Date: January 24, 2015
Day two of an attempt to stop thieves from constantly stealing from a large market in a town in the Land of Fire. Unlike the previous day this time the thieves strike and the Konoha nin are ready to take them down!
Land of Fire, Town of Satomi
Another day has arrived in the town of Satomi situated in the Land of Fire. The shinobi who had been hired to catch the thieves that have been plaguing the town are called down from their rooms at the inn early in the morning hours and asked to go to the market. Although the previous day had been completely void of any attempts at theft the town elders were hopeful that today the thieves would show themselves so the shinobi could put an end to the problem.
The town elders asked the shinobi to dress down to help fit into the crowd and also requested they assist in setting up some vendor stalls. "Maybe because they got suspicious when people who didn't help in the morning showed up and stayed all day." One of the elders offered despite how very unlikely such a possibility seems. It's much more likely that they just want some help setting up and since the shinobi are there anywayswell, it's not free, but they're getting a little more for their money.
As the previous day had been Soku would be assigned to the jewelry vendors stall to pose as his grandson and employee. Kenta would again be on the lookout from whatever position he felt was best to see as much of the area as possible. Hige was to wander the crowd looking like a bored farmers kid lusting after items his family could never afford. Zankuro and Usagi were each taking an entrance to the town and thus were not watching to market so much as looking for suspicious activity coming in.
Since the previous day had been fruitless Konohagakure had sent an additional person at the request of the town to help keep an extra eye out for the thieves. Thus enter Etsu, the first person they could find who wasn't already busy! The leaf shinobi would have been sent the night before and arrived around midnight, giving her a little time to sleep before the days events. She would be positioned with Soku at the stall, portraying a helper or merchant to be in the middle of things.
Hige is there doing what he did last time, although this time he doesn't have the same amount of money. Apparently spending half of the team leaders cash wasn't what one was supposed to do on a mission. Oh well. The boy wanders the vendor stalls with his henge no jutsu hiding the Inuzuka markings on his cheeks, Konsho looking like any normal pup as he follows the boy. They both look forlornly at things from food to trinkets, wishing they could buy some of them. It's not much of an 'acting' stretch. Some of the stuff /was/ pretty neat.
At times like these, it's very helpful that Kenta is the type of sleep late and wake early. It's probably not so good for his longevity in the long run, but he's still young enough that the effects aren't felt yet. The medic-nin is obviously feeling less moody, since he managed to muster up a smile for everyone when they headed out of their temporary lodgings. He also readily helped with setting stalls, but that's something he would have agreed to even if it's the worst of days for him. Afterwards, Kenta activated his cloaking jutsu again and perches his invisible self on the same roof that was his lookout on the previous day.
Nor was Soku's role an acting stretch, he had no idea how people did this for a living! Standing there waiting for people to buy your stuff, couldn't they look at behind glass or something then make an appointment so you don't have to stand here all day? Soku stares off in the distance, bored out of his skull literally minutes into the marketplace opening. There weren't even any hot girls buying jewelry, just a bunch of pretentious looking people, just hrmphing at the display. Though Soku notices one thing.
"Weren't you here yesterday… you didn't even like anything why are you already Soku and the man have a bit of a stare off, Soku was in no mood to be doing this stall thing for a second day in a row so he does not back down from the stare down. Not even a single blink…
In a mixture of intimidation and being mildly impressed, the man just backs off. Just as silent, weird.
This is new… Etsu had to take off her shades. That was frustrating. Her eyes were exposed at all times and it's not like she couldn't take the light, but she preferred the obscurity of her shades. She spent the majority of the time adjusting because 'Shades look weird on normal people'. Who said she wasn't normal? She was as normal as they come.
"That was…strange. Does this happen often here?" Etsu inquired of Soku quietly as she wandered about attending to items. Things had to look neat and settled. They had to scream 'buy me'. Probably wasn't helping Soku's situation much.
It's a good thing this isn't Soku's full time job or he would have starved a long time ago. Others around the stall turn their heads to look for a moment but quickly turn away before they accidently lock eyes with any of the vendors at /that/ stall - especially Soku. The market is crowded, overly so. As this is the only town nearby and there are many craftsmen and farms that live nearby it is considered one of the largest in the Land of Fire. The towns size doesn't allow for it so much but that is the way it work unfortunately. As such the streets only grow more and more crowded and it gets to the point where people are barely able to squeeze by eachother while walking and looking at items.
