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Cayuga 08-01-2017 06:10 AM

Frozen in Fear
Sero continued his march through the snowy landscape of Snow Country, unaware of what waited for him past the horizon. He was a nomad now, nowhere to go, with nothing but the clothes on his back. He was a lost soul as far as he was concerned. As the snow slowly turned to land Sero wondered where he had put himself. He had long abandoned his throne room atop his icey castle. He needed to find support, he needed to find friends, and more importantly, he needed to find food. The one thing about the Snow; it didn’t allow for many animals to flourish.

Sero continued on his path and if he knew any better he would think that he was in Rice Country. Not only was he aware of where he was geographically, that he had traveled East and that the snow of his homeland had melted away to give way to humid marshlands and forests. Piercing what seemed like the heavens Sero could see a City. He knew of Atma City but never witnessed it himself. He knew of the strength fostered in that cesspool of a civilization and he would have to be careful. Snow shinobi were a high commodity and fetched a pretty penny to the right person. Because of this, Sero would get in and out, only getting food and heading more to the East. He didn’t know where he was going but he knew he was going somewhere.

As he entered the city the skyscrapers and citizens seemed to overwhelm the ragged man. Sero had been alone for nearly a year at this point and he was a confused lamb. He wanted nothing more then to find a snow refugee like his own. He figured if refugees headed to the East, Atma City would be the first place they would go.

Cayuga 08-01-2017 04:44 PM

As Sero continued to wash over his senses with everything that was happening around him, he couldn't help but notice that no one seemed to be paying attention to him. It was the first time in a long time he was around so many people and this is not how he thought they would act. He thought that as soon as he walked through the threshold of the city he would be attacked. However, except for a few shady people that seemed to be staring at everyone, he was being left alone relatively quite well. Each building and place of business seemed the same and the streets were filled with a whole bunch of degenerate looking types.

Sero would keep his head low and alone very small eye contact with anyone. There was no telling what someone might ask him if he really was confronted. Sero knew how to handle himself, and being alive was a testament to his ingenuity and need for survival. With that in mind, he knew that he would be able to take on anyone that came at him; at least he hoped that would be the case. He soon realized that his stomach might have different plans.

The growling from his gut was enough to be heard from at least a few feet away, and he was sure that if the streets were so busy and loud the other people could hear his stomach as well. Taking refugee in the next bar he saw Sero sat at a table, looked into his pockets and came up with nothing. He was broke as a piece of wood and he had no way of getting any food. Sitting down without a drink or meal made him look suspicious and a few people began to stir. then suddenly, a woman appeared with a drink.

"You got to be careful in this part of the Country. You look new, are you a traveler?" The woman asked kindly to Sero.

"You could say that. I am sorry miss, I have no money for this." Sero stated apologetic to the woman's offer.

"It's on the house, if you want to repay me, I know something you can do. That group over there will beheading into the woods to the East of here. There has been some interesting missing persons cases and a large amount of weird silk or film, or something. Anyways, you figure it out and I can even get you a room tonight. How does that sound?" The woman finished stating as she walked off, uninterested in the next words that came out of Sero's mouth.

Standing from his chair Sero approached the group.

"Got room fo another?"

merdle 08-10-2017 02:30 AM

There were three men at the table. Two of them looked like twins, both hardened men with thick leather jackets adorned with little metallic trinkets stolen from battlefields. They looked at Sero, and then both looked around the room as if worried who else would come stumbling onto their little operation.

"We were just discussing business, and looking for an additional partner..." Said one.

The other picked up, "I assume you have some way to pull your weight? There are some folks that need... finding... out in the woods."

The last man at the table had a wide brimmed hat, pulled down so low that there was no way he could see what was happening in front of him. But it didn't stop him from reacting to Sero approaching, or talking to the Snow-nin once he was there.

The man smiled as he spoke, "It doesn't really matter, if you can defend yourself. We'll pull the rest of the weight. Pay is okay, but I'm sure we can find alternative ways to earn from our client."

The twins looked at Sero, pushing a full cup of beer toward the shinobi. "You in?"

