PDA

View Full Version : Team Cybele: The Leaf and the Sand



ZeroNumerous
2012-11-01, 07:26 PM
DM

Setsuna moves to the east, and leaps over to the larger tree beside her. She retrieves a small card-shaped object from her belt pouch.

Spot DC 21
It's an Advanced Seal.

Ninjutsu DC 23
It's the Ninja Art Trap technique, and it was loaded with a Summoning Technique.

She casually rips the card in half and throws it in the air. The pieces explode into smoke, and three shadows fall out of the smoke and onto the tree with her. The three shadows stand up, and reveal themselves to be pale-skinned copies of the three sky-nin. The massive copy of Houshi carries a giant club and drools openly from his mouth. The copy of Amon crackles with lightning and seems to be talking, but the real sky-nin don't hear anything coming out of her mouth. The copy of Yousuke carries a chipped sword with no sheathe, and doesn't seem to have some sort of mocking trait behind him.

Setsuna smiles, and shrugs. "I thought it would only be fair that you children would fight children. I, naturally, didn't have any. So you'll have to excuse me for borrowing your faces for a little while. It was surprisingly easy. None of you are terribly special after all."

Fake Houshi, Fake Amon, and Fake Yousuke leap into action. Fake Houshi moves to directly confront Yousuke. Fake Amon and Fake Yousuke move south in order to stop the enemy from reaching Setsuna. All three fakes seem to be readying themselves to use some kind of skill.

Camille is still out of it, but consents to be released by Cybele. The sky-jounin lets her go, and she sits down on the tree branch without comment or complaint.

http://i.imgur.com/EcZ0G.png

Legend: Red - Fake Houshi
Light blue - Fake Amon
Light gray - Fake Yousuke

Initiative: Yousuke - 24 - 60ft up.
Setsuna - 20 - 75ft up.
Fake Genin - 20 - 65ft up.
Camille -19 - 65ft up.
Houshi - 19 - 65ft up.
Cybele - 12 - 65ft up.
Amon - 7 - 65ft up.

Setsuna retrieves an Advanced Seal from her belt pouch as part of her move action to (14, 3). She takes ten on her jump check. She rips it to summon the fakes as a standard action.

The fakes all move to their specific locations as move actions. They take ten on their jump checks. They ready actions to do various things.

zeone3000
2012-11-01, 10:09 PM
Inwardly, Houshi begins, Well, scratch that plan... Tactics would suggest...

He hops through the trees, positioning himself to soon fight himself, "You may be able to copy our looks, you may be able to copy our abilities, but you will never be able to copy our souls!"

Hit Points: 38/38
Chakra Pool: 29/30
Chakra Reserve: 8/8
Armour Class: 20
Effects: Spd Rank 1 (1/5)

Free: Unsuppress Speed Rank 1
Double Move: 70' to 2-3/8-9, draw fullblade. taking 10 on Jump for 25.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-02, 12:13 AM
DM

Houshi's first leap sends him straight into an trap. A burst of flame drops the genin down five feet as the branch he lands on explodes. Houshi's second attempt to move forward results in another trap exploding beneath his feet. The genin plummets to the forest floor, and is immediately assaulted by the neurotoxin.

Cybele releases Camille just in time to watch Houshi fall below the line of mist. The sky-jounin releases all of her restraints, and her muscles visibly bulge as she stops holding back. "Amon! If you have a gas mask or something, take it and go help him!" Without waiting for a response Cybele instantly disappears. She reappears behind Setsuna a second later, and immediately launches two punches at Setsuna's skull. The first blow misses as Setsuna blocks it with her hand. She smiles. "Silly girl. Congratulations, you made it to me. But at what cost?"

"I won't let you harm what's precious to me." Cybele responds in a cold manner as she swings again. The second blow hits the doctor square in the liver, and she coughs up some blood as the organ bursts under the pressure. Setsuna just smiles.

"Did you think... I'd risk everything... in a fistfight with you?" The doctor explodes into a burst of smoke, and the cloned versions of the genin explode as well. The only thing left of any of them is a small pile of dirt and stones.

Cybele uses Hirameku to cross the distance between herself and Setsuna in 1 standard action. She moves 110 feet to appear at (13,3) on the same level as Setsuna.

She hides as part of her movement. She takes 10 for 32. Setsuna can only roll a maximum of 27, so she cannot possibly succeed.

Cybele makes an unarmed full-attack vs Setsuna, then attempts to hide again. She's threatened, so she'll need to roll: [roll0](-20 penalty for attacking in the same round) vs [roll1] spot by Setsuna.

Attack#1 Roll: [roll2]
Damage Roll: [roll3] + [roll4] sneak attack

Attack#2 Roll: [roll5]
Damage Roll: [roll6] + [roll7] sneak attack

TraceHyde
2012-11-02, 08:52 AM
Amon is stunned by the turn of events. Some vain part of her is offended to have fallen into the obvious, strategically avoidable fight, though mostly she's just bewildered as the fight seems to start and END with Cybele's fight. Yousuke had an excuse when he fell in the trap of ignorance, though Houshi just HAD to get himself in trouble. hadn't he insisted on grabbing Camille and running? She didn't even have time to evaluate her offence at the clone of herself before it pops out, Cybele apparently vanquishing their suddenly less than impressive opponent.

"HOUSHI, ARE YOU OKAY?!" Amon shouts down as he descends into the mist, knowing he might well be dead. She could swear she heard him shouting when he hit the ground.

And this fight wasn't over yet; if they didn't get away from this mist, if they ended up paralysed, then the real Setsuna would swing around shortly enough to finish them off. But if Houshi was out of it, no, he was almost certainly shot in the nerves, how were they supposed to escape while dragging him? At Cybele's order, she hesitates as she reaches for her mask. If the gas was rising, she might not be able to escape it in time for the mask to remain effective at protecting her. But if Houshi was bleeding out down there, she couldn't just leave him alone... "HOUSHI, IF YOU CAN MOVE, I NEED YOU TO TELL ME RIGHT NOW!" she shouts vainly. There was no way he was on his feet

TraceHyde
2012-11-02, 01:37 PM
Amon prepares to rescue Houshi, donning her gas mask (http://www.policelot.com/photos/Low%20res%20pics/S10%20Gas%20Mask.JPG) and focussing her chakra as she makes to head into the gas.

Amon spends a round in total activating her Tree climbing technique (1 chakra) and donning her gas mask

Amon quickly asks for advice on how to retreat, her voice muffled but no less desperate. "Cybele! How will we position out of here? We're vulnerable like this and she'll know where we are! Can you see the tags well enough for us to maneuvre out of here?"

If Houshi doesn't respond or produce a sign of his survival quickly enough, Amon will start making her move into the mist, using a run action to get as close to Houshi's position as possible

zeone3000
2012-11-02, 04:06 PM
*creak*

*snap*

*bang*

*thud*

On the ground level, Houshi yells, "Ouch... I'm alright!" With a few quick uses of shundou he ascends back up the trees.

Four of them to be precise because them movement is halved to put back up at 80 ft.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-02, 04:17 PM
DM

Amon finds Houshi conscious, but very injured, at the bottom of the pit. The gas rises twenty feet above the two sky-nin, and they're no longer inside it but it's now a twenty foot block above them. Cybele leaps back to Camille's location, looks down to see that they're okay, then shouts down to them. "If there's no mist down there, then just travel under it! Head northeast!"

Cybele picks up Camille, then leaps over to Yousuke. She unceremoniously throws an all-weather cloak at the genin. "Put it on, quickly." If Yousuke doesn't obey immediately, then she repeats her order with urgency. If the genin does obey, then she grabs Yousuke, picks him up with a strength hidden behind her thin frame, then hugs him close to her. The cloak provides a barrier between her skin and the genin's, as it absorbs the sheen of sweat covering her thin frame. "Don't let go."

Cybele assumes a shunpo stance, then in six seconds Yousuke, Camille, and their jounin teacher have traveled 520 feet north. They've left the mist 200 feet behind them. Cybele drops Yousuke and Camille. "Watch her." Then she's gone once more as she travels 450 feet back to where Amon and Houshi were. The jounin looks at the two genin, then points at their belt pouches. "Cloaks. Clothes. Whatever you've got, you need something that will block skin contact with me." Houshi can see that she's in a Flash Step stance.

Yousuke

Camille doesn't move, nor does she say anything. She simply hugs herself and stares at the ground.

TraceHyde
2012-11-02, 04:37 PM
Amon senses Houshi making to move as she travels through the mist, feeling downright rejected in her efforts to rescue him. "Stay put!" she advises him as she reaches ground level, "You'll re-expose yourself to the gas otherwise and I don't trust your chances with that neurotoxin!"

Knowing better than to waste her time to heal his wounds - a number of scorch marks and dislocations that he paid no heed to at the moment - when they could make good their escape, AMon instead surveys the area, waiting as Cybele returns. When at last she does, she nods, grabbing her worn cloak by its fabric and slipping it around so the fabric faces the jounin, her front and neck now covered by it and her face of course obscured by her gas mask still. "Ready," she declares.

zeone3000
2012-11-02, 05:17 PM
Houshi stops himself before hit the pink smoke and pulls out an extra shirt, "Okay... but how you gonna carry both of us?"

Bad Situation
2012-11-02, 05:20 PM
Left alone with Camille, Yousuke throws his own cloak around her shoulders and reaches an arm around to give the girl sideways hug, drawing her into his chest. He knew, in the back of his mind, that bodily contact with her as a bad idea but damn the consequences, the pitiable girl needed support. "Just stay strong," he whispers, "I will not let harm befall you."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-02, 05:28 PM
DM

Cybele motions for Amon to climb on her back, and once the genin does so she grabs Houshi around the waist and bodily lifts him over her head. In six seconds the two sky-nin are standing beside Camille and Yousuke. Cybele drops Houshi and Amon beside Yousuke, then releases her stance and suppresses her physical nature once more. She's breathing a bit harder, but is otherwise okay. "So change in plans. What now?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-02, 05:48 PM
Amon breathes heavily in her mask as some relief overcomes her, but she quickly reaffirms the knowledge they are not safe yet. Wait, is Cybele asking AMON for advice, no way... "I'm surprised that's all she had planned. For all the preparation she had up, the most effective tactic ended up simply being to 'charge in and rearrange her organs' - the default position for any ground-combat team. Either she isn't taking us seriously or she's up to something... perhaps luring us, or testing us. It would be wrong to take her at her word that that was her only trap, especially when her clone will have likely informed her of our tactics. I'm not quite sure wher eto go form here... She psyched us out last time by letting us think we'd outsmarted her, a classic maneuvre. Now that we know her tactics but she knows our's... I don't even know anymore. It depends on factors we don't know of her - her resources, personal and equipment-wise, and her ability to detect us. She fights eerily similar to how I would engage us, really... From her perspective, if we stay out here and assume she has another trap set, even the threat of that trap would be enough for us to stay out in the wilderness long enough for her to really set another one. But we are getting very desperate, and with our prize of sanctity in the village closer now than it was when we started, a clever glitch in our psychology would make us think we'd be losing something by turning back, something she may predict..."

Amon looks to Yousuke, smiling invisibly behind her mask as she sees him hugging Camille. She was safe at least. "Careful, Konpaku-san..." she reminds him softly. "Yousuke, do you have any analysis?"

Still mulling it over in her head, she quickly suggests to Cybele "I think we should head to Konoha still, the only matter remaining is how directly we should head. Some swerving maneuvres away from our most probable path would do nicely at escaping preset traps unless she can predict our every slightest movement; the only problem with that is it technically gives her more openings to intercept. How fast could you take Camille there with that technique?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-02, 06:06 PM
DM

Cybele looks at the sun poking through the canopy above. She mentally makes a map of their location, then turns back to Amon. "A minute and a half, give or take fifteen seconds. But it's too risky. If Setsuna shows up in the flesh then I'm the only one who can fight her evenly."

Cybele takes 10 on Survival to figure out her location based on the sun. She gets a 25 and succeeds. She takes 10 on Navigate to figure out where she is in relation to Konohagakure. She gets a 20 and succeeds.

Bad Situation
2012-11-02, 06:12 PM
Yousuke stands and brushes himself off before saluting to Cybele. He listens to Amon's opinion but shakes his head at several parts, "A shinobi is not above lying to his enemies. For all we know, Setsuna lay multiple traps in all directions of advance and chose to disarm the team morale by claiming that she had predicted our course of action. No matter her intelligence, predicting an enemy's approach with only one contingency is a fool's game. There is no reason to believe that she does not have the resources to employ several traps rather than only one. It is my belief that she is using psychological ploys and is presenting 'evidence' of her superiority to dishearten us."

"She is expanding her web of traps and using her clones to box us into her designs pinpoint our location. With that in mind, I agree that we move to Konoha. We are close and if my theory is indeed true, then continuing with the mission would be playing into her trap and allow her additional opportunities herd us toward her ends."

"Sensei, can you get into contact with Scarlet or one of her servants? They should know that we are being delayed and may wish to know that a rogue Euryale is attempting to steal away someone that they have offered refuge."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-02, 06:21 PM
DM

Cybele shakes her head. "I do not know the summoning technique, so I am unable to communicate with them. In Soragakure, Kaede-sama contacted Scarlet."

TraceHyde
2012-11-02, 06:34 PM
"I know..." Amon budges at Cybele's analysis of the situation and objection to the idea of taking Camille there quickly. "If we were to do that, now is our only chance, before she can hone on us, though if she has shunpo, she'll arrive here before you get to konoha. But then, she'll also overtake us on the road. I'm sorry, Cybele, you want to protect Camille, but since you have to watch over us too, we're endangering you a lot..."

Amon gives another unseen smile as Yousuke's analysis seems to basically match her own, with a few expanded details. "though if she and her clones are in a variety of positions and she possesses the speed to get here before Cybele can get to Konoha and back, then she'll just overtake us on the road anyway. That, and she only really wants Camille. She only engages us to take us out of the equation... I think."

Amon turns towards Konoha. "Hmm... Cybele, why don't you use your own earth clone to carry Camille to Konoha then - or to at least keep an eye on us while you go personally? I can't ensure we get Camille to safety otherwise... not while we're weighing down your movements. If we can't keep up in a fight anyway..."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-02, 07:00 PM
DM

Cybele shakes her head again at Amon's suggestion of using her own Stone Clone. "It doesn't move as quickly as I do, as it's unable to use the Flash Step technique. And if I left it here, then there would be the risk that it could be destroyed and you would be left in danger."

TraceHyde
2012-11-02, 07:15 PM
"It can't flash step? Damn..." Who would have thought Cybele would care so much for our safety? She clearly doesn't like us or anything, I don't get it. Well, technically it's just me she hates I imagine - I give everyone a reason to hate me, it seems, so I... GAH! FOCUS, DAMMIT! Amon shakes her head quickly, realising that in surrendering to some sense of futility in her thoughts, her thinking was already turning to currently irrelevant things.

"Nothing else for it... we'll have to go to Konoha as one. Cybele, you're a master of evading detection, I'm sure you'll know how to best lead the way. We'll leave right now unless anyone has a better idea, Yousuke?" She digs out her wild card. "Cybele, do you think your curse would affect me if I used a technique through this?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-02, 08:07 PM
DM

The sky jounin shakes her head once more. "No, because my chakra doesn't enter the device. I simply give it the knowledge of a technique, and it performs the technique for you. Only your chakra is involved in its use."

TraceHyde
2012-11-02, 08:12 PM
"In that case, if you have any aid to give, now's the time to give it. Got anything for me to borrow that might be useful in any future scenario?"

She nods to Houshi and Yousuke to get going as she makes towards Konoha slowly, waiting for everyone else to start moving

"Lead on Cybele. I would recommend irregularly changing direction to throw off her preparations, but you're the boss."

zeone3000
2012-11-03, 08:54 AM
Houshi raises his hand in protest, his arm being little stiff after the fall, "Whoa, hold on there. Say it is true and she set up three different traps in three different directions. We ran into that trap about an hour after being found right? How long would say it would take to set up a trap of magnitude? Then, two more in two different locations reasonably distance from each other. Cybele-sensei, is possible for those clones to do such things?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 08:57 AM
DM

Cybele nods. "A Stone Replication could set explosive tags and things, but it would have to be given those tags in order to do so. But... A ninja can only have one Stone Replication at a time. Unless she's created some kind of variation of the Stone Replication technique."

zeone3000
2012-11-03, 09:10 AM
"So, she either got lucky and picked the right way. Two, predicted our movements and only set one trap. Three, somehow trapped all three paths. Hmmm, I think she may have an accomplice if she trapped all three." He looked down the suggested path to Konoha, "How long will it take get there at our current speed?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 09:12 AM
DM

Cybele does some quick mental calculations. "Fifty minutes, give or take five."

Bad Situation
2012-11-03, 09:15 AM
"Would it be reasonable to assume that somebody in Konoha would be able to contact Scarlet?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 09:16 AM
DM

Cybele gets a bit sarcastic at that. "It is reasonable that, in a major city full of ninja, one of them would know the summoning technique."

TraceHyde
2012-11-03, 09:43 AM
Amon quicks an unseen eyebrow at Cybele's sarcasm. She grabs at her mask's bindings. "Cybele, do you want this mask? I don't have a technique for curing neurotoxin so I'm useless if only I make it out of an attack like that anyway."

Amon looks to the trees, analysing the strategy of traps. "For her to set up so many traps at the exact height and place we'd be is insane. We're clearly too predictable." Doing a quick calculation in her head, Amon advises "I think we'll be able to better evade if we change our height and path by perhaps 10m and arbitrarily 100m respectively every 5 minutes overall. It may add another 10 minutes to the journey though in case she attacks us more directly. Cybele, by any chance do you already have a clone of yours following us like usual? The extra surveillance might do us good. Anyway, like I said I'm ready to head out at the drop of a hat - time is of the essence, after all and I trust your sense of tactics to lead us out of here. If there are no alternate paths into Konoha, I suppose we'll make her own, and failing that, go straight there"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 09:51 AM
DM

Cybele shakes her head when offered the mask. "I couldn't wake any of you up, and couldn't move more than two of you at a time. There's no point in me having the mask either. And no, it costs too much chakra to maintain a stone clone for longer than a few minutes. If we have to go out of our way by one hundred meters every five minutes, then it'll add a lot longer than ten minutes to the journey."

TraceHyde
2012-11-03, 09:59 AM
"100m was arbitrary," Amon comments, shaking a little awkwardly. "I meant since... if she attacks us with the gas again then only the one wearing the mask will still be standing to fight her off. I'd rather that be you than me. If we did all get paralysed, if that really did come up... transport me last, okay? There are other medics in Konoha after all" The muting of her mask and its hiding of her face makes her expression hard to tell, though her fear of being a burden is clear. "Let's get in the trees, I'd say 50 feet up, okay? Height should be easy enough to vary."

zeone3000
2012-11-03, 04:31 PM
Houshi sighs at Amon insecurities, "If continue to think like that, you'll never stop being what you fear. Now, because of how close it is, Konoha is our best bet. Time to test if she really did predict our route. If so, we should except another trap. If not, she's just full of it."

TraceHyde
2012-11-03, 05:38 PM
Amon ignores Houshi's observation of her insecurities - or at least appears to. One can barely even see her eyes behind that mask. is this what Cybele feels like?

"We can't afford to leave that sort of thing to chance though, is the thing," Amon points out. "We got lucky - this trap had us pretty well ensnared. If Cybele weren't here, we may well have died. And Cybele may not have been explicitly accounted for before... if that were the case, if she has the time, her next ambush will be readjusted to account for the jounin factor. Then again, Cybele suggested we take this path and Setsuna predicted it, so as crazy as this may sound, perhaps she just knows how you've been trained to think as a Euryale."

Feeling cheeky already, Amon suggests "Perhaps in that case we should do the opposite of what Cybele thinks. But this is no time for jokes. I think Kusagakure should be reachable by morning, but we would have to stop and heal you at some point Houshi, since you'll keel over with those wounds if we force march for that long. Heading to Konoha may only be putting off the overall problem, but at least engaging Setsuna on our own terms will be feasible." She tilts her head to Yousuke. "Well Konpaku-san, final thoughts? I lean strongly towards getting to Konoha and getting Camille out of the warzone that these woods have become. Cybele, lead the way."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 05:51 PM
DM

The four leaf-nin start heading south, and after fifteen minutes they're forced to stop by a large pink barrier. If the sky-nin attempt to go around it, then they discover that the barrier turns at a 90 degree angle after fifty feet in all three directions. If they attempt to go back, then they discover that they're now locked in a four-walled barrier.

Ninja Lore DC 22
The barrier is the same as the one created by the Barrier Seal technique.

Cybele grits her teeth. "Dammit!"

"Tsk! Such language." The sound comes from below, and if the sky-nin look down they spot the labcoat clad Euryale Setsuna standing just outside the barrier, looking up at them through it, and smiling. "I had hoped to avoid using this, as it takes a lot of chakra to pull off, but it seemed like you weren't going to be good little boys and girls and just turn over my Euryale." Setsuna chuckles quietly to herself, then turns to look at the sun.

"Well, girls and boys, lets play a game. The name of the game is: Surrender. You can either release the Euryale quietly, or..." The one takes out a small gray device, then pushes a button on the top with her thumb. Four small explosions at each corner of the barrier reveal four large nozzles. They immediately start pumping out the same pink gas. "Or, well, I watch you fall prey to my neurotoxin, then come in there and slit your throats."

Cybele

The sky-jounin growls, then turns her back to the Euryale and lowers her voice to the faintest whisper.

Listen check DC 15
"I don't think she can hear me. If not, then I have a plan. But it's really risky. I'll use Underground Displacement to go out there and kill her, then I'll disable the gas. If I take too long to kill her, then the gas might affect you guys. On the other hand, if I just disappear then she might open the barrier and just kill you all anyway. Any other plans?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-03, 09:26 PM
Amon nods at Cybele's plan, wondering how to convey her thoughts best without alerting Setsuna. Reaching around her bag, she finds her bomb. Judging by the gas pressure... damn, so much maths, I don't trsut my ability to do all this in my head, but... At least it will give Cybele some cover, the discretion is just a bonus. Or our last line of defence if all else fails. "It would be nice if we had a maid to clean up this sore sight of a woman," Amon says in reference to her place as Kaede's servant. Which is to say, go stab her ass. "I'd make a threat at you to stop calling Camille 'your Euryale' but you'll hardly listen," Amon comments oddly, bringing her hand back to slam down the smoke bomb, filling the surrounding area in the 'box' with far less lethal gas. She shouldn't be able to cast her senses beyond the box's boundaries easily - we're unseen now, for a mere split moment.

Amon deploys high pressure smoke bomb in her space.

Tapping Cybele on the back with an odd sort of push as if compelling her to go, she whispers in a tone similar to Cybele's [likely same listen DC] "Go get her, tiger. Hopefully she'll run off rather than get into such direct confrontation with you. We can handle ourselves if this cage is lifted. I can't do anything about the gas like this. Perhaps you can damage the tags of the walls from the outside. Don't keep her waiting..."

Bad Situation
2012-11-03, 09:40 PM
Yousuke nods wordlessly, unwilling to give away any inclination of their plan by speaking. He draws his sword in his left and stands over Camille protectively, allowing his right hand to slip into a half seal as if in preparation for a jutsu.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 09:54 PM
DM

Cybele waits for the smoke bomb, then uses Underground Displacement to disappear into the ground. She's gone for six seconds, and nothing seems to be happening. Another six seconds pass, and still nothing. You can't hear anything from outside the barrier, and any attempt to Sense Chakra merely senses the chakra of the barrier. It seems that nothing at all will be happening.

Listen DC 20
You hear the sound light clapping.

Bad Situation
2012-11-03, 10:14 PM
Hearing the clapping from outside the smokescreen, Yousuke mentally curses, "****!" Was Cybele unsuccessful? Had they underestimated Setsuna once again? "Something's wrong. Tighten the protective circle around Camille. I don't think Cybele's plan went as planned..." he whispers harshly.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 10:31 PM
DM

"I would say. She's off chasing a clone, but before she can come back..." The unseen speaker quickly forms a flurry of hand-seals, then touches the ground. "Hell Swamp!" The ground beneath the genin turns from firm earth to mud, and their weight threatens to drag them down into the muck. Camille sinks almost instantly, and the purple-haired girl shrieks as she goes waist-deep into the filthy mud. Setsuna just smiles, and resumes clapping for the genin.

"Well, I have to give you credit where credit is due. You are remarkably good at running away. Of course, all of you are pitifully banal in your plans, so setting this up wasn't a concern. Unfortunately it's wasted quite a bit of my energy to capture you all, so I'm not feeling entirely benevolent." Setsuna looks at the sky-nin, and just weakly smiles. "But I respect your courage. So I'll let you live. This time."

http://i.imgur.com/3uBRj.png

Legend: Dark Red - Houshi
Dark Blue - Amon
Dark Gray - Yousuke
Purple - Setsuna
Pink - Camille

Light Brown = Swamp


All the genin need a Reflex Save(DC 25) or be rendered immobile for 1d6 rounds(rolled separately for each save). Regardless of whether you succeed or not, the mud counts as difficult terrain. If you succeed, then you can use Tadayou to stand on the mud without needing further checks.

Camille Reflex: [roll0]. She's like immobilized, so [roll1]

TraceHyde
2012-11-03, 10:56 PM
Amon bites her lip, partially annoyed at the realisation that woman was probably smugly feeling successful in whatever new layer of trap she set, but doesn't have the time to dwell on that as the dread of what is unseen dawns on her. Cybele knows time is of the essence - would she really leave them hanging to better get an angle on Setsuna? Stupid, stupid, stupid, why keep going to Konoha, you knew whatever trap she'd next set would be inescapable. I wasn't expecting it to be lierally no of course, but...

Before she can head out of the fog though, Setsuna seems to return to make her move. The cloud is dissipating, dammit, no... She doesn't get to do much before the ground gives out beneath her and despite her best efforts she finds herself quite submerged. Feeling the gunk seeping into her joints, Amon coughs in disgust but rallies herself, struggling against the insta-marsh that envelops her before feeling the futility. Gritting her teeth she responds to the taunts of their unseen aggressor. "Quiet. I'm in no fit mood to exchange wits with someone who ruined Camille's life." Cybele will catch her, Amon tries to tell herself.

zeone3000
2012-11-03, 11:29 PM
Houshi grunted as he tried to pull his legs free, "I don't get it! Why is Camillie so important to you to set all of this up?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 11:34 PM
DM

Setsuna just laughs. It's a deep, unrestrained, and definitely unhinged laugh. "Mwhaha.. Hahaha... BWAHAHAHAHA!" She throws her head back and covers her mouth as she laughs, and continues to laugh for several seconds. Then it dies down, slowly, as she comes back to reality. "Ignorant fool. Because she's mine. That is MY creation. MY hard work. MY effort! She is MY Euryale, and you fools won't stop me from taking what is MINE! Heh." The woman chuckles, then looks away. "Besides, you can't possibly understand her worth. You don't have the kind of power necessary to even notice what you're playing with."

zeone3000
2012-11-03, 11:40 PM
Houshi sighs at the maniacal laugh, Great, she's nuts. Houshi shakes his head furiously, "Well of course I can't if you don't tell me. Why don't you explain it to me then, slowly and with small words."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-03, 11:47 PM
DM

"What do you know of the Euryale? That we're cursed mortals? That we're some kind of doomed clan? Feh. You know nothing. And you can die that way."

