Date: June 26, 2011
Nobu, Shisei, and Daichi investigate the mansion of a wealthy lord to find out who has been stealing from him.
"Vaulting into Adventure"
The estate of Chosokabe Yoshitora, in the Land of Fire
The estate of Chosokabe Yoshitora, a wealthy nobleman of the Land of Fire, is designed with the sort of paranoia that comes from having a lot to lose. After making their way over a wide moat and through a series of portcullises (each redundant defense guarded by a large compliment of soldiers), Nobu, Shisei, and Daichi have been thoroughly searched and questioned by a series of increasingly important bodyguards. Finally, after being stripped of nearly all of their equipment — without so much as a letter opener let through — the team is allowed into the opulent study of the man himself.
"I must apologize for your treatment," he greets them, his voice insincere and his face haughty and appraising, "My guards can be so… dreadfully paranoid." He waves vaguely in the direction of a bodyguard standing at his side. "But you are not here to assess my security," he continues, "Or are you…? Yes, hm. Yes, I suppose you are. Very well then. I sent for you because I've been having problem with a thief, you see. Or is it thieves?" He spends a few seconds pondering this aloud, then finally starts speaking again.
"Well, it doesn't matter. You see, money has been disappearing from my vaults. Naturally, I have had all of my guards and servants searched, as well as my family members. But, nothing has come up." He shakes his head sadly. "There is only one possible conclusion. Someone, an outsider I daresay, has breached the security of the vault itself. I want you ninja, you /shinobi/, to search the vault and find out how these miscreants have gotten past my security." He looks at the ninja expectantly.
"We can do that, Chosokabe-sama," Nobu says simply. Actually, he was already told this when he received the mission, and he told Shisei and Daichi on the way here. But whatever. "If my team members have no questions for you, we're ready to begin."
Shisei tilts his head to one side as he listens, and then when Nobu asks him a question indirectly, Shisei simply shakes his head. Since graduating the boy had gotten used to these types of missions and knew what to expect - they'd be allowed to inspect the security around the vaults and examine everyone in the household soon enough. Of course, half the time the noble complaining about the thefts was simply trying to cover up some lover he had on the side, but that was beside the point.
"Let me know when to get started, Nobu-san," the Genin says to the Chuunin, "If you think its an acceptable course of action, we should look at the vault itself first." He then glances toward the other Genin, wondering if the boy had anything to add.
Daichi has been called away again on another mission. The young genin had been rather quiet lately for no reason. He takes his training seriously however he has been feeling a bit unmotivated as of late. Perhaps a mission was just the thing our lad needed to get him back in the loop of things and to generate a bit of drive into his soul. Being briefed by Nobu Daichi was rather unenthusiastic about hunting down a thief but it was better than another cat chase. Daichi usually took the time to learn about his teammates but he was more concerned with other things. Daichi just follows alongside his two comrades until they arrive at the estate. He didn't like being searched so thoroughly and deprived of all his weapons. Madness's Butcher was specifically hard to depart with, if not for Nobu's orders Daichi would've had a tussle with the guard. It was awkward being so 'naked' but the genin figured it was for good reason. Daichi had already been briefed by Nobu so he faded in and out when the nobleman spoke. When Nobu began to speak now Daichi would regain focus "So uh…we're getting started then?" he asked eyes shifting between Nobu, Shisei and the nobleman.
"Yes, I would like you to inspect the vault," answers Yoshitora, "In fact, I think I shall have you go there first. Very well then." He holds up a hand and snaps his fingers. A servant enters the room and beckons the team to follow. "This way, good sirs."
The servant leads the team through a number of hallways, courtyards, passages, and stairways, until they finally come to a little room with two doors set across from each other and some plush-looking chairs to sit on. "Wait here, please," says the servant, then disappears. In a few minutes, he's returned carrying the team's equipment on a large tray, which he lays down on the floor. Then he opens the second door, bows, and exits the way he came.
Nobu quickly grabs his gear and puts it all back on. Once he's all decked out, he pulls the door fully open to reveal short hallway with a couple of guards standing at the other end in front of a heavy metal door with several locks on it. "Stay here a moment," he orders Shisei and Daichi, then walks over to the guards and speaks to them for a few seconds. The guards start unlocking the door and Nobu gestures for the genin to come over. Once they've arrived, he leads them into the vault.
Silently, Shisei collects the small amount of equipment he brought with him - a pouch full of kunai and shuriken. He also carefully, almost secretively, slips a pair of engraved trench knives into a hiding spot behind his back. Having re-armed himself, the boy nods to Nobu and follows him into the vault.
Shisei has to blink a couple of times as he peers over the room, a little astounded by the enormous amount of wealth in front of him. Being an orphan, he'd always gone without, and upon seeing how much the rich man had, he had to admit that there was no small temptation to take just a little for himself… the man probably wouldn't even notice, since things had been stolen recently anyway. But he quickly shakes his head, dispelling the unprofessional desire, and starts checking the room.
Daichi follows along quietly at the request of the servant. His hands tucked away in his pockets the Genin is alert yet somewhat listless. This estate was huge, so many hallways, passageways, stairways just sooo many 'ways'. Daichi sighed once or twice feeling a bit lethargic. His eyes did liight up a bit as they were told to wait, just a break from the monotony of all the 'way' gave him a bit of relief. Once the servant returns with their equipment Daichi wastes no time reequipping himself. Lugging the large cleaver over his head and onto his back Daichi was ready for the mission and a bit more secure. Still his apathy remained. He waits for Nobu now to give them the ok to move on. Standing behind with Shisei Daichi observes the individual. "…." he started to say something but the words escaped him. Daichi shrugs and just follows Nobu to the vault after he gives the ok. "Let's get started then."
