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.

Keep Going! Fight Harder! Push On!

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
Thin rays of sunlight crept slowly across the dojo floor as the morning sun made its way up and over the horizon. There were not many people here, when most would be sound asleep in their beds, but it could not be said that the Toraono Dojo was ever truly empty. The Throne of Bone — residence to the Toraono Clan — housed many who knew that the best way to spend mornings like this was soundly snuggled up in bed; others, perhaps insomniacs or those of an otherwise restless nature, found this the best time to simply breathe and reflect on events long past; and still others from the Clan, and some who were not, knew that these quietest hours of the day were when they could truly use the training space provided to its fullest potential. Kazu was of the last group.

Since well before dawn the young boy had been here; sweating straight through his simple white tank-top and dark brown training pants, he worked the forms of his fighting techniques. Kazu was determined not to skip out on his training. Back at Kamishini Castle, where the Ryuzaki Clan resided and where he thought of as “home,” his training had always begun early in the morning. ’A sharp body keeps a sharp mind,’ came the voice of his father, Ryuzaki Ryohei, from somewhere in the back of Kazu’s mind. Kazu had been happy to discover this location, mostly curious (at first) what the other Clans of Sunagakure were like, then relieved to find there were others like the Ryuzaki who valued physical fitness so highly. He had made this a regular training spot.

The boy glided from one stance to the next, holding tightly in his right hand an oddly shaped sword that seemed to be made of pearly-white bone, never once paying any mind to the sweat which now coated his heaving body. ’This is nothing,’ Kazu told himself. ’I have to be stronger than this. I won’t go easy on myself!’ Even though there was no one around to tell him it was time for him to be training, or to hold him responsible if he decided to take a day off, Kazu knew neither of those options were acceptable. Even if no one else told him such, he would tell it to himself. ’Keep going! Fight harder! Push on!’ It didn’t matter whether he could handle the intense training or not. He simply had to keep going — there was nothing else to it.

Kazu’s focus was laser-like. He was not alone this morning, as there were plenty of other people doing their own training scattered around the lacquered hard-wood floor, but there were also plenty of people who did not train. Watchers, most of them. Observers. Kazu paid them no mind, certainly not worried about whether or not he impressed them anymore, or less, than the others who had come here to train; yet, he could not help but notice when a group here or there whispered something among themselves while looking his way. ’They’re not distracting at all,’ Kazu told himself, forcing his eyes not to wander towards the most recent example of such observances. ’I don’t care. Let them talk. Just keep focusing. Focus. FOCUS!’

Kazu placed one foot down, while attempting to move through a form he was not yet used to, and was too busy “focusing” to notice that he had placed his foot down in a particularly slippery area — possibly slick with his own sweat — until it was too late. His foot slid out from underneath him, and suddenly his whole weight, thrown backwards, worked against him! He crashed down onto the floor — hard. So hard, in fact, that he lost his grip on the bone sword he had been using and heard the thing slide unceremoniously across the wooden floor, away from him. Without a steady supply of chakra, the weapon crumbled to dust and disappeared rather quickly. Kazu simply laid there for a moment, panting and wincing. ’It’s not that I’m embarrassed or anything! I…just need a minute to breathe.’ Somehow, a break seemed like a good idea at the moment.
 

Sunahoshi Suzaku

Administrator
Staff member
Aug 24, 2012
3,287
Yen
1,236,740
ASP
496
Kill Switch
No
PC: Sunahoshi Katsuo, Former Kazekage (Current Amnesiac)

Physical conditioning was one of the few things that brought an end to the endless discomfort that wormed its way through Katsuo's heart and mind. He had a name now at least but it wasn't a name that meant anything to him even if it apparently meant a whole lot to those around him. It had been quite a shock to find out that his identity was as the man that was known as the leader of this strange world of magical martial artists and otherworldly creatures that was shinobi life and still not one that he was comfortable with.

But the training helped out. It gave him something to focus his mind on that wasn't who he was supposed to be and what the now free country of Wind would expect if they knew he was still alive. Apparently as far as the rest of the nation and the country knew, Sunahoshi Katsuo was missing and presumed dead at the hands of some horrific villain which was the leader of the swarm of monsters that had been assaulting the gates the day that Katsuo had come... well come back to Sunagakure. Clearly he was still alive but devoid of any memories from before the moment he'd woken up from recovering from his injuries.

A year after he'd gone missing, they said. So not only was he missing any knowledge or information about his past, he also had a period of an entire year that neither Katsuo nor anyone in Sunagakure could account for. It was disquieting to say the least.

Flexing his muscles in his right arm as he lifted his body weight up from the ground, Katsuo tried his best to keep his mind focused on the task he'd set for himself. He'd found that his memory problems didn't simply extend to his identity and past but also to his fighting abilities to an extent. During moments of duress and adrenaline he could tap into extraordinary powers the likes of which he would never have otherwise believed that a human being could possess but outside of those moments of true danger to himself or others Katsuo couldn't figure out what it was that caused the transformations or unlocked access to the power that flowed through him during those times. Much like waking up from a vivid dream, shortly after the battle was sorted he found it impossible to recollect how to control those powers or even how he'd manifested them in the first place.

So he spent the majority of his time training himself in whatever place struck his fancy at the time. The dojo at this hour tended to be quiet which made it perfect for the physical warm-up exercises of the day and had the added bonus of letting him see some of the other training-minded martial artists in the village start their routines as well. Bending his elbow and bringing his head down closer to the floor in the one-handed hand stand push up stance, Katsuo pushed his weight back up into the air once more and counted to five hundred before flipping back to his feet. He had often wondered in the early hours after his reawakening about the reason that he'd conditioned his body to this degree. For what reason had he sought so much power before losing his memory. Then after he'd awakened the tumultuous storm powers that were dormant in him he began to feel trepidation about that reason until he'd faced the Swarm alongside Sunagakure's elite. Even though he still couldn't remember the reason for it, he knew in his heart that there was a truth that couldn't be denied behind the power he wielded.

He'd sought that power to protect other people.

The clattering sound of Kazu's bone blade falling to the floor and sliding for a few yards before disintegrating into dust broke the relative silence that filled the air and snapped the attention of everyone else working out in the room over to him as the young man recovered from his fall. It was understood by all who observed the event that if the youth were allowed to train in this room then he was more than able to survive a small slip without injury and so no one else moved to assist him-- save for Katsuo.

