Date: April 23, 2014
Two kumo nin come in search of Atsuro, and food while the Hokage comes for food and other business.
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
BBQ place, Inuzuka Compound
Having been in Konoha for the past week or so, Hiei finally gets a reprieve from fighting the dead and genjutsu spewing statues to observe a tradition. The visiting of the Inuzuka Village. He inclines his head to the guards at the entrance and walks on in. He immediately begins looking for the shinobi that he came to hang out with. Atsuro and of course, Taizen. He asides to Hiro, who has accompanied him today. "The last time I was here the Hokage told me about a restaurant that had some excellent food. I'm hoping to get to try it out today." He rubs his stomach. "Been burning too much energy fightning. Need to refuel the machine."
- Hiroyasu decided to tag along a with the Yotsuki for a little change in scenery. "It's good to get out and get some fresh air. The morgue was the only place a guy could get a nap.. and apparently when you wake up and get off a table in the morgue.. people lose their fluke minds.." then rubs the back of his head "Is it the one with the dog chefs? I wanna see that" he says with a shake of his head "Your always hungry how is that new?" he asks slapping the Yotsuki on the back. -
Fortunately for Hiei, Atsuro and Taizen have just come from the training area. They've been training — not always a guarantee with Atsuro — and they're tired and hungry. Also fortunately, their practice was ninjutsu based, so Atsuro doesn't smell all gross and sweaty. They're ready to just go home, eat, and sleep, but as they walk past the village gates, they stop and sniff the air a couple times. "What's this?" Atsuro asks, exchanging glaces with Taizen. He takes off into a run, and Taizen follows not far behind.
"Aha!" Atsuro stops not far away from Hiei and Hiroyasu, with Taizen not stopping far behind him. "Well," says Atsuro, "Hey, kids. I didn't even realize you two were in the village, much lessing coming here to visit." Taizen speaks up, "Hello, Hiei. Hello, Hiroyasu."
Having just gotten some training done of his own at the hospital, Taiki decides to take a break and head back to the compound to change for food, and the opportunity to check his schedule to see if he has any other appointments, or if he can take some time off for one of his past-times. As he nears the gates the guards inform him of the two Kumo nin that went through, supplying names and probable destinations. Not that Taiki couldn't tell himself when he sees the names. "They're probably looking for Atsuro," he mentions to them and nods. They bow in return and Taiki strides in along with his two ninken. "So… home or a restaurant?" he asks his partners. Nozomi makes a bark and Taiki chuckles. "Well, we've been wanting to give their food a try, so why not?" Taiki and company then turn and stride toward the same restaurant the others are headed to. He picks up several scents himself and nods. "Besides which, it looks like we'll run into everyone there."
Daisuke had come to the Inuzuka village on business with the Clan Head, coming across a small gathering of well known shinobi. "Oh?" he says as he recognizes the group, interested to see what the gathering was about. He walks over and calls his greetings in advance, walking up to the small gathering before he catches Taiki a little further away, "One sec." he says as he passes the trio with a quick pat to Taizen's head.
"Taiki! Wait up a second, I wanted to discuss something." he calls as he walks up to Taiki, noticing the entire group was most likely heading for that crazy dog chef BBQ restaurant, "Perhaps over a meal?"
Hiei glances over at Hiro. "The fact that you would actually sleep in a morgue…you know what? Nevermind." He should be used to his eccentric partner by now, afterall. A familiar voice reaches his ears and a big grin comes over Hiei's face. "There they are." He says to Hiro before moving over and holding out his fist for a bump from Atsuro and then a good petting for Taizen. "Atsuro, Taizen. It's good to see you guys. How have you been?" He points towards the restaurant. "Hiro and I were just going to have a meal. Would you like to join us?" He hasn't spotted Taiki or Daisuke just yet, well until the Hokage calls out a greeting. Hiei turns to him. "Lord Hokage…Taiki-sama. Didn't expect to run into you guys here." Well, Taiki maybe, but not Daisuke.
