Dust Devil


Haruko, Itami

Date: March 4, 2011


Fujin Village has requested supplies for their village. Haruko and Itami are there to help, following the guide of a map they've been provided along with their message. However, what they see when they arrive is nothing short of ruin. The duo decide to investigate and possibly, prevent whatever destroyed the village from becoming a threat.

"Dust Devil"

Location unknown

A village was in need of some supplies and Sunagakure was there to help. Out in the desert was a small village, Fujin Village, that needed supplies. It was something small, so only one cart was needed to go over the sands. Along with the driver, this made three people. Itami, Haruko and Sakon.
Just over a sand dune, the village came into view and looking on a map and tracing their path, Itami says, "I think we've found the place. Won't be long now…" She points out on the map at their location versus that of the village. Just a little over a couple of miles. Once the group arrives, they see that this village is in…complete ruin.

"Are you quuite sure?" Haruko asks as she looks at the ruins, "Don't you think we should be, like, I dunno…? Somewhere else… this place doesn't look like it has any need for supplies any time soon." She shrugs though, and looks at the ruins, "Or if this is where we should be… then I think we might be too late, as, well… you can see that yourself."

Sakon looks bothered as he sits in the coach and rubs his neck. Itami unrolls the map and looks at where they are. "…Look here. Unless I've been tracing wrongly, we should be here. The map says that the village is still intact, but…" She looks up at the ruin just outside the coach opening. "…We just might be, but…how did it happen?" She wondered and looked to Haruko. So much for a delivery.
Exiting the vehicle, she walks along the sand towards the village entrance, some ways away from the gates as she looks inside. "So, what shall we do?" She calls back to the coach. Sakon responds, "I think we should go back. No tellin' what was around here that made this place like /this./" He folds his arms. "Still might be around here waitin' in ambush or somethin'…" She then looks to Haruko. "What do you think?"

"Turn back?!" Haruko responds, shaking her head, "Not without trying to find out what the hell happened here." She walks along with Itami, and continues onwards, entering the village gates and walking through, "Come on slackers, we got work to do!" She calls out as she draws a pair of Kunai. "I'll do this alone if I have to, you know…?"

Sakon closed his eyes. He was seriously considering leaving the two of them behind. "Fine, fine. You two investigate. I'll keep by the village gates or somethin' and if someone jumps out of nowhere, just to let you know, I'm going to leave. You two are ninja. You'll find your way back." He truly wants to convince himself so he won't have to feel guilty if they die and he returns without his other cargo.
Itami smirked. "I'll keep that in mind." She chuckles at Sakon and nods to Haruko. "Alright. Coming!" She jogs after Haruko as she enters the village gates. Fujin was in complete ruin. Whatever happened here took out all of the inhabitants, but what could be powerful enough to do that? She's heard news about what's going on in other areas and it only seemed logical to assume that this was going to come to their front door, so to speak. As the duo walked through the desolate village, they'd find debris blown all over, but it was unusual in that the debris looked largely scattered and pulled from various areas. Strewn about. There's no evidence of the smell of smoke on the buildings or smoldering remains, so it wasn't a blast… At least, not of that kind. "I admire your courage." Itami remarks to Haruko. "But we'll probably need to stick together on this. See anything unusual, I mean, other than the village being completely destroyed?" She inquires.
There's a soft wind blowing through the area, but there weren't any winds going to or from the village when they were coming. The air was fairly stagnant up until now.

