Date: September 4, 2011
Yuuka arrives late and discovers Nori and Meruin talking with the Kaguya clan's latest student graduate.
"Social Fishing at Mist Lake"
Mist Lake [Kirigakure]
A large crystal clear lake with a small yellow sanded island set in the middle. The lake is surrounded with large trees and lush green bushes. There are berry bushes, some poisonous and some not. The grass surrounding the lake displays patches of long and short grass with the odd stone set allowing for great seating. Villagers and ninja tend to wander towards this area for relaxation or training. Filled with an abundance of fish, here also tends to be a great spot for those interested in the fine sport of fishing.
Nori looks a little crestfallen as the kid gives in. "Thats not what you should say. You should say, 'Good luck, but you'll have to beat me first!' and challenge me to a fight," says Nori, nodding sagely. "Here I thought we were kindred spirits, you seem to have about the same attitude towards the clan I do." He chuckles lightly and walks passed the kid. "So, whos this uncle of yours? Getting beat sounds like a good training exercise, but the way you're on about it, sounds like he just likes to hurt little kids." Nori speculates as he picks up his rod and starts fixing a bit of bait on the hook from his pocket. "The only little kid I want to hurt is Meruin over there." He nods towards the Okumo. "You ever try punching your uncle back?"
Tsiro's eyes look directly towards the fire. "All the time. Sometimes I even land a few. Fighting is fun." The kid shrugs as he seems to just be letting out thoughts. "Everyone has to fight. Why not fight each other? You'd win. It'd make more bruises. Then tomorrow we do the same routine. Then a week later again. I've the best taijutsu of my class. Guess the beatings arent all in vain. I last longer than most kids…."
"I am curious," said Meruin, on the thin layer of water at the shore of the lake near the two Kaguya. He was speaking towards Nori, though he was looking at Tsiro. He began to circle the genin, his smooth motions taking him around, impassive face giving nothing as his draining eyes took in all they could. "Why have you taken a sudden interest in having a negative impact on my welfare, KaguyaNori? As I have told you and you have told me, my actions have only brought you strength. Is that not what you desire?"
Nori chuckles. "You're not in class anymore. Fighting just to fight is pointless if you aren't learning anything except how to take a hit and give one back." The Kaguya flicks the rod, and sends the line flying out into the water again, where the splash is muffled slightly by the mist. He settles back down against the log, and plants the pole in the sand, then begins cleaning the first of the fish. He glances up at Meruin while he does so, and comments, "You said one arm. You took two, so I figure I feel a little miffed about it." He grins, his expression friendly but for something flickering dangerously in his eyes. He considers the Okumo a moment, and then says, "Though, I've been biding my time. Hunting for revenge isn't really my style, and you seemed to think your precious 'time' was worth another limb… I just don't agree." He chuckles lightly, spitting the fish and setting it over the fire to cook. "You're, what, ten years old? How precious could your time be?"
Mist Lake wasn't her usual training grounds, though today there was something appealing with the summer breeze off of the surface of the lake. The gentle wind brushes over her face and threads through her long, snow white hair, tresses pulled with it as pale strands wisp along her cheeks. The crimson paint shines vividly against her pale skin as the Kaguyakunoichi blinks lightly, moving at a steady and comfortable pace northwards while she silently takes in her surroundings, the forest around her. Trees out in front of her seem to part around the worn, earth path, passing beneath the branches. While she shouldn't be surprised to the lake with its usual amount of visitors, Yuuka blinks her aquamarine eyes with some surprise as she sees Nori, and Meruin, who seems to be circuling around someone else.
Tsiro seems oblivious to the movements of the others. "Fighting is in my blood. It is my destiny. My earliest memory was of my father beating my mother, much the same way. Something amazing happened. Her fist struck him and he fell. They usually went at it, but he had a bone sticking out of his head." The crimson eyes of the child seem to glow in the fire as he relives the memory. "She fell with him and he kept choking her til she died. They were both animals. That makes me one right?" His eyes finally move from the fire towards Nori. He still seems like he missed the verbal conversation going with Meruin.
