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Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

The Seki District is Kumogakure's residential area for its better-off inhabitants. Most of the clan complexes and prominent family estates can be found here, along with shops and markets to supply residents' needs. Life here can be as comfortable and idyllic as one wishes, although most shinobi tend to find this sort of existence stifling.

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Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Tue May 15, 2018 6:29 am

It was a slightly windy afternoon as Osu walked through a light snow. In one hand he carried a red ‘paper’ umbrella and in the other her carried a rather nice teapot. He walked through an old but well kept neighborhood with many ancestral homes behind high walls and gates. Eventually he came to one property that stuck out considerably due to how poorly maintained it was.

Contrary to his usual manners, Osu didn’t bother waiting for permission to enter, partly because he would be lucky to even be rejected. Instead he crossed the property and entered the house without much hesitation and coughed slightly as he crossed the threshold. “Pardon my intrusion,” Osu called out lightly, knowing very well the resident could probably still hear him if he whispered.

Osu entered the kitchen listening if he could hear the heartbeat of anyone in the house while he put on some tea. “You may remember my previous visit, Kiyo-Sama, I am Chigokai Osuteno. I was here with Takaki Saeko and Kagetsu Yuii some time back. I was hoping we could have a chat over tea.”

Admittedly Osu’s hopes weren’t high for a reply, but even if he were met with silence he wouldn’t force himself too deep into the house and simply sit in the living room for a few hours, drinking freshly brewed tea paying attention for any sign of the retired Raikage.
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Wed May 16, 2018 1:03 pm

The small house the former Raikage called home had been set upon a quarter acre of land long before the population boom the village had seen eighty years before and it began to grow vertically to compensate. The homes around it had grown with the families housed within, most leaving tiny corners or making use of roof space now for gardens, but like the lady within, the stone and wood construction had remained largely unchanged in its nearly one hundred years of life.

And so her garden grew.

Unkept they called it but to Kiyo, the cultivated chaos surrounding the home she had been 'gifted' after fifteen years of sacrifice was the only place of order left in the village of Kumogakure. Every leaf, every branch and every rock had been ordered with precision and everything had its purpose.

Cruel care had been taken in making her front garden uninviting. The crumbling stone fence caked in moss and winter stripped vines protected her from the order of the outside world. Her web and thorny, twig covered path gave the illusion of absence, turning away unwanted solicitors better than any sign. The thick, needled green foliage blocked out curious eyes so well there was no need for curtains. Twists of brambles made even shinobi children think twice before exploring its grounds. It even had the added advantage of blocking the towering monuments to change, buildings which sprung from the old to house the ever-growing masses.

In contrast, the back garden was a welcoming labour of love. Edible and medicinal plants hung and grew from every available surface, flourishing despite their apparent overcrowding and the colder weather in the world beyond. The mammoth trees which lined the property that looked so unwelcoming from the outside offered light shade and many appeared fruit bearing. A small paradise designed to feed, heal and comfort the single occupant which dwelled inside. In amongst the foliage, there were but a few signs of human comforts; a grapevine twisted swing, a comfortable seat created at the base of the a giant oak tree, and a work table littered with various tools.

Osu had been privy to both views as he trudged past every warning thorn and willow bush that announced he was unwelcome and settled himself with tea on one of two couches which overlooked the back garden through open doors. As with most gardens constructed by Hashigaki, there was no visual logic to the colours or types of plants grouped together, but with each changing gust of wind a new mixture of pleasant scents found their way into the small home. A record player sang out an instrumental melody from the far living room corner, adding an extra sense of serenity to the area.

A retired woman's perfect retreat.
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And amongst it all was Kiyo, curled in layers of mismatched clothing and a thick woolen blanket beneath that giant oak tree. Several books were carefully piled next to her and their presence, along with the way she rubbed at one eye gave away why she had yet to flee. The rigid way she held herself and thudding of her heartbeat suggested he was dangerously close to losing the opportunity to talk.

