Date: January 26, 2012
Sora and Hitoshi meet down in the Exam Caverns.
"First Promotion Exams - Spider Meat"
North Shiren Caverns, Land of Wind
There were only a couple of days left in this little Survival competition. Having survived a virtually harsh re-model of the caverns, as well as the rousing and angering of the local wildlife… and even moreso, the poisoning of the water supply, Hitoshi was proud of himself. Even moreso, he was proud of the fact he had managed to obtain two scrolls. All in all, life was going well for him, and he had the end of this horrible part of the Exam in sight. Quite literally, in this case.
The young man, now having apparently separated from his party he had been travelling with, had relocated his own little camp to the north end of the cavern… maybe a kilometer or less from the entrance way. He had a pathway to get out, and was ready to do so. Despite this… he was hunkered down. A fire pit dug, and a sleeping bag rolled out nearby, he was busy cooking dinner - over the fire, a kunai was tied up to a stick, dangling with some kind of odd meat cutlet skewered to it. His last flask of water had just been broken out, and he was sipping at it quietly, perched on a rock and watching the fire crackle. "Just a few more days, if I've kept up with my counting right," he remarks to himself softly…
Sora was on the move. But she was moving with great delicacy, to avoid not only Chuunin but Genin as well. She too has had the thought to go near the entrance. To ambush the people who would already want to set an ambush here. But as she approaches on soft feet, she already notices a camp already set up. A kunai is drawn quietly. But she doesn't take especial precautions since it's clear the camp isn't for concealment. In fact, by the time Sora approaches it she's in danger of drooling. So she'd come up on Hitoshi quite openly. "Hey there," she says, squinting at the boy to see if she recognizes him. "You a Genin?" she asks, tapping her kunai lightly against her hip. "And you gonna be able to eat all that by yourself? If not, I could help ya out," she adds generously.
The meat is neither beef, nor chicken. That much is apparent. It doesn't smell -bad,- of course… but it does have a slightly gamey smell to ist.
As Hitoshi hears someone approaching, he pauses slightly, looking over his shoulder… the light of the fire illuminating his Konoha forehead protector. He didn't appear ready to remotely defend himself, either, with one hand holding a flask of water to his lips as he slowly sips. He blinks once, twice, and tilts his head at the appearance of the young woman, before tilting his head a little.
"Yes, I'm a Genin… My name is Taniguchi Hitoshi, of Konoha." A pause, and he blinks when she begins to bring up the DELICIOUS CUTLET cooking over the fire. "I've got more than enough for myself, and if you're hungry, I'll be glad to skewer up some more and start cooking it. This is my last flask of water, though," he remarks softly, shaking the small container slightly. "I've gotta make it last another day or two." He pauses, then, casing the woman and tilting his head. "And… you are?…"
Sora would go over to sit by the spit, clearly indicating who should get first dish. She looks suspiciously at the meat, and then gives a shrug. She's eaten things she thought earlier as inedible. She doesn't even bother to ask what it is, she doesn't want to know. Sora eyes his water bottle and reaches in her pouch to toss him another bottle. "I have to return to my camp later, it's near a freshwater source," she says.
She had relaxed a little when Hitoshi said he was a Genin. Now she leans back and lets out a long sigh. "Been eating rations for days though, sooner have rodents." Which she had. "I'm Hayato Sora of Sunagakure." She taps the forehead protector wrapped around her arm. "Why are you out here kid? It seems a bit exposed for wanting to ambush if you need scrolls or protect them if you have them."
"Hayato Sora-san," Hitoshi repeats softly, committing the name to memory as he thinks back to an earlier conversation with Daisuke… The water bottle also caught and stashed away… He smiles a little bit, chuckling. "Senju-sempai spoke highly of you, you're quite a graceful combatant and a decent kunoichi, apparently," he remarks lightly, turning the meat over as he digs for a kunai, as well as another package of the paper-wrapped meat, skewering it and promptly hanging it over the fire, as well. The first skewer, apparently done, is removed and offered toward Sora idly. "I've been eating off this supply for a few days after coming across it, so I've at least been able to eat," he comments, apparently explaining why he wasn't being selfish.
When she begins to pose her question as to his exposure, he smiles a little bit, patting his bag. "I have two scrolls in my possession. At this point, I feel as if Fate is on my side as far as getting out of here and into the next round is concerned. I don't fear attack; if my skill isn't on par enough to actually maintain my two scrolls at this point, then so be it. I at least will get out of here with -one,- and be able to go back saying I didn't completely bend to this dismal place and lose who I am."
He takes a sip of his water, then, shaking his head. "That probably sounds a little confusing. I'm sorry."
Sora looks at first mortified and then amused when Hitoshi speaks of Daisuke, and what he had to say about her. "Daisuke-kun…" she says. "That monster. Er, not in personality. In terms of strength, I was all strung up." She takes the meat and chews on it with a grateful nod. As she's cramming the meat into her mouth she says, "Well it's nice he mentioned me. Graceful, hehehe. Suuuuure." She glances down at her meat, with an expression of 'what is this?'
When he mentions his two scrolls she grins at him. "Well, be careful. Even a student could beat a Jounin if they got in with a lucky kunai to the neck. Which almost happened to me. This is good, what is it?" she asks, waving the meat.
The second kunai is turned slowly in the fire, and Hitoshi listens to Sora in silence as she imparts her own brand of wisdom on the situation to him. "This is true," he remarks lightly, "and I do expect, eventually, to have to face someone who's willing to try and take me down like that before the next round of the Exams comes up." He chuckles, then, shaking his head a little. He then watches the meat sizzle, and he turns it again, slowly.