Retrieving a sack of sundries that he brought with him each morning to the dojo for his morning warm up, Katsuo made his way over to where Kazu lay on the ground and as he loomed over the young man he reached down to offer him a hand up from the ground.

"You okay, kid?"
 

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
Kazu could practically feel the stares of everyone in the Dojo on him. It was…unpleasant…to say the least. ’Maybe if I lay here long enough, they’ll all just forget they heard anything and ignore me? Of course, the longer I stay here, the more attention I’m probably drawing to myself.’ Kazu shut his eyes and took in a deep breath. The sweet feeling of air slowly filling his lungs, then the melting pleasure of it escaping out his nostrils, was almost good enough to distract him from the self-inflicted embarrassment. Almost. ’Perhaps,’ thought Kazu, ’the whole situation will just…go away…if I don’t acknowledge it..’

“You okay, kid?”

Kunai weren’t as sharp as those words were; they cut through Kazu’s hazy hopes more effectively than anything else could. Kazu’s eyes shot open, briefly showing startled panic, as he searched for the source of the concern. His cheeks flushed a few shades lighter than his eyes before the boy realized he was simply staring at the man who had offered a helping hand up. ’I should have just gotten up when I had the chance.’ It was suddenly unclear whether his eyes or his cheeks were the deeper shade of red.

”Yeah.” Kazu extends his hand out to accept the man’s offer of help, pushing himself up at the same time. A moment later he is on his feet, yet still has to crane his neck upwards to meet the man’s eyes. ”Thanks. Just a bruised ego, I suppose.”

Now that he has a chance to look at the man, Kazu realizes he had noticed him earlier. One-handed hand stand pushups weren’t exactly the flashiest of training methods, at least compared to the way some shinobi trained, but they also weren’t the easiest. Kazu couldn’t remember how long the sight of the man had filled his peripheries during this morning’s training, but that probably meant he’d been there the whole time. ’How many pushups did he do?’ This guy must have been a Toraono Clan member who trained here every day if he was that strong — Kazu had heard the Toraono Clan was a family of fierce fighters, rivaling that of the Ryuzaki, so it would only make sense that someone that strong belonged to their ranks.

”So…” Small talk. It seemed today wouldn’t just be about training his body, but also his social skills. Kazu practically grew up on the dojo floor, back at Kamishini Castle near Sora; it was no surprise that the boy could use the practice. ”…how long did it take to work up to that many push-ups? It looked like…well…a lot of them.” Oh yeah, he was killing it. Nervously, his eyes began to wander around the room. He scratched at the right side of his nose with his index finger as he spoke. ”I, uh, want to get that strong too…someday…”
 
Last edited:

Sunahoshi Suzaku

Administrator
Staff member
Aug 24, 2012
3,287
Yen
1,236,740
ASP
496
Kill Switch
No
PC: Sunahoshi Katsuo, Former Kazekage (Current Amnesiac)

"Don't think too hard on it. Everybody falls sometimes when they're trainin'. Even the guys that say they don't." Remarked Katsuo as he pulled Kazu up a few inches and the young man launched himself to his feet with the momentum. "Especially the guys that say they don't."

There was an awkward moment of silence between them until Kazu made the first move and Katsuo realized that in his rush to help someone out he had stepped into an encounter that he was not entirely ready to have.


"So..."

Oh no. Small talk.

To say that small talk was a weakness of the former Tenth-Kazekage-Turned-Crime-Fighting-Hobo would likely have been an understatement. Kazu immediately launched into the thing that perhaps Katsuo feared the most when interfacing with other people during his day-to-day activities and that was questions about his past. Questions that he had no reasonable way of answering.

How long did it take him before he could do that many push-ups in a row?


He could not for the life of him remember where he'd gotten the training to do what he could do or who he'd learned it from but the martial arts part of his brain was perhaps the only part of it that worked properly. Blocks, steps, counters, strikes. His muscles remembered every beat of the dance which was martial arts and unlike the secrets of the power he'd unleashed during the battle with the swarm at the gates these memories did not fade with the adrenaline of battle.

"Well, you know how it is. Every day just... giving one hundred and ten percent..." Katsuo responded, equally as awkwardly as Kazu had asked.

They were both very bad at this. Katsuo was not a man that was terribly well known for his personal eloquence even before he'd lost his memory as well as a year's time of his life and that had not improved at all by whatever incident had caused him to lose those memories.

"Tell you what. It's probably easier if I just show you, huh? Come on."

Jerking his head over his shoulder, Katsuo motioned that Kazu should follow him out to the sandy yard of this area of the dojo which lacked any form of ceiling and was entirely open to the air. He usually did this particular part of his training in a more secluded area but there was something about the moment that made Katsuo want to show off a little and maybe teach the kid something in the process.
 

Ha Kuren

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,337
Yen
430,950
ASP
699
OOC Rank
B-Rank
Ren did not fully understand why she was here early in the morning but her companion insisted on seeing this place. She had asked Kiyo why they could not come at a more reasonable hour and his response was that he wanted to see the place before it became disturb. Thus Ren was laying in front of the entrance to sand yard completely asleep. She was just too tired to be up this early and hopefully no one would trip over her.

New.Danganronpa.V3.full.2257061.jpgKiyo on the other hand was amazed at the sight and eagerly jotting notes into his little note book. To him this was an archeological find of the modern shinobi. Most would likely thing him weird just staring at a field of sand, but to the keen eye it was more than just sand. It was a work of art that told a story. The yards was raked like a zen garden, but it was not just wavy lines in the sand. The shapes in the sand looked like ripples on a lake during a heavy rain. Each group of circles were a spot where a rain drop hits the water’s surface. Sometimes the ripples would clash with one another or bump against a rock.

Kiyo found this simply fascinating to find this imagery of rain in a terrain so lacking of water. It speaks just how much water means to the people here. If Kiyo allows his mind to wander he could almost hear the rain within this yard. However his moment of meditation was quickly broken as he hears footsteps approaching. He would notice Ren sleeping on the floor and clear his throat. Ren did not stir as she was quite deep in her sleep. When the figures approach Kiyo would apologize, “Please forgive my friend here. It appears this was too early for her.” Kiyo looks once more into the yard knowing that soon these two would play in the pool of sand without even noticing the art.

One can easily tell he is no ordinary snake with a simple glance. For one he does not go naked like most animals and in dark green button down shirt that seems specifically made with him in mind. He wears a green cap that matches his shirt and a red sash to wear as a belt. Around his face is a mask that covers her mouth, which possesses a zipper to allow him to eat without take down the mask. Due to his small size his voice sometimes comes off sounding like a child though he is fully grown. His voice also hard to distinguish which gender he is.
 