"Nine winters," corrected Meruin. "But chuunin rank. As I recall, I am more decorated than you are, KaguyaNori. My time has been strictly regimented since I was two years, seven months, and one day old. My uses are many; my duties are more; my time's value matches these facts." Meruin's eyes turned to Yuuka, who approached from the paths, examining her as she walked. "Yes, by lineage you would be a beast. However, by lineage, you would also be a man. Your parents made a choice. You may do the same. Either will suit Kirigakure's needs." He inclined his head to the approaching female Kaguya.
"We are all animals," the smooth voice of Maikeru rings out at he steps into the area. Adorned in his usual black clothes and white trenchcoat, he walks casually over to the group, looking specifically at Tsiro. "Such is the nature of Kirigakureshinobi. There are even those of us who are considered monster and demons. However…" He glances around between the gathering Chuunin, a faint smirk on his face. "Each is left to choose his own path. A wolf may kill for sport, or he may kill for necessity to survive." His eyes return to Tsiro as he continues. "It is all a matter of what path you choose to walk. When it comes down to that, there are no excuses, not even your past or upbringing."
Nori chuckles. "I have my purposes, unfortunately theres not much call for them these days," he says idly, though he doesn't elaborate further. "I agree with Meruin on that one," he says to Tsiro. "I suckled at the tit of the blood swamp, and for a long time I really was just an animal, since thats all I knew. But, that had nothing to do with who my parents were. You may have been born of your father's seed, but that doesn't mean you're him." He chuckles lightly, his attention turning to where Meruin indicated, his attention falling on Yuuka. He seemed about to greet her, when Maikeru broke in. "You can also choose to wear strange clothes and invite other men to take your last name," he comments dryly.
"Only if you choose to be." Yuuka murmurs out loud, just enough for everyone to hear as she approaches. The hand that loosely holds onto the strap of her cloth knapsack slides it from her slender shoulder, holding the bag in her hand. "Your life is determined by no one but yourself. If not, you must take it into your own hands." Her gaze flicks to Meruin and she lowers her chin to him, then to Nori while he continues fishing. Yuuka arches a pale brow as Maikeru appears soon after she had, his words confirming her own. "And its what we all agree upon, it looks like." A smile grows lightly on her lips as Yuuka glances back to Tsiro, actually appearing kind. "I am KaguyaYuuka-san, by the way."
Of all the people to speak, only Meruin's voice seemed to upset the kid. It was the way he talked. It just caused the blood of the child to start to boil. He was so different from him. Tsiro hardly knew how many days were in a week, yet this guy seemed to count things down to the minute. Those crimsons beads would blaze up once while looking at Meruin. Then his eyes would go back to Nori, the new arrival Maikeru and then finally Yuuka. She was right, everyone did seem to agree, which only served to confuse the kid more. Not that he would admit it. These people were so very different, yet all viewed the same truth. The kid would shake his head every so slightly as if returning from thought. "Tsiro." is all he would say. His eyes would remain on the female kaguya though.
"Thank you," murmured Meruin, "For feeling the need to repeat what I'd said." His voice rose, then, meant for all to hear. His words were simple and dismissing. "I have business to attend to." He gave a general bow to all present, leaned slightly towards Maikeru in respect for his rank. "Be well." And he vanished.
"My last name is Daeshiro, imbecile. Onryou is the name I have taken as part of the brotherhood," Maikeru says with a glance to Nori. His voice is yet as calm as ever, not showing any signs of anger outwardly. However, his eyes almost dare Nori to keep going, like a wolf daring a sheep to step out from its flock. Though he does have an agreement with him, he wouldn't mind putting Nori in his place. He gives a brief look to Meruin, giving a light bow of his head. "Safe journey." Turning to Yuuka, the Jounin gives a nod, "Hello, Yuuka. How are you?"
Nori chuckles and shrugs, obviously not caring. He glances back up to Yuuka a moment, offering her a slight smile, and then looks back to Tsiro. "He's KaguyaTsiro," Nori says, something a little cold in his voice as he says 'Kaguya'. "I told him he'd be good bait for the fish, but he seemed to think sitting by the fire was a better use of his time." Nori chuckles lightly, and then flicks the fishing pole again. Another fish flies from the water, and he snatches it out of the air. Repeating his methods, he baits the hook again and casts, then cleans and spits the fish to cook.
