Date: July 3, 2016
The Land of Tea Guards escort Shuuren and a present to the Land of Sea's place. Naturally, misfortune strikes again.
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
"Verge of Darkness - Bridezila"
Land of Sea
Ah, diplomacy. Sometimes it involves long business meetings. Sometimes it even involves battles. Then sometimes it just involves taking an expensive gift for the wedding of another Daimyo's daughter. In this case it seems the last of those is what is on the menu for today. Since Shuuren has been wanting to take a bit of time away since the race anyway, it seems the perfect opportunity to do so, so off he is headed with a team of guards and his newest guest in the Land of Tea, Saki, to attend the event.
Of course, were there no worry, Shuuren probably wouldn't need guards at this point, but there have been traps laid for the Daimyo in the previous months. Whoever is after him is slow and methodical, apparently not seeing a need to rush things for whatever their plan is. Enough space is given between their strikes that one really can't tell when they are coming, and thus far the Daimyo hasn't been able to get anyone with any information on them or plant someone inside their organization.
Plus, there is also that that gift itself is quite expensive and in need of guarding. The Daimyo doesn't plan on spending his own entire trip playing guard to the trinket, so Taro and Ryuusei get to have that on their minds as well. Joy for them.
As the ship heads southeast toward the one of the smaller islands on the land of the sea, Shuuren has not yet retreated to the cabin to rest. Instead he currently stands on the deck of the ship staring out at the horizon, seeming to be in deep thought about something. Still, he's adorned in his daimyo cloak and signature suit, not in his battle attire, so things can't be TOO bad, right? Maybe the trip will just turn out to be a simple escort and delivery and they can head home without any trouble… Yeah… right.
Saki is helping operate the ship, apparently. It seems she knows a bit about boats, as she's busy doing that. While the boat only needs to be steered after they take off, she is still at least keeping an eye on some of the riggings and ropes and similar things that keep the ship going, every now and then returning to the Daimyo to say that 'Everything looks good.' At her side is a sword that maybe Ryuusei and Taro recognize to be Imire's old sword. After all, he got the extremely ornate present for getting second in the Tea Races, so he didn't need to carry his old one around anymore. Which is why she has it. Obviously. Eventually, Saki notices Shuuren seems to be thinking very deeply about something, so she hovers sort of nearby him, uncertain on if she should ask him on the matter or not. The girl is wearing an off-white shirt under a navy-blue jacket over it. A dark blue skirt that falls to her knees and tights cover her lower half, as well as relatively long socks so that she can keep warm.
Taro needed some work both for pay and to keep his mind off the boring past weeks in land of tea. At least for him. He hasn't done anything interesting, or adventurous. He spotted both Saki and Ryuusei along with the obvious Shuuren, and sorta nods to himself before finding a spot to relax a moment. Had to make sure he had everything. Swords check. Mask check. Extra money in case of hunger. Check. Yeah all good. Now he should probably see about helping, but honestly this isn't what he is good at. Boats and such. He should probably learn since it would be a useful skill. Taro closed his eyes for a moment before standing up and walking around to watch people work to hopefully get an idea of what was being done. Meaning he didn't take much note of the others with him yet.
Though not officially a member of the Daimyo's royal guard, she was simply happy to be upon the waves once more. She was standing right in front of the Daimyo's cabin, to the side of the door as her long yet thin bladed rapier's tip rest upon the ground. In turn, her hand rested upon it's hilt as she herslef rested back against the wooden wall adjacent to the door. Keeping her eyes open was the most difficult part of the trip so far. The eventual battle-maiden wore more battle-suited gear.
Rather than just the white dress she has come to love and have replaced more than a few times, she wears a white button-up blouse with a hem that hangs down to her knees, a pair of brown cloth pants tucked into her boots. Adorned upon her chest was also, surprisingly, a black leather chest-piece fitted to her measurements rather well. She even has leather adorning her fore-arms, because hardened leather upon them will certainly help with failure to properly parry what comes her way. She even had a hat, because a good royal guard always has a good hat, but said hat just remains on the deck beside her as her vivid violet eyes slowly close at the rocking of the waves.
Ryuusei was supposedly far more skilled than the average individual at this point, but at the least, would be no help against the sort of people who are after Shuuren's life. Upon seeing the island, Ryuusei would slowly straighten up, yawning widely as her hand covers her mouth. "Mmmh… I wonder how the Daimyo knows another Daimyo's daughter?" It was a simple whisper, but that hasn't stopped Shuuren from hearing Ryuusei before. She seems to walk up to his side, placing a hand upon his shoulder as she sheathes her blade with the other hand. "Lord Shuuren, would you like me to scout ahead to port and see what awaits us there?"
Shuuren would almost seem oblivious to those around him until they walked up to him, though one would probably be far mistaken to think he actually doesn't know what's going on around him. When Saki starts to hover near, he casts a brief glance her way and nods to her and then to Taro before turning his attention to Ryuusei when she approaches him and asks her question. He blinks a couple times then looks ahead at the island that she can currently see before looking back down.
"There are a lot of islands in this country, a few more than the Land of Water has actually," he explains. "We've still got a way to go, but, once we get closer, I'll let you scout ahead if you wish. The island we're going to is basically at the bottom of the map, but supposedly it's been settled and decorated rather extravagantly for the event."
His eyes then turn upward once more toward the sea, trying to gauge. "The island we're approaching marks about a quarter of the way there. We'll have to do some navigating around the other islands, but this way is a bit quicker than trying to bypass all of them since that would probably take an extra day."
