Date: September 8, 2012
Taiki sees the penalty for being stubborn, but soon has other things to deal with as he is informed of Naru's "death." (Dark themes. Reader digression is advised.)
Poster's note: Profanity filtered in obvious places.
"The Sound of a Shattering Heart"
Things have quieted down since the commotion a couple of days prior. The Doctors are breathing a sigh of relief as they got what they are calling their most difficult patient ever to finally stay in bed. Sad to say, Taiki is just not very cooperative with hospitals when it comes to his own health, as can be evidenced by five beds being housed in a three bed room. On each of two of them a dog is quietly sleeping, both heavily injured but recovering. That they expect from Inuzuka. The third bed, the one farthest from the door, contains the only awake inhabitant, who is coincidentally the one the doctors and nurses hate to treat. Inuzuka Taiki is propped up and reading a scroll, with another open and a graphite rod in his hand to make notes. Two other shinobi, both Genin, lay asleep in the other two original beds in the room.
Ironically enough the most heavily damaged of the three happens to be the problem child, who is almost mumified by bandages, including a chest brace to keep him from twisting his chest. There's a half-eaten tray beside his bed, obviously the remainder of lunch which is now probably cold. Taiki shows no interest in it.
And in comes a….ninja? She's certainly not dressed like the medical staff on hand, but in she comes with a clipboard and a tray with dinner. A bag is tied to her belt at the side, and any one of the three could probably tell by smell alone that they're treats. As she comes in, she looks the one in particular that's been causing trouble, raising a brow. "I'm half surprised you're putting up the fight you are, wrapped up like that. We doing this the easy way or the hard way?"
At first Taiki doesn't even respond, though the dogs do wake from their shallow slumber. Both look at Taiki for a moment, then give the doggy equivalent of sighs before turning their attention to the newcomer and wagging their tails. They can smell the treats and, unlike their partner, have been very cooperative. Finally Taiki's eyes move toward the door, then shakes his head and motions to the half-eaten lunch tray, then the dogs. He then turns his attention back to the scroll, writing something down. The intent is clear, leave the tray and give the dogs their food. Not a word is said.
Usagi raises a brow at him. "Sorry, no can do. Here to check the vitals too" She 'does' however, go to give the dogs their food and two treats apiece, then looks back at him. "So, again. Easy or hard way?"
Taiki actually sighs for a moment and sets the graphite rod down on the table next to the new tray. He then turns his attention toward Usagi, looking her in the eyes. "You're no nurse," he says hoarsely. He then looks her over and says, "If fact, you're not that long out of the Academy, are you? What, are they actually /afraid/ to send someone in here now to check me over?" The Inuzuka has a long, hard stare, full of pain. The eyes are wet, though not a tear is showing yet. It looks like talking is at least a little painful, but he copes. Still, he doesn't make any effort to aid or impede her.
"Probably a good thing, because the nurses put up with you acting like that" Usagi shrugs slightly. "And you haven't answered my question yet" She raises a brow, and is coming over to take his vitals in a rather no nonsense manner, letting the dogs eat in peace if they do so. She does see his eyes, and her demeanor softens slightly, and she sighs softly. "Look, I can understand you don't like this. I've heard you've been a handful lately, but you're not going to get any better fighting it….please just do us both a favor, ok?"
Taiki mutters something quietly, with the only words Usagi may here is "not worth it" or something along that lines. There's only one or two words that she could have missed, but he doesn't impede her checking anyway. However, it is quickly proven once again that a dog's hearing is much better than a human's, for the dogs' heads both snap up in unison. Pitiful whines escape their throats, causing the Inuzuka Chuunin to hang his head. "Gomen," he says quietly to both of them before looking up at Usagi. "And to you too, Gomenesai. You just caught me at a very bad time."
Usagi goes about checking, not really saying much to his statement of not worth it. As she's checking, she hears the apology and pauses. "There's nothing to apologize for, Taiki-san. Not to me" She brushes his shoulder softly, almost as if she was going to place it on his shoulder, but nonetheless gets back to checking his vitals. "What's their names?" She motions briefly to the two dogs…who are next on her list.
