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FrostedCaramel

God's in His Heaven, All's Right With the World.
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays
Posting Speed
A Few Posts A Day, A Few Posts a Week
My Usual Online Time
Whenever you're asleep, thanks time zones.
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adaptable
Genders You Prefer Playing
Male, Female
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Mainly passive, can be aggressive if the situation requires such.
Favorite Genres
Sci-Fi, Modern, and Horror.
Only the Dead Know the End of War | Operation Obsidian Blood
Aoi is dispatched with Dea Cho to patrol the recently cleared areas of the cave system.


  
Blood had stained her clothes and her mouth still tasted of copper and iron as she and another walked through the labyrinth of tunnels and stairwells that made up the vast network of caves and halls beneath the Hon lands. She’d been reassured that the place had been thoroughly cleared, that there were no more demo-- enemies lying in wait around the next corner or in some dark and forsaken cavern at any point, yet here her and the new Cho; Dea; were, sent out to check on a specific section of the caverns, or halls, or tunnels, or whatever they actually were. They’d been given clear enough instructions, report anything of note and search any bodies they came across for information. She’d figured it’d be a simple enough task if the report that they had fully cleared the place was true but she couldn’t trust it so soon after what she’d faced down just a few hours earlier, something like a demon could easily have avoided a search party if it so pleased.

She turned a corner and held the torch out in front of her with the younger and far more timid Cho in tow close behind. The light from the flames showed that the tunnel they’d been following opened into a larger cavern, certainly natural by the looks of the uncut walls and roof and the large stalactites that hung down like fingers reaching for the ground. She turned to Dea and gave her a little reassuring nod as they entered the cavern, “Stick close, if the directions are right then we’re about done with this patrol, can get out of here and back to the surface.” she said as she turned back to lead them forward silence the only answer she received from the Cho as a feeling of unease began growing in her stomach at the realization she’d been tasked with leading the genin. She didn’t like the idea, that she had to look out for the Cho, she wondered why she hadn’t been paired with Meilin or Dagrún, with her people so she would be more comfortable, but in the end there was little she could do. It was the order she’d been given and she had to swallow her pride and the seemingly pointless tension she had been so willingly stoking with Meilin and the Hon in order to at least feel like she had any grasp on what she was doing in this position.

They made their way around a rather impressive stalagmite that was wider than five men and came upon a surprising sight as the light of their torches licked at the darkness ahead of them. A three men lay strewn about the floor, their dark cloaks spread out in odd ways over their unmoving bodies and pools of blood reaching out in the direction of the slope of the cavern away from them. She stood where she was for a moment and held a hand out behind her to keep Dea from moving forward without seeing what was ahead first, “A--” she felt a sense of dread growing as she thought about the act of having to loot the dead zealots but pushed on, “Alright, easy then, search them for anything of interest… maps, documents, that sort.” she said as she turned back to Dea who seemed to have gone white at the sight, “Come on now, summon up that Chonobi courage no?” she said as she offered her own weak smile and hoped her face wasn’t quite as flushed as it felt.

The steps she took toward the bodies echoed around the cavern louder than she had thought they were earlier but she chalked it up to nerves as she stopped at the closest of the bodies and knelt beside it. With a small prayer that she was sure wouldn’t be heard so far beneath the ground she lifted the cloak and breathed a sigh of relief to see that the man's face was turned away from her. She gingerly reached into the cloaks pockets and moved to the man's pockets pulling a few assorted items of seemingly random worth and nothing that would interest anyone behind a trinket collector. She stood up and eagerly dropped the cloak back over the man before starting to move to the second body when she realized that Dea still hadn’t moved from their earlier stopping point.

“Dea?” she said as she turned to the girl, “Come on I know it’s not fun or even slightly nice but the faster we do it the faster we’re done, help me out here, it’s not fair for me to search all three.” she said as she threw a glance back at the final two bodies, “Please?” she said as she moved her gaze back to Dea. The girl seemed to shift as if she was fighting against some force Aoi couldn’t see before finally taking a step forward and moving quickly to the third body. Aoi didn’t bother to force words from the timid Cho, figuring it better to let her mull about whatever she wanted in her own mind and talk if she felt comfortable enough to do so, though she couldn’t say it made her feel very comfortable in such a place to be bathed in silence, she also didn’t mind not having to talk to the Cho.

She crouched down again and lifted the cloak quickly to find the man face up this time, the expression of pain and sadness on his face causing her stomach to knot as she quickly took a hand to shut his eyes and move on to the less than savory business of searching a dead man.

She pulled a piece of paper from the man's pocket and opened it to find a small handwritten letter of some sort, though the handwriting was scratch and hard to decipher it was the symbols used that made no sense to her. She turned the paper slowly around to see if any one direction seemed to make more sense than the other and huffed slightly as no matter which way it faced the writing was completely alien to her.

“That’s not right.” came the voice of Dea as Aoi continued to study the paper in her hands. She ignored it for a moment, only a few hearts beats before some part of her mind began to scream at her to pay attention to what the Cho had said. She quickly realized it was the first thing Dea had said since they’d left and looked up in confusion as to why the genin had finally decided to speak.

Aoi stared at the girl just a few meters away from her and watched with such intense clarity that she was having trouble processing everything she was seeing. The dead man had reached up a hand and appeared to be holding a handle into the stomach of Dea before he pulled it away revealing the nearly sixteen centimeters of blade that connected to the wood clutched in his hand. Dea tottered where she knelt as a deep stain quickly grew from the place the man had removed the dagger and seemed to try to say something before toppling over.

“DEA” Aoi yelled as she leapt to her feet and pulled a kunai from her pouch. She threw it at the man’s head and didn’t even stop to make sure it had really lodged into the side of his skull as she jumped over his corpse and fell to her knees by the young Cho. She slipped her hands over the girls stomach and pushed as hard as she could as blood pumped from the wound. Her mind scrambled for the next steps, the next action she needed to take as the young girl bled out beneath her hands and distressingly her searching came up empty.

She screamed for help and realized the futility of the act as the cavern simply swallowed her voice in an unending echo before she tore her slick hands from the girls stomach and formed a bird seal. Her iron quickly left it’s place against her body and formed into a ball above the girls stomach before falling down onto her wound as Aoi stared in disbelief. “Come on Dea, come on!” This wasn’t right, everyone was supposed to have been dead and the cavern safe, they’d been lied to, set up for failure. She fell back in a panic as she watched Dea’s eyes stare blankly at the ceiling and her life blood pump out from around the iron pressed over her wound. There was a warm, wet feeling running along her knees and shins as she knelt at the girls side and she realized it was the girls blood as she bled out before her eyes.

Aoi turned to find the nearest torch and grabbed it quickly, cursing softly that she knew nothing of Chonobi rites or rituals she smothered out the torch using her own cloak and without realizing just how hot the wood still was ran her fingers over the end of the torch and brought back her fingers covered in black soot. She leaned forward and felt suddenly wrong for doing such a thing to a Chonobi, but if her own God could be so accepting, then why couldn’t the myriad Chonobi Gods find a way to overlook something like this? She quickly spread the black soot over the girls lips noticing an odd red left along with is as she did and moved to write the Taika symbol of peace over her forehead. She pulled her hand back and stared a moment as she tried to remember what she’d been taught just a few years prior. She felt herself shaking and wiped at her face, leaving warm streaks of the girls blood along her cheeks and underneath her eyes as she.

She apologized quietly before clasping her hands together and offering the last rites afforded to a follower of the Way of Fire. Hasty words strung in between gasping breaths and a shaky voice that she hoped would be enough for any of the Chonobi Gods to understand, that a Chonobi God would even understand her language. Finishing it off with a plea to any of Dea’s Gods to listen to her words and accept them as the best she could offer for one of their own.

When she finished she dropped her hands to her side and wondered for how long Dea had been alive for that as she surveyed the horrendous amount of the girls blood that was now completely surrounding both of them and quietly decided that she had probably died sometime before she had even managed to put out the torch. A small amount of iron hissed out of one of her sleeves and snaked its way over to Aoi’s own torch, wrapping itself around it and lifting it silently into the air as Aoi reached her hands under Dea and through the slick warmth beneath to lift her up and begin her walk back to the entrance they had been dispatched from for their risk free patrol.
 

Aliceee

Fierce Rebel
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept
Genders You Prefer Playing
Female
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Fine doing both/Aggressive
Favorite Genres
Fantasy, modern and magical.
Genre You DON'T Like
Scifi, yaoi, some horror, furry.
Reasons in the Dark
Empire of Akino
Hon clan lands

A collab between Oetje and Aliceee.

Summary:
Dagrún and Meilin perform a scout and sweep in the caverns after a rest. Much like Meilin expected, the pair finds nothing that is of concern. Allowing her to spark a conversation with Dagrún. The exchange slowly seems to open up Dagrún, who speaks some of her kin and reasoning to join the Imperial military.



  

The darkness would be driven away by the light of the torches. Echoes resonated through the winding dark halls as the pair advanced deeper into the caverns. There had not been any sign of anybody living in the caverns but yet the group had sent out a few pairs to investigate the caverns for potential threats or anything that the Zealots had attempted to hide away. Leading the way, Meilin shot a look over her shoulder as Dagrún followed. She had assigned Dea to the care of Aoi, trusting the Miyazato to guide and watch over the young genin. If the sensory of Madoc was correct, they had nothing to fear at first. And with every fight ending in a victory, Meilin considered that there was little to doubt that the other scouting parties would encounter any trouble.

Besides, this was a good chance to work and talk a bit with Dagrún. Seeing it was just them, they could speak the language that they were both comfortable with. Without bothering any Taika or Yamanaka member of either Team 4 or 8.
Approaching a dead end with nothing found on their end, Meilin decided to gesture that they could hold a small sort of break.
"I am glad that you and Madoc managed to work well together to take out a Zealot. What is your opinion on the Yamanaka?" Meilin decided to ask as she reached for a flask, filled with water. Taking a sip first, she would hold the flask towards Dagrún.

Being in a rather good mood as things had turned out pretty okay, for both teams involved, Dagrún had no complaints about searching the caverns. She had wondered how old these caverns were. And who had to build them. The smooth walls betrayed that they weren't made by nature and thus had to be man-made. The lack of any sign of civilization nearby these caverns made Dagrún ponder if the original builders had long left or this used to be some sort of hideout. Perhaps even a secret sort of storage for the nearby people of Alfstedt? Even though the distance to the small settlement was a bit too far to be a winter storage or some of that sort.
"The Yamanaka? Ah," Dagrún nodded as she accepted the flask. "He is a bit of what my brothers would call, a noisy twat. But I like him. Except for his disrespect on the Gods. Even those who our enemy worship." Dagrún said, taking a sip of the water.

The description of Madoc being a noisy twat made Meilin smile. She couldn't really argue that Madoc could sometimes be somewhat of a 'twat'. Even if she did also start to grow fond of the rather blunt Yamanaka. The mentioning of Madoc disrespecting the gods made Meilin slightly frown.
"He disrespected their god?" She asked, first. Then she realised that she had not a clear idea on how pious Dagrún could be. Bringing up another question, that Meilin decided to voice.
"So, what about you though? I am aware that Hons ha--"

"Ylfings," Dagrún calmly said, clearly correcting after Meilin stated Hons. "I won't hold it against the noisy twat or," briefly a frown appeared on Dagrún's features, visibly thinking about something. "Or Aoi."
The name was spoken with a certain gentle care, much as if the blonde woman was cautious to not say it wrong. Her voice would be softer as she continued.
"But I dislike to be called 'Hon'. It feels odd, forced and unnatural. But they are allowed to call me like that. But I would prefer in the privacy between us, captain, to not be named like that. Please."

Meilin wasn't sure what to say in return. She kept staring at Dagrún for several reasons. In truth, she had half expected that Dagrún would refer to Aoi as just Taika or the blue girl. But not by name. The way she also said the name made it clear that Dagrún actually attempted to not cause any negative emotion, being careful on how to properly say it. The following comment made Meilin slowly nod.
"Alright. That is a fair request. Perhaps you should voice it to the others as well. Maybe," Meilin continued, trying to flash a warm smile, "maybe they will understand it."

Taking another sip, Dagrún would offer the flask back to Meilin. The words of the Cho caused the blonde to smile. A genuine smile.
"Thanks, I am grateful." She said as Meilin accepted her request. The suggestion that Aoi and Madoc should be told of this as well caused Dagrún to lightly shake her head. "I don't think they would understand captain. Last time, you came to me with that request. Remember that? I don't blame them for not knowing much about me. Nor about my kin. I doubt that they even know that I am glad that they are all out alive."

Taking the flask back, Meilin was happy that she had decided to do the sweep with Dagrún. Even in spite of the ominous atmosphere where they were, it seemed that they were able to open up a bit towards one another. The response of Dagrún, stating that Aoi and Madoc wouldn't understand brought a sting of pain up in Meilin's gut. She remembered her own troubles with Aoi and Madoc.
"They," she started slowly, weighing her words carefully, "are different. I didn't have it easy with them. Or well, they didn't have it easy with me. But they are good folk. I am sure that if you would try to explain it to them that they would attempt to understand."

It remained silent for a moment as Dagrún seemed to consider the words of Meilin. Only to lightly shake her head. "I am sorry captain but I prefer not. They might be good people, aye. I am willing to believe that. But they wouldn't understand my problems or ways. I am halfway doubting that you or Dea are capable."
A wry smile crossed Dagrúns lips as she did understand the mere hypocrisy of her statement.
"They know little of what troubles my kin. I doubt that they even know of what we sacrificed these last few conflicts and how little we got in appreciation. Instead, we are looked upon as tattooed savages. As nothing more than barbaric scum, until the call of arms rings and they are in need of men bearing steel in their name. No, no," the young woman once more shook her head gently, "I doubt they know what even made me decide to join the Imperial military."

The feeling of joy that she and Dagrún were opening up to one another started to become a bit sour. Remaining silent, Meilin listened to what Dagrún said. And much to her own shame, she couldn't really argue against it. Even her mother had told stories of the terrifying people of Dowhon. On how they were terrible foes that were more than eager to seek out the worst danger to prove their worth. On how they lived in castles made out of ice and snow. That they had hearts made out of iron, feeling little love for those they considered to be enemies.
"What made you then decide to join the Imperial military? Chances are high that we will soon be deployed in an area outside of the Ylfings, Scyldings or even Vythlings territory. If you would attempt to rely a bit on Aoi and Madoc, you would surely find two loyal friends in them."

"I joined cause it might one of the last chances to make sure that my House will be able to stand. To gain some respect for the people of Dowhon."
There was a certain anger rising in Dagrúns voice. The young woman's eyes narrowed as she would gesture to the direction they came from.
"What do they know of the crimes committed to my kin? What did the Taika daimyo do when the House of Rachon and Ecla stole land that was ours? Tell me, what respect did we ever get for sending fathers, brothers and even grandfathers to defend against the Shoji bastards? I can tell you it, for the answer is all the same: nothing!"
The cheeks of Dagrún started to gain a slight red tint.
"No, captain. They wouldn't understand what I am fighting for. I am not blessed by the Gods like Aoi with her Magnet. I ain't fortunate enough to be taught some Hidden of the Yamanaka. I don't have that Crystal Release like you. I got to rely on what my kin could teach me."
Taking a moment to breathe in and out, Dagrún continued.
"They probably think that I only care about some. Or about nobody at all. But let us be honest, captain. How much did they worry about me when they were fighting their battles? I doubt that they didn't even think once about me. I fought and was ready to lay my life for Madoc of Yamanaka if I had to. I would be ready to chase after Aoi and that other woman if you ordered me to, without a second thought. What more do you people want from me?"

Completely silent, Meilin wasn't sure what to say. Her lips briefly parted, only slightly. But soon enough she was hearing the reasons why Dagrún had joined. The questions were something that Meilin couldn't answer. The feuds that some of the Hon Houses had with each other were known but which nobility or clans were without any sort of conflict or strife in the past or present? Yet, she wasn't sure if she should pity or worry about Dagrún now. The mere comment on Crystal release caused Meilin's stomach to slightly twist. So Dagrún had seen what Meilin had tried to hide at the training field, the day after the feast?
"Then try to explain it. Please? I indeed know little of the troubles that have befallen your House and kin. I come from Keishi and there isn't much that I learned about you and your kin. I am sorry for," Meilin tried to consider for a second on how to formulate her thoughts into words, "everything. But allow us to help you, at least."

For the first time, Dagrún decided to not hold back her emotions. Anger started to mix with fear. She wanted to turn around and walk away. A whisper informed her that she could likely reach the boundaries of her House within a week or two on foot. The cold winter was no enemy of her. It was more like an old friend that was ready to welcome her and shelter her from the strange world of those outsiders that dubbed her and her kin as barbarians.
"I don't know. Last time, you informed me, they got upset with me on how I speak. How do you know that they will attempt to understand me? They will likely misunderstand my words. Only probably because I don't just say whatever is on my mind. Might be a good lesson for Madoc and his mind tricks, hmpf."

"Perhaps. Perhaps they will indeed misunderstand you, yeah."
Meilin decided to take a step towards Dagrún.
"But perhaps they won't. I can't decide for them. I have worked and fought beside them. Not for a long time but enough to trust them these days. They might not understand or know much about our Gods or culture. But I implore you, give them a chance. It worked for me, so why won't it work out for you?"

Dagrún eyed Meilin, clearly unsure if she should go with Meilin's suggestion. She remembered her grandfather last piece of advice. Before he went away with the others, to die for the freedom of others. Only to be never be given the proper respect. It still hurt and angered Dagrún to the soul, even while she could reason that others were simply not aware of her grandfather's sacrifice.
"Very well captain. I am sorry for the outburst. I am just," Dagrún huffed as she shrugged her shoulders. "I knew from the start that I would leave home and known hearth. I even studied and learned Taika to be able to speak with ye all. But the idea to go somewhere to be seen as a mere animal. Or that I am needing to work harder cause I am not fortunate as you lot are... It is kind of stressful for me. I feel quite uncomfortable at the idea to be somewhere far from kin and familarity."

Placing a hand on Dagrúns shoulder, Meilin gently squeezed as she offered a warm smile.
"No harm done. Though to be fair, I remember how you showed your capability with lightning release at the field. You got nothing to be envious about, Dagrún. I wish that I was fighting alongside you to witness it more. My fire release is a mere joke compared to your lightning, by the looks of it."

Unable to resist a smile, Dagrún felt a tad happier. Scoffing lightly, the woman's left eyebrow slightly perked up. "What about that crystal release though? I would be happy to spar with you, captain, to see it in action. Unless you prefer to keep it hidden for everybody."

The mentioning of her release made Meilin feeling a bit shyer. She had made a mental note to approach Yumi. But to just approach and request the woman some guidance in how to use Crystal release wasn't a light request. Guessing that Dagrún was just curious, Meilin decided to be honest with the other.
"Truth be told, I haven't developed it that much. But once I got a solid grip on it, I will take you on that spar, Dagrún. It would be an honor."

"And my pleasure, captain." Dagrún added, a wink following. "Now, shall we return? Perhaps, I will try to sit down with Aoi this evening. Get a tad of conversation ongoing, eh?"
 

Oetje

Stormraven
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week
My Usual Online Time
Really sporadic. My schedule is somewhat of a mess at times.
Writing Levels
Intermediate
Genders You Prefer Playing
No Preferences
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
I can go with both. I am rather flexible.
Favorite Genres
I like a lot of genres such as magical, modern, fantasy. Anything with an interesting plot.
Genre You DON'T Like
Anything that is too focused on something that I don't feel too comfortable with. Such as furry.
An Early Farewell
Empire of Akino
Hon clan lands

A collab between the living members of Team 4.