Saki offers a small smile to Ryuusei, knowing that it is an easy mistake to make in regards to the islands. She could have very well made the same mistake if she hadn't looked at the map thirty times to check on their course… "Sou.." she would reply to Shuuren, taking a moment to glance around and judge their distance from the Land of Tea. Then she sighs and looks up at the stars, which give her a slightly better picture of things. Then she bows to Shuuren. "I'm going to go check on things again," she offers before slipping away.
Saki would walk along the deck, making a usual sort of round. At least she would have had se not noticed Taro. "Ah… Taro-san… I didn't notice you… Sorry… I was too busy helping with the ship…" she says, frowning at herself. "Umm… How are you?" Geez, for her to not notice the Fuma until they were a quarter of the way done with the trip… She feels stupid!
Taro looked over at Ryuusei as she asked her question. He could barely hear what was said, but it was enough to make him crack a smile. One hidden behind his mask. To be honest he wore the mask now only out of habit. He didn't need it anymore considering he didn't live in lands where his identity needed to remain hidden to that degree. Made him feel like Kakashi at times. Just wearing a mask just for the heck of it. Even his statues would have a mask? Bah. Can't have that happen. Anywho… He was looking back at the ship when he heard his name. A quick look over his shoulder would show that it was Saki who approached. "Oh hey. It's fine. To be fair I had been off to the side most of the time. I just felt like I should probably learn a bit about how to work a ship. I am not.. very good at it you know? So I am looking at what these guys do… And honestly I am not understanding one bit." He chuckled and placed a hand behind his head. "I am doing fine anyways. How about you?"
Perhaps it was Ryuusei simply being nervous, and on guard despite looking like the waves were lulling her to sleep. "Only a quarter? Ah… This distance is a little more than I expected…" All she knew was that this was the Island that marked the Land of the Sea's territorial beginning. Her eyes take a look at Taro. The hired blade, one who hasn't quite garnered her trust, even if he has the Daimyo's. Then, her eyes turn towards Saki, who she knew heard her blunder completely. "W-well…" Ryuusei turned around, taking a few steps towards her hat. Everything in Shuuren's realm had some sort of foreign influence. The hat, for instance, was a tricorne. She crouched to pick up the hat, before holding it upon her chest. "I do appear unprepared then, my apologies Lord Daimyo."
"… I don't suppose that we are in very little danger then, being that we are out upon the water?" Ryuusei would ask as she rests herself against one of the vessel's guard rail, facing the Daimyo and making herself a part of the scenery he was intent on gazing upon. Eventually she would slip the hat to her head, leaning back and giving the one she was dedicated on escorting a small smile.
Shuuren nods to Saki as she says she's going to go check on things, though how easily she gets distracted from checking on things to talk is slightly amusing. He looks back to Ryuusei as she speaks, nodding. "It won't be too much longer," he says, lifting an eyebrow and shaking his head. "You've not been trained for naval travel. Perhaps that can be one of the next things we work on,' he suggests then glances back ahead at the sea.
"… Unfortunately, we do have a good chance of running into an enemy out here," he says with a sigh then looks back to her and offers a smile. "But, if we let our enemies control our lives, then they are winning already. I won't be intimidated."
As they sail forward, he blinks and looks ahead as he sees something on the horizon. There seems to be a ship that has run aground on a rock formation. "… Seems we may have another guest of the Sea Daimyo that's having some trouble… Head that way," he orders the captain then looks back ahead.
Saki nods slowly. "It can seem like a lot, but once you get the hang of it, everything is really easy. I suppose that applies to everything… But it's true!" She smiles a bit, then says, "Let me know if you want to learn? I don't know much myself, but… I heard teaching hits the memory harder." She bows and then would resume her checking, though she paid before she goes two steps and turns back. "…Want to learn some now?" she would ask uncertainly. Regardless of the answer, she turned back around and began to move again.
Taro looked at Shuuren and Ryuusei again as he waited for a response from Saki. Seems they were just chatting. Nothing of importance yet. "Oh? Yeah I suppose it is for everything. Just like me with swords and such. Started confused, but ended up not that bad." He looked upwards as she spoke and he just nods. He was thinking a bit about it when she turned back and asked him her question. His eyes shifted to her quickly, and he seemed to hesitate. Eventually though he nods. "Yeah. I think that would be great. That way I can be more help for things like this." Then he heard Shuuren talk about the ship run aground and he looks over that way with a hidden frown. "Maybe.. Can't yet. Might have to help investigate this…." He paused and looked between Shuuren and Saki. "Hmm. I will for sure want to learn. Now would be great. Or after we figure out what's up with this boat." He gave a slight nod before looking at Shuuren directly to see if he gives any hints to his intentions. From this distance nothing is certain. Could just be they got a tiny bit stuck.
That was as close to an order to 'relax' as she was going to get. The result was that Ryuusei would lay across the guard-railing, one foot on deck to stabilize her, as she let herself relax. Reaching into her vest, she pulled out a sprig of wheat from it's confines. "That sounds like a plan…" The sleepy guardswoman says as she closes her eyes. Hearing Taro talking about his experiences in being someone new to running a ship reminds her of her first few months of learning the basics of ship maintenance. "You'll do fine. Running a ship is like… tending to a garden…"
Moments before her eyes close, and the sprig of wheat reaches her mouth, a call of action disrupts her attempts to keep the enemy from controlling her life. Her head moves at the proclamation of an uninvited guest, looking at the trouble ahead. Also, a sigh.
