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A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

The beautiful and undeveloped parts of the nation are called the heartland. Where humanity has not gathered in numbers, native animals and vegetation thrive. Giant amphibian creatures with teeth are the main predators in the area, while herbivorous beasts of varying sizes and shapes feed on the many trees and lush grasslands. Life is abundant and this allows the region's adventurous settlers to enjoy a living free of the threat of starvation.

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Byakko Yukiin
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A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Sat Feb 09, 2019 3:28 am

The name was misleading as the number of hearts here in the so-called 'heart land' was actually less than those in the city, humans were scarce and of the creatures that did reside here a large swathe of them were arthropods that didn't have hearts or non-human creatures that did have hearts but weren't exactly what one had in mind. Ripping the hearts out of fish or particularly nosey predatory mammals wasn't what he had planned for his field trip anyways so it didn't really matter but the false advertisement still stung a bit, ya know? It's the little things.

Like young budding kunoichi that he seemed to be shackled to him anytime he left the village. Before long he'd be on a personal name basis with every kunoichi in Kumogakure based solely on his excursions from beyond the walls of the mountain fortress.

Still, this was a bit different as he needed another body present for emergency situations and out here in the wilds there weren't many suitable candidates for provisions with the aforementioned lack of humans in this 'land of hearts'. Dealing with these extra-dimensional beasts came with risks and those risks meant the potential loss of life or injury in a place where he couldn't replenish his cores. So why not bring along a resource like another human? That could extend his life span for another attempt to kill whatever had killed him.

Or at least that was one theory, in reality, a shinobi of this one's caliber wouldn't sustain him for longer than a few minutes and would be a massive waste. It would be like trying to run a mountain off the energy from a weed. The primary reason for choosing to involve other parties was because he knew about his own predisposition to risk-taking behaviors when he was younger and he didn't need anyone coming home with broken bits and pieces because of their pursuits of extraplanar powers. Better to guide them on this path under his tutelage and worry about making them into the chakra equivalent of a potato chip if it came to that.

Yukiin swung wide with one arm, its talons ripping through the flying pests in his path who rapidly adjusted to their new employment of falling aside him as he took point, leaving the girl behind him to handle the task of watching behind him within his blind spot while he managed navigation. It was an important job, he'd stressed as much, but whether she'd be any good at it was another matter. The journey was one that he'd taken very slowly, this place wasn't close to home and it took a day at top speed to arrive but at her point in development she'd die straining herself to keep up. So he took it slow, refusing to carry another shinobi with functional legs on principle.

He wasn't hurting for time and observing the kunoichi over the days allowed him to take stock of her abilities to fend for himself as he made no effort to pack food or water, things he didn't need, and told her not to bother bringing them either. Three days, she could survive three days without food or water, but the intention was to see if she could forage for herself. Yukiin wouldn't have much trouble capturing and preparing prey, in fact he'd packed a preparatory sleeve of blades just for such a purpose, but that wouldn't teach her anything. She could bumble with his tools instead, ideally she wouldn't swallow anything poisonous but that was her problem.

Before departing the gates he'd been clear.

"Three days at a cautious pace, one way, taking the 'scenic' route, you will have access to my tools and books to use in any way you feel appropriate to obtain food, water, and anything else you feel you need when we break for camp each day. You will walk three paces behind me and will inform me of any threats to our safety or health. Simple, agreeable, terms and in exchange we will petition an extra planar creature and hopefully it goes smoothly enough to end in a binding contract. If that sounds good, follow."

He hadn't lied about the scenic route, these places were full of their own wild and natural beauty that was also part of what he hoped to impart to the youth - that the world beyond the gates was pretty, but that dropping your guard could turn a dream into a nightmare at the snap of a finger. Tall grasses with tufts of flowering plants were pretty but could also hide enemies, bodies of water teeming with dragonflies might be where enemy scouts lie in wait, and so on. Leaving the job of look out to her meant she had to consider these things, if she took it seriously, but he couldn't really control that part.

The icy Byakko unfurled the scroll from his pocket when they broke for camp on the third day, clicking out a claw and pricking his thumb. The camp ground glimmered softly in the low fire, something he accepted a human would need to be comfortable here even if he hated it, as the surrounding brush plants smoothly waved in the quiet winds. Neither the wind nor the flames changed the Medic's speech however as he dripped the white fluid that was his 'blood' onto the paper.

The scroll wound itself up in response like a snapping tape measure, falling into the fire to a roar of scattered ash. These scent products had improved radically over the few years he had been using them, allowing him to infuse his own chakra to increase the output and ranged coupled with ash to carry the scent further...ingenious really. The wafting flavor of the soot-stained air was formulated to capture the attention of the extraplanar beasts that were, seemingly, always shy of human contact without incentive.

"The call is out, if its answered please remember to be on your best behavior and to be prepared to protect yourself if required. There is no assurance who or what answers will be interested in pleasantries. Don't assume that my presence means you'll be safe, these are unpredictable matters."

Yukiin slid back in his fold-out chair like a retiree on his last day, clicking his teeth against his 'pocky' stick of frozen coffee as the broken piece fell down his throat, the flush of caffeine bringing him the small pleasure of its toxic influence.