Summary:
Team 4 gathers together as the operation, Obsidian Blood, has come to an end. With Dea's death, the team prepares to give their final goodbyes to the genin.

  

There wasn’t much light as dark clouds blocked the sight of the moon. The fact that it started to lightly snow didn’t either make it easy for the team to do their new job. But nobody had decided to complain so far. A certain silence plagued the members of the team ever since Aoi had came out of the caverns with Dea. The others had been waiting, having returned from their patrol as well. The sight of Aoi carrying Dea’s cold body had been enough to cause silence.
Meilin had given everybody a task to prepare a funeral pyre for the late genin. She had managed to arrange something with Astrid, allowing them to make camp at the location for one night before they would go to the settlement by the name of Alfstedt.

Once the team had gathered the required wood and stone for a ceremonial pyre, the body of Dea would be carried and placed on top of the wood. The features of the girl were blank, her eyes closed and her hands laid on top of each other on her. As good as possible, the team had managed to cover the spot where the girl had been stabbed. But the sight of the crimson coloured spot wouldn’t vanish and there wasn’t enough time to find more proper attire to burn Dea’s body with. The markings that Aoi had placed on the girl’s features still remained there.

It remained silent between the members. Meilin had taken a step forward. She wasn’t sure what to say. Nobody in the team knew Dea. There hadn’t been enough chances, exchanges or moments where anybody could have really bonded with the girl. Licking her lips, Meilin decided to speak as she would pick up the unlit torch.

”We come together, in this Winter’s night. To bid farewell to Dea. She came to us from the South. Where her kin still remain. We come together to offer her a final rite, so that she may join her ancestors and the gods, to let the Valravns take her.”
Pausing as she lit the torch, Meilin felt bitter and sad. There was the desire that she could turn back time and could have swapped places with Dea. To prevent the girl’s death and the fact Aoi had to suffer such harrowing experience, carrying a corpse through those dark caverns. In a way, she considered the girl’s death her blame. Knowing of one rite, Meilin would take a step forward as she spoke again.
”Hail to the Day,
Hail to the sons of Day,
Hail to the Night and Night's daughters,
Hail to you, Lord Akumu,
Hail the mighty Valdar,
and hail to the Great Wolf, who gives to all,
and hail to you, our blessed dead,
Stand with us if you would,
smile on us if you will,
may peace be between us, for all time.”


Lowering the torch, she would light part of the pyre. Feeling the hot air raising, driving some of the snow already away, Meilin turned. She would hold the torch up to allow the next to light another part of the pyre. As well saying their own farewell to Dea.

Taking the torch from Meilin, Dagrún would remain in silence. A second passed before the blonde Hon took a step forward, the torch held high. Resting her gaze on Dea, who appeared to be quite peaceful in death, Dagrún wasn’t entirely sure what to say. She didn’t know Dea nor was much aware where the little girl came from. Save it that she was from the South, the Jarldom of Birgir. Being one of the Vaugnir. A people that Dagrún didn’t know much about. And with Dea gone, the chance of learning more about the distant Vaugnir seemed smaller than ever.
As Dagrún was about to speak, her lips parting, no words left her. Her lips closed again as she shifted her weight from one leg to another. Remembering that she was in the company of those that didn’t understand the tongue of her people or Dea, Dagrún made a decision.

”I, daughter of Haldor, descendant of Tryvvge, ask the Valrvans to guide the spirit of Dea. Guide and watch over her, from this life to the next. Gods, welcome her and allow her to join her ancestors. Though largely unknown to me, I bid her no ill will. May she find respite among the ancestors and warmth among the gods.”
Slowly, Dagrún would lower the torch. Almost gently allowing the flames to touch and lighting he next spot on the pyre.
”Farewell Dea of the Vaugnir. It has been a honour and a privilege to have met you.”

After those words, Dagrún would turn around and offer the next the torch, allowing her to take her previous spot and once more become silent.

She couldn’t bring herself to look at Dea, not since she’d left the cave, some childish part of her believing that if she refused to look that the young girl would still be alive when she finally turned her gaze back to her. But she knew that wasn’t right, she knew Dea was dead, better than any of them probably. She watched the light from the flame of the torch flickering at her feet, listening along to the words of Meilin and vaguely recognizing the fact that the light became brighter as the pyre was lit somewhere by her. There was a long pause, and Aoi almost found herself breaking her unspoken rule to not look at Dea to see why silence loomed over them until the words of Dagrún took over for the oppressive silence creeping in around her.

She found it slightly comforting that she knew some of what Meilin and the Hon were speaking about, though she wished sorely she knew more as they both spoke words that she had no idea as to their meanings. She jumped slightly where she stood as another part of the pyre popped into life as the blonde pressed the torch to it and stepped back. Aoi’s eyes moved up from the snow and followed the Hons body until they rested squarely on the torch being held out. She took a deep breath, hesitated to step once and then crunched forward to take the torch.

The lit torch in hand she found herself watching her own hands shake before she cast her gaze back to the ground. She let her eyes wander forward far enough that she could see the pyre and watch the fire spread slowly from where Meilin and Dagrún had touched the flame of the torch to the wood. She chose a spot at random and moved forward being sure to keep her gaze low enough to not see Dea where she lay. With a clipped breath she touched the torch to the bottom of the pyre where she stood and stepped back as the flames licked up the side. Keeping her gaze low she held the torch in front of her and shuffled for a bit too long as she searched for words for the young Cho, “I’m sorry Dea.” she said quietly to the orange flames ahead of her before crunching away from the pyre and offering the torch to Madoc.

As the flames on the pyre grew brighter after Meilin had spoken her part and then handed the torch off to Dagrun, he stared blankly at the pyre that held their once teammate’s corpse. Granted teammate was a strong word, she wasn’t around long enough to really do much with the team in any regard. She was much too young to have died like this. As Dagrun finished her part his eyes narrowed on the pyre as the flames only took it over more and more.

Aoi who had right to be the most shaken here, seemed so different than when she visited his tent. Yet she was the one to carry Dea’s dead body out from the caves, which had to be hard even if they really only knew her by name. This all felt so god damn fake and while he knew he should be sad, he wasn’t. Not a single part of him felt pain from this, did that make him a horrible person? Not even feeling a lapse of pain or sadness at a child of all dying a pointless death? He wasn’t sure and as Aoi light the pyre and said her bit quickly. The torch would be handed off to him.

Staring at the piece of flaming wood in his hand, he would look at the pyre and walk towards it. Choosing a spot not yet touched by flames, he would touch the flame of the torch to it and watch the spot illuminate with the light from the flame. ”Rest easy kid.” was Madoc’s only words as he walked away still carrying the torch in hand, rejoining the rest of the group.

She watched as the others gave Dea their farewell. It was in a bittersweet to see the group for the first time like this, including Dagrún. No more suspicion that one was jabbing at the other. Even despite different beliefs or not having one. Even despite being born and raised within a different culture, they each paid their own kind of respect to Dea. While remaining silent and seemingly unaffected as Dagrún and Madoc spoke, Meilin's eyes lowered when Aoi walked forward.
The flames would start to spread, driving the cold away but not the silence among the remaining members of the team.
Somewhere, Meilin felt responsible. If she had been there, assigning herself with Aoi then she could have avoided this. Similar thoughts crossed her mind and it only started to feed the anger that she held toward the Zealots. What was driving those bastards to bring death to everybody that disagreed with them? When would they stop to cause misery?
Wanting to say something to drive the silence away, Meilin felt her lips tight on each other. Slowly the young woman raised her chin by a bit as her eyes narrowed.

"I will hold the watch. You guys can take it easy for tonight." Meilin spoke, her voice surprisingly steady and calm.
"Tomorrow, we will be travelling to Alfstedt."
 

Lesli

Secret Shadow
Roleplay Invitations
Not Taking RP Invites at this Time
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week, One Post a Week
Writing Levels
Adept, Advanced
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Both.
Favorite Genres
Anything with a good plot or twists to it.
Genre You DON'T Like
Stories that can't keep my attention focused or seem to bland in my opinion.
Team 8 and 4
Empire of Akino, eastern sphere of the Fire Province.
Hon clan lands, near the settlement of Alfstedt.


The mission would end with a success. In perhaps an emotionless, detached viewpoint. The caverns had been 'cleansed'. Any Zealot had been taken down and exterminated. The following search made it certain that no zealot would manage to escape the Akenian teams that were present on the site. Seeing that intel already provided beforehand that some of the present Zealots were high ranking members, it would hopefully land a firm blow against the remaining operating Zealots.

But at the end of the operation, one casualty would occur. Dea Cho would fall victim to a surviving Zealot. Being paired with Aoi Miyazato, the later would carry the girl's corpse back to the surface - after dispatching the culprit of Dea's death. Even though the group was planned to move out to the village of Alfstedt after the mission, they would make camp and remain located near the caverns. This would be decided by Astrid after Meilin's request, allowing Team 4 to cremate Dea Cho.
At the following morning, the camp would be broken off and the group headed off. The trek towards the village of Alfstedt would be going without any problem. It would take a few hours before the group descended on the perimeter of the settlement.

The perimeter was dominated by fields, likely used for agriculture. Though most of the fields were covered by a thick blanket of snow. Some fields were cleared but not much activity seemed to take place in the fields. Here and there were large barns and farmhouses, likely close to the land that they owed.
Up in the distance was the small hub that likely was the centre of the community, where the small market and other facilities could be found. Instead of going towards that hub, Astrid would lead the group towards one of the large farmhouses.

The Hon would engage briefly with an old man and upon returning to the group, they were told that they could make use of the attached building to reside a few days.
This attached building seemed to be somewhat of a barn. Luckily for the teams, Astrid and Yumi, there weren't any noises resonating to indicate that they would be sharing space with animals. The inside was large enough that they wouldn't in the way once going to sleep and the hay seemed fresh. The cold was kept out as long as the door would stay closed.

In addition to their newfound sleeping quarters, they would be given some meal by the occupants. There were some curious glances from the young folk - either farmhands or perhaps even the children of the old man. But they wouldn't remain long around to pester the group.
For the next few days, the group would now be resting before they would head out again.
 

Gerontis

"Teddy Bears never forget."
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays, Not Taking RP Invites at this Time
Posting Speed
A Few Posts A Day, One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week, One Post a Week
Writing Levels
Adept, Advanced
Genders You Prefer Playing
Primarily Prefer Male
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Probably both, depending on the situation. Am at least comfortable with both.
Favorite Genres
A lot. Can't really pick a few out as it depends on the lore etc. etc. etc.
Genre You DON'T Like
I don't really dislike any, but I guess that I don't do a lot of superheroes or high school ones. Not that I am not interested in them. Oh dear, I am rambling.
Eastern Continent - Wolf Country
GM Post
Eastern Continent | Wolf Country | The Eastern Combined Force and the unknown enemy army.


The days would slowly pass for those in the east. The situation remained much the same as neither the allied nor the unknown enemy forces attempted to cross the river, almost jealously guarding their side and wanting the other to make the attempt to cross. Some reports of small skirmishes did come about, the nature of these conflicts being that patrols on both sides exchanging a volley of projectiles or insults. Yet, yielding no results in casualties on either side.

However, much according to the agreed plans, the work on the pontoon bridges was happening in full. A decent sized group of allied forces would work without seemingly pauze on the project, continuing to build and prepare parts of the pontoon bridge.
The units that would be designated to serve as the distraction force would also enter preparation. A route was planned out and the planning of the deployment was discussed and agreed upon before any of the allied forces would ready troops to begin marching southwards.

To avoid that the enemy would learn of the prepared planning, the allied forces would use some of their cavalries to make feigned attempts to cross the river to the north. Resulting in that the enemy deployed and focused more attention to the north, clearly not wanting to make any attempt of the allied force without costing them dearly.
The time for the allied troops, underneath the command of Satoshi Jun, would be soon.


  

In the dead of the night, they would march. Companies of northerners, Akenians and Republicans would walk into the dark as torches wouldn't be allowed - to avoid the enemy to be alerted of their movement.
To ensure that the enemy's attention would be lured away from the forces that moved south, a few detachments of allied forces assaulted some locations. These assaults resulted in some casualties for the enemy, losing these outposts and were in need to reinforce them. The allied force would withdraw from the conquered outposts, returning to their side of the river.

No message came from the southern outposts of the enemy, which had been beset and overwhelmed by a large allied force. This force under the command of Satoshi Jun crossed the river - south of the camps. Not eager to exhaust his detachment of allied forces, Satoshi wouldn't yet push further and the allied force made camp. A single messenger would be sent back to the bulk of the allied force, alerting them that the next day it would be the deciding battle.

Early in the morning, they marched. After a hearty breakfast, officers would report that morale was high. Many of the soldiers were done with waiting and anxious to wet their steel. Regardless of their origin, nationality or clan, the allied force underneath the command of Satoshi was far from afraid to face their enemy. A certain confident was present as they put faith in that the plan would work.
Nearing the location of where they would deploy, a few groups would be sent forward to take over some of the outposts of the enemy. The fact that the attacks didn't come from the other side of the river overwhelmed the enemy held outposts. With swift victories, the allied force would continue to move further to where they would deploy their forces.
The fog of the morning concealed the allied forces, allowing them to move closer without the enemy being aware of this.

Soon enough, the sounds of bellowing horns would herald the imminent clash. A wailing sound that seemed to rile up the hornet's nest, for the enemy would respond with amassing a force of their own to face against the deployed allied force on their side of the river.

 

conman2163

Long live Carolus Rex...
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays, One on One Roleplays, Chat Roleplays, Private Convo Roleplays
Posting Speed
Several Posts a Day, A Few Posts A Day, One Post a Day
My Usual Online Time
8:00 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept, Advanced, Adaptable
Genders You Prefer Playing
Male, Female, Primarily Prefer Male
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Generally both. Better make sure I know who is leading and who is following though.
Favorite Genres
Pretty much all of them
Genre You DON'T Like
Yaoi
Caravan Escorts, Pt. 1

A collab by Conman, Nim, and Jason

Summary: Team Omari meets up inside Amegakure's market district and prepares for their newest mission, escorting a caravan from Amegakure to the lands of the Tokugawa. After a short while, they set out on their mission.


 

It was early morning, just past dawn, when Chu arrived at the meeting point. He was twenty minutes early from the departure time and dressed in his full equipment, Shinobi Flak Jacket zipped up and sword belted about his waste, looking smart in the uniform that they were given. Nearby, loading a set of wagons, were merchants, preparing to make a journey back to the Tokugawa lands. They had sold their stock and were taking on some goods to bring back. Chu’s team, fresh as it was, had gotten this, a C rank mission to escort the caravan, as their first encounter. Given that he had no idea how the other two acted in field conditions, it would be a good test. He’d already worked out a general plan for the escort formation, and his summon was currently resting on his shoulder. It was his first true mission since the fight in the Housha compound, with those Zealots having turned the wounded clan members into what amounted to zombies. In one hand he held the reigns for three horses that the team would ride on their escort, his own horse loaded with extra provisions. He had sent the message out to the other members to arrive here with full traveling kit yesterday, and he had no doubt that they’d be arriving soon.

There were three wagons, each loaded with goods to bring back to the Tokugawa, and a pair of merchants in each wagon. Three caravan guards with horses were chatting nearby. They weren’t particularly well armed, but they had horses and swords, and he presumed experience. From what he knew, they had grown nervous about the return trip with all the recent activity in the town. Rather than risk endangering themselves through having to few guards with zealots and the like about, they decided to hire Shinobi.

It had been a few days since the training with the team, and with what she considered to be somewhat eventful few days in Amegakure, Kuni did feel ready and rather eager for a new mission. It was the first mission she had in a year that didn’t involve the team leader telling them about a potential risk to everyone on that team and then being offered a choice, but rather a standard mission, one which required full travelling kit, indicating they would be travelling a decent distance and for some time too. She was a bit sad to be leaving Eiji and Sachi once more, but for a change, it wasn’t because of her status as a Jinchuuriki or due to going to prison. She was going to perform the role she signed up for, and she still felt like she needed to prove to everyone that she does deserve the Chuunin rank, beyond just passing the exam.

Arriving at the departure location in her shinobi gear and with the travelling gear, Kuni approached Chu and stopped beside him ”Yoshikuni Sadako, reporting for duty, Omari-san.” She said, making sure to use what she felt was the appropriate title. He wasn’t her sensei, and she didn’t consider him to be that much older and wiser, so that was what she settled for. Hopefully he wouldn’t take offense from that.

The man arrived not long after Yoshikuni, surveying the carts lined up to get ready to leave. While Sairento wasn’t sure if his skills were best used on a simple escort mission, he knew this was the price he had to pay for his decision on previous missions. Sairento supposed that it was better than having his head removed from his body. Looking towards the Omari and the Jinchuriki, he wondered if it was really all that wise to let Kuni out of sight of those around the village. With a beast inside her, he frankly wouldn’t have trusted the girl as far as he could throw the carts they were to escort. Either way, it was what he had to deal with. Giving a respectful nod towards the two assembled, Sairento reported in then looked towards the Omari, curious how he planned on running their first mission.

Chu was not disappointed with the speed at which the pair arrived. He gave Kuni a small nod and wave as she arrived and greeted him, saying little more in response. Sai wasn’t far behind her. They were both geared up with travelling kit and the like, and now that they were here he didn’t have to worry about them being late. He jerked a thumb over his shoulder at the caravan behind him. ”As you both know we’re going to be escorting this caravan to the Tokugawa lands. Not much to be said, we’ll be doing a typical formation. Sai and I will take horses and go slightly ahead of the convoy during our travels.” He indicated the hawk on his shoulder. ”Fugam will scout ahead and tell me of anything we may be walking into in advance, at least until we reach any woodlands. Kuni you’ll stick with the caravan and assist the rest of the guards. I’ve already spoken with them, they’ll be sticking close to the wagons. If you run into trouble, signal. Top priority isn’t protecting the goods, it’s protecting the merchants, so if it comes down to it leave the wagons behind.” He folded his arms and looked between the two. ”Any questions?”

Watching Sairento arrive, Kuni turned to look at Chu, who began explaining how it will all go. Chu and Sairento at the front, on horses, along with a bird called Fugam, who would apparently be scouting ahead. That was probably the better choice, as Kuni didn’t know how to ride horses. It was something she did want to learn, but it wasn’t high on her priorities list. She would be sticking to the caravan, along with the guards, and the top priority was protecting the merchants. Most of the details seemed to cover things, but there was something that came to her mind ”Just one question. How many stops are scheduled for the way?” She asked, as every additional stop on the way did mean another place they would need to secure.

Sairento nodded after hearing the orders from Chu, the plan was solid enough. With Kuni staying with the caravan, they kept a pair of eyes on the caravan while he and Chu could keep watch up ahead. When the girl asked her question, Sairento looked at her for a brief second. It was a pretty good question, every stop meant another possible threat could lurking. He would’ve much preferred a straight route, but then again Sairento wasn’t a big fan of escort missions to begin with. So that might have just been his desire to get it done quickly talking. ”Rules of engagement? We waiting for confirmation they’re a threat or incapacitating before they become one?” The man asked with little hint of emotion in his voice.

