Emissary of the Empire

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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Ace Trainer » Sat Jan 14, 2023 10:30 am

"To a degree, I would suppose Kota could be considered my oldest friend."

The young bright eyed aid looked at the Taishou surprised by the comment. The term 'friends' was not one Kesu had heard the Taishou use before, as he wracked his brain trying to find an instance in which Shio had referred to anyone as a friend. Even more, the suggestion that this was his oldest friend was even more surprising. Someone from Iwagakure no less? How could that even be the case, and why had this Kota never been mentioned before? Kesu felt particularly caught off guard by the comment. But, finally he would simply nod, handing the next paper for the Taishou to sign as he continued to talk.

'You seem surprised? Perhaps 'friend' is too exact a word, but our relationship is casual none-the-less. In fact, I met Kota for the first time only a few weeks prior to meeting you. So I was only 11 or 12 at the time, Kota is only a little older than me. But we were both sent a representatives to a joint event between our villages. After meeting Kota I got lost and separated and well...here we are.", he scribbled on the papers in front of him, continuing to muse aloud, "We've had a correspondence here and there as things have changed. I guess I only consider him a friend because he's one of the few people in the world I don't interact with through a layer of formality.", he signed the next papers then pushed away from the desk, standing to his feet.

"And given he's visiting me as a representative of Iwagakure, even that has come to an end.", he reached out and grabbed the cap and coat on the back of the chair he'd be sitting on, placing the cap on his head and wrapping the cloak over his shoulders and moving towards the door.

"Come, Kesu, our guest should be arriving soon.", and off to greet Kota he would go.
Mistaki ShioShiimu KozanGekko IndraShoshiki HeiyaHizashi Ikinari
Kirigakure No Sato
Kemurigakure no Sato

Taishou of Iron Country
Kirigakure No Sato
Genin
Experiment 81 v2
Sunagakure No Sato
Genin
The Soul Host
Iwagakure No Sato
Special Jounin
The Tungsten Princess
Sunagakure No Sato
Jounin
The Revolutionary
Past CharactersShow
[Kenketi Tenteki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Special Jounin]
[Setsuya Inka :: Sunagakure No Sato – The Soul Host – Special Jounin]
[Kaikyo Kohon :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shinwa Basuta no Suihouheki Yasahii :: Kirigakure No Sato – Mizukage :: Spirit of Capricorn, Topenga]
[Futokutei Hitoare :: Konohagakure No Sato – Pestilence (Four Horsemen) – Jounin]
[Aisu Koiji :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shitagane Sakki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Genin]
[Batsu Betsuni :: Iwagakure No SatoJounin A Rank Missing Ninja]
[Futokutei Yasunari :: Konohagakure No Sato – Genin]
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Kao
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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Kao » Tue May 30, 2023 1:15 pm

Kotaru had put off this meeting long enough, he supposed. It wasn’t as if he didn’t want to see Shio or disliked him. On the contrary, Mistaki Shio was one of the very few people who could consider Kotaru a friend. The bannin had enjoyed their low-maintenance friendship consisting of a few letters here and there about nothing of consequence. He thought that would change when Shio had supposedly gone rogue. Or when he took over Iron Country without much resistance. Or surely when he expanded into Fur Country. Remarkably their friendship remained intact over the years, untainted by outside influences from their respective countries and world events.

Of course Kotaru ruined that by running his mouth.

He had casually mentioned their friendship to the Tsuchikage during one of their world domination planning sessions, and the older man had immediately balked and smacked the back of Kotaru’s head hard enough to convey that his next words weren’t a request, but a demand. Go talk to him and formally get him on our side. The last thing the bannin wanted to do was introduce politics to a friendship that had, against all odds and reason, remained uncomplicated. Eventually Kotaru ran out of excuses and couldn’t avoid it any longer, and he once again found himself taking on the role of reluctant diplomat.

Freshly fallen snow crunched beneath his boots as he approached the Kemurigakure plateau. The rough terrain and sparse vegetation reminded him of home. Kotaru inhaled deeply, taking in the crisp air as he walked alone, his heavy cloak billowing behind him. The day ahead was crucial, but for now he hoped he could begin by greeting the Taisho as an old friend.
Kao's CharactersShow
Akari KotaruBanninIwagakure no Sato Team 18 Jousai [color=#1fb8a3]
Komiya ShizuoJounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#209DD3]
Yanagida Yukino Special Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#a07ac2]
Ishiwara SetsunaGenin Iwagakure no Sato[color=#E81D1D]
Enkouten Mai Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#CE5412]
Aisu Namie Chuunin Kirigakure no Sato [color=#5bc2d4]
Awai FusaeA-Rank MNKonohagakure no Sato[color=#D95FEA]
Important NPCsShow
Akari Kanehara Akari clan elder [color=#80A0FF]
Sakata KannaIwagakure Councilwoman [color=#3DA43B]
Hazuki Shuran Jinchuuriki researcher [color=#E854C0]
Enkouten Kaizen Iwagakure councilman, clan leader [color=#C65871]
Rock Country Daimyo [color=#AC4A4A]

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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Ace Trainer » Tue Jul 04, 2023 2:42 pm

Shio moved through the winding halls of Kemurigakure silently until he got to an exterior tower, moving through the window, his cloak immediately beginning to rustle as the wind pushing against the tower wrapped his body. Kesu would float through the window behind him, immediately pulling his clothes close to his body, and shivering. Shio hung out the window for a moment, chakra binding him to the building as he looked out into the snowy landscape. Snow was new to Shio, or at least 'new', he'd been in Iron for almost five years now and it snowed practically year round here. But, it never snowed in Kiri growing up, and the rainfall there was warmer and tropical most of the year so it was not a good comparison.

