Loki (emitter), Ryoji
Date: January 9, 2014
Ayumu tries to find a seal master…
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
"Shadow Clone 2: Ayumu"
Sentou Valley, Sunagakure
Having found a scroll that is sealed shut, Amuyu would be quick to realize the merchant he got the scroll from did not possess the knowledge needed to break it. He did know someone however, in Suna that could, but they weren't on the best of terms, so all the merchant could give is an address just off Nanpuu Street in Sentou valley. That, and contact information for Ayumu's old friend, the cousin of the perfume merchant. The Merchant wished Ryoji luck, but muttered something about needing it that could only barely be heard and was not elaborated upon.
All it took was grasping the scroll to reach the unastonishing conclusions regarding where his feet must tread next. An unfortunate trade-off for a slate being wiped clean, but hardly one Ayumu was willing to dwell once Shinjuro.. Shinjuku… Shin-whatever gave him that last bit of what he needed. A simple inclination of the head, some muttered promise of returning at a later, and then… Ayumu disappears in a blur of pure speed.
What should've taken at least over a week of traveling is cut short through his clan's connection. Alas, that meant more debts being wiped off the slate for the sake of haste. Ayumu hated himself all the more with each transaction. Nevertheless, he pressed on and in time found himself greeting the sun upon exiting Motai theatre. From the taste in the air (among a few other senses) it becomes clear that the day has only just begun for most. He took to the roof tops upon realizing this, hoping to reach his destination before even the short-cuts are overrun as well…
Well, this seal master isn't a real morning person, so Ayumu is running a little early. His assistant, a tired-looking younger female, is opening the shop this morning, though there really isn't a lot to sell. The door looks old and weather-warn, and what merchandise that can be seen through the window tends to be dust-covered. While there are a few people who come down this way, most pay absolutely no attention to this shop, despite the fact he's known for his good work.
It is that one single point in which her attention is neither on the doors or windows that a hand would suddenly clasp her shoulder from behind. It was not Ayumu's intent to scare… at least, not entirely. He merely wanted her attention firmly on the present and not on whatever it is else she had to do. It was nothing personal, technically.
"Ohayo~" He says immediatly after, though this might be drowned out by her screaming or what-not. Even if her panicking becomes the case, the Iga would hardly seem put off by it at all. He smiles that fox-like smile of his with his arms folded behind his back, waiting patiently and noting every little tic behind the cheery persona.
The young woman jumps, and lets out a small "eep" as she turns around and back at the same time. After taking in Ryoji for a moment, she tilts her head to the side and asks, "Welcome to Yuchiru's sealing supply shop. Is there something I can do for you?" she asks.
But before Ayumu has a chance to answer a loud, barely awake male voice echoes from the back. "Hin, what was that? How many times do I have to tell you to be quiet in the mornings. Don't I have enough to do without you waking me up early?" An unkempt man comes out from the back, decidedly put out by being woken up too early. "Who's this?"
GAME: Save complete.
The answer that had been on the tip of Ayumu's tongue since analyzing Hin from top to bottom fades away with just a question. Sightlessly though he be, Ayumu made of show of peering back (or behind Hin if the layout of the building requires it) out of curiosity. The smile from before only grows larger when the last question leaves the elder male's mouth.
"As I was just about to tell the lovely Hin-chan here, Ayumu Wakahisa be at your service." He says, stepping just far enough away to make room for a full bow at the waist to the new arrival. "At least, that is what I'd like to say." He rises from the bow. "But alas, er, in a matter of speaking, I actually am in need of some assistance regarding your, or—" He turns and winks at Hin. "Your assistant assistance expertise in seal removal." A flurry words on top of flattery were but a mask for the Iga given the new arrival the same scrutiny. While Hin was certainly of interest to him from one perspective, the unkempt man is even moreso. If it is possible to place him, Ayumu tries in earnest to do so.
"Nice to meet you Wakahisa-san. Unfortunately, I'm not too well versed on seal removal," Hin starts, sounding a little bit embarrassed to say that.
"She mainly takes orders for me until I am able to mind the store myself," the man gruffly says. He sounds local by accent, though he's not from clan living to be sure. "Name's Yuchiru, what do you need?" he asks bluntly. Afterwards, he speaks to the girl, "Go man the counter Hin, I got this one."
Ayumu does not really know what type of look to give Hin once she makes her admission, so his attention remain firmly on the shop owner for the time being. A rude thing to do perhaps, but maintaining a certain air about him was very important. "A pleasure to meet'cha, Yachiru-sama~" He says, tipping a non-existent hat. "… Oh! But of course, right down to business." He says as he stuffed both hands into their respective side pockets and began digging around. Another show truth be told since the Iga needed a little more time to digest all that his senses picked up. More question spawned as a result, but none are given heed. For now. "Here we are." He says, drawing the scroll part way.