“Νομίζει ότι θέλουμε να μιλήσουμε. Διασκεδαστικός,” she hissed under her breath in melodic classical, “Πιστεύει ότι είναι οικογένεια; Αυτό το έκοψε. Λυπάται, ίσως;” Then, finally in common, “Bold. Chigokai choose an interesting ambassador this time. The answer is still no.”
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Wed May 16, 2018 9:19 pm

Osu blinked a bit in surprise as the former Raikage spoke. “Pardon my lacking education, Δεν ξέρω την αρχαία γλώσσα,” Osu said fluently in the much rougher Vulgar.

“I feel as if there is already a misunderstanding in the mix. I am not here as a representative for any of my Aunts, but for myself… Though I must admit I am now curious as to what they are after from you now… isn’t likely Ookami herself is involved since she is too busy satisfying her hedonism night and day, and I can’t imagine more than two of the other matriarchs working together willingly without Ookami forcing them to set aside their petty squabbles personally… Ah pardon me, I got distracted. It is simply that it is a bit of a family trait for us Chigokai to never budge once we decide on something being necessary, for better or worse. The only ones more aware of this familial trait of ours than the Kagetsu would probably be the Santaru, but the reason of my visit isn’t to discuss a millennium of inter-familial politics.

More formally I will introduce myself as the second in command and honestly de facto leadership of a growing majority of the medical branch, with no disrespect or ill intentions directed towards the current sennin and my senior under the same teacher. She is an older sister to me, but it has become a bit of a necessity for me to usurp a bit of authority here and there to create a bit of a independent faction within the village. I won’t speak in riddles and flowery words. There are a number of traitorous bastards, daimyo precisely, who have reason and ability to bring our village great harm through the use of a dangerous growing force in our country, I need help translating many documents written in Classical, and I am trying to limit the involvement and knowledge of the current administration as much as provably possible for when the Shogun starts demanding the heads of those responsible should all go well and all the more so if they don’t. I am not asking you to leave your retreat, but to simply teach me a few things and point me in the right direction for a few questions I believe you will be able to answer. Tea? I grew the leaves and roasted them myself.”
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Fri May 18, 2018 4:18 am

Kiyo exhaled a long plume of steam into the winter air and pressed her head to the bark of her tree. "Curious," she hummed as Osu began to rattle on about his clan. He was somehow managing to simultaneously mock and overshare, an interesting mixture from a trained shinobi. The academy's lessons on discretion must not have left a mark on this one. "If one recognizes that the base motives of the grand three have scarcely deviated for centuries, then one is provided all the tools one needs to trace the threads of their reasoning. I invite you to ponder on that, as the subject bores me." she retorted in a bland, measured tone. "Αν και αναρωτιέμαι αν θα ενοχλήσετε αφού δεν περιλαμβάνει μαύρη δαντέλα, διακόπτη συμβόλων."

The former Kage lapsed into thoughtful silence as the subject changed to motives and the oversharing continued. It was hard to tell if she was even listening, bundled, hooded and turned away as she was. Curls of red hair coated in a fine layer of frost betrayed no thoughts as Osu laid out his bold future plans in skeletal simplicity. By the tale of traitors, Kiyo's head lulled sharply towards her shoulder though and by the admittance of conspiracy to withhold information from leadership, she grew still. Asleep.

A minute stretched by before she startled back to life, but not, as Osu might hope, to give his proposition any thought- if she'd even absorbed it.

"Do you like poetry, young Chigokai?"
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Fri May 18, 2018 4:47 am

Osu was rather caught off guard by the reply. “I… yes and no. I enjoy the idea of poetry and I can appreciate the effort and creativity that goes into pieces, particularly the melodies and aesthetics of word choice. But when it comes down to it, I have difficulty identifying with most works, despite typically understanding the intended messages.” He was rather confused by where this was going but he had always been a curious and mostly patient person. Mostly.
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Fri May 18, 2018 3:25 pm

"A pity, but not shocking," Kiyo hummed with an air of disappointment. From the second floor, a clock began to chime from, counting the hours to three in a warbling, musical tone. Signalled that it was time to end her garden reverie, Kiyo stood, blankets and all, and carefully picked her way through the snow towards the open glass doors.