"If you die its a paperwork nightmare, try not to."
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Irie Airi
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Sat Feb 09, 2019 5:31 am

Airi woke up early to the sound of someone knocking on her door. She was disoriented and a little lost but eventually she found a hoodie to put over her top and some shorts. She made her way to the door and opened it. It was early and as she wiped the sleep from her eyes she looked up and saw someone she had not seen in...what was it now four months or so...maybe even five? Her face turned into a wide brimmed smile as she said, “Good Morning...Byakko-san.” She bowed to him as well as she could while keep her eyes open and said, “How can I help you this morning?”

He gave her a very specific thing to follow. Pace for how quickly they would be moving. What she would be allowed to touch of his. Things that would allow her to eat and drink. Plus anything she decided that she would need while on the road. She would watch his back and in exchange she would be allowed a chance to meet some extra planar beast. Honestly she was just happy she got picked for a side adventure with Byakko-san. Why he picked her was really up in the air but this would give her ample ability to show him just how far she had come. She was ready to show him everything she had!

“Sure let me pack my bag! You can come in if you want!” Byakko had refused to come in and said to be quick about it as they were already losing precious daylight. She had noticed the clock, he came just before dawn...either way she did not pack much. Mostly her shinobi supplies, a blanket for could nights. A tooth brush and really not much else. She did pack on pair of clothing to change into but aside from that she got packed quickly. Byakko-san asked why it took her so long and she responded with, “A lady needs to be prepared.” He scowled at that but honestly she got ready in seven minutes. A minute of that was leaving a note telling everyone not to worry and that she was safe with Byakko-san. No one would really check this note but what if a teacher did or something?

-+-+-+-+-+-+-+

The first day had been easy goings as far as she could tell. The mountain ranges were interesting to say the least. She had never taken the route Byakko took and as such it was mostly just watching your step or sliding correctly. He gave her advice when he felt appropriate and she had only slipped twice. He saved her the first time but made her save herself the second time. While she expected he would have saved her the second, she felt she at least met a bear minimum expectation.

Her maximum speed was nothing compared to Byakko-san. She had told him she could keep up and she was pretty sure he went at 20% his max speed and lost her. He waited for her and then basically mentioned that she needed to speed up. Byakko-san was very good about pushing Airi up to a point but never going beyond what he felt she could handle. Maybe she had not improved as much as she thought she had because he seemed to have read her abilities like a book.

The first night out among the stars she asked Byakko quite a few questions as she read his book. She had thankfully found a few streams along the way but food had been impossible for her. Byakko informed her she would have to do better tomorrow or else she would start to have problems. She stayed up as late as she could but with the early start and a day full of exercise she barely made it through the first few chapters.

-+-+-+-+-+-+

Airi was very hungry by midday the following day. She was really only getting naps and not a full night's sleep. Byakko was pushing her so they could make it to their destination. It was on this day that she realized how much slower she was making this trip for him. She was now in a place known as Solum de Asphodelus. It was a plains area and what she suspected was that this was where most of the grains and stuff for Kumo were farmed. It was here that she managed to gain some plant based food but more importantly...she killed her very first living thing.

She felt terrible. She had found a rabbit out in the plains and Byakko simply said that was going to be her best chance for food and she needed to move quickly. she moved quickly. Maybe it was hunger but she used her Piercing blade and stabbed it clean through. It was here that he taught her how to properly clean and cook an animal, or well watched her and scowled when she did something wrong. Though he told her to wait till that evening to really eat her prey. She had protested and told him he was mean and he gave her an ultimatum. If she could at least move reasonably fast, they would set up camp quicker this evening. Airi could not remember that entire afternoon to evening and she had no idea if she even got there quicker but when Byakko said to stop she could barely wait to eat that whole rabbit. It had not been enough but that with some rouge potatoes, that thankfully Byakko’s book informed her some had been poisonous and some not, she managed to least eat well.

Once again she slept soundly but had very pleasant dreams.

-+-+-+-+-+-+

When she awoke it did not take them long to finally end up in what Byakko called, The Heartland of Kaminari no Kuni. He merely referenced it as Heart land though. It was here that she really needed to keep her eyes open. See the other two days had been more of a survival test but today things were actually causing them problems and Byakko-san...from what she could tell was getting annoyed by them. Byakko’s claws ripped through anything and everything. Airi barely had to do much. Just the occasional fight or stabbing. If nothing was noteworthy at least she could kill decently sized bugs.

At the end of the final day she managed to spear a few fish but she was too worried about eating some poisonous plant to trust anything else. She did managed to heat up water and purify it though that made Byakko at least give her a mild look. She was no survivor person but a few days out in this beautiful countryside really made her happy. If he took anything from her abilities or lack thereof, she did not complain to him once. Though her over enthusiasm probably bothered him. She did talk a bit too often, pointing out stupid obvious things or beauty for beauty's sake. He told her to focus and pay attention which she figured meant she had been too lenient on her scouting job.

When it came to camping on the last day Byakko pulled out a scroll and told her this was where they would try and find what they were looking for. Byakko made a fire which Airi knew hurt him but she shrugged her off anyway. She really could survive without it. The second night she had tried to get close to Byakko only to find he lacked any warmth...thus she did not try and curl up next to him again.

