Michiko (emitter), Yori
Date: July 20, 2015
Michiko and Yori go to investigate who on earth attempted to kidnap Yori! Because they picked the wrong Saito.
"Kumo's Kidnappers - "Yori's” Capture"
Land of Lightning
Dirt Path [Land of Lightning]
The road here thins and grows smaller, no longer paved. As it continues its winding path through the short stubbly grass of the plains the mountains grow closer in the distance. The path crosses no streams, no rivers, and it has very little in the way of game. It is a almost deserted path, one which few people seem to travel.
To the west lays the large plains at the end of the Land of Fire, and to the north and the east lays the massive mountains of the Land of Lightning. They are very forboding, and rather ominous. At almost all times of the year they have large clouds around them, giving it a forbidding look.
So those kidnappers decided not to show themselves at the party the local Landholder was all anxious about. But maybe there was a reason for that? Michiko had called Yori off of the mission the other day, getting the Saito himself before the team had gone off to the ball. She stood waiting at the entrance of the village early the next day, like she had told Yori she would, and double checks that the horses are all ready. Yori gets one that's fairly standard to Kumo while Michiko has a smaller-looking horse by the name of Roadblock. Her own horse thanks to her sensei. The day was cold right now, with it being so early, and she couldn't help but let out puffs of air to watch her breath mist in the cold.
The Saito had had plenty of time to prepare since he didn't have to go on that other mission, and so prepare he had. Now that the time had arrived Yori had set out to meet Michiko at the gates, bowing deeply to the Jounin once he arrives there. "Good morning Michiko-san." He offers in greeting before moving to the extra horse and grabbing the reins.
Michiko smiles a bit, though her eyes are a tad troubled. "Yori-san," she greets. "We should get going. I'll tell you about the mission while we move." She hops onto her horse and waits for Yori to join her before the two go thundering off towards the southwest border. "Apparently, there's a group in the Land of Lightning that are trying to take down the administration one by one. They started by kidnapping me, but they've been keeping quiet since then." Which might explain why the Saito hasn't heard anything through reports. "We have reason to believe they struck again, though. One of our Chuunin, a Saito with a similar name to yours, was kidnapped. They probably thought it was you, which implies that the people we're working with don't have pictures." But they're still crafty enough to take out a Chuunin.
Yori mounts up when Michiko does, nudging his horse to follow after the Jounin. As he listens to what she has to say he frowns deeply, his own eyes looking trouble at that. Someone from his own clan had been taken, and even worse it was probably because of him in it's own roundabout way. Yori shakes his head sadly as he looks back to Michiko, "Where was this clan mate taken from? Does anyone have any information?"
"We're going to where he last was seen. A smaller village on the western border," Michiko replies. "We should get there in an hour. Keep watch, too, though. Bandits might try and attack us." Because bandits have the worst timing. "All that we know is yesterday he was returning from a completed mission. He should have been back, but he's not. Those who looked around found his equipment tossed to the side where fighting occurred."
Yori looks grim as he listens to the report and he slowly nods, eyes on the road ahead of them instead of looking at Michiko. It really wasn't all that pleasant and he was doing his best to not show the stress he feels at having someone taken from his clan. "Did no one see anything? Did it maybe have something to do with the mission he had been on? Maybe someone didn't like him doing it?"
"I'm not sure why simple talking to the Village Elder would set anyone off. It's possible that it's mission related, but we can't be sure until this is dealt with. If we find the kidnappers, we're taking at least one man prisoner." Then she falls silent, mulling over the information she has, trying to come up with reasons why and the like. The journey for the pair would be a quiet one, at least, and the two would find themselves at the village in short order.
Yori stayed silent as well after the information had been divulged. There really wasn't much else to do until they arrived at the village. He went through every possible scenario in his mind while they traveled, picking apart everything that he could come up with. But in the end there was simply too many unknowns to narrow it down in even the slightest. He couldn't do anything but wait.
Michiko stays near the village entrance, hopping down from Roadblock and going over to Yori. "We can split up. Ask around the village and see if you can pick up anything. I'll talk to the Village Elder and the guards and see if they know anything we can use. We'll reconvene here." Michiko pauses to get an affirmation, then she turns to the gates and starts talking to the guards. Most of her questions, should Yori pause to listen in, were the standard, 'Have you let in anyone unusual within the past month?' sort of questions.