"I will quote Uittoman for you," she stated with a spark of energy as she shut each door then squirmed loose of her blanket cocoon and shed it into a basket, "I sit and look out upon all the sorrows of the world, and upon all oppression and shame; I hear secret convulsive sobs from young men, at anguish with themselves, remorseful after deeds done; I see, in low life, the mother misused by her children, dying, neglected, gaunt, desperate; I see the wife misused by her husband—I see the treacherous seducer of young women; I mark the ranklings of jealousy and unrequited love, attempted to be hidden."

As the words flowed, she flowed across the room to the inset stone fireplace opposing the garden view. The short journey brought Kiyo past the couch which Osu had chosen for his soapbox, and though she exuded confidence, her thundering heart betrayed her. It did not slow as she created a pile of logs and, with a quick seal, lit them.

"—I see these sights on the earth; I see the workings of battle, pestilence, tyranny—I see martyrs and prisoners; I observe a famine at sea—I observe the sailors casting lots who shall be kill'd, to preserve the lives of the rest; I observe the slights and degradations cast by arrogant persons upon laborers, the poor, and upon the displaced, and the like. All these—All the meanness and agony without end, I sitting, look out upon; See, hear, and am silent." As if to give the final word its proper respect, the redhead stood and drifted wordlessly from the room and, unless stopped, up the stairs and into her bedroom.
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Fri May 18, 2018 7:26 pm

Osu gave a small tsk as he heard the poem, as he had heard it before. He waited for the former kage to finish though, and didn’t physically move to stop her as she stood and began walking. Instead he recited a piece himself as he watched her start to leave him, and would continue to speak even if she left him down here entirely, as he knew very well she would be able to hear him regardless. Though not with a poem, but a famous letter, “Whilst men are linked together, they easily and speedily communicate the alarm of any evil design. They are enabled to fathom it with common counsel, and to oppose it with united strength. Whereas, when they lie dispersed, without concert, order, or discipline, communication is uncertain, counsel difficult, and resistance impracticable. Where men are not acquainted with each other’s principles, nor experienced in each other’s talents, nor at all practised in their mutual habitudes and dispositions by joint efforts in business; no personal confidence, no friendship, no common interest, subsisting among them; it is evidently impossible that they can act a public part with uniformity, perseverance, or efficacy. In a connection, the most inconsiderable man, by adding to the weight of the whole, has his value, and his use; out of it, the greatest talents are wholly unserviceable to the public. No man, who is not inflamed by vain-glory into enthusiasm, can flatter himself that his single, unsupported, desultory, unsystematic endeavours, are of power to defeat the subtle designs and united cabals of ambitious citizens. When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall, one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle. I quote Bāku.

I am familiar with Uittoman’s works, but if one’s answer to observing the wrongs of the world is the end of action rather than the beginning, then they are but walking corpses, and I doubt even he meant the poem to be understood this way. The more one knows the more dead one must be to not feel the cause for action. You should know more than I of the forgotten history of why this village was formed, why we hid from all those countless years ago, and why our ability to walk proudly in the open today is something our ancestors would die many times over before it is lost to us once more. Can you really sit still as a new voice with the same designs seeks to put us back under heel with our sole purpose being monsters in their wars? I do not know the thoughts in your head so I ask you to speak them plainly, do you observe the cruelty of world to assure yourself that action is pointless or do you still have blood flowing in your heart? At the very least observer, do you not want to know what is coming so you can be listening for it? Because I can almost assure you, that without every hand if assistance I can draw, my efforts will likely fail and it will not be many years before the scent of your garden is overwhelmed with the blood and ashes of the innocent, and everything that we have built will crumble as we sit in the shadows drawing lots to see who starves here among the very neighbors and families you once led.”