He burned the scroll that had his blood on it and told her that she needed to be on her best behavior and to be prepared for anything. Everything was a cake walk up to what would be coming and she needed to be ready. When he finished she nodded and held up her hand, “I will not perish!”

With that she got nervous as she sat by the fire. She dared not speak for she figured it might make something go wrong. Byakko was a statue and while she was not as stoic she still held herself quiet. Hopefully whatever he wanted to have work would work...
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Otani Ryuichi
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Wed Feb 13, 2019 6:40 pm

When one is searching for trouble, they tend to fall into one of two categories. They're either one to embrace the problem or danger they searched for, or they take a drastic shift in their resolve and flee. What these two shinobi were doing would have very well caused them to fall into a situation where their own resolve will be tested...

The scent of the scroll, and the smoke and ashes that filled the air didn't seem to do much at first, as one would expect for a signal. One would have to expect whatever they were searching for to require dropping whatever they were doing to wait days, weeks, or even months to prepare and find out what the scent came from. Luckily, the duo in front of the fire only needed to wait several seconds. As if turning on a siren, howling was heard in all directions. Left, right, in front, and behind were all assaulted with the loud, high pitched sound of a wolf.

These howls even seemed to take on the characteristics of a real howl, with them all having to stop to (what would be assumed to be) breath individually, and they all had a unique pitch to them. If this was a genjutsu, it was an advanced one, and it didn't seem to be stopping soon. Only grow progressively louder....and closer.

Eventually, the howling was met with a sound of rustling branches, and plantlife, which was then met with surrounding movement all around them and eventually, countless sets of glowing yellow eyes, with their matching bodies hiding in the darkness of cover.

"Who are you two? Tell us, or we'll have to make you pay for that....stench." One voice said from beside Yukiin, which seemed to sound like a grown man with a smoker's cough.

"Yeah! We were going after this huuuge bird, and now we can't smell it past that shi-" said a second younger male voice directly behind Irie. being interrupted by the first voice. "Calm." He said, before appearing in plain sight. It was a snow white wolf, with matted fur and a missing eye that he didn't care to keep open to reveal a gross, skin filled indent in place of the seeing orb. However, this wolf also had a vest on that was eerily similar to some village's own combat vests, as well as several tools. To top it off, the elder wolf didn't seem to carry much of a dangerous aura, or killing intent...even if he was annoyed.

"I'm guessing that was your intention...unless this is some really potent bug repellent." He finished, looking over the small girl and white haired young man.

"My name is Inuya."
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Byakko Yukiin
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:45 pm

"We are shinobi, based on your attire I believe you are already aware of that and familiar with what it means or you just coincidentally developed very human-like tools."

Yukiin gestured to the weapon-laden vest, his eyes passing over the creature's body with a slow, methodical, gaze. The cold flicker of light behind the vision seemed to calmly settle as the assessment was completed and they were both deemed safe, for the time being. Though his body did not move or adjust unnaturally on the outside, the substances that composed his form beneath the surface shifted in their currents to ready the flesh for movement or aggression if needed. He was a cat after all, trusting dogs not to lunge was unwise if they discerned what he was or knew the significance of his family name. Lying would've solved that problem but it was considered a faux pas to do so to contract creatures, they didn't usually like it.

"I am Byakko, Yukiin. The scent was indeed intended to capture your attention although I was unaware that it was unappealing to you, I will let the seller know so that in future more appealing blends are made; if you have any requests let me know and I'll relay them."

He knew he was being observed but it was a wasted effort on their part, if Yukiin had arrived with the intent to harm then they wouldn't have stepped into this clearing without catching a trip wire to the neck and an explosive tag or sixteen. The flashy nature of their entrance told him that they were concerned, if they felt in charge then they would have no need for such a flagrant display of power, so either they were all afraid of shinobi (or these particular ones) or they were smaller in number than they lead on. It could be clones, could be Genjutsu, but the only way to find out would be to start throwing things at them to see if they popped or performing a Kai, neither of which he could really get away with without seeming aggressively disrespectful...plus if they were an illusion that might provoke an attack. The shinobi didn't stir much from his seat while he thought his way through things, not wanting to rise and startle the beasts or give them the impression that he intended to take any aggressive action, though he did bend his arm slowly to the earth and then back and forward into a thrust to cast a fistful of dirt into the fire to snuff it, and its smells, out.

"It isn't an immediate solution but the scent no longer has an origin, it should fade in time. As for your bird...can't recall seeing, hearing, smelling, or otherwise sensing one but I'm not a tracking expert. Just a Medic. If we've interrupted your dinner plans then my accomplice has been training the past few days just for such an occasion."

The creature gestured to the young kunoichi, passing the buck off to her with a grin. He mentioned his medical expertise but failed to offer the fix Inuya's eye, figuring that it was a status symbol at this stage and that if he wanted it restored he could ask as much. Offering to do so might come across as offensive, better to wait to be asked.
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Irie Airi
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Thu Feb 14, 2019 10:22 pm

Airi shivered at the howling that came almost directly after he started to burn whatever it was he was doing to attract whatever it was he was trying to attract. The howls were getting louder and louder and Airi looked to Byakko-san who remained like a statue. Unfazed by anything that was going on. She swallowed and kept in her sitting position by the fire. She did not want to mess anything up and tried to look as clam as she could. As the yellow color of eyes started to appear around them she held her tongue. Byakko-san still remained unmoving and as such she gritted her teeth to keep any noise from coming out of herself. She was so nervous this was probably just as bad as the rock throwing incident.

