Briar Village

Chuunin Final Exams
First Round

The individual combat trials will be held in a natural amphitheatre near the side of one of the nearby mountains. An area about 20m radius has been marked out; slightly higher on the edges than in the center. There is seating (including box seats for the high-ranking people from various countries that showed up overnight to watch the ninja villages show off their abilities) in a semi-circle going up the nearby mountainside.

In the morning before the exam starts, Li burns off all his chakra by making clones, thus triggering his seal; he’s still all shiny-glowy when his exam starts, and has recovered most of his chakra.

Mizuki spends some time asking Sensei for tips on her fight.

Tajo sneaks into his opponent’s room during Mizuki’s fight to see if there’s any useful information there. Apparently his opponent is lazy, because he’s still there! He’s too busy running around packing things to notice Tajo, however, so Tajo just kind of hides behind some furniture watching. Serizawa runs out of the room a couple minutes later, but Tajo stays hiding for about 25 minutes before he searches the room. Looks like pretty much everything is packed up, though, so Tajo sneaks back out of the room during the second match.

First Round

Nekodama Mizuki of the Briar Village vs Hatsue Osamu of the Hot Water Village

Kamatari Seduro of the Briar Village vs Tamura Kiyo of the Waterfall Village

Kam drops a chakra-wick smoke bomb as he enters the stage and palms a second. His opponent, Tamura Kiyo, from the Waterfall village, is on the other side of the arena. She’s carting a large bamboo parasol around, and you all saw her in the second exam using it both to hide behind and to pummel people with.

After the announcer introduces the two combatants, Tamura rushes to the center of the arena while preparing a replacement technique. Kam closes half the remaining distance but is staying in defensive mode.

Tamura swings, but Kam manages to “block” with the explosive smoke-bomb he was holding. It goes off, both he and Tamura’s replacement techniques trigger, and Kam replaces with the explosive smoke bomb he’d placed earlier, near the edge of the arena, which then also goes off in the shockwave from the first bomb. Unfortunately Kam didn’t notice Tamura’s replacement with all the rest of the smoke filling that section of the arena—she’s back near the center of the arena again. Kam sets up another replacement technique.

Tamura doesn’t seem to be doing anything, but Kam may just be too far away to tell—so he runs back up into the smoke cloud, and takes his shoes off, trying to catch her by tremorsense or chakra-sense.

He does catch her chakra near the center of the field, but she doesn’t seem to be moving. Kam blows a huge fireball out of his mask, but loses sight of Tamura as her umbrella drops, closed, to the ground.

Kam examines the umbrella’s chakra system as he slowly closes in on it… and then the umbrella pops open. Tamura reappears and sets up another replacement technique as she picks up her umbrella again.

Kam asks if Tamura is having fun yet; she grins and says, “Yes, lots!” She then lobs an exploding kunai towards Kam—it misses, but still catches him in the explosion. Kam miraculously manages to replace with Tamura’s parasol, so now she’s holding onto his arm instead! Kam initiates his earth-chakra strength boost, and manages to grab hold of Tamura.

Tamura spends several rounds trying to reach into one of her pockets for an exploding tag, to set off her replacement technique and get her out of Kam’s grasp… while she works towards that, Kam ties up her arms so she can’t do any new seals, and then takes several rounds of his own to come up with a seal to negate her currently active replacement jutsu.

Tamura finally pulls out (and sets off) an exploding tag right after Kam finishes formulating the seal he wants. He applies the seal quickly enough to prevent her from replacing, and they both take the 20 damage from the explosion. This puts Kam at more of a disadvantage… but he just punches her and sends her flying.

Tamura takes a second to makes sure she’s still in one piece, then taps out.

Winner (by forfeit):
Kamatari Seduro!

Kam is declared the winner of the match; he grabs her umbrella via puppetry, then walks over and hands it back to her. She thanks him and uses the umbrella to assist in standing back up. Kam congratulates Tamura on doing a good job in that fight.

Takeshi Li of the Briar Village vs Tsunayoshi Keitaro of the Sand Village

Li drops an exploding tag just inside the arena when he enters, and then keeps walking towards the center, leaving two more tags along the way, until the match is officially started. His opponent takes the introduction time to do some sort of technique which none of the Briar genin recognize.

At the stat of the match, Li runs up to Keitaro, throwing an explosive kunai. A strong burst of wind knocks the kunai off course just a little, so it only scratches Keitaro and the tag goes off too late to catch him. Keitaro backs away around the edge of the circle and responds with a flurry of wind blades, but doesn’t penetrate Li’s glowing armor. Somehow he still has time to redo the same technique from earlier, still with no obvious immediate effect. (Though if Mizuki is watching, she notices that it’s related to the wind that blew that previous kunai off-course.)

Li throws another exploding kunai, and this time manages to compensate for the wind somehow, and catches Keitaro fully in the explosion. Keitaro is looking pretty ragged, but tries summoning a tornado to penetrate Li’s armor. Li uses the replacement technique and moves in close, and Keitaro has some difficulty turning the tornado around to get back to Li.

Keitaro takes a break and sets up a pro-active replacement technique… and Li hits him with a kunai. Keitaro gets a good shot in with the tornado and actually causes some damage to Li. However, Li just throws another kunai and catches his opponent defenceless; the exam proctor cuts the exploding tag of mid-flight so as not to cause undue harm.

Winner (by KO):
Takeshi Li!

After his teammates finish their matches, Tajo borrows three “normal” smokebombs from Kam. He outfits Youshun with two exploding tags and two smokebombs, planning to leave Tanuki out of the fighting. Before going to the prep room, he hands his backpack off to Li, and just takes his axe, staff, and exploding tags.

Serizawa Hoshi of the Sand Village vs Atogawa Tajomaru of the Briar Village!

Once in the arena, Tajo goes full defensive and slowly moves towards the center of the arena. Youshun flies up above him. Hoshi then uses some sort of technique, but all it seems to do is cause a slight breeze blowing towards Tajo.

Hoshi then spends a few rounds circling around the arena throwing kunai at Tajo (half miss entirely, the other half Tajo dodges) while Tajo cautiously advances on him.

Hoshi finally gets fed up and throws an exploding kunai; this one Tajo reflects back, apparently missing. Youshun then drops a smokebomb on Tajo, who steps off to the side a bit and sits down under his Invisibility Cloak Technique.

Hoshi again creates a breeze to try to thin out the some cloud… Tajo tries to get his stealth cloak to match the smoke wisping away, but the more observant people in the audience can tell where he is. However, Hoshi doesn’t seem to be one of those people. Youshun complains at Tajo for being horribly off-target with the reflected kunai.

Hoshi finishes blowing away the smoke; Youshun and Tajo are both pretty much just in a holding pattern for now.

Hoshi looks around the arena, then tries dispelling genjutsu on himself.

Hoshi then summons a lizard; Youshun takes offense at this and drops an exploding kunai on the lizard just as it is summoned, which breaks the summon and also catches Hoshi in the blast. Tajo finally realizes that Hoshi is not where he appears to be, and also (successfuly) dispels genjutsu.

Tajo, still hiding, goes back on defense. Hoshi hits Youshun with a kunai—”That’s for bombing me!”. Youshun flies up out of kunai range.

Hoshi also goes on defensive, trying to wait Tajo out. After a second round of this, Tajo finally decides to do something. He charges up to Hoshi, shouts “Primal Force!”, and swings with his staff. Hoshi dodges part of the blow, but still gets knocked sixteen meters back and out of the ring!

Winner (by Ring Out):
Atogawa Tajomaru!

This Means War!

(A week later)

Once again everyone is gathered at the fountain for the morning mission briefing. Kam has taken to wearing mirrorshades over his metal faceplate. Sensei walks up, takes her headphones off, and announces that a squad of Mist ninja has been detected traveling through the Briar Country, and her team has been chosen to keep an eye on them and “make sure they don’t get into any trouble”.

The foreign nin seem to be traveling through the Briar on their way to the Wind Country, so Mina tells everyone to get enough gear for a couple day’s travel and to regroup at the city gate. Once everyone meets up there, Sensei asks Mizuki and Kam to transform into forms more suitable for travel. Mizuki turns into a panther and Kam turns into a kunai, which Mina grabs, and then starts running off to the north, in the direction of their targets.

About four hours later, Sensei says they’ve reached the last place the Mist were known to be, and asks Mizuki to start tracking their targets. It takes her a couple tries, but Mizuki finds the trail and they begin trying to catch up. This area of the Briar country is grasslands on rolling hills, and after an hour of tracking, Mizuki notices some unusual chakra activity up ahead. She turns human and tells the group that she’s seeing some sort of dark chakra in the next valley over. Once they get near the ridgeline, Mina tosses kunai-Kam into the air and tells him to wake up; he turns human again and lands nicely. The group then tries to sneak over the ridge, but Kam seems to have forgotten how high the grass really is and doesn’t keep low enough to reduce his profile. Fortunately the ninja below are in the middle of combat and don’t seem to notice!

From the top of the ridge, about one hundred fifty to two hundred meters from the Mist ninja, it is obvious that there are four ninja involved in combat. There are small areas of burnt grass scattered around the hillside; a ninja in blue with a sword fighting a large, black-skinned man; and another ninja kneeling over someone a short distance away. The distance and waving grass hides most of the detail, however. Sensei pulls out a scroll from a pocket, unrolls it and slams it on the ground—and an Akakaze poofs into existence. She tells him that she may have found the person who murdered [Fu’s dead sensei, fill in the name later] and that she wants backup. The Akakaze nods, and sprints off towards the south at Ludicrous Speed: he is out of sight in just ten seconds or so.

Sensei tells her teammates to stay back, because these guys are dangerous, and then rushes into the fight herself, making several clones as she approaches. Kam gets his weapons ready, while Tajomaru gets out a notepad and starts taking notes. Mizuki takes a good look at the various combatants, especially the black-skinned one who seems to be the source of the dark chakra she’s been seeing. Tajomaru, Kam, and Li all try to sneak up closer. Tajo keeps taking notes, Kam gets close enough to the black-skinned guy to try to try to compare his chakra to the patterns he remembers from the “demon deer” incident, and Li just gets an exploding kunai ready. Kam quickly determines that this person’s dark chakra pattern is similar to the demon deer and fox, but it is more complex, and he utters a mild curse.