Chu pulled a small folded map out of his breast pocket and presented it to the pair after unfolding it, motioning for them to come closer. He traced the route they would take with his finger, tapping a marked village on the way towards the Tokugawa lands ”Not counting the stops they will take to make camp every evening, we will be stopping in only one place. Talon village. It’s a place that is on the way to the lands of the Tokugawa. We’ll stop there for a day while the caravan takes on additional goods for the return trip. It will be about three weeks before we make it to the destination if we make good time, a month if we make bad time. We’ll take the same route back, though i’d say we’ll probably be looking to stop halfways to purchase some supplies for the way back.” He folded up the map and replaced it in his pocket before turning his attention to the question posed by Sai. ”It should go without saying that you are to confirm a threat before you neutralize it on this mission. We’re in the Empire, not some foreign land or hostile territory. Use your own judgement. If you make a mistake that unnecessarily costs the life of a civilian or causes unnecessary injury, the consequences will not be light, so take into careful consideration who it is that you deem a threat before you act. Additionally, if we come across bandits and the like i’d much prefer it if you capture rather then kill any of them.” He looked between the pair again. ”Anything else?”

Stops every night, and one in the Talon village. Overall, a three weeks trek at best, a month’s at worst. That certainly summed up the answer to her question. When Chu answered Sairento’s question, Kuni couldn’t help but briefly wonder how big was the risk that anyone would try and attack the convoy because she was travelling with them. But then again, how many people really knew who she was outside of Ame? Just because her being a Jinchuuriki was public knowledge, didn’t mean it spread out. She hasn’t done anything important or big to warrant her name becoming known beyond Ame, after all.

Looking at Chu, she shook her head. If anything will happen during the mission due to someone targeting her, then she will take the blame on herself, as the one who didn’t fully consider the possible consequences. But for now, knowing the Jounin Commander had knowingly tasked them with this mission, Kuni intended on following what needed to be done to the best of her capabilities.

Sairento simply nodded in response to Chu’s small speech about the rules of engagement. This would complicate things a bit, but it was nothing he couldn’t handle. Though hearing that they had one major stop caused the anbu to give a slight frown. He wondered for a moment how things were in that city for a moment, and if they would need to worry about an hostile presence. Zealots, Bandits, or otherwise. He’d make sure to keep an eye out as they got close in particular. ”No more questions.” He said simply, and gave a small shrug. Though he did wonder what Chu wanted to do with any bandits they captured, haul them all the way to Konoha? That seemed quite inefficient…

Momentarily Chu’s look lingered on Sairento examining the stony anbu’s face. He did not exactly know the details of the demotion of the former anbu. Just as he needed to be cautious with Kuni and her status as a jinchurikii, he would have to be careful with Sairento. If his demotion was because of disobedience in the line of duty, it would not be good to rely upon the man’s trustworthiness when faced with following orders or doing what he seemed best. Nearby, the caravan guards were saddling up on their horses and the merchants were clambering onto the wagons. The hawk on his shoulder gave the two in front of Chu an almost human sideways glance, before screeching and lifting off with a few powerful beats of his wings, climbing into the sky and lazily circling far above the caravan. ”Very well. Let’s go then.” He walked over to a hitching post where two horses with full tackle and filled saddlebags rested. He swung himself onto the horse and cast a glance at Sairento. ”Sairento, don’t go further then two miles ahead of the caravan, and do not engage if you don’t have to if you encounter danger. Signal and retreat to the caravan, we’ll make a plan from there if we do encounter hostiles.”

Hearing that it was time to depart, Kuni made her way to the caravan, looking at the guards who were going to be close to her ”Good morning.” She told them with a smile, as she got onto the caravan and sat in the spot that one of the guards indicated for her to sit at. While they did not return the morning greeting, the same guard that showed her where to sit offered her a nod with his head, before moving away. Turning to look ahead, Kuni waited for them to begin travelling.

Sairento wondered for a moment if Chu even knew the reason he was removed from the ANBU. He knew how to escort a VIP and such, and certainly wasn’t stupid. But either way Sairento betrayed no sign of his inner thoughts. Instead he simply nodded as he moved to and climbed on one of the two horses. ”Lead the way then.” He said in a simple tone with a gesture forward, figuring it best for the team lead to set the pace for the travel. At least for the two of them.

Chu did not reply, instead tugging the reins of the horse and turning it away, setting forward at a walk. He stopped briefly beside the caravan and looked to one of the merchants who temporarily stopped loading the crates in the back of the wagon to look at Chu. ”Alright, we’ll be going ahead and check the agreed upon route as we discussed.” The merchant gave a grunt in reply and then turned back to his work, putting the last of the crates in the wagon before climbing aboard. With that, Chu moved his horse forward at a walk down the road, not waiting to see if Sairento was following. His sword bounced slightly at his side as the horse moved through the streets, the black metal unreflective despite the already bright sun. Despite it only being just past dawn, Chu noted with disinterest the many different merchants that were out setting up their shops for the day. Briefly he wondered if any of the old clan members were among them. As spread out as his clan had become, it would not be surprising.

Not paying full attention to what Chu was now saying to a merchant who was putting on the wagon the last few things, Kuni simply offered him a reassuring smile as the man got on and sat down besides the merchandise. She felt kind of lucky to be where she was, as she was quite curious about the Tokugawa, the merchants and much more, and this put her in a good spot to speak to them. But she decided to wait until they departed, as the merchants themselves were still finishing packing. There was no need to interfere until they got going, at which point she felt it would be safe to assume the merchants would be more available to discuss the smaller topics.

Sairento wordlessly set out after Chu, his gaze drifting in what seemed a lazy motion across the area. Yet he was carefully watching as they went ahead, weary of threats despite not having gone far yet. With the state Amegakure had been in as of late, he wouldn't be overly surprised if somebody had tried to make a move on a caravan. As he looked around, the man wondered how eventful their trip would be. With any luck, it would prove to be uneventful and the mission would be an easy success.
 
 

Aliceee

Fierce Rebel
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept
Genders You Prefer Playing
Female
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Fine doing both/Aggressive
Favorite Genres
Fantasy, modern and magical.
Genre You DON'T Like
Scifi, yaoi, some horror, furry.
Operation: Cursed Night
Kirigakure, the capital of the Republic of the Water Country.
Part 1

A collab by Team Mika - 14.

Summary:​
The team has been given the objective to rally and then make to the villa of a certain merchant. The goal is to make it seem as if the villa has been raided by Suzu insurgents. Though the security isn't tight, it won't be an easy mission for a team filled up by genin and only one jounin - to watch and lead their every move. Soon enough, the genin of team 14 learn what horrors can await in the night.


  
Waiting, Mika didn’t feel anxious for what was to come. These kind of missions were anything but a rarity for the experienced or more seasoned of operatives. If anything today would be a challenge, it would be to reign in and keep her team to operate properly. If they wouldn’t succeed today, she doubted that they ever would.
Good thing was that the genin wouldn’t know anything else than that they were given a mission that wasn’t a joke. It was, in Mika’s opinion, the only kind of intel they needed before heading out. Questions weren’t necessities that should be given to a mere pack of genin.

The team gathered, relatively well on time. Mika made them inspect their gear. Their weapons specifically. For the mission, each of them was given a certain kind of cloth that they had to pull over their faces to cover their features - leaving only their eyes visible. Any sign of their affiliation with the Republic was to be left at the rally point. No headbands or anything that could give them away.
Then once she was sure that they seemed ready, Mika would address the team.

”Today, none of you will write history. This night? It won’t exist in documents. It won’t appear on your record if it is either a success or failure. You won’t speak ever of it. If you do,” the woman introduced a pause as she shot each genin a glare. ”I will find you. And cut out your tongue before I strangle you with it. This mission ain’t a laughing matter. People are going to die today. Better make sure that you ain’t one of those unfortunate souls.”
Once she was sure that the warning was given, the jounin continued on to explain what they were going to do.
”We are going to raid an estate. Our goal? To apprehend Mr. Yasuda, an Imperial. No harm must come to him. His guards, however? They must be silenced. Then we will make it look as if it was a raid planned by thugs. We are to act like we are members of the Suzu.” For a moment, Mika’s gaze fixed on Aya Oda. ”I know some of you don’t like the idea of guising yourself as one of them. But believe me, this night, your personal preferences matter not. Now, keep those mouths shut if you don’t want me to sew them shut!”


  

The estate was looming in the distance. A simple, two meter high stone wall marked the boundary of the estate. There were some lights coming through the curtains, indicating that the denizens of the estate weren’t asleep yet. There was a main gate but it was closed. And knowing from intel given, Mika was aware that it was guarded by two guards. A not feasible entrance but perhaps exit, she thought to herself. Then there had to be four more hired swords from some mercenary guild. Their quality was described, on paper, nothing to be higher than a chuunin’s prowess. Thus, they were in the martial department faring better than her genin. The only advantage was that they didn’t use ninjutsu.

”You lot,” Mika said in a hushed tone, ”Each of you, got a minute before we move over the wall. Say your prayers, make peace with your God. I don’t care. In a minute, we are all going.”

Taishiro was admiteddtly feeling a bit uneasy with the situation. Just the way that Mika-Sensei spoke about the mission, it gave him a sense of worry in his gut. Yet at the same moment, he knew that shinobi were expected to do whatever was tasked to them, and this was nothing more than another task assigned to this team. So with these thoughts Taishiro pushed that gut feeling down as best he could and silently sent prayers to whatever deity may be listening as Mika told them. His only request being that they help his father should he not survive the night. With that done, the boy looked towards Mika with no expression in his eyes past the mask. Hoping tonight wouldn't go too terribly.

Listening to Mika, Aito found himself curious. Who would just give them this mission. The explanation was long and the mention of how difficult it would be did make him nervous. Not one but twice they were warned in some way on how this mission could kill them. ”Sensei why would they send us? What makes us special compared to more experienced shinobi?” Looking over at the other two genin he wondered if they could do it. He knew nothing about them and they have had little to no experience working together. ”I got your back so have mine, okay?’ He grinned under the cloth at his teammates. A thumbs up was given then his attention went back to Mika.

Overlooking the estate in the distance that their objective would be found in, she couldn’t help but feel a bit discouraged. Not because of the mission’s style, or the fact no one would know what truly happened this night, not even masquerading as Suzu. Letting out an internal sigh as her eyes peered out through the cloth, luckily hiding her disdain right now. Make peace with their gods was an understatement, she never felt closer to death’s door in her life and she has been on multiple missions with high risk of death.

Staring at her teammates she couldn’t help but feel her will sink further, mostly after Aito’s comments which were so not comments one would say in this situation. He could have her back all he wanted, if he fucked up he was so on his own. The same went for Taishiro, the way she saw it this was just another mission to weed out those that couldn’t make it. She simply gave a nod to Mika to show she was ready, and a slight shake of her head when she looked at Aito who went from no confidence to wanting to watch each others backs.

The jounin took the time to observe the situation once more. There was no sound or questions raised from the likes of Aya or Taishiro. The question of Aito made Mika throw a look over her shoulder to the three genin. The blank expression on the woman’s face together with the dark of the night made it hard to distinguish what the jounin thought or felt about the genin’s question.
”Nothing. If you want a honest answer, I could do this alone.” Letting a second of pause follow, to make sure that the fact started to sink in, Mika continued calmly. ”You guys need to gain experience. No gaining that with doing simple patrols or always lingering behind.”

Briefly, Mika wondered what Nishi or Kukiko would reply. If anything, this newer generation of shinobi were softer indeed. But disciplining them now wouldn’t benefit the mission. The question did briefly raise some doubt if these kids were ready for what was to be done. Even while Taishiro and Aya had managed to survive some scuffle before, that wasn’t against fellow humans.

Then the jounin moved. The streets were deserted, so far they could see. No verbal warning or instruction was given as the hooded woman moved forward - no sound produced from her footsteps. Yet her pace was quick, her movements betraying her experience and training for these kind of missions.
Nearing the wall of that made up for the boundary of the estate, Mika pressed her left shoulder against it. Glancing at the genin, she would try to gesture them to be silent. It would be best if they wouldn’t yet use any chakra.
There hadn’t been any warning of sensory nin guarding the place. But entirely trusting the information given was a rookie’s mistake. To be wary of the unexpected or possible hindrances was the way to go.
”Wait for my signal. Don’t yet use any chakra. Try to help each other over the walls. I will give a soft whistle once you guys can move over.” Mika whispered to the genin.

In a quick movement, the woman would turn to the wall. Jumping upwards, she gripped the top of the wall with her gloved hands as pressing a boot against the wall. This movement quickly was followed with the jounin vaulting over the wall, disappearing from the genin’s sight.
Landing on the other side, Mika soflty grunted as she quickly shot a look around. The gardens revealed in a way the wealth of the family. The decorations, the neatly trimmed trees and pathways.
Seeing no guards, the jounin would softly whistle, hoping that the genin would attempt to move over now. Else? Mika didn’t mind to abandon them to further the mission.

Being the tallest of the three genin, Taishiro moved forward first and put his back to the wall. Gesturing to the other two he would give a boost if needed. Fortunately, he was confident enough that he could make it over the wall quick enough. He doubted that they should keep Mika waiting, he knew that she wouldn't really tolerate them screwing around and taking forever. Especially since doing just that would probably prove to be bad for the mission.

When Mika had given him the honest response Aito nodded. It did make sense they needed experience. Listening to the instructions he watched as Mika was up and over then gone. Seconds later the soft whistle was heard and Taishiro had moved to the wall. Gesturing he would help Aito move over and with the boost he got to the top. Looking down at the other two he waited a moment before dropping over. He would have stayed to help either up but being on the wall too long may draw attention and he knew that. At the bottom he made sure he was steady in case one of them needed help landing.

She saw that answer coming and honestly it only made her will drop even further, mostly since she was basically forcing them to work together while she went on ahead. As evident by her getting over the wall but wanting them to work together to get over it. Something that she dreaded inside. As Mika went up and over, it came as a surprise as Taishiro took the initiative and placed himself with his back to the wall. Using himself as a boost, she actually felt a bit pleasantly surprised. Until Aito went first and as Aito got to the top, he then just as quickly got to the bottom. ‘Oh that little…’Moving over and using Taishiro as a boost, she would lay low on the wall and lower her hand to help pull Taishiro up and over the wall, something that would have been much easier with a bit of extra muscle.

Opting to wait, Mika remained in the shadow. There were still no signs of the guards that could be on a patrol. Glancing over her shoulder, the first member of her team came briefly into sight. It was Aito, who moved over the wall and dropped himself on the opposite side.
Then Mika saw Aya but noticed she didn’t drop herself on the ground right away. Judging from how she positioned and moved herself, it was clear she was intending to help Taishiro mount the wall.
Not a word left the lips of the woman as she made a mental note on the performance of the genin.

Waiting for them to rally behind her, she would gesture them to stay silent and stay with her. There were some lights inside but it was too little to indicate that the entire household was awake. At best, there were the guards and servants.
Mika glanced over her shoulder at the genin. Though she whispered, the woman’s voice would be audible enough to carry over the cold instruction.
”We will leave nobody alive.”

That said, the jounin would creep forward without creating a sound. As a cat, the jounin’s movement betrayed that she was focused and determined to succeed the mission. Nearing a nearby door, she took a position left of it. Gesturing that one of the genin should take a spot at the other side and the two others ready to move in, Mika would wait till they would take their position.

After boosting both his teammates over the wall, Taishiro turned to notice Aya still on said wall and holding down a hand to help him over. Quickly and quietly he took her hand, with both working together he was able to make it over quickly enough. He moved to follow along quietly, positioning himself not far behind Mika and keeping his head on a slight swivel to try to keep watch. As they neared the house however, he heard Mika's whisper cut through the air. Her words for a moment chilled him worse than the air around him. The ruthlessness in that statement didn't sit terribly well with Taishiro. Then he reminded himself that this was the job, and that it would be either him or them very soon. Which helped ease his nerves slightly.

As they arrived at the house’s door, Taishiro moved silently to the other side once Mika gestured for him to do so. He figured he silently placed a hand on the grip for his tanto, hoping to be prepared if the need came up. His gaze then moved to look back towards Mika, waiting on her next instructions.

After aiding Taishiro up, she would slide down the wall to join up with the others. Giving a glare at the back of Aito for wanting them to watch his back but quickly fucking off when it was needed. Stopping behind Mika she would keep quiet as she followed behind the cloaked woman who spoke softly to them about what they were about to do. No one was to be left alive, something that seemed so easily spoken yet should be so much harder to do. It briefly made her remember some of the innocents that she killed when trying to fight her pursuers when Hiro died. Those were accidents yet still hard to remember. Yet she had no doubt that some that would die tonight would also be innocents, yet this time they were out to kill on purpose.

Still following her sensei who would stop on a side of this door, with Taishiro stopping on the other. Mika made it obvious enough that Aito and her would be the ones charging in. Pausing and looking at Aito she mumbled in her head as she got her katana ready for whatever may come.

Everyone was up and over. Then Mika spoke about not leaving a person alive. Of course that didn't sit well in his stomach. Did everyone mean even people who wouldn't fight back? As their leader came to the door and took position, Aito followed. Not much was spoken and the silence could be cut with how thick it was. Watching Taishiro take up opposite of Mika when she gestured meant it was his and Aya's job to go in. Eyes locked when he glanced at her and she readied her katana. Biting his lip he nodded as his hand gripped one of his own blades, his other hand ready on the second sword he carried. Feet grinding into the ground, Aito looked at Mika and nodded once more to show he was ready.
 

Oblivion666

That One Grumpy Pants
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”Taking It Back”

Empire of Akino
Amegakure

A collab between Mary, Jason, Talent, and Oblivion

Summary: The group continues to explore this possible lead only for an unfortunate event to happen.

Size: Short


Kali gritted her teeth, listening to Mitsunari chew her out was mildly frustrating and embarrassing to say the least. Biting her tongue she responded with “ copy that, sir in a monotone voice. She took a step back from the crate and stepped into the shadows, keeping away from prying eyes. Taking refuge in an alleyway that was positioned to the left of the bar itself. From her line of sight she could see a door with a canopy. “ I see an entrance Ryu, I’m gonna investigate, is it clear to proceed?” the young adult had asked.

Moving over the rooftop, Yone wondered how the others were doing. Seeing they were given different communicators, it was for a reason that she didn’t hear or receive any intel on their part of the mission. Trying to rationalise it didn’t do much to calm her nerves entirely.
Arriving at the new position, Yone couldn’t see much of an entrance or spaces that those inside could move out from. But also limited their entrances inside. Crouching to stay out of sight, despite being concealed in the dark of the night, Yone raised her left hand. Pressing on the communicator, she didn’t speak right away. There was a reason why Mitsunari had given separate communicators to Kali and Ryu.

Yone briefly felt a mixture of amusement and frustration. It was an odd sensation that went together with the brief idea if Mitsunari considered her a possible traitor. Shaking the idea out of her mind, Yone spoke up in a soft voice.
”This is Y,” she said, pausing for a moment, ”Request two taps for approval, to return back to starting position.”
Becoming silent, Yone would stay at her position. Hoping that the request wouldn’t seem too odd. Hopefully, Mitsunari would figure out that she was trying to prevent him to speak up and establishing a form of communication to evade possible eavesdroppers.

Besides that one blunder that happened, overall they weren’t doing horrible. They could certainly be doing a better job, that’s for sure. Ryu would need to improve how she does her lookout duties, Kali needed to improve how she went about being stealthy, Yone was doing fine but it looked like she was exerting herself a bit to accomplish the task. Which was fine, but they had time and thus she could take her time. As time progressed the other communicator went off with Yone requesting two taps to return to the starting position.

A slight chuckle escape him as he gave the two taps for approval, It showed that she was being aware of what could happen. Granted those odds were low, but it was certainly a smart move nonetheless. Now all that was left was for Kali to get in quietly and examine the inside and then get out quietly.

