Date: May 30-September 10, 2011
The moment of truth finally arrives; will the ancient technology help Chichi to control the "spirit within"?
"Dominance - Treatment"
Ruins of an Ancient Temple [Land of Wind]
It's been a long, harrowing road to get here — for some more than others — but at last the goal is in sight. For Omoi, the goal is already reached, in a sense; he's here studying the ancient civilization he's wondered about for so long. n.n Of course, his first priority is to try and get that one machine running again. If the traps in this place are any indication, it shouldn't be in need of much repair, but Omoi needs time to carefully look over the controls to make certain he knows what he's doing! This takes the better part of the day, as Omoi scuttles around the chamber, scrutinizing heiroglyphics on the walls, taking notes on what he thinks they mean, comparing them to other portions of the directions, and retranslating.
Eventually, Omoi approaches the others, looking very carefully over a scroll of notes. "All right…I've been over this three times, and it appears to be self-consistent. That's far from proof of correctness, naturally, but it's often the best evidence that we have to go on when translating from forgotten — " "So what's the verdict already?" Hitsu interrupts. "What do we have to do to make this thing work?" Omoi looks up and blinks. "Hm? Oh…" Omoi points to a pedestal in the middle of the room with a switch poking up from it. "You pull the lever." Hitsu brow-twitches. "I told you it was a waste of time reading the manual." >.<;
After having the arrows that he was hit by taken out by Chichi who was just a little rough, Seiji sat bandaging up his arms and legs. Having used what water they had to clean up the wounds before bandaging, the task was tedious, but what Omoi said did give him a bit of relief. With the traps so old, the poisons should have worn out and right now he wasn't feeling as if he was poisoned or anything. Flexing his arms and legs, Seiji stood up and began walking back and forth just to make sure his equalibrium wasn't too thrown off. A little shakey, but he is fine for the most part.
With his own injuries taken care of, Seiji would go check on Chichi, seeing if she was hurt and if so helped her clean her wounds and bandage them up too. Rubbing the back of his head, a chuckle escapes him as he remembers their last journey, shaking his head he rubs her shoulder. "Doing alright?" he asks. He would then turn around and notice that Omoi is checking on the machine and heiroglyphs of the machine. "Seems we have so much to learn Sara-chan." he says as he watches as Omoi comes back to tell them how to get the machine working. A thought coming to him, "Yeah, if it's that easy, what will happen once the machine is turned on?" he asks. "There may be still more traps around this place and that lever over there may just be a Big Shiney Red Button to possibly try and trick us to possibly kill us." he states. "Shouldn't we at least try to see if there are any other surprises in store for us before pulling the lever?" he asks.
Chichi/'Sara' is not, infact, injured. Any injuries she >did< have were long since healed before even reaching the end of the passage. She does not possess particularly impressive regenerative capabilities in comparison to some Clans or individuals with Kekkei Genkai or special jutsu or other such things, but hers is both continuous and fuelled by a much larger reservoir of physical energy than those most of those others.
She looks worried even though no one died during the journey down the Hall of Death. Showing uncharacteristic intelligence and foresight, the red-haired girl says, "Actually, I am pretty sure that if Omoi-san says that the lever turns it on, that's what it does. He has been reading the squiggly lines for like… >Weeks<! If there's anything to find out about turning it on, I'm sure he knows it by now. But what >I'm< worried about is… How do we know that this machine is actually the one we want? Sure, it was well-guarded. But what if there's other passages? What if the thing we >actually< need is somewhere else? What if this thing sitting here doesn't do what we expect — or worse, does something >bad<." Crossing her arms over her chest, Chichi thinks about all this as she looks towards Seiji/Kai. His hand on her shoulder is comforting, but the worry of messing with something that ought not to be messed with is still prominent in her thoughts. Fear of the unknown makes her hesitate. She is not smart. Period.
But that doesn't mean that 'Sara' blindly charges into things, nor that she is a fool. Slow on the uptake and suicidally reckless are not inherently tied. Chichi is afraid that the moment this thing turns on, it will start doing… >Something<! What if it identifies her as the holder of the Eight-Tails? What if it wakes the creature up more than it already is? What if it sucks it out completely? What if the Bijuu is >released< from its imprisonment? Does she want to be responsible for the destruction and death, just because she thought that she could bargain for the aid of the Kazekage with power that does not >belong< to her?
"…Maybe it would be safer if we just left now."
Omoi shrugs. "I'm quite certain this is indeed the machine spoken of in the legend, the glyphs tell the same story as the records I found elsewhere. The only question is whether it will help with your own condition. As for traps, well, theoretically that is always a possibility, but the degree of detail in these instructions suggests otherwise. Hitsu-kun, could you check around for any signs of further traps?" "I already did," Hitsu growls. "You think I'm dumb enough to let you go poking at all these squiggles on the wall without making sure they wouldn't kill you first? Look, I don't give a rat's nose whether this thing cures Red of her sniffles, but there is NO FREAKIN' WAY I'm going to go back to Sunagakure and say, 'Oh, we didn't even try the machine, Little Miss What-If got cold feet at the last second'!"