Bad Situation
2012-11-03, 11:55 PM
I know that there's a scared little girl here who has nobody else in the world but us to rely on. I know that your precense is hurting her greatly and I know that I will do everything in my power to ensure that she is safe and happy.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 12:26 AM
DM

Setsuna ignores any further mewling from the sky-nin, and moves into the smoke. She heads straight toward Camille, guessing the girl's location based on the voices of all the sky-nin. She casually picks the girl up by her vest, and drags Camille up out of the mud. She looks the other Euryale in the eye and smiles. "You're still growing. Hm... Did the Sacrifice teach you how to control yourself? Good, good. I don't have to in that case."

http://i.imgur.com/v0cdc.png

New round. Yousuke is "free", but needs another Reflex Save(DC 25) or he'll fall again.

TraceHyde
2012-11-04, 07:47 AM
"I know Cybele acts a little more like a snake than is comforting," Amon responds calmly to Setsuna's bragging. She'd come to realise it - for all her own planning, she was still thinking too much like prey. Setsuna's tactics were above her own, but only because she allowed them to be. Her actions demanded rebuttal at least in their minds. In that case, let her think she'd won - Amon's new patented triple bluff. Act like she was inculted yet trying to appear clam, the clear sign of someone who'd fallen for Setsuna's ploys an dtried not to let it get to them. "I know what it's like to have that snake lash out at me. I was told you were exiled from the clan and were specialised in lifting the curse. I know what you did to Camille, and I suspect you harnessed our incompetence to do it - the Hinami incident left you with a rather ripe chance, did it not? So I know many things. I also know Cybele will find you." Flash the insecurity comforter that Cybele will save teh day to show how weak your mindset is, good... Something seemed to be easing up, so she decides to keep the woman tallking. Even though that seemed impossible - she had what she needed and Cybele could be back at any time - Setsuna simply couldn't afford to dawdle. In truth, all she felt was terror. Terror of Camille being snatched away, but she would not allow it to ovbertake her, not while she could make a difference.

"Camille, I don't want you to endanger yourself, but..." Struggle. Please, Camille. Buy some time. I don't know if she could treat you any worse than she will anyway. She already looks at you as property. "Camille, I'm sorry, but if we can't help... Don't let yourself be taken again!" Punch her in the tit or something! She's a Euryale - she's probably not used to that sort of contact! Slip out of her arms when she leaves teh swamp at least, do something!

I have another post but i wanted to see how the first 2 rounds play out first at least. If allowed, i would attempt to use my threads to trip Setsuna or disarm her of Camille, or otherwise buy time, possibly with a sunburst tag taht I've had charged for the last 3 days.

Amon will be free on the fifth round, 30 seconds after the initial creation of the swamp

Actions
I tap for 6 chakra for the round, and activate water strider.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 08:15 AM
DM

The woman smiled. "Is that what you think? Do you really believe I would use some discarded refuse from the Sacrifice to create my Euryale? Pathetic, but expected of someone like you. No, I used a pure sample of energy from our great descendants. That is why you didn't understand the great prize you had in your hands, and that is why you'll lose her." Setsuna starts a series of hand-seals, then finishes out the Jigen Ugoku technique. She grabs Camille, who freezes up in terror, and the two of them disappear in a whirl of leaves and dust.

---

Thirty seconds later the smoke dissipates enough to see the barrier again, and the three sky-nin can see Cybele outside of the barrier shouting and pounding on it with her fist. The genin don't hear any words from the jounin, nor do they hear the sound of her fist hitting the barrier. The barrier vanishes thirty seconds after Setsuna leaves, and Cybele heads out into the swamp to help the genin. "What happened?" Cybele waits for an explanation, and explains what happened to her in turn. "I made it out, then attacked Setsuna. It looked like she evaded and reappeared further into the woods. I stupidly gave chase, then killed her and realized it was a clone. I came back, but the ground inside the barrier had been turned into mud. Unfortunately I can't use Underground Displacement to travel through mud. I was banging on the barrier and shouting to get your attention, but I suppose it was soundproof."

It takes over eight minutes before the swamp finally dries up, and dirt rises upward to push any genin stuck in the mud out onto solid ground.

"Well. It looks like we'll have to track Setsuna down. But I can't track her through teleportation..." The jounin looks rather upset as she contemplates her own shortcomings. She goes quiet, and simply thinks to herself.

TraceHyde
2012-11-04, 09:05 AM
Amon screams as she senses the ensuing technique. "COWARD! YOU'RE NOT GOING TO KILL US, FOOL?! I'LL SPIT ROAST YOU AND LEAVE YOUR RAVAGED CORPSE TO THE WOLVES! STICK THE ****ING KNIFE IN ME, DO IT!" Anything to buy time - she senses the swamp giving out from her struggles, just a little more, just a few more seconds. She knew not what she would do when free, but if she could just get one hand free, she could use her threads to...

"NO, NO, STOP! LET GO OF HER! YOU WON'T KEEP HER, I'LL DESTROY EVERY FACET OF YOUR WORK, I'LL RESCUE HER AND UNMAKE YOU! LET! GO!" Amon screams. "CAMILLE, I'LL SAVE YOU, WE'LL-!" Amon falls silent as she senses them gone. There's a pause before she gives a high pitched and drawn out scream that echoes throughout the cage. She was left untouched and Camille was abducted. Even greedier.

Amon finally breaks free of the gunk just as the smoke nearly gives way. Running out of the smoke, she spots Cybele instead of her quarry. She gestures wildly through the barrier, her feet strongly atop the surface. "SHE TOOK CAMILLE, TELEPORTED, 20 SECONDS AGO, JIGEN UGOKU, SET YOU UP WITH A CLONE, REAL ONE GONE!" She shouts, still at the top of her lungs, her rageful tears almost visible through her mask as she hopes Cybele can still do something. Some part of her nags her with the question of why she could hear Setsuna through this barrier.

She pants as the barrier give sway, ripping off her mask, biting her lip hard enough she was drawing a bit of blood. "Dammit, I'm so stupid, how do we even..."

Amon falls quiet as Cybele likewise retreats. Cupping her face in her hand for a moment, she rubs her eyes, scrubbing her own despair out - or, more accurately, pushing it somewhere deeper down inside herself. "Right, okay..." She can't even fake any sort of smile as she places a hand on Cybele's shoulder. "What techniques do you know? If we don't have anything we can follow her with, then we'll fish these two out and head for Grass immediately - perhaps we'll find some hint as to where she'll hole up. She'll never be more open than she is right now with all the resources she used up and if we act fast enough we can stop her causing Camille further trauma, okay? We can do this. but not if you lose hope, okay?" Nothing about her suggested hopefulness in any degree, but she did refuse to give up - there was a faint but burning fire in her eyes. Leaning in a little closer, she comments sadly "I think we've both lost too much to sit weighing our losses when we might keep this one, okay?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 09:21 AM
DM

Cybele shakes her head. "As I said, I can't track her through teleportation. She could be anywhere from 300 to 700 feet from here. It'd be a complete gamble to even hope I go in the same direction as her..." Cybele just shakes her head again, this time a bit harder than the last. "No, I don't have anything. It'll take a day to get to the Grass on foot, but Setsuna might move her in that time." Cybele doesn't say anything more, but she's clearly implying that this course of action won't have any results. After all, even if they were to leave immediately Setsuna would be fresh and capable by the next morning. Their "opportunity" was already lost before it had ever even presented itself.

zeone3000
2012-11-04, 09:31 AM
Houshi punches the dried mud, "God damn it! She out witted us at every turn! There was nothing... absolutely nothing we could have done." He hangs his head, "It was over before it started. Still, we can't let it end there. We can't let that bitch win. Not that easily. Even if they can't tell us where she is, maybe we could find where she has been and go from there."

TraceHyde
2012-11-04, 10:06 AM
Amon grunts as if wounded at Cybele's rejections. Those were of course problems she knew of to begin with, but she had hoped to lift Cybele's mind a little. Before she can add more, Houshi's own grumbling does seem to coincidentally touch on something.

"Okay, she could have only teleported so far though. If we check in a grid formation we could find the initial stop. However, the second idea, if she wasn't expecting to find us today might prove more promising... she seemed to track us, so perhaps you can do the same for us, back at the house you made, we could use that to track where she came from." She pauses. "No, never mind Houshi, she probably won't go back to her base knowing we would do that. Unless she gets cocky." If I'd been smarter or faster...

Amon goes to Yousuke's side, not sure quite how to look Cybele in the eye.

Reflex save to aid another on his next escape attempt [roll0]

"Let's see, getting in her mindset, ew, but it has to be done... what greater cause of the Euryale was she talking about... why did she refer to Cybele as the Sacrifice?..." Amon mumbles to herself.

She looks sadly to Yousuke as she tries to help him out. "I... I'm sorry... if I'd been a little faster, if I'd gotten a hand free, we might have... We let her down again.."

zeone3000
2012-11-04, 10:18 AM
Houshi grabs Amon by the shoulder, spins her around and put his rather large finger in her her face, "Damn it Amon, you aren't taking all the blame for this. You can't and I won't let you. We were all there and there was nothing we could do about it. You got that? And if you do it again..." He though a moment, puffing his cheeks, "Uhm... err... little help here." He drifts his gaze over to Yousuke.

TraceHyde
2012-11-04, 10:38 AM
Amon looks shamefully away from Houshi. "...Quiet. Setsuna's tactics are similar to my own, I should have better predicted her moves. The only difference is that she's more resourceful than me, more confident in her abilities, so I couldn't grasp her scope... We were all here, but the trap was designed as unbeatable. I should have known to avoid it in the first place..."

Reflex save to aid another on Houshi's escape [roll0]

She tilts her head to Cybele again. "But of course... we can't really stew in blame until after we've done everything we can to rescue Camille." She still can't bring herself to smile, not even to lift the mood. She was endlessly furious, really. "She said she didn't use Hinami to make her a Euryale, by the way....something about 'pure sample of energy from our great descendants'."

Bad Situation
2012-11-04, 01:12 PM
Yousuke tugs uselessly at his earthly prison and lets his shoulders sag resignedly when he realizes there's no hope. Instead, he turns to Camille to offer her some parting words. "Camille...I cannot stop her. I was too weak to face your feelings in Soragakure and I now I am too to save you. I wish I could have done more for you. I wish that for all of my boasting, I could have at least saved you..."

"But know this: A swordsman never gives up. Even if I have to track Setsuna down to the ends of the earth I will save you. Like a stupidly loyal dog I will give chase and when the time comes I will bear my fangs, my everything, for you."

Realizing that his voice is beginning to crack he pauses and tries to calm his voice before continuing, "So I need you to stay strong, okay? When I become strong enough I will come to save you no matter what. Do you understand? I know my words are of little comfort but I want you to know that even when life is at it's worst there is always someone out there who cares for you, who l-loves you. And that's me." Tears spill unbidden from Yousuke's eyes as Setsuna approaches the mud swamp but still Yousuke continues, "This lowly dog will always be loyal to you. Always. H-he may not know what to do all of the time and sometimes he makes mistakes but if you w-wait, he'll come for you. With his tail between his legs and nose pressed to the floor in exhaustion he'll come for you, no matter what."

When Setsuna finally picks up Camille he throws the last of his energy into his shout, "So know that I will come. Spiteful and loyal to the death, I will save you!" And like that, they disappear and the swordsman shudders into deep heaving breaths, "...no matter what..."
---
When Cybele arrives, too late, Yousuke stares at the floor in quiet agony. He only looks up when Houshi asks him for help with Amon. "...No. Don't even try to pretend that you-that we were ever on the same level as her. We were outclassed, pure and simple. If she had been aiming for our deaths in the first place we would have died the second she made the decision to kill us."

"I will vindicate myself. We will save her. A swordsman does not make promises he does not intend to keep."

TraceHyde
2012-11-04, 02:11 PM
Amon's tears intensify a bit at Yousuke's words, though her mask makes it hard to tell. We were trying so hard but we can't save anyone like this...

---
"She..." Amon looks off to the side, only more wounded for Yousuke's reassurance that they had no chance of repelling Setsuna. If we had no chance, why did we try when others might have prevailed... All my scheming did was make firm my belief in the worst possible course of action.

Amon's still in her 'victim blaming' mindset.

At Yousuke's reaffirming his intentions though... a small hope, a genuine hope enters her eyes. Where did Yousuke's heroism come from anyway? Whatever it was, seeing betrayed hope in Cybele, and that wounded but enduring deterimation in Yousuke, she nods. her brow squints as her gaze hardens on Yousuke. Putting out a hand as if to shake his, she says with a new honour of sorts, "Konpaku Yousuke, show me the honour of a swordsman that I might attain it. We will save Camille, we will give her whatever life she seeks." Curiously absent is her question of his love for Camille even though such a doubt is present in her mind - and of whether he had merely said so to keep her spirit together. Doing her best to get him on his feet with the offered hand, grabbing his hand if he's still unable to lift his, she nods. "We'll never let those precious to us be lost," not again, "lest they forget how precious they are. Swear this, that our hearts never give way. Swear this and I shall be by your side while you do what is right. Swear this, Konpaku Yousuke."

Bad Situation
2012-11-04, 03:20 PM
Yousuke stares down at Amon's gesture before clasping it with his own. After a moment he lets it drop and says, "...I will swear nothing. I cannot promise that my heart will not waver, only that I will continue on in spite of it. If you are looking for reassurance then I have none to give. Whatever you are looking for, you will need to find it within yourself, as I have."

The swordsman draws his sword and holds it in the air precariously. "Honor comes from within the soul, not from without. And from this honor, courage, love, and the willingness to protect are born. A swordsman wields his sword not to strike down his foes, but to strike down his own weak self. He wields his blade not to protect himself but to protect his very soul. I will grow from my failures today to ensure that my weakness never becomes issue again."

TraceHyde
2012-11-04, 03:35 PM
Grow from failure...? Amon does seem to budge at that in an odd way but nods anyway. Her gaze remains just as intense as before nonetheless.

"If we both share the same ideal, we shall keep each other in line - if you can't promise your heart shall not waver, all the more reason." She pauses, her gaze flickering for a moment. "I know my presence is not appreciated and I should not seek you to say otherwise. I know we can only use our own strength. But there is no reason not to nurture."

Amon turns to Cybele, bowing. "I'm sorry we proved a liability. I vow, as I always have, to become strong enough to be relied upon. And more importantly, whatever our plan, I vow as Yousuke does, to see Camille is delivered to safety and from that woman's clutches."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 07:27 PM
DM

All while the genin talk amongst themselves Cybele is furiously scribbling something onto a small scroll. She rolls the scroll up, puts it in her mouth, then performs a technique very similar to summoning. The technique requires no blood, and just spontaneously creates a small bird with a backpack designed to hold scrolls. She places the scroll onto the bird's back, then sends him off in the direction of Konohagakure. She repeats this once more, then sends the new bird off in the direction of Soragakure. She turns to the genin, then nods. "I have sent in a request to Konohagakure concerning a dangerous criminal ninja believed to be operating in the Fire Country. Hopefully they will act on it. I also sent a note detailing what happened to Kaede-sama, and he will definitely have some kind of insight into how to track her. I also requested that Sune come to help, but I can't be certain she'll appear."

With that said, Cybele addresses Amon's apology. "I was no better, but we should not dwell on the past. Focus on the future, and don't hold anything back."

Finally, Cybele harkens back to Amon's question concerning the "descendants". "She likely means a piece of the Snake God, which means she killed one of the snake summons in order to create..." Cybele goes quiet, then smiles. Not just a thin grin or a happy smile, but an ecstatic slasher smile that takes up her entire face. "That's it! She used a summon to create Camille! We can save her through that! We need someone with the Snake Blood Pact who knows the summoning technique. The only place I can think of is Kusagakure, so it seems we're heading that way anyway." Cybele doesn't wait for confirmation, and simply turns toward the Grass Country. "Amon, heal Houshi. We'll start land-hopping after you've finished. We have to get to Kusagakure as soon as possible." She waits for Amon to do as she ordered, then immediately starts land-hopping toward Kusagakure.

---

On the trip over, Cybele explains her plan: The blood pacts require that all members in the pact sign a contract, just like humans have to sign a contract to summon them. Well, that means that a sample of blood is available from that contract, and if someone were to get access to that blood then they would be able to reverse-summon the summon. Because Camille was created by using the pieces of one of these snakes, then she can be reverse-summoned by using some of the snake's blood as part of the summoning technique. It doesn't matter where Setsuna took her anymore, so long as they're able to get that contract, discover which snake had been used to create Camille, then reverse-summon her.

Land-hopping for four hours deals 10 damage to everyone.

---

Spot DC 26
You see four Kusa-nin following you. They're wearing standard ninja gear, as well as travel cloaks that blend in with the grass. They're following you from 60 feet out, but haven't made any aggressive maneuvers toward you. One of them, a tall man with bright purple hair and purple eyes, seems to be a Euryale.

Listen DC 24
You're being followed by four people. They're doing very well to stay quiet, and are likely intending to simply judge your stance toward Kusagakure.

Kusagakure sits amid a massive field of grass. The city's giant walls are roughly the same size as Soragakure's own, and its population is likely roughly the same. It has a giant gate marked with the kanji for "Grass" across the front of it. The city's gates are wide open, and several traders seem to be going inside. You can't make out any guards from this distance, but it's not hard to imagine that they're there. Cybele starts walking toward the village, as land-hopping would likely be seen as aggressive. She speaks to the genin calmly, but doesn't turn around to address them. "Stay on your best behavior. We need their help, and I can't ask that of them directly. Also, don't worry too much, but we're being followed by grass-nin."

zeone3000
2012-11-04, 07:40 PM
Houshi was in deep thought during the travel and when they arrived at the gate, "It just seems to easy. With all the traps she had to stop us..." He sighed, he really hated himself right now, "I just don't see her not having something to stop us from reverse summoning Camillie. It would just be too easy. I mean, if it works frickin' awesome and hopefully she doesn't seek revenge."

Bad Situation
2012-11-04, 07:54 PM
Yousuke nods and sticks close to Cybele's side when they near Kusagakure. "Will we be seeing to Scarlet on our return? I would imagine that they were expecting us still."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 07:59 PM
DM

Cybele nods. "Yes, once we recover Camille we'll continue with the mission and guide her to Scarlet-dono."

TraceHyde
2012-11-04, 08:33 PM
Amon nods at Cybele sending off for help. "The illustrious Sune then? It is nice to have such people to help us when we need them, isn't it?" Amon says, forcing a bit of a smile. She gives a lame thumbs-up at Cybele's insistence they focus on moving forward. "See, now you're getting it," she says, smiling with at least a little more sincerity.

She recoils a bit at Cybele's smile, trying to recall if she'd ever seen her smile like that. "Huh? What are you..." At Cybele's sudden inspiration though, Amon claps her hands twice, a light returning to her eyes, though her gawking mouth failing to keep up. "Y-You think? We can save her just like that?" Throwing her hands up victoriously, she quickly bends to Houshi's side to patch him up. "What are we waiting for, let's kick this woman's ass!" Some part of her knew Houshi's concern about 4 hours before he voiced them though she keeps her lips pursed, hoping for the best.

Houshi is healed of 22 damage, giving him a net gain after the journey of 12HP

Amon nods at Cybele's plan as they travel, not quite grasping how the blood worked in some ways, but glad to see her sensei on her A-game

---

"Don't worry Houshi," Amon reassures him. "To my knowledge, no technique exists to prevent such a summoning. Setsuna might develop one if she is sufficiently paranoid, but it is unlikely she already possesses it." No, whatever trick she plays will likely be of a more mundane type "Let's just hope her perspective on things is so twisted she wouldn't even consider this angle."

Amon grinds to a halt as Cybele does, walking briskly alongside her as they approach the gate. Thinking, she suddenly digs out her headband that had been absent from her head throughout the last 4 days, slipping it back on and tying it in her old practiced fashion, and before long her hair sits like she'd never taken the bandanna off, her Soragakure symbol shimmering more proudly now in the flickering sun. She turns to the group, Yousuke and Cybele in particular, nodding to them. "For Camille," is all she says for a while, looking with determination towards the village

Amon smiles at the knowledge they were being followed. "Ha, good to know the Grass is more on top of things than the Leaf then if they think to keep an eye on the foreign ninja. You know your way around best, Cybele, why don't you lead the way?" She tilts a smile Houshi's way. "Remember - best behaviour," she emphasises in his diretcion, though with her tone, if one weren't watching her face, they might conclude she was reminding herself of that objective. "Anything we should know about the village before we go in?"

Ninja Lore to know about Kusa. i take 10, hitting 19

Amon digs around for her identification in her bag, touching upon the scroll Cybele gave her. "Hey, Cybele, do you want this message back or should I deliver it?" I obviously don't know what it says or anything....

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 09:54 PM
DM

Cybele shakes her head when Amon mentions the Grass being more on top of things than the Leaf. "It's not a question of proficiency, but of necessity. The Leaf could weather a surprise attack from anyone: Even one of the other Great Villages. The Grass is much weaker, and must be vigilant or it would be severely damaged in a surprise attack." Regardless of her thoughts on Kusagakure, the sky-jounin shares what she knows fairly freely. The group eventually arrives at the main gate of the Village Hidden Among Grass.

Two ninja with Grass headbands stop the group, and Cybele attempts to explain her situation. One of the ninja leaves in order retrieve their boss, and after a few minutes he returns with a balding older man in tow. The older ninja listens to their story once more, then issues each of the sky-nin a small laminated card. The cards state that they're one-day passes through the village for whomever has signed them. He requires each of them to sign their name and home village on the card, then signs his own name on the back of each card. Finally, the sky-nin are allowed to go into the city. Cybele immediately starts heading toward the city's north wing, and after almost thirty mintues of walking the sky-nin arrive at the Euryale compound.

The compound is a massive walled in section of Kusagakure. The ten-foot walls have a single large gate, which is guarded by two young boys with bright purple hair. Each of them wears a set of glasses, and it's not hard to guess that they're Euryale. The two boys, whom neither could be older than fourteen, look up at Cybele. They shake their head, but she speaks her piece anyway. "I am Cybele, of Mother Chairlaine, of Greatmother Claire. I claim the right to entry in order to speak to the current Greatmother."

The boys look at one another, then sigh and look back to Cybele. The one on the right speaks while the one on the left leaps over the wall and heads into the compound. "The Sacrifice is dead to the Euryale from the moment she leaves the city. That is our law and you know it well Sacrifice. I deny your claim."

Without skipping a beat Cybele continues speaking the moment he stops. "Then I claim my right to enter as a newborn Euryale. The tainted blood in my veins marks me as your sister." Cybele starts to remove her glasses, but the boy stops her.

"I do not need proof, Sacrifice. Your hair and your eyes are enough. I cannot deny the claim made open to all Euryale by our ancestors, but know this: Your new form will not give you elder status among us, for we know it to be a lie. The Sacrifice could not be so old." The boys stand aside, and allow the group entry into the compound. Inside, they can see a very wide training ground. Children, ranging from ages five to ten years old, sit in meditation poses on the training grounds. Each one bears the distinctive purple hair of the Euryale clan, and all of them are quietly meditating. Some have the same pained expressions as Camille once had, others are more serene, and still others are gasping and clutching their chests. However, none of these incidents seem to correlate with their age. Some of the youngest members are the most serene, whilst some of the oldest are in the most pain. However, whatever kind of meditation they're undergoing, it's obviously much more painful and stressful than normal meditation.

Cybele guides the group along a stone path further into the compound. She makes a bee-line for a large traditional-style home sitting on the edge of the compound. As soon as she, and the group, arrives within thirty feet of the home two female snake-masked ANBU step forward from the shadows. They seem to materialize from thin air in the same way Cybele does, and they're obviously challenging the group's right to continue. Cybele nods, then forms the hand-sign for "Release". The sky-jounin explodes into smoke, then reappears at her normal fourteen year old age. The ANBU on the right nods, then speaks. "You may not pass here, Sacrifice. No matter your claim, the Greatmother recognizes your death and grieves appropriately. Your children may pass, and may assume the mantle left by your passing, but you must remain."

Cybele nods, as if expecting this, then motions for the genin to step forward. One of the female ANBU steps aside to allow the genin passage, but they both keep their eyes on Cybele.

---

If the genin step forward, then they walk into a traditional-style living room. Tatami mats cover the floor, a small table sits in the center, and a woman in her late twenties (http://i.imgur.com/bZeaV.png) sits at it. Her body is covered by a thin blanket, and she shakes a little. Yet, her sharp crystalline purple eyes dart to the intruders immediately. Her long pale purple hair drapes across her shoulders like an old woman's shawl. She smiles a little, and that tiny movement shows the genin thick red lines running up her face from her left shoulder. The lines are similar to a snake's scales, and they cover the left side of her face as well as much of her neck. The woman shakily offers a seat to the genin with her left hand. All three genin can see that it's completely covered in red scales, and looks more like a lizard's limb than a human one. She breathes heavily as she tries to speak.

"I... am sorry... young ones. I am... not quite well. You have... caught me at a... bad time. But... They tell me that... the Sacrifice has... returned." She speaks in between breaths, and seems to be having a hard time both breathing and speaking. But she powers through it, even if it takes her awhile to express herself. She gives a faint smile as she speaks of Cybele. "I am glad... I was very... worried about her. But... My guards only spoke... of the Sacrifice. What of... Sune and... Nanako?"

Regardless of the genin's answer, the woman continues onward. "And... what did you... come here to speak of... children of... the Sacrifice?"

zeone3000
2012-11-04, 10:09 PM
Houshi opts to stay outside, this was his teammate's mission. Besides, he felt Cybele would need some company. Though, he couldn't help but ask, "What is this Sacrifice they keep saying. I mean, obviously it's you but there's more to it then that."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 10:28 PM
Houshi

Cybele, now being a foot and a half shorter than Houshi, has to strain in order to look up at him. "Kusagakure is a village surrounded by three of the Great Villages: Iwagakure, Kumogakure, and Konohagakure. In order to survive, the Grass must appease these larger villages. They give up contracts, money, or assistance to the Cloud and the Leaf. The Stone, on the other hand, is much more malevolent in their demands. Every seven years a young Euryale is chosen to become the Sacrifice, and she is sent to Iwagakure to be the Tsuchikage's plaything. Seven years ago I was kidnapped by the Stone. My sisters, Sune and Nanako, saved me by killing the stone-nin who did it."

Cybele looks away as she continues her story. "The Stone demanded that I be the Sacrifice, and further demanded my sister's heads as payment for the dead stone-nin. The Greatmother of the time, Claire," Cybele uses the woman's name without an honorific to show her obvious distaste for the woman, "agreed to use me as the Sacrifice. But she also sent Sune and Nanako as additional sacrifices, because she expected that would preserve their lives. It saved Sune, but not Nanako."

