Date: Feburary 7, 2010
The Takokujin traveled to Sunagakure in order to meet with the Council, as well as Hibari specifically.
"Traveling to Sunagakure"
Desert just outside of Sunagakure
Rain and Natsumi had chosen an early morning start to cut some time out on their rendezvous with the the rest of the Takokujin. They had raveled by foot the entire way, and so were expecting to be late due to a few snags here and there. However as they arrived at the location, which was little more than a sparse patch of nearly dead grass, they would realize they were the first to arrive. perhaps the other groups had trouble getting to the location, perhaps they had to deal with something that truly drew them away . What ever the case may be, They waited for a few hours before anyone else would arrive as it drew closer to high noon. Rain seemed to prefer to stand and wait instead of resting, ready to move when they got here. Shie would be skittering across the desert sands with extreme swiftness in order to deliver a sealed message to Rain. Reading over it briefly, Rain would crumble it in to his hand where it would turn in to ash and blow upon the wind. "We will be missing… a few." he would indicate to Natsumi.
A swift blur as a figure lands with a thud against the sand, some of it piffing up around him as Odo rises to his feed, his sword sheathed over his back, and his tanto slid into the sheath on his outer right calf. This was several minutes after Rain would get the message from the very sneaky Shie. He brings up a hand to rub from his temple down to his chin for a moment, looking at Rain. "You already know," he states, keeping his eyes level on his comrade. "The others should be here momentarily."
Natsumi arches a dark brow under the slight shadow of her hood, her milky, sightless eyes blinking slowly in consideration of Rain's words while she remains unmoving, the side of her face tilted towards him as the desert winds blow through the cloak that keeps her cool. The desert heat becoming increasingly annoying as it nears closer to noon. With Odo's arrival, she shifts her head slightly towards him, the pulse of blue chakra from her surroundings glowing the moment just before he lands and approaches. Silent, she turns her attention outwards, stretching her senses once more as sand swirls from the thick, hot breeze, "I wonder if they encountered… trouble…" Natsumi murmurs slowly, pondering to herself.
Ryoji rushes out of sunagakure in a panic and ends up crashing into one of the guards along the way. After picking himself up and giving a quick bow in the wrong direction, the young teenager starts running again…only to crash face first with the canyon walls. "…A-ouch…When the heck this..*groan*..forget it. Gotta get out here before those guys come after me again", he says outloud before taking a moment to feel out the sun's location and continuing his way into the desert. Along the way however, ryoji catches an interesting taste in the air and begins tracking it all the way up to rain's part. "Hm…what's this?" He asks curiously before attempting to poke rain then tasting the finger. "Hm…taste likes…a human of some sort?..Foreinger yes? Odd..could of sworn it was some type of desert flower. Oh well, I guess I'll have to wait awhile for the other thing. So, who are you, what brings you here, and please make it quick?", Ryoji asks snappily.
Speaking of faces however, his sightless is not so easy to discern due to his messy reddish-brown hair bangs overlapping much of the upper portions of his face while the lower portion only reveals either two usual expression; that of apathy or insane delight depending on what he senses…or causes. Last but not least, thanks to the majoriety of his lifetime spent in the desert, a light tan complexion.
Nodding slowly towards Odo, Rain would simply state, "We will proceed without them, there is little point waiting out here for them all day." Turning to walk towards Sunagakure, he would mention to Natsumi about her comment, "If they have, then they should also know how to get out of it.", with a some what dismissive tone on the matter. Rain would do many things, perhaps even move the entire world, but he wouldn't babysit the Takokujin. Ryojin's blind running aroudn caught his attention and Rain simply stops as he approaches. A finger is jabbed against his hand, and his taste apparently sampled, though Rain didn't seem to react overly much. Still, Rain knew of Sunagakure, something like this could easily be lethal in the right hands. Even knowing all of that, he didn't take precaution to it. Perhaps he could see the difference.
