Zhouhua (041)

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Zhouhua

Zhouhua is home to ferocious packs of wolves that plague the sheep-farming villages of the area’s northern half. Further South, however, the more open grasslands of the North give way to deep forests in which the Inuzuka Clan have dwelled for many years. The Inuzuka know their home well and trespassers are dealt with quickly and effectively.
 
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The two mercants continued toward Keishi.

They told their story and collected some gold. It was much less than last time.

We really need to make the story bigger.

How we're basically calling Takauji a god, and Sado a demon.

What do we have left?


The woman.

What do you mean?

She needs to be like an angel from heaven. A perfect soul.

A voice for her people and a savoir for Sado's.


Alright fine. We'll fix the story before we get to Keishi.

But I think making her perfect dehumanizes her.


And calling Takauji a god, and Sado a demon doesn't dehumanize them?

Well that's different. Sado is dead anyway.

The story continued to spread throughout the lands as more people began sharing the story.

NPCS ELM from 122 | LLM
The two merchants were walking through the land of Zhouhua. The two were having a spirited debate about how to take the story they were working on. One believed they needed to focus on the warrior woman who took out the brute. The other wanted to focus more on the plot. Together they walked rather slowly through the land at first talking back and forth.

So, you think she should have angel wings?

Yeah, and big breasts.

I still don't see how that effects the story.

It adds a certain air of mystery.

Her big breasts, adds mystery?

What happened to the story dehumanizing her too much?


They were too caught up in their debate that they didn't see a wolf stalking them

AWOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Oh shit.
Oh shit.
Oh shit.
Oh shit.
Oh shit.
Oh shit.

They both darted forward rushing to Keishi with haste trying to leave as soon as they could.

NPCs ELM from 43 | LLM
 
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#3
This post marks the beginning of my mission using these storyboard elements:
Fight an individual of comparable strength ( 3 )
Custom: Defend the helpless ( 3 )

Summary: Wanted to do something new. I haven't tried out the "fighting" missions yet and was traveling through lands with aggressive Inuzuka and ninken. I figured it would be a cool story element to have them be attacked and for Lorelei the NPC to need to deal with her place in the world. Also the clone who had a similar place in the world mainly as just another "tool" to try and make everything better for her or at least comfort her after a traumatic event.





Lorelei and Smith moved forward away from the decimated land and buildings they found in the previous area. Lorelei was seemingly exhausted, they had traveled a far distance in a day more than a normal person should be able to. She had been pushing herself harder than she should have and as the two moved forward she had to stop for a moment to catch her breath.
In that moment of weakness Smith could sense something approaching two things actually from the dense forest to the south they were just faint signatures that were moving in their direction. Listening he heard nothing, but that sensation was distinct and he realized that the danger was paramount. His only objective was to protect this woman at all costs. Instinctively with his right arm he reached outward grabbing Lorelei's left arm and pushed her back a bit so that she was behind him.
She almost fell to the ground with the amount of force he used, he didn't realize she wasn't prepared for this and that the momentum almost threw her off of her balance. HEY! What are you doing!? She yelled, unaware of the impending danger the two were in. Smith merely shushed her and took a step forward in front of her he spoke some advice. Shhh, if I should fall here. You run. He focused toward the two incoming chakra signatures trying to make a mental map of their position as in the distance he now heard two distinct growls getting closer.

He looked more serious as two wolf-like ninken rushed out from the forest toward him one was pure white with a large bushy mane and the other a sleek black wolf-dog both were about two-thirds the size of Smith at least four feet in height and they looked stocky at least one hundred and twenty pounds each. The two jumped forward about ten meters away from Smith and collided together creating one large double-headed canine that landed in front of Smith snapping out with their two powerful jaws. Lorelei screamed out in terror.