Hitsu grabs Omoi by the arm and drags him over to the lever. "Here, I'll even try it out for you! Will that make you happy?" Hitsu sets the slightly dazed scholar beside him facing the lever. "Okay genius, walk me through this. You stand right here?" "Er, yes…" "You put your hand on the lever?" "Yes, like so, and then you pull it down — " "LIKE THIS!?"
Hitsu clamps his hand down on top of Omoi's and yanks the lever down, then leaps back. Omoi cries out in alarm and tries to jerk away, but finds his wrist cuffed to the switch! "Hitsu-kun, what's going on?! I thought you were going to test the machine!" Hitsu smirks. "Oh, I am, 'bro'." A powerful humming fills the chamber all around, and arcs of electricity start forming between the floor and ceiling, passing through Omoi. His body convulses as the sparks grow more frequent and powerful. Suddenly, Hitsu disappears with a *POOF*…and doesn't reappear again.
Soon the machine's roaring begins to wind down, and the bolts stop. Omoi braces himself against the pedestal and slowly straightens up. He reaches up and takes off his glasses, then tilts his head this way and that, cracking his neck. "Damn, it feels good to be back in here again."
Looking to Chichi/'Sara, she has similar concerns he does and even though Omoi knows as much as he does about the machine, Seiji didn't knwo what to expect from this at all. But as he stands there thinking, "Sara-chan, we've come a long way and to turn around now, I don't know if that will help us further down the line." he says. But before he can say anything else, he turns to look at Hitsu and Omoi as the two argue about Hitsu going to check for traps. But…..when did Hitsu go and check for more traps? He hadn't seen the man leave his brothers side unless it was getting him out of danger during their run here. Moving his hand from Chichi/Sara's shoulder, "Well I can go double check." he says. His level of expertise in traps aren't the greatest but it could be that one or a few could have been over looked.
As he starts to move forward the two brothers, well Hitsu with a limp Omoi in tow. Seiji couldn't really help but just stare as the two go forth, as Hitsu places Omoi's hand on teh lever and pulls it. Hearing the frantic voice of Omoi asking why his brother wasn't testing it, only to see Hitsu say he was and vanishes, "Shit, Omoi!" he hollars. He starts to run towards the handcuffed Omoi who can't get loose, the hum of the machine and the electricity bouncing around as it starts stops Seiji. He tries to look for a way to get closer to Omoi without getting zapped but can't really find a way to do it.
All he could do was watch as Omoi's body convulses, "Hitsu did this to his own brother." anger flares up within Seiji, how could one do this to his own flesh and blood, leave him to possibly die, but as the machines humm dies down Seiji looks to Omoi and begins to approach but stops when Omoi takes off his glasses and states that it feels good to be here again. "Omoi-san are you alright?" he asks. There was something wrong and his hand moves to the hilt of his katana just on reflex.
The red-haired girl's eyes widen, and her brow furrows. A ragged breath is sucked in as she watches Hitsu's behavior. She doesn't know him very well. She doesn't know Omoi very well either. But even someone as dense as her… She has a certain 'empathy' in regard to other people. She can not 'read emotions', but she can understand other people sometimes. She can put together certain things sub-consciously, and then use intuition to come to a conclusion about an individual. Right now, she feels all sorts of 'warning bells' going off in her head.
"…Something is wrong," she whispers quietly to 'Kai' as Hitsu drags Omoi over to the device and then forces his brother to place his hands on the lever. The angry words about 'cold feet' and how he doesn't care about what the machine does… If she knew him better, she imagines she might have actually been hurt a little bit by his disregard for how this mission impacts her. But as it is, she can not really expect this guy to care about her overly. Still… They were, even if only briefly, allies.
This reversal might be his true motivations and personality showing themselves — someone concerned only with his only glory, his own success. But even that does not feel like the right answer. It is not until Hitsu forces Omoi to push down on the lever and leaves him to be electrocuted that she realizes just how 'wrong' things have become. Her hands fly up to her mouth, overlapping to cover the lower half of her face even as her lips part in shock. The scream dies before it even starts. Yellow-brown eyes wide, reflecting the horrific light show being demonstrated before them, Chichi can not make herself do anything until it is too late.
Just before the end. She lowers her hands and starts to charge forward, intent on wrenching Omoi free, even if she winds up electrocuted as well.—Yes. This is not smart. But, since it probably bears repeating, Chichi herself is >not smart<. However, it is not enough. The machine deactivates, and Omoi is the only one left of the two brothers. It takes Omoi's words — not the words themselves, but the 'feeling' of them — to trigger Chichi's intuitive empathy. She has stopped half-way between Omoi and Seiji when the machine shut down, but now her head comes up and her eyebrows come down, and she narrows her eyes. "…He was never real, was he?" Chichi doesn't know how she came to that conclusion. She doesn't know if it's technically 'correct'. But the feeling she gets is… This is not the first time that this has happened. "Did you ever >really< have a brother? Was Omoi just a convenient name or was 'Hitsu' the alias?"
