The Recluse War - Sparks to the Flame


Rockpath (emitter), Taiki, Takeo, Kenta

Date: May 23, 2015


On a mission the Recluse strike. They kidnap Takeo and strike down those that attempt to help. What will this mean for the future?

Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.

"The Recluse War - Sparks to the Flame"

Land of Fire

The Inuzuka Clan has an enemy, and very few know this. They have spies everywhere, listening and waiting for a target to appear so that they might strike… But who knows where or when it will happen?
he day is rainy, cold, and ultimately poor for most anyone on a mission, but Taiki, Takeo, and Kenta are all being sent out to investigate some odd seals that have started to crop up in the Land of Fire. Taiki would probably be able to, from experience, recognize their purpose, which is why he was sent. And the other two were deemed suitable backups for such a task. Taiki would be told: Investigate. If you find the culprits, you may take them down. If you can, wring as much information from them as you can.

Taiki takes missions like this very seriously, especially since it's not often he gets assigned missions out of the village that he doesn't personally volunteer for. Still, his own spy network has informed him that the "private" war may heat up sometime soon, so he is being especially careful. He and his ninken are on alert, which leads the Clan Alpha to be even more formal and quiet than normal. As they gather to begin their mission, Taiki double-checks his gear as he waits for his assigned team mates to arrive. Shinobu and Nozomi both are equally somber as they wait for others to arrive.

If nothing else, it seems only fitting that Takeo should accompany Taiki. He's family, and that aside, a fellow clan elder. If there's some manner of threat toward his kin taking place, then so much the better that the young man's present. Still, he wears his usual characteristic attire and relatively relaxed demeanor.
"I've been studying working with scrolls. Thought I'd try something a little different for a bit," he comments on approach. "Afraid it's not really the same thing as what they're sending us out for, though. As usual, you're the brains of the mission." Takeo smiles at Taiki and positions himself just behind and to the right of his cousin. Close enough to protect, far enough away to let him spot any of these potentially dangerous seals first.

Kenta approaches with a dark hooded cloak enveloping him from head to toe. Wind wipes the dark fabric all around him, making his short form seem a bit wraith-like. His back looks a little misshapen due to both the pack and the medical pouch that he wearing underneath. It's not his favorite attire, but a chilly and rainy day like this practically requires protective covering. It'll also help him blend into the gloomy surroundings when they start traveling, which would probably be useful on a mission like this. The cloak hides the serious frown on the young man's face, but doesn't nothing to disguise his equally somber tone when he speaks up. "Konichiwa, everyone. Reporting for duty." He bows deeply as he always does before he stands there waiting for what comes next. "Ummm… I prepared as best as I can. Not completely sure what we'll find out there." The younger of the two medic-nin has little information on what's expected, but if Taiki's being sent in a seal expert, it's potentially a big issue that they're facing.

As Takeo addresses Taiki, he nods slowly. "Be ready for anything. I don't like the mission parameters we were given," he simply says to his clansman. He waits until Kenta shows, before quickly reminding the two of them of the mission. "The fact that they're sending me out for this mission indicates that the seals will investigate tells me we are likely facing some very powerful or complex arrays. Generally, the kind of arrays we are talking about require someone very skilled in fuinjutsu to set. So if there is anyone watching, we must be ready for a large-scale battle."
Nozomi whines very softly, reminding Taiki of something else. "On a potentially unrelated note, my sources tell me some enemies of mine may be about ready to try something. Actually, they're enemies of my clan, as at least one of you should know," he says, looking directly at Takeo as he says this. "When I explained this to the mission office, they decided to send both of you with me, just in case. Because of this threat, we will move in diamond formation, with Takeo-san taking front, and Kenta-san taking the rear. I will be in the middle, with Shinobu and Nozomi on each side. When we investigate the seals, the four of you will form a parameter around me to watch for incoming attacks. We will have to base our responses on what happens, but if I say, "code black,"fight with everything you have. My clan's enemies will not hesitate to kill you, and they are extremely skilled. Be warned, they are also good in fuinjutsu, so you will need every scrap of knowledge you have to counter them. Any questions?"

Takeo reaches up and scratches at the side of his cheek with an index finger. "They've got an issue with the clan, so we're doubling up on Inuzuka? That seems a bit like tempting them to act," he comments, though a shrug follows thereafter. "I understand. You know I'm a lousy fighter, though." Prior to taking up his place in the formation, the man leans forward and sticks a fingertip under the edge of Kenta's hood, peeking underneath for a moment. "Ah hah. It's my partner in crime, who's looking particularly menacing today."
Having said that with a smile he wrangles in quickly, Takeo steps to the fore and offers a motion of his hand. "At the least, if they try something, I'm more than likely to blow up half of the trees ahead of us. Should be a good enough signal for you." When he does fight, well, he doesn't have a reputation for being very good at tightly contained attacks. If it's not one thing, it's another. Assuming nothing more is said, he'll start out in the direction Taiki indicates whenever he's given the go ahead.