Yori dismounts, leaving the horse there before following Michiko into the village. When she goes off to talk to the guards and Elder he moves off towards the market area whichi should be open by this time. He tries to find anyone in the older state of life since they tend to gossip a bit more. Mostly for the moment he just walks slowly through the market and tries to keep his eyes and ears open.
"No, I haven't seen him since yesterday, when that young ninja came into town. I think he was quite taken by his adventures, though. He kept pestering that ninja with a million questions, remember?" says one old lady to another. The shop tending lady started to pack up some bags of veggies. "I wonder where he went. He was turning into a good helper. A month ago, he couldn't tell a bean from a Brussel sprout."
Michiko hmms softly at the guard. "Alright…" she says with a nod. "Thank you for the information." Of which there was nothing useful. Time to go to the elder. The girl makes her way to the house pointed out by the guard and knocks a few times, waiting for the Elder to come out. Which he does! And Michiko starts asking him questions, too.
Yori catches what the two ladies said and he moves over towards them before bowing deeply to them, "Excuse me for interrupting. I'm Saito Yorishiro, from Kumogakure. You'll have to forgive me but I overheard what you said about someone who was new to your village not long ago? Might I ask who it was?" He gives the women as much of an innocent, sweet boy look as he can as he waits to hear what they have to say.
The ladies pause when Yori comes over, their heads tilting. "Are you related to that ninja that came in? He said his name was Saito Yorushiro." The other woman, the one bagging groceries, says, "He called himself 'Nox', with no last name. A bit of a strange one, as he was always so jumpy at first. He calmed down, though. I thought he could take over my shop, he was such a good helper."
"Yes, the other Saito was my clan cousin," Yori says, bowing his head. "We are looking for him at the moment. He failed to report back to the village." He pauses for a moment as uncertain emotions come over him before he finally looks back up again. "I fear he may have been taken by someone in the village, most likely someone who hasn't been around long. It could be this 'Nox' you speak of. Could you possibly give me a description of him? Do you happen to know where he went?"
"That doesn't sound like him," one of the ladies comments while the other has a deep frown. "Well, he has dark hair. It's cropped close to his head, and it's fuzzy to touch now." She had given him a haircut recently. "He's about average height and he was wearing a brown cloak over his clothes." Hopefully that helps? "He also had a sword with him, but he didn't seem to be able to use it well. Much more efficient with a shovel."
"Did he have any identifying marks, perhaps? A scar on his face or arms, or maybe a birthmark?" Best to make sure they hunt for the right person after all. "Or anything that might set him aside from other people? Perhaps his eyes were a strange color?" Yori looks between the two woman before his eyes move to the goods the one is selling. "Is that…fresh kale, in this season?" She must have a greenhouse or something! "I, um, will take a bundle as well." Doesn't help to buy something when getting information after all.
"It is!" the woman says, beaming with pride. "I grew it myself! The garden is a bit hard to maintain in this old body, but I do my best," she says, bustling around to get Yori a bundle. The customer lady hmms a bit. "I think he had some marks. There were some I remember on his side, like the skin was eaten away." Acid? "Quite horrendous, but he didn't seem affected by it after a few weeks of rest."
Yori watches the lady as she gets his kale ready to go, then looks back to the customer and nods slightly. "Ahh, I see. That might help us in finding him. We just need to ask him a few questions. IF you happen to see him again please send a message to me at Kumogakure. I'll be happy to pay for any costs and do whatever else I possibly can as well." He bows to the two ladies once he's paid for his kale and taken it, "Thank you both for your time." With that he turns to meet back up with Michiko at the gates.
Michiko stands at the gate as she waits for Yori, and she smiles faintly. "Shopping? What did you buy?" she asks curiously. "And did you find anything of interest?" They probably found out the same information, but having the same story can confirm things. As the pair talk, Michiko sends a pulse of chakra through the ground to see what she can find. Probably not much for now… But she might as well have a sense of where they're going.
Yori ducks his head a bit when he gets close and Michiko mentions his bag. "Uh, hai…they had very fresh kale and I couldn't resist. Plus they were giving me some information and I felt I should purchase something in thanks." Yori looks up then as he prepares to give his report, and so he does, giving all the details that the ladies had given him about 'Nox'. "I'm not sure if he's the one involved, but it seems suspicious that he's disappeared."