Sensei herself runs up to the Mist swordsman and gives him some quick first aid, while her clones swarm the dark fighter. Two clones are destroyed easily in hand-to-hand-combat, but instead of just poofing, they turn into ink-scratches that attach themselves to the enemy, seemingly to no effect. Seeing the skill of the combatants, Tajo sends Tanuki and Youshun back over the ridge so that they won’t get hurt, and then takes up a defensive posture.

Sensei, the swordsman, and Sensei’s remaining clones spar with their black opponent for a few more rounds. He seems to be focusing on Mina, and most of her clones get poofed while she and the Mist nin don’t seem able to cause much damage. Sensei does bring up a few other Briar ninja, which are either ignored or seem to poof after only a single hit. Li finally sees his chance though, when he gets a open shot at the enemy’s back, and manages to hit with an exploding kunai!

Sensei pales a bit, jumps to a position a little to the side of the nin she’s fighting with, and throws a kunai in front of Li. A Kyoudo clan member poofs out of the grass where it hits, and Minaka shouts to him, “Intercept!” The black ninja glares at Li and throws a black dart of energy at him, but the Kyoudo jumps directly in front of it and is enveloped in a soundless dark explosion. Only a thin sheet of briars falls gently to the ground when the explosion recedes. Mizuki, still in panther form, runs up to Li’s position. Tajomaru runs off towards the side, avoiding combat. Kam throws a bola, using a new puppeteering technique, that somehow goes through the black ninja instead of hitting him. Li throws a kunai but misses entirely.

Mizuki, still in panther form, tries to pounce on their enemy, but gets swatted out of the air. Sensei jumps in front of her, and drops two more seals that poof into Nekodama Kenta and… a ninja wearing all black, with purple hair and and a sword. Kam pulls his bola back around to try to tangle him up again, but his attack is dodged! Li throws another kunai, but this also goes through its target… and hits a Kyoudo on the far side, who poofs into a large pile of briars, enclosing the dark chakra user and Kam’s bola! Tajo just keeps running, arcing a little closer to the main combat.

Mina warns everyone to back off and regroup at the top of the hill, and Mizuki starts backing up the hill. Kam tries (and fails) to extract his bola from the mess of briars with puppetry. Li decides to press the attack, and throws another exploding kunai into the briar pile… and there’s a huge explosion. Once the smoke clears, there’s a thin shell of briars remaining where the rear of the pile was, and a crater in the ground, but no sign of the enemy.

Tajo finally reaches his target… and attacks the Mist medic with his staff, knocking him over in a bright flash of light!

Once everyone gets over this turn of events…

The medical nin slumps over, out of the fight. The swordsman, who was being healed, makes some handseals but nothing obvious happens—although a kunai flies out of nowhere and hits Tajo in the back! Tajo turns around and bull rushes in the general direction the kunai came from, but even with his staff out sideways, he doesn’t hit anything.

Meanwhile, back near the rest of the group, the ninja in black makes some handseals of his own, then hides in the grass. Kenta takes a look at Tajo, then shifts to tiger form and rushes over to get him out of the fight. Minaka stands still for a second and just looks around for her vanished opponent. Mizuki turns human and tells Sensei that there’s a trail of dark chakra heading from near the center of the explosion down the valley. Li throws a kunai at the freshly healed Mist swordsman, but misses. Kam puts his hand on the ground, but doesn’t notice anything that he can’t also see, and so he runs towards Tajo as well.

The Mist swordsman rubs his eyes and looks around, trying to get a read on the new situation. Kenta reaches Tajo and tries to grab him by the backpack, but Tajo slips free. Mizuki, still in human form, starts running toward the Mist medic to see if he’s okay. Kam runs up to about where Tajo is and touches the ground again; this time he notices someone moving around but can’t see them at all. Li throws another kunai at the Mist swordsnin and connects, but his target poofs into a log instead. Tajo whistles for Youshun and Tanuki to return, and takes up a defensive stance.

Kenta tries to knock Tajo down, but Tajo was prepared and manages to stumble back a few feet instead. Something flies through the air near Kenta, but misses. Tajo tells Kenta to back off, and Mina walks up to Li and tells him to quit messing with the Mist ninja, since they’re not enemies. Kenta and Tajo face each other down for a little while, and Kam calls out to the invisible Mist nin to see if they’re okay. A female voice, sounding upset, replies that she’s fine. Fortunately no one makes any further attacks.

Mizuki finally reaches fallen Mist medic, but when she asks if he’s okay, he rolls face up, sits up, and says he’ll be all right. She tries to make small talk, but doesn’t get much response. Mina tries to get everyone to head back up the hill the way they came, but her kids don’t understand why and start questioning her. As the Mist group starts walking further down the hill the way they were going, Kam follows them from just a few feet away. When Mina asks him what he’s doing, he says, “I thought we were supposed to escort them.”

Sensei facepalms.

She finally drags everyone back up the hill to regroup and wait for the backup she sent for. She then sends Kage and Kenta to follow the Mist nin and make sure the black-skinned ninja doesn’t try attacking them again. Mizuki keeps an eye out for any further signs of dark chakra, or anyone else showing up here, but they don’t see anything until an Akakaze ANBU shows up after 20 minutes or so. He has a pouch slung around under his jacket, with a kitty poking its head out in front. Minaka explains what happened and that she thinks the dark chakra guy is a genjutsu user. The cat jumps out of the pouch and turns into a mountain lion. They head off tracking the dark chakra trail, and Mina tells her group that they can resume trailing the Mist nin, but since Kam blew their cover, they’ll have to keep their distance now.

They keep about the same distance from the Mist nin that they’re at currently; Mizuki tracks them and Kam keeps an eye out for any traces of unusual chakra use. They don’t see anything of note, and confirm that the Mist ninja’s trail leads out of the Briar Country into the Wind Country. Mina takes her team back to the Briar Village for debriefing, and chews them out for letting the Mist know what their mission was, and for picking an unnecessary fight. Her team is dissatisfied with the mission briefing, and argue with her regarding what they “should have” done.

Homework assignments from this mission: Li has to write on how to start a war without getting caught (he does an excellent job, albeit horribly obscured in legalese); Kam has to write on why/when it is a good idea to blow one’s own cover (he does a horrible job of composing his ideas); Tajo gets to write on what circumstances are acceptable for letting one’s victims escape (he says “so they can recount one’s glory”, but only does a passable job of writing); and Mizuki is given a short essay on how she could have backed up her teammates (she doesn’t do very well on her composition).

[ +2 CP to all! ]


About a month later…

Everyone but Fudini meets at the fountain as usual for the morning mission briefing. Kam has taken to wearing a metal plate over his face. Sensei walks up and takes her headphones off as usual, but this time is being followed by the head of the Nekodama clan and a young Nekodama female who was in the next graduating class. Sensei introduces her team to Kenta (the clan head) and Mizuki, who apparently has been rushed through the Academy and given an early graduation. She then says that Kenta wanted to test her team’s ability since his little cousin was going to be joining them, so she’s going to check on Fudini while Kenta handles today’s training mission.

After Mina leaves, Kenta says that he wants to give the team a basic test as an opportunity to see how Mizuki will fit in the group’s teamwork. He’s hidden ten little toy mice around the village for them to find, and offers a orange cloth-filled-with-sawdust mouse toy as a sample when Tajomaru asks what they look like. Kenta sits down on the fountain and waits to see how everyone does.

Tajo offers the sample to Tanuki, who chatters something and runs over to a nearby dumpster. There’s a bright orange-and-yellow striped mouse taped down by fake exploding tags on the top of the dumpster! Tajo grabs it, and the tags explode into a cloud of that turns Tajo and his clothing a bright shade of pink.

Li takes to the rooftops for a different vantage point; Mizuki transforms into a grey housecat and starts looking for any that may be in a real mousehole; Kam creates nine clones that scatter to search the widest area possible while he himself stays at the fountain to coordinate everyone; Tajomaru and his animals also run off to hunt.

One of Kam’s clones finds a bright yellow mouse taped to a wall about 10 feet off the ground; he runs up the wall and pulls it off, narrowly dodging a fishing net that is thrown at him. He takes the mouse back to Kam at the fountain before rejoining the search.

Li spots a yellow-and-green striped mouse near Mizuki. He calls out to her and she sees that it’s caught by the tail in a mousetrap. Not noticing any traps, she turns human again and calls Tajo over to investigate it. Tajo knocks the mousetrap and mouse a few feet away with his staff…and a bunch of needles shoot out, hitting Tajo and Mizuki each with two needles.

(Unbeknownst to everyone else—a Kam-clone finds a mouse toy tied to a bush. He unties it, notices a note tied to it as well that says, “remember kids, drugs can do weird things to you!” and promptly poofs, dropping the toy and the note.)

A few minutes later, Li spots that same fallen mouse toy and calls Tajo over. Tajo picks up the toy and ignores the note. The mouse starts singing a happy, perky, bubbly song (that only Tajo hears) about how delicious mice are and how they make yummy snacks. Tajo gets mad and starts punching the mouse, which has no noticeable effect. Tajo keeps punching the mouse intermittently.

Another Kam-clone finds a blue mouse down an alleyway with a little paper speech bubble taped to it that reads “feed me”. He tries pushing some cheese where the toy’s mouth would be, but only succeeds in knocking it over…and is hit in the back of the head by a wad of cheescloth that smells like a horrible mix of chloroform and limburger. He takes the mouse back to Kam at the fountain and poofs, adding the scent of flower petals to the strange mix of odors. Kam makes a replacement clone and sends it to take the blue mouse to Tajo before it starts searching again.

Asking around at a businessplace near the forest, Mizuki is told that Kenta left a cat statue there recently. She finds a small statue with a blue-and-purple striped toy mouse stuffed down its throat. She grabs a stick and tries to pry the mouse out, but the statue bites down, breaking the stick! After it opens its mouth again, she puts a kunai between its jaws vertically, keeping it from closing, and is just able to slowly work the mouse out . She takes the mouse back to the fountain, and Kam sends it via clone to Tajo.

Tajomaru, not finding any mice himself recently, quickly runs down the Nekodama twins from his graduating class, and tells them that he’s supposed to be hiding some mice for Kenta to find. He asks if they’ve played similar games with Kenta before and might know where he tends to hide things, so that Tajo can avoid using those spots. The twins give Tajo about 8 possiblities, five of which he’s already checked. Tajomaru thanks the twins and goes on to check the other spots.

