail on the head."
And out comes… the /first/ stone? Just handed over to them? Just like that? If you listen closely, really /strain/ your ears, you can actually hear Datura's jaw hit the ground in shock.
It's ear-piercing, the squeal of happiness and delight that practically comes shooting out of the young woman's mouth like a sonic jutsu of ear-shattering proportions. She claps her hands together with a terrific grin, eyeing the offered-up stone like it was a long lost child. It lasts for only a moment, however, before her expression falls into a bit of narrow-eyed suspicion, quirking an eyebrow in a bit of disbelief.
"Wait, is that thing real? Amuro-kun? I can't tell. It's not the real one, is it? I bet it's not the real one. It doesn't look like the real one. …Is it the real one?"
I dunno, why don't you shut your mouth so someone can answer! But this thought doesn't readily occur to her.
Amuro goes, "Hmmm," very deeply. With his senses he would be able to tell instantly whether this thing is the genuine article… Unless someone has enough experience with the real thing that he can produce a replica that gives off the same sort of energy, or some other similar trick. It could potentially even be Genjutsu.
Looking down at the gleaming red Stone, Amuro finally answers Datura with, "There is one way to tell for certain whether it is the Stone of Spirit — or the Fire Stone, as it has been called by some." Then he bends down slowly, focusing on the large ruby, and touches the sapphire to it. If this is a trap, then it will probably go off right here and now, and probably take out Goh, Wanpo, and Amuro all at once.
And if it's actually the Stone of Spirit? The sapphire will >absorb< it, turning the large ruby into a bright-red liquid, and then pure crimson energy, which swirls through the blue gem's exterior as though it were made of air instead of something solid. And then, with the red substance safely stored inside, it would seem to fade out of sight. But that's only if this is the real thing.
"So Amuro is your name." Goh intones, looking at the leader after the girls loud squeal. Woah! She sure changed moods quickly. "..I guess. At least I got that much from you." The blonde says with a laugh. As Fuu touches the gleaming red stone, something /will/ indeed happen. A toungue will shoot up from the stone! A lizardy toungue! It moves to wrap around Amuro's arm, and at the same time, the stone poofs into lil' Reiko! A small, two inch long lizard. If successful and the toungue grips Amuro, it will then proceed to pull him /inside/ the creatures belly. Gone.
Goh meanwhile, crouches, ready for battle! He's either made a smart move, or just a dumb one.
Amuro starts to turn his attention towards Datura to stare (or perhaps glare) at her with unseen eyes for revealing the name he has been going by. And that's when the stone turns into a Salamander's tongue, and seems to snare the masked man's right arm, completely bypassing the huge sapphire in his hand! A fatal mistake on Amuro's part, not paying attention to the threat of a potential enemy like that! How can he have lived as long as he has and not suspect Goh of duplicity!?
Amuro is drawn towards the tiny lizard, until he digs his heels in. Then, when he becomes unmovable either due to using Chakra to stick to the ground, or some other method, Reiko pulls herself to >him< instead! He is swiftly swallowed whole, even as he struggles silently to free himself. He has vanished down the tiny lizard's throat in but a scarce few seconds. Too fast for anyone to react to help, it seems. That huge blue sapphire that Amuro was holding is left behind on the ground, glittering in the fading sunlight.
So now three Chuunin-level kunoichi versus one Jounin-level opponent, and the leader of the team has vanished to who-knows-where! Wow! Goh sure knows how to make a good day turn to suck!
A vein pulses in Mune's forehead as her eyes close and one eyebrow keeps twitching in barely contained anger. 'That Datura… Is not as smart as I thought she was.' Then the trap is sprung! And it turns out to be something completely other than what Mune had thought. Of course she was out of sight so she didn't actually see the fake-stone dumped on the ground or what happens next. She just knew based on Datura's loud exclamations that there was apparently something going on involving a stone that may or may not be real.
When there are sudden sounds of struggling going on, even if they are free of shouting or other noises, Mune dares to sneak a peek around one of the stone columns holding up one of the small buildings in this camp. She catches the last of Amuro's boots vanishing down the gullet of a tiny lizard. Very odd, to say the least. But also very disturbing.
Eyes wide, Mune leaps out of her not-so-hidden hiding spot, and hurls both of the vials she is holding at Goh. "Ontop of smelling bad, being a jerk, a thief, and a trespasser, you are also apparently a liar. I can't stand people with poor hygiene. So die!" Then the two vials smash into whatever they wind up hitting. If that's the ground, due to Goh dodging or blocking the attack somehow, then they sizzle and make the stone wet, but don't really do anything else. If they get on Goh, however, not only will it burn his skin but it will keep on burning until rinsed out thoroughly with water, or until it dilutes itself. And it will hurt. A lot.
Kanami watches silently, too shocked to react to help Amuro immediately. When Mune leaps out of hiding and throws a couple vials at Goh, who is apparently not such a great guy after all. "Oh, dear. You are apparently not such a great guy after all. You are after power…" Then she puts her hidden hands together and begins to gather Chakra. She may be quite tired, but she doesn't have the luxury of Taijutsu or chemical warfare like Mune. She needs Chakra to use most of her skills.
A grin comes across the face of Goh as Amuro is sucked deep into the belly of Reiko. The small lizard herself poofs from existence, taking Amuro /with/ her. Presumably, anyways. "I'll take him for now, ladies. Now… if you'll excuse me. I gotta get going." Wanpo has meanwhile crawled out of his hole entirely, revealing his full six-foot long self! "It's been fun and all, but—woah!" Goh gasps a little, looking to Mune as she attacks. Cartwheeling backwards so the vials pass harmlessly over him, he grunts out "..You're gonna get up me for lying now? And hey! I smell amazing! Pickled… Potatos woo!" Leaping up into the air and away, Goh lands on top of the outer wall, ready to make his fleeing tactic. "..cya girls." And just like this, he jumps past the wall and is gone from sight. Or tries, anyway.
