Kumo Kadets - Part 1


Rockpath (emitter), Hanami, Rangiku

Date: July 29, 2015


Rangiku and Hanami are sent to check and see if there could possibly be more students sent to Kumogakure!

"Kumo Kadets - Part 1"

Land of Lightning

Kumogakure has been losing shinobi left and right! Well, not really. But between the Silence and the Recluse and 'The Usual Suspects', there have been a lot of deaths and disappearances. Which is precisely why it has been decided that it might be a good idea to send people to recruit younger folks into the shinobi village. Maybe offer them a free ride or see what the polls say. To get the message spread out quickly, two of the faster member in Kumogakure have been summoned to take on this particular mission: Reizei Rangiku and Shinatobe Hanami.

Hanami gets the summons, and is pretty pleased with it. Not really sure if she'll be that great with trying to get kids interested but she can at least talk to them hopefully… Anyway she suits up and heads out to the front gates to meet up for the mission.

"Really? I have to head out to a mission? What a drag. Why did you have to get me up so early foooooorr." Rangiku whines. 'It's not early, it's 3 pm.' "that's what I said…it's EARLY!" Rangiku staggers to the front entrance very unprofessional-like. She yawns widely, carrying something that looks like a meat bun and a drink as walks towards the entrance. She waves the meat bun towards Hanami…..and promptly trips on her own feet, landing on her face. The bun doesn't get dirty nor does she spill her drink.
This is a promising start to a mission.

A generic Chuunin stands at the gates with a scroll. He glances between the two and sighs inwardly. Were these two gonna make it? Oh well. "We're going to be traveling to the villages in sector E today. All four of them. They're all between ten and twenty miles apart, so we have to move quickly," he explains. "When we get to a village, we'll spend time talking to the people there. About an two hours. Then we'll move onto the next village. We need to keep travel under an hour. We should finish quickly, though, with your speed. Ready?"

Hanami watches Rangiku approach and sighs herself, "Come on…be professional." But she knows enough of the girl to know she's capable so she'll give her the benefit of the doubt that she'll be on her best behavior when it counts. For now she just listens to the chuunin and nods, "No problem, promise. Okay then. Rangiku get with it and lets go." She loosens her limbs, and when the chuunin is ready sets off at a good pace. Fast, but not pushing herself since it wouldn't do any good to exhaust herself before they were done.

Rangiku is able to dust herself off as the Chuunin explains things, and continues eating her meatbun. She's able to finish it when the Chuunin starts off. 'Hey Waita….." She then downs the rest of her drink……and belches loudly. "Never mind." and she takes off after the Chuunin and Hanami. Of course, she's a Reizei, she's fast…….fast enough to keep up.

The Chuunin glances between the two, then nods and takes off. Noticing that Hanami and Rangiku are right on his heels, he seems to nod lightly in approval, then continues forth. It doesn't take long for the team to get to their destination, either, as it's only nine miles away from Kumogakure. They apparently are heading north and east until they reach the first village. "Okay. This village doesn't give us many shinobi, usually. Mostly because they want as many of their kids to help with village life. So it'll take some work to convince them, I think."

Hanami keeps an easy pace behind the chuunin as they go along. Slowing down as they approach the first village she listens in and nods, "Okay, makes sense. Do you have any suggestions? I'll admit I haven't really done this kinda thing before. Well, the closest I got was awhile ago going on a mission to a village to just talk with the kids and villagers, do a little self-defense training thing. Was to reassure them we shinobi were still there helping protect the villages and stuff after the prison break. This will be kinda different, obviously." She glances over at Rangiku, to see if she has any questions to add or maybe suggestions to help with the mission.

"I have like….a question or something." Rangiku says as they slow. "Why not just show them how awesome a shinobi can be?" She says before gesturing to Hanami. "Case in point. Plus, they all look up to the Raikage or some such. Why not tell them he's a shinobi?" She then covers a yawn. yeah, she just ran 6 miles and she's yawning. Friggin Reizei.

"Because we have to convince the parents, too," Generic-Chuunin replies with a soft sigh. "So let's get to it. You guys can convince the kids, and I'll work on the parents. Hopefully we can get more students this time around." The Chuunin then walks casually into the village, which doesn't seem to have guards set up. A lot of younger kids that are perfect in terms of when most join the academy are all playing while a lot of kids that look to be Hanami's age are all working hard with running small farms.

