Date: July 27, 2016
Team 13 is called upon to track down a missing wagon, which may have been stolen.
Land of Fire
The time has come… Rankoro Rinoko, the leader of Team 13B… is leading a mission today! Thanks to her team's expertise, the librarian-esque kunoichi was assigned a recon mission to locate a shipment of important cargo that went missing. Most likely the wagon was stolen by someone who managed to get wind of the value of the goods aboard. Maybe even the guys who were supposed to be shipping it.
The team would've been informed of the premise of the mission beforehand via letter from Rinoko, and she even requested the assistance of an extra member from Team 13A that Tsugumi was gracious enough to lend her for this mission… Uchiha Suzu! Not that Rinoko doesn't have faith in Aru's dojutsu, but she figures two sets of them are better than one and one can pick up things the other can't and vice versa.
Waiting in front of the gates of the village, Rinoko is adorned in her normal outfit with her hitai-ate worn on her forehead. Oddly she doesn't look as nervous as she normally might. Instead she looks determined and focused. This is a chance to prove herself, so she has to perform well and make sure this goes off without a hitch.
It's ironic, that Suzu, whose initial 'serious' missions in the C-Rank+ range, seemed to consist of a whole lot of tracking missions, and which frustrated her that she kept winding up on them when she lacked the skills to do well on them, is now part of a sensor unit that spends a lot of time tracking, rooting out enemies, and so on. It's almost like she was fated for this line of work.
It beats assassinations, at leat. Though she's going to be going on some of those sometime in the future, if she has any say in it (which she doesn't). Today, though? Today is something simpler. 'Find missing cargo'. Suzu shows up in her standard outfit that more and more seems like maybe she should get a new one that actually fits. But she's geared up and ready as she meets with Rinoko outside the gates. She has a smile for the Chuunin when she sees her, bowing her head lightly despite what friendly terms they're on. Always best to be respectful. But she also waves and calls out, "Ohayoo, Rinoko-sensei~." There's still more than a bit of the old Suzu in there.
Namikaze Nonon arrives in a much less flamboyant manner than usual. No sudden appearances, no waiting for Aru to arrive so she can appear behind her… She just arrives! Out in the open! Shock-u! She also looks kind of worn out, as she yawns into one hand and calls out to the other two kunoichi. "Ohayoo… We're stealing some cargo today or something, right?—Hey, it's a ninja thing, don't worry about it." She adds on as some traveling merchant headed into Konohagakure pauses to stare at Nonon.
She shoos him away with one hand. "Shoo! Shoo!"
Then she focuses back on Rinoko. "Sorry, I've been working on a new technique and it hasn't left much time for my… *YAAAWN* …beauty sleep."
Aru has also been training. Unlike Nonon, she appears to be rested enough for the mission, but based on the state of her attire and the smudges of dirt and dust on her, and the somewhat dissheveled nature of her hair, it seems she was training right up until it was time for her to be here. She bows her head lightly to all gathered. "I do not think we are stealing any cargo, Nonon-san." She still is a bit formal with Nonon despite their time together. More out of habit than anything else. Like in the manga Ninja Ball Z where Sasugeta always called Gokuto 'Gogurt', his birth name from the planet Gokuto originally comes from where everyone is named after dairy products, despite knowing FULL WELL that EVERYONE calls Gokuto 'Gokuto'.
Except with Sasugeta it's more of him being a dick and not just the habit thingy like Aru.
Looking to Rinoko, Aru says, "We are retrieving cargo instead, yes? Do we have any idea who might have taken it? What was in the cargo? How long ago it was stolen and where?"
The extra member of the team for today is the first to arrive! Rinoko smiles at Suzu as she approaches, lifting a hand to wave to her in return. "Hi, Suzu-san. Thank you for coming to help us. I hope I didn't pull you away from anything important." She studies Suzu's expression a bit as she arrives, perhaps wondering if she's actually in that good a mood or if this is a bit of a facade. While she really hops the former of the two choices is true, she can't be certain.
Then comes Nonon. Rinoko turns her attention to the speed demon of her team with a bright smile, snickering a bit as she freaks a merchant out and shaking her head. "We're /recovering/, not stealing… Unless you count it as stealing back from those who stole it." That smile would turn into a slight grin at the comment about beauty sleep as she retorts, "Lucky you don't require much in that department." Non-ninja compliments at the start of a mission?! Perhaps Rinoko's coming out of her shell a little after overcoming her phobia of heights.
