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.

Sick Day [Private]

Mienai

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Isolated, and away from the city. A perfect place really. It was here that Megami had purchased a spot of land for her and Hana to live. It was an island, completely surrounded by the sea, with a few grassy patches, and very little crime. Most preferred to live in Maruishi, or in the center of Iwa, but Megami wanted to keep Hana safe, and live in a place where it wasn't loud. Her home, was made of fine metal, strong to withstand weathering and natural disasters, even weapons if the matter was to arise. It wasn't large by any means, just enough for her and her sister. It was held by support beams in the water, with a glass covered stairwell leading up to the door. It was a strange site, and many questioned the design, but it was strong and fortified. It was rare the times she was home, and sure, this place was more for Hana's sake than her own, but on days unlike today, it wasn't much of a choice for her presence to be there.

Megami sat at her kitchen table, dressed in nothing more than a white baggy tank top, a pair of black boy shorts, and pink pig slippers. Her hair was slightly in disarray, having just gotten up. On most days, she would have been up before the break of dawn, fully dressed for work, but she was running behind today, on account of coming down with a bad cold. She hated missing work, but her sister refused to let her leave. Megami was slouched over her kitchen table, glaring at her sister. "This is ridiculous, Hana. I'm fully capable of going to work." Hana stopped washing the leftover dishes from breakfast and looked at her sister, hands on her hips. Megami's face was paler than usual, extremely flushed, and her eyes had a glossy look to them. Hana sighed and before Megami could react, Hana already had a hand on her forehead. "You're sick, you have a fever, I'm not letting you go anywhere." She turned around, only to hear the ever so expected grumble that followed. "And don't even think about sneaking off, I already sent a letter out for someone to come watch you." Megami stood up, fury in her eyes, though the intimidation wasn't as strong as it usually was, given she wobbled a bit from the speed she had stood up at. "I am not a child, Hana. I'm fully capable of looking after myself. Why would you even call someone in..." A sneeze interrupted her momentarily. She sniffled. "...call someone in, if you're going to be here. Unless you aren't. Where are you going?" She knew her sister like the backside of her hand. Hana, while extremely loving and respectful of her sister, definitely knew how to push her buttons, but also how to take advantage of a situation.

Hana started over into the bedroom across the way, forcing Megami to stand from her stool and follow after her slowly. "I'm going on a date with Yuki. I know how much you dislike him, and no you can't stop me this time, threaten him, or follow us around all evening glaring angrily at the back of his head. You're going to stay here, at home, until you get better." Megami stopped and her jaw dropped. This was not happening! Not on her watch! "He's an idiot. You know he isn't good enough for you. I refuse to let you go." Hand turned around and wagged her finger at her sister. "Sorry, Sis. But I'm not a child anymore. Someone should be here shortly to make sure you stay home. I'll see you this evening." Hana gave a friendly wave and danced out the door. Megami stood, angrily staring at the door. She walked up to it, placing her fingers delicately on the door, shortly followed by her forehead. The cool metal felt good on her hot skin. She let out a deep sigh.

Turning her head back, she trudged over to her cabinet and started to search through her wardrobe looking for her armor, patrol gear, civilian clothes, anything really that would get her out the door and stopping Hana from seeing that stupid idiot. She couldn't find anything besides her pajamas. It made her scowl at the drawer, until she saw a note. Picking it up, she read it over. Sorry, sis. But you really aren't leaving the house today, well...that is unless you want to go out in your pjs. I'm sure everyone would get a kick out of that! Love you! Megami crunched the weak paper in her hand, and threw it aside. There was no way she was leaving dressed like this. Hana would pay later though. She looked around her house, thinking about what Hana had said. She called in someone to 'watch' her based on some paperwork she found on her desk? Megami's eyes scrunched together. She walked over to her desk and found an assortment of ANBU and Guardian records that she had been looking through in a review of the branch. She groaned loudly to herself before facepalming. Normally she would lock these things up, but her small fever last night had put her to bed earlier than expected. Megami could only dread who would be coming. She had to be more careful with these documents next time.

She left the papers on her desk alone and shuffled towards her bed. It was an effort in itself as she swayed from side to side, using the wall for support on occasions. Her fever hadn't quite subsided, making the room spin a little. She fell forward, onto her bed, and turned to lie on her back. Grabbing one of her mystery novels from the bedside, she opened it to a random page and placed it over her eyes. The darkness made the spinning stop. She felt tired, and extremely warm. She most likely wouldn't hear anyone come in, but she didn't really want to see them anyway. She wouldn't have to interact with them if they didn't interact with her. Of course if they tried to take or touch anything from her house, no matte sick she was, she wouldn't stop until she had thrown them physically out of her house. Letting out a sigh, she relaxed, and closed her eyes. "Goddess, help me..."
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Endo Eiji

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Thsi day couldnt have gotten better than what it had already provided him. Souji was running errands all day and well, he was seemingly always on duty. It was something he was proud of... giving his all to the country he loved and there was alot that he could get done with the people and connections he made throughout the years. Something wasnt really.... calleding to him through this morning though so he would manage to get everything he needed for the house. More Udon noddles, gyoza, and many more foods and such that he would likely lick his lips at and smile. Either way, it was something that he had already done... he'd parted with the thoughts of having to leave the house once again and now... he was going to be able to relax...

Until...

~//~"A Guardian is needed at the residence of Arcadia Primarily an Advanced Guardian. Someone report immediately..."~//~, yeah Souji had a thought... he might not have taken it less he had nothing else to do. So, this might prove to keep his mind at work, never know what deeds needed to be done. As Lightning said at their meeting of the Guardians, they had to gain a better look in the public eye. Souji wasnt about to stick in the shadows anymore... especially when there was a chance to finally grasp at the very position he felt he deserved. Little did he know, by taking this little vaguely made mission he might be closer to losing his position than gaining a promotion. It was something in the pit of his stomach that he knew something was off, but he never turned a mission down. Never. He never did anything against Iwa and he never would.

Patience. Either way, he would manage to schedule everything for the house before leaving to Arcadia for this. Wearing his casual attire as it seemed he might not need any weaponry... then again the weapons that were most feared about him were his mind and his hands. Either way it seemed safe enough.. going back to his birth place for this seemed like fun enough... even though he didnt have many fond memories he did have them. So he clung to them now more than ever. Arriving in the shadows of the shades of the plants outside. This house didnt look familiar... and seemed relatively new... then again he hadnt been here for ages. "Hm...", disappearing from view for a moment then reappearing at the top of the steps. He'd knock on the door, wondering what he was going to see and what he was supposed to be doing. All he knew was that there was someone that needed guarding. He would be the one to do it as when he approached he'd tap a headset and call in.

"~//~Shadow Guardian at the Arcadian residence..."~//~ he could hear a voice within the house but familiar but he couldnt put his finger on it... maybe he'd find out soon enough but definitely he would manage to get this stuff done and make the day darker for everyone... Darker because he was still dealing with the fixation of the light around him. Either way... it was time... but again what was the feeling in the pit of his stomach.

[MFT]
 

Mienai

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Amidst the darkness, Megami lie on her bed, thinking about how awful it is to get sick. It was so rare that she did, and she dreaded it every time. She was hot, and the sweat made her clothes uncomfortable. Still, she wasn't about to strip or anything, as these clothes were fine as they were. She didn't know how much time had passed before there was a light knock at the door. She heard some muffling, but her thick headache prevented it from really being processed. Lifting herself up, she placed a hand on her forehead as she swung her legs over one side of the bed. Standing slowly to make sure she had her balance, she headed toward the door, not far from her bed. The door had no kind of window or anything, so it wasn't like she could see out of it. Megami was dreading whomever Hana had sent the letter to. As she cracked the door, the light outside actually hurting her eyes for a moment, she took in the face of the Guardian of Shadows. There was a short pause as she stood staring for a moment, her brain processing things. Megami gave a scowl at how unamused to this unfortunate circumstance she was. When her brain caught up with itself, she instantly reacted. "NO!" She abruptly slammed the door shut again.

Turning around, throwing up her hands, she gave a frustrated growl. Him? Hana sent it to HIM? Megami screamed in her head. Megami was a professional by all means. She hated anyone to see her as weak, especially anyone that worked for her. Oh, but Hana just HAD to send for a babysitter, just what she needed. Well today was going to be fun, wasn't it. Megami didn't lock the door, knowing that Hana would have already paid him for his services of guard duty. It was one of the many things Guardians were paid to do. So, regardless of her disdain, he would come in eventually, or sit outside. Maybe he would pick the latter and spare them both this awkward situation. "Hana, you are so paying for this when you get home..." Megami muttered to herself. She headed towards her white couch and sat there, arms crossed.