Hanami just gives the Chuunin a nod, then looks to Rangiku, "Well, honestly I would hope if they're educated enough they'd know the Raikage is a shinobi too. But we can't just wow them with coolness. These are a hard working, down to earth folk. Plus the parents have to be convinced as well. Hopefully though we can do both," she smiles then follows into the town, eyeing both the young kids and the teens for their reactions.

"They are. And they're hard working, so they'd make great shinobi. It's all about convincing them it's cool. Telling them it's hard work is boring to them, since they do that on a daily basis. Just need to convince them that it's cool to protect their village, and some of the things they could do is cool." She says looking towards the teens and young kids. "Besides…we're not much older than they are….or I'm not." She says cinching her belt a little tighter around her sword. "hey guys!" She says waving to the teens and kids.

As expected, perhaps, the younger children pretty much stop what they're doing to go and run up to these approaching shinobi. "ooh! Who're you?" "They have forehead protectors. They're prolly shinobi." "Oh, wow!" The older kids look on with shakes of their heads and they continue going about their work. A few might come over, but only to watch over obviously-younger siblings. In the meantime, generic Chuunin goes wandering around the village to talk to different parents he comes across.

Hanami smiles warmly to the kids, waving as she moves over in that direction after Rangiku greets then, "Hi there, I'm Shinatobi Hanami. And yes, my friend and I are shinobi, good eye. Are you kids having fun, keeping busy? And it looks like you guys are really working hard I'm impressed." Clearly the first is addressed to the kids, the second to the any of the older teens that came over.

Hanami smiles warmly to the kids, waving as she moves over in that direction after Rangiku greets then, "Hi there, I'm Shinatobi Hanami. And yes, my friend and I are shinobi, good eye. Are you kids having fun, keeping busy? And it looks like you guys are really working hard I'm impressed." Clearly the first is addressed to the kids, the second to the any of the older teens that came over.

Rangiku lets Hanami talk to the kids as they come up and smiles to them, a brilliant smile, and she tries to remain approachable. She looks over towards the older kids and gives them a smirk. "nothing like little brothers and sisters checking the shinobi, hmm?"

The teens narrow their eyes a bit at Rangiku. "You're not welcome here. You should go," one says. He doesn't look like the oldest, but there's definitely some sort of authoritive air about him. "You're not wanted here," he states. "We need everyone here for the village." Another, female, looks to Hanami and nods. "Yeah. It's getting close to planting season, so we need to work the ground. I'm really glad, because it's always worrisome having enough feed for the animals." The kids sort of clamber around both kunoichi and seem cheerful. "What do you do?" "Do you fight bad guys?" "What's being a shinobi like?" "I heard that one of you /died/!"

Hanami glances at one who spoke harshly to Rangiku, but keeps her attention on the female and kids, nodding, "I lived up in the mountains before…well before I became a shinobi and eventually made my way to Kumogakure. It wasn't the easiest at time, everyone worked in some form or other. Is it hard getting enough to feel the animals because of the land or some other reason?" Meanwhile she smiles to the kids, "I train, working hard at developing my skills so I can become better. And while I do that I go on missions and try and help the people of not only Kumo and the surround villages but also the whole Land of Lightning. Being a shinobi can be a lot of fun, but also a lot of work. You guys clearly are familiar with that I can tell, tough group," her smile flickers at the mention of someone dying, pausing before finally nodding, "Yes. I'm surprised you heard of that. But yes, she died fighting the bad guys and defending people like you and me."

"Funny." Rangiku says to the teen. "If everyone stayed where they were, there would be no one to defend the villages against raiders." She then looks to the little ones and smiles. "Yes she does. I do too." She then looks over towards the crops and tilts her head. "I wonder something. If you have more people here, it means more hands for the crops. I'll admit that, but wouldn't it also means a greater strain on your food sources when winter hits? So, let some of them join the academy if they want during the winter months. It won't be as big of a strain on your resources, and they could come back, if they wish, and defend the village, while helping with the crops."
She then turns towards the little ones. "What Hanami said. I'm Reizei Rangiku. It can be a lot of fun, but also a lot of work, but it can also be very rewarding."