The light smile remains on her lips, growing just slightly when Tsiro introduces himself. "Tsiro-san." she murmurs, repeating his name to commit it to memory. As Meruin speaks, she shifts her attention to him as her bright eyes blink once, frowning gently just before the young boy vanishes. Her expression deepens with quiet concern for a moment or so longer. Rarely does Meruin react in such a way. Her lips part with a slow breath as Yuuka reaches up and brushes back snowy locks behind an ear, looking back to Maikeru. "Concerned, but well for the most part." A light smile briefly tugs at the corner of her lips. Glancing back to Tsiro, mirth sparkles in her blue green eyes as she murmurs, "Just ignore them. They are always like that around each other. It is almost amusing." It was Nori's words that cause the Kaguyakunoichi to pause, quirking a pale brow at the boy in front of her for a short moment. "Is that true? Sitting by a fire I mean."
Tsiro shrugged his shoulders. "First I tossed a giant rock on the thin ice that I am on. Then I sat down. He told me something about two of three strikes. But ones not my fault." Of course if anyone looked around there was no ice to be seen or any giant rocks for that matter. The kid would then look at Nori. "Pretty sure the fish would be upset when I punch em." His eyes briefly glance of Maikeru, but they do not stay there long.
"Concerned, eh? Well, don't worry too much," Maikeru says, a faint smirk tugging at his lips at her words about him and Nori. He turns his eyes to the youngest Kaguya, chuckling a bit at his words. The kid's at least got some fire in him. Good to see he's not intimidated by Nori. Moving over to a large rock, the Jounin takes a seat on it and glances between the group, saying nothing else for the moment.
Nori sits for a bit longer, and then pulls the line in. "Well. Its true enough. Compared me to some mongrel house pet," he says nonchalantly as he pulls the bait of the hook and tosses it into the lake. He then pulls the line off the stick he was using as a rod, and begins winding it up in a coil. "Kids got spunk," adds as he stows the line in a satchel. The tedious task took him but the breadth of seconds, deft maneuvers from a practiced hand. Nori settles back and closes his eyes, a smirk on his face as he clasps his hands behind his head.
That one pale brow remains quirked as Yuuka watches Tsiro curiously. If anything, the boy at least gets some approval from Maikeru and Nori. The light smile returns her soft lips, "If I may ask, have you learned tree walking yet?" He's been training, so he has some skill at least, but she couldn't help but wonder what he knows.
Tsiro is caught a little off guard by the approval from Maikeru and Nori. It's almost like the kid has never really had approval. Then Yuuka goes and ruins it all for him. The kid puts his head down. "No. I do not even have the basics taught at the academy. I graduated because of my Taijutsu". He would glance up at Yuuka to see her facial expression.
Glancing between the group of Kaguya, Maikeru shows a faint smirk on his face. He stays silent still, possibly pondering on something as his eyes drift between them all. After a few moments, he actually seems to turn completely into a blood red glow and fade away into nothing. It doesn't really look like a flicker, more like something dissipating… Some sort of clone perhaps?
Nori opens an eye to glance at Tsiro. "Well, I suppose you'll need someone to help you out with that, then," he says idly. "At least you have a chance to learn some things. I didn't have the slightest idea of what Genjutsu was until someone used it on me, and I was already seventeen years old." He chuckles lightly.
Sharon Wood moc.oohay|58smailliwybur#moc.oohay|58smailliwybur to me
show details 11:37 PM (18 hours ago)
Participants: Meruin, Tsubaki, Yuuka
Date: September 5, 2011
Summary: An Okuma shinobi summons Yuuka to go to Meruin's aid.
Title: Desert Spider
Location: Kaguya Village [Kirigakure] and Desert of Knives [Land of Wind]
Kaguya Village [Kirigakure]
This area smells very strongly of blood and views of ivory, each building in this district made by the Kaguya that owns it and out of their own bone. At the far west end of the village there is one house that is double the size of any other which could presumably belong to the head of the Kaguya Clan. Among the buildings are small resturants and shops, all made of the same bone material as the other buildings, though the merchandise is not necessarily such.
There was a somewhat unusual sight in the Kaguya village this day. A man of around six feet strode through the bone buildings, his long form covered by a sweeping black cloak. The hood was pulled back, revealing the man's gaunt cheeks and thin, fang-pressed lips. And, of course, the large brown spider sitting on his short black hair. So not a vampire, then, but an Okumo.
