Date: October 29, 2011
Against the will of the Iga clan who would prefer Ryoji remained a "rouge" agent, the teenager in question choses to attempt to try and get officially enlisted into Sunagakue's shinobi corps.
"Recruitment & Evaluation Pt. 1"
Sunadome Arena - Fighting Ring [Sunagakure]
From the ground floor of the arena, one can truly get a sense of the sheer size and spectacle of the place. At its widest point, the colosseum is nearly a mile in circumference, and the domed ceiling is roughly fifty stories overhead. Needless to say, trying to take it all in can be dizzying. The floor of the arena is made up of a number of massive rolling sand dunes, about a hundred fifty feet tall at their tallest point. In the very center of the arena, a simple, well manicured lawn of green, rather like an oasis, marks the primary battle spot. The lawn is a little larger than a standard boxing arena, and is even equipped with a small pond, no more than five feet across.
Patience. A 'substance' that Ryoji had a ridiculously amount of; but sadly not enough of it to wait on word from the elders of his clan to decide rather or not it would be wise for the 'child' to officially join Sungakure. So, within a week he made preparation for his induction into the shinobi forces. This essentially meant that he spent a week meandering around the village and occasionally waltzing himself straight into trouble, and then back out of it before any authorities arrived to 'antagonize him needlessly'.
Unintentionally and somewhat ironic given his.. disposition, Ryoji is the earliest of three total candidates to arrive by ten minutes after the first rays of the sun peek over the horizon over a potentially mild mannered feeling day. He is also by far the roughest in appearance, the shortest by far, and also the -only- one to arrive with plenty of inconsistencies in some of his identification papers. Not enough to pull him out of the line up completely, but enough that others will probably have to take a deeper look into them while the other tests are conducted.
"Don't you wish your chicken was cool like me?~" Ryoji singsongs idly along the edge of the ring (much to the chargin of both the other canididates and official assigned to keep an eye on them) with a foot propped up against the wall and hands behind his head.
Kuoroke arrives at the dome precisely when he was scheduled, although his appearance shows that he's had to hurry to get there at that time. Then again, he always hurries, so there's little uncommon about his arrival. His glasses glint slightly as he glances over those present with a sharp turn of his head. He quickly glances at the folders of papers in his hand, mentally linking those present to the figures in the files. "Thank you." He nods to the shinobi tasked with keeping an eye on them. "I'll take it from here."
Kuoroke takes a few steps along the three candidates. "I understand you three want to join the forces of the village of Sunagakure. Now, I'm going to start off with a few questions. The first one is this. Why are you here?"
Daichi, the largest of the trio by a foot compared to Ryoji and bearing the most masculine overall physique, is the first to speak up. "Because, the pay is good? And the.. uh.. benefits too?", he asks in suprisngly high pitched voice for such a tall guy. Barely concealed giggles are heard from behind the man's barrels for arms before a girl, tan and fair haired steps forward. In passing to step up she briefly gives Daichi a pat on the elbow before turning her attention on Kuoroke, smiling brightly, then bowing quickly, fully at the waist. "Well, I don't really care about all that. All I know is that a friend of mines said since I'm so good at, how did she put it, kicking arse? *shrugs* Ya know, instead of just working as a bouncer 'n all that jazz yeah?", She explains nonchalantly while all the while staring unnervingly directly into Kuoroke's eyes. "By the way examiner-san, whats your name?" She adds on.
"From the scent of him, I'd say he's a.. -the- kuroki." Ryoji suddenly pipes up; startling the girl enough to get to illicite a short heated glare back at his person. One in which the Iga simply ignores in favor of shifting around into a more comfortable position against the wall before speaking up himself. "To serve, protect, and assist in the growth of Sunagakure's citizens. Be they civilian or shinobi at whatever cost necessary.", is stated formally with an air of great conviction. And yet, proves to be a facade when Ryoji casually follows up with the sarcastic remark of, "… That is the answer you were looking for correct? Edo"
"Kuroki Kuoroke. I am one of the Councilmen of this village. Therefore, until you are deemed important enough to appear before the Kazekage, I am your greatest god." Kuoroke introduces himself. He glances at Daichi, the tall boy. "The pay? The pay will be exactly as good as will be necessary. Don't expect to be living luxuriously on a soldier's wages." he nods to the girl, staring right back at her, unaffected. He's been stared at by worse things. "Alright, if you're so wonderful at it, you'll have the chance to prove yourself. You may be of use to the village."