Moving just slightly, but ever so slowly and quietly Ryu looked around as much as she could to see if she could find anybody. Out of the corner of her eye, Ryu noticed movement that soon revealed itself to be a group of four seemingly in conversation as they made their way past the bar. From the looks of it as the group came closer and what she caught of their conversation, the four were simply on their way to work. Where? She hadn’t caught that much from their conversation. ”Group of four walking by.” Ryu said softly into the communicator to give Kali a warning. However, the group seemed more or less caught up in their own conversation. Hopefully that would be enough to keep anything from looking overly suspicious. It certainly seemed as much as the four continued walking on down the street, right past the bar. ”Clear now.” Ryu added once the four had passed and she glanced out to make sure that there wasn’t anybody following them.

Kali watched as the four Ryu had mentioned walking by, lost in their own conversation, clearly they were just civilians enjoying the city. It was funny to think that some were oblivious to the conflict around them, they would never know that they had walked past a group of shinobi on mission. Once given the all clear, she moved with haste, pulling out a little pocket mirror from her vest, and got to her knees once she was at the door and used the mirror to see under the doorway, she didn’t see any bodies, just what seemed to be numerous shelves with junk all over it in a dimly lit room. A single door was left ajar in the said room, but she couldn’t see too much past it. Slipping the mirror back into her vest, she put her hand on the doorknob and slowly twisted the handle to feel that it was unlocked, lady luck was on her side. She opened the door slowly, and just as it opened a bell had rung right above her causing her breathing to stop as she became frozen in place. She was frozen for about half a minute before letting out a quiet sigh quietly and started to slip in, making sure that the handle slowly reset itself before letting go. “ I’m in...it’s quiet...Keep me posted if anyone is about to come in this way, Ryu ” The former ANBU spoke softly

Waiting patiently for a response, Yone once more wondered how things were going for Ryu and Kali. But considering that Kali was an ex-ANBU, Yone hoped that there wasn’t much need to worry on that front. Returning as quick as she could to the place where she had left Mitsunari, the genin would offer a resolute salute to the man.
”Reporting back, sensei.”

She would keep a serious tone as she would give the details on the building.
”There is the front door. Nothing special there. Windows are present on the front and sides of the building. There is a door at the right of the building. An entrance or exit for those who work at the place. I wasn’t able to spot anything else noteworthy or possible exits from my scouting.”

From her position in the alleyway, Ryu noticed movement in the corner of her eye. Three civilians seemed to be coming down the alleyway she was hiding in. The girl swore slightly to herself, then looked around to see how she could avoid seeming very suspicious. To her right was a trashcan with what seemed to be some rather full trashbags lying on the ground next to it, as if somebody had just lazily thrown it over there. Removing her pouch of ninja tools to hide behind one of the discarded bags, she had a… rather gross plan. Slowly Ryu moved over, grabbing one of said bags as standing to toss it in the trashcan as the civilians would come into line of sight. Her face looking a bit disgusted with the task, both from how she actually felt and as she imagined anybody her age would be feeling about such a task. The trio seemed much too caught up in their own conversation to care much about some girl taking out the trash as they passed on by and paid her no mind. Ryu continued her ‘task’ until the trio had left the alley, before returning to her previous spot and grabbing the hidden pouch to reattach it. She was certainly going to need a bath after this.


The young adult moved deeper into the room that she could only assume was a storage room, she moved closer to the door that was slightly left ajar, and used the mirror once more to see what laid before her in the next room. From what she could see in the reflection, the room was dimly lit, but seemed very vacant. She slid the pocket mirror into her pouch once more and peered over the doorway to get a better view. The room was empty, lots of vacant tables and chairs, some with a few worn playing cards that lay around the table. The bar seemed to have many different types of liquor, that look as if they haven’t been touched in ages with all the dust that was on it. She looked around the door frame to see if there was any other surprises like the last door with the bell. Once she spotted nothing she moved on into the room staying low to the ground and moving ever so slowly to not disturb anything or anyone.

She slowly made her way to another back room door, and slid the mirror under the door, only to see extra furniture and foldable chairs laying around, the room was vacant. Moving away from the door, she moved over to what seemed to be a kitchen, everything had seemed to be ruined and filthy, as if no one had touched this place in quite a while. She didn’t spend too much time there before slowly and quietly moving up the stairs quietly and looking over the banister to see that there was only more tables and chairs, completely unoccupied.

Moving back into the main room where the bar laid, she stood at the end of the stairs, her eyes darting around to see if she had missed anything else. It was then that Kali had spotted a door behind the bar that was left slightly open, from what she could see from the slight opening it would lead into the basement.

The bar seems very dead… Got a storage room, aside from the one I went through to get in, a kitchen, and an upstairs level that is just for seating. There seems to be a door behind the bar that leads to a basement, I’m going to check it out now. ” The former anbu spoke softly through her radio relaying the message.

Evaluating the group’s progress and how they went about things, he noticed some flaws for sure that would need to be fixed. For the most part it wasn’t too horrible, so when Yone came back and reported what she saw as possible exits and entrances and would nod and smile. ”Good job, we will go over this better when the other two report back in as well.” Mitsunari said as he could still hear what those two were talking about as he was on their channel as well.

The door Kali spoke of led into downwards into the dark where step by step it only grew darker and darker. Until at the bottom of the steps only pitch black would remain. The very vague dark outlines of barrels made it appear as if it was like any other ordinary storage for the excess alcohol the place sold. Yet the room was far too dark to properly see further in.

Yone nodded. Not because she entirely understood what Mitsunari meant - for she had no idea on how the other members of the team were doing. Nor that she actually cared much. She had done her task and wanted to get on and over with it. The temperature was low due to the cold season and the fact that they were out in the night.
Making sure that she wasn’t in sight for those on the street, the genin would lazily look around. There wasn’t much that she could do at the moment. Bothering Mitsunari on how long they could be waiting would only likely receive the man’s disapproval.

Ryu wanted to be able to do more to help Kali inside with scouting, but her orders were quite clear. She was to be the lookout for Kali, and so she had to keep doing that. Keeping a close watch for anybody coming in case the woman suddenly needed to leave the bar, and to ensure she didn't get surprised by anybody herself, Ryu remained in her little spot in the alleyway, hoping that things wouldn't go sour any time soon.

Time would go by for a few more minutes before Kali and Ryu would return with Kali explaining what she found inside, seemed like a normal establishment for the most part. They had the possible exits that could be used as well as where this meeting was most likely being held. Now all they had to do was wait for this group to show up. Yet as more and more time passed by them with the darkness of night sinking in, the more odd it started becoming that no one was showing up. After twenty more minutes went by with no one arriving, Mitsunari gave the command to stay put to the rest of the team and vanished.

A few minutes would go by before he would reappear with a rather angry look on his face along with a note. He informed them that the zealots had known about them showing and thus changed where they were holding their meeting. Thus a wasted opportunity this was, he would then disperse them until he would call upon them next time for hopefully another lead.[/spiler]
 

Oetje

Stormraven
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Really sporadic. My schedule is somewhat of a mess at times.
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I can go with both. I am rather flexible.
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I like a lot of genres such as magical, modern, fantasy. Anything with an interesting plot.
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A choice being made - In the North, part 2
Lightning Country,
The Hojo Clan.


A post regarding the Hojo clan's stance towards the Regency Council and its demands. A post that will give insight on what the Hojo will do in return to the demands of the Council.

Previous Post


  

It continued on. Various prominent members that served the Hojo spoke up. Most were quite clear on where they stood. They disagreed with the new demands of the Regency Council. It was against the privileges that they had been granted when the country had been established. It was furthermore nothing but a shameful affair that a mere band of commoners and a few priests were consulting the future daimyo. Without a representation of their own or somebody that could make the future daimyo understand the importance of the nobility, the clans, what future did the Lightning country have?

The only that hadn't spoken was Miyara Uyeda. A member of the Miyara clan and despite growing out of his prime, still considered the most skilled swordsman that served the Hojo clan. The man had an esteemed military record, only having suffered two defeats. Though most argued that those defeats were valiant in nature, for Uyeda hadn't the resources at the time to pull off a victory. The bald swordsman that had gained the monikker: Sword of the Miyara, remained silent, seemingly drawn into his thoughts and ponderings.
Maero waited as some of the other lords were talking, agreeing that the Regency Council was enforcing them to take up the sword to defend the honour of their clans. To defend the sacred balance and privileges of the nobility.

"Master Miyara," Maero began, causing the present men to turn silent as they would slightly bow their head as soon as their lord began to speak again.
"What is your opinion? Do you believe that we can stand against the Regency Council?"

Uyeda remained silent for a second.
"Yes lord. I do believe we have a chance. But we need to be resourceful. For even if we would rally our entire force, we will not be certain of a victory." A second of silence followed Uyeda's answer, for none present dared to question the bald veteran's opinion.
"I may suggest that we mobilise some of our forces. And perhaps not regard our soon to be a foe as honourable. They are still led by a peasant. Not by the son of the late feudal lord, my lord. So, we can't dishonour us, for there is no honour to be lost to fool and taking care of a peasant."

Barely had Uyeda finished or soft mumbles could be heard as everybody in the room agreed. Some already seemed eager to suggest something to Maero, the lord of the Hojo clan.
Slowly and very calmly, Maero would raise a hand and once more silence would dawn into the room.
"It is clear then. We shall ready ourselves to combat the Regency Council and its minions. "
The men at the table would all bow their heads, towards Maero Hojo.


  

Kosami's Hold was bustling with activities. The usual and almost strict order that seemed to be ruling over its denizens was now disturbed. Men clad in armour and carrying weapons were marching in small formations in the streets. Some of these formations would gather in a place to become a larger unit, before marching towards the main gate. Thus creating a stream of soldiers, banner carriers and only followed by a stream of waggons pulled by horses and the usual camp followers.

As this would take place, Maero stood on a balcony that provided a good view on some of these formations of soldiers marching out of Kosami's Hold.
"Send an emissary to Yama, where they will have to travel towards Okutokan. Bearing gifts for the Iron Lord. With best regards from the Hojo."
The servant would make a deep bow before walking away as Maero continued to observe the formations of soldiers marching out of his family's ancestral stronghold.
 

Aliceee

Fierce Rebel
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Fine doing both/Aggressive
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Fantasy, modern and magical.
Genre You DON'T Like
Scifi, yaoi, some horror, furry.
When the Cloud Bursts
A GM post.

| The Empire of Akino | The Imperial Rain province |
Amegakure, the provincial capital.


'The Assault of the Three.'

The day started as those before. People would head to their work. Establishments of various sorts would go open without much trouble. Mothers would attend to their tasks at home, likely considering what they would cook for the dinner. Not to mention the guards that would patrol the streets, alert for any sign of unrest.
However, despite the latest victories acquired against the combined might of the Zealots and Insurgents, their guard had diminished. People were less wary of shinobi - despite the last few troubles that had arisen with the actions of some shinobi.
The heralds on the street corner would inform any curious person that approached them as any bystander that the guard had caught more suspects on the murder of the commander of the guard and police. That the Yondaime Amekage would see to it that the city would continue to thrive in peace.

That this day would spark a new future for Amegakure.
One of a bright future.
And the people actually started to believe the shouting heralds, that delivered the promise of the Yondaime Amekage.

Only for chaos to stir up.
Without a warning, it would flood the city. The chaos, violence and panic seemed to suddenly rise and grip its claws around the throat of the city, attempting to suffocate it with a force not equalled by the previous riots.
Gangs of armed men would take control over the streets, fighting against guards and members of the 4th Imperial Division that got stationed into the large city. Large groups of civilians would attempt to scurry away from the chaotic fights, only aiding to spread the panic and confusion.
Despite the constant rain, it didn't stop the various fires that started to burn in the southern parts of the city - the location of the poorer districts. Most fights started there and the city guard started to lose ground while the unknown attackers started to gain more dominance. Eventually, small parts started to split and harass innocent bystanders. Regardless of age and gender, nobody seemed spared of the sudden attacks.

To make matters worse, the Amekage office seemed to be under attack as well. A large group had managed to breach the complex and overwhelm the first few defences. A few rallied emergency forces of soldiers, guards and shinobi attempted to take the complex back. Only to be repelled by a force that seemed composed out of men that were on par with their training and weapons.
A few groups attempted to flee the city but it seemed that even on the outskirts, the sudden and unknown attackers had rallied some groups. These groups easily preyed on the panicked civilians, attacking them out in the open of the outskirts of Amegakure with impunity.

The only place of relative peace in this tide of bloodshed, chaos and strife seemed to be the north-eastern part of the city. Where the Imperial barracks were located. However, large groups of civilian start to flood the area. And with it, tension rising among the panicked and unyielding mass.
 

Lesli

Secret Shadow
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Anything with a good plot or twists to it.
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Training in Alfstedt - Part 1
Within the Hon clan, the House of Magnhild.
Empire of Akino, the western sphere of the Fire province.


A collab between Winter and Lesli.

Summary:
With the group temporarily staying in the small settlement of Alfstedt, Aiko decides to use some of the time to train Satia. The genin is going through a rather generic training exercise, meant to hone her overall skills and abilities. But Aiko has a few questions in mind, that she will subject Satia later to.



  
It seemed far from a regular training field. There was a thick layer of snow present, suffocating and hiding the ground away under the white, cold blanket. The dark grey mass of clouds almost seemed to threaten with more snow from the heavens but for the entire morning it hadn’t snowed or rained.
The field was a bit out of the hamlet of Alfstedt. The distance allowed some privacy and yet wouldn’t be too far away. At a decent pace, it would be a fifteen minute walk if nothing more. The location was also rather easy to find, if followed by the instructions.

In the middle of the field stood Aiko. Her fists, dressed in leather gloves, were resting against her hips as she considered to clear the clearing of the snow. Deciding against it, the woman threw a glance at the few materials that she had brought with her. Considering the objectives of today’s training with Satia, she didn’t need much material. If there was any need for it, she could figure out another way to make due.
Watching how her breath became visible as she sighed out, Aiko hoped that the genin in question wouldn’t overslept or get herself lost.

Training with Aiko always sparked a good amount of intrigue in Satia whenever it was scheduled as thus far each session had proven itself more than useful, if not in terms of teaching her techniques than definitely in giving her something to think about for the future. Because of this she was rather eager to engage in the training session offered as she made her way to the specified location where she was to meet the Jounin.

Upon arrival the chosen area hadn’t been what she’d expected, the layer of snow causing her brow to furrow slightly as her gaze swept over the white sheet before resting upon the waiting figure standing at its center. Satia exhaled a breath of her own before making her way over, her shawl covering the bottom half of her face with her dull grey cloak gently fluttering with each pass of air that swept against her.

Eventually she arrived within conversation distance, inclining her head respectfully before placing her fist against her palm as she gave the Chonobi greeting. “Good morning Aiko-Sama” she said softly before adding, “You asked me here for training?” she enquired, interested in what she might have planned for her within the session.

"I indeed did." The woman added an affirmative nod to her short answer. With her left hand, Aiko made a subtle gesture to the field on which they would conduct their training on. "A little bit raw, so to say. But I don’t think that I can make it any more natural than this field."
Enlisting a pause after her words, Aiko weighed the following words carefully as she would continue speaking. "Last mission you weren’t part of any detachment that fought against the zealots. I haven’t either been able to put you through any combat during the brief time that we were in Amegakure either. However, as you would expect from working in the military, combat will occur. I know you can fight. But I haven’t seen you kill before."

Letting those words sink in, Aiko would take care to observe the younger Cho in how she would react in return. "I am going to be honest. Killing isn’t meant to be easy. I prefer not to advocate it. But sometimes it has to be done. I believe that you can likely understand or maybe dream this kind of advise but still. If that time comes for you to kill your first person, you best not hesitate. We will soon work on that. But before that," the woman’s tone would become more upbeat as she started to shift the objective.
"Let us start with a warming up. I want you to clear this field of snow. How you do it? Is entirely up to you. Though," a smile crept on Aiko’s lips, "I can’t advise the usage of anything explosive. Best not to stir any local into shock."

Satia’s expression became more serious the more she listened as Aiko explained about the concept of killing, something she had indeed not had to confront before. The gravity of taking a life in theory wasn’t nearly the same as actually following through with the act in the field, taking a life wasn’t something Satia considered lightly and she wholeheartedly agreed with the sentiment that it should only be done when necessary. She’d both hear and read stories of Shinobi who come to delight in the ’thrill’ of taking a life and it was a steep slope into something far more than unpleasant.

Having never been in such a situation she couldn’t say she’d find it easy or be completely comfortable with it. To say so would be foolish and naive which is why she nodded in both understanding and agreement with the Jounin as she explained. However when she mentioned the task of clearing the field of snow her eyebrows raised as she looked around them at the quantity, her features taking on a more thoughtful expression as she tried to imagine ways in which the task could be completed. For a Shinobi in command of the fire element there would be an easy solution, however that was not her element.

“I see” she replied at first, in part to herself as she contemplated a strategy on how she might clear the field. She looked up to the sky, her brow furrowing again as she noticed no snowfall before crouching down as she took some of the snow between her fingers, almost as if she were analysing it’s consistency and perhaps something more before brushing it away. “Thawing the snow would be ideal, but not an option to me given what I have at my disposal… “ she muttered. “My natural affinity is air, lighter than snow… but with enough force generated perhaps I could push it”.

The Genin continued her observational mutterings as she worked through her own thought processes for solving the problem, “Then again.. moving it doesn’t fix the problem it’ll just move it somewhere else” she inhaled a deep breath as she sized up the length and width of the field. “Perhaps generating heat through friction will work so long as the exertion of force is equal or greater than the field dimensions”. Satia continued to sweep her gaze around the field until she was satisfied, giving a small nod as she finally came upon her solution, giving Aiko a small confident smile before she took a few steps away.

Bringing her hands to her sides she would flex her wrists gently causing her throwing knives to appear, splayed between her fingers and anchored by her thumb against her palm as she focused Chakra into them just as she’d been shown by Aiko in previous sessions where she’d been shown to do so with her fingers. Of course Satia had done this previously in order to make her knives faster, though unlike before where she’d coat a fine layer around the knives, instead she focused specifically around the points of each knife. Small orbs or air would soon swirl and form around each tip, rather big at first before slowly shrinking in size as the internal torrent of each one spun faster, compressing in on itself as the Genin focused primarily on generating heat within each through applying friction. Keeping both hands close together to make it easier to focus on all ten of them, they would shrink again, then again until the orbs shrank down to the size of beads that began to glow white and sing a high decibel of sound.

Finally she would focus additional Chakra to her feet, bending her knees before kicking from the ground to propel herself into the air, her torso twisting just before the apex of her height before she would send each tethered knife as far as she could throw them in different directions from her position. The knives would sail, the spools of wire concealed on her wrists spinning as they would glide in wide archs like artillery before falling towards the white sheet. Upon each landing the knives would detonate themselves, unleashing fast expanding domes of friction heated air with the intention of melting through the snow, expanding outwards from the epicentre of where the knife landed.

She tried to aim her trajectory in such a manner that she would gain the most amount of coverage from each landing, hoping that the remnants of snow that would escape the expanding limit of the domes would thaw through lack of supporting snow and with the environments temperature increased temporarily from the applied strategy.

Once the task was given, Aiko would let Satia try to figure on how to complete the task on her own. The temptation to give some tips or directions was present but Aiko refrained from doing so. The thought behind that decision was that it would be more fruitful to let the genin conjure a plan of her own design and then execute it. As long as she wouldn’t bring harm to herself or anybody else, Aiko wouldn’t see a reason to intervene.
Observing the genin, Aiko was content that Satia didn’t seem to ask for help or wait for any advice. Intently listening to the talking of the genin, Aiko was content that she could in a way follow the young woman’s thoughts regarding the objective.