It seems the thieves are going to take the day off this time. In fact it's still fairly early when things start to get suspicious. Etsu would be the first to notice that there are three men in hooded cloaks nearby the stall she's at. While the cloaks themselves are not unusual for the cold of the marketplace there is something suspicious about their behavior. Although the hoods are up it appears they might be waiting for the right moment to strike at the items out on the table which includes a lot of expensive jewelry.
From his vantage point Kenta would also see that there is a pair of cloaked men moving quickly through the crowds at another part of the market. While they haven't done anything overtly suspicious yet they are knocking people out of the way as they walk and being disruptive. Rude or something else? Hige notices a man that keeps reaching for items on tables and then withdrawing his hand once the vendor looks, before he can actually touch anything. And Soku. Poor Soku.
Hige spots his man and begins tailing after him. He's wearing the cloak like the town elders had told them the night before but as of yet he hadn't actually stolen anything. And maybe he just wanted to check the things and not steal them but was nervous? Who knows. Regardless the boy and ninken follow after the man but don't raise any alarm yet.
Kenta frowns and leans further out over the roof's edge to watch the two men that he noticed. They're easy to track, since they cause a wave of disruption along their path. People are either shoved out of the way or jerk out of range before they even get close. While this doesn't necessarily mean anything, it could be the case that these are thieves preparing to create a diversion.
The invisible medic-nin flashes through several hand seals and sends his mind outwards. If he's better trained at his clan jutsu, he'd be able to contact multiple people at once. Unfortunately, he can only uphold a link with a single person, so he directs his telepathy towards Etsu. <"Etsu-san, there are two suspicious-looking men making a fuss at another part of the market. They might be trying to draw people's attention away from a thief attempt. Please be on alert and inform Soku too."> he sends towards her.
"There's a lot of odd balls, I don't know how this old man does it." Oh wait he's old, he's good with nothing to do. Soku is glad about one thing, he didn't have to deal with anyone else, looks like they're mostly avoiding the place now. Poor Soku, stays poor not a single sale and not a single pick up on the events going on about him. He just plays with his hair for the time being, so helpful, this guy is.
Etsu caught the two men in cloaks nearby, but she didn't pay them any heed. At least, any that they could read. "I believe we have some 'customers'," Etsu remarked to Soku indicating the cloaked individuals. As she finishes her statement, a voice sparks up in her head that catches her off guard a bit. Kenta? With the information being passed on, she continued sharing. "There are also two more 'customers' that are causing problems for vendors down the way. It's believed they are causing a disturbance in order to draw attention away from a portential theft. Be on the lookout."
As she finishes straightening out the last item, she retreated back to look at her final product saying, "Selling things to odd balls is what makes the market work."
The two cloaked figures that Kenta is watching continue to rough their way through the market until they are nearly on the other side of it from the jewelry stall. As they've moved a hole has opened up around them and behind them and at least one person got some scrapey booboos from falling. The two men branch off from one another and stop about ten feet apart. Without any warning they both reach inside their cloaks and throw up paper tags in the air. The tags explode, not the firey type by an explosion of light and sound! The entire market turns as one at the sounds and some screams come from those closest the noise. People begin trying to force their way away from where the tags are located but with how crowded it is that proves difficult. The two figures have started to blend back into the crowd and would be hard to separate from others unless one was particularly watching them.
When the noise sounds the man Hige trails makes a snag off of the vendor he's closest to. He takes a few porcelain trinkets, probably not worth a whole lot but it's still a theft and what they're here to stop from happening.
The three nearer the jewelry stall start moving as soon as the attention shifts towards the sounds and they converge on the area. They're spread out evenly as they each try and grab as much as they can within mere seconds. The hoods continue to hide their faces as they try to throw what they can into sacks as quickly as possible. For most the diversion is working as people are too busy either trying to move away from the sounds or are too busy staring in that direction to notice the thievery right under their noses.
Hige is momentarily distracted by all the noise and he looks in that direction, expecting some kind of destruction to be happening. It doesn't take him long to realize the diversion tactic and he looks back in time to see that the man he was chasing has nabbed something and is already moving through the crowd. With a curse he starts after the man, Konsho moving with him as they try and dodge the masses of people. Curse his shortness!
