Waking Dreams



Date: April 22, 2015


Shinobu decides to try and learn genjutsu after a rough day.

"Waking Dreams"

Land of Fire

As is often the case within Konohagakure, much was peaceful around the village. The sun, shining happily down on the inhabitants, seemed to beckon more and more people outside their humble abodes and into the hustle and bustle of the village. The streets were, while not jam-packed, extremely crowded. It was difficult to squeeze through to the popular shops, especially the ones with many excited children. However, it also meant that it was easy to avoid such areas, should one know Konoha's hot-spots.

A young girl, small and only seeming smaller with her poor posture, shuffled through the village, looking around with a bit of fear in her single eye. The market, an aforementioned hot-spot, was avoided like the plague as she made her way to the one place she found a comforting solitude within. The walk, though only a few short blocks, felt extremely long for the girl, especially since she's been held behind walls for almost all of her short life. Clutched in the girl's arms was a black labrador retriever, who seemed far more intelligent than most dogs. The pup occasionally yipped at the young girl, who was holding the lab like a plushie against her chest, and she would simply nod softly and continue forwards.

Eventually, the young girl made it to her destination: Konohagakure's lake. It was a peaceful place, much like the gardens, yet there were also more people about. Inuzuka Shinobu set her nin-ken down, making her way to the tree with a small house nestled within its branches. The sign on the 'door' said "No boys allowed!", and not many people came up to it anyway. It doesn't take long for the young Inuzuka to climb up the tree. The sun shined through the small window that allowed her to peek outside to the lake below. There weren't people around. It was safe. It was warm. There was no danger, and Kame was there to protect her if anything should go wrong.

With this in mind, the girl closes her single eye and begins the breathing exercises that Mana had showed her They were supposed to help calm her down, the older woman said. The more she breathes, the more chance there was of Shinobu not panicking in the midst of crowds. She could enjoy life to its fullest and not have to worry. At least, that's the idea. Only a week into the treatment, and Shinobu still hasn't quite felt its effects. When she went outside, fear still swelled within her. The girl still panicked. It was easier to stay in place than it was to run, but it was difficult to tell… Did she stay because she was still scared? Or did she stay because she conquered that fear?

She decided not to dwell on the present fears, and her mind began to drift, slowing making its way to topics that were less scary. Thoughts about meeting Kame. The young black lab had immediately taken a liking to Shinobu, and they seemed to have a special bond. There was something about the pup's happy energy that just made Shinobu's day, and many of the Inuzuka elders hoped that the pup would encourage Shinobu to come out of her shell. For that expression, Shinobu decided to call her new companion 'Kame'.

Her mind proceeds to travel back, and fear starts to grip ahold of the young Inuzuka. Kame yips softly, whining and bringing Shinobu back to the present before something too terrible happens. When the single eye opens, only panic is within its brown depths. That fades after a minute of reorienting herself with her location. Kame is picked up and hugged like before, once again a living plushie. It wasn't good to dwell on the past, so Shinobu made her way back to the Inuzuka village.

The young girl made her way back into the place she now called home, and Inuzuka Mana, the elderly woman who was taking care of her, was in the kitchen preparing lunch. "Ah, Shinobu-chan. I hope you wanted some lunch?" the old lady asks kindly, making sure the rice-cooker is almost done before checking what's on the small fire. A small pot that has many herbal and meaty scents wafting from it.

Shinobu gives a small nod, but seems distracted. And a yip from Kame is all the woman needs to know that her ward is not doing alright today. She takes a breath, sighing softly before settling into a chair, patting the seat next to her for Shinobu to sit in. "Would you like me to show you something, Shinobu-chan?" the woman asks, settling in her spot. She had a few minutes before everything was done, and nothing was in danger of burning. So theoretically, the pair could sit for as long as they wanted.

Again, there's a small nod. Mana smiles. "Well, then. Repeat these hand signs for me, then?" The instructions confused Shinobu, but she copied them, not realizing what they truly were. Rat. Snake. Ram. "Good," came the elderly woman's kind words. "Now, add a bit of chakra to them. I know you can use it, Shinobu-chan. There's a bit of energy here," the woman points to the girl's stomach. "You need to draw upon it."

Biting her lip, Shinobu gave yet another nod, focusing chakra into the seals. It was merely practice, again, for what was going to be taught. Mana, still having the skill to perform jutsu, actually went through with it. Within her hand now was a crystal ball. Within the ball was a puppy. It was playing cheerfully, chasing after a rubber ball that was being thrown by those of the Omega clan, who took care of many nin-ken. It doesn't take much to realize that the puppy, black-furred, is a younger version of Kame. Shinobu offers a small smile to the old lady who took care of her as Mana explained what just happened. Genjutsu: the ability to see what is not there. Or rather, the ability to make others see what is not real. It can be pleasant or otherwise.

"Those of the Omega Clan specialize in genjutsu. Many of us are caretakers of the runts that exist within our clan, but should battle come our way, we are not helpless. We are just as skilled in the Inuzuka's style as any other, and we can perform genjutsu very easily unlike the other sub-clans. That isn't to say that we're better, as many of us are smaller than them. But, we do have quite a bit of potential. Much of our genjutsu has been withheld, though, so you will have to forge your own path, should you wish to practice this."

The pair 'discussed' genjutsu for the rest of the meal, and Mana continued to work with Shinobu on it for the day. While the young girl couldn't quite gather the chakra that was needed for the jutsu, she certainly had the determination. And so, Inuzuka Shinobu began her first lessons in the art of illusions.

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