- Hiro stretches "You sleep where and when you can" before waving in greeting "Yo! Atsuro" then looking around "Who else? We heard you were having problems with an infestation.. So we were dispatched to assist.." before bowing his head to the arrival of the Inuzuka head, followed by none other than the Hokage himself. "Lord Hokage, Master Inuzuka.." he greets them both before giving Taizen a thumbs up "Taizen-sama!" he gets his own separate greeting.. "Yeah how can you not try BBQ made by Dog Chefs! We have been here many times and somehow not found the time to try it.." he says rubbing the back of his head. -
Snubbed by Taiki, Atsuro holds up a hand to wave to Daisuke, who just passes right on by. "Sheesh," says Atsuro, "Is there a slap mark on my face?" He looks back to Hiei and Hiro. "Hey, kids," he says, "Been a while since you were in Konoha." He accepts the first bump, of course. "We've been good. What brings you to our humble village? More of that Kono-Kumo diplomacy I hear so much about?" He folds his arms. "Dog chefs, oh yeah. Hachiman's. As the most senior whatever, I guess it would only be right for me to pay. Especially since certain people clearly aren't interested in eating with the plebeians." Taizen wags his tail as he gets pet and thumb-upped. "An infestation?" Atsuro repeats, "Of, like, nin-termites?"
Taiki is about to wave greetings to the group as he walks up, but Daisuke catches his attention first. Taiki stops, bows slightly at the waist at Daisuke, then nods. "That sounds great Hokage-sama. I just finished some advanced training and am actually pretty hungry."
Now that the highest ranking person here had been greeted, and he's close enough to actually talk to everyone else without yelling across a crowd, he turns his attention to everyone else. "A coincidence, to be sure. I take it we're all headed to the same place?" To Atsruo he frowns and shakes his head. "Well, I was going to answer when I got close enough, but now I think I won't," he vollies back sarcastically toward Atsuro. That done, he turns his attention toward Hiei and Hiro and says, "Welcome. I am curious too. Infestation?"
Daisuke becomes the link to pull Taiki towards the other group and unite it as one large, conversation flowing, entity by slowing down a bit with Taiki to meet up. In response to Hiei's surprise at seeing him, Daisuke chuckles. "I find I have to visit a lot of locations I didn't really pay much time in in the past. I like a kind of hands-on approach sometimes, more than sending scrolls or letters or representatives. Nothing beats a face to face conversation." He hears the word Hachiman's and his theory is confirmed that they would be dining with the dogs tonight, secretly hoping Satomi didn't make something at home, because he wasn't coming home hungry.
"This isn't really a formal location or event, but I personally want to thank you guys for helping out with the Land of Tea debacle. We should be safe now with the precautions taken but I'm still not too sure about how the Land of Tea can handle this. Perhaps the next step is to move in and help, we will have to see if the Daimyo makes a plea or not." he says with a low nod of the head towards the two Lightning nin who came, and were here to thank at this time, to their aid. To Atsuro and Taiki, Daisuke gives skeptical looks, though he supposes they were both busy people and the undead uprising was quelled fairly quickly. Atsuro just gets a sympathetic pat on the shoulder while Taiki is informed of the 'infestation' of dead rising from the refuges of the Land of Tea.
Hiei grins at Atsuro. "Hey, you know every time I come to this village, I have to make a stop to see you guys." He playfully elbows Atsuro in the shoulder. "Hachiman's huh? That's what it's called. Sweet." He couldn't wait to try it out. Dog chefs…his genin students won't believe him when he tells this story later. He then inclines his head to Daiskue. "It's no problem, Hokage-sama. That's what allies are for." He takes on a thoughtful look for a moment. "I fear that Shuuren-sama may be in over his head this time. The statue that we fought talked about death and destruction, and how all villages would eventually be enveloped in darkness. It threatened Kumo, too. Saying that it would send it's dead army into every hidden village. I'm sure it was a construct, but whomever was controlling it could channel genjutsu through it. It was some pretty nasty stuff, too." He looks around at those assembled. "I'm not convinced we haven't seen the last of it. But with defenses bolstered as they are, I'm confident they probably won't get the drop on us like last time." He glances at Hiro and then says, "We'll probably be heading back soon ourselves. I don't think that thing was in the habit of making idle threats."