Letting out a breath, he'd kick off the tower, vanishing into the air and accelerating his body to the front gate. Landing atop the gate, he'd place a hand on the top of his cap, keeping it tight to his head as the wind ripped through his cloak, causing it to flap behind him like wings. His eyes would scan the terrain, looking for any sign of his friend. Eventually, Kesu would arrive behind him, floating through the air until he ended up directly next to the Taishou. The boy would say nothing, simply scan the terrain with his master until finally, he'd spot the Akari trudging through the snow, and extend a hand, pointing for the Taishou.

Shio's eyes would follow the gesture, until he landed on Kota. However long ago it had been, and suddenly, Shio felt like that 9 year old boy in Fountain once again. Extending a hand in the air, he would wave at Kota and, to the shock of Kesu, grin from ear to ear. "Oiii!!", he'd call out.
Mistaki ShioShiimu KozanGekko IndraShoshiki HeiyaHizashi Ikinari
Kirigakure No Sato
Kemurigakure no Sato

Taishou of Iron Country
Kirigakure No Sato
Genin
Experiment 81 v2
Sunagakure No Sato
Genin
The Soul Host
Iwagakure No Sato
Special Jounin
The Tungsten Princess
Sunagakure No Sato
Jounin
The Revolutionary
Past CharactersShow
[Kenketi Tenteki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Special Jounin]
[Setsuya Inka :: Sunagakure No Sato – The Soul Host – Special Jounin]
[Kaikyo Kohon :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shinwa Basuta no Suihouheki Yasahii :: Kirigakure No Sato – Mizukage :: Spirit of Capricorn, Topenga]
[Futokutei Hitoare :: Konohagakure No Sato – Pestilence (Four Horsemen) – Jounin]
[Aisu Koiji :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shitagane Sakki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Genin]
[Batsu Betsuni :: Iwagakure No SatoJounin A Rank Missing Ninja]
[Futokutei Yasunari :: Konohagakure No Sato – Genin]
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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Kao » Thu Jul 13, 2023 11:14 pm

Kotaru, unsure of how the nascent village would approach things, had expected to be greeted in a way similar to what was customary in Iwagakure. Back home, two or three envoys would meet important visitors several miles outside of the village and then guide them through its impressive wall. He was understandably surprised when there was no one to intercept him and he had been able to approach unimpeded. Kemurigakure came into view, and just as he thought 'No way I just walk in,' he saw two figures atop the gate, one of them waving and welcoming. The bannin knew immediately who it was.

"Oi oi oiiiiii!" he shouted back, lifting his hand to return the gesture. The thrilled grin on the Akari's face was a rare sight to behold. Most who knew Kotaru back home in Iwagakure would hardly believe he was even capable of such an expression. He picked up his pace, and before long he was in front of the gate and in front of his friend. For a moment he forgot he was there on business. Kotaru, still beaming, began to rustle in his cloak's outer pockets. "Before I forget, I made you some pork buns. You told me a while ago that you like 'em so I made a dozen. I think they turned out pretty good. Figured we'd need something to eat if we're gonna talk politics and shit." Kotaru pulled out a scroll, stamped with the Iwagakure crest and neatly tied with a silver silk cord. Beneath the crest were the slanted, slightly messily written words To Shio, from Kota. "I brought more formal gifts, too, but I thought I should give you this first before we get into why I'm really here."

Kotaru looked to Shio's companion, seemingly noticing him for the first time. "Who's this? One of your devotees?" He barely waited for an answer. The aid's presence was a bitter reminder that they were here in the interests of their respective villages. The young men, unfortunately, couldn't let this turn into a social call. So reluctantly Kotaru straightened his posture and bowed stiffly - awkwardly, even - towards Shio. “Lord Taisho. It’s an honor.”
Kao's CharactersShow
Akari KotaruBanninIwagakure no Sato Team 18 Jousai [color=#1fb8a3]
Komiya ShizuoJounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#209DD3]
Yanagida Yukino Special Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#a07ac2]
Ishiwara SetsunaGenin Iwagakure no Sato[color=#E81D1D]
Enkouten Mai Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#CE5412]
Aisu Namie Chuunin Kirigakure no Sato [color=#5bc2d4]
Awai FusaeA-Rank MNKonohagakure no Sato[color=#D95FEA]
Important NPCsShow
Akari Kanehara Akari clan elder [color=#80A0FF]
Sakata KannaIwagakure Councilwoman [color=#3DA43B]
Hazuki Shuran Jinchuuriki researcher [color=#E854C0]
Enkouten Kaizen Iwagakure councilman, clan leader [color=#C65871]
Rock Country Daimyo [color=#AC4A4A]

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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Ace Trainer » Thu Sep 07, 2023 10:52 pm

As Kota's pace increased and he closed in, Shio would drop from the large arch he stood on. The winding path behind him was a short ramp up to the actual walls of the tall village on the plateau, a natural defense to prevent anyone from simply wandering up. Shio was never a large child, but since Kota had last seen him he'd still grown almost a full foot. Now, the young ruler was only a few inches shorter than Kota, standing at practically eye level as the representative of Iwagakure got close to them. The wide grin on Shio's face seemed to get even wider as the pork buns were mentioned, "No way!? Let me tell you, the boar they breed in Sanrou have to be hardy to survive, the meat is gamey, not good for pork buns at all.", the excitement seemed very genuine.

