Date: November 2, 2012
Ninja come together to show off their costumes and party 'til dawn!
"What If? Costume Party - Costume Contest"
GLAMOUR! THRILLS! RIDICULOUS STYROFOAM PROPS! Yes, it's the very first NMR Costume Party and Contest! Ninja from all over the map have laid down their weapons (well, the visible ones anyway c.c) and congregated for a night of fun and tomfoolery. Snacks and drinks are available in abundance in the ballroom-like space, and a large stage with a catwalk jutting out dominates one end of the room, where the contest will eventually take place.
Speaking of the stage, Kokoroe Sousa, the Kazekage of Sunagakure, walks out onto it and turns to address the crowd. He doesn't seem to be wearing much out of the ordinary, just a pair of thick, black-rimmed glasses. "Good evening, and welcome to our gala event," he says. "The costume contest portion of the event, with Kage for celebrity judges, will begin soon. In the meantime, enjoy the refreshments, get to know each other, and admire one another's costumes. Thank you." Sousa heads off, holding one hand to a communicator in his ear. "Still no sign of the Hokage? All right, keep me posted." e.e
The Mizukage was there as well! One of those rare 'peace on earth' times, he went along with others to that point that the costume contest was at. Having sampled the fine snacks, he was there in all things, a referee outfit, much akin to a wrestling ref. The one thing out of the ordinary for that outfit would be that he still had the kage hat on, that symbol for the Village hidden in the Mist proudly displayed for all to see. Standing off to the side towards the back end of the catwalk, he would nod politely to Sousa as he passed by, holding a plate with munchies on it, while he'd watch those moving about in the party.
Glamour, thrills and ridiculous props made from a non-biodegradable and environmentally harmful substance!? This was what Fuuta was all about. This evening the glorious setting of the first ever NMR Costume Party Fuuta couldn't be more elated. The man was always flamboyant and theatrical but now he gets the chance be commended for it! He wasn't in his costume yet. He would save it for the contest. Fuuta had already decided that he'd win this little competition. He had quite the audience; even the Mizukage was attending this momentous event.
Fuuta strolls up next to the Mizukage and pats him on the back while he enjoys his munchies. "WEEEEELLL! You're in for a treat today." Fuuta laughs "Tell me how does it feel knowing that you're about to witness one of Yoko Fuutama's most spectacular performances and demonstrations of his incomprehensible and boundless GLORY!" Fuuta points skyward "I will not disappoint. And I warn you now that if you have a heart condition you might want to consider taking medical precautions. I'm here to stupefy and stun not spur off seizures or spasms, though I have been known to entice people to that level." Fuuta chuckles haughtily while stroking his chin. He then looks to the "Mizukage" and sees that actually it's just a random attendee in a costume. Fuuta blinks "Oh…wrong Kage. Uh…well…ENJOY THE SHOW" Fuuta slaps the man on the back and moves onward. He finally does spot the Mizukage, the real Mizukage, all the other Mizukage are just imitating "AHHHA! Found you. Nice disguise." Fuuta greets Yuge, finally.
Eri struts out already adorned in her costume for the upcoming contest. Seemed she decided to go with a 'mad scientist' theme, but it is not quite like how you'd expect it to be. A frizzy and singed white wig covers her usually blonde hair and thick goggles replace her spectacles. She wears a long lab coat which is unbuttoned more than half way down exposing a revealing belly shirt. On her chest blood and a pretend wound stain her shirt and skin. It quite literally looked like someone ripped her heart out, an amusing turn of phrase based on Eri's personality. Any sort of shorts she wore underneath were covered by the long coat. In her hand she carries a chemistry beaker full of red liquid with a realistic looking sharingan floating inside. Her face and skin has been dusted to add a pale and ghostly feel about her. As she partakes of the snacks and drinks she looks around searching for Shuuren. She had ordered him to be her date for the party, after all it would look quite bad if she shown up by herself. "Suit better make it here before the contest begins
Getting past security was rather interesting for one particular guest at this part, but his costume is elaborate, to say the least. Still, he managed to keep everyone else from getting a peak at his costume. Adorned in his normal while suit, one of the world's most famous Medical Ninja steps into the ballroom with a couple rather large men carrying a box behind him. They have the looks of professional bodyguards, yet the mildly strained looks on their faces show that whatever they're carrying is getting more cumbersome the longer they are forced to hold it. While not much taking orders, especially since he is now a neutral Medical ninja, the former Jounin decided to let Eri slide this time apparently, as he approaches her and gives a nod. "Thought I wouldn't make it to an occasion like this?' he asks, smirking slightly as he casts a brief glance at the men carrying the box.