Cybele finishes her story with a deadpan delivery like she were talking about the weather. Whether that's because the story no longer affects her, or because she's come to terms with it, remains to be seen. "Either way, the Sacrifice is declared dead in the village. She is shunned for one week, so that the Euryale may come to terms with the loss of everything important to her. Sune, Nanako, and I lived like homeless vagrants for the week before we were sent to Iwagakure. I have no love for this village any longer, but we need them."

zeone3000
2012-11-04, 10:48 PM
Houshi heaves a heavy sigh, "Wow... I... Wow, now I can see why you are the way you are. I'm not gonna stand here and pretend I understand it or apologize for it, that doesn't feel... right. I do understand that if they didn't do it, Iwagakure would have attacked Kusagakure over it. Which is just asinine. Just to satisfy the whims of one person? I fear I'll never understand why some people are the way they are. Then, you're own clan just threw you away for the 'greater good'. Things will never get better like that." He let a moment pass, "So, I'm guessing Kaeda saved you or something."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 11:02 PM
Houshi

Cybele simply shrugs her shoulders. "Absolute power corrupts absolutely. And the Fifth Tsuchikage is... he's truly corrupt. There is no humanity left in that man. As for the clan... It's necessary. I do not hold a grudge anymore, but at the same time this place is no longer my home."

When asked about Kaede, the sky-jounin simply nods. "Kaede-sama tried to flee the village. Sune and I were sent to kill him. He convinced us to betray the Stone, and the three of us killed the group sent after him. That group included Hinami, whom Kaede-sama spared."

zeone3000
2012-11-04, 11:11 PM
"Yes, Kaede is an alright guy in my book." Houshi motioned to the two guards, "Obviously... they don't even want you. Again, something I just can't understand. I'm guessing the village suffered some type of retribution for your escape."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-04, 11:23 PM
Houshi

The ANBU girls just watch the two sky-nin with disinterested gazes. Cybele casually responds in their stead. "It is to be expected. I am dead, and they likely remember my passing. I am not Euryale Cybele within this city, Houshi. She is dead. I am simply the Sacrifice."

Bad Situation
2012-11-05, 01:47 AM
Yousuke bows and enters further into the compound. "I will be in your care. I welcome your gracious hospitality." Then he turns shoots Cybele a parting glance, saluting as if to say, "You may rely on me."

---
At the threshold of the room, Yousuke bows down to the ground in deference before entering in earnest. Even as he takes his place across from the woman he keeps his eyes averted in respect for the matriarch. He sets his face into a grim countenance to reflect the severity of the situation.

"I mean no disrespect but might I ask permission to speak bluntly?"

If the woman allows such, Yousuke continues, "Several weeks ago, we encountered a young girl by the name of Camille. Save for her lack of constitution she was an otherwise ordinary child. However, at some point in time her parents entrusted her to a woman who did...something to effect her health. When I sensed her chakra I recognized her sensation as one similar to Cyb-The Sacri-Cybele-sensei's own signature. Sensei later confirmed that she was of the same bloodline but revealed that her 'curse' was one of artificial origins. At the time we suspected and later confirmed that her mysterious benefactor was none other than Euryale Setsuna, who we understand is an exiled clansman."

"On our way to escort Camille to Scarlet-dono's mansion we were caught in no less than two of Setsuna's traps. She managed to stall our reprisal long enough to approach spirit our charge away from us. In her gloating she admitted that she had used 'a pure sample of energy from her great descendants' and left us there for sensei to find."

"Sensei theorizes that Setsuna killed one of her summons to access the required chakra and used said chakra to alter Camille's body. As such, she believes that someone with the Snake Pact will be able to summon her back to our side."

"...I am doubtful of this plan's success and some part of me wonders if we are playing into Setsuna's hands but if there is indeed a way to save her then I will gratefully bear the responsibility of my actions."

"So with that said," the swordsman bows with his forehead scraping the floor, "Please allow me to sign the Snake contract. I have promised her that I would save her no matter what and I intend to make good on my promises. I love her dearly and I feel responsible for her loss. Please..."

TraceHyde
2012-11-05, 10:39 AM
Amon writes her signature on the card with her off-hand thus nulling whatever intrinsic properties the signature has :3

Amon nods to Cybele as they enter, 'I got this', not really sure what to expect. She catches the start of Houshi's questioning as she enters about this 'Sacrifice' business but thinks better of eavesdropping and only getting a part of the full story. From what she knew of Cybele, what Kaede and she herself had said and from the lore of the village and the way the other Euryale treated her, she could figure out most of it.

Entering, she sits beside Yousuke, nodding respectfully and trying not to stare at the woman, though not averting her gaze as Yousuke does. She bows her head in apology at the woman's state. "I'm sorry we must trouble with our business then - of which there are several items, some more personal and some more urgent than others. We could bring the formal matters to the attention of your representatives if it would perturb you less." Don't concentrate on the arm. bowing her head again, she introduces herself, "Amon, Genin of Soragakure, and indeed student to Cybele - or, indeed, 'Sacrifice' as every encountered member of Euryale refers to her."

When asked of Sune and Nanako, Amon's expression looks a little softer in return for the concern. "Sune I have not been introduced to, but I have spotted her and hear much of her. Nanako, however..." Amon looks more darkly. "I did not wish to pry further into Sensei's business, but a letter I decrypted mentioned the honouring of 'Nanako's sacrifice' and with what i know of her - and what i do not know, I believe she was not so fortunate. My apologies." She gives a moment of averting her gaze and silence in honour of such a motion to let it better set in in case the woman would grieve at all before progressing.

Before she can explain further, Yousuke says his piece and Amon lets him, commenting only "Asking to speak brashly is itself brash." Not quite how i would describe things, but good enough, she thinks, not at all objecting until the end when he requests to sign the contract with snakes. "Konpaku, do not be so foolish. Even if you were allowed such a contract, we do not have the time for you to master Kuchiyose; think not in terms of personal heroics but in terms of how quickest and most assuredly to rescue from that woman's perversions."

She turns to the matriarch. "It is as he says though. Our dear friend has been abducted once more by Setsuna, who speaks of her as a mere tool in some ascension of hers and Cybele believes the use of the summoning contract Camille to be bound to as our best way to retrieve her. Please, might you lend us the aid of the Euryale? Name your price, we have decided to do anything to rescue her - as a fellow student of Cybele, as his love and as my friend, we stake our souls on it."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-05, 11:32 AM
Can't nullify red tape, so it doesn't matter what hand Amon uses.

DM

The woman waits for the genin to finish out their entire speech. She shakes a little during their explanation, but does nothing to stop them. Midway through Yousuke's statement a young girl (http://i.imgur.com/pUI5t.jpg) in her middle teens enters the room. She's wearing a heavy hooded jacket, a thick black eyepatch, and a small squirrel rests on top of her chest. Her hands hold a delicate glass plate with four steaming tea cups resting atop it, and she quietly approaches the genin. The plate goes down onto the table in front of the matriarch, and the older woman gets her cup first. The girl bows deeply as she offers the woman her cup, and the older woman takes it casually. She looks at the squirrel and frowns. The girl hands the genin their own cups of tea, but without the same kind of reverence as she treats the older woman. The girl sits beside the matriarch, but just watches the sky-nin.

When Yousuke finishes and Amon starts up again, the older woman raises her hand to stop the sky-nin. "Alright, alright." Her words take a lot of energy out of her, but she speaks anyway. "Setsuna is a wayward child, yes. But you should know that the Sacrifice is no longer one of us. There was a child among us known as Cybele, but she died seven years ago. However, as her children, you are able to inherit what she has left behind." The older woman drinks some tea, and exposes her other arm as well. Her right limb seems quite human compared to the scaled skin on her left arm.

"I will not consent to the boy signing the contract. He is not Euryale, and does not know our ways. However, as inheritors the Euryale are obligated to help you. Akemi." The girl straightens up instantly when her name is mentioned. "Take them to the training ground, and help them however you can." Akemi bows deeply to the older woman.

"Yes, Greatmother." Akemi starts to get up, but the older woman places a hand on the girl's thigh.

"But, I wish to speak with the Sacrifice. So, children, would you send her to see me?" Whether the genin agree or not, Akemi stands up and looks at the genin.

"Lead the way."

TraceHyde
2012-11-05, 11:58 AM
Amon bows deeply as the greatmother speaks of inheritance from Cybele. "I shall endeavor to better understand your ways that benefit us so," she says thankfully. She did not get even a single sip of tea in - despite what it might do for her exhaustion, before she consents to go. Her muscles were quite ragged from forcing march over to the Grass so quickly, but she couldn't afford to waste energy healing herself just now. "Thank you for your hospitality and I am sorry to have bothered you so." Sucking it up, she hovels on her good leg towards the door until stopped. Not quite catching her intentions given the context, Amon just nods. "I shall send her in, though her presence will be of her own election. There is also a matter of delivering a scroll message from our higher-ups to the leader of Kusagakure..." Amon fumbles in her bag for the scroll, though doesn't actually remove it unless requested. "But perhaps it shall wait..." she remarks, unable to notice the warped arm all over again, not wanting to strain the woman's health even if she was the recipient - with Cybele here it could at least wait until after the meeting lest focus be lost.

Amon takes 10 on treat injury, life sciences and ninja lore to figure out what this woman's deal is with the transformation, hitting 17, 20 and 19 respectively

If not stopped, Amon follows Akemi out the room, handing the scroll to Cybele as she crosses paths with her. "She wants to see the 'Sacrifice'," Amon says, nodding to Cybele. "As 'children' of the same, we have apparently inherited the aid of the Euryale in this matter," she says in a mechanical voice but can't help smiling a bit

Bad Situation
2012-11-05, 03:45 PM
Yousuke remains quiet on the walk back to Cybele, sparing only the Greatmother a polite bow as he exits the room. When they reencounter Cybele, he is content to remain silent and instead passes his time by looking at Akemi, examining her closely and watching for any sort of reaction.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-05, 06:35 PM
DM

The Greatmother does not respond to Amon, as she's clearly saving her energy to speak to Cybele.

The trip back to your teacher is short and sweet. Cybele doesn't react to the statement that the Greatmother would like to see her, nor does she react to Amon's teasing. Instead, she simply looks to the genin and nods. "Very well. I will go so long as they are going to help Camille."

During the meeting, Akemi just watches Cybele. She says nothing to the sky-jounin, and your teacher makes no attempt to speak to her. After all, both of them know how their conversation would go. Cybele would attempt to inquire about Akemi's plans concerning Camille, and Akemi would just respond that business between Euryale was not for outsiders. Then probably remind Cybele that she is not one of them anymore. Rather than bother with that Cybele just walks toward the home of the Greatmother. Both ANBU allow her to pass without comment or complaint.

Akemi reaches up to the squirrel resting in her jacket and pets his head. She just watches Cybele leave, and doesn't move until the woman's gone. She finally turns and starts heading toward the north. "Come on kids. Lunch and I will save this girlfriend of yours, okay?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-05, 06:59 PM
Amon wasn't teasing, she was commenting on the novelty of a situation she didn't understand working in her favour.

As Cybele passes her by, Amon produces the scroll she received at the start of the mission, offeirng it to her sensei. "Do you want this?" If Cybele rejects its burden, Amon shrugs, pocketing it. Regardless, she nods to Cybele as she goes to impart some confidence

Once Cybele is out of sight, Amon gives a ragged breath, propping herself up against the wall for a second, the tension of trying to seem tough for Cybele lifting. Sighing, she tilts her head in greeting to Houshi. "We talked far too much there, didn't we. I think we got on her nerves. Well, at least she was nice enough to point us to help without complaint. Interesting to see her concern for Cybele..."

Looking once more to where Cybele vanishes, Amon wonders Cybele's feelings. She tries not to think too hard on the woman's affliction though to spare it no thought proves impossible.

At Akemi's offer, Amon stands her full height, clearing her throat. She's about to reject the offer to rest, but with her fatigue her no such objection arises. "Very well. What did you have in mind to save her? Cybele's theory is, if I understood it at all, we might find what snake specifically was used to create Camille and use that to summon her to our position, as I'm sure you heard. Is there a library for such knowledge or other consultation?" She pauses, looking to Yousuke, wondeirng if the term 'girlfriend' arose any embarrassment from him, hoping it didn't.

Turning to Akemi, she remarks "She isn't my woman though, I'm currently single. Amon, by the way," she introduces herself, extending her hand. Both of her hands were clad in medical gloves as they had been before they entered the compound. After all, she wanted to save herself the embarrassment of having to put on such things mid-conversation. "Would you mind terribly if I ask you of Euryale? It would be beneficial to our cause and I am quite interested." She follows Akemi through the compound, of course not knowing the way herself otherwise

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-05, 07:25 PM
DM

Cybele doesn't take the scroll from Amon. It wasn't her mission, but she also probably didn't want to talk to the Greatmother any longer than absolutely necessary.

---

Akemi looks at Amon with her one good eye. Akemi doesn't seem to have any kind of glasses, and from what the sky-nin know of the Euryale her sight should be causing Amon serious physical pain, yet Amon doesn't feel anything out of the norm. The girl, who's obviously an early developer for her age, just looks at Amon's extended hand as well. Handshakes simply weren't done in the Euryale compound: Medical scrubs or not. Nonetheless, she nods at the sky-nin. "Akemi, of Mother Sae, of Greatmother Claire. Though, I suppose that wouldn't mean anything to outsiders. Hm... Then I guess my name would be Euryale Akemi." The girl points to the squirrel. "And this is Lunch. He's a bit of a pervert, so if he gets hands-y just whack him on the head." The squirrel chitters at the sound of his name, but does nothing else.

Akemi shrugs when asked about the Euryale. "If you want to, then go for it. But don't expect answers if it's important. The Greatmother doesn't like it when we talk to outsiders, even if they are inheritors."

Akemi starts heading to the northeast, and motions for the genin to follow. "And ya, I heard the plan. There's no library or nothing like that. See, the snake pact on the human side is locked up in the Greatmother's house. She's the Snake Sage ya know? But the human pact on the snake side is... Well, I guess it's a living snake. You just gotta summon it to this side."

TraceHyde
2012-11-05, 07:53 PM
Amon nods at Akemi's intro, shooting her a bit of a smile, though looks confused, "He's a... pervert?" she asks, looking to the squirrel, no idea if the squirrel was just another of the intelligent animals she was running into this week or if Akemi was screwing with her. Amon recalls something being mentioned about control, though her best guess is it may be some other sort of inhibitor, failing the first explanation, as to why Akemi was not harming her. It was a bit odd to look a Euryale in the eye like this in its own way

When Akemi talks of them being outsiders with regards to her queries, Amon nods. "Actually, I was hoping to ask about that. As it's been made clear to us, we are outsiders to the clan even with our 'inheritance'. Why would you help us in spite of our outsider status? is it only in this matter? Fear not, i don't intend to exploit your hospitality." She didn't want to jinx it, but wanted to know the terms they were under. "Stop me if I say something foolish by the way, I am quite foreign but willing to learn, or at least learn of, this culture - not enough to pry beyond my rights, mind you, but at least to get along."

Amon puts her hand to her mouth, thinking as she's told of the workings of the snake pact. "The greatmother back there would be the leader of the Grass then, right? If she's the Sage is that why she's...." Amon stops herself, shaking her head, knowing she was prying too much. "So, this living snake contract... what's it like? Will you be able to summon it?"

Bad Situation
2012-11-05, 09:18 PM
Despite himself, Yousuke flushes at the mention of Camille. "Sh-she's not my girlfriend," he hastily points out and goes quiet as they follow after Akemi.

As they continue in the swordsman notices something about the girl and cannot help himself from asking, "Your eyes...they are different from the other girls..."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 02:56 AM
DM

The girl smiles when Yousuke gets flustered. She'd clearly been teasing him, and is happy he's not too serious to at least be amused. When Amon questions Lunch's perversion the girl just shrugs. "Did you think I just carried squirrels around in my cleavage for fun? This little pervert just climbs up my leg to put himself here."

When questioned about her altruism Akemi just shrugs. "I'm helping because the Greatmother requested me to. Why does she want to help you? I don't know. You aren't grass-nin, Euryale, or even friends of our clan. It's possible that the Greatmother remembers the Sacrifice, and feels that she needs to make it up to the Sacrifice. It doesn't matter to me one way or another."

Akemi just shrugs when Amon asks about the leader of the Grass. She doesn't comment one way or another, and obviously isn't going to talk about it. "Yes, I can summon the contract snake."

When Yousuke mentions that she's different, Akemi nods. She points a thumb at her eyepatch. "My real eye is behind here." She points to her exposed eye with her other hand. "Transplanted eye. Some of us use chakra control training to not use glasses, but Dr. Setsuna came up with fake eyes for those who can't control their chakra as well. The eye absorbs the chakra coming out from our bodies, then discharges it naturally back into our bodies."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 03:42 AM
Amon smiles at the justification for the squirrels perversion. "Well, what else is he going to do at that size? Really it's the only intelligent way to travel if one can manage," she jokes. "You know what, Akemi, you're alright. It's nice having a Euryale with a sense of humour around - who isn't also trying to kill us, of course. Cybele's idea of a joke is to stab me ion the ass when she feels Ive talked too much."

Amon nods at the explanation of allegiance. "Well, whatever our outsider status, I'm glad we're able to ascend it for at least this case. Camille never asked to be given the form of a Euryale or become a ninja, and certainly not to be abducted."

Amon seems like she has questions about Setsuna, but instead mulls it over for a minute or so before speaking. "I heard she got tossed out for her practices. There's more to it than that though - but then, since she was talking about some greater fate of the clan, I suppose you have no reason to tell me. I'd ask how to be inducted, but I have a feeling from my time attempting to nurse Cybele - with explosively painful results - that it would compromise my status as a medic."

The talk of Setsuna puts Amon in a bit of a foul mood again before she forces a smile, remembering to keep her spirits up. Camille might already be within their reach, after all. "Is there a way to halt a summoning on the summoned's side of things? I should hope not, but i have not learned much of spacetime techniques."

Amon's stomach growls loudly as if tryingto get her attention, earning her a blush. "So, ah, what we got to eat? We haven't had anything since breakfast and, I mean, my team's health, all things considered..."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 04:10 AM
DM

The conversation turning to Setsuna causes Akemi to just cross her arms. Lunch squeaks loudly as he's squished against her chest. "Dr. Setsuna was a genius. She pioneered a lot of ways to help the clan. Yes, what she did was unacceptable, but..." Akemi sighs and shakes her head. "I just feel that Dr. Setsuna could have been fixed. Maybe things were different if Greatmother Claire was more open-minded."

When Amon talks about joining the Euryale Akemi just vigorously shakes her head. "You do not simply join the Euryale. You are born as one, or were changed into one by Setsuna. We do not wish to spread our problems to any others. The fact that Setsuna created artificial Euryale is why she was exiled."

Akemi looks a bit confused at Amon when the girl asks for food. "Well, if you wanna go eat then that's your business. Doesn't mean anything to me, but I thought saving your friend was kind of a big deal."

Bad Situation
2012-11-06, 04:18 AM
Yousuke flushes for the remainder of the talk but manages to fight down the reddening when the issue of Setsuna comes up. "...what was Setsuna like? Regardless of her intentions and actions toward Camille she seemed to truly believe that she was doing the clan a great favor by implanting Camille with the poisonous snake chakra." It was important to know the enemy, and that included the enemy's reasons for fighting. Amon would be too embittered to ask, so the unfortunate duty fell to him. Unlike her, he had a promise to keep, leaving no room for pointless biases.

Promises however, would not stop him from looking at the girl's breasts as it turned out. In spite of restraint on his part, his trained swordsman's eyes could not help but take in every inch in great detail. Clearing his throat to shake himself away from his improper thoughts he asks, "To what extent does the transplant work? I was never allowed bodily contact with Camille or sensei but that squirrel seems to be coping just fine with your...embrace."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 04:31 AM
DM

When Yousuke asks about the squirrel Akemi looks down at Lunch, then just smiles at him. The little squirrel chitters at her, and she answers Yousuke's question. "Lunch was part of Dr. Setsuna's initial wave of transformations. His little body doesn't produce enough chakra to be dangerous, so his eyes aren't a threat. But he was a prototype to prove her method worked. He is technically a Euryale, even if he is a little pervert."

When Yousuke talks about Setsuna though, Akemi sighs. "Dr. Setsuna needed test subjects for a theory she had concerning our chakra generation. She wished to create animals that could absorb the poisonous chakra of Euryale clan-members, then she planned to transplant their hearts with artificial hearts she had built. She wanted to cure our condition permanently."

Akemi shakes her head. "No one wanted to risk their lives, so Dr. Setsuna created artificial Euryale in an attempt to create test subjects. If she was right, and her artificial hearts cured our condition, then we could have cured the entire clan. But to ruin other lives to do so? It was unacceptable. So she was exiled."

When questioned about the extent of artificial Euryale's abilities, Akemi simply shrugged. "I do not know. I was not privy to much of Dr. Setsuna's notes. But the artificial Euryale we've allowed into the clan have proven equally capable, so I imagine it's a total conversion."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 06:55 AM
"Of course I would not seriously consider becoming a Euryale. Not without good cause anyway. Like I said, it would be terribly inconvenient for most tasks in my line of work and personal life, not even having the support of the Euryale as you do."

Amon blushes in that old embarrassment of misunderstanding. "Ah, Lunch was the squirrel's name, right..." Looking away she hopes to save herself looking like much more of a fool. "Forgive me. After how ravished my body is after the events of today, it seems the mere mention of a breather was enough to break my will. of course on reflection I can't justify a thing to myself no matter how hard I tried. After all, it's hardly like my state will make much effect on the proceedings if we are successful and we can hardly wait another moment." She bows deeply to Yousuke in particular, still hiding her embarrassed face.

As he conversation turns to Setsuna however, Amon does regain her composure. "Indeed, pushing people away does little to rehabilitate them," she agrees with Akemi in an odd way. "Perhaps her superior deemed her as too much of a risk to negotiate with. But such tragedy of happenstance... no, I suppose it is relevant to know our opponent, continue if you please."

Amon makes no comment on Yousuke's ogling but does note it as a sign of Yousuke's oncoming (or ongoing, i was hard to tell with his appearance and skill) puberty.

Amon nods in appreciation of all she is told of Setsuna, noting all her discoveries. "I thought sh needed Camille for as much. What sort of... experiments... would she...?" Amon veers out, shaking her head, not really wanting to imagine what might befall Camille if they failed.

"So, ah... does any method exist to make contact with the Euryale without suffering backlash? My time bearing that... snake and that oily, burning chakra... was an experience I would rather never repeat but it is most inconvenient to not be able to heal Cybele of her wounds." Her description of her time under the curse speaks to Amon's terror felt that night. Looking to the sky, Amon remarks, "I am training as a doctor between missions. If you would allow me, in return for the service your clan is giving us in helping Camille, I could try and contribute to Setsuna's old research - perhaps find a more palpable solution. Of course, I know as an outsider that would involve revealing entirely too much to me, but if there is no one else in the clan capable I wouldn't mind giving my assistance." She bows, not really expecting a favourable response but feeling it right to offer assistance anyway. "Like you said, perhaps if the clan were open minded enough to at least curb Setsuna there may have been other methods found. I will NOT allow any others like Camille to suffer if I can help it, but it isn't right for you all to suffer if some means of lifting the curse in some degree might actually exist."

Amon bows again. "Sorry for being so intrusive. I suppose it feels only right to repay those that help us."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 07:53 AM
DM

Akemi has nothing more to say concerning Amon's apology to Yousuke. She does notice Yousuke's gaze, and takes the time to tease the young man. "I know you like what you see, but it'd be unhealthy for you to touch." She giggles, then fishes Lunch out of her cleavage and zips up her jacket all the way. Akemi places the little brown squirrel on her shoulder, and he settles onto her shoulder easily. When Amon talks about seeing Setsuna's research Akemi just shakes her head. "Setsuna's research was destroyed. It was too dangerous to be allowed to exist. Furthermore, it's none of your concern. The Greatmother wouldn't allow outsiders like yourself to know what Setsuna knows."

Akemi looks over to the house, then nods. "In fact, I imagine she's asking the Sacrifice to kill Setsuna."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 09:09 AM
Amon nods understandingly. "Of course. Still, it felt right to offer." At the mention of Cybele killing Setsuna, Amon goes silent for a moment. "The only way to kill her would be to catch her off guard. We can't take her lightly - if she gets the drop on us again, even Cybel will fail if we can't at least disrupt her flow."

Amon ponders a moment. "I wonder if she would really ask it of Cybele when she's an obvious outcast with this whole Sacrifice business. But again, I hardly know your ways"

Turning to brighter topics, Amon finally gives into a bi of temptation at the teasing of Yousuke. "Oh, don't mind him. I guess there's just an exotic flair about someone that you can't touch, right Yousuke-kun?" Closing her eyes, her unseen gaze seems to burrow into him as a glare despite her smile, pure malevolence billowing out of her, "Of course, Yousuke, being Camille's white knight, would know better than to fall to temptation even if he could touch, right, Konpaku-sama?"

Putting her gaze forward again, she sighs. "I don't blame you though, Yousuke. It's a perfectly natural part of growing up, a fascination with girl's bodies. Just as long as you realise there's more to a girl than her physique, you'll be fine in my book. Just make sure you give Camille enough attention to make up for it."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 09:45 AM
DM

Akemi just shrugs when Amon talks about killing Setsuna. "I never fought her, and I don't know anything about the Sacrifice. I just know that the Sacrifice is the only one of us that the Greatmother could ask to do it."

Akemi pets her squirrel lightly as she explains. "The Euryale clan are a family bound by bonds tighter than blood. We are oathsworn to not end the lives of other Euryale. This is why we did not kill Setsuna for her crimes. However, the Sacrifice is not one of us. She could kill Setsuna, and end the blight on our clan's name."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 09:51 AM
"Cybele said she had no love lost for this place as I recall," Amon remarks, deciding to be honest. "I don't see why she would take her out on her own time, to be honest, though perhaps she's more bound up than she lets on."

She ponders a moment. "For the sake of Camille's safety, we might end up killing Setsuna anyway, of course..."

Bad Situation
2012-11-06, 12:37 PM
Frowning, Yousuke clenches his fist open and closed, glaring at the floor as they talk. "If the Greatmother desires it, I would kill Setsuna myself."

"If I were able to any rate..."

Sighing resignedly he crosses his arms and looks into the air, "But that is neither here nor there. Will you be able to summon Camille from Setsuna's side and if so, what is stopping Setsuna from summoning Camille back to her side?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 12:58 PM
Amon's pace is disrupted at Yousuke's question as a few things snap painfully into her head. "If this method is possible it would mean there is something stopping her on her end or else she is somehow unaware of the ability to summon Camille to her side - otherwise she would have done so rather than go to all the trouble of subduing her. If this works and there's nothing stopping Setsuna from doing the same, she might figure out our play and summon Camille to her side again." Amon turns her attention on Akemi, "Is there some means to prevent a summon? Might Setsuna's means have alienated the contract she holds?" she suggests hopefully

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 01:02 PM
DM

The girl nods at Yousuke's question. "Of course I can summon her, but there's nothing stopping her from being summoned back if Setsuna realizes how we did it. And no, there's no way to stop a summoning short of killing the summon."