(Jinjū Konbi Henge: Sōtōrō ) - Human Beast Combination Transformation: Double-Headed Wolf
Rank: B
Type: Supplementary
Range: Short
Chakra Cost: 20
Damage Points: N/A
Description: A Combination Transformation where man and beast become a single entity. It is a specialty of the Inuzuka clan, a clan that has been walking side by side with ninken for generations. They coalesce into a bicephalous wolf, thus drastically increasing their power. In their direct attacks, they demonstrate great efficiency. Furthermore, using techniques in addition to this gives birth to an extraordinary power of destruction.
NOTE:Must be a member of the Inuzuka Clan.​
(Ookami Taiga) -Wolf River
Rank: A
Type: Offensive
Range: Short
Chakra cost: N/A
Damage points: 60
Description: After performing transforming in a two headed wolf, The user and and their dog leap forward and bite the enemy with both wolf heads.
Note: Requires dog companion and be a member of the Inuzuka clan.​

As they began to move toward Smith and Lorelei leaping together to form one massive two headed canine Smith surrounded himself in a protective cushion of natural energy. As the two heads snapped out trying to bite him he lifted his right arm upward placing the forearm firmly in the left head's mouth as it bit down. It's teeth and jaw would be met with the natural energy negating the offensive holding the bite at bay long enough for Smith to extend his left hand in a one-inch punch like motion.
The second knuckle on his left hand would be extended as he used kinematic chaining to start the punch at his right foot pushing upward through his legs and turning his hip and chest sideways creating a massive set of three one-knuckle shots to the throat of the beast that had his right arm in it's maw. Smith was breathing heavily, spittle was forming at the corners of his mouth as his barbarian-like rage began to take hold of him. If the Inuzuka and ninken continued to push him he would kill them.
This would effectively catch the Inuzuka and his beast off guard as they wouldn't be able to perceive the protective shell thus seeing a bite make contact with the arm. However this was the only way Smith thought of to both negate the damage and survive as he was a clone thus any amount of damage that got through to him would disperse him. As the knuckle hit the beast's throat in three very quick one-inch punch like motions the creature would reel back in pain yelping like a wounded animal as it would spit up blood releasing Smith's arm from the gaping maw.

(Forgotton-ō no shukufuku) - Blessing of Forgotton Kings
Type: Supplementary
Rank: A
Range: Short
Chakra: 30
Damage: N/A (+20 to another entity's technique)
Description: This technique is in essence a defensive technique but can be used to increase the power of others techniques as well. It is based heavily around the Sage Transformation ability to imbue upon another being Natural Energy albeit a small, safe fraction of the user's total power. This Natural Energy does not combine with the allies' chakra flow, and only surrounds their body momentarily being taken out either by an incoming attack that makes contact with the Natural Energy or the release of a technique moving from around the allies body and onto the technique imbuing it with a layer of Natural Energy.

To activate this technique a Jugo clan member must make physical contact with another creature while under the affects of a partial transformation (if not already under the effects of a transformation this technique can instigate one) and through that contact infuse them with an unseen aura of Natural Energy encasing them in a protective cushion that will not in any way impede their movement. During this process the user needs to make contact with the ally and sustain contact during the molding of chakra, or until the aura is negated. It can also be used on summoning creatures to increase their durability and can be done in the same timeframe as a summoning technique as long as the user is making contact with the creatures. This process is very similar to the one Jugo performed to remove the Zetsu spores from Sasuke's body and also when he imbued upon Sasuke's Susanoo the power of Natural Energy.

Note: Can only be used thrice per battle.
Note: The defensive ability can be used on the user, but not the boosting ability.
Note: Aura lasts until released by use of a technique or the user and cannot be controlled by the ally.
Note: The aura can defend from A-rank elemental techniques of any nature, Natural Energy or Senjutsu.
Note: The aura can defend from S-rank raw chakra techniques or similar including weapon based ninjutsu and most forms of taijutsu including S-rank.
Note: Courtesy of Howard
( Hitonare Za Tora ) - Taming the Tiger
Type: Offensive
Rank: S
Range: Short
Chakra cost: N/A
Damage points: 80 + 20 ( SM ) = 100
Description: A technique that focuses on overwhelming power and precision. Through careful breathing this technique allows the user to deliver several one knuckle punches in quick succession, each and every one striking the exact same spot on the target with devastating effect. This attack is capable of breaking through most conventional defenses.

I don't want to fight you. I'm merely defending the woman. If you come at me a second time I will kill you.

