Date: August 19, 2010
The day before Meimei had her job interview, she and Takumi had a chance to meet again, at Tenrai Hospital. However, three people are about to enter Sunagakure that may be causing trouble for the Village's residents… Including the ones at the hospital.
"Broken Memories Pt. 2 - A Simple Check-Up"
Tenrai Hospital - Sunagakure
Sunagakure's hospital, Tenrai Hospital, sees varying levels of activity at different times of day and night. It is early evening, but the sun is not quite ready to begin fading, thanks to it being summer. And in the desert, that means that it is miserably hot. Especially if one is used to living in a country locked in ice the length of almost the entire year. But Meimei, while uncomfortable, irritable, and sorely missing the freedom of bathing as desired that is prevalent in more hydrated countries, is suffering in more serious ways.
She was brought in by a concerned citizen who had noticed how she was leaning against the side of a building, walking down the street in a disoriented and unstable manner, and so forth. It turned out that the Onohara woman was dehydrated, suffering from heat exhaustion, and might have had major health complications if she had continued to try to 'tough it out' in the sun. Luckily she has been provided with enough water to return to moderate health, and has been resting for a couple hours to prevent any further harm. She wants to leave already, but the doctors and nurses were insistent that she be tested to make sure she is healthy enough to find her way to the hotel.
So now she is sitting in a waiting room in a chair, looking incredibly unhappy. The voluminous black hood of her black cloak has been pulled back, exposing her thick mane of purple hair. It does not appear to be dyed, but who is going to believe that that's her natural hair color? …Okay, so there's weirder colors out there. The REALLY weird thing, however, is her eyes. Good thing she is constantly shielding them as though she had a migraine, and was trying to avoid letting any direct light into them. Otherwise someone might have commented on the vivid purple coloration, and the strange 'shinyness' of her eyes.
'I need to buy some new goggles,' she thinks to herself. Her previous pair were either stolen or lost.
Nakamura Takumi casually walks through the halls of Tenrai Hospital, wandering from the surgery board and over to the nurses station. Having spent most of his day working as a clinic doctor, the end of his self-assigned shift was coming up and he felt anxious to get home. A few of the villager patients seemed surprised when he entered the room in his full Chunin gear, but Takumi likes to stay ready for action at any time.
Takumi is brought out of his daydream as a nurse comes up to him with a chart, asking if he can help with this patient before he leaves. A quick read of the chart shows that it is a simple checkup on a patient that came in earlier. He nods back at the nurse and smiles, his eyes showing his emotion as his mouth is covered with his facewrap.
Opening the door to the waiting room, Takumi looks down at the chart and calls out "Hibiki Yoko? I can see you back here."
The guards at the entrance to Sunagakure had not been a problem. A tall young man with shoulder-length white hair, purple eyes — though with no odd qualities to them other than the color, unlike Meimei's — wearing a black, sleeveless tanktop, baggy black pants, black combat boots, and a loose white wrap about his shoulders and torso to keep the sun off of his skin, approached the gates. He did not look hostile, gave his identity as 'Goro', and showed no evidence of having any weapons on his person either to the trained eyes of the ninja guards or upon a physical examination.
He was allowed to pass into Sunagakure. He confidently and self-assuredly made his way through the Village, and towards the Administration Dome. It was time to see if he could get access to birth records without being a citizen of the Village.
The guards at the entrance to Sunagakure were going to be a problem. A tall man, nearly eight feet in height, with short, spikey black hair, and dressed in a black robe with red clouds, along with a black ceramic mask on his face, emblazoned with a red question mark, and no eye holes to see out of, was watching the entrance to the Village from a distance. The heat haze of the desert likely obfuscated the details of his appearance for the moment, unless one or more of the guards arranged atop the cliffs that surrounded Sunagakure were to use binoculars. However, if the tall man were to move closer, he would be seen quite easily, and his appearance remembered by the Village's defendes long after he had left. Well, he could solve the remembering issue, but there was always the chance that a witness might be missed. Especially in crowded streets with all sorts of alleyways and windows and so forth that potential observers could watch from.
That would simply not do. So Amuro would have to make some changes to ensure that the bare minimum of details concerning his person would be recalled at a later date, and that those details would be misleading or outright wrong about his true identity. Going down on one knee in the desert sands, the masked man makes a few 'Earth Style' hand seals and then intones in a voice so incredibly deep it almost sounds artificial or perhaps even inhuman, "Earth Release: Henge no Jutsu!"