Taiki is about to say something when the door opens, admitting two Jounin with black headbands and black armbands. They look around, then approach the sleeping Ryo with the doctors right along behind him. Behind them is a Yamanaka, an old one at that, who ignores them and approaches Taiki. "Taiki-san," the older woman says as she comes up even with Usagi. The woman is a skilled psychologist, thought retired, but she seems very familiar with Taiki. Looking at Usagi she nods, but seems focused on Taiki. "Beating yourself up like this isn't going to help. You know that."
The doctors feel that Ryo shouldn't be woken up, so they turn and look over at Taiki. They whisper to each other for a moment, then nod as they approach. "Chuunin Inuzuka Taiki," the older man says with some compassion. "As lead of this part of the mission, I'm afraid I must present you with this." The man holds out an envelope with a black wax seal and ribbon.
Time seems to stop for the young man in the bed as he slowly, shakily reaches out for the envelope. He gulps and looks at them for a moment and asks in a voice that is about two steps from breaking, "Please Kami… please no…" His hand finally grabs the envelope, almost dropping it. It looks like it is scalding him to hold it, he just holds it for a moment, staring at it.
Usagi raises a brow at the group of them, but stands back with more experienced people in the room take over. she stands to the side, looking and watching….but she does watch the envelope, and the obvious trepidation in which he holds it. She furrows her brow, leaning against the side of the room, watching carefully for now.
The Yamanaka looks ready for just about everything, though her focus is solely on Taiki. He slowly, painstakingly, breaks the seal, then opens the letter. His eyes don't even seem to focus for a moment, but only for a moment. As he reads tears start to fall, the first tears to fall for over a year. "Na…. Na'chan…. No… Oh kami no!" The paper drops to the floor, face up, proclaiming the death of Uchiha Narusegawa, chuunin of Konohagakure. Taiki collapses and sobs, his entire body shaking. Nozomi and Shinobu, both quickly understanding what is going on, throw their heads back and howl, sharing the pain with their partner. The howls are loud enough to wake up anyone except the Ryo, who is probably sedated. The old woman reaches over and puts an understanding hand on his leg, a look of grave concern on her face. "Please continue to monitor him," she asks of Usagi, though she's already doing the same.
Ryuu had been sound asleep up until a loud howl rings through his ears andn shake him from his sleep. Ryuu jolts out of bed and lets out a soft yelp. The sudden jolt in movement irritated his injuries and a sharp pain then surged through him. Now Ryuu was cranky and in pain. "WHAT THE ****!?" he shouts hugging his sides and turning over in bed. Ryuu lets out a few groans and one heavy sigh. He slowly inches his way out of bed. Coming to a full stand and stretching Ryuu yawns. The young genin turns around and he sees the most melancholy sight; such depressing expressions worn on the faces of his comrades. Even Nozomi and Shinobi seemed to share in the anguish; Ryuu heard that much at least. He rubs his head a bit unnerved by all of this. Was this one of those out of body experiences where he'd died but hadn't pasted over? Those things are so damn cliche! Ryuu spoke up finally after glancing around the room. He glanced to the still sleeping Ryo with a bit of envy. "What's with the long faces?"
Usagi nods to the woman after a few moments, taking a slow breath and moving to sit next to Taiki for the time being, just letting him lean on her if he chooses to do, there to lend a hand if he wishes.
"She can't be dead… Oh kami no…" Taiki says as he starts to curl up on himself.
One of the doctors, seeing that Taiki is not currently capable of doing much explaining turns to Ryuu and says, "It appears as your leader for this mission meant a great deal to him," he says, motioning with his head toward the weeping chuunin. "His actions are making a good deal more sense now…"
Taiki looks up to the ceiling, and wails, "Naru!" Now he collapses again, this time unaware of what he's doing as he tips over into Usagi, weeping. The dogs get down off their beds while the doctors aren't paying much attention and move to join Taiki, at least getting their heads in contact with their partner.
There is a inclination of denial in Ryuunosuke's head which prompted him to ask "What do you mean? What happened to our leader?" He walks towards the doctor. "Why is he so upset? What the **** happened to Naru-san?" Ryuu pressed on becoming slightly more irritated with each question. Ryuu looks back to Taiki. The poor guy is falling appart. Right there he wept without holding anything back. A profound sadness was very much so evident. The cause of this sadness was evident too. Alas Ryuu didn't want to come to that conclusion, he didn't want to accept it. He hoped that the doctor had something to say about Naru other that she had met her end. "He's not crying because she's gone right? Tell me he's upset about something else." Ryuu looks back to the doctor. "Don't just stand there silent SAY SOMETHING!" Ryuu winces as all this anger and heightened emotion wasn't well for his injuries.
