Date: April 14, 2015
One of the criminals, another one of those crazy scientists who enjoys fiddling with nature, has been found. A team of Kumogakure Kunoichi have been dispatched to deal with the man and his beasts.
"The Usual Suspects - Sciencing Nature"
Land of Lightning
In the Land of Lightning, people have begun to cheer on the forces of Kumogakure while they continue to take down different criminals. Today's mission was no different, as Michiko had assembled various shinobi to take down a rather easy criminal who had set up a base in the far north. 'Be sure to pack warm. It may be summer, but it will be cold' said the letter that summoned everyone to the gates. Michiko is sitting on a horse, and several other steeds are present. If any had a specific mount, she would be sure that horse was waiting for them. Even one that managed to get used to Rise! Right now, it's early morning.
"Just once, I'd like for this all to end, but no, it will never end, because people can't stop being idiots," Amani grumbled to herself aloud while approaching the gates. "I mean, it's an inherent thing. Humanity is just prone to stupidity and that's okay, right?" She inquired to some random passerby. They looked at her strangely and shrugged, ultimately nodding in a sing song manner. "Exactly my point! Thank you!" She pointed out before marching off. "My horse!" She shouted and indicated the one for her. "It's been a while. Anyway, I've packed warm like you asked…"
She ripped the note from her lab coat and showed the crumpled mess to Michiko prior to stuffing it away. She proceeded to mount her horse. "This cheering is annoying. How long do I have to wait before they get used to seeing stupid criminals being punished?"
Nozomi, being from the north herself, knew what the temperatures would be like. She shows up in a slightly fuller version of her normal ninja kimono, carrying a small bag of supplies. She is surprised to find her horse, Strawberry, waiting for her! Emmediately she walks up to the brown hoarse with a red strawberry-shaped mark on the rear and, upon finishing a quick inspection, starts to coo over it. It is only after a few minutes of this she remembers that she saw Michiko here. She then drapes a hand on the horse's shoulder and bows to Michiko. "Hello Michiko-san."
She rejected it. Unless order to do otherwise, Rise absolutely refused to ride the horse after sitting on the beast for more than a few seconds. And if ever asked for a reason why she would simply shake her head in refusal. Unlike the first and perhaps surprising rejection, the normally abnormally subserviant kunoichi never gives a reason. Even the threat of facing disciplinary action does not seem to phase her. Rise just simply… could not do it. So unless ordered to stay behind as a result of her actions, the woman dressed in thicker and white/grey version of her usual assemble would go by foot or grudgingly by horse if ordered to do so.
"It will more than likely be when news spreads of a team failing in their mission; especially against such adversaries like the Ox King or the Admiral." Rise states dryly yet absently, seeing as how her back pack refused to settle in place right.
Michiko offers a light nod to everyone as they arrive, smiling a bit to Amani and Nozomi. "Good, you're all here. The compound to the North is currently hosting Kumatsuki, a man who enjoys experimenting on wildlife." She mutters briefly about how the number of people who enjoy that hobby needs to go away, apparently having experienced it before. Then continues, "It's been noted that he sometimes brings animals along with him, as well as native life. We'll have to be on guard. The man himself isn't terribly strong, being around Chuunin level, but again… Don't underestimate him. He has nasty tricks up his sleeve, I'm sure."
Michiko glances down to her own horse, a small brown horse by the name of 'Roadblock', nudging him in the direction of the path. "And I'd rather Kumogakure doesn't fail in its missions. At least when it concerns these people… This team should be enough to handle the escapee, though. Any questions, I'll answer while we move. Rise-san, if you really insist on not using a horse, you may travel on foot as long as you can keep up. Amani-san, you and Nozomi-san will be working together should we need to split up. Try to keep an eye on each other."