Another Kam-clone finds a red purple-and-red striped mouse tied to the handle of an umbrella, sitting open on the ground in another alley. After looking around, he manages to spot a bucket sitting on the roof of the nearest building, above the umbrella. He runs up, verifies that the bucket just has water in it, and then takes the bucket back down so it won’t fall on him. He then takes the umbrella and mouse, eventually getting the mouse to Tajomaru.

Li spots a red mouse up in a tree, at the base of a branch, tied with ninja wire to that branch. He jumps over to the tree, cuts the wires and grabs the mouse… and is knocked out by some sleeping powder. After a minute or so, Tajomaru realizes that he hasn’t heard any advice from Lin in a while. He sends out Youshun to search, and finds Li unconscious at the base of a tree. He wakes Li up, and gets the eighth mouse from him.

A Kam-clone searching in the forest finds a red-and-orange striped mouse taped up to a tree trunk with several fake exploding tags. He hides off to the side, and then practices his chakra-lamp-puppetry to cut the tags with a kunai. When the tags break, a set of bola are thrown in Kam’s general direction, but not close enough to catch him. He recovers the mouse and takes it back to Tajo, who goes back to the fountain to wait for the last mouse to be found.

Li, still somewhat out of it from the sleeping gas, notices a old grey toy mouse in a sewer grate. He calls a Kam-clone over for assistance, and together they are able to recover the icky toy. They bring it to Kenta and ask if he hid that one also. Kenta isn’t cure who hid it or when, or if it was thrown out or lost rather than being hidden, but it’s not one of the ones he set out for this team to recover. Tajomaru, while waiting for the last mouse to be found, is trying to clean the pink dye from himself in the fountain, and has started singing snatches of songs about mice being tasty. He takes occasional breaks to punch the blue mouse angrily, and refuses (also angrily) to say anything useful when questioned about this behavior.

Finally, out at the war memorial in the forest, Mizuki (in panther form) tracks Kenta’s scent to a little shrine with food and lit incense sticks, and a orange toy mouse with a bell on its tail is in the center of that display. The shrine is in honor of Nekodama Isamu and the others who have given their lives for the village. Suspicious although she doesn’t notice any traps, Mizuki throws some pebbles at the mouse from a distance, knocking it over. When nothing happens, she pokes at it with a stick. When still nothing happens, she turns back into a panther, grabs the mouse in her mouth, and runs back to the fountain with it.

Once Mizuki brings back the final mouse, Kenta collects them all and congratulates the group on their hard work. When handed the icky grey mouse as part of the collection, he picks it out and puts it on the wall around the fountain. He then asks the team to take good care of his clanmate, and leaves just at about the time that Sensei comes back to officially end the training for the day.

[ 1 CP all! ]


A couple days later…

Once again everyone assembles at the fountain at 9am. Sensei walks up and take her headphones off as always, then tells everyone to pack up for a four-to-five day trip to the Fire Country. When someone asks if this is for business or pleasure, Sensei answers “business”.

Tajo says he’s already packed, and just waits around the fountain. Sensei sits down at the fountain and puts her headphones back on. Fudini gets back first, and Tajo takes the opportunity to make sure that Fudini is caught up on Team Itou’s recent accomplishments. Kam gets back after a while, and presents Tajo with two little “forehead protectors”, one for Youshun and another for Tanuki. Tajo accepts them but doesn’t really know what do with them, so they just end up in a pocket or in his backpack. Li then wheels up a noodle cart, and Tajo and Li fight over who is bringing noodles and who gets to eat them.

Once the group gets underway, though, Li leaves the cart behind—he was just trying to gauge people’s reactions. After the group is safely out on the road, Sensei reveals the details of their C-rank mission: they are to infiltrate the Shinra Corporation’s compound in Ba Sing Se (third largest city in the Fire Country), swap the “Pesiko” product research scroll for one that she now gives to Team Leader Tajomaru, and bring the real scroll back.

Sensei also asks how the group wants to make the border crossing—would they prefer to enter the country “legitimately” or sneak across the border somewhere? Li suggests making the crossing as a group of traveling merchants going to Ba Sing Se to make some purchases. They settle on Li being the businessman “in charge” of the group, Kam being an associate, Sensei being a lower-tier secretary, Fudini being a magician accompanying the group, and Tajo being the bodyguard/escort. When Tajo says he doesn’t have clothes to disguise with, the rest of his team reminds him that the Transformation Technique can create disguises easily, and he grudgingly decides to use it.

As the trip to the Fire Country border is about a day’s journey, they stay the night at a traveler’s inn before making the border crossing the next morning.

Ba Sing Se is about another day’s trip away; the group arrives at just about sunset. Sensei has made arrangements for three rooms at the Outside Inn. Tajo and Kam decide to make a reconnaissance trip that night, so Li and Fudini take one of the rooms and make plans for doing the swap tomorrow. Shinra Corp mostly focuses on household goods and appliances, so Li thinks they can pretend to be placing an order for a large amount of such things and asking for a tour of the facilities. Sensei claims one of the rooms for herself, and leaves the third room for Tajo and Kam once they return. Tajo leaves Tanuki and Youshun in the room to guard the fake scroll until he has a better feel for this city. Kam dresses all in black for this nighttime operation.

Tajo and Kam find the Shinra Corp’s facility pretty easily, in the upper commercial district of the city. Like most corporate holdings in this city, the complex is surrounded by a story-tall wooden wall wide enough for guards to patrol along the top. Tajo and Kam walk up next to the wall itself, just off of the main street outside. Once there, Kam places a hand on the wall and tells Tajo that there are four guards currently patrolling. Tajo waits for the nearest guard to cross above them, then stealthily runs up the wall and jumps down on the other side while the guard’s back is still to them, and Kam follows suit.

The complex is well-kept, with large two-or-three story wood buildings, lots of open spaces, several trees, and bushes lining the inside of the exterior wall. There’s even a large pond in one of the open areas. Tajo and Kam proceed around the complex in a counter-clockwise direction, with Kam trying to sense any occupants of the various buildings. He finds a couple large, mostly empty buildings in the back, and Tajo takes a peek at the gates at the rear entrance. The building in the center of the complex appears to be the main administrative building with several people walking around inside. The front building also appears to hold offices, but only seems to have a couple people inside right now. While prowling along the outside wall, Kam also takes the opportunity to size up the guards; they mostly look like hired thugs.

As they try to sneak over to the next building, however, a guard walking on the wall nearby shines his light over at Tajo and calls out. Tajo tries to run out of the spotlight before the guard can realize what he’s seeing, but somehow trips over the bushes instead. The guard shouts that they have an intruder, but doesn’t seem to notice Kam sneaking back towards the central building. Tajo gets up as quickly as he can, and starts running off towards the side wall, screaming. Some other guards rush over and start firing arrows at Tajo; one of the guards has a similar turn of bad luck and breaks a bowstring, but Tajo still gets hit with two arrows before he can get to the far wall, which he simply jumps over. He quickly darts into a side alley and hides there just long enough to catch his breath and determine if anyone is pursuing him out of the complex, then transforms into a vagrant and gets back to the hotel to regroup.

On his way back, Tajo is approached by another vagrant asking for money. Tajo gives him a couple coins, which is gratefully accepted. The drunk then notes Tajo’s injuries and asks if everything’s OK before trying to put his arm around Tajo. Tajo expects to have to check his pockets afterward, but is surprised when his injuries are healed. He mutters something about Sensei after the vagrant leaves, and still double-checks his pockets.

While Tajo is running around, Kam scopes out the center building some more. It’s three stories tall, has sheer walls, and the windows don’t open. He decides not to try to break any windows. He decides to hang out by the building for a while and see if the guards change shift; while doing so, he makes a clone and has it sneak back out to the hotel to let his teammates know what he’s doing. The clone meets up with Tajomaru, who sends it back with Tanuki in case Kam can find a way to use the little guy. Tajo also sends Youshun along to help keep an eye on things.

In the meantime, Kam transforms into a uniformed guard. Around 3AM the guards do change shifts, and Kam is able to sneak in right behind that group. One of the guards he sneaks in behind looks like he was drinking before he came in to work. Kam cases the place, and is able to determine that the archives are on the second floor, with about two guards on that floor. The ground floor has four entrances, with a guard stationed at each. Kam is finally able to sneak back out around 6am when employees start arriving for work. He then makes two more clones; one to track one of the archive guards once he leaves, and another to act as a messenger for the clone doing the tracking.

Once Kam gets back to the hotel and is about to go to bed, he realizes he has to stay awake to keep his clones from disappearing.

The next morning…

Li and Fudini, still disguised as a merchant from the Wind Country and his assistant, rent a rickshaw and drive up to the Shinra Corp. Li sweet talks their way in past the main gate, and gets a middle manager to offer a tour of the facility. They discuss customs for a while with a clerk from the Customs sub-department, and Li barely manages to avoid insulting anyone when asking if his assistant can check Shinra’s archives for information to help him find a product he can get an exclusive distributorship for in the Wind Country. The clerk is sent up with Fudini to the Archives on the second floor of the central building while Li and his guide continue on the tour.

The Archives is reminiscent of a library. It appears to be a large, open room with a security desk and extra guard near the stairwell entrance. There are several aisles of stacks in the center, and it looks like the edges of the room are devoted to small “reading rooms” with a large table in the center of each, and a couple chairs around each table. The doorways to these rooms are open, with no doors.

Fudini gets the clerk to bring him large amounts of files on Pesiko distributors, and piles them up on one of the tables, so that someone coming in the room couldn’t see him sitting behind them. He then starts asking for investment and other information on Pesiko, and gets the clerk to call in a manager when Fudini refuses to back down on asking for proprietary information.
The manager tries to give Fudini product info rather than marketing info. Fudini follows him around and finds the card catalog, where he finds that the scroll he wants is in a secured area, rather than the unrestricted-access room he’s in right now. He then wanders off to the restroom (near the security desk) and sets an exploding tag on a fifteen minute timer, then goes back to looking through the various files he’d already been given.