Cayuga 08-10-2017 07:00 AM

”I am in. You don’t have to worry about me pulling my own weight; I am a survivor after all. I can what must be done as long as the pay is good.” Sero stated as he picked up the beer and started to take a drink of it. There were a lot of things Sero enjoyed and one of them was not beer.

Sero didn’t enjoy the way the beer filled his mouth, nor the way it made him feel after wards. The bloating and constant trips to the bathroom seemed to be more of hindrance compared to the feeling he would get off the buzz. Sero was more distinguished and liked the taste of whiskey.

”Too bad there ain’t no whiskey. So, these “folks” where are they and when did they go missing? They normal people or are we hunting some Oto shinobi? I am not really from these parts so I don’t know too much of the happenings around here. Plus, if they went missing, the sooner we go the better.” Sero stated calmly. It was only then that he realized he might have asked too much of the group and they might be interested on where he was from exactly.

There was no way he could tell them that he was a Yuke-nin and worst comes to worst he would have to kill them later if they found out. Sero knew that he was a high commodity and there was no way he was being taken down by some thugs in the bar.

He looked closely at the three of them and it seemed like the man with the hat was the boss man and would cause the most trouble. However, he didn’t want to count the twins out. There was a lot of anxiety building in Sero but he knew if he kept his cool they would be all right.

merdle 08-14-2017 01:34 AM

"Details, details," Said the man in the hat, "There are enough of us that unless there is some squad of Jounin out there, we should be able to get them back."

The twins nodded in unison, one starting on his drink again, the other said, "Just been rich folks going on the road East. Heading toward Coal. They keep not making the trip, and the only trace after is a bunch of silk strands."

His brother dropped his drink and let out a sigh, "Probably some strange technique. I heard there is a Sound clan that leaves silk behind. Could be them. In which case, we could have a prize on our hands."

The man in the hat shrugged, "If they are ambushing rich people, who probably have bodyguard, we should expect some kind of fight. So stay alert out there, and stay quiet. We should try to use surprise to our advantage. They won't know we are coming to fight them head on, or that we will be able to sense them."

The man tilted his head back far enough that it was obvious that beneath his hat was a veil that fell over his eyes. Unless he had some alternative means, there was no way he could see through the black cloth.

"I'm going to take a piss. You two keep our fourth company, and we can head out when I get back."

Cayuga 08-14-2017 07:20 AM

Sero was impressed with the group of mercenaries in front of him and he knew that he might be in good hands as long as he could keep his secret hidden. There was no way he could tell these men that he was a Yuke-nin. This was only solidified as they continued to speak and brought up a Sound clan that had a good bounty on their head; most clans had a good bounty on their head but Sero felt that Yuke-nin had the same price on their head.

What surprised Sero the most was when the man with the hat raised his head to reveal something Sero was not familiar with at all. His eyes were completely covered and he had no idea how the man could really see. Sero tried to remember anything about Sound shinobi but still came up dry as to why he was so unique. As the man left the table Sero was quick to notice that he walked as if any type of blindfold did not hinder him.

As the man went into the bathroom Sero went towards the two men with a couple more questions.

”Your boss, what, um….what is up with his eyes? Can he really see through that black blindfold? Seems more like a hindrance then anything. Also, what clan are you talking about with silk and such?” Sero finished off. He would hope that these two would be a little more revealing with the situation then the more serious leader of the three.

The bar seemed to be getting more wild as the time went on and Sero was ready to get out of there. He just hoped that the three other men were capable enough to hold their own. He didn’t want to worry too much about other people.

merdle 08-15-2017 01:49 AM

"Sees just fine," Said one of the twins, "I try not to worry about it. He can see much better than you'd expect too. Tried to get the drop on him once, he almost ripped me from sack to lip."

The other twin laughed at that, then took another sip, "As for the sound clan, hell if I know. Wasn't long ago I thought the whole lot were dead, just a fairytale. Now they've got that village, got the Mercenary King all riled up."

"Whatever," The first twin said, putting his empty cup down, "If Kumanoi doesn't kill'em, the other villages will just mop them up again. We've gotta get outside. If he comes back and we ain't ready, he'll probably be pissy."