Osu would sit there waiting for a just a few minutes if all that followed was silence before he would decide what to do next.
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Sat May 19, 2018 4:38 pm

The bait was cast, but Kiyo was already gone. And so Osu was left with only a crackling fire and his own thoughts for company and perhaps the sense he had been dismissed.

A floor above, a fleeting, mirthful smirk danced across Kiyo's lips as she plucked a small, worn black book from a dusty top shelf and pressed it to her cheek.

<3
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Fri May 25, 2018 5:58 am

The continued silence was… frustrating. It was obvious that this was the end for today. He had failed to meet any of his goals. There wasn’t really any more reason to keep sitting here. “We both know very well you can still hear me, so I will just say I will be back in a week. I bid you good health until our next encounter.” Osu gathered his tea kit and left, casting a displeased look at the house as he left and even stuck his tongue out towards the room he heard Kiyo’s heartbeat enter before exiting the gate.

And so a week passed. Rather than the afternoon, this time he came fairly early in the morning, half suspecting that the former Raikage would expect him to come at the same time and stay out of the house until he departed. The sun hadn’t risen yet though the sky was beginning to brighten and the snow fell steadily on the already deeply covered streets. Of course any cloud shinobi worth their salt could walk on top of the snow without sinking in, but it would be hugely inconvenient for most. The main roads had already been handled but side streets like this one that had mostly shinobi families were usually the last to get cleared. One more Osu carried his teapot and walked under a dark red ‘paper’ umbrella.

He walked casually through Kiyo’s gate once more and simply barged into the house with an, “Excuse my intrusion please.”

He would look around and listen for Kiyo while calling out, “I am here once more Kiyo-Sama. Have you thought on what I said?” If it seemed she was in the house, Osu would begin to put some tea on even if Kiyo wasn’t being cooperative.
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Mon May 28, 2018 2:12 am

For one week Kiyo returned to her solitary routine, paying no mind to the hours that slipped away as she always had. There was too much to do in her quarter-acre palace to dwell on the strange visit of one little medic. Plants to care for. Books to read. Music to appreciate. In fact, she had forgotten the threat of return entirely until the telltale rattle of her front door and the all too familiar voice demanding to be excused jarred her from her studies. There wasn't enough time to make a dignified escape to the upper floor either, as her young trespasser made himself at home in the kitchen once again, forcing Kiyo to tolerate his presence once again.

It wouldn't be difficult for Osu to divine her whereabouts. The double doors to her office had been left wide open and a soft piano melody drifted from within. Kiyo was not the large desk set against the back wall, nor nestled in the faded reading chair surrounded by well-loved books. Instead, she sat cross-legged in the centre of the wood floor with back turned to the door, lost in thought.

"It may interest you to know that in my youth, one would knock then wait for permission to enter a stranger's home. Perhaps, since you are the one insisting upon seeking my aide, you might consider adopting my customs," she stated with a hint of mirth, not moving from meditation to greet her unwanted guest, "and I have given over as much time and respect to your words as you have mine, Chigokai. My answer has not changed."
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Fri Jun 01, 2018 2:54 pm

“While it does embarrass me moderately Kiyo-Sama, there is a risk that you would use the time to escape if I knocked… But that is a shame to hear. I will have to redouble my efforts. It is nice to see you are in a rather good mood today though, did something pleasant happen?” Osu simply continued brewing and the scent of jasmine began drifting around.

It wasn’t long before tea was done and Osu set up a small spot between himself and the former Raikage as he sat across from her. He poured two cups, taking one for himself and drinking before continuing.

“I think it is probably for the best not to call me Chigokai. Not to force you to feel more familiar but rather the clan is rather torn on me using the name currently. I’m a bit of a black sheep you see. Please, call me Osuteno… or Oσθενο,” phonetically one could roughly see how the two names were related, and in meaning it was a rather grand pair. The first name if one examined the kanji would mean Heavenly King of Excellence, while the latter in Classical Kumogakuran means without or beyond weakness. Whoever named him obviously had great expectations, and possessed some knowledge in a rather rare language.