A voice came from behind Byakko-san which stated that they needed to explain themselves or else they would pay for that terrible stench. A voice behind Airi caused her to jump and she trembled as it mentioned that they lost sight of their prey. He was told to be quiet but she knew something larger and threatening was behind her.

She could see the white hair of a large wolf came into focus and she nearly felt her mouth drop. She had never seen an animal so large in her life. The fact that it was talking made all the more impressive. She had an urge to both play with him and hug him and to bow down and listen to everything he said. He wore a shinobi vest which clearly meant he outranked her since she was so small. Inuya was his name and she felt her heart race. He was so cool…he matched Byakko-san very well.

Byakko-san was snarky to the wolf or at least how she felt he spoke. The wolf had also mentioned bug repellent as such she wondered if they were just sassing each other. Byakko-san then introduced himself and mentioned that he would make sure this scent would never happen again. It made sense that if the animals did not care for it then they started off on a bad foot which is terrible.

Byakko-san threw dirt onto the fire to snuff out the smell. Byakko-san mentioned that he was a medic but that if they needed help tracking she would be able to help him. A small ‘huh!?’ played on her face but then she remembered they were asked to introduce themselves. Airi knew dogs did not like it fi they saw you as a threat and you looked into their eyes so she kept her face downward. She bowed deeply at the waist as low as she could go without looking foolish and said, “M-My name is I-Ire Airi. I am a young student and am m-more than willing to help you if you d-desire Inuya-sama.”

She said and added nothing else. Seeing as how she had no idea what was really going on or what she was dealing with she figured that being polite was the best way to handle things. She aimed to follow Byakko-san’s lead and compliment him however she could.
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:22 pm

Shinobi. Right. Their kind was not uncommon around these parts from time to time though it would perhaps be more preferable if they didn't have to advertise their presence to the whole entire world with that horrid odor glancing at Yukiin as he proceeded to extinguish the flames, the smell departing from the earthly plain. Well, that was a relief for now. "Thank god for that! Now, can we get on with thi-""Enough, Kaoru."Inuya growled his ears twitching in annoyance. Clearly, this white beast was the leader of the pack and it seemed Kaoru was the rebellious one, that much could be established. As for the remainder of the group, they said nothing daring not to step closer, yellow eyes flicking back and forth analyzing the duo before them, perhaps they could forgo the bird for something more...edible. Inuya betrayed no expression on his face as the shinobi identified themselves simply nodding as a confirmation after each one. It seemed like the man was the senior of the two here, that much was certain, as for the girl..well..it was not hard to tell she was still fresh. A newcomer to these parts. His mouth curled almost into a cold smirk as the thought came to him. Well, she was in for a surprise."Does it look like I require aid, child? Stop stuttering for crying out loud, that is how you will get killed out here. Have your seniors told you nothing before forcing you onto this field trip into the forest. It's not all fun and games out here, I must say."Inuya was surprisingly blunt but perhaps that was due to the fact that they had lost track of their winged, feathery victims. He would not lie, he was still slightly ticked off about that.

"Meant to capture our attention? You are either a very foolish or very brave man, Byakko Yukiin.""I say he's a little pie-.""If i hear one more word out of you, you will be conducting this hunt alone.He reprimanded Kaoru rounding on the younger beast his yellow eyes boring into the youngster's pupils."Am I understood, Kaoru?"".......Yes,Inuya..."Good. Now where was I? Ah yes."Snapping his attention back to the two humans, he focused in on the man. His words had sparked an interest..the way he carried himself. Clearly, these were not your ordinary campers. But what sort of person was so reckless that they intentionally went out of their way to throw into a air a pungent odor so strong it could attract animals of any caliber, monsters of all types lurked in these deep woods."Well, you got our attention. So speak, human. It had better be good and make it quick. Hunger does not wait for anyone."Behind him, Kaoru would nod his head eagerly up and down as if agreeing with the boss man but other than, no snappy remark came this time.

Two of the pack wolves were eyeing Airi having dubbed her as the weak link in this situation. Having seen her earlier exchange with Inuya, they were not concerned about the student and should it come to conflict, they had a fair estimate of who was to be their potential target. One of the wolves went as far as to lay down in the grassy surface though his head remained transfixed on the young kunoichi wagging his tail to and fro in a attentive manner. They had been on a serious misson tonight and this darned shinobi duo had ruined it all. It had been quite a large bird too so whatever explanation Yukkin had, it would have to be something quite exemplary. Though it seemed his next words got the attention of the pack, Inuya blinking a few times as he comprehended what he heard."For the occassion, huh?"He murmured for himself and a brief period of silence would follow than the white-maned predator shook his head gesturing with a paw towards the medic."You seem to trust us already despite having only met us. I really don't like that....I really don't."His tone grew deep almost menacing in a way before softening."But, I presume you do have to repay us in some fashion, both of you for getting in the way of our goal. So, here is what I propose. You will accompany us in our tracking and hunting of this winged devil, only and only then will this issue be resolved." The wolf who had laid down took a stand his ears perking up, the rest of the pack following suit, their eyes swinging to focus on the Byakko keen to hear his reply."Refuse if you want, I have yet to hear of someone who has held off an entire hunting pack."Inuya remarked in a bored fashion pawing the ground before him. They really needed to pick up the pace. That damned bird would get away with the time they had wasted here.[color#804000]"Do make your answer swift. We have burnt enough time here as it is."[/color]