Natsumi arches a brow as she turns to the side, sensing Ryoji approaching a few dozen yards before he manages to bump into Rainos, skeptically following him with her senses. The moment the teenage boy lifts a finger to pokes him, she blurs with speed, appearing between them as her hand has a firm hold of the collar of his tunic, the other hand wrapped around tightly at the wrist of the offending hand. "I would suggest refraining yourself from doing that again…" she murmurs slowly, her voice slow with the murmured threat. Pushing him away, the blind woman releases her hold on the boy, her attention still narrowed hard on him for a moment longer before tilting her head towards Rain, "There is not much that they can not free themselves from. This is the only reason why I wondered." Natsumi lifts a shoulder in a shrug, perfectly calm as she stretches her senses to their surroundings once more.
Odo watches as the boy approaches, and he narrows his eyes down at Ryoji as Natsumi apparently handles the situation flawlessly, he just, well, stands there. A look over his shoulder to the expanse of open desert. "Guess the few that came with me weren't as skilled as we thought in survival." He shakes his head and looks to Natsumi for a moment before addressing Rain. "At least they will leave bodies behind so if any questions come up, they may consider it just them behind the whole thing and not look too deeply into it."
"No answers?…hm..I guess this means one of two things then. You either the usual gang of desert bandits or what not or—"ryoji is cut off by the other woman's sudden grab at him before pushing him away. "Hm….I guess the first one might not be too far off then, neh?" He asks while dusting himself off. "Still. Such an action taking that way and even at the smallest offense says otherwise. A noble and his guard perhaps? No…you don't exactly taste it…Who are guys talking about anyways?" He asked again while slowly stepping in the direction of natsumi's voise and attempting to poke her as he did rain.
Looking at the boy with a downward glance, Rain didn't really say anything to him. However, as Ryoji would raise his hand to attempt touching someone in this group yet again, Rain would quite smartly smack the back of the boys hand. "Learn patience or be treated with the same impatience." he would state to the boy before begining to walk away. "Do not ask favors of a Stranger without reason or compensation." Continuing his forward path, he would speak with Odo briefly, "If that is to be the situation, so be it. The carrion feeders require sustinence such as every other being." It would seem that Rain would completely ignore Ryojin, however, he would wind up saying, "Boy, what are you running from?"
Natsumi turns her head slightly to glance her sightless eyes towards Odo at the mention of survival, the corner of her full lips tugging with a slight smirk under the light shadowing of her hood, though she remains silent at Rainos' side. Ryoji's movements don't go unnoticed as he slowly sidesteps towards her, lifting a hand to attempt to poke her as he did with Rainos. Her expression darkens, though before she reacts Rain smacks him smartly upside the head. Far worse than what her reactions would have been, instinctively. As he turns to take the path once more, Natsumi keeps her attention on Ryoji for a moment longer as she leans forward, her hooded head inches beside his as she murmurs, "You already have our scent, the sound of our voices, that is unavoidable now, though through taste only makes me suspicious of you… Be careful or I will find more reason to cut your tongue out…" her velvet voice murmurs. Without hesitation she straightens the curve of her back and turns, following smoothly after Rain, silent as she keeps her attention mostly surrounding Odo, Rainos and herself.
Odo continues watching the things going on between the three. Rain, Natsumi and Ryoji. Was he staying back because he didn't want to get involved? Was he just amused internally by the small situation here. A glance to Rain when he smacks the boy. Rainos would know that look, as Odo turns to start slowly pacing toward the direction Rain was happenstancing to go a few moments before. "I'll clear the way. I'll wait for you two at the secondary meeting point."
Ryoji would rub his heaad in pain. "..That one certainly smarted. And who said I had neither reason nor equal compensation. I am afterall quite versed in the art of trading", He would say wirly before stiffining at rain's last question. "How bout we starting trading with names first, eh? Ryoji the deset hermit, at your humble service. *he gives a mock bow* And by all means, cut out my tongue aneue. But only if give me something in exchange and worth more than just a name." He states nonchalantly. "And really. Is such hostilily and the succies neccessary for one such as I?" He asks bemusedly while falling in behind them. Idly he would appear starring in odo's direction before turning back to focus on rain and natsumi while thinking '…Who are these guys really anyways?'
Rain would nod after Odo as he took of to secure their way in to the village and ensure there was no more "trouble". "You seem to misunderstand your position, Ryoji." Rain would reply as he still continued to walk without looking to the boy. "The only thing that i offer, is progress. Right now, we are progressing towards where you just ran from. The only thing left for you to trade, are your reasons for running from where we are headed, or the lack of your continued presence."
