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1 Downtown Scheming [Private/Plot] on Sun Jun 11, 2017 8:42 pm

Raiu Mizuki

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Chuunin
Backwater Bar, Rusty Penny Cartel, The Rat Diamonds, The Black Alligators, The Steel Tooth Terrors... A seemingly endless list of gang names revealed themselves to Mizuki as she spend hours and hours to discover the history of the slums and how a lowlife area filled with scum and villainy ruled itself. Though such gangs were generally despised for their nature, their common vulgarities and their poor individualistic actions at the cost of the commonwealth, it was fascinating to know how each gang was ruled by a the strongest or most respected man within their group, and how each gang pushed back another either by numbers, good organisation or brute force. It wasn't a means of living Mizuki fully understood, disciplined as she was and generally abiding by the order of the higher in station, but she could understand its appeal to those who had precious little to live for. Power, protection, a purpose, the promise of riches and renown. Most inhabitants were easily fooled by a false sense of security.

But such was the bad side of any community. No matter the effort to regulate things properly, there were always those that fell off and tumbled into a ditch. Too weak to crawl out, they preferred to blame their lack of luck on others and kept moping into the dirt in hopes to find an easy way out. Usually, that easy way out only dug them deeper into the dirt up to the point there seemed to be no means to get back out. The slums were an unfortunate situation every leader of a society had to deal with.

Mizuki wasn't here to analyse the workings of society, however. She wasn't pouring over scrolls for hours to learn how a city was run. No. She wanted to know the history of the slums and see how they worked so she could safely navigate the darker end of the Village. After her previous confrontation with the Rusty Penny Cartel, she realised they would not back down until they had their vengeance. No matter how many times she'd intervene, they would wait for the right time to strike and take out the Backwater Bar - most likely when the shinobi would be too occupied to prevent them from attacking.

The kunoichi wanted to prevent an all-out slaughter. Even if they lived in the slums, such an onslaught would only fuel the fire between the two. Terror would break out, the people would be terrified and a wave of chaos would sweep over the Village. This wouldn't only force the Raikage to spend valuable resources to curb the outbreak, it would also spread the shinobi thin whereas they could be of more use elsewhere.

That, and she wanted to prove herself. She wanted to assure herself she was cut out to handle a large scale diplomatic mission, prove herself that the death by her own hand hadn't changed her into a heartless being and prove the higher ranked ninja she no longer fit in the ranks of a genin. She had trained hard and grown a lot, and finally had allowed herself a reluctant acceptance that, maybe, she was deserving to be called a chuunin. Though even if she ended up accepting that of herself, it was mostly the Raikage she had to convince.

None of that proving would happen if she couldn't handle this, she told herself. Filtering through the list to get the most recent activity of the current gangs ruling the streets, there were still a handful remaining. Mizuki jotted down their names on a new scroll and opened the map of Kumogakure she had sketched together piece by piece with every new patrol. It was crude, holding little other details than streets and a few main buildings as a point of recognition, but it would have to do.

Backwater Bar, Rusty Penny Cartel, The Rat Diamonds, The Black Alligators, The Steel Tooth Terrors. - the five most prominent street gangs currently about. Having noted them on a clean scroll, she threw the old list away as she decided she'd work with these for her self-imposed mission. With the reports of latest activity, she could easily note their core activities and see the how and why of the gangs.

'The Backwater Bar' was an old gang, along with the Rusty Penny Cartel, that had held control over the slums for several generations. Ironically, this was mostly because they acted as simple street thugs than a few of the other gangs that were really into criminal activities. No, the Backwater Bar was much more like a rugged gang of bandits that liked to fight it out once in a while. Their general criminal activities restricted themselves to armed and lethal fighting, noise and harassment, and to lesser extend, drugs and assumed unintentional murder. However, their members were plenty and generally well-build to endure a beating.

'The Rusty Penny Cartel'', the greatest rival of the Backwater Bar, had originally started as a collective of scrappers and merchants whom picked the dead and forgotten battlefields clean to find anything worth selling at low price. They undercut the prices of other merchants easily, but as they generally stuck to those who had barely a nail to scratch their own back with, their shops remained within the slums under the principle of, "By the slums, for the slums".
With the fluctuations within the slums, the merchants ended owning several small bars, somewhat retiring itself from the gang wars as they left the streets open to whoever under the condition of being left alone.

The Rat Diamonds, were mostly a gang of thieves and snitches. They seemed to have no organisation whatsoever, but that might be just a trick as well. There had been plenty of them being caught during the years, all bearing a similar marking, but none who spoke up about their leadership. It was as if the only rule in their gang was not to bother with someone else bearing the mark. Mizuki assumed there had to be a leader somewhere, but if so many reports stated no information on leadership was gained... the leader had to be one elusive trickster.

The Black Alligators, much like the Steel Tooth Terrors, were two gangs of heavy criminals. Smuggling, illegal weapon traffic and even people traffic were their thing. They were generally small, well organised and somewhat of an elitist gang that vehemently defended their turf even if it involved cold murder. Every hit against them had been retaliated in kind, even costing some lives to shinobi in the process. It was hard to tell why they hadn't been simply eradicated just yet, but Mizuki assumed it had to be either with lacking numbers to do so, or such a mission requiring a lot of high ranked resources. Perhaps it was yet another reason, one that would remain elusive to Mizuki's insights.

Why exactly would a gang of thugs want to get back to a gang oriented at mercantile? While she could see the Rusty Penny Cartel rip off their rivals, it seemed hardly a reason to rake up an old feud. From this, she concluded there had to be more behind it, but such information would be hard to find within mere scrolls. For this, she'd have to spy upon the gangs, perhaps infiltrate - an idea she wasn't too keen about since she wasn't that good in disguises and undisciplined behaviour. If only she could, she preferred to keep things straight-forward.

