Ninpocho Chronicles is a fantasy setting storyline set in the World of Ninjas where feudal daimyo, clans and ninja villages all wage war on each other for money, glory or for a common goal.

Each ninja starts from the bottom and start their training as an Academy Student. From there they develop abilities akin to that of demigods as they grow in age and experience.

Along the way they gain new friends (or enemies), take on jobs and complete contracts and missions for their respective villages where their training and skill will be tested to their limits.

The sky is the limit as the blank page you see before you can be filled with countless of adventures with your character in the game.

This is Ninpocho Chronicles.

Apples and Bananas [Contract Search]

Ringo

New Member
May 1, 2021
47
Yen
191,600
ASP
372
“Okay, I got this.”

Ringo walked alone on a path on the outskirts of Sunagakure. Due to the dangers that lurked in Wind Country’s desert terrain, students were not typically permitted to venture out without proper supervision, but the boy had received special clearance today. The reason? He was on his way to visit his extended Mugen clan that lived out in the boonies. He was normally accompanied by his parents and brother during such excursions, but his parents were long pronounced missing and his brother was beyond swamped with shinobi work to join him on this trip. The absence of his immediate family was difficult to process and made day-to-day life much harder for the boy, but he did his best to adapt by sharpening his own autonomy. Not that he really had a choice. However, his eagerness to grow stronger and save his parents one day drove him to exceed the basic instinct to survive. It was the vision of one day retrieving them from potential danger that gifted Ringo with the resolve to evolve as a ninja.

Today sure was hot, but that was every day in Wind Country. Wiping the sweat off his brow and taking a quick swig of water from his canteen, the boy continued down the paved path before him. He wasn’t too far away from his destination, but the desert’s heat slowed down time. The sun’s unforgiving rays scorched the sands below him and him alongside with it. Within the window of his peripherals, he attempted to see if there was anyone nearby him that could empathize with his momentary discomfort, but there was no one. Oddly enough, Ringo traveled completely alone this day. Where was everyone at? He thought he’d at least spot some traveling merchants on this path. The boy lifted his canteen again to hydrate himself further. Just as he did, he heard a small, high-pitched rasp from what sounded a few feet to his right. “Give Tengoku water.”

Huh?

In a flash of brown, a small animal of sorts leaped up and snatched away Ringo’s canteen. The young student was completely caught off guard. What was that? Turning his head to where he thought he saw the creature land, he noticed a tiny monkey in some strange get-up. The monkey guzzled down the water from the canteen with some of the liquid falling from its dry, cracked lips. It was the most random sight to behold; Ringo couldn’t really process what was going on. As soon as the miniature ape finished drinking his fill, he looked up at the student and held out the canteen. “Tengoku thank hairless monkey. Tengoku live to see new day.”

Hold up. Was this animal talking? “I think I might be having a heat stroke,” the boy dazedly expressed out loud. The monkey shook his head in response. “Tengoku think boy look fine. Tengoku go now.” The monkey shifted his small body to a direction away from the path and dashed off. “W-wait,” responded the boy as he held out his arm. The vocal creature did not listen and continued moving. Oddly enough, Ringo’s legs began to do the same. “Am I following him?” The boy matched the monkey’s pace and followed closely behind him. “Why am I following the talking monkey?” He did possess a youthful curiosity, but even this was pretty left field for him. Ringo was never the type to indulge in wonder, especially if it potentially posed inconvenience, so he was at a loss in understanding why he pursued this peculiar being. His body sort of acted on its own. “Maybe I am having a heat stroke.”

The monkey, on the other hand, was fully aware that he was being followed by the boy. In his perspective, this was his opportunity to snag more water if he needed it. After about 5 minutes of pursuit through the desert sands, the monkey came to a sudden halt. As Ringo was essentially shadowing him, he did the same. “Tengoku sense danger,” warned the ape as he held out his fur-covered hand. Before he could fully heed the creature’s warning, a cat-sized critter burst from the ground below them and lunged out at Ringo’s face. Tengoku grabbed his staff and whacked it away before it leeched on to the boy. The grotesque, bug-like creature hissed and burrowed back into the sands. “Be more careful. Tengoku warn hairless monkey.”