The man's stride was swift, his steps sure and silent as he almost seemed to drift through the paths with the sickly grace of the spider. He faltered at no point, looked neither left nor right or regarded any who he met. He knew where he was going and he saw to it that he got there in short order. His goal was a humble hovel owned by a woman the files had said was close to Okumo Meruin.
He stepped up to it and knocked.
Yuuka lifts her bright aquamarine eyes up at the door as her hands pause, water from the faucet running over them with the carrot held in her fingers. Hardly ever does she get visitors. Rare, if anything, so a part of her wondered who it could be. More than likely a mission. Setting the carrot into the sink with others, she reaches for a small towel as she turns and moves towards the door. Opening it inwards, Yuuka blinks her bright eyes with some surprise at the cloaked man standing there. An Okumo, to be percise. She recognizes the clan instantly, but not the man himself. The young Kaguya woman frowns gently with the towel held in hand. "Konnichiwa… May I help you?"
"No," replied the man at the door, his voice a crisp business-toned one, his pronunciation a flawless thing. He inclined his head to the woman in greeting, the spider on his head seeming entirely unbothered by the movement, staying still as it watched Yuuka with it's eight eyes. "But, you are Kaguya Yuuka, yes? You may be interested in helping Okumo Meruin, instead."
Yuuka blinks her bright eyes at the stranger, her gaze flicking between him and the spider perched upon his head for only a short moment. When her eyes return to the man, a frown begins to grow in them, "Of course." she murmurs softly, "If he needs my help, he has it." Not that Meruin would ever ask for help. More than likely, this clan member knew something that Meruin himself doesn't. Even if she was in the dark, the Kaguya kunoichi doesn't hesitate in answer.
The spider on the man's head began to work it's fangs at that, a clear poison stretching between it's jaws as it shifted that. The Okumo spoke again, then, and the spider stopped, settling. His rust colored eyes found Yuuka's aquamarines, locking onto them. "You will have heard the rumors on the boy's recent banishment, I am sure. He is currently in the ruins of a territorial shippodoku in the desert of Sungakure. It is likely that this predator will prove greater than he and the boy will die. We have found that if you go to him, his chances of surviving increase from twenty-one percent to sixty-four percent."
Listening quietly to a man for a moment or so, Yuuka blinks her eyes again in surprise when she hears that Meruin is in the desert, in Sunagakure. Her soft lips part slightly before she murmurs, "A predator?" The concern in her gaze deepens, "He… he is in serious trouble then…" Curling her fingers tighter on the towel, she turns just enough to toss it to the sink, only to smoothly step outside and close the door behind her. "Alright. Then we do not have any time to waste."
The Okumo stepped aside to allow Yuuka room to walk past if she should so please, his cloak shifting slightly with his smooth pivot. "You should be well aware that there is great danger towards your own health should you choose to go and attempt to see Meruin safely home. Tsubaki is somewhat crazed and it has not dulled her combative capabilities. It only serves to make her less predictable and more dangerous."
Slipping the strap of her knapsack across her torso, Yuuka lifts the hood atacked to her kimono and pulls it up over her snowy head. Her bright eyes lift up at him for a moment's pause before the gentle frown of worry returns to her features, "That does not mean I should not at least try." she murmurs softly. "Ii am willing to risk it if it means bringing Meruin-kun home safely."
"Very well," replied the man, turning and beginning to walk back out of the Kaguya village with his productive stride. "You appear to be ready to leave immediately. Luckily, we are as well. We will be your guides to the boy's location. We thank you for your cooperation."
Desert of Knives [Land of Wind]
An endless sea of sand, either blistering hot during most of the day, or freezing cold at night, stretches outwards in all directions. There is plenty of life, in the form of various hardy desert plants, as well as animals, but there also a remarkable number of humans patrolling the wastes as well…
The Desert of Knives has gotten its name due to the proliferance of bandits and other criminals that tend to inhabit this region. Few caravans are foolish enough to risk travelling through this area despite it being a shorter route to the more inhabited parts of the Land of Wind, where trade can be conducted, than trekking through the Northern Deserts. To the north-east is the infamous 'San Sara-Duruta', a haven for all manner of vile people and practices. The rule of ninja is non-existent this far beyond Sunagakure's borders. To the south is the open desert that is not under the sway of bandit lords. To the north is the western expanse of the Desert of Knives.