Lastly, he moves his attention to the most verbose one of the group, Ryoji. "What I am looking for, kid, is the truth. That would be a very good answer, if I believed it. I do, however, not. Maybe I would, from the other two, but you…" He shakes his head. "Try again. Alright, second question! What is it -what part of the profession of a Shinobi- that you think you are good at? You're exempt." the Kuroki nods at the girl.
Aside from the female candidate's smile stretching itself to its limit's in response to the Kuroki's question, silence is all that Ryoji and Daichi gives Kuroki. The latter of which however, after agonizing visibly over Kuoroke's question, starts to talk; but is cut off by Ryoji stepping suddenly forward and coughing into gloved hands. "First off, that really hurted, edo" he emits plaintively. "And secondly, you can't expect to find the truth if, by definition, shinobi be they potential or otherwise, must be vewy good at deception, edo. Hmm.. yeah, think I got that right, edo." He whispered the last part to himself after glancing away, then looks back in Kuoroke's general direction. "But yea, unless that is not important compared to self-sacrifice, living in the shadows, etc.. etc.. then *eye rolls* I'd say me and big guy here probably do the self-sacrifice part pretty good. Ain't that right Daigumo? Edo", Ryoji asks rhetorically.
Daichi unfortunately misses the jibe and corrects the Iga with a little too much enthusiasm, "Yar.. I-I guess. But uh I'm really strong too like how a shinoto needs to be!!"
"He can answer for himself. And you're supposed to be good at deception towards the enemy, -never- towards your superiors, and only towards your subordinates when it is necessary for their own good, or for the good of the village." Kuoroke lectures. "The less understanding of this you show, the worse your chances of joining our forces." He paces back and forth a few times. "Well. The questions will continue later, that's not why we're here. I'm here to see if you're physically up to it. You two." He points at Daichi and the girl. "Start running laps around the arena. I'll get you later. First, though…" he glances at Ryoji. "Let's see how you are in combat." Kuoroke paces away from the Iga a few steps, then turns around. "Come at me." he invites.
Ryoji has to literally bite down on his tongue to prevent anticipated 'self-destructive' remarks from being set free. He even goes as far as to slowly but surely 'fade' into the little happy place inside his mind just long enough for Daichi and the lass to try and pursuede (at least on Daichi's part) Kuoroke to reconsider before reluntantly running off. "…… Heh.. heheh, fire-edo~…… Hm!? Wait, what?… *double blinks* Oh, aaahhah, okay! *snickers* I thought for a second you ment come on to me because maaaan that would've been awkwooooooo" He trails off as he charges straight forward with NO hint of a plan in his stance or expression beyond predictable yet slightly unpredictable standard attacks: Right CHOP! Left KICK! And Retreating BACKFLIP KICK!!
Kuoroke slides his hand inside his cloak, pulls a blade from it, and when the right chop comes at him, he crouches a bit, and blocks by raising his arm, bringing the blade dangerously close to Ryoji's face - close enough to imply a threat, but not close enough to actually injure him. He almost ignores the other attacks coming his way, first one kick connecting with his ribs, then another one meeting him just below the chest. Although he is moved slightly by the kicks, his only response to them is the re-sheating of the blade.
Then, he returns the attacks, coming at Ryoji. His first attack is a right hook to the jaw, followed up by his left knee aimed for the gut. Both of these attacks are held back to the point of not being able to do damage, but the Kuroki does want to see how they react to a proper attack, so when he sends a straight jab at Ryoji's ribcage to finish the series up, he doesn't hold back any more.
