The Pleasure Of Serving


Meruin, Saijin, Yuuka

Date: January 27, 2011


Kirigakure has called upon a squad of genin to execute intruders on their land. The execution commences.

"The Pleasure Of Serving"

The outskirts of the Land of Water

Meruin stands in the briefing room, the eight year old at the front, examining the paper held in his hand. They were his orders, obviously. He was waiting now, for the others to enter as he read on the details that he would soon be leading. There was no expression, no emotion… simply an air of waiting.

Recieving word through his mentor, Ryokoo, Saijin quickly made his way into the back of the store and donned on his Kuro Kitsune outfit. He was ordered to meet up with a team in the briefing room at the Administration building. Giving the order that this mission was an urgent matter, Saijin knew that no time could be wasted. Still buckling his weapons across his back on the way into the room he notices Meriun standing there with paper in hand. Giving the kid a nod if he were to look back at him, Saijin was relieved to be following behind him on another conquest.

Yuuka is already here, waiting quietly with a soft and concerned frown in her features. She should be getting used to missions by now, having been on a few, though she still looks around her with muted nervous energy. One might think she was going to meet the Mizukage himself instead of just assigned a mission. Releasing a slow breath, Yuuka lifts her gaze to the door as she sees Kuro step in, apparently been summoned as well.

Meruin looks up from the paper about two minutes after Saijin steps in, and he looks to the two here. "The mission briefing was scheduled to happen now, so it is happening now. There was another scheduled to accompany us, but they're not here, so the three of us will be forced to pick up the slack if we depart before she arrives."

Saijin slides a kunai up into his sleeve. It seems that was the last piece of gear he had to ready as he shifted his weight from leg to leg to make sure that everything was in place and his complete mobility was there. Saijin looks from under his hood towards Yuuka when Meruin speaks of them being the only three. He then gives a nod to Meruin to signal he was more than up to picking up the slack. Feeling very confident of this group Kuro Kitsune was ready to make great things happen.

Yuuka absently bites at her bottom lip for a moment before quietly lowering her chin in a light nod, not really needing to say anything, as Meruin had stated the obvious. She turns her gaze as Saijin slides a weapon into his sleeve, and while he looks like having one less person wouldn't be a big deal, the Kaguya kunochi wasn't so certain.

"I am to be your team leader," Meruin began. "And I will lead you to the northern edge of Kirigakure. There is a group of people, there, who have picked up what little they have and fled from their homes to make the journey to here. It is said that they were holding sanctuary for the recently escaped criminal Kamizuru Kushin. Fearing persecution from Iwagakure and Konohagakure, they came to Kirigakure. About 50 strong, they have little food, little knowledge of the land, and they asked to be given aid and protection.
"Kirigakure wants them killed."

Saijin furrows his brows as he replays what Meruin just said twice through his head. Not one to be very outspoken as "Kuro Kitsune" he takes a step forward. "You-you can't be serious. These people can't be much of a threat to Kirigakure. We don't even know the details of this Kamizuru character either. For all we know they could've been falsely accused. These people have been with out food and are in a strange land probaly fearing for their lives without any hope left in them probaly weak and battered from the traveling. You're talking about a mass massacre." Although Saijin's voice held to be stern he never once raised it above a humble level as he spoke.

Yuuka remains quiet as she listens, watching Meruin as he explains the mission's details in full without much of a difference in his tone all the while. Explaining that they are to be killed, however, earns a look of surprise as she blinks once, her lips parting in her silence for a moment longer. Turning her snow white head, she glances to Saijin as he evidently might think that Meruin is kidding. "We… do not know that…" she says qyietly, "We do not know that they are not a threat to Kirigakure…"

"Kamizuru Kushin killed over 60 people, one of which was one of the Fire Daimyo's advisors. His guilt is assured, and he was only imprisoned because of dispute over who could try him." Meruin took the paper he'd been given between his small fingers, methodically tearing it into tiny pieces. "Any reasoning I could give you for this would only be conjecture. It could be that we have information that the criminal is within their group at this very moment. Alternately, the Mizukage may have been awoken a little too early on the day that he heard the news. Whatever the case is; we have our orders.
"And we will perform them."