“Uh, thanks,” responded a still flabbergasted Ringo. Today was getting weirder and weirder by the second. “Tengoku, right?” Regardless of being perplexed by the oddities within this situation, it was always best to properly greet oneself. “I’m Mugen Ringo of Sunagakure. Nice to meet you, Tengoku.” The student’s new furry little acquaintance did not acknowledge his introduction much; he still scanned around. Was he looking for that bug thing that had attacked him? “What are you doing all the way out here, Tengoku? It’s kind of odd to see monkeys out in the desert.” Especially ones that talked. He decided to leave that part out for now. “Tengoku is training. Tengoku future protector of Heavenly Realm… must grow stronger.” Heavenly realm? His answer raised so many more questions. Ringo paused as the monkey continued his survey. What should he do? Logically, it may have been most wise to bid farewell to Tengoku and make his way back. His extended family was expecting him, plus the monkey was correct in assuming that it was dangerous out here, especially with monsters and bandits lurking about. On the other hand, Tengoku did say he wanted to grow stronger. This was an ambition he currently shared with the monkey. What if this tiny ape had secret ways to accomplish this? This would surely prove useful to him, especially as he strove to save his mom and dad.

“I want to grow stronger, too,” was the boy’s earnest response that he decided to share out. Tengoku finally faced up at Ringo and stared directly into the kid’s eyes. For a second, the twinkle of ambition both shined in their pupils simultaneously. The monkey then nodded assuredly. “Tengoku sense spark in hairless monkey. Ringo will now be Tengoku rival. Tengoku and Ringo grow strong by fighting each other. Now.” The monkey then drew out his miniature staff and entered into a battle stance. Ringo held out his hands in a hesitant protest. “Tengoku, I think you’re jumping the gun a bit here…” Suddenly, a swirl of sand manifested by the small monkey and a loud, deep voice boomed from a much larger figure that became visible.

“Tengoku, who is this human child? You know it is looked down upon for our kind to associate ourselves with them.” A tall, muscular monkey clad in gold plating and wielding a long, intricately designed staff now stood near Ringo’s new self-proclaimed rival. His presence was intimidating; power and a cool type of ferocity radiated from him. The student immediately was struck with the chills. Was the arrival of this new monkey the true danger that the young ape spoke of? “Tengoku found rival, Master Hikari,” announced the monkey as he bowed in a type of respectful reverence, “Tengoku believe that hairless monkey, Mugen Ringo, make Tengoku grow strong fast.”

“Is that so…” The big monkey known as Hikari boldly stepped toward the human youth. While being approached by a giant, weapon-wielding ape would scare anyone off toward the opposite direction, Ringo stood his ground. For a reason unknown to him, he wasn’t afraid. He did feel nervous, yes, and he kept his wits about him, but he didn’t sense any malevolence from Tengoku’s apparent master. The older ape neared Ringo and began to examine him. He touched the boy’s arm with his dry palm and then knocked firmly on his head. He then leaned in and shot an intense gaze inches away from his face. Ringo continued to hold his ground.

“Hmm,” mused aloud Master Hikari, “Hmmmm!” It was clear to Ringo that he was being assessed, which, quite frankly, he was quite used to as a student at Sungakure’s shinobi academy. The armor-clad monkey cleared his throat. “You will do, Mugen Ringo.” Before he could muster a reply, Master Hikari opened a scroll, formed hand signs, and, with a poof of smoke, summoned a staff that was fitting to the boy’s size. He lightly grasped the staff and tossed it at the boy, which Ringo managed to catch with his ever-sharpening ninja reflexes. “You have guts, but do you have combat potential? If you’re up for the challenge, I ask you to spar with my pupil, Tengoku. I’d like to observe both your skills.” His words sounded more like a command than a request. Ringo decided that he would take the monkeys up on their challenge and engage in battle. While fighting was not his cup of tea, he knew that this was a time to put that to the side.