She looked down at herself, glaring at the fact that all Hana had left her were pajamas. Well, this was her house, so she wasn't going to be the one that felt awkward. Megami continued to sit on her couch, before picking up her mystery novel. She started reading it as she sniffled, the only other sound coming from her being the turning of the pages. The things that her sister got her into...
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Endo Eiji

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"Not gonna be easy, Eh?"

"NO!", and that was... after Souji caught a glimpse of his boss off the job sick in her pajamas. Then a rush of air in his face as the door slammed... 'That Bi-..' How delightful. He already knew she was a tense individual to be around, but she obviously wasnt too excited to see his face. Much like how she looked at him in the meeting or the short time he was there for the meeting with Endo. It was horrid how things were turning out to be. Maybe he shouldnt have taken this little mission for the extra money. It was all for his family... and yet now he stood in the doorway of the woman whom he knew hated him... but maybe it was for the wrong reasons but either way, she never came to him to settle her differences. He had not a problem with her but... maybe this would be a chance to clear the air... or make things worse.

Shaking his head he'd shift through the shadows in the cracks of the door before reforming himself inside of her home standing now just through the threshold of her home. It was very nice, well laid out and spacious from where he stood. She must've made well off her earnings as a Sennin... Was he jealous? Alittle but not for greed... he just didnt have the money to do the same things she was able to. He ran extra missions just to stay afloat. Coming from the clan that he was from was alittle hard. The hardships of misdeeds down the line of their family stopped shortly after the death and retirement of the first Tsuchikage after some mysterious disease befell her. From there they seemed to always be behind when it came to things in the country. They were there but a second thought... Who knew though.

"...", nodding he'd take in a deep heaving sigh and took his gaze to she that sat upon the whitest of couches. She seemed annoyed that he was here... but he was no psycho analyzer, he was barely an interrogator. Just looking at her he'd wonder if he could even sit anywhere all the furniture looked new and the chairs seemed like they were barely used. There was someone living here but they seemed to be quite busy... or this house was new altogether. And either way, Souji would stand... like any awkward babysitter would do. Wondering what he could even say to this woman to keep her from raging at him. She didnt seem like she was in the mood for anything... let alone company. Let alone someone she might have sincerely hated watching over her like some child... but why? Who made the call for a Guardian to come here. Someone must truly care for this woman... Meh, it wasnt worth the trouble to dig deeper into. Especially when at any point just by breathing the wrong way he could lose his job... and any way to support his family.

"So....", he'd rock back and forth on his toes and heels, wondering where he could take this, ""You have wonderful... pajamas... Lightning-sama. They look quite appealing though, mixed with comfort...", just an odd observation. Mixed with alittle bit of physical complimentary conversation. Maybe this could break that damn ice barrier he felt, it was like the damn Titanic here, she seemed to be Rose's mother and he was Jack... and the look she gave him only made him feel more unwanted... and unneeded.
 

Mienai

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Much to her, well not really, surprise the Guardian of Shadows entered her home, via the shadows. She only knew that because he hadn't bothered with the door. Seems her effort of effectively slamming the door in his face made no impression. It wasn't so much his presence that gave her great annoyance, but rather something else that she couldn't put her finger on. His attitude just was a nature that seemed to clash with her own, and that set her on edge. She was a soldier, a Guardian of Iwagakure and servant of the Goddess. She didn't bond with people on a personal level, well, it was harder to, and the pain of losing someone close was one she knew all too well. So, she didn't bond. She lived for her sister, and did her job. That's what she was trained to do. Hana thought she really did need to have more fun. She wondered just how much Hana actually worried about her, as opposed to the opposite. Maybe Hana thought that she was smothering her too much, but she really just wanted to protect her. Hana was all that she had left.

She gave a sigh as she turned a page in her book. The lines seemed to blur together, and she wasn't sure she was even reading the page anymore. In fact, she'd probably reread the same line about six times now and didn't even know what it said. Her eyes were just on automatic, but her head wasn't in the novel. In her peripherals, Megami saw Souji looking around her home. She gave no direct inclination that she saw him doing this. It wasn't much to her. Money taken from selling the home that her family had lived in for generations, spent on a home of newer design, but small proportion, and putting Hana through a good schooling. The money she'd saved from her years of being in the Guardians branch helped pay for the furnishing. It wasn't much to her, and she found that most of the time she didn't have the time to be home. Hana taught during the day, but frequently was out with Yuki. At least they always had dinner together, a promise Megami had yet to break. Her musing ended when Souji actually said something. She took in his appearance, noting he just looked like an awkward kid standing there. She turned her head away from him so he couldn't see the small blush of embarrassment on her face. Damn it, Hana. Megami closed her book and set it on a small glass coffee table in front of her. Clearing her throat, she stood up and crossed her arms, desperately wishing Hana had just left her one set of her civilian clothes. "Uh, thanks, I guess. Look, just, uh, take a seat. I'm getting a drink." Megami wasn't sure what else to really say to him. She just hope that Hana hadn't paid him to watch her every move. Otherwise this was going to just be a train wreck of a day.

Megami entered her kitchen for the second time that morning and opened a cabinet to retrieve some of her homemade rose tea. Megami loved roses, despite what others may have thought, and she was an exquisite tea maker. Tea was her second favorite drink after vodka, but probably was the thing she most frequently drank. She started to brew the tea when she briefly wondered if he'd want anything. She threw on some hot chocolate, instead. She didn't take Souji to be a tea drinker much, and coffee wasn't something she kept in the house. Unless he wanted alcohol or water, hot chocolate would be what he was getting, as Hana loved the stuff and she had plenty of ingredients. As she waited for the tea to finish, she chopped up a few chocolate bars and added it to a pot of milk, cream, and sugar. It was simple, sure, but it was enjoyable. The rose tea took only a few minutes to brew, and she expected it to be rather good, given that she grew the roses that she took the petals from. Taking it off of the heated hearth, she poured the tea into a white glass cup and waited for the hot chocolate. When it finished, she did the same for it. It had become a habit for her to stir the hot chocolate a certain way for Hana after adding the marshmallows and letting them melt a little. It was silly really, but it always made Hana smile. She also added honey to her tea to help with her cold. Picking up the warm beverages, Megami entered her sitting room once more.

She placed Souji's hot chocolate onto the glass table, and retook her seat back on her couch. The steam from the tea mixed with the sweet aroma was really helping with her sinus passages. Megami motioned with her head towards his drink. "I didn't know if you'd want anything, but I made some hot chocolate and you're welcome to it." Megami took a sip of her own tea after that, letting out a hum of satisfaction as it slid down her raw feeling throat. If Souji were to pick up his cup, he'd probably be halted by what he say. There was an image of a bear with it's paw up, mixed into the hot chocolate. Hana really could be a child sometimes, but Megami had more than just talent with a sword and it usually involved something that made her sister happy. Either way, as they sat there, the ticking of a clock would be heard. Megami grasped her cup lightly in her hand and stared. "I guess you aren't the worst person they could have assigned to this job. If it were my decision of course, I wouldn't have had them send anyone. I'd be working. So, why exactly did you take this job, disregarding the large payment in advance of course?" Megami closed her eyes as she took another sip of her tea and sniffled, feeling a little bit her lungs open up. Colds were just the worst, but she was happy to at least have her tea. Well, and she couldn't complain that at least she had some form of entertainment, even if it was still awkward.
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WC: 1056
 

Endo Eiji

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It was something that he had not expected in a million years... even though he'd not live that long surely. It was the actual concept in saying that it was not to ever be expected in this life time nor any one lifetime that he could experience in the many generations to come after him. Megami... Erm... Lightning, as he didnt know her name, would call to him to sit himself down. She seemed to loosen up a bit as she brushed his compliment off. So he sat himself down like a good boy, he was still looking around the place... he was fooled. It was quite big but the illusion of the house was given with the height of the ceiling in retrospect to his actual being. It was quite intriguing. The architecture of this home seemed to differ from anything he had seen in Iwa, and as a normality in Arcadia. Souji's eyes would trace the area catching every detail of the home that he could find from where he was sitting. 'Hm.', nothing about her personal life was truly here. Maybe locked away in her room, but there were other things to see... he tried to figure out who his boss was from how she lived. Very neat. Organized. Direct. However, she was not alone. There was someone else here... well, someone else that lived here with her.