The ground rumbles beneath and around him, and then the sand begins to shift before suddenly scattering as four curving 'claws' of stone erupt from the earth. As they rise, and then begin to fold over Amuro, closing about his body, they stop resembling claws and look more like the petals of a flower — made of stone, of course. The stone melts together and then flows like a semi-liquid, looking more like wet cement than the solid stone it actually is. Then, finally, the rock pulled up from the ground adheres and settles in place, taking on a shape… A human shape.
And so, a short time later, a hunched over old man with a cane, a white robe, a conical hat, and white face-wrap, approaches the gates. At his side since before the transformation took place, may well be a young woman…
To someone who wasn't use to traveling so much just yet, trekking through a scorching desert during the summer months wasn't something to be enjoyed by visitors to the Land of Wind. It was hot, dry and mostly unbearable. The only thing keeping Tomoyo from falling due to heat stroke was the all encompassing white cloak she was wearing to ward off the sun's rays. Or at least minimize head absorbtion. Sadly, she learned a harsh lesson that her skin wasn't as resistant to the sun as she thought and her entire face had been sunburned. By the time she was perched some distance away from the walls of Sunagakure, she had covered up most of her head with another wrap to only leave the area around her eyes open. Upon closer inspection, the flushed and burned skin could be seen and a look of uncomfortableness is clearly noticeable.
She wasn't sure just how long they were going to sit outside of the village and wait around… curiosity getting the best of her as she reaches out and tugs on her traveling companion's robe. "Papaaaa… how long are we going to sit out here? I'm burning up. Do you think they have something for my face in town?… Why didn't you tell me the sun could do that to my face?" she almost sounded scornful for being allowed to get burned like that! Not long after her string of questions and complaints does her Papa get ready to move out! The transformation he undergoes is rather radical and a little pretty to watch. "Oooh, that's pretty. Is that one better than just the regular henge I was taught?" she asks curiously.
For her own appearance, she merely changed the color of her eyes and hair style to be short and black. It wasn't as drastic as Papa's but it should be enough. And soon enough they were heading towards the entrance of the village. An elderly man and a young woman. Her arms tucked away inside the cloak to keep them nice and safe from the evil rays of burning sunlight. She didn't want to have to hit people with sunburned hands. Definately not a pleasant thought.
Meimei almost forgets the name she was going by these days, and fails to respond immediately to Takumi. However, she DOES recognize his voice, and so looks up, but continues to shield her eyes. When she sees the Chuunin she had spoken with last week, she narrows her already-squinted eyes until they are nearly closed, and then rises from her seat to approach the teenager.
She waits until she is nearer to the open door and then asks, "Lead the way, please." Whether Takumi will recognize her voice or her name from the chart, he should at LEAST recognize the extremely short woman in combination with those two clues, if for no other reason than there aren't many females in the Village that are her height and yet behave and speak as though fully matured. Not that that has ever stopped most people from assuming she's a kid — or a teenager at the oldest — before.
Why does she need Takumi to lead the way? Because she is almost blind, that's why. Even with the lighting in the hospital being bright enough to see by, and yet subdued enough to not be glaring in people's eyes at night, it seems that this place has about as much visibility to Meimei (aka 'Yoko') as the sun reflecting off of sheet metal at noon for 'normal' people.
Takumi checks over the chart, holding an arm out toward one of the cots on the hospital floor while making his way towards it with his patient. At the cot he pauses and turns to 'Yoko' while looking up from the chart. "So it says you were admitted with dehydration and possible heat stroke, and given preliminary aid, and I'm here to make sure everything worked out."
As he looks at the patient he feels a sense of recognition, but is busy thinking about what to get for dinner. "Now then, normally there are some tests to do to make sure everything is fine, but I can quickly scan your chakra network for disruptions and get you out of here faster than the old 'say ahh and look at the light' treatments, if I may." He smiles and moves to put a faintly glowing hand on MeiMei's shoulder.