“Okay, I’m ready,” he announced. As he entered into his defensive stance and braced himself, Tengoku lunged out and swung his staff at him. The boy managed to dodge the first swing, which left the the monkey wide open for a counterattack. Ringo jabbed his pole toward the monkey, but Tengoku simply performed an aerial acrobatic by grabbing onto the boy’s weapon and pushing himself off. The young Mugen grinned. “You have some cool moves, Tengoku, but let’s see how you handle this.” With one of his hands, Ringo formed a couple of seals. The small ape then saw Ringo multiply by three right before his very eyes. What was this technique? “Three Ringo, one Tengoku. How happen?” Without giving him time to answer, the monkey attacked the brown-haired student closest to him, but it went straight through him and his illusionary clone vanished. He was then met with a blunt hit to his side. A bit peeved, Tengoku launched himself toward another Ringo, but he also phased through that one. He got hit by another one of the Suna boy’s attacks and rolled to the ground. The young Mugen felt a little guilty tricking Tengoku with genjutsu, but Hikari never forbid it. Master Hikari clapped his hands. “I’ve seen enough.”

The warrior-looking monkey towered over his ape student. It almost looked as if he was about to punish Tengoku for his combat mistakes, but, instead, he reached out his hand to help the little monkey up. “Tengoku, you are still so young and naïve. There are other forms of fighting other than Taijutsu; Ringo allowed you to experience that today. I hope you learned a valuable lesson.” Turning his attention to the human student, he raised up his arm as if he was giving the boy a pass. “You’re lanky and I do not sense a love of fighting in you, but you fared well against my pupil. You have a defender’s heart, and I see potential in you.”

“Thanks, Master Hikari,” responded Ringo with gratitude. It was his first time, too, finally getting a word in with the larger monkey. “As I’ve shared with Tengoku, my name is Mugen Ringo of Sunagakure. I’ve been rolling with the punches so far, but I really have no idea who you two are or where you are from. Do you mind sharing what you can with me?” It was then that Master Hikari indulged the boy by sharing who they were and where they came from. According to Master Hikari, he and Tengoku were from a kingdom far away, which they dubbed as the Heavenly Realm, with other creatures like themselves that wielded chakra and spoke the common tongue. Their kind didn’t fancy humans too much and attempted to stay out of their affairs. Many of their kind, however, did form relationships with people from the outside and forged this bond with a contract of sorts. This was all extremely intriguing to Ringo; it felt like a story ripped straight from a book his mother once read to him.

“And you see, Ringo, I am one of the twelve protectors of our realm. Tengoku, my student, will one day take my place as a protector. It is my duty to raise him to become a Warrior of Light that will one day defend our kingdom against those who seek to harm it.” While he shared out his story to the youth, Tengoku also listened intently to his master’s words as if each word held great importance to him. “Now that you know some of our background, please tell me more about you, Mugen Ringo.” The young Mugen explained his background about how he was raised in a ninja family, the recent disappearance of his parents, and his goal to gain the power and skills to get them back. For a second, it appeared as if Master Hikari’s eyes watered. Was he empathizing with Ringo or did the dust from the desert’s sand get in his eyes?

“You are, indeed, a defender, young Ringo. I acknowledge you as Tengoku’s rival. Alas, it is typically forbidden for my kind to associate with yours… we must follow orders…” the older monkey’s breath didn’t stop there, so Ringo anticipated he had more to say, which he did. “…however, perhaps, as Tengoku’s master, I can make an exception. If you are up for one final trial, then I will have no choice to acknowledge you by the customs of my kind. Do you accept?”

“Yes,” replied the boy instantly. Again, Ringo was shocked that he was so willing to proceed with all this without much question. Something in his soul pushed him to keep moving forward. “Very good. Tengoku has been tasked to defeat some of the native pests in this land. You may have encountered them at some point already.” Ringo shuddered. Yeah, they did. “We believe there to be a small nest of them nearby. I ask that you and Tengoku rid these parts of such vile creatures.” Ringo held out a tightened fist and nodded. The small monkey hopped right beside him and puffed out his chest. The monkey and human boy duo were ready to rise to the challenge. With their expressed acceptance, Master Hikari disappeared into a swirl of sand. It was time to get to work.