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
"Well, you know how it is. Every day just... giving one hundred and ten percent..."

Kazu had to force the smile that formed on his face — both to have it form, and to keep it from twisting into an exasperated grimace. Considering this was the answer that everyone gave him, and that it was as lukewarm a response as could be found, Kazu’s disappointment was immeasurable. But to show that would have been rude — very rude, indeed — so the boy did his best to put on a brave face and take it in stride.

”Oh, yeah. Right! That makes sense! I guess you wouldn’t have gotten that strong if you didn’t train as hard as you could every day…” ’But that’s what I’m doing already! And, well…’ Kazu had grown up surrounded by amazing fighters and fearless warriors; comparing himself to their feats was not only impossible to avoid, but usually encouraged as a way to “toughen him up.” Kazu could never admit it, not to himself or anyone else, but he was positively itching to be “there” already — standing toe-to-toe with all the greatest, most amazing, fighters around; and, maybe even holding his own against them. However, to admit that would make him too over-eager. And that would be so much worse — so much more rude — than anything else he could think of. ”Well, thanks a bunch, mister! I appreciate your words of wisdom! I’m probably bothering you right now, though, so maybe I should jus-“

"Tell you what. It's probably easier if I just show you, huh? Come on."

Kazu was on the verge of bowing respectfully and letting the man be about his business when the greatest gift he could have imagined dropped into his lap. Kazu froze, for a split second, but then quickly recovered. The smile on his face, an ear-to-ear grin that threatened to split his face in half, was nothing like the earlier one. Was he bouncing up and down on the balls of his feet, or was that just a trick of the light? And why did his eyes suddenly look bigger…and almost star-like?

”I…that…are you…yes! Yes, please! Thank you, thank you so much, I would like that very much, sir!” The speed at which Kazu began bowing, and the total number of times it was done, was both impressive and embarrassing all at the same time. It was probably this reason, more than anything, that the man motioned for them to head outside and away from the other people training. Kazu happily followed.

As the duo made their way out into the morning air — crisp and cold; not yet heated from the still-rising sun — Kazu notices a familiar face, as well as a rather odd sight. A blue haired girl named Ren, who he had met before and knew liked to speak through her hand-puppet Usagi, was sleeping soundly out in the open. This was the familiar face. The odd sight, however, was the dressed-up snake near her that seemed to be…taking notes? 'That's...odd. I've never seen a snake with a sense of fashion.' Either way, Kazu knew that snakes out here in the desert could be rather dangerous — crouching, as if preparing to stalk some prey, Kazu keeps his eyes locked on the serpent as he whispers to his impromptu sensei.

”Hang on, I know that girl. Give me one second to get rid of that snake. I would never forgive myself if I let it bite-”

“Please forgive my friend here. It appears this was too early for her.”

Kazu froze, again, his eyes widening to the size of saucers as the hairs on the back of his neck stood straight up. A moment passed, then another, until finally the young boy turns to the older man with a look of sheer terror.

”Did…did that thing just talk?! Or…did I hit my head harder than I thought when I fell…?”
 

Sunahoshi Suzaku

Administrator
Staff member
Aug 24, 2012
3,287
Yen
1,236,740
ASP
496
Kill Switch
No
PC: Sunahoshi Katsuo, Former Kazekage (Current Amnesiac)

The young Kazu seemed thoroughly excited at the prospect of Katsuo showing him a deeper look at his training regime and that brought a grin to Katsuo's face even though he wasn't sure if the youth would be quite as happy about it when he found out what it was. Even without his memories, Katsuo was a man that took his efforts to the edge of what many might describe as too extreme but Kazu would find out about that shortly enough.

Bringing his arms up as they walked, Katsuo stretched one arm behind his neck with the assistance of his other arm and then did a similar stretch with his opposite arm before bringing his eyes up towards the sky above them as they exited out into the sandy practice yard. Already clouds were beginning to gather in the sky overhead and that brought a strange reinforcement to the excited grin that Katsuo wore. He'd never done this particular practice exercise with someone else before-- at least that he could remember --and was eager to give it a try.

”Hang on, I know that girl. Give me one second to get rid of that snake. I would never forgive myself if I let it bite-”

His attention pulled from his focus on the sky above them, Katsuo beheld what Kazu was referring to: a young girl propped up against the large pillar that served as a support for the threshold they had just walked through and perhaps more notably there was a large serpent curled up with her that was wearing a rather curious hat and clothing which was an odd sight indeed.

“Please forgive my friend here. It appears this was too early for her.”

For his part, Kazu turned and looked to Katsuo with an expression on his face that could only be described as abject horror. It was clear that he'd never encountered a creature like Kiyo before and for that matter Katsuo had not either since his arrival... no his return to Sunagakure. There existed a nagging feeling in the back of his mind like a distant feeling of strange familiarity which made him feel as though he should know what this. Was this snake-creature familiar to him, in some way?

Coming up to Kiyo, Katsuo crouched down in front of where Ren was sleeping in the snake's embrace and looked curiously at the creature before casting a look over his shoulder and gesturing that Kazu should join him with a jerk of his head.

"There's nothing to forgive; this is a public place last I checked." Explained Katsuo, waving away Kiyo's apology for Ren's public napping. "And napping isn't against any laws I know of."

Granted he didn't actually know much about the laws that governed Sunagakure or the people that enforced those laws. Shinobi were peoples of unearthly power but he hadn't gone out of his way to meet with too many of them following the events at the gate, preoccupied with his own troubles as he was. As though summoned by the serpent's thoughts of it, the quiet pitter-patter of soft rainfall began to fill the yard and the dojo as the clouds overhead acquiesced to what Katsuo wished of them. It was something that he had not learned much of how to directly control but it had not taken long for Katsuo to recognize that the weather patterns seemed to respond to his emotional state and by following that connection he could... influence them.

"The name's..." He trailed off for a moment, hesitating. Was he ready to go around introducing himself as Sunahoshi Katsuo? For people to know him as that person when he himself didn't know who that was? In a last minute spur-of-the-moment decision, Katsuo recovered his words and continued; "You can just call me Hoshi. And this is... huh."

Katsuo stopped to consider Kazu's name this time. He'd never actually introduced himself to the young Ryuzaki and Kazu had never offered his name either. It seemed as though they were alike in another factor aside from their inability to properly handle small talk.


"What is your name, kid?"
 