"Dead" Usagi is the only one that seems to be so blunt in regards to it. She sighs softly, shaking her head and putting a hand around Taiki to comfort him. She nods to the dogs, gently placing her hand on the closest one.
"This is better than last time," the old lady Yamanaka says as she makes room for the dogs while rubbing the chuunin's legs. Honestly she's happy to see this reaction, but then glances over to the Genin who looks ready to join the chuunin. When Usagi says that word, she nods solemnly. "I'm afraid it is just what you think it is. Uchiha Narusegawa is dead. I was called here because I've been seeing him," she explains, rubbing Taiki's leg. "Tell no one about that, it is an A rank secret."
Taiki in the meantime curls up as much as he can, one hand going to his two ninken. "Bu… Noz… what will I do now?" he asks them in a pleading voice. The dogs whine piteously, gently licking at Taiki's hand.
In the meantime the two Jounin of the death information squad looks over to the Doctor, talking to them about Ryo. The doctors nod, allowing the two Jenin to leave, for the moment.
"That's it Taiki-kun, let it out, don't hold it in…" The old lady says as the boy starts sobbing harder.
Ryuu turns sharply looking towards the woman who sat next to Taiki comforting him. The harsh reality that he'd been trying to deny hit him and it hit him hard. Slowly his hands became fists. The gradually tighten, the strain can almost be heard. Every muscle on Ryuunosuke's body tenses regardless of pain or injury. Failing the mission was bad enough but learning of Naru's death prior to the mission was too much. "I let her down and now this…" Ryuu mutters softly. Sadly he couldn't release his contempt in the same manner as Taiki did. He'd spent more than enough time weeping over deaths. Ryuu's anger was unrestrained and unsupervised. His eyes cut like daggers into the old lady. "A secret? Sure. SURE. No problem." he complies harshly. WIth that Ryuu makes his way out of the room obviously in one the foulest of moods.
Usagi sighs softly, closing her eyes. this was not exactly the best of situations. She quirks an eyebrow at the old woman's wordage, but is nonetheless gently olding taiki as he weeps. She closes her eyes, gently petting the one dog she's got her hand on.
The old woman clears her throat, demanding the attention of the departing Genin. "I meant the part about me seeing him professionally, genin. The rest I suggest you go see either your clan or your sensei about." That said, she turns toward Usagi and sighs and shakes her head. Finally the sobs star easing off, which causes the old woman to regard the chuunin carefully. Finally he looks to the doctor and says, "Find Team 10's sensei, and bring him here."
Usagi shakes her head slightly, sighing softly. She nonetheless gives Taiki a gentle hug again, taking a slow breath and looking up at the woman. "so why is it a class A secret that you're working with Taiki?" She seems to be mildly curious, tilting her head a bit as she does so.
The old woman looks up at Usagi and says, "You heard about the problems the Inuzuka Clan have been having lately, no?" She starts still rubbing Taiki's leg. "Taiki-kun was and remains in the middle of that mess. The man in a coma is Taiki's Otousan, the woman killed was his mother. The traitors are two of Taiki's uncles. That much is public knowledge. What isn't public knowledge is what all that has done to him. Right now he's acting as a go between between the other clans of Konoha and the Inuzuka. His having mental breakdowns like what happened last time would only cause a lot of problems." Whatever his reaction was last time, it was not good.
"Na'chan…" Taiki whimpers as he continues to cry, only peripherally aware of the room and the people around him. Shinobu and Nozomi nudge their heads into his side and whine slightly, letting them know they're here for him.
"This could be a major setback, so please keep a watch on him until he's physically able to leave," the Yamanaka tells the doctors. "Don't hesitate to call me if you see anything wrong, though I'm not going anywhere right now."