Smith spoke in a cold, viscous tone one of apathy and indifference. However there would be a slight upward inflection like a person who was asking for them to come at him. He seemed like he was having fun like he wanted to kill them, and that he was just waiting on a reason to do it to justify it. As Lorelei saw the bite make contact she screamed in fear a second time she was too lost in fear to notice the malicious gleam in Smith's eyes it was the look of someone who enjoyed hurting others. She fell backward landing on her ass as she tried to crawl away dragging herself away before turning, partially standing up and running roughly five meters away from the two turning to look back. She didn't know how to respond. She was told to run if there was danger so she did just that with tears in her eyes it was even reiterated to her by Smith a second time just moments ago.
As Smith threatened the Inuzuka and his ninken the combined form backed away a few feet gaining a bit of distance both heads growling and scowling at the man moving in a semi-circle. They seemed injured but too prideful and stubborn to walk away from such a fight to them this was their territory and they would defend it to the death. Lorelei would yell out again this time with actual words in a desperate plea for them to stop. Please! We're just passing through. We mean no harm!
She was trying to help in whatever way she could but it wasn't working. She was just being a distraction to Smith and the Inuzuka picked up on that. He would attack again when the man was distracted and with the intent to kill. He was too slow to pick up on the fact that Smith would just keep turning his direct offenses into his own offenses. As the woman called out the canine looked directly toward Smith watching his head, neck and chest.

Smith turned his head slightly toward her unsure why she was calling out but this motion had an ulterior motive as Smith picked up on how the two heads were watching him and waiting for an opening. In that moment the massive two-headed dog rushed forward again leaping again toward Smith. He lorded over Smith and the battlefield with his decent height, stature and weight. Smith missed his height at this point he would be nearly twice this combined form's size if he was his normal goliath stature. The combined form went in to attack Smith again this time when he seemed distracted. Smith's eyebrows furrowed as his head turned again to face the combined form. A sly grin eked up his face, he couldn't help himself-... it was a feint and they fell into the trap. As the dog snapped outward again with his right head Smith was prepared. They were using the same offensive which was predictable. However Smith's next action would be unpredictable, different than the last and deadly.

(Ookami Taiga) - Wolf River
Rank: A
Type: Offensive
Range: Short
Chakra cost: N/A
Damage points: 60
Description: After performing transforming in a two headed wolf, The user and and their dog leap forward and bite the enemy with both wolf heads.
Note: Requires dog companion and be a member of the Inuzuka clan.​

He lifted his left arm channeling poison chakra into and through it as he extended his left hand upward his arm literally moving forward slightly. It seemed to move forward as the canine bit forward literally biting off whatever transformation Smith was extending from his arm and hand. It was poison, he had converted his left hand and forearm into poison and extended it forward slightly so that when the dog bit him a second time he merely got a mouthful of sticky, sickly, tar-like poison. The sticky nature of it basically bound the right mouth shut as the canine tried to open it's mouth and rid themselves of the poison. However the effects would be nearly instantaneous upon consumption. Lorelei yelled again.

(Dokuton: Doku no ki, Kalaipahoa) - Poison Ninjutsu: Kalaipahoa, the Tree of Poison
Type: Defensive/Offensive
Rank: A
Range: Short - Mid
Chakra: 30
Damage: 60 ( when used to attack )
Description: A poison user concentrates poison chakra all throughout their body or into a specific part of their body and by using this poison chakra they can turn portions of their body into poison. If a technique or an attack strikes this form with the potential to strike them directly depending on it's strengths and weaknesses some techniques can be completely negated while others can be partially negated. This is because not only does the user literally turn their body to poison they proliferate this poison creating an additional buffer of poison allowing the "body of poison" to take on far more damage than the users natural body. This costs a move and the user can temporarily become poison for at maximum three turns before reverting to normal. This ability can only be used once every other turn and if used to negate damage the user reverts to normal upon taking enough damage to take out the poison. Due to this the user can defend against something that would naturally harm them negating the damage of an attack with the strength of an A rank or below for things neutral to the form of poison the body is converted into. Alternatively it can negate an S rank technique of something that form of poison is strong to.
The whole body can be converted to poison but to do so the user must perform a single hand seal. If instead they only turn a portion of their body to poison they are able to do so without a seal. Whole limbs, or portions of the body such as the head, neck, shoulders, stomach, fingers or chest can be converted to poison relatively easily. However as mentioned above the form of the poison dictates it's strengths and weaknesses. While this technique is primarily a defensive technique it can be used offensively by for example turning an arm to poison and grappling an opponent. Limbs converted to poison can be extended up to mid range away and can be destroyed without harming the user because as mentioned above it is not their natural body but instead poison proliferated from the poison they converted their body into.
Notes:
- Can be used three times per battle with transformations lasting for three turns at max
- Can be used once per turn with a two turn cool down
Don't kill each other!

