Date: November 7, 2014
Arika is kidnapped! It's up to Tsuchi, Rikuto, and her guardian Ping to save the girl, which they are able to do quite easily (thankfully).
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
"The Eighth Tailed Beast: Almost Kidnapped!"
Within Sunagakure, there were some traveling merchants that would frequently appear. They tended to be off in the shadows when selling their wares, and the products were often low quality, meaning they were disturbed even less than they already would be. As they continued to visit the Sand Village, they began to notice things. One would be a little girl. Another would be that she constantly has a bodyguard. This leads them to think… 'She must be someone important.'
So one day, Arika managed to escape Ping once again, and he was quite a distance behind her much like previous times. He needs to work on that… Otherwise he's quite the sad Jounin. Rounding a corner, Arika finds the wide mouth of a bag in front of her, and the girl is plucked from the streets and stolen away by the merchants! Ping only just managed to see them leave the village when he ran into both Rikuto and Tsuchi (apart or together, it doesn't matter). The man dragged both along with him as he breathlessly explained the situation. "Ikitara-san was kidnapped. I don't think they know her true identity, but we need to get her back before they find out."
A blink as she hears this and Tsuchi looks over to Ping again, "And how, exactly, did you lose a student?!" She peers at him with a wide eye before looking forward as she moves along with him, "She's like 8." She states, "8, Ping!" She declares and rushes along, "She isn't some Silence mastermind…heck, she isn't even some desert bandit mastermind! She's a student!" She looks to Ping again before rushing forward, "I'm seriously believing you deserved that nickname more and more, Ping." She then shakes her head as she rushes along after those that took the girl. She then glances to Rikuto, "You are going to seriously need to be up to the task, RIkuto." She nods her head, "You have to use your senses and find her, this is not practice."
"Eh?" Blinking suddenly when Ping arrives, Rikuto only stares at the man for a moment, some what dumbfounded. "Just how did.." Rather than continue, the young Miira turns to Tsuchi and raises a hand at chest height and points at her for a moment. When the young woman disappeared in a dash, he turns around and looks towards Ping and asks, "Just who is Arika-san anyways?" Turning towards the young woman, he nods his head briefly and closes his eyes briefly as he follows behind her. "Try not to use any ninjutsu just yet then, I want to try and get a clear reading from them." With that, heat radiates from the boy's body as if he was caught on fire but he didn't even break into a sweat.
"I know!" Ping bellows, feeling a pit forming in his stomach. Dread. Definitely dread. "I took my eyes off her for a second and she was gone. I went after her, but by the time I caught up, some bandits were carrying her off in a sack!" Fortunately he doesn't have anything like groceries on him, which means they can go along quickly. "I'm sorry…" he mutters, head hanging down. He's starting to question just why he ended up promoted in the first place. Likely it was because he was a master Fuuinjutsuist. Not much else to it…
As they travel, Rikuto would be able to detect a trace of chakra. It's weak, but his skills are up to par. Enough to catch it. It doesn't feel exclusively like Arika's, the merchants that captured the young girl also using chakra to aid the escape. Ping looks to Rikuto, unsure if he should answer. Was he allowed? He has to give a good reason… "Ikitara-san is someone who will be very valuable to our village, given time and training," is all he says, hoping the Miira is satisfied with the answer.
The thieves are making good time, as they are users of wind. Arika struggles uselessly in the bag, feeling a bit of panic enter her. ~Kid, relax. If you let me go, then you'll be able to get out quick. Just let me out.~ 'I can't. I'm not allowed…' is her weak response, though she's starting to believe it might not be a bad idea given her current situation.
"I don't know much about her clan. A prodigy or.. Over there, this way!" The boy's attention snaps, soon turning in direction towards where he could feel several different feelings, more outstanding than most of the bleak dunes. "I'm not sure, but I think these are Shinobi nothing too large but a lead." Motioning with his hand, he looks at the two close to him before starting to cool off with a sigh and a light shiver. "The feeling's fading fast though, either they are moving fast or they are getting tired, I can't tell." Rikuto turns to Tsuchi, looking towards her as he waited for her next order or trick under her sleeve to get there quickly.
A hurrm and she looks over to Ping, frowning and shaking her head, "Ping, now is not the time to fall on your sword." She looks at him and then looks forward, "There'll be plenty of time for that after we get Arika back." She then looks to Rikuto and shakes her head a little as she hears the description. SHe then looks forward, "I'm putting eveyr last one of them in a whirlwind." She nods her head, "Arika included. When we get htere, let me lift them all in one go. You and Rikuto need to get her out of my Wind Devil and fast…then I'll crush the remainder into dust…" She then starts off in that direction at a faster clip and gestures, "Move, fast, no delay."
Ping offers a nod, moving in the direction Rikuto directed the group in. "Sounds good," he says, keeping a good two paces in front of Rikuto while letting Tsuchi take the lead. "Tsuchi-san… Thanks…" With those words, he focuses on rescuing his ward from the merchants. Fortunately, Rikuto's question doesn't have to be answered. The mad sprint is enough to keep him unable to speak.