Tsubaki continued after Meruin, racing in order to strike once more, but he had other plans. The shuriken that he threw slowed her down by a minor amount. She wasn't able to flicker past them to continue on. So, she paused and ripped both out of her chest and tossed them aside.
Considering he was at a distance, she had to cut him off, so she placed her hands together into seals to send up a spire of earth to connect with him and soon flickering forward to make up the distance between the both of them, pincer held out to stab him in the stomach.
Meruin's eyes stay on the Shippodoku, lips curling into a snarl as his bloodlust began to take over once more, brought on by the pain arcing through his form. Already the wound was a bit smaller, though, his body healing what damage had been done at a rapid speed. Enough so that he barely snarled any harder as he moved forward with swift motions of his arachnid legs… only, it seemed, to run into Tsubaki's appearing pincer. An abrupt leap backwards helped but didn't at all stop the pain from coming on. A new gash in his stomach to deal with, he sent out a flurry of strikes with poisonous strands of spider silk.
Tsubaki flickered out of the way of the strands easily enough, but something was bothering her. Her attacks looked to have no effect and it took a bit for her to notice, but she sees that he's healing his wounds as the battle goes on. Her lips lifted into a sneer as she placed her hands into seals to summon forth a dragon of earth beneath her.
When it was close enough, she planeted her feet on it and rode atop its head as its maw opened to snap its teeth shut on him, backing up the attack with two slashes of her pincers towards his face.
Yuuka is quick to follow after her Okumo guide, dashing as fast as she physically could without straining herself, blurring across the desert's sands towards what appars to be the ruins of a tomb or temple of some kind, the surface worn and half-bured by the desert itself. As her guide comes to a sudden stop, she follows suit, her deep aquamarine eyes narrowing with a slight frown from beneath the hood of her kimono, glancing quickly over the open entrance of stone, built into the wall of the temple as sand threatens to overtake it.
Glancing to the Okumo, he lowers his chin with a mere nod, confirming her suspicions. That Meruin was inside. Her hands unconsciously tighten into fists as the Kaguya kunoichi turns and passes through the stone arch, soon being engulfed by shadows. Not that it makes much of a difference to her. Yuuka allows her eyes to adjust without slowing down, using her senses to guide her forward. The tunnel angles downward, leading her deeper inside the supposed temple.
It barely takes a few minutes for her to pass through to suddenly emerge inside what she could only assume is a room big enough to hold a city. Or a maze that had been made by a giant spider, thick white spider silk clinging to surfaces with tears randomly through several webs. Yuuka is quick to scan her surroundings before her bright eyes lock onto Meruin several yards away, arachnid legs rushing him straight towards a woman. He leaps hard backwards, but he's clearly hurt.
The Kaguya's expression darkens, her hands curling tightly into fists at her sides as chakra unconsciously begins to build up inside of her.
Meruin seems to simply face the dragon head on, the nine year old standing tall on his arachnid legs. The earthen teeth meet his fur and stop there, carrying him backwards. Soon, though, the teeth dig deeper, finally piercing hidden defenses and sending a small mist of blood into the air before slamming him back into the wall and crumbling against it, leaving him open to Tsubaki's slashes to his face, cutting him open, opening deep rents on his cheeks. He falls to the ground, then, having taken too much damage in too little time. Still, though, his body continues ineffectively healing itself as his eyes lock on movement that was neither his nor Tsubaki's.
Tsubaki follows Meruin's every movement, down to his fall to the ground where, she drops and lands on the ground in a crouch before him. Though, just when she was about to make another advance towards him, she heard him utter something. Something that sounded like a name. Someone else was here now? She quickly turned around to seek out what a Yuuka might be or who, rather.
It takes her a short time to zero in on Yuuka, but her expression is unreadable from this distance. Still, her stance seems to suggest something of aggression and Tsubaki wasn't pleased with that.
She left Meruin alone on the ground breathe in the blood that was seeping from his wounds while she took the chance to take out this other intruder. Flickering from where she was, she met up with Yuuka in an attempt to strike her with one of her pincers and follow that up with a hard slash from the other.
