Date: March 24, 2012
Issei is dissatisfied with Odo, and the Hampa's activities, and thus decides that Issei would make a better leader. Thus, the usurpation begins.
Poster's note: Profanity filtered in obvious places.
"It's All About Timing"
It had been what? A couple weeks since the end of the exams? A month now? Odo was recently returning to the Land of Fire to check up on a couple people he had to speak with. His simple backpack was all he brought on this trip with supplies for a simple campsite and a few changes of clothes for a few days. He was a tad traditional in the soldiering idealogy. If you can't shove it into a scroll… throw it on your back- or something like that.
He tossed the pack at the bast of a tree near the waterfall. It was late morning, getting towards midday now with the bright sun high in the sky, beaming through the canopy giving enough light in beams and shafts to light just about everything on the forest floor, even in the thicker areas of foliage above. Near the waterfall, that picturesque monument of nature signifying one's walking distance of half a day from the village, or an hour or so of leaps and bounds through the trees or dashing across the forest floor to get to Konohagakure due east. Odo had already been travelling all day yesterday, and half the night. A stop to catch some food was overdue, but for now he rested by sitting against the tree in the slight shade it could provide with how drearily forebearing the sun was today to expose everything to it's light.
Issei had prepared for this moment. He dilligently planned for it. Said his pseudo-farewells to those whom he could utter them towards… that only being Naru. Nothing was holding him back. It was just like during the Clan Wars. Nothing to lose but one's life. And even that was now turned into something twisted and more sinister than he had thought first. Being the dog of a village was far worse than the shocktrooper of a clan— nay, the meatshield of a clan.
How he learned that Odo was arriving was perhaps questionable, if anyone would later ask themself that same question. Though he had not intended to destroy the man, nor aimed to be destroyed himself— he simply wanted to express his … differing point of view the only way he could know how to get his point across… vividly. Indeed, Issei had under the influence of the village's ideals warped his beliefs to no longer coincide with those that Odo had perhaps in mind for the Remnants, introducing a paradox— a riddle if you will— that could only be solved one way.
The figure of Issei steps out from the nearby foliage, walking with purposeful steps, the light breeze ruffling his cloak and hair for but a moment as he comes to a full stop.
"Greetings, Odo." The youth said, at least well-mannered.
Manners didn't go too far for Odo these days. His usually long temper and lengthy fuse were intact, but propriety just didn't go so far for him as it might most others in positions of leadership, "What do you want, Issei?" He said shortly, getting to the point, or at least not in the mood for smalltalk.
He rested his head against the trunk of the tree, golden eyes looking up at the sunlight peeking through the leaves. So hard to find a good shady spot today.
"Things have changed, Odo. I no longer obey you." Issei said, for once, dismissing his usually carefree and playful demeanor. He was as cold as ice now. Purposeful. Without flaw, at least in conviction and determination.
"I will take over the Hampa and change them." He said, eyes closing.
And then his eyes opened, while they were still turning red and the tomoe each spiralling until they sat into place, fixed on Odo.
Odo turns his head lazily on the trunk. He can hear his hair scritching between the bark and his scalp, but that is overshadowed by his exhale that turns into silent laughter. "Hahahe… heh… Ok. Lead us then… How many members do we have?" Leadership rule #1- know your people, don't let your people know each other in non-legal operations.
"It doesn't matter. It is not the members that make the Hampa. It is their will and their dedication. If their will cannot be directed towards preventing unnecessary bloodshed, then their will has no place in Hampa. I am tired of losing people important to me."
He pressed his hands together in a focusing seal and said, eyes cold and distant, "Naru and Ryo must never see war again. Neither must Yuna, my sister." He finally lowers his hands, "Are you going to resist or comply peacefully?"
Odo's knack for quirking people off this week was epic. First his sister for being away for so long, then his brother for almost revealing some… stuff that might get him ostricized or outcast, and now Issei… for no apparent reason. "Ok-" Odo started, pushing his hands behind him to stand slowly with a bit of a grunt, "If you want it, take it. If you have no knowledge of who is in the group, then it's only a name. And a name never made or broke a group. So if it's the group I lead you want to take over, you need to know who holds membership and where all the pieces fall on the goh board before you can make any moves at all."
On his hip was his sword, still not drawn, and arms across his chest. No defiant posture, but not relenting anything openly to his now-enemy Uchiha.
Issei watched Odo dispassionately and said, "I know Hiroshi." He shrugged his shoulders lightly, "But even so, Odo, you fail to understand the paradox woven into my being. It is not the leadership, I covet. It is the fact that I believe you lead us on a path against my wishes."
He licked his lips, "And if I can't change the Hampa…"
"Endan." Issei said, and then unleashed a huge mass of burning oil towards Odo in a jet of furious flames.