Saijin looks to Yuuka as if he can't believe she is on board with this as well. Looking back to Meruin who further fills him in on the details, Saijin lowers his head. Taking a step back to where he was originally standing he gives a nod. "I understand." Even with the words coming out of his mouth everything in his body is holding up red flags to what he is about to partake in.

Travel was slow. There were no true impediments to the group's movements, really. And that's why Meruin chose such a leisurely pace. Kirigakure was small and there was nothing to make the journey hard, so he conserved energy, making their travel time an insignificant four hours, with a break halfway through. They needed to conserve their strength for the slaughter.
They were nearing the camp. It was a mere five minutes walk now, and had been visible for quite a while. Many were sick after the journey, so they couldn't make the journey to the village as a group. So, they sent an envoy, and Kirigakure sent one in turn. The group was then moved to this locale. It flat, lacking any semblance of foliage higher than Meruin's waist for miles aronud. Any escaping would be easy to see.
"Your assignations," Meruin said, now, eyes on the camp as they walked at a simple pace. "We are going to walk into the center of the camp; Call out the leaders of the people; Inform them that they were sentenced to death; And commence. The both of you may kill whomever is in front of you. However, for me, the men of fighting ability will take precedence. Yuuka, the women are your assignment. Saijin, you take the children, the elderly, and the infirm."

Saijin continued to be conservative as he traveled. Which was not out of the ordinary for anyone who has been around Kuro Kitsune. The entire way there he fought back and forth between his morales and what he was trained to do. After recieving his orders he looked at Meruin as if he was a three headed dragon. His gaze narrowed at the kid while at the same time his stomach churned at the thought of killing children and the elderly. He wanted to vomit just imagining performing the task at hand. Still walking along with the group he looked over to Yuuka to see whether or not her facial expression changed with the details of their next task given to them.

Yuuka walks quietly behind Meruin as she glances to him, and while she agreed to follow through with the mission, it didn't mean that she didn't have her own moral objections to killing innocent people. Normal people that were driven from their home without an ally to rely upon in their need. Even small children that will never have a chance to live, to grow up, to laugh and play. To love. She forces herself to breath out slowly as she nods faintly, lowering her gaze to the soft earth they walk upon. It takes her a few good moments for her to force her hand to move, to reach into her sleeve and pull out her Epigaea dagger and tighten her grip on it in preparation.

Two minutes away from the camp, darkness suddenly burst from Meruin in a low wave in the form of spiders. They sped away from him, scuttling with an almost panicked haste. The sounds they made swiftly diminished as they got further from the group and spread out from eachother, until the sound was no more.
"A perimeter," explained Meruin, "So we know if any escape and can track them down." The eight year old continued towards and into the camp, seemingly unaffected by the knowledge of their mission and the fact that people were beginning to gather, and murmurs being spread, hope lighting in eyes. He remained the same as he walked through them as if he were wstill walking through the plains on his way here. He came to a halt and stopped there, silently waiting.
The crowd had already gathered, most who could be outside there and waiting in a ring around the trio of kirigakure ninja. They talked amongst themselves, their voices a constant vribation in the air. The leaders had not yet stepped confronted them. But they soon would.

Saijin watched as the spiders took off away from the group in a hurry. Clenching his fists in anger, he had at least hoped few of the innocent would be able to escape this massacre. Looking over to see Yuuka ready herself for the upcoming event brought a angry expression over his hidden face. He hated her at this moment. He hated Meriun. And he especially hated Kirigakure for choosing him to do this mission. With his ability as a hunter and tracker it all made sense to him why he was chosen.
Following Meruin down to the camp and through the people one little girl tugged at his pant leg. "Hey! Did you bring medicine for my sick brother? its his birthday today and he can't even get out of bed!" Saijin choked as he didn't know what to tell the little girl. Closing his eyes he just turned away from the girl and kept following behind the other two until they came to a stop.
Looking around at his hopeful faces in the crowd his eyes sized up his targets. "This is wrong…" He says only loud enough for the other two to hear. He then looked over to Yuuka dead in her eyes for any trace of sympathy.