The additional information is helpful, but it makes Kenta's expression even grimmer under his hood. He shakes his head slightly at Takeo's question. "Ummm… understood. I thought that the mission would be something potentially dangerous like that when I heard about it. I'll do my best to back up all of you if trouble occurs…" The young man scuffs his left foot against the ground, leaving a shallow furrow on the wet earth. While he doesn't mention it, the revelation that this could be set up by enemies of the Inuzuka clan and Taiki in specific brings some suspicions to mind. Kenta compresses his lips into a thin line when those thoughts went through his head. Whether it's related or not, the younger medic-nin remembered what happened the last time that Taiki ended up in enemy hands. "I definitely won't fail you," he says grimly.
The serious expression on Kenta's face evaporates for a moment when Takeo briefly flicks his hood up. "Ummm… I don't think I really look menacing. That's kind of impossible… I'm glad that you're here with us though. Isobu and you would be very helpful if danger occurs, Takeo." He clears his throat softly and tugs his hood more firmly into place. Then, he quickly pats down all of his (many many) pockets in preparation for take off.

As soon as the group heads out, they would see nothing but the grey atmosphere, the wet trees, and the bleak future. Taiki would be able to direct Takeo to their destinations, which is to the southwest of the Land of Fire. The completely opposite direction of where Konoha lays, and more to the west where the terrain turns rocky. In total, the trip would take two hours worth of travel at a full-on sprint. Plenty of time and enough of a distance that the weather changes from rainy to misty, and then simply grey.

Taiki nods when Takeo downplays his fighting capabilities and says, "If the situation gets really bad, you are authorized to use /every/ means at your disposal." The word every is stressed enough to indicate that yes, biju cloak is allowed should things go south in a hurry. Speaking of south, that is the direction he directs Takeo to go. The dampness in the air would tend to muffle the trio's normal methods of detection somewhat, requiring that Taiki and his ninken put a bit more effort into their senses, as well as coordinating very closely as a team. Surprises have been known to occur, and he wishes to ensure that everyone is as forewarned as possible.

RP: Taiki transforms into SHINOBU-AND-NOZOMI.
RPCOMBAT: Taiki defends against with a INUZUKA-SENSES-II…62

"I follow," Takeo says over his shoulder to Taiki, though he smirks in subtle amusement at Kenta's modesty. "I am /more/ than well aware that you can kick my agatha, lieutenant. I'm just an oddly tall man surrounded by many short people who can do the same." He then clears his throat and looks ahead, if only to seem more serious for Taiki's sake. Of course, he /does/ take this seriously, but it's just become his nature to relax a bit since he found his peace.
While they're walking along, he begins to gather up chakra within himself most quietly, tapping into his reserves and those provided by his Bijuu to form his stores. He also does Taiki the courtesy of lifting a hand and twitching his fingers inward, using his innate control over moisture in the air to draw it closer and part it from their path every few moments. Perhaps it'll offer his cousin and the ninken a tiny bit of help with catching any unfriendly scents

Kenta keeps his hood up as he races after the rest of the group as the tail end of the diamond, even though the amount of moisture rapidly slacks off, especially with Takeo's help. There's little time to talk when they're moving as such speeds. Aside from that, the young man's keeping most of his attention on his surroundings. If there are enemies around, especially ones focused on the Inuzuka, the group might get attacked along the way. Kenta's eyes and ears aren't nearly as sharp as three of the other four, but he tries to take in as much as he can. Meanwhile, he also stokes the chakra that flows through his network with every pounding step that he takes. Kenta slowly builds up the chakra in his reserves in preparation for the potential dangers up ahead.

As the group nears the first location, Taiki's eyes start narrowing. "Tighten formation," he calls out after a few more moments before calling out, "Halt." Taiki moves closer to a seemingly normal spot before running through a single seal, causing his hand to light up in blue chakra. He raises his hand toward the stone and frowns deeper before turning back to the group and running through some chuunin-level Konoha message handseals that states, "Seals surround us, possible trap. Proceed in close formation with extreme caution, but be prepared to spread out at first sign of danger." He then moves back to his position as Nozomi and Shinobu move in closer, as they seemd to understand Taiki perfectly. In the meantime, Taiki prepares to attempt to protect the entire group should their surroundings actually attempt to explode.