- Hiroyasu shrugs "I don't see any marks, but maybe you stepped in something?" responding to the more rhetorical question from Atsuro. the question about what infestation raises his eyebrow for a moment but its brushed aside as just his poor wording. "Your problems are our problems. If you need her services, we brought along our head diplomat. Yotsuki Nariko" giving her a official mention before it goes downhill from there. "I think we might just charge into the eye of the storm and deal with it.. whether he asks for help or not; when it started to effect everybody its hardly an isolated issue" he adds before looking at Hiei who seems already wrapped up in the idea of dog chefs, serving bbq, in copious amounts.. "I hope everyone is doing well?" asking in general to save the more drawn on individual questions for later. -
At Taiki's snarking, Atsuro just smirks. "The pressure gets to you after a while, doesn't it?" He turns to Daisuke and nods. "I dunno about all that business. Would certainly never explain why we never had that meeting about me working for you. Or were all those promises of a huge office and piles of money just words? Oh, and dental and optometry, or I'm going to walk."
"That's true," Atsuro tells Hiei, "And we always plan to have a spar, but rarely actually get around to it, for some reason. Maybe that's a good thing, now that you're a giant. Perhaps you've surpassed me in swordsmanship." He frowns as Hiei describes… whatever the heck happened on that mission. "That's… uh, weird." He gives Hiro a grin, "Looks like neither. Guess they're not too proud to eat with the commoners after all — when they're called out on it. Very bourgeousie, really." Taizen answers, "Atsuro and I are doing well."
As Daisuke catches Taiki up quickly, the Alpha nods and says, "I was off with a group of new medic nin on a field training exercise, involving one of the prime tenants of medic nin." One can guess he was referring to the one about Medic nin avoiding being hurt by the slightly feral grin on his face. Given his rank, he probably ran those genin ragged. Pity them. "Sounds like I missed quite a bit, though I probably have s scroll or two about it on one or both of my desks…"
$t"It's been my experience that big bads don't threaten much, at least not without trying to back it up." And given how much Taiki has had to deal with villians in his short life, that's something he knows quite a bit about. He then shrugs and says, "I'll see what the other doctors at the hospital says, and look over the reports, but one thing I know for certain, one needs to be very careful in providing unasked-for help with another country. Some would take that as an invasion… thus blowing up in everyone's face."
Shinobu simply shakes his head from as if clearing something in his ears before adding, "Hardly. Just a superior talking to us kinda demands attention first Taizen. You know that." As they reach the restaurant, Taiki opens the door for everyone, dogs included.
"Just once I wouldn't mind a villain talking threats of love and peace." Daisuke mutters after listening to Hiei. He nods his head afterwards, "Of course, you would want Kumo to be at full alert as well, and, if needed, we will be glad to reciprocate." he says as he turns to Hiroyasu's suggestion with regard. "I would have hoped Shuuren would call for help long before this because an international issue, but it might just come to that, indeed."
Daisuke smirks at Atsuro, "I haven't talked to Taiki about that just yet, though I will admit with you being his secretary now it fell down the pile of importance." he says as a retort, adding "Noblesse Oblige, it's a thing." as a tease to his commoners nonsense. With that, the group has arrived at the famous Hachimen's as Taiki opens the door.
Hiei inclines his head in thanks as he steps into the establishment. He looks around for a spot to accommodate the large group and when he finds it, he kneels down at the table, making himself comfortable. He idly listens to the nin-ken talk to each other and shakes his head. No matter how old he got, that would still probably be the coolest thing he's seen to date. "I actually agree with Hiro. I know the Tea Damiyo evacuated all non essential personnel when it first broke out." Nariko's parents lived there afterall. "But Taiki-sama also makes a good point, too. That's why I think that we should send a small team. Perhaps four or five shinobi…into the Land of Tea. If nothing else, we need intel. This has already become an international event. And we have to consider the worst. The reason why we haven't heard from Shuuren-sama may be because he /can't/ send for help. I saw these things in action. Whomever they kill, that person rises up to join their ranks. I wouldn't wish that fate on an enemy."