'Hm~ So Miss Lightning lives here with someone else... Male or Female?', well it was very obvious... if it were a male then it was going to be alot more defined, the couches would be abit more worn, and the place would smell different. It was definitively a woman living with her. That or a dainty and very small male. Either or. Maybe thats what Lightning was into. It was funny... sitting here for a period of time awaiting what he was to be doing. He was instructed to watch the inhabitants in the home. And she was definitely the only person in the house. His chakra sensory system didnt seem to pick up on anything else... his boss as did Keita and Haruka, had a large amount of chakra... something that scared Souji. He was nothing in comparison... he was merely a strategist of battle, he was not strong but he was calculated. The problem was if he were to have gotten in a confrontation with any of these people he'd likely be outsmarted and out powered.

Now, she'd reenter and the smells of chocolate filled the air. He loved hot chocolate. He loved drinks in general. He'd drink before he ate. Why? He wasnt entirely sure... but thats how he functioned. "Ahh! Thank you thank you~", then looking down into the cup he'd see the bear and find it in him to give her a light smirk.... he didnt often smile but this was painful enough as it was. His face seemed to be in immense amounts of pain when he smiled. He didnt smile... it was just too awkward. Either way a side smirk was easy, "Oh My? Lightning-sama is an artist as well? Quite intriguing. I felt you might be a bit of an artistic person...", nodding he'd look back to the cup and take a light sip. It... was...DELICIOUS! His eyes flared up after the initial taste then he looked up quickly embarrassed a bit as he wanted to jump up. He didnt. He wanted to sooo bad. But he didnt. It took some fighting. But he had an image to uphold with his solid demeanor. He was always stoic. He was supposed to come off like a jerk... No one was supposed to like him, he was just to do his job... right? Well, he thought about it as Lightning spoke, questioning him and explaining a bit of the situation, but he'd get it. "Well, honestly there werent many details... but I'm not in any position to turn down any mission that comes up. You can even look at my file if need be... I dont turn down anything... I'm not very... well off. Low class would be the term of that many use... Right now its just me taking care of my brothers and sisters as well as my mother and father.", Awfully open. He never asked for anything. He worked for everything he had and he had little to show for it but he kept his family afloat. He knew people would help if he asked... but that would make him feel the failure... his pride got in the way of it all.
 

Mienai

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It wasn't often that she was really that she was caught off guard, but her she turned to him with a look of confusion for a moment. Why was he smirking like that? On top of simply being on autopilot for most of this morning, Megami's head cold really slowed her deductive reasoning skills. Another reason why she definitely shouldn't go into work today. She looked down at his cup again, wondering if maybe he was just surprised the 'Big Bad Sennin' had some hospitality skills. But then he said something about artistry and she didn't quite follow. But then she remembered that she gave him hot chocolate, and she closed her eyes before sighing. She'd become so accustomed to making it for Hana that she didn't realize she'd put a picture in it using the partially melted marshmallows. Well, that just got awkward. So, turns out the 'Big Bad Sennin' really does have a soft spot. "Tch, sorry. I'm so accustomed to making it that way, guess I just got used to it." Megami hid a smile by sipping her tea, thinking about the first time Hana had asked her to do something like that. She had thought it impossible at first, but a few angrily failed attempts, which included a ton of swearing, broken dishes thrown angrily at the wall, a few burns, and angrily cursing the goddess's name for not making the vile drink more cooperative to her orders, she ended up with her final result of a happy bear face in the hot chocolate. Megami had yet to really work on too many intricate designs, but she could do cute faces for Hana.

Megami held her tea in her lap, taking the time to rest. Her nap earlier had just been cut short by his knocking after all. Souji had started drinking his cup, and he seemed to enjoy it, or she thought he did. It was just hot chocolate, it wasn't hard to make or anything. Maybe he just didn't get it too often. She shrugged to herself. Her face remained stoic as it could, given that she just wanted to rub the hell out of her nose. This congestion stuff really needed to stop! Souji went about telling why he had taken the job, and she listened, regardless of how uninterested she might have appeared. She placed down her finished tea on the glass table and sat back. She understood his plights, but hated to come off as weak herself. Still, she would speak few words on the matter. She wasn't completely heartless. "I see. Well, don't give up hope. Fighting for a better future, is the only thing that keeps us going sometimes; it's our focus as Guardians. Without hope, we may as well be dead. Just don't lose sight of what matters to you. It may seem hard now, but you do what you have to. Even if it means sacrificing everything..." Megami knew this all too well. Megami would give everything, even her life, if it just meant that Hana would be safe and taken care of.

Megami sat back on her couch, her head leaning back into the top rounded edges of the cushions. Her arms were folded behind her head as she looked up a the ceiling. The ceiling had a skylight, just allowing her to watch the clouds roll by. She liked the addition of several large windows placed around the home. It let in light and sometimes allowed for one to just relax. But either way, it was just a means to gather her thoughts, working through an already fuzzy brain. "Still, it's kind of funny, really, that she didn't give you any details. But then again, she doesn't know how to formally address my work. She still thinks it's easy to do what I do." A humorous huff resonated from her before she was cut off with a small cough. She recovered herself and sat back up. Her tea was finished, and they were just sitting there, talking. It wasn't practical or anything, just talking so that thick silence wasn't suspended between them like a giant bar of lead or an elephant in the room.

She hadn't talked like this in a long time, choosing to stay distant from people. She threw herself into her work so much that sometimes she didn't even catch the time or day it was. Megami stood and walked over to a small cabinet in the wall, sliding open a panel. She removed a small board and some pieces. At least if they were doing something, it wouldn't feel as awkward as this situation possibly was. She set the board down on the table. It contained patches of black and white, alternating consecutively. The pieces were small circular chips, in sets of red and black. She placed the black pieces on one side, the side opposite of her, and the red pieces on her own side. She placed each piece on only the white squares, within the first three rows, none existent on the black. "I may be sick, but why not pass the time with a game." She sat on the floor in front of the table, legs cross under her. Checkers was an easy game, and many were familiar with it. Her father had played checkers with her when she was younger, as a way of teaching the basics of strategy. Once she had learned that, he'd advanced her forward to things like chess, and then cards, playing upon both strengths of wit and luck. Both of those things in hand made for a well rounded fighter. But, this game wasn't really meant as a test of wit, or strength, or luck. She just wanted to play.
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Endo Eiji

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Accustomed to making the hot chocolate in such an artsy manner? She made this for someone who enjoyed this? Hm, so this woman or feminine male that lived with her, must've been someone she cherished to do this to the point where she basically went on 'auto-pilot' when making. Someone very close to her indeed. Judging from the small hidden changes from when she sipped her tea. He wanted to say she smiled... but he'd deny the thought. She didnt seem like the one that smiled often. She was much like him in that notion... very stern on the outside but soft and mushy on the inside. She was a hard-ass because she had to be... but Souji might never see the light of her soul in such a way that she would feel completely open to her in that manner. Especially with how reserved she seemed to be. Her posture... her demeanor as soon as she saw him. Then the quick change to attempting to be open. It seemed to be working in her favor... Souji'd almost dropped his guard...

Ramblings of ones mind would lead to many thoughts that branched further out into notions that either could be truthful, or were as far fetched as the sun was green. While the light rays from the sun did infact cast those differential rays of light to come back in a hue that seemed yellow, orange and sometimes spurts of red, it was when you cloed your eyes after looking directly into the light that you saw a slew of things you'd never see with your eyes open. Why was this? Because sometimes with your eyes open, you could 'see' many things. However, sometimes spending your time looking for things... you would never find what you would truly be looking for. Which is why you saw a slew of things and felt many more things when you closed your eyes from the light around you. To guide yourself as the Gods wished to guide you. This was how Souji walked... and maybe he had his eyes open for far too long with this woman. Maybe he needed to feel her instead of trying to see who she was.

