Date: October 20, 2014
Word has reached Rise's ears that a newcomer to town sought to master the eight chakra gates, or at least something to that extent. Curious, the taijutsuist confronts Hangaku, and after prodding the girl with questions, all that remained was to test the foundation first.
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
Kanayama Hiko Training Center [Kumogakure]
The Kanayama Hiko Training Center is a massive structure designed to serve the needs and survive the rigors of ninja training. The stout exterior stone walls are buttressed by interior walls of flexible and replacable timbers that are seperated from the stone by an intricate shock absorption system. The interior is one large room, though in three different places around the outer edges there is seating to that trainers might observe their students, either from ground level or from box seats above.
There is a wide open training arena, as well as areas for more specalized practice. There are number of poles of different thicknesses, a variety of kinds of woods, and even some metals for practice for specific techniques as well as general balance training. There's an area that has a number of automated foes, be they repeating crossbows mounted on the walls or wooden practice dummies with a clockwork that allows them to use some of the power with wich they're hit to strike back at the ninja training with them. There's even a wave pool that can be set to have a mirror like calm, or to be like a rough sea.
Having been directed here for the best place to train, Hangaku had her blade out and was standing in the center of several dummies. She slips around them, swinging her blade into the dummies as she moves around, slamming her blade into them repeatedly but using lighter attacks as to not completely destroy the dummies that she has been so kindly allowed to use. She moves back and forth, swinging and moving and moving and swinging, slamming her blade into each attack before she would take a momentary break.
Hangaku would have plenty observers, though few were so for an innocent reason. Among those observers but out of sight at the moment was Rise. She was, to say the least, hesitant to bother with finding out more about Hangaku, a supposed seeker of chakra gate training among other things. The gates exacted a toll on the body that even the pint-sized berserker of Kumogakure was hesitant to have passed on to another. Still, her curiosity plus seeing the older woman in action dispelled most of her misgivings. So, as soon as the swordsman stop for a break, Rise took it as her moment to look closer.
Seconds later, her drop from the rafters above concludes with a virtually soundless landing. Short of some extrasensory abilities or a chance glance back, her speaking up preludes any chance of noticing her presence. "Ya shouldn't worry too much about wrecking them so much, cuz their makers are waaaay used to Kumo-grade training." She states with a smirk.
She indeed didn't notice the girl dropping down. She instead was turning slowly to look around for the source of teh voice. Standing at over six foot tall, the woman looks around with a few blinks, "Umm, k…who said that?" She then looks at the people looking before she looks to the right again before finally she chances to look down and blinks as she spots Rise and then blinks again, "That you?" She hmms and hten idly sets the blade down, the blade's tip hitting the ground causing a solid thud as she leans on it, "I guess, but I'm a guest in Kumogakure and I don't like breaking what isn't mine. Things cost money."
The corner of Rise's eyes twitches, but she refrains from answering. The longer it takes for the swordsman to figure things out, the more irritated Rise becomes. Eventually she reaches the point of crossing her arms beneath her breast and tapping the ground with her foot as a means of venting without resorting to knocking Hangaku down. "Ya think?" She asks from behind gritted teeth. Her mood seems to sour more afterwards, though ultimately all of her frustration gets expelled with a heavy huff. "Be that as it may, you're Hangaku, right?" She asks, then pauses long enough for a short answer before brazenly continuing. "Why are you so interested in the eight gates?"
Looking at the girl so moody, Hangaku tilts her head, not entirely sure why this girl was so upset. I mean, goodness, Hangaku, in boots, is like 6'4" tall. She idly looks at the girl before nodding her head, "Yes, that's me." She then listens to the second part before saying, "I'm interested in them because they fit what I'm looking for." She nods her head, "I have heard they enhance the physical form and don't require a person to push out a bunch of chakra in order to let loose a proper amount of power. I'm not a chakra user by any stretch. I swing my blade and I'm good at defending myself. That's all I got." She nods her head, "The Gates…they open up the body and allow one, like myself, to fight at levels that those finger wigglers can."
Rise lofts a brow at the initial answer, but otherwise holds her tongue. By the end, Rise is shaking her head. "As much as I'd hate to burst yer.. gah… Burst your bubble, but the gates do require a bunch of chakra. Its kind of a one-shot deal for each, but still there's that, AND a matter of chakra control too… Unless yer look'n to blow yourself up in the process?" A smirk plays at the edge of Rise's lips afterwards. She wasn't kidding given her tone, but the chance to weasel out some discomfort out of Hangaku was too much to ignore. "'Side from that…. no… All I wanna really know at this point is if you really still wish to learn how to open them or not." As soon as those words left Rise's mouth, the girl stares intensely into Hangaku's eyes.