As Aru arrives, Rinoko turns her gaze then to her and nods. "We are retrieving it yes… It was taken somewhere on its path to Konohagakure. The details on what was in it were not provided, but it was stolen some time between last night and a few hours ago when its owner labeled it missing since it didn't arrive on time." Reaching into her coat, she withdraws three pieces of paper with a symbol for a merchant group on them. "The wagon will have this on its side… and its workers should have it on their jackets."
She looks back to Nonon then and says, "This mission will be physically intensive for you in that you'll be the only one running. The rest of us will be in the sky using a combination of two of my jutsu to keep us inconspicuous in the air while Aru and Suzu use their dojutsu to scan for clues and trails. As we find things, I'll send you paper birds and such to give you information so you can run and check out what they've found."
Suzu looks over as Nonon and Aru arrive, nodding to each in turn. Aru seems confident in her progress. That's a big change from how she was when Suzu first met her. And Nonon seems a bit toned down her sillier antics… Much like Suzu, though likely for different reasons. Even the 'working on a new technique at the expense of their health right before a mission' is pretty similar.
But now here they are, Suzu well-rested and ready for action, Aru getting a free ride so it doesn't matter if she's rested or not, and Nonon… Doesn't look very ready at all. "…If necessary, I can take Nonon's place, if she needs to rest. I may not be as fast, but I have a sharp eye. With Aru doing long-range observation from above with you, I can do closer-range investigation just fine."
Not to mention, unless Nonon's training was to develop sensory abilities…
The return smile on Nonon's face at the compliment from Rinoko, as she gives a friendly nod to Aru turns lopsided as she hears what the mission's about and her role in it. "Ehhhhh?" Nonon lets out in displeasure. But then she sighs and shrugs helplessly while shaking her head. "Thanks for the offer Suzu-chan, but there's no way I'm going to let you take over the one thing I can contribute to this team right now. I'll show you the luits of my frabors!" She probably meant 'fruits of my labors'.
I-is she really okay to be doing this mission…!?
"…Wait, why will I be the only one running again? You said you'd be in the air? You can fly now?"
While the others are goofing off and talking about shirking work loads, Aru focuses on the mission at hand. Hmph! She examines the papers held up with the symbol of the merchants, trying to think if she has seen them anywhere before or recognizes any other meaning that could give her a hint. In the end, she says, "I admit to also being surprised by the discovery that you can fly, Rinoko-sensei. Is this a new development, or did you always have that capability?" Aru sighs and says, "We can discuss all this on the way, I guess. Rinoko-sensei, Suzu-san, Nonon-san… The longer we dawdle here, the more time the thieves have to get away. I recommend we get going as soon as possible!"
"A shinobi must always pace their training around their missions. If you wear yourself so thin that you can't perform on a mission, you're not pacing yourself correctly. You could also find yourself rendered helpless in the case of an emergency," Rinoko states as she glances between Suzu and Nonon, trying to sound more like she's simply giving advice rather than scolding… but she does have to play leader here, right?
With a shake of her head, she says, "Nonon can handle her duty. We'll keep an eye on her, though. If she seems to need to rest, you and she can swap out for a bit." She then smirks as the other two realizes what she said about being in the air and nods. "It's a new development, but, yes, I can fly… And, yes, we should be on the way. Nonon, run ahead on the path northwest toward the Land of Rice. Suzu, Aru, come stand in front of me side by side and turn your backs to me."
If Nonon believes she can handle it, then Suzu isn't going to question her further. Besides, the team leader's word is final. She said to focus on her own duty and let Nonon do hers. So the Uchiha kunoich moves into position as she is instructed, with her back to Rinoko. Flying sounds like an interesting ability… And the part of that still isn't quite done being childish is actually excited about the prospect of getting to experience it. She wonders if Rinoko is going to, like, put a hand on her back and do some kind of strange jutsu to make her lighter or something. What kind of elements would even be necessary for that…?
"I'm ready, Rinoko-sensei!"
Nonon siiiighs and stretches this way and that, working out any tightness in her muscles as she gets ready to run. "Hai, hai, Rinoko-chan." She shakes her hips, shimmying in place, and then puts her hands on them as she rolls her torso around in a circle, front, side, back, other side, and forward again. From the loud, visceral snaps and pops, it sounds like she's cracking her sternum the same way someone else might crack their knuckles. Then she lowers herself and takes off at a run along the designated path. She isn't using her jutsu yet. Spending her Chakra this early on is not the smartest idea. She kind of wishes she could see how Rinoko is going to manage flying Suzu and Aru around, but she has a job to do.