"Efficient," Michiko compliments. "I have similar information. This 'Nox' character showed up about a month ago, which is a week or two after my kidnapping incident. He must have traveled, if he /is/ a part of this whole thing. If not, then we can at least have him returned to the village safely." The girl didn't find anything in her earth sensing, but she says, "The guards told me that the bodies were found north of here, so we'll go that way by foot. Our horses can stay here." The Saito would notice that Roadblock and his own steed were gone, led to the stables. "Questions before we move out?" Again.
"No Michiko-san," Yori says when she asks him about questions. "None. I just hope we can find my clan cousin before something happens to him." Yori finds out where the horses were put and stores his bag there temporarily before returning to Michiko and preparing to set out along the road. He's still worried, it's evident. He fears the worst has happened.
"We'll find him," Michiko promises, determined to see none of Kumo's forces hurt. The girl waits for Yori, then she takes off with him, speeding north until they see/sense something interesting/of note. For Michiko, she notices that there's someone traveling not too far. Yori would notice a faint trail of blood, though the source isn't detectable. It looks like someone was being dragged, though….
Yori follows after Michiko at top speed, face grim as he goes. Despite Michiko's assurances he can't quite put aside the feeling that this was going to end badly, and that it would be his fault. At the first hint of blood Yori pushes it faster and faster, racing to follow the trail and catch up to whoever it is.
Michiko watches Yori burst forward, and she increases her own speed to keep up. The girl isn't too happy that Yori is charging into this, but she could understand his urgency. "Careful, Yori-san," she cautions, forcing him to slow down a bit as she doesn't sense movement anymore. The girl looks around a bit, and the two would notice that a fire has started up. "Whoever this is, he's probably sit down to eat lunch and get warm. We should try and sneak up on him."
Yori grimaces when Michiko tells him to slow down, but he does. The blood being lost doesn't make him want to wait very long however. That was really a bad sign. He finally slows to a stop and starts looking around the main road to see what they can use to sneak up on the person. "I don't want to wait too long. Someone is bleeding, and it's a lot."
In this area, there are at least some trees to hide in. But they might not be the best since they're covered in snow that could fall. Michiko considers. "We should henge. Check things out like that," She suggests. She then gently pats Yori's shoulder. "If we see your cousin, I'll heal him. You deal with the kidnapper, okay?" she asks, making a small plan. It wasn't a great plan, but it was a decent plan…. Especially one that she came up with on the spot.
Yori nods stiffly to Michiko, much in a way that is very unlike him. The only other time he'd been like this was when Michiko herself had been kidnapped. This was more personal not because it was another Saito, but because they were probably looking for /him/. "Hai, Michiko-san," Yori says, making a handseal to henge into a traveler before starting forward once more.
Michiko makes a handseal to henge herself into another traveler. An old woman with a walking stick. The two move forward into a small clearing to see the 'bad guy', 'Nox', and his prisoner, Saito Yorushiro. It looks like the injured Saito has a deep cut in his leg that prevents him from running away, and he's unconscious thanks to the pain. "Excuse me, sir," Michiko says in an old voice. "I think that man needs some help…"
Nox narrows his eyes a bit, but doesn't stand up immediately since he thinks these two are just travelers. "Yeah, 'm taking him back to the village," he says gruffly, even though he was definitely not going in that direction.
Yori walks with Michiko, hitching a 'pack' on his back that contains various items that a traveler would have. He squints his eyes at Nox, then looks to the other Saito. "Looks like you might be going the wrong way. Understandable to get turned around. But you might want to head back that direction," Yori says in the voice of a middle aged man. But then he just keeps on walking, his path looking like it'll take him around Nox.
Nox glares at the two. "I know where 'm goin'!" he says. "Quit bothering me. GET AWAY FROM HIM!" he suddenly shouts at the two when they seem to have a vested interest in the injured Saito. "I gotta take him. They'll kill us both, otherwise," he suddenly says, looking majorly worried.
Michiko glances at Yori and gestures for him to get this dude while she healed his cousin. Once she's sure that Yori got the message, she breaks her henge and moves again to Yorushiro, healing his leg to the point where it would at least stop bleeding.
Yori frowns when the man gets so defensive, then catches the motion from Michiko out of the corner of his eye. The henge drops as he launches himself forward towards the man Nox and striking quickly with metal covered fists.
Michiko continues to heal Yorushiro's leg and also sends a bit of healing chakra through his whole body to try and rejuvenate him. At least his labored breathing is starting to relax a bit. The girl seems to relax, but continues to work on the injured Saito for now.