When the tag goes off and everyone (including the clerk escorting Fudini) starts panicking and running around, Fudini tries to sneak into the secured area… and finds out that there is another security station there. He fails to fast talk his way in, so backs out to his cubbyhole and transforms (not very well) into a guard. He goes back, and fast talks the ‘free’ guard into going up front because they’re asking for more security there, but the guard at the desk says he can’t leave his post.

After some back-and-forth on this, Fudini deftly drops a smoke bomb just outside the doorway to get the guard’s attention and hopefully draw him away from the desk. Unfortunately the guard just kind of stared into the smoke cloud wondering what it was. Fudini and the guard chatted about it for a little while, contemplating if it was related to the previous explosion, and then Fudini suggested they check this room to make sure no one was doing anything suspicious.

The guard gets a little more scared at that thought, gets the list of people who have signed in to use this room, and hurredly goes to check everything out, splitting the search with Fudini. While “searching”, Fudini quickly goes to the scroll location from the card catalog, and swaps that one with the one he brought. After the search (and reporting nothing found), the guard and Fudini meet back at the security desk where the other guard has returned, saying they didn’t need him up front after all.

Fudini spots the other guard holding the remains of the smoke bomb, and asks what it is. The guard says he’s not sure, and says he should probably turn it in as evidence. Fudini offers to take it in for him, and is given what’s left of the smoke bomb pellet. The guard then says he’s going on break, and makes some small talk with his co-worker as Fudini leaves.

Fudini then goes back to his reading room, de-transforms, finds the clerk, and leaves to meet back up with Li.

Li ended his tour when the explosion happened, and has been back at the first building negotiating possible terms waiting for Fudini. By the time Fudini gets back, negotiations are essentially put on hold until Shinra cleans up from the attack.

Li and Fudini then go back outside the compound to where their rickshaw is waiting for the return trip.

During the ride back…

Li and Fudini get in their rickshaw to go back to the hotel. Li quickly realizes they’re NOT going back to the hotel, they’re going somewhere else instead. Li uses the Transformation Technique to disguise himself like someone from this lower-class commercial area. Li and Fudini then prep replacement techniques before blowing up the rickshaw with 2 exploding tags, which happens to knock out the driver.

Li fails to replace with a drug dealer on the corner, lucky for that guy. Fudini hides by a building across the street.

A knockout gas grenade lands near Li, but he manages not to pass out and just feels woozy for a round. He recognizes the gas as standard knockout gas, so isn’t too worried about it. The drug dealer, however, is out cold. A bubble-gum-chewing chuunin with short purple hair, on top the roof of a nearby store, tosses another gas grenade to Fudini’s general vicinity. He tries to stealth into a doorway or something away from it, but passes out before he gets there.

A cop runs up and punches Li, who only takes 2 damage. Li runs around to the side of the building to try to hide before he jumps up to confront the grenadier; on his way there he tosses a kunai at her but misses. The cop follows Li shouting about him resisting arrest, but fails to grab him before he jumps.

The purple-haired-chick jumps down to Fudini while Li is around the side. Li doesn’t see anyone up top once he gets there, so transforms into a fly to hide.

A brunette jumps up to the roof shortly after Li gets there, doesn’t see anyone, and calls down to the chuunin to see how she’s doing. Since they lost Li, the chuunin jumps up carrying Fudini. [ Insert jokes about Fudini getting picked up by a hot chick, but being too unconscious to realize it. ]

Then the chuunin pops her bubblegum, walks over to where Li is hiding, and tries to smoosh him (lightly). He somehow manages to replace with a passerby, so now Li is down on the ground and some random guy is on the roof taking a punch.

The chuunin then walks over to her first post, blows another bubble, and gasses Li (who succumbs this time).

Sometime later, Li and Fudini wake up in an abandoned warehouse, tied to wooden chairs, with a bright light close by overhead keeping them from seeing very far away from the circle of light they’re in. The brunette, wearing a waterfall village forehead protector, is standing in front of them waiting for them to come around. The chairs are about two feet apart, facing her. The kids are untransformed, and their gear seems to have been taken. The brunette is tossing a scroll in the air while she waits.

Li makes a crack about the girl (in her late teens) being “old”, and she gets mad and slaps him.

Li does most of the talking for the first part of the “interrogation”. He tries to say that they never managed to swap the scroll, and when the girl says that they have a common goal then, he tries to talk like their cells should join up. The girl says that wouldn’t work since they both have to steal the scroll; Li says that one team can just make a copy. Brunette thinks that might be an useful idea, and tosses her scroll over the heads of the boys and tells someone to make a copy of it. She then says that she doesn’t know if the rest of the kids’ team would go along with this idea, and asks who else is with them.

Li gives the name of the Akakaze from Team Hana, and refuses to name his sensei (he thinks she’ll get mad if he uses her name). He calls her “Headphones”, but the Waterfall nin aren’t certain who he means.

Seeing she won’t get much more from Li, the girl turns to Fudini, who says he can’t talk well with his hands tied. So she has someone behind him put unflexing gloves on his hands, and untie his wrists.

Fudini promptly says, “What makes you think we /want/ to work with you?”

There’s some more chatting between the three there before Fudini and Li decide that they want to try to “network” with the Waterfall cell. The briar kids offer to help, trying to just get free, but the Waterfall seems to already have all the info the Briar has.

Someone throws a scroll back to the brunette who catches it, pockets it, and says that they’re out of time—if they won’t cooperate, they’ll have to be left here. She starts up a ninjutsu that takes an unusually long set of hand seals, then unleashes an Air Blade on Li. It makes a gust of wind that launches Li and his chair into the air, and he is then hit by three wind-chakra blades. His armor protects him from some of the damage (he takes only 27 points) but the chair is broken and his bonds are cut. Then he takes a lightning burst to the back from a blonde kunoichi from the Waterfall Village, but manages to replace with the brunette instead, who falls over twitching from the taser effects.

Li runs over to Fudini, takes the gloves off, and spins him around to face the brunette & blonde. Fudini blows a fireball, the brunette gets KO’d from the stun damage but the blonde jumps back out of the radius.

Then a gas grenade falls at their feet and neither Briar genin makes their save.

Meanwhile, back at the hotel….

Tajo wakes up after 6 hr nap, about 3 hours after Li and Fudini left. Kam has gotten some senbon from Mina in preparation for his grand plan to Get Stuff Done if the other two fail, so Kam and Tajo decide to go find why their teammates are taking so long to get back. Kam makes disguised clones and fans out from the Shinra complex… and quickly finds the remains of the rickshaw. So they all regroup there, and Kam promptly fails (a lot) at tracking.

Kam gets lost, and Tajo tries to tell him to quit tracking because he’s doing such a bad job.
Fudini and Li wake up on the floor of the warehouse sometime later. They find their stuff is still there (but no scrolls) and no one else that they see. So they go out the main door… right into Kam.

Tajo laughs at Kam for walking around with his eyes closed and walking into people. Li says a lot of stuff that doesn’t make sense to Kam or Tajo and there’s a lot of 7th grade jokes between Li and Fudini about Li getting a blow job.

Kam: “So, what. Happened?”

Li: “We were ambushed by Charlie’s Archfiends. And we attempted to escape from the rickshaw by blowing it up.”

After they finally get a clear story out of those two… Sensei walks out of the warehouse and asks what they’re gonna do now. While they’re trying to figure something out, she heals up Li and Fudini.

She also finds Ayugai Ume in her bingo book, tells them that they’re up against a sensory chuunin who leads an infiltration cell, and that the chuunin is rather weak (the genin she leads provide the muscle).

So the kids transform back into their “business suits” and go back to Shinra Corp. Li says they got beat up by someone asking about some kind of documents. Kam scans everyone from under his mirrorshades and doesn’t see anyone out-of-place. Tajo also sent Youshun ahead to scout the road to the Waterfall area, to see if there’s a group of 3 girls leaving. Regrettably, Youshun does not see anyone matching that description. Li is told that Shinra discovered that some documents were stolen, and there is a current investigation, which will check if the missing documents match the ones Li was asked about.

Once they leave the Shinra complex…

As the group starts wandering around the city to try to look for clues (or a convenient place to plan), a orange tabby cat runs up and starts begging for attention, or food, or something. Tajo tries to make friends, but the cat decides it doesn’t like him and runs back into a nearby alley. Mina chases after the cute kitty, and the group follows. Once they’re far enough back in the alley to be inconspicuous, the cat poofs into a Nekodama with two swords on his back and orange hair, in his late teens. He exclaims, “I found them, Mina-chan! They’re resting up in the Tokimeki Memorial Hospital.”

“Good work, Kenta-kun,” says Sensei. “Mind sticking around for a bit, just in case?” Kenta nods, poofs back into an alley cat, and runs off further into the alley.

Kam sends a clone out to purchase gas masks for the group from a local military surplus store. The group then goes to the Tokimeki Memorial Hospital, and Li tries calling from an outside payphone, posing as the boyfriend of one of the Waterfall genin, to find what room they’re in. On his first call, he’s put on hold and then the call is disconnected. He calls back, gets an apology for the disconnect, and is told that the girl is in room 116.

While Li is on the phone, the other genin make a quick lap around the building to see where the other entrances are. Fudini transforms into a doctor and Tajomaru transforms into a janitor. Kam leaves a clone with an exploding kunai near each entrance to act as a lookout in case the Waterfall nin decide to flee. Fudini manages to gain access through the staff entrance; the rent-a-cop on duty doesn’t seem to be very particular. Tajomaru hangs out near the loading docks with the Kam-clone stationed there. After a little while, Tajo sends that Kam-clone to make another lap around the building to confirm the other clones are all in position.

By the time Kam-kun gets back to the main entrance, Li has gone inside to get flowers at the gift center. They meet up and proceed to room 116. Kam uses his tremorsense to discover that there are two girls sleeping in the hospital beds, and an older lady sitting in a chair reading a book.

Doctor Fudini checks at a nurse’s station for info on any recent female burn victims, and discovers that there are two in room 116. He gets their charts and proceeds to room 116, arriving just after Kam finishes scanning the room. Fu enters the room immediately, and Li follows. Kam hangs outside until the other two confirm that this is the right room.

The lady sitting in the left corner of the room nearest the entrance looks up and snaps her book shut. Fudini looks at the flipcharts on the beds, but he can tell that these are the same girls from the warehouse. Li can’t see much from behind the large collection of flowers he’s carrying, and asks the lady where to put them, trying to be a distraction for Fudini. Li is directed to a table on the right side of the room. Fudini uses the nurse-call-button to request 20cc of morphine.