With the information in her pocket and having a few options and goals, Mizuki was ready to go explore the slums. Taking her written notes with her, she cleaned up all the other scrolls and left the archives to work out a plan at home.






wc: 1307



Last edited by Raiu Mizuki on Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:44 pm; edited 2 times in total

2 Re: Downtown Scheming [Private/Plot] on Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:51 pm

Raiu Mizuki

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Chuunin
Home


She didn't want to be noticed. Not really. Standing on top of the buildings while she looked down into the streets would sooner or later be noticed, but her usual attire would totally put her out of place in the rugged world of the slums. If anything, she'd have to dress for the occasion. Something less proper and disciplined, much to her annoyance. Something her sister would wear with pride, presumably, even though Erisu had quite an eye for fashion statements, actually. Since her sister was just a little taller than her, her clothes would do well. Slightly lose, which gave off the impression she wasn't as strict nor could afford tailored clothes, and generally much closer to the sort that might label her as rebellious, wild and carefree. If she could borrow those, she'd already be halfway down the road to succeeding her mission.

Entering her sister's room, a moment of quiet aching welled up as she saw how her room had still remained untouched, yet cleaned up, after all the time Erisu hadn't come home. The walls were a plain white, just like her own rooms' walls, but with the added 'creative' artistry her sister had painted on top of it. A picture that had to represent Erisu teasing her sister Mizuki, but looked more like some washed out blur of colours that failed to represent a child's dreams. Her bed was a perfect fit for one person, but even now still the bed sheets were heaped up and ready for Erisu to hop in and nest herself inside the personal blanket house. On the other side of the bed stood a desk with so much clutter Mizuki wondered how her sister ever found anything back in there. Make-up, mirrors, lipstick, mascara, a lost shuriken, no, two of them, a piece of underwear worn by the corner of a larger mirror, the box with her countless amounts of earrings, rings and piercings that seemed oddly small compared to the amounts of different jewellery Mizuki had seen her run around with, her sloppy journal filled with doodles, silly pictures and purple lightnings all over the place... And that seemingly wasn't even half of it.

Mizuki hadn't come to frown at her sister's eternal clutter, however. She had come to take out a few clothes, and regretted that decision as soon as she opened one of the wardrobe's doors and was burried in a bunch of shirts, skirts, sweaters, blouses and other sort of tops. Twitching internally that even now, when not being home, her sister had still got the better of her, she pushed off the small mountain of clothes with a huff and looked at the remaining mass of clothes stuffed between the shelves. How...?, was about the only thing her thoughts could form as her mind completely failed to grasp the structure, or lack thereof, within the wardrobe. "How do you even find anything in this mess?". She pouted and crossed her arms, a frown visible as she already felt like scolding her bratty bigger sister, but since it would do her little, she quickly abandoned the thought with a sigh.

Starting to dig into the heap, Mizuki seemingly took ages to take out a few clothes that had the semblance of a combination her sister would take. Spreading out the chosen clothes on the bed to imagine how it would look like on her, she realised that the shirt with the big star was rather familiar. It was hers. An old shirt of... what, five years ago? Sure, Mizuki had outgrown that shirt since long, but why did her sister even have it? If it was too small for her, it was too small for ... actually, it didn't even matter. She had taken her shirt again without even returning it.

Mizuki threw the shirt back into the heap and picked out something else. In the end, the combination of solid black boots, white & black striped stockings with cargo short and a navel-revealing tank top under an off-shoulder shirt - at least, Mizuki remembered her sister wearing something like that before. It was somewhat hard to tell with the endless amount of clothes she had. Though the clothes were loose, it wasn't too bad of a difference in size, but Mizuki felt terribly out of place after having changed clothes. She eyed the mirror sceptically. The more she tried to pass for a wildcard, the more Mizuki resembled her sister, and the more the ache grew.  It didn't help that, aside from her long, black hair and slightly shorter size, Mizuki was the splitting image of Erisu Raiu.

"One day, Mishi, you'll see that what you hide behind discipline, and what I aim to unleash, are just two sides of the same Raiu potential."

Mishi. Her sister had always joked it was a nickname for 'loved by all', but it was nothing more than just Erisu's nickname for Mizuki. It had been a name to pester her with, out of envy, because the Raiu always seemed to favour Mizuki's disciplined nature above hers, but in time it had grown into being just another nickname - much like her parents called her Mimi. The truth was, her sister might have been right all this time. A truth Mizuki had never wanted to see. Without discipline, the storms of the Raiu were a force of nature, wild and carefree.

Pushing the memories out of her head, Mizuki refocused her mind. She had a mission to do, and she had to succeed if she wanted to become chuunin, which was a crucial goal to achieve if she wanted to proceed with the rest of her plans to successfully protect her family. Time was of the essence, and failure was not an option. Not bothering to remove her sister's clothes, Mizuki decided it was time to move on. She'd have to leave her most trusted katana behind, which had been a difficult decision to make, but she knew she wouldn't be completely unarmed. She had a jutsu just for this situation.






wc 1031 + 1307
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Last edited by Raiu Mizuki on Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:44 pm; edited 1 time in total

3 Re: Downtown Scheming [Private/Plot] on Thu Aug 03, 2017 9:48 pm

Raiu Mizuki

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Chuunin
The Slums

It was difficult settling in the slums for Mizuki. They were a shifty sort of people remaining light on their feet. Reserved, yet their eyes had spotted all they needed to see. And despite their rough appearance and demeanour, most had a certain air of casual care. The belonged her, unlike her who had never even worn clothes like this. She stood out, and that brought its problems since the very first moment. People hid, thinking she was some sort of undercover shinobi - which she actually was, others scoffed and frowned as she passed, and at some point a few even sneered and cussed. The problem was, Mizuki couldn't change this behaviour. Even if she transformed into something more fitting, her personality was too disciplined, too rigid compared to that of others. Well, maybe she'd fit in with the yakuza, but Mizuki wasn't really keen on picking up crime life just to spy on a few gangs, even if she knew that were how most infiltration specialist did it to get around such obstacles.