Amani cast a lazy glance to Nozomi and returned her sights ahead of her as she guided her horse through the gate. "I suppose I can try to be mindful," she remarked. "This should be a simple task…no, not really. It's never simple. Never underestimate. Kumogakure and the Land of Lightning have a special breed of people that seem to defy the odds that are against them. The most common man can turn into an unstoppable monster for reasons only the sky above could know," she shook her head and tsked. "So, heed Michiko's words. Your chance of survival goes up three percent more from the 25 you're given and that's not even a guarantee."
Nozomi nods to Michiko to indicate she understands, then listens to Amani and inwardly wonders if Amani is normally this fatalistic. Still, she mentally shrugs it off and simply offers Amani a bright smile. "Stick with you. Got it. I'm not exactly a short range person anyway, for reasons that should become evident." That said, she mounts her horse and nearly slips off the other side before managing to catch herself and settle in. Once she's seated in the saddle, she looks a lot less clumsy than her mounting insinuated. As her horse follows Amani's she seems to be more solid in her movements than usual…
As the straps settled into proper alignment, Rise turned her attention to the others, observing them more closely. Two Yamayuki, One Murasame, One.. Taijutsu expert versues a man and his pets. Try as she might to avoid underestimating their target right from the start, the odds were stacked considerably in the favor at face value. Even Amani's words do little to sway her.
The moment Rise hears her name, she perks up considerably. After taking one last sidelong glance at her would be mount, Rise bows fully at the waist. "Hai, Michiko-sama." Rise replies calmly during the bow, then rose ready to jog or run if need be to keep up. The simple act of moving gets her blood pumping and chakra surging bit by bit.
The journey is simple, yet not, as the team has to travel up and down a mountain trail or two. The horses make it easier, and the paths are well-maintained, but the steepness is sometimes difficult to get over. There's a single break at a body of water so everyone can get a drink, including the horses. Then they're back on the road. Twenty miles of travel on horseback… It takes roughly two hours to get to their destination. About a half-mile out, Michiko would indicate for the group to stop and dismount, wanting to use as much stealth as possible so they could scope out the area. Her chakra is sent through the earth as she concentrates, exploring for anything that would resemble their target or a large beast.
The most obvious thing about their target is their location. Before them is the entrance to a tall cave. How far it extends and how elaborate the maze is within is unknown, though. Everyone is sent to explore quickly and report back what they find.
Amani took the trip in stride, keeping to herself mostly and focusing on their surroundings. She'd grown bored, but that didn't mean she was any lest invested in this mission or…maybe she was. "Nozomi…" She began. "When did you come to Kumogakure? Are you from the tundra lands or were you born here?" She inquired, trying to strike up some form of conversation with her. Seeing as she's a fellow Yamayuki, well…
She holds any further questions as she looks around and targets some animals and a person in the area. "…Ah. So, I'd like for you all to grow used to this area, so I'll give you a quick tour," she began masking her words under the guise of general conversation. "This land has many different kinds of animals. Honestly, just look around you and you'll spot them if you have a good eye. However, there are some not to be found here. Namely big cats that are more suited to plains and hotter temperatures. You may find those of the Ursus genus and raptor birds. They're keen hunters, y'know. People don't tend to take these parts often when traveling, but you'll find the occasional person out here…" She gestured numbers for each descriptor holding up two fingers for big cats and bears, and one for a bird. She finalized it with one human.
Nozomi enjoys the ride and appears to know some of this area, having traveled it enough. So while some aspects of the trip were not so simple, it was still something she could easily keep up with. "I was born in the tundra, stayed there until about four years ago, when I was poised to start as a musician/lore keeper. See, I'm slightly clumsy, and though my parents were warriors, and capable of using chakra, many, including myself, thought I wasn't. Then, thanks to a bandit uprising, it was discovered I could, so my parents brought me to Kumo to enter the academy. I graduated when I was 13 and had to go back to my village for a year almost immediately afterward. Came back here about a month ago to start my time as a shinobi, where I focus mainly on musical ninjutsu, since I'm still slightly clumsy," she explains. After more conversation along these lines, they come to a halt and Nozomi takes the time to look around. "Those are some big animal prints," she states, pointing at the obvious overlapping prints near the entrance, followed by pointing off in a seemingly random direction. "I've seen some great cats before during hunting expeditions, but some of those look like they'd feed a family for a month…"
The phrase 'as healthy as a horse' very much applied to Rise, because at no point did she request early breaks or even seemed all the tired by its end. If anything the raven-haired berserker grew more energetic as time went by, though she remained mindful enough to keep from unintentionally bothering the others with the desire to move on whenever stopping to rest the horses seemed appropriate. For her sake as much as the others, Rise devoted herself to keeping active vigil following their first break. It mattered not if happened for minutes or even hours, because the woman had to remain dedicated to the cause. Mostly.