Yuuka glances around them quietly as the crowd form around them as they walk through downtrodden people, eyes not innocent to the world, but still hopeful of something better for themselves. Catching Kitsune's eyes, she tries to smile gently, one that never reaches her eyes and is instead filled with quiet sadness. "It is…" she says softly, agreeing with him. "But you can not assume we were told everything. Or that we know exactly what we are or ever will come up against in our futures." she says softly, lowering her bright eyes to the ground as they seem to darken with something else.

"There is no right or wrong," said Meruin, speaking once prompted by Saijin and Yuuka's conversation. "There are only orders. Remember that." Whether or not he was in the mood to say more would never be known, as the leaders stepped up, then, entering the ring of people. The reason it had taken so long was apparent. The leader of the group was an elderly man, his face wizened by the years and weathered, it looked like, by the salt of the sea.He was also crippled. His legs had been taken off at the knees, and he was being pushed towards them by a wheelchair. Who was pushing him wasn't readily apparent until he came to a stop, and the little girl that had first tugged on Saijin's leg stepped from behind the chair, smiling broadly, showing a gap between her teeth.
Her green eyes shined with pride as she explain to them, "Hi. I'm Mami. And this is my grandpa. He's really nice. He let me bring him over to meet you guys, since my brother is sick." It was obvious by how fast she talked that she was exciting, if you couldn't see it in the way she couldn't seem to stand still, or to stop twiddling a strand of her unkempt hair.
The old man looked at her with a smile that seemed to /prove/ that he was her grandfather, moving a vein-tracked hand to pet give her a familiar pat on the head. "She has the right of it. Sorry for making you wait. I'm not as young as I once used to be; don't get around quite so good as I used to." He grinned a little at that. "I'm Tatsuo. What brings you here?"
Meruin immediately stepped forward and spoke, then. "There has been new information regarding your petition towards the village of Kirigakure."

Saijin watched with nervousness while Tatsuo was being wheeled out by his granddaughter. His heartbeat then quickened as Meriun spoke. He knew that within a few minutes this place was about to become a camp of chaos. The blood, the screaming, the crying…suddenly flash backs of his childhood crash into his mind. What was about to go down was not much different from what happened to him when he was much younger. In fact it was because of his village being sacked that him and his family ended up in Kiri and put him on the path of being a shinobi. He tried his hardest to block out of this with the words Yuuka just spoke. He needed to convince himself that this was necessary. Weak and trembling fingers reach down to his hip where his kunai were holstered.

"Good news, then," said Tatsuo, his granddaughter, smiling and moving closer to him as he put a hand on the top of her head. You could tell, though, by the way he spoke that the words were more hope than decision, and his bringing Mami closer was as much out of insecurity and worry as it was out of affection for the girl. Meruin answered promptly.
"You have all been sentenced to death. Kirigakure extends it's apologies." The genin then turned around to the two behind him, speaking into the silence caused by the stunned crowd. "We are down an ally; be efficient. You are to begin." He looked to Saijin, "One infirm, and one a child. They are your responsibility. Be swift."
And with that, he whipped out an arm, and a pair of shuriken whirred from his sleeve, thudding dully into the throats of two men who still couldn't believe this was happening, even as they sank to their knees and their lives pooled on the ground. Everyone stared. But the shock wouldn't last long.