"Your holding back." Is all Ryoji would state apathetically after recovering from his own overpowered flip. However before he can even -think- to elaborate, Kuoroke answers with an assualt to his personage. The first assualt is guided aside with such disconcerting little effort that the next is met with strong pulse of chakra in the direction of Ryoji's only weakness in his guard to cancel out any attack at the abdomen. In lucking out in guessing Kuoroke's intentions, Ryoji starts to relax too much for his own good, and would because of this have to endure the pain of a rib almost broken by punch strong enough to literally lift and leave him hanging in the air for a few seconds.
The Pain almost draws a chuckle a hoarse chuckle out of him, but…. revenge un-inhibited by warning sounds came first.
Rather or not Kuoroke senses the change in time or not, Ryoji's counter attack is as rapid as the sudden doubling in the length in his hair before it arcs around his body and reforms into spear like tendrils. "..Go.." He emits hoarsely, falling back while his hair did the dirty work of slashing and stabbing at the Kuoroki. Admist the the blanket of 'living' hair, a sharp rocks sail through undeterred. In fact, the hair actually temporarily unravels in places just for the projectile to get through!
By the time all is said and done, Ryoji will hopefully manage to retreat a few meters away and begin to try and recover. A hand gripping his damaged rib while other limply falls out of hand seal; only to cover the Iga's mouth.
Meanwhile back with Daichi and the lass…
"Huff.. Huff.. How long do you think he'll have us do this?", Daichi ponders aloud. "Dunno big fella… Opps, I almost forgot! My name is Michiko! What's yours!"
"Of course. I need to know how much strength you put in that punch of yours." Kuoroke admits calmly, raising his hands and swatting the spears of hair coming in his direction away from his body. "And I can't have you injured too much." During one of those deflections his hands come near the edge of his cloak, he draws one kunai with each hand, now from inside of it. The knives flicker in the air, and a metallic clang signifies that they connected with the stones that found their way between the attacking air.
"Move it!" Kuoroke barks at the two other potential ninjas. "Less talking more running!" He disposes of the blades by throwing them at the ground near the two of them as a reminder, and then joing his hands in a quick series of handseals, causing a slight but uncomfortable air current beneath Ryoji's feet, risking to throw him off balance if he's not careful. While he's forming the hand seals, Kuoroke closes the distance again, beginning first with a kick to the side of his head and then a jab of his fist, again, aimed at Ryoji's throat, but this time held back again. "Is that everything you have?!" He growls.
While Michiko and Daichi both give their own startled "eeps" before picking up their pace, Ryoji continues to struggle on.
Aside from eyes narrowing to slits, Ryoji otherwise keeps his expression aloof and his next words spoken with an air of nonchalance and a bit of drool sipping out of the side of his mouth. "Right, because this is—" This time without hesitation, the moment his ears picked up on the unnatural change to wind currents along the ground, Ryoji lept into the air. Too late however does he remember Kuoroke's rank and by extension the skill level required to hold it before a kick to the skull knocks him out of the air. The only thing besides a last minute aerial rotation and his hand flying up instinctively to protect his skull that saves him from the full force of Kuoroke's assualt, is a weakness in Ryoji's legs creeping up on him and forcing him to fall to a kneel outside the chunnin's strike range mere moments early. "……. No.. *pant*.. it, isn't… but you've seen enough by now.. right? Edo", He asks through clinched teeth and without looking up at the man before him.
Kuoroke approaches Ryoji, grabs him by the back of his shirt, and with a powerful tug pulls him up to his feet, facing away from Kuoroke because of the way he was held. "I have. Now I trust that -was- what you're capable of. Not bad. Take a break, visit a medic, and tell them I sent you. They'll tell us both when you're ready for the psychological evaluation." he instructs, pacing around Ryoji. His eyes slide to the other two candidates and their reactions to the fight. A real Shinobi-level fight, on both sides, even if it was quite uneven. "Alright, that one passed, but he can probably take both of you on his own. Who's next?" Kuoroke turns to the others.