It takes a moment or two for her to really divide her attention between the group and elsewhere, so a reaction to Nozomi's story and Amani's rambling is delayed… not that there was to be much of one afterwards. She merely regarded the two each somewhat briefly as they spoke before seeming to refocus her attention elsewhere. "And usually they are hunters.. No, poachers. Pathetic ones too if they have to rely on traps, no matter how clever they are about it." She says tonelessly. And yet, as if to make up for it, the girl gestured occasionally here and there. Idle gestures to most, but the team they told another story. An unnaturalness to the cave entrance…
Michiko nods lightly to all the information, saying, "Indeed… We should be careful. I heard that the caves all lead to dead ends, but there's supposedly some interesting animals in their depths. Nozomi-san, Amani-san. Go make sure that people around these parts are doing okay. They might be a bit scared at seeing you, but we need to get them to safety." As she speaks, the girl indicates a bit of rope and tying up. "I think Rise-san and myself should be able to handle any animals that are coming your way. And be wary of traps… We should disable any that might catch an innocent traveler."
Michiko nods lightly to all the information, saying, "Indeed… We should be careful. I heard that the caves all lead to dead ends, but there's supposedly some interesting animals in their depths. Nozomi-san, Amani-san. Go make sure that people around these parts are doing okay. They might be a bit scared at seeing you, but we need to get them to safety." As she speaks, the girl indicates a bit of rope and tying up. "I think Rise-san and myself should be able to handle any animals that are coming your way. And be wary of traps… We should disable any that might catch an innocent traveler.
"What? No, no, we shouldn't disable traps that can catch travelers. Those are important. Because! Because, now just hear me out here…there are some travelers that aren't so nice. What I mean is…" Amani lifts a hand to her head to think. "Okay, how about this… We are riding horses. Typical sort of traveling animal. Great at that sort of thing, but how many can say they have bears, lions and a falcon? Anyone?" She questioned. "How about…we leave those traps up. Because I'm sure there's someone out there that fits the description of owning these types of animals," she states. "I mean, there's just a really high and close possibility that this very distinct idea can come to pass. Just think about that. These traps could be used for good. Besides, anyone coming out this far is foolish. What could they be doing out this way, honestly? This area just begs to be hunted in every way," she huffed.
"But fine, I guess I'll see to the people. Nozomi, with me. We have to go do things to keep them out of danger," she sighed. "Why? Aren't they perfectly capable of being able to survive? They live all the way out here," she gestures to the area. It's clearly got nothing more for it other than survival, but nope.
Nozomi listens to Amani's points, then considers the surroundings. "Most natives out here would be very knowledgeable bout their surroundings. I know in my village, we could always tell if something was different, and it normally led us to find people who didn't belong, eventually. Problem is, sometimes the bad ones don't want to be found, and that's when problems happen, even to those who know there area. So we should at least check on them. Besides, they may have insights we lack about the situation here."
Rise hesitated for a moment, but ultimately turned to regard Michiko fully as she delivered orders. Without anything personal to add (if only for the moment), Rise shrugged off her back pack and began rooting around in it. She always carried plenty of supplies in general in person. Still, adding a few shurikens and first aid supplies wouldn't hurt in the long run. Right? Unfortunately, one little snag popping up sort of delayed the Shirokiri, so just about everything happening around her is tuned out for a good little while. Once her task is complete, Rise quietly rises and regards the other with a faintly curious look.