A voice in the back of his mind warns him to pull out the copy he made… And yet, Ayumu draws out the original and offers it to Yuchiru.
The man takes the scroll and looks it over for a few minutes, his demeanor going from irritated to interested to thoughtful. "Where'd you get this?" he asks gruffly. "Whoever gave this to you must be teasing you, since it's obvious you'd have a difficult time reading it." He's not the most kind-hearted man in the world, nor the most polite. "So I take it you want me to break the seal? That'll cost you quite a few Ryo. You could almost afford a teacher for whatever this is otherwise." Nevertheless, the man walks to the counter and sets the scroll down, then opens a drawer for another scroll and some ink and brushes. "A thousand ryo, up front."
Yachiru's gruff response and candid answers hardly seems to phase Ayumu in the least. He had been expecting as much after a few mental files revealed the man's connection to a few of the Iga's other associates, allies, and etc. Ayumu winds up frowning however at the cost demanded in exchange. It was not as if he could not pay for the endeavor or being a meser of sorts that held him back. He simply…
"Yachiru-sama." The smile is gone and so is the easy-going air about Ayumu. "While monetary compensation is to be expected out of any true businessman, I wonder if another arrangement can be come to?" He asks evenly as he absently folded his hands behind his back.
"I don't run no charity, Wakahisa-san. I dare say you won't find a better seal master than I, and my charges are reasonable given the complexity of this seal and the expertise required to break it. Or are you trying to give me some kind of test? If that's the case you can just go on your way. Otherwise, make it worth my time." He holds out a scroll for Ayumu to take in his left hand, even though he received the scroll with his right hand. The woman is studiously keeping her head down, seeming to want no part of this transaction. Yachiru, on the other hand simply grunts toward the girl as he waits for Ayumu to make his decision.
Ayumu grits his teeth behind closed lips. "My apologies, Yachiru-sama." He says evenly with his head slightly inclined forward. During the rise there is a brief glance towards Hin's direction. It wasn't exactly what one would call noteworthy by itself given the fact that she is only an assistant. And yet, Ayumu remain ill at ease now regardless. "… It was not my intent to bring about ill-favor. Only trade a genuine favor for a favor. A much more useful thing compared to monetary concerns given the truth regarding that route." He explains. "BUT! If that will not work then, let us be done with such pointless drabble and get with the boring route. Agreed!" Without hesitation, Ayumu reaches out with his left-hand to shake the seal masters right hand rather roughly. That is, if he can latch onto to thing.
A closer inspection from Ayumu's sight orbs shows that the scroll Yachiru is trying to give back is a fake, with the man hoping to capitalize on Ayumu's apparent blindness. As such, the man's right hand is not within reach, but he instead puts the scroll in his left hand into Ayumu's. "I don't need no favors from a man who can't even see what's on a scroll and yet wants me to unseal one for him. Here, take your scroll and leave." With that the man turns back to the counter where Ayumu's scroll still sits, apparently meaning to put it away. Hin, on the other hand, simply tries to divorce herself from this situation, a look of disgust toward Yachiru evident on her face.
"Iga, Ryoji." The first name would probably mean next to nothing to Yachiru. Which is how generally liked things to be when it came to 'minor' associates within Sunagakure. The surname however… well, if Yachiru truly /is/ a native of the Land of Wind, then it is /that/ which stands out. The Iga clan. A clan that put the clan in clandestine. Virtually nothing did not slip beneath them, be they a child or an adult member of the clan. A fact that all who resided in Sunagakure knew — have known for decades know, though only their ties to Sunagakure have made it truly a public thing.
More importantly, they do not — nor have ever taken kindly to those who'd abuse bargains made with any of their members. While the weren't as heavy handed as crime syndicate can be, the Iga's have long since perfected the art of paying back in kind without 'needlessly' dirtying their hands. "I was a little remiss before about that, my apologies… And have a swell day Yachiru-sama, hin-hime~" He singsongs before turning to leave without picking up the real scroll first. 4
The man freezes, his blood turning to ice as he realizes he just got caught by one of the worst people to be caught by. His face turns sheet white, and even his lips lose color from the blood draining from his face. Only now does Hina drudge up the concentration to speak. "Uncle, you are most sincerely inked. I've put up with your parchment for years, since my dad died, but now that you've brought the wrath of the Iga clan down on you, I'd rather live on the street than get in their way." She throws down her rag and marches off to the back. "I'll count my own pay this time, thank you very much, then I'm gone."
The slamming of the rear door brings Yachiru out of his moment of terror long enough for him to speak. "Wait… I'll do it for free… just… let me live…" his voice is low, and humble for the first time that Ryoji had heard it. He looks toward the door Hin had gone through, perhaps wondering if offering her up would help him out of this situation.