As that masked face turns towards her, the largest, most positively innocent grin of 'whoopsie' she's ever worn crosses her features. At least, it does before the stone transforms into something much less sanitary than a stone, at which point her expression goes from 'whoopsie' to 'euyuk'.
Quick as a blink, Amuro is gone down the gullet of some lizard, now wearing it like a bad, upside-down Halloween costume, causing the young kunoichi's eyes to bug out of her head, before she makes a gagging face even as she jumps to her feet. "You are a vile and odious infiltrator, with nasty little reptiles at your call. I hope you get what you deserve. And your little lizard, too!"
She's fiddling with her card case, drawing one out to reveal… the tarot card of 'Disaster'. But it appears she won't get the chance to use it much, as the man is already in the process of running away! But then, he's still leaving his little beastie lizard behind, so he gets to see the card, maybe. But then, the salamander would have to LOOK at it, but all it would take was a glance, and then he'd perhaps wish he hadn't.
With Wanpo peering about carefully, he looks to Datura and her attack! "Hey baby," He speaks in that very deep voice. "I ain't done nothin' to ya personally." Attempting to burrow itself under the ground from whence it came, the large lizard will scurry underneath, although not before taking the AMAZING PSYCHIC DAMAGE THAT IT MUST BE. Grunting a little, he begins to dissapear. Gone into the ground, hopefully!
And so Reiko escapes, with Amuro apparently swallowed and imprisoned! Goh follows soon after, though his escape is less 'instantaneous' and more 'flamboyant, Zoro-style running away over the wall'. Datura succeeds in nailing Wanpo with her unique style of mind-ery, though the Salamander is likely in for much worse in a moment. Only when Wanpo begins to burrow into the ground, hiding his head and body from direct physical attacks, and Goh is all but vanished from the camp, does Amuro emerge from the stone tiles that make up the Protected Fort's flooring.
He just seems to rise out of the ground like a liquid that is rapidly turning into a solid body. Once he is standing, Amuro just stays silent and gathers his wits. "Akuu Goh is a hundred years too young to catch me in such a simple deception," he mutters to himself once he is certain that Goh has departed. And yet Reiko >did< catch >something< that will likely remain Goh's prisoner for awhile. And no, it's not just a scarecrow dummy with a 'You Suck' sign nailed to it.
Mune scowls a bit behind the high collar of her coat, when Goh easily evades her thrown chemical vials. When he immediately tries to flee, she is prepared to give chase and try to pour acid on Goh's face until he coughs up Amuro! But with both Goh already out of sight over the wall, and the huge lizard digging his way through the stone tiles on the ground, and then vanishing into the dirt underneath, it looks like she isn't going to get the chance.
"…." is all she has to offer. Then she pauses and looks around the camp. When Amuro starts to emerge from the ground, she nods, and then runs up the twenty-foot high stone wall that surrounds their fort/camp. Once she stands on the wall, she grabs a couple more vials from inside her coat. One contains a powder, and the other contains a sickly green liquid. She pops off the caps, mixes the two, and quickly hurls the resulting substance — which is violently frothing — after Goh as hard as she can. She doesn't expect to hit him with it. But she does want to make it seem like they're not just giving up chase. That would be suspicious.
When the vial is not even half-way to Goh, the glass container EXPLODES loudly, sending out a huge cloud of toxic white bubbles. Poisonous soap, basically. It froths over the grass, dissolving plant life, making dirt infertile, and basically making it look like Mune has thrown her biggest, best attack after the pickling ninja to keep him from escaping intact.
But with Goh's speed and headstart, it is likely he will simply outpace the growing mass of bubbles, which eventually will slow and then begin to pop and vanish. Only when she is certain Goh has escaped completely does Mune turn to look down at Amuro, and leap first to the roof of one of the buildings, and then to the ground within the camp.
Kanami stopping to gather Chakra apparently keeps her from throwing out any cheap parting shots at Goh as he swiftly departs for a healthier environment. She can't do anything at all. She could leap up on the wall and try to snag Goh that way, but she gets the feeling that it would be a lost cause. He's clearly not the chump she thought he was. He might even retaliate and blow her up! And that would be unpleasant. When Amuro emerges from the ground, Kanami is surprised. But she wasn't really distressed over his capture either, so she doesn't feel relief or anything either. She just… Smiles behind her mask.
"I see… You are very clever, Amuro-sama. But what did that Goh person capture, if not you?" She hmmms and then shrugs. "I suppose it doesn't matter, as long as it won't provide him with any benefit." Then she removes her pale mask and hangs it back on her obi.
And now the lizard was gone, burrowing back down to wherever it had come from, with Datura having no means to pursue it in order to get their leader back. With a grumpily disparaged sigh, the young blonde-haired woman tucks the tarot card back into it's little case, clipping it closed, and back onto her belt.
"They took Amuro-kun! No we'll /never/ get paid for all that work!"
She wouldn't have too terribly long to mourn the paycheck that would never come before the man himself begins to reform out of the earth like he was made of some kind of ooze. Instantly as he reappears, Datura's quick-stepping towards him, her hands held close to her chest with a look of earnest concern across her features.
"Oh, thank goodness you're okay! I was so worried."
Surely he didn't hear that crack about not getting paid, right? Nah. The blonde was only one-hundred percent concerned for /his/ well-being. Honest!
Datura abruptly turns away as she drops a hand from her chest to her stomach, going in search of Mune, who'd hopped atop the wall to hurl things after the fleeing enemy. "I know we probably shouldn't stay here long, but I can't /move/ without something to eat!"