"Shall we proceed, Michiko-sama?"
Michiko hmms and nods. "We could try that. But animals aren't that stupid, usually… At least, I doubt these ones are… We should still keep an eye o-" she cuts off as a few kunai end up cutting her legs and arms. The cuts were shallow and annoying, though, so she didn't pay them too much mind. Two bears come lumbering out, their 'orders' being relayed by a strange device in their heads. On their backs was a kunai launcher that sent a projectile once every other second. With both of them, they're able to put of up a sort of 'unhalting attack' on the Kumo-nin.
Michiko eyes the mechanisms, considering… "Try to take out the kunai launchers and the strange contraptions on the bears' heads," she orders quickly, already moving, albeit a tad slowly, to get out of the way of more kunai. As she moves, part of the earth rises and shoots towards the things on the bears' heads, one for each animal.
"And because of that, they should know when a trap is coming!" Amani remarked to Nozomi prior to drawing back her reins so that the horse would move out of the way of the bears. She leapt off and took the damage of the kunai to protect her horse from taking serious damage. "Just like that! They should know very well what lies in this area, good or bad, I mean, really!" She shouted prior to whipping around and clapping her hands to send two waves of sound towards the bears. "Well, that's…unsual," she grunted out through gritted teeth. What the heck is up with those devices? Are those receivers? "I think you all know what needs to be done, but just in case you don't, we need to destroy those things on the heads of these bears."
Nozomi is caught by surprise by the bear, and pays for it. Her clumsy attempt to dodge out of the way of the first kunai while hastily pulling out her half-flute causes her to be hit by the first kunai. She manages to get the flute up and actually muster a quick sound defense, but it was too late as the second kunai hit her before the sound wave fired off. Quickly improvising a tune, she starts off with very shrill note designed to cause pain for the bear's sensitive hearing. She follows this up with a hasty, but solid manifestation of her newly acquired offensive skill by forming a sword of sound and lauching it at the bear's kunai launchers. After this, she starts to settle into a fast song that will enable her to both defend and fight. It's very hard to talk and play a flute at the same time, so for now the witty banter has stopped.
Rise… didn't know how to respond to Amani's counter part. It all made sense of some level, but… It was just fortunate she heard heavy foot falls nearby, granting her pretty good excuse to look away. By the time the woman completes the motion, it is already too late to call out a warning. Self-preservation drove her to leap away from the others, battering away kunai that came too close in mid-motion. As soon as her feet touches the ground again, Rise just… she couldn't stop herself in time to listen to orders before shuriken are sent flying in the direction of the bears eyes.
The sound waves are quite painful for the bears, as are the bullets made of pure mud. While neither end up causing enough damage to the devices on the bears, the do injure the animals. Hard, solid earth gives the bear some bruises, maybe even a cracked bone due to the force of the impact, and it roars in pain. The sound waves from Amani were just enough that both devices on the animals' heads crack a bit, garbling the delivered message.
Rise's throws were all-too accurate as they are sent. While one bear's eyes are… particularly tiny and hard to hit, that doesn't mean that it comes away unscathed. Its snout gets a nice trail of blood, and the ground is spattered with red when it shakes its head. The other is blinded and decides to charge at the shinobi blindly, not sure where anything is anymore. It's likely trying to head back into the cave, but it's just all turned around. The other bear is a bit smarter, using its large paws to try and swipe at those who may come close enough to it. … Of course, none of the shinobi are willing to come near, so it has to charge and swipe.
Michiko makes a handseal, the bear charging through a simple clone that she was able to make at the last minute. That, along with kunai that are being launched at her from the unbroken launcher, are all handled by said clone, passing through it like there was no issue. The last thing she expects, though, is for one of the bears to come charging at her. Apparently she was a good target for both her size, proximity, and … She was only giving the bears bruises, not making their ears bleed. The Iwata is slammed into, which is an unpleasant feeling, but it knocks her out of the way from the paw swipe coming her way.