The other twin nodded in agreement. They rose from the table, leaving their drinks there. One went to pay, settling Sero's drink as well.

"Should just be a straight shot," Said the other one as he lead Sero out of the bar, "We head East, and keep following the road until we hit the fork where the thin road keeps going East into the woods. We'll hit Coal first, but you barely notice since we won't be deep in. We'll know we're getting close if we start seeing that silk stuff in the trees."

The leader rejoined them, looking refreshed.

"We ready to go?"

Cayuga 08-15-2017 06:12 AM

Sero was quite amazed at the current situation that he was in and was astonished with the fact that a man that was essentially, for all Sero knew, was blind as a bat. There was something that really struck a cord with him and he realized that he would have to deal with strong and strange shinobis if he was willing to make Yukegakure and Snow Country great again. As the group spoke about clans Sero could not remember what types of clans were housed within the Snow Village. He really couldn’t remember much and if not for the years of recon and news gathering in the safety of his ice fortress would he be aware of Kohonagakure involvement.

As the three men went outside, the breeze of the air filled his lungs, he was used to way colder then this type of environment and yet, Sero was really starting to get used to not having to wear a huge jacket and deal with always having to warm himself through chakra. It seemed almost natural for the body. However, he was one of the last crusaders of Yukegakure and he would make sure that they rose again, he just needed to make a little extra cash.

Sero had yet to walk in Coal Country and he assumed it was aptly named such for its abundance of Coal, however, he had to make sure to play along and as the twins spoke he continued to just nod his head in agreement. There was no point to start off on the wrong foot already.

”Yea, I am good to go boss, just lead the way. I am not sure where we are going exactly but I will follow you fully to the end with this one. I need to make that extra cash, I am quite hungry.” Sero stated with a smile on his face.

merdle 08-18-2017 11:06 PM

The group collected themselves, and then started on their trip to Coal. They didn't pretend not to be shinobi. As soon as they got out of Atama city, they leaped into the trees, and started to jump from tree to tree to head toward their destination.

As they continued on, there was idle chitchat. It became apparent that the twins were named Ryuku and Kyuku, though which was which was hard to tell. The leader was Musuro, who didn't talk much as they continued forward.

Then, eventually, Ryuku ran into something and nearly fell out of the trees. He started to gasp and spit, and Musuro stopped them.

"It's the stuff, boss," Ryuku said as he got control of himself. He was right, the tree he had jumped through was full of white silky strings, all stuck to him, but in large ribbons of it that didn't make it immediately obvious what it was.

"What is this stuff supposed to be?" Kyuku asked as he came to pull it off of his brother's head.

Cayuga 08-19-2017 07:04 AM

Sero was almost relieved that as they exited the bar there was no stopping the fellow mercenaries from showing off their shinobi skills. However, that also meant that Sero would be in trouble if he was found out to be a Snow shinobi. There was no doubt that a lot was riding on this mission, however, Sero really needed to eat. He needed to make sure that he survived if he wanted his dream to become a reality. The arguing of the two brothers left Sero alone in his own head as the third man, Musuro was mostly quiet.

As they continued their journey through the woods Sero suddenly stopped as one of the guys fell from the tree; something that shouldn’t normally happen the way it did. Instead of making sure the motley crew of mercenaries was alright, Sero went up into the tree branch to see what he had run into. Investigating it a little further, Sero still couldn’t really figure it out. The stuff was white in pigment but was so thin that it was nearly invisible. Sero shook in the fear that all the trees could be laced with this stuff and he worried a little bit for sure. Taking a sample for himself he jumped back down to the crew.

”I don’t really know what this stuff is. Do any of you guys have any ideas on what it could actually be? The best thing I want to say is its some sort of web. But these are just too big for any type of bug to make that I have seen. Are you guys from this country? Do you have big bugs in this area? I almost want to asy it’s a spider web.” Sero stated towards the crew. He knew Musuro was blind and the two twins were idiots. He hoped that the combined effort would figure it out.

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