This seemed to throw Kesu even more, who have never seen this sort of jovial youthfulness from his fearless leader before. Who was this person that had the Taishou of Iron Country, a leader of a sovereign country able to topple armies all on his own, the grand shinobi that had saved Kesu from a life of dirt, acting like a child? The look of Kesu's face seemed to betray his confusion, an incredulous look of not-understanding combined with what seemed to b almost a hint of jealousy that Shio had a relationship like this with someone. As Kota mentioned other gifts, Kesu would reach into his cloak, pulling a small package and handing it to Shio as well.

Shio would take first the object from Kesu then reach to take the scroll from Kota before handing over the object. When Kota took it, he'd see it was some form of cloth, seemingly woven out of a sleek metal thread and some softer purple material. "I'm glad your hair is still long! Many of our samurai grow their hair and only cut it when they're defeated in battle. That is a ceremonial wrap for hair, it can be braided into your hair and will keep your hair in whatever shape the braid is. Good so they can display it in battle without it being in the way. Typically the colors reflect rank, allegiances or clans... Not quite pork buns....but its symbolic, y'know?", he smiled again, looking Kota directly in the eyes.

Then Kota asked about Kesu, and Shio seemed to snap back, taking a surprised step back as Kota bowed at him. Reality set in with him, and the joy on his face faded. Rather than call Kota off, he did what was 'correct', and removed his cap tipping it towards Kota before placing it back on his head. He wouldn't speak, but instead allow Kesu to do his job as his aid, "It is a pleasure to host a representative of one of the Great Shinobi villages, we appreciate the time you have taken to travel with us to Kemurigakure. As I'm sure a shinobi of your caliber noticed as you approached the village, the Taishou's chakra emanates throughout the air all around the village and those affected by it gain the ability to sense chakra. We are happy to nullify that effect for you if you're unable to do so yourself, but you should be aware that every resident of Kemurigakure has the ability to sense chakra and will be aware of your presence anywhere you go.". As Kesu explained this, seemingly a generic explanation the aid gave all visitors, Shio's eyes fell to the ground, a tint of shame present on his face. It seemed the young boy did not like the way his status was affecting this relationship already, and as the formalities mounted he felt embarrassment and responsibility for it, unable to place why exactly he felt that way. Finally, Kesu would finish and he would turn to Shio, "Should we go to your office, Taishou-sama."

Shio would look at Kota once more, and give a soft smile and then nod, "Yeah. Lets get the politics out the way then I can show you the village.", he offered, and with that he'd turn and begin walking to the village, the young blonde boy floating silently along him.
Mistaki ShioShiimu KozanGekko IndraShoshiki HeiyaHizashi Ikinari
Kirigakure No Sato
Kemurigakure no Sato

Taishou of Iron Country
Kirigakure No Sato
Genin
Experiment 81 v2
Sunagakure No Sato
Genin
The Soul Host
Iwagakure No Sato
Special Jounin
The Tungsten Princess
Sunagakure No Sato
Jounin
The Revolutionary
Past CharactersShow
[Kenketi Tenteki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Special Jounin]
[Setsuya Inka :: Sunagakure No Sato – The Soul Host – Special Jounin]
[Kaikyo Kohon :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shinwa Basuta no Suihouheki Yasahii :: Kirigakure No Sato – Mizukage :: Spirit of Capricorn, Topenga]
[Futokutei Hitoare :: Konohagakure No Sato – Pestilence (Four Horsemen) – Jounin]
[Aisu Koiji :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shitagane Sakki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Genin]
[Batsu Betsuni :: Iwagakure No SatoJounin A Rank Missing Ninja]
[Futokutei Yasunari :: Konohagakure No Sato – Genin]
ChatangoShow
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Kao
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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Kao » Fri Oct 20, 2023 10:14 pm

Kotaru's lips spread into a wide, almost childlike grin when he received his own present. He couldn't remember the last time he'd received a real gift that wasn't some newbie's attempt at brown-nosing themselves into his good graces. He bowed shallowly at the waist - more naturally than the bow before, and with more sincerity - then tucked the smooth cloth into an inner pocket of his cloak. When Kesu began speaking, the bannin's smile dropped and his gaze immediately lost its warmth, growing more and more frigid as the boy went into his spiel. It was a glimpse into the man's nature and his typical demeanor, and it was a side that Shio had rarely, if ever, seen in person. Their relationship had always been easy and casual, so much so that the Akari had created a Shio-sized opening in the walls he had created between himself and the world around him. This formal meeting was perhaps the first brick laid that could potentially rebuild those walls for good.