Kenta knew it! Those rowdy cloaked men are part of the thief gang! <"Etsu-san! The two men that I'm tracking -are- part of the thief gang! They're trying to get away now. I only managed to keep my eyes on one of them, but I'm going to follow him. He might lead me to the other or to their hideout. Please be careful handling the rest!"> As soon as Kenta finishes sending the telepathic message, he's off racing across the rooftops. The chaos below makes hiding in the crowd easy, but moving around much harder. The medic-nin has a minor advantage in that he can track his target at a much quicker speed.
Careful… Was digging holes under their feet and causing them to collapse into them careful? Yeah, probably was. They'd be fine. They wouldn't be reaching out to grab anything from here. <"Understood. I will be making my move shortly…"> She responded back, though she'd already attacked. She'd begin her approach towards the holes to see if she managed to capture the thieves.
With the market in turmoil thanks to the noise and flashing tags people are only just short of trampling eachother. The town guard have made it into the market now and are trying to get people to calm down and proceed at a slower pace but so far it's not having much effect. They are mainly just making sure that no one gets knocked over or beat up. Luckily the guard numbers have been boosted lately with all the thievery so there's plenty to take care of the crowd.
The man that Kenta follows continues to push his way through the crowd though unlike before when it had been rougher he is much more fluid this time. He steps around people and bypasses them with a skill worthy of a shinobi. Once he's out of the main hubbub he continues to show that he is indeed shinobi by jumping to a nearby rooftop and starting to run towards the edge of the town.
Of the three thieves that were stealing from the jewelry stand two of them find themselves inexplicably capture while the third managed to realize what was happening and get away just in the nick of time. The man jumps up onto a nearby awning and shows his true colors as a wandering or ex shinobi as well by releasing a pair of kunai towards Etsu as a distraction before trying to run.
Hige's man disappears into the crowd thanks to the throng of people but, like the others, he has taken to the rooftops which allows Hige to see him. Apparently the chaos they created was even more than they expected to handle. The man starts running as well and it quickly becomes evident that they are all heading to the same place.
Hige lost his man for a moment and his tick of anger started to flare up, but then the thief made a mistake and took to the rooftops. The Inuzuka jumped up after him and started to follow, throwing a glance around quickly to see what else was going on. The only thing he can see is that there are other people on the rooftops as well, all cloaked and all heading in the same direction. That can't be good. The boy silently hopes everyone else is okay as he and Konsho continue their tail.
Kenta checks that the tag inscribed with a cloaking formula is still nestled firmly in a pocket. The last thing that he needs is for it to fall out from all the jumping and running that he's doing. His biggest advantage would be staying unseen until it's too late. The fact that there are now other cloaked figures fleeing towards the same location means that he might have a chance to catch all the remaining thieves. Kenta keeps chasing after his particular target with relative ease, but he nearly chokes when he pulls a small black pill out of a pocket and pops it into his mouth. Extreme activity doesn't mix well with swallowing something dry. Thankfully, he manages to get the pill down.
<"I've captured two of the thieves on my end and another is attempting to get away. I am in pursuit as we speak."> Etsu spoke with Kenta on the matter as she lifted kikaichu up in a column to defend her from the two kunai. So this guy is a shinobi. Must be true for the others as well. She runs away from the stand, leaving Soku to watch the captives and attempts to stop the thief by passing on insects with a quick jab to put him in a state debilitating enough to give him pause.
Up on the rooftop reindeer, er, shinobi actually…well, anyways. There is now half a dozen people on the rooftop excluding the leaf nin who all head to the same location - a small clearing just outside of town. They have all gathered there now and the hoods finally come down, revealing men and women from teens all the way to their forties. One of the older men looks around with a frown and says, "Where is Team 3, there were supposed to hit the jewelry stand. That's our biggest money maker." The others look between each other but no one can answer.
That's because Team 3 is quite busy. With two of the men buried in the dirt that leaves only the one trying to escape. However his attempts prove to be fairly futile as the bugs catch up to him and before he can shake them off they cause him to miss a step and fall in an alleyway between two buildings. The man lands hard on his back and is definitely dazed for the moment.
