Date: September 2, 2012
Kitaru visits the Boneyard to pay his respects to the departed Keisuke, one of the Kirigakure's seven swordsmen, when he stumbles across Kirau by himself. The two having met previously during their short-lived sparring match. Since then, Kirau has been struggling to find a way in which to make himself stand out more - even contemplating dangerous means in which to do so. The arrival of the ice queen Aoitsuki, who was mentioned to Kirau at an earlier date, steers the conversation towards matters of buisiness. Her departure leaves both chuunin resolved, each in their own way.
Boneyard Gardens [Kirigakure]
The gentle bubbling of the fountain wasn't distracting… it was soothing. Kirau felt like he needed that today. And solitude, too. The boneyard was empty as far as he could tell, with mist obscuring everything nearby, and his senses dulled by the medicine the medic-nin had asked him to take after his examination earlier.
His body had been building up a toxic substance, they'd said. It had been happening ever since he'd transferred and become a part of the village, and his diet had changed to include a lot more fish than normal. They'd called the element Mercury - a heavy metal toxic to the human nervous system. After they'd told him that, it made a lot of sense. He'd thought nothing of being able to actually feel something in his blood before - assuming that it was iron.
Now though… armed with this knowledge? He was starting to ponder… what if he allowed the substance to build further? If he willingly poisoned himself - might there be a benefit?
Kitaru's step was quiet as he'd walk into the boneyard. His steps were silent as was his mind, that contemplative nature put at a sort of ease. He moved over to one particular spot, the resting place of Keisuke, to put a bone nip flower atop the spot. Stepping back, he'd clasp hands before himself and bow slowly. Turning away, he started towards the fountain, pausing only at spying Kirau nearby. Smiling slightly, he'd alter his trajectory, walking over closer to Kirau to give a small nod. "Greetings. The day finds you well I do hope?"
The silence didn't last long. It never did, really. But at least the approaching figure who broke it was a familiar one. One of the few other chuunin in the village Kirau actually knew. "A clean bill of health, Kitaru-senpai. At worst, a slight sunburn, which you can blame on Sunagakure." He nodded respectfully in turn, straightened up his back, and made sure that he smiled a little bit too. This was polite conversation, not therapy hour! His internal debate about flooding his veins with a dangerous metal compound could wait another day.
Sliding off the fountain's edge, he crossed over towards the other boy and gave him a slight incline bow of respect. What did he even feel about Kitaru, did he know? Admiration… fear… resentment… or were they somehow friends? At this early stage, it was difficult to tell. But there was certainly no harm in being polite.
Kitaru would return that bow. That small smile still in place. "Hai? Good to hear it. I'm glad that it is working for you then. I was coming to pay my respects to Keisuke-san. I just happen to notice you, so figured I'd stop to say hi. Have you continued to work on your training?"
After Keisuke's death things had become a little difficult for Aoitsuki, she had been out of the village lately to deal with pressing manners within her clan structure, with all the momentum with Keisuke's death, the Alliance between Sunagakure and Kiri, and even the troop movements within Kumogakure, Aoi was out devising trade, cutting ties with some and forging others with nobles in Sunagakure…
And now, finally back within the walls of Kirigakure the Ice Princess was out to pay her respects to Keisuke, on one arm she held a basket of flowers, all forged from ice made of her own chakra. She plants them into the thick ground, stabbing them into the dirt so they stood up right and placing the basket to the side, her azure eyes finally catching Kitaru and an unknown individual she had never seen before. With a slight huff she rises to a stand and moves forward towards him, her long locks of beautiful golden hair flowing down her cheeks and back, smoothing over her curvacious form. Her body was adorned as usual in a kimono, though stopping at her thighs, it was a emerald dark green with teal sash tied along her waist. "Kitaru-san," Aoi spoke softly in greeting to him, bowing her head slightly, though her eyes caught glance of Kirau, she said not a word, and of course was sure that Kitaru would offer some sort of introduction.
Kirau had no knowledge of Keisuke, being barely even an associate of Kitaru himself. Assuming that he was a comrade though, he could at least sympathize with- no, actually, he couldn't even do that. He'd never lost anyone before, unless severing his ties with his own family was somehow comparable. In which case; he simply acknowledged the matter with a bow of his head. Kitaru didn't seem to be openly beset with grief… which meant that he probably didn't want to discuss the matter anyway, if he was keeping any pain internal.
They were joined however before he could make any response by a stranger. At least, that was how he viewed her. She knew Kitaru by name and addressed him as someone on equal footing, so they obviously knew one another. He'd mentioned a name the other day - Aoi. But this could easily be someone else completely. Rather than continue with the conversation, he held back… waiting. Desiring to learn exactly who it was he'd be divulging his thoughts with before going any further.