- Hiroyasu nods to Taizen "Excellent, I brought you, and Atsuro, both a giant jar of goat jerky.. don't let me forget" he says before looking up at Taiki, and then Daisuke.. "Ah right.. We both have license to operate in the land of Tea. Similar to but less limited than our rights bestowed here to assist Konohagakure." then thinks about it "As long as your current Hokage respects the edicts of the previous.." before sneering at Hiei "As terrible as it sounds; I would rather ask forgiveness; then wait for permission. That is what we pay Diplomats for right?" he chortles elbowing the Yotsuki in the ribs. "And I doubt 2 Kumogakurian Chuunin are considered an invasion force.." or are they… his mind wanders as he nods and moves to sit by the table-stove. "I have not figured out how they transmit the control either.. doesn't seem medical.. might be genjutsu that controls the mind after the body dies.. That is more the realm of Researchers, and not Combat Medics" he say rubbing the back of his head. -
"Spiritually," Atsuro tells Shinobu, "I am everybody's superior. On paper, I report to Daisuke or whatever." He looks at Daisuke and shakes his head disapprovingly. "Administrative assistant," he admonishes. Then he turns back to Shinobu, "See?" He looks back to Daisuke, "Well, I mean. I was already in my position in the clan now when you offered. Ah, I get it. You see Taiki as a rival administrator, you're trying to throw his people off." He pats Daisuke on the shoulder, "Nice try. We'll negotiate pay and benefits in a week. I assume I'll get a corner office, of course. Maybe a couple of assistants. Will lunch be brought to my office, or is there a fancy dining room?"
He and Taizen walk into Hachiman's cooly, casually, obviously many-time veterans of this meaty place. Atsuro sighs a little as Hiei and the others keep talking about the Land of Tea. "I need to keep up on current events more," he says, sighing a little, "Everyone's been fighting zombies while I practice turning into a giant, three-headed dog." Taizen wags his tail happily. "I can remind you," he offers to Hiro, obviously happy at the idea of some tasty goat jerky. "How giant are we talking?" Atsuro asks, sitting down at the table. He picks up a menu, reads it for about one twentieth of a second, then sets it down. "Everyone ready to order?"
Taiki grins and nods in agreement with Daisuke about his first observation. "As a person hunted by an evil organization that's been far to quiet lately for my liking, I wish the same thing Daisuke-sama. Don't think it will ever happen, but who knows?"
After listening to Hiei's and HIroyasu's comments, he appears thoughtful for a moment. "We could do something of a small joint Kumogakure/Konohagakure venture like they suggested. AFter all, one could argue that Shuuren-san, by sending his people to Konoha, was asking for our help. And with these two having a free pass into Tea country, it would make sense to send at least a small but powerful team in." He is of course, thinking aloud, but since he's been weaned from birth on political issues, its something he's used to doing.
Taiki pretty much ignores Atsuro's comment to Shinobu, as does the dog, the later of which is looking over the menu. The trio decide on beef BBQ before Taiki looks over to Atsuro and says, "So what did the Hokage-sama finally ask you to do, considering our last conversation when I asked you to join me in council?"
Daisuke looks amused at Atsuro, "Secretary, Administrative assistant, potato, potahto." he says with a grin as he takes his seat and settles in, preparing for all the meat to arrive. "Either way, I'm sure there will be lots of meetings and coordination involved, why don't we put that business on the back burner for now and think of better things. I mean…there are dogs over there flipping burgers." he says as he leans forward and points towards the kitchen area, open enough to see the action. "I'm ready to order whenever, I'm getting a plate of BBQ meat if someone is interested in splitting the jumbo pile."
"Which reminds me." he says to Taiki, not quite sure how it reminded him exactly, but regardless. "I was going over your report and I had a good first step towards really getting things going. I'd like you to open the medical facility multipurpose rooms to teaching all of our chuunin, and above, basic First Aid to use out in the field. My original purpose for coming."
Hiei had started listening to the conversation but his attention is caught by the sight of the dogs preparing the food. "I'll..uh..have..some beef and pork. Please." He says while never taking his eyes off what he's seeing. "And who says you need opposable thumbs to cook?" He comments and then looks back at the group. "Yeah, we'll be here a few more days, so there's time to figure things out." He looks at Atsuro and Taizen. "Oh, and just so you guys know, you're not getting out of sparring me this time. Tomorrow. I'll be here. The last time we sparred..you pretty much creamed me. I want to see how I measure up now." The Kumo Chuunin grins slightly at the Inuzuka swordsman. He does give some thought about the task force they're proposing. Hiei may have to bribe someone to make sure he's on that team. He was worried about his aunt and uncle, not to mention Shuuren himself. "I wonder who trained these guys to cook?" He wonders aloud.
