Date: November 26, 2012
A Battle during the Survival portion of the Exams between Usagi and Etsu
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
"Second Promotion Exams - Bugs Against Shadows: Etsu vs. Usagi"
Blood Marsh, Swamplands of Kirigakure
As soon as the exams started, Usagi had all but vanished from most except those with particularly heightened senses, her form covered with darkness and shadows. Particularly nifty, considering the place was almost all but shadows. It played to a strength of hers, and she was just fine with that. She'd seen the start of the fight between Eremi and an armored shinobi, but decided not to stay for that one….it was attracting too much attention. Ryo and Ryuu, she hadn't seen lately, so she was moving on for the time being, staying out of sight…and out of the way until she could find a suitable target.
Animal tracks… That means wildlife comes through here. Wildlife meant food. She couldn't tell what kind of animal made the tracks just yet, but Etsu hoped it was something meaty. There were plenty of plants to go round here. She decided to spread her kikaichu out to find anything of use to her here. She wouldn't be pitching any tents in this area. It's too muddy and wet, but that forest would do some distance away or…those caves. Hmmm. Decisions decisions.
Usagi furrows her brow…she recognized the woman she'd come across right now. An Aburame. She's the one she'd met at the lake. She takes a slow breath and releases it, closing her eyes for a few moments. She was being monitored, she knew that, so she'd have to show what she could do. After a few moments, she focuses some chakra into her system, but doesn't yet come out from stealth. Wouldn't do to ruin the surprise, after all….
Etsu continued to look around the area and release kikaichu. They'd follow the tracks around specifically so that they could report back to her about any traces that were similar. Later, she'd be going hunting and wanted to catch something to be food later on. She'd also need to figure out which plants were safe to use as bedding. All signs appear to point toward that forest in the distance as it's probably the safest part of this swamp. And vines around here could possibly be used to tie leaves and such together. What else is around here? She had to find out.
Now was the time to strike….Usagi focuses briefly, and her shadow reaches out, touching and combining with other shadows, which, for A Nara, is a VERY dangerous thing to be up against. It takes a few moments as her shadow melds into those of her surroundings, connecting and extending her range slowly but surely. After a brief moment, once connected, a shadow lances out along the ground, looking to ensare that of Etsu's, taking a brief moment to try and trap her. Surprise was the first part….and if she could pull it off, she might even get a scroll without having to fight.
Etsu was just wandering around until she found herself stuck. She wasn't sure of what it was, but she did try to assess the situation. She didn't see any roots sticking up and there didn't appear to be any elements involved. The mud was there, but the suction was minor. She…wasn't in quicksand…"Aaah, so that's it," she remarked to herself as she discovered the source. She saw her shadow was unusually long. "Nara," she remarked. "Well, you can reveal yourself now that you've trapped me. I would like to see the face of the onen that has me stuck in this marsh." While she spoke, she was preparing herself for a fight.
Usagi drops down out of the trees into a crouch, her shadow still connected to those around her. It moves and snakes as if a mind of its own, constantly seeking nearby shadows and latching to them, to keep her in touch. "Etsu…." She nods slowly, sighing. "Honestly, I'd prefer this not turn into a fight for various reasons" she's definitely keeping an eye on the bugs around her. So far they aren't attacking….so far. As she approaches, she doesn't seem to be in a mood to attack, but her eyes are searching her body to see if anything is like a scroll….one she's looking for. "Tell me where it is, and I'll have it and be on my way. If not…." she shrugs slightly. "I don't want to hurt you" She takes a slow breath, still approaching, but getting close.
"Then it is unfortunate that I do not intend to part with my scroll without fighting for it," Etsu states. "Part of surviving is also learning how to take pain and endure it. I do not mind feeling pain if I must protect my scroll. I came into the exam knowing this," she remarked. "The scroll is inside my coat. I didn't place it outside my person for obvious reasons. It'd have been too easy to obtain." Looking down to the marsh and then back up to Usagi, she says, "You are free to do as much damage as you think it'll take to get it off me. Just know that I will be returning the favor."
Usagi smiles softly, stopping a good six feet from Etsu. "I see….and I will try to avoid this, so hopefully whichever one of us doesn't come out of this with a scroll can quickly make up for lost time" Usagi reaches a hand inside her vest, watching as Etsu mirrors the movement. Hopefully it wouldn't take long at this point, but she was definitely moving to try and force the woman to take her scroll out and toss it. That'd be the easiest method. And hopefully the safest. But….Usagi closes her eyes and nods. "So be it" With that, the shadows connecting the two would leap up onto and swarm Etsu's body reaching up to try and choke her. After a moment of holding that, Usagi throws an explosive tag, one not really attached to anything harmful, but one that would explode when it got close to her.
Etsu reached a hand into her left pocket much like Usagi performed, but it would appear that she decided to attack. As the shadow traveled up her body and to her neck to choke her, she coughed only to try and flicker out of the way to evade the explosive tag, but to no avail. She was choked and bombed, left with damage on her person. Was she upset? Of course.
"That…really hurt," she offered to Usagi. She didn't make any indication of what she'd be doing next, only the silent communication between her and her insects as they were fed into the ground and began to burst up from the mud to attack Usagi.
Usagi blinks as the bugs come up from underneath her, locking her down in the mud for the time being. She pauses, gently testing the restraints for the time being, and having felt her chakra being drained. Should have honestly done a bit better than she did before, though she takes a slow breath and nods. "I wasn't expecting this to be easy…" she looks at the bugs again, then closes her eyes, preparing herself. this was going to hurt….and she knew it.