Angrily, Chichi's lips curl back in a near-snarl as she demands, "How long have you been planning to use this machine!?"
The scholar turns his head and smirks. "Omoi? …Eh, he's passable. I can still hear him bawling, somewhere deep down. Wonder if another jolt would shut him up for good. He sure was too darn real for me." The cuffs come off after a moment's picking. "It's been ten freakin' years since I learned to do a shadow clone. Shoulda known splitting my chakra up would be a bad idea. Next thing I know, I'm looking at my own body from the outside, wearing his frightened-dormouse look." Hitsu, for that's who this really is, flings his arms out. "I mean c'mon, it was bad enough he was in my head all this time! People told me he was strangled by my umbilical cord when we were being born. Boohoo, so sad, but that should've been the end, right!? No, he had to get into MY brain somehow like a freakin' tick! And then he wouldn't even let me back into my own body!? He makes-believe like he's always been alive so hard he convinces himself!?" Hitsu snorts. "I think you can see why he had to go."
Hitsu strides toward Chichi. "Good news for you too, huh? Now we can do what we came here to do and then blow this place, instead of waiting around while Egghead stares at scribbles. C'mon, get your butt over there, it doesn't hurt that bad." Hitsu reaches out to grab Chichi's arm and pull her toward the switch pedestal.
Moving up close to stand by Chichi, his hand on his katana now, he looks to Omoi or is it…. when Hitsu began explaining himself and how he had to create a shadow clone to pose hide themselves Seiji just shook his head. But then he wondered if Sousa was in on this or was he like them fooled by Hitsu? He did glance as Chichi as she asked her question about Hitsu ever having a brother, but when it comes out that Omoi was strangled by Hitsu umbilical cord, and some how Omoi's concious managed to be absorbed into Histsu. This was too confusing even for him, but now all that remained was Hitsu and if Omoi was in Hitsus brian then there is no telling what those two are capable of.
On edge, nervous and a little mad, Seiji tries to calm himself. It wouldn't do him or Chichi any good to go off half cocked and do something stupid, but the power of that machine was able to bring Hitsu back in control of his body while forcing Omoi back into Hitsus subconcious, well what did that mean for Chichi and how it would work for her? Why aren't the smart people here to figure this crap out. Sighing a little, "So you brought yourselves here just for you to get back control of your body." But as he was about to continue, Hitsu tries to grab Chichis arm so that she could go over their next. A move that is graceful as it is fast, Seiji steps in front of Chichi and pushes Hitsus hand away. "She isn't touching anything. We don't know what this machine will do to her nor do we know it's full capabilities. If you were still Omoi, maybe we could've discerned that before you decided to become one wiht yourself. You weren't here to help us you were here to help yourself." he says as he looks to Hitsu. His breathing even, but he doesn't draw his blade, yet anyways.
Chichi listens to the story. It is disturbing, horrifying, and more than a little bit confusing. She didn't think Shadow Clones worked that way, but she's not exactly an authority on that subject. When Hitsu approaches and tries to grab her, Seiji is already in the way, trying to stop him. She doesn't know how strong Hitsu is. He's a Chuunin. Chichi >thinks< she might be able to take him with Seiji's help, and without resorting to using any power that is not 'hers'… But she's rather not have to.
"That's enough," she says quietly as Seiji yells at Hitsu. It is not clear whether it is directed towards the one who tried to grab her or the one who tried to defend her. Her eyes are closed and her head is tilted forward. "Did Kazekage-sama know about you already when he sent you to help us?" She waits for the answer, but regardless of the results, she takes in a >very< deep breath that fills her lungs to capacity, making her torso expand slightly as the muscles flex to accomodate the respiratory system's two focal points. Her chest rises and rises, until she stops… Holds the breath for several seconds… And lets it out. When she lifts her head, she says, "You got what you wanted, Hitsu-san. I'd like to go back now. I need to talk to Kazekage-sama about finding an alternate means of obtaining what was offered to him. This thing is too much of an unknown. It'll take time to study it and make sure it will do what he wants. In the mean-time, I have a new deal for the Kazekage… Kai-kun and I will find the help we need some other way. Instead of helping us with our own issues, I want Kokoroe Sousa to find a way for Omoi to live in a body of his own. Then you can both be 'real' and 'alive', and no one has to be trapped in anyone else's head or… Alone."
She then turns without waiting for further response, and seems to be prepared to leave. Is that it?
