The Demon Within - Journey's Beginning


Mushi, Aburei

Date: September 24, 2011


Mushi summons Aburei to accompany her on a quest for inner peace.

"The Demon Within - Journey's Beginning"

The Waterfall [Land of Fire]


A large waterfall that streams into a massive pool. Surrounded this beautiful object are green trees and lush bushes. The element of nature seems plentiful here as the essence of dears and even predators come here in a neutral alliance to drink from these waters. The waters of the waterfall crash onto large rocks causing a faint mist to surround it. The pool is a dark blue color signifying how deep it is. The true depth of the water is unknown.


Ever since the war began, Mushi started feeling irritable. Of course, her stay at Konoha where he neutrality was criticized, was trying. But never like the last times. She felt angry and upset with unoffending people, and had actually started an outburst; making a spectacle of herself. Somehow, she couldn't keep control of her temper. Yes, Mushi had a temper. But it was buried under a lot of other things, and not how she dealt with things. The war… the pain… no comrades nearby… and now, pounding headaches… She couldn't gather herself and clear her mind.
It was only when she had an urge to hurt someone, lay in to an annoying Genin, that Mushi began to suspect her headaches were more than just simple headaches. Besides, neither the Konoha nin or herself could heal them. Well, she could at least deal with one problem. She needed some company, but who to send for? It'd be Aburei who'd get a letter. "Meet me few miles west of Konoha. Hurry up. -Mushi." It wasn't her usual tactful way of talking and writing, but she wasn't at her best.
She'd spent her days outside of Konoha, within sight of the main path. She supposed it was dangerous when the raids were going on. But if anyone tried to bother her, they'd pay. Currently she's lounging around the waterfall, sitting up but her eyes closed. Actually trying meditation, something which she'd considered highly useless before.

Huh…that's an odd request for Mushi-neesan. c.c It's in her handwriting, so Aburei doesn't have a lot of reason to doubt it really is her. Especially since he can't think of any reason why anyone would want to lure him anyplace. So what reason could Mushi-neesan have to request his presence in such an abrupt and minimal-info way? Could she need help? :o Has she encountered some sort of epidemic? :O IS ABUREI HER LAST HOPE FOR SAVING THE LIVES OF HUNDREDS AND *GASP* MAYBE EVEN HERSELF!?!? O.O …Probably not, she'd have called a more experienced medic for that. X) Even still, Aburei assumes that her reasons may be medical in nature, and comes equipped with the best general-use supplies he can carry. Y'know, while still complying with the directive to HURRY UP. "Mushi-neesan!" Aburei calls out on coming within sight of her. "I'm here! What's going on?"

Mushi turns to Aburei as he emerges from the forest. "Took you awhile," she says. But then, she draws a deep breath and says, "I mean…thank you for coming, Aburei-chan. Glad you're here." She pats the area next to her for him to sit. She takes out a small bottle and upends it into her mouth. Many brightly colored pills — at least ten — are gulped down and consumed. As if they were candy. She washes it down with a bottle of water. She looks a bit paler too, and from the darkness under her eyes she's not been getting as much sleep as usual. Not noticeably bad, but it's strange for someone like Mushi who makes a point of staying in impeccable health. A sick medic can help no one, after all.
Once she's done, Mushi wipes her mouth and says, "I wanted to call someone from the Medic Center. Someone I can trust. But calling a senior healer like me might have too many political implications at this point. But no one can be suspicious of you." She'd smile and actually ruffle his hair. "Aburei-san…can you be my travel companion? I'm not feeling well, but I think my village can help me find a cure. I think at this point I need some nicer companionship than myself. It'd be of great help. If you can't though, I understand."

Aburei tilts his head. "Political implications?" o.o It's not that politics are a totally foreign idea to Aburei. He understands that people are social, and flawed, and the mix of these tends to create troubles that can be either mitigated or manipulated by those with particular skill and understanding. He might even be capable of navigating some treacherous waters himself given the situation. But serious political stuff…it just seems like something that happens to other people, y'know? Not Aburei or Mushi-neesan or any of the other nice, unassuming people he knows. n.n
Aburei shrugs. "Sure, I can do that, Mushi-neesan. What are your symptoms?" Aburei scratches the back of his head. "I mean, not that I think I can figure out what's wrong if you couldn't…but it's hard not to be curious." n.n;

"I'm known to some around here," Mushi explain to Aburei. "That I'm a neutral healer. Calling someone in might look as if I were bringing reinforcements. Battle power, and we don't want to attract that kind of attention. I can avoid that snag by having someone as young as you around." She rubs her brow, perhaps from their situation, or due to her headache.
She grimaces when he asks what her symptoms are. "I know what my illness is from, I think," she says, "though not how to cure it. The symptoms are…violent thoughts. A piercing headache. And sleep comes hard, even with sleeping pills." She looks measuringly at Aburei. "It has to do with my secret. Some at the Medical Center knows about it. Did you ever hear of it Aburei-chan…what I am?"

A secret? Curioser and curioser. o.o Aburei taps his chin. Something about Mushi-neesan's question seems famil — oh yeah! "You mean that chakra monster thing? You mentioned that when we ran into each other near Kumogakure." Aburei starts to put two and two together. "Okay, so you think it's acting up or something? That does seem like a good explanation for violent thoughts. That wouldn't be like you at all, Mushi-neesan." n.n Aburei folds his arms. "So, you think your home village might have a cure? Must be a pretty special place if you have more hope in it than in the Center. Is it where you learned your medical techniques, Mushi-neesan?"