Perhaps she wasn't ready for sacrifices of that sort. Much like she didn't feel ready to step in her father's footsteps as an executioner.

Mizuki had already a fair amount of knowledge on how the slums looked like. She had patrolled the area before, and she had been here with a jounin of Kumogakure to round up a few smugglers and thieves. She remembered how he had been impressed by her performance. That very same man, Zetsume Zix, had then taught her all she needed to know about kyujutsu, an art she found most useful to pin down opponents or making good use of the advantage of having the higher ground during city combat. Mizuki smiled faintly as she smiled at her own accomplishments, only to remind herself a few seconds later that all of this would serve her little purpose if she wanted to remain undetected. During espionage, weaponry should be the last of things she required. Well, perhaps senbon were the exception to the rule...

In comparison to simply passing through, the slums seemed so much different to those who took their time wandering around to learn every nook and cranny of the area. Walls seemed to shift, streets seemed to warp, and under the cover of a downpour it was as if the slums played tricks on you as it disoriented you. Mizuki could see why her sister would prefer this place above the dojo. She, on the other hand, disliked the area with a passion, and now forcing herself to 'live' here would only fuel that disgust as she'd turn from an awkwardly dressed martial artist into a filthy looking street thug.





As the days passed and Mizuki tumbled from one story into another, her disciplined nature seemed to falter at times. Driven by bare necessity, she slipped in a dirty kick in the groin or slipped in an elbow to the face of those that didn't understand the meaning of 'hands off'. Others, out to fuel their adrenaline challenged her to simple brawls, street races or some taunting and dissing games - much to their disappointment when they realised the kunoichi simply stared them down for their rudeness in the latter sort of 'games'. What was the fun about dissing each other anyway?

That said, her exceptional technique and somewhat outlandish way of fighting, at least in the eyes of the common slum-lurker, was well praised as she defeated quite a few of them with just basic moves. It almost made Mizuki wonder what sort of training, or lack thereof, the street fighters had to be beaten so easily but she reconsidered her thoughts as the slums had to have their lives from survival and cunning rather than strength and technique. As she had experienced herself, this was a hard place to live in and she wasn't all that good at it herself.

On another day, she had run into small groups of gangs seemingly out to fend for their 'turf'. Once even running into them and having to defend herself as they didn't feel like letting go of her 'transgression' as easily. Though her shinobi training was more than sufficient to deal with them, she hadn't been able to avoid the conflict without several bruises and a few cuts. Without any sort of medical jutsu at her disposal, she had to resort to some sort of first aid. Mizuki knew the low grade material would not suffice. If she was lucky, the wounds wouldn't fester. If she wasn't, she might have to abandon her mission for another day.

At some point during those days, the girl stood eye in an eye with a pirate bearing the Shirai emblem, same posture and long blonde hair. For a moment, Mizuki couldn't believe her eyes. Was she seeing Erisu? Here? But as she stared too long, the woman turned around and revealed herself to be someone else. Brown eyes, an ugly burn scar on her face. The two of them crossed gazes for a few seconds, until Mizuki broke contact and walked away. The harm was done though, as the woman poked another pirate, pointing at her and started to tail her. Mizuki was gone before they reached her, but even then... if they had recognised the colour of her eyes, her face, they might have thought her to be Erisu. Maybe they knew who she was.

Mizuki scolded herself for being so careless. The slums were getting to her, and she felt like she was losing grip over herself with every passing day. She still felt out of place, her clothes were torn and dirty, and she had yet to find anything noteworthy as information to conclude her mission. It seemed like she'd really have to give up. Sitting on the doorstep of an abandoned house, she rested her chin on her arms as her mind retraced every step of her plan, every decision and flaw made during this last week, and every intended outcome. Despite the errors, she seemed on track, yet still she had not achieved anything.

"There she is.", an unfamiliar voice said, followed by footsteps in her direction. Mizuki looked up to see a handful of pirates run up to her. One had drawn its weapon, even though it didn't look like he was truly positioning it in an offensive way. Perhaps more to reassure himself than with any intention to strike her down. Mizuki wasn't sure what she was to do, looking to the other side for an exit already.

"Mizuki"
"W-what?"
"You are Mizuki, aren't you?"
"Who asks?"
"Erisu. She said she spotted you a few days ago.", the pirate casually shrugged his shoulders as Mizuki was just the target of his orders to him, not someone he cared for.
"You must be confusing me with someone else.", Mizuki replied, crouching into a defensive position.
"H-huuuh?", the man looked dumb-folded, looking at his companions for inspiration. Scratching his the back of his head as his companions seemed just as clueless, he continued, "Are you sure? The description fits... Right?"
"I don't know this Erisu you're talking about.", Mizuki persisted even though she could feel her heart ache. The desire to see her sister again, especially in such hard time, was almost tearing her to pieces but if she wanted to prove herself as a shinobi, if she wanted to put this mission to a good end and keep her cover, she had to endure this. There was no telling what her sister would do if Mizuki did reveal herself.
"Well, that's some rat's piss right there. I guess we'll have to continue looking for her then. Apologies, lass.", the pirate said, far too courteous in comparison to the usual pirate's behaviour. He tapped his head in a goodbye and the group walked away, with only the girl from the tavern looking back over her shoulder with a mixture of disbelief and pity. Mizuki could only wonder what the consequences would be of this brief encounter, and as she walked away to find another spot, a shadow on the roof left as well.