[Greetings! I will be your temporary contract moderator for this search until Ryuichi returns. If you have any questions or inquires at all, feel free to reach out to me on-site or the Discord channel. Good luck to both of you and let's have fun!]
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Byakko Yukiin
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:38 pm

Yukiin concealed a smile at the behavior of these creatures, quite a strange blend of human and inhuman but ultimately not very unusual or straying far from either type's mindset. They were far from alien in mind but they were, definitionally, alien of form and culture and plane so it was an amusing thing to consider just how much an 'alien' was like them. The creature here that was the most divorced from this plane's occupants was the one who had lived there his entire life but as he made no outward indications of his thoughts and lacked many of the telltale human traits that would give away his internal processes, the slow clicks of these foreign ideas were unheard; the outside world was left only with a flesh that did not move without direction, a heart that did not beat except to pretend to have one, and eyes that followed the canines as the collection of predators speaking now were each playing their own game and seeing who was to be heeded and who was to be subjugated.

The young Byakko moved his vision to Kaoru, watching him like an armorer examines a weak link. His thoughts turned to considerations of the value of his life within this society of theirs as he puzzled out whether or not he could compare to the treatment of his own subordinate to this one of their own species. They gave her plenty of space, physically, but verbally they aggressed which was unusual for an animal, especially a canine. They typically engaged in physical aggression and combative gestures, nipping, pouncing, and clawing at each other to determine hierarchies so either they were more human than they realized or they were being very cautious of the girl's caretaker. Could be both.

They didn't really test him though on whether or not he was worthy of caution, they gave it freely. But they accused him of trust?

"My juniors are not taught by way of my tongue, they are taught by way of their own hands."

He rolled his arms back, left and then right, cracking shoulder bones that he didn't have as he let his talons fall from his finger tips and glisten as his response to the aggression pointed at him and the attention being given. Yukiin paused for a moment and pushed out a mist of chilled air from his lips, as if testing silent words before he made them. He had initially wanted to reserve his natural weapons as a surprise weapon, as needed, but he determined that it would be better as a preventaive measure instead - he wanted them to be aware, as they seemed to underestimate, that he was the sort they might find difficult to conflict with due to familiarity with their weapons. Still, this came at the cost of revealing their nature - his claws were feline and they would notice that...they were also crystalline ice, mixed into the bone lattice, making them glisten more than was normal but would make them much more vicious if he employed them; something they might not notice.

"Your concern is misplaced. I do not trust you, you do not trust me, and it is irrelevant both ways. You want something from me, I want something from you. I offer you my assistant and my assistance in exchange for the wrong you feel has occurred, please do not mistake my generosity as weakness or as an opportunity to leverage any threats against myself or my student."

Yukiin smiled as he spoke but it was made to appear as a callow thing, like a child trying to finger paint what a smile looked like, as it came into conflict with the severity of his tone. The tongue was a weapon, words were tools, and drawing them on someone was an act of aggression that these and many other creatures used to test the waters but it was not one that would be used to test them back if they pushed any further than this. Even a dull tongue would merit a sharp knife eventually, or in this case a sharp claw clipping the wolf's hide for the offense. He likely understood that potential threat of even dull words though or he would not have been interested in restraining his own student, he was concerned about the impression it might make or the response that might be given.

He gestured with a talon back at Airi. "It is disrespectful to show fear in front of an ally, even a potential one, please do what is within your ability to restrain it before speaking. I cannot force you into an agreement with these terms, I don't own you, but when I ask for respect from another party I expect my own to do the same."

The 'human', as they called him, locked his eyes with Inuya. His tone was as warm and cordial as he could manage, though it did not come with any accompanying smiles.

"If these terms are agreeable I accept them if she does as well, as a separate matter..."

The shinobi tapped a claw to his eye, unflinching as he did so. His tone was much colder, snapping like the winter wind before the canine's face. He waited until after Airi gave her compliance, which he was fairly certain she would, as once she involved herself in this contract he was free to change his portion of it without her consent in the matter.

"I also wager both of my eyes against your remaining eye that kunoichi Irie finds your prey before your Kaoru does. You underestimate and insult myself, my student, and my village by such assumptions of inadequacy in our instruction and ability to give instruction. She can do without nose, fur, or claw what your Kaoru does with all of these assistances - and she can do it quicker. Such is the greatness of Kumogakure and all her children."

The claw against his eye flicked down, slicing into his cheek and drawing forth the white chilling fluid that was his substitute for blood, the wafting cold that spread from the open wound in his body leaving crystalline dew behind. If they wore human clothes then it was likely they also understood how to make a handshake as he for certain did not know what they normally did to seal deals.

