Tales of the Hidden Waterfall
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In this first chapter, our heroes, Tachikaze, Gensan, and Mizuki, are given a test by their first mission by their jounin teacher Kuromoto and everything seems easy at first...until Kuromoto stops playing around.
Chapter 1, Chapter One: Teacher Vs Student!
Tales of the Hidden Waterfall Village
Written by Cyrus Esparda
Chapter One: Teacher Vs Student! Land a single blow!
In a large, yet dimly lit room, A group of jounin were quietly kneeling, face to the ground, in the presence of three men in formal white clothing, the elder in the center appearing much younger than the two beside him. “Kuromoto, Please stand and accept your next mission.” He said to the crowd.
One all of the jonin kneeling stood up and looked at the men, with cold black eyes. He was wearing a traditional jounin outfit and a headband showing the symbol of the hidden waterfall village. He had short black hair and bushy side burns on the side of his face.
“Kuromoto, your next mission is high level C rank mission and must be completed at all cost.” The young man in the middle replied with a scroll in his hand. “Take your genin team and-”
“Wait Shibuki.” Kuromoto interrupted. “It's far too dangerous to bring my students along on this kind of a mission. Let me go with another jonin and I-”
“Kuromoto! Do not speak against the village leader's wishes.” One of the older men snapped at the jonin. Shibuki raised his hand in the elders faces and the man calmed down.
“Kuromoto, I know about your rookie team's inexperience in these types of missions, but we have not the pleasantries of babying our genin like in Konoha Village.” Shibuki replied. “We cannot spare you jonin for this mission and with your...skills, the genin will only be there to observe and act only if needed.”
“...I understand.” Kuromoto answered with a bow. “We shall leave immediately.” There was a tone of resentment in his voice and he did not look at them in the eye as he snatched the scroll from Shibuki's hands and vanished from sight. Appearing outside of the building he was standing in, He looked over the enormous pool of water the the village was built around to see the giant tree in the center of the village, whose branches blocked the sun over them,
Dashing across the water, Kuromoto leapt high into the air and landed in the middle of a grassy field nearby the lake. “Tachikaze, where are you?” The jonin called out. With an exasperated sigh, he scanned the area and then pointed at one of the trees. “You're over there. Game's over.”
“Aww...” From one of the trees came a boy in his teens, dragging his feet all the way to Kuromoto. He has tall spiky hair as black as Kuromoto's and he wore a swampy green shirt, black, fingerless gloves, a brown vest and light khaki pants with black sandals. “Normally, it takes you two minutes to find me. I must be getting sloppy.” he groaned
“Tell you the truth, it's two minutes of caring even less about you.” Kuromoto snidely replied. “Now get Mizuki and Gensan and meet me outside of the border for debriefing on our next mission.”
“A mission? Alright! It's been long enough!” Exclaimed Tachikaze as he ran off to see if he could find his teammates.
“Great...Maybe I should have asked Gensan to do it.” groaned Kuromoto as he vanished with a puff of smoke.
“Alright Mizuki...are you ready to go again?” Asked a boy around Tachikaze's age but with much paler skin. His hair was a faint violet and well-combed and he was dressed in crimson robes with a black shirt underneath it.
“I'm ready. Just don't hold back like last time, Gensan.” Replied a girl with long hair as blue as the ocean. She wore a blue vest and dark green pants under a white skirt that covered her right leg. Taking a deep breath, she nodded and Gensan, wearing a burgundy robe and dark shirt and pants underneath, beside her made a hand sign and the scenery darkened and became hazy around Mizuki. The sun was visible but sinking low into the tree in the now late evening sky.
Arising from the earth came numerous swordsmen that swarmed around Mizuki at all sides, with their swords drawn and shimmering in the fading sunlight. The blue haired kunoichi leaped into the air ,avoiding her adversaries initial strike. “Water Bullet Jutsu!”After making several hand seals, Mizuki spat a barrage of drops going the speed of falling daggers.
Mizuki landed behind the group of samurai and flung a handful of shuriken at them. As more fell stricken dead, a new set came out of the woodwork, more musclebound than before and carrying axes and giant hammers. “Mizuken!” Taking a scroll from her vest, Mizuki bit her index finger and spread the blood across the parchment.
As if on command, rain began to fall from the sky despite there being not a cloud in the red ember sky. Mizuki stomped on the ground and the rainwater gathered around her legs. “Alright, bring it!” The warriors launched an attack en masse and just as they were about to strike, a familiar face appeared in between then.
“Hey guys! I finally found you-” Said Tachikaze to Mizuki.