As if to signal the end of the discussion Cybele exits the house. She looks at Yousuke, Houshi, and Amon then nods to them. "You may proceed with the summoning." Cybele removes her glasses, then places a snake-like ANBU mask on her face. The genin can see cracks in the edges of the mask where her eyes already damaged it. "You will be on your own for the rest of the trip to where Scarlet Satoko resides, as well as the trip home. I am going to find and murder Setsuna."

Akemi nods. "Well, if the Sacrifice says she wants it to go down, then who I am to refuse. Just tell me whenever you want this to start."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 01:16 PM
Before Cybele appears again, Amon asks "Is there a way to remove someone from a contract? Take their name off the list or something?"

Amon's taken aback utterly at Cybele and makes no secret of it. The use of the word 'murder' catches Amon's ears oddly as far as word choice goes. "Cybele?" Amon raises an eyebrow at this course of action, finding the presence of the mask particularly odd. She shakes her head. "Wait, did you find out where she is or something? If following her and swooping in was an option, we'd have done that to save Camille by this point." She looks awkwardly to the ground. "I guess since she's exhausted herself so much you won't have much trouble if you catch her unawares, as I know you will if we're not there. But..." she budges awkwardly. She wants to confirm the plan before Cybele runs off or they go ahead summoning

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 01:26 PM
DM

Akemi shakes her head. "Do you think contracts signed in blood can be broken so easily? The only way to take your name off is to die, and if this works... Even death isn't enough."

Cybele's mask just looks at Amon. "Heh." The sky-jounin uncharacteristically laughs at Amon's ignorance. "Don't be foolish girlie. If you were with me, then Setsuna would see us coming from a mile away. And I know where she is. That old woman gave me her location, so I'll just nip in and slit her throat when she's sleeping."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 01:41 PM
Amon looks further put off balance, looking right at Cybele and trying to keep a confused stutter out her voice. "'Girlie'?" Amon tries to form something more coherent, turning to Houshi and Yousuke as she slightly throws her arms out, looking for someone to back her up. Regardless this new confidence does seem to get to Amon in some decent way though. "I, uh, I guessed she'd told you as much." bending forward, she puts her finger to her mouth in concentration, swiveling a bit as she eyes Cybele, truly wondering if this was the same Cybele or not. "Well, I'm not terrible at stealth, though obviously compared to yourself..." I was the stealth operative on my old team until I got this stupidly creaky foot - going unheard is insanely challenging with this thing, you know?

"I guess it'll be fine then. Just be careful - if she's expecting you at all, things will get dangerous... If she's trapped the place for instance... I mean I have a gas mask and I'm a damn fine 'locksmith' and trap counter, so I thought I'd be useful to..."

Talking to Cybele like this was obviously draining Amon's usual forthrightness as she lost her sense of just where she stood in the conversation. Clearing her throat - still out of her element but seeking the greater cause, she puts her gaze on Cybele again. "You will see you back at Soragakure at least, right? I mean that mask couldn't really mean..." Why'd they give her a mask? What does that even symbolise?

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-06, 02:10 PM
DM

"Tch. Lemme put it another way. You'd just slow me down, and I'd have to fight her instead of just murder her. None of her traps matter, and even if she is expecting me she can't fight what she can't see. Just be a good girl and do as you're told." With that said, Cybele vanishes from sight. The genin don't hear or see her leave, but it's fairly obvious that she's gone after Setsuna.

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 02:59 PM
"I... I guess that's true," well, KNOW, that's true, "but..." Amon flinches at being called a girl again - she already found such a title annoying at best but this was the most bizarre of all contexts. "Well, at least try and find us on the road after... you..." Amon gets halfway through saying as Cybele vanishes.

I hate this. Last time she ran off without us she didn't intend to come back alive. Amon tries not to think of all the ways she would fight someone that she can't see - ways that Cybele might lose.

After a few moments when Amon is quite sure Cybele is gone, she clears her throat, trying to regain her composure and failing utterly. "You know, I've seen a lot of strange techniques in my time, but a snide confident Cybele is the most bizarre." Turning to Yousuke, Akemi and Houshi her eyebrows seem stuck in their place of horrified expression. "What was that about with the mask?" she asks of no one in particular.

---

After a brief minute she realises how quickly Cybele might be travelling - was there an intended timing to their summoning of Camille? Cybele would have said if there was, right? Shifting awkwardly, she bows her head to Akemi. "Well, let's do it, shall we?"

zeone3000
2012-11-06, 05:53 PM
Houshi puts a hand on Amon's shoulder as Cybele vanishes. He gives a thumbs up and a smile, "Don't worry. That Cybele will be back and Setsuna will be dead. That's ANBU Cybele, the one Yousuke and I had to defeat. Honestly, I'm not sure would be standing here if we didn't. Yeah, imagine our faces as she turned from that to other. It was shocking to say the least."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 06:16 PM
"ANBU-Cybele? We're differentiating Cybele's mindsets like that?" Amon asks a little incredulous. With all that was going on Cybele's weirdness was the straw that broke the camel's back that was her comprehension. "...She always seems kind of awkward around us. I wonder if that's more like her true self when she has a mask on, or if there is such a thing as a 'true self' worth pondering..."

zeone3000
2012-11-06, 08:15 PM
Houshi crosses his arms and quirks a brow at Amon, "Are you gonna sit there and say that she wasn't a completely different person? Anyway, I guarantee ANBU-Cybele is just a mask to cover for the real one when she has to take care of business." He shakes his head, "She's been through so much, I can see why she needs a mask..."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 08:22 PM
Amon looks angry for a moment at Houshi's repeated arguments of her being a different person. "Don't be so idiotic. People are people, not a store of multiple persons. They just have these things called 'moods' is all. Maybe you should try it some time. I'm no psychologist but when one says 'it's' like they're a different person' they're using anoher tricky little word called a 'similie', and another thing..." Amon pauses, catching herself gesturing at Houshi and not knowing why she was letting him get her so flustered at this one point

She goes a little more quiet at Houshi's mention of what Cybele's been through. "Please, no details. If i am to hear such things, I would prefer it to be from her."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 08:39 PM
Amon bows her head to Akemi. "Any reason to believe Cybele won't have killed her within the hour that you can think of?" she asks. "If not, I suppose we might as well proceed now. We should optimally summon Camille shortly before Cybele's assault - just so Cybele is not distracted and to ensure Setsuna doesn't have enough time to figure out to summon Camille herself and invalidate our best efforts"

Amon is ready to see this summoning unfold and will follow Akemi to such a thing post-haste if there are no objections

So yeah, take that as my permission to move things forward as I sleep off today's work

zeone3000
2012-11-06, 08:44 PM
Houshi can see he hit something, "If I'm being idiotic, you're be closed minded. Also, if you would remember, I did have a change of mood not too long ago and it wasn't pretty. Much like you did, except in the other direction. Instead of crying, I lashed, and I lashed and I lashed some more and you know what? It's not worth it. I've trying be sad too, that's not too fun either when everyone wants to pick on you for being nothing more then yourself, you're bigger then everyone else self. So, I'll stick to being myself. Being a big guy equals big emotion. I'll fight hard, I'll hard and damn it, I'm working on dying hard too." He thumbs to his newly acquired scar, "Which reminds me..."

He scoops up Amon in a big ol'bear hug, "Thanks... I wouldn't be here right now if it wasn't for you."

TraceHyde
2012-11-06, 09:04 PM
Amon averts her gaze as Houshi speaks of changes in mood. "Don't talk to me about my crying, not in public," she says quietly, mumbling really as she tries to look like she could just barely see something REALLY interesting in the opposite direction to Houshi.

She's about to say something when she's hugged and thanked and generally cut off, her expression turning a flabbergasted neutral in his arms. "Houshi?" No one thanks me for anything, there's a reason for that, I... She closes her eyes a moment until she's released (or it becomes apparent Houshi isn't letting go). She remains silent unless talked to, though looks a little less stressed in her own way

After a while, she looks to Yousuke, remembering his face when he was bleeding out, along with that of Houshi. "Any medic could have done what I did - probably have done it better, too..." Some sick, awful part of her wanted a 'thank you' form Yousuke - a part of her she would have to boil in acid later for daring to exist, daring to make her so conceited.

She clears her throat, looking back at Akemi, cutting off the conversation with Houshi rather mechanically. "Take it up with me later, Houshi. We have a girl to rescue at this hour. You have my address, after all." It was embarrassing to say such things in the midst of perhaps dozens of Euryale. Couldn't Houshi have taken this up with her on the road at least?

zeone3000
2012-11-06, 09:28 PM
Houshi realized that he was probably embarrassing Amon to the greatest extent of the law at the moment. He still didn't care, they weren't even in their hometown and if she wasn't going to accept his honest feelings...

Before he let go, he swung her around to and fro, "Any medic didn't though, you did and I'm not letting go until you acknowledge that fact."

Then, she brings up a good point, "Fine but this isn't over." He motions to Akemi as if nothing happen, "You may continue."

Bad Situation
2012-11-07, 12:41 AM
Yousuke rolls his eyes at their antics but cannot help but contains the grin threatening to stretch at his face. Distancing himself from the pair, he follows at Akemi's side and spares her a sidelong glance. "Will you be summoning her at Satoko-dono's mansion or will we be summoning her here and whisking her away to the mansion?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-07, 03:54 AM
"Of course we'll summon her now," Amon remarks. "Who knows what Setsuna might do otherwise in the time it would take us to reach the mansion. We're too exhausted to travel much further - if we are quite certain Setsuna won't be in a fit state to pursue, let us spend the night in the Grass and set out first thing in the morning. Camille might still be catatonic by the time she arrives, after all."

Houshi was still thinking on her clearly. Don't be so rough with me, it hurts the bond with my leg to be shaken like that. Houshi certainly didn't know his own strength, but that wasn't truly her thought. Rather she was distracting herself. Sensing Yousuke draw some of Akemi's attention, Amon lightly grabs Houshi's hand, looking up into his eyes hesitantly, that old sadness in her eyes. "Houshi... I need you and Yousuke to be more careful, okay? This isn't some game we're playing in our line of work, and you... you don't know what it's like to lose a team mate. That feeling of helplessness... I know no one likes me, that I'm dead weight and a nuisance, this team's made it quite clear to me we'll never be as close as my old one, or even at all, but please... spare me that pain again, okay?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-07, 02:12 PM
DM

Akemi has nothing to say concerning Cybele. After all, as far as she was concerned it was normal behavior for the sky-jounin. Regardless, she does head to the training ground once she gets the go-ahead to start the summoning. The purple-haired woman walks into the center of the large field where the kids are meditating. She picks out an empty spot, then pulls out a summoning scroll from inside her jacket. She bites her thumb, opens the scroll, and smears her blood across the calligraphy. She takes a few seconds to finish the hand-seals of the summoning technique, then slams her hands onto the ground. An explosion of smoke overcomes the grass-nin, and when it clears a snake twice as long as Yousuke is tall lays in front of her.

The snake has shiny black scales all across its back, and dull rust-red scales across its belly. It "stands" at the same height as Yousuke, but it's curled upon itself several times so it's clearly quite large. The snakes tongue darts in and out as it watches Akemi and Yousuke with cold eyes. "What do you whelpsss need from old Blackssscale? Isss thisss one going to sssign hisss soul away?" The snake hisses as it speaks, and Akemi addresses it directly.

"Oh shove it crusty. You know the only reason we summon you is for the pact." Blackscale frowns as much as a snake can.

"Lisssten here--" Akemi cuts him off.

"I told you to shove it didn't I? Cough up the scroll, or I feed you to Lunch." The snake glares at Akemi, then opens its mouth and starts coughing. A slimy white-and-purple scroll-case slides out of its throat as it vomits up the scroll on command. The snake grumbles, and Akemi pulls on her gloves before she picks up the scroll. She pulls it open, then looks it over.

"You said your girlfriend got infected two weeks ago, right? Lets see..." She stares at the scroll for some time, then points out a name. "Redface. Hey, crusty." "My name is--" "Ya, ya, is Redface alive?"

The snake grumbles loudly, but eventually answers. "No. He was summoned away, then his corpse returned. His heart was removed."

"Bingo. Here crusty." Akemi rolls up the scroll and casually chucks it over her shoulder. The snake catches it in his mouth, swallows it, then grumbles at Akemi before exploding into smoke. Akemi looks to Yousuke, then starts the summoning technique again.

"This time, try to not to stare at me while your girlfriend's around, okay?" She smiles, then finishes the technique. An explosive cloud of smoke covers her body. The smoke dissipates in time to show Akemi standing over the unconscious body of Camille. The purple-haired girl is breathing, and a paper tag with a blood-red seal on it is attached to her forehead. If Yousuke moves toward Camille, then Akemi backs off but does warn the sky-nin.

"Don't touch that seal. We don't know what it does yet. We should take her to the Greatmother though."

Bad Situation
2012-11-07, 02:46 PM
Yousuke watches the girl's interaction with the snake with thinly veiled amusement, crosses his arms and quirking his head to the side to stare at the pair with incredulity. At Akemi's teasing however, the swordsman goes deathly serious and nods, "...I have learned my lesson in regards to Camille and the affections of other females. You need not worry."

When the smoke clears, Yousuke rushes to Camille's side, brushing the hair out of her face picks her up and hefts her onto his back. Leaning forward and cupping at her thighs, he carries her back toward the compound and manages to prevent her from falling off his back. Stopping halfway he turns around to ask, "I am afraid I do not know the way back to the Greatmother. I would greatly appreciate your aid in guiding me."

TraceHyde
2012-11-07, 02:59 PM
Amon watches the whole display, wondering if this is how summons usually acted. As entertaining as it was, it certainly detracted from whatever mysticism she had built around the snakes and Euryale. All such classificeation is of course lost when Camille appears once more, just like that, earning a shocked gasp from Amon. It... it worked so simply? She doesn't get long to dwell on her appreciation before Akemi's remarks draw her attention to the seal on Camille. "Careful Yous-" she tries to warn before Yousuke heaves her up with barely a second thought. "...How does her chakra feel? Same as ever?" she asks, concerned. "Here, let me get a look at her." Had Camille not just appeared, Amon would have teased Yousuke for his apparent lack of direction sense, but now she was far too occupied confiming Camille was alright

Amon takes 10 to evaluate Camille of her condition, hitting 17

She also attempts to identify the tag, sensing chakra as necessary, using... probably ONE of these rolls
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=14185924&postcount=1074

Amon angles Camille's head so the tag doesn't touch Yousuke as she's carried, if possible and if Camille is truly unconscious

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-07, 03:13 PM
DM

When Yousuke moves to pick up Camille Akemi stops him. "Sorry Romeo, but she's been sweating pretty hard." Akemi points out that Camille's sweater and pajamas are soaked in her own sweat. "As cute as it would be for her to wake up in your arms... well, I think she'd be happier if you weren't dead." Akemi picks up Camille and carries the girl in her arms. When Amon gets close to check her condition, Akemi lets Amon look but not touch.

Akemi leads the group back to the house, which will be their second trip there, and carries the girl inside. She lays her down beside the older woman, and she looks over Camille. The older woman places her hand on the girl's stomach and closes her eyes. After a few seconds, she moves her hand away and nods. "She's fine, and she'll wake up in ten to fifteen minutes."

Bad Situation
2012-11-07, 03:26 PM
Once inside, Yousuke sense of propriety disappears and he kneels inappropriately by the Greatmother, fretting over the safety of Camille. "Will she be okay when she wakes? What's that seal on her forehead? How will we prevent Setsuna from summoning Camille back to her side? Should we depart for Satoko-dono's mansion immediately? Will she be okay for the duration of the trip?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-07, 03:39 PM
DM

"I do not know", the old woman still struggles to breathe, "but she is alive. That seal is to paralyze her. We cannot, which is part of the reason why I sent the Sacrifice to kill her. If you wish to see the Red Lady then you are free to attempt to do so. We will send the Sacrifice along if she comes this way. But you should wait until the girl can walk, or else you risk subjecting yourself to her curse by carrying her."

TraceHyde
2012-11-07, 03:53 PM
Amon agrees with Akemi's evaluation on carrying Camille. It would be romantic, but there is a certain point where one must be practical.

Sitting before the greatmother again, Amon nods at the greatmother's evaluation. "Paralyse her, eh..." Eyeing the seal, Amon asks "Is there a way to remove the seal or will it come off itself?"

"How far if the Red Lady from here? Sorry to trouble you. At the very least we can catch a breather while we await Camille's awakening... Is there some trick to finding the estate?"

Bad Situation
2012-11-07, 04:01 PM
Yousuke stares at the Greatmother resolutely and sits down appropriately after he is assured of Camille's health. "I would gladly subject myself to her curse if it meant getting her to safety even a second sooner," staring down at her prone form he adds, "but I will wait." All the speed in the world could not ensure Camille's immediate safety, given her condition.

"What of the seal? Why did Setsuna place it upon her forehead? How might we remove it?"

Remembering the dampness of her clothing he looks down to hide his flushing and he also asks, "...might I ask that you prepare a freshened set of clothing upon her awakening?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-07, 04:28 PM
Amon reaches into her overstuffed bag. "Don't worry yourself with his pettier requests," she tells the greatmother. Retrieving some sort of gym bag filled with bulky clothes, she passes it to Yousuke. "I always carry a change of clothes or three. I'm not in Camille's size but it should be fine," I'll just have to remember to not use these clothes again

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-07, 04:47 PM
DM

The older woman just shakes her head at Yousuke. "Then you are a fool. How do you think any Euryale with a conscience would feel upon waking up and finding out that someone had killed themselves getting him or her to safety? They would curse themselves, and rightly so."

When questioned about the seal, the older woman repeats what she had said earlier. "It will come off in time, and she will wake up then. I do not wish to risk removing it earlier, as it may be trapped. As far as why, I do not know."

Akemi takes the clothes from Amon. "When the little one wakes up, I'll change her."

TraceHyde
2012-11-07, 04:50 PM
"Were her instructions only to kill Setsuna though? Cybele seemed told us not to expect her on the road but would not have gone if she did not expect to win, so I'm not sure..."

Clearing her throat, Amon puts on the more business-like tone that she practiced from the year's at her parent's side. Reaching around, she retrieves the scroll Cybele gave her at last. "Well, with all we can do on that matter that is done, there is official business of village leaders to be tended to," she says, waving the Sora-sealed scroll. "I was told the Euryale matriarch is the intended recipient, as Cybele said they were the leader of the Grass. As the greatmother, i suppose that would be you?" Amon asks, holding out the scroll for the older woman - if nothing else Akemi could hand it off to her

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-07, 05:23 PM
DM

The older woman makes no attempt to answer Amon's question concerning Cybele. Whatever was said or happened between them would stay that way. She does, however, respond to Amon's other questions.

"Yes, I am the head ninja of Kusagakure, but I am no longer acting in a professional manner. Akemi is my replacement, and will become matriarch when I pass." The younger woman looks to Amon, then holds out her hand.

Akemi takes the scroll, breaks it open, then looks it over. After a few seconds she nods, rolls it up, then hands it back to Amon. "Very well. It's good to know the Sky intends to compete this year. I know they weren't able to last year due to their problems with genin."

TraceHyde
2012-11-07, 05:36 PM
Amon stirs a little sadly at the confirmation, or rather acknowledgement, of the woman's poor health. "I'm sorry to find you in such a state beyond my knowledge as a doctor. It does pain me to be unable to help."

Taking the scroll back, Amon shoves it in her bag once more. "I wouldn't know about that - I have been out of commisison due to injuries for the last exam, and these two are not a fortnight Genin."

Clearing her throat, Amon wonders about the whole prospect of war, but leaves it out of the conversation altogether for the time being. She'd already taken up enough of this poor woman's time. "Sorry, but could I request the use of a room for my team in the village for the night? Even with Setsuna eliminated, our exhaustion makes the prospect of travelling much further entirely too risky. Plus I would quite like somewhere to see to it Camille recovers fine without, you know, bothering you," she bows to the matriarch.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-07, 06:00 PM
DM

The older woman just shakes her head. "It is nothing more than our people's fate. There is nothing you, nor any other doctor, could do."

When Amon talks about being out of commission, Akemi just raises an eyebrow. "Well, all I remember is that the Sky didn't show up because they didn't have any genin. They still sent jounin to watch though."

Akemi nods when Amon asks for a place to sleep. "Naturally we won't allow you to rest in the compound, but I will see about getting you a room in an inn in town."

TraceHyde
2012-11-07, 07:18 PM
Amon goes silent in confusion.

You and me both, Amon

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-08, 02:20 AM
DM

The Euryale do not allow the sky-nin to rest in their compound, but they do take care of Camille. The group sleeps in a small little mom-and-pop bed and breakfast. It's run by an elderly couple who are quite helpful. The night passes without event, and Akemi sends a message for the sky-nin first thing in the morning. She explains that Camille woke up in the morning, and she'll be escorted to the Grass' northern gate. The mail-nin who delivers the message is polite, but clearly busy and leaves immediately afterward.

If the genin head to the northern gate then they see Camille speaking with a Euryale (http://i.imgur.com/54F3b.png) wearing a short skirt and a pair of sound amplifiers on her left hip. The two of them seem to be chatting away rather nicely, but the conversation dies when Camille finally notices the sky-nin. The grass-nin nods, puts her glasses on, then heads back toward the Euryale compound.

Camille waves at the sky-nin. "Good morning. I am terribly sorry for what happened yesterday." She bows deeply. "I... simply froze up when that woman appeared. I heard from Akemi-sama about your work in my rescue. I thank you for that."

TraceHyde
2012-11-08, 03:27 AM
Amon agrees to let the Euryale tend to Camille given her condition and their expertise. She tells Yousuke to explain as much in the morning - that they did what they thought was absolute best for her heart

Amon falls to her knees as the finally see Camille alive and well again, bowing to the floor beside her. "Camille, I'm sorry, I should have known her traps, I should have outsmarted her somehow. If Cybele hadn't been so knowledgeable and that doctor not been such a loudmouth, you would still be in her captivity, I..." Amon splutters, standing, turning from Camille to nod at Yousuke. He would be up to plate shortly, just as soon as... Amon takes Camille's hands in her own, looking her in the eye. There was this sudden experienced tone to her even as she shakes from her own memories like they were icy daggers.

"You couldn't have done anything, Camille, I want you to remember that, okay?" It wasn't advice Amon had ever really processed, but from how often it had been said to her it must be important to hear. "You can't apologise for anything or thank us for anything, the Euryale did all the work in protecting and retrieving you, but more than that," she gives Camille a little shake, though despite trying to get her attention, looks pained off to the side. She's not aware it's the side she was looking limply looking towards when she was held down and torn apart, not consciously anyway. "You did nothing wrong..." A victim blaming themselves for inaction was certainly something she knew all too well.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-08, 04:13 AM
DM

Camille nods. "Maybe you are right, nonetheless I feel as if I have been a burden once more."

Bad Situation
2012-11-08, 04:50 AM
Yousuke watches Amon talk to Camille with feigned disinterest, suppressing the urge to roll his eyes. "You should practice what you preach, Yamana-san. I do not believe you would have been able to outsmart her. She has designs that go far above our heads and has years to practice her skills. I cannot speak for you, but it has been a month since my own Academy Graduation. This is not the simplified world of fictions you may believe it to be. No matter their potential, three untested genin have little hope of defeating someone so clearly their superior. Somebody who had the time and foresight to lay down traps to impede our advance, I might add."

Smiling at Camille, he lays a hand on her shoulders and gives it a comforting squeeze. "You are never a burden, Camille. I promise. I am a swordsman, I have trained my entire left to protect those close to me and yet I failed to even protect you from your greatest fear. If there is fault to be found it is in me, not you."

Letting his arm drop, Yousuke closes his eyes and takes a deep breath. "You mean a lot to us, Camille. Y-you mean a lot to me, okay? I wish I could make you see that but...Augh, I shouldn't be filling your head with this sentimental nonsense during a mission..."

TraceHyde
2012-11-08, 05:44 AM
Amon glares at the floor at Yousuke's advice. "I know th-that..." I wasn't thinking about Setsuna...

Sensing Yousuke's sentimentality, Amon backs off, releasing Camille. She gives a last smile as she turns. Pity Yousuke already claimed her. She seemed such a nice girl. Winking cheekily, Amon heads off, leaving the two alone to talk, dragging Houshi by the ear if necessary to allow them some privacy.

Amon goes looking for Cybele again; she'll ask around if any of the Euryale have seen the Sacrifice and if that fails, go looking for Akemi or the greatmother around the latter's home.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-08, 06:08 AM
Yousuke

Camille looks at Yousuke, then shakes her head. "Yousuke-sama. I'm quite happy to hear those words, but as I told you in Soragakure. There is nothing between us, and there can be nothing between us. You have a life that you need to pursue, and that life is full of people who are precious to you. You and I together would mean the end of your life, or worse. For that reason alone, I would refuse any connection between us." She reaches out and takes the young swordsman's hand in one her own gloved hands. "Go live, Yousuke-sama. Promise me that you'll live to be a happy old man with lots of children. Promise you don't dwell on what could have been, because any future between us would only end in your death."

Amon + Houshi

The Euryale guards don't allow either Amon or Houshi access to the compound again. When questioned, they state the the compound is only for Euryale, and is not open to outsiders. They state that they have not seen the Sacrifice. However, at the South Gate, Amon and Houshi are able to find a group of three stone-nin gathered around a large man-sized wicker basket. The basket has two poles stuck through it, and looks like a buddhist coffin. The one of the stone-nin is talking to Akemi, and he seems to talking down to the young lady in quite a smug manner. He openly stares at the young woman's large chest. Akemi just takes it with a blank face, and doesn't seem to be saying anything.

If the genin get closer, then they might be able to pick out what he's saying.

Listen Check DC 17
"Oh-ho. If I knew these Euryale women were so pretty I'd steal one for myself. That thing you all got, that disease or whatever? A simple old wrap will protect from that, right? So whaddya say you stop playing at being a real ninja and become my little toy, huh?"

Akemi says nothing, but watches the basket all the same.

Bad Situation
2012-11-08, 06:39 AM
Yousuke holds back a sob when Camille offers her condolences. Truthfully, he had never really considered a future with Camille, or any girl as a matter of fact but the images put into his head give him a strange sense of melancholy. "Then I want you to promise that when I am a happy old man with plenty of children, you will be there to see them grow. Just because you think this is goodbye, does not mean that I am ready to give up on you. I do not want to hear that there was nothing between us. You are a person who is precious to me, Camille and even if it takes me all my life, I would like to see you happy even if this happiness is not with me. Even if we could never be...together you will always be a dear friend of mine if nothing else, so speak no more of the 'nothingness' you claim is between us."

Rubbing her hair into a mess, Yousuke bends down to give her a quick peck on the lips, bracing himself for the worst of the poison. Smiling sadly he says, "I do not fear death, Camille, for a Konpaku swordsman has no less than two lives to give for the sake of those he loves. I do not know if there will ever be an end to your curse but I will takes my hopes to the grave."