"I believe I do agree with you Lightning-sama. I would give everything... everything for them... especially my little brother. Oyochi... I am paying for his education in the Academy. He wants to be a Warrior... and of course it isnt particularly cheap.", nodding as he let out a little chuckle, but he couldnt help but give a look of concern directly after. That weight always on him. If he failed a mission he would not have money to pay the bills... to pay the house off... to pay for his brother's schooling. So much on the young guardian... then again he couldnt dwell on those things. He had to be the strong one, and within that instant he'd shake it all off before taking another sip of his hot chocolate, "I believe in doing whatever it takes. By any means necessary to get my job done as a Guardian to the Gods. And as a Brother, Son, and student... So yes... You are right. Lightning-sama.", and with that he'd just drop it... less she wanted to talk about it a bit more. Though, this seemed to be turning into something else. A game. Checkers. Something he played with his mother... she helped him alot with his training before she got ill. Taking his seat on the floor like she did he would roll his shoulders feeling like a kid once again, stifling a chuckle before speaking, "Of course... nothing wrong about a little game...", looking up to her he couldnt help but to give another half smirk, "I hope you're ready to lose Lightning-sama~, he'd give her a bit of a challenging tone. Not to be snobbish, but he liked competition. He wondered if she did as well... and if so~ this would be tons of fun. Even his eyes lit up... Souji's body language began to be more open he could feel himself loosening up. His shoulders dropping a bit, he was... getting comfortable. "Red or Black?"

[MFT]
 

Mienai

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The amount of time she spent involved in the personal lives of others was very lacking. In fact, this felt rather odd compared to what she was used to. Sure, she spent company in the presence of her sister, and then those she dealt with on a professional level, but nothing much in terms of just going out and hanging with friends. It had been so long since she had developed any friendships, but she couldn't claim that she was unhappy as a result. She was thorough, or as thorough as she could be. And she was happy because Hana was happy, and she enjoyed her work regardless of all the risks that came with it. She understood his plights all the same though. She had been in that circumstance. She didn't care to mention it, but she had become a workaholic in order to cover all of the expenses she needed to, and saved where she could. Megami had spent most of money on bills, Hana's schooling, food for them, something special for Hana here and there, while the rest went into a savings jar she kept hidden behind a panel in her home. She wouldn't spend a cent on herself. But Hana would always surprise her with presents or gifts too, and she treasured every one of them.

Making no comment on anything further. Megami would nod and watch as Souji moved to sit across from herself. He seemed enthused to play, but she wasn't particularly feeling driven. Most days she would but every bit of her ambitious nature into winning, but it was a sick day after all and she was a little slow paced. Megami looked at him, hearing his challenge and she just nodded. He was a competitive fellow, but she would play more casually than she was used to. This was for enjoyment after all. "Good luck to you as well. I'll play red, as it's on my side." She picked up one of the red chips and moved it diagonally left on one of the white squares. Many argue that the first move of any game is the most defining of the match, but rarely does it matter what one would do. The second move is perhaps the most valuable, as while a first move could lead into an opening assortment of options, the second solidifies the direction your set up is going. Even in chess it is possible to lose in a matter of 5 moves. Still, this was just a game of checkers, and it wasn't something she wanted to spend forever thinking about. Checkers was a game where all the pieces just move forward, never back, and only diagonally. And it maintained the easiest capture of pieces by simply jumping them. This wasn't a game of real strategy, just make sure that almost all of your pieces had one following it. In other words, the buddy system.

Still Megami loved the game as a child. Her father had taught her that in all variety of strategy. However, he also told her that winner is not everything. Should she best an enemy, or a competitor, gloating is not honorable. Overtime, she grew humbled. She trained harder in her defeat, and thanked every opponent for her victory. It made her a better fighter for it, and perhaps even a better person. "I've seen how hard you work. On the roster that is forwarded to me, recording the tasks of the week done by the Guardians and ANBU of my branch, I see your name pop up a lot. Even when it comes to grunt work." Megami picked up her tea again and paused, allowing him his own time to make a move on the board."Of course, even when working endless shifts people find time for other things. Do you do anything interesting in your free time or do you just wait around for more work?" The last comment was a little bit sarcastic, but she had been trying to bite it back for a while. It worked for some time, but as the tea started to free up some of the cold symptoms, she started to feel a little bit of her normal self setting in. Sometimes she felt she let her guard down too much when she was ill, but it was just so rare that she was. And the conversation was oddly interesting for a change. He shared a similar fate as she, but he was also very different. Perhaps her own reality of the world just spun on a different axis than his own. Perhaps one day, he would find the find the right path.
<i></i>
 

Endo Eiji

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This was nice, and awkwardly pleasant... Souji even found himself warming up on the inside but this was something that wouldnt last long. Not just yet he had to pull himself back from the thoughts that he was diving into. Why did this feel good? Why did this aura... this light feel wonderful? Who knew... but even in her sickness he could feel the radiance. Something that was long absent from his life. Ever in the shadows, ever forgotten. It had seemed Souji would have become something of a consequential thought in the back of the woman's mind... taking another sip of his hot chocolate he noticed the vibrant differences that lead him to believe this woman was more than she always let off. A Guardian, but something... more. A mother perhaps? No. Her hips hadnt widened and her bone structure wasnt full. You could see the difference from many women who had children, even when they had healthy exercise, they didnt seem to overcome the 'look' of a mother. Plus she seemed too 'hard' to be a mother. Maybe she was something else... something. She protected something. It resonated with her words, the ability to put one thing over everything... to give your life protecting. Was she like him? Surely not... Surely she had come from a prominent family with all the riches and gold. They lived happily and their deaths made her hard... thus why she was such a 'tight' woman to be around. Though, she'd loosened up... Why? She was showing him something that he had never thought he would see from here... it was rather satisfying. Because, he had hoped that she was lighter than she came off... certainly Souji was. Maybe so... Maybe so...

Either way, he had to respond now, "Aye, you need not luck... You're the Sennin, even when sick your mind is far greater than my own...", nodding he was confident in his tone but he's know that she wasnt in a gaming mood... Maybe the compliment would help. He did truly respect her after all... why not tell her. He had grown up to believe that the Sennin was just as strong if not stronger than a Kage. Stronger, more decisive, and smarter. They had to be on another level... and it was the admiration he had for the leader of his branch the fact that she could whoop his ass as she saw fit... it was exhilarating. Because it was a level of power that he knew that she could be confident in her ability to defend the nation. Her sword... the sword that would lead the armies of Iwa's strongest into battle. Wow... Souji's eyes lit up for a moment, as if he was about to... but he didnt. What was he about to 'do'? The world would never know... but maybe it would be something given upon the wings of a better future.

"...Honestly... I only work... and in my free time I watch over my younger brother... Making sure he stays out of trouble... I recently took one of the visitors into the Abandoned Mineshaft to the Wonderland Cafe'... they had much fun there.", nodding he'd continue after his long winded response, "I am proud of what I do Lightning-sama... and its a pleasure doing what I do for my people... So I have not a regret.", nodding even a being of shadows could seemingly bend in to the light. Though there were many things that came into his mind. Taking a black chip finally, he'd move it forward into a black square, signalling for her move to begin once again. "I do have a question for you... something that I have been wanting to know.", a serious tone but soft. He was wondering since they had met, "What do you think of the Tsuchikage's... War? I was the Masked Guardian, that was there, if you remember... I am just wondering.", 'Notice me, Sempai~' dotdotdot, Something in him wanted to know and be able to pick her brain. Now, it was in her court...


OOC: Marked
 

Mienai

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Checkers was a calm game, a slow game. Sure you could go in, aiming to attack every piece, take your opponent by force. But really, it was too simple for that. You pieces could only move forward. If you made a mistake, it was a misfortune, a bad calculation on your part. Basically meaning, you left a hole in your strategic play, and anyone rushing to win in a game of checkers, simply wasn't watching as they openly left themselves defenseless. Megami learned that in all aspects that the quicker to end things, usually meant that you didn't plan anything defensively. And so, as she played, she simply moved one of her red pieces at a time, slowly building a strong defense as she moved herself forward. Once she crowned enough Kings to her liking, well, maybe then she would switch tactics. But for now, she moved her pieces bit by bit, and listened to her opponent as he spoke.

She didn't like seeing people put themselves down by giving another a comment. It was like a reverse compliment. While it may make one person feel good about themselves, they don't realize they put themselves down in the process. "Something you may not realize is that we are all strong in our own way. To compliment another using the scale of your own capabilities, will only be a shortcoming to you. You can't be the best if you always think someone is better than you. You should strive to be your best, not the best compared to others. You have something to lose; you have something to fight for. That should be enough." Megami knew of what she spoke of, and she said this right as she took one of his pieces. The piece was taken not out of the urge to win, but to prove the defining symbolism behind her words. Those that strive to be better compared to everyone else, will simply lose site of why they were even doing it in the first place. They lose their passion and love for the very thing that set out to do for themselves. It leaves an emptiness in people that sometimes can be hard to get back. It was like watching the light die from their soul, and Megami hated that most of all.