Amani decided to create a bubble of sound to project outward and impede the attacks that were coming her way. She proved to be successful only up until such a time that her bubble literally burst and more kunai made it through. "Darn it, I didn't correct for that change of frequency!" She remarked, growing more frustrated at the stinging pain of having kunai jammed into her body. She decided to solve that problem by activating her eyes and giving herself a new perspective on the issue. "Ah, much better…I think I ought to try and go in to disable them. It may be dangerous, but heck, it has to be done. Just…give me a few moments to gather myself." Frick, these kunai hurt.
Nozomi notices the on-rushing bear and considers using her ninjutsu, but that bear must e close to a ton, and she's sure she doesn't have the chakra to stop that kind of force, so she dodges instead, causing the bear to actually miss her. Her notes take an upswing to send two more sound waves out to attempt to intercept the kunai, but somehow they fail, causing Nozomi to also be hit by sharp objects. Okay, this is beginning to hurt…. The next chord forms into another invisible sword, which she sends after the charging bear, and soon after two more sharp, piercing notes ring out toward the one launching the kunai in hopes of making the bear uncomfortable enough to affect its aim. She hears Amani's request and nods, but does not miss a beat in the tune she's playing.
Amani's last command (suggestion) fully registers now, and it actually pained the woman. Although her instincts wer largely at fault, it did not change the fact that it was her hand that held the weapon and sent it flying remained very true. It would not happen again today if she could help it. Sooner than expected, Karma chose to answer her earlier mistake with a wild charge from a bear that threatened to harm the rest of the team. Most fortunately managed to avoid the charge, but Rise remained standing in place, bracing herself.
Rise lowered herself just enough at the right time to duck under the bears head, then reach up and grab it roughly at its throat. Momentum and raw strength aid the girl in tossing the bear behind her, flat and its back. If all went well, the beast would be dazed and the device broken by the sheer weight of the creature slamming onto it.
With it hopefully down for good, all there was left was to — She pivots, slapping most of the first wave of kunai out of the air using her wrist guard while nimbling dodging the rest. A few manages to slice into her arm in passing, agitating the woman enough to try and drag Mr. Dazed by the muzzle and launch him after the other. She stops short after the first tug, shake off her.. irritation, and launch a pair of shuriken into the launcher.
While kunai are painful, the Bears are experiencing quite a bit more. Not only do they have to deal with bruises and potentially cracked bones, they also have to deal with the piercing note that a certain Yamayuki continues to play over and over in her performance. If they weren't already, the ears of each bear are likely bleeding. This doesn't help them, either. Especially the one that's already lost its sight thanks to a well-thrown kunai from Rise. The bear, already charging, can do nothing to stop itself from getting flipped over! Charging at Rise with all its strength, it was far too late for it to try and change course, even if it did realize what was about to happen. And so now everyone gets to see the one-of-a-kind Bear Thrown on its Back by a Little Girl performance, the beast thoroughly dazed thanks to Rise.
If it being dazed weren't enough, Rise's grab at its muzzle caused it even more pain, as the Shirokiri has a strong grip. She's not able to lift the bear, but she /can/ crush its mouth… Ow… The other bear, only able to see, watches its companion suffer and looks about ready to charge the Shirokiri when … Two shuriken make their lucky way into its kunai shooter. Normally this wouldn't be a big deal, but the scientist behind this mechanized creature decided to outfit the bear in a way that the launcher was hooked directly into its biological system. As such, having the two shuriken stop forthcoming kunai is painful, and the bear is down and eventually unconscious as kunai, unable to escape, end up coming from its insides… Ew.