TraceHyde
2012-11-08, 06:39 AM
Amon rolls her eyes at the man. "My my, men are so brash are they not? Women truly are the finer sex for a reason," Amon looks to the man like a toy. She did have a poor opinion of males when it came to sexuality - though those without at least some class or romance, the lazy ones, simply have nothing redeeming to them. "Merely using a 'wrap' requires a certain dedication - one small quirk of fate and you'll die, so to touch a Euryale is not for some feint-hearted and sex-hungry fool. If you want, I could describe in intimate detail my last experience with being exposed to their 'disease', but I think you're reasonable enough for both of us if you dropped that line of thought, eh?"

Drawing up to Akemi's side, Amon gives one last comment of "And I assure you Akemi is a superb ninja, beyond what you would identify as 'real'." Now seeming to forget the man exists, she looks to the coffin, looking far more stoic and silent. After a moment, trying not to think much on the contents, she asks simply "Anything concerning me?" without looking over. "Has she checked in at all?" Amon asks in obvious reference to Cybele. Knowing this Sacrifice business probably related to the Stone, she thinks better of mentioning her by name in front of these ninja.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-08, 07:35 AM
Yousuke

Camille ducks under the young man's hand, and when he attempts to kiss her she quickly raises her hand to block her lips. His lips meet her leather gloves, and she protects him from the worst. Nonetheless, the young lady does take a step back from Yousuke. "Hm. I suppose I'm being too round about then, Yousuke." She uses the boy's name without an honorific, but not in some derisive manner. Instead, she's simply distancing herself from him.

"Surely you have noticed it here. The Euryale are all young. Akemi-dono is considered an Elder, and she is in her mid-20s. Even Cybele-sensei and Sune-sama are merely 14, but each of them are special jounin." The girl closes her eyes, looks down to the ground, and sighs.

"Greatmother-sama is 29 years old, and dying. Because her curse has turned her into an old lady on the inside. Cybele-sama and Sune-sama would be considered middle aged among these people. Even I am considered "old", and I am merely 13. The Euryale do not survive past thirty. In fact, Greatmother-sama is considered a truly ancient Elder for living to 29." Camille looks up, smiling at Yousuke with the hint of tears in her eyes. "T-That is why t-there is... There's nothing between us. I-I am lethal to you. I will die far before you. I can't bring you children, happiness, or a promise to grow old with you. It is better that I do not burden your soul, and that you leave in peace."

Camille wipes her eyes and turns her back on Yousuke. "Cybele-sama said that the Euryale were a clan of geniuses, but I did not suspect why until I came here. Originally, I wished to leave out of pettiness about you and... Satsuki-sama. But... Now I realize just how far apart we truly are. Do not dwell on this, Yousuke. For my sake, as well as yours."

Amon and Houshi

Both sky-nin can see a shadow inside the wicker coffin. It seems to be a young child--probably no older than six or seven--but they don't seem to be moving around.

Akemi looks at Amon with her eyes, then smirks at the young girl. "Same old, same old. I don't think that old bat will show up here anymore. Like you said... There's no love lost on this village." Akemi just looks at the stone-nin, who turns his gaze from Akemi to Amon. His gaze crawls down Amon's body, but stops once it reaches her obviously false leg. His nose turns up, his lips curl into a snarl, and the man gives Amon a look of obvious disgust.

"Ugh. I didn't think they let girls like you still fight. I suppose the Sky is desperate for ninja, huh?" Akemi frowns at the stone-nin.

"You have your Sacrifice. Get going." Akemi's clearly talking about whomever was locked up in that coffin.

TraceHyde
2012-11-08, 08:05 AM
"Hah, not even dropping in to see Camille? I guess we'll see her back in Soragakure - I just hope she's okay. her target is quite tricky, after all." Amon eyes the 'coffin' like container and its contents oddly, not sure what to make of it.

Sensing his disgust, Amon barely reacts, not even looking towards him as she gestures him away with her back turned. "Yes yes, you're a man, you don't want a real woman, you want an idealized 'toy' like you said, and I'm sure with your natural charm and gorgeous visage you'll attract one soon enough." She waves in assurance to Houshi if he seems confused/angry/disgusted with the man, 'I've got this'.

At the mention of Sacrifice, Amon eyes the stone-nin more closely, along with the casket, piecing together basically all of the Sacrifice ritual. "...I get it now," she remarks through gritted teeth. Pointing to the coffin, she looks to Akemi. "This some sort of appeasement then?" she asks a little more calmly of the grass-nin.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-08, 08:12 AM
Amon and Houshi

Akemi nods. "'Bout right. The Tsuchikage requires a new toy every seven years. The last Sacrifice ran away though, so we had to replace her. This is our second Sacrifice in the last seven years." The grass-nin just watches the coffin as the other two stone-nin heft it up. All three stone-nin start to leave.

TraceHyde
2012-11-08, 08:25 AM
Amon bites her lip. "Given the Euryale curse, I'll assume you don't mean toy in the same way this limp-**** means toy, right?" she asks, from her tone clearly already knowing the answer to be 'no' but feeling the need to say or do something - and knowing that she had no such option that wouldn't cause an international incident. She makes sure the old man can hear her insult anyway though. "So the Stone is an entire village of bullies then? How disappointing." Pausing, she looks to the container again. "I take it they had a name."

Bad Situation
2012-11-08, 03:09 PM
Yousuke looks down at the ground at her tears, frowning at his inability to change the situation. "I'm not blind, Camille. Even I can see the conditions of the Euryale...but if your life is short all it means is that you must live it to your fullest. I cannot fault you for looking out for my best interests but if you expect me to just give up on you, then you are sorely mistaken."

Tears roll unbidden down the side of his face as he grins widely, "I will not dwell on this as you ask. And I will look toward the future. But in my future I see a healthy and beautiful Camille. If not by my side then somewhere safe. And happy."

He laughs bitterly at this, "Hah! Asking a swordsman to merely give up is a battle already lost. If I cannot have you fine, I will give up if you truly wish it. But until the day I die I will seek out a cure to your curse."

"But how...the only person who has made any headway on the curse is...Setsuna..." She had inflicted Camille with her curse and so she could set it right again. If there was somebody who could end Camille's misery if would be her. "But she won't be able to do that if sensei kills her..."

And for once in his life, he prayed for the failure of the mission.

zeone3000
2012-11-08, 04:05 PM
Houshi shook his head solemnly, "I'm afraid she does and whatever else the sick mind of the Tsuchikage can think of. Why would the next generation continue this? It's so wrong and shows the darkest side of humanity." He points out the gate, "Then those three idiots... They're lucky I didn't split them in half. What's wrong with people today?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-08, 04:41 PM
Amon smiles bitterly. Something about Houshi's extremes always did seem to balance her out - in this case, his anger soothed her oddly.

"Big words for a big man, Houshi..." Amon comments, watching the stone-nin travel away solemnly. "Of course, not being grass-nin it would cause quite the international confusion if we assaulted stone-nin at the gates of this village. I won't object to you slapping the ******* one about on the road if we see him again though."

Amon turns away from the casket. "Well, that ruined my mood," she remarks obviously trying not to think about how passively she was allowing such evil to happen. "...Even if we did something, even as outsiders, all of you would just end up suffering when a Sacrifice goes missing, right?" she asks Akemi, hoping she'd be given an excuse to DO something.

TraceHyde
2012-11-08, 05:08 PM
(When the stone-nin are at last gone, if Akemi doesn't say anything more and Houshi doesn't feel the need to kill anyone)

Amon loosens up a bit, bowing her head in apology for her intrusion and seeming momentarily sombre. If still nothing else is said, after a moment or two she shakes herself, putting on an exhausted sort of smile. "Well... there's some things I want to take care of before we set out. Care to grab a coffee?" she invites Akemi. "Apparently I was supposed to get some official response form the Grass to that message, so I don't know if that means writing or something..."

If Akemi sits with Amon for a while or even just talks while they walk, Amon brings up the following topics:
-"I'm not sure if we're still going to the Mansion, but what's the quickest way there?"
-*whsipers* "I heard there was a psychologist in this country, do you know how I can contact them? For, ah , furthering my knowledge, of course."
-*awkward pause* "How do you decide who becomes the Sacrifice?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-08, 11:25 PM
Yousuke

Camille's simply silent for much of Yousuke's venting. She finally nods, then says. "We should gather up the others then, and get ready to leave." Camille starts looking around for Amon and Houshi.

Amon and Houshi

Akemi nods her head. "She's dead, but yes. She had a name. They all did. And we continue it because me must, just as those who come after me will continue it. The other option is simply to watch our village be destroyed." Akemi just watches them leave, and waits until they leave without saying anything to the two sky-nin.

Once the stone-nin have left Akemi looks to Amon and shakes her head. "I have to watch our Greatmother. I do not have the freedom to wander around by myself." Akemi starts heading back to the Euryale compound, and says nothing unless pressed for comments.

DM

Camille, Yousuke, Amon, and Houshi regroup shortly after Akemi leaves.

TraceHyde
2012-11-09, 03:50 AM
Amon walks with Akemi back to the compound - not INTO the compound, of course, but at least to the entrance. She mulls over the Sacrifice business for a while before forcing herself to discard it. If there was a change to be made, it would be in the Stone, not here anyway...

"Of course not," Amon remarks when Akemi says she has too little freedom to come with her. "Well, you're pretty dependable - not sure what I could have expected. Thanks for summoning Camille yesterday by the way. I'd shake your hand, but apparently Euryale don't do that even with gloves, right? That reminds me, on a darker note..."

Amon clears her throat to get some info from Akemi, "I'm never sure where I stand with the Euryale or precisely how deadly your curse is. Last time I was exposed to such chakra as that... snake, my reflexes saved me from exposing myself to the point of death. I think it was Cybele's greater chakra pressure that did it though... so how deadly to a low-to-mid ranked ninja IS a Euryale's fluids?" Amon asks, gulping as she knows the answer won't be pleasantly described. From the odd, unsure stutter in her voice it was clear she wasn't sure why she was asking except that she felt like she was supposed to.

As they get closer to the compound, Amon finally asks, in a whisper "Hey, I heard there's a psychologist in the Grass. Do you, ah, know who they are? I have something to check in with them..."

Before Akemi finally leaves, Amon asks for directions to the Mansion, producing a map if necessary

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-09, 04:21 AM
Amon

Akemi shrugs. "I've never known a survivor of it, and most Euryale end up accidentally killing non-ninja before discovering he or she has the greater curse."

When questioned about the psychologist Akemi just shrugs. "Do I seem like the type who pays attention to what happens outside of my clan? Sorry, I can't help you."

Akemi doesn't know where the Mansion is, so she can't help Amon with a map. She points out that Amon's client should know, or else she couldn't reliably hire a group to guard her.

With that, Akemi retreats back into the compound to deal with her own problems.

TraceHyde
2012-11-09, 04:37 AM
"Hey, you're a shoe-in to lead the Grass, right? Maybe you should keep a closer eye on things," Amon remarks, smiling jokingly. Amon quite liked other 'damaged' looking girls.

Amon waves as she goes. "There a registration around here or something then? I'll ask around and hopefully something will turn up. I guess if I'm competing in the exams, maybe I'll be able to wonder in here again."
---
At the last second before Akemi goes off, Amon remembers something, "Hey wait, Akemi, I had a mission to get the Grass' response to the scroll I delivered. Can I get a note from you or something so they don't have to take my word for it?"

[roll0]

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-09, 11:26 AM
Amon

Akemi looks at the girl, then nods. She produces a scroll from one of her belt pouches, then searches through them all for awhile to find an inkpen. Eventually she finds one, writes out a short reply, then rolls the scroll up. The green-and-black scroll bears the marking of Kusagakure on the top and bottom. Akemi hands the scroll over to Amon casually. "Here. Take care out on the road."

TraceHyde
2012-11-09, 12:30 PM
"Thank you," Amon greets with a sing-song voice as she tucks the note away in her bag. "I'll do my best to take care of myself, don't worry. With Cybele sage-knows-where, someone has to look after these two."

Amon's smile fades a bit as she thinks on the topic of the message. "Hey, when you said there were no genin in Soragakure..." She shakes her head. "There were at least a few, even if we weren't up to snuff - i was in a team of 3 the better part of two years ago." Yeah, she's probably just mistaken. the events on Soragakure arent her primary concern after all. Plus if Kaoru was officially disbarred, then like Omki... Looking to the floor, she looks quite troubled before pulling herself up again. "Of course, my team couldn't go forward, but... Still though, I'm surprised they didn't put anyone else forward."

Amon smiles again. "Well, maybe they were trying to pull a fast one on the Grass and I just blew the lid off the whole thing, oh well," she laughs

Bad Situation
2012-11-09, 04:27 PM
As she walks away Yousuke calls out, "...we will be parting ways soon, Camille. I would like for this parting to be joyous if nothing else." Smiling sadly, Yousuke sits by the gate and thinks to himself. "Is Setsuna the only person capable of developing a cure? By all accounts she seems to be a genius, even by the Euryale's standards, but is that all it would take to create a cure? I need to learn more, for Camille's sake..."

Standing abruptly, the swordsman turns his attention toward the market place. When they had first met, Camille had been reading in a large library. "Perhaps she will appreciate a book if not my advances...Let's see if the great and legendary Konpaku Youki is as famous in this village as he is...everywhere else..." He didn't know how receptive she would be to the action-adventure serials his grandfather had become famous for but Konpaku Youki vs. The Soulless Army was one of his favorites in spite of the series' typical overblown dramatics. Perhaps she would feel the same.

"Maybe she'll give me a kiss for my troubles? Would I survive the exchange? My youkai lineage has to be worth something right?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-09, 11:09 PM
Amon

Akemi just shrugs. "I don't know why, nor do I know the Sky's reasoning. I just know there weren't any Sky-nin at the competition aside from Sonia and Kai." Akemi just smiles at Amon's joke, but says nothing otherwise. "I'm sure your teacher will put you up for this year's exams. After all, not many genin can say they fought a Euryale and lived."

Yousuke

Yousuke can easily find a Konpaku Youki serial. The selection is fairly wide, but the best-sellers are displayed most prominently: Konpaku Youki and the Sword That Cleaves Evil, Konpaku Youki and the White Void, and Konpaku Youki: The Story of Cold Steel. Strangely, he also finds several serials about Sanagi named the Save the Queen. If the sky-nin flicks through them, then he discovers that they're more like a raunchy love-novel than a proper serial.

Bad Situation
2012-11-10, 12:55 AM
Yousuke smiles at the presence of serial novels and picks out the most popular books, but makes sure to include The Soulless Army among his selections. As he passes through the rows of books his eyes come across what looks to be Sanagi's own serials.

"Save the Queen...I didn't know Sanagi-san had her own set of stories..." On a whim, the swordsman reaches out to grab the book nearest to his hand and flips through it curiously. The book snaps shut with an audible smack, and the embarrassed young man looks around to see if anybody had been looking at him. "Does she know these books exist? How shameful..."

Not wanting to be caught putting the book back onto the shelf, the ninja quickly places it within his own Youki adventure novels and approaches the counter to purchase the books. He could dispose of the book at a later date, when nobody was watching him.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-10, 03:52 AM
Yousuke

The merchant takes Yousuke's money, and makes no comment on the boy's purchases. After all, it was none of his business what the young man bought.

Amon and Houshi

Camille finally joins up with Amon and Houshi. "Yousuke and I have been waiting for you guys. Are you ready to go?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-10, 04:38 AM
"Y'think?" Amon asks a little bashfully at the suggestion of being put forward. "Well, it's not like we escaped by our wits or anything, she just didn't feel like killing us. Living by the mercy of a Euryale when we've been caught dead to rights is hardly so impressive. In the end, we couldn't do much - we had to come here to ask you to retrieve Camille for us and Cybele killed Setsuna herself." She was simply still feeling too bad about the whole thing to even take a complement gracefully. "If I'm put forward, I'll have to get a lot stronger to be worthy of that nomination."

Clearing her throat, Amon looks to the sun for a moment. Not nine yet, accounting for our position, that's good.... "Hey, does that mean you've seen Kai? She's become a little elusive lately - I barely remember seeing her before I was disbarred and I've met every member of the big three except her in recent weeks. Let's see, was she blonde... no that can't be right..." Feeling stupid for this small talk, she shakes her head. "Ah, I guess it doesn't matter much."

---

Amon sees Camille approach seemingly by herself and extends a gloved hand to her. She looks a little calmly saddened, guessing the two of them hadn't worked things out - this was their last opportunity, there's no leaving that mansion right? "...Do you know where we're going or should I call Kaede for directions?" she asks finally. It sucks that Yousuke's the only one she'd listen to...

Amon shakes Akemi's hand if she lets her, otherwise bowing her head. "You've been a big, big help, summoning Camille and all. The Grass should be thankful to have dependability or leadership like yours."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-10, 04:53 AM
DM

Camille nods. "Yes, I do know where to go."

Akemi just raises her hand in a sign of refusal. The Euryale didn't touch outsiders, no matter what. "Eh. I'm not nearly as useful as Greatmother Claire was. I just wish she could have convinced Setsuna to stay." Akemi leaves quickly and quietly.

TraceHyde
2012-11-10, 05:36 AM
Amon waves to Akemi as she goes. "Don't sell yourself short, you'll do fine, Akemi-chan."

Akemi gone, Amon turns her attention on Camille. "Ah, well." She throws her arms out to her side, clearly offering Camille a quick hug. "It's a pity; if you'd stayed in the sky I'm sure we'd have been great companions to one another but... I guess I shouldn't dwell on it, right? I can hardly ask you to stay on my account. If you feel you've said all you need to then..." Amon salutes. "I'll see it through, Camille. I know you don't want to seem a burden, but I consider it my duty to make sure you're happy."

She looks briefly around. "Where is Yousuke, anyway?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-10, 05:44 AM
Camille

The younger girl shakes her head. "You and I both know why I can't stay." With that said, she just shrugs when questioned about Yousuke. "He was right behind me, but then he disappeared."

Bad Situation
2012-11-10, 07:36 AM
Yousuke appears as suddenly as he disappeared, standing behind Camille and raises his hand for the group to see. "I apologize. I had some...business in the marketplace that I had to take care of. As you can see I am quite ready for our departure."

TraceHyde
2012-11-10, 07:57 AM
Amon blinks as Camille declares she should know why, before the realisation hits her. "Oh, you figured out that the Euryale..." she falls silent until their final team mate approaches.

Amon nods to Yousuke as he approaches. She catches his meaning rather quickly for once - a present for her, is it? I wonder if I have time to pick up something too? ..Nah, I might overshadow Yousuke then. Maybe I can make her something for Camille on our way over. I'll just snatch some supplies on my way out of town.

Patting Camille's head, she smiles. "Let's get you home then. Lead the way, Camille-chan."

---
After departure (of course)
---

As they navigate, Amon can be seen occassionally tinkering with something as they go, having picked up a few gears on her way out of town. She was coordinated enough to craft while walking, but doesn't let Camille see. In face a lot of the time, she doesn't even look at what she's doing, trusting her sense of having made thousands of similar items to guide her hands. Eventually she needs an engraving. "Hey, Camille, how do you spell your surname? Why? Uh, no reason, just I keep a diary is all, yeah..."

I take 10 on navigate to hit 15

As they travel, Amon whispers briefly to Yousuke when she's quite sure Camille can't hear, "I hope you made it count." In obvious refence to two things; his last words and his gifts to Camille. Assuming in the case of the latter, he hadn't granted her his gift(s) before departing town

TraceHyde
2012-11-10, 08:17 PM
Amon gives a little hop to pat Houshi's head as they go to gain his attention. "Hey, Houshi, about yesterday...I feel I owe you a hug back, but it'll have to wait until my hands are free," she says, indicating to a small bundle of cloth in her hands that she was obscuring her tinkering with. She gives Houshi a bit of a smile. "It is nice to be appreciated, isn't it, Noble Swordsman?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-11, 01:11 AM
DM

The genin and their charge head out to the Mansion. The trek is short, as it only takes a few hours via walking to arrive at a wide river. During the trip the sky slowly darkens as rainclouds gather together. Camille stops the group, then points to the north. The group skirts the river until they come to a small canyon created by the river's flow. Dense trees grow between the canyon's walls, and the group enters the forest quickly. The river eventually brings them to the Mansion itself. The tall structure (http://i.imgur.com/ZseEA.jpg) juts out of the riverbank majestically. The canyon wall behind it protects it from any attacks from the rear, and the river's bend covers any attempt to approach from the front. Camille points out a small dock built onto their side of the river, and then points to the mansion. The group would need to travel across the river with the boat, or use their chakra to walk across, and expode themselves to anyone watching from the Mansion. Unless stopped, Camille opts to take the boat as she lacks the capacity to walk on water on her own.

The boat trip is short, almost as if the river's currents are dragging the boat toward the mansion rather than downriver. When the boat docks, which it does without any assistance from the genin or Camille, the group's greeted by a familiar looking woman in a green qipao.

"Greetings travelers." Suzunabu stands at the top of a series of white stairs that lead down to the dock. "To say it's a surprise to see you here would not do this visit justice. I trust you did not have trouble." Before Suzunabu can make anymore small talk a feminine voice shouts from behind her.

"Meiling! Are they my guests? If not, just throw them in the river." Meiling shouts an affirmative, then motions for the genin to come up the stairs. If the genin go up, then they're greeted by an older woman (http://i.imgur.com/LExJy.png) leaning against a short stone wall. She's wearing a purple shawl and hood held in place by a necklace of gold and jewels. The shawl seamlessly flows into a tight fitting purple dress that shows off the woman's curves. Strangely, the dress is missing a large amount of fabric, and it grants the genin a view of her cleavage. She's covered in golden jewelry. A pair of thick golden bands wrap around her biceps, her thin wrists are adorned with many golden bracelets and loops, and she wears two golden rings on each hand. The rings on her middle fingers are set with rubies, while the rings on her ring fingers are set with sapphires. She has her head resting in her hands, and her elbows resting atop a small wall that blocks any view of her below the waist. The genin can see that each of her fingernails are painted gold.

Spot DC 21
The thin green tail of what seems to be a large snake curls around the edge of the short wall. Its upper body is hidden behind the wall, and it seems to be crawling toward the lady's feet. The color and pattern on its back is reminiscent of a very poisonous snake.

The woman's lizard like eyes flicker from genin to genin, before finally settling on Camille. Suzunabu bows down in front of the woman, then motions toward the genin. "These are the sky-nin under the tutelage of Euryale Cybele. They have brought your estimated guest." The woman smiles mischievously, and Suzunabu goes on to introduce her. "Guests, this is Lady Scarlet Satoko. Scarlet-dono, this is Euryale Camille, Konpaku Yousuke, Amon, and Houshi. I am afraid I never learned the full names of either of the other children."

The woman's smile doesn't subside as she extends her right hand toward the genin. Her palm is turned down and her fingers point downard. It's obvious she'd rather have her hand kissed than shaken. "Charmed, I'm sure."

Bad Situation
2012-11-11, 03:20 AM
When Yousuke sees Suzunabu he smiles and bows. "It is a pleasure to see you again, Suz-" The swordsman is cut off by a voice from above and instead turns his direction toward the source. "Her guests...that voice must be the lady of the house..." Taking in a deep breath, the genin prepares himself to climb the stairs and meet the woman they would be entrusting Camille to.

Noticing the snake on the wall, Yousuke quirks and eyebrow. "A snake...would it be considered a good or bad omen, given the nature of Camille's ailments..." Shrugging his shoulders imperceptibly, he maneuvers himself to Camille's side and climbs the steps in time with her footsteps, eager to meet their host.

At the top of the stairs, the white haired shinobi regards the woman with curiosity in his eyes but when he notice Suzunabu bowing he bends down and does the same. "It is an honor and pleasure to meet you at last, milady." Remembering his manners in time and takes the hand gratefully, kissing it as he was taught by Youki. Drawing his lips back, Yousuke takes a kneel a few steps away from her and keeps his arms distant from his weapons as a sign of respect. "I am Konpaku Yousuke, son of Konpaku Youmu, daughter of Konpaku Youki. In the name of my clan's honor do I kneel before you now."

TraceHyde
2012-11-11, 05:51 AM
Amon pockets her tinkering product as they approach the river, getting ready to row. "Well, I'm the ONLY one here that thought to learn how to walk on water - there's your project before our next mission, Yousuke - and we won't get far if I have to carry Houshi. Come on."

---

Upon seeing Suzunabu again, Amon jauntily tilts her headband in greeting. "Hey, if it isn't my favourite dragon! What up, Suzunabu, how's the kid?" Laughing a little nervously, she adds, "Hey, no hard feelings over when I used my technique to make you -?" She gets halfway through apologising before the apparent lady of the house interjects.

Eyeing Satoko, Amon smiles. Well, she doesn't seem like a worse person to leave her with than Setsuna, so, you know, that's a point in her favour. She doesn't blush at the sight of her, despite her being attractive. With a woman like this, the team could do without her fumbling and laughable attempts at courting. No matter how nice older women are...

When called upon for a 'formal' greeting, Amon is annoyed to already see Yousuke take the hand. A little grossed out, she remembers to pick a finger he didn't kiss as she kneels, doing the same (ew, I don't want Yousuke-spit, eeewwww). "Ah, charmed indeed to meet the illustrious Scarlet-sama," she declares in her rarely heard formal voice she'd always honed by her parents side as she lavishly pecks the sapphire of the ring finger. "By birth of Hiruku and Ayaka of Yamana, I am Yamana Amon. But by merit of my own efforts, I am Shokunin Amon, Genin and mechanic of Soragakure. Call me what you will, milady." She smiles, deepening her bow by Yousuke's side.

"You keep quite the nice home; a simply understood regal charm to any peasant observer, but to a ninja's eyes there is no mistaking its placement as accidental in its safety. Forgive me for that focus, for safety has seemed an unaffordable luxury throughout our trip."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-11, 06:18 AM
Camille

The young girl bows deeply as well, but does not kiss the lady's hand. "My name is Euryale Camille, Scarlet-dono. It is an honor to finally meet you after our correspondence." She shakes a little as she rises, and does not meet Satoko's eyes.

zeone3000
2012-11-11, 09:54 AM
Houshi waves at Suzunabu as she makes her appearance at the top of the stairs before he mentally frowns when the lady presents her hand, Ugh, I hate royal etiquette. He ascends the stairs behind his teammates and kneels next to the them, "Takanashi Houshi, thank you for granting our charge asylum in your court." Frankly, Houshi didn't like nobles that much.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-11, 01:12 PM
DM

"Oh?" Scarlet seems interested in Amon's statement concerning the defensibility of her home. "Well, while the canyon is quite easily defended, it's also quite troublesome to escape from. I like to keep unwanted guests out, and invited guests in after all."

Scarlet's smile dims a little as she settles her shoulders. Her bosom becomes less prominent, as she crosses her arms over it, then sighs. "They're easily cowed, aren't they Meiling?" Suzunabu shakes her head, and it only causes the noblewoman to laugh.