Tengoku, do you know where the monsters’ nest is? Tengoku nodded assuredly. “Tengoku know where. Tengoku guide both. Tengoku ready to fight… is Ringo?” The boy paused. Was he? ‘Yes’ was the sound that resounded in his heart. ‘Yes’ was the affirmation that he wanted this. He needed this. He felt that, whatever was about to happen, would shape his destiny and would get him one step closer to saving his parents. With a twirl of his staff, Ringo’s expression grew serious for the first time in a while. “Let’s do this.”

The two made their way through the desert’s harsh sun and through bursts of mini sandstorms. On their path to the nest, too, they encountered some random sand-burrowing critters that they had encountered earlier. They were pretty easy to scare off for the most part. Not before long, sounds of shrieking pierced the air from a nearby sandpit. The nest. The monsters they had fended off so far were easy to handle by themselves, but could Ringo and Tengoku destroy a whole pack of them? The area suddenly grew silent. Surely, they weren’t close enough yet to capture these creatures’ attention, right?

‘Hissssss. Grrrrrrrrghhhh’

From a distance, the two witnessed a pretty large, lizard-like creature jolting straight toward them. It had reddish-scales and sharp, exposed teeth that dripped a famished drool. It was pretty clear that this beast was a predator and that both Ringo and Tengoku were identified as its prey. Ringo’s natural instinct was to book it out of there and try to outrun the carnivorous reptile, but the sight of a fearless tiny monkey readying himself for combat pulled on his heartstrings. No, he wouldn’t run… he’d stand his ground and fight alongside his new friend. The duo, wielding their staffs, entered into a very similar battle stance as if they were in sync with one another. “Lizard about to jump at Ringo and Tengoku… ready yourself.” Not even a full second later, the fearsome creature lunged out and attempted to take a chomp at the small ape. Tengoku grounded his staff, swung on it to dodge the beast’s attack, and used his gathered momentum to land a pretty heavy kick on the lizard’s jaw. It shrieked. As the lizard attempted to recover from the strike, Ringo took full advantage of this opening and swung his staff on top of its head. A loud ‘thunk’ confirmed his strike’s impact – it was a direct hit! Letting out another high-pitched shout, the lizard repositioned itself by hopping back a few spaces. So far, Ringo and Tengoku had the upper hand in this battle. The young student felt confident that they would be the victors of this fight.

The beast lunged forward once more and looked as if he was about to swipe at the monkey. Tengoku utilized a similar counterattack, but quickly realized that he underestimated the beast. The lizard feinted his attack and, instead, switched targets mid-strike. Due to his lack of combat experience, Ringo did not have the time to properly react; he was going to get slashed by the lizard’s fearsome claws. With a much better reaction time due to his extensive training, Tengoku slammed the hilt of his staff on the ground and launched himself forward. He then intercepted the strike and took the full brunt of the blow. “Tengoku!” shouted Ringo as he saw blood fly from where the monkey was hit and as he rolled a few yards away. Warding off the lizard with a swing of his staff, he quickly glanced back at the monkey. Tengoku was badly injured and struggled to recover from the attack he absorbed for Ringo's sake. “He saved me…” a million thoughts rushed through the boy’s mind as he processed the situation in seconds, “I wasn’t strong enough to defend myself, so he purposefully threw himself in front of me to protect me. If I can’t even protect myself or my friends, how will I be able to save my parents? I need to get stronger… I have to be!” As the pressure of a life-staking battle pushed his adrenaline levels over its limits, the boy’s pupils began to form cross-like lights in them. He suddenly felt different… he could see lights and colors more vividly. It almost felt as he could touch or manipulate them. Maybe he could? Manifesting light through the emergence of the Mugen family’s kekkei genkai, Ringo shrouded himself in a luminous veil. In that moment, too, the lizard paused and began to look around for the boy. Through the power of light manipulation, Ringo was able to erase his presence almost completely. He did feel that this was a temporary feat and that he had to work fast.