“Please tell me Kiyo-Sama, do you know what the current perceptions of chakra sensitives among the citizens of the country and the nobility are like?”
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Fri Jun 15, 2018 3:04 am

The red-headed woman snorted once and stretched arms towards her ceiling, pulling the fabric of her knee-length tea leaf coloured Yukata with them. Her back cracked twice as her fingers fought to touch the dusty pendant light above. With an exhale, she plunged forward to press her forehead to the wooden floor, encouraging her muscles to lengthen. Music had a way of carrying her mind to times, places and peoples lost to her now, leaving her body to atrophy. It was hard to say how long it had been since she had last moved, or how long it would have been without Osu's interruption.

"I had Citrus meringues and honey milk with Kameko and Harinezumi," she offered as an explanation for her good temperament, head still pressed to floorboards, "It was a wonderful afternoon. We usually bicker and fight but Kameko is making Hari behave because I think she is feeling guilty that they're keeping their relationship a secret. I'm enjoying the peace too much to tell her I saw them together a week ago behind the training grounds when I'd forgotten my glasses. Tragically, they won't last. Nothing ever does."

With a final breath, she raised back to sitting then adjusted her clothing to ensure decency. This close, he might notice how strikingly similar the features of Kiyo's face were to her great niece. They shared the same nose, similarly shaped mouth and large, expressive eyes that betrayed Hashigaki heritage. But that was where the resemblance ended. Kiyo had a hard refinement that Yuii lacked and a calm demeanour to match. On the surface, they were as alike as a twisting river and deep, placid lake.

Which made the frown she gave the tea he put on her floor, in her office filled with her very rare books all the more acidic. "Aκόλαστος will suit better," she stated, contemplating her cup, "Now, spare me your didactic questions and get to what you're here to say. "
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:07 pm

The explanation was rather odd. Was she in a different time and place? A story perhaps? Had Kiyo ever been able to see? Osu couldn’t even put aside the possibility that she was mocking him. That suspicion increased every time she said something else in the Classical dialect.

After a moment of contemplation he decided to let it go for now. More importantly, even though she wasn’t happy about it she seemed to be willing to listen to him a bit more for now. “Fair enough. We have lost most of the East Coast. While we never really had that many operations out that way to begin with…” Osu brought out a small stack of reports that appeared to be addressed to the Main Branch rather than the medical branch he supposedly represented. “These are a few documents I have seen fit to have… collected by an associate of mine before they could trouble others in the village, I spent part of a day transcribing them to Braille. On their own most don’t really suggest much. A heavy decrease in the number of chakra sensitives found and collected in various cities on the east coast, minor nobles gradually separating themselves from shinobi contacts, a few shinobi disappearing here and there when they go out on a ship leaving the east coast, particularly around storm seasons, fairly sparse, and even if all of that together sounds suspicious, that is only after collecting and examining a good forty documents together. They are being very careful, quite professional really. A bit more digging, and much of the insured goods on those ships belonged to the Tenouzan Church, somehow there is always a witch hunt two to three weeks before when we are scheduled to send people testing for chakra sensitives, a number of nobles are looking better off than usual or by unfortunate illness someone new takes the position of head of the family. Most of the time they don’t even die. There has been an odd increase in polio and such out that way you know. Rather unfortunate.

Feigned ignorance aside, certain scouts have been reassigned to safer parts of the country to scout and informed them their “replacements” wouldn’t take long and to head over immediately… But given the fact that the Tenouzans obviously know things they shouldn’t like our ‘random’ inspections nearly a month ahead of time, the travel schedules of scouts and which nobles we have clandestine meetings with, we are very obvious riddled with either many mid level moles, or several high level ones, possibly a mix. There is an extremely high chance of at least one or two members of the village council being a mole or directly involved with one. I have already been looking for traitors among my own relatives, but aside from a cousin of mine having several inappropriate relationships among widows and one of my Aunts, may Raiden bless her soul, be trying to contact that moron of a chancellor that somehow still has his position to scheme… she isn’t terribly bright, one of the issues with the last matriarch war being largely based on pure strength aside from a couple very smart individuals. That is why I was rather curious when you mentioned that you had already been contacted by the Chihokai. If it were just Ookami I would no doubt believe you were invited to drinking and one of those damned orgies of hers she has with the maids… ugggh some of those women helped raise me… the things you learn spying on your relatives… but if the ones who contacted you were among my more scheming Aunts, or forbid, the actually competent schemers, it would help me a lot if you could clue me in.