Hitsu grunts impatiently. "Oh, come on! I already tested the freakin' thing out ON MYSELF, what more do you want!?" Hitsu's brow twitches erratically, and his fist shakes. "No, the Kazekage doesn't know. Egghead had already established his little act by the time we came across Sunagakure, and I wasn't about to mess up my shot at a steady job by looking like a basket-case! And guess what? I'm ALSO not going back there without completing this mission! It's gonna be hard enough explaining how we lost my precious brother, and I have NO intention of becoming a missing-nin for you and your squeamishness! So if you ain't cooperating WILLINGLY…"
Hitsu suddenly darts in and flings a strong backhanded strike at Seiji's face. His combat capability is dramatically improved from before, which makes sense when you consider he was only a clone before! He swiftly moves on to grapple with Chichi, intending to drag her bodily over to the switch.
Seiji managed to stop Hitsu from touching Chichi/Sara, his blade rises from it's sheath slightly but when Chichi/Sara says to stop basically. Seiji didn't know if it was for him or to Hitsu but then again it didn't matter. He doesn't lower the katana, but he just keeps it ready, the change in power is big, he didn't know if he would stand a chance against Hitsu, but one thing he isn't is coward. The Yotsuki didn't shy away from a fight nor would he allow himself be taking lightly, but then he knows he wouldn't be fighting alone if it came down to it. His heart raced slightly, but as Chichi asks her questions about if the Kazekage knowing about the brothers and Hitsu saying they managed to hide this fact from him allowed him to relax a little and have him not suspect the Kazekage in this.
As Chichi takes deep relaxing breaths, Seiji could only keep his vigilance, and as Chichi spoke again, all he could do is think about the traveling they did to get here, and he didn't want to do it again, but Chichi was right. A new course had to be taken at this juncture. Hitsu fooled too many people and it had to be brought to light. "Alright we go back." he says but just as Hitsu spouted off not leaving until he Chichi touches the relic.
Seiji's eyes narrow as Hitsu makes his move, seeing him react Seiji's blade clears the sheath and moving with trained grace and speed, Seiji attempts to parry aside the punch. "No!" is all that is said from the young Yotsuki genin who possibly by now is somewhere near a Chuunin in rank and power. Hoping that the parry is succesful which would push Hitsu's punch wide missing him, Seiji spins in towards Hitsu, channeling his chakra through his legs he attempts a spin kick that is aimed towards Hitsus soloplexus, as the kick shoots out, lightning could be seen crackling down along his kicking leg and foot.
Chichi's eyes widen as Hitsu leaps towards her and she in turn raises an arm in preparation to defend herself. However, Seiji tries to intercept Hitsu once again. Unfortunately for both of them, even Chichi can notice the marked increase in Hitsu's speed and skill, such is the difference between his abilities a few moments ago and his prowess now. Seiji may or may not be successful in parrying the backhand and attacking in turn, but the red-haired young woman has no intention of just standing there and being 'protected'.
Maybe that is Seiji's role, as assigned by Jon-sensei, but that does not mean she has to stand idly by and let her boyfriend do all the work… And it also does not mean she has to let Seiji get hurt just to preserve herself! So she attempts to circle around to Hitsu's left side as fast as she can — though she doesn't have any speed-boosting Ninjutsu or similar so this is based purely on her considerable physical speed and there is no 'teleport' or 'blur' or whatever — and then she throws both hands from where they lay at about waist-level, attempting to strike Hitsu with both fists at the same time!
"Two-Pronged Strike!" she calls out, just before she spins into a sidekick aimed at Hitsu's left knee. She is probably plenty strong enough to do serious damage to a normal person's leg with an attack like that, if not break the bones completely. Even a tough ninja will generally be vulnerable to that sort of attack. The joints of an opponent are a weak point. It is where the phrase 'a chain is only as strong as its weakest link' comes from. If that one weak point is destroyed or harmed, the whole thing comes apart.
But can she even land a hit on Hitsu? He seems to be much faster than before!
Either way, Chichi is aiming to incapacitate, not kill. And violence is not the only way to end a fight. So she yells out, "The Kazekage never said anything about me using the device for this 'mission'! He just wanted us to find and retrieve it! It's far too big to move with just us and we don't know if moving it would wreck it, so we >have< to go back!"
Then she braces herself for what she expects will be a counter-attack. "And don't worry about explaining Omoi's disappearance to Kokoroe-sama… Because I'm going to tell him as soon as I see him next! You had your reasons for what you did, but continuing to hide the truth at this point will just get you in more trouble when it finally comes out!"
Hitsu barks sharply when Seiji's foot makes contact and shocks him. "Grrr…gotten too used to being invulnerable," he growls to himself. >.<; With that thought at the top of his mind, he reacts much more productively to Chichi's assault. He shunts aside the punches with his arms, then spins backwards to avoid the kick.