Satoko turns her gaze on Yousuke first. "Proud, aren't you lad? But I can see you aren't all you pretend to be. Delicious, absolutely delicious." She practically beams with joy at Yousuke, then her smile dies as she turns to Amon. "A mortal, but a strong one. Or, maybe... Hm. Interesting." She gives the girl a thin but wide smile, and shrugs it off. "Well, do as you will."

With that said, she turns to Houshi. "Bold not to kiss my ring, but still mortal. You smell like blood young man." She gives him a curt nod and soft smile, then addresses all the genin.

"You have free reign to do as you wish within the Mansion. I'm sure you're all quite hungry. Suzunabu, show our guests to their quarters, then be so kind as to prepare their meals." The woman's upper body rises up, and while she seemed tall before the genin finally get a gauge of how truly large she was. She towers over Houshi, and the small wall covering her body is dwarfed by her size. The purple dress she's wearing terminates at her hips and just four small flaps cover her lower body. Well, they would if she had a normal lower body.

Her waist flows straight into the muscular upper body of a snake. Green-and-yellow scales flow from her hips into a long sinuous snake tail. The powerful mono-limb flexes and squeezes as she "sits" up and draws herself to her full height. She stands nearly eight feet tall, and smiles down at the young sky-nin. She no longer shows the playful, mischievous side of Scarlet Satoko. Now she's the Dragon Sage. The lady to whom the greatest of summons bow and scrape. "Remember. So long as you are guests of the Dragon Sage, there will be no one within these walls whom would dare lay a hand upon you."

TraceHyde
2012-11-11, 02:09 PM
Amon raises an eyebrow,not sure how to take the sudden attention as Satoko looks over each of the genin. "Strong... mortal?" Amon repeats, not one of the words she says before turning to Houshi sitting well with her. Or at least, that's how her remembering of her reactions goes as Scarlet unfurls to show her true form, some naga-dragon-thing she doesn't even know - a certain bizarreness and the slime-dry scales creeping her out, her vastness certainly making her take a step back. Her words of 'keeping guests in' and 'cowing' take on a rather oddly sinister meaning, but she keeps a yelp down, forcing the hand she'd instinctively thrown up to her chest in defence, back down to her side before Satoko notices her posture.

"Ah~?" Amon yelps a little when she tries to speak, trying not to stare at the swishing tail. Clearing her throat, she regains her nerves as best she can, at least trying to keep up her formal attitude. "Ah, ahem, well. We wouldn't want to be a bother," Amon says, seeming to accept the offer for food anyway as she prepares to step forward.. just as soon as Houshi or Yousuke do. She tries to keep her legs stable and succeeds for the most part in not showing her discomfort by shaky knees, but of course that damn leg gives an audible clunk or two before she calms down.

Remembering that Suzunabu was instructed to prepare quarters, Amon makes her excuses ahead of time. "I don't know that quarters will be entirely necessary, as we are quite busy," she informs Satoko, smiling pleasantly as a single bead of sweat forms at the side of her head. "Our own masters might brutalise us while there's more work to be done, after all," she offers as a reason, remembering what she knew of Satoko's (dragon's) work ethic. "Of course, i can hardly refuse hospitality when it is offered by a lady. Might you have any tea?" Amon finally proposes, quickly backtracking as she realises how careless she's being with her words - STUPID, you're going to get us all eaten, think before you speak, get an idea of her mindset THEN refuse to stay the night, what's wrong with you!?

Clearing her throat one last time, Amon bows as she finally regains her composure. "Ah, forgive me please. One would think I would be used to the sight of Sages after the first, but the surprise put me off balance, ah-hah," she says, her giggle returning to a more usual, playful one. When Satoko declares no one will touch them, Amon crushes the last of her hesitation as she forces one foot in front of the other towars the mansion. "Not even a friendly hand, milady?" she jokes.

Amon bows her head to Suzunabu again as she passes

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-11, 02:31 PM
Camille

The purple-haired Euryale freezes when Satoko rises up to her full stature. She had been feeling an oppressive nature exuding outward from the woman, and the revelation that she was part dragon only enhanced that pressure. Camille visibly shudders, but locks her thoughts away in order to preserve her sanity. The snake-woman seems to take no notice, and simply ignores Camille.

Scarlet

The dragon-lady leans in closer to Amon. Her snake "legs" bend to accommodate, and soon she's on the same eye level as the young girl. Satoko's alien-like pupils contract as she stares Amon in the eye. Scarlet smiles, then brushes the young girl's cheek with the back of her hand. "Don't worry young mortal", the snake lady says with a smile that shows her fangs, "I'm not the type to eat you. It would be terribly rude of me to eat guests, after all." The snake-woman laughs at her own joke, but doesn't seem to be terribly aggressive. She's simply naturally scary.

TraceHyde
2012-11-11, 03:13 PM
Amon shivers as Satoko touches her, blushing a little even in spite of herself. 'That's how you know you've been single too long - when the big scary snake monster touching your face gets you excited, you dumb pervert Amon', she disciplines herself - anything to distract herself from showing too much fear. At Satoko's reassurance, Amon quivers again purely at her specificity. Is she bringing up eating me because the thought crossed her mind or... can she read minds? Oh god. Do't think about sex, don't think about sex - no, better, don't think about not thinking about sex (but still make sure not to think about sex). AH, is there no privacy even for my thoughts, it feels like I'm naked - wait what are you talking about, people can't READ MINDS, I've been reading way too many comics. If such a technique existed I'd make it my business to know it by now.

Amon chuckles breathlessly at Satoko's joke. "Y-yeah, I guess that would be against some manners somewhere, right? Ha." Pursing her lips, she gathers herself again, Satoko's persuasion finding the oddest ways to keep her off balance even when she was trying to be nice - and Amon wasn't even sure why. Maybe it was the scaly lower half, the memory of snake crawling through her body - anyone would be creeped out by that, she supposes. "Although your referring to me as 'mortal' doesn't do well to keep my demise out of my mind," Amon adds, trying to contribute to what she interpreted as Satoko's still high-spirits mood. "Perhaps 'human' or 'Amon' would be a better fit, milady?" She does seem to have gathered up some of her nerve again, enough to appear strong... except maybe to Satoko if she really could read minds, of course.

zeone3000
2012-11-11, 07:05 PM
Houshi's hands tremble at the women's appearance, slightly confused by her words, Of course I smell like of blood, I'm full of it. Then, if she meant in the warrior fashion, Yousuke should too. He waved it off as the eccentricities of a noble. He looked to Yousuke to garner his thoughts on staying.

Bad Situation
2012-11-11, 08:33 PM
Ignoring Amon's chattering, Yousuke steps toward Satoko and bows low. "I apologize for my impertinence but I would like to request that you extend your hospitality to my team for an additional three days. For my own selfish peace of mind, I wish to see Camille settled into her new environment before I leave here. I do not have the wealth required to pay you for such a kindness but I will gladly pay back my expenses with my body!"

Blushing deeply at the implication of his words he clarifies, "Th-that is to say, I will pay you back with my labors."Realizing the potential insult in his words he is quick to add, "I mean no disrespect to you though! You are beautiful indeed and if I could appreciate a mature woman such as yourself I would!"

The swordsman hangs his head in shame, "I will speak no further..."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-11, 09:51 PM
DM

Suzunabu quietly leaves in order to get things ready for the genin.

Satoko leans away from Amon in order to allow Yousuke to speak. The young man's stumbling words, unfortunate implications, and general ineptitude draws out a hearty laugh from the older woman. She chuckles for quite sometime afterward, then turns on her tail in order to start slithering toward the mansion. It's only when she's stretched out during movement that you get the real scope of how truly large she is. Houshi could lay down beside her, and it would take three of him in order to measure her length from tail to head. The tip of her extremely long tail curls upward and wiggles to and fro as she "walks" toward the mansion. "I like you boy, so I'll allow you to stay. But so long as you are my guest you may not call me "Lady" or "Mistress". You must use my name, or call me "Ma'am"."

Regardless of the genin's answer, the noble snake-woman guides them to the Mansion's gates. They're a set of massive steel bars fashioned into twelve foot tall gates. Satoko pushes them open as if they were as light as feathers. She guides the genin to the mansion, past its large wooden doors, and into its posh interior. The walls are tastefully decorated in soft pink, its hard-wood floors are covered by tasteful pink rugs, and several small tables with small flower arrangements lay spaced out every fifteen feet. Satoko points to the west wing, then to the east wing. "There's the library down that way. The bedrooms are that way. There's a kitchen on both sides of the mansion, as well as lavatories. You're free to do as you will as long as you wish to stay."

The snake-lady waits for any questions, and unless some are proffered then she heads to the east.

TraceHyde
2012-11-12, 03:41 AM
Before Camlle can dwell on Yousuke's words to Satoko, Amon spins around, aiming a sharp, quick kick to his leg to signal him to shut up before he digs himself in deeper, her facepalming a signal of her conquered fears in the name of 'Yousuke is dumb'. She's a little surprised to hear Satoko accept, almost as surprised as she is that Yousuke would want to stay. "Did you really just need something to do until your sword is ready?" she asks him harshly - not really so annoyed by the prospect as she was by Yousuke's repeated offences with word choice in front of Camille. Looking to Camille, she does soften up a smidgen. She didn't seem angry or sad again, and she could detect clearly that fear of Satoko. Stlll wearing his loves, Amon gives Camille a fond pat on the head as she follows Satoko inside. "You don't need to impress us, Camille, even a true ninja gets scared, right?" she asks pleasantly

Inside, Amon eyes the place oddly. "So, ah, how about that tea?" she proposes politely. "Where will Camille be staying then?" she asks half of Camille and half of Satoko.

Bad Situation
2012-11-12, 05:36 AM
Yousuke easily avoids the kick, gracefully turning the dodge into a self-serving bow. "I am humbled by your kindness, mil-ma'am." When Satoko finally turns away, the polite smile on his face disappears and turns into an annoyed frown when Amon brings her attention toward him. "Worry not, Yamana-san. I am not nearly as petty as you." Satisfied with his parting shot, Yousuke chases after the Satoko.

---
When he finally tracks Satoko down, Yousuke follows her from behind for some distance until he is sure nobody from his team is following or listening. "E-earlier. When you said that I was hiding something...did you know that...I have youkai blood in my veins? A youkai hunter by the name of Reimu informed me of my lineage and the thought has been with me for some time now..."

Looking directly into her eyes in spite of his fear, he asks, "I would not presume too much of you but is my condition...similar to your own?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-12, 06:35 AM
Unwilling to let up, Amon follows closely by Yousuke's side even as he initially tries to slip away. "Imagine a moment if the lord of this house were a man and I, in exchange for room and board, offered 'my body'. I don't think I would be given the benefit of the doubt that was anything but the offer of a mistress - do you?" Nodding sagely, she adds finally "But then if the springtime of your youth is so overpowering that 'serving' the first lady you meet is too tempting to refuse, I can hardly stop you." Before Yousuke can retort, Amon blows a raspberry, then mimics his movement - quickly stepping away from him, getting the last word in unless Yousuke spoke up

---

((I'm considering leaving this dialogue until we get lunch with Satoko. if that isn't happening, Amon will ask her this when she finally leaves the group to their own devices))

"So I understand Yusa of the Black Sand was here then?" Amon asks of Satoko. Yusa's escape had been bothering her for a while - she hadn't heard ANYTHING about her since she escaped. And there was war brewing between the Sand and the Leaf; Yusa of the Sand would be in quite the position among the confusion to accomplish whatever goal against she had. Even though she's clearly really tough, it was still at least a little bit their fault for letting her escape - Amon wonders if this war would have sprung up if they'd been strong enough to apprehend her. "Or perhaps the winning and ownership of your Contracts is a more private affair I should not stick my nose into, forgive me"

Bad Situation
2012-11-12, 07:01 AM
Yousuke rolls his eyes and let's Amon blather on pointlessly as he ignores her very presence. Thank you for proving my point, he says aloud and without looking at his teammate as she tries to slink away. After this is said he goes back to ignoring Amon.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-12, 09:03 AM
Camille

The girl just smiles at Amon, a little shakily. She hastily avoids being touched out of reflex. "Do not worry, Yamana-san. There is nothing between Konpaku-san and I any longer. You do not need to protect me." She beams at Amon, even if her hands are still shaking from Satoko's reveal. "B-Besides. I'm more afraid of my new landlady."

Satoko

When Amon whispers, the large dragon-lady just turns around and smiles at the girl. "You would be right! It would be rather amusing to mistake the young man for anything more than a fool, but if one takes a fool seriously, then who is the true fool?" She chuckles, then turns to Yousuke. "Moreover, it is rude of a gentleman to call a lady petty, whether it is true or not. You should be more of a gentleman. You have read the Konpaku serials, have you not? Would Youki say such a thing to a lady, even if she had her weapon drawn and to his throat?" Satoko teases Yousuke seemingly without knowledge of his nature.

If Yousuke follows, and if he speaks to Satoko, then she responds casually. "If that miko said so, then it must be true. I have no doubts that you realize she is not one for practical jokes or games. As far as hiding something... No. I was referring to your words." Satoko points a thin finger to the young man's forehead. "You're not honest. You were putting on an act for me back there, and I was letting you know that I know."

With that said, Satoko continues on to the east wing. It's literally impossible for Yousuke to walk alongside her due to the sheer size of her lower body, but she talks to him anyway. "Besides that... Yes, I am a youkai. As are my daughters now. Surely someone related to Youki would know the story: My husband became a dragon, and as part of his bargain with the dragon pact our souls were traded away. I became what you see before you: A partial dragon. My daughters became... something worse."

TraceHyde
2012-11-12, 12:15 PM
"There is nothing between Konpaku-san and I any longer."
Amon frowns obviously

"B-Besides. I'm more afraid of my new landlady."
Giving a chuckle, Amon attempts to pat Camille again, this time aiming for her shoulder. "What did you think I was talking about?" she asks playfully. "Hey, she said she wouldn't eat you at least. Or rather 'guests' - but you'll be a resident I guess." She puts on that old evil grin she hadn't worn since her second mission. "I suppose YOU'RE the one that should be watching your back then. You never know when she'll... GET YOU!" she goes quiet and slow towards the end before springing forth as if to attack Camille before shouting the last two words. Giving a bit of a laugh, she pats Camille again. I'm wearing gloves and I'm much more powerful than you, it's alright. There is a slight apology in her tone as her laugh quickly calms down.

---

Amon laughs with Satoko as she hails Yousuke as a fool. At the mention of Youki's serial though, Amon looks on wonderously. "You read those too, Lady Satoko?! Yousuke-kun's always like this, Camille is the rare exception of a girl he actually tries to treat like a gentleman - would you believe he's really Konpaku Youki's grandson?" Thinking a moment, an evil thought occurs to her again. "If he shall be in your service for the moment, perhaps you can get him to follow a code of manners? Or a uniform at the least," she giggles, wanting to mess with Yousuke for his constant messing her about. That and Yousuke going around as some butler straining out the words 'at your service Yamana-sama' earned her an odd sort of villainous glee.

If Yousuke pisses Amon off, she's got a decent (and evil) prank to play

As Yousuke budges in for Satoko to speak privately, Amon takes it as an opportunity to speak to Camille. Taking out a box containing the result of her latest tinkering she hands it lightly to Camille. before the little black felt-lined box can be inspected though, Amon quickly takes it back, looking worried. "Ah, never mind, it's still broken..." she says, embarrassed. Shoving it into a pocket of her dress, Amon quickly starts talking before Camille can dwell on the (by Amon's standards) half-finished watch. "You ever think about how many things that happened to you were pure luck, good or bad?" Amon comments oddly before rolling with it. "Well that applies to the vast majority of people I guess. If I'd been a few miles to the west, maybe I'd still have my leg, y'know? I was just thinking though, about how your whole affair started by that twist of fate that we just happened to find you just after your transformation - of all the ninja teams in all the villages, the one in the area with Cybele should find you. Not just that, but YOUSUKE found you an acted all heroic for once."

Smiling at some odd sense of nostalgia of young love, she continues. "I suppose I am just jealous of Yousuke in a way - that surly rude little boy found a nice young girl that brought out the best in him - a girl that cares for him, no less, and don't pretend you don't," she adds, fixing her with an authoritative gaze before smiling again

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-12, 02:29 PM
Camille

Again, the sky-nin avoids being touched. Whether Amon was wearing gloves or not, she had been trained to avoid direct contact with others, and that training made her react almost like a compulsion. She gives a blank face to Amon's attempt to scare her. After all, there were worse monsters around than simple jump scares from a teenage girl. Nonetheless, she just shrugs when Amon talks about luck. "Not really. Have I cursed the fact that I've becoming what I am? Yes. But I can't change it. I am who I am now, and nothing will change that. Cybele-sama would always tell me that she regrets that I was afflicted with her problems."

Camille absentmindedly reminds Amon that she's not crippled, injured, or hurt. She's dying. There's no fake limb capable of fixing her, no salve for the mental pressure of dealing with the end of her life, and the only possible path to her recovery--to the recovery of the entire Euryale clan in fact--closed when Setsuna was murdered by Amon's teacher. When Amon talks about her feelings for Yousuke, Camille just casually shakes her head. "There's nothing between Konpaku-san and I any longer, nor can there ever be again. Furthermore, there can be nothing between you and I. Not if you value your life." Camille's voice grows cold at that last statement. "Satoko-sama said she can stop the growth of... the thing in me by being nearby. I feel it subsiding even now, and it doesn't hurt nearly as much as it used to." Camille sighs.

"I'll die if I stay with the Euryale. I'll kill Yousuke if I stay in Soragakure. But if I stay here, then I'll get to live a little longer and everyone is happy. The right choice is obvious."

TraceHyde
2012-11-12, 03:47 PM
Amon looks at Camille with a smile that didn't give out, even though her eyes turned quite dark. She knew Camille was dying; she was a lot worse off than her. But that's no reason to act like it, right? To treat her like she was dying seemed too cruel. It wasn't that big a deal in the ninja world, Amon feebly reasons; me and Yousuke and Houshi probably won't live to see our twenties, let's face it, Camille might outlive us. Even as she thinks that, she knows there's a fallacy there. Reflecting briefly as Camille stops for breath, Amon realises that not one conversation she'd had with Camille after that time in the diner had failed to make her feel like ****. Some hideous nihilistic part of herself almost wanted to grab Yousuke and just landhop back to Soragakure just so she wouldn't have to deal with that dread. God I'm a coward. Maybe Cybele failed to kill Setsuna after all. Of course, that would mean Cybele is currently tied up being experimented on... we really should have called Kaede, i can't believe we rushed out of town so fast

At the last statement of Satoko's power though, Amon does give a bit of a budge. "That's why you wanted to come here... Why didn't you say anything? I thought you just wanted to get away from it all..."

At Camille's last round up, Amon looks rather guilty. "I never wanted you to be a ninja, Camille; that was the worst thing about leaving you with Cybele is I knew she'd bring you into the fold. When she had taught you how to deal with your curse a little I was going to try and arrange for you to have a civilian life. The only reason I didn't want you to go with Scarlet in the first place is that I wanted to keep an eye on you, we all did..."

"Although." Amon steps at last, circling Camille like a shark with her paces as she speaks without making eye contact. "I have two objections to that line of thought, Camille." A hand on her hips in some sort of indication to maturity, she remarks "You don't need to grow old with someone or touch them to love and be loved. And two." She plants her feet, looking right into Camille's eyes, bearing down with her height on the younger girl. "Don't say 'everyone's happy'." She nods to Camille in indication, first article: you aren't happy.

Amon heads for the front door, frankly needing some air. "Rather, it would be more correct to say, 'everyone's safe'. We're ninja, Camille. We're never safe."

(If Camille has no initial response, see spoiler. If she does, don't worry, I'll edit this part out and put it in a seperate post if it is appropriate to do so)
Amon stops if talked to. but guesses Camille might want an 'out' of this conversation. That and some time to think. Still, she knows she isn't the best judge of character; her stride is not dismissive or even brisk and Camille is free to follow if she so chooses. Unless anything more is said, she goes out to the front garden or nearest equivalent to catch her breath for a few minutes, staring into the river bank. As she stares, she finds somewhere to sit down, sets down her things, returning to tinkering as she reflects on everything. She really didn't have anything smart to say - she had a smart line to say to Camille but it no longer seemed appropriate. As she tinkers this time, she gives up all pretense of hiding her creation from Camille, openly admiring her handiwork as she messes with the gears, screwdriver and tweezers at hand as she does her thing. There was something soothing to tinkering, her finest hobby, how time flies and her worries seem to vanish; as long as she makes something, it all feels just a little bit better...

Amon spends [roll0] ~5 minutes tinkering before she intends to head back inside, her head quite cooled. Unless someone approaches her, a loud noise or other 'remarkable' event knocks her from her 'tinkering trance', or she is sent for (likely for lunch, she was offered food after all), of course

Bad Situation
2012-11-12, 04:56 PM
Yousuke pauses and stares at Satoko with tired eyes. "...people seem to expect much from me, due to my lineage. I love my grandfather very much but being the grandson of Konpaku Youki is as much an honor as it is a burden. It is the truth that I am not nearly as excited to be in your presence as I have made myself out to be but I truly am grateful that you have taken Camille into the safety of your home. That was not a deception."

With that, he is content to trail behind Satoko, eager to broach the question of their mutual youkai blood. "What is it like...being a youkai I mean. I cannot fully empathize, given the nature of my inheritance but I would like to know more. The news was a shock to say the least but I am trying to take it in stride...a Konpaku swordsman embraces all aspects of himself, youkai or not. If there is something to be attained by this blood then I will master it as surely as I will master both my body and soul. ...grandfather teaches me that the Konpaku are tigers and dragons wearing one skin and that I more than anyone else embody this to its fullest extent. I have never quite been able to understand him but I was hoping you could give me more insight into his words."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-12, 04:59 PM
Camille

The young girl shrugs. "What more was there to say?" Once Amon talks about not being a ninja, Camille just shakes her head. "I was doomed the moment that... That woman did what she did. Whether I was a ninja or civilian didn't matter."

When Amon talks about love, the girl just shakes her head. "Cybele-sensei tried to say the same thing. Is she happy? Is she loved? No. I saw my future in her, and I did not want to live that way. Besides: Everyone is happy. I'm content with that outcome." Camille didn't need time to think. She'd already thought about it for a lot longer than this little conversation, and for longer than even the trek over. She'd thought about it since the day she arrived in Soragakure. She has nothing more to say, and allows Amon to leave.

---

Outside, the genin finds the gardens peaceful. Strangely, no birds or squirrels enter the leafy green around the mansion. The garden is well-tended, and a variety of flowers grow in it. The garden's clearly a high priority, but it seems too large for one person to take care of. Nonetheless, no one bothers Amon at all outside the mansion.

TraceHyde
2012-11-12, 05:22 PM
Amon stops at the door, unable to leave Camille's words without response. She'll be jaded if I leave her now... if you want to leave some impression on her, now's the time to do it. She's been left with her own thoughts; you'll have to cut her deep if you want to leave an impression, disturb her notions. But how - what can I hope to accomplish?

"Cybele-chan is not example to live your life by. She has been through a lot and responded to it poorly. Her, let's face it, lust for Kaede and worship-like devotion may be misplaced." She turns to face Camille. "At the very least her conduct, the way she thinks, is wrong. But the sentiment she bears cannot be torn down even if she herself is. Ad hominum tu quoque, my dear Camille," she nods despite her no doubt garbled latin. "I've known some degree of love in my time, of intimacy. Do you think I needed to get down and dirty to do it? Do you think i needed the guarantee of a long term relationship just to feel safe enough to let myself feel something for someone?" She invisibly bites her tongue, thinking. "Yes, it's wrong to place myself in your position. I can't possibly imagine what it's like for you so I can hardly draw such parallels - whatever my ego, I am not a monster."

"You've let yourself be ruled by your misfortune, Camille, and it hurts to watch. How can I be happy for that? How can Yousuke be happy for that? You've locked your heart, Camille - that much is obvious from your speech, your priorities." Amon strides towards her suddenly. "You are far too young to think only of others. I don't consider it the least bit greedy for you to consider your own happiness."

zeone3000
2012-11-12, 06:51 PM
Needless to say, Houshi felt out of place. They actually succeeded in their mission but no one was truly happy about it. Well, he was. If this was Camille decision, let her live with it. Even if it was the cowardly way out, "Ha, if you say so." He directed his sarcasm at Camille's statement.

Then, at the mention of a kitchen, Houshi was off towards the food.

TraceHyde
2012-11-12, 07:03 PM
Amon stops halfway towards Camille, looking sadly to the floor as she feels herself run dry. "Camille, maybe it is for the best that you stay here... but you shouldn't be afraid to feel. Cybele's weakness is how bundled up she is, how much she disocciates from things that should affect her. If you truly want to avoid becoming her..." She sighs in apology. "I'm sorry, I'm not the best person to say this to you. I just... wanted to help..."

She backs up a little, towards the door, but doesn't exit until Camille says something, anything

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-12, 07:44 PM
Camille

The purple-haired girl simply shakes her head. "You're smarter than that, Yamana-san. Yes, I saw the way Cybele-sensei looks at Uchiha-san, and yes, I realize that her love is forever one-sided. But you're a fool if you think that was what I was referring to. As I will say for the last time: There is nothing between Konpaku-san and I, nor can there ever be." Camille's obviously angry that Amon doesn't understand, and her attempts to fake comprehension and say all the wrong things only drive the young girl deeper into her anger. "What would you understand of the kind of pain a Euryale deals with every day? Nothing. You have an inkling, a minor little nagging thought, of what it's like to carry a tiny fraction of hell inside your body. But do not ever even imagine you understand what it means to burn in agony every single morning until you force your own body to obey you. Don't imagine you know what it's like trying to force this thing away from your brain or your heart so you live another day!" Camille's now shouting and gesturing aggressively at the older sky-nin. "And you speak of Cybele-sensei weakness when you have no idea what it is like to live in eternal isolation. Do not imagine that you know her. Because she's suffered this far longer than I, and is still rational. You mock that with your words, and I do not wish to hear them any longer."

Amon has definitely succeeding in cutting Camille, but most definitely not in the way she intended. The little purple-haired girl angrily gestures toward the door. "Get away from me. I won't be lectured at by someone who doesn't understand the pain of being Euryale. Get out and don't speak to me again."

Yousuke

"Oh? I'm sorry to hear that it's such a drag to have a famous and powerful grandfather. Is it troublesome to be loved as well, or am I deluded? Ooh, does it take a lot of focus to scowl so much, or is that just natural?" Satoko turns to smile at the sky-nin as she playfully mocks Yousuke's complaints. "Yes, much will be expected of you. It is your heritage after all. But do not think of it as a burden. Many would count their blessings to have a loving grandfather in their lives, even if he was not Konpaku Youki. Regardless, whether you lied or not is none of my business." The snake-woman continues on through the mansion with practiced ease. "I only called attention to it so you'd know I knew, and wouldn't maintain the charade any longer. I like men who are respectful, but distaste meaningless subservience."

