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Zetsukuro: Shinzui Kitsune Clan

Setting

Zetsukuro: Shinzui Kitsune Clan
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Zetsukuro

Welcome to the Shinzui Kitsune Clan

Minimap

Zetsukuro is a part of Zetsukuro: Shinzui Kitsune Clan.

9 Characters Here

Mashio Miyazaki [21] A child prodigy all grown up, and learning that she must change.
Akimoto Tsugaru [18] "Samurai? Never met one..."
Sugahara Matsu [18] Liked by many but respected by few.
Zetsumie Aku [16] Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you assasins.
Masao [3] I'm a lover, not a fighter... but I'll protect what I love.
Tatsuo [2] Vision without action is daydream. Action without vision is nightmare.
Setenani Berukanyu [0] People cant fly.. unless they mess with me.
Takeo [0] I'll be your sunshine on a cloudy day.
Kodora [0] How would you know if I got smart with you?

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Setting

4 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Akimoto Tsugaru Character Portrait: Mashio Miyazaki Character Portrait: Zetsumie Aku Character Portrait: Sugahara Matsu
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#, as written by Seerow
For Akimoto a the mission was a bit of an enigma. Such dangerous opposition with undocumented abilities combined to make one of the most exciting and terrifying ventures the shinobi could ever hope to embark upon. Of course it stood to reason that there was some kind of misinformation. It certainly would explain their choice of delegation to Sugahara, and would actually make for a rather bemusing joke. Yet he couldn't help but allow himself to fantasize about the nature of their mission. He could return home as Akimoto, the blade that tore through a kami. At the same time, it wasn't so far fetched an idea that he could never see the village again.

Zetsumie was coming with them but this did not bring any comfort to Akimoto. The elder ninja was a powerful force but his reputation wasn't in the safekeeping of his comrades. While the details were foggy, it was known that Zetsumie had lost his former apprentice. Through wild speculation or not, the situation was less then ideal. Zetsumie would get the job done if the task before them could be accomplished.

Strangely it was in Mashio that he found a private reserve of resolve. Though he would never admit it to himself, she was still superior in his mind. Yes today he had eked a victory, but he had done so with the addition of intense training. Weeks had been spent and milestones accomplished and it all amounted to little in their duel. Akimoto has the resolve and the nerve to grow, but it was Mashio who had the true potential. Though he hated it, he was gladdened for her company and more importantly her talent.

Preparations were hardly needed he had been in anticipation for an outing in some time. Food and supplies were constantly restocked in hope and all that he had left to accomplish was to ditch his armor in favor of stealth. He gave up the armor reluctantly but understood his mission demanded otherwise. Stealth wasn't Akimoto's strong point but he could fight with the best of them. All that remained would be to gather the various tools that could be needed.

When he returned to the appointed gathering he had said nothing. Moving about in his travel guise and abandoning most anything that resembled the armored-nin's iconic appearance. He had kept his contributions to himself for the time being, their journey would take the path decided by the eldest. Though Sugahara had expressed a wise course of action, he knew it would ultimately be decided by whomever had both the most prestige and loudest opinion.

Setting

4 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Akimoto Tsugaru Character Portrait: Mashio Miyazaki Character Portrait: Zetsumie Aku Character Portrait: Sugahara Matsu
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#, as written by Wrenn
Every journey changes a man -- even short walks after a heavy dinner can induce the kind of quiet reflections that are the origins of soul-searching. Whenever Sugahara Matsu had real difficulty with his reports -- when understanding simply wouldn't come -- he would put down his work and walk about the shinobi village or sometimes its immediate surroundings, and by the time he'd returned his frame of mind had sufficiently changed where he could suddenly make heretofore unseen connections between the differing and sometimes contradictory reports that passed across his desk.

If such effects could be felt in even the shortest of walks, what then could the old scholar expect from a months-long journey across the land? Was it as his old mentor Arashiyami Kozaburo had quoted? That 'he who returns from a journey is not the same man as he who left'? Sugahara Matsu found the prospect daunting.

Still, as the group began their journey the dark clouds lingering in his mind slowly but surely evaporated, leaving only rays of sunshine and warmth. The land was beautiful, the weather perfect and the company interesting. There was Zetsumie Aku, the living legend; mysterious, dour and capable. There was Akimoto Tsugaru, young and inexperienced but whose brashness was tempered by a quiet and introspective soul that Matsu sensed as being not altogether different from his own. Then there was Mashio Miyazaki, who was like an ornery house cat -- pleasant in limited doses, but fickle and prickly and prone to lashing out.

As their journey began, the company had walked more or less in a loose single file, so that each was in his or her own world, silent and isolated from the others. As the morning sun slowly climbed in the sky, the formation began to change at random -- sometimes Matsu found himself side by side with one of the other three, enjoying a conversation of small talk and pleasantries; other times all of them spoke together in their first real group dynamic. These conversations didn't last long -- as though Zetsumie's overbearing presence required Miya and Akimoto to bristle. One of the two youths would snap at the other, then there would be a short burst of heated comments before both retreated to their solitude once more. Matsu hoped that they would come to accept each other's company as the journey went on. For his own peace of mind of course, but for the strength of unity and success in their dangerous mission.