Hitsu glares daggers from bloodshot eyes at Chichi and Seiji. "Oh you'll tell, huh little girl? All right then, how's this for a new ending to the story — THE ENTIRE EXPEDITION WAS NEVER SEEN AGAIN!!! I'll bury you and my own identity here with that egghead and nobody will ever know I survived!" Hitsu flies through a series of handseals, then blows a thunderous gust of wind at Chichi and Seiji. Whatever the results on the pair are, this is evidently a technique which a wiser nin would hesitate to use in such a confined space — it's shattering the room's equipment and making it fly about all over!
The parry barely makes it, but it does what it was needed to do if slightly, now with Chichi moving and counter attacking Hitsu from the left, Seiji watches as Chichis attacks are blocked. With his increased skill and speed, Hitsu is a much stronger opponent, but regardless of that, Seiji knows that they cannot allow him to delay them or to continue attacking. Knowing that his girlfriend isn't as fast as he is, Seiji knows that if he can open up Hitsu and keep him busy, that should give Chichi enough of an opening to do some damage and possibly end this fight.
As Chichi speaks about them needing to leave as well as letting Hitsu know that she was going to info the Kazekage, Seiji uttered a slight curse. Her mouth opened a bit too much and now with Hitsu knowing what is planned if they managed to get out of here, this leaves them somewhat vulnearable. "Shit!" he says as he sees that Hitsu is quickly moving through seals. He didn't know what those seals meant, but as he tries to quickly move in to stop him, Seiji sees that it is already too late. As the blast of chakra is expelled, Seiji feels his body being pushed, and as he looks around equipment is shattering, being lifted and thrown about. "Becarful Sara!" he calls out as he uses his chakra to propel himself away from the main blast, as well trying to dodge the debris that is coming in towards them. He has to stop Hitsu, there is no other way. Gathering as much chakra as he can, he tries to launch himself towards Hitsu, and fighting against the force he tries to rapidly send a flurry of slashes towards Hitsu in hopes of scoring a deep enough hit to stop the jutsu possibly.
Chichi doesn't like this. She doesn't like this one bit. She thought Hitsu was a bit grumpy and maybe a bit creepy at times, but he was okay. She had been treated worse in her life than just some terse words and aggravated yellings-at and oggling. He could maybe even be a friend someday. Now, she still has a mix of greatly damaged trust and minor attachment to Hitsu combined with the pain at the betrayal, the stubborness of this man, the anger at what was done to Omoi, the refusal to >fix< things instead of being so >selfish< that he has to deny an entire seperate side of himself a chance at life that would not be possible otherwise… Chichi is generally positive, upbeat, and friendly. She doesn't like seeing people hurt and she doesn't like being the cause of that hurting. But Hitsu is rapidly eating away at what patience remains.
When the Wind Release hurls Seiji backwards forcefully, sending him across the ground with the spiralling 'arms' of the powerful vortex, and threatening to do the same to her, Chichi fights to stay where she is. She applies Chakra to the soles of sandals and >clings< to the ground, bracing against the wind even as it lashes painfully against her skin. 'Wind burn?' she thinks distractedly, considering perhaps it is like rug burn or rope burn but with wind. 'Weird,' is the last thing she thinks on that subject before trying one last tactic.
She hurts in a lot of ways, but Seiji is charging right into the violently swirling Ninjutsu in an attempt to take down their enemy before more damage can be inflicted to the machines… Or perhaps before the whole place can collapse on them. Who knows how stable this place is, anyway? She can't let Seiji get hurt any more. This machines… Saving them would be good, but lives are more important.
Chichi is not smart. This has been covered over and over. But she has had some crash courses in not-dying since leaving Kumogakure to save her own life. It feels like so long ago. Hitsu is using a Wind Release Ninjutsu. The Wind Chakra Nature is weak against another element and strong against yet another. Chichi has various Lightning Release techniques she can use… But that's what Wind is strong against! Attacking with Lightning right now would be stupid!
But she has to do >something< to stop this. Let's see if she has figured out a solution for how to overcome this backstabber before anything >truly< unrecoverable is lost. She forms a single handseal, and sends out her Chakra… To cause some of the debris, dust, and perhaps even sand that may have been tracked down here, suddenly erupt into a cloud of dirt that is then held in place in the air…! For like five seconds before that Wind Release blows it all over! Well, so much for that idea… Or is it?
In a confined area like this, the dirt cloud has nowhere to really >go<. Even blown around, all Hitsu's jutsu may do is spread the cloud to encompass the entire chamber, and continue providing material for the jutsu to continue as he damages the environment more and more.
Well, Chichi may have used Earth Release to try to counter Wind Release… And if her plan (or luckiness) works out, then she may have just concealed the entire room from Hitsu… But the Ninjutsu itself is not necessarily stopped or countered. Does she have some other surprise in store? Has she learned the Elemental Weakness of the Wind Chakra Nature!? Does she have access to >Fire Release<!?!!?