Amuro — who shall henceforth be referred to as 'Yuubi' in his disguised form — had not answered Tomoyo's questions out in the desert beyond a general explanation. "Ultra-violet radiation has a corroding effect, not to mention the various other forms of radioactivity beating down upon us from the sky. Be glad that you have merely sun burns. They are superficial and will heal eventually. If you were in the upper atmosphere while a solar flare was ongoing, for instance, there would be very-high-energy particles present that could cause a host of other health issues if they penetrated into your cells. Chromosome damage, cancer, death…" He trails off at that point, the message hopefully clear.
There are worse things in the world than sunburns.
However, now in Sunagakure, 'Yuubi' and Tomoyo make their way down the eastern road, heading towards Tenrai Hospital. Yuubi's voice has altered completely, sounding like a raspy, wizened old man. The tone is not particularly deep compared to Amuro's own voice. It is unclear whether the voice changing is a benefit of the Doton: Henge no Jutsu, or some other skill, but it should adequately conceal the man's identity for now, at least.
Upon arriving at the hospital — something that may take a bit longer than Tomoyo is used to, due to Yuubi needing to walk at the pace of an old man, instead of… Uhh… Well, Amuro is pretty old too, but he's still faster than Yuubi! — and entering the building, the elderly-seeming man in the hat, robe, and face wrap, takes a moment to look around with his brown eyes, scanning the arrival area and waiting room. His eyes look normal enough from afar, or even at a medium distance, but up close, and >especially< upon face-to-face inspection, they have a sort of 'glassy' quality to them that bespeaks of their false nature.
And yet Yuubi seems to see just fine, as he begins making his way to the reception desk. Luckily there are few or no people in line right now, so he raps his cane on the counter, due to being too hunched over to be seen other than via his broad hat and eyes. Hopefully drawing the attention of whoever is attending the desk, Yuubi says, "My grand-daughter has received some nasty burns. She needs something for her skin." He then turns his head slightly to glance over his shoulder behind and to the side, making sure Tomoyo is close at hand.
As the duo approached the village gates, or rather the open tunnel that lead into the village… Tomoyo's question about the sun was quite thoroughly answered. To the point where she was soon wondering if she should flat out fear the sun. She didn't really reply to the explanation, but rather had a look on her face for most of the way there. ._. She was begining to hope she could find some sort of cream for her face so that she wasn't scarred for life with her sunburns. Unsure of how this process worked, having never been scorned by the sun before.
Passing through the guards of the entrance of Sunagakure with ease, they were now traversing the oven like streets on their way to somewhere. Tomoyo wasn't sure where they were going, just that they were going somewhere! Which was perfectly fine with her. At least they were exploring about. The young woman sightseeing as they walked, murmuring comments mostly to herself about the things that could be viewed along the way. The people, the culture and the things she wanted to sort of go buy as souvenirs.
"Grandpa, do you think we could buy some things later?" she asks, sounding hopeful as she reaches up with a hand and pokes her cheek through the cloth that kept her bundled out. "Ow…" hissing a little in pain. Soon, they'd find their way to the local hospital for some reason or another! Little did Tomoyo know, they were here to get some medicine for her face! Papa was so thoughtful. Though they could have put a little hustle into getting there and out of the sun. Sadly, the body of a hunched over old man prevented them from getting anywhere faster than the speed of old.
Now standing at the receptionist desk within the hospital, where it was noticably cooler in the shade, Tomoyo stood at Yuubi's 5'o clock position. Upon Yuubi mentioning her sunburns, she inadvertantly reaches up to poke her face again and has a similar reaction as the last time. "Owie… The sun isn't my friend today." she comments, frowning beneath the head wrap she wore.
Meimei/Yoko follows Takumi, following the indications of motion by a blurry shape more than recognizing the gestures and such to be seated. She confirms Takumi's evaluation of her chart. "Mm. I'm not from around here. Not used to needing water as often… Or it being so scarce." She then goes quiet and listens to the explanation. "…My Chakra network, huh." She sounds vaguely thoughtful, rather than nonplussed, but her face gives no indications of being grateful to have Ninja aid for her recovery/check-up. 'Didn't know he was a Medic-Nin,' she thinks to herself.