- Hiroyasu ponders for a moment, "Well its more an earthen jug.. rather than a jar jar.. but uh around 5 or 6 lbs I didn't really pay much attention I just stuffed a jug full of tasty slow smoked jerky." giving Atsuro a light shrug then nodding to Taizen, he knew that was a definite. "I'll have what your having Atsuro" before listening to Taiki and nodding "If you have suggestions or nominations for members, we will entertain suggestions.. Not just anyone mind you.. It needs to be handled delicately. uh.. wel.. " he clears his throat "Leaf Shinobi are kinda known for massive collateral damage. Usually by fire" clearing his throat again.. before looking for some water to sip. "Holy Goat! There are dogs over there flipping burgers!" conversation deflected! Then Daisuke suggests it be handled later which seems a prudent thing.. while they schedule the scheduling of the meetings to organize the special task force in charge of handling the meeting about the pending schedule. The Two Kumo-nin can just employ the Yotsuki Manuever and let someone else claim the victory later. "Soo coooool.. they are extremely skilled.. there are people with thumbs who have no excuse…" he says eyes sparkling at the wonder of dog chefs. -
"That's what I'm trying to figure out now," Atsuro says, "But it's starting to look like our esteemed leader was merely stringing me along. Saying I was the prettiest jounin he'd ever met, how all the other jounin must be jealous of me, that sort of thing." He shrugs, "The second one is true, but the first one is incorrect, of course. I'm handsome, not pretty." He looks over to Daisuke slyly, "Yes, of course," he says, "We'll discuss it /some other time/." He gives Daisuke a very obvious wink as a joke.
Since people seem to be ordering, Atsuro goes ahead, "One Hi-BBQ Platter, and a beer." Followed shortly by Taizen, "Beef short-rib. And water." Atsuro looks over to Hiei and nods, "Get out of it? Why, I'll be looking forward to it. It'll certainly be embarrassing if you beat me… but then I can just say that I'm a great teacher or something, I guess. When you fight a swordsman you haven't taught, you don't really have that escape route." He looks over to Hiro. "Really?" he asks, "I'd have thought you were a lighter eater than that." Then he adds, "None taken. Really, our clan is devoted to collateral damage. As expemplified by our illustrious leader." He gestures to Taiki. Taizen answers the question that's been going around. "There have always been some nin-dogs who can cook. It's only that the first restaurant was opened after the founding of Konoha."
Taiki chuckles as Daisuke grills Atsuro for a moment before turning his attention to Daisuke. "We can do that. It could potentially save lives, given that we don't have enough combat medics or general purpose shinobi medics to get one on every team, especially the genin teams. At the very least, we should be training the chuunin- and jounin-senseis on first aid, given the potential for young genin to wind up with a severe case of injury on anything above D-missions." That, and given some of Taiki's recommendations to Daisuke, that does indeed fit as a first step.
As Hiei and Hiroyasu talk, he kind of chuckles. "Yeah, a few of us are known for… forceful redecoration. Though to be fair, even those of us that are known for that can reign it in when we need to." Although Taiki is speaking mainly of himself he doesn't say that aloud. He's far too well known for not exactly being environmentally friendly, what with his reputation of destroying pells, trees, large portions of ground… you know, leaving craters when a certain B rank taijutsu move goes off.
"Hiroyasu you just reminded me I have to book a reprimand for one of my shinobi who apparently burned down a bar in Fuuma Alley." Daisuke says with a shake of his head. He wasn't going to deny it, a lot of ninja in the Leaf were flashy, though the ones who were subtle were so subtle you would never know they were there, which was the point. The attention falls on the dogs, as it should be, as Daisuke's first time turned out similarly. "I assume the best Cooking-nin in the Land of Fire taught them, but that is just my wild imagination." he says to Hiei. He nods his head to Taiki, who seems to get, and agree with, his suggestion. "I'll leave that in your hands, then, unless you need something for it to happen." he says before turning to Atsuro. "If you must know, I offered Atsuro a position as a kind of liason between the clans of Konoha, keeping the peace, friendly nature, and meeting needs or addressing concerns a clan may be having, so that everyone can work together and stoke the Will of Fire to burn even brighter. This was before I knew he was hired as your secretary, though, Taiki."