Another few days had passed. Uneventful days on one side, but fruitful ones on another. Finally having picked up a notion of the territory each gang claimed for its own, Mizuki had been able to trail a few of the patrols performed by the gang members. While the patrols certainly weren't consistent, they left little to the imagination on terms of route and duties. The path they walked was always the same, only alternated by going clock-wise or counter-clockwise, so to speak. As they walked their route, they seemingly needed to reapply some spray paint at certain corners, refreshing their gang sign to be sure no one would miss it. In some back-alleys, they met with a few contacts, mostly sharing information with snitches, sometimes making a brief trade on drugs or small hand weapons. Naturally, there were those slum-traders that never budged from their favourite spot, having to pay the price for it - 'protection' money, as they called, which was, of course, nothing more but a scam. If the trader didn't want to lose a few teeth, he'd pay them a fee for his station. And lastly, there was an almost perfectly predictable moment where the gang faced a rival and a small skirmish broke out. What the men lacked in shinobi training and professionalism, they certainly had plenty in bravura and guts.

Eventually the kunoichi discovered the headquarters of the Backwater Bar. Not quite honouring its name, their hideout had more the semblance of an abandoned wokshop-turned-bar than a real bar. The outdoor area that once held a small mountain on scrap had been turned into a sort of small brawling area. Training poles for climbing and pull-up exercises, dummies for combat training, an old sofa for... just sitting there, Mizuki guessed. The interior fitted the picture of a hideout much better. Sealed windows, locked door requiring a pass, and from the few glimpses she had seen, the interior looked dirty and gritty and barely provided of light.

The Backwater Bar gang wasn't much better of, to be honest. Their boots were of the heavy sort, and for some reason all black without exception. They wore simple jeans pants of which most had a tear or two in them - adding to their 'coolness' factor, it seemed. Their chests were covered with simple shirt, most often of a dark colour. Some wore a leather jacket on top, others a jeans jacket of which the sleeves had seemingly been ripped off. Much like the scrolls had revealed to her before, these men weren't afraid of a fight. In fact, they often went into amicable fights with each other as if to settle their position within their gang.

Among the guys, Mizuki had spotted the few people she had confronted twice before. Even here, in their home territory, they often seemed to stick together when they came out to watch a brawl or smoke a cigarette. And when some higher up in their unmentioned hierarchy discussed things, there were often two or three of them together in whichever new group they had been appointed to. It seemed they weren't just gang members, but more like friends. Perhaps brothers.

Hearing someone clear his throat, Mizuki quickly turned around to see a group of the Backwater Bar pointedly looking at her, arms crossed and one of them patting a baseball bat.

"Care to 'splain what yer doin' here?", one asked with a nudge of his chin in her direction.
"Spyin', I say. Better beat her up.", another threw in.
"Yeah, it's been borin' lately. Let's have some fun.", the third one offered.
"I ah- was just looking how to get in.", Mizuki tried. "You guys are so cool I was hoping to become a member myself."

Mizuki had to keep her face as stoic as possible, disgusted by her own words as the guys looked at each other, not sure if they had to believe what they just heard.

"You wan' to join? Don't make me laugh."
"Look at ye. Dressed as a girl, you don't look very tough."
"I bet you cry like a girl as well."
"Of course. She cries like one, she is a girl, you oaf.", one corrected his ally.
"Ohyeah, right..."
"We'll tell ye once. Stay away. Next time I catch you, it's the bat for you"

And with that said, they moved on, pushing her roughly out the way. With a last mean look of the hind members, they disappeared from sight and into their headquarters. Mizuki let out a sigh of relief and slipped away to return to the abandoned house she had been using as a temporary hideout.






wc 2177 + 2338
= 4515


____

Beauty of the Moon,
Maiden of the Astral Dance,
~ Lightning in Disguise





[Socials]: 3
[Missions]: 0

• Raiu Dojo
• Jutsu & Techniques
• Mizuki's Laser Circus
•  Whethering the Storms

[Power Song] Let the Storm Descend Upon You
[Plot Theme] Reap a Storm

4 Re: Downtown Scheming [Private/Plot] on Sun Aug 06, 2017 3:01 pm

Raiu Mizuki

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Chuunin
Mizuki's Hideout

Exhausted from the stroll in the streets and the encounter with the Backwater Bar, Mizuki slipped into the abandoned house and flopped down on the futon she had left there. Her hideout had little to brag about as it was nothing more but an old stone house, its doors and windows shut tight, and the roof partially broken open by who knows what. The roof, in its current state, did little to stop the rain from coming in, something that was quite a pain to suffer considering Kumogakure wasn't exactly the place to be for those who disliked rain. Naturally, the cold wind would easily slip in as well, but it offered Mizuki an easy entry without having to disturb the impression of vacancy this solemn shack gave off.

Inside the two story house, nothing functioned. No light, no warmth and only broken furniture for as far as furniture was still present. Mizuki guessed its former inhabitants must have suffered the wrath of a gang, but it didn't quite explain the gaping hole in the roof. Was this the remainder of a previous assault on Kumogakure? If so, how old was this building, and how poor exactly were the slums? Wasn't the Raikage supposed to deal with things as these? Plenty of questions that would never receive an answer, and thus Mizuki let them slip out of her mind days ago.

Where the living room had been, that was where Mizuki had cosied up somewhat. She had dropped the futon from home here, and had pulled the remainder of the table closer to serve as her worktable. Granted, she had to scrounge around in the rest of the old stuff to give the table a new leg or two so it would remain in balance as she worked on it. The table was now carrying a small first aid box, ink quill and a few scrolls with some of her notes on it. Nothing much of value was scribbled on the scrolls, since Mizuki wasn't quite sure how safe the hideout was, but it held a few keywords nonetheless, and those could reveal just as much to those knowing a thing or two from the slums.

A brief break later, Mizuki moved to a seating position and gazed into the scrolls. Reading once more through its content, she blinked as her eyes fell upon a rather familiar hand writing. "Hey, Mishi", the words read, written in the typical hand writing of her sister, which seemingly was still as ugly and cryptic as ever. Somewhat startled that her hideout was compromised, Mizuki looked around to reassure herself she actually was alone, but even that failed as she suddenly stood eye in eye with a lean woman on the other side of the room.