And yet, the Bears are not the only problem the Shinobi have to deal with. Right around when they both go down, the mountain lions mentioned earlier decide to make their appearance, springing from the ground. It is harder to tell what was modified on them, but a closer inspection would show they had sharp drill-like claws, extended ears, and seemed practically blind. And yet, they were able to emerge from under both Rise and Michiko…
Michiko relaxes slightly when it seems Rise managed to take care of the Bears, and the combined efforts of all the shinobi had succeeded in taking the two down. At least, they were no longer threats. She's about to call out a congratulations to Rise when she feels something in the ground… Instead of a 'Nice job!', she instead calls out "JUMP!" The Iwata also takes her own advice, fire spewing from her mouth to launch her away from the 'mountain lion's claws. Her eyes narrow upon seeing just what it is. "Pleasant… Though I don't see anything that resembles what was on the bear…" she notes, a seal forming so that two bullets of mud are projected in the large cats' directions. A blow to their sides, if successful.
"At this rate…we might as well place all of these animals down. Since we seem like we're having such a good time attempting to kill them!" Amani remarks with some mild spite in her voice. "But, if I were to be more reasonable, I'd say that these animals would be a danger to anyone as they are. They can't be sent back," she sighed. "Such a waste. Have we found the one responsible yet?" She questioned anyone who could be actively looking for their master at this point.
Nozomi comes to a pause in her tune, leaving her just long enough to say something before resuming play, "If I had less lethal methods of fighting, I'd use them." That said, she starts playing again, this time the beat is fast but the composition is complex as the notes wrap up amongst themselves to form two sords which are sent out by Nozomi. No sharp piercing sounds this time, at least.
Neither of the bears' pain draws a flicker of remorse out of the dark-haired kunoichi. As far as the woman was concerned, so long as her team remained safe, not even the orders of a superior mattered. The jarring thought elicits a wince from the woman. Fortunately, it is not so distracting that Michiko's warning falls on death ears. Following a quick shake of her head, Rise springs out of range of the lions moments before they spring out of the earth. In mid-air, the woman drew a pair of kunai, and expertly launched them towards the mechanism that allowed them to drill underground, crippling them, or so she hoped.
Michiko's mud bullets come in like pincers right at the two mountain lions. Or rather, right where they were a second ago. It could have been a devastating blow to their sides, but the two large cats were swift enough that one bullet was completely off target while the other one hit a cat's back leg. It's painful, but it doesn't do a lot of worthwhile damage. Nozomi's attack, though, is rather effective with the cats' keen sense of hearing. They screech and yowl in pain, pausing in their dashes to try and cover their ears. This allows for Rise to injure them further. Or rather, the machines that they used to dig were broken, and they could no longer be used.
Noe handicapped, the two cats seem to be at a loss. It seems that it was the drills that were somehow sending the secret controlling message that made them Attack the shinobi, and so now they looked ready to turn tail and run. Michiko quickly keeps them where they are with some metal bindings that shoot out from the ground and keep them there. To Amani, she says, "Look in the cave. I think if you travel inward about 300 yards you will find something."
"Noted," Amani replied to Nozomi. "Shinobi are not known for being gentle creatures. We can draw parallels between the two, really, but I'll spare us the deep, metaphysical allegories or some garbage I can cook up between these animals and us. Let's just agree that they need to die. That's a mildly blunt way for me to say that. I can be much worse." She begins to head off into the cave to seek out more about what's going on inside. She sends out a reading across the area and determines that there is some life in here. At least that much is confirmed. "Alright, let's see if I can shake up the area here…" She determines which part of the cave walls would be effective in carrying the sound to the enemy and proceeded to strike at precise points to cause loose stones and structures to fall from the ceiling around him to trap him…or kill him. Is that an option?
Nozomi takes careful notes of the walls of the cave, and remembers that sound echoes easily in such an environment. Since she can't see where exactly the target is, but knows its in the cave, she gets a mischievous look on her face as she steps closer to the mouth of the cave. After a moment she hits two very high pitched notes in her tune, sending the effects down the cave in hopes that the echoes will help subdue whoever is in there.
