Date: September 5, 2013
Having heard that Eremi had left, Konoha, Etsu leaves out in search for him so she can give the boy a piece of her mind.
"Pain and Gain - Consorting with the Enemy"
Land of Fire
It took some time for Etsu to recover, but she's otherwise well now. She's out and about, walking around to get in some exercise. It's under the cool of the evening, which makes it even better. Of course, she has her reasons for being out here. She's seeking someone in particular and is determined to figure out where he is, even if she has to send her insects out to do so. When she reaches the path, she stops. "You had better show yourself. I don't want to waste time searching for much longer."
Moving through the forests in the Land of Fire, like some sort of lone protector, Eremi was searching for a decent spot to set up before the last of the daylight had faded away and to hopefully not be bombarded twice in the same week. Though that was just wishful thinking. Especially since as he neared the bushes ahead that blocked the path he heard a familiar voice call out. Not to him, he didn't think. Why would shou be calling for him? Readjusting the strap of his backpack to feel more comfortable on his shoulder, Eremi stepped out on to the path and made his way toward Etsu. "Who are you looking for?"
"You," Etsu remarked to Eremi. She turned to him and scrutinized him. "I want to know something…" She starts. "Why did you leave? What I said back there… When that Okumo was here, I meant it, but I was still upset." She approached. "So, tell me why you left."
Smirking, Eremi wondered when one by one, those he knew closest would coming looking for him wanting answers. The only problem was, he didn't know if he was going to be able to tell them what they wanted to hear. "Well," Moving closer toward Etsu until a few feet away, "Konoha just didn't seem like the right fit for me. I love being a shinobi, but the politics were unbearable and there was nothing I could do about it save for leaving and doing my own thing."
"That's it?" Etsu questioned. "The politics weren't right and it didn't fit?" She isn't sure that was enough of a reason. "That isn't it. There has to be more…" She states. "You should tell me everything.
Eremi shrugged as he shifted his weight from one leg to another. He knew Etsu wouldn't like the answer, but to think he was holding something back was unexpected. "Alright Etsu." He sighed, "I'll tell you everything." Glancing around real quick, he took another step closer, took in a deep breath and just barely audible enough to hear. "I plan on killing the Hokage." He said with a straight face, not saying anything else to let that sink in. "No, I'm kidding." He smiled briefly, "Though if she keeps sending people out to find and beat me up, I just might have to." He winked and took a few steps back. "Seriously though, there's no big reason why I left. The more important question would be why do you care? Why would anyone care? We're in peace time, I'm not a huge help to Konoha being with them and I'm not a threat not being with them. They're wasting resources coming after me…Politics." Though there might actually be more to why he left, he's just keeping it to himself for now.
"…" Etsu's fingers twitched lightly. Killing the Hokage. Hm. "Of course. You're kidding." She looked away from Eremi and in the direction of the village. She slipped her hands into her pocket and realized there was something missing. She didn't have her pocky. The box was in her other coat. "I don't understand why you'd leave for no reason. Or rather, not a big reason. But it insults me that you'd ask why I care. I care because you are a friend. It's selfish of you to ask that question." She states. "It's not Konoha's welfare I care about. I know the village can go on without you." She lifted a hand from her pocket and lashed out by extending her hand to slap Eremi in the face. "What I'm upset about is that you didn't consider me or at least, it feels that way. It feels like you didn't consider anyone you knew. You just left." Etsu, despite her feelings, still maintained that monotone she was known for.
Eremi just stood in silence as Etsu spoke, letting her get it all out, but he did watch her with a bit of confusion as she let more emotions and feelings other than anger and disdain show to the surface than he was used to. He thought of her as a friend, too and at times, he would have liked it to be more, but that was just a childs crush with no chance of ever going anywhere. "Etsu, I.." And then the hand met his cheek, hitting with enough force to echo in the silence of the forests as it turned his face away and left a red mark. He didn't retaliate of course. That would be silly. Like getting mad at someone when they ask for milk. No, instead he looked off in the distance for a bit before turning to face Etsu once again.
