Their potential sponsor offered a flute of bubbly to the mercenary youth, it was likely that the sweet fluid was indistinguishable from *sigh* 'pop' to his uncultured palate. A 'waste' some would claim, but that is the essence of wealth - to squander it without fear because you simply have such glorious excess
"No thanks. Clouds the mind and kills the body."
The young man declined the offered drink. How dull, a health nut. At least he knew what champagne was, while not entirely redeeming at least the boy was not a cultureless heathen and he might be a solid investment if his sentiment preserved his peak potential and his capcity for success was worth maintaining. Hirotomi was appraising Shiromaru as well as the rest of them as he would a potentially valuable gem being peddled by a possible shyster.
You can call me Shiromaru.
The flute was returned. Was there a bloodline limit that was obvious? Pearly white eyes or demonic features? He looked a bit too young for this but the heir has seen enough in his travels and dealings to know that age had very little to do with one's ultimate skill. He would look into the name, see if he was known in any of his circles or circles he had influence over.
"The fall of Mist has been nothing but a benefit to me & the name is Miroku Akkuma..."
The former Kiri-nin claimed. Two of three names shared. Aburabuta of course wondered how true Akkuma's words were. It was uncommon for a shinobi to disparage their own community. There was a sense of nationalism. A sense of pride and heritage in their homeland. His denial of either sat strange with the businessman but it was too early to jump to conclusions just yet. Of course Kirigakure had no direct relevance to him, however behavior was a different matter.
Its been a while Akkuma.
Shirmaru greeted the Kirigakurian. They knew each other. Associates? Acquaintances? Hard to say but he would find out in due time. Out of the corner of his eye he watched Akkuma sample the offered drink. It would have a full body and splendid sweet notes, it was indeed the best one could buy in this desert-hick town. There was no reason to ever have anything less than the best. Aburabuta answered the mercenary's questions simply enough. He had no desire to go into detail. Details were for winners.
Some of his plans involved secrets he would only be willing to share with his most trusted inner circle but the -why- was basic and obvious enough: there were profits to be had and he was seeking his full share.
There were some specifics that would involve a long-term agenda for this fledgling protagonist but it was unlikely any of these men before him would prove themselves worthwhile or live long enough to learn much more. If they did, perhaps their relationship could be mutually beneficial.
"Your terms are agreeable. We have a compact."
And Shiromaru agreed simply. Truly he was not a man of many words. Aburabuta stood up and extended a gloved hand to Akkuma, the better dressed of the trio but still garbed in unfashionable rags in his opinion to seal the agreement with a simple handshake. Some say it is dangerous making contracts with demons, but men are just as terrible. "An agreement then."
A gentleman's pact was made.
Out of the corner of his eye he would watch as Ao drained his drink like a heathen. He cringed.
When do we start?
Shirmaru asked, the scrappy street-rat was likely his favorite. Strait to the brass tacks. The answer was of course obvious: today.
He was in a bit of a rush because his last buy-in's had an unfortunate accident but thankfully nobody was going to find their bodies.
“Well it looks like we’ve got a couple of bad-asses over here.”
The curious one said as he looked to either side of him at his fellow former-mist shinobi.
“Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for a good fight, but I like to know a little bit about who and what I’m fighting for.”
He pointed at the slips of paper. Aburabuta released a charming laugh, it sounded like money
. "I assumed that you already knew,"
Hirotomi replied. "Read any paper, business, social and sometimes fashion and you would find my name."
He waved his hand dismissively and sighed. How could he expect a barely literate to read the business section, it was far too deep in the publication and it was likely he never got through the cartoons. "I am an heir to the Aburabuta name,"
a surname that used to carry some weight domestically and abroad but it would seem likely that the name would fall on deaf ears.
“Are you telling me that you have a hidden village of your own? And let’s say we win this tournament for you, what do you get out of it?”
Straight to the point. A disbeliever. Aburabuta leaned over the table, his groomed brow arched. "You mean to tell me that you think that a man with means would not?"