"But as my blood should tell you, you are wrong to call me human but may be right to call me foolish."

Yukiin's lips turned up, not in happiness or pleasure but in acknowledgment of what he believed to be a fact.

"Every soul in Kumogakure is worthy of such confidence."
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Irie Airi
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Thu Mar 14, 2019 2:25 am

The pack leader was a rather hostile individual. Airi merely offered to assist in what they messed up and he told her off. She felt herself flinch at what he said, clearly thinking that she was not useful enough to even begin to help the pack. He began to explain to her that her stuttering and looking weak would get her killed out in the wilds. She knew she needed to be stronger and more confident…but that was easier said and done. The only times she ever felt confident were when she was holding her blade. She looked down thinking that the wolf was more than likely right.

What came next in his statement made her angry. She was told that her seniors were incompetent in informing her how she would need to be and that that being outside the village was not all fun and games. Airi knew…this whole trip had been a huge growing nightmare experience for her. She took life for the first time, she was dragged through high and hell water at paces she could barely maintain. She had probably caused Yukiin a huge amount of problems being so slow. In the end sure she did feel like she was only weighing him down, but what she learned was a great many things. This wolf had no place to decided based on one thing she said if she was being properly trained or not. As he spoke on he then turned a told off his own subordinate. Airi wanted to laugh, wanted to taunt, wanted to do anything to show that maybe Karou’s superiors taught him nothing however…Airi was better than that. She could keep a level head and she could keep her mouth shut. Yukiin told her to be on her best behavior and she intended to only speak unless spoken to. If nothing else at least Yukiin would not looked bad based on anything she said…

Yukiin responded by saying that his students were not taught they were experienced. It was true that Yukin had spoken very little, his eyes and the way they slanted in certain way were the only truly tell what he was roughly thinking or feeling and that was even a stretch. Most of the time Yukiin was impossible for Airi to read. She had no idea if she was even good or bad in his eyes. His comment certainly was not defending her more than removing blame from himself. As an outsider she felt that would be interpreted as Airi was to blame not Yukiin but she knew better. Yukiin allow those to fail to just before any permanent damage could happen. He probably believed minor failure was an excellent teacher.

She could feel the eyes of the pack on the back of her head and while she could feel the tingling sensation go through her she remained steadfast. She was more focused on Yukiin after all. Yukiin started to reveal his true form…she had seen it completely once and she still found it to be pretty. Deadly…but elegant in a way.

The wolf next spoke what it was they wanted, Airi had to grit her teeth to keep quiet with what he was suggesting. He suggested the very thing Airi got chastised for from him. She wanted to do many things but silence and her beginning to stretch like Yukiin made up for her physical anxiety. He even had the gall to threaten them again…Airi was nervous, fearful but they would lose a lot to take out Yukiin. He was much stronger than they gave him credit for…speaking of which.

Yukiin began to gesture to her and she looked over. He began to explain that it was terribly rude of her to show fear to a potential ally. She looked...so confused. Was that really something that was rude? Maybe they should not be so scary what about that? Did Yukiin just do this so Karou would not feel bad or that he suffered like the wolf captain did. She wanted to protest but she bit her tongue.

“I accept as well...sorry for my misbehavior.” She lowered her head from her sitting position to show deference to the wolf. Not that her show of humility would matter. He would probably nip at her again for it.

Suddenly Yukkin’s voice grew cold and she looked up and shivered slightly, rubbing her bare arms to stop the goosebumps. He then placed a wager that Airi would be able to find the bird before the wolf Kaoru did. Airi blinked a few times and mentally scream in her mind, ‘ARE YOU AN IDIOT I HAVE BEEN HUNTING FOR ALL OF TWO DAYS NO WAY I CAN BEAT A REAL LIFE WOLF!’

Her face was as emotionless as it could be but the screaming continued. Why would he do that? She felt her heart beating like crazy...she could already see his disappointment as he looked back at her with hollow eyes. Why me? Why me? Why me?

She was skeptical of his last statement but she would not dare go against it, they needed to be unified.
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Santaru Soku
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:06 am

Okay, this was gonna be a tough cookie to crack. But in a sense, he rather liked the older shinobi. He carried a sense of pride about him, not too much pride that rendered him arrogant but just enough and not as foolish as the other one who proceeded to apologize to Inuya which only caused the beast to wince more."Do not apologize. In fact, I think it would prudent if you cease to amend that action which you have just taken. Out in the wild, that sort of approach does not fly well with some, in fact, some even take it as an insult and that can result in....deadly consequences if I do say so myself."His matted fur began to raise on end as Yukkin began to bomard them with words and with each syallable, Inuya's eyes narrowed eyeing the human letting loose a low growl towards Kaoru who made to step towards the duo hearing his name but instantly shrank back."Us? Afraid? The most successful hunter is the cautious one. We sit and analyze before striking, Do not mistake us for children, shinobi, perhaps some of the lessers here do hold you in some sort of fear but I will promise you I have seen my fair share of carnage and trapped several times, however, that does not mean I intend to simply walk into one blindly. Just because we have a mutual agreement does not mean we are friends or anything of the sort, find the damned bird and be off with your buisness....and your scent for that matter.""Yeah! Can we stop burning daylight already?!"This time, there was no reprisal for the outburst as several of the pack wolves rose to their feet shaking their head and pawing the ground as if excited to resume the journey.