Mushi looks mildly surprised when Aburei does know her secret. And according to her, it was from her own mouth. Well, it's not astonishing, considering they're rather friendly even for medics in the same center. "Well…that saves a bit of time, then," she says ruefully. "So off we go to my hometown." She climbs unsteadily to her feet, and begins gathering her supplies. "And yes, it's where I learned some of my medical techniques.
Without preamble, she begins to set out again in a northwesterly direction. "As for my medical techniques, I learned a few of them at my village. Most of them I created according to what I experienced in life later though. Nothing like a good war to sharpen your healing skills." She laughs abrasively. Nope, not at all like the usual Mushi. "But my village has settled down since that tower incident…hopefully. And they'll receive me well…hopefully. You sure you're okay with coming, Aburei-chan?"

Aburei settles his pack (of woefully overequipped medical supplies) squarely on his back and takes off in Mushi's footsteps. "Sure I'm sure, Mushi-neesan. What else would I do in a situation like this?" :) Aburei tries to catch up and glance at Mushi's face. "What tower incident, though? You mean those huge towers that popped up out of nowhere? Is your village near one of those? Or is this something else entirely?" c.c

Mushi nods. "Those towers, yes I'm speaking of those…I'm still not quite sure what significance they held, but Goh-kun seemed interested in them. So did a man he was pursuing, Amuro. They both coveted a strange stone that supposedly enabled you to use powerful jutsu, but at the same time casted a dark shadow on your soul. The stone is with…" She glances around as if someone might be eavesdropping. "Never mind."
"My village was interested in a tower that rose nearby the village. They claimed it. It led to many confrontations. I'm not too proud of what it's done to the Village Hidden in the Waterfalls, though. Great power, great suffering. And now I go back." She sounds weary, not at all like someone reminiscing of their home.

Aburei raises an eyebrow. "…Goh-kun did?" Aburei looks down at the path. "Wow. That must've been tough for you, Mushi-neesan." Aburei manages a wry smile. "Sounds like he doesn't have it now, though. I guess that's good." Aburei's smile brightens cheerfully, almost recklessly. "And if there's trouble in your hometown, we'll just have to do our best to fix it. Maybe that's why Kami-sama put us on this path to begin with!" :D Aburei pulls out his recorder and starts playing a lively marching tune. n.n

"Fix…it…?" Mushi says uncomprehendingly. She stares at Aburei as she slows her pace to walk beside him. She's beginning to understand why she asked him to come. When her thoughts ran so darkly, he tried to make the best of every situation. Then, she laughs again, but this time it's goofy, cheerful, even a little girlish. "You're so optimistic Aburei-chan," she admits. But she recoils in incredulity at the sound of the marching music. "Why do you have that…and are playing that?" she asks.
After a few minutes of walking, Mushi would continue, "My father and step mother live at my village. It was where my brother Toshiro, my twin, was born as well. It's very nice, I'll make sure you get to see it."

Aburei shrugs. "Why not? We have to walk a long way, so music will make it easier." Aburei resumes playing, and the image of a marching column surrounds them — not soldiers, but evidently some manner of trained regiment. An illusionary quartermaster starts shouting out a marching ditty, echoed by the others.

Aburei shrugs. "Why not? We have to walk a long way, so music will make it easier." Aburei resumes playing, and the image of a marching column surrounds them — not soldiers, but evidently some manner of trained regiment. An illusionary quartermaster starts shouting out a marching ditty, echoed by the others.

I don’t know but people say,
Mushi-neesan heals all day.
Comforts people from their ills,
Think they'd pay their stinkin' bills!

Aburei glances at Mushi. "Step mother, huh? I hear that doesn't always work out too well, although I think people are lucky for any family they get. Do you get along with her?"

Mushi glances around at the illusionary man and snorts back laughter, especially when she hears the lyrics. Now she thinks of it, she has very little skill in genjutsu, and hadn't practiced at all. "That's a nice illusion, Aburei-chan," she says. For awhile, she listens for further lyrics. The forest is only growing thicker as they head north, and the path slightly less used.
"Raena?" she says fondly. "No, we get along very well. She's never had her own children, and she married my father a few years after my mother died. It helped him come back to his old self, mostly. By then, me and Toshiro were much older, and already out in the world, not relying on our family so much anymore. Raena and I are good friends. You should meet her. She's a bit of a genjutsu user like you. Speaking of which, from who did you learn genjutsu?"

Aburei smiles. "That's good to hear. Maybe they'll accept me as family like you have. Guess I probably shouldn't try calling them toosan and kaasan at first, though." n.n; Aburei twirls his recorder. "There were a few guys at the Center who coached me in genjutsu. I've learned some simple distracting illusions for defense from them, just in case. Mostly, though, I just like to use it for entertaining. If medical skills weren't needed so badly, I'd be a full-time bard." ;) Aburei resumes playing, and the marchers chant another verse.

I don’t know but I been told,
Medicine is made from mold,
Lichen, moss and fungus too,
That's why it tastes like yer shoe!

Mushi smirks when Aburei tells of his passion to be a bard. "Well, one day every shinobi has to retire," she says. "Maybe then you could devote your time to music and singing." After that she walks in silence, but her lips move silently. Her face is scrunched in concentration. Is she trying to battle the dark influence of the bijuu? Is she lost or confused? This question is answered when she shakes her head. "Nope, I have no talent for making rhymes," she admits ruefully. "I suppose you like to make up songs, right? It's not like there was a song out there about my medicine, heh. Here we go, I think the village is out of sight."

Aburei grins. "Sure do. It's one of the gifts Kami-sama has blessed me with. Music just flows through me. Sometimes I feel like I'll burst if it doesn't come out." Aburei looks back over his shoulder. "Hmm, yup, can't see Konoha anymore. We've still got plenty of distance ahead of us, though! Onward!" :D

I don’t know but it's been said,
I'm a vision in yer head.
Figments in yer idle brain,
Just to make marchin' less pain!

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