Ha Kuren

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,337
Yen
430,950
ASP
699
OOC Rank
B-Rank
Most of the time Kiyo finds the human culture fascinating, but other times he wonders about them. If he was naked and not wearing anything he would not be the least surprised about being confused with an average day snake. However one could tell he was definitely out of the ordinary with a single look. He would think him wearing clothes would be a clear sign of him having higher level intelligence. When Kazu asks about his sanity Kiyo rolls his eyes with an audible sigh. “Sssssssseriousssssssly?” When Kiyo is upset he tends to slur his words with hisses, which is not too surprising considering his species. Some racist hicks expect him to talk like that all the time. “Yessss I have the ability sssspeak the common tongue? What do I look like? A rattler?” Rattler is a derogatory term that was influence by human culture. It refers to someone that is young or naïve. The associate image to the term is a baby with a rattle. Naturally rattlesnakes within the village finds the use of the term offensive. Though they are part of the reason it exist. Kiyo clears his throat in an attempt to return to his normal speech. “I am what you human’s call a contract animal.”

Fortunately the other man was a different story as he did not freeze or question his senses. In fact he seems find Kiyo quite normal and he speaks to Kiyo like any other person. Still something was odd about this person which causes Kiyo to tilt his head. “I don’t know why but you remind me of someone.” Kiyo could not put his tail on it but there was something about him the reminds him of The White Viper. “Do you perchance know Shiromitsugawa-sama. She was a human like yourself. She learned the ways of the snake. She was an honored Sage and you remind me of her somehow.” As the past tense would imply, this person he speaks of is no longer among the living. Kiyo would turn his head to look outside only to see it raining. This was the desert so it was unusual to see rain. “Interesting.”
 

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
Kazu’s face reddens, and his eyes cast downward in embarrassment, at the serpent’s scolding. It seemed he had pestered the python with his actions and attitude, apparently offending it in a way that was beyond Kazu’s understanding. It made some sort of comment regarding its appearance, challenging the boy as to whether it looked like a ‘rattler’ or not. Kazu was about to answer that the snake did, in fact, kind of look like a rattlesnake, but something made him hold his tongue at the last second. ’Maybe I’d...better not. I’m in new territory at the moment — probably best not to step where there might be an unseen trap.’ For all that he knew of social protocol and etiquette (which, admittedly, was rather limited in scope), none of it had prepared him for the revelation that animals, anywhere in the world, could speak. ’Do they even follow the same social rules?’ Kazu had so many questions buzzing in his head. At least one question would be answered:

“I am what you humans call a contract animal.”

The other man casually approached the talking snake, crouching down to its level so they could speak eye-to-eye, then motioned with a jerk of his head for Kazu to join them. The young boy had almost missed seeing that informal summons as he pondered over what sort of contract this animal was beholden to; with a start, Kazu squatted down and rested himself on the heels of his feet next to, but slightly behind, the dark-haired man. ’It’s not that I don’t want to get closer or anything,’ the young boy told himself vainly, ’I just...don’t want to be rude.’ Sure. Nailed it.

“The name’s...” The introductions began with uncertainty. The man seemed to hesitate for a moment, which was a curious thing to Kazu, but the man’s business was his own. There were many walks of life, and some just happened to involve a little intrigue and mystery; though Kazu did wonder about it for a moment. “You can call me Hoshi.” 'As in...star?’ As if the mention of celestial bodies had somehow triggered it, rain began to fall in the open yard next to them. Staring just beyond the edge of the Dojo’s roofing, at the dry sands beginning to suffuse most unnaturally with water, Kazu’s eyes light up in wonderment at the strange development. ’Well, now...that’s interesting!’

“What is your name, kid?”

Kazu realized he was daydreaming, again; letting his mind wander off past the limits of his body was something he’d been told was a fault of his, something to be reigned in, but Kazu had never really been able to help it. He was simply curious, and tended to get distracted often. Drawing his attention back, the boy gave them a sheepish grin as a form of apology for his wandering mind. ”I’m Kazu. Ryuzaki Kazukura, if you want to be formal, but no one calls me that except my father when he’s angry. In fact, I’d really prefer just Kazu.” Of course, Kazu was not truly of the Ryuzaki blood — he had been adopted as a newborn babe — but the boy didn’t think they’d want his whole life story right then and there. Sensing that it was his moment to speak, Kazu continued by directed his words towards the serpent. ”I’m sorry about earlier — truly, I am — but I really didn’t realize. I’m...still in training, actually, and I’ve got a lot to learn.” Another sheepish grin, along with a slight bowing of his head, which hopefully would be enough for the snake. ”If you speak the common tongue, then you must also have a name, right? Will you please do me the honor of tell me it?”
 

Sunahoshi Suzaku

Administrator
Staff member
Aug 24, 2012
3,287
Yen
1,236,740
ASP
496
Kill Switch
No
PC: Sunahoshi Katsuo, Former Kazekage (Current Amnesiac)

"Shiromitsugawa?" Repeated Katsuo out loud, looking upwards and placing his chin in between the forefinger and thumb of his right hand while his elbow rested on his left hand atop his knee, still in the crouched position. After a moment, he shook his head and gave a disappointed shrug in response. "No, sorry. The name doesn't ring a bell."

Which... of course it wouldn't. Kiyo and Kazu had no way of knowing that Katsuo's memory complications and he didn't see any reason to suddenly go into it with a creature and a kid that he'd just met. Even though the name meant nothing to him as it was it didn't meant that it was meaningless to the man that he had been. Perhaps did did know this Shiromitsugawa but so far meeting people that had known him in his previously life had not proven to do much in aiding him. The government and military officials he'd met so far that knew him looked at him and saw Sunahoshi Katsuo but he had no idea who that person was or was supposed to be.


”I’m Kazu. Ryuzaki Kazukura, if you want to be formal, but no one calls me that except my father when he’s angry. In fact, I’d really prefer just Kazu.”

"Kazu it is, then." He agreed. Far be it from him to deny what someone else wanted to be called.

Kazu then asked the serpent beast what its name was and Katsuo quietly waited for an answer. It was only polite and they still had a bit before the weather was right. Slowly behind them the rain intensified into a rushing deluge for a bit before beginning to settle and occasionally the pitter-patter of falling raindrops was overshadowed by a rumble of thunder in the heavens above.

It would be ready shortly.
 