An ppen blouse that enticed the imagination, a long skirt seemingly missing a little piece worn on top of fishnet stockings, and black high heels covering her calfs. The position of the cutlass resting on her hips betrayed a drawing technique Mizuki was all too familiar with - father's Willow Style. As Mizuki's hairs raised up, and her eyes lifted to meet those of the person, two pairs of turquoise eyes crossed each other. Loose curly blonde hair framing the face of the pirate in front of her, covered only by a black tricorne bearing a long purple feather and the pin of a rather cute heart-formed skeleton.

"Hi, Mishi~", the sibilant, ever-teasing voice of her sister resonated.
"E-Erisu?"
"I see you haven't forgotten about your sister just yet. I'm glad. I heard you w-", she began, as if it was the most normal thing to suddenly drop in after an absence of months. Her words cut short, however, as Mizuki's eyes grew cold, and her cheeks gained a reddish colour much like they often did when she got highly annoyed at her sister's antic. As usual, rather than to speak up, Mizuki just shut down, stuck in a state of anger she didn't really wanted. Erisu merely continued as if there was not the slightest of cloud to be seen in the sky. "Are those my clothes...? You must have been missing me plenty if you're starting to wear mine.", Erisu stated, quite dumb-folded herself at the sight of seeing her disciplined sister wearing such rebellious outfit. The fact they were dirty and torn seemed to do her little, however. "Not too bad, but... so not you."
"Stop acting as if there's nothing wrong! Where have you been? It's been months! Dad is worried, mom is at the hospital and I... I've been looking for you and your stupid pirate gang ever since I've graduated."

This sort of discussions were familiar. Too familiar. Mizuki would shut up at first, upon which her sister would just continue with her air-headed self as she danced around the problem, which would result in Mizuki suddenly unleashing the entire storm of thoughts. There would be a heated debate involving a passionate Mizuki and a fluttery Erisu trying to avoid any sort of responsibility. Again.

"I'm sorry.", Erisu replied, calm and soft, much not to the expectations of Mizuki. "You are right, I should have returned sooner than this."

Light as the wind, Erisu suddenly stood in front of her sister, smiling a most forlorn smile before pulling her in close for a hug. Completely taken aback by her unusual way, Mizuki suddenly wasn't sure what to do. What was going on?

"Don't be angry, sis. I just couldn't help myself.", Erisu began. "You know I never felt comfortable in a cooped up state. Though I love you all, I couldn't bring myself to return home, to the dojo, to father's traditional discipline. With mother gone, you training hard and father every busy I saw my chances to slip away and join a world where I do feel home. Where I feel myself.". Erisu let go of Mizuki, taking a step back. "So, please, don't hate me. No matter how hard I try, I can't return home. A pirate's life, that's my true calling..."
"You were branded a Missing-nin...", Mizuki tried in hopes to make her sister aware of the consequences her dreams had caused her, much to the uncomfortable amusement of Erisu. "Kumogakure's shinobi are looking for you. Dad is looking for you."
"And since you are graduated as shinobi... you have the duty to stop me. I get it. Congratulations on being genin, by the way. I'm really proud of you.", Erisu said, smiling brightly before she took off one of her many bracelets. "It's a... late gift, I know, but I kept this one just for this occasion, honestly."

She pressed the thin silver bracelet in Mizuki's hands. It was an elegant craft of high quality, decorated with two stars next to a crescent moon. Mizuki found it beautiful despite its rather simplistic design and was about to smile were it not for her mind realising what her sister was trying to do.

"No. You won't get away with this."
"Awww", Erisu replied with a childish pout. "You've really outgrown my tactics, haven't you? Fine, you seem to h- Hey, where's your katana?"

As if only now realising just now Mizuki wasn't wearing her katana, Erisu blinked at her sister's hip where her trusted weapon was supposed to be, and somewhat unconsciously moved her own hand to touch her own cutlass as if to reassure her she hadn't forgotten her own weapon.

"Woah... This is worrysome. You're wearing my clothes, you look like you haven't had a bath in weeks and you're walking around without the katana of which we'd all start to think you were married with."
"I'm on a mission, and how painful it is to admit, there's no room for a weapon as revealing as mine."
"A mission? So that's why you're acting so weird out here in the slums... You really did grow a lot.", a contemplative look crossed Erisu's face, as if she was trying to assess the meaning of this all. "I remember those... I find them such a drag to bear, but I guess they'd fit you just perfectly. Does dad know?"
"He does."
"Of course he would. You're not exactly me", the blonde pirate sighed.
"Exactly."

Erisu stuck out her tongue in playful defiance, and turned around to move back to the hidden exit the building offered.

"Where are you going?"
"Back to my treasure pile. Even if missions aren't my thing, I don't want to compromise yours any longer.
"What about dad and mom? You should visit them.", Mizuki suggested, but seeing as Erisu drooped her head and didn't reply, she pressed on, "You will see them, right?"
"I'm a Missing-nin, Mizuki. I can't do that. Perhaps mom wouldn't mind, but dad's the sort that would bring me to justice. If not as Kumo-nin, then as father."
"You can't just vanish again..."
"I guess you are right. You are a shinobi now, it wouldn't do you good if I didn't take your responsibilities serious, so let's fight for it. If I win, I get to escape, if you win, you'll take me in custody."
"That's hardly fair..."
"I won't use my cutlass, I promise.", she said with a big grin.
"Right, because you're so good on keeping your promises."
"Not really, but I never broke mine to you."
"Yes, you did."
"Well, maybe once."
"You break them every time."
"That's oddly predictable on my account. Say, it wouldn't be fair if I used my weapon against you without your katana."
"You really want us to fight, don't you?"
"Hey, I'm curious about my little sister, even if it doesn't look like I care."