When Yousuke asks about their mutual status as youkai, Satoko stops and turns around. She looks Yousuke in the eye, and shrugs. "What is it like to be yourself? I do not know, for I have never been anyone but myself. I am me, and you are you. Whether you are human or youkai changes nothing about that." When Youki's words are brought up, Satoko simply shrugs once more. "Well, I do not know. Maybe you should ask him?"

Houshi

The mansion's large, and seems quite accommodating for someone of Houshi's size. It's only natural, given how large the snake-woman was. The large sky-nin smells his way toward the kitchen, and eventually stumbles into an extremely large--and extremely empty--dining hall. A familiar woman in a green qipao stands in front of a large stew pot. Several bubbling pans rest atop the stove's range alongside the pot. The red-haired woman dashes from pan to pan in order to make sure nothing is burning, something is seasoned, or to flip whatever it is she's cooking. She seems to be utilizing her trained speed in order to pull this off, and it's hard to imagine a normal person succeeding nearly as well. Unless bothered, Suzunabu continues cooking.

TraceHyde
2012-11-12, 08:04 PM
"L-like I said, I DON'T know how it is Camille, I was only t-trying to h-help... " Amon looks to the floor, dreading eye contact as Camille snaps at her. In all honesty... she had wanted this. Amon preferred this. This anger; even this was better than nothing, the simple coldness. Yet she feels disgusted with herself anyway. "Emotions are like a pendulum."

Amon shuffles back towards the door, though doesn't turn from Camille until she reaches it, not making eye contact until she swivels around to face the door. "Well I got to see how you truly feel at last," she says with the oddest, most melancholic smile. "And I don't just mean about Yousuke when i speak of your feelings."

That done, she leaves at last. I do only seem to make things worse. Though at least in this case I managed to avoid that, she reflects oddly. I achieved the exact result I wanted. I'm just not sure why I wanted it.

Amon resumes her handiwork, finding a nice stable perch to make her watch. She supposes Camille won't be accepting it. Still though, her nerves were shot from being shouted at a bit, making her strain a little in frustration before the simple meditative joy of her tinkering soothes her heart some... Amon spends some time creating watch as well as even training if long enough time goes by without her being sent for.

Looking out over the river, Amon considers at one point activating Tadayou and just heading home...

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-13, 07:14 AM
Amon

The sky-nin doesn't see anything out of the ordinary until someone finally steps up onto the stairs. At first Amon doesn't recognize the purple-haired kunoichi stepping into view, but eventually her mind places a name to the appearance. Sune, Cybele's twin sister, stands at the top of the stairs. Her body is covered by a familiar ANBU-type uniform, but unlike Cybele she has no covering for her face nor any glasses. Instead, she simply views the world through half-lidded eyes, and that gives her the appearance of someone who's bored. The sky-nin looks around for the gatekeeper, but stops once she spots Amon. She waves, then heads over toward the tinkering ninja.

"My sister sends a real urgent message about coming out here to help, and when I get to Kusagakure they tell me that you've already left. I get here, and you're playing with something. This better not be a trick on her part."

Houshi

The young man notices a small humanoid float in from one of the open windows. She's not bigger than two feet tall, and has large silvery translucent wings adorning her back. Her long flowing blond hair billows in the wind, and her maid's outfit tells the young sky-nin that she likely works in the mansion. The winged humanoid flies across the dining hall and toward the small kitchen Suzunabu is using. She talks with the dragon for some time, then turns around and sees Houshi. She points to the giant genin, then says something to Suzunabu.

The red-haired dragon lady turns around, waves at Houshi, then motions for him to come closer.

TraceHyde
2012-11-13, 09:05 AM
Amon raises an eyebrow at this new appearance. "Cy...bele...?" She never really knew where she stood with Cybele but even she figures out this wasn't her by the time Sune speaks. Amon nods respectfully, frankly a little disoriented but remembering her manners - she would wave if her hands were free. She smiles pleasantly all the same at Sune's annoyance. "You're Cybele's illustrious sister, Sune, I take it? My we really are meeting the whole clan today - pleased to finally make you acquaintance." She teased her a bit with he ponderous tone, knowing she'd likely rushed over; she wanted to take the girl's measure, see if she was in better spirits than Cybele, but she didn't want to be so overt with it to make a bad first impression. "This 'toy' here is a Shokunin Amon Special; a watch I'm making as a parting gift with Camille," she smiles, nodding to the mansion to indicate where she is.

Amon closes the watch shut, halting her work for now as she stands, approaching Camille. "Camille was captured by Setsuna last night so we went to the Grass; Cybele rightly figured that Camille's transformation meant she was bound to the Snake Contract, so we had her summoned to us then rested for the night before coming here. Cybele went to kill Setsuna as soon as the greatmother told he where to go - she said she'd meet us back in Soragakure and sure enough we haven't seen her yet." Amon gives an awkward chuckle, sweating a bit as she remembers the embarrassing reason she let Cybele just run off on her own. "She acted really weird when she put this mask on, so I didn't really know how to deal with her... Ahem. Anyway, Camille was delivered safely."

Amon thinks for a moment before extending her still gloved hand, wanting to see if Sune was anything different from every Euryale she had met. She WAS able to get by without glasses after all - maybe she was a special case. "We were never introduced by the way. Yamana Amon," she says with a smile, hoping this one was more friendly than her teammates.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-13, 09:23 AM
Amon

Sune throws up her arms in faux exasperation when Amon says Cybele. "We look years apart, and yet everyone things I'm my sister." Despite her play at being annoyed the young sky-nin never raises her eyelids and maintains the half-lidded bored look of an intellectual among farmers. "A watch? What, are you some kind of old man, or is she getting fired?" Sune takes a comical shot at Amon's choice of gift, but brushes it off anyway. She waits patiently for the sky-genin to finish her explanation of things, and only nods where appropriate. She finally responds when Amon stops talking.

"Sounds about right. I suppose Setsuna is dead then, as there aren't many people who can spot Cy-chan." When Amon extends her hand Sune just looks at it, then places her hand on her hip and sighs at Amon. "You know, that's really insulting to a Euryale. It's saying "I'm not afraid of your curse, because it clearly poses no threat to me". Not that I care, but you should avoid doing that in the future. You never know who you'll upset, ya know?" Nonetheless, Sune does not shake the young girl's hand. She does bow slightly, and introduces herself. "Euryale Sune."

TraceHyde
2012-11-13, 11:13 AM
"Well, this was the first thing that came to mind that I could make," Amon says, explaining the watch. "She doesn't seem like one to appreciate one of my swords - and I don't have a forge on hand anyway-" Amon thinks for a minute, remembering to invent a technique for that, "-and I didn't want to risk getting her the same gift as Yousuke, so here we are." Amon nods sagely as she explains her reasoning behind the most pointless thing in the whole conversation. "Also I saw Cybele without her technique up twice already. You are twins after all, looking similar to a casual observer is nothing to be ashamed of."

---

"THAT's why none of the Euryale seem to like me," Amon remarks in realization as Sune explains why a handshake is insulting before bursting out in an unladylike laugh. "Though I mostly just wrote that off as a combination of my poor social skills and generally being jinxed, since there are few ninja I get on with. I just wish some of the nice ones were on this team..." she adds with a murmur, seeming to not even realise she was saying it out loud.

"Well, Sune-san, if you must know, the day I met Cybele..." She gives a weak laugh. "Well, let's just say that, having felt it, I must say I am terrified of that curse. I just... think it's nice to not treat the Euryale like they're nothing more than curse bearers, you know?" Though I DO only ever seem to piss people off, even when i don't mean to

Finally, Amon returns Sune's bow, before backing up a bit and perching herself again, giving a little sigh as she looks to the house. "Well, what are you going to do now, Sune? Go make sure Cybele's okay? Return to town? Stupid Yousuke wants to stay here for three days, but that's more than a little excessive."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-13, 12:38 PM
Amon

Sune shrugs when Amon talks about the things she can make. "I can understand that, I guess. And no, looking similar is fine. But when everyone assumes I'm my sister's daughter... It gets a mite irritating." Sune frowns as she speaks, but it lets up once Amon starts talking about the Euryale.

"Ya, the Euryale are a clan steeped in a lot of old traditions. Handshakes not being one of them. In fact, there's a ban on all kinds of physical contact except between two Euryale." Sune listens as Amon talks about what happened between her and Cybele, and just shrugs when Amon talks about treating the Euryale like normal people. "Maybe you do, but that doesn't mean the Euryale see it the same way. A lot of them are resigned to... well, whatever comes. Some of us get depressed, some of us get angry, still others like my sister become obsessed with living. But all of us get insulted when our curse is treated lightly."

When Amon asks about Sune's plans, the young girl just shrugs. "I trust Cy-chan. I could return to town, but I think it'd be easier to return with you guys. After all, Cy-chan can move pretty fast on her own, but you guys are gonna be like molasses ya know?" Sune beams as she pokes fun at Amon's skills, but otherwise seems more playful than serious.

TraceHyde
2012-11-13, 01:21 PM
Amon's silent for a while as Sune speaks - she would comment on the twin appearances as 'well at least Cybele's aging tech basically guarantees you'll have a killer bod by the end of puberty' but she remembers the reduced lifespan and stops herself at the last second. Other than that, she mulls things over. She felt like she was suffering overexposure to these Euryale right about now - being around people ineffably worse off than her just made her feel guilty and futile.

Amon pouts, Sune succeeding at putting her in a more playful schoolyard-taunting mood. "Well maybe I'd learn to move like that too if Cybele held still long enough to teach me," she remarks, blowing a raspberry as she leans back against a wall, stretching out in her perch as a show of her preference for savoring. "If I want to get somewhere quick, I'll build a vehicle or trick a taijutsu user into carrying me. I'm Shokunin, not an athlete!"

Amon smiles, amused, really, though wishing she knew something about Sune to tease her about that wasn't hurtful. Thinking fast, she DOES remember something Kaede said. "Well, I'm sure you'll be just as fast as your sister when you get to her age, Sune-chan," Amon teases, giving a devilish smile. She KNEW Sune was the older of the twins. But she also knew Sune was apparently fixated on that point

Amon gives Sune a chance to react before she grows a little more sombre, turning to the house again as she speaks hesitantly. "Cybele's obsessed with life then? I never would have guessed after..." Muttering to herself, she wonders "Perhaps Nanako is like Kaoru to Cybele. Someone to live in place of. She did mention the duty of respecting her falling to Sune in that note..."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-13, 02:03 PM
Amon

Sune just shrugs. "Sounds bad, but my own team is left in the lurch so it's not like I'm one to preach." When Amon teases her, Sune just smirks. "Other way around kiddo. But I know you're not that smart, so I'll let it slide." She takes a shot back, then raises an eyebrow when Amon mentions Nanako.

"I dunno who this Kaoru is, but how did you find out about Nanako? Neither Cy-chan nor myself talk about her."

TraceHyde
2012-11-13, 02:53 PM
Amon flinches, looking a bit panicked as she realises she was talking to herself even in front of others now. "Uh..." Resisting a blush, she clears her throat to compose herself. "The greatmother was asking after Nanako and you after she found out Cybele was alive - and from everyone calling Cybele the Sacrifice and seeing a kid be sent off as the next Sacrifice, I just kind of figured it out from there..." She leaves out the part where she read Cybele's letter declaring her intent to die, at least for now, but an awkward pause in her speech makes her omission obvious.

"Kaoru is the shinobi from my old team," Amon adds, trying to change the subject before her willful intrusion of the Euryale twins' privacy becomes obvious - and sadly the only subject she could think to grasp at didn't leave her any more pleased to discuss. "He... isn't a shinobi anymore, because of me. To say the least... So I try and carry on in his stead. He was always friendly to people and understanding - I wasn't so nurturing until i decided to take up his mantle, but... I owe him that much. I certainly can't live up to his legacy as a genius. So for Nanoko... I'm not very good at figuring out people unless I've been through what they have, so..." She grows more and more quiet the more she talks, knowing she shouldn't be speaking of such things, but... the subject had been boiling away in her for so long it was overflowing by now

Amon goes silent for a bit, staring at the house as if hugely entertained by its presence. "Sorry for taking a heavy tone," she says suddenly, ironically sounding a little relieved in a way - or at least 'resigned', a sigh in her voice. "I usually don't share my problems with pretty girls until at least the second date." With that, she playfully looks back to Camille, winking - more joking than flirtatiously. Unlike Cybele whose defences were a sort of indifference and the shadows themselves, Amon's was a kidding nature.

"...Nanako's name was the cipher for a message intended for you - a message I obviously read. Sorry," she fesses up, blushing as she hopes to avoid digging herself a deeper hole

Bad Situation
2012-11-13, 03:22 PM
Yousuke's scowls throughout Satoko's explanation but gradually softens the further and further she calls him out on his complaints. Feeling shame, he looks down at the ground but nevertheless continues to follow her. "She's..."

"...you're right. Few would be so lucky to have somebody like my grandfather raising them. Did you know him? My grandfather, I mean."

Remembering Satoko's earlier comment, he adds, "And on the subject of family, whatever became of your daughters? I would like to meet them if nothing else. You may call it meaningless subservience but grandfather has taught me that it is only polite that I ask to meet with all members of a household should I plan on extending my stays. For that matter, is there a location where I might be able to train? I cannot afford to let my skills decline lest grandfather chide me for waste."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-13, 03:24 PM
Amon

Sune shrugs once more. "Then you know everything you need to know about Nanako. She was our eldest sister, and was sacrificed by the Grass to save their hides. She's dead now." All throughout Amon's long rambling speech Sune is quiet and cold. She clearly didn't like that Amon know about her older sister, but doesn't comment on it as she allows Amon to ramble onward. Sune simply crosses her arms over her chest and waits for Amon to finish.

When the sky-genin cracks a joke, she finds Sune rather blank-faced. The younger girl doesn't chuckle, smile, or amuse herself with Amon's attempt at humor. She does finally speak when Amon confesses. Her voice is somber and deadly serious. "Nanako killed that stone-nin. I was with her, so I was blamed too, but it was Nanako who finished him off. The first day, the Tsuchikage tortured Nanako and myself. Before he could get to Cy-chan, Nanako admitted she was the one who killed the stone-nin." Sune's muscles clench instinctively as she revisits what happened in the Stone, but her face is as blank as always.

"Cy-chan claimed it was her, but Nanako convinced the Tsuchikage that she was the culprit. He cut off her legs and her arms, then kept her in the council room where he met the higher ups of the Stone. He used her eyes as a threat to his council, and used her safety to ensure Cy-chan and I were obedient." Sune looks Amon square in the eyes as she speaks. "He would torture Nanako when Cy-chan or I refused to do his bidding. One day, he went too far and killed her. She died crying for our mother, staring Cy-chan in the face, and cursing the Grass. Since that day Cy-chan has always been weak when people can look right at her."

Sune shudders a little, then shakes her head to free herself from her past. "The next day Kaede ran from the Stone. We were sent to kill him, and bring Momo back. I... I wanted to do it, because I was afraid I'd be next. Cy-chan wanted to abandon the Stone with Kaede. Well, the rest is history, and here we are."

Yousuke

Satoko just smirks as she looks at Yousuke. "I did. Sixty years ago he was quite a looker. He was young, virile, and... stupid. Ah, if only I had kept him around." Satoko sighs, then shrugs as if to say 'Oh well'. When Yousuke asks about Satoko's daughters, she just shrugs once more. "Re-chan should be around somewhere. Flan-chan won't be joining us. You should be able to find some space outside that Suzunabu uses to practice her ninja abilities."

TraceHyde
2012-11-13, 04:03 PM
I'd say Sune's story is much more rambling than Amon's. :P

The more Sune looks her in the eye, the more Amon was tempted to look away. When she finishes, Amon looks to the ground, hugging her wooden fingers as she feels herself being released. What am I even supposed to say to all that? Why did she tell me so much, I... I can't even handle my own problems. The thought of someone mistreating Aiko that way does make Amon visibly feel sick. As does the knowledge that she let another sacrifice go to that foul Kage without a word of objection. She thought she'd feel more glad to hear why Cybele is the way she is. Maybe if she hadn't spent the last 3 days in the midst of the Euryales' despair and she could remove herself a little more, but no.

Amon silently returns to her tinkering, occupying her hands as she tries and fails to say something. She always felt guilt around these people, but 'sorry' sounded condescending. She had wanted to ask her something about Camille's curse, but the energy to change the topic had left her, instead that heavy presence of the conversation was bearing down on her.

"Camille is..." she starts before sighing into silence again, nodding towards the front door. She didn't feel like her words bore enough significance to be said - regretting silence even as she exhibits it. She doesn't know why she felt the need to explain Kaoru - she knew no one cared to listen to her talk about herself. Unless... did she just exchange stories with Sune? Was she expecting more - no. She seemed bored listening to Amon.

Amon just sulks, staring into the gears as she works. Or tries to. Tinkering always brought peace, even when it shouldn't...

"You don't need to tell me of your despairs, Sune-san..." she finally says as she works, her tinkering giving her just enough calm to speak up - at least a little. "Sorry, that sounds crude..."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-13, 04:15 PM
Amon

Sune shakes her head. "It's not a despair for me any longer. Nanako is dead and gone. While I miss her, I recognize that mourning her has to end sometime. But it seems that Cy-chan will always hate herself for what happened to Nanako." Sune just sighs as if to push the heavy atmosphere away with her breath.

"I told you because you shared about your own friend. Carrying that kind of regret makes you and Cy-chan closer than you think." Sune sighs once more, then looks to the sky. "I was worried that this girl, this Camille, would become another burden for Cy-chan. I'm glad she's gone, to be honest."

TraceHyde
2012-11-13, 04:35 PM
Amon quivers a bit at Sune's words. "I... I ran." Amon stutters suddenly. She tries to hold it back, tries to limit her words, but no matter what, she fails to simply remain silent. "You and Cybele stayed by her side so long, yet I ran to save my own h-hide..." she confesses, her voice snapping a bit. She forces herself to remain stable, to just keep looking at the gears, to not dwell on it, but she can't muster it. "I..." her eyes start to well up a bit. She won't want to hear it, she decides, forcing herself to be quiet just a little longer, to force it deep within herself. "I-it doesn't matter..." Just keep crafting... Are you seriously trying to get pity for which you can't even be forgiven?

"Cy-Cybele at least wouldn't step over the bodies of her loved ones like that... So how close could we b-be, Cybele and me...?"

zeone3000
2012-11-13, 05:39 PM
Noticing the winged blonde girl, Houshi's face scrunches into one of puzzlement, This place just keeps getting weirder...

Houshi stands up from his seat, here he had been sitting quietly and walks over, "Yes?"

Bad Situation
2012-11-13, 07:59 PM
Blanching at the uncomfortable thought of a woman lusting over his grandfather, even in the past, Yousuke attempts to shift the conversation to something else. Anything else. Really, the only thing worse than imagining his grandfather in that would be imagining his own mother with strange me- "Let's not go there..."

"What was he doing here in the first place? Did he have some business with you? Did it have something to do with your title as the Dragon Sage? And what exactly does being a sage entail? What are your daughters like? Do you suppose I will get along with them?" He asks his questions furiously and in rapid succession, eager to sear away the disturbing mental images forming in his head and out of genuine curiosity.

TraceHyde
2012-11-13, 08:15 PM
If Sune remains silent yet remains present long enough, Amon might continue, her hands shaking too much to continue working as she remembers it all.

When Amon first speaks, of the past, it's like she's fighting herself on whether she wants to be heard or not - consciously, she doesn't, but the silence drags it out of her. "They... Omki didn't ask me to run. She b-begged me to stay, to do something, to help Kaoru... I dragged her away, I told myself it was the right thing to do, that Kaoru would want us to make it out, but... I even left Omki, in the end. Just....blacked out and I was... running. I... I thought if I kept being a ninja, if I got back into it, I could... be forgiven for my weakness. That if I endured, good times would come. But everywhere I go there's so much suffering and I'm unable to do anything about it," she looks to Sune, biting her lip as she clearly references (in her mind) the Euryale curse as an example of that futility. "I decided to help Cybele the day we met, even before I knew about her curse, but... I only ever seem to make things worse. But it feels like Omki and Kaoru would want to..." she shakes her head sadly as she considers her estranged's opinion. "Cybele's so close yet so far. I guess... now I know why."

Amon faces away from Sune as she looks to the sky. "Sorry... I shouldn't be burdening you with my stupid feelings..." Giving one of her fake smiles she had practiced for the last 2 years and beyond, she remarks "Next to all you two went through, I guess I don't have a right to complain, huh?" Somehow the convincingness of her smile wasn't quite up to snuff compared to her usual disguising of her emotions, though she keeps up an effort anyway.

Just felt the need to post something before hitting the hey in case you were going to move us ahead. With this conversation tone I'm not sure if I can work in the 'how come I didn't transform' question so smoothly, though I guess we'll see in the morning

---

"As she fixes up the watch, before Sune appears, Amon's odd 'crafting train of thought' leads her to an odd feeling - like there was something really important she's forgetting to do" - segment of a post I thought I had deleted without posting. Eh, it's WAY to late to post it now though and editing it in would be weird

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 10:39 AM
Yousuke

"Oh-hoho." Satoko laughs at Yousuke's obvious discomfort concerning his grandfather. "Do not be so closed-minded young man. Even in your old age, I bet that the ladies would be all over you." Satoko slows down to better hear all of Yousuke's questions, and to answer them in kind. "He was here about a sword. Supposedly, one of my dragonkin had stolen it from him in the past, and he wanted it returned. Quite serious business, I assure you." She chuckles at that, but carries on anyway. "So requested that I summon the dragon, or send him to the Mountain. I chose the latter of the two."

When Yousuke questions her status as a Sage, Satoko smiles and beams with pride. "Why, as a Sage I am responsible for the relations between man and dragon. I assuage the dragon's wounded egos, and ensure that those who would abuse them are brought to justice."

However, before she can answer Yousuke's next question, the dragon-lady stops as they near a pair of wide double doors. She opens them, and slides through with ease. The doors lead into a tall hexagon-shaped room lined with rows of books. In the center sits a young girl in a pink dress (http://i.imgur.com/gzLqX.jpg). She seems to be no older than eleven or twelve, yet the young girl sits and sips her wine as if she were an old lady. She leans forward as a pair of black lizard-like wings adorn her back. They flutter weakly, as if she were moving them unconsciously much like a person tapping their foot against the floor. A book rests in her right hand, and she slowly flicks through its words with all the time and care of a glacier. Satoko raises herself up to "sit" on her tail, then motions over to the young girl. "Re-chan, our guest arrived."

"Re-chan" bolts up in her chair, looks at her mother with the joy of a child plainly written across her face, then notices Yousuke and coughs. For a moment she makes eye contact with Yousuke, and the young man is able to see her bright red eyes. The girl's alien gaze shows her heritage just as easily as her wings. She blinks, then immediately resumes her disinterested somber look and sips her wine. "Very well mother. I will pla--Greet. I will greet our guest soon enough." Satoko chuckles at her daughter's actions, then motions to Yousuke. "Re-chan, this is Konpaku Yousuke, grandson of Konpaku Youki. Yousuke, this is Remilia Scarlet, the Daughter of the Dragon."

The young girl frowns at her mother, but nods at Yousuke.

Houshi

As Houshi gets closer he notices the extremely small winged girl is carrying a large bottle of soy sauce nearly as big as she is. Her arms are wrapped tightly around the bottle, and she seems to be having trouble carrying it and flying. Suzunabu waits for the young man to approach, then motions to the soup she was making. "Taste that, would you kindly?" The young flying girl bows to Houshi, and the bottle of soy sauce she's carrying pours out onto the floor from the action. She lets out a small cry when she notices her mistake, but corrects herself too late. The entire bottle is empty, and Suzunabu just sighs. "These fairies are useless. Would you mind getting some soy sauce from the pantry? This fairy will show you the way."

Amon

Sune has nothing more to say about Amon's past, or how close she was with Cybele. After all, she didn't know Cybele's mentality. Even so, she did explicitly state that they ran away from the Stone without getting revenge, so it's not as if they were any braver. When Amon talks about helping her sister, and comparing their misfortune, Sune just shakes her head. "All suffering in life, from the big to the small, is not something to be proud of. You had your own problems, we had ours, there is no point in comparing them. Even so... Helping Cy-chan would be hard. She's too locked up in what Nanako would do, and has forgotten who she once was." Sune just grins at her next words. "The easy way to help would be stabbing her in the ass when she gets depressed."

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 12:38 PM
Amon has a long pause as Sune attempts once more to raise the mood, looking back at her, her eyes glimmering a bit as she examines the Euryale. Pondering, she accepts it as an escape from having to speak further of herself. Lest she realise how much her own ego has decayed in recent times... "The feeling of forgetting who you once were..."

Amon finally stands, but doesn't move, still leaning against a wall as she wipes her eyes. Why am I crying anyway... "I don't know how to help her then, sadly," she says, turning to Sune a little somberly. Clearing he throat she tries to cheer up, rolling with Sune's joke about stabbing Cybele - "She did stab me in the ass once to shut me up, but I've tried and she's way too fast for me to get back at her for that."

Amon smiles, bowing a bit. "Sorry. We just met after all, it's rude of me to pass my burdens off to you..." She sighs, relaxing a bit at last. "Well. How's things back in town? Is, ah... is Kaede doing well?" Her eyes give a sudden twitch, some fear in them even she wouldn't want to confront long enough to explain to herself

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 12:55 PM
Amon

Sune just shrugs. "I'm not his keeper. He's alive, as far as I can tell. Everything else is basically the same as far as I can tell. Lots of people with complaints, and lots of teams spending all their time getting ready for the Exams."

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 01:06 PM
"Exams, huh..." Amon reclaims her perch, looking to the sky as she thinks. "Did you and Cybele have to take those when you came to Soragakure?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 01:38 PM
Amon

Sune nods. "Yup. Had to earn our special jounin status by demonstrating our abilities. Cy-chan had to sneak through three jounin, then "kill" another jounin by touching her throat without anyone seeing her. I had the easier one, just needed to pull off a bunch of Doton techniques."

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 02:31 PM
"An elementalist, huh?" Amon asks as she looks Sune over. "Don't suppose you'd know anything I could learn? If I'm doing the exams, I'll need to get to cramming." She laughs shortly, like an engine filter backfiring. "I was hoping you'd know what the chuunin exams were like," she looks to Sune as she quirks a brow. "So, were you in ANBU too? Can you do the disappearing thing all the Euryale seem to do? It would be good if I could learn that - it would make a good combo with my hijutsu"

Blushing, she clears her throat, looking off to the side. "Of course, I don't expect you to actually train me or anything - I mean, Cybele won't and she's my jounin, y'know?"

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 03:04 PM
Amon

Sune shrugs. "Well, I'm Earth, Fire, and Wind types, so if you're either of those types then I could train you. But otherwise... Sorry." When Amon talks about the ANBU then Sune shakes her head. "Yup, in the Stone at least. Here in the Sky, well... Lets say I won't degrade myself for Kaede-san."

