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[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 11:54 am
by Niro
Mitsuo and Tatsuo had been planning this trip into the steppes for a bit of time now. Both of the boys had been interested in the arts of Kouton release since a young age and now they were being able to express their interest in it by taking a village-allowed trip into the steppes to research more into the art. The trip was to a shrine located in the steppes.

Normally, this would be of no issue.

This the time of the year changed this particular detail. It was the beginning of winter in Rock Country and that meant the temperatures would drop, snow fall would be near constant, and the small number of wild animals out would be those wild with hunger or trying to find something to help them get through the coming months.

Tatsuo tied another strap down on his extra-large backpack. It was fitted with a tent on top and enough rations, water, and other survival supplies like flint for last them the entire trip and then some, just in case. The young man patted the pack and made sure everything was tied down before sitting down next to it at one of the exit stations of the village. Now he just needed to wait for his partner.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 2:57 pm
by Yura
Today's the day, Mitsuo thought to himself as he quickly moved through the streets of Iwagakure. He had promised to meet Tatsuo at the gates of the village at the crack of dawn so that they could leave for the shrines of the kouton monks as soon as possible. He was running a little late, but that's only because he had decided last minute to take his mother's advice and repack his gear to take into account the colder weather. With that same mindset, he had decided to switch up his clothing a bit as well. He had replaced his tank top with a thermal long-sleeve shirt of the same color and his long-sleeve jacket with one made of a thicker, warmer material though embroidered with a similar design. He had also replaced his normal shoes with leather boots which would be of better use when hiking through terrain that they were about to face.

"Can you believe that we're finally going to the shrines!" Mitsuo called out as he approached Tatsuo, a wide grin plastered across his face. He was excited. He and Tatsuo had been dreaming about this trip for years, wondering what it would be like to learn more about the art of Kouton. Having worked within his clan's forges since before he had entered into the academy, Mitsuo had had an interest in all things metal for as long as he could remember.

"I see that you are well prepared like always." He said as we looked over at Tatsuo's supersized pack. He could always trust Tatsuo to be prepared for a journey like this. That's not to say that Mitsuo wasn't prepared himself. While not quite as large as Tatsuo's, Mitsuo's bag contained various food/water rations and camping/survival gear that they would likely need, as well as an extra set of clothes and a blanket, with a sleeping back on top.

"I'm ready to go when you are."

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 3:40 pm
by Niro
Tatsuo saw his chuunin friend before he heard what he was saying. The boy was a little older than him and they had been friends in the academy while keeping touch as they each progressed in their careers. The young Akari looked over his friend and his equipment before giving a small satisfactory nod that he had prepared in a proper manner, if not as extensively as himself.

"Yes, I'm quite excited." Tatsuo replied with a small smile in response to the previous question blurted out by his energetic friend. "I thought better to over pack rather than under pack, who knows what may happen during this time of year with the snow storms and such." His smile grew a small bit wider as he continued on and the thought of the trek ballooned in his mind.

"Let us go then." Tatsuo called out, nodding to the guard manning the station they were ready to exit the premises. The guard swiftly put them through the required protocol to leave while checking out two donkeys for their trip as it would be tough to travel through the low regions of the mountain range and into the steppes without them. Tatsuo placed and strapped down his pack on his steed before withdrawing a heavier cloak from it and wrapping himself in it.

The Akari mounted the animal and brought its reins under control and waited a moment for Mitsuo to do the same. Once the pair was ready, Tatsuo would lead the way towards the steppes as their journey began.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 4:09 pm
by Yura
"Yeah, well, let's just hope that the weather cooperates with us." Mitsuo replied as he followed his friend to the village gates. Winter was not particularly one of his favorite seasons. When you are born to a clan that wields molten hot lava for a living, you don't exactly make friends with the cold.

After being processed by the village guards, Mitsuo followed Tatsuo over to the pair of donkeys that awaited them and began to strap his bags to the mammal. To be honest, he hadn't expected to be taking donkeys to the shines, but it made sense. Their journey was going to be fairly long and with the likely weather events that they were going to be experiencing, it would be nice to have the animals carrying their gear and helping them save some of their energy.

"I'm good to go," Mitsuo said as he hopped up onto his steed and took hold of the reins, "Do you have the map or do you know where we are going?" he asked as he urged his donkey forward to follow his genin partner. Some might find it odd that Mitsuo, a chuunin, was deferring to Tatsuo, a genin, but, to be fair, Tatsuo had done a huge portion of the planning. Mitsuo might be the higher ranking shinobi, but, at least for this part of the mission, Tatsuo would be leading the way.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 4:37 pm
by Niro
"Last I had seen at the weather station was slight snow but nothing dangerous. I can only hope that trend continues for us." Tatsuo called back to his friend as he pulled out the map from his pack and spread it over his lap. He gazed over it, taking in the different topography lines and other geographic information which would help them navigate the path towards the shrine.

"Yeah, I was able to get a map of the route. It's honestly nothing too bad, some mountain low lands until we hit the steppes. We might have to camp out for a little bit at night depending on the weather but we can cross that road when we come to it."
Tatsuo continued on as he folded the map back up and placed it back in the large pack strapped to the pachyderm underneath him.