"Then I will unmake it."
"Embers on the Wind." He finished with blowing out embers and thick smoke at Odo.
"Un- make..?" The jet of flame was too quick for him to react in his slightly sleepy state. But before something else could come out and get him, he was quickly behind the tree and embers and smoke billowed around him in a 'V' shape. "Oh come on, you don't even know who would succeed me after I'm gone."
Rule #2: Always have a second in command who knows the who, and the what. The why will come later.
Odo looked down at his feet, and smiled, still talking from his slightly guarded position, "So you think you can unmake an entire organization? First you'd have to torture me into telling you everyone involved.. that could take weeks, or even decades!" At his feet was a large rock. Perfect size.
Odo reached down, palmed it by the top point, and leaned around the tree to hurtle it towards Issei, leaping out from his 'hiding spot' as he did so, landing on the water's calm surface as this was a small part of the lake, not directly connected to the larger lake that drinks from the waterfall day and night.
"So even if someone succeeds you, what guarantees that they will know who removed you? They will fall the same way you are. And I doubt he could be much stronger than…" Suddenly, in mid speech, Issei disappears from his spot, only to reappear above Odo, "YOU!" He shouted out in a voice, one could say no doubt revealed his true nature. Some kind of merciless battle freak.
He'd kick down at Odo, and whether he hits or not, throw a windmill shuriken at/after Odo, already slipping into handseals.
"Just face it. This is the end. STATIC CLOUD."
Odo deftly (if not impossibly close call) dodges the three attacks, each in succession, ending again with Odo moving a large distance to get out of the way of the cloud. He was finding himself oddly remembering his battle with Tessen, and some of the moves were vaguely familiar.
Odo stands up straight, closing his eyes and breathing deep for a moment, then opening his eyes afterward. Issei's sharingan would see a good bit of chakra flowing about Odo. Invisible to the naked/normal eye, but sharingan and byakugan and techniques of the like would know that Odo had something going on at the moment. "Yes, they would be weaker than me. But, wouldn't that make your challenge a valid succession of power?" His hand played at the hilt of his sword, fingers wrapping around the handle as he stepped forward, the water beneath his landing foot rippling out calmly, a vast chasm between that calm and the rage of chakra surging around and through his body as his sword sang it's sultry song of metal on metal as it drew from it's dark bedded sheath. Like a maiden longing for her lover's embrace. ONly this lady's preferred love- the belly of his opponent.
Rule #3- Go for it with everything, or go home with nothing.
"Let's see how much you know, Uchiha Issei."
Issei considered his opponent for a long, long, minute. The realization he came to was somewhat ironic and startling. "I am gonna need more firepower, huh?" He asked as he put his hands together into a focusing seal, stamina be cursed.
"Well, I suppose you have a point there, Odo. I wouldn't call it a succession of power though. Just asserting my will over someone else's." He smirks, and tries to bait some answer out of Odo, "But, considering that you may actually win, why not tell me, exactly what were you planning with the Hampa anyway? I like details. My ears were always privvy to the forbidden."
Odo smirks, seeing the vie for information. "Well, we like to help our members to their own ends, as well as those of the group at large, which is a culmination of all members ideals." In a moment, Odo was finished drawing his sword, his clothes still smoking from Issei's initial attack of oil and flame, the oils puffing into small flames every now and again. "But specifics, I'll tell you after I cut off your ears." Odo's blade would nearly dissappear as a loud cracking sound would aftershock after the two deft swings. Once towards the Uchiha's chest at an angle, and the second in a downward slash at Issei's left thigh.
There are things far more useless than ears! Well, no ears make you look plain stupid and ugly; So Issei managed to at least catch the blow with his shoulder at such an angle, which would no doubt leave a long scar across his entire left torso.
"My ears? You are…" He inhaled, "MISTAKEN!" He shouted out as he unleashed another jet of black oily fire at Odo, but this time, he mixed it up with something else— Watching where Odo may or may not dodge, Issei followed through with his attacks, using bolts of lightning shot at his opponent at critical moments between steps.
"But in the end, you are saying that all of us desire conflict?" His eyes were lancing fury.
Odo quickly maneuvered out of the way of the oily flames, and in his last steps out of the way of the lightning, one hits him in the shoulder, causing his arm to spasm and tense, then relax and tense again many times in a few moments. He could feel the burn of the lightning on his skin, and he grins. "Ahh, lightning. A long lost friend of mine."
"Conflict? No. Power, yes." Odo launches his sword past Issei. A diversionary tactic with how close he threw it at him, but that wasn't ever meant to connect. Odo's speed would close the distance quickly, and his good arm to Issei's throat, in a chokeslam backwards towards a tree behind the other young man. Odo would try to throw him with all his might into the tree he could muster with the one good arm he has now, the other hanging limp at his side at the moment.