Ha Kuren

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,337
Yen
430,950
ASP
699
OOC Rank
B-Rank
Kiyo makes an audible sigh as the boy as the boy does a leap in logic. “Must you humans name everything? Nothing is real to you till you named it.” Kiyo did have a name, but after confusing him with a common snake he figured a little bit of teasing is in order. Soon the sound of falling raindrops was overshadowed by a rumble of thunder and yet Ren did not stir. “There are a great many strange things in the world, my boy, but humans are the most profoundly mysterious living thing of all.” Kiyo would look out into the sand garden once more. “Her name is Kiyo.” Cries a voice over by Ren. Due to his small size his voice sometimes comes off sounding like a child though he is fully grown. Kiyo voice also hard to distinguish which gender he is. It also does not help that he does not bother to correct anybody.
 

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
“Kazu it is, then.”

The man’s answer struck Kazu square in the face. Simple, to the point, and plainly straightforward. Kazu wasn’t sure what exactly about it gave him this impression, but this man had a definite “cool” aura about him. The young boy opened his mouth, as if to begin saying something, then quickly closed it again a moment later. ’Is less really more?’ The young boy didn’t know; however, he did know that he felt a great deal of respect and admiration for this man. Kazu wanted to impress him. Learn from him. Kazu looked up to this man as an example of something he wanted to be like; the young boy decided, right then, that he would make this man his sensei. One way, or another.

However, before that could happen, he would need to dig himself out of the hole he seemed to be making for himself. The serpent did not seem to appreciate Kazu’s questioning nature, making it quite known in its tone. “Must you humans name everything? Nothing is real to you till you named it. There are a great many strange things in the world, my boy, but humans are the most profoundly mysterious living thing of all.”

Kazu blinked. His face was smooth stone: expressionless, and rather hard. The boy did not avert his gaze, but he seemed to be holding something back. Inhaling once through his nose, then exhaling slowly, Kazu opened his mouth, just a little, as if he was trying to push back something bitter into the back of his mouth while also trying to speak.

”How strange. Among humans, exchanging names is a sign of respect. It enables mutual understanding, and furthers our abilities to interact. Your kind must feel differently, it seems.” Kazu values mutual respect rather highly. Growing up in a warrior clan, he was taught that even bitter enemies harbored respect for each other. To violate that sacred standard was frowned further down upon than treachery of the highest order; Kazu would not show anything but the bare minimum of respect to one who would not reciprocate. ”Until next I disturb your meditation, oh Nameless One.” The boy gathered himself and turned his attentions away. A voice popped up from near Ren — Usagi, the puppet that isn’t a puppet — yet Kazu ignores it. ’If the serpent won’t tell it to me itself, then there’s no point.’ Kazu would not play a game with an unwilling opponent.

As Kazu turned away, the rain picked up. The odd morning shower had turned quickly into a torrential downpour, then quieted back to a gentle drumming, as an overture of booming thunder took the central musical stage.Walking to the edge of the canopy that protected them from the elements, Kazu stuck one hand out, palm-side up, to let the waters wash over it. His back was to the group as a whole as he played with the droplets.

”Such strange weather.” Kazu glanced back towards Hoshi, a curious and questioning look in his eyes. ”I’ve lived in these deserts my whole life, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen it rain like this. Have you?” The thing the young boy was most worried about was whether the man would still show him the training routine he had mentioned earlier. Shaking the water off of his hand, the boy continued. ”A little water never hurt anyone, but that thunder sounds...close, right? Do you think we can still practice alright?”
 
Last edited:

Sunahoshi Suzaku

Administrator
Staff member
Aug 24, 2012
3,287
Yen
1,236,740
ASP
496
Kill Switch
No
PC: Sunahoshi Katsuo, Former Kazekage (Current Amnesiac)

”I’ve lived in these deserts my whole life, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen it rain like this. Have you?”

Reaching out and catching a few raindrops of his own, Katsuo allowed a smile to come to his face as Kazu inquisitively lamented the precipitation falling. There was something oddly comforting about the rain to Katsuo and that feeling was magnified by rain manifested through his own power. It had a warmth to it that lacked in naturally occurring rain, even rain which normally might have been considered a warm temperature. There was a sense of nameless community in the storm that he couldn't describe, like the presence of an old friend at one's side.

"Definitely." Replied Katsuo with a wild grin, his face alight with anticipation and excitement. "Hang out here for a second and I'll check."

The rain was hardly stopped by the time that Katsuo moved out into the practice field but it was softer than it had ever been, raindrops falling periodically around him as he walked. The sand shifted in water-logged clumps beneath his boots as he walked causing his feet to leave behind perfectly sculpted prints in his short walk out to the center of the field. As he walked the sky rumbled once more, this time with a series of bright flashes to which signaled the volatility of the storm overhead and making it clear that it was prepared for what Katsuo wanted out of it. To any normal martial artist, what he was planning to do would likely have been considered crazy at best and suicide at worst but they weren't just normal martial artists. Katsuo was still struggling to identify with the classification of "shinobi" but he understood perfectly well that the skills and powers that he had at his disposal set him apart from the ranks of what might otherwise be considered "normal".

Water streaming down his face from his now wet and growing wetter hair, Katsuo dropped his hands to his side and closed his eyes before taking a deep breath. To any observers it would likely look like he was simply meditating in place even though the rain fell around him, pelting his shoulders and face as he stood motionless beneath the roiling storm that loomed in the sky above them. Then all at once after fifteen or so seconds, he exploded into motion at the same time that the sky split open and hurled a javelin of burning light down from the sky at him. The lightning struck just as Katsuo crouched low and spun to the side causing the bolt to slam into the sand only a few beats away from where he'd been standing and filling the portion of the dojo which was adjacent to the practice yard with a flood of effulgence.

With naturally occurring lightning this sort of thing would be an impossibility from the way that it conducted from the air and into the ground around its strike zone but with chakra-based lightning the burst of energy dispersed harmlessly into the ground leaving behind a sparking and sizzling web where it had missed Katsuo and blasted into the wet sand of the practice yard.

Shaking his head of the water that had collected, Katsuo looked back to Kazu and gave him two thumbs up as the resulting thunder of the recent lightning struck nearly shook the foundation of the dojo.

"Perfect! Couldn't ask for it to be any better!" He announced over the softly falling rain.
 

Ha Kuren

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,337
Yen
430,950
ASP
699
OOC Rank
B-Rank
56FQopp.png
Kazu words about exchanging names out of respect like it was something people would do out in the open freely and it makes him shiver. Being that he is cool blooded it was obvious he was not shaking due to the temperature. “Exchanging names is more than respect. It is a form of Trust.” Kiyo raises his head enough so that he would be slightly above eye level of Kazu. “With the knowledge of a person’s name, they can lay hold of a piece of the person’s soul.” Kiyo often spoke about stuff that sounded occult, but we do live in a world where a person can do miraculous things simply by preforming a series of hand gestures.