Looks like Saki's not one to pay much attention to what's going on since she hasn't noticed the ship altering its course to head toward the one that's in trouble. "Be careful you don't run over the same rock formation," Shuuren orders of the captain, who signals some of the crewmen to be on the lookout for the rocks or other things that might disrupt their voyage. As they get closer, the Daimyo narrows his eyes a bit as he sends out a pulse of chakra to try and get a read on the people on the ship.
"…. Odd," he comments with a slight frown. "Most of the people aboard the vessel appear to still be alive, but they're all unconscious. I believe there's some kind of toxin affecting them. It could just be that there's some kind of material on the ship that shouldn't be because someone didn't clean it well after a trip into other places. Or…" He trails off bit, brows furrowing. "It could have been planted there. Either way, we should see what we can do for them once we get close enough."
Of course Saki noticed! She isn't blind or deaf. She just doesn't acknowledge that they seem to be switching course because it's not an immediate concern! Gosh. "We can learn, and then by the time we're done, the boat will have been figured out," she suggests, taking Taro on a very brief tour. Well, it's more like it got cut short because she heard the Daimyo mention that the people on the other vessel were unconscious. It caused her to pause, a frown on her face. "Let's just keep an eye out for any rocks we could smash into by accident," she suggests to Taro, suddenly feeling extremely uneasy about the whole situation. They can't just ignore a ship and its crew, but… She almost wanted to given the knot in her stomach.
Taro nods slowly as he thinks about that other boat. No matter really. No reason they can't do as she suggested and learn some still. He would start to follow when she stopped and he looked over for the same reason. "I… Yeah I guess that is all we can do for now. Just look out for rocks." He stepped over to the side of the ship, and looks into the water before leaning slightly over the edge. Can't see any yet so he looks back at Saki. He seemes to notice something is off with her, and he decides to ask her on it. "Hey. You feeling alright? Don't worry about this. I am sure it will be fine." He said in a hopefully calming voice before deciding to look back into the water.
Ryuusei is one to slowly get up, knowing just what was going on. "You intend to help them, knowing that there is a chance that this is a trap?" Ryuusei asks as she rights up to the deck, throwing her hat aside and drawing her blade as the ship grows closer. Her blade slowly slips out of the scabbard as she cleans the blade with a cloth hanging upon her belt. Perhaps this was seen as foolish, given the lessons she had learned lately. Yet, Ryuusei was still kind-hearted. It reflected positively on her views of Shuuren. "Please do not move too far from my sight, Lord Nagamura…" She would plead, as she took her position at his side. All of those water-walking lessons might actually come into use today.
"You two, don't go far. The crew is plenty capable of watching for rocks…" Saki might not have any real combat skill, to Ryuusei's knowledge, but Taro was a hired hand for this mission. "I'm talking about you, Taro-kun, in specific. You… You were a part of Shuuren's guard when he was assaulted in a previous sortie, weren't you?"
Shuuren casts a glance at Saki and Taro as they start to look for rocks then back ahead toward the sip. Ryuusei's question brings a slight smirk to his face as he says, "Yes… Because there is every chance that it isn't a trap too." Of course, those chances are probably slim compared to the chances this IS a trap, but that's still no reason to leave people stranded here.
The Daimyo nods to Ryuusei's request the looks forward at the ship, his position allowing him to see something before anyone else does. His eyes widen as he sees the flag of the grounded ship. "… Tell me it's not," he says, trying to gather his thoughts in a plan. He reaches into his coat, grabbing a set of surgical masks, one of which he gives to Ryuusei, one he puts on himself, and the others he tosses Saki and Taro's way. "If you don't want me to move ahead of you, you're going to have to move with me," he tells Ryuusei before moving to scoop her up before flickering onto the deck of the other ship. Should the others look up at the mast of the ship as they get closer, they would see that the flag it bears is that of none other than the Land of Sea.
Saki shakes her head a bit. "I dunno… I just don't like this… Something just feels off, you know?" She sounds very worried, and her hand is resting on the sword at her side. Another sign that she was displeased with how things were unfolding. She would glance at Ryuusei when the Takaha gives her 'warning', and the teen just nods slowly. "Yeah… No problem…" she says, leaning on the side of the ship and staring at the further boat.
It isn't until Shuuren voices disbelief that Saki tears her eyes away from the 'wreck'. "What?" she would ask, blinks and fumbling with the object thrown at her. "Oh…" is all that escapes her lips, and she loops it around her head to cover her nose and mouth before taking a deep breath and taking a mighty jump to land on the deck of the apparent Land of Sea vessel.
Taro places a hand on her shoulder as she admits her worries. "Yeah. It could be worrisome. Don't worry though. I am sure it will be okay." He hoped it would be. Last time he dealt with this kinda thing he got injured badly. "Uhh." He caught the mask thrown at him, and didn't seem to make note of Ryuusei's earlier comments though he did catch them. "This is weird." He puts the one mask over his other mask and pokes at it a bit before hopping onto the edge of the ship and staring over to the other boat. He couldn't personally tell what was going on at the other boat, but there was only one way to find out. "Saki. We should hurry over there." Seems she got the memo as she hopped across pretty quickly. Dang… Anyways he would hop onto the water and run across to the other ship before climbing aboard. "Alrighty now. What do we do first? He looks at the folks and can't tell much about them.. Need to train his skills.