RPCOMBAT: Taiki defends against with a INUZUKA-SENSES-II…60

Takeo waits for a heart's beat as the call is given to tighten formation, allowing those behind him to get closer. Nearly as soon, the order is given to halt movement altogether. As Taiki shifts away to examine whatever it is he's picked up on, Takeo keeps a cautious eye upon their surroundings. His claims at being a terrible fighter aren't undeserved, but by the same token, this is his family and his best friend. He'll do what he must, should it come down to it.
When Taiki returns and indicates the uncertainty of their situation, Takeo nods and resumes moving ahead, though his steps are quite a bit shorter now so as to maintain the guarded formation. In a subtle gesture intended to further help Inuzuka noses, and perhaps even to improve visibility, he takes the hand previously held ahead and holds it upright at about eye level. This allows him to draw in mist from all sides, spiraling it together at one point before redirecting it into the sky. It's about as far as he can casually manipulate the ambient water in the air without turning said mist into something more substantial.

Kenta frowns at the surrounding trees with narrowed eyes. "I see some of the seals too. I can't tell what they do without a closer inspection, but a trap sounds likely," the young man says in a quiet voice. Kenta steps a little closer to the group as he goes into even higher alert than before. His hands move under his cloak to slightly loosen the bindings of a few pouches that holds the defensive and offensive tools that he'll most likely need. It'll ensure that he can get to them quicker, but not cause everyone to tumble out at the first wrong movement.
But Kenta isn't completely done either. The young man makes a quick hand seal and focuses his gaze on each of his four other companions. Like streaking out streamers of his mind, he quickly touches each other mind in turn to establish a mental link with them. <"This'll take some effort for me to maintain, but we can't know whether we have any watchers that's deciphered our hand language. No one should be able to eavesdrop on this without knowing the Yamanaka clan techniques,"> he quickly sends out to the group along the link.

RP: Kenta uses TELEPATHY-II.

COMBAT: Rockpath attacks target 1 with ATTACK-PREVENTION-STEALTH with a roll of: 44
COMBAT: Rockpath attacks target 2 with ATTACK-PREVENTION-STEALTH with a roll of: 40
COMBAT: Rockpath attacks target 3 with ATTACK-PREVENTION-STEALTH with a roll of: 59
COMBAT: Rockpath used GM attack on Takeo with WESTERN-HEAVENS-SEAL with a roll of: 45
COMBAT: Rockpath used GM attack on Taiki with WESTERN-HEAVENS-SEAL with a roll of: 47
COMBAT: Rockpath used GM attack on Kenta with WESTERN-HEAVENS-SEAL with a roll of: 48

Taiki was right in assuming that there was likely a trap… Much to his luck, the winds have changed, and he and his partners would catch the stench of three people hiding in the bushes. They were good at hiding, but they picked a poor spit to do it… As soon as the trio (quintet?) gathered close together, the seals around them would glow with chakra, and then begin to activate.
Chains shoot out, red like the ink that they were written in. The 'chains' we're not so much chains as they were small kanji laced together to represent the seal, rapidly binding together as the enemy tries to trap the Leaf Shinobi in their spot and drain some of their energy. Regardless of if this works, they have revealed their presence with the attack, and anything could happen now.

COMBAT: Taiki defends against WESTERN-HEAVENS-SEAL(47) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-ENCAMPMENT-WALL…67

Taiki doesn't give any outward signs of the telepathy being a success, but inwardly comments, <Neither of you know some of my more… esoteric sign languages, so I had to go with what I could. If something happens, I'm going to try to throw up an advanced seal array. Be ready… INCOMING!> Taiki runs through a series of handseals and is instantly surrounded by a blue field of energy. Unfortunately, he forgot that this particular defense pretty much forms close to the body, thus making it useless to protect the team. Fortunately, both of his ninken are just behind him in throwing up the seal wall, thus avoiding their capture as well. Instantly, Taiki and the two ninken are crouched over, moving as a unit performing elemental tsugas according to their abilities.

COMBAT: Taiki attacks target 1 with LIGHTNING-PASSING-FANG with a roll of: 43
RPCOMBAT: Rockpath defends against with a ACROBATIC-FLOW…52
COMBAT: Taiki attacks target 1 with AQUA-TSUGA with a roll of: 60
RPCOMBAT: Rockpath defends against with a CHAKRA-DODGE-III…49
RPCOMBAT: Rockpath took 500 damage.
COMBAT: Takeo defends against WESTERN-HEAVENS-SEAL(45) attack from Rockpath with a WATER-WALL…41
RPCOMBAT Takeo took 2000 chakra drain

Hearing the warning blaring through his thoughts, Takeo brings up a hand. It's an odd sort of situation, surrounded both by mist which helps him so, and a trap designed to kill him. He picks up on direction of the attack coming in his direction, hence the gesture, which draws a wall of chakra laced water up in his defense. Unfortunately, the rising curtain comes a touch too slowly and he's struck. The water wall collapses and Takeo stands utterly still, paralyzed by the seal.
<Snagged me. I can't move,> Takeo alerts the others via the telepathic network Kenta's established. <There's no way for me to force myself free with Isobu. Just do what you have to.> At this point, the enemy shinobi don't even have to worry about a Jinchuuriki menace. They could stick him with a kunai and be done with it, if they so wished.