No sooner have the words, "Go ahead, then." left her mouth then she feels the hand on her shoulder. Either she took too long to answer so he decided to take her silence for acceptance, or he was waiting with his hand held out all this time, waiting to hear her answer. She doesn't know which is the case, because she can't SEE anything. Both hands are still shielding her eyes, which seem to glimmer slightly in the shade produced by her appendages, if Takumi were short enough to see them, or were to bend forward and look at her face, or anything similar. Otherwise he's too tall to see them from this angle, and probably has no reason to check, other than perhaps curiosity!
She waits for the 'scan' to be completed in silence, wondering if this guy really doesn't recognize her or is just going to treat her like any other patient while 'on-duty'.
With his hand on Meimei's shoulder, Takumi sends a faint chakra pulse through her system, reading her status in the changes of his chakra as it returns to his network. The process is relatively quick as he is not performing an intense battlefield triage.
Takumi makes a face as he removes his hand from Meimei's shoulder. "Well you seem to be hydrated again and im not seeing any health issues, though im reading some pain activity around your eyes." At this he bends down a bit to look at her eyes. As he does, his right eyebrow jerks up a moment. "Ah now its coming to me. I remember you from before." Straightening up he adds, "Im guessing its too bright in here for you. I remember you had those goggles last time we met. I can't do anything about the light in here or the pain, since its a stimulus response, but other than that youre medically cleared to go. It was…Yoko right?" Takumi hopes his notorious trouble with names doesn't pop up at this time.
The receptionist acknowledges 'Yuubi' and begins to ask Tomoyo questions about if she has been a patient here before, and if she has any allergies to anything, and all those other questions they need to ask before someone can be treated. While that's being done, Yuubi somehow manages to just >slide< aside, out of view of the receptionist, and make his way at a comfortable pace through the waiting room to one of those doors that has a warning about medical personnel only without an escort or whatever.
He turns the door handle and moves inside, disregarding the warning sign. When Yuubi is almost past the desk inside the new section of the hospital, a nurse looks up from her desk in order to see who just arrived. She sees only a hat moving across her field of vision, slightly above the edge of the desk. Blinking, she rises to her feet to get a better look. "Sir, do you have an appointment?" she asks, not seeing anyone escorting the elderly man. He turns his head slightly, and his right hand emerges from his robes to point at the woman. The kanji for 'Forget' glows a mix of red and black on his palm, and the nurse's eyes go blank as she sits down abruptly, missing her chair and falling to the floor instead. It produces a bit of a thump, and the chair being sent rolling across the floor by being nudged, and the subsequent impact against the desk, may be detectable by those in the nearby examination rooms. Or maybe not. The doors are closed after all.
Yuubi lowers his hand and conceals it again, before continuing along, moving faster than he did out on the street. When he finds his way to the records room, he undoes the lock by placing his right hand on it and making the door handle melt. The metal just starts smoking and steaming and pours onto the floor, like it was dissolved with acid. Yuubi enters the room…
Meanwhile, the receptionist is handing Tomoyo a form and asking her to fill it out while she waits. The woman glances around briefly, confused as to where the girl's grandfather went… But then just shrugging it off.
When spoken to by the receptionist who gets busy with writing down any pertinent information about Tomoyo that she can gather, the girl steps forward some to lean against the edge of the desk so she can answer the questions without having to speak to loudly. "Aahh… no, I'm a new patient. We're sort of visiting, which is why I ended up with this nice little sunburn on my face. I underestimated the sun." she says with a frown, having to really think about the other questions. "As for allergies, I don't… think so. Is there any way to figure that out?" leaning further against the desk as she continues to draw blanks on the allergy question. She continues to answer questions as needed, so that she can get her lotion or whatever it is they'll give her and she can be on her merry way.
What she pretends not to notice is that 'Yuubi' slips away, disappearing into the halls of the hospital. After giving what information she can to the receptionist, she meanders back to find a chair until somebody can handle her unfortunate case of sunburn.
Meimei allows her mouth to turn down slightly in a frown when Takumi bends down to look in her eyes. "Yes. Hibiki Yoko. I'm applying for a position at the Academy as a teacher. I hadn't known you were a Medical Ninja at the time we spoke." She nods, seemingly to herself, and then says, "Well, if I'm cleared to go, I better get out of here. I have to buy some new goggles. My previous ones disappeared mysteriously. I don't know if I lost them or they were stolen, but I can't see much without them."