Surgical masks, designed to reduce exposure to micro-organisms, but also airborne chemicals. Seems advanced, and looks Ryuusei look that much more silly. "This…" She says as she settles it over her mouth, eyes blinking a little. It seemed as she was in the middle of adjusting it for maximum comfort, she is swept off her feet in an instant. Aside from the usual squeak, and the resulting grunt as she appears with him onto the adjacent ship. Only moments after does she slip out of the Daimyo's grasp, blade held defensively as she observes the deck. If only she had the self-cofidence to slap his hand and ask him for permission to carry. There wasn't much more than unconscious sailors, and when Ryuusei glanced up, she recognized the flag. "I'm going to go below deck. I'll call up if something catches my eye." This will give Shuuren time to play with the immobile corpses above, while giving her the satisfaction of doing what an escort ought to. Even before he gave her any orders, she carried out her own, as she moved towards the hatch leading into the decks below, prying it open. The arrival of Taro makes Ryuusei 'suggest' a course of action. "You can follow me down here, so we can determine if the cause of this is below the deck." Moments later, Ryuusei hops down to the next level of the vessel.
Well, Shuuren is focused on what's going on right now, so asking about carrying her probably isn't high on the priority list since she did ask him to stay close. He sends out another pulse of chakra as they land on the deck, setting her down as he looks around. When Ryuusei starts trying to direct traffic, he looks over to her and lifts an eyebrow. "… Because you're so sure that there isn't a greater concentration of whatever knocked these people out below deck and that it's a great idea for you to run ahead of the medically trained person in the group," he comments with a bit of sarcasm. "I think I know whose ship this is… I need to get to the main cabin to be sure she's alive."
With that he starts to move through the halls below deck. As they move, they would notice a number of unconscious bodies along with way. The Daimyo brings his hands into a seal, creating a number of Shadow Clones to tend to the others. What they would also notice is that, while some of the attending crew for the ship are male, most of the guests upon this rather fancy ship are female, and it's decorated rather extravagantly. Shuuren even seems to know where he is going on this ship, indicating he either designed it or has been on it before.
Saki lands on the deck of the Sea's ship, looking around at the unconscious bodies. Well… She can't help here. The girl sighs softly, but she keeps her hand on her sword and taps her mask to double check that it's in place. Then she moves to follow Shuuren. … For part of the way. "Wha-? Wait! Ryuusei-san! Don't just go off on your own like that!!" she would exclaim, a small cartoonish sweat drop appearing at the edge of her forehead. "Taro-san… We'll just look around, I guess? I'll go with Shuuren-dono…" Because she was technically his bodyguard. Saki is quick to chase down the Daimyo, glad that he knew where he was going. She certainly didn't.
Taro looked at Saki as he climbed over. She had jumped far…. He knew Shuuren was skilled and could just easily get across, but Taro can't even do what Saki just did. He chuckles at Ryuusei trying to run off below deck and HAS to comment on it. "Oh don't worry Saki. I am sure Ryuusei just wants to be saved by our Daimyo too. Probably jealous of the people on board." He chuckles a bit to himself. "Alright. I am gonna follow too. I don't want to get caught out and stuck. Plus I am here to keep him safe as well. Not that he needs it..but…. " He shrugs and starts following slower than the rest. He looks at things along the way to make sure they get everything. Also… He does know he has sensor ability now. At least a small bit, so he would actively try to look for some sort of activity. Sadly he wasn't very good at it yet.
On the contrary. Ryuusei was trying to be a bit more independent. All a part of trying to build her self-esteem. Ryuusei only called one last thing up above at Shuuren's comment, "I have complete faith in these masks you have provided, Daimyo-sama. Should… I remain here until you are done above then?" She can't really tell what is going on, but she didn't want to be caught too far away to assist the Daimyo. Doing so would be somewhat of a failure on her part as a guard-in-training. "Did I hear Saki's voice? What is she doing here? Nnh… Satonezu…" Always first into action. The Satonezu. It didn't seem as if Taro was actually doing as she had asked him, to help clear out the deck below. No one wants to take any initiative… Ryuusei supposedly walks around in the deck, keeping her ears peeled.
Well, it's a good thing this is an in-training group as bad as they are at collaborating. Maybe Shuuren should think to drag Daoma along next time he's going to get so far away that he thinks there's going to be trouble since she's supposed to be the leader of his royal guard. Her or Reina, though her Ninjutsu would be rather bad on the deck of a ship. Still, the task at hand must be done with those on hand now.
The further the Daimyo and any of those following him get into the ship, there are more people down and more decorations that seem to be rather wedding-themed. When they at last reach the main cabin, he opens the door and frowns as he sees what he feared apparently in the woman laid on the bed unconscious along with a few others in the room scattered along the floor, including a couple guards. "That… is the daimyo's daughter." He sends out another pulse of chakra as they move to read the condition of those in the room. Placing a hand on the princess' head to check if she has a fever while reading her condition more thoroughly, he frowns again. "… She seems to have a greater concentration of the toxin than the rest. If we can't find a source of it… She may be the carrier."
"But I thought…" Saki sighs and would just nod. "The more the merrier…" she would say. She just hopes Taro doesn't get hurt… The girl closes her eyes, trying to focus a bit more than usual and get into a specific mindset meant for battle. Taro might notice that her chakra had sort of spiked unusually high before settling back down now. Same with Shuuren. Saki didn't seem to notice, though, nor did she seem to do anything particularly special to cause that spike. The girl was just focusing on her surroundings and trying to keep an eye out for any danger heading her way. And Shuuren's way… A part of her mind was cast back to where Ryuusei was, the teen hoping that nothing would happen while Shuuren was sequestered in the cabin area. Sure his clones are out there, but … Well, she worries all the same!!