Kam stalks the nurse bringing the morphine. He manages to catch her by the women’s restroom and tries to Vulcan Neck Pinch her, but fails. Startled, the nurse screams and tries to put up a fight, but Kam is able to drag her into the restroom before she can flee, and gags her and ties her up in one of the stalls. He takes the morphine and her nametag, transforms into her, and goes back to room 116. As he leaves the restroom, a security guard comes up and asks if everything’s ok. Kam says that someone assaulted him [her?] and makes arrangements to file a report later in his shift. Kam proceeds to room 116 and the security guard goes back to the security station.

Meanwhile, the lady in room 116 has been making light conversation with Dr Fudini and Li, but after a short time she stands up and goes towards the door. Li tries to throw a poisoned kunai at her as she passes him, but she blocks it with the book she had been reading. She then throws a gas bomb as Li’s feet; Fudini manages not to pass out and puts his gas mask on, both the lady and Li exit the room via Replacement Technique and end up in the hall, on opposite sides of the entrance to room 116.

Li cries out, “How dare you, assassin!” The waterfall chuunin throws another gas bomb in front of the doorway to room 116, then rushes through it back into the room. Li puts his gasmask on before following her. Kam, farther down the hall, puts his gas mask on as well and runs up as quickly as he can.

Fudini tries to rush the chuunin with a gurney that Li had replaced with, but she vaults on top of it and jumps over him. She tries to grab Fu, but he replaces with the gurney himself, bottlenecking his teammates from entering the room easily themselves. He then threatens the lady, telling her to surrender or he’ll blow up the room with a fireball.

She seems to consider this for a second, then jumps back and grabs both unconscious girls and says, “I dare you.” Fudini complies, and a fireball consumes all three Waterfall nin, but when it dies down, there’s just a burning shrubbery between the two smouldering hospital beds.

Li catches sight of the chuunin outside in the garden area, and tells Fudini to grab the girl’s stuff while he pushes past and jumps into the burning bush… replacing with another shrubbery. So now there are two shrubberies inside the hospital. Outside, one of the Kam-clones near the main entrance has spotted Li chasing someone outside, and throws an exploding tag overhead, attracting a lot of attention to that area. Fudini spots a fabric bag near where the lady had been sitting originally, so he grabs that and then follows Li out into the garden. (Three! Three shrubberies! Shall I assume Kam exits the same way, and the final count is four?)
Hearing the commotion, Tajomaru runs around the corner from the loading area, and quickly decides to attack! Screaming out, “Primal Force,” he and his animal triple-team the overburdened chuunin, who collapses and resumes her natural form as was shown in Sensei’s bingo book.

So now there are three girls in a pile of blood in the garden, one of which wears a Waterfall Village emblem, and a variety of people wearing gas masks surrounding them. There’s also a janitor there, but he’s carrying a staff rather than a mop or broom.

Trying to escape the scene of the crime…

Tajomaru (to Li): Quick, get inside and make sure you have all their stuff.
(to both Kam and Li) me and Kam will get them out of here before security comes. I’d prefer not to just chill outside of a hospital with a few victims, after explosions, without what we came for. We’ll just take everything with us.
(back to just Li) See if you can find Fu while you’re in there too.

Li runs back in through the loading dock area, transforming in to a policeman as he does so. Kam takes off his gas mask and makes a clone, then he, the clone, and Tajo each grab a Waterfall nin and start looking for somewhere to stash the bodies out of immediate sight.

Mina walks up and says, “What /have/ you kids gotten into this time? Well, you’d better find a place to hide those bodies before the explosion draws too much attention. There should be a storm sewer back by the loading docks, that will give a better escape route than the roof here would. Or you could run through the street and try to get lost in some alleyways or another rooftop, but that would draw a bit more attention as well.”

Kam, Kam-clone and Tajo grab the waterfall nin, and drag/carry them back around to the storm drain near the loading dock, not too far behind Li. Fudini brings the bag and starts going through it; he finds the genin’s gear and some extra gasbombs. Between the three of them, they are able to open the drain and get everyone down there.

It’s not well-lit, but there’s enough water that you can at least tell which direction “out” is. On the way out, Kam brings up some ideas for getting the girls across the border—specifically, tying them up and stuffing them in big rice bags, and pretending to be merchants bringing goods back through the Briar Country.

Once Li reaches room 116 again, the window is open and the security guard from earlier is outside talking to Minaka. She’s playing the overly-frightened eyewitness, and pretty well keeping the guard busy. Li checks out the room to make sure they didn’t leave anything behind, and finds nothing else of interest. He goes back out again via the loading dock, and “rescues” Sensei from having to make a report for the security guard by taking her for an official statement.

So everyone ends up at the exit to the storm sewer system, at a river just outside the city. Sensei and Li meet them outside by the exit, and everyone gets filled in on Kam’s plan. The Waterfall nin are gagged, bound, and blindfolded.

Li and Fudini go back into the city and purchase rice, barrels, and a cart and donkey to pull it.

Sensei stabilizes the chuunin, but doesn’t want to perform surgery and really patch her up until closer to the Briar Village.

The brunette does start waking up but still seems pretty out of it from whatever meds she was on… Once she realizes she’s tied up, gagged, and blindfolded, she starts thrashing around, but Tajo steps on her a little and she figures things out pretty quickly. The blonde starts waking up similarly about an hour later, but is much quieter.

Shortly after that, Li and Fudini come back with a cart carrying several barrels and bags of rice; Mina paralyzes the genin to make them easier to handle.

And then the group double-times it back to the border, where Li handles the guards again. At the hotel, Sensei says that the Chuunin is wanted by the Briar, but the genin will probably just be used as hostages in exchange for something else.

The prisoners are let out of containment a couple trips on the trip for food/water/necessities. When they are let out, Sensei paralyzes one arm each, so they can’t make seals. When the blindfolds and gags are taken off so they can see to eat and all that, they panic a little when they first see Minaka… to condense the conversation, it sounds like Sensei is a rather famous Briar nin, and if the Waterfall girls had realized she was around, they wouldn’t have stayed.

Once back at the Briar Village, Mina sends Fudini off to deliver the prisoners, then assigns homework to the others:
Li has to write on what the point of this mission was (he goes with the obvious—industrial espionage) and his is very well-written; Kam’s assignment is to explain how the team can capitalize on the knowledge they gained from this mission (and his writing is perfect); Tajo is asked to analyze the teams’ use of force, in retrospect (he says that they succeeded so they used the right amount of force, and did OK with the actual writing).

[ 3 CP and 2 skill points to all! ]

Kam Individual Training #2
Gear, Blank Books, and New Trainers

Seduro rushes home through the village and through his family’s estate. Upon entering the main house he abruptly stops when he sees his father.

“What’s the great hurry Seduro?” Akira asks his son.

“I heard my order from the blacksmith had arrived, Father,” Seduro pants recovering his breath.

“From the blacksmith?” Akira chuckles, “That would explain why it was so blasted heavy! Your uncle has it in the library.”

“Hai, Thank you Father.” Seduro says as he bows quickly, just before running off to the library. Once there, he is greeted by his uncle who is currently sitting at a reading table examining the new weapons.

“Nice designs, Seduro, and multiple secret compartments in every one. Very nice weapons.” comments Katsuro as he balances one of the new Kunai point down on the tip of his finger.

“Thank you Uncle, I am rather anxious to inspect them myself.” Seduo says with just enough inflection added for his uncle to catch his meaning.

“Of course,” Katsuro says as he lays the Kunai down, stands from his seat, and points across the room. “Could you hand me that book there when you come.” Seduro picks up the book and upon crossing the room offers it to Katsuro who does not reach out to take it. “Seduro, I have shown an interest in what you are working on. Shouldn’t you return the kindness and show an interest in what I am working on.” At this admonition Seduro thumbs quickly through the pages of the book.

“It’s blank!” Seduro utters in surprise, “What can you learn from a blank book, Uncle?”

“What can’t you learn from something as wonderful as a blank page!” Katsuro enthusiastically rebuffs as he takes the book from his nephew, “For instance this blank book is about to tell me who will teach you your next Jutsu, Seduro.” Seduro simply stands there with a confused look on his face as his uncle deliberately turns to a particular page in the blank book and blows what seems to be a rather large amount of dust from it. “There! That’s settled!” Katsuro declares, “You tend to your new weapons then this afternoon meet me by the old well outside town for your next lesson.”

“Hai, Uncle-Sensei,” Seduro says with a bow and an ever more confused look on his face. His bewilderment doesn’t last long though, because as soon as his uncle leaves the room he gathers up his new “toys” and heads to his room. He inspects the weapons and the secret compartments to make sure they meet his designs. He then puts a very tiny chakra wick in each compartment before filling it with oil and sealing it up again. While he knows it will take hours to charge all of the weapons, he still decides to charge one of the Kunai keeping the rest of his chakra in reserve for whatever his Uncle has planned. He focuses silently on the Kunai for a few moments before opening his eyes. “Wonderful!” he says, “And you can’t even see the glowing.” He take several of his new weapons to the family dojo and practices there with them for the rest of the morning.

Later that afternoon Seduro goes out to the old well outside of town and as he approaches there is a Nekodama sitting cross-legged in front of the well. She is in her late 20s or early 30s with her families normal feline features and her hair in two different styles. The left side of her head has short spiked black hair while the right side has long flowing orange hair. She has her eyes closed and pays Seduro no attention as he approaches. Seduro, curious if she is preforming a jutsu or is really his uncle in disguise, sits down facing her, matches her meditative pose and begins using his chakra sight. Upon seeing the flow of energy around him it’s apparent she is not his uncle – he half expected that, but what he wasn’t ready for was the appearance of a clone of pure chakra. He wouldn’t have been able to see it without the chakra sight. He reacted in surprise, at which point the clone returned to the sitting nekodama before ceasing to be.

“I told your uncle my teaching style was only suited to teaching Nekodama and he assured me you would be able to follow along. Now I see why he had confidence in you,” said the seated nin (without opening her eyes). “Can you see Chakra Points, Kitten?”