As for the other council members and clans, I am slowly having them investigated but right now my hands are few and all quite busy with how much is on their plates. On that front if you would be willing could you assist me by either tightening the watch on your people, or giving me a list of names to focus our efforts on for your clan? The only one who I really have down as someone even mildly suspicious so far is this Ishiyo character and there isn’t terribly much to it so far.

So we have our structure riddled with moles likely, a competent enemy who I believe is using their witch hunts to gather chakra sensitives for their own military force and have been doing so for a few decades now, turning public opinion enough that even the twin cities down at the southern border practically have festivals as ‘witches’ are burned at the stake, the nobility are nine to one backing the Church over us except for some of Kumogakure’s immediate neighbors among the minor and intermediate nobility, and while I have a few thousand books and documents that might clue more into what is going on here, I can’t read Classical and vulgar is so butchered a language it might take me up to another year to make enough progress to translate on my own. I need more helpers and partners but I have to personally vet everyone for loyalty, secrecy, and competence before I even make the attempt to win them over, and I have to make sure the current leadership is provably clueless when I eventuality slip up and get myself executed for treason or some other nonsense. All while keeping this a secret from my wife because if she knew how much danger I was planning on putting myself into, she would dice me up with that halberd of hers, package me into her luggage and not let me out until we were far, far away probably raising the twins in the middle of nowhere.

… Look, I have a growing number of loyal people under me but what I really need is more partners. I can stretch myself and burn myself far more than what would be medically possible for most, but that is just begging for mistakes to be made due to my attention being split to far or exhaustion. I have embarrassingly even had a heart completely fail on me this last week from not taking time to sleep this past month. Just too much work to be done.

Honestly I would be thankful of any assistance you would be willing to give me… though I won’t lie and say I will leave you alone unless I can get everything I need. My apologies, but being an inconvenience and annoyance to you is better than passing up on even a single edge for success.”
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Mon Jul 30, 2018 5:00 pm

Kiyo took a breath, turned her chin to indicate she was listening, and silently allowed Osuteno to recount his many findings and woes with the church of the Tenouza. She twitched, surprised as he produced a boon of translated documents, but did not pounce on them immediately. She had said she would listen, so she would listen.

On and on he went, weaving together threads of incidences and tragedies into a cloth of sinister make. A Tenouzan creation that, if she was to take Osu’s word, aimed to smother them all. Yet, Kiyo remained placid to all the bad news, rousing herself to speak only when he was done.

"Regretfully, I can divulge nothing more of my meeting your clan member that might enlighten you to their motives.” she addressed first, ”I am also woefully poor at describing individuals unless I focus the energy on knowing them, and frankly, I did not care. I assumed it was the usual request, however. The uneducated are convinced I can talk my niece into altering her decisions on matters of state, or that I would want to, so I have the occasional caller. It is usually my own blood that comes forward with demands, but there have been others.”

Which brought her to the next subject of Osu’s hasty rundown, her own blood. This one amused her, though Osu could be forgiven for knowing nothing of the Kagetsu clan head. She was a dour, angry old woman who seemed bent destroying anyone in her way. “My little sister Ishiyo is a harsh, difficult to love, woman but she is completely loyal to her clan and our village in her own way. She is still dangerous though, Chigokai, so watching her is still a logical move despite your other troubles. She is no ally to you.” She contemplated the others of the elder council that made of the Kagetsu clan’s ruling force then, but could not think of anyone who would dare cross Ishiyo to aide the church. “The rest I cannot speak on.”