Ayumu made a note to shatter his knuckle and nail some hyper sensitive tongues to a wall later on that day. It would not make him feel any better about playing the clan card when his own merits should've sufficed, but it would be a start. Or so… he hoped. For the time being he settled for at least taking some small, silent satisfaction in his most recent associates two-person drama.
He only felt even more sick to his stomach instead…
Mustering that carefree persona is agony beyond measure. By some miracle Ayumu manages well enough to turn around and appear as if shocked by elder male's last words. "Eh? Hmm… Well, I suppose that can be arranged if you can convince that lovely assistant of yours to come with me and… swear a life debt to me?" He asks, seemingly uncertain and nervous for a moment. "Right!" He fist taps a horizontally held out hand. "And getting that unsealed of course. Sounds fair enough?" Mentally, Ayumu was adding up how many eye balls will he have to throw into an acidic vent to make up for this whole event.
Just as Ayumu makes his counter offer, Hin comes out and pauses. "Sir, believe me when I say that I want nothing to do with his mess. I've been held here against my wishes as he used my father's dying request against me. I will freely admit that I could have spoken up to stop him, but the consequences later would have been severe for me. If you feel I have wronged you personally enough to swear a life debt to you, I'll do so, provided you can tell me the extent of that wrong. Otherwise, I'll pay whatever is fair to the both of us for my part /only/. I'm not paying for his greed, not now, not ever again." She sends a glare of disgust and hatred toward Yachiru, one that speaks volumes.
Yachiru was about to start in on her when that glare was delivered, but he thought better of it. He knew, right there than any hold he had on her was long gone, and that he'd be lucky to get her to spit on him if he were on fire. "P… please reconsider…" he pleads to her. When that plea falls on deaf ears, he turns his attention back to Ayumu. "Iga-sama… I'll gladly unseal this for you now, with her watching. As you can see… she's no fan of mine." Defeat echoes through his voice as his entire world is now crashing down around him.
Ayumu dismisses most of her words with a wave. "Mah-ee! That not be what I mean, though, my apologies for the order on that." He says, grinning and sheepishly scratching the back of his head. "The life debt is solely for your uncle there. You are hardly at fault for any of this beyond silence… Huh, Something the others wouldn't approve of me letting go." He admitted off-handily as he rubbed his chin thoughtfully.
"Eh, consider being a part of my company.. Wait—" He clears his throat roughly, and then lets out heavy breath. "I would like to converse regarding another matter Hin-san, but only after this matter is settled. The details regarding 'that' will be explained then." He turns to yachiru now, folding one hand behind him and extend the other out as if an offer to a truce. It is not. Not exactly. "You may take my hand and swear that life debt to me, then unseal that scroll as promised. Or… You can give your niece a 'proper' severance payment and unseal that scroll for me to be called even." A harsh payment — punishment no matter how one looks at it, though which one is harsher largely depends on Yachiru's perspective of the Iga before him. Ayumu gives away nothing to sway things in one direction or another.
Yachiru looked at Hin for a moment, briefly considering that debt. Problem was, he'd have no way to enforce it, given that she suddenly developed a backbone, one that was enforced by this man that had him in a deadly compromising position. "I'll pay whatever you say to her as a severance…" he admits, defeated. "And I'll never try to influence her again." He winces as the withering glare he's given, knowing full well that he woudn't stand a chance anyway. He then walks to a picture and swings it open, then taps several places on the safe behind it with his chakra before dialing a combination. The safe swings open to reveal quite a nest egg of ryo and jewels. "Take whatever…" he then lays the scroll on the counter and starts to unseal it, completely removing all security seals while leaving the rest alone.
Hin goes over and takes a small pile of ryo, about six-months normal pay for an assistant manager, out of the safe, then grabs a brooch and a couple of jewels. "I'll take my mother's brooch back, thank you very much," she snarls. If she wasn't rebelling before, she sure would be now. She then walks over to Ryoji and nods. "Tonight, Sandswept Inn's resteraunt, about sunset. I'll listen to your offer then. I need to get out of here and spend a few hours getting clean." She sniffs one more time at Yachiru and then walks out the door.
A simple nod. It is all the Iga bothered to give in answer to Yachiru's suplication before the man went off to carry drink the lesser of two evils. "As you wish, Hin-chan." Their last exchange and one made without Ayumu ever looking at her. Silent reigns for a full minute after she leaves. Finally, Ayumu moves to take up the scroll. That is, presumeable if Yachiru seems done with unsealing the troublesome thing. "I will not say that you did the right thing. I will not make false promises to you. I will not lie and say that I am not disgusted with how you handle business deals… All I will suggest is that your act is gotten together before an even less kindly fellow or woman walks through those doors." All of this is said as the scroll is rolled up and slotted into his pocket.
"Now if you'll excuse me yachiru-san, I bid the a hopefully brighter day from here on out." And on that note, Ayumu took his leave…