Usagi looks over at him, then back to her. She nods once, slowly, and looks to Taiki again. She sighs softly, pursing her lips. "He's got life cut out for him…." She closes her eyes. "I'll do what I can. You have my word" She looks at the two dogs, giving them a treat again if they let her. She gives him another hug, shaking her head again. "Let me know what else I can do to help"
The hospital had for the last couple of days been walking on eggshells where Taiki was concerned, as Taiki had been resisting parts of treatment. The doctors kept Atsuro informed, but tonight's problems changed that. Mednin were sent to track down Team 10, on the orders of Taiki's shrink, given that the volatile situation they had discussed before had just happened. The Yamanaka woman was on hand when Taiki was told, so it should be of no surprise she is in the room, at Taiki's feet, rubbing his leg and giving soothing sounds every once in a while to the chuunin. Taiki is laying on his side, his head burried into a young genin's side while his arm is draped around the heads of his two ninken. Quiet sobs can be heard from Taiki, which is far better than what was feared.
In the meantime the old woman nods toward the genin hugging Taiki and says, "He'll need friends. Naru'san was extremely important to him, that much should be fairly obvious. We had contingency plans set up should this had ever happened, which is why his sensei should almost be here by now. He doesn't like hospitals as it is, due to things I can't talk about, but this will make things worse for a while. Try to have patience with him."
"I'll do what I can" Usagi nods slowly, keeping her arms around Taiki as she takes a slow breath. "good to know….I'll do what I can, and I will" She smiles a bit at the woman, then takes a slow breath. She shakes her head slightly, petting one of the dogs again.
Taiki slowly starts to relax, his own hugging becoming less desperate as the sobs start to smooth out. Instead of a sob there's now a moan of pain, as he's been doing all of this without regard to his own injuries. Now those injuries are making him aware of their presence, especially the broken ribs. But he is still crying, even as it is evening out. "Yamanaka'sensei?" he croaks out as he slowly starts to become aware of his surroundings. "It's true… isn't it? She's really gone?" The voice sounds entreating, almost begging for it to not be true.
The old lady sighs as she looks around, wishing that his guardian would hurry up and get here. "I'm afraid so, Taiki-kun, she says quietly, still rubbing his leg. "How are you feeling?"
Taiki groans again painfully, and the words escape his mouth even before he can filter them. "It's all my fault." It's too late to take them back, but you can tell he believes it.
Usagi nudges Taiki. "Hey…enough of that" She looks at him for a few moments, then stops the hug. "Stop and think about it…what happened that was your fault?" She tilts her head slightly, looking at the dogs with a 'help me out here' look.
The eyes of the bald headed Uchiha boy open. He seems to have awakened from his drug induced nap. He looks around with a groggy sense about him. After a brief moment he notices there seems to be more people in the room than there was when he went to sleep. They also seem to be really sad. "Whats going on?" At first Ryo thinks maybe it had to do with the Recluse. Then something tells him maybe it was not.
Those sent out to look for Team 10 didn't really have to look far, Berii's release from the hospital was more or less due to good behavior and the convincing of a relative that happened to be a doctor. But, like an idiot she thought, "light training", was a good idea. As one may expect, Berii was back but, not in intensive care this time around so it left her to wandering until accidentally coming across the messenger on her way out.
"Neh?! Taiki too?!" Facepalming, Berii agrees to head to his room. Shuffling through the hallways she was convinced that he had went too wild with that Tsuga business but, the closer she got the more out of place she started to feel. An ominous feeling hovering over her, getting heavier and heavier on her shoulders until she was in front of the door. She sort of just sits there and stares at it, trying to get a grip on herself.
"…bweh." She shuts her eyes for a moment, Sharingan activating just long enough to get a few reads on the chakra signals within. There were quite a few people in there but, none she recognized. That didn't help much at all, if anything that made her more uneasy. Biting her bottom lip she knocks gently before pushing the door open, one dark eye peeking through the crack in the doorway. "Hnn… it's Bewii."
Taiki tries to curl around himself, but his ribs are now preventing him from doing so fully. He groans again in obvious pain as Shinobu, who is closer to that end, tries to keep Taiki from bending over any more. "If only I had been able to keep up. If I had been able to fully back him up… we would have been able to finish off that man… She could have lived then…" He sobs the last part out as he clenches his fist. "I failed her… and now she's dead!"
The old Yamanaka woman had obviously read Taiki's initial report, though, and frowned. She's about to say something when Berii peeks in. "Come in," she says softly to the pink haired girl. "Your teammate is a bit… upset, and not thinking right," she says as she frowns and turns her attention to Taiki. "We all get outmaneuvered Taiki-san. That's a part of Shinobi life. You did what you thought was right, taking into account the people you were with." It's obvious that Taiki isn't buying it though. He ducks down as Ryo wakes up, knowing what will happen when he hears.