The combined form would feel fear to an almost crippling degree as the other head yelped out in combined fear. The two turned and tried to dart back toward the forest severely damage and now poisoned comically knocking their heads together as for a second they tried to bolt in different directions. While they began to run Smith formed a single hand seal as multiple water mosquitoes formed around the combined form. Lorelei had snapped him out of his momentary lapse in judgement he was too lost to his heritage to realize that he literally almost killed these two.
However they were too lost to fear and terror as the swarm began to jab into their flesh extracting the poison and nullifying the rest the combined formed fell and passed out at the tree-line as it dispersed back into a Inuzuka and his ninken. Both would be left barely alive, but alive none the less as Smith walked into short range for a moment and performed the diagnosis skill. They would wake up in like an hour with a severe headache but would be fine due to the nullified poison. He walked up to Lorelei lifting his left arm and wiping the slobber from his mouth.

( Iryō Suiton: Suika ) - Medical Water Style: Water Mosquito
Type: Supplementary
Rank: A
Range: Short
Chakra: 30
Damage: N/A ( -20 damage as the poison is removed )
Description: After using the Tiger seal, the user creates water mosquitoes, that can be used to nullify poison in a target's body. Designed specifically to suck out poison, the user is unable to use anything else while concentrating on the target. Despite being a healing jutsu, the several mosquitoes cause pain to the body as it heals it. This jutsu is capable of removing and countering up to 50 damage done by poison.
Note: Can only be used 1 time per target.
I'm sorry you had to see that.

She was at a loss for words. This was the first time she had seen the man fight. She didn't notice the feral gleam in his eyes earlier if she had this may have been a different conversation all together. He seemed to return to his normal demeanor at least the facade he had shown her up until now. The two began to continue their journey toward Keishi in relative silence. Lorelei didn't know how to respond thus she didn't.

They had almost made it to Keishi when she finally spoke up. Her voice was confused and saddened. After thinking it over for a while she realized that the entire world was messed up. There was no black and white like she thought before she thought Takauji the hero, then she thought Jack was the hero-... now she didn't know what to think. The world was violent and insidious.
There were no heroes just a wash of gray areas, men and women fighting over lands some protecting others, others merely out for the thrill of battle, others wanting fame, fortune and ryo. It was a depressing revelation for her. She didn't know how to process that information. She wanted the world to be a happy place, instead it seemed to be growing more and more violent as each day passed. She remembered the way that she was treated initially by Trunks-... Jack seemed like the only person she had met so far that cared about the regular people over other shinobi.

[video=youtube;2SWI4AfuxQU]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SWI4AfuxQU[/video]

I-... I don't know what's right anymore. They were just defending their home-... weren't they?

But we didn't do anything wrong-... we were just walking to Keishi.


Smith replied in a somewhat stoic tone remembering back to something he saw a while back in the lands below Kushasogen. He lifted his left hand and placed it upon the back of his neck as he seemed to fumble over a way to explain it. It was hard. Due to his upbringing in relative solitude away from the civilized world he knew very little about it. He was learning about it and was almost as oblivious to it as she was but she needed words to bring her through that event. It was traumatic for her it seemed. It was aberrant, something she wasn't used to seeing.

The world is a living thing, and living things defy simple fixing. All we can do is protect those we care about. We can extend a hand to offer aid-... but it's up to the other person to accept that aid. If they don't want it you can't force it upon them. That's just tyranny to force your will upon the world around you. I'm trying-... Jack is trying to do the right thing but it's hard to know what that is.

