Date: November 7, 2011
Yuuka gets to meet Tsiro's parents as they try to kill each other a second time. Takeshi makes peace with his wife and an assassin he knew.
"What If? Dead Rising - Loved Ones of the Kaguya"
As you enter the gardens from the street, you realise that the curved white fence-posts with the strange-seeming cross-baring between them are large, curved rib bones; Likely from a whale, if their size is any judge. Within the walled off area, however, the ground is rich and lush; Tall fruit trees, staggered so that during any given season at least a few of the barrier-ring of trees would be in bloom and part giving fruit, rest covered with a network of creeping vines along the trunks. The ground seems almost carpeted by herbal beds full of mint, garlic, any number of things that one can imagine are likely here, growing.
The area seems to be a large, circular space; Trees at the far outside, concentretic rings of herb beds, and then a ring of low to the ground fruit-bushes. Where the ground is visable, it seems that the dirt has a strange consistancy, like light, bleached woodchips. In the center of this large garden is a grassy field, perhaps 60 feet across, at the very center of which is a water fountain; Upon the fountain's central pillar, in very small text, lists of names are written. When you find the name of someone who you had heard died within the last few months, you realise the morbid truth; This place of lush, nurtured growth is a graveyard.
The final resting place of the Kaguya dead. It is the graveyard or for the Kaguya the Boneyard Gardens. Though many often forget those who have gone before them, there are a few who return here to pay their respects and perhaps offer prayers or life updates to those they once loved.
Among those people is Tsiro. He stands next to the fountain and bows his head for a few moments. His finger is placed on a name. "Mother, I did not know you well. But… I have your gift. My bones… they grow likes yours did on the day. I do my best to make you proud. I hope." The boys words are soft and show more than a small hint of sadness.
A hand gently rests on Tsiro shoulder at his last words, the woman standing at his side smiling with a gentle sadness for his loss. "I am sure she would be more than proud of you, Tsiro-kun." Yuuka murmurs, giving his shoulder a light squeeze in reassurance. It was all she could do for her student, and no other words were needed. She blinks her dark aquamarine eyes slowly as she looks up at the fountain, over the names that are engraved into its surface of those that have given their lives for the Village of the Mist.
Takeshi saunters into the area unannounced and not making himself known immediately. Yuuka and Tsiro appear to be discussing something over a particular grave, which he doesn't approach and instead moves towards the fountain to look at the names written on it. There are names here that have importance to him as well, but there are also names he does not discuss because of circumstances. This is a testament and will at the same time, but this is what the Kaguya are known for.
"Buried dead, reborn again through the world. With their death, a tree grows or a blade of grass shoots forth. Rebirth is literal here."
Tsiro closes his eyes as Yuuka places a hand on his shoulder. He reopens them when he hears Takeshi's voice. He offers the elder a nod. There were no real words for him to speak to either of them. The boy missed at least one of his parents, though deep down he more than likely missed them both.
Then something odd began to happen. It was like an eclipse during the day time. Darkness covered the Boneyard Gardens. The wind began to pick up, howling around the bone structures. Though it could be the wind, it almost sounds like moans coming from beneath the ground.
Yuuka blinks up at Takeshi when he appears, mildly surprised at first before her eyes become solemn. For Tsiro, he knew the harsh reality of how his parents parted this world, so maybe Takeshi's words could comfort him. The thought lasted but for an instant as a heavy darkness fell over the Boneyard Gardens. The kunoichi tenses and pulls her hand from Tsiro's shoulder in preparation for the unknown, instinctively on defense as she snaps her gaze quickly around them. "What is going on?!"
The clouds passed overhead as darkness dawned and Yuuka reflexively responded, but the elder held a hand out to quiet her, "Calm down and focus." He turns to sit quietly on the edge of the fountain, staff in hand. "And now, we wait." He seems serious too, just simply sit down and enjoy the view while they wait for something to happen.
Tsiro's eyes glance upwards towards the sky. He then looks back towards the ground when told to focus. He does not speak though. His eyes glance around. They notice that the earth is starting to move beneath them. It is not like a tremor or an earth quake, but like there was something alive. "Look!" Tsiro states as he points his finger. His eyes glance in horror as a hand pokes out of the ground. "It's human!".
Yuuka instantly blinks up at Takeshi as he holds out a hand towards, frowning when he lowers himself to take a seat on the edge of the fountain. The earth beneath their feet ripples unsettlingly, Tsiro pointing right where the ground begins to part and the hand emerges, followed by another what looks to be a person pulls themselves out from the earth. Yuuka wraps her arms around Tsiro's shoulders and pulls him back a few steps, alarmed and fearful.
