Date: November 5, 2012
Goh and Mushi arrive to confront the elder, who introduces them to the concept of senjutsu.
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
"Quest for Salamander Senjutsu. Part 3"
The plush valley that sits in between the range of surrounding mountains is as idealic as one could imagine. With virtually no human contact, the environment has been allowed to grow and form as nature intended. With a little bit of guidance from the salamander, of course!
As Goh and Mushi wander along the only path that leads through the foliage, they will find that the density of trees and bushes becomes less. Patches of grass become more common, until there are soon entire fields of grass stretching along the plains. Eventually, after a good hour or so of treking, the pathway will come to an end, hitting what looks to be a temple made of cracked stone.
Over the course of the walk, some conversation had been exchanged between Goh and Mushi, though the long moments of silence were naturally a common thing. But with this temple now before them, the pair at least have something to talk about that has nothing to do with the past. With big pillars and walls, the building is large enough to easily accomodate a family of humans.
"Should we just… I dunno. Go in?" The blonde asks, not really expecting Mushi to have an answer. The pickler didn't really want to violate any laws.
After awhile, Mushi begans to relax a little. Mushi does mention a few things about the landscape, or more specifically about the landscape of the hummingbirds. "Museigan Forest is giant beyond belief," she says. "Just as the hummingbirds are bigger, there are bushes that are tall as trees and trees that reach to cliffs. Flowers you could sit on, streams that are wide as rivers. I kind of expected the salamander's wilderness to be bigger." She chuckles.
When they reach the building, Mushi glances around. "It really is a nice place," she says. At the front of the temple she'd say, "Yeah…but make sure you're not tracking mud." She wipes the bottom of her boots on a patch of dry grass before stepping in hesitantly. Though trying to keep a bit behind Goh.
"Right, of course." Goh does wipe the mud off, shaking it clear before walking in. He sucks in a small breath.
The inside is dark, the pickler squinting to try and make things out. However, once they reach a certain point, lanterns along the temple walls alight. Sitting there right in the middle is a pedestal. And on top, is a small salamander. Probably a bit bigger than Reiko, but not by much. Five inches long, with its eyes shut.
It's always difficult to tell how old a salamander is, usually. Unless you've been around them quite a bit. However, even by novice eyes, one can easily tell that this thing is not only old, it's /ancient/. Cracks along the skin as if it hasn't been swimming for a long time. When it does open its eyes slowly, it doesn't open them very much. Just enough to look quietly out.
"Hello, Goh. Mushi." It croaks out, as if it hasn't used its voice in decades. "Igneel mentioned that you were on your way."
Goh just sort of stares. There's no bowing, or head tipping. He just stares blankly. "Holey moley. How old are you? You look as old as this temple!" Oy.
He has a similar air about him that Igneel does. That feeling of authority, though it's not represented through sheer size and power. More wisdom.
Mushi stares at the little salamander, and comes to several very quick conclusions. One is that it's old, ancient even. Another is thatthere's that unmistakable air of authority about it. And another is that…kind of cute. Very cute in a lil, should be massive but is a wee-bitty-salamander type of cute, she could almost pet it. But somehow she doesn't think that'd be very respectful, or help Goh's chances. She does incline her head respectfully.
She does glance at Goh when he mentions how old the things is. She glances quickly back at the salamander, to see if he's taken offense. To move things along and not let that old comment hang in the air she says, "Thank you for meeting us." Not like it ever gave permission for them to enter the temple, but it's good manners. "Who are you?"
"You can call me Sanshouuo." It replies, seeming to have either not heard Goh, or simply ignored him. The name certainly carries some sort of official title. As if he is 'THE' salamander. "My name is passed down from one to the next as elders come and go. I am the second Sanshouuo to exist, and have been here for the past century. Keeping everything in order." It still doesn't move, just laying there.
"Despite the abnormal circumstances in this situation, I believe everything has a purpose. A reason for happening. Goh, you may be aware that you are not the first Champion to represent the salamander. However, you are the first to reach this sancturary. Similary, Mushi, you the first human to reach here who is not bound by a contract. It is a day of firsts, reached in unusual circumstance. Certainly, Goh could not have gotten this far without Mushi. And Mushi would not be here if it not for Goh. Yet both of you combine, and here you are."
Goh sweatdrops a little, perhaps confused by the words.
"Normally, we would teach senjutsu to salamander through a certain way. However, this way will be changed for you, Goh. To involve the healer. Again, she will help you get access to this method of being."
Mushi listens attentively to hear what the salamander is saying, perhaps knowing this is a once-in-a-lifetime occassion. Even if Goh comes back down here, it's unlikely that she will. Mushi looks down when the salamander hints at why she might be here. Though it's to hide a slight smile. This is one smart salamander. Moreover, everyone besides Goh seems to get it, even the ones who have just met her. However, when she looks back up her face is a picture of complete formality.
She blinks when Sanshouuo mentions teaching him senjutsu, and smiles triumphantly. Good, she was afraid that her presence might block his way. Though she does raise an eyebrow at that 'to involve the healer' bit. "So you're going to spice things up because he has some extra help around?" she asks. "What is the test? Umm, Sanshouuo-san."