Despite not wanting that to happen, there was no way the two friends could move forward without addressing the needs of their respective villages. At the mention of Shio's ubiquitous chakra, Kotaru folded his arms across his chest and cocked his head to the side. "Ah, so that's what that is?" Sensory was a skill he'd never had a talent for. He'd attributed the feeling to general unease about the day ahead, but this explanation made much more sense. "Are you sure you want your villagers feeling my presence? I've heard sensing my chakra can be a bit much to people not prepared for it," he said proudly, taking the time to gloat in a rare display of pride in his own abilities. But then he shrugged; who was he to tell Shio how to run a village? If he wanted everyone to know that a high ranking foreigner was roaming the streets with their leader then that was Shio's prerogative.

He followed the two to the village, silently at first, but being around Shio made him uncharacteristically chatty. "If you'd have told me at the beach party that you'd someday lead a hidden village I'd have laughed in your face." Kotaru craned his head to peer up at the impressive plateau. He'd have to ask Shio if the village had always been here or if it'd been built specifically for him and his people. "Granted, back then I couldn't see beyond my own problems. I'd have laughed at the thought of me becoming a bannin. And at my brother becoming Tsuchikage. Things have really changed. Except you - uh, the way you look, I mean. You still look like you did when we were kids." Curious, but Kotaru had seen stranger things in his life.

Once they were somewhere private - presumably the Taishou's office - Kotaru would slip off his cloak and throw it over his shoulder. With a rather grave expression he resumed speaking in a more formal tone. "Speaking of Tsuchikage, he sends his greetings and his assurance that everything I tell you regarding our planned future for Iwagakure and the world can be taken as if he himself said it." After making himself comfortable by crossing one leg over the other he added, "What are your concerns about my village's direction, Lord Taishou?"
Kao's CharactersShow
Akari KotaruBanninIwagakure no Sato Team 18 Jousai [color=#1fb8a3]
Komiya ShizuoJounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#209DD3]
Yanagida Yukino Special Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#a07ac2]
Ishiwara SetsunaGenin Iwagakure no Sato[color=#E81D1D]
Enkouten Mai Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#CE5412]
Aisu Namie Chuunin Kirigakure no Sato [color=#5bc2d4]
Awai FusaeA-Rank MNKonohagakure no Sato[color=#D95FEA]
Important NPCsShow
Akari Kanehara Akari clan elder [color=#80A0FF]
Sakata KannaIwagakure Councilwoman [color=#3DA43B]
Hazuki Shuran Jinchuuriki researcher [color=#E854C0]
Enkouten Kaizen Iwagakure councilman, clan leader [color=#C65871]
Rock Country Daimyo [color=#AC4A4A]

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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Ace Trainer » Sun Nov 26, 2023 2:44 pm

As they walked, Shio allowed Kesu and Kota to interact briefly before interjecting at Kota's question, "The people of Iron are fiercer than you might expect.", was all he would retort. It was a little snide, perhaps a playful shot of Kota's gloating. Sure, normal people my be intimidated by Kota's chakra, but the people of Iron were not normal civilians by any stretch. Strength was their mantra. Kota continued though, and Shio smiled, this time slightly more mournfully, trying to prevent Kota from noticing. In truth, what Kesu had just done and what Kota had said both simply reminded Shio that this was not going to be a normal visit. This was business, and Shio had a lot he needed to accomplish. The pleasantries and the idea of reuniting with a friend were far more fiction than fact, and Shio was becoming more and more aware of that.

"That beach party is where it all started really. I got lost after that.", he said sheepishly. He glossed over Kota's commentary on his looks, not seeming to want to address that elephant, perhaps for personal reasons perhaps for tactical ones. "I never planned on it either. Its hard to believe. But, here we are. We were diplomats then, and diplomats now. The setting just a little different. Almost as if this stage I had built was just for us.", he gave a smile at Kota, looking up at him almost like a big brother. "We've come a long way."

As they entered Shio's office, the air would change between them suddenly and swiftly. A chill overtaking the room and Kota shifted the tone. Shio would approach the throne he often sat on, and would place himself in it rather unceremoniously, looking directly at Kota. The assurance from the Tsuchikage was a nice gesture, but Shio knew it was be insufficient for what he was about to say. Kota asked of the Taishou's concerns, but Shio seemed to ignore the question entirely, or at least interpret it as 'what can I do', but his response unveiled his concerns nonetheless.

"You can stop this ridiculous expansion."

His lighthearted tone and demeanor was gone. Kotaru was no longer speaking with the childhood friend he'd kept through letters all this year. The depth in his voice, the force in his tone, Kotaru was now speaking to the Taishou of Iron Country.
Last edited by Ace Trainer on Wed Jan 17, 2024 1:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Mistaki ShioShiimu KozanGekko IndraShoshiki HeiyaHizashi Ikinari
Kirigakure No Sato
Kemurigakure no Sato