Seduro not sure weather being called “kitten” is a term of endearment or an insult simply answers the kunoichi’s question dryly and factually, “I can see the flow and pathways of chakra, but not the individual Chakra Points.”

“That will be enough. Tell me, who taught you how to do that?” She responded coldly.

“My uncle,” Seduro answered, again simply sticking to the facts until he knew what was going on.

“He can see Chakra too? I had always guessed. It looks like teaching you might pay off after all,” She said calmly.

They sit in silence in apparent meditation for the next half hour, the first few minutes of which Seduro silently worries to himself about potentially revealing a family secret and wondering how honest he should be with whom about what in the future.

After the half hour of silence has past the yet unnamed nekodama breaks the silence.

“Can you hear it yet, Kitten?”

“Hear what, Sensei?” Seduro asks.

She sighs before asking “What DO you hear?”

In a slow halting tone Seduro starts listing "I hear birds …. I hear the wind … some crickets … a frog … our breathing … "

“Yes, but do you hear the ground?”

“The ground?”

After fifteen minutes of silence the silent sensei again speaks.

“Can you hear it yet, Kitten?”

“No Sensei.” Seduro admits quietly.

“Watch me Kitten, as I touch the ground with my Chakra. That’s all the harder it is. Reach out with your chakra and touch it, but gently. Let it push against you and recede from you. Feel it and you will be able to hear what it hears.”

Seduro takes a deep breath in preparation and tries to mold his Chakra correctly intimating she shape that Sensei’s chakra is making and proceeds to pop off the ground an inch. “I said GENTLY” the kunoichi bellows as she throws a small rock and hits Seduro.

“Sorry Sensei!” Seduro apologizes before making several more failed attempts to “gently” touch the earth with his chakra each time lifting ever so slightly off the ground.

“Your Jumping! Not touching!” Called out the Nekodama sensei. “Use your eyes kitten! This is not like shaping a snow cone from ice. It’s more like flavoring to the snow cone you already have. Don’t try and mold and force your Chakra. Look at your Chakra, it’s not compatible with the ground and the shape it takes won’t change that… It’s not quite the same color I’m showing you. Until they are the same don’t reach out.”

“Hai, Sensei,” responds Seduro just before the two begin another marathon of silence. In the stillness Seduro is using his Chakra Sight to study his own chakra system and Sensei’s in an attempt to match their “colors”. After an hour of watching Seduro contemplate his own navel the sensei stands up.

“I don’t have all day to hang around here and play with a kitten. Your uncle thought you could follow along, but obviously his faith was misplaced.” She begins walking out of the clearing as she says “If you need any help later … Find someone else.”

Seduro lacking anything substantive to say in his defense just sits there continuing his meditation. Even after the Nekodama sensei is gone he continues trying to make contact with the ground. After an hour and a half more he removes his shoes and socks and squats down so his hands and feet are in contact with the ground in an attempt to maximize the contact between the ground and his chakra points. After another hour of staring jointly at his hands and feet he makes a connection. He can feel the ripple of the ground beneath his feet. He uses his own chakra to match and amplify what he hears until he can hear the hums and thuds of the earth beneath his feet. He can hear the ground speaking to him, in a sense. When the squirrel climbs down out of the tree he can hear the deep thud of it’s feet as they make contact with the earth or the high hum of the trees themselves even when they aren’t moving.

Satisfied with his accomplishments he stands up and begins walking home. He leaves his shoes off for good measure to relish the new sensations of which he is now aware. On his way home as he is passing through town he is stopped in his tracks as he hears a barely audible voice that seems to be whispering in his ear.

“Can you hear it yet, Kitten?”

“Yes, I can hear the ground, and it is telling me everything it hears.” Seduro says confidently in a satisfied voice, just moments before he is hit in the head from behind by Nekodama Sensei whom he suspected was near but whose presence he is painfully aware of now.

“Don’t get cocky, your still just a kitten,” She says in a matter of fact voice, “but if you practice you might just be able to see me sneaking up behind you next time.” She turns and leaves with her departing words being “For your next lesson don’t be so slow on the uptake. I don’t have all afternoon to waste playing with kittens.”

Seduro mumbles “Hai, Sensei.” before continuing his barefoot journey home. On the way wondering what else Uncle’s blank book might say of him.

New Teammate, New Training!

About a week later…

After a week of miscellaneous D-rank missions and individual training, everyone meets at the fountain at the usual time for the next mission, and Makashima Fudini is there as well. Kam is blindfolded for some reason, though it doesn’t seem to be affecting his ability to sense his urroundings. After the usual greetings, Sensei walks up, takes her headphones off, introduces Fudini to Li, and announces that Fudini has been added to their team. She then says that she’s dragging everyone off to a back alley, and walks off. The team members follow.

Upon reaching the narrowest alley in the village (about 5 feet wide, between two three-story buildings), Sensei jumps up halfway one of the buildings… and sits down on the side of the building, facing down to the rest of the team. She explains that today’s training is on how to use chakra manipulation to walk on walls. Instead of using chakra to push off of the ground like they learned with the jumping training, they have to make their chakra “sticky” and use that to hold them to the wall.

Kam and Li make it up the side of the building pretty easily on their first try. Tajomaru, assisted by Tanuki, sets up a belaying rope to keep himself from falling—and promptly fails to climb up the wall at all. Fudini is able to make it up the first story before he falls.
Tajomaru and Fudini both take some time to get used to this new technique, while Kam and Li watch from the roof. Fudini falls several times, including once from the second story, but Sensei heals him when he starts getting woozy. Tajo also gets good mileage out of his climbing gear, as it takes him several trips up and down the building before he can make it without assistance.

Getting bored after watching Fudini and Tajo continue to try and fail, the other two decide to have some fun and push their limits with this new ability. First, Kam jumps off of the roof onto the side of the opposite wall, to make sure he can keep hold once he lands. Seeing Kam succeed, Li tries it and also succeeds. Tajo, down on the ground and finally out of his harness, throws small rocks in their general direction for showing off. He then tries to jump up and catch the wall that way; his first try fails, and his second try ends with him landing on his back instead. After he shakes that off, though, he is able to successfully jump up and stick to the wall.

Fudini continues to struggle with the new technique. He borrows Tajo’s climbing gear so that he doesn’t have to worry about falling any more.

Kam and Li try one other trick while waiting—this time, they crawl down the wall face-first, like a spider, and then do a handspring onto the opposite wall. This proves a little more difficult, but they both succeed.

Sensei then asks Kam to help his teammate out since he seems to keep confusing “sticky” chakra with “jump” chakra, and tells Fudini to get rid of the climbing harness and just try walking slowly. Using this method, Fudini is finally able to walk all the way up the building.
Sensei is not quite done with the training, however. She tells Tajo and Fudini that, thanks to their teammates showing off, they still have two more hurdles to pass: they have to be able to jump onto a wall and stick (which Tajo has already done), and they also have to go down a wall headfirst, then do a handspring onto the other wall and land there.

Fortunately they both pass these last tests much easier than the original training.

Sensei then tells everyone that she has some things to go over while they take a break from that hard work. First off, she wants to assign team roles. She assigns Tajomaru as Team Leader (assuring him that it’s temporary when he seems surprised), Fudini as “Public Relations” since he has the most experience as a genin, Li as Second-In-Command, and Kam as Information Officer. Second, she tries to explain that although she hasn’t been in charge of this group long enough to form any attachments to her genin, she has a strong attachment to the Briar Village and she values all members of that village. She also apologizes for getting them assigned to the rescue mission for Fudini’s team the previous week, and she feels like it’s her fault that they failed that mission. She explains that, due to the village’s extremely small size, losing a three-man team is the equivalent of losing an entire graduating class from the academy. …or at least she tries to explain all that; at one point she has to forcibly shut Li up by paralyzing him, and after that Tajo keeps making faces.

Once she gets through her speech, she tells the Team Leader to carry Li to the memorial, and for everyone to meet up there for the next part of the day’s training. Tajo carries Li rather roughly, and although he can’t feel it due to the paralysis, he can tell Tajo isn’t being nice.
They all arrive at the memorial at about the time Li’s paralysis wears off, and as usual Sensei is already there looking at the names on the memorial. Sensei then jumps up to her usual spot standing on top the memorial, announces that the Team Leader and Second-in-Command are squad captains for the next exercise, and asks Tajo who he wants on his team. When Sensei refuses to tell them what the exercise will be, Tajo picks Fudini. Li responds that he wants Sensei as his squadmate. Sensei commends his choice, but says that she’s not playing this game so he’s stuck with Kam instead. She also tells Tajo he’s not allowed using his Primal Rage technique, and then tells them all to fight!

Fudini promptly drops a smokebomb, then runs off and hides behind the memorial. Kam does almost the same thing, hiding opposite Fudini. Li throws a kunai into the smoke before running off and trying (miserably) to hide in the forest just outside the clearing. Tajo sends his animals out to search for Kam and Li, then starts wading through the smoke cloud with his axe and polearm stretched out, just trying to find anything at all.

While Li hides and Tajo keeps searching the smoke, Kam pulls out a kusari-gama and starts sneaking around the far side of the memorial. Fudini notices the motion, and blows a fireball without having a clear target. Unfortunately there are no screams of pain nor scent of burning hair or clothing.

However, this leaves Fudini an open target for Kam, who grabs Fudini’s arm with the weighted end of the kusari-gama. Fudini, being less experienced with this kind of weapon, tries and fails to knock Kam off-balance by tugging on his end of the chain. Li, however, is able to hit Youshun with a poisoned kunai, dealing severe damage to Tajo’s pet. Yushun screams in pain, but is now able to hover over the trees where Li is, so that hopefully Tajo will be able to locate the target. Tanuki tries to hide so that he will not also be hurt.

Fudini tries to blow another fireball at Kam now that he can see his target, but the chain on his arm prevents him from forming the seals correctly. Tajo rushes at Li, intending to avenge Youshun, but just barely notices Li forming seals for a Replacement Technique and drops his staff instead of completing the strike. Li then makes six clones in a successful attempt to hide again. Kamatari is also successful in his attempt to wrap Fudini several times with the chain, effectively pinning him.

The real Li takes advantage of the confusion created by his clones to transform once again in to a fly. Tajo decides to try to intervene on behalf of his squadmate, and runs over to where Kam and Fudini are running (and hopping) around while Kam tries to tie off the chain so that Fudini can’t escape.