The sighting of the genin decided to get to work motivated Aiko to start to make distance. Though not minding snow, she wasn’t eager to be delved underneath it or whatever would happen once Satia would get to work.
The handiwork of the genin did surprise Aiko, even though she kept that response hidden away from her features. Once she was done, the jounin waited a moment before she would walk back to her previous spot and speak up.
"Quite original. I had half expected you to start sweeping the snow around with wind ninjutsu. But that wouldn’t be too effective, unless you would condense the air very tightly. But I didn’t anticipate you would do this either. Good, now that is done. I have another task for you."

The woman raised her right hand and pointed at a nearby tree. There was something small stringed up at a branch. The object was tied with a small, thin rope to the branch. "I have stringed up a bell there. You’re required to bring it down without ninjutsu or any of your tools. Neither are you allowed to jerk the bell off with your hands."

Once the Genin landed and her knives had been deployed she would observe her strategy unfold, watching the snow thaw before recalling each knife individually. Usually she would recall them together but given the range they were cast from her, recalling them all would pose a risk that didn’t need to be taken. Once each one was recalled safely she would flex them between her fingers, the blades seemingly disappearing from her hands as though she’d performed some kind of magic trick. “Thank you, admittedly I thought about it but I came upon the same conclusion. Moving the snow wouldn’t solve the problem, actually it’d probably have made my task harder” she lightly shrugged with a small sheepish smile.

Sighting the tree that Aiko gestured towards, her eyes narrowed slightly as her heightened sense of perception quickly found the bell among the branches. Satia’s eyebrows raised upon hearing the next task, asked not to use any of her tools which was an interesting detail but when she surmised carried more meaning, if not one Satia herself was applying to it. Holding her hands behind her back she looked back to Aiko with a modicum of intrigue as she decided to air her thoughts openly. “If I had to guess, this would be an exercise befitting a situation where a nin may not be in a position where they can use their tools and talents, relying solely on their most basic selves to solve the problem, no?” she asked.

“I’ll try my best” she added with a small amount of confidence before making her way towards the tree, taking her time to observe it. She tried to keep a mental note of the composition of the branches in relation to the bell along with various points on the main structure fit for gripping points and solid foot positions. Admittedly it’d been a long time since she’d ever climbed a tree naturally since she was a young girl and she couldn’t help but feel a little nostalgia at the idea of climbing this one, even if the method was far more inconvenient. After a few minutes passed Satia approached the tree before pacing her foot against the trunk, reaching to grasp the lowest branch before pulling herself up.

It was by no means easy, the Genin not being one built for physical strength, however lifting her own bodyweight wasn’t so much an issue as it was pacing herself through the climb to carefully manoeuvrer through the branches towards the bell. She moved nimbly, making use of her flexibility honed from many years of dance which she incorporated in a good amount of her physical fighting prowess. Once at the bell she patiently observed it, following the length of the rope to the securing branch to see how it was secured. This would perhaps be the most difficult part as she’d have to balance herself while untying the bell, without dropping it or falling herself.

Taking in a deep breath she began to get to work, attempting to balance herself in the strongest position she could find between the branches before raising both arms to carefully and dexterously deal with the knot. It was a bit of a struggle and a few times she had to pause to rebalance herself before continuing before after several minutes the knot slackened, allowing her to take hold of the rope in one hand and carefully free it from the branch. It was only then that she realised she’d need to descend with one less hand than she had before, which meant a much slower dismount than it was a climb but eventually she managed to hop down and present the bell to the Jounin.

Once more, Aiko would just let Satia tackle the objective on her. Offering no advice or hints on how to accomplish her task. The question of before was only met with the hint of a smile from Aiko as she didn’t want to give too much away before the genin had made an attempt.
Watching from the gorund as Satia started to descend higher into the tree, the jounin was watchful for any sign that her pupil could lose her footing. Even despite having some faith that the genin could acomplish her task, Aiko prefered not to fully lay back and not have a single worry.

Soon enough the task was completed by Satia and Aiko nodded.
"Very good. And yes, indeed. You will come to face situations where you can’t rely or use your ninjutsu or tools. Requiring you to be crafty and attempt to make use of your skills and strengths. Though, can you perhaps tell me why you wouldn’t attempt to get the bell with the use of chakra or your tools?"

Satia considered the question, her gaze moving to the bell for a moment as the thought the question over before looking back to Aiko. “If I had to make a guess, perhaps the bell was tampered with something that could have adverse consequences to using those tools. Or maybe using those tools would alert others that might need to be avoided, others who might have tools of their own that make Chakra users easier to spot?”.

"Heh. I actually should have done that. But no," Aiko replied with, at first, "What I actually was trying to establish is that it is kinda odd to sometimes follow certain rules or commands. It is true that as member of the shinobi corps, you’re part of the military. We got certain rules and a hierarchy to follow. But much as you can guess, the world isn’t black and white. When somebody will order you something, it is usually for a good reason. However," the woman paused for a second, "Don’t just follow orders blindly. Not that you now need to question every command but don’t always attempt to follow a code of honour. People already consider shinobi to be honourless. No need to convince them otherwise."
Aiko wanted to add another comment to it but decided to not bring up any bitterness. Certainly not seeing how fluid the training was going. With that small lesson explained, she would move on to the next.

"Good. Now onto the next. I initially would love to work on accuracy and fighting on a distance. A feat that many genin seem to lack or not find too interesting. You, however, are one of the few that I don’t need to really train on that. Instead, I want to work with you on something else."
Walking to the material that she had prepared, on a rather disorganised heap, Aiko would pick up what seemed to be a pillow.
"I don’t have the best material to work with but this will do. I had it made stuff with some tougher material. So punching it will not be pleasant but not be too painful." Aiko explained as she patted the pillow. Seeing that the surface barely dented by the patting, it became clear that Aiko wasn’t joking regarding the stuffing.
"Going to be a bit more mundane but I want you to throw some punches and kicks. I will hold it up and well, feel free to throw in some kicks and punches. After that, we will get started on some more exercises."

Her eyebrows raised at hearing what Aiko had to say about following orders. She’d never considered the prospect of questioning what she was being ordered to do, though when she thought about it she could see how it distinguished blind pawns from those who looked further ahead and considered the consequences. She nodded and internally made a mental note to write down this particular lesson for future study, feeling it was more important than most to remember.

The next task came as a bit of a surprise to the Genin, not expecting such a simple ask from the Jounin given that punches and kicks were the bare basics of most if not all ninjutsu. Nevertheless she would comply with the ask as she moved closer into position, making another mental note that the ’pillow’ would likely have more resilience then that of a normal one. Satia’s style of ninjutsu was a little peculiar compared to the usual generic styles, forsaking fists for palm strikes and direct finger punches to harm the body from within as opposed to inflicting blunt force trauma to the surface of the body.

Because of this she engaged in her usual approach strategies, striking the pillow with a flurry of fast palm strikes and finger punches. She mixed them up, moving herself nimbly and into approach angles that made her applied combos more effective, exhaling from her lungs with each hit utilising her speed to lay down as many hits per second that she could manage. She’d break combos only to throw kicks, often after a particular type of palm strike designed to create distance to make the kick more effective as she rotated her torso, bending her shape to use different parts of her foot to angle a variety of different kicks, from direct frontal kicks all the way to spinning back kicks and heel kicks.

Holding the pillow up, Aiko had no problem to keep the object between her and her student. Allowing the pillow to take the brunt of the trauma delivered by Satia, she made sure to observe the young woman’s movement. There was a certain difference in how the genin attacked and moved her body compared to the gross of the genin she had educated. After a bit, Aiko nodded and beckoned that Satia could have a breather.
 

Aliceee

Fierce Rebel
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept
Genders You Prefer Playing
Female
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Fine doing both/Aggressive
Favorite Genres
Fantasy, modern and magical.
Genre You DON'T Like
Scifi, yaoi, some horror, furry.
A possible ally or enemy - Part 1
Asami Sanosuke,
Okino, a very important port-city in the Lightning Country | Centre of the Jun Clan.

A collab between Gerontis and Aliceee.

Summary:
After her dealings with the Sato Clan, Asami travels further southwards. Her path takes her to the city of Okino, where she decides to try to negotiate with the Jun clan. For it is in Okino that the majority of the Lightning fleet is docked and maintained. The Jun clan operate and command a large portion of the state's fleet, making them a viable and important ally to the cause of the Sanosuke-Sato alliance.

But will they ally themselves with the 'true' North?


  

The ride southwards hadn't been without any peril. With the ever-growing tension between clans and forces loyal to either the Raikage or the Regency council, Asami and her small band had to avoid as much contact as they could. Even a small band of Sanosuke travelling southwards could lead to hunting parties and what not. But Asami and her small retinue managed to reach the outskirts of the city of Okino.
Before the group would venture towards the city, Asami would give several instructions. She decided to head alone to the city as it was held and governed by the Jun clan. Nobody could say for certain which side the Jun were on. They had been granted various prestigious as influential positions over the fleet, which the majority was docked and maintained in Okino. But the city itself and its boundaries? That was land given to the Jun clan by the late lord Ranzaki Yasuhide. Which effectively made the Jun clan in debt to the crown and to the Raikage. The fact that the Jun clan had the majority of the navy effectively underneath their command and care made them a most dangerous card in the game between the Raikage and Regency council.

The few warriors that travelled with Asami weren't too happy to let her go alone. But agreed that if she wouldn't return within a day, that they would head back north and bring news on what side the Jun clan were on.
Being content with how things were set up, Asami would ride towards Okino, closing in the distance rapidly. The usual busy traffic of merchants and villagers from nearby hamlets was less than usual. Not very surprising with the fear of the loaded tension of a civil strife, that could just rise without a warning.
Reaching the main gates, she would be halted by the guards. The men were clad in light armour and held spears. Short swords and maces were picked as sidearms. And their handling betrayed an iron discipline as they kept order around at the main gate. Once Asami made it known who she was, it didn't take long before she spotted a captain ordering one of his soldiers to alert his superiors.

Being taken apart from the others that tried to enter the city, Asami briefly wondered if this would be her last day. The mere thought wasn't entirely comforting but she came to the weird conclusion that she had peace with it. The Sanosuke and Sato were readying themselves. And they actually should have a chance to keep themselves free from tyranny. The idea that her name wouldn't be more than a footnote in history didn't bother her. Glory or renown hadn't been the driving factor for her to do what she had done.

Before Asami could contemplate more, guards marched where she was. They would instruct her to come slightly disguised, for she would be escorted to the castle, in the northern part of the city.
Agreeing, Asami did consider what that meant. They could have just tried to kill her or make an attempt to parade her through the city as a prisoner. That would surely give away on whose side the Jun clan was on.

Reaching the castle gates, the guards handed her over to heavier armoured soldiers. They continued to bring Asami into the keep, where she would be brought into a rather comfortable room. The room was quite modest in terms of decorations. A certain tapestry regarding a possible Jun ancestor or hero caught Asami's attention. Soon, enough, a servant entered and requested her to follow him. The servant brought her to a room where she could refresh herself if she so desired.
Asami thanked the servant and decided to take a bath. If the Jun clan was still considering to kill her, Asami was certain that they were the most polite executioners she had ever known. Letting a possible enemy take a bath in their own keep.
There were some clothes hanging but Asami decided against it. The comfortable attire she had worn for the past week wasn't most fit for a meeting with a noble. But she prefered them as they allowed her to move in it without hindering her. If it came down to a fight, a kimono wouldn't do her much good.


  

Following the servant, Asami did subtly eye the paths and guards. It was clear that the guards doing rounds in the keep weren't your usual city guards or soldiers. They seemed on high alert and some betrayed that they weren't ordinary soldiers. Several of these castle guards didn't have a weapon that the usual men-at-arms wore. Shorter blades or knives, indicating that they were possibly Jun nin. Only clad in armour and possibly giving the idea that they were the same as the guards. Not a rare trick or strategy but neither one that Asami would let herself be fooled by.

Being led into a large spacious room, Asami noticed that there were few of the armoured castle guards present. They were located at the entrance, the few windows and a pair flanking a man sitting at a low coffee table. Judging by his clothing, this was either a prominent member in service of the Jun clan or a Jun.
The servant made a deep bow but Asami wouldn't follow. Holding her back straight, she stared at the man while waiting for the talk to start.

"Asami Sanosuke. It is an honour to receive the Red Devil, herself, into my holding. I am Jun Nobuuji. The Lord of Okino and master of the waves, as some would like to say. Please, take a seat. Would you perhaps like some tea?" Nobuuji politely spoke as he gestured to the pillow that resided at the other side of the coffee table.

"No thank you, lord Jun." Asami replied as she sat down. "I have no need for beverages or refreshments. I do thank you for the most hospitable welcome. I do, however, assume that you're aware of why I came to you?"

The lord subtly waved, dismissing the servant. Leaving him and his small group of guards alone with Asami. The question was met with a friendly smile as the man nodded. "Oh, I assume that you're here to look for allies. It is easy to guess that various clans try to bundle their strength together. Am I assuming correctly that you come on behalf of the Raikage?"

"Sorry, Lord Jun. But that assumption is wrong. I haven't come here on the instructions nor the behalf of the Raikage. Instead, I have come on the behalf of the Sanosuke and Sato clans. I take it that you have received the particular requests of the Regency council?" Asami replied, managing to stay cool and collected.

"Oh, I see. Curious development. I had expected a delegate from either the Raikage or the Regency Council. But I am most interested to hear what the Sanosuke have to say. Certainly, if they also have bonded with the likes of the Sato." Nobuuji said, before raising the teacup to gently blow on the warm liquid's surface.

Asami decided to refrain from saying anything regarding the Raikage. She hadn't any contact with Takeru or anybody else from Kumogakure. And to be honest, it wasn't bothering her at all. Right now, she was more than fine to just focus on ensuring that her clan and people would endure the coming conflict. "To hear that the Lord of the Jun is interested in what the Sanosuke have to offer, gladdens me, lord." Asami briefly nodded towards Lord Jun before she began. "Seeing the outrageous demands of the Regency Council, the Sanosuke clans have formed a defensive alliance with the Sato. We have secured the north and would welcome the ranks of the Jun among us. Seeing your current position, it would be hard to reinforce you when the time comes. But not impossible. The fleet of the Sanosuke jarls is combined threatening enough to match anything that the potential enemies have to offer. With your support, I am certain the Jun clan wouldn't have to bow down to any council or rival clan."

Nobuuji remained silent as he took in the words of Asami. Taking a sip of his tea, the clan leader slightly frowned. Placing his teacup down, he would lean forward. "I hold no illusion that if I combine my forces with you, that we rule the northern seas. I hold the navy under my influence and control. And it is true. I owe that to the Fifth Raikage. Without him, the Jun clan would be merely a footnote among clans. However, the late lord Ranzaki did grant the city and surrounding lands of Okino to my kin. Without the crown, my clan and kin wouldn't be as prosperous as they are today." A friendly smile crossed Nobuuji's lips. "I consider myself a man of honour, Lady Sanosuke. Honour, however, is a complicated matter. I owe a debt to both the Raikage and Crown. But more so to my people. I need to make a decision to what is best for my clan. And currently, Okino is quite close located to Ranzaki. If I were to openly side with anybody but the Regency council, I would face a siege by land. I highly doubt that the Raikage forces can break it fast enough to save me from being disposed of by the forces loyal to the crown."

"True. The Regency council has several fortifications and enough troops to hold off or delay any relieving force of the Raikage. Siding with him will just sentence your clan and people to the wrath of the Council. However," Asami somewhat inched forward. "Were you to side with the pact of Sanosuke and Sato, you would be able to count on our naval force. Even if the Council would besiege you on land, we can provide provisions and troops overseas. And with the Jun clan having a large naval force to their command, I am convinced that none in the north will dare to oppose us on the waters. "
 

Lesli

Secret Shadow
Roleplay Invitations
Not Taking RP Invites at this Time
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week, One Post a Week
Writing Levels
Adept, Advanced
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Both.
Favorite Genres
Anything with a good plot or twists to it.
Genre You DON'T Like
Stories that can't keep my attention focused or seem to bland in my opinion.
Training in Alfstedt - Part 2
Within the Hon clan, the House of Magnhild.
Empire of Akino, the western sphere of the Fire province.


A collab between Winter and Lesli.

Summary:
With the group temporarily staying in the small settlement of Alfstedt, Aiko decides to use some of the time to train Satia. The genin is going through a rather generic training exercise, meant to hone her overall skills and abilities. But Aiko has a few questions in mind, that she will subject Satia later to.



  
"I suppose that you’re truly warmed up now. Meaning that we don’t need to use this anymore.” Aiko would follow the comment with throwing the heavy pillow to where she had picked it up. Conjuring a shadow clone, she would gesture to the shadow clone.

"Same as before. This time, I want you to make sure that the clone doesn’t get any opening. For every opening or successful counter, you owe me ten push ups. Making your next task only more difficult.” Informing the genin of the objective, Aiko would let Satia regain some of her stamina before gesturing that she could have a go. The shadow clone would take a defensive stance and not brutishly punish the genin for any small mistake.

Once she was able to stop she took a moment to recover and catch her breath, keeping her posture straight and breathing in and out fully in measured breaths as she was taught and trained to do so. The hardened pillow had been uncomfortable to strike, but after a while the discomfort could eventually be ignored once she’d adapted to the feeling of it.

She listened as Aiko explained the next task, feeling a little twitch of nerves at the prospect of making a mistake resulting in a punishment that’d serve to increase the difficulty of the task. Such training methods weren’t an alien experience for her, but nevertheless weren’t among her favourite as she briefly recalled similar exercises conducted during her basic training days. “Very well” she replied softly with a small nod before she composed her stance, focusing on the clone as her pupils constricted slightly to click her perception into her observation of the clones movements.

Her style was developed and designed to end fights as quickly and efficiently as possible with the least amount of risk posed to the user, not for prolonged engagements where having greater amounts of sustain could prove more crucial and beneficial to overcoming the engagement. Given she was being asked to engage in what she assumed was a prolonged conflict, meant she would need to add to her style in order to make it work otherwise she may as well start doing pushups now.

The Genin inhaled a composing breath before taking a step forwards into effective range, coating her fingers in Chakra as she began engaging in fast finger punches towards various key points on the clone. The speed in which Satia applied the strikes, while potentially impressive was not what boasted her chosen style, but rather what she added to it in order to complete the task. Instead of disengaging out of reach to avoid the counterattacks, she would instead opt to redirect the momentum of it, intercepting each counter blow at an angle as she moved her body through various flexible movements to alter her position and stance so that she was always either behind the direction of movement from the clone or to the side to then alter the counter attacks trajectory away from her.

Some of the counterattacks would be parried by slaps from the back of Satia’s hands, curling her arm to guard with her forearms to push away and alter the clones movements before taking back control enough to re-engage her strike patterns. Of course the Genin was not infallible, every now and again the clone succeeded in landing a hit and as a result the young Cho would accept her pushups as a result before starting over, though with each failure she would adapt her pattern again to compensate for it, palm striking, finger punching, batting away the direct counters or altering its trajectory away from her entirely, creating her own openings in the process to continue her strikes.

Eventually Satia would draw her arms back slightly to provoke and bait a counter from the clone, waiting for the clone to counter before moving her arms in an asymmetric pattern, using the back of her hands to knock the clones arms in seperate directions before stepping forwards to deliver a double palmed strike towards either side of the sternum. The hit created just a bit of distance with the force of the ’shove’ allowing her to twist her foot to face her heel towards the clone before jumping up to deliver a spinning double kick to the clones chest to send it flying away from her.