Aru nods in acknowledgement to their team leader, wincing a bit at all the cracks and pops and snaps coming from Nonon readying herself to run. Ugghhhh. Even now, the Namikaze ninja finds ways to aggravate the Hyuga girl. She shudders a bit but moves into position as she is instructed. "The Land of Rice… Is that where the shipment was coming from or just the landmark being used as a reference point…?" she wonders out loud as she puts her hands together, and molds some Chakra. She is actually so focused on the mission that she has forgotten she is going to be flying in a few moments, and thus hasn't spared much thought to how she feels about it. After all, a human being flying? How is she supposed to react to that? It's so far outside her experience!
"I hope my range is enough. My training was to complete a defensive technique, but now I'm wishing I devoted my time to improving my powers of perception. Especially range, if I'm going to be scouting from the air." At least her Byakugan has advanced adequately to give her that base range amplification.
Once Suzu and Aru are in place, Rinoko brings her hands into a seal as well. Suddenly her body would turn basically into sheets of paper that compass each of their bodies and take on the form of a large white bird with a large wingspan, large enough to carry all three of their weights.
After fully forming around them, the bird takes off into the sky and flaps to soar over Nonon's trail and toward where the wagon went off course and a bit ahead of her so they can start to gauge things and send her messages down. There aren't any clues so far, even with Byakugan and Sharingan at their disposal, but they aren't quite to where the old man guessed the wagon may have gone off trail at.
"I'll let you guys see this technique in its more pure form some time when we're not racing after something," she promises as they move along. "Only Tsugumi-sama has seen it so far, and she just happened to walk up as I was mastering it."
As Suzu is engulfed in a giant paper bird and then flown up into the air, she lets out a surprised, "Wh-whoah!" She's quite amazed being flown through the air, let alone taking off so quickly and leaving the grown behind. It almost feels like she's falling into the sky. It's exhilirating, terrifying, and awesome all at once! But as she hears her mother mentioned, she has to wipe off the wide grin off her face as she is reminded that they're on a mission, not sight-seeing. She resists the urge to wave to the distant Nonon below. Not like the blonde is even going to see the gesture, after all.
"Okay." Suzu says as she closes her eyes briefly, and then opens them once more, now bearing her Sharingan. She keeps a sharp eye out for anything out of place below, leaving communication up to Rinoko. "I hope this isn't the last time I get to fly around like this though."
Nonon has yet to get any messages so she assumes there's nothing to report yet. She runs along the path, ducks or leaps to get around anything that pops up in her way, and aims to get to the destination. Aru was right after all. The more time they hang around doing nothing, the more time the trouble-makers have to get away! …Assuming it was stolen, rather than simply lost. Not for the first time, she is reminded that someone with medical expertise on this team would be a huge boon. What if there are injured merchants or something that they come across? What if they need to keep a bad guy alive or conscious for questioning after a battle?
Every mission they go on, the team learns. But they also keep finding more gaps in their repetoire that need to be filled.
Unlike Suzu, suddenly being wrapped up in paper and flown into the sky has no fun element for Hyuga Aru, just fear. She squeaks in terror the whole way, struggling to regain her sense of direction and make sense of all these new sensations. Fighting not to hyperventilate, Aru blocks out her fear by focusing on the mission. Her Byakugan is active and she is scanning for Chakra signs below. "N-nothing out of the ordinary so far." she offers shakily. Rinoko may have gotten over her fear of heights, but she might just be giving a fear of heights to Aru in turn.
However long Rinoko has been able to fly, apparently she has put plenty of practice into this jutsu even since Tsugumi saw it. She wanted to be absolutely certain it would be ready for mission use, after all. She flies with precision along the trail but not in a manner that would let anyone know that this is anything but a giant bird up here. She briefly considers if they should perhaps recruit a Yamanaka into their fold for communication purposes for missions like this, but there isn't much time to ponder on such things now. Perhaps she can discuss that with Tsugumi later.