COMBAT: Kenta defends against WESTERN-HEAVENS-SEAL(48) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-ENCAMPMENT-WALL…67

Kenta spins on his heels as soon as he hears Taiki's warning and sees the chains slash through the air towards the group. <"Got it! Those chains look nasty! Don't let them touch you!"> he sends out to the rest of the group, even while everyone's already taking measures to defend themselves. Kenta's hood blows back as he moves his hands rapidly in a mirror image of the seals that Taiki also forms. The young man ends the series by stamping one foot on the group and another blue field of energy springs up around him to deflect the incoming attack.
<"I'll cover you, Takeo,"> the younger medic sends. He quickly closes in on his frozen team mate and places himself in a guarding position. Kenta jerks his gaze to the side to catch the closest attacker's eyes. He snaps an invisible thread of chakra through the air like a whip with the force of his mind behind it in an attempt to momentarily stagger the figure with a quick mental attack. Two tags wrapped around kunai are hurtling through the air even before that completes. "Kai!" Kenta exclaims and forms a hand seal. Both tags erupts into identical clouds of stinging green gas.

COMBAT: Rockpath defends against MIND-LOCK(45) attack from Kenta with a ACROBATIC-DODGE-II…64
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against POISON-TAG(31) attack from Kenta with a ACROBATIC-DODGE…42
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against POISON-TAG(37) attack from Kenta with a ACROBATIC-DODGE…49

COMBAT: Koto attacks Takeo with TEN-POINT-SEAL-TECHNIQUE with a roll of: 68
COMBAT: Kenta successfully interrupts attack number 3: DOUBLE-SLASH from Rockpath against Takeo with a roll of 47 vs 45.

From the shadows, a figure emerges, hidden from all, even with one's Inuzuka senses able to smell a mouse a mile away. The man chuckles softly, shaking his head. "I didn't think it would be that easy…" he comments, seals exploding from his sleeves and shooting out towards Takeo. "We'll take your beast, Inuzuka. Thank you so much for it…" These seals would latch onto the Jinchuuriki, draining chakra and stamina while keeping him where he is, hopefully. In the meantime, three figures would spring out of the surrounding area, from rocks and trees. All of them are wielding swords, and all three decide to take one alone by each. "Haaaah!!!" yells one, clearly looking to impress as he charges Taiki. Another, this one a bit weaker, aims to wound Kenta in the arm, while the final goon tried to stab Takeo through his gut.

COMBAT: Taiki defends against DOUBLE-SLASH(42) attack from Rockpath with a LIGHTNING-DODGE…66

A growl boils from deep within Taiki's throat as the swordsman charges at him. Quickly he assesses the situation, and knows that he must protect Takeo from this extremely lethal threat. Therefore, the three act in unison against two different targets. Taiki and Shinobu both syncronize into a non-elemental gatsuga while Nozomi launches into another water tsuga aimed at the new guy. The trio somehow end up together behind and between their two targets, with Taiki growling out, "Leave him alone."

"COMBAT: Takeo defends against TEN-POINT-SEAL-TECHNIQUE(68) attack from Rockpath with a TENSE…11

Takeo stands there like a statue for the moment, still pinned down by the seal's effects. Sure, it drained quite a bit of the chakra he'd gathered, but that hadn't been a great concern for him in a while. There are other, more pressing duties to be concerned with. <He thinks it'll be easy? This thing'll only last for so long, and then I'll bring the whole wolfenbached forest down on his-> The young man's thoughts are cut short when Kenta moves to protect him, and then the others. <No, no! Don't go getting yourselves tagged and snared just to protect me. You both know something about seals, and one of you needs to be on the move.>
It's rather frustrating to be surrounded by the very element he's most skilled in, to be capable of so much wrath against these unknown shinobi, yet they've rendered him immobile. Evidently, Taiki was never the target. It was him. Did someone in village command know? These small thoughts likely flow through the telepathic network before Takeo collects himself.
When the next seal comes at him and constrains him even further, draining yet more of his chakra and physical energy, the whole part about his duty comes into play. <Listen up and listen good,> Takeo says, thinking the words as quickly as he possibly can. <I think he's trying to pull Isobu out of me, but the idiot can't just do it unprepared. He has to go into someone or something that's proper.> A pause. <Taiki, I have a blank scroll in my robe. I don't know exactly how it worked, but they kept Isobu in a scroll using a seal before he was placed into me. You need to get him into that and back to the village before they can take him. If they botch their attempt or kill me, Isobu will break free and go on a rampage. Nothing else matters. /Nothing else/.>
It had been a long time since Takeo was afraid, genuinely afraid, but he was now. Whoever this person is, they'd just wrenched the chakra right out of him. Isobu, perhaps the closest 'person' in his life, was in danger of being stolen or set loose on a rampage.