"From what I've been told, I do have a lot of chakra even if I don't know how to use it." She shrugs and then idly taps her blade on her shoulder. Hangaku doesn't even seem to blink at the girl. The woman just nods her head, "Of course I do. I wouldn't have been asking about it if I didn't want to." She chuckles and shrugs before looking at the girl, "The question I have is are you able to teach me or aren't you?"
Rise's eyes do not soften for even a moment well after the answer is heard. Nor does she allow her expression to change in other ways in even the slightest as Hangaku spoke. "Hm…" Her eyes finally fall away towards the ground. If she were to be honest with herself, the girl lacked the confidence to carry out any kind of teaching. Even so, after a few moments of silence Rise took in a deep lung full of air and straightened out once more. "Guess yer gonna find that out pretty soon now, aren'tcha?" She winks, then motions for hangaku to follow her over to the edge of one of the mini-dug out arenas.
"First and foremost, I'mma need to find out your endurance threshold, and I don't just mean stamina.."
A nod and the woman follows after Rise, blade resting lightly on her shoulder as she follows after her, "And what exactly is it that you are trying to find out?" She hmms as she walks with her as she leans down a little, stretching her leg out before moving back to her full height and idly tapping the blade to her shoulder, "I am a blacksmith by trade." She nods her head, "It's what I do." She nods her head before tapping the blade to her shoulder, "And I swing this…so endurance is not something I'm short on."
"Pain." Rise states plainly and without preamble. "The gates don't enhance the body without exact a large toll on the body in the end. Putting it mildly, the higher you climb the more your body tears itself apart in the process… You'll experience that first hand if my training takes, tho' that largely depends on if you can even past this first test." With that said, Rise shift into a basic kata and takes on a more serious air. Not that she wasn't already pretty serious as things stood, but still…
"But as I said, we'll be testing both with a spar…. I won't be holding back." She says with an evil little glimmer in her eyes.
A hmm and she grins a little, "Well, I won't be underestimating you like I did the other one." She nods her head and she reaches up and unlocks the metal from her arms. She pulls both sleeves free with those metal rings on them. She rolls her shoulder as she pulls them to the side with her left arm and then she flicks them off to the side as if they were perhaps a small pack. When they hit the floor, however, the sound is like someone just dropped a thick table. She looks over at Rise and nods to her, "If you aren't holding back, nor will I." She chuckles as she rests her blade on her shoulder and then steps back with her right arm.
Rise couldn't help but grin a little at the initial response. Her grin falters for a second after hearing the noise, though only briefly. "Hm… Ya better damn well better, cuz I ain't passing this training along to anyone that'll just half-cement things." Despite her own words, the girl failed to keep to them. She expected much out of Hangaku, but not enough to warrant the same treatment as a certain few others. Still, weights or no weights, the girl crossed the distance between them as if unhindered and immediately tried to knock Hangaku off her feet. Seemed to at least, only to miss intentionally and leap soon after and unleash a series of kicks.
The girl's movements might be just this side of unbelievable. The reason is very simple. This woman has a blade nearly as long as she is tall and she simply seems to roll back under the initial attack, her left hand hitting the floor as she goes into a single hand handstand before splitting her legs open to avoid the initial kick and then push up and flip over the secondary kick. She lands on her feet, her blade already swinging down and around in a wide horizontal arc at Rise before she brings that blade all the way behind her and whips it up and over her head in a massive downward swing that, if it misses Rise, will likely divot the floor, "Try not to get cut in half before you train me."
A measure of surprise, and yes, even admiration lights up Rise's eyes after Hangaku's display of acrobatics. The latter she would blame for slowing her down, seeing as how she didn't react in time to keep put some distance between them. The same cannot be said for the follow-up strike. The bruises behind her wrist guards are a minor convince that only serve more to inflame her defiance than actually hinder her. The proof of it was in her face as she hammered Hangaku's blade's flat side aside mid-charge and kept on going to try and gut check the girl in passing. "Try not to pass out before this fight is over." She says, regardless of a hit or miss. Without missing another beat, Rise tries to overwhelm Hangaku with punches that kept to the same area.
For her part, Hangaku merely flexes her ab muscles and the gut check hits nothing but hard flesh. She then spins aside from the punch that came for her next. She then would send a spinning back hand toward Rise's face as she moves before she would sweep her blade wide again and then whip it upward and give a downward angular slash across Rise's body, "I'll see what I can do to make sure I don't." She chuckles and then rolls a shoulder, preparing for the next melee.