The topic of conversation was getting far to personal for her liking. She didn't connect with people. She could feel sympathy, and relate to them. And sometimes it even reminded her of things in her past. Yes, there was a reason behind everything she did, and the reason for her behavior and thoughts. She wore her mask well, a perfected technique. But at least Souji brought up something that wasn't personal, something related to business. "Well if you were the Guardian that was there, then you understand my feelings. It's a risk to the people. Aiming to stir up conflict with no reason as to why. Are we a bloodthirsty country with a constant need to conquer? I can only hope not. I can only act in accordance to what is deemed a responsible decision for the people. That's my job." She stated a shortened version of the exact thing that were said at the Shrine. However, something did irk her a little. "Why were you brought there in the first place though? I didn't send for you, and if the Kage did, then he must trust you a great deal." Yes, this was a question she had been waiting to get answered for some time. And now she felt was the right time to ask, and she had waited long enough to get it answered in any case.
<i></i>
 

Endo Eiji

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And just like that she'd take the lead in this game of their's. This game that he had played millions of times before in different ways, aspects, and much more challenging... but it was the simplicity of this game that brought the nostalgia. He was, ready, forever trying to better himself but also very aware of his natural limitations. Though, he words. The words she spoke stern and strong he could not respond to them even if he wanted to. It was definitely too personal to dive into at such a time. The thing was, she would obviously know what he was fighting for. He said it. His family. Though, to her moment speaking of the compliment, Souji realized ever deeper that he would be training himself to 'catch up' to that of the Sennin when he himself should never act in comparison to others rather acting on his own accordance to the Gods and how they would guide him. He could be anything he wanted to become. He just had to strive to be better he was. To be the best Souji he could be. 'Thank you Lightning-Sama.', and with a simple nod his thoughts dove elsewhere...

What did she have? What drove her... why did she fight? What was the reason. There was obviously something there holding her to the branch and something allowing her to give every ounce of her dignity to doing. Something that when everything else failed that she knew was worth fighting for as long as it was a possibility... something that would destroy the very foundation of her life if it was stripped. That was very much in her tone. It might have even been tied to what her true name was. He knew no one would name their child 'Lightning' unless they were just full of themselves. This woman didnt seem like she had those type of parents. IT could be the person living in this place with her... Likely someone who was a long time friend or a Lover. It couldnt be a sibling... because he'd likely have seen this person around with the other Warriors. A Lover would be harder to track. Having no personal ties nor link to her.

'Lightning-sama, you are a great mystery... Something that I do wish to find out more about...' speaking within his mind and moving a piece forward into the fray. No pieces were taken, but he'd begin his response to the war with a simple notion, "Well I can answer that question many ways..." nodding his head and looking her directly in her eyes. He was not a man that he woudl ever lie to another for any reason so being forefront was something of second nature, he did it without thinking. "The Tsuchikage honestly barely knows me. I was unaware as to why he called me. I fought with him previously in the ranks of the War some years ago. Since then we have had minimal contact. So your guess is as good as mine.", shaking his head, he wondered how much that had troubled the Sennin. It was a confidential meeting. Something that he wished no part in. Though he was always gathering as much information for the future... it would be imperative for him to do his part to making sure that the village was safe. As much as any Sennin would. So, he'd continue.

"I'm indifferent. We may have fought with one another, but I would be surprised if the man knew my name outside of the information he has access to being the Kage.", ugh, this was a painful conversation of sorts. Souji didnt much like the questioning of his reasoning for being somewhere when he too didnt have any clue as to why he was called. "It pains me to know what the future may have instore for us if this War continues. Everything we've been fighting for... to keep order could be in vain...", Souji was trying to see how this woman felt because morally if this all happened... Souji would be devastated. Though, he was at ends.


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Mienai

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It was...shocking really that even Souji didn't understand his presence there. Surely he must mean something, on some sort of level to the Kage. Old comrades, but distant in relationship. She found that strange, but maybe even minute companionship could form some sort of trustworthy bond. She trusted her Guardians, well enough to do their jobs at least. So perhaps that was the sort of bond they had? She was uncertain. But either way she supposed the occurrence of his presence there was just a random event that she shouldn't have dwelled on. He also seemed to agree with her to some extent about this war. However, he didn't truly seem indifferent to her. But that wasn't her business to get into. Not at this precise moment anyway. She just shook her head. "If war is upon us, if it does happen and we aren't able to prevent it, the best we can do is protect our people. Some things you just do, regardless of the circumstances around you, and that would be one of them. We could definitely---" Megami froze in her sentence, there was a sound she picked up.

She stayed silent a moment, turning her head towards the door. There was a mumbled voice, she couldn't make out the words. Her eyes grew wide, a moment of surprise flashing on her face. The doorknob started to slowly turn before Megami had scrambled to her feet, knocking over the chessboard in the process and bolted towards the door as it opened. "Heee-WOAH" There was the sound of a high pitched voice as Megami pushed her sister back outside before Souji could see her. He probably already thought she was an insane woman. Megami had clamped a hand over her sister's mouth until she could turn back and shut the door. "DON'T MOVE." Whether sick or not, her voice was that of a commanding officer and she was dead serious. As the door came to a close, she was now assured that Souji would not be able to hear what was happening on the other side of the door. Megami removed her hand from Hana's mouth and Hana glared at her. "Hey, what's the big idea. I was just coming home. I thought you'd be happy." Megami sniffled and just nodded. "I am Hana, really. But that person you sent the letter to? My babysitter is someone who works for me. I couldn't just let you come in and start giving out secrets to him." Megami crossed her arms, fully believing herself to be in the right state of mind here. Surely Hana would respect her wishes. Right?

Hana paused for a second, processing what was going on. Suddenly her eyes had mischief in them, and her lips pulled into a teasing smile. "Wait...it's a GUY? And you haven't tried to kill him yet?" Her voice was that of teasing, as if knowing a secret of her sister. Megami gave a groan and an eyeroll. "Hana, no, it's not like that. I told you, he just works for me. That's all. I just want to keep you safe." Hana giggled and nodded. "Ok, ok. I know. Hey, look, Yuki's over there. I think he's flashing me!" Hana pointed away from the house and Megami's eyes suddenly hardened and fists tightening. "YUKI I'LL KILL YOU!" And now, the wrath of a protective older sister. However, Yuki had long gone and Hana took that time to sneak inside. By the time Megami looked back, Hana had locked the door. "Hana! Open this door! Hana!" Megami started pounding on the door angrily, not knowing what Hana had in store.

On the inside though, Hana was bracing herself against the pounding door and looking towards the man that had been watching her ill sister. "Hi! You must be that nice man that came to look after my sister! Thanks! She can be a real handful sometimes. Anyway, she was wondering if you wanted to stay for dinner! It's on us! Really! She insists!" From the outside, Megami could still be heard yelling and coughing on occasions, just pounding away at the door. After Hana as asked the question she unlocked the door and moved aside, allowing for Megami to barrel in. Her face was flushed, and hair tussled as she breathed heavily. Her stare could probably kill any who gazed at it long enough, however Hana just smiled and giggled. "What did you do?" She said gravely as Hana tilted her head, appearing completely innocent. "Oh nothing, really. Your clothes are in my room hidden in the drawer with all my pink tops. Why don't you get ready for dinner. Our guest will be joining us." Of course, Hana didn't wait for Souji to answer. She just skipped to the kitchen as if none of the past 5 minutes had happened at all.