Without any personal means or further orders, Rise awaited calmly for the results of Amani's plan. Every now and then the woman is tempted by the desire to check up on their fallen prey, but managed to resist the urge. Their condition was not her business now that Michiko had them bound in steel hard bindings. As a precaution, Rise started to try and plug her ears, but with only one hand to work with, the attempt is abandoned following a weary shake of her head. It looks like she will have to just bear and grin it.
Well, Amani can certainly stir things up, though perhaps not as much as she had hoped. The piercing sound that she had released hits a wall, which pretty much absorbs the vibrations and starts to shake the cavern. It wasn't enough to result in any stones falling on anything, though. A few cracks were created within the cave system, and even a few could be seen on the outside if one had a high vantage point and keen eyes to look down on the outside.
Nozomi's high pitched notes bounce off the walls a bit better than Amani's. They aren't /as/ piercing as the older Yamayuki's, and they're still quite painful to hear. The cries of the bird that was mentioned earlier can be heard reverberating off the walls, but it's hard to pinpoint unless one was extremely experienced with how sound and caves work.
Michiko takes the time to study the animals that the group had defeated, bindings of metal ensuring her protection so that she can further incapacitate the lions trapped within them before examining just what may have been going on with their insides. "Hmm…" she murmurs softly, having a feeling that Amani would be very interested in what she's currently feeling with her limited skill.
"What…what?!" Amani began shouting. "I know I had accounted for every possible, conceivable and coincidence that could have happened!" She watched the waves head off around the cave as hers and Nozomi's meshed up deeper inside. "Nozomi, we must work together in order to combine our abilities and defeat this blasted menace. He's lived through my attacks and now he must pay for his insolence," she balled her fists, cracking her knuckles as a result. She then proceeded to strike the walls once more and projected some sound down the way to add to her initial attack.
Lacking the nejigan, much less of high enough levels to look through walls and such, Nozomi cannot seem to exactly locate the target. However, when Amani instructs her to work with her, she gets an idea and strains her ears even as she wraps her music tightly together to form another couple of swords, which she hopefully sends in the same direction as Amani.
Restlessness. It finally does the Shirokiri in. While being prepared for some type of counter assualt was all well and dandy, allowing her agitation to grow unchecked did not sit well. Somewhat grudgingly, Rise turned her limited medical skills upon the bears. She removed any embedded weapons without much apparent care for their well being. It is only upon closer examination one might notice her expert removal of the weapons before cleaning out and bandaging up the wounds.
The walls, already weakened from Amani's previous sound-strike, start to shake and tremble, cracks forming deeper into its surface. A few pebbles start to fall from the ceiling, then larger rocks as things begin to collapse. Deeper within the caverns, as Amani and Nozomi's sound waves travel through, more and more of the stalactites/stalagmites (never understood the difference…) fall from the ceiling. A faint sound could be heard, getting louder and louder until those sensitive enough would hear a crunch right when the sound could be heard no more.
Rise would find that many of the embedded weapons were… rather solidly within the bear's flesh. It took strength that only a few in Kumogakure had to remove them, but she would find them out after much tugging and pulling, and perhaps a lot of pain to the bears if they're alive, still. Michiko finished examining one of the mountain lions and decided to send a pulse of chakra through the earth, pinpointing the man who was running through the tunnels. The crash of stone right where the foot fell… He was either dead or about to die. And judging by the fact that there were no more sounds coming from the cavern, it was likely the former. "Well, I think we completed the mission," she comments lightly. "Now we have to figure out what we wish to do with these beasts before we return to Kumo."
Amani certainly picked up on that crunch. It was grisly, but heck, he brought it onto himself. She decided to make one last sweep to ensure no more vitals could be picked up in the area before declaring him dead, including the bird. "We have to put them all down. Every last one of them. They can't be sent back into the wild as they are now. They've been too…modified?" She couldn't even find a proper word for them. They weren't even what could be called domesticated. "Let's just go with that. They won't function normally as they are. So we have to kill them," she shrugged. "It's all we can do for now."