Sousa goes onto stage again, still muttering into his headset. "I don't care if she was last seen in the Arctic Circle, you go and find her." :P Sousa reaches center stage and speaks to the audience. "Thank you for your patience. Our first entry was unfortunately disqualified as a contestant, something about an A.L.T. clause in our contest's legislature, but he has graciously agreed to perform his act on a purely exhibitionary basis. Please welcome Saito Jon of Kumogakure." Sousa leaps off the stage amidst the welcoming applause and somersaults into his judge's seat.
Jon is currently wearing an iconic bright yellow trenchcoat with a matching fedora. The folds of the coat are open, showing a tidy black suit with a white shirt and a black-and-red diagonally striped tie. On his left wrist is a fancy-looking watch, equipped with dials and a radio speaker. Slung under his right arm with familiar yet professional ease is a tommy-gun. Scruvo, Jon's crow companion, is in on the act as well, wearing a tiny newsboy cap.
Jon walks slowly across the stage, and a bluesy saxophone piece begins to play. At a few handseals from Jon, a genjutsu effect takes hold, draining the color from the world and outlining everything with sharp black ink lines. Paper renditions of buildings, road signs, and passing cars pop up around the stage. Suddenly, several thugs with cartoonishly disfigured visages, from a guy with a flat-topped cranium to one whose face is wrinkled like a prune, jump out of a car and open fire! Jon takes cover behind a mailbox and returns fire in bursts, and paper bullets punch holes all over the page. "Oi, Tracy, look out be'ind ya!" Scruvo caws as another car pulls up from the other direction. The scene freezes, and a big banner materializes over the top, saying, 'IS THIS THE END? FIND OUT NEXT TIME!'
Sousa claps politely as the genjutsu fades and Jon takes his leave from the stage. "Very intriguing use of technique for that little act. What did you think, Mizukage-sama?"
Yuge would watch the stage curiously, a warm nod given with a smile towards Sousa. "Indeed. Interesting use of environmental settings for the scene. Quite pleasing. Tis too bad that the A.L.T. was not followed properly. I think he would be quite the shoe in for a win myself. Ah well, another time perhaps, hai?"
Sousa takes a look at his show order cards. "Next up, we have Yoko Fuuta-san of Kirigakure. Try to remain impartial, hmm Mizukage-sama?" ;) Sousa touches his headset. "What? Giant chipmunks? Doesn't matter, keep looking! The worst they could do is store you away for winter with the rest of the nuts." >P
Yuge would chuckle lightly. "Of course, Kazekage-sama, we would not wish to sour such lovely proceedings with something simple like favoritism or Kirigakure proving they are the best or anything like that. We will impartially decide that Kirigakure is the best." He would grin towards Sousa, before looking to the stage. Fuuta was always one for big performances, this was going to need to be his best.. that, or he gets busted back to student rank again.
Fuuta mistook another attendee for the Mizukage. "Oh this is ridiculous." he mutters becoming a little fed up with it all. His attention is then brought to the stage as the Kazekage begins announcing the first contestant and this A.L.T clause. Fuuta blinks "Oh…it's starting. Costume right…" And with that the young shinobi flickers off to get ready. There was a roar about the crowd meaning that this Jon had put on quite a spectacle. It was his turn now however and Fuuta loved going over the top.
After the audience has been prepped for his performance Fuuta would begin. The sound of drums can be heard faintly at first as a thicket of smoke is slowly released onto the stage. As the smoke travels and accumulates in obscure density the pacing of the drums increases. The tempo begins to grow lively and the clapping of wooden blocks begins and starts to crescendo. When the smoke as reached the edge of the catwalk a silhouette appears. The silhouette is tall and dignified and even through the smoke scarlet eyes can be seen that radiate with a mysterious luster that makes crowd wither. The figure begins to move forward and as it does so the drums slow in tempo and quite significantly. "I stands on the same ground as you but I belong to the heavens." A voice calls out to the crowd. "For I am the King who possesses all treasures of the world." The figure then raises an arm then majestically lets it drop. Suddenly from the ceiling all manners of golden and silver blades and weaponry fall lining the catwalk. The figure continues forward in the rain of golden weaponry untouched by their glorious decent. "My treasury houses only the finest of drink and the finest of swords. This alone should indicate which among us is the greatest. Be honored that you are able to witness the Gate." As the figure reaches the end of the catwalk the smoke clears revealing.