Hiei continues watching the dogs cook. It was so bizarre and fascinating all at the same time. He grins at Atsuro. "Oh, I'm still fairly certain that you're going to beat me to a pulp. My goal is for it take longer this time. And don't forget, you did mentor me when I was a kid. I took that knowledge and expanded upon it. I even teach it to my own students. Good advice is good advice, no matter where it comes from." He grins at Daisuke. "Yeah, I had a talk with that shinobi and his clan head about that Fuuma situation." Of course, Hiei was there and Akinori didn't really show much remorse about burning the guy's bar down. "Taiki-sama, I think it's a great idea to teach your team leaders first aid. I learned it from Hiroyasu, and I've had to use it several times since then. Stuff happens on missions, and you don't always have a medi-nin around to patch you up. Course I found out that chicks really do dig scars…so there's that, too."
- Hiroyasu looks back to the Hokage "Yes.. I heard about that" glancing at hiei with a cold glare before looking back at the dog chefs. "All our chuunin team leaders have been taught to render basic first aid. It has improved our mission success-rate and lowered training based injuries by a factor of ten." giving a nod to Hiei before shrugging when he goes off the tracks at the end of it.. When the large large pile of meat is delivered to him, get pulls out his own pair of chopsticks and gets quiet as he is focusing on the meal. -
"A few of us," Atsuro repeats. He glances over to Daisuke, "Burning down a bar? Throw the book at that insane criminal. I'll execute them myself, if you just say the word." He immediately stops and rubs his chin, "No, but I'm pretty sure I told you that at the time. Like, it was the first thing I said, and you didn't think it would be a big deal — hold on, I'm arguing that I /should/ become part of the bureacracy? Oh man." Taizen answers Daisuke too, "They were." In regard to the dog chefs, natch.
Atsuro shoots Hiei a grin, "I won't deny the possibility. But you never really know. It's always a good idea not to get too confident in your swordsmanship — I might've told you this before, but the art (and science) of kenjutsu is just so common, it's very easy to get smoked out of nowhere by some unassuming schlub." He pauses for a second, "So I improved the shinobi traditions of a non-Konoha village? Maybe we shouldn't talk about this in front of my boss." Atsuro looks over at Hiro and grins — it's easy to get engrossed in the food here."
"Ooooh," Taiki says with a smirk on his face. "You basically offered him the same position I once held, only on a grander scale…" he says as he glances over toward Atsuro. "I was part of the Inuzuka's ambassador corps before I became clan Alpha," he explains to the two Kumo-nin before returning his attention back to Daisuke. "I don't see a problem with conflicts of interest, really. We have our own ambassador corps for inter-clan relations that don't necessitate my direct involvement, so it shouldn't be a an issue."
His attention then turns toward the dog chefs for a few minutes, grinning. "I've heard of this place, met the chefs before, but never had the time to come here. If the smells are any indication, this is going to be great."
Turning his attention to Hiei next he nods. "That's true. Part of my duty as a senior healer, especially as a specialist-slash-combat medic mednin, is to try to improve survivability of our teams. Of course, that we Konoha-nin tend to be… flashy doesn't help in that as any enemy worth their salt would try to eliminate us before we get going, but it is part of my duty. Thus the training trip I took a few starting-out mednin on…"
Daisuke nods to Hiroyasu at the good news Kumo has had by implementing basic first aid within their ranks. "Good to hear, we will definitely be following suit. Here's hoping we get similar results." he says as he jumbo plate of meat arrives, pulling out his chopsticks to place the first batch on the mini BBQ stove in the middle of their table until they start sizzling nicely. Atsuro's words seem to somewhat confuse even himself, so Daisuke just smiles politely and nods to Taizen, who confirms his imagination. "Either way, you are included in this learning of basic first aid, Atsuro, so you better remember this tomorrow." he says, eyeing the beer by Atsuro.
"So Atsuro would be kind of the representative of the administration, who would meet with your ambassador corps if needed, or just to touch base. I think every major clan has some kind of group or representation right now to make sure they get a voice." he says to Taiki with a nod.
Hiei listens to the conversation around him, mostly listening to talk about clan councils and stuff. "That sounds like a headache waiting to happen. Having to deal with all of the clan heads and make sure their needs are met. I wouldn't want that job." Hiei admits. At least now he knows why his grandfather pretty much stayed in a perpetual bad mood most of the time. "Being clan head must be troubling. Everyone always wanting some of your time. I'm amazed you guys still get to go on missions. I think I would rather meet the business end of a sword than get assigned desk duty. I'm serious about that."