Tajo throws an exploding tag at Kam, which unfortunately hits all three of of genin in the immediate area and knocks Fudini off his feet.

Li then flies over to the monument, where he remains unobserved by the other combatants. Tajo, having dropped his other weapons earlier while assaulting Li, pulls out the antlers he had taken last week from the “demon deer” as an improvised weapon. When he tries to hit Kam with them, however, they break instead of dealing any damage. At this point, Kam is finally successful in tying off the chain by wedging the sickle’s handle behind the chain at Fudini’s back.

Li then drops his transformation and hits Tajo with a poisoned kunai, surprising him. Tajo then fails to punch Kam, who jumps up on top the memorial near his squadmate and pulls a kunai from his pack.

Li steps as far away from Kam as he can while staying on top the memorial, and hits Tajo with another poisoned kunai. Tajo tries to throw an exploding kunai at Kam while running up to them, but Kam quickly drops behind the back of the memorial instead. Sensei grabs the kunai mid-flight and tosses it into the trees, but doesn’t say anything. Kam then runs out from behind the memorial into melee with Tajo, but fails to grapple him.

Li then hits Tajo with another poisoned kunai and Kam succeeds in his second attempt to grab Tajo just before Tajo decides to tap out.

Li and Kam then approach the entangled Fudini. When Fudini refuses to tap out, Li scratches the kanji for “loser” on Fudini’s forehead. Fudini manages to finally escape his bonds, only to have Kam hit him from behind with the hilt of a kunai.

A woozy Fudini tries to hit his opponents with a fireball, but aims too high and hits the edge of the forest instead. Kam misses another attempt to KO Fudini, but Li hits him with several poisoned kunai and Fudini falls unconscious.

Sensei jumps down and stabilizes Fudini while Li distributes the antidote to his poison and makes sure that Youshun is OK. Once Fudini regains consciousness, Sensei quickly heals up everyone else (including Youshun) before returning to finish healing Fudini. She warns him that it may be a week or so before the scar on his forehead fades.

She then orders everyone back to the fountain for a mission debrief, where she congratulates Tajo on his decision to tap out of the fight. She also congratulates Li and Kam for their teamwork in winning the match before scolding Fudini for not tapping out when he was obviosuly at a severe disadvantage.

Homework assignments after this training mission are a two page essay from Tajo on small unit tactics; a two page essay from Fudini regarding his scar and how it applies to his performance in this match; a two page essay from Kamatari on weapon tactics; and finally a two page essay from Li on what his opponents did wrong in that match.

[ Tajo rolled a 3 for his homework, because the dice are consistent about his writing ability. Fudini got a 5, just about on-target; Li got a 7, also just about on-target; and Kam failed by 3 if my notes are correct, because Kam is just bad at expressing himself in writing. ]

[ This post-op was a bit rushed because it’s so long! And also my notes were incomplete. If there is anything that anyone particularly wants me to add or correct, I’ll be happy to do that—just let me know! ]

[ Also—Special Movement (Wall-walking) for free to everyone. That’s 2 CP worth this time ^_- ]

Danger in the Forest!
First Mission Outside the Village!

Next morning, at about 7AM:

Both Kam-kun and Tajomaru are awakened or greeted by their teammate Li, who tells them that they have an emergency C-rank mission, and to meet at the fountain for a mission briefing ASAP. After deliving the message, Li poofs into a cloud of smoke.

When they arrive at the fountain a short time later, Itou-Sensei is already there, along with a genin they vaguely recognize as having been a year ahead of them at the Academy.

Sensei introduces Kam and Tajo to Makishima Fudini then says that Makishima’s team was coming back from a successful mission when they were ambushed about 3 hours from the village, to the east-northeast. Today’s mission is a C-rank mission to recover that team from where Makashima left them hidden. She also explains that Takeshi is being kept away by family duties, so they’ll have to leave without him, before she starts walking quickly to the village gates.

On the way to the gates, Kam asks what ambushed the other team. Fudini says that he couldn’t tell what the person really looked like; he seemed to be all black as if he were possibly just a shadow.

After leaving the village, Sensei tells Makashima to guide them back to his teammates. Tajo also sends Youshun to scout from the air.

It is soon obvious that Kam is the slowest member of the group, so Sensei tells him to transform into something. He turns into [a basket or briefcase or lantern or something suitably carryable], and Tajo picks it up and carts it around until further notice.

Youshun comes back about 60 minutes later and Tajo says that Youshun found the group; this is good because an hour later, Fudini realizes he is slightly lost. Between the two of them, however, Fudini is able to continue guiding the team to the hiding point.

After another half hour, Fudini spots a deer grazing a short way ahead in the forest. Unusually though, this deer is completely black… and almost seems to be melting into the shadows around it! Fudini stops the group and draws their attention to the strange creature, at which point Kam discontinues his transformation. Sensei asks if this is similar to the person he saw previously, and Fudini says that it is. Tajo approaches the deer carefully to see how it responds… and it looks up, snorts, and then charges at him, gashing him with it’s antlers! Sensei jumps up into a nearby tree to watch the fun.

Kam sits down and closes his eyes; Fudini responds with his Fireball Technique, breathing a fireball off to the side away from Tajo but still managing to catch the side of the deer on fire. Tajo tries to calm the deer down but it’s not listening at this point. Instead, the deer turns to Fudini and gores him as well.

Kam decides he should help his teammates, and hits the deer in the shoulder with a kunai. Fudini tries another fireball, but errs on the side of caution and it lands just a little too far away to be able to hurt anyone at all. The deer manages to hit Fudini a second time before Tajo shouts out “Primal Rage!!” and he, Youshun, and Tanuki swarm the deer. All that is left are the legs and the head. Tajo then takes the antlers as a trophy.

Sensei heals Fudini with her blue glowing hands and asks Kam what he saw. Kam says he saw what looked like a deer with a strange jutsu on it that he didn’t recognize. Tajo gives Sensei a puppy-dog look asking why she hasn’t healed him. Sensei coos over him and hugs him briefly; when she steps away, he realizes his injuries are healed.

The team rushes on to the location Fudini says he hid his teammates at, only to find the bodies uncovered and… chewed on by something. Tajo makes a closer inspection and determines that the teethmarks match those of deer. Tajo and Fudini have a ‘discussion’ with Sensei about how they should cremate the bodies here in the field instead of carting them back to the village. Sensei of course overrules them, and Kam makes a pile of clones to carry stretchers with the bodies on them. Kam then sits in front of his lantern and meditates for a minute or so (while Tajo taunts and bothers him).

The group forms a protective perimeter around the stretcher-bearers and proceed to carry their fallen comrades back to the village. After a short bit, Tajo falls back and jumps up in a tree to search for any other possible “issues”. After searching for a little while, he does spy a “demon” fox with a similar appearance to the deer from earlier. The fox sneaks into its den, and Tajo jumps down to try to coax it out. After several minutes of coaxing Tajo is miraculously able to get it to come out and accept some food without getting his throat ripped out or hand bitten.

Tajo then send Youshun off to get Kam, and then proceeds to tempt the fox into following him for more tidbits of food. Youshun gets Kam’s attention by divebombing him and then calling at him from the direction they had left Tajo. Kam also leaves the group and goes back to find what Youshun wants. When he spots Tajo leading a shadowy fox, he again sits down and closes his eyes for a few seconds. Once the fox notices Kam, though, it gets mad and then runs off. Tajo and Kam leave it alone and rejoin the rest of the group.

Sensei asks Kam if he was able to learn anything more about the fox. He says that he still doesn’t recognize the jutsu, but he thinks he would know it if he saw it on something else now. Sensei also says that they should have found a way to capture the fox since they killed the deer, so that the village would be better able to determine who was responsible for the ambush.

Also during the trip, Fudini places a small broken stick on each of the corpses.

Once they reach the village, Sensei sends Fudini to tell his teammates’ families the bad news. She also send the clones (including one of her own) off to take the bodies to the morgue. For homework, she assigns Kam a two page essay on exactly what he found about that jutsu, including diagrams if possible. Tajo’s assignment is also a 2-page essay, this time regarding village protocol for What To Do When Your Teammates Die.

[For the record, the basic protocol is to recover the bodies, as unaltered as possible, for forensic analysis and proper ceremony. If the deaths occur in the village, leave the bodies alone and report for a forensic team to examine the entire site.]

[Kam managed to succeed by 1 on this longer essay. Tajo rolls snakeeyes, indicating an innate talent for expressing himself through writing, regardless of whether he has any actual skill in it or not.]

[ 1 CP to Kam, Tajo, and Fudini for surviving. No bonus points, as you guys missed most of the opportunities to gather useful info. ]

Finally! Real Training!

Next morning, at the fountain…

Everyone actually shows up at the fountain today, and Sensei shows up a minute or two later as usual. After taking her headphones off, she tells everyone to regroup at the memorial in the forest again for some actual training. The genin are slightly confused by her choice of words, as everyone goes there in one group.

Once there, Sensei creates a clone (with darker hair) that smiles happily and waves to everyone. Sensei explains that she hasn’t gotten a chance to see everyone work together in a combat situation, so just to gauge their ability she wants to see how long it takes them to tag her clone. She also asks them not to do anything that might damage the memorial, and not to go far out of the clearing.

Sensei then jumps up to the top of one of the trees at the edge of the clearing and lets the genin go at it.

Li starts quickly by throwing a kunai at the clone, but she just moves her head slightly to avoid it. Kam-kun runs up and punches the clone, but she sidesteps him. Tajo also tries (and fails) to attack her in melee.

Tajo then waits until Li attacks next (throwing an exploding tag at the clone’s feet) and uses that as cover to hide in an open area with the Cloak of Invisibility. Kam and Sensei’s clone both jump away from the explosion in time, however; the clone lands behind Li, taps him on the shoulder, and waves at him while still smiling happily. Kam then makes 6 clones surrounding Sensei’s clone (using Li as a 7th person in the ring).

Kam then calls out that they should all try to attack at the same time, so that the clone will have less room to maneuver. Tajo’s hawk, Youshun, flies over to try to catch the clone if she jumps out again. Kam and his clone army all rush in as well; Li jumps back a step and throws a kunai; after the scuffle clears, the clone is standing happily just outside the pile of Kams, several of which are calling out that they were able to grab the clone.