The men in the clearing have failed to notice anyone tailing them, whether it be the invisible Kenta or the quite visible but sneaky Hige.
Once Hige realizes where all the men are going he slows down and ducks low to watch and listen with those keen ears of his. The boy gives a peek over to count the folk real and mutters softly to himself. Where the heck are the others…they can't let these guys escape but even Hige isn't stupid enough to think he can take them all on. Especially since they've shown a shinobi prowess. He'll hold off for as long as he can, but he still pulls out a kunai in case he has to try and stop them on his own.
<"I see other cloaked figures on the roofs, but can only confirm one of them as one of my original target. I'm going to continue in pursuit to see if they all meet up and I'll try to apprehend them if that happens"> Kenta sends back to Etsu along the telepathic thread. A moment, he adds further findings. <"The fleeing individuals are leaving town. I'm still chasing… they've reached a clearing. There's an entire group of them here! I'll try to slow them down until you can get here to reinforce us.">
Kenta keeps running towards the gathering of thieves, but he changes his trajectory directly. Instead of dashing into the clearing, the medic-nin runs up one of the trees to reach one of the branch's midway up. Then, he stays making hand seals while he focuses chakra to dissolve the black pill he had swallowed earlier. The cloaking barrier around his form fades away due to the effort required to use the new jutsu, leaving him detectable again. But by that time, Kenta is already leaning forward and blowing -hard-. A wave of white mist laden with sleep-inducing poison billows forth to blanket the entire clearing.
Etsu sees more thieves up ahead and moves to try and apprehend them. She spreads her arms and sends out a cloud of kikaichu to cover the area, clinging only to those that pose any threat to the people and area in general. In this case, it happens to be their bandit friends. "You must cease thieving immediately and turn yourselves over to us. There is no need to continue this fight," she spoke as she drew closer.
"If they aren't here within thirty seconds we're leaving them behind. I sensed some other stronger chakra's again today. There might be some shinobi here." That's the man who is likely the leader who has his arms crossed over his chest as he speaks, a deep frown etched in his features as he talks to the others. And a sensory nin. So it is that when Kenta becomes visible again his eyes widen and he says quickly, "Scatter! We've been found!" Three of the six make it away in time but the other three fail and within moments they are eating dirt from the sleeping gas. Of the three that escape two of them throw a kunai at Kenta while the third works on hand seals in midair, releasing a volley of fire bullets as they land.
Too bad Etsu didn't get there before the attack happened on poor poor Kenta. Hopefully he survives. But now the thieves are all but covered in bugs and unable to free themselves at the moment. You might think that would be that but no, it's never that easy. From out of the market area behind them comes a chakram through the air slicing right for Etsu's head. Three others have appeared, two of them flanking the chakram man. "Release my underlings or face my wrath." The man in the middle roars loudly.
When Kenta appears and attacks Hige's eyes widen but he doesn't hesitate in action. Sure he hadn't really expected the medic nin to go in alone like that but, well, he /did/ have the surprise thing going for him. The Inuzuka boy prepares to attack when Etsu appears and, uh, seriously just takes care of business. "Hey, good job." The boy quips as he stands up. But then the other three appear and one of them is even attacking! Hige lets out a growl and falls to all fours before Konsho jumps on his back. In a flash there's now two Hige's where there had only been one. They both charge forward towards one of the men, one throwing a kunai while the other jumps and begins spinning in the air in a tsuga.
Kenta's eyes widen when he sees how quickly the thieves more. Are they facing six -Jounin-?! Thankfully, his surprise attack knocks out half of the group, but that still leaves three highly trained ex-shinobi. Three against one still isn't great odds. And they're retaliating! Kenta quickly makes a hand-seal and a surge of power fills him as the hidden seals marking his body activate. The seals release chakra that had been stored over weeks back into his body. Kenta keeps forming seals. He slaps his palms together at the last instance and walls of chakra spring up around him to form a protective barrier. The attack slam into the barrier, but doesn't manage to break through.