Natsumi ignores Ryoji as she calmly follows behind Rain a few feet, her milky and sightless eyes blinking slowly as idly she lifts her left hand from beneath her cloak, her left hand lifting to her full lips as they part slightly. Unseen, her tongue brushes against the skin of the single finger, quick and seemless before lowering it to her side once more. Her focus of her senses extends around Rain, moving to Odo every once and a while to feel the steady beat of his chakra from his heart. Calm and collected as is Rainos' and herself.
Odo had made it to the gate guards, and was talking to them for a few moments. One of them bows more deeply than for just a normal 'ruffian desert gang', and waves them through as the other takes up the boring position of standing there. And, standing there. Odo makes his way halfway through the gate between the two high walls, looking back to Rain, Natsumi, and.. Ryoji.
"My, my, my. Such a stuffy lot you are…but entertaning nonetheless", Ryoji says bemusidly before pausing to stare up at the walls of suna, gulping audible, then sighing. "And I was really hoping to avoid using this again", he mumbles before pulling from his sleeves a dull piece of cloth and drapping it over his head. Another would be pulled out to bind it and keep it in place before he would nod in approval. "There. That should keep them off me for awhile. But anyway, back to the deal. *rubs hands together* If that, for now at least, will be enough to garner the same in return. A story or a reason. Then….*sighs*…then I MIGHT be willing to take that trade. So what do you say?" He would ask depressingly before shifting his new head gear to make sure most of his hair was covered. As they make their way past the guards. The one ryoji bumped into earlier would grab his shoulder and whisper. "Have you finally decided then?" And in reply he would nod stiffly before shrugging the arm off.
Rain looked towards the guards, but simply passed by them without a word. There wasn't anything to say to them really, and time was not to be wasted on simple dances with nicities. As Ryoji explained what he desired from all of this, Rain didn't seem to bother answering until they were in Sunagakure proper. Thed dome shaped and other wise rounded buildings sprawled before them and the streets were packed with citizenry trying to make a trade with each other, or trying to find a deal with ryo likely to attempt to find a better trade later. There were also some pockets that were less densely populated, their vendors being of a more… nefarious type. They had regular wares on sale, but as this was a place of mutual trade, there was a great deal of knowledge about who tended to sell what.
"We are here to speak with the Sunagakure Council." Rain would say simply before finally looking back towards Ryoji. "That is my tale, my story, and your payment. Take it or leave it." Rain would then continuet a few steps towards one of those more secluded stands, though he didn't ask for anything yet. "Odo, would you mind maintaining a bit of a perimiter for me? 20 fett or so will do just fine." he would request.
Natsumi arches a thin brow under the shadowed hood of her cloak as she listens to Rainos, following him easily though her attention remains solely on her surroundings. The blind woman moves effortlessly through the sparse crowd, the staff in hand moving easily with her steps. Silent for the while, she turns her head, as if to peer over her shoulder at Ryoji for a speculative moment or so, though her attention narrows to something beyond them. Something distasteful. Ignoring it for the moment, she turns forward once more.
Odo stops for a moment, and nods, "Righto. Twenty feet." He begins moving people and getting them literally out of the way. Pushing and parting the people who mostly look on with disgust how he's clearing a path for Rain and Natsumi. A few start getting the picture, and getting out of the way before he even has a chance to move them. Then people start getting out of the way themselves, with the occasional guy who's not paying attention kindly 'let known' that there is a clear area wanted around Rain. Oh yeah, and that occasional stubborn guy who doesn't want to change his course. So Odo changes it for him.
Ryoji would be moving his head around abit nervously as he tries to pick up on even the slightest sound. The crowd itself however proves barely a problem as he expertly maneuvers around in some sort of familiar path. That is to say until odo starts man handingly people out the way. "Well…that's not much of a trade ,but I can see where your coming from. What with this that and the other runing about." He states mysteriously before stopping midstep. 'This feeling…that can't have have figured…wait..*sticks out tongue a few moments*..ah, that explains it thing' He thinks before taking a moment to talk with one of the more nefarious vendors. Said vendor would grow paler as the short discussion continues before hastily bowing and jaunting off through one of the alleys. Afterwards ryoji would immediatly turn and run to catch up to the tail end of odo's crowd control barrier. "Well, simply put. As much as I'm more than welcome to sunagakure. I simply can not keep my feet planted here. Especially with those iga fellas around." He says with a shrug. "Are you sure there's nothing else we could trade as well though? A guide perhaps, while you stay within the lands of wind?" He asks curiously.