If that dirt cloud succeeds in spreading and flowing all around, hiding her and possibly Seiji from view, then the indication that something bad might be about to happen from Hitsu's perspective would be when a red light begins to shine in front of him from within the churning dirt cloud… No, >two< red lights! Chichi >does< have Fire Release! Wind fuels Fire! She can hit Hitsu with not only her own Ninjutsu but with >his< own as well! >YES!<
Chichi comes lunging out of the dirt cloud a moment later, charging right at Hitsu. A crackling rod of Lightning Chakra made semi-solid in her grip is her weapon!
…>NO!< Chichi charges at Hitsu, seemingly oblivious to the fact that her Lightning is going to rebound on her and hit her with both her own jutsu and Hitsu's. Game over. Chichi is really not smart.
That's what Hitsu may think to himself. Then the Clone Technique-generated duplicate of 'Sara' vanishes in a puff of smoke. From behind, a much deeper and brighter red glow shines from the dirt cloud, perhaps giving Hitsu just enough time to turn his head before seeing what appears to be Chichi (or 'Sara', as he would know her) engulfed in a bubbling aura of glowing, inhuman Chakra, with a pair of 'Chakra horns' on her head, enlarged 'Chakra paws' on her hands, and three tails of the same demonic energy extending from behind her.
She lashes out with a number of red tendrils that extend from that 'Cloak' and attempt to snare and wrap around Hitsu. Not only might they immobilize the traitor but if they touch him they are caustic enough to burn him on contact and as long as they retain that contact.
Chichi is not smart.
But she's learning.
Hitsu would smirk at Seiji's tactics if his mouth weren't occupied. Stupid kid, thinks he can just tough his way through the gale? In response, Hitsu simply turns directly toward Seiji and increases his chakra output. Seiji's sword strikes slice the air centimeters in front of Hitsu, seeming for a desperate moment to be growing closer, but in the end Seiji is blown back.
The good news is, all that blowing took a little more out of Hitsu than he expected. He pauses after blasting Seiji away and drops his head, panting. When he looks up, the room is obscured by Chichi's earth technique. Hitsu snorts. "Heh…think that'll save ya? Don't underestimate me, what you saw before was only a part of my chakra at work!" Then Chichi comes at him out of the cloud, wielding her lightning chakra. Hitsu sucks in a quick breath and fires a ball of wind chakra — but of course, it blows right through! A flash of irritation passes through Hitsu, followed by alarm as he remembers OHYEAHICANGETHURTNOW, and then a sense of doom when he notices the glow coming from behind him. o.o; He turns swiftly, but is caught in Chichi's chakra tendrils before he can do anything. He cries out, struggling uselessly while his brain tries to simultaneously deal with the pain and identify the form which has him in its grip. "Gaaaah!!! What are you!?!?" >.<;
Trying as hard as he might, the Yotsuki ninja isn't able to do much at all. He knew that Lightning going against wind is very bad which is why instead of using his lightning blade strike he went with just a basic frontal attack which in a way did what he hoped it would which was to keep Hitsu on him. But for that Seiji pays dearly as his blade misses it's mark and sends him flying backwards. The Earth covers where he lands, but thats not what awaits Seiji as he hits hard against the ground, which with the force of the blast of wind that was fully directed at him in a solid burst slams him into a wall. The sound of a crack ring in his ear and intense pain coming from his left side. A gasp escapes the dark skinned shinobi, as he slowly manages to sit up from where he is. His head ringing, his vision is blurry and it seems that there is a lot of spinning going on in the room.
As he sits there trying to collect himself, he notices things going red, and at first he thinks that, 'Oh man, my head is cut open.' He reaches up to touch the blood but there are a few scratches and a little blood but nothing running down his face. He looks around a bit mroe as his vision begins to clear up and the dizziness begins to fade. He looks in the direction of the red and notices Hitsu is ensnared by Chichis cloak tails, "Shit." he says as he rises off the ground holding his left side. Damn breaking a rib or two hurt a lot, but he wasn't out of the fight. He isn't all that smart either, but just a little smarter then Chichi, but he would never tell her that. Gripping his sword in his hand, he begins making his way towards Chichi and Hitsu, though as he does, he uses what little cover there is to keep Hitsu from seeing his approach.
Elongated canines and animalistic eyes give Chichi a rather wild and fierce expression, but amazingly enough (at least amazing to Seiji, possibly), she appears to be in control still to >some< degree. She can speak intelligently, at least, as she growls out in a somewhat deepened voice, "You can leave here in several pieces or just one. Keep fighting us and it will be the first option. Stop bringing these ruins down on >all< of our heads and >face< your problems like a >man< and we'll try option two." She pauses for a moment as she allows the dirt cloud to subside and drift to the ground. Of course, this also means Seiji is likely to become visible, but right now it seems Hitsu is restrained. Would he even be able to escape somehow.