Considering this group had only worked together once before, if at all, they were … Doing as one would expect in regards to teamwork. Horribly. Saki doesn't seem to realize this, of course… And it's not like they had a clear leader amidst themselves aside from Shuuren! Saki just lets thoughts like that run through her mind as she follows Shuuren along, glancing here and there at the different unconscious bodies. Finally they reached the princess, though Saki would keep near the entryway. "So… What exactly are we supposed to do?" she asks, frowning at her uselessness.
Taro was not super close. He was checking side doors and such. Not like he was useful here when Shuuren could check the whole boat himself and likely beat all three of his guards at once. So not much to think about there. The one thing he mainly focused on was Saki as he walked along. He noticed the little spike, but couldn't figure out what it was. Probably a bit of chakra in her step or something? Ehh who knows. "I will just be over here checking this room then if you think she could possibly be the carrier." He heard Saki say something about what she should do before he entered the room. "Umm. There is another room across from this one we could check since they are the closest to the princesses room? You check that one and I check this one. And.. Ryuusei can do whatever a girl like her does." He chuckled lightly before just walking in the room he picked and he would begin looking for clues. What could he find down here…. Hmmm…
In the hold below, nothing at all happened. Guess there was no reason to investigate. Ryuusei would enter the room a few moments later, standing guard right in front of the door. "There was nothing of interest down below, Daimyo-sama…" That's all she had to report.
"… I suppose the best thing to do would be to gather the people and put them on our ship," Shuuren answers as he looks over at Saki. He ponders the easiest way to do that while he looks over to Ryuusei when she comes to make her report.
The Daimyo's hand is still on the princess' cheek checking her condition when her eyes suddenly pop open and she turns her head to bite into his arm through the layers of his signature white suit, her jaws bearing incredible strength as her teeth sink into his flesh and transmit the poison flowing through her veins directly into his, attempting to sedate him at the same time with the toxin that's in her.
The guards might not have much time to save the Daimyo, however, as they suddenly awaken as well and start to charge them and try to punch, kick, bite, and tear at them. They seem rabid from whatever this toxin did, though the bite from them is not infectious like that of the princess since she is the carrier.
Saki hesitates as she looks over in Taro's direction. "I don't know… We can, but… Shuuren-dono might need help…" And as she spoke, the Daimyo gave their instructions. "Eh?? Oh, umm… Hai…" she would say, making her way over to one of the unconscious bodies when they suddenly lunged. "Oh destoroyah" she would exclaim, jumping back from the zombies quickly to avoid their attacks. "Shuuren-dono…" she would suddenly think, glancing in his direction. She was supposed to be guarding him, after all! Of course, the first sight that greets her is the princess gnawing on his arm… "Dang it…" she mutters, bringing out her sword but not yet unsheathing it. She can't very well attack the princess, even if she is a zombie now. So Saki does the next best thing: she starts trying to knock out the people that are suddenly returning to consciousness.
Taro was caught off guard as he entered into this room. Like the moment he walked in some folks were attacking him. "What th- OW!" He couldn't get a hold of his swords as he was already grabbed and had one of his arms being gnawed at. Luckily he has armor… "These people are trying to eat me!" He kicks himself away and tries to shut the door with them inside. Sadly one got stuck in between and he couldn't shut it. Only ting he could do was let it open and have them charge him. But this time he was ready and had his swords unsheathed and swinging!
A technique that re-animates the unconscious for attacking. Ryuusei had moved in to tell Shuuren of her progress (None) and found herself attacked by these controlled women. Seeing one approach, she whipped out her blade, and created a barrier of water as the blade traveled through the air. A barrier of water designed to stop projectiles like a non-newtonian fluid, and the lovely lady seemed to be halted. All the while, Ryuusei turned around to masterfully jam her guard against the face of a biter and parry her face away. All would have been lovely, but the barrier of water worked like a non-newtonian fluid. If it was an arrow, this would have been fine, but the zombified girl slowly worked her way through the barrier, planting her teeth upon Ryuusei's arm, and tearing through the sleeve, leaving a nasty little bite mark on her arm… As a result, Ryuusei tried not to irreversably scar the woman forever, but did try to jam the blunt end of her pommel against her head all the while giving the woman who she had parried moments before a swift kick to the side! She wasn't worried about Shuuren. Not much. Yet, being in the same room as the person she is to protect while he prepares to pacify the zombies is the same as protecting. Sort of!
Shuuren's head whips around to the woman as he feels the bite sinking into his flesh and poison and toxins beginning to run through his veins. His first instinct might be to get revenge for his suit, but, if it is, he manages to stave that off despite his mind starting to feel the effects of the poison. It seems the Order of Darkness has figured out that Shuuren will not ignore the plight of friends in need even if he knows it's probably a trap… They're going to have to pay for this.
Since Shuuren doesn't intend on killing the princess, despite him managing to pull his arm away from her, she dives at him to try and bite into his neck. "… Ryoko-san… Try to gather yourself," he almost growls out as he tries to hold her back, though he knows she is probably not in control of herself at all at this point. "Just try to knock them out," he calls out to the others as he tries to fend her off.
The guards employed for this mission are doing a bit hit and miss. Some of the attacks by the wedding party are deflected, but others manage to get through along with some attacks on the party themselves. Luckily none of them are dead so far from their wounds, though Taro's slashing does some damage to some of them that might need to be healed sooner than later.
Saki continues to avoid the incoming attacks, ducking, dodging, and weaving in between the zombies trying to bite onto her. The girl glances back at Taro when she hears him. "No, just bite you," she would tell him, glad that Taro didn't seem to badly injured. Saki has to turn her attention back to the party gals, though, her sword coming up. It was still in its sheath, and it would likely stay that way while she was knocking the guards around, aiming for the head but settling with strikes to the gut. Basically, she wanted to disable them. "Shuuren-dono!! Are you okay?" she tries to shout over the din of the fighting.