Taishou of Iron Country
Kirigakure No Sato
Genin
Experiment 81 v2
Sunagakure No Sato
Genin
The Soul Host
Iwagakure No Sato
Special Jounin
The Tungsten Princess
Sunagakure No Sato
Jounin
The Revolutionary
Past CharactersShow
[Kenketi Tenteki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Special Jounin]
[Setsuya Inka :: Sunagakure No Sato – The Soul Host – Special Jounin]
[Kaikyo Kohon :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shinwa Basuta no Suihouheki Yasahii :: Kirigakure No Sato – Mizukage :: Spirit of Capricorn, Topenga]
[Futokutei Hitoare :: Konohagakure No Sato – Pestilence (Four Horsemen) – Jounin]
[Aisu Koiji :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shitagane Sakki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Genin]
[Batsu Betsuni :: Iwagakure No SatoJounin A Rank Missing Ninja]
[Futokutei Yasunari :: Konohagakure No Sato – Genin]
ChatangoShow
HonchkrOnu
ArticOnu
RichardUnknown
RichardGreen
RichardRed
RichardBlack
RichardGold
AlienHostRichardGold
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Kao
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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Kao » Mon Jan 01, 2024 12:52 am

Despite their friendship, Kotaru hadn't been sure what exactly Shio's stance would be. Ideally - perhaps idealistically - Shio would have supported Iwagakure's endeavors and perhaps even joined Iwa as they moved against Sunagakure and Wind Country as a whole. Kotaru was aware that hope was perhaps pure fantasty. A more realistic response from the Taishou would have been neutrality. Kotaru had thought perhaps Shio initially express more neutral intent, or at least be slow to reveal his thoughts on the matter. Kotaru hid his surprise masterfully, his expression largely unchanged. "How disappointing." The bannin's voice became melted steel. "Expansion? Lord Taishou, we're only reclaiming what is rightfully ours - land that was quite recently taken from us, and land that was historically ours but lost generations ago. We're simply making corrections to the outcome of an ill-advised war that we were forced to fight."

He cocked his head to the side and added almost wistfully, "Some of the results of the invasion were...regrettable for those who didn't need to get involved. I was just as surprised as anyone when my Lord Tsuchikage greeted me with Takeo's head in tow." Takeo. Not the Hokage. "That being said, I'm afraid it's too late to just stop. There's no changing my Lord's mind about it now, not after feasting on victory." As he spoke, the Akari's unblinking gaze was fixed on Shio, searching the young leader's expression for any hint of what he was thinking. Kotaru paused thoughtfully. Shio clearly wasn't in support of Iwagakure's endeavors, so he had to choose his next words wisely.

"If you're worried about your country," he began slowly, "we have no plans to involve Iron Country. But we were allies in the war, and we would like to continue that."
Kao's CharactersShow
Akari KotaruBanninIwagakure no Sato Team 18 Jousai [color=#1fb8a3]
Komiya ShizuoJounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#209DD3]
Yanagida Yukino Special Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#a07ac2]
Ishiwara SetsunaGenin Iwagakure no Sato[color=#E81D1D]
Enkouten Mai Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#CE5412]
Aisu Namie Chuunin Kirigakure no Sato [color=#5bc2d4]
Awai FusaeA-Rank MNKonohagakure no Sato[color=#D95FEA]
Important NPCsShow
Akari Kanehara Akari clan elder [color=#80A0FF]
Sakata KannaIwagakure Councilwoman [color=#3DA43B]
Hazuki Shuran Jinchuuriki researcher [color=#E854C0]
Enkouten Kaizen Iwagakure councilman, clan leader [color=#C65871]
Rock Country Daimyo [color=#AC4A4A]

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Emissary of the Empire

Post by Ace Trainer » Mon Jan 01, 2024 1:27 am

Shio scoffed. Scoffed.

The person opposite him wasn’t Kota anymore. It was some faceless representative of an empire Shio had mentally marked as a threat years ago. The look on his face betrayed the raw anger Shio was feeling. The camaraderie Shio and Kota had been sharing mere moments ago might as well have been as long ago as their time in the Land of Fountains, given how distant it would suddenly feel. Shio had developed a temper, originally it had manifested in small battles, moments where he saw lack of integrity and people behaving inappropriately. But in the more recent years, as he had risen to power he found his temper getting more and more out of control. Moments where he was being questioned in ways he didn’t like, moments he was being told no when he didn’t get what he wanted.

And this was not what he wanted.

”Righful?!”, he raised his voice. ”Many of the lands you conquered were never yours to be claimed. The people you’ve taken claim to haven’t called their home Rock Country for generations! If ever!”, he was practically snarling. ”Iron Country stood as a neutral force that was relied upon by the minor countries across the continent for almost as long as it has stood. Engrained in the very nature of the culture in this country is the desire to protect people not unlike themselves that lack the ability this country has to stand firm.”, his eyes locked onto Kotaru’s, the unblinking gaze of the Akari met with a rage enfueled stare from Shio.

”Involve Iron Country?”, he laughed, a mocking, anger driven laugh. ”I’d bring your armies to my feet, you know that as well as any.”, this wasn’t a threat, it was an attestation. Shio was reminding Kota he wasn’t one to be tested. At the end of the day, Shio stood among a select few - alongside Tatsuo who Kota was representing. ”I don’t give a fuck about Takeo’s head. Konohagakure could burn.”, the words came from his tongue like venom. ”How am I expected to assure my countrymen - my country - they are safe when all around them they are witnessing a violation of a tenant they have held true for longer than any one of them have been alive? Should they take the word of their Taishou’s childhood friend? Does that sound reassuring to you?”