Once more, Aiko would take the role of observer. The training went much as she had anticipated as Satia started to pick up the next part of the training with the shadow clone. Mistakes were made and some were punished but there was little sign that the genin wanted to give up or requested a break. Remaining silent, Aiko made some notes but decided to wait patiently instead of constantly to meddle in and break the pace of the training.
Only after that Satia managed to deliver a double kick to the clones chest, Aiko would let the clone disperse. The blow was quite well executed and the jounin had little reason to be disappointed with the genin’s performance.

"Good. Take a breather. You did well." The jounin stated. Waiting a moment, she would speak up a moment later. "I have contacted a friend of mine by the way. Considering the fact that your taijutsu style resembles some mannerism and what not from the Gentle Fist, my friend was so kind to provide some tips. Though he isn’t a Hyuuga, he has trained several of them in the hand to hand combat department." Aiko explained. She wondered for a moment on how Hiron felt about that, seeing it was no secret to his viewpoint on some clans and their members. Deciding not to also indulge Satia on how contact had been established, she would just continue.
"You already have a grasp for the basics. The way how you deliver the punches and aim for vital points is quite on point." The small pun briefly caused the woman to smile but she would quickly continue. "You probably already have started to study the numerous chakra points that reside in a human body. And you are starting to become more familiar with chakra flow. Now, it is time to get a bit trickier."

Gesturing to the genin to wait, Aiko would walk to the small pile of stuff and grab a few thin planks. Holding one up, Aiko would continue to explain the next part.
"The objective is easy. I want you to hit these planks with combining what you have practiced and know. But with a little twist. You aren’t allowed to use the same movement twice. To clarify," taking a second to properly weigh and formulate her next words, the jounin continued. "If you deliver a quick palm strike with your right. I don’t want you to repeat that until you have done a few others. I want you to become so familiar with the movements and using chakra flow at the same time that you can do it in your sleep. Ready?"

The Genin breathed more heavily after the clone disappeared, her arms starting to ache from the pushups and the constant movement of strikes given to the clone over the course of the exercise. She’d recompose during Aiko’s explanation, listening as she went on to explain about her friend before picking up a plank of wood which made her visibly exhale a steadying breath, unsure how her fingers would match against such a hard surface. Nevertheless she would give a small nod before giving her response, “Ready” she replied, taking an extra moment to remember not to use the same strike twice and to space the movements apart, which was easier said than done when you’ve never thought to do it before, overthinking certainly wouldn’t help her here.

Stepping forwards she would begin, aiming a direct punch with her fingers from her right hand into the wood. Her hand withdrew and her hand shook for a moment as the pain of the hard surface meeting her fingers traveled into her hand causing her to visibly wince. She shook it off and recomposed once more before her expression became more determined, throwing a variety of strikes at a slower pace than usual due to having to think more on what her next strike will be. After a few different strikes she would pause when the pain became a bit too much on her fingers, flexing them a little to shake off the pain before continuing with added determination. She refused to complain or request a break from the task, her brows knitting together as she proceeded to strike again and again, adding a new strike into her pattern as she’d pull her fingers to her palm, adapting the palm strike into a paw strike, sometimes using the ridge of her her middle set of knuckles for a blunter. albeit sharper strike.

After a short while her fingers would become tender and a little bloody, but she found that after a while the pain started to dull and her strikes slowly became harder to the point where the wood began to bend under the strike force till it eventually began to splinter and give under the pressure. Her Chakra coated fingers continued to thump against the wood and Satia gave steady breaths through her mouth as she rotated the attacks, picking up speed and power till eventually she delivered a powerful finger punch, splitting the bloodied wood in half with a satisfying ’snap’.

Tempted to ask if Satia was truly ready, Aiko would hold up the first plan. It became clear that the task started to become more difficult, which the jounin added up to the constant pace of today’s training. Holding the plank firmly, Aiko did experience the vibrations moving through her arm. While it was rather unpleasant, it was probably not as unpleasant as to try to commit and complete the task that Satia was facing.
Spotting that the genin’s fingers became a bit bloody, Aiko wouldn’t call the exercise off. Not that she was a firm believer that pain was the best motivator but she saw little reason to stop for a bit of pain and blood.

Once the wood cracked in half, Aiko watched how the upper half would fall on the ground as she still held the lower piece of the object. Nodding, to confirm that she was most content, Aiko would gesture that they were going to take a break.
Kicking the dropped upper half of the plank to where the pillow of before laid, Aiko would follow the action with throwing the lower half to the same location. Turning to Satia, the jounin placed her hands on her hips as her eyebrows slightly perked up.
"Well, so far so good. I have to say, it is good that you did decide on your own to go at it in a slower pace. Not that I could recommend it in a real fight. But we are training, so that is all fine. I actually prefer that you do something slower and perform better than to just try to do everything as fast as possible."

The woman would wait a second as she then raised her right index finger towards her cheek, lightly scratching it as something seemed to be on Aiko’s mind. "I have been wondering though. And don’t feel obliged to answer but," a certain curiosity became present in the woman’s voice, "if you had to decide between doing something that was beneficial for you but possible condemning another, would you do it? Or would you possibly condemn yourself in the process of helping somebody else? The person in question not being anybody of direct importance or somebody quite close to heart, so to say."

As Aiko threw the broken wood away the Genin took a moment to observe her hands, inspecting the extent of the damage which she quickly surmised was superficial enough to not bring her any concern. They ached and they were quite sore but she was pleased with the outcome and felt a degree of pride in having pushed through with the task till it’s completion. She’d bandage them later, probably healing up nicely within a few days with some applied medicine to speed along the process.

The question Aiko brought forward was interesting to say the least and caused Satia to take a moment to really consider it, her brows once again knitting together as she contemplated it in depth before she eventually responded. “Answering honestly, it would depend on how it conflicts with my own sense of morality. If the person in question required my help to live, then yes I suppose I would accept the consequences of my actions however negative they might be. However if that person required help in something that conflicted with my sense of morality, I would be inclined to leave them be” she replied before deciding to elaborate with an example.

“I mean, for the sake of an example. If saving someone’s life would condemn me as a consequence then it’s likely I would accept that consequence. If that person required my help in taking the life of another, then It’s likely I would leave them to endure the consequences of their own actions. I think it comes down to choices, we all have the freedom to make them no matter the situation except in specific and rare circumstances and if the person needing help is making that choice despite their better judgement I don’t see the need to involve myself at my own detriment. However when there is no choice for that individual and they need help that I’m able to give, there are circumstances I will give it even at the cost of myself” Satia replied, pausing before continuing.

“If you’re asking if I’m willing to step on others to achieve my goals and get ahead, then no… no I don’t believe I can do that and maintain a clear conscience” she finished with a reassuring nod, content with her response.
 

GlitchyBugger

[Snarky British Remark]
Writing Levels
Adaptable
Genders You Prefer Playing
Female
Miko Training
Hyuuga Compound, Empire of Akino

In the light of Tomiko failing Hiron's test, Kyoi starts her cousins training with some exercises in stealth and situational awareness, followed by some self-reflection.
__________________________________

The day after Tomiko failed her test against Hiron, Kyoi found out that she was the one assigned to training the girl to possibly pass next time, her rank and reputation were on the line in this task so she’d need to be strict. As much of a pain as it was due to how she’d treated her cousin this whole time, Miko needed to develop some sense of self-dependence so she didn’t look to others to help her every time she encountered a problem.

And so Kyoi took it upon herself to make sure the courtyard was vacant for today, she’d left a note by Miko’s bed whilst the girl was asleep to tell her where to meet her and when she had to be there.

As soon as you wake up and read this, meet me out in the courtyard for some training as soon as possible.

Kyoi

P.S. If I see you before you arrive, the training will be harder, treat it like a stealth mission.
In the courtyard Kyoi would be patiently waiting for Tomiko’s arrival, watching the direction she would usually come from. She also knew most, if not all shortcuts that could be taken to get around the Hyuuga compound, having deployed a couple of shadow clones to patrol the routes she knew Miko was most likely to take.

As per usual, Tomiko woke up rather early in the morning. She'd always been like that, only sleeping five or so hours before waking and feeling ready for the day. After the previous day's training, the girl was planning on going out to train a bit more herself. Hoping to make good on what Hiron had taught her yesterday, though these thoughts were cut off as she noticed a note at the side of her bed. Quickly reading through it, the girl nodded before stretching and letting out a small yawn. Seemed like her plan to train for the day was changing just slightly. Still, it wasn't anything the girl minded much. With a pleasant expression, the girl hopped out of bed to get ready.

Not long after, Tomiko was ready to go. Slipping quietly outside into the morning air, she immediately started making her way towards the courtyard. However, she knew that Kyoi rather likely had some way of watching the routes she was most likely to take. Instead, the girl decided to opt for taking the long way around to reach her destination. Shortly outside her home, she took a sharp turn into an alleyway that she knew led behind some of the small shops that were within the compound. It was dark and cramped, but also had a building at the end with a roof that was slightly indented. A waist high wall up top, one which she was hoping to use to stay out of sight of Kyoi. Making her way towards the wall, she activated the Byakugan and kept watch for her cousin lurking nearby…

Once Tomiko had left her room and set out on her stealth mission, both of Kyoi’s clones would meet up at the girl’s door to check if she was still present. With a quick nod between the two of them, they split off in different directions to make a sweep around each side of the compound’s exterior. Neither clone intended to be quiet nor secretive about their presence as they moved, one passing by the section of shops and the wall she’d taken refuge behind, though she would have no idea if they were making use of their byakugan, only time would tell if it were the case. With one of the clones in sight and no sign of anything else approaching, it was up to Tomiko to assess the situation and make her next move.

Moving silently as but a whisper on the wind, the girl quickly scaled the wall before her. The attempt being rather quick and simple with the use of focusing the chakra in her feet. Crouching behind the the little half-wall atop the roof, she could clearly see a Kyoi walking below. If Tomiko had to take a guess, this was some sort of clone. Kyoi was certainly not dumb enough to issue a stealth mission then leave the goal utterly unguarded. Forming a simple handseal, Tomiko narrowed her vision in on a spot just behind Kyoi as she tried to see if the clone’s chakra betrayed the use of Byakugan, while of course her focused and narrowed field of vision made it harder for her cousin to pull the same trick on her. As she did this, the girl also quietly planned her path in her mind. If she stuck to the rooftops, she would be mostly able to make it to the courtyard she was supposed to meet Kyoi in mostly unobserved. However that meant a couple of walkways between rooftops that would be in rather plain sight of heavy trafficked areas. For now, she would use the rooftops to get near the temple of Tian, from there she would need to improvise a bit, but it was also a crowded area and fortunately for Tomiko, she was quite short. Crowds made it easy to disappear.

The clone was none the wiser about Tomiko’s movements, it was likely deemed by Kyoi a bit too heavily stacked against the girl if her clones were making full use of their abilities to find her, soon the clone was out of her range and she out of it’s range.
Of course one successful evasion of what was essentially a guard patrol did not a good infiltration make.
Though her route towards the temple of Tian proved uneventful, as she arrived at the grounds around the temple she would find that it wasn’t as busy as she would have liked it to be, not to mention the fact that none of it was headed in the right direction for Tomiko to take advantage of her size as a way to meld into the crowd. If she had her Byakugan still active she’d be able to see that one of Kyoi’s clone wasn’t too far away either, right now Tomiko’s options were to either hide in a crowd and be whisked away from the courtyard, or hunker down and hope this one wasn’t using it’s Byakugan either.

As she weighed her options, Tomiko decided it better to go with the crowd. Sneaking down and deactivating her Byakugan, the girl slipped in with the crowds and slowly made her way with them through the compound. Eventually she found herself on the opposite side of the compound from where she needed to be, ducking from the crowd and into a nearby alleyway she slowly crept along the alleys between the buildings, occasionally activating her Byakugan as she cut through the center of the compound via the back alleys.

As far as Tomiko could see whether she was using her chakra sight or not, there was no definite sign of either of Kyoi’s clones as she made her way back to the courtyard. There were brief moments where one would be at the fringe of her field of view, but they never seemed to pass by close enough to catch sight of her until the entrance to the courtyard was in sight.
Even without her Byakugan active she could see Kyoi waiting patiently with her gaze focused in the direction of Tomiko’s room. Switching between her sights would end up revealing some disturbances in the area. Thin, faint lines of chakra tracing the ground and crossing over the entryway before her if she took the time to observe the area, fortunately there was no sign of Kyoi’s clones advancing on her position, it was likely only a matter of time though.

Tomiko frowned at the thin lines of chakra she could see all around. Surely they had something to do with Kyoi. Grabbing one of her wristbow bolts, Tomiko charged it with Chakra before throwing it so it would intercept with line a bit away from her even as she moved a bit away from it. Wanting to see how Kyoi would react to the sudden presence of Tomiko’s chakra, albeit it brief and moving away. Hopefully tricking her cousin into thinking that she was fleeing the area.

The bolt would tumble through the air before making contact with one of the perceived lines of chakra in the air and Tomiko received her answer as she observed Kyoi, her hands making a quick movement as several other strands of chakra snapped into position and ensnared the bolt, dragging it back to where Kyoi stood. For a brief moment Kyoi inspected the bolt, then she began to make her way towards Tomiko’s location, discarding the bolt behind her as she went.
Even if she didn’t know her exact location she knew what side she was currently at now, but since Kyoi was now moving Tomiko could see that her cousins hair had grown remarkably long as it tailed behind her, to the point where it was touching the ground.

Her eyes widening as Tomiko easily enough put two and two together as Kyoi approached, she swore before dashing off. Silently, and towards another alleyway which would take her around. At this point she figured those lines were likely Kyoi's hair, and kept a watch for the lines as she dashed down the alleyway. Pausing at the end to see if she would get a shot into the courtyard with out her cousin's demon hair.

Unlike Kyoi’s clones, the genuine article wasn’t about to restrict herself when it came to catching sight of her little cousin, so she took to using her Byakugan to locate Tomiko. Of course she would move as soon as she realised her relative location was revealed, at least she was this careful when it came to her decision making.
Regardless of how careful Tomiko was, Kyoi’s visual range had her at an advantage over her cousin, all she had to do was return to the courtyard and maintain her Byakugan and she would likely know where Tomiko was as soon as she got close enough, the courtyard itself was within her entire field of view. For now that was what she would do, returning to the center of the courtyard, albeit slowly, and dispell her clones.

”Alright Tomiko, I know you’re out there, so knowing what you know about my abilities, what are you going to do to get into the courtyard without me catching you? I’ve dispelled my clones, so it’s just us now.”

Tomiko let out a long sigh as she realized that Kyoi was well aware she was around and that she would have no such luck today. Looking at how Kyoi’s hair was lining the the entrances to the courtyard and pathways, Tomiko let out an irritated sigh as she mulled over the words Kyoi had uttered. Well, she said without her catching me. Oh Tian, I’m going to regret this. She thought to herself before moving quickly to cross the street to another building along the edge of the courtyard. Moving around the back of said building, Tomiko climbed up onto the wall slightly. Just enough to clear the wall of the courtyard. She had to get in quickly or else Kyoi would react too fast. Letting out a long sigh as she used the tenketsu in her back to hold her against the wall, the girl focused on the feeling she had from the other day. The same she had felt when practicing her palm rotation, and that mistake had happened. Opening her eyes, the girl felt the chakra that would be used to spin in the technique being propelled instead straight out behind her. Rocketing forward, the genin stifled a small yelp of surprise as she easily clearly the fence and continued on her ballistic path before coming to a sudden halt.

By slamming into the very cousin she had been trying to avoid.

Kyoi had tried to drop a hint with what she said, though as she quietly waited and maintained her focus on her surroundings, the result of Tomiko’s apparently only sometimes careful decision making proved that the girl had taken the hint, even if it wasn’t in the expected way.
The fact of the matter was that Kyoi had no way of knowing that the girl would literally fire herself into the courtyard in order to escape her grasp, nor could she have ever figured out that she would be the accidental target of her trajectory. So as the girl catapulted herself over the wall, subsequently coming into Kyoi’s field of vision, she was already moving too fast for her to use what was essentially her spider web of hair to snatch her out of the air.

The wind was knocked out of her when Tomiko cannon-balled into her, making a rather unpleasant that sounded somewhat akin to a mixture of someone vomiting and choking at the same time. In the resultant aftermath Kyoi rolled Tomiko off of herself, more or less coughing her lungs up as she started to get to her feet. ”That was not… what I was trying to suggest. But I can’t deny that it worked.”

Tomiko must’ve blacked out for a few seconds after the impact, as she didn’t really recall what was going on until Kyoi got to her feet. Getting to hers, the girl whimpered slightly as she discovered a new assortment of bruises along her body. ”Its something I kinda… sorta discovered by accident? I think I can make something of it with more practice but… ouch.” She said softly, bowing her head slightly towards Kyoi. ”I really didn’t mean to you, Kyoi-chan. I’m sorry.” She added in at the end, hoping the elder accepted her apology.

”So you’re trying to develop a new technique.” Kyoi looked Tomiko up and down as she dusted herself off and idly hand-waved in response to the apology. ”Neither of us broke anything, so there’s no need to apologize, water under the bridge and whatnot. But if you’re going to try and make a technique that potentially volatile you should definitely put some more work into it before practical testing. Either way it worked so I can’t really fault you for it, but I think I’ll have to keep an eye on you next time, you’ve got a knack for hurting yourself at the most unexpected of times. We’ll have a talk about that once we’re done here.” There was a cursory gaze at Tomiko’s recently-burnt hand as she took a brief pause.

”Whilst you recoup a little from that, we’re going to go over a few things and we’ll start with the most important question. Why do you think you failed your test match against Hiron?”

”I do no-... Okay.” She started to argue with Kyoi before realizing her cousin was right about hurting herself. Her question however, made Tomiko look away in embarrassment. ”Hiron-Sensei said it was in part due to the fact that even when faced with an overwhelming opponent, I stood and fought. That would get me killed out in the field, so it was because I did the stupid thing in that test, right? Because it was a test, I stuck to the mission he gave us religiously, but in the field I would have been killed by it.” She explained, looking up towards Kyoi expectantly to see if she had gotten it correct.

”That’s right, you made a lapse in judgement that would have gotten you killed if you had been in the field, whether it was because it was a test or not one thing to keep in mind is that if you don’t know anything about your opponent then you fall back and learn what you can about them before engaging, through knowledge someone is able to overcome an enemy they normally wouldn’t be able to beat. For example, you knew most of what I’m capable of and took more or less appropriate action to get past my defensive line.” Kyoi took another pause, forming a seal to recall the hair she had strewn around the courtyard.
”Another problem that Hiron brought up with me was your personality, he essentially thinks you’re too reliant on me for your own good. It’s not a bad thing to be attached to someone, but outside influences can and will use that kind of attachment to force your hand as emotional leverage, while I’m not certain on how to work on that, it’s worth you acknowledging that and putting some thought into what you can do about that on your own. You’ve got five minutes to warm up and prepare yourself, then we’ll get into a brief sparring match, do you have any questions beforehand?”


 

Gerontis

"Teddy Bears never forget."
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The Regency Council Strikes!
GM Post
Lightning Country
The cold wind swept over the plains, which were covered in a thick layer of snow. In this time of the year, travel became more difficult in a lot of areas in the known world. Especially the more you went land inwards of the Lightning country. Various mountain passes were kept open thanks to the military presence, who held these passes under strict watch. Clans made sure that trade could somewhat flow from and into their heartlands. In these cold months, people were less outside and more content with staying inside. A lot of activities seemed to come to a halt and many good folks prefer to stay inside with kin.
However, the cold didn't stop all activity.