The character revealed wears golden armor shimmering with a luster only outdone by the sun itself and elegant red fabric cascading from the waist. He stands with a golden proportion body with such majesty and elegance that the flames around are afraid to come near. Speaking of flames. "WHOOSH" like a geyser flames now spout up lining the stage and catwalk. "You cannot attain this level of greatness which is why you'll find me so captivating." As the smoke dies out and flames settle to a low burn Fuuta stands there in golden clad armor adoring a smirk of overbearing confidence "Because something's are beautiful simply because they cannot be obtained." Raises his other hand and the weapons rise back above disappearing into the dark ceiling. "I am the 'Golden Archer' the 'King of Heroes' the one and only Gilgamesh." The drums start to wildly pound now rising to a magnificent crescendo and sending a thundering boom throughout the area. Fuuta turns elegantly letting the red fabric whisks as he departs. With a sly grin he looks back "And you are welcome." The flames flicker out suddenly and the drums pound one last thunderous time before the lighting flickers on the stage and in the flicker Fuuta is gone.
Sousa taps his cards against his desk. "Well, that was quite a spectacle. I wonder who paid for all those special effects. You must give your shinobi quite a handsome salary, Mizukage-sama." ;)
Yuge would clap politely for Fuuta and chuckle in response to Sousa. "Yoko-san is a brilliant shinobi of Kirigakure. After all, I did mention that we were going to prove we are the best impartially, I completely stand by this of course." A smile was given back with a nod as he'd look back to the stage. "hmm.. so who do we have next now?"
Sousa flips over a card. "For our next performance, please welcome Kiyotani Eri-san from Kumogakure." Headset check. "…Owls now? What do they eat in that forest of hers? Nevermind, just keep looking!"
Eri smiled over at Shuuren and his entourage, looking at the box they were carrying curiously. "It is hard telling with you sometimes sweety. I can't wait to see what you've brought to wear..although it would have been cute if you dressed up as one of my creations.." Eri giggles playfully and her head turns to watch the two acts before her. Talk about some tough acts to follow, Eri would have to use her own tricks to make this even more interesting. She kissed Shuuren's cheek and winked at him "Wish me luck love! Although I shouldn't need it!" With that she runs off to prepare for her act.
After flirting with some of the people who handled the lighting she managed to convince them to turn out all the lights in the ballroom causing the many guests to whisper in confusion. After several suspenseful moments a haunting cackle can be heard as Eri uses her genjutsu to her advantage. A loud and low grumble of thunder sounds and dark gray storm clouds cover the ceiling causing most of the guests to quiet their whispers. A flash of lightning strikes the catwalk and Eri stands on stage where it hit, a spot light now on her. She grins wickedly and reaches out to the audience putting on an excellent foreign accent to go along with her wicked scientist outfit. "Do not fear my prettiez! I eez not here to cauze you harm..Who am I do you azk? I do not have zees name of vich you speek..I am zee tinkerer of hearts…the zveet voice that hauntz your dreemz, geeve me just one moment to tell you my zad zad tale.."
Stopping for a moment to look over the audience ensuring she has their attention she continues on. "I vaz once much like anyone elze in thiz room..Until I met a young lad that..ztole my heart zo to zpeek.." She motioned to the apparent hole in her chest and smiled. "Men..very fickle creaturez..you can geevez dem an arm.." She stops and reaches over to her arm seemingly yanking it right out of its socket. "And a leg.." She reaches down and does the same with her leg, blood now dripping down from her wounds. She tosses both of her limbs aside and continues on seemingly not noticing her injuries.And dey zteell crave more.." She cackles once again and shakes her head. "Zo! I geeve him vat he vanted to be by me side forever and alvays..One day dees could be you.." She holds her beaker up and the sharingan eye twists around to look over the audience. With that another flash of lightning strikes the stage only leaving a pile of ashes where Eri once stood. Letting her genjutsu fade she smiles from the stage and only offers a bow as she walks off the cat walk.