When the two shinobi suddenly spring into action, Nox doesn't put up much of a fight. He holds up his arms to defend himself, but Yori's metal vambraces are a bit too much for bare arms. Bloods starts to form on his arms and drip to the ground, though he's able to escape the worst of the damage by picking up a rock slab and using it as a shield. "Wa-wait please, I'll go with you, juss let me be!" he begs, not even attacking.
Yori looks down on the man when he starts begging for his life, frowning deeply. "I am Saito Yorishiro," Yori says, his tone surprisingly neutral as he speaks. "Who hired you to try and kidnap me?" He doesn't attack for now, but he's not exactly backing off either.
Nox blinks a bit. "Uhh… The boss said that He wanted ye. Said that He wanted to take down Kumo's leadership and getting you was a good way t' do it. I though he was you, but I guess not. 'm Sorry! I didn't want any part, but then they said they'd 'ttack the village…" Nox looks down, looking super nervous and scared. "I didn't want them to do that. So I juss grabbed yo… Err… That guy and drug him this way. The boss said I had t' head north and get to the hideout…. And he'd meet me there after a few days."
"Who is your boss?" Yori asks, still looking down at the man with a displeased frown. "Why didn't you contact the hidden village for help if you were afraid he'd attack your village? We would've sent help and this whole thing could've been avoided." Yori relaxes a little finally, though he's still not all that happy. "What village are you from?" He doesn't even flinch when the man mentions him in line with the Kumo leadership. Let them think that. It'd be better if something happened to him than the Raikage or Michiko anyways.
"He never told me 'is name… Some sorta secret. No one knows nothing in the group cept the higher ups," Nox readily replies. "And he said that if I asked anyone fer help, he would kill all the village. I couldn't do nothing…" This at least speaks volumes for how the odd group works. Even if it doesn't give the best information. "'m from a smaller village than this un. … Hardly on a map. 's called Shinsen for some reason. Guess the founders liked the name…"
Michiko pulls out a whistle and blows into it. This summons the Kumo team's horses. All they have to do is wait. The girl then stands up, looking down at Yorushiro for a moment and seeming satisfied that he was healed for the most part. She glances over to Yori to make sure he has everything handled, the girl listening closely to the conversation/questioning.
Yori considers everything the man says, arms folding over his chest as he looks up a bit and considers. Finally, "Where is this base at you were supposed to bring me to?" Is he scheming? Probably…that could be bad.
Nox points north, in the direction he was traveling. "That way." Michiko steps forward and says, "I see. Thank you for the information." Then she gives Yori a small look. "We need to take these two back to the village. Then we can go and check out the hide out. Okay, Yori-san?" She doesn't want him tackling the hideout alone, after all…
Yori hesitates as Michiko instructs them to go back before shaking his head slowly. "No…I don't think so Michiko-san. I think I should go with this man and pretend to be his prisoner. If we can find the leader of the people this way it would save us a lot of trouble." He looks over to Michiko with a serious look. "I don't like that they kidnapped you once. I don't want them to be able to do it again."
Michiko frowns briefly, considering the plan. It wasn't a bad one. But she had a bad feeling about all this. "Let's wait for a bit. Roadblock and your horse will be coming soon. They can take your cousin back to the village. It's not like they're expecting him, after all. They're expecting you." The girl waits for Yori's reply, then adds, "We can try your plan once Yorushiro-San is safe. But I don't want to leave him here, and I don't want to take him somewhere we don't know." Then she looks over to Nox, who seems to just be staring at the two ninja. "Look a bit more triumphant, Nox-san. You've just captured two of Kumogakure's higher ups, after all."
Yori nods to Michiko's addendum to his plan, "I think that's wise Michiko-san." He smiles faintly then, breaking the mean look he had going on. The boy reaches into his pouch and pulls out one of his notepads, writes something on a page, then tears it out and gives it to Michiko. "Can you sign this Michiko-san. They won't do it from me." Really he's not a higher up, not in his opinion. He's just an assistant, after all. The page states to send a couple of higher Chuunin or Jounin to the village the man named to keep guard for a few days, just in case things went south.
Michiko looks at the note briefly before nodding and signing signing it. "Good idea," she says. Roadblock and Yori's horse arrive, and she helps the currently-sleeping Yorushiro onto her horse. "Yori-san, can I borrow another piece of paper?" she requests. Assuming he hands over that and a pen of sorts, she quickly writes down some instructions before sending her horse back to the village they just came from. Then she looks to Nox. "Lead the way for us. We can arrange our 'capture' when we're half a mile from the hideout."
To be continued…