Shio’s nostrils flared, and for a moment it betrayed what Shio was feeling in this moment, the anger was a response to the control Shio could not assert in this moment.

”Tell me, Kotaru. How would you convince a nation full of people that a man their brethren are calling a tyrant can be trusted when that tyrant has surrounded their borders? What would you say to instill in people trust of a man who appears to be throwing a temper tantrum because his country had to be saved when it got too ambitious? A country the very people that you are convincing had to bail out for the decisions that have led to this temper tantrum? That bailing out had lead to the seat of the current Taishou.”, in the war, Rock and Iwagakure had made several decisions that were questionable at best, and the decision of the previous Taishou to save them had lead to Shio taking the the throne and the title of Taishou. ”How would you, Kotaru, it was difficult to parse out how much was Shio asking genuinely and how much was Shio trying to antagonize the old friend before him.
Last edited by Ace Trainer on Mon Jan 01, 2024 1:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
Mistaki ShioShiimu KozanGekko IndraShoshiki HeiyaHizashi Ikinari
Kirigakure No Sato
Kemurigakure no Sato

Taishou of Iron Country
Kirigakure No Sato
Genin
Experiment 81 v2
Sunagakure No Sato
Genin
The Soul Host
Iwagakure No Sato
Special Jounin
The Tungsten Princess
Sunagakure No Sato
Jounin
The Revolutionary
Past CharactersShow
[Kenketi Tenteki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Special Jounin]
[Setsuya Inka :: Sunagakure No Sato – The Soul Host – Special Jounin]
[Kaikyo Kohon :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shinwa Basuta no Suihouheki Yasahii :: Kirigakure No Sato – Mizukage :: Spirit of Capricorn, Topenga]
[Futokutei Hitoare :: Konohagakure No Sato – Pestilence (Four Horsemen) – Jounin]
[Aisu Koiji :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shitagane Sakki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Genin]
[Batsu Betsuni :: Iwagakure No SatoJounin A Rank Missing Ninja]
[Futokutei Yasunari :: Konohagakure No Sato – Genin]
ChatangoShow
HonchkrOnu
ArticOnu
RichardUnknown
RichardGreen
RichardRed
RichardBlack
RichardGold
AlienHostRichardGold
ValidusWrecks
ValidusWreckingBall
NotOnu
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User avatar
Kao
Posts: 8226
Joined: Fri May 21, 2010 8:00 pm

Emissary of the Empire

Post by Kao » Mon Jan 01, 2024 2:31 am

The last thing Kotaru wanted was an argument, but it quickly became evident that he had underestimated Shio's rage and how much he was vehemently against Iwagakure's actions. The bannin's frown deepened when the man, from atop his throne, gave the kind of scornful laugh that all too clearly indicated Shio was looking down on him. His neck burned as he endured the tirade, his stoic façade quickly fading. He tapped his blackened fingers against his leg and his retort whirled in his head like paper riding a tempest. Eventually he forced the growing storm inside him to calm long enough to gather his thoughts. "You're looking at this through the wrong lens, Lord Taishou," The Akari began, fighting against the sneer that threatened to mar his lips. "Iron Country's neutrality only lasted as long as it was deemed favorable. Your predecessor knew when it was time to pick a side to ensure his people's survival. And you - you didn't exactly come into power peacefully. You have a conquerer's mind as well, no? The new, young Lord Taishou who took advantage of a war and walked into a nation like he was born to rule it, and killed his predecessor with his bare hands. Your rise to power followed by your campaign against Pebble was impressive and it worked out in your favor, did it not? Clearly your new people respond to power, as do ours. We're not so different, Lord Taishou."

Shoulders tense, Kotaru leaned forward slightly. A controlled blaze burned behind his eyes. "The facts are Earth Country surrounds you on three sides and yet we have no interest upsetting your idyllic way of life." Kotaru huffed through his nose. "Tat- Lord Tsuchikage has endured worse things than being called a tyrant throwing a tantrum, including that damned war. Bailed us out? Once Iron's attention turned to Pebble and the rest of our allies faltered we were left to fend for ourselves. We're lucky we didn't lose more than we did. That war was a disaster for us, one Iwagakure and its leaders didn't start, and we don't intend to repeat the same mistakes." Anger flashed in his eyes as the memory of all they had lost flashed in the forefront of his mind. It evidently wasn't common knowledge that they'd nearly lost Tatsuo, but Kotaru didn't intend to mention it. Shio's current demeanor suggested the younger shinobi wouldn't care, and may even lament Tatsuo's survival.