Taro looked at Shuuren as best as he could and he noticed that Shuuren was trying to not harm the princess at all… And then he was asked to not kill… Dang it. Fine. Okay not kill.. Not kill.. And suddenly another one jumps him from behind. "This is annoying to not kill them." He got bit on his neck and it hurt a pretty good amount. A bit of blood splurting out. Almost as if all the damage from each bite was focused at once into that one… "Ugg… Fine. I will just use the blunt ends of my swords… Do any of you have some wrappings? Those would make this very useful." He sighed as he spun around and started knocking them around as best he could.
Ryuusei's morals kept her from outright doing something to kill these people turned thralls. "I don't know if the princess and her entourage can be helped at such close proximity…" Ryuusei had a powerful technique that could wash all of these people away, but Shuuren gave the strictly no-kill order and Ryuusei decided that perhaps retreat was a good idea. After being bitten once more, she decided to retreat outside of the cabin… Were there not unconscious people out there as well though?
Trying not to harm the girl while trying to keep her from doing further damage to him is actually doing Shuuren more damage probably actually than getting bitten again. The poison seeps its way through his veins, causing him to drift toward unconsciousness. His Shadow Clones that were outside seem to have already vanished, which is probably not a good sign, especially for someone trying to get outside to get away from the battle.
Still, the Daimyo manages to stay conscious thus far…. perhaps due to the severe pain one might see that he seems to be in if they actually look closely at his expression and the sweat beading down his forehead or perhaps due to sheer strength of will. Finally he frees one of his hands from the girl's own and pops a syringe out of his sleeve that he reaches around and jabs into her hip where one would normally give a shot. This causes her to fall to her back and start to spasm a bit, but she eventually falls unconscious again. "… Gigan," he mutters under his breath as he shakes his head. Gotta clear his system of this toxin before it does more damage.
Meanwhile, despite the success of the guards in rendering this wedding party unconscious, there are still a fairly large number of them that continue to charge out of the corridors and the shadows. Even Ryuusei encounters a number out on the deck that managed to escape during the opened hatch when the call to wake up came from the princess as she woke up.
Saki would leap away from the zombies that are still attacking. Stubborn ladies… The girl just continues to evade the attacks, though, seeming to do so almost effortlessly. Out of the corner of her eyes, she sees Taro about to be assaulted from both sides, so she leaps at him, knocking him away from the two zombies trying to take a bite from him. "Ah… S-Sorry, Taro-san… You looked like you needed help…" she mumbles, climbing off the injured Fuma and readying her 'blade' once more. The girl waits for the two zombies to get closer, and then she lashes out at their heads to try and knock them out… Because dang it, she doesn't wanna kill them!! "Shuuren-dono?" she would call out, shooting a glance behind her to check on him.
Taro was so ready to avoid the attacks. Definetely could've done it. Then he got tackled by Saki and all he could wo was blink a bit. "Wha-…What? Oh. Thanks I guess. I think I could've handled it though… But thanks. Just in case." He didn't think he could've handled all of them actually. Lies!!! Now though he decides to just put his swords away and start knocking head around. Maybe they can be knocked out via punches to the noggin. "We should try to fight to where he is. Just to make sure he is alright. All I caught was he got bit just like me.. And the bites don't seem to do anything. At least to me."
Ryuusei must have been bit a few more times on her way out. There was a huge bite mark on her calf as she moved outside, including a lack of material around said bite-mark. As she moved outside, she had to knock another face away with her hilt. "Oh… Oh no…" Ryuusei gasped as she watched every zombie and their mother start to rise out of the holds below. She was rather lucky they did not awaken while she was down here, but with so many there might be a chance that someone will get overwhelmed if she let them inside. There was an opportunity to wash all the women on deck into the ocean, which wasn't ideal but perhaps a bit of water will snap them out of their senses. Ryuusei pokes the blade into the wood as she makes a hand-seal, and then once more she grabs her blade. As she raises it up, her finger slides across the blade, leaving a blue glow around said blade. Focused Chakra. It's purpose is to hold in the water she was now rapidly squeezing out of the blade. The pressure within the chakra casing was building. It wouldn't be long before the water's pressure was so great that the chakra casing could hold it no longer. A lapse in concentration is going to get everyone wet, so even if she fails to spray the deck clear, perhaps the water will snap them out of their senses?
Saki's calling out to Shuuren would go unanswered for a moment as the Daimyo is finally able to take a moment to bring his hands into a seal and create a glow of chakra around his body that purges the poison from his system. Once the chakra fades, he lets out a sigh of relief then peers around as if he's hearing something that shouldn't be there.
"… You should really go back to slumber. You've done enough damage to this world," he says in a low tone before looking back down at Ryoko with a slight frown. He'll have to cure her next since she has the highest concentration of the toxin. "… I'm okay," he finally calls back to Saki as he prepares to do so.
Of course, now that the princess is out more of the party are starting to turn toward where the Daimyo is to head his way while others still punch, bite, scratch, claw, and kick at Shuuren's guards for this mission. Seems they don't plan on making this easy, as few mental faculties as they have left right now due to the toxin coursing through their veins.
Saki just sighs. These guys were starting to get a bit old, and they were still as easy to dodge as ever. She should be more careful, though, as one of the zombies got pretty close to her face! o.o;; The girl sweat drops briefly, using the hilt of her blade to smack the small of the zombie's back and render him useless. Then she moves onto the next one, trying to hit more zombies.