Kenta feels a sense of relief when insects suddenly surge towards the thieves. "Good timing!" he calls out. Unfortunately, his relief is premature. Not only does three more thieves appear, but a particular dangerous looking one's targeting Etsu with great skill. "Watch out, Etsu-san! You too, Hige!" he yells. Kenta need to put down that leader, but he doesn't have the sheer firepower that other shinobi has. He takes a gamble by dropping his protective walls to use another of his clan's special jutsu. The young man plants his feet firmly on the tree branch, weaves his seals and lashes at the leader with his mind. "Subdue your subordinates!" he orders through gritted teeth as he try to take over. The version of the mind body switch jutsu that he uses leaves him conscious, but still more vulnerable than usual, which may prove dangerous.
Despite Kenta's best efforts, she found herself struck in the head by the chakram and bleeding from the cut it left behind. It was enough force to make her head recoil, but she'd recover well enough. Blood was slowly making it's way down her face and she was, in simple terms, angered. "I think I understand now…" She stepped back and summoned insects over her to help her blend into the environment and hide her so that she might be able to catch the attackers by surprise versus head on.
The three newcomers, the Leader and his two sidekicks, definitely seem to be the cream of this crop. And that's saying something what with how good the other ones seemed to be. For sure this was not as easy a mission as they'd made it sound to be. The Leader man catches the chakram on it's way back and sneers at Etsu before his eyes go past her to Kenta beyond. He doesn't know what the man is doing but he's looking a little too intensely in his direction, so the Leader takes the initiative and charges Etsu, getting out of the way of any jutsu from Kenta with a rather dazzling display of speed. Too bad Etsu disappeared before his eyes. The man seems angered by this but he doesn't say anything as he slowly turns, trying to find the woman.
The other two take their cue from the Leader and split between the remaining two. The one heading towards Kenta makes a few quick handseals before pointing a finger at Kenta and shooting little lightning needles towards the medic nin.
The other sidekick goes for Hige, drawing out a sword and giving two slices towards the boy who's crouched on all fours, leaving the Konsho-Hige alone for the moment since he's a little further off.
When the man comes at him with the sword Hige jumps away fairly easily. These guys might be good at running but fighting doesn't seem so much to be their forte. Maybe that's why they were stealing and not doing something like being mercenaries. Once he's escaped the mans attack he and Konsho attempt to hit him from both sides. Hige lunges forward to rake at the man with his claws while Konsho comes from behind to try and knock into him and throw him off balance. Finally Hige throws himself into another tsuga towards the dude.
Kenta's sweating a little now. He reels back on his branch when his attempt to control the leader backlashes. The young medic-nin grunts from the momentary daze. He quickly shakes his head to snap himself out of it. Have to stay focus, especially with such dangerous enemies. "No, I don't think so…" he utters softly and slips both hands into different pockets. He throws a tag into the air and releases the seal on it, causing an expanding panel of chakra to catch the lightning needles heading towards him.
Kenta's other hand pulls out another of those little black pills. He swallows it, having an easier time now that he's standing still, and weaves his jutsu. He waits for an opening. When it comes, he breathes out a column of sleep-inducing mist again. This time, he shapes the mist like a flamethrower instead of blanketing the entire clearing. He whips his head from side to side, trying to catch any of the three standing thieves within reach while reducing the amount of mist reaching other areas. The last thing that's need is for him to hit Etsu and Hige by mistake, so hopefully he didn't miscalculate.
Etsu made her way around the field to remove herself from any immediate harm and danger from the leader that struck her with the chakram. When the kikaichu dispersed from her body to reveal her location, she sent them forward in an attack to make the leader regret his action of lashing out at her. "I told you to cease this action, but you saw fit not to listen. Now I must make you suffer."
The first sidekick parries aside the claws and shifts on his feet so that Konsho-Hige simply goes flying past him. The tsuga the man jumps up and over just as it nears leaving him untouched. "Tsk. Children. Right Resan? Resan?" Apparently that was the other sidekick who is enjoying a little nap right now. "Pinchit Resan." The man turns to face Kenta then and makes quick hand seals before putting a hand to his mouth and relaxing a group of fire shurikens! With that done he turns back to Hige and Konsho and gives them a firebolt each!
The Leader is about the only really competent one as, once Etsu reveals herself again, the man immediately faces her and quickly jumps back, then to the side to avoid the attack. That nasty sneer is still on his face as he throws the chakram once more, then makes a few handseals to follow it up with a barrage of earthen bullets.