“Crescent Phase!” Yelled Mizuki as she backflipped into the air with the water growing into an enormous wave crashing forward. Tachikaze was sent flying backwards by the wave and hit a tree behind him, landing on his head. Gensan's illusion suddenly broke and only the three genin were left standing in the forest clearing. “Tachikaze, what are you doing here?”
“Well, I was going to tell you guys that we have a mission today, but then you went and knocked me on my ass!!!” Tachikaze replied with a growl. “Why are you always training, Mizuki? I mean, why don't you just hang out like normal people?”
“Because I can beat up normal people and take their lunch money, she replied while shaking her fist at Tachikaze. “Besides, if I want to get as strong as my big brother, I can't waste time picking flowers.” Crossing her arms, Mizuki casually strolled behind Tachikaze and sudden caught him in a headlock. “Maybe if you trained in Taijutsu more, you wouldn't be so easy to noogie!”
As Tachikaze struggled in vain to escape Mizuki's hold, Gensan stood there, letting out a quiet sigh while bearing witness to the shameless spectacle closeby. “Shouldn't we be getting ready to meet Kuromoto?” Gensan finally replied after Tachikaze began wheezing from Mizuki's crushing headlock.
(( ::Act Two Completed:: ))
Kuromoto leaned beside one of the waterfalls that hide the village entrance, reading up on the mission. Tachikaze was the first to come out, leaping through the water and landed on solid ground. The waterfall then parted like a curtain as Mizuki walked out with Gensan close behind her. Tachikaze shot her a dirty look, seeing as she completely outdid his entrance.
“Alright, I'll get right to it.” “This is a dangerous mission we've been assigned so listen up.” Kuromoto spoke as he placed the scroll in his pocket. “Our mission is to investigate and confirm a possible delivery route that is heavily guarded by lawless ronin. Apparently, whatever they're shipping in these routes could be used to start a massive rebellion against the lord of our country.”
“This sounds like a Chunin mission...Does that mean I'm a Chunin now?!” “OH SNAP!” Tachikaze replied, giddy at the sound of the mission.
“Bless your little empty head, Tachikaze.” Kuromoto said with a sigh. “Our intelligence also says that they will arrive at the Land of Fang by noon, so I'm going to have to be there to intercept.”
“OK, that sounds cool. But what are we gonna do?” Mizuki asked. Kuromoto.
“Your job is to watch over the village while I do the actual mission.” Kuromoto grinned a bit while saying that to them. “You'll be sitting this entire mission out.”
“So you're dragging us along and we may not even get to do anything?” Snapped Mizuki. “Then why not bring another Chunin or something?”
“I'm sorry...what was that?” Kuromoto said, his face being covered mostly shadows and looking frightening to his genin squad. “I'm not sure I heard you right.”
“N-nothing...” Mizuki answered, turning blue in the face from fear.
“So you told all of this just to spite us?” Gensan said while curiously raised his hand.
“Pretty much.”, Kuromoto said all the while flashing a big grin and laid back with his arms crossed.
“But if it's any consolation, I also brought you here to teach you a new training technique to practice while in the Fang village.”
“I bet Mizuki will get a kick outta this...” Tachikaze mumbled, still sore and disappointed over the news.
A short curved blade suddenly shot through the air narrowly hitting the three unaware, but now startled, genin.
“You all lack sorely discipline in controlling your chakra!” “Your exercise is to focus chakra into your hands and catch my shuriken and manage to manage one scratch on me.” Kuromoto said sternly, holding a blade in each hand. When he saw that his students were already, he threw a handful at them at them and watched them sail through the air.
“Catching shuriken? That's sounds pretty easy.” Tachikaze scoffed as he saw the objects come at them.
“Then I'll make it harder!” Kuromoto formed a series of hand seals and the number of shurikens flying at them multiplied by 10. “Shadow Shuriken Jutsu!”
“You just had to say it, didn't you!” Mizuki snapped at her teammate before covering her face with her arms. The hundreds of shuriken went through them and when the opened their eyes, they saw that the shuriken landed behind them and that none of them were harmed.
“If it was that easy to fool you with a Genjutsu, then I might as well leave you here.” Kuromoto said to his students. “This time, I will draw blood.”
“Into the forest!” Yelled Tachikaze, leaping into the thick forest near the waterfall entrance. Mizuki and Gensan quickly followed and Kuromoto chuckled a bit before walking after them. And now the chase begins.”
(( ::Act Three Completed:: ))
The three genin were frantically leaping from tree branch to tree branch, trying to get some distance from their teacher. “This isn't helping.” Said Mizuki to the three. “How are we going to catch his shuriken like this?”