It was a basic truth men with money could buy anything -- friendship, loyalty and love being among them if you knew the price to pay. He had a name, he had the means to buy men... so yes, he had a 'hidden village.' He would pull himself away with an air of confidence, it would be odd considering that he seemed comfortable in a small space surrounded by potentially morally ambiguous individuals. "As for what I might gain...?"
He let his sentence trail off as he shrugged his shoulders. Some secrets were his to keep, "if things work out I might be willing to share."
A relationship with him would be profitable
for them both if they had sufficient value.
“Also, I assume that if we take you up on your offer, that this is an ‘all expenses paid’ kinda deal. Cause if it’s not, well that’s a deal breaker right there.”
Aburabuta repeated before he let out a dry cough that he politely covered with his hand but he was unable to contain it. A riotous laughter would erupt from the businessman. "A-a hotel room!"
He laughed harder, tears rolled down his cheeks. "And a few meals!"
He doubled over. "That is... that is cheaper than the glass of champagne you rejected! It's pennies!"
It took him a moment to compose himself. "Sure-sure, presidential suite and a classy whore for each of you."
He coughed as he tried to suppress his laughter. "How pedestrian to be concerned with such things..."
he concluded, "but I will need some assurances from each of you. Assurances that you can actually fight."
He would peel his glove off his left hand. Was he going to throw his towel in the ring? Of course not.
He eyed Ao's glass, how did he get ice in his flute. A part of him felt sick. Watered down champagne is like eating off the children's menu in a five star restaurant. It is important to note that there are no children's menu in any restaurant worth its ranking.
“The wine is too sweet, by the way.”
"No, it is just watered down. Where... why do you have ice in your glass?"
His brow was furrowed, he was visibly bothered by the uncultured consumption. It was somewhat painful.
He pulled his attention back to the actual discussion. Distractions were for poor people like them. "In any case,"
he recomposed himself. "ATTENTION PATRONS!"
Hirotomi raised his voice to a stern tone slightly louder than he was speaking with the trio and the restaurant halted. The servers, some carrying potted plants, a few boxes to simulate stealthy service maneuvers would gently place their props on the floor. Customers would stop eating or talking, initially this would be those closest to their table. Yes, they were listening in, and like a wave silence would encompass the busy restaurant. Had he 'bought' his patrons? Yes, of course.
What sort of enormously wealthy villain would he be if he depended on customers at a campy restaurant? Well, there was one customer in the far back corner. They got the message when the notice the grave-like silence that befell the restaurant. They looked at each other and then at the rest of the space, with an uncomfortable expression they joined the flock.
Aburabuta excused himself from the shared table and started to walk to the center of the restaurant. He would depress a button, it was almost invisible but it was there on one of the pillars. The floor started to part, tables would be pulled to the left and the right with 'patrons' still seated. A large central space would emerge. No, it was not a cliche pit filled with alligators, lions or sandworms. It was simply an arena. A rather sizable one in fact. The implication here was obvious, this was a test to determine their skill and mettle before Hirotomi invests in them. "Time to put their chakra where their mouth is right!"
Hirotomi announced, there were cheers in response. He would gesture the trio to come forward and to enter the arena.
If any (looking at you Shiromaru) rush over then they would hear the instructions first. "This is a three-way battle, I have a medic on hand. Before I invest in you"
yes they were quite the investment "I want to be certain you are more than merely chakra capable."
"In fact, win or lose you will get a little something to hold you over until you travel to Tea Country."
|OC offer: MISSION REWARD S RANK
- Success: Being last one standing in a three-way fight.
- Failure: Losing in a three way fight.
- You may opt out of this and not fight at all.
- This will be using the new system stuff a bit early.
- Because this is outside of the mod period this would be a no-kill fight.
- Word Count and post count for missions is still required. If you do less than an S Rank worth of words or post you would get the highest possible rank you meet the requirements for (so be a bit verbose).
Money is often a compelling factor but the chance to fight would have been likely enough for the more hot-blooded among them. "But the winner gets a larger share."
His smile was slimy and yes he was asking you to fight for cash.
|You're going to have the chance to test out some new toys. Get your updates taken care of in missing lands for a three-way combat. Goal: be the last one standing. This is your chance to see how certain things interact and to test tour build for tweaks.|