The white-maned canine eyed the girl up and down, curious eyes piercing her as the Byakko's words traveled through his ear lobes."Find it before me, eh young one? Do you know what our target is, girl? These things are awfully fast and airborne so I will be most impressed if you even manage to touch a hair on this dinner meal so tell me, what makes you stand out? Why does your mentor here think you have what it takes to best a pack of seasoned hunters?"In truth, he wasn't really expecting an answer or even an attempt at one in any regard. He had simply dismissed the girl out of pity, his interest was more peaked in the man, whether that was a mistake on his part or not would be revealed soon. Glancing back into the darkness of the trees, his yellow pupils started into the low-hanging branches as if pondering something before turning back."If your underling here manages to somehow track and sucessfuly obtain this creature and best my pack, perhaps I will rescind my previous statement mentioned earlier but until then, I see little as to why I should hold you in any regard at all, consider this a trial. Now, shall we get on with it?"He glanced towards Kaoru as if expecting the younger male to speak which he did so promptly."Lost sight of the darned thing a few miles or so back boss, The bird looked pretty drained though from all that action back there though, I'm sure it's gonna be roaming about looking for a water hole or something."

""There is a lake not far from here, it would be most oppurtune if we happened upon it that quickly but it is worth a shot."Inuya gestured with a paw to the duo as if offering them to lead the group forward."C.mon then, hunters, time to test your mettle. Lead the way, I'd hope you know this maze of trees and bushes well to venture out here, unless of course, you are already lost and we just happened upon you by chance."The comment prompted a snort and few cold laughs from some of the wolves at the rear of the pack. They were quite enjoying the scene and trusted the leader, never before had they done something like this so it would be quite interesting to see how the human operated by the laws of nature. Kaoru crouched down to the ground, his nose sniffing out trying to discern the various scents in the area as he attempted to zone in on thier target, some of the other wolves following suit."I'd hope she is as good as you say because this pack is quite the exemplary group."He added to Yukkin laziliy as Kaoru's head snapped up."Oh man, I got a pretty strong scent drifitng in from the north, boss."
[I do apoligze for the massive delay in getting this out as your other moderator was previously supposed to resume this search with you but in light of other real life issues, is unable to do so. I will now be your acting contract moderator permanently and will try to ramp this up! Good luck to both of you and lets have fun!]
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Mon Apr 15, 2019 9:05 pm

"It would suit you to call a man blind and still follow him." The elder creature responded to the kunoichi's unheard outburst, taking it in stride as the racing of her heart beat out of sync and the doubt in where he said he placed her was evident. His eyes followed the motion os his words as he spoke them, showing their dull nature as he brought back what she wouldn't say for her to examine - whatever doubt she held and whatever malice she directed at him for it, these were internally sourced. The wound on his body sealed itself shut, steaming momentarily as the temperature internally rioted against the outside world, leaving his flawless visage peering into Airi's soul for something that she seemed to have misplaced.

The entity called Yukiin turned his heard back towards the bird in question, even if it was far away everything had a heat signature that he could follow, especially if it was a larger animal than most. Birds in particular made a lot of disturbance in the air and scattered other wild life in their wake as they were known predators, few wanted to be caught in the open below an avian and thus they carved a sort of path in their wake where the signs of other life were pushed aside. The flow of a predator's travel was like a river, it left behind some things and scattered away others, so that you could always know what it was that you were tracking...largely because predators were careless and didn't regard being hunted themselves as a reasonable issue. Especially if they could fly, they had the least concern until they landed. If he wanted to do this, it would've been a pain in the ass to keep twitching his ears and adjusting his eyes to follow it but it would be doable, but he left this task to someone with no such natural advantages.

"Airi, you're a human. Everyone but you has claws, you can't run abreast of a beast on two feet. You're even slower on four. You think that I don't know that? You think that I've set you astray? Assigned you an impossible task?..."

He didn't turn around as he spoke, the wolf pack mentioned water and that wouldn't be hard to find. Every animal from here until the next water source would be moving towards it more likely than not, you only had to follow one thing big enough that it was easy to track. Alternatively the types of plant life would change as you approached it, more water meant different types of life in the slick soil, but that was all playing the game fairly.

Byakko, Yukiin was a cheater.

"Doubt has a price."

He turned and closed the distant between himself and his protege, placing a hand on her head and letting his talons rest on her scalp as his other hand threw together the appropriate seals, the rush of chakra combating the biting cold of his grip as he treated Irie's chakra system like an unfilled glass at the table and he was a waitress desperate for a tip. If there were parts of her system that could be forced into more efficiency, they were. If there were places he could pour chakra in, then he did. He couldn't trip her internal locks, she'd have to do that herself, but if she 'accidentally' just lost her grip on a few of those pesky little 'chakra gates' then oh well, was that really his fault?

How can you fault the generous waitress that your glass is just too small to hold whats being poured out of the jug?