Megami looked back at Souji, and then at the ground before facepalming herself. What had Hana gotten her into. She had just been chatting with him, they weren't even really friends, it was just an awkward acquaintanceship. She stood back up, before walking towards him. "Just...just wait here. I'll be back." Megami trudged past him, into Hana's room. A few minutes later, she came back in her normal civilian clothes and her hair back in it's normal orderly fashion. She went back to the couch, before sitting down. She sighed and briefly looked at the kitchen where Hana was already starting to cook. Well, the situations that she was finding herself in today. "Seems you'll be staying for dinner. Trust me, she doesn't take no for an answer. But, she's a good cook." Megami nodded, not sure of what else to say. He probably had questions, she most likely had answers, and it just wasn't something she was about to throw herself into without reason.
<i></i>
 

Endo Eiji

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Something happened, Souji was intently lingering on her every word, and with ever moment that passed he would grow more and more... 'inclined' to dive deeply into her words but even he would shift as she cut herself seemingly freezing everything as she heard something that he didnt pick up on until it would've been too late. Another thing the Reason the Sennin had so much above him in terms of sensory perception. Though, it could also have been because of her 'hiding' something. However what did she have to hide she was a guardian right? Then again the fact that no one seemed to know her real name kinda made him distant himself from the thought. Everyone had a secret. Some people just never brought it into the light. Souji was... literally darkness. There was alot about him that was a mystery. He was open but many people never asked him any questions. Either way... standing to his feet as Lightning scrambled like a child talking to a friend and finding out their parent was coming home, earlier than expected, and trying to keep themselves from getting into trouble.

Yeah, one of those moments. However, Souji'd chuckle as their game pieces would go off into the air flying, "Guess I won...", but soon he heard a "DON'T MOVE.", and with that Souji got suspicious. Very suspicious. Though, creeping up on conversation would deem him in wrongful standing with Lightning and whomever was out there. Though it was his duty to protect and make sure she was okay during this vulnerable stage in her sickness. What was he to do? He heard muffled speaking but nothing concrete. Another woman surely. Or that feminine male that he thought about prior. Could this be the lover she had living with her? Ooooh this could get sticky real quick if that was the case, but, Souji was here on official business right? Business. Nothing about getting closer to the Sennin at all right? Nothing about pushing through the breaking points of the office relationships... but then again Souji would have to shake his head on that. It was never plausible. Nor could it work.... Right? Enter Hana, but right before she closed the door, Souji would hear, "YUKI I'LL KILL YOU!", which made Souji blink for a bit. He never heard her so angry before.

Soon after, the door would quickly open and shut. This was not Lightning. At all. This was someone that looked... vastly similar to her. Nearly the same body size. Though this was definitely the more dainty of the two. She'd lock the door swiftly and afterwards would commence the pounding of the door. Which had to be freakishly strong to keep the Sennin out of the house. Just long enough for Hana to do her bidding. It was wonderful. Amazing even. Souji'd bow to her as she would greet him with an ecstatic 'Hi!' before she'd continue. It caused enough commotion to make Souji blink. There was so much information to come from a small group of sentences. What? So this was her sister. Okay. Her sister was living with her? Maybe. Maybe not. However her sister wouldnt invite him to dinner unless... one, Lightning didnt have a significant other. And two, Lightning had a sister? That was... awkward. Though reassuring. This meant alot to him to know this information. "Handful? Lightning-sama has be a gracious hostess.", though he wouldnt spoil things by mentioning that she slammed a door in his face. It was good enough that he was still alive so he'd take it as they were even now. She 'obviously' wanted Hana in here alone with Souji... just listen to the ruckus she was making. Genuine. Though, continuing his speech, well small speech, "Dinner? I guess...", nodding he'd have to inform his father that he wouldnt be home until later to make dinner for them. Either way... Lightning was let back in... or rather 'barrel rolled<i></i>' in. Gazing at Hana with the look that would make Souji's heart weak with fear. But her sister, shrugged if off, even smiled and giggled at it. What kind of woman was her sister to have that much control under THAT gaze.

Even their interaction was a bit of a troll, as Hana seemed to have had Lightning's clothed locked away in a place where she'd likely not have looked. Or so it would seem from the obvious statement. Though, knowing the woman she would not be able to do the same trick twice. She didnt seem gullible. All of which happening at once. Everything seemed to be moving so fast, but Souji managed to keep up. Watching, and only responding as Lightning moved back past him he'd smirk, "Waiting...", he was beginning to really enjoy himself. What was going to happen? What was next? This comical relief... Well not so much relief because he was enjoying his one on one time with his Sennin. Either way he'd set himself down where he was previously taking a moment to think to himself, 'Souji, this is fun... Quite fun. Why are we having fun...' and then he'd shake his head. We? Who was we? Him and himself? Ugh, after a few minutes. It was nice to know that he wasnt forgotten. Hearing Hana in the kitchen, and then Lightning returning... he would be seen attempting to straighten up the mess that was made prior to the 'incident' but as she'd enter he'd be placing the last few checkers back upon the set and before turning to her and responding, "Indeed, my question is... Do you want me to stay?", he'd slightly question, wondering exactly what she'd say but more so... how she would say it. Physical presence. Body Language. That whole song and dance. Did she want him to experience a night with her and her sister? To... mingle with the man she just nearly shut out of her home?

These things we wondered...
 

Mienai

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Of course, he had to go back to being that attitude. It was so frustrating! She was a strong, confident woman, the Leader of the Guardians and ANBU, she was not one meant to be teased or mocked. And it was just the way he delivered it, like she couldn't just turn and slap that smirk off his face. If Hana weren't here she probably would have broken his jaw. She'd never hear the end of it if she did. Hana didn't like to see her get violent or angry. Though, Yuki was an exception. But Hana always found the good in people, and she knew how Megami was, and accepted her as she was instead of forcing her to change, and for that, she loved Hana all the more. She seemed to harden more though, after Souji's comments. She'd most likely be spending the next few hours with him in any case, and it was not best to spend it angry. This was still the time she spent with her sister.

He asked her though, boldly at that, if she really wanted him to even stay. Megami couldn't say she did. She didn't like sharing her personal life, personal moments. Moments with her sister, the rare moments that allowed her to smile, and be reminded of everything that made what she did worthwhile, the reason she fought so hard. She didn't want to let someone into that, share that. She already had to share with Yuki, an idiot, of all people. And furthermore, she knew what Hana was doing. She had complained time and time again about how Megami always seemed so lonely, how she always worked all the time. Hana had been trying to set her up with people for years, probably so she'd be more occupied with a partner than fighting her sister's relationship with Yuki. Megami hadn't thought about it, preferring to just work. There had been a time once, but it was gone, and ever since there had been no one. Megami looked up at Souji, and shrugged. "Hana invited you. I'm not about to throw you out. My day wasn't awful, so consider it a thanks." Megami wasn't about to say more than that on the subject. Souji had played checkers with her, and not dug into her personal life. That was thanks enough really.

A heavenly smell started to come in from the kitchen, and Megami knew it wouldn't be long until Hana had finished. She wondered what it was she was making. Hana was actually the better cook out of the two, and anything she made was delicious. "It's almost done, why don't you two come into the kitchen." Megami stood, happy to not just be sitting around. She came into the large kitchen and took a seat on one of the stools, a plate in front of her. "What are you making?" Hana turned around and smiled. "It's a surprise." Hana said this in a manner that provoked another response. Megami's eyes sparkled with joy, rising to the occasion. "Huh, is this going to be another one of those lizard leg kabobs. Not your best, Hana." Hana pouted, and turned away from the cooking food, hands on her hips. "That was one time and it's not like you ate it. How was I supposed to know those lizards were poisonous!" Megami rolled her eyes. "By reading the label." Hana hmphed after that, but started to finish the food.

When it was finished, she separated it out onto three separate dishes and placed them in front of the diners. The dish smelled delicious. It was a well seasoned plate of cubed meat chunks, served on a palate of leafy greens, and carefully chopped and cooked vegetables. Grilled apples were sporadically placed throughout the dish, and there was a small garnish on top. Hana served the dish with sweetened cold tea. She took her place across from Megami and smiled. "I hope you like it." Megami picked up her fork, hoping that her cold hadn't rendered her taste buds useless. However, as she dug into the dish, that kind of appeared to be an odd stir fry, the corners of her lips turned up ever so slightly. She hid her smile well, but it made Hana beam. "Not bad." Hana rolled her eyes, but her smile didn't lose it's intensity. "You like it and you know it." Megami said nothing, but Hana could just read her like the back her hand. There was laughter in her eyes. Suddenly Hana turned to Souji, whom had hopefully started eating. "So, tell me about yourself!" Hana was genuinely interested in figuring out who the guy that her sister hadn't brutally maimed yet was.
<i></i>
 

Endo Eiji

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Strike one for Souji. He couldnt be that guy right now. It was who he was, but right now... save himself the trouble and go with the flow. It was amazing to lay back and get things done on that level. she wasnt used to him enough and he wasnt used to her. So, he would straighten up a bit after seeing her face on directly after the comment. '...Hm... Souji, pull it back man... She's nice enough not to cave your face in.' nodding to himself as he would listen to her speak this time knowing that this was something that she just did. She was... distant. She didnt seem to make alot of connections with people... especially if she didnt like them. She wouldnt deal with someone if she didnt have to. Hana was bridging the gap between them right now. So it seemed. It was Hana's idea right? But werent they just having a nice chit chat? Nah, this was all business... but was this what she truly wanted? Maybe but she was hard to read... one of the few Souji couldnt get instantly. He'd watched people before... from missions to teaching interrogation tactics to some of the 'New Age' learners in the Branch. Sometimes you had to get information out of a person... and Guardians had to do it before this new way from the other countries spewed over into their ways. It was unnerving. Even if Souji managed to use some of the tactics they used... but not all Gods were light. Some helped and served by being seen but unseen. Souji was known for his Guardian deeds. Never hiding behind a mask aside from wearing his spiritual attire blessed by his father which included a mask. Souji did not look to intimidate from the shadows... but he utilized them to take advantage of everyone's known weakness. You cannot harm what you cannot see... and in rare cases what you cannot hear as well.