Hakuren must have been quite tired as even when the rain started to come down even harder, she still remained a slumber. However there is not a person alive that would sleep through a lightening stick a few feet away. The moment that bolt hit the Earth, she jumps and activates her feral shift. Chakra would gather around her neck and glowing with a brilliant light. Once the circle of chakra was complete the condense chakra seems to turn into metal like a collar you see on slaves. Within this state she has some unique powers and being scared to death, well…

In an instant vines begin the rapidly burst from out of the ground and grew like wildfire up the column Ren was just sleeping by. The rate of growth was incredible as it was like watching a time-lapse video. The vines quickly sprouted buds in an assortment of colors: red, purple, silver and yellow. But all of them blossomed into beautiful blue flowers. The flowers glowed faintly and released a sweet and gentle, but robust scent akin to roasted honey. Captivating was the sweet aroma and as the flowers continue to blossom, one might feel like they could fall asleep right there.

Kiyo recognized the flowers quite quickly and warns Kazu, “Resist the urge to breathe deeply.” People like to take the petals of these flowers and grind them up in a fine blue powder. The powdered substance is commonly used to as an inhale poison to put someone to sleep. “Ren calm down. Everything is alright.”
 

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
”Definitely.”

The man joined him in playing with the raindrops. They gathered on Kazu’s upturned palm, swirling together to form still larger droplets, before the young boy tipped his palm ever so slightly to allow them to stream out and over the edge of his hand. Splashing on the ground, to join the other droplets which had made their way into the sand before them, the sound was quite melodic and soothing to the boy’s ears. It did feel…warm, however. ’Isn’t rain usually colder?’ Curious. Even more curious was Hoshi’s wild grin and excited face. ’It hasn’t been that long since it last rained, has it?’ Arcing a thin black eyebrow, and casting a curious sidelong glance at the man, Kazu found himself wanting to ask a question; but the words died on his tongue, cut off by the man’s excited follow-up statement.

”Hang out here for a second and I'll check.”

”Wait, what?”

Before anything else could happen, the man — with his wild grin — stepped out into the soggy courtyard amid the quieting downpour. The wet sand crunched and sloshed, at the same time, beneath his boots. Kazu’s eyebrows furrowed low onto his face in confusion. Then came the rumbling, the slowly bellowing roar of the sky coiling itself in anticipation like a snake about to strike, and a small inkling of fear began to bubble up within Kazu. ’Is this really safe? That thunder was…it was really close…’ But then again, they weren’t nearly the tallest structure around. Surely, and rogue lightning would strike at the top of the Dojo’s rooftop, right? ’They must have lightning rods in place…right?’

Hoshi came to a stop in the middle of the courtyard, and simply breathed. He stood still, the lessened rain still beating down around him all the same, and Kazu realized suddenly that he was holding his breath. ’This is silly. What’s gotten into me? Everything is going to be-’

* C R A S H *

It all happened in a blur. Kazu saw the man suddenly crouch and roll, but at the same moment an arcing fork of lightning — silver, blue, and yellow all at once — bisected the middle of his vision, touching down right on the very spot where Hoshi had been a moment before. Kazu’s eyes burned from the flash, yet he couldn’t look away. His breath, knocked out of him from the shock, came to him in quivering gulps; otherwise, he would have shrieked. His ears ring slightly from the intensely powerful sound waves that resulted from the crashing electricity; yet, even still, he hears something from behind him. Something, which changes everything.

The sound of a snarling animal, directly behind him, announces that Ren has woken up. However, having never seen this side of Ren before, Kazu barely recognizes the girl. He does, however, recognize danger and the sight of an unknown powder floating through the air from a series of chakra-fueled plants. The serpent calls out to him, but Kazu doesn’t even hear it properly — his mind, given over to pure instinct, reels with the impossible choice placed in front of him: stay still, and take a chance on the powder; or, jump into the courtyard, and take a chance with the lightning?

Before he knows what’s going on, Kazu jumps backwards and out into the courtyard. ’Legatus, give me strength.’

His feet try to grip the sandy mud, but the boy slides further into the courtyard than he intended. A falling droplet lands on his skin. It shakes loose what little faculties of his brain are still available, and forces him to refocus his attentions on what he can feel in his body. The first thing he notices, oddly, is that he’s armed. In the thick of the moment, the young boy had hardly realized he’d extended any sort of bone-weapon from his body, yet it seemed that his muscles knew instinctually that he needed protection and moved on their own to provide it to him in the only way they knew how. The two bone-spear-swords in each of his hands look just like the one Hoshi had seen Kazu training with before; except, where the one before had been pearly-white, these ones seemed oddly streaked with silver-grey. And they felt…heavier…somehow.

’What the…?’ Kazu was confused. This had never happened before, and he had no idea what to make of it. His mind tried to come up with some answer, but it was impossible right now: something else had just entered his mind. Something much more urgent. His crimson red eyes, wild with fear, sought out the-man-who-dodges-lightning pleadingly. ”W-what d-do I do? I…I can’t dodge that!”

Through the tips of his fingers, Kazu felt a sort of…crackling energy. The bone-spear-swords, strangely, almost seemed to vibrate in the electrically charged air. They almost hummed. Kazu’s mind, reeling from the shock of the situation he’d found himself in, couldn’t handle any more information at the moment — to him, they were merely strangely colored. But to Hoshi, or anyone else that looked closely, it might be apparent that they were not merely made of bone.

Somehow, metal seemed to be worked into them. Kazu had no idea, but he was holding two lightning rods in the middle of a lightning storm.
 
Last edited:

Sunahoshi Suzaku

Administrator
Staff member
Aug 24, 2012
3,287
Yen
1,236,740
ASP
496
Kill Switch
No
PC: Sunahoshi Katsuo, Former Kazekage

Enjoying the rush of exhilaration that came with this particular brand of training on the edge, Katsuo didn't even notice that there was something going on outside the sand pit with flowers and powder though he quickly became aware of Kazu, who joined him in the rain with a frantic look on his face. Wide-eyed and manic, the young man seemed wholly overwhelmed by the display that Katsuo had put on and he supposed that was not an entirely unwarranted reaction.