Sousa taps his chin. "I could be mistaken, as I don't keep up with all the fads, but I do believe that was our first original character performance of the evening. What do you think, Mizukage-sama?"
Yuge would mark something down before him before giving a nod. "Indeed. A most interesting accent as well. Quite valiant use of the Genjutsu. I would have to say she is probably dreadful when dealing with her on the battlefield, Kazekage-sama. Quite a good show to be sure."
Maybe it was the unusual mix of shinobi from so many different lands, but something made one particular kunoichi uneasy. At the very edge of the room a raven head peeks out, witch's hat askew as large dusky eyes blink from behind the halfmask adorned on her young face. With a quick visual sweep of the party Akina hesitates further, frowning gently to herself before she willingly takes a step out to stand in the doorway. The young witch clutch a broom to her side, her long sleeves matching the short hem of her coal black summer kimono. Tentatively she takes a step, then another, skirting the edge of the crowd all the while.
Flip a card, flip a card. "Our next performer is Senju Daisuke-san from Konohagakure. Hmmm, remind me to ask him afterwards if he has any information regarding Hokage-sama's whereabouts." e.e
The area darkens and people murmur amongst themselves before a voice comes over the speakers. "Hi!" says a cheery voice, "My name is Son Goku. My friends and I are tasked with saving our planet from any threat and have done so multiple times already. But now our planet is under attack by a new threat and I must achieve a new level of power in order to save it. And so I ask from you, the crowd. Lend me your spiritual power. Without it I will surely fail and our planet will be destroyed." With but a moment of silence to let the audience catch up, the voice continues, "So please, everyone. cheer, clap, shout, get riled up or just simply pray. With your actions and your energy I will be able to achieve this new level of power and save our planet from destruction!"
After a few moments of hesitation and nervous chuckling from the audience a few people begin to shout, getting into the whole act. Others begin to whistle, cheer, clap, chant, and the buzz in the air begins to grow. In fact, even the crowd would begin to feel something as a figure steps out onto the darkened stage. As Daisuke focuses his energy, he begins to let out a powerful yell, slowly building up in strength and volume as he does. "rrrrrrrrrrrrrRRRRRRRRR" is heard all around as the sound of lightning crackles from within the darkness. The yell continues until a sudden explosion of red chakra instantly lights up the stage area, revealing the owner of the voice covered in a rich red sparkling and flaming aura.
Daisuke walks along the stage to let everyone look. He is wearing a replica of Goku in Super Saiyan Four form and truth be told not much work was needed to match the costume. His long wavy hair is dyed jet black and grown out a bit to fall over his shoulders and onto his chest. Below thick black eyebrows and outlining his yellow eyes is a thick red color over his eyelids, similar to Tsun's tanuki eyes. The rest of his costume is completely lifelike due to his special nature, with what looks like red fur covering the shoulders, arms, and sides of his torso, leaving a muscular chest that the young Senju didn't have before, bare to the world. Over his wrists are black armbands that the red fur stops within, leaving his hands bare and furless like his chest. Wrapped around his waist is a simple blue cloth sash and from there on he wears long yellow baggy pants, blue socks and some black boots, where the red fur stops is anyone's guess. Behind his waves a red, furry, monkey tail that looks to have burst from the back of his pants, adding to the authenticity of the costume.
Daisuke lifts a hand to the audience in a wave before he calls out to them. "Because of you all, our planet is protected. I couldn't have done it without you all, thank you!" With that, he cuts his chakra flow and the lights go out again to allow him to vanish.
Sousa raises an eyebrow. "Hmmm, audience participation worked into that act. Trite though it may seem, that can be a powerful psychological tool. What's your assessment, Mizukage-sama?"
Yuge would nod back to Sousa. "Indeed. After all, what are you going to remember? The show, or the action that you help with? We definitely have a strong contender there. It will be interesting to see what else our talented shinobi behind the curtain may have going for them." Yuge would nod in the direction of the back area. "Were you going to see if he knows about where the Hokage is at, Kazekage-sama? May wish to catch him before he leaves early, hmm?"