As they move closer, Rikuto might sense an occasional chakra spike. It's easier to detect, but when it fades, there's almost no trace. Arika is doing her best to try and keep the beast from gaining control, but it's growing more and more difficult as panic sets in a firmer grip on the girl. ~Just let me out. I can take them out no problem. Just a bit?~ 'NO!!' Arika's struggling resumes, and the thieves struggle as they try to load her into a cart. "Boss, she's really moving now. And I have a feeling people will realize she's missing soon. We gotta go!" says one, a female in her late teens, maybe early twenties. "I know," the leader replies. "Just get her in the cart, and I can take care of the rest."
Looking between the two, his eyes focus onto Tsuchi again and asks, "Just try to be gentle at first, something's wrong." Looking forward as he races along, Rikuto, tilts his head to one side with furling brows as he continues to feel something 'odd'. "There's something or someone else out there too, it's closer or there's a third that's starting to use ninjutsu but in bursts. I.. can't say I've felt it before. It's there then it's gone, next to the other ones."
The young Miira begins to weave a few seals with his fingers and exhale, causing a clone of himself to appear, though this one seemed more solid than a basic one, it's steps carrying sound and sinking slightly in the sand. "The other ones are stalled, we can catch up, won't be too long either."
A look to Ping and then she nods before she blinks at hearing Rikuto. Taking a breath, she growls softly to herself, "Catch up then!" She then bursts away in a blast of wind that whips up the very sands around her as she races toward the dune that was hiding the cart. As she crests the dune, staring down at the cart and the thugs trying to make off with Arika. She stands there, wind whipping past her even as she comes to a stop, causing the dune sands to whip away from her, flitting through the air, "Listen very carefully. She glares downward at the group, "You have one chance…and only one." She then nods her head, "If you fail to release that girl, I will rend you all asunder and leave naught but sand in my wake."
Ping can feel Arika's chakra fluctuations. It makes him wince, not liking what may come of it. "Got it!" he says, picking up his speed. Even if he wasn't fast, he tried to keep up with Tsuchi. A losing battle. Even as Tsuchi appears, the leader makes a handseal and casts a Genjutsu on the trio. "You have to find us first," he calls out, fading away as he speaks. Tsuchi and company would see nothing but desert after it was cast, and they either need to break the Genjutsu or figure out where the bandits are without the traditional senses.
Ping sends a surge of chakra through his body, breaking the Genjutsu. "/I/ see you. Now give us back the girl, and we won't have to hurt you." He doesn't want to have Arika caught in the crossfire, and she's already so close to losing control…
The girl in the sack oofs as she's practically thrown into the cart. "Ping-san! Tsucchan!" she exclaims, recognizing the voices even through the bag. ~You don't have to rely on others… You can get out of here on your own. Just let me help.~ 'No! You're not going free!' she yells inwardly, clenching her fists and struggling that much harder. The sack is tied tightly, though.
With widening eyes, Rikuto watches as the group disappear into nothingness. "Just what in.." With a shake of his head, the boy would form a pair of seals before glaring forward, but saw nothing in the end. "Just great.." Glancing to the side, his eyes turn to Ping for a moment once he said that he could see her. "I.. can't focus. I can feel them faintly though, tell me once she's free from them, I'll help slow them down and keep distance."
Turning to Tsuchi, the young Miira gives her a nod before breathing in deeply, smoke beginning to curl from his nostrils but it wasn't a clean black, it was tinged purplish green.
Blinking for a moment, Tsuchi pulls out a kunai and slides it right over her thigh as she does before tossing it aside. She then glares at the one making the genjutsu and shaking her head, "You have failed." SHe then flicks her hands together for a couple of quick gestures and almost immediately, the desert sand begins to whip up around. It whips around, slipping the air high, creating a pair of dust devils, she sends racing down the dune to collide with any of the thugs she can catch and then yank them up and away from their cart as she focuses on them before calling, "Ping! Get her from the cart!" She then looks to Rikuto, "Focus, RIkuto! Arika needs you."
Before Ping dashes ahead of Tsuchi's wind devil, he yanks Rikuto out of the Genjutsu. Then arrives at the carts just before the wind races over his back. He uses chakra to keep himself latched to both ground and cart, making sure Arika won't get blown away. The sack that contains the young girl is spotted, and he makes a grab for it. One of the bandits was hiding inside, though, and Ping ends up getting slashed on the arm. Even with that, he grits his teeth and smacks the bandit upside the head, knocking him out. "Ikitara-san. No need to panic, I'm here," he says in his most calming voice. He opens the bag she's in, and the girl scrambles out, eyes a tad wild from fear and panic. ~Tch… Didn't even get to show off…~ the eight tails mutters.
In the meanwhile, Tsuchi's attack draws the leader into a tornado, and he goes flying in a spiral as the tornado twists him this way and that. Both members of Team Sandstorm have to deal with wind-sharpened kunai flung in their direction, though. It slices through the air, a faint noise from the speed it's traveling.