There was a brief pause. Mizuki looked at the bracelet she was given and tucked it away. Her hands now free, she molded her chakra, unlocking a winning smile from her sister. As the chakra formed her now familiar chakra katana, Mizuki thought that her sister had won this whole mind game again. This was what Erisu had intended to verify all along. Her progress, her health, her maturity.

"Astral Technique - Starlight Katana", Mizuki revealed as the katana rested in her hands.





wc: 1723 + 4515
= 6238


____

Beauty of the Moon,
Maiden of the Astral Dance,
~ Lightning in Disguise





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5 Re: Downtown Scheming [Private/Plot] on Sun Aug 06, 2017 5:18 pm

Raiu Mizuki

avatar

Chuunin

As expected, the battle was a monotonous event. Despite the best effort and perfectly executed kata of her bukijutsu, Mizuki was unable to hit Erisu even once. Every attack was dodged or properly parried with similar perfected execution. It wasn't the style that was lacking. Erisu was just that much faster and sharper, being able to read Mizuki's movements with such incredible perception she might even rival her father's skills.  For a full five minutes, Mizuki felt like she was back in the dojo, training her kata against an unreachable target instead of fighting something that she could actually handle.

"You're not even trying...", Erisu had complained. And though Mizuki shot her angry glare, her sister wasn't exactly wrong. Mizuki was holding back against her sister. She didn't want to harm her own family, and had thus used only basic moves. She knew far more advanced moves than this, and had been taught iado to such a degree she would easily surpass her sister's skill, but what good would it do to wound her own sister?
"Come on... Play with me~", her sister had offered in an oddly seductive tone.
"I told you. You're older and of a much higher rank than I am."
"Nonsense. You're holding back even though you believe you can't defeat me. You have yet to use any sort of advanced kenjutsu moves while we both know your skill's far better than what you're showing now. Remember, I've seen you practice them countless times before."

Mizuki stepped back, holding her katana in its traditional opening style - Kenjutsu Seishin. The two women glared at each other, one annoyed because she wasn't going full out, the other annoyed because she was expected to fight with killing intent while she didn't want to.

"You know what? I'll help you out a little.", Erisu mused, the glint of mischief eminent in her eyes. She took her cutlass and stepped into her own form, an equally familiar kenjutsu style - Willow Dance, their father's signature fighting style.
"You said you weren't going to use your cutlass."
"Oh? I guess I must have lied..."
"See? You're breaking your promise already. It's been five minutes."
"I guess you'll have to punish me, don't you? Ohoho~", Erisu replied, waving away Mizuki's complaint like it was nothing of worth. "Now fight me seriously, Mishi. I'm getting bored."

Despite sighing at her sister's antics, Mizuki couldn't deny she felt somewhat more assured. With a weapon in hand, Erisu was equally dangerous and capable of keeping up with Mizuki's most advanced techniques. To fight her father's style, however, wasn't something she had done often as her father usually stuck to the traditional kenjutsu style when training her. She knew it was a versatile style, allowing the blade to move fluently from one attack onto another to such a degree it could easily weave into an 'indefinite' offensive strategy. The Willow Dance-style was especially useful against multiple opponents as it parried in such way that attacks were seemingly redirected to other targets. It was not hard to understand why Erisu was taught this fighting style.

Both women in place, there was a brief moment of calculated strategy going on in the minds, before Mizuki rushed in for another series of attacks. Naturally, with Erisu's superior combat insight, she was easily able to deflect the attack and would have even imbalanced Mizuki were it not for the fact she had some knowledge of her father's fighting technique. It was difficult enough as it was to fight a style that was aimed at evasion and fluidity, but this counted double since her sister had the advantage in every possible way.

As the fight proceeded, it became clear after another few minutes that Mizuki didn't stand the slightest of chances. Aside from having made a small cut into her sister's skirt where her leg was, more so due to Erisu just toying around a little too much than Mizuki actually having stood a chance, she hadn't been able to hit her even once. However, brat as she was, Erisu found it more fun to make it even harder than it already was. Her 'Squid Squirt' technique had made Mizuki blind as she was completely surprised by her sister suddenly making use of ninjutsu.

"Ugh. You brat. Was that even necessary?", Mizuki huffed as she tried to get rid of the sticky suiton chakra that had covered the area of her eyes.
"It's like you don't even know me.", Erisu retorted with a frown. "I guess I win, so... ta!"
"As if? I'm not done yet."
"Oh?"

Shifting her stance and adjusting her weapon into a new opening strike, Mizuki ignored her loss of sight as she improved upon her other senses. Where Erisu had been taught father's signature style, Mizuki had been given the first steps of a newly created fighting style - Heaven Sword style. Equally a technique created by her father, who had always had a passion for kenjutsu and duels, he had been working on a fighting style that would fit the Arts of Execution he was often called to perform. Since Mizuki was to follow in his footsteps by his expectations, he had also begun to teach her that fighting style, even though it was far from being completed, let alone be tried out.

"Did you know dad's been working on a new style?"
"Yeah, he was mumbling about that even before I left. Is that it?"
"Heaven Sword Style."
"The one based on the execution arts?"
"That one, exactly."
"You're so lucky, Mishi~", she said genuinely happy for her sister.
"Says the one with dad's signature style..."
"Aw. You're so cute when you're jealous~", she giggled. "Come on, show me. I'm sure it's just as great as dad's other style."

Disregarding her blindness, Mizuki engaged Erisu, matching the same fierce offence she had shown previously blow for blow. Even the faint counter-attacks from Erisu were parried with a grace that should only have been possible if Mizuki hadn't lost her sight at all. The basic position of Heaven Sword had successfully countered Erisu's whimsical combat. Yet, despite all the best intentions, it would not allow her to get on par with the combat mastery Erisu had, and eventually, too tired to keep up the fight, Erisu swept her legs from under her and ended the battle.