"Why can't you do that?" Katsuo asked, squatting down to eye-level with the frenetic Kazu. He paid no attention to the metallic bone-rods that had appeared in the young man's hands right away, preferring instead to try and get a handle on his mental state. "Because you don't think you can? Because it's impossible?"

It was impossible. Katsuo remembered what it was like waking up an discovering that he could do these things which his rational mind told him shouldn't be possible. He'd plucked speeding projectiles from the air. Flew without wings. Commanded the weather and the skies.

And yes, even dodged lightning.

All of it defied rationality and yet here he was to tell the tale. And there were others! During the battle at the wall, Katsuo had seen a number of others performed similar feats of defiance against what his heart told him were natural laws. They produced flame from their hands and wrestled with creatures several orders of magnitude larger than them.

"The most important limits that we face are the ones that we set for ourselves. You wanted to know how I was able to do all of those push-ups without difficulty? It started with first believing that I could." Explained the elder "shinobi" as he placed a hand on Kazu's shoulder to try and focus him, to reassure him. "And to be fair, at first I couldn't do it. Or this. I messed up and fell lots of times before I got it right. But I never stopped believing that I could."

He was lying at this point but it was a confident lie, at least. He couldn't remember what it was like before he'd had these wondrous powers and abilities but that wasn't what Kazu needed to hear right now. He needed help getting over the hurdle that was his own doubt before he could start trying to accomplish anything real.

"Now, you wanna try it?"
 

Ha Kuren

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,337
Yen
430,950
ASP
699
OOC Rank
B-Rank
Once again time seem to move rapidly forward for the plant; petals fall like autumn leaves and the vines wither to dust. Ren was a bit better now as she is no longer in a state of hyper-panic. Ren seeing as two people were already out in the rain decides to join them. Kazu was not the only one with metal on their person and now an iron collar adorn her neck. She was just as much of a lightning rod as he. Like Kazu she had no illusions of grandeur; she knew full well she was not capable of dodging a lightning bolt. However in her current state she does not need to dodge but to implement the correct safety measures. Ren had ways of protecting herself from this storm.

As she approaches the other two the older one spoke needing to believe in order to achieve. The man talks of the past, what little memories he had of it, about how he failed at first but never stopped trying. Ren understood this, but wasn’t trying to dodge lightning a little dangerous. When the man asks if the boy wanted to try, she raises her hand. “I try.” Ren did not really fear getting hit as the trap was set. If she succeeded, good. If she failed, she’ll survive.
 

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
Amid the clockwise swirling chaos of uncertainty, a slow eddy of reassurance and affirmation swirled counter-clockwise to nullify the effects of Kazu’s staggering mind — Hoshi was attempting to calm the frantic boy. "Why can't you do that?" he asked, matter-of-factly, of Kazu, seemingly unperturbed by the nature of the challenge in dodging lightning. "Because you don't think you can? Because it's impossible?"

”I mean… yeah?” And yet, Kazu was beginning to sound unsure of himself. ’I know I just saw him do it… but that’s… he’s not… I’m not…’ Excuses flew through Kazu’s head, as he tried to rationalize the fact that the man in front of him literally had just dodged lightning. It should be impossible. Lightning was a literal force of nature — and he was supposed to be able to just… dodge it?! Kazu almost sank back into panic, sure of the fact that this was an impossible task, before Hoshi began to speak again.

"The most important limits that we face are the ones that we set for ourselves. You wanted to know how I was able to do all of those push-ups without difficulty? It started with first believing that I could." The hand placed on Kazu’s shoulder conveyed much. The weight of those words began to sink into Kazu’s mind. ’How will I know unless I try? What if… what if it all works out?’ There are moments in every person’s life where an important idea manages to lodge itself into an individual’s brain, take root, and blossom into a philosophy that can change a person’s life forever.

’If I don’t try, I’ll never know whether I can or can’t do it.’ Kazu had lived his life, up until now, knowing what was and wasn’t possible. He knew he could become stronger. He knew that there were people, and ideals, he cared enough for that he was willing to put his life on the line in order to protect them. And he knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that there were some things which simply could not happen: a fish could never learn to fly, a dead man could never walk among the living, and mortals could never stand up to the might of nature.

“Never” and “could not” dissolved within him. Belief, and faith, instead took their place. He realized, truly, that he had never known those things before — he had simply believed them. ’Maybe it’s time I believed that the impossible was possible?’

His eyes had settled into calm. His muscles, tensed with anticipation, relaxed. His grip on the odd weapons in his hands lessened. He nodded, understanding clear in his eyes, at the elder “shinobi” who had shown him a truly miraculous way of thinking today.

"Now, you wanna try it?"

”Yeah. Now, I’m ready.”

Ren, who seemed to have managed to calm down after the shock of a rude awakening, came out to join the pair — now forming a triplet — out in the rain. Hearing her volunteer, as well, made for the final decision in Kazu’s eyes. ’It would be quite the missed opportunity if I allowed her to succeed before me.’ The boy took one deep breath in through his nostrils, closed his eyes, and then exhaled slowly out of his mouth. A sense of floating washed over the boy. Walking a pace or two more into the courtyard, Kazu does his best to imitate Hoshi’s ready stance. Kazu waited, trying to sense the feeling in the air around him, for something to indicate that it was time to move. He waited more. Ten seconds. Fifteen. A lifetime?

”Wait, hold on,” said Kazu, as he opened his eyes for a moment to look back while holding up the bone-swords in his hands (which he’d almost completely forgotten about) for emphasis, ”maybe I shouldn’t be holding onto anything, or else it migh-“

Suddenly, he felt something; like a prickling on the back of his neck. He didn’t have time to think. His body leapt forward as a wicked fork of lightning rained down towards the spot where he was standing. Kazu tried to move out of the way, but he simply wasn’t fast enough — not yet, anyways. The bolt raced towards him, threatening to strike the boy directly, when it began to curve slightly above his head: instead of striking him directly, it seemed drawn into one of the metal-bone-swords Kazu was holding above his head. Yet, it didn’t stop — the electric energy flew straight into Kazu’s body, then out from the other metal-bone-sword, before it was sent arcing back out into the sky from whence it came. The entire exchange occurred within a split second.

”Legatus… “ Kazu’s hair stood on end. The palms of his hands, where he’d been gripping the two lightning rods, appeared slightly charred and blackened as if by soot, but otherwise the boy seemed okay. Slightly frazzled, and definitely a little… shocked... but still okay. ”What… what just happened?”
 