“You can be his little pin cushion if you want, but I want to get out of this without looking like swiss cheese.” Tachikaze replied.
“He'll find us quickly if we're all together like this” Gensan stated. “I'm splitting up and thinking up a plan.” Grabbing onto a tree branch, Gensan swung upwards and out of sight.
“Gensan has a point. Looks like we're on our own this time.” Mizuki smiled at the distressed look on Tachikaze's face as she fell from the tree branches and ran around the large tree trunks.
“Haven't you guys ever watched a horror movie?!” Yelled Tachikaze to his teammates, though he was sure they couldn't hear him. “The teenagers always do this and get picked off one by one!” The raven-haired ninja stopped on a branch and listened to the wind to hear for any footsteps. “He's here...I know he is...”
Tachikaze couldn't tell but directly above him stood Kuromoto, shuriken in hand and about the lunge at him. Holding his arms out, the jounin fell off the branch and fell right on top of the genin. His kunai stabbed the branch but the boy was nowhere to be found. Scanning the area, he watched as Tachikaze was running off into the distance with a pair of powerful wind carrying off until he vanished from sight once again in a gust of debris and leaves.
Mizuki was making walking through the dark damp forest floor. She heard something coming up behind her and was about to perform a jutsu when it crashed into her at full force. It was Tachikaze who flew into her and was now sitting on top of her. Mizuki shoved him off and balled her hands into fist but quickly calmed down. “Tachikaze, next time watch where your Chakra Vent jutsu.” Said Mizuki to Tachikaze.
“Sorry, but it's just Kuromoto.” Replied the genin. “That sadist was ready to split me in half. How are we gonna catch his shuriken when he's throwing them at us like this?”
“Hmm...well thanks to you, he'll be here in a few minutes.” Said Mizuki. “Maybe if we work together, we can pull this off.”
“At this point, I'll try anything.” Tachikaze answered. “What do you got in mind?”
(( ::Act Four Completed:: ))
“I can't believe she got me to agree to this.” Grumbled Tachikaze, hopping from branch to branch in search of Kuromoto. “Mizuki's gonna pay for this.” Then Tachikaze heard it, the footsteps of his jounin teacher. “Alright, now I got you!” Tachikaze stopped and saw that the Kuromoto following him was a just a doppleganger that turned to smoke before when he reached him. “What the? Then...where is-”
“Earth style! Headhunter jutsu!” From out of the branch came Kuromoto's hand as he began to pull Tachikaze into the ground. “Looks like you're the first caught!”
“Sucker!” Tachikaze stuck out his tongue as his body transformed into a regular log with an explosive tag placed into it. Kuromoto flung the log far deeper into the forest before it exploded. Kuromoto now stood on the tree branch, waiting for Tachikaze to make his next move.
From out of the highest forest branches fell Tachikaze, surprising his teacher. Kuromoto instinctively tossed a shuriken up and him, exactly what Tachikaze wanted. 'c'mon...concentrate!' Focusing the chakra into his hands, Tachikaze held his hand out and barely caught the kunai. With the shuriken in hand, the genin throw out a smoke pellet as soon as he landed and vanished from sight.
“So one of them finally got a kunai.” Kuromoto said to himself. “Now I can let loose a little more.” The jounin took out another shuriken and was about to perform a handseal when Mizuki ran up the bark of a tree. Backflipping off, she dropped her leg down on Kuromoto's head, which was blocked by Kuromoto's arm. While he was distracted, another Mizuki leapt onto her back while the other Mizuki was thrown off. “A water clone?!”
The first Mizuki fell on her back and turning into a large puddle upon contact with the ground. Mizuki was able to snatch the kunai from his hand and kicked off of him before he could attack her. With a wink, Mizuki fell backwards into the forest below and out of sight.
“A simultaneous attack...never expected those two to come together with teamwork that well thought out.” Said Kuromoto, dashing towards the shadows of the forest. “But they're not the only ones with tricks.” Kuromoto leapt into shadows sank into them, leaving his students wondering where he went.
It's been three hours into this training exercise and fatigue was beginning to set in on them. Tachikaze, creeping around the higher branches of the forest, was still cautious about moving around too much and attracting the attention of their teacher.
The shadow of the tree the genin was standing on behind him had began to crawl and move like a living being. A pair of black tendrils slipped out of the darkness and Tachikaze turned around to see it creep towards him. Tachikaze quickly leaped to the nearest branch but standing their was Kuromoto.