"It most definitely won't be the last time," Rinoko assures Suzu from her position behind her and Aru in the bird. "Just let me know when you want to fly again. I'd be happy to take you." She then peers over at Aru, who seems shaky, and lifts a hand to gently place it on the Hyuuga girl's shoulder. "I won't let you fall, Aru-san. I promise," she assures her.
Just then, along the trail, they would come upon an oddity. A couple of young men and one old one lay unconscious under a few sets of bushes, and splinters of wood and bark all around as well as scarring on a tree suggest some sort of crash. There is also a trail from said crash site that goes well off the normal trade trail. Assuming Suzu and Aru tell Rinoko these things, they would be relayed to Nonon via a paper rose that flies off the bird down to her for her to unfold to receive said message.
Suzu nods in acknowledgement, glad to know she'll get the opportunity to experience this thrill again. Aru being less sure about flying earns a brief sympathetic look, before attention is focused on the ground below. If the Hyuga kunoichi can concentrate on the mission despite her nervousness, then Suzu has no excuse to be skimping out on HER duties to worry about her. Her eye sight is great, though detailed analysis at this range is difficult… She does call out, "I see a few bodies lying around below. They seem to still be alive, since I can see they are colored with Chakra, but I can't judge their condition. I'm still not used to my completed Sharingan yet."
Once Suzu and/or Aru notify Rinoko of what's going on and the information is delivered to Nonon via paper roses, the Namikaze ninja reads the information while running. Then she moves appropriately, continuing down the trail until she reaches the bodies in order to inspect them. She notices the trail of destruction, of course. The damage to the tree, the brush, the splinters of wood… But while there's a trail to follow here, the civilians come first.
It sucks that she lacks the Chakra control to write with her finger tip alone. So she instead, guessing that the others can see her down there, gestures in a way to indicate that they should come in for a landing and join her. Perhaps defeating the point of remaining separate, but honestly, no one is going to look up and see a giant bird and think, 'Meh. Not suspicious at all. I'll just ignore it.'
Lives are more important than a deception that no one is even around to witness right now.
But dang do they need a medic-nin on the team. Seriously.
Aru appreciates the attempt at comforting her, but is trying to keep her mind on the job right now. She sees the same thing Suzu does once it's pointed out to her, but zooms in further, seeing through the canopy of trees. "Three humans. Adult. One may be older than the others. They do seem to be alive, but their Chakra indicates… Unconsciousness or injuries." She strains to see the details. "There's a trail leading off the main road. Damage to a tree. Signs of a crash… Nonon-san is indicating for us to land, I think."
Aru adds on, "Rinoko-sensei, do you have any seals capable of healing? …If not, has anyone practiced first aid at least?"
"We are not on a leisurely mission time-wise," Rinoko points out with a shake of her head. "Given that they have survived unconscious thus far, they will be fine for a little while longer as they are. I don't have any healing abilities, so I will send a message back to the village for a team to come retrieve them. We must press forward." A pair of paper constructs come from the bird then, first a normal sized bird and second another paper rose to tell Nonon that message and to follow the trail the wagon took.
The giant paper bird then takes off on that trail, assuming Suzu and Aru help guide her down it. There is no sign of the wagon just yet, but, if they hurry, hopefully they can catch it while it is still on this trail.
Suzu isn't knowledgeable enough of medicine to determine if Rinoko's analysis of their well-being is accurate or not. Leaving people in a state of unconsciousness doesn't seem like the most compassionate course of action, but… If they can't do anything for them right now, then that's that. She continues to try to look for signs of enemies or anything out of place, but seeing through the tree tops isn't easy, and she isn't skilled at tracking. Unless there are living people down there, somewhere, she's not going to have much to call out.
Nonon gets the message. She isn't happy about it. For the most part, she seems to be a upbeat and friendly individual, who cooperates with the others on the team and follows orders. But she strongly feels she should at least lay them out and check them for signs of injuries. 'Surviving this long unconscious' doesn't say anything about whether they will remain alive long enough to get them treatment.
These three men are total strangers, and yet she is tempted to indicate the others should go on ahead and that she'll catch up… Two things stop her though. The first is that she recognizes the chain of command. The second, and more important, is that Rinoko said in her message she'd notify others to come help them. Otherwise, Nonon's conscience might not have allowed her to easily go on ahead. Shinobi are supposed to be ruthless in battle and simply be living weapons. To suppress their feelings and follow orders. She knows that.
But she isn't one of the sociopaths of the Hidden Mist. And abandoning civilians that she could help when there's three other team members far more capable of tracking than she is and who have the advantage of flight to chase down any enemies isn't part of her motis operandi.