Now with everyone in a panic and the air filled with screams and yells the people all around them scattered in fear for their lives. It was obvious not one of them were skilled in any combat. Taking a kunai out from its holster, Saijin threw it into the chest of the elder Tatsuo. Mami screamed at the sight of her grandfather being killed. "Grandpa Tatsuo! Noooo!" Hugging him he whispered something to her in his dying breath. Saijin threw his head to the side to get his vision off of the emotional scene. Looking back up he saw the little girl run towards a hut to be with her sick brother no doubt. The genin then turned and began picking off the elderly one by one with his bow and arrows. Deciding that the elders had lived a full life compared to the kids, he just couldnt bring himself to picking them off yet.

Yuuka already has her Epigaea dagger out and hidden beneath her sleeve while Meruin calmly explains what Kirigakure has decided, refusing sancturary and sentencing them to death. She keeps her dark eyes lowered, her stomach twisting into a knot by the time Meruin finshes. It would have been easier if these people were all shinobi and had a decent chance, or at least a particial chance of fighting back. The world has always been cruel. Especially in thte Land of Water. She tightens her grip on the hilt of her blade as she pushes her weight through her legs, pushing off with sudden speed as her blade gleams with deathly promise. Yuuka doesn't look at the women's faces as she passes by them, cleanly slicing along the flesh of each neck without pause.

The shock had broken and panic filled the wound. Oddly enough, despite two of the group being boys, one eight and the other 13, none were brought to violence by their fear, by their anger. Instead, terror and desperation brought their thoughts to fleeing, as they had done to get where they were in the first place.
Meruin took advantage of this, using his far superior speed to quickly outpace the helpless people. A small hop, a quick spin, and another man died, his neck neatly opened by the eight year old's efforts. As it was, the people here were still close. Rather than simply running as far and fast as they could in one direction, they'd scrambled to make it to their own makeshift tents, to gather what little possessions they'd had. Somewhere, they'd half-expected this to happen. Somewhere, they were half-ready to pick up and run, once more, to start anew. And Meruin took advantage of this, sticking to his targets, throwing a kunai at the throat of a man who stepped from his tent with his daughter on one hip and a small pack on the other. The boy turned away from the screaming child as her father dropped.
Not too far in front Yuuka was a woman, the skin tight to her bones. She was so emaciated it was clear that she was underfed even before things went bad for the group. She was weeping, looking ignorant of her tears as she tried to pull get a child with her to escape. Bt she was weak, and the child was pouty and insolent in it's youth and fear. And so, the woman eventually dropped, too tired to get back to her feet as she stared at the little boy so close to her.
Beneath the tumult, Saijin would notice, eventually, that there was another woman. She sat on the ground, legs curled under her, head leaning against the side of a pair of crates as she stared at the genin. Her eyes were empty, devoid of life or feeling or function. The only sign that she was more than a statue was her hand, slowly stroking her swollen belly. Pregant. Infirm. Saijin's responsibility.

Saijin continues to take out the elderly with via Kunai and shuriken from afar. With each death, the boy's hands grew weaker. An old man even rushed to try and take out the young boy. Out of reflex Saijin parries the shovel the man was using to attack him and follows it up with a slice to the man's throat with his sword.
A small child was running away from the scene. He looks up at where Meruin was slaughtering gleefuly. His gaze then turns to Yuuka to see she was carrying out her orders with no hestitation. Now looking back at the kid, he takes a few shuriken from out of his part and whirls them into the back of the kid. "Gah!" Saijin lets out as the sound of steel sticking into flesh can be heard. It feels as though every soul that he takes away, a part of him dies.
That was when he notices the pregnant women not far from him. The boy reaches down to grab another kunai. A few moments pass then with a twitch of his hand it retracts away from it. Glancing over his shoulder towards Meruin he sheaths his sword back into its holster. If the rest of the village was going to be slaughtered then they will just have to do it. Saijin played his part enough in this massacre.
Looking around, Saijin takes off into a dead sprint towards the hut where Mami had ran off to earlier. Kicking in the door, the first thing he is sees is the little girl throw her body over her sick, younger brother who was laying on a cot. "Please don't hurt my brother!" She screamed. Saijin glanced around the empty hut. There wasn't even a fire burning. This was no place for anyone to live. The sick boy then began a coughing fit under his sister. The genin lowered his hood back to reveal the top half of his face and head. "Here drink this." He says kneeling down and offering the boy a canteen of water that the genin was carrying on his hip. Looking through the cracks of the wood from inside the hut he continued to watch the slaughter that was going on outside. Looking back to get a good look at the sick boy's condition and the fear in the little girl's eyes he shook his head. "I'm going to get you guys out of here."