Ringo began his assault on the foul lizard and struck him with as much force as he could. The creature shrieked and swung at the air, but it was apparent that he did not know where the boy was. Ringo continued his attacks and used both all his might and momentum by mirroring some of Tengoku’s previous techniques. He planted his pole, swung around, and launched a dynamic kick at the lizard. Suddenly, an injured Tengoku flung out from no where and struck the creature himself. The beast, at this point, bled profusely from its skull from all the blunt damage it took. It cried out and attempted to run away. “Tengoku finish the beast…”

“No, Tengoku, let it go. I think we won and it won’t be bothering us any longer,” shared the boy as he re-appeared a slight dispersed around him. Tengoku’s eyes shined at the sight. “Ringo different,” he announced in fascination, “Ringo got heavenly guard’s gift!” The small ape, in his enthusiasm, forgot that he was still injured. With a wince, he crouched down and held on to the three slashes wounds on his chest. Ringo rushed to his side. “Are you okay, Tengoku?” He didn’t really have any other methods to heal his new friend. “Tengoku… fine…” he grunted. In that moment, a swirl of sand conjured near them and, out from it, Master Hikari emerged. He approached the injured monkey and held out his hand. A faint, glowing light appeared and, within moments, the small ape’s wound was healed.

“I was watching the whole time,” explained the larger monkey as he looked up at Ringo. Wait, was he? Why didn’t he help out then? “You and Tengoku did well, Ringo. While your inexperience did almost cost you this battle, it seems a gift has awakened in you. We, too, share similar gifts.” Master Hikari’s eyes illuminated with a bright light. Ringo opened his jaw in awe. “I, too, have the gift of photokinesis. Tengoku does as well, which is why I have chosen him as my successor. It seems fate is what connected you and Tengoku here today…”

“Ringo, I have a proposition for you. Serve as Tengoku’s rival. Face many more battles together… grow more powerful. My intuition is leading me to believe that you will both become formidable through this partnership. You will both achieve your ambitions through your new bond.” Master Hikari opened a scroll, one of which was completely different than he previously revealed. It possessed writing that Ringo did not recognize. On its sides were golden statues of monkeys… was this a type of contract?

“If you both sign this pact in blood, then your destinies will be bound together. Ringo, you will be able to summon and harness Tengoku’s power at your whim. I trust you will not be reckless and that you will best discern when you will borrow student…” he then faced Tengoku, “Young Tengoku, you will soon encounter many more battles with Ringo. Achieve new heights as you work together for strength and virtue. It is your duty as a defender and as my successor. As an up-and-coming warrior of light” The small monkey nodded in response.

“Um,” interjected Ringo, “I am honored, Master Hikari, truly. I still have a ton of questions for you, and now even more with this whole photokinesis deal. Also, I do want to respect your customs, but I wouldn’t feel right without asking him first, personally.” Ringo then knelt down and held out his hand toward Tengoku. The monkey stared at his hand curiously, which the boy met with a beaming smile. “Are you down to grow stronger together, Tengoku? Let’s be friends.” It took a second, but the small monkey lit up and grabbed on to the young Mugen’s hand. “Tengoku accept. Tengoku will be Tengo now to Ringo and will be his friend and rival.” The duo didn’t notice, but Master Hikari shed a single tear at the beauty and unity of youth he witnessed.

“It’s settled. Please sign this contract.” Both Ringo and Tengoku signed the monkey’s contract in blood. With a subtle glow, it appeared as if the conditions were met. The young student was guided back to the main pathway that he was on before he followed the small, talking ape out into the desert. The two monkeys said their goodbyes and vanished in a swirl of sand. This whole scenario felt like a dream to Ringo. Did he really just sign a type of contract with monkey beings that spoke common tongue? Also, did he really unlock the Mugen’s family kekkei genkai? He couldn’t see himself, but the cross-like light pattern in his eyes remained. This was a physical representation that the boy had, indeed, inherited his family’s prowess. Taking his last swig of water, Ringo continued down the sandy path and to his extended family’s residence. He wanted to share with them about what had just occurred this afternoon, but he was not completely sure if they would believe him.

“Maybe Kei would be open to hearing about this,” he mused, “he’s always down for a good, action-filled story.”

Using 'Discovery of Contract of Your Choice Card' to attain Monkey Contract.
TWC:
3,993
 
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