The meat, while not -smelling- of chicken, or beef, surprisingly tastes decent; it's almost -like- chicken. Not very chewy, either. But there is that… gameiness to it. Could it be one of those crazy lion-like things Daisuke has apparently been rumored to be riding on?
Not a chance. "It's the meat off of a giant arachnoid another Genin and I took down after happening on it in a severely wounded state." Giant Spider. Yep.
Sora is eating the meat and listening with only one ear to Hitoshi. She glances around the camp, taking in the mess of supplies, and back to Hitoshi with a nod. "Well, you sound like me. We play it hard and straight. I'll wait to see if you make it out with such foolhardiness." She gives a self mocking smile, that turns into a blank look that turns into a frown that turns into a look of horror as she glances down at the meat. But it doesn't stop there. It goes from a troubled look to one of confusion, and then indifference. In all this she doesn't speak as she finishes the spider and licks her fingers off with dramatic savor. "Mm, delicious," she says. "I came across it, it certainly smells better fried up. So a giant spider. I take it you killed it, well done."
"Sometimes foolhardiness favors the bold," Hitoshi replies softly, smiling and taking the second skewer-kunai off the fire… and tearing into the meat with a renewed vigor. Spider or not, apparently the boy has developed a taste for arachnid. After taking a couple of bites, he takes a sip of his water, and glances toward Sora, shrugging his shoulders slightly.
"Well, yes and no. A friend and I who were travelling together earlier in the Exam happened on the creature… it was pretty badly injured, and I decided that it'd be best to just go on and put it out of its misery." He gestures, then, and waves his own DELICIOUS CUTLET slightly. "I'm one of those people who doesn't let anything go to waste, either. Live off the land, and you'll prosper greatly. Even if some of the game is giant spider." He grins, then, and takes another bite, sighing slightly. "It's kind of a shame. I'm sure that if it had been left alone to begin with, the creature would've been interesting to study and even draw. We came down in these caves, and stirred up all this wildlife… And I'm more than positive that the spider, and probably other things, has been killing other competitors. When my companion and I were cutting this thing up, we found not only a scroll, but a couple of forehead protectors in it's gut." He shakes his head, then…
"Such is what happens when you screw with Mother Nature, I suppose." Chomp.
Long distance to Shintaro: Sora XD
And quite abruptly the spider meat is out of Hitoshi's hand and Sora is calmly eating it. As if she hadn't just stolen his other piece of meat. "Thanks," she says, as if he had passed it to her with his permission. Seems that Sora isn't above letting anything go to waste either. But she gives a sigh at his words. "If I had Megami with me I could beat anyone, that giant spider, or Daisuke-kun, anyone at all. I hate these caves. It's dark and there's no room to fly and the best meat is spider meat, which is actually very good." She'd gobble the rest down and say, "I promise I'll make it up to you up top, treat ya to a meal."
She reaches over to flick Hitoshi. "But I'll be rooting for you, to make it to the finals. A kid who can beat a giant spider with only a bit of help? I'd like to see what you can do."
And in the blink of an eye, Hitoshi's DELICIOUS CUTLET is stolen. He blinks, and he would normally make a negative comment on such behavior. Two things stop him from that, though: The fact that the girl had been subjected to rations for days and days on end and was probably legitimately hungry, and the fact she was considerably older than himself. He's preparing yet another cutlet to go on the kunai when she reaches over and considerably flicks at him, as well… and he chuckles a little, shaking his head.
The kunai is put back over the fire. "It was already wounded and on it's last leg, with no pun intended," he remarks softly. "I actually didn't expect to even make it this far. I just took the Written exam to see whether or not I could actually -do- it. I didn't expect to get a decent enough grade to actually make it into this round."
Sora finishes up her stolen meat. "Hmm then I guess it was the humane thing to do to put it down. That's too bad. If I knew it was killing people I woulda dealt with it myself." She actually sounds fairly sincere when she says that. Then she sits back up and rubs her arms. "Down here, it always feel cold," she says. "I guess that's a disadvantage, having lived in the desert." She does make a face when he mentions his exams. "I'm surprised I passed mine too. I've never seen such a load of idiocy. Ours made no sense, I'm surprised I could even put some words down on the page. That was the real trial to becoming Jounin, actually scraping the pencil across the paper for that."
Shintaro has disconnected.
"Ours wasn't so much idiocy as it was complicated. You kind of had to stop and think outside the box," Hitoshi remarks quietly, shaking his head a little. He considers some of the questions he can remember, and he scratches at his head slightly, taking a deep breath and chuckling. "Some of our questions had to pretty much do with whether we'd value the lives of many or one. What we'd do to insubordinates, and things like that." He watches as the meat cooks, and he hrms slightly, shaking his head.
"It's not really about how many scrolls we're going to come out with here in this round, I feel," he remarks lightly. "It's how we're going to conduct ourselves down here." He watches the fire flicker. "Some of those who've lost all their scrolls probably have just as good of a chance of passing these exams in their own village than any of us," he notes, chuckling a little. "It's all in our character. Our mettle. S'how I look at it."
Sora nods to his observations. "Those are some interesting things you are thinking," she says. "I guess it does matter what we do down here. But I'm not sure if they're watch us. Maybe. I think the important thing isn't what they see, but what you see. Down here really tests who you are. I think the point is to walk out as proudly as you went in. Not having compromised your morals and who you are." She stands up and wipes her mouth. "Uh, sorry about that spider. I'll pay you back twice as much. In Suna, the spiders up top are /much/ tastier." Then, she'd flicker off without a trace. Show off.