Rain watches as the trader runs away after he had so carefully made room for him to get… comfortable. Glancing over at Ryoji for a long moment, Rain would suddenly begin to walk away. "Ryojin, follow me." he would state clearly before stating to theo thers, "Natsumi, Odo… it's time to move on. I've changed my mind. Ryoji… show us to the most lavish suite this village can provide." Rain would state. Rain certainly was not new to this village, however, he wanted to see if the blind boy would be able to lead them… anywhere, let along a place of visually asethetic beauty and station. If they should find it… he did owe someone a long, hot bath after all as well as a request to be granted.
Natsumi blinks with some surprise at Rain's sudden decision, changing his mind so easily. The sudden change causes her to frown briefly, though all she does is release a slow breath as she pulls her attention from him, Ryoji, and Odo. Regardless, it was his decision and planning. She only follows, as it should be. The corner of her lips tugs briefly as she turns her focus around her, keeping her head forward though her senses browse through the merchants' wares seemlessly.
Odo takes the change of mind in stride, and walks up in front of Rain and Natsumi, glancing at Ryoji. "You lead the way, we will follow you." As he turns to look at Rain for a few steps, then return to walking forward normally, waiting for Ryoji to lead. In one deft movement, he leaves ten ryo on a cart surface, grabbing an eight ryo worth piece of bread, and putting it in his pocket as he walks.
"Wait what!?" Ryojin ask in confusion before hurridly following after rain. "And why the sudden change of heart? Unless…*snickers*..probably didn't pace yourself during your journey I bet! But first. Slow down and wait a moment." He would say before pausing in his tracks and ignoring the general bump from passerbyers, one of which would drop something into his hands. Briefly, ryoji would feel out the squishy round object in his hands before nodding to himself. "Ah, perfect timing. But anyways, let's preceed", He says before running off…and immediatly crashing over the nearest food stands.
After a few minutes of yelling from the vendor and ryoji just staring blankly at her before walking off to the nearest alley way. A brief wave motion for them to follow is issue behind before he continues through a complex maze of twist and turns before finally stopping down at a completely rundown looking hotel. "Now before any of you say anything. I suggest not judging a books by its appearance." He would state before walking in first and holding the door open. Once inside the group would see the best equivalent to a modern five star hotel to the present times day and age. "So…will this do?"
\ Allowing Ryoji to "lead" them, Rain would step back with the rest for a moment, keeping some distance between himself and the boy. "Have either of you noticed a few things about that boy? He's blinded, but certainly knows how to navigate the streets, and he seems to have.. sway whether he means to or not. I don't believe in coincidence, especially multiple and frequent ones." he would state to them both as he simply followed until reaching the destination. "Yes, this will do." he would state to Ryoji."
Natsumi arches a brow as she listens to Rain, silent in thought for several moments before she quietly murmurs, "Blind… is familiar with the surrounding area at least, and has caused a few hearts to quicken with anxiety, though his has never changed…" she murmurs. "And he is able to taste scents in the air…" Gently shaking her head, she falls into silence once more as they enter into the lobby of the inn, lifting a brow again as her hands emerge from under her cloak, reaching up to lightly tuck her slender fingertips under the hem of her hood. Brushing back from her head, a waterfall of silken ebony locks fall over her shoulders and along the curve of her breath. Already the temperature is considerably different than the harsh heat of the desert, earning an approving and light smirk to tease at her lips.
Odo isn't convinced the kid is doing them a favor at all. "Sounds like a snake to me." He enters the building last, keeping an eye out to the street for one more moment before stepping inside, his eyes only moving about to take in the splendor of the 'grand' living conditions as Ryoji put it, and waits just inside the door for someone to move, need him for something, or nature to call before he really does anything himself. He removes the piece of bread from his pocket and nibbles a bit, chewing on it silently before deciding to take a few steps further into the room, "It'll do."