The utterly enormous platter of food Atsuro ordered shows up. There's a wide range of different types and cuts of meats, plus various sauces and garnishes to go with each and every one of them. "It's okay," Atsuro assures everyone, "Today was a training day. I spent many calories on turning into a three-headed dog. In fact, my doctor advised my that I could die unless I have this exact meal following every training session for that move." Taizen's meal is comparatively modest, but still quite hearty.
He looks between Daisuke and Taiki as they talk about him. "I'm right here," he says, "Yeesh, you guys. Say you're not gonna talk about it yet, then you just go and do that." He frowns, "And it's /one/ beer with lunch. Man. With friends like you…" He looks over to Hiei and nods grimly. "It's like their discussing my execution, eh?" he asks, "I'll give it a try, though. Wanna take bets on how long it'll last? Oh, Taizen will keep me honest. No quiting to make the time fit my bet or anything like that."
Taiki nods once at Daisuke's observation. "That sounds just like what I was thinking. As I said, I fail to see a conflict of interest, so we're good." He chuckles at Atsuro's comment, then looks over to Hiei and grins. "Well, you see we Inuzuka are… different than most clans. I'm about as stuffed shirt as Inuzuka get, and I pretty much would be a permanent scandal for any other clan. We're the wild ones. Daisuke-sama mentioned "flashy" earlier? That's us. The Clan Alpha must not only have the most political clout in the clan, but he must also be able to hold his own in combat, and like anyone else is expected to mix it up when needed. In a way, we're just like the dogs we partner with. Have you ever seen an alpha dog stand back and let the pack attack? Or hunt? No, they're normally right in there with the rest of the pack. That's us. I go on high-priority missions and training exercises as much to show I'm still Alpha material. That… and as Atsuro is fond of saying, I wear far too many hats.
"While it may be a 'desk job', I bet Atsuro would be mostly wining and dining rather than sitting behind a desk with a mountain of paperwork like I do." Daisuke says with a sigh. He grabs some of his ready meat, scarfing some doing while putting some fresh stuff on the BBQ. "Either way, we can try it out and see if it is your type of thing. I figured you were a fairly friendly face within the village, and Taizen can win over anyone's heart." he points out, stealing some of Atsuro's sauces.
Hiei nods towards Taiki. "The Yotsuki clan is similar. To lead, you have to be strong, or no one will listen to you, much less follow you. Sometimes to show strength, you have to make an example of someone who wants to challenge your position." It was the reason why he was currently training under both his father and mother. Getting stronger in other areas besides kenjutsu. "But at the same time, you gotta treat people fair." He looks down at his food and begins to eat. "It's why Nariko and I never talk about our lineage. We want people to respect us for us. You know?"
"He's also very modest," Atsuro cheerfully adds to Taiki's comments. Taizen quickly adds, "But what he said was accurate." Atsuro has already moved on from that part of the conversation, though. Wining and dining? "Tell me more," he says, staring at Daisuke, his hands automatically moving to barbecque and eat any meat, like some kind of BBQ restaurant robot. "I think I'd rely more on— rude." He frowns at Daisuke's sauce-stealing hand. He looks over to Hiei and nods approvingly. "That's a good policy," he agrees.
Taiki gains a rather ironic expression as he says, "When I was younger, I acted just like any other kid. My own genin team, which Atsuro was in charge of, never knew that my dad was Clan Heir, or that we were… what did you call us Atsuro? "Loaded?" Well, that's because I always thought that my family was, but I certainly was not. I didn't have money of my own, other than what the clan provided me. In fact, I was… not well liked…" he says, pausing enough for people to guess he is massively understating the position his younger self was in, "Amongst my clan. One could say its a miracle I'm where I am today. Trust me, a lot happened to get me comfortable with my status now… and every now and then I still look around for my father when someone calls me "Inuzuka-sama.""
"You rely more on rudeness, indeed. Unfortunately, that won't get you very far with clan heads and representatives. Think of it like a sort of internal Nariko position. While she deals with international affairs, you would deal with internal affairs." Daisuke says with a shrug towards Atsuro at his sauce frown. "Your Hokage wanted sauce."