"If your people are as loyal to you as you say then yes, your word should reassure them. I don't care how you convince them. But you could start by reminding them that our quarrel isn't with Iron. Iwagakure sent one man - me, your friend - to your newly conquered village as a sign of goodwill. A sign of support. I'm only here to gauge if we can expect the same. Even if the answer is no and you remain neutral," he finished with another huff, "there's no need for hostility between our people." Between us, he nearly added.
Last edited by Kao on Mon Jan 01, 2024 2:34 am, edited 2 times in total.
Kao's CharactersShow
Akari KotaruBanninIwagakure no Sato Team 18 Jousai [color=#1fb8a3]
Komiya ShizuoJounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#209DD3]
Yanagida Yukino Special Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#a07ac2]
Ishiwara SetsunaGenin Iwagakure no Sato[color=#E81D1D]
Enkouten Mai Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#CE5412]
Aisu Namie Chuunin Kirigakure no Sato [color=#5bc2d4]
Awai FusaeA-Rank MNKonohagakure no Sato[color=#D95FEA]
Important NPCsShow
Akari Kanehara Akari clan elder [color=#80A0FF]
Sakata KannaIwagakure Councilwoman [color=#3DA43B]
Hazuki Shuran Jinchuuriki researcher [color=#E854C0]
Enkouten Kaizen Iwagakure councilman, clan leader [color=#C65871]
Rock Country Daimyo [color=#AC4A4A]

User avatar
Ace Trainer
Posts: 16147
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 7:00 pm

Emissary of the Empire

Post by Ace Trainer » Mon Jan 01, 2024 2:24 pm

The wrong lens? Shio's grip on the arm rests of the chair tightened. How confident of Kota to tell the Taishou he was wrong. There were few bold enough to do that, especially as he allowed his rage to lash out around him. "I'd tread carefully.", he warned through gritted teeth. He would listen to Kota's review of the war, a revisionist history that was likely being taught to the children of Iwagakure at this very moment. As if Shio hadn't lived it himself. As if he hadn't been given an review of the events by the very people who lived it within Pebble Country and Iron itself. His eyes thinned, a discerning, paternalistic look as if he was try to pull apart whether Kota was attempting to fool him or truly believed the nonsense he was spouting. He had little expectation that his friend would understand the nuance within Iron Country, that there was no 'peaceful' transition of power in these lands, not much different from the village he once called a home. It would be difficult to expect Kota to understand that Shio's predecessor had become hungry with power in an attempt to prove himself to generals he had lost favor with, and made a decision that was near universally derided by his people. And yet, it undermined Kota's argument entirely - what he presented as a logical decision made by a tactician, Shio's own generals reported as a grave misstep by a man constantly looking over his own shoulder in cowardice.

The next portion drew even more ire from Shio. To say the war was one Iwagakure didn't start? To say they were left alone? Oh, how sad for one of the mighty Grand Five to be forced to face the consequences of it's own actions. Lucky? Luck had nothing to do with it. Iwagakure started the Grand War, and was firmly pushed back in its place when it's allies - Shio's home country - wanted nothing to do with the mainland. In fact, the war came to a close only when Kirigakure attacked Konoha's own home as it treaded on the doorstep of Iwagakure. Left on their own? Iwagakure was saved by it's allies. For a moment, energy would pulse through the room from Shio, lesser men might even say the wall shook momentarily. It was obvious the Taishou was losing his patience and his cool as the man opposite of him attempted to broker some sort of fragile peace between the nations. He would glare, silence hanging between them for a moment.

"The people of Pebble tell a different story.", he said, a calmness in his voice. "The first attack that they - and Iron's own archivists - document as a part of the Great War was Iwagakure and Earth Countries failed assault on Pebble. A demilitarized zone.", he stood to his feet. If Kota looked, he would notice the bent metal under where Shio's hands had just been. "You call me a conquerer. The people of Iron Country call the Taisohu a liberator. The people of Iron look at shinobi and see soulless agents of destruction that enact their will on the world around them without concern for the consequence. I took to Fur Country after it's population had been decimated by a shinobi.", Artemisu, Katsu. "I took to Pebble Country when it was clear they could not rely on the goodwill of their neighbors for peace.", they had been fortunate Wind Country had been their salvation in the initial attack. "My people purchase slaves from their own pockets solely for the purpose of granting them citizenship and freedom. They look to the Grand Five who, even those who call themselves 'good' engage in warfare that leaves destruction and refugees in their wake that results in the enslaving of people who know nothing of the magic that exists in this world. Do not expect sympathy for shinobi nations from the Taishou of Iron Country. There is not one in Sanrou's fifteen hundred year history that will give it to you."

He tucked his arms behind his back, "Tell me. What assurance does Iron Country have that your country will ever stop? Should I wait and watch? See what happens next and hope my borders never come under question? That the greed your leaders are displaying becomes satiated? And what if it doesn't, and I'm left surrounded and forced to fight to my last breath to protect my people? If it comes to that, why shouldn't I follow my predecessors footsteps? Join arms with the Land of Wind, the Lightning Empire, the Land of Fire.", the venom in his voice crept back in for a moment, at his core, Shio was still a Kirigakure ninja. "How many war fronts do you think your village could maintain until it is spread too thin? How many until the Great Walls of Iwagakure come tumbling down, as they came so close to doing before your hide was saved by the village I once called home."