Sousa nods faintly to Yuge. "I'll get one of my men on it." Sousa puts his hand to his communicator. "Listen, I need you to catch Daisuke-san backstage and ask him about — what do you mean, you're too busy?! …Well no, I suppose if somebody spiked the punch then developing an antidote is a higher priority. Just be quick about it!" >.< Sousa sighs in aggravation and looks at his next card. "Ah, it seems we have our first group act of the evening. Please welcome Tekketsu Fukanzen, Shemri, Megumi, and Shiikaa, of Sunagakure."
Time for a family act! A fast-paced spy-action movie score rolls, and out onto the stage runs Tekketsu Fukanzen dressed in a bright red superhero outfit with black boots and gloves, and an oval-shaped insignia on the chest featuring a lowercase 'i'. The shirt seems a bit stuffed to make him look more powerful, but evidently he's strong enough anyway because he catches a huge boulder catapulted at him from offstage! Then again, maybe it's a prop, but if so Fukanzen does a good job of making it look heavy as he sets it down and takes up a combat-ready pose.
Next Shemri swings onto the stage in similar attire, her cloth 'Extra Limbs' cleverly incorporated into her costume to make it look like she actually stretched her arm way up into rafters to grab a handhold to swing from. She lands with a roll and stops in a slight crouch by Fukanzen's side, elastic 'arms' poised for trouble.
Shemri is followed by her daughter Megumi, who cartwheels onto the stage encased in a shimmering seal barrier bubble. She deactivates the barrier on reaching her parents, positioning herself in front of them and putting up a new, forward-facing barrier with hands outstretched.
Finally, Shiikaa, Shemri's cat, zips in using his talent with wind to speed his dash. He circles the family several times, kicking up a cyclone effect around them, then suddenly comes to a halt in front just as the music hits a final smashing note and an explosion is set off behind them!
Yuge would clap for the act after it was done politely. A nod was given as something else was written down before him. "Quite the performance, Kazekage-sama. It seems you are hiding some talent within the dunes of your land, hmm?"
Sousa peers at his cards. "Ah, I should have mentioned that this last act was also exhibitionary due to A.L.T. technicalities. I don't expect it would have won anyway, though it was quite…heartwarming. Thank you, Mizukage-sama, they do surprise even me upon occasion."
Sousa touches his communicator with a braced look. "Well? …You don't say. Well that's terribly unfortunate, isn't it." Sousa sighs and taps his cards into order. "Don't ask," he mutters to Yuge. -.- Sousa clears his throat. "Our next act is Nagamura Shuuren, formerly of Kumogakure but currently a neutral party."
"Then my methods are effective," Shuuren says with a smirk before turning his head to watch the acts. He gives a nod as she runs off, bringing his arms up and folding them over his chest as he watches both her and Daisuke. While the judges discuss Daisuke's performance, the former Jounin turns and literally grabs the chest from the larger men and heaves it over his shoulder with one arm. "Thanks. You're dismissed," he says dryly before flickering out of sight The two men stand there looking at each other and where Shuuren just was for a moment, seeming quite baffled. If the guy has some kind of superhuman strength, WHY did he hire them and make them carry that heavy box for so long?!
A few moments after the final note of the group performance hits and the stage has been cleared, a powerful gust of wind blows down from over the stage, sounding like jets taking off as a suit of some type of red and gold armor actually begins to float down from the above the stage. A blue glow emits from the hands and feet, from some type of seals as the wind continues to blow from them, and the armored figure stops his descent about five feet above the catwalk. The eyes as well as a center orb on the chest seem to retain the same glow as the seals on the hands, yet that seems to be purely cosmetic, finishing the look to make this functioning replica of Iron Man's armor..
Suddenly, a pair of mannequins formed to look quite human spring from above him as if to attack. However, he lifts his hands and points on at each of them, the gust from his feet keeping him floating above the stage as a gust from each hand dangles the dummies in the air. Suddenly, a flash jet of fire comes from each hand, striking the dummies and causing them to explode!… into candy that rains down like someone hit a pinata. The gusts of wind come to a stop as the figure performs a mid-air backflip to land on the catwalk in a semi-crouched stance.
Finally, he reaches up to the gold mask of the armor to reveal a face… None other than Nagamura Shuuren, who simply gives a wink before vanishing into thin air.
Holding on to his hat so it's not blown away, it'd be after the wind settled that Yuge would clap for Shuuren. A nod was given at the end of the action. "It's amazing they would allow him to leave, with such capabilities such as that, don't you agree, Kazekage-sama? Quite the bold attempt to help people remember his act with the candy as well, I would have to say."