"Perhaps we can take a quick break here?" he offered to the group as the sun neared its peak in the clear blue sky. They'd been walking for several hours, and while the three chunin were no doubt ready and able to continue for days without rest, the old genin was ready for a good meal and a nap. He would find neither today, as lunch consisted of some root vegetables and a negligible bit of smoked mackerel; and the group was ready to move on almost immediately after the small meal. With a hearty sigh, he licked the grease from his fingers before wiping them on the grass, and moved on with the others.

After the shared meal the group's spirits seemed higher than before, and even the two competitive youngsters shared a few words that weren't snapped off between gritted teeth. Matsu found Zetsumie to be a fount of information when the stoic warrior deigned to speak -- the man was a walking treasure trove of exciting trials and tribulations from his storied past. Akimoto possessed a scholar's mind to be sure, and Matsu found their conversations to be stimulating, although a bit one-sided. And even the tempestuous Miyazaki was entertaining as well, although too eager to see slights where there were none.

"Oh dear," Matsu muttered as the small group crested a hill, where they saw a steep ravine barred their pass. The floor of the trench was no more than four or five paces deep, but recent rains had turned its steep slopes into mud -- the robed scholar didn't much like the idea of struggling to climb up that slippery, crumbling slope, or of falling back to the muddied floor again and again. He scanned up and down its narrow banks, looking for a drier space to traverse. Instead, he saw a short ways along the ravine that there were two trees -- one on either side -- whose high branches intermingled enough where passage could be attempted. Still, even the soft mud floor wouldn't make safe a fall from that height.

The kunoichi spotted the trees as well, and made her way to them. Placing her pack on the ground, she nimbly scurried up the trunk and disappeared into the branches. Matsu heard the leaves rustle and watched them fall to the ground as the girl made her slow progress across, her every footstep accompanied by an ominous snapping noise. Eventually she reappeared above them. "I don't think you three will be able to cross here," she admitted. "The branches barely support my weight."

"Can you cross?" the scholar asked, and predictably the girl stiffened as though at a challenge. "Of course," she snapped, as though daring Matsu to contradict her. When he said nothing she relaxed. "Probably," she added quietly.

Setting

4 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Akimoto Tsugaru Character Portrait: Mashio Miyazaki Character Portrait: Zetsumie Aku Character Portrait: Sugahara Matsu
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For the majority of their trip Zetsumie seemed to trail be hind the group most of all. He was being rather silent and spoke only when spoken to or about. He had brought Kuro with him and had been leading the work horse along. As they neared their first little obstacle He remained silent seemingly observing the others. He seemed to allow his mind to wander for certain subjects abut for now he was focused on the task at hand. "Aki; Take Kuro and check for any alternative routs." He said leading the black horse over to the younger. "Be quick about it." He said before moving towards the tree the young girl scuttled up. "Come down from there we needn't be making any trip back home so soon. "Zetsumie Called up before removing a knife and going to fetch a thin sapling to see just how deep the w mud would sink if prodded in to. If worse came to worse they could always ax down some smaller trees and create a path. Zetsumie paused looking to Matsu as he stabbed the sapling in to the mud. "Don't supposes you're up for rope climbing?" he asked.

Setting

4 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Akimoto Tsugaru Character Portrait: Mashio Miyazaki Character Portrait: Zetsumie Aku Character Portrait: Sugahara Matsu
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#, as written by Wrenn
"That seems to be the best solution," Matsu agreed, gathering up some of his beard between his teeth to chew on fretfully -- an absent-minded habit he sunk into when worried. He wasn't afraid of getting muddied of course, nor was he particularly concerned about climbing the rope back up the other side, but the fat old scholar was worried about how the others would perceive him. He would have thought that in his old age that others' opinions of him wouldn't matter -- but he was so conscious of being unsuited for a mission such as this, that he couldn't shake the feeling that each of the others harbored those same doubts about him.

He looked up from the ravine to see Miyazaki climbing down from the far-side tree, having safely made the crossing. "Throw me the rope!" she called, so that she could anchor it to the tree for the others to scale the steep, loose mud wall. Matsu stepped back to give Zetsumie room. "It will be difficult to bring the work horse along," he acknowledged. "I hope Akimoto-sama finds another way across." It would be hard enough for Matsu to climb the rope himself, much less haul the pack animal behind!

Gingerly, Sugahara Matsu made his way down the side of the slope -- half sliding, half crawling. Nearly tumbling as his foot sucked deep into the muck, but he was able to wrench himself free without going sprawling at the bottom of the ditch. He made his way across the thin expanse to the other side, and grabbed the rope that Mashio Miyazaki had secured. He gave it a few experimental tugs before putting his full weight into climbing.

The muddy walls made the task difficult, but Matsu was surprised and pleased by his relatively smooth ascent. Sure, none of the other three companions were likely to be getting jealous of his skills in the near future, but he hadn't embarrassed himself either. With a groan and a helping hand from the kunoichi, the old genin hauled himself out over the lip of the ravine, rolling onto his back.

"Whoof!" he exhaled, before climbing to his feet and spending a few fruitless moments using handfuls of grass to wipe the mud off his arms, legs and belly.

"I half thought we were going to have to leave you behind, Matsu-sama," the girl joked, gracing him with a quick smile.

"Perhaps that would have been wiser," he laughed ruefully. He turned to watch the others.