Yuuka narrows her focus as she concentrates on the scattering wanderers, tightening her grip on her dagger as she rushes by another woman while slashing through the tender skin of her throat. Barely noticeable if it wasn't the river of crimson that began to flow from the slit. With the amount of people scattering as they were, it was going to be difficult to do anything but react, the pressure beginning to build as the number of slashed necks increases. The sight of the extremely thin woman was what stopped her, the feeble and weak fingers struggling to keep hold of the child as he screamed and wiggled. So young, but knew that what was happening was wrong and terrifying. That the security the woman offered was failing him and he was weak to fight destiny as she stared back at him. Death looked upon him in silence while others scream in terror around him, and then, a tear falls over her cheek. Another then streams downwards, followed by another. Yuuka stares at the little boy while completely frozen, tears flowing quietly. Somehow, she knew that she had turned into the monster that haunted her own dreams, that ripped her apart from the inside and forced her into darkness. "Is life not worth living then…" she faintly whispers to herself.
No. This was different. She shakes her snow white head as she looks down at the dagger in her palm. She was different. She had survived somehow and it was the darkness that was tormenting her, even now. How many of these people could have prevented her family from being slaughtered? Could have prevented her village from being lit ablaze. Only to then turn to her when they were in trouble? The Kaguya kunoichi tightens her grip on her Epigaea dagger, lowering her gaze to the thin woman. They were a selfish people, looking for handouts only when it convinced them. When they were in need. Without so much of a thought for others. How many of them have they sentenced to death because of indifference? Yuuka flicks her hand just slightly, though a thin ribbon of crimson appears along the collapsed woman's neck.

Meruin stepped out of a tent, rubbing a few droplets of blood from his cheek, his other hand drenched in the scarlet ichor. Still, with no emotion in the act, he examined the situation about. Most people were dead. All of the men of fighting capability, as far as he could see, had been killed. The camp was still.
There had only been two escapees out of 50 — a woman and child — observed by the ring of spiders around the town. They would pursue them, soon. For now, he would make sure the job was done here as best as it could be. Kaguya Yuuka, called the eight year old, looking towards her. Begin searching the premises for survivors. Be wary. This is the most dangerous section of the mission.
He passed her by, presssing his clean hand against her to guide her in the direction he wished her to begin her search. He would begin in the other direction. Saijin had last been seen heading that way, afterall. If there was a problem, hed be the best equipped to deal with it. And so, he began examining tents, bins, that piles of crates. Soon enough, he entered the one Saijin stood in.