The youth grits his teeth. "You know what I mean," he says hotly, frowning at Rangiku. Her retort seems to startle him. "Uhh… I mean, we always do fine during the winter. We can kill our animals if we really have to. But merchants come up, and we grow plenty." The other kids who seem distracted by Hanami seem to approve of her story and explanation and nod. "It was big news," says a younger boy. "The Hebisuuhai don't live too far from us. So it's easy to catch word." He points in the direction of the clan's mountain. Then says, "I wanna become a ninja, but my parents don't want me to go." Another kid pipes up, "I don't wanna die. Even if it's because I'm defending people. You can go die if you want, Baka."

Hanami nods to the kids, "I see, well that makes sense. Hmm, well I imagine your parents are worried for your safety, it's understandable. I'm sure they care about you all a great deal. A lot of shinobi come from parents just like that, who worry about them too. You have that in common as well." The other kid gets a curious look from her, though she keeps her true feeling, that his comment annoyed her just a bit, from her face, "Now that's not very nice to say. There's nothing wrong with not wanting to die. We shinobi don't want to die either, we just understand the possibility is there like anything else. Your farm work carries with it several risks as well; accidents with tools, equipment, wild animals, all those kinds of things can cause someone's death." She looks up to the older kids after giving the young ones an encouraging smile; especially the one who spoke up about wanting to be a ninja. To the older kids she addresses,
"Now have you thought about how useful some ninja skills can be to your work here? Aside from being trained so you can better defend your village? I've been helping many shinobi help rebuild parts of Kumo, most using earth jutsus to help rebuild or move debris. You hoe the fields, water the crops, all of that. Think about how much easier it would be with certain jutsus applied. You'd be able to get more crop, help harvest it quicker, all that," she pauses for a moment, "And many shinobi like to return to their home villages. While there of course are many in Kumo, several shinobi go back home, at least for part of the time, to help out. Some of you could easily return and help with the farming and defense of the village. My mother was like that, returning home and yet still being a shinobi for the land. But only if you want of course, there's nothing wrong with not wanting to be a shinobi either. I have great respect for what you do here, it's tough work," she nods, then quiets realizing how much she had talked.

"Hanami has the right idea. If you like something, at least take a step in the direction. That's what the academy's for. If you ultimately don't like it, you can return here, and make use of your ninja training here. Defending the village and using your skills in the fields is just as noble as defending the land of Lightning from major threats. The question is simple: Does giving food to your village and to the rest of the villages appeal more, or defending the villages from threats like bandits and raiders. Or even helping rebuild?"
She then looks towards the 'nasty' teen. "And there are times where Shinobi come back to the farms, and actually become better workers. We are simply offering a choice here, but it's always to follow a dream." And she stares VERy pointedly at the hostile teen…the one who said they aren't welcome there, before turning back to Hanami.

A few of the kids seem to nod in agreement. Only the one teen isn't standing down… And he really probably won't. But a number of kids, specifically the older ones, seem to at least be swayed to the shinobis' words. Eventually, the generic Chuunin returns looking relieved. "Well, it looks like they'll keep an open mind after those negotiations. How did things go on your end? Tell me when we make our next stop," he requests, already moving to the exit of the village. The kids have long-since disappeared for dinner so that only the teenagers remained by the time the Kumo-nin had to move on. "This next village will be our last stop for the day. Then we'll get up early for the last three villages tomorrow." he notes before heading off.

Hanami smiles kindly at the kids and teens, wishing them well and good luck as they run off to their homes. She can't help a bit of sadness in her gaze but eventually she dampens it down and trots after the Chuunin, "Sounds like a good idea to me." Once on the way she picks up speed again and takes off, looking back to Rangiku, "You did great, I think you really helped them." Then it's more running!

"Meh…that one teen strikes me as the village bully, and probably thinks he can tell people what they can do since he's the oldest." Rangiku says softly as she takes off right after everyone else. She's really fast for even a genin. But it fits a member of the reizei clan. it also fits their laziness to a point. Full speed and near stop seem to be the only speeds that they go for.

The Chuunin stops outside a village that even further north from the last village, looking around a tad warily. It was getting dark. The sun was practically set. "Let's head in. Everyone's probably at the tavern, and no kid is going to be traveling outside their home. Try and gather information and see who all seems to be the most supportive of Kumo. Finding who hates our village won't be bad, either. I'll be speaking to the village elder for now."