Exhausted by the events of the day, by the chakra use and by the illness slowly coming for its due toll, Mizuki gave up. Fighting her sister, knowing already she couldn't stop her anyway, wasn't worth it. It had been pointless from the start, but with a drawn out fight as this, chances had dwindled below the zero percent now. The only comfort Mizuki could pull out from this whole situation was that her sister, too, suffered from the ill-born illness the two of them had inherited from their mother - and that was hardly a comforting thought to begin with.

"You've improved a lot.", Erisu said in between her own heavy breathing. "But you're more insightful than I am, so don't go out to walk my road and get yourself killed, alright?"

And with those last words, Erisu's presence vanished and Mizuki's sight returned as the blinding jutsu dissipated.





wc 1265 + 6238
= 7503


____

Beauty of the Moon,
Maiden of the Astral Dance,
~ Lightning in Disguise





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6 Re: Downtown Scheming [Private/Plot] on Sun Aug 13, 2017 12:16 pm

Raiu Mizuki

avatar

Chuunin
The Slums.

Having forced her to her full capabilities, Mizuki's muscles were sore from her 'fight' with her sister the day before. She hadn't slept quite well either as her thoughts had been rummaging around the entire time, trying to find a reason to why her sister had showed up. Well, any other reason than just caring for Mizuki, at least. Even if she knew Erisu hadn't forgotten who her family was, it wasn't quite like her to simply show up just to say so either. Mizuki sighed. The train of thoughts from yesternight had picked up again, providing no real concluding answers. Maybe she was just thinking too much about this.

Not paying attention to her environments, Mizuki almost bumped into a gang of people. Familiar people, with that, for as far as even one person should be considered familiar. It was the gang she had met last time when she was eyeing the head quarters of the Backwater Bar, and they weren't really happy to see her back on their turf. In a matter of seconds, they had surrounded her.

"You again. I told you not to come here."
"It's going to hurt now. We warned you.", one said, shoulders shrugging.
"Right.", a mocking grin followed.

Weapons were drawn as they eyed Mizuki with a glint of malevolent mischief in their eyes, totalling three knives and a single wooden bat. Somewhat worried as she couldn't use ninjutsu techniques if she wanted to keep her cover in the slums, she found herself at a great disadvantage facing off six guys at a time. Even if she had the advantage of having better training, she couldn't possibly face them all at once without resorting to ninjutsu or using her trusted katana. Hand to hand wasn't exactly her strongest means of combat, and as such she drew her own kunai.

"Time we teach you a lesson."
"'s goin' to hurt, man."

Feet shuffling, Mizuki understood she couldn't rely on her eyes alone and moved her position to the same one she had shown her sister - Heaven and Earth stance. To think her father's Heaven Sword Style would even be able to be used in a situation as this, it dawned to her why her father was named as being one of the better kenjutsu users of his time. There was little time for thoughts or praise, however, as the first one attacked her from the back, knife simply pointed forward. Hearing his footsteps and feeling his killing intent, Mizuki pivoted out of his line of attack, ending next to him. Gripping his arm as she placed her leg in between his, all it took was a small pull to make him trip and see him stumble just barely into his allies on the other side.

As the first one was left to hit the floor and slowly stood back up to restore his pride and fall, the second one jumped in to grab her from behind. Taking a firm step backwards in the direction of the assault, she strengthened her arms with resolution, and as the thug's arms attempted to wrap around her they were blocked just barely enough so his hands couldn't lock themselves. However, as the two of them ended in a struggle of strength, the guy with the bat stepped in to take a swing at her with quite some force behind it. Much like years of training had taught her how to avoid weapon swings, Mizuki dropped low and rolled under the swing, dodging the attack while breaking out of the grasp. The guy behind her was not as fast, however, but lucky enough to just feel the wind of the bat as it passed in front of him.

The next one would not be so lucky. Knife in hand, he too tried his chances with attacking Mizuki, who was still crouched as she ended her roll. Swiftly parrying his attack with her kunai, she followed up with a nasty stab in his calf and barely refrained herself from finishing the retaliation with another few stabs in his kidney and flank. Under a loud scream of pain, the man dropped his weapon to grab his leg as Mizuki stood back up. Five more to go, it seemed, but Mizuki didn't want to fight. If she was able to defeat them all by herself, suspicion of shinobi presence would only rise, so instead she ran away now that she was no longer surrounded.





Escaping the gang in one turf didn't mean she wouldn't face another. If so possible, Mizuki had ended in another area of the Slums that seemed bleaker than what she had seen already. Thick smoke was puffed out from a factory's chimney and the sour taste of ash lingered heavily in the air. Rats scurried away over the with dirt and trash littered streets. Beggars, homeless and drug addicts alike sat slumped against the walls like they were simply furniture fitting in with the environment. Appalled and quite worried she ended in a place she didn't wanted to be at all, Mizuki looked for a gang sign, and found one belonging to the Black Alligators.

So this was how an area under the rule of heavy criminals looked like... Considering that they held a reputation of having killed a few shinobi, Mizuki decided to track back where she came from. As a genin, this wasn't the sort of area she was supposed to be in as it would far surpass the 'safety' of a D or even C rank. Even if this was a self-imposed mission, Mizuki wasn't that ready to throw away her life just yet. Still... she now had an idea of where they were and could write this in a report if need be.




Arriving in the 'no-man's land' of the slums, aptly named so because no gang dared to claim this part as theirs due to some rumoured master assassin, Mizuki slumped down to take a break. She wasn't sure if the rumours were true, but since only a fool would kill off every person entering this area unless he wanted to attract shinobi attention, she considered herself relatively safe.

Thinking back about her confrontation with the Backwater Bar, she had to consider it a lost cause. While she had been able to spot their headquarters, it was clear she wouldn't be able to see the inside of that building. She had squandered her chances to become 'part of them', and a stealth infiltration at night was possibly too dangerous to do so by her own. Sighing, Mizuki scratched the idea from her mental notes.