Finally, her attention fell on the braille papers. “I will take those,” she stated matter of factly, animating suddenly to lean forward to snatch them to her chest. “And I will see if I make the same pattern out of all these threads you’ve collected, Aκόλαστος. And then I will decide.” Fluidly, she raised to her feet, then strode to the desk behind where they had been seated to deposit the pile.

“In the meantime. I will grant you a boon in return.” she continued, disappearing into the tight rows of her office library. A minute later she returned with two books in colourful, hand bound and written jackets. The first was titled ‘Classic for beginners’ in vulgar, and the second, ‘Classic for Children.’ "You will study and then return these books." she ordered, holding them out like she had a newborn in her hands, "They are precious family heirlooms from my mother’s side, and extremely delicate. You will treat them with the respect they deserve.” She would give them up only once her gave a verbal confirmation that he would be careful.

“Do see yourself out," she called while retreating to her desk, "Your body makes a dreadful racket and I have work to do.”
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Osuteno
Cloud Chief Med-Nin
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Re: Sorry for interrupting your retirement (private)

Tue Jul 31, 2018 12:03 am

Osu sighed expecting as little information on his relatives. Her niece? ...Ahh, Sennin Yuii was it? On closer inspection they do seem a little similar. That does explain some, though concerning in a sense should he ever fully take charge of the medical branch, though the area he would have any say in would be much more narrow thankfully.

He was not at all embarrassed when Kiyo emphasized that the character he mentioned having a watch kept on was her little sister, after all, he was having his own stepsisters investigated among others. It was important to examine everyone who might have the access and ability to be a mole. “I will continue to keep a pair of eyes or two on her then. I am more than familiar with those who do foolish things with the best of intentions.” He smirked at himself a little for the last comment.

Seeing the woman so intent on the documents he brought made him feel more confident that he would have her undivided attention soon enough. It took reading dozens of documents together but once they were all laid out together, even more conservative gamblers would be willing to acknowledge suspecting the Tenouzans to be antagonistic was a fair bet.

While once again wondering what Aκόλαστος meant, he watched her disappear into her stacks for a minute after mentioning a boon and had to stop himself from snatching one of the books out of her hands on sight. Written clearly in Vulgar, ‘Classic for Beginners.’ He could feel his sister’s shouts of excitement in his head upon seeing the textbook. He couldn’t read the title of the other book given it was in Classical itself, but the cover was rather similar in mood as the youth primers his daughters’ scout books possessed. His arms stretching out from where he sat a bit too excitedly, he calmed himself and relaxed back to their normal length before standing up and approaching Kiyo directly. “I promise they will be well taken care of, as much as the most precious books of my own collection,” he said before reaching out for them again.

He had no arguments about leaving, he wanted to get home and started reading as soon as possible, though he did grimace a bit concerning the fact his body made a racket. He was more than aware of it himself as it was a constant in his life, but he hadn’t heard the complaint since the last time he saw some of his clan. Many of them looked at him as if he were a freak or a monster as he walked nearby, very aware of his six hearts and more blood running through him than there would be in a dozen people.

“I will return in four days time,” Osu said simply, books in hand, before departing.


And so four days did pass with Osu and Uso copying every word and diagram in both books and rereading them both multiple times. Several in the hospital who were in the know were surprised and thankful when they heard Osuteno had finally taken a few days off thinking he was finally getting some sleep after all these weeks. While he did sleep one day straight during this period, the rest was spent fully awake and studying as hard as ever, practicing basic conversation with Uso and trying to work out more of the language for themselves with only minor successes. They could pronounce everything they read at least, if not understand the meaning of the words.

‘Classic for Children,’ as they learned was the title, was precisely what it declared itself to be. Pictures with words describing them and occasionally basic sentences. Even his daughters had graduated from such books years ago, but here he was he thought comically to himself looking at an apple and saying το μήλο είναι κόκκινο.