"The wind." Haruko says softly, "There wasn't any wind when we were on our way here…" The teenaged kunoichi shrugs slightly as she makes a mark in one of the ruined buildings, "That's the only thing I have noticed so far, however…" She walks on, warily. "Let's hope that whomever is behind this is either gone… or not all that powerful in the end…"

Itami lofted a brow. The wind, eh? "I see." She remarks to Haruko as she begins to follow behind her. For now, things were relatively calm, eerily so. Other than the occasional whirlwind kicked up by the winds around here, there wasn't much to see. Or so it seemed.
There was more to these whirlwinds that met the eye. These whirlwinds weren't ordinary. They seemed guided and guided meant right towards Haruko and Itami. Some moved gracefully, seemingly without any path until they drew closer to the duo with what appeared to be an intent to bring harm. The majority of the whirlwinds had debris in them which was meant to cause damage to those that were trapped inside or were nearby.
In truth, the whirlwinds are spirits according to the local folklore. Small jugglers of items. Apparently, they juggled so fast that they created wind in doing so. In great number they were known to bring misfortune. So far there seemed to be three of them, but they're building in number slowly. "I don't think we have to worry much about being gone. I'm unsure if there's anyone around in the first place…" This place just seemed oddly lifeless in the human sense.

"They're approaching us…" Haruko hissed, she had no weapons against these kinds of enemies… "Be careful." As if that hadn't been obvious, "What are these whirlwinds anyway…? Some sort of spirit, or perhaps some sort of Ninjutsu?" She wondered aloud, "Or this is all some powerful Genjutsu and we're not walking in the deserted ruins of a village after all…"

Itami took a better look at the whirlwinds as they danced around the few around did seem to be heading their direction. That and more were on the way as the wind picked them up. "…They /are/ approaching. Well, shoot." She's never dealt with anything like this before. "Thanks for the heads up, but…you've got me there. I just thought they were ordinary whirlwinds, but that doesn't seem to be the case." She can't say if it's ninjutsu, but if it is, that means someone or thing is controlling it, but who or what? If it's genjutsu that'd mean the same. The source doesn't seem to be making itself obvious.
On the other hand, if they're not genjutsu or ninjutsu, then what exactly /are/ they dealing with? "We should get out of the way before we're able to find out." She remarks as the whirlwinds attempt to converge, but the distance between the three grants them an opening to jump out of the way. "More are forming, but I'm unsure of how to fight against this. We have to try and figure out the source."
Looking about the town, it'd still be difficult to figure out the source of the spirits. It's definitely what they were, but whether or not Haruko or Itami would be able to figure this out has yet to be determined. While the patterns of the whirlwinds may be random at times, their spawn point seems to be within a certain area further back in the village. From this point, it's hard to tell, but there's a small hint of it by how many seem to be gathered at one point before dispersing.

"Well, I think there's more of them over there." Haruko stated as she pointed in the direction of the source. "More means that they might be coming from there, right?" She asked as she started to walk in the direction she had pointed at. "I'm pretty sure that's where we have to go!" Only slightly impulsive… but more importantly, driven to find out what's going on.

Itami looked to where Haruko pointed and nodded. "Alright. If you are certain, let's move!" She then begins to make her rounds to try and evade the whirlwinds that are running about the gates area and towards the back of the village where much of the housing is situated. From here, it's easy to see where the whirlwinds are coming from and they appear to be stronger at this place as well. The wind picks up and there's an odd green glow in the air. From where the whirlwinds are spawning, the glow appears to be the brightest. "It appears we've found our target!"
If they are able to get close enough, Haruko and Itami would see a circle of seals connected to one spot that appears to be some sort of summoning that went horribly wrong. Whatever summon occured caused this village to turn to ruins and no life to be felt. "We have to get to that light somehow!" She raises her voice over the strengthening winds. It might be difficult as the whirlwinds don't intend to let them pass. In fact, they all converge into one giant whirlwind with some pulling power. Local folklore did say that the spirits caused misfortune in numbers. This must be what they meant, but how'd they keep them away? There was a great deal of debris picking up and whirling around the area and places to hide behind, luckily, albeit did very little in the form of full body cover for some. "I am not familiar with what's going on here! But we need to face this off in some kind of way!" She yelled over the winds.
There was a way to stop the spinning giant of a whirlwind, but whatever the object was is around here somewhere. Folklore suggests that the spirits adore a certain kind of incense. There must be some lying around. In fact, while the wind is strong, there's a faint smell of it coming from a fallen structure nearby. The incense fills their senses and causes them to dance, their graceful movements generating soft and gentle winds with every sweep of their arms and legs. If that isn't enough, a tattered poster suggesting this dancing comes flying through and lands on a broken beam sticking out of the rubble of a house. The only visible parts are a three steps of a dance that are performed by the locals honoring a the tradition held by the folklore.