COMBAT: Kenta counters against a DOUBLE-SLASH(29) attack from Rockpath with a TRAUMA-INDUCTION-PALM…36
COMBAT: Kenta defends against DOUBLE-SLASH(45) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-WALL…54

Kenta shifts sideways when one of the goons charges him and slaps his right hand against his attackers sword arm. A burst of medical chakra surges into the man's body upon contact, painfully seizing up nerves and bursting blood vessels along its pathway of destruction. His left hand smoothly draws a tag from one of the multiple vest pouches hidden under his cloak.
Kenta shoves his attacker away and turns to intercept a second goon that tries to sneak pass him to run Takeo through. <"Not going let them hurt you, Takeo! Don't worry about me!"> The tag flick forward out of his grip, where it hands in the air for a fraction of a second before the seal characters burst into light. A tangible blue wall of force springs into existence and catch the blow before it strikes. Kenta's right hand lifts as the wall begins to fade. The familiar glow of medical chakra emanates around his palm into a chakra scalpel, which he thrusts towards the second attacker's chest. At the same time, the medic-nin thumbs a pill each - one white and one black - from two more pouches with his left hand, which he pops into his mouth in a practiced gesture.
"Takeo!" Unfortunately, Kenta isn't as prepared for an onslaught against Takeo from the opposite direction. "No! Takeo!" he exclaims aloud when he catches the sight of more seals blazing towards the Jinchuuriki. He's too slow to stop it, but notes with some relief that Taiki's already targeting the villain that's trying to take Takeo down. Kenta moves to help, but the three goons still in play has a high chance of putting a damper on his efforts. <"Taiki-sama's not going to let Isobu get taken. We're going to come out of this fine,"> he thinks as fiercely as he's feeling.

COMBAT: Rockpath defends against GATSUGA(43) attack from Taiki with a ACROBATIC-FLOW…51
COMBAT: Koto defends against AQUA-TSUGA(59) attack from Taiki with a UNDERGROUND-FISH-PROJECTION…78
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against TRAUMA-INDUCTION-PALM(36) attack from Kenta with a ACROBATIC-FLOW…33
COMBAT: Rockpath loses the roll and sustains 488 damage.
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against CHAKRA-SCALPEL(54) attack from Kenta with a TENSE…10
COMBAT: Rockpath loses the roll and sustains 1118 damage.

"Ack!!!" yelps the one who was after Taiki, just barely avoiding the Gatsuga-ing duo. He gives a soft sigh of relief, narrowing his eyes at the Clan Alpha. "You're not our target… But you'll do just nicely," he says, shifting his grip on his sword and slashing at the Inuzuka. His attacks come swiftly, the man feinting and weaving as he slowly tries to hit the Inuzuka thrice in the arms and thrice more in the chest.
The one facing Kenta finds himself paralyzed for a moment, but he forces his body to act regardless. It took a lot of concentration and a bit of pain, but his muscles relaxed and he was able to slash Kenta. The man who attacked Takeo is badly injured by Kenta's chakra scalpel, getting a deep slash in his shoulder and slowing him down a bit. He grunt so, but is relentless in his attacks, still aiming for the weakened Inuzuka.
Mystery Man giggles madly and says, "Ah-ah-ahhhh. Bad doggie." With a seal, he disappears into the ground, and two clones made of earth slink upwards. They speak for the mystery man, voice coming slowly and gravelly. "We are taking your power." Then the clones dash at Takeo, aiming to slam into the Bijuu-host at a high enough speed that it's painful.