Contact is made, but Rise was already prepared to turn with the force of the blow. Instinctively afterwards the girl backflipped over the sweeping blade, only to make a mistake upon landing. Whereas first she meant to rush, Rise instead earns herself earned her first genuine wound since the match started. First blood went to Hangaku. And yet, there was no flash of fury or vengeance. Nor did she cry out or laugh it off. Rise simply… acted. Mental restraints are torn asunder as she dashed in again faster than before, hoping again to sweep Hangaku off her feet. It isn't a bluff this time. And should Hangaku fail to stay standing this time, or heck, even if she -does-, Rise mercilessly tries again to break through the older woman's rock hard abs. Even if this time she had to actually get through the blade first…
The girl was faster now and she blinks as she ends up having to jump straight up over the incoming tripping leg before landing and punching downward with her own fist to take the hit from Rise's hand to her arm which is as muscular as her own body. She looks up at Rise with a grin before she shakes her head, "You are bleeding." She chuckles before she flicks the blade back, her arm straightening as she holds that blade perfectly horizontal out behind her before she swings it around with a speed that might be considered unbelievable for someone holding a blade that large. The massive swing is then followed up by using the momentum of the swing to step around, spin and bring the blade in an arc that takes it up over her head and then down straight toward the ground again and through Rise if she isn't careful, "I thought I said don't get cut in half!" She states, perhaps being a bit cocky now.
Her hand trembled this time from strike, but the memory of it fades quickly in the wake of the girl's cocky words. A glimmer of the berserker's infamous temper takes root in her eyes, and almost blinds her. Almost. Experience and instinct kept her in check long enough to limbo under the first strike narrowly despite the surprising speed of the stroke. She straightens quickly, and by another narrow margin, manages to side-step the downstroke. As it cleaved the ground, the girl takes things up another notch in speed and strength. To the normal human eye, Rise fades out of existence, only to reappear at Hangaku's backside and punch her hard at the spine. Again, she seems to flicker about, strike again. Always where muscles are supposed to be weakest, and always from angle just barely within if not outside her peripheral.
This time, her movements are no where near fast enough. She is caught right in the lower back before she is slammed two more times, going to a knee and letting out a gasp as she coughs up blood. She winces as she is forced to pause a moment before she grins a little and then nods, "That's more like it." She chuckles and then stands up and swings her blade around again toward the fast moving girl, swinging at her before she turns the blade over and attempts another slice for her again, this one just as wide and powerful as the first, "That is what I'm talking about!" She chuckles and stands up straight, grinning with red teeth.
Rise stops only once, and that is to regard Hangaku without her vision going all blurry from all that movement. Hangaku's chuckles are met with a toothy grin before Rise is forced to move again. Every swing meets air as Rise effortless danced just out of reach before she tries to take advantage of Hangaku's straightened out pose. It was reckless, but hope spurred her towards leaping at Hangaku seconds after evading her last blow with arms wide, and if given the chance, wrapped about Hangaku's neck as her legs went about the girl's torso before she squeezed the air out of the girl.
Even as the girl jumped toward her, Hangaku grins and simply falls backwards, her legs tucking and letting Rise sail over top of her, she brings her blade up over her head to attempt ot have it follow Rise before she'll roll over and land on her feet, pushing up and then spinning to send the blade at Rise again for another massive swing, "Come on then! You learned what you need to learn yet or do I get to keep enjoying this little contest." She laughs a little.
Rise hits the ground rolling after the leap, only to spring into another defensive roll to the side without so much as a backwards glance to guage the next strike. As soon as her feet settles beneath her, Rise doesn't straighten out before backhanding Hangaku second strike away. "Hah… heheheh…. Yeah, I learned enough to sate me for now. But I think we overdid things a little." She says, shaking her head in exasperation. "Hmm…. C'mon. As much as I hate the place, I'll take you to the hospital to get patched up. After.. naw, tomorrow we'll see about actually getting in some real gate training."
A grin and the woman nods her head, "Well, we can talk about it." She nods her head, "I gotta head back to Fuuma tomorrow." SHe nods again and places her blade on her shoulder, "I have an order from one of your people to build her a new machete and the money is good." She chuckles, "Not to mention, those boys down at my blacksmith shop can't do anything without me for long." She then starts off with Rise, "Though I appreciate your lesson so far…first good fight I've had since coming here." She nods her head, "I'll be back through in less than a week though. So, tomorrow we'll lay some ground work…after I go home. I'll practice and come back." She then starts off with Rise, "Good fight, either way."