Hige and Konsho both miss and, by the time they are able to right themselves it's too late. Both take a full firebolt and are knocked back almost off the roof. Luckily they manage to stay on and, despite some singed clothing and skin, they're still alive. "Bandit." Hige growls, anger showing plainly in his eyes now. "Come on Konsho, we're going to distract him for Kenta." His feral gaze slips to Kenta and he gives a little nod towards the Sidekick, hoping the medic nin gets the hint. With that the two move together, Konsho throwing himself at the man to distract him while Hige tries another tsuga while making sure he goes in a direction that keeps the man between himself and Kenta.
One down, two to go. Kenta had held his breath after he released his jutsu and now he lets it out again. The man removes another defensive tag and flicks it at the fireball blazing towards him. Once again, a panel of chakra defuses the flames before it can reach him. The medic exclaims in surprise when he sees fire wash over Hige and Konsho's forms. "No! Hang on! I'm coming!" Staying at long range is a common guideline for medics, but Kenta chooses to ignore it this time. Right after the Inuzuka makes their distracting move, he launches himself off the tree at the remaining subordinate. Both his hands lash out while he's still in mid-air and send out twin blasts of paralyzing medical chakra at the thief that dared to hurt the Genin.
Etsu lifted more kikaichu to come to her defense, watching some of them sink in as the chakram and earth bullets hit, completely stopped in their tracks and absorbed. "Why must people be so difficult?" She asked. "Anyone in the way should clear the area now. I won't say it again," She lifted her hand and a gathering of nano insects began to focus into a point before she closed it and blew out of an opening to send them forward in a large jet heading straigt for the leader. She had a score to settle with him.
While the remaining sidekick manages to again avoid the tackle it does push him just enough to done side so that Hige's tsuga actually connects. The man lets out a pained should as claws dig in to flesh and he raises his sword up to swing wildly at the feral boy. Luckily Kenta is close and before the sword can do any real damage he's hit by the medics attack and lets out a shriek of pain as his chakra goes haywire and his pain receptors all screw up. He drops his sword and falls to the ground as the pain thrashes his body.
The Leader catches the chakram as it comes back and he stands there, seeing victory before him. But then there's that surprising screech and the Leader turns to see his subordinate flailing in pain on the ground. "Crook crook crook. Idiots." The man mutters as he turns back to face Etsu. Apparently he looked away too long because he turns back into a cloud of insects that immediately wrack his body with poisons that drop him to his knees, then cause him to faceplant on the rooftop right in front of Etsu.
With the man writhing in pain on the ground and not looking about to get up soon Hige straightens painfully and looks around to see where else he's needed. But with the bugs taking care of the Leader there's not really anything left to do. "Remind me not to make either of you mad." Hige says aloud, raising an arm before wincing a bit as it stretches them there burns. Konsho slips out of clone form and whimpers softly at his own singed fur and such.
Kenta hand landed in a crouch and he remains that way. His muscles are are already tensing for action while he watches to see if the Leaf shinobi's downed opponents will get up again. He slowly straightens once he's sure that they're going to stay that way. "Umm… this mission was a lot more dangerous than I expected. I hope that Konoha's going to get properly compensated. At least those merchants won't have to suffer again…" He steps towards Hige and places a hand on the boy's shoulder. The medical chakra that he channels into the boy's body quickly starts healing burn wounds. "Etsu-san, are you alright? You're bleeding a little. Hige, go get the guards. There's too many of these guys for us to bring back on our own."
"I'm fine. Things like this happen on missions," Etsu replied as she placed a hand up to touch at the blood on her face. She hadn't noticed it all that much in the heat of the moment, but after things calmed down, she could feel it had run its course down her face. "I probably just need the wound sealed. I'm certain it's enough that it can't seal on its own…" She looked to Hige. "You did well here. These shinobi were of a higher training, but you held your own."
As if they heard Kenta the guard miraculously appear! "Leaf nin?" The Captain calls up to the rooftop. Shortly after all of the thieves, including those that were buried and/or captured in the market itself, are picked up and hauled off to who knows where. Even the guards and town elders seem to realize that what was faced was beyond what was estimataed and, after profound apologies, promise to send the appropriate compensation to the village. With a job well done the shinobi from Konohagakure gather up their items, return to looking like shinobi again instead of merchants, and head back home with a job well done. And some cookies. One of the elders made some cookies.