Thankfully, Rinoko included that part about sending for help, so that rebellion and its consequences have been dodged. But she's going to very strongly suggest that EVERYONE on this team get basic medical training at the LEAST. It's not hard to pack and become proficient in first aid, and they keep running into situations where it's needed.
For now, she does what she can to haul the three men onto a somewhat more flat surface, side by side, and then heads down the new path as quickly as she can.
Aru observes as Nonon stays behind for a short time to take care of the men, and at least make them more comfortable, before continuing on down the trail. She reports that to Rinoko, but then focuses on just looking for any signs of the wagon having gone down this side-trail, of foot prints or life signs or… ANYTHING that she could notify those more experienced than her about. She at least hasn't noticed any other ninja in the area, let alone anyone who has spotted them in turn. That's always a good sign.
Rinoko isn't a heartless shinobi, but she is learning what priorities are and how to handle them. Life is important, yes, but so is knowing what you can and can't do. Since none of them are medics, they're not going to be much use to these folk, but an actual medical team will be.
As the bird races off into the distance, it's not too long before the dojutsu of the two inside the bird with Rinooko would find what they are looking for. The wagon is still racing ahead through the forest at a wild pace, rocking and creaking with obvious damage to its structure. Atop the wagon is a set of two boys who look a lot like the men that were unconscious back at the crash sight. Both are screaming out for help as the cart races ahead, one clinging to the side of the wagon and the other barely hanging on. A bit of light smoke coming from the middle of the wagon, some of the wood looking slightly charred. It seems there might have been a fire, but not a bad one, but whatever caused that likely caused this whole incident.
Suzu spots bodies in motion, and a wagon in motion as well, having a better job of detecting the pre-images through motion perception than the details of the Chakra of the two. She leaves that, and the identification of the individuals, to Aru. Instead, she reports, "It looks like there's an out of control wagon, two riders, and a fire. Whether it was theft or accident, I don't think they can stop the wagon on their own. And it would be just our luck if dramatic irony says there's some cliff or precipice in the area they're heading towards. Even if Nonon can chase down the wagon and get those two off of it, I don't know if she can stop it on her own."
She's trying to stay calm, but the urgency of the situation is definitely putting an edge in her voice.
Nonon is running along still. Following any directions she gets. Though unless she's informed of the nature of the situation, she only has the smell and sight of smoke, and the sound of a wagon in motion, as an indicator of what lies ahead of her. She decides that it's time to start using Chakra despite her fatigue, forming hand seals and activating her Kekkei Genkai. Swift Chakra is kneaded into her body, and then she uses it in combination with the Body Flicker Technique to use that new technique of hers… Or perhaps this is merely a refinement of skills she already knew. Either way, it's likely that those watching from above will lose sight of her completely for a moment as she just suddenly teleports about 500 feet down the trail and reappears on the wagon with the two boys.
The blonde kunoichi leans in over their shoulders and asks brightly, "Need some help stopping this thing?" n__n
Unlike Nonon, Aru didn't get a good luck at the facial features of the men, but if the boys are related at all, she should be able to identify the similarities in their Chakra. Maybe. Either way, she at least ascertains that it looks like they're in trouble. "Nonon-san is closing in on the wagonUm…." Aru cuts off as she tries to scan for the Namikaze after losing track of her. Broading her Byakugan's range of vision, she locates her again. "Correction, Nonon-san is on the wagon. But as Suzu-san says, I'm not sure if she can stop it alone. Perhaps a curved paper barrier of some kind might be put in their path to both prevent them from continuing down the trail and to slow them down without crashing?"
She's trying to improvise here, but she doesn't know how to use paper and has never had to stop a wagon before. And leaping in the way and hoping she can spin her way to victory doesn't seem like a great idea even if she could get down there in time.
Rinoko surveys the situation as best she can from her point of from and with the information provided. After a moment of thought, she finally answers, "A physical barrier is a bad idea. They might hurt themselves and not be able to go back." It takes another moment or two of deliberation, but she finally comes up with a plan.
"I'm going to fly you two close. Aru, help Nonon rescue pull those two back on the wagon. Suzu, I'm going to land you and myself in the helm set. I'll pull the reins back, and I want you to use your Genjutsu to make them stop." With that the bird takes a serious dive and flies up along the wagon, its belly opening to drop Aru out by Nonon then moving ahead to drop Rinoko and Suzu into the driver's seat of the wagon. Hopefully things go as planned and Suzu can stop the horses along with Rinoko pulling on the reins.