Taro looks at another one that is coming at him. He gets grabbed from behind though as he went to block it. Ghidorah another bite. "Maybe I do need your help. I can't seem to avoid this biollante." He tossed it over his shoulder at one of them before smacking another in the face with his sword hilts. "These. Are. Annoying." He frowned and started walking past a few of them with a bit of punches. "They need to just drop now. Stop this annoying bull. I know they seem to not be able to but.. Seriously." He frowned. "Are you all alright at least?" He looked around for Ryuusei. "Ryuusei! You alright?" He called out to make sure.
Now it was that Ryuusei would channel the teachings of her parents. Liquid form wasn't something that was terribly hand-seal driven, and as the legions of biting and clawing women came for her, they would find that they could not despoil her focus. As they started to dig their fingernails into Ryuusei, and bite her legs they found themselves with a handful and mouthful of water. Taro, Shuuren, and Saki were safe inside the cabin, but everything on-deck was about to be off-deck. Ryuusei's blade garnered so much pressure, that the blade began to sing as the condensed chakra visibly cracked, and Ryuusei brought the blade up to her face, closing her eyes before whipping her blade and letting the chakra casing around her sword shatter. The result was a torrent of water that not only washed the poor hapless denizens away, but also knocked Ryuusei back into the cabin and might have gotten Taro, Saki, and the Suit wet… But at least it's a rather nice day out. Perfect temperature for a swim.
As more of the party come his way, Shuuren seems a little more irritable than usual. Perhaps something in that poison had a bit of an effect on him. Either way, as the wedding party zombies charge his way, he vanishes, avoiding their attacks entirely, and reappears to strike at their guts to render them unconscious with relative ease. Despite his annoyed state, he is still quite able to hold back as he told the others to at least.
"I need to get the poison out of their systems," he says before looking down the hall to see how the other parts of the battle are going… including seeing Ryuusei kind of blasting herself back into the hallway. "Seems we've got a little way to go before we can do that, though… Try to knock them out quickly."
Of course, as he speaks, the party that managed to keep themselves on the boat, though some were knocked against the railing, charge toward the guard team and himself again. They're rather persistent for poisoned folk. Then again the chances they'll remember this happened at all are slim to none.
"They are," Saki agrees with a small nod. She has to try and jump away from more bites, but then there's a rather weird noise that happens outside the cabins. A burst of something watery that, while she didn't see it, she heard it! Saki would blink, distracted. And in that moment, one of those zombies got to score a bite on her. "OUCH!!!" she yelps, continuing that train of thought with some colorful curse words as she brains the zombie to get him off. "Friggin…" she mutters. Then she watches as Shuuren would rush down the hall. "Ah, H-Hai!!" she says quickly, looking around quickly before she would run after the Daimyo. There were significantly less zombies in the cabin moving around now, at least? Those that still seemed incline to bite her would get smacked with the flag of her blade's scabbard.
This time Taro avoided some attacks. Luckily. It much better than dealing with more bites. "Ryuusei and Saki. You guys alright?" He frowns now, and grabs his swords tightly. He ponders knocking some heads together or stabbing folks. Stabbing sounds much easier doesn't it? But he had to be careful, so he would just continue punching them around. "I am starting to get angry at this… Sure I can't stab them Shuuren." He paused and figured he should at least add something of an honorific. "-San." He started heading towards Ryuusei since Saki was helping the Daimyo, and well.. Saki seemed strong enough to back him up without Taro there.
A terrible failure! Not only was she swept away by her own technique, but nothing on deck was swept away at all. Having blasted herself back into the cabin, she barely has time to get up before ravenous zombies are upon her! Ryuusei wasn't able to get up off the floor as she was pounced by one of the unconscious yet reanimated women, Her thigh getting chewed upon as she tries to back away. The pinch upon her leg was terribly painful, "Aaaagh! G-get off!" Ryuusei would try and press her foot against the face of this one, and as the next re-animated steps over her leg-chewing comrade, Ryuusei raises her arm and relies on her Hozuki heritage to keep this bite from hurting. Her arm puffed up suddenly as the zombie bit down, keeping that one from biting down as fully as the other. The order not to kill was still fresh on her mind however. As long as they kept their mouths out of trouble, she wouldn't have to stab them. Instead, she slaps the one that was now keeping her torso pinned. That ought to work. c.c;
As another of the zombies comes his way, Shuuren flickers to strike one after another down to unconsciousness. Since those in the room with him have been obliterated, he helps the guards in the hall by taking a couple of those down in his flickering, first helping Saki with a couple of those near her. As he comes into existence near her, he nods and looks back toward the hatch. "We should see if they need any help clearing the rest of them out."
The numbers are getting pretty thin at this point, though. Only about half a dozen are around and charging Ryuusei and Taro with the fist, feet, and jaws trying to take them down. Whatever this stuff is that's affecting them, all conscious thought is apparently gone since they don't seem to consider giving up when most of their 'force' is down.
Saki would give a quick salute. "Hai, Shuuren-dono!" she would say, taking a breath and rushing after where she saw Taro and Ryuusei on the actual deck. Saki isn't going to have much luck defending Ryuusei, though… She's too slow for such a thing! So instead, Saki would just try and disable the two zombies that are waiting for their chance to try and eat her teammates. "At least there aren't as many left…" she says, mostly to herself as her sword swings out to smack the zombies.