As he spoke he realized he was a clone and changed what he was saying mid sentence.

Lorelei listened and picked up on the way Smith spoke. She seemed to calm down a bit more as she realized that everyone was dealing with the same problems. The world was ferocious and all anyone could do was try their best to endure and survive and provide others with enough comfort for them to make it through. She spoke again with the same tone as earlier but a little more resolute. She didn't seem to fumble over her words this time.

Heh it's funny. I said I wanted to be the hand reaching out to help others but I can't even help myself.

She seemed saddened as she said that. She was doing what she could but for her it felt like very little. She was trying her best she had pushed herself all day to make it this far and in her mind all she did was endanger them by needing a rest. Smith, and Jack and all the rest of the shinobi seemed so strong, they could do things she couldn't, they could protect. What could she do? So far all she did was write down and document landmasses and people she saw along the way. She felt like she was useless and after a long pause of silence Smith picked up on that feeling of uselessness it was a deep sensation of dread that caused an immense amount of tension.

What's wrong now?

Smith said. His tone was softer than usual but the words that came out seemed harsh in their usage.

I-... what am I doing for you? Just documenting stuff you could know on your own?

Smith sighed. Dealing with humans was hard they were needy, and consistently underestimating their worth.

You're taking weight off of Jack's shoulders. He's going to know I said this when I disperse so I hope you're happy. He's putting the hopes and dreams of all of those people you saw back there and even you on his shoulders. He wants them and you to be happy even if he won't admit it to himself. He-... we've been through some serious stuff in our past. You picked up on it and I'll let him tell you if he feels like he needs to but it's changed us on a fundamental level. Jack will keep putting more and more weight onto his shoulders until it crushes us, he doesn't want to see that right now but subconsciously he knows. He's too busy focusing on people like you to realize that one day all that weight, all that responsibility is going to get us killed. I've tried showing him that but he's dense, thick and stubborn. Eventually he's going to piss the wrong person off and start something bigger than what he can deal with alone. That's all I can say. You're doing good, in your own way it just takes time to build up.

Lorelei seemed content with that answer as her meek posture seemed to straighten up slightly.

Even if she was weak maybe she could do something beneficial for the big picture.

Senjutsu:
209 - 40 ( SM / Travel Posts ) = 169
169 - 30 ( Blessing of Forgotten Kings ) = 139
139 - 30 ( Kalaipahoa, the Tree of Poison ) = 109
109 - 30 ( Water Mosquitoes ) = 79
NPC and Clone ELM from LM 043 | LLM
 
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#4

- Coming from Landmark 122 -

Medivh had traversed the landscape, making his way through the forests, with little to no daylight coming through the branches above. The rocks, bushes and the thick forestation found on the bottom of the forest made it difficult for him to travel unnoticed. Having hidden his elven blades beneath his robes, and the satchel on his back as well as his hood hiding his presence, he continued on. Finding a wooden branch he could use as a walking stick, he continued onwards.

As he made his way through the lands, he witnessed the ruins of Kokkyō, the rubble and the metal were spread across the landscape, a vast battle had taken place here most likely. However Medivh had no memory of this. Continuing onward, paying no attention to the ruins of the fortress, he came across a large lake. Deciding to take a break, he walked down the hill to the lake and sat down by the side of it. Here he sat for an hour or so, just relaxing and eating some lembas bread, bread made in a unique elvish manner, quite delicious. After finishing his meal and waiting about an hour, he thought it would be refreshing to take a dive in the lake. Quickly undressing down to his trousers, he jumped into the water, and swam around cooling down, just floating around in it like a corpse. A rather odd thought came into his mind, so why not try it, he breathed in as much as he could and just dived straight down, he wanted to see if he could reach the bottom and return back without loosing his breath. Diving down into the dark depths of the lake, the light quickly faded into black, however his elvish eyes were able to see in the dark rather easily. He thought the darkness and the lake would be more pleasant, but the darkness and the unknown, and the nothing was actually creeping him out, not because of the cold water or him being afraid of the animals in the water really, it was all his imagination running wild, so rather than reaching the bottom his mind sort of panicked and before long he found himself reaching the surface of the water. Breathing in heavily he swam to the shore, to find his clothe and get dressed.