COMBAT: Taiki defends against TRIPLE-SLASH(60) attack from Rockpath with a FOUR-LEGGED-DODGE-II…55
COMBAT: Taiki loses the roll and sustains 475 damage.
COMBAT: Taiki defends against TRIPLE-SLASH(50) attack from Rockpath with a FOUR-LEGGED-DODGE-II…82

Taiki is an old veteran of battles, and quickly picks up on things many people miss, such as the fact that Takeo is the target, the colors he saw on the seal work before, the opening speech of the seal master, and the earth clones attacking Takeo. All this together brings a clear picture of who they are facing. "I see," he says as he attempts to evade the swordman's first attack, only to get scratched by the blade. The second attack is adroitly dodged by similarly advanced Inuzuka dodge techniques. "So the Recluse have decided to move to active war then?" The trio come to a stop in a pyramid with Nozomi crouching on top of Taiki and Shinobu. "So be it. Man-beast transformation: Elemental Stalking Wolf!"
The trio is quickly enveloped in a cloud, from which not one, not two, but three animalistic growls rumble out a moment later. <They can't remove Isobu if they don't have time to do so!> A moment later a rather compact horse-sized three headed dog jumps into the air before spinning into a mealstrom of lightning-filled tornadoes, tearing up swordsman, ground, and likely the sealmaster alike.

RP: Taiki transforms into ELEMENTAL-STALKING-WOLF.
COMBAT: Takeo defends against EARTH-CLONE(53) attack from Rockpath with a DODGE…34
COMBAT: Takeo loses the roll and sustains 868 damage.
COMBAT: Takeo defends against EARTH-CLONE(44) attack from Rockpath with a DODGE…23
COMBAT: Takeo loses the roll and sustains 862 damage.

Takeo has no chakra left after the shinobi evidently in charge of subduing him stole it all. He's free now, but he's left with few options at present or in the near future given his lack of physical prowess. Oh, for the days when he used to be decent at Four Legged Style. Deciding that he'll just have to take the blow, Takeo braces as much as he can for that while he collects more chakra within himself. His own chakra. Perhaps, if he can keep drawing his own to the surface, they'll have to spend longer stealing it away before they can reach Isobu. A theory, but desperate times.
<Don't be foolish. I doubt these people know what kind of disaster they're inviting, but they're obviously not slouches in a fight. He just took all of the chakra I'd prepared in one seal,> Takeo sends through their connected thoughts. <Focus on making sure they don't get Isobu. I'm going to die, whether they beat me to death or whether someone takes Isobu out of me. I'd /really/ rather it were you than him.>

OMBAT: Kenta defends against TRIPLE-SLASH(46) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-WALL…60
COMBAT: Kenta defends against TRIPLE-SLASH(51) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-WALL…65
COMBAT: Kenta defends against TRIPLE-SLASH(49) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-WALL…58

<"Don't act defeated yet, Takeo. These guys are good, but you're not alone. Friends don't let friends die!"> Kenta sends. Then, he grits his teeth as he's forced to draw his attention back to the two goons attacking him and Takeo. Their whirling blades prevent him from giving aid to Taiki's side of the battle, but he comforts himself with the thought that Taiki is unlikely to require much help anyway. More tags flick from the young man's hands in rapid succession, each taking a precious fraction of Kenta's chakra to turn into blazing walls of blue chakra. He's already realized that he needs to concern his energy and try to control the flow of battle even this early on, as it's two-on-one with him at the disadvantaged end.
When Taiki starts tearing up the battle field, Kenta whirls on Takeo and tries to pull his injured friend to safety. <"Have to get you out of the direct line of combat. Taiki-sama can take them down in a few fell swoops if he have more room to maneuver without having to worry about us. Uh… you don't look so good… stay with me…">
The younger medic-nin immediately releases the fourth stage of the seal tattooed to his chest. A steady stream of stored power flows back into his body. Chains of seal characters wrap around him under his clothing, going all the way up his neck in a helix to form a solid black circle on each cheek. The air around Kenta begins to distort slightly from the increased flux of vital energy emanating from him. He sends medical chakra into Takeo to knit as much of the damaged flesh and bone as possible while he tries to move the Jinchuuriki.

RP: Kenta transforms into VITAL-VIVIFICATION-SEAL-IV.
COMBAT: Kenta heals Takeo for 1454 with CHAKRA SCALPEL.
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against LIGHTNING-FANG-OVER-FANG(65) attack from Taiki with a DANCING-FLOW…50
COMBAT: Rockpath loses the roll and sustains 1090 damage.
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against LIGHTNING-FANG-OVER-FANG(63) attack from Taiki with a THE-PINNACLE…68
COMBAT: Koto defends against LIGHTNING-FANG-OVER-FANG(83) attack from Taiki with a DEMON-SEALING-TECHNIQUE…81
COMBAT: Koto loses the roll and sustains 762 damage.
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against LIGHTNING-FANG-OVER-FANG(79) attack from Taiki with a ACROBATIC-DODGE-II…38
COMBAT: Rockpath loses the roll and sustains 1638 damage.