Amon bringing up Cybele's techniques just causes Sune to cross her arms and frown. "Cy-chan's ability isn't something you can teach. You have to know how to stop moving, completely. It's hard, because stopping is equivalent to death for living creatures. Even I can't do stuff like that, and I'm the same kind of "genius" as her."

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 03:24 PM
Amon pouts. "Am I the only Raiton user in the Sky?" she remarks.

"What the hell does 'stop moving' mean? As in... stop the particles that compose you from partaking in quantum mechanics that lead to interaction with photons in the visible spectrum of light? To stop transmission and de excitation would cause a potentially lethal buildup of energy but how can one stop all such energy transfer..." she rambles on to herself. "One thing's for use, you can't possibly mean literally holding still - she's been at our side for hours while in stealth mode and I've even heard her speak."

Amon's assessment is only marginally correct: she has high intelligence but only 1 rank in physical sciences, so she's an untrained genius

Amon's folded arms impersonate Sune's nicely as she frowns at the baffling technique. "Well, Taro's making his seize for power the last week. Anyone I like die yet?" she asks flippantly, one eye opened.

"That reminds me, since we found her in THAT mission, Kaede didn't seem to know but i just kind of assumed you did. You know what Camille's nature is, right? I was wondering if you'd be able to answer another of my intrustive questions about the Euryale..."

If Sune demonstrates she knows Camille was artificially created, Amon with clutch at her chest, looking a bit disoriented as she continues anyway. "Camille snapped at me earlier and described what the curse felt like - the wriggling snake. And I realised it sounds just like... it felt when it was inside me. I was just wondering, if... Camille said her transformation took a day or two, but my body seemed to eventually reject the snake. Or rather it... it kind of died thrashing around just outside my heart after I waited long enough. I was kind of wondering... why did Camille turn when i didn't?"

Bad Situation
2012-11-14, 03:30 PM
Yousuke scrunches his face in confusion at Satoko's first comment, "Ma'am, the 'ladies' aren't all over me now what makes you think it will be any different in my old age?" Satsuki avoided him as much as possible. Yuri seemed to hate him most days, and now even Camille wanted nothing to do with him. His own mother had seemed uninterested in him throughout her return to the village. As far as he could tell, females wanted nothing to do with him.

Smiling at the memory of Youki he asks, "What was he like back then? I have found in recent years that his stories tend to be...less than concerned with historical accuracy than is the norm."

At the door the young swordsman peeks over Satoko's shoulder, or tries to at any rate, to get a glimpse at whatever it was that was inside. When the 'it' turns out to be a young girl, he softens considerably and smiles widely at 'Re-chan'. Bowing polite, he introduces himself and offers his courtesies. "It is a pleasure to meet you, young lady. I would be glad to play with you should you ask it of me."

Staring back into the girl's red eyes with his own grey he finishes with, "I will be in your care for the next few days. During this time I will do whatever is required of me to earn my stay. Should you require me, do not hesitate to ask."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 04:11 PM
Amon

Sune just shrugs when Amon rambles on about quantum mechanics. "Maybe that's how she does it. But no. You stop moving to the degree where you fade into the background, and people ignore your presence. Because you move so little, people's perceptions slide off you as if you were a blade of grass or a leaf on a tree. It's as much psychological as anything else." When Amon talks about Taro's grab for power Sune once again just shrugs. "Kai's being quiet, so nothing's really changed."

It's not until Amon talks about Camille that Sune shows real interest in the conversation. She confirms that she knows about Camille's artificial nature, and waits for Amon to ask her question. When Amon does, the young kunoichi just rubs her chin. "Well, what do you know of the Euryale? I'm certain Cy-chan would have explained the nature of her curse, but I suppose she didn't."

Sune taps her heart. "When I turn my stamina and spiritual energy into chakra, my energy goes through one of my Gates and comes out as chakra. As you know, chakra with different signatures react negatively: they repel one another. Euryale chakra, however, bonds with chakra that has a different signature. It then converts that chakra over to its own signature, like a virus attacking a cell. That chakra meets the creature's innate energy, converts that, so on and so forth. But unlike Euryale, normal creatures cannot live with cursed chakra in their bodies. If that snake had reached your heart, it would have converted one of your Gates and killed you by generating cursed chakra within your body. Your body can't use the cursed chakra, so constant build up of energy causes the pressure to burst your blood vessels."

Sune shrugs once. "As far as how to create artificial members, I don't know. You'd have find and ask Setsuna."

Yousuke

Satoko just chuckles at Yousuke's complaints. "Hohoho. Just give it time, and you will come into your own." When Yousuke asks about Youki's past, Satoko just smiles. "He was brash. Foolish. He thought he could make me obey with the strength of his sword arm alone! It was quite amusing. But he has changed, and I respect him greatly for it." When Yousuke goes to make himself known to the young lady of the house he finds a cold response.

"Do you think I am some child who would be amused so easily?" She asks in a visible huff. She puffs out her cheeks and crosses her arms. Satoko just laughs at "Re-chan", then reaches over as she tries to pat Yousuke on the head.

"Don't be that way Re-chan. You-chan here is such a good little boy." Remilia frowns greatly at this.

"Mother. Please, do not act so familiar to the commoners. And do not refer to me in such a childish manner." Remilia's blushing greatly as she reprimands her mother, but Satoko just laughs it off. However, she grows deathly quiet when Yousuke offers to earn his stay. Satoko smiles as she slithers closer to the boy. She looks him over from head to toe, slithering circles around him over and over until she suddenly tightens up and curls her entire snake-like body around him.

Satoko makes a touch attack to initiate a grapple on Yousuke. [roll0]. As Yousuke is flat-footed, he does not get an AoO. Yousuke needs a grapple check against a DC of [roll1](BAB+STR+Huge size).

Whether she succeeds or not, Satoko just grins at the boy. Her grin accidentally bears her teeth, and shows that she's got very pronounced canines for a human. "Well, well... You want to earn your keep? Guests don't usually work, but with your honor I expect you wouldn't sit by and let us take care of you. So, how about a wager then. If you complete my task, then I will assign a maid to work for you for one year and one day. If you fail, then you will become a maid here for one year and one day. Oh, don't worry, it'll be a fair task. But, if the Konpaku have truly fallen so far as to refuse a task the great Youki succeeded at, then I would not begrudge you a refusal."

Bad Situation
2012-11-14, 04:35 PM
Yousuke frowns at Remilia's curt dismissal and opens his mouth to speak but is interrupted by Satoko's coiled tail. His honed reflexes immediately kick in to react to the danger but is too late and gets caught in the woman's scaled embrace. "Hrk!" Though apprehensive, the genin listens to what Satoko has to say, his expression quickly shifting from fear to incredulity and then finally settling on muted anger. Knowing her last words were bait, the proud swordsman gladly takes the chance to prove himself.

From within the coiled tail, Yousuke struggles and futily shrugs against the constriction and says, "If my grandfather completed the task then so will I! Allow me the honor of enlightening you to the pride of a Konpaku swordsman!" This is said with a manic smile, face etched in excitement. This was his chance to prove himself against his grandfather's legacy.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 05:11 PM
Yousuke

"Ohoho!" Satoko laughs at Yousuke's acceptance, then squeezes him tightly. "Wonderful, wonderful!" She releases Yousuke, then dashes out of the room. Her snake-body allows her to move extremely quickly in bursts, and soon she's out the door. Remilia just sighs, then rubs her temples.

"Why did you get her started...?" Satoko shouts back at Yousuke as she moves deeper into the mansion.

"Yousuke! Find your friends! You'll need them too! And meet me outside." Satoko's voice fades as she dashes through the mansion.

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 05:38 PM
"That would be problematic," Amon comments at last, at the notion of consulting Setsuna. "Like I said, Cybele went to kill her... Maybe she left her notes though?"

Amon sighs, thinking. "So that's how it works." She props herself up against a wall again, bobbing her head back and forth. "It... didn't seem to actually damage me though, just as long as I didn't use any chakra." Thinking, she adds "This does sound in part familiar, though I can never keep straight my own conjecture and others' words sometimes."

Amon turns, looking to the house forlornly as she had found herself doing a lot while talking to Sune. "It feels like... I was supposed to do something in this house. Something... I almost remembered it while tinkering there, but it slipped away when you appeared. Damn, what was it? Asking abou Yusa? No, not even close... dammit"

zeone3000
2012-11-14, 05:52 PM
Houshi does as he is asked and taste the soup. When he's asked to retrieve the soy sauce, he shrugs and turns to the fairy, "Lead the way."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 06:13 PM
Houshi

The soup tastes a bit too salty compared to something Houshi's mom would cook. The little fairy salutes Houshi, then nods. "Y-Yes sir!" She turns and starts floating toward a small door at the far side of the dining hall. She tries to pull the door open, and struggles with it. She eventually gets it open, but things go much quicker if Houshi helps. The pantry is a very large room lined with several shelves of various dry foods, as well as many bottles. "It's uh, it's in there somewhere sir."

Houshi needs a Prof(Chef) check or just a DC 10 Wisdom check to find the soy sauce.

Amon

Sune shakes her head. "I don't think anyone would understand them, even if she did leave notes." Sune shrugs. "Well, I suppose you're lucky it didn't reach your heart then."

When Amon talks about what she should have done Sune naturally has no response. Of course she doesn't make a remark, because she isn't Amon.

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 06:36 PM
Amon makes towards the front door. "Damn. Well, maybe it'll come to me - you ever do that? Where you forget what you're doing until... never mind," Amon quits her ramblings, realising she was boring Sune. Still though, it was bugging her - maybe if I go back to crafting, I'll figure it out, retracing my steps and all that. It'll be a little too rude to do so while I'm in the company of another though, not to mention challenging. It's the difference between shutting your eyes in front of another person and falling asleep in public. Reflecting on her craft, Amon opens the door, inviting Sune forward. "Shall we go get you signed in, Sune-chan? I heard they'll be food. Know any non-elemental techniques you could fill me in on just so I can get some training going before we head back to town?"

zeone3000
2012-11-14, 07:22 PM
Houshi helps open the door and smiles to the little fairy, "No worries. It's definitely in here."

I'll just take 10 for 12.

Bad Situation
2012-11-14, 07:23 PM
Left alone in the room, Yousuke scratches his head and works the kinks out in his body before setting out in search of Houshi. "I feel as though I may come to regret this decision..." Dashing out from the double doors, Yousuke heads to the pantry to find Suzunabu. If there was someone in the manor who knew where to find his teammates it would have to be her.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 07:35 PM
Yousuke and Amon

Sune just follows Amon. She nods when Amon asks about training. "I got a few tips, but not much else."

Just before Sune gets through the door Yousuke bursts into the hallway on his way to the pantry.

Houshi

The soy sauce is hidden in the back, but it's also up on the highest shelf in the pantry. Houshi could hop up to get it, or let the fairy try and bring it down.

zeone3000
2012-11-14, 07:42 PM
Houshi points to the soy sauce, "There it is. Think you can get it?" He turns to the little fairy with raised brows.

Bad Situation
2012-11-14, 07:43 PM
Yousuke doesn't bother to slow down at the sight of Sune and Amon,simply calling out as he passes by, "Meet Satoko-dono outside. She said that she requires the entire team for what needs to be done next."

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 07:46 PM
"Hey, Yousu-" Amon is cut off as Yousuke runs by. She rubs her temple, "Oh god, what is it this time, I lok away for 10 minutes and... shall we check on him?" With that that said, whether Sune follows or not, Amon moves towards Yousuke, her leg creaking as she tries to match the faster ninja's pace. "So... where's Satoko? Has she already got you working to your fullest or something?"

---

Ninja'd

Amon doesn't get far before Yousuke instructs her. She sighs. "Fine, if you're not even stopping to say hello to your old friend here, I guess it's urgent enough. Shall I grab Houshi with you in case he can't find his way out of the house?" she asks playfully even in spite of the just established urgency

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 07:48 PM
Houshi

The little fairy salutes Houshi. "Leave it to me sir!" It floats up to the bottle, hugs it around the neck, then tries to lift off. But instead it just flutters its wings uselessly. It looks rather confused at the bottle, then has a bright idea. It disappears behind the bottle, then the bottle starts to shudder and shake as the fairy pushes from behind. The bottle slides over the edge, and starts plummeting downward.

Houshi needs a DC 15 Ref Save to catch it, or it shatters on the floor.

Regardless of whether Houshi catches the bottle or not, there's only one bottle in the pantry. The fairy heads back to the dining hall, with or without the bottle.

Houshi, Amon, and Yousuke

Sune just shrugs, then follows Amon and Yousuke.

Houshi steps into the dining hall just as Yousuke bursts in.

Bad Situation
2012-11-14, 07:53 PM
The second Yousuke sees Houshi he pants out, "Meet Satoko outside the manor. She has something planned," before running away. The rush does not, however, stop him from bowing politely to the little fairy and Suzunabu.

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 08:03 PM
Shrugging, Amon tugs Houshi's hand. "I guess we're going outside. Yousuke never did learn to keep himself out of trouble, did he?"

With that, she promptly heads back outside with Houshi and Sune. "Always needs to be the centre of attention, that one."

zeone3000
2012-11-14, 08:15 PM
Houshi watches as the fairy tries, then fails then tries again anew, Oh not good... He tries to catch it but knows he's never been good with eye-hand coordination. It breaks on the floor, "We'll it didn't need more sodium anyway..."

He exits the pantry, finding the panting Yousuke, "After a bowl soup."

He returns to Suzunabu, "Well, thanks to my lack of coordination... you're out of soy sauce. Speaking of the soup, isn't even ready?"

We all see where this is going...

[roll0]

By a pre-pubescent testicle hair.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 08:38 PM
Houshi

Suzunabu takes a sip of the soup, then shakes her head. "Needs a few more minutes."

DM

After Houshi's soup, which was still a bit too salty, the group heads outside to discover that Satoko has summoned a dragon (http://i.imgur.com/wVuPc.jpg) with bright silver-colored scales. The dragon is as tall as Houshi, but a bit wider than the young man. The thickly corded muscle all across its body tells of its physical strength, and the keen glare in its eye warns the genin that it is no simple lizard. The dragon stretches its wings, then shakes its head from side to side as if to shake off the effects of sleep. Satoko reaches over and pets the young lizard's head as she speaks to the genin. "Alright, the game is simple. Each of you will have one minute to bring this young one to heel. Whether you do so by cunning, strength, or words is up to you. But it must surrender to you. You may not use your weapons, nor may either one of you attack lethally. Questions?"

The dragon rears its head back and unleashes a series of half-roars and half-grunts that sounds vaguely like laughter. It snorts, shakes its head once more, then glares at the genin with its reptilian eyes. Satoko nods. "Well, he has no complaints. So, whenever you are ready you may decide which of you will go first, then you may have at it."

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 08:56 PM
Amon's not sure what to make of any of this. Putting her hand up when asked for questions, she remarks, "Yeah, two things actually. One, are genjutsu allowed? Also, um, what are we doing?"

Amon senses chakra on the dragon

"Yousuke, you seem to know what this is, why don't you take a crack at it, since you seemed so eager?"

Amon will probably formulate a plan as she observes Yousuke work

Bed now

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 08:59 PM
DM

Satoko just laughs at Amon's questions. "It would be terribly unsporting to limit your abilities. But so long as it is non-lethal, then you are a free to do as you wish. As for what you're doing: It's simple. Yousuke here has graciously offered his services as my maid, and will begin work immediately if you fail to defeat this dragon."

Amon's chakra sense detects that it has a Strong chakra signature.

TraceHyde
2012-11-14, 09:07 PM
"M-m-maid?" Amon blushes, leering oddly at Yousuke, an odd giggle to her voice, her breath short. Mostly she just seemed embarrassed for him. And vaguely... 'intrigued'. "Y-Yousuke-k-kun, I didn't know you were that way..."

Smiling and blushing, she sticks out a thumbs-up sign. The worst part of her taunt is one can't be sure if any of it is actually a taunt at all as she caps it all off with "Don't worry, I support you, Yousu-chan." Winking, she adds, "I won't tell Youki-san if you don't."

---
Turning to Satoko, she seems to eye Yousuke one last time briefly, evaluating him. "Hmm... do you have any uniforms that would fit him though?" Satoko could probably tell Amon wasn't even joking; something about uniform got to her, and Yousuke's wager had thrown her off balance too much to consider reality

zeone3000
2012-11-14, 10:05 PM
Houshi shrugged, putting his hands up in defeat, "Then I'm out if I can't use my weapon. While it may be fun to wrestle a dragon, I find it funnier to see Yousuke in a maid's outfit. Oh and we will definitely need photographic evidence of this."

Bad Situation
2012-11-14, 10:22 PM
Yousuke stares right back at the dragon with impunity, resting his hands against his hips defiantly. According to Youki's stories, his grandfather had wrestled the dragon down to the ground with physical strength alone. Having inherited his mother's lithe physique instead, he was at a loss as to what he needed to do. If Strength alone was not enough, he would simply try the unconventional strategy of 'talking'.

Briskly walking up to the dragon, Yousuke crosses his arms looks up at the massive creature and says loudly, "I do not know your name but for the sake of my honor I will supply you with me own. My name is Konpaku Yousuke, heir to the Konpaku Clan of Soragakure. To prove my worth in the eyes of Satoko-dono I have taken it upon myself to accept her challenge. If I were a lesser clansman I would simply implore you to surrender yourself to me. But my honor as a warrior will not permit this. I had initially intended on bringing you to heel with my words but to do so when my grandfather made the dragon before you kneel with his strength alone..."

Clicking his tongue at his moment of weakness, he raises his fist and clenches it tightly. "It is now a matter of pride. The pride between two warriors. I will fight you as an equal. Your claw against my fist. And I will bear your attacks with the quiet dignity of a swordsman! I only ask that you will do the same!"

Yousuke punches the dragons snout to establish dominance.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-14, 10:31 PM
DM

The dragon looks at Yousuke incredulously. It's obviously stunned by his vulgar lack of forethought, and takes several moments to collect itself. The dragon says nothing, but simply watches the young man for several seconds. If it were human, then it is plain to anyone watching that the dragon's still recovering from Yousuke's random punch to its nose. The impromptu staring match gradually transitions into a full-on glare off, then the dragon counterattacks. It attempts to smack Yousuke with its head, aiming to knock him unconscious so it doesn't have to deal with the boy any longer.

Melee touch attack: [roll0]
If it hits: Yousuke needs a DC 17 Fort Save or he's rendered unconscious for [roll1] minutes.

Bad Situation
2012-11-14, 11:02 PM
Yousuke flies away and spins around in the air as his consciousness slowly slips into pitch black oblivion. "Univeeeeeeersee!" He lands several feet away from the dragon in a peaceful pose, graceful in death as he was in life.

TraceHyde
2012-11-15, 04:02 AM
"Whaddya mean you won't do it - you're the only one here people would believe actually wrestled a dragon," Amon remarks in disgust at Houshi as he refuses the siren call of battle. "You were good enough without your sword to try punching out Suneko, what gives?" It was at that point Amon realised Houshi was too fussy to be a shonen hero.

Watching Yousuke try to talk to the thing then give up, Amon grunts - "At least stick to a plan, dammit..." a spoken aloud thought followed closely by the one "Wait... is this... a Contract fight?" she asks fearfully. We can't afford for you to wind up here for a year, Yousuke, we've got **** to do. Don't screw this up, since we haven't yet heard of her allowing rematches for such games. Even then, who could do it? ...Didn't something similar happen in the Youki books? Something about physical strength, so forget that.

As Yousuke stares down the thing, drawing all its attention, Amon quickly goes for one of her plans on the fly; a series of clones pop out while she herself slips away from the scene, circling around to the thing's rear, safely tucking herself behind cover while it's distracted.

Amon uses Bunshin to make... oh, how many clones We'll say 3. She has them stand where she was and adjacent to that, creating the illusion the central clone performed the technique if the dragon's paying THAT close attention when not distracted.

As Yousuke falls, Amon resists the urge to click her tongue in fear that it would expose her. Instead, two of the clones step forward, towards the dragon, the third hanging back as it nods authoratively to the dragon, staring at it, just as the other two do. Meanwhile, Amon begins performing her precious hijutsu. She has no idea if this would even be accepted as a victory, but it was the best plan she could think up while Yousuke was 'fighting' and his failure to stick to his plan is what got his ass kicked. At she might still have the energy after this to try another tactic, if she eventually failed...

zeone3000
2012-11-15, 09:35 AM
Houshi rolls his eyes at Amon, "How 'bout she was actively trying to kill us? Is that a good enough reason for you to punch someone in the face?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-15, 12:34 PM
Houshi gets no response from Amon, naturally, as she began performing her plan as soon as Yousuke locked eyes with the dragon; to speak would be to give away her position, after all. No sooner does the dragon swipe Yousuke into unconscious than he finds a small crowd of Amons, clones of course, circling it, or rather remaining stationary; as soon as Yousuke falls, each of them glare at the dragon with equal intensity, trying to mimic Yousuke's method. Their hands, and Amon's go into a flurry of hand seals as she aims the second of her Mind Transfers at a dragon. She hardly stops to consider the accomplishment of it though - mostly she was just worrying this would disqualify her. Still though, she might as well take a stab at it, she figured...

Prep
Amon taps reserves for 8 chakra

Amon uses bunshin to create 5 clones while Yousuke 'fights' (5 chakra). They effectively surround the dragon in an incomplete circle, and each of the clones, Amon included, a distance of 15 feet from the dragon (so no mater which one, if any, it bothers to attack in melee, it will remain in 30 feet of Amon, so within her technique's range)

Actual 'fight'
Amon begins performing (and her clones mimic) the Mind Transfer technique (6 chakra), obviously targeting the dragon.

If the technique goes uninterrupted, the Dragon can attempt to identify the technique in order to be allowed a DC19 Reflex save to dodge Amon's soul. Otherwise, if it has 13 or more HD, it is entitled to a DC19 initial will save to resist her will (so if it's level 12 or lower and not trained in ninjutsu, it's screwed, ha).

Each of the clones drop heir guard o provoke an attack of opportunity as they are also performing the technique

If uninterrupted, Amon intends to possess the dragon and make it surrender

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-15, 01:04 PM
DM

The dragon stomps through Amon's clones as it moves closer to her. Woe betide the ninja who thinks her petty parlor tricks are enough to deceive that kind of beast. It moves to cover all of Amon's clones with its reach, then whips its head at Amon when she attempts to perform her technique.

TraceHyde
2012-11-15, 03:07 PM
Amon stumbles as she takes the thing's neck in her side, staggering a little but keeping her focus, never breaking her glare with the dragon; unlike Yousuke, she keeps her feet planted when she lands a few feet away, and the dragon is too late for another such gambit; completing the technique, Amon launches her soul into the dragon, overwhelming it's will instantly, taking the body for her own...

---

The dragon's body rears as Amon's falls into a crouch, her eyes half-opened and unfocussed, without a will to direct her gaze. In her new body, Amon gives a bit of a roar as she clears her throat, turning to Satoko, smiling oddly as she mentally remarks that even now she was not as tall as the woman was long. "Milady, your dragon hereby forfeits this fight - for my very will has been subverted by the astounding Shokunin Amon." The dragon gives a guttural growl as it's eyes closed, Amon trying to giggle.

With that, Amon plays at looking more sombre, turning to her own body with teh dragon's neck as she kneels, bowing her head right to the ground in a sign of forfeit. A couple of the Amon clones smile as they pretend to pat the beast on the head, though obviously intangible

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-15, 03:36 PM
DM

Satoko nods. "Very well! The Craftninja Amon has forfeited!" If Amon protests, then Satoko plainly points out why. "The dragon forfeited, but its will was not its own. Instead, you were using ninjutsu to trade places with the dragon. Therefore, you are the dragon, and thus you have forfeited."

TraceHyde
2012-11-15, 03:54 PM
Amon glares at Satoko. "Come on, Satoko, I never win anything, let me have one." She frowns, but closes her eyes, suddenly looking wiser, more in control as she smiles. "I account for more than you give me credit for. I said 'your' dragon, did I not? Amon is hardly your dragon."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-15, 04:01 PM
DM

Satoko nods. "You're right. However, this dragon does not belong to me. Thus, I accepted that part of your statement as an idiosyncrasy of your personality." Satoko smiles at the dragon. "Or are you saying I'm wrong?"

TraceHyde
2012-11-15, 04:09 PM
Amon's facade of level headedness cracks again as she keeps down the instinct to burn Satoko's face off out of the frustration that comes from arguing with a wall. "Aren't you the Dragon Sage? Don't you, like, own their contracts and stuff?" Frowning in a way she'd seen Alice do, one of resigned contempt, she comments "Having the Judge also be the Prosecution is a bit of an advantage for you here, isn't it? Why did Yousuke agree to these stupid terms..."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-15, 04:15 PM
DM

Satoko just shakes her head. "You need to redo your Academy studies if you believe that. No one owns any summon, no matter how powerful the mortal or how lowly the summon. The contracts exist to protect the sacred trust between mankind and the summons. If that trust did not exist, then the summons would have obliterated mankind after the Sage's death. They are partners and allies, not minions or underlings."

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-15, 04:30 PM
DM

"Very well then. You've won. Yousuke, you are free to do as you wish, and I will assign a maid to you forthwith." Satoko snaps her fingers, and the dragon is dismissed.

Amon's sent on a wild psychadelic trip through the Dragon Mount that would take entirely too much effort than I have right now to describe.

ZeroNumerous
2012-11-15, 05:01 PM
DM

Before Amon can act her body is sent back to the Dragon Mount. Luckily Amon's mental fortitude is great enough to maintain her sense of self, and her soul survives the trip back to her body. Amon and Yousuke wake up, and Satoko assigns a single fairy maid to Yousuke. The young blond-haired lady seems quite familiar to Houshi, and after a moment he recognizes her as the fairy with the soy sauce from before. Regardless, Satoko brings everyone back inside for dinner.

---

The remainder of the day passes uneventfully. Sune tells Yousuke and Houshi that she'll remain with them during the trip back to Soragakure.

---

The next two days pass equally uneventfully, and the genin are free to train as the wish. Suzunabu offers her assistance if the genin wish to train under her, and Sune naturally offers to help them with anything they may need.

---

Finally, the genin leave three days after arriving. The Scarlet Devil Mansion fades into the distance as they travel straight back to Soragakure. It takes two days for the genin to return to the Sky, and they do so without any concerns or events. When they arrive, they're called to Central where Shioya Joji is ready to accept their report. After the genin report in, then he nods. "Wonderful work. It is good to hear that you recovered your client safely, and it is even better that you have killed a dangerous terrorist. I'll put in a request for a bonus to your monetary reward."

Joji goes on after saluting the genin. "However, there is something more we need to discuss. As you know, the Chuunin Exams are two weeks away. Taro has put your group forward as one of the two teams the Sky is going to send to the Exams, and Kei had no complaints. You'll be given leave for one and a half weeks, and then you'll need to make your wya to the Grass. However, your teacher is the final arbitrator on whether your Team goes to the Exams or not. You are to report to your teacher tomorrow morning, and give a response to Central as to whether you will accept the honor of going to the Exams or not. Dismissed."

The genin are left free to do as they wish.