He considered it everything she wanted to make of it. If it was a simple thanks he'd take it. If was more? He'd take it. As long as he wasnt having any doors slammed in his face. Getting punched in the face or anything of that sort. Either way Souji knew his place and as it stood he would take his place awaiting the harmonious smells coming from the kitchen. Though he would make a note of this for the future, if there was a future regarding this home and these women. Meh, but Souji's eyes would turn to the kitchen as he would hear Hana'd call out to them beckoning to the Kitchen for the 'soon to come' food. The banter of the sister would cause him to chuckle, 'They sound like me and Oyochi sometimes.', nodding he'd sit himself on the stool close, but not 'close' to Megami. His eyes bright and wafting the smells of the kitchen into his nostrils. Not externally, but mentally... outwardly, one would be able to see him taking deeper, longer, breaths through his nose and smirking alittle after each.

It certainly smelled the part. Though would it taste it? Maybe. Maybe.

Nodding to Hana, taking a utensil and then lowering his head in a small, silent prayer before indulging in the fine foods of the Sennin's Home. Then, taking small bites. Polite. He wasnt at home so he didnt loosen up as much as he truly would've. Not like he was a messy eater, but he was alot more loose of a man when he was alone. Or around familiar company. It was fine though, he was finally able to do something that got him out the house and around new people that he was beginning to like. And the food... mai G.A.W.D. the FOOD was 'on point<i></i>' as the kids these days were saying. It was amazing. Looking up to Hana after swallowing a bit of food from his plate, "Miss Hana, this is amazing." stoic as always but full of true emotion. Then! Souji would have a question zinged his way. Pausing for a moment she caught him with a mouth full of food, but taking one of those hard gulps, like when you feel something bad is about to come.

"About my...self?", looking over to Lightning, he would blink for a moment not knowing what to say, "Uhm, I'm Guardian Yukata Souji of Iwagakure and Tsuchi no Kuni? I'm the son of a shaman chief, Yukata Razu. . . My mother is also a Shamanka. . . I'm Twenty-three...? I dont know... What do you want to know Miss Hana?" looking back up to the young woman, he's question with... such an inquisitive tone that his question seemed to echo in silence for a moment.

[MFT]
 

Mienai

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Smiling politely at the compliment, Hana was happy to see that at least everyone seemed to be enjoying the new concoction she had just made. She started to eat it herself and had to agree it was quite delicious. Megami continued to eat her food quietly as well, simply listening to the conversation around it. It felt...awkward, really, but not so much to the degree that it was uncomfortable, just different. Kind of like, if someone had just announced that they had passed all of their classes, but their grades were mediocre at best, and you weren't sure whether to congratulate them, or look to the side offering your condolences. Megami saw Souji's own discomfort and just shrugged. No one was immune to Hana's prodding, not even herself. This guy was just going to have to sink or swim, and damn this author hoped it wouldn't be a repeat of the Titanic. After all, there just weren't enough completely-capable-of-holding two people doors around for that, and Megami had clearly already jumped ship.

Hana paused in her eating, looking at Souji as she leaned upon one of her propped up fists. Her face showed that of almost...disappointment. "Well I know you're a Guardian, I sent for you after all, but where's the important stuff?" Megami placed her index finger on her chin, tilting her head in contemplation as her eyes ventured towards the ceiling. "Hm, let's see. Like, what's your favorite color? Do you read? Do you have hobbies? What are your goals in life. How many-" Hana started to list off a series of things, counting each one on her finger as she named them. However before she could get too far ahead of herself, Megami interrupted her. "Hana, that's a little invasive, why don't you let him eat." Hana gave a 'hmph' and went back to eating. Megami sighed and continued to eat her own meal, believing everything to be finished. Though, when Hana saw that Megami had a mouthful of food, Hana grinned and mumbled "Are you single?" rather teasingly. Megami had to keep herself from choking at such a comment coming from her little sister. She glared disapprovingly. "Hana!" Hana just sighed. "Fine!" Hand rolled her eyes, thinking in her mind that her sister could be so stubborn. At this rate, she would never find someone interested in her sister, which she felt sad about. Megami always seemed so...caught up in everyone else's problems. Surely that took a toll on her, maybe even made her feel lonely at times. Hana just wanted to help.

Thinking to herself, she wondered if Souji was ready to leave yet. She loved her sister to death, but she could be a little open, and radical when she really was interested in something. She couldn't deny that at least Hana had spirit, a lot like their mother's actually. Megami shut down that thought before it could go anywhere, better to leave things in the past. "So did you do anything fun while I was out?" This question seemed to be the one Hana wanted to know the most. Megami knew her answer wouldn't satisfy. "We played checkers." Hana pouted, as Megami expected. "Well you guys are boring. Yuki took me out for ice cream and a boat ride around the lake where he kissed me. It was romantic." Hana's infatuation was written clearly all over her face. Megami however, pushed her dinner away from her, clearly having lost her appetite. Perhaps to anyone else in the room, they might sense a sudden chill from the aura of distaste that was radiating from her. However, she would handle that later.
<i></i>
 

Endo Eiji

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In his head, he saw things happening, the words seemed to distance themselves from him and he could feel... lighter. Lighter than he'd ever have felt. This day was turning into one of the ones that would seem pivotal to him. And as he chewed on the food and swallowed like normal people did Souji could feel the stirring within the room. Especially from Hana. His answers were not enough, of course, she wanted to know the personal stuff... The what did he want to do with his life? What did she feel he saw himself in some years. Did he want chil-... Yeah, stuff like that. Souji was a very open person.... Actually. No. No he wasnt. He lived his life in the shadows of others always protecting them throwing his life out on the line for what he believed in. What the Gods sent him to do and which was his mission. He was the Guardian of Shadows. He was forever and always in the Shadow of Tsuchi no Kuni protecting her and all her born inhabitants with his life.

"My favorite color is purple. I read frequently. My hobbies include training, expanding my mind through meditation, taking care of my family...", but Hana seemed to trail off before Lightning stopped her. Souji shook his head and chuckled to himself. Nodding at Lightning's statement. He'd begin taking another bit before he would hear the dainty voice of Hana chime out from the silence. "Are you single?" this caused Souji's face... to burst into some sort of chilli pepper red. He couldnt help but to think where that was going. Was Hana seriously? NO.... NOOO... I mean, Yes~ but NO! Not now. Lightning was too good for him anyways. He was low class. He wasnt anything in comparison anyways right? It wasnt like she would ever like him like that... She was cute.... Beautiful even... but it would never happen. Souji was the 'frog' that would never be kissed by this princess. He didnt hear Lightning's thunderous shout at Hana for her words. However it was surely something that he needed to distance himself from.

"I'm single..."<i></i>​
He could feel his heart racing. Everything in him seemed to pulse to the thumping. And the shaking. Why in the hell was he shaking? He would sit in silence for a moment with his hands folded on lap gripping at his pants. Wondering how he could escape, however, his ninjutsu seemed to leave him. He couldnt think straight. He was flustered. Winded, even. It was sad. Though taking a deep breath he'd slowly begin to return to his normal olive skin tone. and again Hana would chime in. This time it was a lighter question, he'd let Lightning respond before syaing anything himself, "Checkers... and we had a wonderful conversation as well..." at least Souji enjoyed it. Lightning seemed to help him alot through a personal thing te seemed to always end up doing when it came to higher ups. Though at the as Hana would respond... Souji'd shake his head and watch as Lightning pushed her plate away from herself. Obviously this 'Yuki' was someone that she didnt like. Muchless did she like him kissing on her sister. Why though? Was he not good enough? Or was it the complex of -no one- could ever be good enough for her sibling.