"Wait! Not without grandpas necklace!" Mami says as she reaches under the pillow to pull out a gold link necklace with a bright blue orb dangling from it. Saijin nods to Mami then goes to scoop the sick boy into his arms. The genin looks up again to see Meruin continuing his assault on the village. Pulling his hood back over his head, Saijin looks down to the little girl. With a few pets of her hair he says, "Everything will be ok sweetie, I promise." The boy says as he was trying to convince himself more than anything. He really had no plan as to how he was going to make this work. For all that he was doing was following his heart. "Stay close and keep your eyes shut until I tell you to open them. Ok?" The little girl nodded meekly and latched on to his pant leg.
Looking up to make his way outside, Saijin was confronted by Meruin. The genin swallows hard. The sight of Meruin forces the boy to take a few steps back. Wondering why they had not gone outside yet, Mami opens her eyes and gasps at Meruins presence. "Mami, stay close to your brother." He says as he lowers the sick boy back onto the cot. In doing this Saijins eyes never leaves Meruin. "Meruin, I really dont want any trouble; but Im taking these too home with me." Saijin holds his hand up before Meruin could speak. "Now hear me out. The village has been wiped clean. Just like we were ordered. Kirigakure wont even know of two children that made it out. When we get back to the village well tell the guards that we passed by these refugees on the way back and Im taking these two in as my slaves."
"Slaves?!" Mami cries out.
Saijin waves his hand behind him. "Dont worry dear. I really wont turn you into slaves." Still not taking his gaze off of the younger, more experienced nin Saijin continues his plea. "The only one stopping them from having the hope of living a full life is you, Meruin. Im askingno Im begging you to please spare these two and leave them in my care."
With that said Saijin takes a step backwards to show a protective stance he has on the kids. "I have the most upright respect for your skills as a shinobi, Meruin. I dont want this to become anymore difficult than what it already is, but I give my life to protect these children if I have to." The genins hand slowly reaches over his shoulder. His fingers wrap around the blood coated hilt of his sword. He leaves the blade sheathed for now as he awaited Meruins answer.

Meruin's answer was succinct and definitive, without a moment of hesitation. "We have our orders. They are for everyone to be killed. This will happen, and it was foolish of you to attempt to prevent it. Foolish of you to suggest it, even. But, it had not been entirely unexpected."
Meruin's platinum hair lengthened some, sliding down to the back of his knees, and though his face remained the stiff mask of entire indifference, the black talons that capped his nails, one hand bathed in blood, gave him a menacing air. "I will say this once. Relinquish the children."

Saijin's heart dropped when he heard of Meruin's answer. His heart dropped even further when he heard the little girl's fightened gasps. "Meruin. There's no need in this. Its not foolish to give the gift the life if you're out there giving death. All I'm asking is two in return of sixty. Look, I don't know what you've gone though in your childhood already but if this is out of some vendetta you have against whatever is or isnt happening to you then that right there is foolish. And if you are lacking that bond with someone that gives you something to fight for each day then I'm standing here saying let me be that person. We'll help each other and in time no one will be able to beat the determination we have thats fueled by our friendship. I'll be there to look out for you and talk to you about things when you need to."
Saijin closes his eyes and sighs again as he draws his blade. "But I will not let death's greedy hands get ahold of these two as long as Im standing." The genin shakes his head as he opens his eyes. "Meruin, I don't want it to come to this." He says in almost a whisper.

"Do not worry," said Meruin. "I will not kill you." He seemed to disregard everything Saijin had said as simple delay tactic and useless pleading. "But the mission shall be accomplished." With that proclamation, his arms whipped out in the genin's direction. Thick ropes of webbing went from the Okumo, streaking towards Saijin, the oppressive weight of them seeking to wrap and entrap him.

Saijin attempted to jump out of the way of the ropes of web that shot out of Meruin. The genin was too slow compared to the Okumo and Saijin found himself being wrapped with the thick ropes of the sticky web. "Gah!" Saijin says trying to get a hand free to cut the web lose. "Mami! stay close to your brother!" The genin calls out as he watches Meruin with a look of anger. "Close your eyes and count to ten, sweetie. I promise when you get to ten it will be all over!" Still trying to move his body from side to side in the webbing. "Meruin…don't do this…" He says with a final plea to the younger nin.

"It was done when my orders were given."
Meruin looked at the two wide-eyed children, his gaze as implacable as falling snow. And he turned his back on them, using the silk hold he had on Saijin as a tether, walking from the tent, and well aware that he would be letting it rip. "Come. As team leader, I take the right to administer your punishment. It is a kindness. Kirigakure would do far worse than I will for insubordination."