Usagi sighs softly. "We all have limits, Inuzuka-san. Our only way to do better is to better ourselves so that it will not happen again. I will help you….if you let me" She looks to the Yamanaka woman with a raised brow. then she looks to the other, furrowing her brow. This is definitely going downhill from here. "will you let me?"
Ryo starts to gain a picture of what was going on. He heard some words from Taiki, but they were echoed in his head by the medications. "That's just rude." he states as he moves to sit up. He had not recieved an answer. His eyes point directly towards Taiki as he ignores Berri's entrance. "Pull yourself together Taiki. What happened?" His head seems to be starting to clear a little and now he's able to focus. He's not sure exactly what Taiki is doing, but it seems painful. Her then turns towards Usagi. "If he cannot tell me, you tell me."
Berii's expression falls, grim. With Taiki acting the way he was, she somewhat wanted to casually back up and let this ride over a bit. But, she felt it was her duty to stick through with this and well, she was called into the room now too. When the Yamanaka tells Berii to come in, the Uchiha goes a bit pale before slipping into the room. Garbed in pajamas, she shuffled in on fuzzy slippers before shutting the door.
Sympathetic tears already starting to flood Berii's eyes yet she had no idea what she was crying about. Sniffling, Berii steps forward as Ryo starts pointing. "Aye! Stop it!" Berii glares at Ryo with angered red eyes, not even realizing she activated her clan's technique. Though there was lack of control there she managed to do her best to resist swatting Ryo's hand as she goes over to Taiki's bed side. She /did/ want to know what happened though. "T-taiki?" She's seen him rage before but, this is something new entirely.
Usagi sighs softly and shakes her head slightly. "Uchiha Narusegawa has been pronounced dead" She doesn't say much else as of right now. She looks to the two of them apologetically, then hangs her head. And she didn't even 'know' the woman. But she could see the pain it was causing them clearly enough.
The doctors had been monitoring the situation and as soon as Ryo started coming round they sent for the Jounin. It was protocol, after all. So just as Berii enters, so do two Jounin with black headbands and arm-bands. "Uchiha Ryo?" one says to grab the genin's attention. The look on the man's face is comiscerating, and it should be fairly obvious what he is here for. "I am sorry for your loss," he says, holding out an envelope sealed with black wax and a black ribbon. It should be fairly obvious what it is.
Taiki's voice, sounding broken, seems to be muffled but understandable from his pillow. "Na'chan… Na… Naru'chan… is… d… d… dead…" he finally gets out before starting to shudder. His tears are drying up as he's been crying for quite a while, and he's getting dehydrated.
The old Yamanaka woman then gets up and walks over to the sink, getting some water. She holds it out to Usagi and says, "Help him drink please," she asks before turning back to the room. "Taiki-kun is blaming himself for the death of someone he… well, he uses the words "cares for deeply," but I believe it is much deeper than that." She then surupticiously looks over to Ryo, as if gauging his response to this new information. "And please help keep him from aggravating his wounds any further," he asks of the teammate and the mednin-in-training.
The eyes of Ryo move towards Berii as she yells at him. He's still confused and she was being as much help to the situation as a brick being thrown at a glass house. His eyes then focus back on Usagi as she speaks. He heard the words, but they did not seem real. Almost like a prank or a game. A set up.
Then as the Jounin come in and the letter is handed to him, he opens it and his eyes scan over the words. Most of them are gibberish. Filler words placed into a letter to bridge the meaning over only a few that mattered. As the realization sinks in, Ryo gets that feeling in his throat. The inability to be able to swallow. Then his eyes focus on the bed beneath him. For the moment the room seems empty despite the inhabitants. Time itself seems to stop. A single moment almost feels like a life time of pain. It was the instant that he realized life had changed.
When someone recieves a deep wound in battle, the body numbs the area of pain. It seems to be a natural defense of the body. In that moment, his entire mind had frozen. A mechanism to cope with something he could not understand. His body and mind were now numb, yet there was a pain somewhere inside him. A place he'd not felt before. The pain burned in a way he had yet to feel. It may or may not have been painful in a normaL situation, but this was not that.
