Date: June 8, 2015
Takeo was curious about the Four Great Sages who lead the Giant Turtle Clan when he was in their domain. Unfortunately, Harukaze-sennin was the only one present, and he departed before a query could be made. Weeks later, while training together in the woods with Tamotsu as they had often done, Takeo decided to broach the subject. Ultimately, he learned about the existence of nature chakra, senjutsu, and Sage Mode. He decides here to pursue it, believing it will grant him the meaning and sense of purpose he lost when he was no longer Jinchuuriki. If becoming Takeo-sennnin offered Konoha and the world in general something, then so much the better.
"Takeo's Sage Journey - For Every Path, A Purpose"
Deep Woodlands Near Konohagakure
Since their return from the Land of Earth, Inuzuka Takeo and his new giant turtle summon, Tamotsu had spent much time training together. More and more, the turtle was holding his own against the young man. On this day, they trained together in a remote section of the forest.
Rings of water flowed in a crossed diagonal flow about Takeo, his hand upheld, making it difficult to guess what he'll do with the moisture he's condensed from the air. Then, the single sign. It was all he needed to make use of any water jutsu. Until now, it had given him the advantage, but Tamotsu raised a wall of earth to intercept the lance of water without so much as moving. He was difficult to read in his own way, in that he barely moved when using ninjutsu.
"Ha," Takeo says with a light laugh, straightening up and loosening his posture a bit. "You're starting to read me like a book. I told you that you'd have plenty to teach me."
In his rumbling voice, Tamotsu explained, "We're doing what we should, learning of each other. If I have taught you at all, then our contract has been meaningful."
Takeo dismissed the rings of water, save for a bit to gulp down, as he moved to sit upon a large rock. He regards the summoned beast for a moment before inquiring, "What about the Four Sages? You know I've been curious about them; maybe you can teach me outside of battle. How did Lord Harukaze do the things he did? I've never seen something quite like it, even when I was Jinchuuriki."
"What things? Do you mean the power of his jutsu?" Tamotsu lingers in silence for a moment, as the ponderous turtles often do. "He is at one with the world. It's no wonder an island thrives upon his shell. Nature itself has its own form of chakra, Takeo, and the Four Great Sages have learned to use it. You think of the one you met as a leader of a nation, but he is properly called Harukaze-sennin. A Sage."
Takeo tilts his head to the right. "I understand, to a degree," he says as he waves a hand aside. "Given the spark of Isobu still within me, I retain the ability to draw water from virtually anywhere. It's all around us. Still, you sound like you're talking about something deeper. Like, a secret channel of chakra flowing where we can't feel it. The world's chakra, rather than the elements only?"
Tamotsu settled his hulk upon the earth and drew his legs in. "Is it so difficult to believe? You have mastered a kind of chakra many would find strange. You were a master Jinchuuriki. Even still, that part of Isobu is within you, letting you command water in a way few can. There are many forms of chakra to be used in many ways, but we are closer to the workings of the world. The Sages draw upon the world's bounty and use senjutsu to lead and protect."
"Senjutsu?" Takeo hadn't heard the term, which prompts genuine interest. "Can a human learn to use it? Well, however human I am. Heh."
The question prompts pause for thought from Tamotsu. "I have never heard of a human doing so with the aid of our clan," he decides, "but in other beast clans, yes. Sage Mode. We're reaching the limits of what I know, but I do know that it would involves long study and some risk. You would have to leave Konohagakure to go afar again. There's somewhere I think would be wise to venture first."
Takeo all but bolts off of the rock and to his feet. "Offer accepted, my friend," says the Tokubetsu, smiling with fangs bared. "I knew you'd have more to teach, like I said, so I kept my travel bags stocked. Why don't we leave this evening?"
"You want to become a Sage of our clan? And of Konohagakure?" The question comes from Tamotsu. "Will you leave during war? What if others follow you? It is a long journey, and your people have a hard battle ahead."
Takeo pauses with his back turned, surrounded by the quiet of nature's beauty. When he finally speaks, he turns his head slightly over his shoulder. "I'd become one with the Turtle Clan, right? The wisdom of the Four Sages? Right now, I can sling water, but you're a shield. If what can be learned on this journey grants a shell as protective as yours? Claws, a bite, power over chakra? I might help to bring about peace."
Satisfied, as was the disappearing Tamotsu, Takeo headed for home to get ready for a far longer trip than the last. However, there was a thought lingering in the back of his head. With this new Sage Mode, he might recover lost purpose. He's seen more than enough to be fairly sagacious, right?
As well, deeper still, the thought that he could possibly stand up to and exact revenge upon Isobu's thieves.