Thus the four days passed but due to a slight surprise Osu did not head over immediately that morning. It was well into the afternoon before Osu showed up with two small figures hiding behind him. “Be polite now, Kiyo-Sama has been a Raikage before.”

“Are Raikage mean?” Asked Yukiko.

“Or scary?” Followed Karasuko.

“... Raikage are people like anyone and can be different in the same ways. If I had to say they have something in common… it would be that they each care about the village in their own ways.”

““Isn’t that just another way of saying they aren’t anything alike?””

Laughing lightly while petting their heads Osu replied, “I suppose it is.”

Arriving at Kiyo’s home Osu knocked on the doorframe and said, “Pardon the intrusion.” Following him the twins mimicked his action and hopped through the gate each saying ‘pardon the intrusion’ themselves.

The twins both had a hand on Osu’s yukata as they hid behind him and looked around the room they were in and staring with wide eyes at all the fun looking things they could spot in other rooms.

When they did see Kiyo the girls stared at her with curiosity while Osu explained, “I uhh... the sitter service cancelled on us saying that they would send no one else to our house, and My wife needs some rest, so I have my daughters with me today.”


Yukiko suddenly spoke up, “Daddy says you were the first Raikage of the era.”


Karasuko in normal fashion began following her, “Doesn’t that mean you are super o-“


She was interrupted by Yukiko however, “Suko daddy said be polite! I don’t think pointing out how she obviously has to be way older than she looks is proper!”


Realizing her mistake Karasuko appeared embarrassed as she said, “Ah you are right Kiko! My apologies Obaa-Sama.”

Following which both girls stepped out slightly from behind Osu giving polite bows while the corner of Osu’s mouth twitched in embarrassment. Approaching Kiyo he sat a bag in front of himself before sitting down himself and his daughters mimicked entering seiza in the same fashion on either side of him each grabbing a sleeve of his yukata as they stared at Kiyo’s face.

“Επιστρέφω τα βιβλία σας,” he said simply, using classical this time.” Έχετε διαβάσει αυτό που σας έδωσα?”

As the girls were sitting a bit behind Osu he didn’t see the mischievous glint in their eyes nor the corners of their mouths raise slightly.

““Daddy we are thirsty,”” the twins said in unison, returning to their blank expressions.

“Hmm? Oh I suppose I should put on some tea for us all anyway before getting down to business. I hope you don’t mind if I borrow your kitchen again Kiyo-Sama.”

Waiting a moment for any sign of a negative response, Osu got up and walked to the other room leaving the twins with the former Raikage.

“We heard about you in Kunoichi Scouts. I am Karasuko, the little sister, age four, soon to be five.”

“You are still as pretty as you were in the picture. I am Yukiko, the older sister, age four, soon to be five.”

““Mommy told Auntie Saeko she doesn’t like it when daddy is with pretty women, she says he is too dumb to realize they are trying to…””

The twins stopped speaking in unison and looked at each other.

“Se-?” Asked Karasuko.

“Se- Seance? No…”

““Seduce?””

They both looked back expectantly at Kiyo, ““Auntie Saeko told mommy pretty ladies like you are after Daddy’s money even though he doesn’t got that much, and be violented by his tendrils? Are you trying to mistresses our daddy? Are you γιαγιά?”” The tone in their voices changed suddenly as they spoke a single word in Classic.

It was about two more minutes until Osu reentered the room with a tea tray prepared and something fragrant steeping, unaware as most of how much the twins listened in on more adult conversations and snuck into his study. “Girls, you will have to use your animal crackers as your tea snack, is that alright?”

““Yes daddy,”” the two replies obediently.

“We were just telling Obaa-Sama about how mommy said we are going to be big sisters soon!” Exclaimed Karasuko.

“Even though I already am one,” said Yukiko smuggly.

“Ah… yes. Chiai was showing symptoms of morning sickness today and the initial pregnancy test seems to be pointing that way. I stayed at home until she started feeling better and took the twins so she could rest. Though we were going to wait to confirm for sure at the hospital before telling anyone.”
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