"Thats....nice? However, I dont think its boring. I rather liked the time I spent with your sister.", bold. Quite bold. However, it wasnt something he wasnt accustomed to doing. He enjoyed the company they shared. Maybe the Gods had shined upon him to take this 'mission' to take care of the Sennin... and he didnt really even take care of her. Just kept her occupied.And he enjoyed every moment.... after he had a door slammed in his face. Thus far, he didnt see the Sennin like he had once did. A very Tight individual who disliked the world. She was a family woman. Even if her family was merely her sister. Which brought to his attention.... What was her real name? She was the Guardian of Lightning. She was called Lightning. Souji could be called Shadow.... which didnt sound too bad.

"Are you... okay Lightning-sama?", he'd ask obviously knowing that something had her bothered. likely because she truly didnt like this guy Yuki. However, it was imperative that he stay consistent. He was concerned not because of nurtured feelings but because she looked and even seemed to radiate something... that took her light spirit from before. Did this get to her as much as it had gotten to him? Maybe... but he'd be here to help out.

[MFT]
 

Mienai

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Some things just weren't meant to be experienced by co-workers, let alone should be verbally said allowed. While Megami was going through her own series of conflicted emotions, from wanting to murder her sister's 'so-called-boyfriend' to trying to maintain professional composure in a setting of personal space with a subordinate. Megami was just not having the best of luck on anything as today. But I guess that's why when people get sick, it's considered an 'off-day'. Megami starred as her plate of food she had shove away, having blocked out most of the prior conversation. Hana on the other hand tried to process the man's responses. It was strange he found company with her sister to be...enjoyable. Megami wasn't really the friendly type, nor the sociable type. But this guy seemed to be just as stoic and uptight as she was. Furthermore Hana didn't much like the color purple, and she seemed to calm down a bit when she thought about it. She returned to quietly eating her food as well as Souji kept talking. She looked up when she saw his face go red, looking confused. "Is the food too hot?" Hana sat there thinking for a moment until suddenly she gasped. "You must have caught her cold! Oh no! You need to get home!" Hana suddenly stood and dashed off to somewhere in the house.

Before she came back Megami had sighed and picked up her and Hana's dishes, scraping them off into the sink. She was sure they had finished eating anyway. Megami seemed to busy herself with cleaning and putting things away. She couldn't remember the last time someone had said they enjoyed her company. But it was nothing that she wanted to get inside her head. Souji was a nice guy at least, and he seemed to be like her. Struggling to help his family and just wanting to do his best for them. Megami turned and opened a jar, pulling out a small envelope. It was sort of a place she placed emergency money in case Hana or herself ever needed access to large quantities of money without having to go to the bank. She pulled several bills from the jar, before replacing the lid and pushing it back inside it's cabinet. She placed the bills inside of another spare envelope and turned around. Walking back to the table, she pushed it towards Souji. "I request you don't open this until after you leave. But you won our game, so take it, it's not optional." Souji seemed like the type to reject handouts or gifts, a man who doesn't care for his pride was few and far between, if not completely nonexistent altogether. Megami knew if she didn't force him to take it then he never would. Still though, it wasn't out of pity that she was doing this. Her father taught her that having honor was important. She lost to him, because she knocked over the board. And because she lost, tribute was given to the winner, most commonly given in the form of currency. So, that's what she had done. If he rejected it, she couldn't say she would have done anything differently.

Hana came back soon, wearing some sort of medical mask. "I have another date soon, so you two can't be getting me sick!" She seemed kind of silly in everything, so Megami just rolled her eyes. Hana and Megami would see Souji out, since it seemed late and he should probably go home. "Thank you for your services, Souji! It was nice meeting you!" Hana smiled, though you could only tell by the reflection of it in her eyes, and waved him goodbye. Megami nodded, following the sentiment. "See you at work." Hana slapped her sister lightly on the shoulder, for the stoic comment. "What sort of goodbye is that?" She said it out of teasing, because she knew that's how her sister was, but it was still something she aimed to work on. After bidding Souji a good evening, Hana would close the door and Megami would head to her bed, ready for sleep. Today had gone on long enough.
<i></i>

[Topic Left]
 

Endo Eiji

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'Well, that went better than I would have ever imagined', the thoughts rolling through his mind as he would wait in silence. There were many things that he would work for in his life. This was not one of those instances that he was obviously used to. He'd had crushed before however, that was puppy love. Was it to say that this was any different? No... But there was something burrowed deep within his mind that was an ever growing chant. Something was stirring within the young Yukata boy. Erm, Leader really... but he did not want to play with such trivial thoughts. It was just something that was going to happen and he knew he would be crushed if it happened again... but tonight. Was too soon... too soon for him. Too soon for this. His eyes, lowered to his lap and a slow shaking of his head ad he'd attempt to calm himself. Though his ear's perked up when he heard Hana begin speaking again. "Huh?", shaking his head frantically. He knew he wasnt sick he just got red with emotions...

Though nothing would be said from Lightning's direction as she would head over to... a quiet corner. 'Oh gawd, here it comes... I really did it now.' Souji was trying to figure out as many escape possibilities as possible, in case things got hasty. Though, he didnt think that she would hit him. Not now, not after not hitting him all night... slash day. They had a wonderf-... scratch that. Souji had a wonderful time. Lightning didnt seem to mention anything about how her day truly went. So Souji would be going out on the limb when thinking that she would have this majestic day with unicorns and dolphins, and that one ray of sunshine hitting like a spotlight on them both wearing some sort of tuxedo and her in an elegant dress picked from amongst her favorite colors... no. None of that. He knew for sure that wasnt going through her mind. Though, what was? Did he make a good impression? Was this going to turn into something that she felt she could trust him? He was the Shadow Guard. He was the ANBU that would never allow for his superior to be harmed on his watch.

What could it be? What was she working on? Souji's body tensed up a bit as he could feel her body turning. Well, not 'feel' but he could sense she was about to move her body into his direction after hearing the tale tale signs of metal hitting glass. Or some sort of 'clink' noise. She's reach out to him with an envelope. Her words, resonated within his mind for a moment before he would react, 'Was this out of pity?' no, her tone and her eyes did not look concerned. More so they looked as if she was debating within herself about how he would react to her. So they were in an endless loop of wavering to the person's reaction to the next thing being taken. And the ball was in his court right now. He could also hear Hana's footsteps in the distance, and judging by the size of the house and an estimate of how quickly she was walking against the floor. Air resistance. And hesitation within the walk. Amongst other things. She would be in the the room within the next ten to fifteen seconds. So within this moment, he'd have to just take everything into consideration. "Thank you. However, I call it a draw.", nodding with a small smile... VERY VERY SMALL SMILE on his face before taking the envelope. "We'll play again, when you're at your best. And I hope to earn this...", sliding the envelope into his jacket pocket right as Hana entered the room sporting some new head gear. Thought he would never open this envelope until they played again... that was a promise within Souji himself.

He couldnt help but to chuckle though, "Dont worry Miss Hana, I'll not be getting you sick... It seems I'm just about to be on my way out.", nodding he'd stand to his feet before bowing to Lightning and then Hana, They'd guide him to the door... and everything seemed like a wonderful ending. Alot better than it could've been in the end on things. However, this was more so an experience that would set up many more experiences for the future. Moving down their steps he'd plant his feet once he got to the bottom before turning to them and waving. "Thank you both for a wonderful night and the amazing food..." then he would hear Lightning's 'goodbye', and he understood it... more than Hana would. It was how they said things. Maybe there was no underlining fact with it... but she now knew the person she worked with. Seeing him at the job would make judgement for and against him a bit easier, she's stay unbiased however, it was her job to be unbiased. However, this would make things easier because, by her knowing him at least even a bit now. She would understand why he said and did certain things. And that was something to take from the night... Or at least thats what Souji would take from this. He now knew what the woman behind the armor was like when she was partially vulnerable. She wasnt the hard ass that she seemed to be. She had a life, worries, and a family to protect. Just like him. She was human. Which would make this all the more real in the end...

"I shall see you Lightning... Until we meet again.", and with that, he'd dissipate in the shadows and begin his way home.

[MFT]
[Topic Left]