After a refreshing dive, he gathered his things and continued onwards into the forests towards his destination, there were really not much to see, he avoided the villages and anything man made, he wanted to go unnoticed.

- Leaving Landmark towards 41 -
Coming from the deep forests, he came into a less forestated area. He had not traveled for many moons, so his memory of this place was rather small. As he moved through the forest area, he tried to move unnoticed, and sometimes he thought his mind was playing games with him, he thought he heard footsteps, he thought he heard branches breaking and he was almost sure he was being followed. There was no need to fear anything, of course he thought everything would be fine as long as he continued onward. After walking for several hours he thought he could see the end of the forest and a more clear area filled with tall grass, but before he could reach the end of it he heard a howl coming from behind him, he knew it was a wolf.

Turning around to face the animal, he saw a large grey wolf. It was larger than he expected, way larger in fact. He was unsure of what to do against the animal, he couldn't walk away, neither could he just kill it, could he?. The situation was difficult, he knew nothing of the land, he did not know if there were more wolves in the area, and the blood of another wolf would definately draw their attention. He had to make a decision on what to do. He decided to avoid fighting, by quickly crawling up into a nearby tree, hiding between the leaves. The wolf would most likely lose interest after a while.

Medivh ended up sitting in the tree for several hours, the light of the sun was gone, the night sky was lit by the stars above, the moon was nowhere to be seen. He could not hear the wolf, in fact, he had not heard it for quite some time. To be safe, he decided stay in the tree over night. As he fell asleep he came into a dream. It was a terrible dream for him, a dream that was the kind that made you question your decisions. The dream was short, as he awoke quickly, after dreaming about his possible life in the village with Abigail. As he awoke, he sat up sweating.

Wiping away the sweat from his face, he bit his thumb and performed the summoning technique. This summoned a small diving toad in front of him. It just looked at him confused in the tree.

"Sorry to summon you, I just want to be safe that I am not being followed by wolves or any other prey, you can get me safely ton this area?"

The toad looked at the map Medivh was holding out, it simply nodded and opened its mouth. What came next would look absolutely comical. Medivh would be absorbed into the toads stomach through its mouth, and for any normal person that would definately freak them out. Afterwards, the toad quickly jumped and crawled down the tree and into the tall grass, where it would travel unseen through the terrain, a regular toad would definately not arise any suspicion.

(Gamagakure no Jutsu) - Hiding in a Toad technique
Type: Supplementary
Rank: C
Range: Short
Chakra: 15
Damage: N/A
Description: The user summons a special diving toad (moguri gama) from mount Myōboku and then the user will hide in its stomache. The frog is capable of diving very deep in fresh water. The frog's stomach has a special barrier which obstructs chakra, protecting the user from sensory-type ninja.

Note: Must know Toad summoning contract.

Chakra: 800 - 15 = 785
 
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#5
Arriving from [SUP](43)[/SUP].​




Continuing south, with visions of poverty and desperation fresh in his mind, Shayde was happy to see that the forests were slowly but surely disappearing, showing an indication that he was indeed heading in the right direction. As he walked through roaming green hills, with sheep frolicking off in the distance, it stood to reason that this just one small part of some expansive farm. Shayde decided that, since this was no doubt private property, it would be best for him to get through this land as quickly as possible. He didn't want to be on the business end of some strung out, rural laborer's double barrel after all. On his way out of the land, he came face to face with the most adorable wolf, snarling and growling at him with every fiber of it's being. Shayde felt summoning one of his canine companions for a little "play date", but before he could even prepare some Chakra, his right arm molded itself into a giant, terrifying maw, that roared back at the wild animal, with all the vigor and decibel count of a Tailed Beast. As the wolf ran, terrified, Shayde watched his arm return to normal, stating; "That wasn't very nice... Don't make a habit out of it." He couldn't be certain if it was intended to be playful or dismissive, but Shayde heard a loud chuckling echo throughout his head. As the two continued on their way, Shayde found solace in the fact that Greed had learned the simplistic aspects of the concept of comedy...




Leaving Landmark, heading to Keishi [SUP](07)[/SUP].​
 
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