Ryoji would nod before walking over to the reception desk. Altough a look of anxiety can be seen at first on the receptionist face; ryoji whispered words slowly calms her down and inclining her head in understanding. Said receptionist would disappear for a moment in the doors behind her before returning with a notepad. "As far as rooming is concerned your free to stay for the first week, compliments to yours truly. *turns around to face the group* As for after that, well, an exchange of either money or services will be necessary." He states with grin while rolling the same object between his fingers. He inclines his head back and raises said object up above his awaiting mouth and finally revealing it to be an eyeball. "Itadakimasu", ryoji says before dropping it and chewing on it with an apt expression of glee. "In the mean *slurp* time. Unless theresh anything else that I cam help yoth with immediatly. Just ask yoshiko-cham here and she'll get in contact with me okaysies. Time for my own meething with the kazakage now….*gulp*….a bothersome thing." He states before waving yoshiko the receponist to help them as he makes his way to the door. "Oh and try not to ask too many questions around here. You might get dragged in with some unscrupulous characters if you do while in sunagakure"
Rain would glance towards Ryoji before simply stating in parting, "I'll keep that in mind." Heading towards the current living arrangements, Rain would actually head inside and seem to glance around for a few moments. "Come… Odo, Natsumi…" he'd move fro mthe doorway wtih those words and await them as he considered the situation.
The moment that Ryoji departs, Natsumi scowls to herself, turning away from the front doorway to follow the hostess to their rooms, turning into a hallway. "He has not exactly been subtle…" Lead to a pair of rooms, Natsumi doesn't hesitate to follow him in before lowering herself into a comfortable and cushioned seat, releasing a long breath as she settles into it. Turning her head, she glances to Rain and Odo at the doorway, watching and waiting for them in silence as she allows their leader time to think to himself.
"Odo…" Rain would state just as such and the Reizei man would go on guard duty, which he'd probably prefer in the end. "Shie…" he would then mention before His shadow would creap along the room in tiny ltitle tendrils, seeming to reach behind, beneath, and between every nook and cranny of the room in order to sweep for any sort of irregularities or a lack of privacy. As this happens, Rain would step from his shadow to sit beside Natsumi. "Yet he was running prior to all of this. As well as changing his appearance before heading back to this village. It is all quite strange in the end."
Natsumi narrows her thoughts as she rests her elbows on the arm rests, lacing her slender fingers together to cup in front of her, "I do not trust him…" she murmurs, "If he is part of a well respected and feared clan, that might make sense to the reactions he was receiving." Her fingers flex slightly, though she releases a slow breath as she turns the curve of her head, dark locks falling over one shoulder as her senses feel around her. The corner of her lips tugs slightly at the familiarity of Shie's chakra as he moves, searching throughout the room, though she doesn't seem to feel anything irregular. "Perhaps he was hiding something with that sash…" Natsumi murmurs to herself, only to release a slow breath. "In either case, I found him to be increasing irritating…"
Rain would loung backwards, closing his eyes as his head was drooped back over the couch. "It appeared to me that he wanted to manuver in a way that would allow his worth to be noticed. Some of the reactions didn't appear to be, at first, because of him either. Beyond the obvious… it is the depth that i seek to understand. Whether or not he or what he knows or what he is or who he hails from is of any signifigance or use. Information… is the most valued commodity of this village. That is something i can agree with."
Natsumi barely scoffs, "Constantly asking questions without offering any in return… he expected too much…" her expression darken just enough to be noticable. "And he has a taste of you now… I find that less than appealing." the corner of her full lips tugs behind her hands, seeming amused. "Though I have a taste of him as well. Not that it would be difficult to recognize his chakra signiture…" After a moment or so of quiet she releases a long breath, freeing her arms to lean back further into the cushions once more. "Why does it already feel like it has been a long day?"
"I have a feeling his taste for me was not entirely… innocent. Still, it doesn't truly matter. At the moment, we have his attention, what ever that means. He wants something… perhaps simply to satiate his curiosity of us. We shall see what happens." Rain would sit up however after listening to Natsumi and seem to disappear in to anothe room however. Soon, the sound of water being turned on could be heard. He would take abit of time to prepare it, but he didn't plan to use the bath himself. Rain was a man of his word and would remain such.