"I absolutely took you and everyone else into consideration, but there was little I could do. My hands were tied…" Shaking his head, "I mean, what else could I have done? Confronted everyone about my plans only for them to talk me out of it or prevent me from leaving? I was going to leave no matter what. This just seemed like the best option." Shrugging, "And it's not like I technically left. You can still always find me hanging around the Land of Fire. This is still my home after all."
Etsu knew it was the truth, but she still couldn't get past it that easily. She knew her feelings were more because she felt she was closer to him than others. However, even she knew that it couldn't work. Burying those feelings took longer than his, she supposes. "I know. I know that, but…it still hurt." She didn't like this feeling of vulnerability, but it had to be experienced. "I know I'm not you and I haven't experienced what you have, so I know you did what was best for you. That should be important to me."
Eremi sighed, expecting this to happen, but had prefered if everyone he hurt were to take their anger out on him instead of what Etsu was doing. It just made him feel worse, "I'm sorry, Etsu. I know what I'm doing is hurting others, but you have to trust me that it's better this way. For me and everyone else." A hand would reach out to rest on Etsu's shoulder, "This is just the way it has to be for now. There's no other way around it."
"I do trust you. Maybe even too much, but I do trust you." Etsu looked at her shoulder and then to Eremi. "Then at least permit me this much…" She drew closer to him, removing her shades in the process to reveal her steel grey eyes. She casts her eyes over his features one final time before leaning in for a kiss.
Eremi nodded while smiling, "Good, I'm glad you do." There was little in life he wanted more than to build an unbreakable bond with someone. That no matter what happened, they'd always be there for each other. Friends, he had sure, but 'friends' are sometimes nothing more than someone you've known for a while. He wanted more than that and he had that with Etsu. It made him happy, yet sad at the same time that he had to leave the village. "I would do anything for you." Still smiling as he was wondering what Etsu wanted out of him, curious as why she took off her glasses and hesitant as she leaned in.
It wasn't that he didn't want to kiss Etsu, he was just scared to do so. It was hard for him to breath and his heart was beating fast. This would be his first kiss and even though the circumstances behind it seemed wrong, he still wanted to do it and then, as he stared into Etsu's eyes, he did it. For him, the feeling was exhilarating. He never wanted the feeling to end, he wanted it to last forever. He knew it couldn't though and the fact was it might never happen again. So he cherished every moment until the kiss would end.
Etsu was never one to grow emotional, but this moment was overwhelming. Tears streamed down her face as all the anger, hurt, sadness, and a cocktail of other emotions were released. This was what she wanted, what she needed and now that she had it, she didn't want to let out go. Yet, it had to be done. She parted from him slowly, and instantly her heartrate dropped. She caught herself before she could fall and inhaled deeply only to sigh the breath back out. She lifted a hand to wipe away the tears from her face and coolly slip her shades back on. "I forgive you," she remarked. "I will no longer hold your leaving against you."
And as Etsu pulled away, Eremi felt himself still leaning forward, not wanting the kiss to end, but it had. So he did the best he could to regain whatever composure he had, swallowed a few times, let out a breath and clutched the single strap of his backpack that rested on his shoulder with a free hand. "Thank you, Etsu. I appreciate that, but I would understand if you still did hold it against me." He stood there for a moment longer, staring at Etsu, not wanting to walk away, but knowing that he should. He was a missing-nin now and being out in the open like this drew too much attention. If he wasn't careful, eventually more skilled shinobi would come looking for him in groups and then he was toast. "I..I should probably be going now, before we draw unwanted attention. Unless you had more you wanted to talk about."
Etsu thrust a hand into the air. "Don't try to make me take it back. My word was final. I forgive you and that's that." She spoke as if she'd just dropped a gavel on the matter. She lowered her hand slowly and slipped it into her pocket. "I hear you and understand. It does you no good for me to linger out here, lest I be considered conspiring or consorting with the 'enemy'." She raised her hands momentarily to make air quotes before allowing them to find their way back into her pockets. "I'll depart and…perhaps catch up with you another time." She lingered as if she wanted to say more, but decided against it and flickered away.