The pincer strikes hard, drawing blood across Yuuka's forearm, though the kunoichi narrows her gaze slightly and takes a half a step to the side, the slash coming within inches of slicing flesh. Her upper lip curls with a dark growl, "That was a mistake." she murmurs, the blue green of her eyes flashing dangrously. Already fine specks of ivory dust scatters around Yuuka, unnoticable to anyone but her. She pulls her attention from that to her opponent as she raises both of her arms, another growl escaping her throat just before her hands blur, open palms striking not to do damage, but to plant a pair of tiny bone shards on Tsubaki. All she needs is one.
Meruin watched as Tsubaki vanished from in front of him, reappearing in front of Yuuka and striking, tossing blood to the air. His eyes narrowed some and his blood stirred, body healing at a faster pace as he saw her in danger.
Tsubaki attempted to block against the blur of hands that Yuuka threw up against her, but nothing came of them. She was a bit confused as to what happened as no damage came from the attack. She didn't take too much time to dwell on it, however and went on the offensive, unaware of the shards that were placed on her. She started to jump into the air, but found that she couldn't move. What just happened? She was stuck in place. Whatever she did in that time must have done something, but /how/ is what bothered her.
As much as Tsubaki tries to avoid it, Yuuka can feel the connection the moment it happens, narrowing her deep aquamarine eyes sharply as the surface of the tiny slivers suddenly erupt, vines stretching at a impossible speed to wrap around her opponent. With Tsubaki trapped, the bone of her left shoulder bulges, breaking through flesh completely for the bone from her arm to fly through the air and caught smoothly in Yuuka's hand. The end lengthens into the sharp point of a hiltless blade while it also curls into an angle. She doesn't hesitate for a moment, her arm arches and spins the blade at Tsubaki, slicing through the air.
Meruin's watches as Yuuka assails Tsubaki, a frown coming to his face. She was doing… very well, actually. But, he knew that the Shippodoku would only come back from this with an anger and a viscousness, well prepared to deal more than she's received. He would have to be there… would have to help. He felt his mind shift as he forced his body to heal faster still, to master the changes that'd come over it.
Tsubaki couldn't do anything but take the slices of the blade that came against her. Now her blood would spray from the spinning blades of bone, easily cutting into her flesh. She shouted out, both in pain and anger while she struggles to break free of the bones that held her. For every time her muscles bulged and pressed against the bone to raise it, it'd come back down seemingly tighter than before.
Hissing at Yuuka, she contines pressing against the binding bones hoping to break free and she knows she'll get to that point soon.
Yuuka sharply narrows her eyes on Tsubaki as she struggles against the vines. It wouldn't be long before she breaks through them. That doesn't give the Kaguya pause though as she presses her weight through one leg and pushes off hard in a dash, blurring with speed. The blade lifts to slash at her target again.
Meruin was feeling slightly better now. His body only getting stronger than it'd been a moment before. He lifted himself up to his knees, mind racing for new ways to feel, new ways to.. work. Unendingly hard to explain, he simply stopped trying to, instead experiencing as he forced his body to filter the substances moving through his veins that healed him so. Straining it, concentrating it, it reached a much higher potency and he let it flood into his body, regenerating the damage done to him at a faster rate.
Tsubaki huffed and her muscles seemed to expand before she was breaking out of the bindings, body drenched in her blood having sustained slices from those blades. She roared out, the blood reaching up to her skin turning her red clearly showing her anger in the situation. This one has transgressed against her long enough!
Pincers at the ready, she held them out to either side of her before seemingly flashing from her spot to behind Yuuka, her pincers now crossed having performed a cross slash against her, now seeking to see and hear her blood spray like she did to her.
Yuuka tightens her fingers around the hilt of her ivory blade as Tsubaki breaks through the binding, scowling darkly at her opponent. And as fast as she is, even the Kaguya kunoichi's senses weren't fast enough to detect Tsubaki, appearing directly behind her. Defenseless, the pincers cross slash across her back, the motion throwing her forward as blood splatters into the air. Yuuka's bright eyes widen, the world seeming to move in slow motion around her as she falls, helpless. The pain was so sudden, so incredible that darkness over comes the Kaguya, her limp body sliding across the dusty, earthen floor and shredding through several layers of web before rolling to a stop.