Hanami nods, "Sounds good. The kids seemed to listen to us at the last village which was a start at least. Lets see how we do here with the townsfolk." With that she moves into the village, looking around to see the village, keep an eye out since she caught the Chuunin's wary look, and find the tavern. When she does she'll head inside, taking a moment to assess the crowd, smiling lightly.

Rangiku stays with Hanami to head into the tavern. However, she's not old enough to drink, nor would she want to. She looks about once in the tavern, remembering the Chuunin's words and starting to head for the bar….ordering a tea, if she can.

As the two kunoichi get used to their surroundings, they would eventually be able to pick out snippets of conversation. Specifically, though, they might start focusing on a conversation between a young man and an older man. "-i. I think they deserve to choose their own path. /We/ deserve to choose our own path. /I/ don't want to stay here for the rest of my life." "And I don't want to see this village deserted!" snaps the older man, looking to be in his forties. Which is pretty old. "We still need to keep this village running. Regardless of slow business. We-" "Yes, you say that /all/ the time. 'We've only hit a small rut'! Well, it's lasted for the past /five/ /months/!"

Hanami wanders through, picking up the conversation but acting like she didn't and taking a roundabout way to the bar. She orders a tea as well if she can, finding a seat and greeting anyone who does the same in a kind manner. Still trying to inconspicously listen to the young and older man, she decides to take a gamble. Using just a bit of chakra she lets it out mixed with the air floating around the tavern to pick up on other stray conversations.

Not quite as skilled in using chakra, Rangiku turns her head a bit, and sips at her tea. "Sounds like it could be interesting, whether we interfere or not." She says getting another sip of her tea.

The two men look like they're about to go to blows when the bartender roars, "OUT! You two have been fighting in this tavern for a week now, on and off. If you're not out in the next five minutes, I'll have your hides!" The two duck their heads and mutter an apology to the bartender out of respect for him, then they both vacate the premises.

Hanami listens, not really picking up anything else of note around. Thinking she'd have to start asking around which really wasn't her forte, suddenly the bartender is yelling at the two to leave. She looks at Rangiku, "One or both of us head after them?"

"Both of us. Come on." Rangiku says downing the rest of her tea and heading out after the pair, with or without Hanami. Of course, the one with the sword can look pretty menacing at nighttime….not that she wants to.

Well, now instead of the two men fighting indoors, they are fighting outdoors! Fortunately, it's still verbal, and their voices are hushed so as not to disturb others. How considerate. "No, you're not going to the Hidden Village, and that's that." "You're not in charge of me anymore, I have my own family!" "That's why you aren't going! You can't just abandon them like that." "I'm going to /protect/ them. And if I get proper training, at least I won't die." "Mhmm… I'll be sure to tell them that while I make your coffin."

Hanami nods to Rangiku and follows her out as quietly as possible. Once outside she eyes the fighting pair and tries to keep back enough to hopefully not be observed yet. But she keeps herself ready to go at a moment's notice if things turn physical between the two. If one were to pay attention, the dust around her feet would start to stir faintly, though most would just assume it's a trick of the wind.

"You are just about the most negative person I have run across." Rangiku says as she strides her way ahead of Hanami so she can remain hidden from them. "I'd say pardon me for intruding upon your argument, but the bar could hear your argument the entire time you were in there. Allow me to add in my two cents to keep you bulls from ramming your heads together until you both knock each other unconcious. First…." She turns towards the older gentleman. "From what it sounds like, it IS his choice. Let him make it. For all you know, he might go through the academy…..and return home to help out. And from what I heard, sure, there's dry spells, some are longer than most. That's when you put out feelers to see where the markets are going, or WHY your market has gone dry. If everyone stays in one place, what's the point of getting out of bed in the morning."
She then turns to the younger gentleman. "As for you….one simple question….what's so bad about this village? Sure, things seem more glamorous in the the hidden village, but this village has it's uses too, unless there's something coming that's causing you distress?"
Yeah, Rangiku got wordy……has hell frozen over?

The two men stare openly when Rangiku comes over and gives them a stern talking to. In fact, they seem so surprised that they can't even answer. "…" "…" Then the pair both shake their heads and growl at the same time, "Mind your own business." They then glare at each other. Almost like they were twins. They're remarkably close in appearance, really. "Hmph," says the younger one, and he stalks away like that's the answer to the question.