Takeshi continues to watch as humans appear to be tearing their way through the ground towards the surface. It was not unseen to him. He had been present during the invasion of an undead army controlled by what appeared to be an insane shinobi, so the dead were not all that scary anymore. No, this was something else. These all seemed familiar to him. He knew some of these people.
"They should look human. They're all those who have fallen and been buried."
"They were dead?!?" Tsiro asks in a slightly larger tone. That meant… The boy tries to squirm away from Yuuka. The forms of the dead looked sickly and decayed. They were more zombies than anything else. "We have to send them back. They're not alive. They're… walking corpses." Bones begin to form at the end of Tsiro's wrists. He was prepared to send the dead back to the land of the dead.
When Tsiro starts to wiggle in her grasp, Yuuka releases her hold on the boy, though the dread settles like a stone in the pit of her stomach. She blinks twice at the ground, her gaze snapping up at Takeshi with some surprise at his explaination. "What? The fallen?" she murmurs, almost stumbling over the words, "But, what could be doing this?"
Takeshi watches them as they raise and the other two get worried. He remained seated on the side of the fountain, watching the darkness grow deeper and the people continue to rise until a hand touches his shoulder. It's cold to the touch and yet, doesn't have any ill intent hidden in it. This was a person who meant them no harm. Not that it mattered anyone once the thing began to speak.
A voice came out, silk and smooth, reminding one of the sounds of spring, "Teshi-dono. I've seen what you've become and what you've made. Are you proud of yourself?," and then the voice changes, a screeching howl, "For chasing our only son off? Where is kei-chan, where is he you bastard?"
The staff hits the ground with a thud, the eder is, for once, dumbstruck, but he cannot move either. All he can do is listen and choke out a response, "He..uh..I…kei-cha…Seven…Sword."
"It's because of all that crap you taught him that he wants to risk his life for a sword! You taught him to tear everything down and he does it just so you'll look at him! You never approved!"
Tsiro raised an eyebrow as Takeshi seemed to know one of the corpses. That was bad. That meant that his parents were among the dead somewhere too. His eyes move from corpse to corpse until he spots one. It's his mother. Her hair is silver, but her body is badly decayed. She seems to be fighting another corpse. As Tsiro's eyes focus on the other corpse, it becomes apparent to him who it is. "For crying out loud. Even in death they still feel the need to end each other." the boy states. His finger move to point out the two corpses to Yuuka. "Uh… meet my parents?"
Yuuka blinks her bright eyes in stunned silence, watching the few deceased people of their village rise up from the ground, the loved ones (or not so much) of whom she had become close as family with. If it wasn't for that, but the fact that they instantly were in confrontations that had her baffled for several moments. "Wait, wait." Yuuka frowns as she waves her hands lightly, "You have not seen him in what I can only assume to be several years, and the first thing you do is start accusing him and calling Takeshi-san rude names? That is the really the first thing you want to do?" Her frown deepens with some confusion as she shifts her gaze back to whom she can only assume to be Tsiro's parents, after he introduced them. "And you two. You already killed each other. You should already know that its pointless to die a second time, so why are you bothering?"
Takeshi's wife continues to yell at him before she stops. Then she begins to hit him silently. He doesn't budge really, his nerves now having calmed down as he considers. "They're focusing on the bad. Which makes some sense given their current state." She continues to hit him and then suddenly stops, that same voice back before, but calmer and nicer.
"And yet, despite that, I still feel Keisuke. At least you taught him one useful thing in the time you spent together."
Tsiro watches as his folks are reprimanded by Yuuka. He also looks towards Takeshi. Was that how Kaguya were suppose to act? It was all very troublesome for the boy. His eyes glance back towards his parents. He was not sure what to say or do.
Of course as Yuuka called out to them, Tsiro's parents began to respond. First his mother looked towards her. Then she looked towards Tsiro. It did not seem to register that she was dead. Of course that left her defenses wided open. She would be knocked from thought with a fist to her face.
Tsiro's father on the other hand had used the distraction to get a leg up on her. Then his eyes looked directly towards Yuuka. "Mind your own buisiness. Bitch cheated on me." His eyes would then look right past Tsiro as if the boy was not even there.