"Incense!" Haruko called out, making her way to the smell of incense as fast as she can. She digs around through the structure, trying to find out where the incense is so she can burn it… It's not that she's afraid, but more that she wishes to speed this the hell up! "Come on, help me look for the incense here!" The young kunoichi calls out.

Itami thought she could smell something and Haruko's announcement confirmed it. In response, she went after Haruko and began to dig through the rubble where she'd come upon some incense that'd spilled across the ground. Itami, hoping to aid in the burning aspect placed her hands together in quick succession of handseals to blast a bolt of fire at it where the oil and herbs would begin to burn, smoke rising up where heat pocketed to lift the incense into the air.
The duo would be picked up by the whirlwind eventually and spun around until they were close to being slammed on the ground, but the spirits were delighted by the incense in just enough time for their fall to be cushioned by gentle winds. Although, that didn't mean that they weren't in for a hard thump on the ground. It just meant less bones to break and luckily, it was nearby the summoning circle. "That…that was…some kind of ride." She remraked on the ground before getting up to dust herself off.
Now that the spirits were too busy dancing, they were able to focus on the circle where the ground began to shake. Arising from the green glow was…a man who was highly decorated in samurai garments. This person was Hayaji, a spirit of whirlwinds or the host in which he operated from. "I know not any humans that are capable of challenging the spirits, or rather, foolish enough to try, but you both prove to be the exception…" He starts. "BUT ENOUGH!" His voice booms and creates a giant wind in the process. "No longer will you both impede me and the destruction of these lands! Those that seek the wrath of Hayaji! Know now that trifling with the gods means death!" He shouts.
Something was off about this guy. It's obvious that he wasn't a proper summon…maybe it was something else entirely. Dabbling in unknown arts? Whatever it was, the poor sap that did was made to suffer. He won't be the man he once was after Hayaji is done with him. Spinning around his spear, he holds it at his waist in preparation for combat before making the first strike to generate a blade of wind from one swing of his weapon.

"Sorry. I'm not planning to die yet!" Haruko calls out as she deftly leaps out of the way of that blade of wind. "Now, please, allow me to introduce me to the skill of this Kunoichi!" And with that, she dances around the spirit, stabbing at him three times. Once at the left leg, once at his right knee, and once at his groin…. groin shots are valid tactics, right?

Hayaji spun his spear around to deflect each stab away from him while a grin formed upon his face. "You will have to use more skill than that in order to defeat me!" He yelled and turned his spear around to strike Haruko with the blunt end of the weapon. "Then how about a taste of mine?" Itami inquired as she began to breeze through handseals and smack her hand on the ground to summon up earth from which hollow bullets could fire from her hands. Hayaji began to attack again by swinging his spear towards the duo in order to attack the both of them in one sweep.

Again, the child leaps out of the way of the wind spear. Haruko puts her Kunai back where they belong and drawing a bunch of Shuriken. As she keeps her distance, she throws them at the spirit, aiming at the spirit's head, with each of them. "I'm sorry, did you just fail to hit me?" She asks, perhaps a little more cocky than she should.