Kitaru glanced over at Aoi hailing him. A small nod given back in response. "Aoi-san. I'd like you to meet Murasame Kirau. He's a chuunin that has recently joined Kirigakure. A rather well rounded individual within combat, from what I've seen." Looking to Kirau, he'd smile lightly. "Kirau-san. This is Shirayuki Aoitsuki. She is an amazing ice manipulator, a very solid chuunin and a pleasure to work with. I myself have come a long way from where I was, due to her assistance."
Aoi kept her eyes on Kirau from the moment, her eyes had a chilling vibe to it… And she even slipped forward just a little bit to get a closer look over the chuunin. " A new chuunin, hmm?" She asked him curiously, the way words were spoken she found it unusual that he "recently joined" kirigakure. "Its nice to meet you, Murasame-san, where are you from?" She asked him curiously, tilting her head to the side, her expression was non existent showing that perhaps she was actually a bit bored with this greeting.
So, this WAS the same person… immediately, he felt her stare upon him, which made him tense ever so slightly. If she was the person to help Kitaru reach his level of combat prowess in the first place, then any engagement with her would likely be futile, even if her powers were manifested physically, different from the intangible horrors he'd found difficult to guard against - despite his normally solid defence.
"I'm from Iwagakure. The same as Kitaru-senpai, who mentioned you before in high regard." Straightforward, and very much to the point. Whatever this woman's temperament, her mannerisms seemed to demand prompt, informative responses. Small talk would likely wither if held up against her piercing scrutiny. "It was only a few days ago that we met. We sparred together… and it was very educational." Which was to say - he'd never faced genjutsu properly before, and ended up collapsing to the ground, his "iron defence" policy crumbling in the face of Kitaru's sensory overload.
Kitaru would watch Aoi for a moment, studying her as if gauging the reason for the chilled response. A small nod given, he'd look back to Kirau. "I do seek to help others within Kirigakure." Kit would smile slightly with a small shrug. "Aoitsuki-san is actually rather important within her clan.. So she can be.. cold, sometimes." Kit would glance at her again. "It's been rough. She was part of team K with me and with what happen.. well, it effects everyone differently."
"Death is a natural part of being a shinobi, but whatever the circumstances whoever did this is going to pay, dearly for it…" Aoi responded back to Kitaru, seh arched an eyebrow as he mentioned her to be. Cold, which was a little unusual for him to to say so bluntly. "You do know that I am here? Kitaru-san?" She questioned him though just as that her attention is tured back to Kirau. " If you are from Iwagakure you must be here from the same circumstances as Kitaru, I do hope you have a good experience in Kirigakure… If you have problems, especially with Kitaru-san you may speak with me…"
Some might have called such a viewpoint about death nihilistic. To Kirau, however, it seemed very pragmatic… efficient, even. He nodded to confirm her assumption, and in gratitude. Although she said that he would be free to ask questions, it seemed to be a conditional affair. A matter of business. Helping him would help to benefit the village by giving it another effective ninja – she was being pragmatic, again. “I would consider your council a privilege.” He spoke modestly. “If I can ever be of any kind of assistance, please do not hesitate to ask it of me either.” And there, that was the second part of business. Reciprocity. If these people did something for him, they would expect something in return… even if they protested otherwise.
Kitaru would smile sheepishly towards Aoi. "Ah.. hai.. sorry Aoi-san.." Kitaru would shake his head with a sigh. "I"m generally more tactful than that." Shrugging his shoulders slightly, Kit would look between them. "Aoi-san, Kirau has a multiple elemental capability like I've seen you do. Although I believe his is metal, hai?" Kit would rub the back of his head then with a soft sigh. "It has thrown me off with the loss of Keisuke-san.."
"It will be interesting to see what he is capable of as time moves along, that sounds like an interesting bloodline…Though a bloodline that won't go around…unnoticed," Aoi spoke softly, obviously hinting at something though as Kitaru had brought back the news again she took a step back. "You need to make sure you keep your head held high despite the situation Kitaru-san… Keisuke is a martyr and you should treat him as such," she spoke softly, trying to help Kitaru feel a little bit better… "I have some things to finish but… I look forward to speaking with you, and seeing what it is you have to offer, Murasame-san," she smiled, very very faintly and inclined her head as she turned in the other direction… Moving further along on a path to conclude her business in the area…
The words spoken by the ice queen didn’t fail to raise an eyebrow with Kirau, who had ample time to reflect whilst she offered Kitaru her extended condolences. Already some people had noticed. And indeed, sometimes the notoriety that came through possessing a kekkei genkai was his only claim to fame. He had little choice but to use it, either, since his other abilities were too poor to receive recognition… he needed to find a way to adapt it uniquely. Which brought his thoughts back to their original focus – Mercury. “I believe I shall leave as well. Until next time, Kitaru-senpai.”