Nozomi sighs and shakes her head. As recently as she had been in her village, some rules remained strong, chief among these was the concept of balance with nature. Her eyes flit over to the bears and lions as she considers the issue, then droops her head slightly. "As much as I don't like it, I must agree with Amani," she starts before looking up. "They'll smell too much of man to be accepted back with their own kind, and given the advantages that the tools they have will give them, they would constitute a major problem for the local wildlife. It would be more a mercy to kill them."
Rise lost herself in her work, forgetting during the time the fact that earlier the bear was out to get her. It is only as the rest of the team began talking of putting down the animals that the woman snapped out of the haze, and retook notice of the present. Her body shifts even before she had truly considered her actions, placing her in front of the blinded one. "This one is mine. I… will not allow further harm to him." She states in her usual dry tone. That is to say, that is how she sounded on the surface, but Amani at least might catch the smallest inflection in her voice that bespoke protectiveness and determination.
Michiko glances back at the other animals and nods lightly. "Alright, then. I'll take care of the other bear and the mountain lions, then… Umm… And Amani-san, please figure out if Rise-san keeping the bear is a good idea." With that, the girl turns and makes her way over to the trapped lions, setting them ablaze now that the rain has finally stopped falling. It's a shame she doesn't have something like deadly poison on her at the moment… Probably would have been more merciful… The fire consumes both lions and the remaining bear before she drags them all into the ground, the soft earth allowing for this to happen with less effort.
"Rise can keep the bear if she wants. It's probably developed some attachment to people now given what its just been through. We'll need to do extensive work in trying to get all those…devices removed from it so it can learn to be a bear again," Amani explained. "I imagine that there will be some initial troubles, but it will be tamed eventually. If…the devices are found to be troubling to remove, then we'll need to work with this newfangled bear," she lifted her hand to her head and rubbed her temples. "I need to get a drink. When I get home, I'm going to get some coffee. Just tons of it filled with cream and sugar!"
She found her words punctuated by lions and a bear being set aflame. "I'm sure they'll make a nice…err, compost…for the earth here or something…?" She questioned. "We should probably leave. Rise, bring your bear. We have much work that needs to be done when we get back to Kumo."
Nozomi nods when Amani says she needs something to drink, and wonders just what the minimum age for alcohol is in Kumo, and if being a Shinobi reduces that any. While she is not miss innocent when it comes to death, she can imagine what the bird felt when the cave fell on it. That, however, pales to the sadness she feels as the one bear and the lions are burned alive. Even though they were knocked out, there was a chance the fire could awaken them.
Nozomi turned away from the fire and started singing nonsense words quietly to distract her, though interspersed with the song was a comment, "Given that they were incapacitated, and we all at least have kunai, we could have slit their throats before burning them…" She will not add that it would have been more humane that way, and also attempts to hide the silent tears that fall as her singing turns from nonsense to a dirge as she walks away from the burn site, still within sight of the others, but far enough away to hopefully avoid having the others see her cry.
Rise eyes widen by a fraction, then close completely as she bowed fully at the waist to her seniors. There wasn't one part of her that actually believed they would agree to her keeping the bear. Amani was always a little… weird, and Michiko had no reason to accept the burden. As Amani's words fully sank in, Rise understood than that any costs inncured would be on her head, not theirs.
This was fine with her. Money meant so very little to the petite woman. What did however and yet escaped her at every turn is the reason behind wanted to protect an animal that might not fully recover from its ordeals. There was also the little fact that she did blinded it in the first place too, so…
"I will make sure no trouble comes of this." Rise states after rising from her bow. While wrestling over how best to carry the beast without scaring the horses, Rise pauses only once from the sound of Nozomi's singing. She watches for a lengthy time, never once showing any signs of having been moved by what is heard. At one point her lips part as if she intended to call out something to Nozomi. But… nothing comes out before she decides to return to getting her new pet above her. "I am ready to move out, Michiko-sama."