Hanami hmms, well that's one way. When the younger man stalks off she peers at Rangiku and the old man then slips off after him, "Excuse me, sorry. My friend can be direct, she has a point though and means well. We're shinobi, which is why we were curious about your uh…argument. Your father I imagine? You seem pretty determined to go become a shinobi. Is it just because you want to learn how to defend your family and village, or something more?" Her tone is pleasant and casual, hoping not to set him off and close him up.

Rangiku looks over towards the younger one before looking back towards the older man. "You should come over and listen to his reasons before writing them off. You'll get your say too, but I'd like you both to speak, then think about each other's points. It'd be better than just yelling over top of each other." She says walking over towards Hanami.

The older man shakes his head to Rangiku. "No. He needs to think on his own for the time being." Then he turns and starts walking away while the younger man talks to Hanami. "Yeah. He stopped me when I was younger because he wanted me to take over the family business. Coffin-making. I'd rather not… But…" He sighs. "And being a shinobi… I would rather be one. Or at least let my kid have a chance to be one. But he's still supportive of our '5-child' law." Meaning only five kids get sent to Kumo's academy from this village. "And I doubt my son will be able to even get a chance."

Hanami listens quietly until he's done, "Only five? How come only five get to go? Is it just to keep from more kids attending? Is your son really interested in being a shinobi as well?" She scratches her cheek, "Sorry, for all the questions I'm just curious. I'll admit I don't get out as much to learn about the surrounding villages, which makes this a good experience. Are the reasons so few are allowed to go because the villagers wish to keep people here to work in the village then? Are people kept from leaving even if they aren't wanting to go become a shinobi?"

"You're missing out on listening to people other than yourself talk." Rangiku says before she looks over towards the younger man. "Coffin making? Ouch." She then chuckles to Hanami. "It sounds like there's a reason why it was made into a law." She then looks to the younger man. "Could you explain?"

The older man continues to walk away, disappearing into his house. The younger man looks a bit surprised that Hanami doesn't know. Then again, she's young. She probably didn't read up on all the ins and outs of the village. "We have a rule that only 5 children per year can go. This is to both make those selected feel special, should they not wish to go, and to limit the number of people going to train as a shinobi. Before the rule, we had so many kids want to sign up. And we had so many kids that hated the idea of joining the village." Back when it was under old management. Just after the clan wars. "It was weird. So we implemented the system."

Hanami thinks, "So you limit the number of kids to make them feel special, over the other kids? I mean I guess those that have the talent for becoming shinobi do in a sense become special over those that can't. But that's no different than someone who has the talent for ship building, or cooking, or whatever over someone else. I don't know, seems like putting the focus on these select kids to make them feel special just hurts the ones that don't make it more than if you just allowed the kids who were interested to go and try whether they succeeded or not, or changed their minds."
She frowns, "I'm sorry, I'm not trying to criticize the way you do things. I'm just of the mind that those that are interested should be given the chance. I mean if the kids don't want to go, then they don't have to. If they try and find out it isn't for them, that's fine too. For me, I wasn't interested at first though I received some training from my parents who were shinobi. Things changed, my mind changed, but I made that decision." She sighs, then bites her lip, "Do you think people here would be against shinobi visiting the village, to see what kids were interested or not? And maybe even given them some rudimentary training while they still stayed home? Or maybe something to think about, those that want to go but can't probably cause trouble. Wouldn't it be best if they were allowed to leave and thus not cause trouble for the village?"

"It's true. The ones that are interested should be allowed to go, while the ones that aren't should be allowed to stay." Rangiku says with a shrug. "When I first started at the academy, I didn't want to be there. It was 'family tradition' for the Reizei clan. Now? I'm starting out and trying to convince others to help out, either by joining the academy and becoming Shinobi themselves, or preventing threats to the entire land like the Recluse. It sounds like an old law that makes the elders select who should go and who should stay."

The younger man simply shrugs and says, "Tradition is weird. It's late. I should go." That's not much of an answer, but hey.. The moon is pretty high in the sky by now, and it's obvious that people are less likely to talk. The Chuunin would have mentioned a hotel for Hanami and Rangiku to stay in, so they would likely make their way to that place to take the rest of the night off! So far, mission - interesting. Who knows what the next day will hold?

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