Hayaji once again deflected Haruko's attacks and even those of Itami's saying, "You cannot hope to win using inferior attacks such as those!" His voice had an unusual boom to it, though this time, it was without the excessive wind. "My time is wasted fighting the both of you and you both shall perish as a result!" While he was skilled at wielding his weapon, he didn't take into consideration the limitations of his current form. It wasn't a full summoning and just as the human suffered so too did the spirit as well. It was his power working through a human shell, but when he body sometimes refused to cooperate, it meant things were difficult for him.
As such, he couldn't devastate the both of them with a whilrwind of ultimate death and had to settle for what strength he managed to gather from both himself and the body together. So, he's resulted to having to focus in order to regain what he lost leaving him open for attacks. Itami looked at Haruko and then back to Hayaji while he was more or less vulnerable to attack as he attempted to try and gather chakra for his attack. They'd be able to strike him while he's 'down'. Itami ran first to strike Hayaji into the air where she hoped that Haruko could follow up with another attack to smack him back down to the ground.

OW, that hurt. Well then, that only meant Haruko had to work faster. Gathering all her courage, she leaped out to strike yet again with her shuriken… one at the head, one at a foot, and the final one at the chest. "Dodge this, you creep!" She called out as she made a backflip while throwing the last shuriken, "Show me your 'might'!"

Evan as Haruko was stricken in a counter by Hayaji's stabs of his spear and Itami was avoided altogether, he still had to focus in order to gather his power. It was evident he was trying since the wind began to whip around him and gather round his body. Yet, he'd be cut off with the three attacks by Haruko to him that embedded shuriken into his head foot and chest. He yelled out and observed the bladed weapons sticking out of each place he was stricken, but what he didn't expect was to see blood.
With all the power he had, he thought he at least had enough control over this body in order to withstand attacks. What seemed to be happening was more than limitations, it was as if the body was rejecting the one that took it over. It was a battle of wills that made the summoner's body fight against Hayaji who was finding it increasingly difficult to gather chakra with the rejection.
"This is not possible!" He shouted as the warm blood began to spill down his face, feet and chest. "I will not be defeated by mere mortals!!!" He attempted to force his attacks, but his movements were sluggish and sloppy. Who said that the summoning couldn't come at a disadvantage for both people involved? He directed his rage towards Itami and Haruko by attempting to swing his spear around his body to build up momentum for stabs to each.

Ow ow ow. That huuurt. Still, Haruko had to keep on fighting. Instead of using her shuriken however… she drew her Kunai yet again. And with those two in her hands, she attempted to jump up to the spirit's back and strike him in the chest, holding on to him that way. If that succeeded… she'd call out, "Itami, strike him now!"

Itami suffered damage as well, never thinking that she'd be doing battle with some sort of human spirit type thing. Whatever the case was, she couldn't allow him to win and roam free to attack others. She was concerned for Haruko, but the girl kept on rising to the occasion and attacking despite her condition. Itami, following by her example as well as command it seems, drew a kunai of hers out and dashed forward where she'd aim and deliver a blow to the heart of the summoner's body.
The body bled from sustaining the stabs and shuriken strikes, sometimes blood dripping from time to time as it began to fall limp. Hayaji, without a host begins to exit the body, forcefully withdrawn to the green glow that brought him to this plane. "CURSE THE BOTH OF YOU!! IF I AM EVER SUMMONED AGAIN, I SHALL HAVE YOUR HEADS. YOUR HEARTS SHALL BE GIFTS TO THE KEEPERS OF HELL TO TORMENT." His voice boomed now that he was in his natural state. The god was much larger than he was in human form, naturally. Eventually, he disappeared back into portal and the door shut. The dancing spirits remained as if to give a parting farewell to the lives lost for the foolishness of the summoner. The man suffered as a result of being a shell for Hayaji and needed a proper burial.

With the fight over, Haruko slumped to the ground as the adrenalin rush left her body. She didn't have a lot of energy left in her, but she was glad it was over, "We did it.." She murmured, more to herself than to anyone else. "Let's go back to Sunagakure…" And with that, she closed her eyes, tired as hell.

Itami nodded and waited for Haruko to rise before heading out of the village amongst dancing wind spirits. Their mission was incomplete as they couldn't deliver the supplies. The village now would be little more than dust in the wind from its destruction.

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