“Living Shadow jutsu!” Kuromoto said as he used a series of handseals. Kuromoto's shadow rose from the ground and took the form of four large tendrils on his back. “Let's see you run now, Tachikaze.” Instead of creating another wind tunnel to escape with, Tachikaze stood his ground and took an attack stance, staring down his teacher fiercely. “Well, at least all that running gave you some spine.”
One of the tentacles swiped at Tachikaze, which the boy flipped over. The shadows began to cover Kuromoto's skin as all four of his whip-like shadows cracked at Tachikaze. The genin arched his back to dodge the first two whips, leaped up and split his legs as the third swung under his legs, and hopped backwards to dodge the last one. Slipping on the tree branch he was standing on, Tachikaze was about to fell into the forest below when a third arm grew out of his back and grabbed the nearest branch.
“Figured Tachikaze couldn't move like that...” Kuromoto said. “Gensan, using a jutsu like that won't help you against me.”
Tachikaze smiled as the illusion faded and standing in front of him was a silver haired ninja wearing a crimson robe. “Then I'll have to use a stronger genjustu!” spoke the genin with a serious look on his face. “Time Distortion Jutsu!” Kuromoto jabbed at Gensan once again with his tentacles, but when it touched the ninja student, the image faded and Gensan appeared dodging it while running towards him. Kuromoto struck and missed again, this time Gensan leaped over the crack of the whip-like appendage. Gensan was now close enough to reach the shuriken in Kuromoto, but as he swung his hand for it, his arm simply went through like there was nothing but air there. “A genjutsu...but then-...KAI!” Gensan quickly dispelled the genjutsu and found a paper bomb at his feet. Reacting too late, Gensan was caught in the blast and sent flying onto another branch of a tree.
A shadow appeared in front of where Kuromoto laid and from out of it came Kuromoto, shuriken in hand. “I must have went too hard on him this time.” He said as he reached into his shuriken holster. “This should wake him up!” Drawing another shuriken, the jounin instructor threw it at the unconscious genin.
Suddenly, from out of his chest grew a human arm, that caught the blade. The arm moved forward and the illusion faded in a cloud of smoke, revealing it to Gensan, who was spinning the blade on his index finger. “I'm not someone to be taken lightly, Kuromoto-sensei.” Gensan replied to his teachers callous comment.
“I'll remember that.” Kuromoto replied. “Alright everyone! Let's meet up here! You can come out now!”
(( ::Act Five Completed:: ))
Tachikaze, Gensan, and Mizuki stood in front of Kuromoto with looks of pride of their faces. “Alright, you were each able to catch a shuriken. Took you three long enough to learn that by focus chakra into your hands in time to catch my shuriken. If you Practice this long enough and you could even catch a fly with a pair of chopsticks.” , Kuromoto said with a grin
“Aww it was an easy exercise.” Tachikaze said while scratching the back of his head. “I mean it's not my fault Mizuki needed help and-” Tachikaze was silenced by a sharp elbow to the gut by Mizuki.
“Now to make sure that you didn't cheat, I marked each of my shuriken.” Kuromoto continued. “If it says a special message, then you pass with flying colors.”
The three genin looked at their kunai and written on the tag was something barely visible.
As they read the last of the message the white tag they had on the shuriken flashed a bright light in their faces. “Get's them every time...” Laughed Kuromoto as he took his shuriken back from his now unconscious students.
(( ::Act Six Completed:: ))
Tachikaze was the last to wake up and quickly learned that his arms were restrained by some thick ropes. “What the-? Hey, what gives?” Yelled Tachikaze.
“The final lesson.” Gensan said, his back to Tachikaze. “That Kuromoto was playing around with us the entire time.”
“That's right.” Said Kuromoto sitting on the opposite side of wherever they were. “If a jounin of my rank was after you, you would last two minutes. Hopefully this will teach you not to try anything beyond your abilities.”
“So the whole exercise was to get us to eat a slice of humble pie?” Asked Tachikaze, struggling to escape his ropes.
“Yeah, pretty much.” Kuromoto replied. “Now get some rest. We have a big day tommorow.”
As the carriage the ninja group rolled along, a small band of ninja were sailing through the air past it.
“Can't we rest for the night?” Asked one of the people leaping through the trees. “We've been running for hours?”
“No, we must stay ahead of the others...and remain undetected.” Replied the leader of the group, his body covered by a long cloak.
“I just don't get it. Why do we have to follow these genin around anyway?” Another voice asked their leader. “I mean, I'm sure Shibuki-sama could find something better to do.”
“It's not the genin we're watching over...it's their teacher.” The leader answered. “Because at anytime, he could become a monster that could destroy us all.”
(( ::To Be Continued:: ))
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