Suzu has been working primarily on her Genjutsu lately in terms of training, under her mother. But it isn't her specialty, if she even had a specialty, and being called upon as the only Genjutsu-user on-site to control the horses is definitely pressure on her. But compared to the pressure of trying to save the Village and keep her father from dying, it's basically nothing. Save a wagon and a couple horses? Pfft.
As Rinoko flies her and Aru closer, and Suzu is deposited on the wagon, she sticks her feet to the wagon with Chakra so she isn't thrown off, as Rinoko takes the reins and tries to keep control until Nonon and Aru finish evacuating the two boys. Her Sharingan is still active, but without having advanced her training sufficiently to hypnotise the horses via eye contact, even if she could move around to do so, she has to rely upon hand seals. So it's a good thing that Rinoko is keeping control of the horses.
"Demonic Illusion: False Surroundings Technique!" she intones. She also forms a second set of hand seals, and attaches a sound-manipulation Genjutsu to the first technique. If successful, the horses perceive the area ahead of them as having a wall ahead, but it's always just distant enough that they aren't in danger of suddenly stopping. Instead, it's constant encouragement to slow down, without the immediate 'break things and endanger the riders'. She can only target one of the horses with the sound Genjutsu, but she uses it to have soothing sounds and a calm voice talk to it, reassuring it, and diminishing any residual painful ringing noise from an explosion or… Whatever caused all this.
She can't manipulate their entire world perception with jutsu of this level, and she can't influence both with auditory hallucinations without more time to recast the jutsu on a second target. She makes a mental note to practice an improved version of this jutsu that can affect more than one subject.
Now it's just up to Rinoko to slow them down, and Nonon and Aru to get the riders off the wagon without anyone getting hurt.
Hmm. A lack of response from the passengers. They must be too scared. The blonde takes in the situation, turns as Rinoko's paper bird descends and deposits a trio of kunoichi, and then puts her arms around one of the youths as she says, "I'm going to get you to safety now, okay~?" Then she leaps with him and quickly flickers several times, using multiple trees, boulders, and so on to diminish her momentum before coming to a halt on the road. She looks up, pondering going back, but she is feeling… Dizzy suddenly. It seems a long-distance run followed by a burst of heavy Chakra usage like that is a bit much for her in her fatigued state.
She'll just have to trust in Aru's ability to get the other boy to safety, and in the ability of her team mates to save the wagon and horses.
Going from the terror of flight to the terror of an out-of-control wagon being pulled by mad horses: Not an ideal transition. Aru lands there with the others, then tries to heft the boy, with much huffing and puffing. Unfortunately, her physical strength is very… …Average. Like, 'average for a normal teenager girl. Maybe slightly higher, but not by much'. And she isn't sure she can pick up another person if they're even remotely close to her in weight. So she compromises.
Instead of carrying them off, or leaping with them, or anything else, Aru just pulls the boy over the edge with her, and then emits a powerful wave of Chakra from dozens of points all over her body, spinning while releasing a stream of Chakra. It's not the full Heavenly Spin, because she has someone in her arms she doesn't want to tear apart. But it might be enough to, using her Byakugan, intentionally collide with a tree, and use the tree as a brake by depleting her momentum with Chakra-boosted spinning, and probably the tree behind it, and maybe the ground when they hit it…
If this works she might wind up digging a ditch with their bodies before coming to a stop. And they might wind up quite dirty. But hopefully they won't be injured.
The plan basically goes off without a hitch. Thanks to Suzu, Rinoko is able to pull on the reins to get the horses to come to a stop. They'd be given a moment to calm down… as the team is able to calm down before Rinoko turns the wagon around and brings it around to pick up Aru, Nonon, and the two boys they rescued from the wagon. As they head back toward Konoha, the boys tell the story that this was their fault. The smoke on the wagon was from a firework they were playing with that they'd been told not to. It went off, scaring the horses and causing the crash that knocked out their father, uncle, and grandfather and sent them on the ride of the lives.
By the time the team arrives back at the crash site, the men that were there have long been take back to Konoha's hospital for treatment. Today's mission wasn't quite what it seemed it would be at first, but it was accomplished nonetheless.