To Hiei's fairly well painted picture of his clan, Daisuke replies. "It is amazing that anyone can hold leadership for very long and get things done, always wondering when the next challenger will be striking. It sounds similar to a sort of Alpha male in a clan or pack. I respect power and how it gives authority, but that is where differences spring up in Konoha and Kumogakure leadership. At least I can speak for the Senju clan in saying the power to move the people through words, making them take the steps on their own because they want to, is more highly valued than physical strength and power exerted. There are…some clans, I would expect… where power is more valued even within our walls, though." he says, shaking his head lightly before eating some more of his freshly BBQ'd meat.
Hiei eats more of the meat, savoring the taste. "This really is delicious. The guys back home will never believe this." He comments while looking over at the cooking dogs again. His attention is drawn to Daisuke and he nods. "It's not /that/ bad, Hokage-sama. It's just that since the formation of Kumogakure, the Yotsuki have always been the backbone. The raw power that the Raikage can call upon in times of need. Our clan head has to be able to command a group of men and women who are strong willed to begin with, to act as one. It's as much mental strength as it is physical. And I'm telling you, you guys call me a giant? I'm short compared to most of my clan. My cousin Zetto makes me feel small."
"That's more or less true," Atsuro confirms what Taiki says. "I'm actually not clear what it is Nariko does," Atsuro informs Daisuke, smiling warmly, "I know it's diplomatic in nature, but that's about it." He taps his chin, then says more seriously, "I'm also not really clear on why you would consider me the best man for the job. What makes you think /Atsuro/ would be the best one to foster better clan relations? Especially since I rely more on rudeness." Atsuro gives Hiei a grin. "You're pretty big," he says, shrugging, "This Zetto must be huge."
Taiki grins at Hiei's comments. "Sounds like my clan. I'm actually somewhat shy normally, at least for the Inuzuka. Atsuro is more indicative of what the standard member of my clan is… loud, outgoing, strong willed… that's us." Of course Taiki knows he's setting himself up for another Atsuro comment on that last bit, but he doesn't care. "But when it comes right down to it, even the loudest of us tends to have a way of keeping people from taking too much offense in what we say. That's Atsuro. He's rude, but people like him anyway."
Daisuke nods his head as Hiei explains it wasn't quite as bad as he was imagining in his head. "So the women don't try to rile their men into challenging for top dog to be a 'real' man or anything." he says, taking this particular scenario from an old manga. Stick around Daisuke long enough as perhaps Atsuro has, and a lot of his expertise or wildly vivid imagination had come from being home alone reading old manga. "Your and Hiro's meals are on me, by the way, as a thanks for the help this week. So eat up.""
To Atsuro Daisuke simply says, "She brings me great sake and keeps me informed of anything important, like potential incidents involving Konoha or Kumo nin in each others lands, etc. She is quite a busy bee." He gets serious for a moment as well, saying "I can't tell if you are serious or not, but you have a good way with people, which I've seen over the last few years. That being said, I don't pretend to know all sides of you, so if you don't feel it is a good fit, you are more than welcome to decline. Maybe I will just hire Taizen if your confidence is so low." he says with a raised brow before eating some more meat.
Hiei chuckles at Daisuke's question. "Ah..no. The women are more likely to challenge themselves for top dog should that be the case. You've met Nariko. Yotsuki women are tough. Personally, I give them a wide berth and mind my manners. Besides, my current girlfriend doesn't really know the full deal, so she's unlikely to try to push me into something like that." Hiei inclines his head. "That's nice of you, Hokage-sama. We graciously accept your generosity." Of course, he just told a Yotsuki that the food was free. Hiei hopes he brought some money. He's going to need it. "By the way, Atsuro. I want to see that three headed dog jutsu. Sounds scary..which means I'll probably like it." After that, he concentrates on eating until he's full.
"Taiki is also rude," Atsuro points out, "As I'm sure you've noticed. And yet people liked him enough to make him into our clan head. And I, personally, have put my own life at considerable risk for his sake, a number of times." He scratches his chin, "I forget why." He looks over to Daisuke. "And my meal?" He asks in a singsongy voice. He rubs his chin. "So I bring them booze and talk to them. Okay, that does sound pretty in my wheelhouse. I accept, pending a review of my salary and other benefits." Then his eyes open wide and his head turns right to Hiei. "New girlfriend? Okay, I'll show you the technique, you tell me everything."