This wasn't going as Issei had expected. Sure, he figured out that Odo had some way to augment his strength, but this turned into far outside his expectations. To top it off, Taijutsu. Issei hated Taijutsu with a burning passion for the lack of exploiting it had. Fire nor Lightning could provide an edge against it.
"GAAH" Issei managed to crackle out as Odo caught him in the chokehold and went to slam him into the tree behind.
This reminded of Issei how he and Odo first met. Odo threw him through a train. Fun times.
"Gaining power on the expense of the defenseless is cowardly!" He'd squeeze out eventually as he's slammed into the tree.
Odo stands over Issei after landing in front of him now slightly imbedded into the tree trunk. Odo removes his sword from the living wood, and imbeds it into Issei's shoulder. Only flesh, nothing completely damaging. "We expend the powerful who exploit power over the defenseless. The villages that promise such tranquil protection in return for mindless servitude and death. I'll not have that."
In winning, Odo tipped his hand of purpose to the other teen male.
A slicing sound when he removes his sword, and steps back, sticking his sword in the ground, and his once limp hand coming up to a grimacing formation of seals, and a huge column of water would rise from behind him in a pummelling arc towards Issei. Odo wasn't relenting.
Rule #5- Don't stop hitting it, stabbing it, or otherwise beating it until it stops moving, breathing, bubbling, or otherwise showing signs of conciousness.
"You're lying!" Issei yelled at Odo, but whether he was heard or not was left debatable as the Waterspout smashed into the spot where he was— and where he stayed during the assault.
When all was said and done, the by now badly beaten Issei was holding on with more conviction than stamina, and also wondering of Odo's stamina. He hadn't seen a single focusing seal from him. Just how much more can he endure? Doesn't matter, he'd just need to keep him moving.
"Why are we waiting then, if that is the case? If we are against this so called 'power', why aren't we there to cripple Kirigakure or some other powers who swallow the defenseless for resources!? We do nothing!" He yells out forming a handseal, "I've seen this before."
Issei fades from view only to reappear around Odo in quick succession, lashing out with kicks and punches of various types. "You will just wait and pick the remains."
Odo just shook his head at Issei's aggression, and answered in the midst of attacks, "It's all about- timing!" And with the third of attacks from the Uchiha, Odo attempted to strike him and knock him out of his speedy attacks. It didn't work. Odo took the brunt of that shot in the chest. He slid backwards in the dirt, and grabbed his sword when he stopped. Great placement, yes?
"It's all.." a couple coughs. Maybe Odo was weakening! ".. timing."
He raised his sword above his head, and brought it down in a cleaving manner with a leap at Issei. The reverberating sound was deafening to anyone that could hear it. Rumor has it if it hits you then you never hear it.
Hear what? All I hear is ringing in my ears.
Possibly what Issei would have said if that was a real question. Real question was, if Issei had more questions or taunts or aggressions to alleviate via Odo. Timing, Odo says.
Maybe Issei was wrong? He wouldn't bloody admit it, so the point was mostly moot. And this wasn't some spar in which Issei could just lift his hands up and say 'I forfeit'. Nor a situation where he could just go 'Oh, sorry, mom's calling.'
"Heard that line too many times before!" Issei yells out, coughing significantly more than Odo. Honestly. Even smoke was coming out of his mouth from fire jutsu turning bad. A barrage of Lightning should be the next one to take the spotlight anyway.
"I am tired of waiting, Odo. Suppose I can reconcile with the paradox— it would require action." Half of Issei was disagreeing with him for not remaining steadfast, but the other half was citing facts as reasons, facts like 'this is acceptable' and.. oh, right 'I can't defeat him.'
But 'I can't defeat him' never stopped an Uchiha before!
The white-haired swordsman evades all of the oncoming attacks from Issei. "Suppose…" he pauses, stepping forward and rears back his right arm, the one that hasn't been hit with any direct attacks yet, dropping his sword as he lifted his arm, "…I knocked some sense into that little paradox of yours, and you deal with logic instead!" And he would come down with two viscious shots. One to Issei's stomach, and the last to his jaw, trying to end this whole thing, but now it looks like killing is off the menu.
Issei was too beaten up to actually come up with anything smart to say, much less even evade the first blow, which would inevitably spur on some survival instict to cause him to get out of there fast.
"I need time to think." The youth said, and there was no mistaking it— he was no longer an enemy. There was something chillily honest in that voice. If he had said 'I will kill you' in that same tone, there would be very little hidden of any agendas. Just plain truth. So, with that said, he never reappeared in the vicinity again. Just left. Possibly to collapse somewhere and cry in pain for the next… oh… four hours.