The man that Taiki is facing is apparently less than he though. He ends up going down, being the closest to the three headed monstrosity that suddenly emerged on the battlefield. And yet, the three that remain do not seem to care that a comrade is down. They just need to complete the mission. The furthest is the luckiest, able to dodge the attack handily with a huge leap. The two in the middle suffer, but not as badly as the first had. The 'leader' of this team throws up a barrier of seals, but it only lessens the damage he receives.
"Tch…" the seal user mutters, rubbing his face and ignoring the blood that drips from his arm. "Earth Style: Swamp of the Underworld Jutsu…" he says, forming seals rapidly with one injured and one perfectly fine hand. Suddenly, the ground starts to soften, turning to a stinky mud that threatens to capture all that were in the area. His companions seem to realize what he was planning and immediately leap away, both raining fire down upon the ones who are trapped below.

COMBAT: Taiki defends against SWAMP-OF-THE-UNDERWORLD(113) attack from Rockpath with a RAIDEN'S-WOLF-DANCE…113
COMBAT: Taiki defends against COVERING-FIRE(47) attack from Rockpath with a LIGHTNING-DODGE…44
COMBAT: Taiki loses the roll and sustains 600 damage.
COMBAT: Taiki defends against COVERING-FIRE(59) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-ENCAMPMENT-WALL…77

Failure is not an option for Taiki, so when the seal master invokes the swamps, Taiki pumps chakra like mad into his feet as Shinobu does the same while tossing Nozomi onto a nearby rock. All and all, the Inuzuka Alpha trio barely manage to escape the clutches of the swamp as Taiki first tries to use bleed-off speed to avoid the fire. Failing that, he calls forth his seal encampment wall as he guages the situation. He really is feeling the pull of the chakra now, and therefore decides to focus a bit more to plot out his next move while assessing how this will effect his teammates. Because, even though he may not like admitting it, Takeo has a point. If they start working on extracting Isobu, Taiki will need the strength to keep the biju from falling into Recluse hands. That would be a disaster of epic proportions…

COMBAT: Takeo defends against SWAMP-OF-THE-UNDERWORLD(100) attack from Rockpath with a WATER-WALL…23
COMBAT: Takeo defends against COVERING-FIRE(53) attack from Rockpath with a WATER-WALL…71
COMBAT: Takeo defends against COVERING-FIRE(45) attack from Rockpath with a WATER-WALL…61

Takeo may be a bad fighter, but he has a very good sense for what water's doing, and he senses it condensing beneath his feet before it drags him down to his waist. The pull is so powerful that he makes only a token effort at trying to stop it. Fire, on the other hand, is something he's better prepared to deal with. He makes seals with just one hand, causing the water from the swamp and in the air to condense into walls, extinguishing the flames intended to descend upon him like bombs.
<Get ready to move your gils,> he thinks to the group. It occurs to him that the name Taiki called these people earlier, they're the same bunch he once fought against to save the very man who'd sealed Isobu within him. Quite the full circle, there.
Using his control of water, he parts his jaws wide as he turns his head as far to the left as he can. Mist is drawn up from the swamp, from the air, condending into a point between his fangs. As he belts out a roar for the ages, having obviously had enough of this tarvek, he expels a spear of pure water from his mouth. It extends off into the distance as he rapidly turns his head from left to right. Everything within that arc is most likely cut in two, if not the crafty shinobi, then certainly the forest they're no doubt using in part for their strategy. Trees fall in every direction, some of them upon the path. Hopefully, a few seals were cut in two with that little display, as well.

COMBAT: Kenta defends against SWAMP-OF-THE-UNDERWORLD(106) attack from Rockpath with a DEMON-SEALING-TECHNIQUE…90
"COMBAT: Kenta defends against COVERING-FIRE(52) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-WALL…56
COMBAT: Kenta defends against COVERING-FIRE(60) attack from Rockpath with a SEAL-WALL…64
[NPC System]: Takeo roll(s) Pure Water Spear from 38 to 67 and get(s) a 57. - Rolled by: Takeo

<"Taiki-sama! The ground's turning soft all around us!"> Kenta exclaims through the mental link. As his feet begin to sink, the Chuunin forms a complex series of hand seals and throws out both arms. A flood of black characters ripple out from him, formed from pure will and chakra combined. Most of the characters blanket the ground around him in a barrier of energy to stabilize his footing against the churning mud. But with so much of his power focused like that, the barrier doesn't give full coverage overhead and enables the incoming blasts of fire to get through the cracks.
"Ahhhh! Not good!" Kenta exclaims when he looks up to see the flames converge on him. The momentary diversion of his attention causes the barrier underneath him to fizzle just for a second. It's a second too much, since he instantly gets sucked into the mud down to his waist. The Chuunin hurriedly grabs tags from two breast pockets and flings them up high, where they form weaker blue barriers to block the flames.
Kenta slaps his hands together and starts drawing as much chakra out of his body into his reserves as fast as possible. This physical drain leaves him panting from fatigue, but the medic-nin needs every shred of power that he can gather for the battle. As Kenta lowers his now shaking hands, he cranes his head around to assess the Jinchuuriki's condition. The retaliation from Takeo against their assailants obviously impresses him, but he's too concerned to take note of that for long. <"Taiki-sama! Takeo and I are both stuck! We're not going to be able to retreat easily if it comes to that!">