"The tests are over, Mushi." The elder replies. "The trials that you faced in the Caves tests a variety of traits. Skills, reflexes, but moreover, stamina. To gain access to senjutsu, you must be in the very top tier of chakra levels. Otherwise, it will be all for nought. Now that you are here, there are no more tests. Simply learn to control it. Once you have done so, you are free to return."
Goh is still scratching his head, maybe trying to get his head around everything.
"Mushi, while you will not learn senjutsu, your aid will still be required to ensure that Goh does not perish. Learning senjutsu is not like tree walking. Where if you fall, you simply try again. If you fail senjutsu, you have a high risk of dying. Mushi, you will prevent this. By quite literally, knocking the senjutsu out of him."
The pickler sweatdrops again. Did Sanshouuo just give her a liscence to beat him to a pulp? "Er… old man sala, maybe that's not a good idea. You see, uh… we're sorta—"
"How you feel to each other right now is irrelevant. What ever happens, both of you are well connected and know each other inside out. This is ideal."
The blonde frowns.
"To be plain, Senjutsu is the process of gathering nautral energy. You bind it with your own chakra, giving you many benefits. To learn it, it requires many hours of stillness and patience."
Mushi can't help but let out a breath of relief. While she could help out with another of those crazy demons, she wouldn't want to do it today before some of her stamina comes back. That they're not going to face another one is no hair off her back. She glances over at Goh to see how he is taking this. She supposes this is a practical test, to test his stamina, unlike her test in the forest.
She frowns when the elder mentions Natural Energy. "The energy that comes from nature rather than within," she says, "but because it is not natural within your body, it can be at once more volatile and dangerous. I've treated patients who've been overtaken with senjutsu chakra. Well, to be more accurate, tried to help them too late." She glances at Goh, before looking back at Sanshouuo. "You are overestimating me," she says. "I do have a fuinjutsu that can extract unusual chakra, but I can only use it a limited amount of times. And the higher the caliber of chakra, the more dangerous it becomes for me to use that technique. Sorry," she says sheepishly.
"Hm. I did not know you were that capable, Mushi." Sanshouuo replies. Goh himself looks over at Mushi, almost in some surprise. That was some pretty hardcore technical finesse she had. Not that he should be surprised, after everything she had done. "Regardless, you are free to aid Goh in any way you wish. With any technique. I trust that you will not just let him turn to ash." The pickler doesn't say much in all this. Just sort of observes.
"If you would prefer, I have another method. The way we use is through a glove." Opening his mouth, the elder salamander will stick out a long toungue that extends to Mushi. On the end of it is a black glove. Yes, it's a little bit sticky, thought surprisingly not drenched. His mouth must be very dry!
"This has special properties. Hit Goh with this, and all nautral chakra that he has gathered will be quite literally beaten out of his system."
Goh blinks. "You're literally giving her permission to hit me?! I thought you were just joking!" His jaw drops a bit. "Augh! That smacks!" Probably better than the alternative though.
Oh. Mushi knew that. The glove. She takes it and smirks. "I thought you said you needed my skills on this," she says. This will be much better for helping Goh. She doesn't want him to die after all. But now that she thinks of it, couldn't the salamanders have sent another strong person to help him? Igneel would be more likely to let a friend pass, than someone he said had separated from Goh. Maybe somewhere they wanted her to mend things with Goh.
Not a chance.
Mushi slips the glove on and flexes her fingers. She says to Goh, "Don't worry, I need to practice a medical skill I just acquired. It's called Pressure Points technique, it uses no chakra, and I can use it to immobilize someone with no force." She shrugs. "Or it might not work and I'll have to sock you the old fashioned way." She grins at Goh.
Goh gulps a little bit, before the torches on the walls begin to darken. "My second can lead you to the correct part of the sanctuary and explain more. Good luck, Goh and Mushi." As he finishes speaking, the inside of the temple is once again covered in darkness. The torches completely out.
The pickler makes his leave, stepping out and onto the plush grass once more. "Maybe we could start with the non-painful techniques first for helping me out?" Goh suggests to Mushi, a twinkle of hope in his eye. "I think that would be best." He coughs.
As the duo stand there at the front of the temple, another salamander approaches. It looks about double the size of Wanpo, and, to Goh's surprise, has wings. It looks like a smaller version of Igneel, save for the fact it has a bit smoother skin. "You can fly too? I thought that was an Igneel exclusive thing."
"I'm Wanino." The sala speaks in a voice that's pretty commanding, completely ignoring Goh. "Follow." With her wings tucked to her side, she turns and begins to stride away. The pickler frowns, before falling into line behind.
But when Goh leaves Mushi says, "I want to speak to this guy for a second." She'd wait till the pickler leaves and then go to the ancient salamander. She hands him a feather that is a beautiful blue and green. "You may recognize this, it belongs to a hummingbird of Museigan. Just channel a bit of chakra through it and it can notify me where you are and to come help you. If the salamanders ever need my help call." She smirks and says, "And Goh-kun. Just don't tell him about it. Promise 'kay?"
She quite literally wouldn't give it to him unless he promised, and then she goes out to catch up with Goh and gape up at the flying salamander. This will certainly be an unusual day.