Saijin is helpless to move from the confides of the webbing. He could barely turn his head back to see the children he was being pulled away from. Suddenly he felt something in his free hand that drapped to his side. Looking down he saw a tiny hand pull back and a necklace with a bright blue orb in the palm of his hand. Clenching the jewelery tight, the genin was determined to make up for this tragic day.

They went to the center of the village, where the first blow had been struck. Meruin stepped over Tatsuo's corpse, gesturing to a nearby wagon as he tore the heavy silk from around Saijin, it's length slowly beginning to sink back into his skin. "Stand there, and turn your back to me. You are to receive lashes."

Saijin stepped from out of the webbing and took his position as Meruin instrusted. The young boy was right though. His punishment was far lesser than what Kiri would do to the genin if they were to gain wind of this. For now, Saijin complied to the Okumo.

The spider silk stopped retracting into Meruin, maintaining a long length. They dampened, then, with a caustic poison. "Do not move," said Meruin. "I do not wish to harm you more than I intend. We begin."
And he did, his arms moving in a sudden haze of motion, sending a flurry of swift strikes at Saijin, the damage more from the burning contact poison than the silk itself. "I wish you to realize the misfortunes of your rebellion. Because you decided not to participate, at a certain point, many lived in fear longer than they needed to with the same result. There were two escapees. A mother and a child. We were going to follow and execute them, but because you took our time, and you could no longer be trusted to perform the execution, I instructed my spiders to catch and swarm them. They have died a horrible death by numerous spider bites. Things are worse than they need to be when you disobey."
That said, he whipping came to an abrupt halt, and the spider silk fell from Meruin, dissolving in it's own acids. "Come. We will return to Kirigakure, now, without delay." And, true to his word, he began to head from the village, stopping beside a tent to let Yuuka know to come.

Saijin lets out a loud yell as Meruin's webs lash at his back. The genin showed no sign of resistance and stood there taking his punishment in full. From afar Saijin could hear the little girl crying as her only hope was being lashed at in the center of the village. The punished nin stood there without saying a word for a good while. He then looks back over his shoulder and says, "I know that I can not save everyone." He says in regards of the mother and child Meruin spoke of. "But I do what I can to protect who needs it most." By now Meruin was finished with his lashes. "If thats not what motivates you to be a shinobi, then what does? Greed? Power? something else of your own personal gain? When youre lying on your back with your last breathes draws out of you, what is it that inspires you to get back up and fight back against the most incredible odds?" Saijin pauses for a moment to catch his breath before continueing. "If you are out there to keep other outside forces from barging into our homes and massacring everyone that makes up our village, then how can you live with yourself when you go and massacre a village yourself?"
Saijin turns to walk past the eight old boy to begin his journey back home. He stops however just long enough to say, "Contrary to what your young mind may think…There is a big gap between murderer and protector. I won't be remembered as a murderer."

Meruin gives no response to Saijin, almost as if he hadn't heard the words the boy had given. There was nothing that truly needed to be said. So, as was his wont, he kept his mouth closed. Instead, he waited for Yuuka to leave the tent before nodding her on. The two set up a pace towards the village that soon had them pass Saijin, and the Okumo said only, "Come," as they did so. They were on their way home with the sun finding it's rest.


After they'd left, Mami walked away from the camp that still held the cold bodies of they who'd once been her family. But she had some food in all of her pockets and in the small satchel on her back, and her brother was walking beside her. His breathing was hard, and he needed to lean on her a lot, but he would be fine. He had to be. He couldn't leave her all alone.
She rubbed the back of her hand against her face, cutting through the stream of tears on her face with a sniffle as she tried her hardest not to sob. It was getting cold. The sun was almost gone. The pressure in the brave little girl's chest built until it seemed like she couldn't draw another breath.
Suddenly, the ground opened up before her and her brother, and a net of silk sprayed out and captured them, drawing them into the pit in the blink of an eye. The spiders inside of the pit bit, and poisoned, and fed, and neither of them had to worry about that problem again.

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