Sunahoshi Suzaku

Administrator
Staff member
Aug 24, 2012
3,287
Yen
1,236,740
ASP
496
Kill Switch
No
PC: Sunahoshi Katsuo, Former Kazekage

Standing back up from his crouch as Kazu agreed to give the practice a try, an involuntary grin split Katsuo's face wide. There was an upwelling of pride for the young man who was so willing to take to a task that he thought was impossible and see it through even though in the back of his mind he knew it had to be beyond him. It almost certainly was beyond him and they both knew that. Despite what Katsuo had told him, he knew that Kazu almost assuredly wouldn't be able to dodge the bolt on his first try but that moment of trying and failing but then getting back up was just as important as the moment in which things clicked and he crossed the line of impossible to possible.

Kazu began to ready himself to give the practice a try and as Katsuo took a step backwards from the young man he found himself standing near the girl which had been sleeping nearby the intelligent snake creature who was now looking up at him. At first Katsuo moved to usher her from the field to avoid her getting hurt but then he recognized her from the battle against the Unbent Swarm. She was the young student that had put herself into peril by throwing herself high into the air to alert the other fighters that there was a problem at the wall. Even though it was the efforts of Sunagakure's other fighters -- and perhaps most notably the lance of raw spirit force that Katsuo had deployed -- that had destroyed the Unbent monstrosity that had managed to sneak past their front lines it had only been because of the warning that Ren had given that Katsuo had been drawn back so quickly to the wall.

"We meet again. I didn't recognize you at first." Katsuo said, instantly reconsidering his decision to relocate the student. This was a dangerous task but no more dangerous than taking the field against the Unbent and Ren had more than already proven her valor there. "Let's give Kazu some space first then you can take a shot up at bat."

Katsuo moved to indicate that they should take a few steps backwards with his head but as he did there was a sudden flash of light that filled the training yard as a tendril of natural lightning fell from the sky towards Kazu. Katsuo had been momentarily distracted by Ren's appearance and in that moment of lapsed focus the storm made its own decision to lash out at one of the three standing in the yard-- specifically the one holding a pair of metallic rods. Turning as soon as he felt the air around them begin to fill with the charge of the lightning blast, Katsuo only took a few steps before the blast slammed into Kazu and then was sent splintering back into the sky, splitting the air with a second bolt of lightning that raced back into the clouds. Rushing over to where Kazu was, Katsuo knelt to check up on him-- after all that had not been one of his own lightning bolts but a full force blast naturally born from the storm above which could be considerably more dangerous given that there was no control over it's voltage.

"You feelin' alright Kazu? Everything in one piece?" He asked but visibly the boy seemed relatively unharmed. Surprised, to say the least and frazzled from the experienced but otherwise unhurt.

”What… what just happened?”

"Luck, mostly." Katsuo was honest in his appraisal of the moment. Kazu had been very lucky that the lightning bolt hadn't seriously hurt him but in the process of that luck he'd hopefully learned something very special about his own capabilities. "But lucky or not, you did it."
 

Kazu

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2012
3,481
Yen
1,692,782
ASP
3,953
Kill Switch
No
OOC Rank
S-Rank
It was strange. One would think that a direct lightning strike would be a little more painful; instead, Kazu felt little more than a slight tingle in the outer extremities of his hands. Light pinpricks, along the insides of his palms where the metal-bone-sword made contact with his skin, felt more like a tickling caress than a raging force of nature that had forced its way through his body. Inspecting his hands, and the lightning rod he held within them, Kazu noticed a few wayward sparks still arcing out from the tips of his fingers, knuckles, and the very tips of his blades. ‘That definitely should have hurt more than it did… right? I’ve seen lightning tear through critters before like they were nothing…’

The mystery would go unsolved, for now.

"You feelin' alright Kazu? Everything in one piece?" It seemed the mystery man, Hoshi, was just as unclear about what had just happened as Kazu was. "Luck, mostly," had been his explanation, as if that barely began to cover it. Though Kazu didn’t know it, he ought to have been fried into calamari on the spot from that blast – Hoshi had been dodging chakra-created lightning, which could be made much less lethal than natural lightning – yet, somehow he’d been able to channel and direct the bolt without harming himself.

The secret, unknown to the boy, laid in the changed composition of his bones. Later, he would come to understand that his bones were developing a metallic coating – the reason for this was unknown to him, and was far beyond his abilities to figure out. They had acted as a naturally insulated channel for the lightning to pass through, keeping his internal organs free from damage, and only causing minimal damage to the skin covering his hands where the electricity had to pass through in order to jump from the metal-bone-swords to the internal conductive wiring of his newly metallic skeleton. All of this had culminated into the most extraordinary feat of redirecting lightning.

But, of course, Kazu knew none of this yet. From his perspective, he had survived, purely, due to a miracle.

”I… I guess I did do it… or, I did something, at least.” Getting a hold of himself once more, Kazu began to sway back out from the exposed courtyard towards the covered area where Hoshi and Ren stood. Everything was in one piece, but his head felt a little dizzy all the same. Blinking a few times, Kazu realized he still held both of the lightning rods in each of his hands – tossing them down onto the ground, the things clanked and rang with the sound of metal against stone or tile as they rolled away from him and the others. Given time, the bone-swords would dissolve into dust; however, it would take a while longer than the bone swords he’d made previously in the Dojo.

With his hands now freed up, Kazu gripped one of the columns lining the covered area of the courtyard as he lowered himself down to sit with his back against the column. His face looked weary, though he maintained a smile despite of it. ”All the same, though, I’d rather not do that again so soon… at least not without a short breather…”

A lot had happened to Kazu today! He’d gotten a chance to have an impromptu lesson from a veteran martial artist while out doing his normal training, managed to bite off more than his could chew, and somehow survived to tell the tale. He had encountered his first contract summon, although Kazu and the creature hadn’t quite seen eye-to-eye personality-wise. He had managed to realize and (partially) break through a few of his own mental barriers, clearing the way for a new way of thinking that might lead him to who knows where. All of this, in one day.

‘No wonder I’m exhausted,’ thought Kazu.

It had surely been plenty for everyone involved. Kazu would need a little while to rest and recover, but there would be plenty of time for the three to chat, exchange names, promise to meet again soon, and otherwise bond over the craziness that had occurred today. However things played out, Kazu had been very thankful to meet Hoshi today. He hoped that they would be able to train together, again, soon.

[ooc: Happy to continue this thread, or let it fade away here, so I left it open-ended. Topic Left, unless we want to continue.]