The Seal Master Earth User doesn't look too happy to see that Taiki escaped the clutches of his strongest attack. Curse you, Inuzuka!!! The man shakes his head, though, determined to distract Taiki while his men do all the heavy lifting… Literally. One man pulls Takeo from his binds in the earth while the other jabs a few key spots on the Jinchuuriki that will make him unable to move. Then, with a grunt, he flings Takeo skywards and off to who-knows-where. … Seriously, where did Takeo go?
The spear of water Takeo unleashed is rather devastating to the area. The Recluse remain unharmed, their leader defending them with an earthen dome when it was unleashed. Also, they were close enough to just duck and cover. With that out of the way, Taiki would once again feel the ground shift beneath his feet, even as Takeo was tossed away. Kenta, despite his prowess, was ignored for the … more scary nightmare of an opponent. And while the two goons forced Taiki to fight them, the seal master ran off with his catch.

COMBAT: Taiki defends against SWAMP-OF-THE-UNDERWORLD(109) attack from Rockpath with a RAIDEN'S-WOLF-DANCE…116

Taiki's eyes narrow as the men move and remove Takeo from there. The Seal Master's disappearance sets a fire in Taiki's eyes. One of these two goons would die. The other, well… Taiki knows enough about seals now to prevent their suicide and silencing seals from kicking in. So Taiki burst into action, utilizing the speed he gained from using his fastest defense to avoid being swamped to fuel his ultimate attack as he blurs into random flashes around the battlefield. Several attacks are launched against the two remaining enemies, hopefully sending them high in the air to be sent hurling down to the ground. If needs be, he would keep one alive to learn where they were taking Takeo. That, and any other information gained, would be enough for Taiki to recognize the state of war between Clan Inuzuka (and likely all of Konoha) and the Recluse.

COMBAT: Takeo defends against FLING(46) attack from Rockpath with a TENSE…7
COMBAT: Takeo loses the roll and sustains 664 damage.
COMBAT: Takeo defends against PRESSURE-POINTS-TECHNIQUE(41) attack from Rockpath with a TENSE…18

Takeo finishes cutting down half of the forest and doesn't manage to tag one lucreziad enemy. It figures. The head honcho of the bunch seems to take him a little more seriously now that he's angry and unleashing it, however, and he finds himself the victim of paralyzing pressure point strikes. There's nothing he can do or say at that point as he's pulled from the mud and kidnapped via the Recluse's efforts.

"Takeo! No! Takeo!" Kenta yells up at the rapidly diminish forms of the Jinchuuriki and his capturers. He struggles against the mud that's imprisoned him, but the stuff is too hard to break free from. Kenta nearly smacks the muck with his fists and only barely manages to stop himself in time. The last thing that he needs is form his hands to get stuck too. "We have to go after him!" the medic-nin howls in a voice full of horror.

COMBAT: Rockpath defends against RAIDEN-WOLF-CLAW(82) attack from Taiki with a EARTH-STYLE-WALL…44
COMBAT: Rockpath loses the roll and sustains 2152 damage.
COMBAT: Rockpath defends against RAIDEN-WOLF-CLAW(93) attack from Taiki with a SEAL-BARRIER…55
COMBAT: Rockpath loses the roll and sustains 2126 damage.

The two who remain stand no chance against Taiki's wrath. Not only is he extremely angry that he lost a valuable Konoha nin, he also lost a clan mate and good friend. The one nearest tries to block the incoming wolf with a series of seals, but Taiki and his ninken break through it with ease, shattering the barrier formed. The momentum is slowed enough that the last man standing is merely badly wounded and likely not going anywhere after that hit. It would be no trouble for two medics to keep him alive for future questioning.

Taiki growls as he keeps one person alive and kills the other one. After the application of a few quick seals he himself devised, he glares into the eyes of the man slowly losing consciousness. "You won't die… yet. You will tell me everything you know, and then you will die, knowing you caused the destruction of all that you serve. Welcome to the first day of hell." That said, he looks to Kenta and says, "They're gone, but we'll learn where they went Kenta. We need to get back to Konoha to report this. The Hokage must know, and we have a war to plan. I'm sorry."

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