As everyone was probably expecting, the vault contains an obscene amount of wealth. There are numerous gold and silver ingots stacked up against the walls, shelves lined with priceless sculptures and vases, jewel-encrusted eggs, statues of the finest marble, and fine paintings hung up on the walls. And even the vault itself clearly represents a significant investment. The floor, walls, and ceilings are all made with rugged steel, and the door that the team just passed through is several inches thick of it. The vault itself is divided into four sections, centered around a single pillar in the center and delineated by slight changes in the level of the floor.
"Let's get down to business," Nobu says. One of the guards closes the door behind him. I'll take the section to our right. Shisei-san, search the section in front of us. Daichi-san, search this section." He pauses. "And remember not to take anything from the vault. We'd probably never make it out alive. Let us know if you see anything out of the ordinary." He heads off to his section, stepping down to the lower level.
The Uchiha Genin shakes his head again as he begins searching through the room. He does a quick scan of the walls and floor, checking to see if there are any cracks or small holes that a ninja might be able to gain entry through. He then begins to peer up at the ceiling, wondering if an intruder might be able to come in somewhere up there. For the most part Shisei is trying to ignore the intimidating riches contained in the room and focusing on ways someone to get in unnoticed, or alternatively anything that might have been left behind by the thief. "Found anything yet?" he calls out to the other two as he searches.
Daichi moves to the specified location and would begin his investigation. The genin found nothing out of the ordinary and proceeds to inspect the very structure of the walls. Perhaps they would provide some sort of clue. Pressing his ear against the wall Daichi knocks against the structure to see if the thief had perhaps tunneled their way in. Daichi hears nothing of the sort but he does detect the sound of water faintly on the other side of the wall. Thinking back he did recall a moat but that wasn't helpful now "No nothing." he answers. Daichi would look to Nobu "Nobu-sensei I'm going to enter a sensitive perceptive mode to see if I can detect anything strange." Daichi tells him "I will help the investigation. Do you approve?" he asked.
Nobu searches his section for any clues of what might have happened here, checking the walls and floors carefully. "Not yet," he replies to Shisei, "But keep looking. If this is where the stuff was stolen from, there's probably something here we can use." He pauses and glances over to Daichi. "What do you mean by 'sensitive perceptive mode?'" he asks.
As Shisei scrounges through the various riches he catches a glimpse of something out of the corner of his eye. Turning to take a closer look, he sees that there is a scrape mark on the floor, as if something had been dragged across it. He waits a moment before pointing it out to the others, letting his eyes follow the mark to the wall on the left hand side of the room.
"Nobu-san, it looks like something pretty heavy was moved recently. Think it has anything to do with our stolen items?" he asks, the cocks his head to one side as he frowns and adds, "And where did they take it? It's not heading towards the door…"
Daichi decides to show Nobu what he means. Releasing a bit of chakra, Daichi enters his awakened state. It allowed him to take in his surroundings as an entirety. Usually used for combat against multiple opponents Daichi found it rather useful in this situation. He could sit and gather his mind and process information much more clearly. After a few moments of scanning the room Daichi can notice a painting. This painting was larger than the rest much larger. Now at first glance with wasn't too suspicious however Daichi had to point it out. "Nobu-sensei that I think I've found something as well." he mentions. Moving over to the painting "This is a rather large painting, ascetically larger in comparison to the others. Is if alright if I move it?"
Indeed, if one follows the scrapes that Shisei has found, they actually point perfectly to the painting Daichi has noticed. As for the painting itself, it is a portrait of Yoshitora, and quite a large one at that. Nobu hops up onto the original section. "I think you're right," Nobu agrees, nodding to the both of them. "You can go ahead— Actually, let's move it together. It looks heavy, and I don't think we want to risk dropping that." He walks over to the painting and grabs one edge of it.
Daichi assists and grabs the painting along with the others and proceeds to left along with them. He just now began to notice Shisei small stature, the child was young and meek looking. "Yes it is. Set it down carefully now." he says making sure his grip his firm yet delicate so he doesn't damage the painting. Lugging Madness's Butcher around Daichi had built upp quite a physic just as Tosai had intended.
The painting is quite heavy, but with the team's combined strength, they're able to lift it off the wall and carefully lay it down on the floor of the vault. And in the wall behind it is a large hole. The thick steel has been neatly cut away, forming a perfectly circular hole, just the right size for a man to get through, and probably some nice loot with him. Beyond the hole, there is the beginning of a passage dug out of the earth, visible thanks to the light in the vault. But it quickly goes downward and into the darkness. "That should satisfy Chosokabe-sama," Nobu decides.
The team returns to Yoshitora with their news. He thanks them profusely, then calls another servant to lead them out. However, the servant does not take them out of the mansion yet. Instead, they are lead to some fine guest rooms and informed that they are to eat dinner and spend the night here as a sort of reward. The company of Yoshitora is hardly enjoyable, but the sheer luxury of the feast and rooms is more than enough to make up for it. Then in the morning, after sleeping on the most comfortable beds money can buy, the ninja are treated to breakfast, then escorted out, through the many gates, and onto the road back to Konoha.