"I didn't appreciate those attacks. Very painful, you know…" Etsu began to speak to Usagi. "But I understand the importance of taking up a scroll," she began to walk toward her opponent. "What I can respect is your method. Tactful, just as I expected from a Nara." Kikaichu began to rise from the Aburame's cloak then, the majority of them looking swolen in the abdomen. The rest were simply kikaichu, beginning to swarm and take up the field. Those with swolen bodies would be sent forward only for them to release an acidic spary from their bodies and return to their host. The rest of the kikaichu add insult to injurty and proceed to attack by biting in areas most affected by the acid.
That first one HURT. The acidic insects caused several burns across her skin, causing Usagi to cry out in pain, but the pain helped…in one way at least. She was able to break free of the insects keeping her in place, and in a puff of smoke, two more Usagi's stand with her, keeping the insects confused enough, as they were made of her chakra as well. It was long enough for Usagi's shadows to leap from all around Etsu to try and bind her body down. Not just an imitate, but a full lockdown.
Etsu stanced and extended her arms out to add to the insects already swarming the field. The number would become so great that the girl would simply vanish from the field escaping the notice of the one who is attacking her. She hides among the trees and takes the time to focus her chakra so that she'd have a better chance at fighting. At this rate, her chakra was too low to keep attacking, so she needed to gather herself in order to be a better competitor. She'd also have a better vantage point of the field, especially with all the insects flying around.
Usagi pauses a moment, looking at the misplacement of her opponent. She is putting this up on the line for right now, but she does attempt to slip into the shadows for right now. She's hurt, and she knows it….and this was going to get dangerous for the both of them rather fast.
Etsu spots Usagi as she attempts to blend into the shadows and follows after her. "My insects are all over this field and it's very likely that some are on you as we speak. You are hurt and I do not want to place you in a condition that will not enable you to battle. Perhaps we may stop here and I request that I am able to procure your scroll. If we continue to battle, I fear that you will be unable to continue. I find you a good opponent and think you have much more to prove while here. What say you about this request? I have antidotes for the poison my kikaichu have placed into your system as well as for the burns you suffered."
"If you can find me again….fair enough" Usagi knew she wsa low. and this was really going to beetle if she couldn't pull it off. She was losing, and she knew it, and she was going to try and get away from it as best she could. In the meantime though….a good distraction for both person and insects would serve, and she had a method to do so. Her hands form seals again, poofing to distract the insects likely on her, onto the two clones she replicated once more. After that, she attempts, by herself, to sink back into the shadows. Though if it didn't work….she wouldn't be going anywhere, and she knew it.
"Fair enough," Etsu repeated as confirmation to Usagi. After she broke apart and utilized clones, the kikaichu still swarming about the field were constantly relaying information to her and continued to track things on the field. Unfortunately, Usagi would not be able to escape and the Aburame found her once more. She offered a hand to her, ensuring that there were no insects on it and that she would not be attacking her anymore. She wished to shake it saying, "You've done well. I am honored to have been your opponent. I will try to see to your recovery from the poisons of these insects and your burns if you do not mind…"
Usagi's shoulders slump as she closes her eyes, nodding. "Please. I'll have a battle to fight in regards of gaining two scrolls now, and I do not need to be in worse shape than I already am" She reaches into one of her packs, the ones at her hips, and produces the scroll to pass over, as well as to shake her hand. "Though be glad I'm not figuring to be sneaky. Shaking hands with a Nara is just asking us to lock you down" She doesn't, she stays true to her word. Etsu found her. She also pauses long enough to pull her shadow back to herself, and put some chakra into her system. She was far, far too low.
Etsu nodded. "Please, rest yourself. You must recover. I have some food and items I can share," she offered while shaking the girl's hand and subsequently taking the scroll. "You and I both are sneaky sorts. An Aburame and Nara are a decent combination when not fighting one another," she offered. "But please, I request that you rest. You have more than enough time to dedicate to searching for scrolls. It will do you no good to try in your condition."
Usagi nods slowly, taking a deep breath. "I would agree, between what all we can do to an opponent between the two of us" she smiles a bit. "you, as of now, don't have to worry about it, though" she takes a slow breath and nods, looking up into the trees. "Though you would likely rest as well, and perhaps make sure your kikaichu are keeping alert….despite that you and I didn't make a massive mess and many loud noises, I'd not hope that other genin didn't notice our battle. I offer a proposal. Until the both of us are rested enough to continue….we stay together for mutual protection and defense" and if someone attacks Etsu for a scroll, Usagi would obtain one a bit easier that way….Etsu didn't need any more, and she was sure that the Aburame was smart enough to figure that out too. If not, an added bonus later.
"Hmmm…" Etsu hummed, "Until such a time that we are well rested and recovered, we shall stick together. I believe I can offer my assistance in this matter," she offered. "I know not how strong the others are, so I cannot guarantee that I will be able to defend against everyone that comes against us. We will have to be careful and mindful of our surroundings at all times. Is this well understood?"
Usagi nods slowly. "Well enough. You and I can blend easily enough into this environment….and that is our biggest advantage for now" She isn't using her shadows at the moment either, instead taking a roll of bandage from her pack. colord dark green, instead of the stark white usually found in hospitals….that stands out like a ray of sunshine in this place. after Etsu aids with the burns and poison, she'd apply those where needed, sighing softly. "I suppose we can take watches to rest if neccesary"
"Good. Taking watches is fine for me. You should go ahead and get some rest. I will stand guard until you are able to watch the area yourself." Etsu slipped the scroll given to her away on her person and decided to take first watch for this place." She immediately took up her new responsibility and proceeded to guard Usagi.