Sousa chuckles. "Another form of audience participation, a bit weaker, but with more direct positive reinforcement. Too bad for him it's not the audience doing the judging, though we may take their cheer into account."
Oh! Cookies! Spotting one of the nearby tables of food Akina quickly scurries closer, snapping up a cookie to quickly munch on it. Yummy! She almost seems to hum happily to herself as the little witch turns her dusky eyes up at the stage again, watching curiously as another contestant walks the catwalk.
Sousa checks through his cards. "Hmm? This card wasn't here before, was it? Maybe it was a last-minute entry. It seems we have an act by — " Just then the lights cut out all over. c.c
With the cutting out of the lights, a dark presence suddenly seems to begin to fill the area. Dark whispers are barely audible, there just enough to be rather creepy but not enough for one to understand what they're saying. A few of the lights over the catwalk seem to come back, yet quite dimly, only enough that one can vaguely see what's going on. A dark figure runs through the light, its appearance rather ethereal, shaped like a man yet completely black… Followed by another running the opposite direction. A blood-curdling screams rings out amongst the darkness, as a young woman with long black hair, adorned in a burgundy kimono falls from over the stage onto the lit area of the catwalk. Some are rather confused at this point whether this is part of the act or she might actually be hurt as she starts to whisper, "Help.. me…" A man standing right in front of the stage starts to walk forward but stops, looking rather puzzled. His eyes get rather big as the woman's lock with them, a rather intense look in her eyes as blood begins to pour down from her forehead, a swarm of the dark creatures stepping out of the darkness and beginning to slowly approach her from behind. "Help… me," he says again, starting to get a little louder. "Help… me,' she continues, getting progressively louder as the crawls closer and closer to the man, her body seeming to gain more and more orifices to blood from all on its own as she starts to reach for him, her head dipping down to obscure her face in a mess of hair and blood. "Help me… Help me… HELP MEEEE!!!" As she reaches out, he finally steps forward to reach a hand out to her, asking, "Are you…. alright?" The moment he asks, her eyes cut back up to him, now pitch black, devoid of any other color as she stares intensely at him. "TOO LATE!" a deep, demonic voice growls out as a giant aura of blood red appears around her in the form of a demon with giant jaws the move to clamp down on the man, the lights cutting out just before he is eaten.
When the lights come back up as normal a moment later, three figures stand on the stage, Maikeru in the center, the woman, who appears to be in perfect condition now, on his left and the man who was about to get eaten on his right. Both of them give a bow for their performances, Maikeru simply giving a nod before they vanish.
"Ahh.. one of the dark horses of Kirigakure, as it were. Quite the impressive performance, even if he is not able to be voted for due to the A.L.T. technicalities, hmm, Kazekage-sama?" Yuge would clap politely for Maikeru, before glancing to Sousa with that smile.
Sousa tilts his head. "Hmm. Quite the flair for the theatrical. Even going so far as to give the appearance of something going amiss in the show." Would've been nice to be informed as part of the event's coordination. Sousa returns Yuge's smile with a deadpan you-knew-about-this-didn't-you glance. e.e
Yuge's innocent look of no-I-know-nothing-about-it of course said otherwise. Looking at his notes, a final nod was given then. "I believe we're going to have a temporary pause in the show for refreshments and dancing? I would not mind a small break myself, how about you, Kazekage-sama?"
Eri grins and finds Shuuren after his act, arms now full of candy, seems she managed to horde quite a bit of it for herself. Everyone should know what a sweet tooth she has. "That..was..awesome! One of us is going to win for sure!" She grinned playfully and put away all her candy in a spare pouch before offering a hand to him. "Care for a dance?" Without waiting for an answer, she takes Shuuren's hand (if he allows it of course ^^) and drags him off to the dance floor. She was going to show him how amazing and light on her feet she could be.
Sousa nods. "Of course. Many thanks to all of the contestants who have displayed their creativity thus far, and to those who have yet to perform, we look forward to your acts. Everyone, please enjoy yourselves until the contest resumes." Sousa gets up and heads for the backstage with his hand to his ear, "All right, can I assume you've found your way out by now? No? Fine, just sit tight, I'll send someone after you as soon as I can spare the manpower." u.u