Fourth Promotion Exams - Bound


Zankuro, Sei

Date: July 11, 2014


Taken unaware within the first day of the promotion exam, an "offer" is made to Zankuro…

"Fourth Promotion Exams - Bound"

Hanging Bridge [Land of Lightning]


The hanging bridges of the Tenrai Mountains are a testament to primitive engineering. The long curves of twisted fiber woven with aged planks may look decrepit, but they were built to last, and lasted they have. Since the distances between the mountains are too great for single lengths of bridge to remain strong over, artificial supports of wood with platforms on top were constructed to divide the journeys into more manageable lengths. The platforms also act as crossroads, allowing bridges to branch or change directions.

On this particular platform, bridges stretch away to the north, west, and southeast. The bridge westward is the longest single length of bridge in the mountains. It bellies low over the chasm, often obscured in parts by the clouds, for a more taught bridge would be structurally unsound over such a great distance. As it is, it's safe enough, provided you're reasonably sure-footed. To the north, the bridge meets with a long, curving range of cliff. To the southeast, the plateau which holds the entrance and exit of the testing area can be reached.


The night is mild, the twinkling stars shining brightly. A gentle northeasterly breeze cools the night air, and stirs the few clouds which float slowly across the sky. It is first (maybe second?) night of the exams. Too tired to go another step forward, Zankuro is finally forced to essentially collapse where he stood. Sort of. He /is/ on the hefty side, and the hanging bridges that essentially made up the cross roads of the Tenrai Mountains were not the most stable by appearances. "Ah.. this'll do.." He murmurs, adjusting himself as needed so that the giant scroll he was using as a pillow didn't slip out from beneath his head.

It'd be hard for most to hide on bridges… at least one would think. Using a combination of tree walking and those silks of the spider brood ranging ahead and behind him, Sei managed to make his way along them anyways, avoiding ever touching the surface. Instead, spiders would gather to make those silk lines that let him travel, then take them up afterwards, making it very difficult to track. A spider would crawl near Zankuro's hand. Then another. Then five more. Leading edge of the brood reported another person of the exam was ahead. Sei's path took him from under the bridge to on top, running along one of those lines of the rope to latch onto the top of the platform Zankuro was using to rest at. Staring down at the other teen, Sei pondered, watching and waiting for a reaction.. even if it was snoring.

Zankuro shudders. That last breeze that whipped through the area dug deep into his exposed flesh. He groans and murmurs something about grabbing a jacket, but makes no move to follow through with that desire or even notes the presence of the spiders unless one dared to touch him. Although even then he might bother think much of the feeling. His attention was solely on the twinkling lights above and beyond. Staring had a way of hypnotizing him. Almost. With his thoughts elsewhere, nothing short of an outright obstruction or something else disturbing him would grab the Sarutobi's attention.

Sei pondered as he'd watch the one laid out on the boards. He was awake enough, although ignorant of his surroundings, considering the number of spiders that would be near him. Contemplatively, Sei would start spiders spindling down under the bridge. waving on the winds to get a feel for the motion. Hiding the activity of the spiders within that blowing wind, Sei would wait for each time it'd blow across Zankuro to have spiders leap across, silken threads left behind. Dozens at a time in that perfect coordination that the hive mind afforded. Sei would watch and wait, once Zankuro became aware of the silk bindings, they'd draw tight. Sei himself would drop down in a crouch near Zankuro to watch him for a moment, studying the other exam participant intently.

Zankuro had begun to slip his hands behind the back of his head when he first catches on to what'shappening. Wild eyed with panic he tries to pull himself free of the webbing, only to get nowhere. "What in the—" Is all he manages to get out before the rest dies in his throat at the sight of Sei. Tired as he is and dim as the lightning may be, it didn't take a genius to realize that the one that hovered nearby was none other than Kirigakure's sole applicant. He'd bare his teeth or crack a joke to lighten up the mood if he thought it helped, but couldn't come up with — Oh wait! "O-kum-on, dude. You and I both know this ain't right." He says with an awkward chuckle tossed in afterwards.

Sei simply stared at Zankuro. A spider would hop off Sei's head, silk attached to lower down and hover right in front of Zankuro's face. There, it'd hiss at him, before the wind would cause it to float to the side, to land on his shoulder. Sei hopped down then, landing on that rope again in a crouch, the pad pulled out and opened as spiders would go scrambling across it rapidly, to be displayed towards Zankuro. ~I could of killed you instead. Be grateful. You are my competition. I'm giving you this one chance only. Leave. withdraw. Or if I have to face you again, you will die. Understood?~

Zankuro's eyes wavered from the instinct to follow the over-sized spiders moving about. He managed by sheer force of Sarutobi will power to ignore it for the most part and stay focused on the 'real' threat. Despite the obvious fear in his eyes, there's a certain calculative feel behind Zankuro's eyes as well; subtle but present. He idly tests the strength of the webbing, mentally countdowns his supplies and what may be in reach, considers conditions, terrain, and so on and so forth in search of way out of this mess he found himself in. "Or.. here's just a wild thought here.. We could team up? I can play the handsome but wild-eyed distraction while you and your nice, creepy crawly buddies there take down the competition by surpise! Good deal, right?" He asks with a cheshire smile, stalling for that extra bit of time.

Sei continued to stare at Zankuro, unblinking, no emotion. That obviously was not something exactly expected. Although considering the talk he's heard about himself.. not surprising either. The spiders would move again, re-arranging on the pad as the silk binding Zankuro down would suddenly release, being pulled away faster than they were put into place. ~I am not going to team up. If I could take you down so easily, so could anyone else and I refuse to fail. This was your chance. Leave. Withdraw, or die.~

Zankuro sweatdrops. The Okumo did have a point there. 'So much for plan O.' He thinks. "Alright, alright, Sheesh… Uh… bit of a problem though there Cap'n… Kind of can't move here." He says and emphasizes his point by wiggling about as much as the webbing allows. Which may not be all that much at all, IF at all. Zankuro stops pretty quickly too. The bindings were starting to chaff something fierce.

Zankuro sweat-drops. The Okumo did have a point there. 'So much for plan O.' He thinks before his attention drifts down to the webbing. Seeing it get pulled away like that was a sight to see, though his attention doesn't linger long with the notepad being put back in place. Rather than answer immediately Zankuro picks himself up first, dusts himself off, and if allowed to redoes his bandolier/giant scroll. "… You did have a point there." He admits with a frown in his voice, then shakes his head. "Alright, well, I'll bid ya good luck then pale giant 'Not that you'll need it' and a good eve.. I guess." Zankuro says before shuffling his way past Sei so he could head back to the entrance. Rather or not he actually does take up the withdrawal offer or not is another story. At the very least, Sei wouldn't have to worry about him for the immediate future.

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