Yuuka makes a face, though Takeshi makes a good point. If she were dead, she would probably be a little irriated as well. Her hand lightly rubs the back of her snowy head as she looks from Takeshi to his dead bride, only to sigh wiht some defeat. Maybe reasoning with the deceased wasn't ever meant to be. The kunoichi shifts her eyes back to Tsiro's parents while they continue to try to kill each other. Emphasis on the word try. Her gaze instantly hardens on the dead man, lifting a hand to gently place on Triso shoulder. "Do not speak like that in front of your son." Yuuka growls darkly, the calm anger heard at the edge of her voice.
Takeshi stands, "Well, as amusing as it is to see our loved ones again, it's probably about time we send them back to the grave wouldn't you say?"
At that word another figure jumps out of the darkness, also dead, to swing a sword at the elder. It serves to no effect as the thing passes through the elder as if he wasn't even there, but even in deaeth they try to kill the living. The figure turns to face Takeshi.
"You, It was my goal to kill you then and i'll finish it now, just like I slit the throats of your family." The man advances on Takeshi and there's a sigh from the elder.
"Great, he would be among them." The sword comes down through the air again and again, it just misses. "Yuuka, Tsiro, meet my wife, Nao. Also, meet the person Mitsuo hired to kill my family, Josei."
Tsiro looked at his parents in horror. They were just as bad as he remembered them. There was no way they were going to get along. He looks towards Takeshi's wife and waves. "Hi." Not that the boy was trying to be rude, but talking to corpses that talked back was really kind of creepy. He offers Josei a wave before turning back to his folks.
The eyes of Tsiro's father fall onto Tsiro. He seems taken back by the boy. "Thats not my kid. He's an…" then a bone dagger from the palm of Tsiro's mom interrupts. It lodges itself in the father's head. He falls over, both hands clinging at the bone in his skull. "That oughta shut that asshole up." she states before taking a look at Tsiro. "You have grown so tall. Ooooo you have a head band too. You must be a shinobi."
And now there is a dead guy trying to kill Takeshi. Repeatedly. This was becoming a bit much. Yuuka sighs softly as she shakes her snowy head, "Konnichiwa, Nao-san, I am Yuuka-san and this is Tsiro-kun." she introduces them, her attention shifting to the boy's mother when she splits the dead man's head with a bone dagger. "See this right here, this you do not do to your wife when you are married. It tends to create issues." Yuuka murmurs to Tsiro, half-jokingly. Looking back to her student for a short moment, her expression softens and she breathes out a light breath, a hand gently ruffling his dark head with quiet affection, "Tsiro-kun is a Genin, and he already has Shikotsumyaku. But one day, he will no doubt be one of the clan's strongest warriors."
Takeshi just sighs. Well, they're all interested in keeping them here for the time being so he might as well get use to it. When Josei swings the sword again, Takeshi thrusts his palm forward and the now brittle blade simply shatters. "You use to be my cousin. Whatever did Mitsuo offer you anyways to convince you to betray me?"
Josei just looks at him, "My wife."
There's a nod from the elder, "She's alive, by the way. But, that makes more sense now."
Then all three sit down together and chit-chat. Takeshi - Making the insane look sane.
Tsiro smiles lightly at his mother. He still understood none of it. Yuuka's humor was lost on the boy. It had been something he had pondered every so often. Of course when given the actual situation, he could not think of a single thing he really wanted to know. The boy does not ask who he is or where he comes from. He sits there simply watching his mother. Finally he speaks. "I think you guys need to rest. Do not worry. I'll be fine."
There is a smile from Tsiro mother as she hears Yuuka's words. She was smiling at Yuuka. "Thank you." she states before reaching down and grabbing Tsiro's father by the skull. "Guess its back to hell for us." she states as he moves to grab her hands. She tosses him in the hole. Then she follows him.
Yuuka smiles gently in return, pulling her hand away from Tsiro's head as she watches his mother throw his father into the hole in the earth before disappearing into it after him. Breathing out a short sigh, she gently shakes her head and turns to look down at her student, smiling still, "I knew she would be proud of you." she murmurs, "And I think one day you will become a much better man than your father." The kunoichi shifts her gaze up at Takeshi, who seems rather calm speaking with his deceased wife and the man that had killed his family. Perhaps he had come to terms with that a long time ago. It takes Yuuka a few long moments for the conversation from before to catch up to her as she frowns, "Wait, son?"
Takeshi looks over at Yuuka momentarily before returning to his conversation. It seems they too must go. "Josei, look after Nao." There's a nod from the other Kaguya as he leads the woman back to the ground along with Tsiro's parents. Then it's all over like it never happened. Well, that's about par for the course. Finally, he turns back to Yuuka.
"Son. Keisuke Odori Kaguya. Biological Son of Takeshi Odori Kaguya." He pauses, "What? You all never knew?"