The boy's eyes open once more and he drops the letter. He swings his feet off the bed and stands on them. He was a bit shaky but, he makes his way towards Taiki. His face shows no emotion. It was easier this way. He would grieve for the loss in his own time, but that would be another time and a way different place. For now, there are no tears. Just a blank expression of numbness. "I am sorry Taiki…"
Berii was at a loss on what to say when Usagi passed on the news. "Hnn…" Berii's head drops, tears fully flowing now but, these were also sympathetic as Berii was not nearly as attached to Naru as the two shinobi but, the news of anyone you know dying is always a bit painful especially when there was a griever among you. Berii's eyes let tears loose but, that was about it.
Despite the Yamanaka's request, Berii did not make any effort to do anything to Ryo after the news was dropped and thankfully he did nothing to make the situation worse. So she just emits a soft, "Sowwy guys." She sighs again and then her hand rests on Taiki's head. She'd just gently run her hand back and forth, not knowing what else to do. She had the thought in her mind that, 'Hitoshi came back' but, didn't want to fill her teammate with false hope so just kept silent and comforted him in the only, somewhat awkward, way she could.
Usagi nods, taking the cup from the woman, and bringing it to Taiki's lips. "Hey…c'mon…let's take a drink" She smiles slightly at him, still sadness being seen in her eyes as she tries to bring him out of it a bit. She does respond to the elder woman. "I will do what I can. I'll make him a priority as much as my studies allow" She looks to the others…the woman seemed to be letting it out, while the other man didn't seem to show anything….wait. The other woman had the sharingan eyes….she curses silently to herself, she'd jsut told family that they'd lost one of their own. She looks down at her clipboard. Even 'better', she just told -two-. Boy this day wasn't getting any better.
Taiki looks up at Ryo and sees the emotionless expression on his face, and gulps. "I'm… I'm sorry Ryo… Oh dear Kami, I'm so SORRY!" He looks like ****, literally. The tears have dried, leaving his eyes puffy and his nose runny. He's cried himself dry, but is still in deep, deep emotional pain. It will be a long while before he is able to think of this and not want to cry. "I'm sorry," he whispers, dropping his eyes as he eyes the glass of water. He wants to refuse it, for he definitely does not feel like drinking anything, but he can't help but to think that is when Atsuro would come through the door and berate him for not taking care of himself. He feels the akward feel of Berii's had running through his hair. There she goes, petting him again. One of these days he'll have to explain that to her… but not now… it feels kinda good…
The Jounin haven't left yet, and are watching Ryo for the moment, as is the old Yamanaka lady. They can't read what he's thinking by face or body language, and others have snapped over less. So they wait, quietly to see if Ryo will accept Taiki's apology.
Ryo continued to move towards Taiki despite the apologies. "Take today. Be sorry. Grieve for her…" Ryo then turned around and looked at the Jounin. He offered a simple nod of his head. "Tomorrow, I will be training to hunt them down. I may not be able to bring her back, but I can sure cause that man and his friends as much pain as they can handle and then some."
Berii relaxed a bit, rubbing the tears from her eyes with her free arm and frowning slight as she looks towards Ryo. "Hey. Swow down, we don't want you gone too, hnn." Berii straightens out and the frown slowly shifts to a smile, "I'w hewp though. If I can in any way." Berii nods at him, her eyes trace her arm down to the boy she was petting, "You need anything Tai-kun?"
«OOC» Berii got distracted sorry z.z
The old lady nods slowly, analyzing Ryo's words and movements. "That will be alright for you, Uchiha Ryo'san, but I'm afraid Taiki-san will need longer. He has several broken bones that are still healing, and he has not been kind to his body the past few days. Assuming he lets the med-nins do their jobs, he will probably be training right alongside you in a week. That's the soonest we can clear him for training." She attempts to pin Taiki's eyes to drive the point home, but the chuunin has passed out as soon as it became evident that Ryo didn't hate him. He's just been through too much. With this the woman stands up and looks to the doctors, "Keep him asleep for as long as you can for the next 24 hours. After that," she says, looking at the assembled genin here, "He'll need help pulling himself together. Naru-san's death was a big blow for him. On the level of his parents, maybe even larger. If you think you need my help, call me." With this she nods to the Jounin, who follow them out.