The Black Alligators and Steel Tooth Terrors were from the beginning no option considering their reputation, but her coincidental stumbling upon the area of the Black Alligators was at least something worth mentioning in a report. Everything else would be left in the hands of higher ranked shinobi. Perhaps in the hands of her kuyjutsu trainer Zetsume? Knowing him somewhat, he'd make a fine choice for this sort of mission.

Still, two gangs remained. Because of previous missions, the location of the Rusty Penny wasn't exactly a secret, but true to their nature and reputation, the Rat Diamonds had yet to show their face. Petty theft happened everywhere in the slums, but she had yet to hear of large burglaries in which she could possible stick the occurrence to the meddling of the Rats. It seemed like the whole gang was just a myth fuelled by the paranoia of the people here.

Having regained her breath, Mizuki stood back up and decided to return to her hideout. She guessed that the point had come where she had to wrap up the mission and return home to report what she had discovered. Even if she had slipped out to do this personal and without consent of the higher ranked shinobi, she'd feel even more guilty if she didn't relay proper information.

As she walked through the streets, she suddenly felt a brush in her pockets. Turning around to catch the thief, there seemed to be no one in sight however. Had she been dreaming? Blinking a few times, she moved her hands into her pockets, only to find a note.


"Run.
Signed, a friend."


Shivers crawling over her back, Mizuki started to look around to see who or what was putting her in danger, and though she could see nothing she decided to up the pace a little towards home. It didn't take long after that, however, that a couple of people landed next to her. Broadly build, black long coats and clear markings of battle, three pair of eyes bore themselves into hers. Without a word, they assessed the target before them, two of them looking at each other questioningly.

"You don't look the sort to belong here."
"Who are you to say that?"
"Steel Tooth Terrors."

There was a moment of silence between the group and Mizuki.

"Nothing personal, but you're marked for death."
"Marked..."
"We'll make it swift."

With a speed faster than she could anticipate, the man in the middle dashed forward, planting a meaty fist with full power in her stomach, and without hesitation, followed it up with two more strikes and a bone shattering kick in her flank, sending Mizuki flying against the wall and reeling in pain. Clenching her teeth, she looked through teary eyes to see what took them so long to finish,  a flicker of light briefly blinding her. The pain too much, the last words which echoed in her head before all faded to black:


"Willow Dance Style - Rippling Waters"


wc 1636 + 7503
= 9139


____

Beauty of the Moon,
Maiden of the Astral Dance,
~ Lightning in Disguise





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7 Re: Downtown Scheming [Private/Plot] on Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:07 pm

Raiu Mizuki

avatar

Chuunin
The Aftermath

Mizuki opened her eyes, finding herself in a sober whitened room, resting wrapped in a thick sheet on a soft bed. Immediately, pain made her aware of her recovering bones, triggering the memory of her confrontation with the three hunters. As she gazed around the room, a familiar face sat nearby, navy blue eyes resting on her with a mixed expression of sorrow, relief and mild disappointment. Recognising her father at her side, Mizuki smiled faintly.

Hey, dad
"Hello, daughter."

Kiyoshi sighed, signs of weariness and old age suddenly apparent on his face.

"I'm sorry. I shouldn't have let you go alone."
"I did it on my own accord, father. The blame is mine."
"It is not. I'm a jounin and I know how dangerous the slums can be. If I had known sooner this wasn't a mission from Administration, I could have stopped you."
"It's fine, dad. Nothing bad happened."

The expression in his eyes told Mizuki that her father thought differently about the 'nothing happened' part of her sentence, but he said nothing of it, allowing his shoulders to slump a little.

"The last thing I want is to lose another daughter.", he whispered.
"I'll make sure that won't happen. I've been trained by you, after all."

Kiyoshi grunted, as if snorting at the whole idea that his training would safe her from death.

"I saw Erisu.", the kunoichi shared, causing her father to suddenly blink and show a hint of interest. "She's doing fine."
"Where did you meet her?"
"In the slums. Some of her pirates spotted me and must have made the connection."

He nodded slowly, understanding the situation.

"Knowing your sister, she was just making sure nothing happened to you. Will she return home?"
"I'm sorry. I failed in bringing her back.", Mizuki said after a brief pause. "She wants to remain free from ... everything."
"How typical.", Kiyoshi replied as he frowned. It was clear he didn't approve of her behaviour, holding back the anger and worry meant for another. There was little to be done about it, however.

For a while, the two remained quiet as Mizuki felt tired despite having had all the rest and care, while her father seemed to mull over the current state of affairs. Not that it was unusual for the two to be quiet like this, both being more disciplined and dutiful, they understood each other just fine.

"I'll write a report once I'm healed up."
"The Raikage was made aware of your escapade."

Mizuki wondered what Lin would think about this. Here she was, probably the most disciplined of all genin, going out on an adventure to prove herself only to end up in hospital with broken bones. Mizuki blushed slightly in shame, realising she could have died right there while forcing others to intervene there where she shouldn't have been in the first place.

"I'm glad you're safe.", Kiyoshi said suddenly, offering her a reassuring smile as he saw the guilt in Mizuki's expression.

Mizuki certainly would have learned her lesson now.





[Exit]

525
Total: 9665

Training:

Scaling - Voice of Susanoo: remaining 200/3000 + 250 ryo
Scaling - Shooting Stars: 3500/3500 + 500 ryo
B Rank - Paralysing Shout: 1500/1500 + 200 ryo
B Rank - Heaven Event Horizon: 1500/1500 + 200 ryo
B Rank - Broken Star: 1500/1500 + 200 ryo
Jutsu Total: 8200 wc + 1350 ryo


Speed: C -> C-1 - 575/575
Reaction: C -> C-1 - 575/575
Stat Total: 1150 + 200 ryo

Remaining wordcount: 9665 - 8200 - 1150
= 315


____

Beauty of the Moon,
Maiden of the Astral Dance,
~ Lightning in Disguise





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