A look at Ping as he releases RIkuto from the genjutsu before she nods and then looks forward. The first wind nearly cuts her but the second is easily avoided. She looks to the attackers even as Ping helps out. She then looks over at teh leader and then makes a few handseals before saying, "I'd highly recommend you call your men off…while you still can!" She calls out and releases a blast of wind from her mouth. Rikuto will once again see why it is that Tsuchi shoudl be feared as the man, cuaght in that tornado is freed from it extremely abruptly as the wind comes crashing down through the Dust Devil and smashes it, and v ery likely the leader, deep into the sand.
Turning towards Ping once he stirs him, Rikuto bows his head but then watches as the man dashes forward. "First.." A pair of lesser clones appear in front of the young Miira and charge forward, catching the Kunai with their chests, while not stopping the blades completely, they manage to divert it away from the boy. The more stable clone and the real boy charge forward after Ping, closing the distance between him and the kidnappers.
When Tsuchi begins to cause gales to wrap around them right in front of him, he stops with a mild skid. "Geeze.. This is her still holding back mostly?!" Breathing in, he closes his eyes and breaths out a thick smog tinted in dark tones along with the clone. While the smog wasn't fast, he aims it towards the twisters, tainting them as with poisoned air as much as he could.
The man barely has a chance to respond, already crashing to the ground and buried in the sand by a few feet. He resurfaces, gasping for air. His minions see this and call a hasty retreat, terrified of Tsuchi already. They take the cart and flee, not bothering to check on their cargo. Fortunately, Ping and Arika are next to Rikuto by this point, the Jounin holding Arika in his arms gently. Soft spot…
The boss flails from his position. "Hey! Get back here and help me out!" he cries out at his men, though they're already quite gone. "Shanghai…" he mutters, struggling to get out of the sand. He's very very stuck, and likely not going anywhere soon. "Tsuchi-san, I encourage you to finish this scum off. I'm taking Ikitara-san back to the village." She likely won't be running around on her own for a few days…
A look at the man buried in the sands partially, she stares for a moment before chuckling lightly to herself as she turns and starts off with Ping, Arika, and Rikuto, "Not hardly." She states as she starts off with them. She looks over her shoulder, "Good luck to you." She calls back before looking forward, "The sand scorpions hunt this area…and they do love meat." She chuckles and starts off with Ping, "I'd wriggle for all you're worth if I were you." And she idly looks over to Ping, "How is she?"
Looking towards Tsuchi briefly, he turns to focus on the mostly buried faces. "Might still be easy for them to get out in a few hours from how they feel. Do you have a way to make it so they can't use signs?" Raising a hand, he points towards the 'boss's' shoulder or where it should of been. Taking his time, he turns back to Arika though there wasn't a smile on his lips as he begins to look her over briefly before Ping took her. "I think Ping is going to give you a spanking after you get back to the village Arika-hime." Tilting his head to one side, he scratches the side of his head, 'Still.. how does she lose a Jounin in the middle of a village' was whispered softly
Arika wiggles her fingers in a meek wave. "I'm okay…" She's a bit pale from the experience, as well as trying to hold back Gyuki, but she isn't injured. Her blue eyes are bright, but with fear instead of happiness, and the girl seems even smaller than usual. Though that might be because of Ping's massive size. "That experience was enough to scare anyone, Miira-san. I doubt she needs further punishment." Definitely a soft side.
In the sand, the thief continues to struggle, news of the scorpions a great encouragement factor. He doesn't know what makes Arika so special, still. But that's the last thought in his mind. "Abscond… Get me outta here! Please! I don't wanna be food!" he cries out in fear. Not a very big bad villain now!
A look at Ping and then Tsuchi frowns at the state Arika is in. She stares for a moment before looking back to the crying out leader and states, "If you don't wanna be food…I recommend finding a way free. Good luck." She then starts off further and looks to Rikuto, "Kill a man and he's out of your hair. Make a man fear you…and word spreads to those who'd even thinking of acting the same." She nods her head, "If he survives that is." She chcukles and reaches over to pat Arika lightly, "You're fine now."
Glancing to Tsuchi, he gives the young woman a silent, nod before looking at the man for a few moments. "I wonder what caused Silence to be formed, letting too many go.. or not enough?" The question didn't seem to be asking anyone in particular, but Naoya turns his back to the buried man and slips his hands into his pockets. "Arika-san. After you've rested some, come find me. I wanna teach you a few tricks, should help you relax. Maybe even use it for a prank around the village." His attention would fix onto the young girl, trying to watch her reactions while they walked back towards the village.
Arika offers a small smile to Tsuchi and nods, trying to summon up some spirit. She still doesn't look well from the experience, but the color is returning to her skin. "Okay, Rikkun!" she says, a bit of cheer returning. It'll be a few days until she's back to normal.
The group returns to Sunagakure without any further issue. Ping ends up getting called to the office of Kazekage for almost losing one of the more precious things of the village, but he's allowed another chance since Arika is rather attached to the Jounin at this point. Success!