He lifted his chin, breaking eye contact with Kota and looking thoughtfully into the air. "I have no incentive to advocate on behalf of your country to my people. To promise them protection. By my estimations, I have nothing to gain from it. Iron Country wants nothing to do with the squabbles of the Grand Five. I want nothing to do with it. So, you speak for the Tsuchikage, as you said. So tell me Lord Tsuchikage, what tangible thing can you offer to Iron Country to assure it's safety?", the shift was sudden, immediate, and clear. Shio wasn't going to make an ask, he wasn't going to tell Kota what he wanted, or even reveal if it was something specific. He was bargaining, give Iron Country something worth having, or run the risk of Iron Country picking up arms alongside the very countries Shio had once called enemies. "Give my people a show of good will. That they are some how different than their brethren you've laid claim to."
Last edited by Ace Trainer on Mon Jan 01, 2024 2:30 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Mistaki ShioShiimu KozanGekko IndraShoshiki HeiyaHizashi Ikinari
Kirigakure No Sato
Kemurigakure no Sato

Taishou of Iron Country
Kirigakure No Sato
Genin
Experiment 81 v2
Sunagakure No Sato
Genin
The Soul Host
Iwagakure No Sato
Special Jounin
The Tungsten Princess
Sunagakure No Sato
Jounin
The Revolutionary
Past CharactersShow
[Kenketi Tenteki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Special Jounin]
[Setsuya Inka :: Sunagakure No Sato – The Soul Host – Special Jounin]
[Kaikyo Kohon :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shinwa Basuta no Suihouheki Yasahii :: Kirigakure No Sato – Mizukage :: Spirit of Capricorn, Topenga]
[Futokutei Hitoare :: Konohagakure No Sato – Pestilence (Four Horsemen) – Jounin]
[Aisu Koiji :: Kirigakure No Sato – Jounin]
[Shitagane Sakki :: Kumogakure No Sato – Genin]
[Batsu Betsuni :: Iwagakure No SatoJounin A Rank Missing Ninja]
[Futokutei Yasunari :: Konohagakure No Sato – Genin]
ChatangoShow
HonchkrOnu
ArticOnu
RichardUnknown
RichardGreen
RichardRed
RichardBlack
RichardGold
AlienHostRichardGold
ValidusWrecks
ValidusWreckingBall
NotOnu
ReallyisOnu
NotCdf
SunaOOCOnu
HolyCowMrSmith
GlobalModOnu
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Kao
Posts: 8226
Joined: Fri May 21, 2010 8:00 pm

Emissary of the Empire

Post by Kao » Wed Jan 24, 2024 11:27 pm

Kotaru's eyes momentarily unfocused as he subtly forced himself to not roll his eyes. Yes, yes, the failed assault on Pebble. That mistake had truly costed Rock Country dearly. In his eyes, and in the eyes of many of his countrymen, that decision was a grave mistake that they had hoped could be quickly remedied by a successful war campaign, but instead it had resulted in consequences that they were only just now trying to repair. They were to blame in the eyes of the world, and Kotaru was only one among thousands who could not and would not accept it. Leadership had scrambled to adjust the narrative, and it was one that the bannin wholeheartedly believed. Shio's words didn't quite fall on deaf ears yet they still didn't reach the man who stood before him. The bannin's eyes briefly flickered to the chair's bent metal but neither his mind nor expression would change.

But then Shio dared threatened to join his enemies and Kotaru stiffened. His arms crossed over his chest, one hand clutching his bicep while the other clenched into a tight fist. His fingernails dug into his skin, pinpricks of dark red blood pooling on the surface. He let Shio finish his spiel, affording the same respect that the Taishou had shown him But his eyes were flared with indignation as he listened to his friend reveal a side of himself that Kotaru loathed. The Iwa shinobi said nothing for a long, long while. He stared in disbelief as he shuffled through his thoughts, trying to filter through what he truly wanted to say and what was diplomatic. "I can't believe you'd actually," he began, his voice made monotone by well-controlled rage, "consider joining with them. I can accept that you want nothing to do with the fighting and that you won't help. But I can't accept that you'd do anything to mess up your chances when you decide you're ready to go home."

He sat on that for a moment, letting Shio think about it. Through their letters Kotaru got the sense that Shio would like to eventually return to his home village. Despite the theatrics and desire to protect this country and village, he was a Kirigakure shinobi at heart. "Flippantly throwing around my Kage's title doesn't help the situation, Lord Taishou. What could I possibly give you? In situations like this I could offer you soldiers but your people wouldn't accept it and you won't accept an alliance anyway. I could go the traditional route and offer you land and a wife, but." Kotaru shrugged one shoulder, "I can't imagine you accepting something like that. All I have to offer is myself and my word. That if anyone in my camp tries it I'll personally turn their bodies into ash and their minds into dust." He paused, suddenly struck by a new thought that hopefully wouldn't offend the Taishou. "Or, if this goes our way, I could offer you and your people a piece of the spoils of war."
Kao's CharactersShow
Akari KotaruBanninIwagakure no Sato Team 18 Jousai [color=#1fb8a3]
Komiya ShizuoJounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#209DD3]
Yanagida Yukino Special Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#a07ac2]
Ishiwara SetsunaGenin Iwagakure no Sato[color=#E81D1D]
Enkouten Mai Jounin Iwagakure no Sato [color=#CE5412]
Aisu Namie Chuunin Kirigakure no Sato [color=#5bc2d4]
Awai FusaeA-Rank MNKonohagakure no Sato[color=#D95FEA]
Important NPCsShow
Akari Kanehara Akari clan elder [color=#80A0FF]
Sakata KannaIwagakure Councilwoman [color=#3DA43B]
Hazuki Shuran Jinchuuriki researcher [color=#E854C0]
Enkouten Kaizen Iwagakure councilman, clan leader [color=#C65871]
Rock Country Daimyo [color=#AC4A4A]

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