Taro drove one of his sword hilts into the chin of an attacking zombie hard enough he might've broken it's jaw.. Whoops. The second one he hit on the back of the head to send it to the ground before he attempts to grab one of the ones moving to attack Ryuusei. It turns its sights on him when he gets to grabbing though and he is unsuccesful in knocking this one to the side and gets clawed on his arm. "Mothra… Ryuusei are you at least alright?" He asked before swing a sword at the one that bit him, but he did spin it so the hilt would hit the front of it's face. Another one would get kicked in the gut to get knocked back into a wall. "Are they done yet?"
Taro's help was exactly what Ryuusei needed With the one pinning her torso down knocked right off, Ryuusei spent this moment kicking the other one off her leg completely. "I'm… I'm fine. I'm starting to feel less and less like giving these mindless attackers any mercy…"
After all, Shuuren can just fix them up. He could even make them better than they were before. Perhaps, that is what Ryuusei decides as she stands up. "*Huff* My previous attack… I was trying to hold back not to hurt them, but I'm just not skilled enough to disable them without hurting them…" Ryuusei says as she raises her blade. As she steps over one of the re-unconscious women who was on the deck, she raised her blade right in front of her face as she focuses her chakra into the blade. "Thank you, Taro… I better not try anything risky anymore. Whoever is behind this attack could attack us at any moment."
So Ryuusei is not going to hold back any longer. She dashes onto the deck as she changes her posture, keeping on her toes as she dances around some of the unconscious zombies. Like a dance, she strikes her thin blade against the various women as she dances around them. As he blade swings, it leaves a trail of water behind that remains in the air for a few moments, lodged into the thin cuts she had struck against each woman she maneuvered about. After she was done with the maneuver, each of the trails of water suddenly continued a forward momentum and attempted to push each of the women down to the floor. Ryuusei swiped her water-drenched blade, flicking the excess water off as she sheathes said blade back into it's custom-made scabbard.
The barrage of attacks from the guards at last wipe out the rest of the wedding party gone mad. As they all skid to the ground in quite a bit of pain but falling unconscious, it seems the battle is won for now.
"We may get tired of showing mercy, but, if we fail to how mercy to those our enemies showed none to, how are we any better than they?" the smooth voice of Shuuren would ring out as he appears near Taro and Ryuusei. He looks at her to check on her then looks at the downed party as he sends out a pulse of chakra to check on everyone on the ship as well as to be sure no other enemies have presented themselves. "… Taro, Saki, carry them into their cabins and lay them on their beds so I can heal them. Once I've healed Ryuusei since her wounds are a bit worse, we'll join you and I'll tend to your wounds and then theirs." With that he brings his hands into a seal and creates a wave of chakra that flows from his hands into Ryuusei to begin healing her.
Saki would clip her sword to her belt, glad that the fight was over. She only got chomped on once on the arm, so she was perfectly fine right now! Just in a bit of pain, but she wraps the injury up to keep it from getting (more) infected. "Hai, Shuuren-dono!" she says smartly, turning on a heel to pick up one of the unconscious bodies and carry it to a room somewhere. The girl would deposit the man she grabbed onto a bed that she went into randomly because she didn't know any of these people and wasn't sure which room they're actually staying in.
Taro would just nod and start lifting some of them over shoulder. He carried them into rooms slowly as he did get a bit…bitten up in there. "This is a pain. I mean dealing with all of this. If I was just how I used to be… I might've left these bodies more dead than alive. But… Gotta respect the Daimyo." He says grumpily. It made it so much harder, but he officially lived in Tea now so nothing he could do about all of that. And plus… He brought enough trouble there before.
Ryuusei would indeed drop to her knees as Shuuren worked on closing her wounds. "Thank you, Lord Nagamure… I… Sorry… I tried to be gentle." Learning to disable is far harder than just learning to kill, it seems. Still, she knew she would have received some scolding from the Daimyo. "What now? How do we tell what happened here?"
"It's okay. You're still learning," Shuuren says with a nod to Ryuusei, giving her a pat on the shoulder before offering a hand to help her up. "Simple. I'm going to sample the princess' blood before I heal her," he answers, waving for her to follow. As they pass Taro, he brings his hands into a seal and sends another wave of chakra, this time at him to heal his wounds.
Once that's done he'd walk toward the main cabin where the princess lays. He moves her into a more comfortable position on the bed then pulls a syringe from his coat to draw some of her blood.
Saki would giggle a bit at Taro's grumbling while they worked together. "It's not that bad, Taro-san… Is it? I know they were trying to take a bite out of you earlier, but now you get to carry around all these unconscious girls…" at least most of them were female. There aren't a lot of guys that would go to the bride's bachelorette party, usually… "Umm… I'll work on the people in the cabins first…" she informs Taro, then she grabs some of the unconscious that are actually within the immediate vicinity.
Taro shakes his head slightly. "No see. It wouldn't be if it was a willing thing you know. But this. They were just trying to bite me and they are unconscious. Mostly the they were just trying to bite me part." He states. "Anyways there is better things here than the unconcious ones in mind though." He states again as a last minute and sublte addition. Then carries a few more into other rooms. He is heading further out to get them. Also a quick thanks was throw to Shuuren.
"Yeah… Still learning…" Ryuusei says as she sits cross-legged in place, running her hand along her former wounds. The speed of medical ninjutsu leaves a surprised look on her face. Only after a few moments of reminiscence does Ryuusei wince and take a deep breath. She stands up, and without a word, begins to help Taro line the ladies up for Shuuren.
The rest of the trip would consist of Shuuren using jutsu to get the ship off the ground and signaling for the captain of his own ship to move on ahead while he heals the wedding party. Luckily they don't run into the person who laid this trap… which is kind of odd. Anyway, the trip goes on well from here, letting them reach the island where the wedding is without further incident… so far.