"If you give me a reason to abandon option two, I will >tear your arms and legs off<. Can't have you using jutsu or running away, after all…" She bares her teeth more at Hitsu but whether this is a nowhere-near-friendly smile or an actual threat gesture is unclear. Most animals do >not< show their teeth to express happiness. There are even some >human< societies and tribes who only smile with their lips and treat the baring of teeth as a sign of aggression. Still, 'Sara' does not look remotely happy about this situation, so it's probably not really something to worry about right now.
"And don't even >try< to protest about how 'inhumane' or 'cruel' that would be… You've done enough to already that I'm willing to do whatever it takes to get Kai and I our of here alive. If you don't make it, I'll be sure to cry really hard for you some time next century. I >will< dismember you if you keep being a pain in the neck, and you'll just have to hope we can get your torso back to the Village before you bleed to death, because I don't think anyone here is a doctor!"
All of this is starkly different from Chichi's usual demeanor. That should be evident even to Hitsu who has known her a relatively short period of time. She is vicious, saying she will perform acts of violence as a matter of 'survival' that she probably would not consciously consider at any other time, unless there were no other options… And perhaps not even then. Nothing about her tone, her body language, or any other aspect of her behavior right now indicates she is bluffing or making 'threats'. A threat implies some ambiguity about carrying it out. These are >promises<.
"As for what I am… If I told you, I wouldn't be able to let you live. If you figure it out on your own, I recommend not telling anyone unless you want me to >destroy< every last person you speak to, yourself included. Infact…" She attempts to draw Hitsu closer, the tendrils retracting gradually, shortening the distance between the young woman with the presently somewhat-frazzled red hair, and those 'horns' protruding from her head. When he is mere inches away from her face, the demonic Chakra likely continuing to burn Hitsu for at least the next few seconds, Chichi/Sara growls out, "…It would probably be healthiest for you if you didn't think about it at all."
If Hitsu agrees to play nice, Chichi perhaps demonstrating her foolishness or naivety even with this new mean streak of hers, will slowly put the Sand-ninja down in front of her and let him loose. But she doesn't move even an inch away from him. She is keeping an >eye< on him.
If he struggles, protests, or gives Chichi >any< reason to suspect he is not going to cooperate… It will probably be up to Seiji/Kai to protect Hitsu from his girlfriend! …If he even feels inclined at this point.
Hitsu is practically choking on pain. He doesn't fully comprehend what Chichi is saying to him, although he gets the gist of COOPERATE OR DIE. When Chichi finally sets him down, he remains on his hands and knees, breathing hard. Shakily, he reaches into his pocket and pulls out his spectacles, putting them on his —
Hitsu suddenly crushes the glasses in his fist and flings them away. "NO! You are NOT coming back!" Galvanized once more, Hitsu flickers away from his spot on the floor. He grabs the lever on the pedestal, which is somehow still standing, and slams it down.
Bad idea, as you've probably guessed.
With most of the machinery damaged or entirely blasted away, there is nothing left to guide the huge power surge into a useful purpose. Lightning blazes unchecked through the chamber, mainly through the center. Then there is a sound like a pop, but too big and forceful to be adequately described by such a puny term. It's the sound of whatever powered this arcane device blowing out.
When the electrical crackling fades, there's no longer any question of Hitsu returning to Suna or not. He won't be going anywhere anymore, not on his own two feet.
Fortunately for those who remain, the loss of power seems to have also affected the temple's security measures. The way out, as well as the sidechambers, lie entirely open. The primary purpose of the expedition may be a wash…but maybe Sousa will be less disappointed if somebody brings him back a shiny artifact or two.
Seiji still feeling the effects of hitting hard stops, listening to Chichi as she gives Hitsu the Cooperate or Die speech, he really hopes the idiot would listen because even he hasn't seen or heard Chichi like this before. He's seen her use her Bijuu powers before, but her being cooherent enough to talk is something else. A bit of a smile show on his face as he sees that she is somehow managing to control her abilities, but looking at Hitsu, he didn't think the man can take much more of being held. Where his hand lay on his side, Seiji still has the burns there from when Chichi rescued him during their tumble over the waterfall by Jon-sensei.
Keeping quiet, Seiji watch as Hitsu is lowered and released, Seiji readies himself. He didn't know what will happen, hell he doesn't even know if he would be capable of helping if Hitsu begins a fight, but then again, hoping and someone doing what they are supposed to are two different things and Seiji having witnessed people do stupid things before, him included watches as Hitsu flickers out of sight and returns only to pull the lever. "ARE YOU NUTS!!" he hollars out towards Hitsu.
Hearing the loud pop sound and looking to Chichi, "Lets get out of here!" he calls out, it may be noted that Seijis voice isn't as strong as it normally is, and as he is backing away, he's moving a lot slower and favoring his left side. He starts making his way towards Chichi so that she could see him better and gesturing back the way they came, all the electrical crackling stops. The smell of burnt flesh could be smelled and as the Yotsuki looks in that direction, he sees whats left of Hitsu, "Eeww." he says. "Well thats what he gets the baka." he says a little angrily. For Hitsu to put them in jeopardy because of his own wants and agenda was reckless and stupid and now he's paid the ultimate price.