The sound of boots, drums and orders being barked by officers somewhat silenced the many that grumbled and cursed the fact that they had to endure the bitter cold, trudging through the snow. Even while many of them had experienced cold winters, it didn't make it any easier to bear with the cold. But the large formations still progressed on to their destinations.
For it seemed that the Regency Council had decided to make the first move. Out from various strategic positions had the Council gathered and mobilised their forces. The rising tension between the Raikage and Regency Council had now moved past the edge. No longer were they just barring their fangs, showcasing who they could mobilise. It had come to war, over the Lightning Country.

The soldiers that marched were garbed in the typical Taika style. The hundreds of men that were enlisted into formations of pikes or bows marched under the stern gaze of officers. Detachments of cavalry were present at the flank and rear of the marching force. As deadly as Taika cavalry could be, the cavalry of the Lightning country was reputed to be the fiercest and experienced cavalry force in the known world.
The rough terrain that dominated most of the Lightning country geography did little to nullify the deadly combat effectiveness of these horsemen. Several banners even indicated units that were actually members of the Khaad, Bayads and Uvas clans. Fierce nomads, some even veterans of past conflicts.

This would be one of the few forces that were sent out to march to attack the enemies of the council. Due to the lack of response, the Council announced that the Sanosuke clans and the Hojo clan to be enemies of the state. The Alaricus and many other clans would be demanded to subjugate to the demands of the Council unless they desired to be branded enemies as well.
Even despite some clans not regarding the threat serious at first, reports and rumours would soon start to spread that the Council had a much larger force than anybody had anticipated. Some rumours stated that the Regency council had mercenaries hired to ensure that none would doubt and rebel against them. More so, some of these mercenary companies seemed neither Taika nor Chonobi. Leading to all kind of hushed speculations of where the council had gained these extra forces from.
Some clans that decided to resist and were in the close vicinity of the Council forces were soon violently put down before they could amass their forces. Various villages would be burning and many put to the sword. A draconic measure to instil dread and keep the peace but so far an effective one.

Slowly the tension that had gripped the nation turned into fear and dread. Many small clans would turn to the demands of the Regency Council before any armed force would march upon them - for many were aware that shinobi agents, loyal to the Council, had been dispatched and could be anywhere.


  
Some notes:

The Third Army, under the command of Houjou Hikotomo.
Hikomoto is a veteran of the Great War. He served as a captain of ashigaru, wielding pikes. During his tenure, his unit would face many threats of the Earth country. Having suffered a few defeats as captain, he would later be promoted as commander of a few units. As a leader, Hikomoto is a patient and cautious man. His sense of honour prevents him from just sacrificing large groups of men to obtain his goal - as being immune to be bribed to fight for anybody else but the crown of the Lightning. The knowledge and experience in dealing with various foes - of both Taika and Chonobi (particular Hyuzu) forces - has made him a deadly adversary.

His force is made out of approximately 15.000 troops:

Light infantry/Ashigaru:
20 units of Yumi Ashigaru (bowmen): thus numbering 4000 soldiers.
15 units of Yari Ashigaru (pike/spearmen): thus numbering 3000 soldiers.
8 units of Naginata Ashigaru: thus numbering 1600 soldiers.
5 units of Katana Ashigaru: thus numbering 1000 soldiers.

Samurai:
7 foot units of with naginata: thus numbering 1400 Samurai.
8 units of horsemen equipped with lances and naginata: thus numbering 1600 Samurai.
7 units of horsemen equipped with yumi: thus numbering 1400 Samurai.

Specialised forces:
150 trained Shinobi as scouts and counter-intelligence.
850 Nomadic warriors (capable horse archers that can also are competent in melee engagements).

The Fourth Army, under the command of Izumi Ujitsune.
Uijtsune is one of the most competent commanders of the Regency Council. He served as a minor commander that was part of the first invasion force into the Earth country. Despite the various setbacks that the Lightning country faced, in particular against Hyuzu composed forces, Uijtsune managed to rally the troops and keep a portion of the coast under Lightning country control. Allowing more forces to pour into the Earth country, thus setting the scenario and plans for a deeper push into enemy territory. His experiences have made him very valuable against Chonobi-esque forces, knowing quite well what makes them strong and what possible counters to their usual battle tactics might be.

His force is made out of approximately 18.000 troops:

6.000 are Taika mercenaries:
4.000 archers and 2.000 naginata ashigaru.

Light infantry/Ashigaru:
22 units of yumi Ashigaru: thus 4400 soldiers.
20 units of Yari Ashigaru: thus 4000 soldiers.
5 units of naginata Ashigaru: thus 1000 soldiers.
5 units of katana Ashigaru: thus 1000 soldiers.

Samurai:
6 units of mounted naginata armed samurai: thus 1200 Samurai.
4 units of mounted yumi armed samurai: thus 800 samurai.

Special Forces:
200 Shinobi forces, serving as scouts and infiltrants.

The Sixth Army, under the command of Toki Tameuji.
Tameuji is a competent commander, despite his young age. Though not having served during the Great War, he has distinguished himself during the brief conflict, in which the Lightning provided some aid to the Fire country - during the attempted invasion of the Wind, in 473. The Shoji occupation provided Tameuji with even more experience and the promotion of being a commander in his own right.
Even though he is younger and more eager to prove his value, Tameuji is not rash or willing to put up with huge risks.

His force is made out of approximately 19.000 troops:

9.000 are Taika mercenaries:
6.000 archers and 3.000 naginata ashigaru.

Light infantry/Ashigaru:
20 units of yumi Ashigaru: thus 4000 soldiers.
11 units of Yari Ashigaru: thus 2200 soldiers.
5 units of naginata Ashigaru: thus 1000 soldiers.
5 units of katana Ashigaru: thus 1000 soldiers.

Samurai:
6 units of mounted naginata armed samurai: thus 1200 Samurai.
4 units of mounted yumi armed samurai: thus 800 samurai.

Special Forces:
200 Shinobi forces, serving as scouts and infiltrants.
 

conman2163

Long live Carolus Rex...
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Time for an offensive!

Summary: With the news of the huge army the Regency has amassed, Gedric mobilizes his forces and meets with his commanders. In the end they decide that, rather then defend their holdings, the time to strike is now.


  

The relative period of unease and staring was over. Gedric Hon had payed for it dearly too.

The reports had flowed in from the Shinobi teams he had deployed, three armies had been put together by the Regency. They had brought almost fifty thousand troops to bear, twice the size of the army that had been under their command before. His scouts had not done enough investigating yet to find the root cause of the swelling of their numbers though. They did send reports of strangely clad troops in their number though, and Gedric guessed they had hired mercenaries, it was what he would do in their position, but from the numbers that they had swelled their armies by, it would have been a king’s ransom in gold that they had shelled out to enlist the services of these troops.

Taking offensive action was no longer an option. He sent word to his commanders as he looked at the map inside of the room in the castle that had become his war room, they would meet today at midday. Then he drafted a letter to the Raikage informing him of the situation that was at hand and asking for word of any support from the other clans who called the Lightning their home, then he sent this with his most trusted courier to be delivered directly into the hands of the Raikage. He had reports of clans raising their banner in defiance, but just because they were against the Regency did not necessarily make them allies of the Raikage.

Later in the day, in the war council meeting, the commanders of the two divisions and commanders of the brigades under them met with Gedric to discuss their options. ”It seems quite clear to me that the Regency is beyond the point of reason. I say we take the field and fight them in open battle, Lord Commander.” The boisterous young brigade commander Lord Tokutomi was barely twenty five. He had long, dark hair that was swept back from his eyes and held in place by a distinctly Taika looking top knot on top of his head. He had been chosen by the commander of the Second Division for the very boldness that lead him to speak before even the Division commanders had voiced their own opinion. It was good in a commander to be bold, in Gedric’s opinion, but it was obvious to him the young man was not yet entirely ready to command his force. Still, he was hard pressed for officers, and it had been at the insistence of the general of his Second Division that he be given a command. He could not risk alienating the man in the face of the growing conflict with the Regency. It frustrated Gedric that such machinations had infiltrated the ranks of his war leaders, but it was not something entirely in his control. A hard stare from the General of the First Division, the much more senior Lord Kazuyuki, shut him up. He was a stony faced man who had a habit of letting his actions speak louder than his words, and was a strong, dependable general. A good choice for the leader of the First Division. ”While it is obvious to me that the forces of the Regency are dangerous, and we should act soon, we should not be so hasty as to attack right now, in my opinion. Better to wait and see where the three armies go, and strike with precision at where they are weakest.” Gedric was quiet at the words of the quiet warleader. He held the wisdom of over fifty years of life. He had served in the great war as an officer as well. It had been one of the reasons that Gedric had picked him to be in command of the First Division.

There was wisdom in the man’s words. Waiting to strike. But Gedric felt if they waited too long, some of the clans who had already joined them might lose their nerve. Besides, he couldn’t keep an army of over twenty thousand men assembled forever. It was the General of the Second Division, Lord Ryo, that spoke next. ”I say we take the offensive and drive at them now. Our army has the corp of engineers after all. Wherever we go, they will make a fortress for us to defend!” Gedric studied the man, still quiet. There were some mermors of agreement among the brigade commander at the words of the Major General. The corp of engineers had been the brainchild of Lord Ryo, an idea that had come after many years of experience with sieges. An idea that Gedric Hon had taken in hand and wholeheartedly supported. It was an overestimation of the Corp of Engineers abilities to say that they could so easily build a fortress in the field. The new system had only been in place for a few months for some of these men. Many were still adjusting to their new roles, and despite constant drilling and training, all of that would have to hold up in a battle. Certainly they could build some fortifications to defend from, but a fortress? No, certainly not. Still, he presented a tantalizing idea to Gedric. Aside from that, what of the mighty siege engines they had learned to construct? Could they perhaps help even the playing field?

It was clear to Gedric that action could not wait for offensive action until springtime. The Regency was already moving, and so must they. The conversations of strategy continued for hours, discussions of potential troop movements, attack plans, and where to draw supplies from while on the march. Finally they decided on a course of action. The First and Second Divisions would leave two brigades each behind to garrison the castle, then they would march out to fight the Regency. The marching would be tough, that would be certain, but they would do their best to advance on the Regency and meet their armies in battle. This display of bravado in the face of such numbers might encourage the clans they came across to join them against the Regency. As for supplies, an army could carry more than just their weapons, that was a lesson Gedric had learned early on in his career as a mercenary. They would carry as much of the supplies they needed in packs on their backs. The men would groan and moan about it, but it would shorten the supply train, and mean less of a need for a wagon train. They would load up on as much food as they might need and then march out. The orders had been given. Ten days would be given to prepare for the march. Canvas bags would be converted to packs and makeshift packs would be made from wood and cloth to carry supplies for the men. All around the camp that spilled out of the castle and onto the fields below men rushed about, making preparations for the upcoming campaign.

Gedric’s army would make their own move. He drafted a new letter to the Raikage in his office, telling him of the preparations and his plans. This one he would send under an armed guard of his own trusted men. His best assurance that such a thing would reach the Raikage without any interference from outside parties. Once he was done with that, Gedric stood and left his office to go find something to eat.
The Raikage's forces are employing two of their divisions. They have:

2400 Combat Engineers
2400 Archers
2400 Cavalry
2400 Skirmishers
4800 Light Infantry
7200 Medium Infantry
2400 Heavy Infantry

While the majority of the army is veteran, however the recent changes made to the military means that the officer corp is relatively new to the jobs of command, with plenty of troops having to be promoted up to fill the needs of the army.
 
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Claire's Decision

Claire Rose
Kirigakure, Team 11​

Was did it even mean to be a shinobi? At this point Claire was unsure. She thought it was simple, to protect others and keep the peace. Yet to kill innocent animals for population control and to keep diseases at Bay was never something that crossed her mind. Had her sister known this? She knew her sister simply wanted to protect others, to keep everyone and everything safe. Had she harmed or killed innocent souls? Claire was unsure since it was never spoken about.

There was also the fact her sister had died doing this. Which also was known, those who did this risked their lives. So how could everyone be okay with fighting? If everyone agreed to be peaceful no one innocent had to be harmed. She knew not everyone thought that way. If anything it would be the minority. Many wanted power or to be feared. To have a big name, yet her sister just wanted to help. Of course revenge was something on her mind but the thought of helping and carrying on what her sister did was also present.

How many people did she help? And at what cost? Did the good outweigh the bad? Eventually Claire would need to accept the tasks of being a shinobi. But was she ready like her sister? Then there was the fact of her team. What did Nishi and Yukimi think of her now? They simply were doing as they were told. They accepted what needed to be done and did that reflect who they were? No. Nishi even made it clear it wasn't something desirable but a necessity.

At the end of the day Claire knew she needed to apologise. She needed to buckle down and put her own self and her own feelings past what would be better for her nation. A shinobi lived their life for the big picture and many had to accept the harder things in life. If she were to do this she had to work with her team and work past herself. Sighing Claire thought of her sister and how strong she was. Now it was her turn in order to live this life.

The next day she found herself training at the training fields. Practicing her jutsu and pushing her physical limits. Focusing on her aim as she threw weapons and flung her sickle. By the end of it she laid on the ground and looked at the sky huffing. ”I am a shinobi and I can't give up. My sister fought to the end and now I have to. Once rested she made her way to find Nishi and Yukimi. It was time to own up to her mistakes, her harsh words and childlike thoughts. It was time to begin her life as the shinobi she wanted to be.

 

Oblivion666

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Alaricus’s Answer

Lightning Country
Capital Eryx
================
As the cold wind blew outside as the snow was ever present outside on the landscape and anywhere else it could rest. Inside the keep though in his own study a knock came on the door to which Vasilis would look up from the table he was sat at. “You may enter.” he stated running his hand through his blonde hair as the door opened and his greatest general Óengus clad in his armor came in with a letter in hand, despite his age Óengus fought like a beast and inspired the men like no other. The look on his face basically said everything Vasilis needed to know. “Another letter from them?” Vasilis questioned as he stretched his hand out. Óengus reached out and handed the letter to him and nodded.
“Aye my lord.” He said his voice scruffy as he folded his arms behind his back while his lord opened the letter. Glanced at the contents and tossed it to the side. ”My lord… what is to be your answer? They already branded the Hojo and Sanosuke plus the Raikage as enemies. Now they are turning to us who ignore the threat.” Óengus asked Vasilis who smiled and sat up from his table and motioned for his old general to follow him. They would walk the halls as Vasilis still smiled.

Along the way he stopped a servant and told him to gather a group of men to the war room. Their footsteps were the only audible sound in the hall when Vasilis would speak up. ”Óengus my old friend. You have been our major general from when my father ruled and for my rule. In that entire time has our clan ever ignored a problem? the question would be asked to which Óengus shook his head.
”Not once my Lord” He said simply keep his posture straight which caused Vasilis to chuckled and pat the old man on his shoulder.
”So I’m not ignoring this regency at all. I have my intention on it, but it’s because I do that I also do not fear them. They may ask me to bow all they want, I refuse. Our people bowed before because it was in our best interest. Yet to bow now would make us sheep to the weak. I will not weaken our proud people who have overcome every trial, just to satisfy those that wish to use us as tools. We are going to deal with this my friend, I swear to you we are.”

Óengus briefly allowed himself a small smile before an affirmative nod, as the two continued on their way to the war chamber where they were the first two to arrive. In the middle of the room was a table with a large map on it and several character pieces. Vasilis moved pieces to their respective areas, pieces to the Hojo lands, Sanosuke and the Raikage and regency, As well as his own clans. As the two looked at the map the door would open as various men moved into the room. Three to be exact, fellow leaders in their own right Cathasach who while wasn’t a fighter as was possibly just as old as Óengus, he and his wisdom helped Vasilis when he was still new to the world of diplomacy. Drust a more hot headed and eager to prove himself general under the Alaricus, yet his loyalty was tougher than steel. Nechtan was the man in charge of all things naval, he ran a tight gig as well. If things didn’t mean his approval they were forced to fix it until they did. He after all held one of the most vital defense points in the Alaricus lands.

”Gentlemen.” Vasilis spoke first to the group of men. ”Depending on how the Regency wants to proceed, we soon may be under attack. I doubt that they sent quite everything at the Hojo and Sanosuke and the Raikage So we need to be prepared for when they do decide to show us. After all if they want to stroll into our lands, then we simply have to show them our hospitality.”
The first to speak up would be Durst who was more eager to score some accomplishments. ”We have our rivers as a ward from attacking us on both sides. So they expect the most resistance there. So why don’t we have one force engage them there while another force is on the other side of the river and pinchers them in. Only escape is the freezing water. Easy pickings.” Durst said as he moved what would be the regency's force, had them engage the bait army, while the other other attacked the rear. The room was quiet as they looked at Durst who seemed confused. ”To rash of a plan?”
”Opposite my boy.” Óengus said as he clapped Durst on the back. ”It’s a smart tactic. It however can be improved. They expect us to fight its what were known for. So I suggest we go with Durst plan but!” Óengus said to make sure everyone was listening. ”Our center is well fortified. Baiting them in there might not be plausible, even if the river is freezing. However. If we allow them to think they are winning, baiting them in will be much easier. Give them some handouts. Let them win a skirmish here and there. Yet when the real deal comes, our bait force who stayed behind for a last stand as our army fled. They lure them in. While our true force is already on its way around, yet while the enemy is crossing the river to finish what they believe to be the end. It will be too late.” Óengus finished his piece to which the other men looked at each other and nodded.

”I agree with this plan and I’ll make sure our sea side area is defended perfectly as it should be. Ward off any thoughts of them wanting to attack that way. This way they are more likely to take your bait.” Nechtan stated to which the others agreed to.
”Men soon the enemy may be upon us, but this will be simply one victory that will set us on our path. The future is shaping before us, so lets us be the ones who shape it. Not sheep, not a unwanted mutt from the south.It won’t be those beasts up north and it won’t be those pesky Hojo either. We adapt, and we will overcome all that oppose us. So men get ready. We have cattle to slaughter.”
 

Aliceee

Fierce Rebel
Roleplay Invitations
Group Roleplays
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept
Genders You Prefer Playing
Female
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Fine doing both/Aggressive
Favorite Genres
Fantasy, modern and magical.
Genre You DON'T Like
Scifi, yaoi, some horror, furry.
Operation: Cursed Night
Kirigakure, the capital of the Republic of the Water Country.

Part 2

~~~~~~~~
Part 1
~~~~~~~~​

A collab by Team Mika - 14.

Summary:

The team has been given the objective to rally and then make to the villa of a certain merchant. The goal is to make it seem as if the villa has been raided by Suzu insurgents. Though the security isn't tight, it won't be an easy mission for a team filled up by genin and only one jounin - to watch and lead their every move. Soon enough, the genin of team 14 learn what horrors can await in the night.


  
Waiting, Mika didn’t feel anxious for what was to come. These kind of missions were anything but a rarity for the experienced or more seasoned of operatives. If anything today would be a challenge, it would be to reign in and keep her team to operate properly. If they wouldn’t succeed today, she doubted that they ever would.
Good thing was that the genin wouldn’t know anything else than that they were given a mission that wasn’t a joke. It was, in Mika’s opinion, the only kind of intel they needed before heading out. Questions weren’t necessities that should be given to a mere pack of genin.

The team gathered, relatively well on time. Mika made them inspect their gear. Their weapons specifically. For the mission, each of them was given a certain kind of cloth that they had to pull over their faces to cover their features - leaving only their eyes visible. Any sign of their affiliation with the Republic was to be left at the rally point. No headbands or anything that could give them away.
Then once she was sure that they seemed ready, Mika would address the team.