Though he didn't have "chakra", technically speaking. He was made out of dregs and their energy so if chakra was water then he was pretty much dumping dried ice into her system for all the catastrophe it would cause. He couldn't imagine it would feel pleasant to have your body forcibly normalize itself out of a subzero 'chakra' shock but it couldn't kill her; he wouldn't allow that to happen. If he felt her life slip too far from the path in his grip, the jolt of warm medicinal chakra to her vitals would drag her back into life...as many times as he needed to do it. Maybe medically dying once or twice would give her an appreciation for the finer things in life, like doing what your superiors tell you instead of doubting them. This was an important lesson.

Plus it wasn't jutsu assault to use chakra like this in a training situation, even if it was destructive towards your students, so she had no real room to complain. His own teachers ran him through with spears and tried to crush him under metal balls or drown him inside an airlocked room, all he was doing was dragging potential out of her like a hand fisherman.

The medic gave it a few moments, steam slipping between his talons, ensuring the girl was both topped off and stable before halting the flow and maintaining his grip, giving her a few moments to flicker back to consciousness or wherever her mind trailed off to in the throes of pain...Yukiin liked to go to his happy place, some people went to Daimyo Ramen off of main street, whatever worked.

"This is your potential, this is what I believe in. I could just transform into you and catch the thing myself, that would qualify as Airi, Irie beating out the competition but I think the scales have been tipped sufficiently in my favor that I won't need a trick like that. Shall we?"

When he released his grip the mist that formed from the equalizing temperature and liquids in the air was sufficient cover for him to do another type of transformation however and twist himself into the form of one of his student's weapons, placing himself in her grip; leaving himself literally and figuratively in her hands. Not another word, if she couldn't manag- no, none of that. No conditionals, no plans for failure, only the expectation of success. He'd pumped enough of his chakra into her anyways, he could use a bit of a rest to recuperate in case he needed to wipe away an angry wolf pack or something.
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Re: A Shared Claw [Private | Contract Search]

Mon Apr 15, 2019 10:50 pm

Airi watched as the two seemed to suddenly get on each other’s nerves…Airi could only watch. Speaking seemed to get her in far more trouble than anything else. Yukin reprimanded her for some unknown reason. She felt herself flinch as he spoke. Airi could not even understand what she did. Still reprimanded she got so she needed to reflect. The pack got excited ready to continue their hunt and Airi felt even her own heartbeat pick up. She decided to stand, she figured now she would have to prove herself. She felt tired and exhausted but that did not matter. She needed to put everything out there. She now felt the pressure of this whole mission her shoulders. Amazed that Byakko-san would leave ti to her…maybe he just saw this as another test?

Airi watched as both Byakko-san and the wolf both looked in the same direction…Airi did not turn her head but that small detail told her enough. She would need to start heading that way. Byakko-san looked at her…the wolf questioning what he saw in her. He spoke to her asking her if he would make such a miscalculation…he asked her if he set her to an impossible task. Does that sound like Byakko-san? No Byakko-san had been around much longer than her a shinobi much longer than her and firm man to remove anyone who had zero potential. He saw something she did not…She needed to believe in that. She shook her head no and swiftly said, “No Sir, Byakko-san!”

She could not answer the wolf and so she focused on Byakko-san who was giving her…and unusual amount of attention.

Byakko-san approached her almost faster than she could see. He rested his ice cold talons on her head and at first she thought…is he giving me an encouraging head pat? Was he going to give her some words of encouragement? She the stinging pain of ice cold chakra entered her body…it sobered her even though she had never drank before and it felt like some weird invisible muscle was expanding well past its limits. At most she could only allow small notices of pain…she tried to keep them down but it…an awful feeling. Just when she thought the pain would make her cry out she felt brief jets of warmth…she knew this was healing chakra…he was…he was…hurting and healing her. It was actually a more miserable situation. He was keeping her right on the cusp…

She felt…huge…it was a weird sensation. She felt bigger than she was…as the pain ebbed away he spoke to her…his words…did encourage her. Gave her strength beyond her time…she imaged…she wondered. Could she ever get like this herself? Byakko then turned himself into a weapon and placed himself in her hands. A short katana…somehow he knew a good size for her. As she felt its cold steel she knew what this meant. She was on her own now…charged up she looked at the wolves…now alone.

If she hesitated…she would lose.

She pumped the cold chakra into her legs and shot up before Kaoru even finished. She leapt into the trees and jumped leaving a few footprints into the trees. Airi need to pull back. “Easy…easy…” She needed to get used to being so charged. She pulled out her summoning scroll and summoned her other weapons. Then she moved through on handed hand seals. “Ninja art…Crystal Eye…” As she moved as quickly as she could sprinting to get what little lead she could from the dogs and their expert tracking she pulled minerals from the earth below to make herself a third eye.

She would then proceed to will it up into the air above the tree line as high as it could. She even would take herself higher into the trees not pushing it too hard. For one thing she needed to not leave a trail the wolves could follow. A bird like being would be difficult for them to follow. North…towards water. She used an advanced move for the eye to send out a wave of chakra to allow for additional awareness. She absolutely needed to find it before them. It was the best she could without much notice or training.

[OOC: used Crystal Eye and its special action trying to locate the bird moving in the direction she thought was correct based upon how the wolves spoke and looked.

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