Limping over ot where Chichi is, "Hey Chi-chan, you ok?" he asks. Knowing not to get too close when her cloak is about her, he looks to her. "Your not hurt or anything are you?" he asks.
Chichi stares down at Hitsu with barely-contained rage… Or perhaps just the innate violent tendencies she has suddenly gained, without any true anger involved…
…Nah. She is definitely angry. But when Hitsu pulls the glasses out of his pocket and starts to put them on, Chichi suddenly exhales as though she has been holding her breath. The Hachibi's 'Third Tail' Cloak starts to diminish almost immediately, receding back into her body as her features return to normal as well. But before she can even finish relaxing and containing this power-that-is-not-hers, her hope that maybe Omoi would regain control is crushed in the same moment that Hitsu crushes those eyeglasses. His denial of Omoi being free to be his own person does not enrage her this time. She is too shocked to react before he vanishes and appears near the lever.
Chichi's lack of environmental awareness when she is surprised or confused means she does not even realize where Hitsu went until she notices where Seiji is looking when he yells out to the Chuunin.
She turns just in time to see the switch pulled down forcefully. Too much is happening too quickly. Even her stubborness and determination can only get her so far. In the end, she is the type who pushes ahead, paving the way for the 'thinkers'. The tacticians, the generals, the less-defended or even defenseless people… She is a 'tank'.
She is unable to even decide on a course of action beyond 'stand and stare in horror'. If all that power flowing through the room, the damage to the walls and ceiling, and likewise, had resulted in stuff falling on her or harm coming to her, she would not have been able to process the fact or do anything to defend herself. She just can't think quickly enough.
How much of this is Chichi's fault? How much of it is the Eight-Tails' influence? He's some kind of cow, right? Cows are dumb. Maybe she can blame him sometime.
But as she stares at the charred remains that were once a human being, realizing that Omoi will >never< get the chance to live his own life or any other now, and that Hitsu will never learn from his mistakes or be made to pay for his final act of defiance and spite by killing an innocent man inside of him… She could not even raise a finger until long after it was over.
She can blame the Eight-Tails later. Maybe one day she'll even believe it was really his fault. But right now, there is no one she is blaming other than herself. She stands with her back to Seiji, no sign of the menacing red aura of before anywhere around. If she's injured on the outside, it's unlikely she'll realize it until a long time from now, if she hasn't already healed by then. She doesn't answer Seiji on if she's injured, but she does respond to his first question as she turns her head to look at him. There's still some dust and dirt in the air, and who knows what they're using for a light source right now, but if they can see at all, the tears coming out of the young woman's eyes should be quite apparent as they clean a trail of wetness across her cheeks. She answer, "No."
Then she takes one more look at what's left and… Picks up the remains of Omoi's glasses. Maybe the frames are bent and the lenses are probably not anywhere near salvageable… But… After being silent for at least a full minute as she examines the spectacles, Chichi says, "Maybe Hitsu deserved it, and maybe not. But did his brother deserve to die as well, Seiji?" she asks quietly but rather calmly considering tears continue to leak from her golden-brown eyes.
She is going to bring these back to Omoi's home village. She's not okay with letting history forget that Omoi ever existed. She's not okay with letting Hitsu's selfishness prevent anyone from learning of the loyal and caring twin brother of Hitsu who had just wanted to >learn< and to >help others<. She will not allow anyone to ever know what Hitsu claimed Omoi was. As far as the rest of the world will know, Omoi died an innocent mand and a hero. He overcame his own terror of being harmed or killed, putting himself into dangerous situations and places, even for two kids he barely knew.
Omoi deserves to be honored. 'Hitsu…' She almost clenches her hand around the glasses when she thinks that name. Instead she tucks them into a bag hanging from her belt and finishes the thought out loud. "…It will be easier to forgive him if we remember what good he >did< do, instead of the bad he >tried< to do. Maybe he didn't intend to truly help anyone but himself… But we're both still alive, there are probably things here we can bring back for the Kazekage to study — and they might help people a lot."
Chichi looks up from the ground before her finally, the uncharacteristically calm and solemn demeanor and expression no longer present once she finishes rubbing the back of one arm over her eyes.
She smiles lop-sidedly and says half-jokingly to Seiji, "Well, they can't be any worse than what that device would have done if I'd used it, right?" She's not happy, she's not going to look back on this mission with fondness, and she's probably going to have a lot of things to grapple with emotionally later on. But she's looking to the future with a smile on her face. The world isn't going to wait while she grieves.
"Come on, let's see what we can find, then let's go back to the Sand. We need to tell Kazekage-sama the sad news… Of how Omoi and his brother were… L-lost down here, but they protected us from a dangerous machine that might have killed me or you or both of us. Omoi identified it, and… In the end… Both brothers died together to ensure no one would be hurt by that thing ever again."