”Today, none of you will write history. This night? It won’t exist in documents. It won’t appear on your record if it is either a success or failure. You won’t speak ever of it. If you do,” the woman introduced a pause as she shot each genin a glare. ”I will find you. And cut out your tongue before I strangle you with it. This mission ain’t a laughing matter. People are going to die today. Better make sure that you ain’t one of those unfortunate souls.”
Once she was sure that the warning was given, the jounin continued on to explain what they were going to do.
”We are going to raid an estate. Our goal? To apprehend Mr. Yasuda, an Imperial. No harm must come to him. His guards, however? They must be silenced. Then we will make it look as if it was a raid planned by thugs. We are to act like we are members of the Suzu.” For a moment, Mika’s gaze fixed on Aya Oda. ”I know some of you don’t like the idea of guising yourself as one of them. But believe me, this night, your personal preferences matter not. Now, keep those mouths shut if you don’t want me to sew them shut!”


  

The estate was looming in the distance. A simple, two meter high stone wall marked the boundary of the estate. There were some lights coming through the curtains, indicating that the denizens of the estate weren’t asleep yet. There was a main gate but it was closed. And knowing from intel given, Mika was aware that it was guarded by two guards. A not feasible entrance but perhaps exit, she thought to herself. Then there had to be four more hired swords from some mercenary guild. Their quality was described, on paper, nothing to be higher than a chuunin’s prowess. Thus, they were in the martial department faring better than her genin. The only advantage was that they didn’t use ninjutsu.

”You lot,” Mika said in a hushed tone, ”Each of you, got a minute before we move over the wall. Say your prayers, make peace with your God. I don’t care. In a minute, we are all going.”

Taishiro was admiteddtly feeling a bit uneasy with the situation. Just the way that Mika-Sensei spoke about the mission, it gave him a sense of worry in his gut. Yet at the same moment, he knew that shinobi were expected to do whatever was tasked to them, and this was nothing more than another task assigned to this team. So with these thoughts Taishiro pushed that gut feeling down as best he could and silently sent prayers to whatever deity may be listening as Mika told them. His only request being that they help his father should he not survive the night. With that done, the boy looked towards Mika with no expression in his eyes past the mask. Hoping tonight wouldn't go too terribly.

Listening to Mika, Aito found himself curious. Who would just give them this mission. The explanation was long and the mention of how difficult it would be did make him nervous. Not one but twice they were warned in some way on how this mission could kill them. ”Sensei why would they send us? What makes us special compared to more experienced shinobi?” Looking over at the other two genin he wondered if they could do it. He knew nothing about them and they have had little to no experience working together. ”I got your back so have mine, okay?’ He grinned under the cloth at his teammates. A thumbs up was given then his attention went back to Mika.

Overlooking the estate in the distance that their objective would be found in, she couldn’t help but feel a bit discouraged. Not because of the mission’s style, or the fact no one would know what truly happened this night, not even masquerading as Suzu. Letting out an internal sigh as her eyes peered out through the cloth, luckily hiding her disdain right now. Make peace with their gods was an understatement, she never felt closer to death’s door in her life and she has been on multiple missions with high risk of death.

Staring at her teammates she couldn’t help but feel her will sink further, mostly after Aito’s comments which were so not comments one would say in this situation. He could have her back all he wanted, if he fucked up he was so on his own. The same went for Taishiro, the way she saw it this was just another mission to weed out those that couldn’t make it. She simply gave a nod to Mika to show she was ready, and a slight shake of her head when she looked at Aito who went from no confidence to wanting to watch each others backs.

The jounin took the time to observe the situation once more. There was no sound or questions raised from the likes of Aya or Taishiro. The question of Aito made Mika throw a look over her shoulder to the three genin. The blank expression on the woman’s face together with the dark of the night made it hard to distinguish what the jounin thought or felt about the genin’s question.
”Nothing. If you want a honest answer, I could do this alone.” Letting a second of pause follow, to make sure that the fact started to sink in, Mika continued calmly. ”You guys need to gain experience. No gaining that with doing simple patrols or always lingering behind.”

Briefly, Mika wondered what Nishi or Kukiko would reply. If anything, this newer generation of shinobi were softer indeed. But disciplining them now wouldn’t benefit the mission. The question did briefly raise some doubt if these kids were ready for what was to be done. Even while Taishiro and Aya had managed to survive some scuffle before, that wasn’t against fellow humans.

Then the jounin moved. The streets were deserted, so far they could see. No verbal warning or instruction was given as the hooded woman moved forward - no sound produced from her footsteps. Yet her pace was quick, her movements betraying her experience and training for these kind of missions.
Nearing the wall of that made up for the boundary of the estate, Mika pressed her left shoulder against it. Glancing at the genin, she would try to gesture them to be silent. It would be best if they wouldn’t yet use any chakra.
There hadn’t been any warning of sensory nin guarding the place. But entirely trusting the information given was a rookie’s mistake. To be wary of the unexpected or possible hindrances was the way to go.
”Wait for my signal. Don’t yet use any chakra. Try to help each other over the walls. I will give a soft whistle once you guys can move over.” Mika whispered to the genin.

In a quick movement, the woman would turn to the wall. Jumping upwards, she gripped the top of the wall with her gloved hands as pressing a boot against the wall. This movement quickly was followed with the jounin vaulting over the wall, disappearing from the genin’s sight.
Landing on the other side, Mika soflty grunted as she quickly shot a look around. The gardens revealed in a way the wealth of the family. The decorations, the neatly trimmed trees and pathways.
Seeing no guards, the jounin would softly whistle, hoping that the genin would attempt to move over now. Else? Mika didn’t mind to abandon them to further the mission.

Being the tallest of the three genin, Taishiro moved forward first and put his back to the wall. Gesturing to the other two he would give a boost if needed. Fortunately, he was confident enough that he could make it over the wall quick enough. He doubted that they should keep Mika waiting, he knew that she wouldn't really tolerate them screwing around and taking forever. Especially since doing just that would probably prove to be bad for the mission.

When Mika had given him the honest response Aito nodded. It did make sense they needed experience. Listening to the instructions he watched as Mika was up and over then gone. Seconds later the soft whistle was heard and Taishiro had moved to the wall. Gesturing he would help Aito move over and with the boost he got to the top. Looking down at the other two he waited a moment before dropping over. He would have stayed to help either up but being on the wall too long may draw attention and he knew that. At the bottom he made sure he was steady in case one of them needed help landing.

She saw that answer coming and honestly it only made her will drop even further, mostly since she was basically forcing them to work together while she went on ahead. As evident by her getting over the wall but wanting them to work together to get over it. Something that she dreaded inside. As Mika went up and over, it came as a surprise as Taishiro took the initiative and placed himself with his back to the wall. Using himself as a boost, she actually felt a bit pleasantly surprised. Until Aito went first and as Aito got to the top, he then just as quickly got to the bottom. ‘Oh that little…’Moving over and using Taishiro as a boost, she would lay low on the wall and lower her hand to help pull Taishiro up and over the wall, something that would have been much easier with a bit of extra muscle.

Opting to wait, Mika remained in the shadow. There were still no signs of the guards that could be on a patrol. Glancing over her shoulder, the first member of her team came briefly into sight. It was Aito, who moved over the wall and dropped himself on the opposite side.
Then Mika saw Aya but noticed she didn’t drop herself on the ground right away. Judging from how she positioned and moved herself, it was clear she was intending to help Taishiro mount the wall.
Not a word left the lips of the woman as she made a mental note on the performance of the genin.

Waiting for them to rally behind her, she would gesture them to stay silent and stay with her. There were some lights inside but it was too little to indicate that the entire household was awake. At best, there were the guards and servants.
Mika glanced over her shoulder at the genin. Though she whispered, the woman’s voice would be audible enough to carry over the cold instruction.
”We will leave nobody alive.”

That said, the jounin would creep forward without creating a sound. As a cat, the jounin’s movement betrayed that she was focused and determined to succeed the mission. Nearing a nearby door, she took a position left of it. Gesturing that one of the genin should take a spot at the other side and the two others ready to move in, Mika would wait till they would take their position.

After boosting both his teammates over the wall, Taishiro turned to notice Aya still on said wall and holding down a hand to help him over. Quickly and quietly he took her hand, with both working together he was able to make it over quickly enough. He moved to follow along quietly, positioning himself not far behind Mika and keeping his head on a slight swivel to try to keep watch. As they neared the house however, he heard Mika's whisper cut through the air. Her words for a moment chilled him worse than the air around him. The ruthlessness in that statement didn't sit terribly well with Taishiro. Then he reminded himself that this was the job, and that it would be either him or them very soon. Which helped ease his nerves slightly.

As they arrived at the house’s door, Taishiro moved silently to the other side once Mika gestured for him to do so. He figured he silently placed a hand on the grip for his tanto, hoping to be prepared if the need came up. His gaze then moved to look back towards Mika, waiting on her next instructions.

After aiding Taishiro up, she would slide down the wall to join up with the others. Giving a glare at the back of Aito for wanting them to watch his back but quickly fucking off when it was needed. Stopping behind Mika she would keep quiet as she followed behind the cloaked woman who spoke softly to them about what they were about to do. No one was to be left alive, something that seemed so easily spoken yet should be so much harder to do. It briefly made her remember some of the innocents that she killed when trying to fight her pursuers when Hiro died. Those were accidents yet still hard to remember. Yet she had no doubt that some that would die tonight would also be innocents, yet this time they were out to kill on purpose.

Still following her sensei who would stop on a side of this door, with Taishiro stopping on the other. Mika made it obvious enough that Aito and her would be the ones charging in. Pausing and looking at Aito she mumbled in her head as she got her katana ready for whatever may come.
 

Lesli

Secret Shadow
Roleplay Invitations
Not Taking RP Invites at this Time
Posting Speed
One Post a Day, A Few Posts a Week, One Post a Week
Writing Levels
Adept, Advanced
Playing Style- Passive or Aggressive
Both.
Favorite Genres
Anything with a good plot or twists to it.
Genre You DON'T Like
Stories that can't keep my attention focused or seem to bland in my opinion.
Training in Alfstedt - Part 3
Within the Hon clan, the House of Magnhild.
Empire of Akino, the western sphere of the Fire province.


A collab between Winter and Lesli.

Summary:
With the group temporarily staying in the small settlement of Alfstedt, Aiko decides to use some of the time to train Satia. The genin is going through a rather generic training exercise, meant to hone her overall skills and abilities. But Aiko has a few questions in mind, that she will subject Satia later to.



  
It briefly remained silent. Aiko just nodded, at first. No clear indication on if she was discontent or content with the given answer of Satia. No explanation either followed right away as the jounin seemed pleased enough to let a silence echo after Satia’s answer.
"I am content with that answer for now. As you stated yourself, it depends on the situation. I want to just say that morality is nice to have but don’t try to cling too much on it. You will eventually be challenged with something you won’t agree with. And sometimes what seems to be choices are just illusions. But enough of that for now. As I stated before, I am content with the answer that you gave before.”
Flashing a smile, Aiko’s eyes narrowed slightly as she seemed to have something else in mind. The woman would turn to the right and briefly lower her head, making it appear like she was thinking about something.
"After all, I have been thinking about something else. I didn’t want to bring it up earlier because of it could up some awkwardness but remember when I taught you the genjutsu clone?” Turning towards the genin, the woman wouldn’t continue further but just await what response that alone would get her.

Satia wasn’t sure how her answer would reach the Jounin but she felt it was better to answer it honestly than to pretend or offer an answer she might expect would satisfy her more easily. Fortunately, it seemed the older Cho was content with her answer, although she parted her with some the truth of some information she expected from this line of work. She didn’t doubt that she would one day be confronted with a situation which might conflict with her morals, but she would confront that obstacle when the day eventually came, she’d just need to be prepared for it when it inevitably comes around.

Satia expected Aiko to mention the next task before the tone of the conversation changed as Aiko looked down and mentioned about the clone training session, causing Satia to cock her head to the side slightly as she watched the Jounin carefully, feeling somewhat nervous as Aiko mentioned awkwardness before bringing it up. “I do?” she replied, posing her reply is a question not entirely intentionally to prompt Aiko to continue.

Slowly nodding, Aiko would reply on her turn. "I hope you do. It raised some questions. I had suggested to conjure the image of somebody, if I don’t make a mistake with recalling it." A short pause followed. "Ironically, I wouldn’t be so surprised if Kazumo had conjured an image of Koike. But you? Not to mention, I do have another matter that I have to resolve with you." The woman continued calmly, hiding the amusement in her voice. "Unless you might want to bring it up yourself and save me the bit of trouble."
The arms of the jounin would cross out front of her chest as her eyebrows stayed lightly perked up.

As Aiko continued Satia’s expression gradually changed from one of interest to one of a young girl absolutely mortified as her cheeks flushed, her jaw tightening as she looked away from the Jounin, her hands clenched behind her back. She cleared her throat a little before exhaling a composing breath, “Well, you see.. the night before, at the event me and Koike… we happened to cross paths and.. “ she became more aware of the heat in her cheeks and internally cursed her inability to conceal the reaction better. “We enjoyed each other's company, indulged in conversation and even a… “ she exhaled a short breath, “Dance”. She couldn’t bring herself to meet Aiko’s gaze as she spoke. “I think perhaps he left an impression on me that carried into the training” she replied.

Aiko wanted to interrupt the younger Cho during her answer but opted to let Satia finish it. Once more the older woman slowly nodded as if she needed to take in the information and verify it.
"You danced with Koike. Huh," a second of silence followed. Making it hard for Satia to figure out her thoughts regarding the answer, a snicker escaped Aiko.
"So, that explains a bit. But doesn’t explain why you sneak out of the tavern at a late hour. Unless another impression was landed?" Deciding to not imply anything else, Aiko would wait to see what Satia had to say about that.

Satia felt on fire at this point but remained composed in stance as Aiko responded, adding about having caught her leaving the tavern late which clicked into her memory reminding her of having suspected that she’d been followed leading to her making efforts to ensure that whoever had been following wasn’t able to do so for long. She’d had no idea that person was Aiko and at the mention of it the younger Cho looked at Aiko with a small amount of surprise before her mind quickly worked up a response. “Ah, well. I simply needed to get some air and didn’t want to wake anyone during the night” she replied quickly before realising she’d just openly lied to Aiko, which made her insides seize up as if they’d been frozen. It was too late now, she was in far over her head that she had no idea how to even begin to rectify this situation.

"You needed some air at a late hour."
Aiko slowly repeated the answer, quite enjoying the small session of torturing the younger Cho. Her right eyebrow lowered, her features already betraying that she doubted that was the real answer. "So instead of going just outside, you decided to go for a long walk into a city you’re barely familiar with? Doesn’t seem right. Certainly not with what you proved just a bit ago. With that you think before you answer or act. So," the woman straightened her back as she flashed a polite smile.

"I can do two things. I can either state what think why you went outside and just read it from your expressions. Cause I doubt I have seen any student of mine grow this red. Or you can just tell me and there won’t be any need to grow flustered. After all," the voice of Aiko became a bit softer. Almost as if they needed to speak softer so that the others of the team wouldn’t hear them. "I do find it endearing. So come," gesturing with her left hand, Aiko smirked. "What happened? Unless you want me to speak what I think what happened. I sincerely doubt you want that."

Doomed, she was doomed and she knew it from Aiko’s expression alone, confirmed when she commented on how she was lit up like a strawberry. Swallowing a little the Genin once again release a small breath through her lips in a defeated sigh before she decided to come clean, deciding to save herself from further embarrassment of enduring the Jounin’s interpretations of what might have happened. “I...I-I was invited out by Koike to spend time at another tavern on the other side of the city. I agreed to meet with him” she brought her hands in front of her, her cut fingers interlocking as she fidgeted slightly. “We had a bet on who could hold their beverage better, the loser would wear a ribbon in their hair” she smiled sheepishly.

When it became clear that Satia would give the answer, Aiko felt a little bit disappointed. She would have enjoyed giving her own idea on what had happened that evening. But upon hearing that the two had decided to meet at another tavern, the woman’s features turned a bit blank. She had several questions on what kind of establishment that they had decided to meet, for she couldn’t really picture Satia into a place that was populated by the lower class. When the genin stated that they had a wager regarding who could hold their drink better and what the loser would do, it continued to remain silent for a solid two seconds.
"So, who wore the ribbon in the end?"

Satia wished Aiko would stop asking questions, it felt like a huge light had fallen on her, placing her at the center stage in a large theater. She continued to fidget with her fingers but as Aiko asked her next question Satia gave a quick look around before looking back to Aiko, speaking in a quieter tone as she replied. “Truthfully… I knew I would lose. I.. still have the ribbon” she said sheepishly. “It was just a bit of fun” she added, wondering how this could possibly get any worse. She sorely hoped that somehow Koike would suffer something similar as a consequence for managing to convince her to sneak away to join him at the tavern.

The sight of the younger woman fidgeting was only making Aiko feel only more amused regarding the whole situation. In truth, she couldn’t recall how long it had been that a student of the team had done something like this. If anything, she only could recall one time but that seemed almost years ago. When Satia stated that still had the ribbon, Aiko almost felt the need to stop her questions and let it end there.
"So let me summarize it really quickly. You guys decided to meet at the other end of the city, at a tavern. Have a drinking wager and the loser would wear a ribbon. Now, I am growing only more curious but do tell me. How did you get back in one piece?"

If it hadn’t been the that Satia held Aiko in such high esteem with a lot of her respect she might have hated her in that moment, but as she asked her next question Satia once again flushed brighter. “W-well you see, Koike… he, made sure I got back safely” she looked away at the floor, lifting one of her feet a little, pressing the tip of her heeled boot against the ground a little. “He proved to be a proper gentlemen” she finished, moving her hands behind her back again as she fought the urge to cringe up into a ball and hope for the ground to swallow her whole.

Happy though, regarding what had happened. The idea that Satia had to stumble back through the entire city that was foreign and unknown to her, on her own, would have certainly angered Aiko. Though this wouldn’t save Koike for later, Aiko told herself. The current demeanour of Satia was endearing and in a way provoked more from Aiko to keep questioning. Luckily, for her and unlucky for Satia, the answer brought up more questions.
Raising her left indexfinger to her nose, Aiko snickered as she rubbed the bridge of her nose.
"So, he brought you back? That is good. Did he leave right away? And before you worry too much. You ain’t in trouble. As long as you’re honest with me."

Satia’s attention snapped to Aiko at the question, wondering if she was at all implying what she thought she might be implying. “No! he left right away. We said goodbye at the door and I went to bed!” she replied, “I am, I wouldn’t even begin.. I’m not that kind of.. oh dear… “ she covered her face with her hands as she exhaled through them. “He walked me home and then I went to sleep, that’s the truth” she wanted to run, run far and fast in any direction. “Please tell me you have no more questions” she exhaled out, finding herself exhausted more by this than any other part of the training.

Only a snicker escaped Aiko as she tried to hold back a laugh. Managing to not burst out into laughter, the woman briefly looked away as she nodded. "Alright. I do have more questions but I shall spare you. For now." The jounin would inhale slowly and exhale as she couldn’t hide the smirk. "Doesn’t that feel a tad better? Honestly, I would have expected something far more devious. This is pretty mild from two young adults that decided to indulge into alcohol. But no worry, I shan’t bother you with more questions. I will save some for Koike. He ain’t escaping my wrath either." Pausing for a moment, the jounin wouldn’t wipe the amused expression from her features.
"Though in the future, I will be stricter with allowing you guys having late night trips. Then again, the guys are apparently more interested in books than to experience life. So I won’t need to worry about that." The last two sentences were more mumbled as Aiko decided to roll with her shoulders.
 
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