She moves towards the entrance to this examination area, and pauses briefly to say, "Thanks for the help. Have a good day." Then she manages to fumble her way out into the 'medical staff only' area beyond. She fails to notice the lack of a nurse at the desk, mainly because she still can't see anything. But she HAD heard the thump and the sound of the chair hitting the desk. She assumed someone had dropped something. The fact there's no one around is a bit odd… But she can't even be certain there's no one around, other than the lack of the sound of breathing. Hmm… Suspicious…
Unless Takumi has something further to say to her, or comes out to investigate as well, she decides it's none of her business and proceeds to head out into the waiting room, and then out of the hospital completely.
Takumi raises a hand in a friendly wave as Meimei makes her way off, but then notices her take a wrong turn, heading into the doctor's area. He follows after her to the nurses station and calls out, "Miss? This is not the way out, you wandered into the doctor's area, I can escort you in the right-" It is at this time, due to his higher stature and ability to actually see, that Takumi notices no one is at the nurse's station, and a hand is visible on the floor behind the desk.
Moving quickly around he desk, Takumi finds the nurse on the floor and quickly kneels down, picking her partway off the ground and giving her a slight shake while cradling her shoulders. As the nurse seems unresponsive he looks around while kneeling and then calls out, "Did anyone see what happened here? I need a nurse!"
Yuubi is in the middle of searching through medical records in the records room, when he hears the sound of someone shouting. Shortly after that, the sound of footfalls is heard as people rush towards where that desk-dwelling nurse had fallen. "…What a bother." Yuubi mutters. He snaps the file folder he has in his hand closed, and pushes the drawer of the filing cabinet back into position. While some are checking out that desk, surely someone will notice the door to the records room has had its handle melted off, and the door is half-open. And surely someone will investigate.
And when they do…
They'll find an empty room with absolutely nothing missing or out of place. An exhaustive search of the files later on will turn up no sign of whoever may have damaged the door. If he or she was in here at all, then nothing was taken, at least. Or so it appears, thanks to the disguised Amuro having planted counterfeit medical records to replace the actual ones he absconded with.
Meanwhile, the nurse that Takumi is attending to gradually wakes up, though she remains disoriented for a few more minutes. When she is fully conscious, she will claim to remember nothing of how she wound up on the floor. She had just gotten on shift and sat down in her chair, and then the next thing she knew she was on the floor. This contradicts what another nurse would report about having spoken to the afflicted woman barely half an hour before. It's like the last hour of this poor nurse's life was just… Erased.
Tomoyo's form is filled out uneventfully. That is, until her 'grandpa' reappears at the hospital entrance and calls out, "Grand daughter, are you done yet? Nevermind. We're leaving." He then tosses a tube of some kind of medicated lotion for easing pain, repairing sun-damaged skin, and preventing infections or itchiness, into Tomoyo's lap. He turns around and makes his way out of the hospital. How did he get to the door? Didn't he go into the back of the hospital? Well, yes, but the floor happens to be made primarily of stone tiles and, beneath that, dirt. At least for the records room.
And Amuro can certainly pass through the ground easily enough. Not that that would likely occur to any investigators later on…
Sitting around in a hospital wasn't very fun, it was strange and had a sort of weird smell associated with it that left Tomoyo feeling slightly uneasy about lingering around for prolonged periods of time. And apparently paperwork for a little bit of medication took copious amounts of time, as she was waiting for what seemed like forever to get some relief for her crispy face! The sound of some shouting comming from down the hall draws her attention as she leans in her seat to try and see what was going on, but to no avail. Sigh. "Maybe some elderly patient fell and broke their hip…?" she mutters to herself, who knows what could happen in a hospital! She never needed one before today.
Left to her own devices, time passed arduously slow for the girl until finally 'Yuubi' returned to the waiting room and tossed a tube of something into her lap. Presumably it was the medication she was seeking from the get go! "I.. I don't think so. I'm still waiting for them to finish the paper…Oh.. alright." she replies, picking up the tube in a hand and depositing it into a pocket inside her cloak somewhere for later. Getting up from her seat, she offers a bit of a bow to the receptionist lady, "Sorry to be a bother." she says before whirling about on her heels and tamping off after her grandpa, humming a tune of victory after receiving her ointment! "Why do hospitals smell funny?" she asks in a conversational tone as they leave. Letting the question hang in the air.