Sensei calls down that she can’t tell what any of them may have touched, but since the clone hasn’t “poof”ed yet, their objective is not yet completed.

Li waits to see what strategy his teammates want to try this time; Kam’s clones all decide to try mob-rushing the target again, and this time one of them gets a lucky hit in and manages to poof her.

Sensei then jumps down and congratulates everyone on their success. She goes on to explain that she and her clone were also trying to demonstrate the utility of chakra-enhanced jumping, which is one of the most basic forms of chakra-enhanced movement. She gives a quick explanation and demonstration of how a burst of chakra from one’s feet can cause a great increase in jumping ability. Kam sits down and closes his eyes to watch her chakra system and get a better idea how to do the technique, so Sensei demonstrates it a couple times, slowly. She also demonstrates the relative painlessness of a “mis-fire” from using too much chakra, after her students show some misgivings about this process.

On the first trial, all three genin manage to mold their chakra to jump up correctly, but not being used to jumping that high, they all fall when they land.

After several further attempts, Li is able to consistently jump and land correctly. Kam is also able to quickly learn how to jump but has a very difficult time with landing from that height. Tajo has very poor success at both jumping and landing; during the next several minutes he “mis-fires” the jump several times, and even faceplants on two landings.

Li goes off to grab drinks at the store (which Sensei gives him some cash for), and when he gets back Sensei calls a 10-minute break. After that, Tajo is also able to figure out the jumping part, but it still takes he and Kam several more minutes to reliably stick the landing.

After Sensei is convinced her team can properly perform this technique, she takes everyone back to the fountain for homework assignments and general discussion.

Sensei asks what sorts of training her students would like, now that everyone seems to be able to get started as a team. Tajo says he wants combat training; Li says he wants better/stronger poisons; Kam says he wants tactical/job training.

Sensei then assigns homework—Tajo has to write on the uses of jumping in combat; Li is given a “college ruled” half-sheet of paper and told to fill it neatly with an essay on how to use poison around one’s teammates; Kam has to write on his ideas for tactics involving clones.

Once Sensei leaves, Li notices his parents watching him from across the village circle. His mom rushes over and hugs him and gushes over him for a minute; Li just stands there and takes it. Li’s dad walks over much more leisurely and asks to be introduced to Li’s team.

After Li makes polite introductions, he asks his parents what they’re doing there. His father tells him apologizes for missing Li’s graduation ceremony, and says that he wanted to meet his son’s new teammates. Takashi-san then invites the team out to barbeque as a graduation present to his son.

The meal is mostly small talk, with Li’s mom being somewhat embarrassing for Li. Tajo is somewhat loud and uncouth; Kam is quiet and polite (and seems to generally try to avoid eye contact). Li’s dad says that he’s in town for a few days as a business trip as well as seeing his son, and Li promises to visit his mother at their hotel before she leaves again.

[ Homework “scores”: Tajo got a 4 on is essay; Li wrote his in legalese but succeeded by 4; Kam failed by 1 ]

[ Free Jumping Level 1 to all; Tajomaru also gets a free rank in Writing (Academic), or just the Academic specialization if he has that skill already ]

Filler Episode #1!
In Which Nothing Of Import Occurs

The next morning, Tajo and Li meet at the fountain, and after chatting for a minute or two, Sensei walks up, takes off her headphones, and tells them that Kam-kun is down with that 24-hr bug now, so they’ve got another D-rank training mission. This time, they’re tasked with cleaning up someone’s idea of a prank—Mr. Nani’s warehouse had a huge graffiti tag on the side of it this morning, and he wants it gone. (No, Li, you have to keep the wall in good contition, you can’t just blow it up and call it done.)

Tajo and Li stop off at the store for sandpaper and laquer.

The warehouse is two stories tall, and the tag covers both floors.

Tajo goes inside and gets a ladder so they can reach the second floor (cause we haven’t all been around to learn chakra walking).

Li cleans the top story; Tajo cleans the ground floor. La la la.

A group of kids runs by and pesters them; the genin are too busy to bother with kids though. Li drops a smokebomb on one that gets too interested, and Tajo pulls another off the ladder before Li kicks the kid in the face. The kids eventually complain to Sensei, and she just shoos them off.

3 or 4 hours later (so before 1PM) they’ve got everything cleaned up and back to normal, so they head back to the fountain for debriefing.

Tajo is assigned a half-page essay on how he could have put the kids to use and gotten done faster. Li’s assignment is a half-page essay on how they could have gotten more trianing out of the mission. (Tajo writes another brilliant essay; Li writes his way too big but argues for a slightly better grade.)

[ +1 CP to Tajo and Li—not gonna penalize you guys just because the GM wasn’t prepared for another D-rank mission >_> ]

Kam Individual Training #1

After the most recent D-rank mission Seduro returns home feeling more like an exterminator than a ninja. He enters he family’s “Grand Estate” by crossing the bridge over the coy pond in the front yard. With the large house and so much open land you would think the Takeshis or the Shirodas lived here, but it wasn’t money that built this “Estate” it was reputation. The reputation of Kamatari Honda, one of the founding members of this village. He built this place to house his anticipated “Legacy”, the clan he intended to found as well. Seduro muses to himself how ironic it is that Honda built such a large estate but the current count of 6 Kamatari is the most to have ever lived here, and with his grandfather and uncle often out on missions it’s like his immediate family is living in a ghost town.

He navigates the large house to drop off his gear in his room and makes his way to the back yard all with out seeing another living soul. After the “simplicity” of the recent mission he feels unchallenged and about as empty as the estate around him. Determined to get in some of workout today he enters the family dojo alone and after a brief period of centering himself he begins to preform a kata.

“So whatcha doing?”

Seduro is startled both by the question and by the presence of his Uncle Katsuro whom he just barely avoids accidentally hitting. So startled in fact that he ends up falling backwards in a very un-ninja like manner.

“Just training.” Seduro says as he regains his feet.

“I’ve got a better idea,” Katsuro says “lets play hide and seek.”

Seduro, knowing better than to argue with his uncle, polity bows and says “Hai, Uncle-Sensei”

“The Dojo is the boundary. You blindfold me, then hide. I’ll count to 30 then find you.”

“Not “try to find me”, Uncle?" Seduro asked, and Katsuro’s only answer was a smile as he handed Seduro the blindfold.

So Seduro blindfolds Katsuro who promptly begins counting down from 30. As Seduro begins slowly sneaking away Katsuro begins matching him step by step while still counting.

“You’re cheating Uncle. You’re watching me with Chakra-Sight.” Seduro protests loudly.

“Seduro! I could hardly be cheating at game whose rules I am making up, could I?”

Seduro sighs loudly in resignation. “At least stay in one place until your done counting.”

“That sounds fair,” Katsuro concedes and begins counting again “26 …. 25 ….”

Seduro waists no time and jumps up into the rafters. He adjusts his chakra lamp to match his own chakra system and sets it on the rafter in front of him – just between him and his uncle. Then not to be “out-cheated” he ducks out the nearby door and onto the roof of the dojo. After a few more seconds of waiting a hand from behind taps him on his shoulder.

“I said the boundary was the dojo.” Katsuro informs his nephew.

“I’m still on the dojo.” Seduro says in a flat informative matter.

“You are.” Katsuro acknowledges, “You’re also found. Your turn.”

Katsuro then blind folds Seduro who promptly makes hand seals and begins counting. Seduro watches his uncle using chakra sight as he elegantly jumps down from the roof and enters the dojo. He continues watching as Katsuro crawls into an unusually small storage area designed for training equipment. Upon reaching the end of his countdown Seduro follows the path his uncle had just trod grabbing his lantern on the way and throws open the storage area only to see it empty. Puzzled he forms hand seals again and uses his chakra sight to survey the dojo. He clearly spies his uncle’s chakra surrounding what looks like a training dummy. He drops his hand seals and upon accosting the training dummy finds the it is he who is the real dummy. While he is standing there pondering he is again startled by his uncle tapping him on his shoulder.

“What’s wrong Seduro, are you having trouble?”

“I saw you going into the storage area, but when I looked you weren’t there. Then I saw you transformed as the training dummy, but when I came over you weren’t here. There were no lanterns or clones, so I am trying to figure out how you’re misleading me.”

“I was in the storage area, and I was hiding as the training dummy. So I think the right question should be asking is not why you thought you saw me those places, but why you didn’t see me leave them.”

“Because I dropped my chakra-sight handseals to maneuver over to you.” Seduro answered.

“Then try not dropping the handseals, at least until you can do it with out dropping the jutsu.” Katsuro said in a plain factual monotone. Katsuro then puts the blindfold back on the young nin and tells him to try again. One more time Seduro forms hand seals and begins counting backwards. This time uppon reaching zero he slowly begins waling toward his uncle all while still making the hand seals. As he gets to his uncle’s hiding place he see’s him replacement jutsu out. Seduro then slowly approaches the new location. The whole time he is walking slowly and deliberately not to loose his focus and accidently drop the technique. During this process Katsuro quits hiding from his nephew and begins merely walking out in front of him just out of reach.

“You’ll never catch me at that rate Seduro, you’re gonna have to pick up speed,” Katsuro taunts

“What ever happened to hide and seek, Uncle, this is more like tag,” Seduro erupts as he grasps for his slowly elusive uncle - who suddenly stops, allowing the groping genin to catch him. Seduro pulls down his blindfold to see the silly grin on his Uncle’s face and mutter’s “oh no.” softly under his breath.

“That is a great idea Seduro! Come with me.”

Katsuro leads Seduro out to the training grounds behind the dojo to an agility pit with that houses innumerable logs of various heights buried on end. The are for the purpose of waling and jumping across but Seduro knows his uncle has more in mind. He fills the pit with some coals from a nearby furnace then proceeds to douse them with water creating a sauna effect. The resulting steam obscures the pit, the logs, and vision in general.

“You might want to put the blindfold back on Seduro. It seemed to help you focus.” Katsuro suggests before disappearing into the smoke. “Oh, and … Your It.”

“Well, it looks like I’m going to learn to do this jutsu with my eyes closed,” Seduro says in an ironic tone as he pulls the blindfold down over his eyes and slowly steps into open air sauna that will provide him many more hours of “fun” with his uncle.


I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.