Tatsuo maneuvered the donkey onto the most correct path for their travel and got comfortable in his seat. Well, as comfortable as a person could get on a moving donkey in a nearly desolate land covered in snow.

"I wonder just exactly it is these priests do at the temple to be so...priest-y." Tatsuo pondered aloud. "Do they just like...praise metals in the ground all day or something? Praising the sun or something more...holy would make more sense to be fair."

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 5:05 pm
by Yura
To say that Mitsuo was happy that the weather was going to be relatively mild was putting it, well, mildly. He hadn't had the chance while rushing out of his clan compound to take a gander at what the weather reports were saying, so knowing that the area wasn't expected to get much snow while they were journeying to the shrine made him very happy. A little light snow was a lot better than a blizzard, and if they ended up having to camp a little bit, so be it. Coming from a family that trains their youth how to hunt and gather in the wilderness, camping was not a problem for him.

"You know, to be honest, I haven't the slightest idea." Mitsuo said as he pulled up next to his teammate, in response to Tatsuo's final statement/question. He had tried to research the priests and the shrines a bit prior to their trip, but he couldn't find much on them other than the fact that they existed. "I suppose anything is possible really. We might find them praying to some metal statues or idols or something when we get there. And I would assume that they spend their days practicing kouton and stuff like that. " he speculated wildly, "They are priests of the kouton shrines after all. Who knows what they do. I suppose that's part of the reason we are doing this. To learn more about them and whatnot." He added, " Do you think that they will be willing to actually teach us what they know?"

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Fri May 26, 2017 10:37 am
by Niro
"Honestly, I don't see why not. They probably get very few visitors nowadays due to the disinterest in metal working around the steppes. Iwa continues to grow stronger and we use up more minerals in a wasteful manner compared to people like these. They'll probably be happy to see someone is interested in their ways, especially because of how young and impressionable we are. I don't think them willing to be teach us will be the problem, the problem will be can we prove ourselves worthy enough to be taught I think." Tatsuo replied to his friend, putting a bit more of thought into the whole ordeal than he previously had. The trek so far had no noteworthy events to it so far with the duo and their steeds keeping true to the path marked on the map Tatsuo had brought along.

"What do you plan on doing with the knowledge once we learn of it? I'm trying to think up some ideas of what I can do with it and I'm pretty excited. Most of the Kouton jutsu trained in the jutsu are pretty basic jutsu which just create small objects so I'm really excited to see someone do something more with it." Tatsuo chattered away, the cold and uncomfortable seat not being a bother as long as there was something to do.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Sat May 27, 2017 6:24 pm
by Yura
"Yeah, well, with our luck they are going to react the complete opposite way." Mitsuo replied to Tatsuo's initial statement, "Watch, we'll get there and they'll be so confused as to what they should do with us that they'll just turn us away." He added in jest, though it had been thought that had concerned him since before they had left the village. What if these priests or monks or whatever they called themselves nowadays had fully embraced their more isolated lifestyle and turned the pair of Iwagakure shinobi away? Should they continue trying to get the priests to teach them? Or did they respect their wishes and return home? I suppose we'll cross that bridge when we get there, Mitsuo thought to himself.

"Metal, itself, is a fascinating element to work with even without all of the chakra and jutsu."Mituso replied, returning from his own thoughts in time to catch Tatsuo' statement, "Working in the forges growing up, we made all sorts of things out of metal. Weapons for shinobi, trinkets to sell at the market, metal beams to build new buildings, basically anything that you could think of. So knowing that we could add such a versatile element to our arsenal of jutsu is extremely exciting." Mitsuo rambled, getting himself pumped over the idea of learning to work with an element that he had wanted to for so long.

"I think it is going to be interesting to see what they teach us compared to the basic kouton jutsu that are taught in the village." Secretly he hoped that he would be able to translate whatever they taught them into a style that he could use with his taijutsu.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Mon May 29, 2017 5:55 am
by Niro
They marched on.

Their small talk and intense focus on the wonders of Kouton they hoped to be displayed by the monks and one day themselves kept them disillusioned from the changing weather.

The weather on the Plateau was easy to predict but once one was within the mountains grasp, another story was written.

Clouds quickly gathered and the winds kicked up as the temperature began to drop. A flurry of snow was soon upon them, their mules braying in displeasure. Tatsuo grunted as he fought with the reins, looking through the snow and trying his best to continue onwards. Right now there was no going back or stopping as the only thing on either side of them was mountain. For now, they would have to continue on and try to find shelter from the worsening weather.

"Mitsuo!" Tatsuo yelled over the wind and snow, still able to see his companion beside him, "We need to find some sort of shelter! Keep your eyes out for a cave or something! This weather doesn't look like it's going to be our friend right now!"

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Mon May 29, 2017 10:13 am
by Yura
Surprise, surprise, the weather people were wrong, Mitsuo internally grumbled as the winds began to pick up and the snowfall got heavier. Within moments of the change in weather, visibility greatly diminished and all other sound had been drowned out by the high winds. Grabbing the ends of his jacket, Mitsuo buttoned it up tight and pulled the hood up before grabbing hold of the reins of his donkey and urging it to keep moving. Trying to keep his steed steady while navigating the rough conditions of the terrain had already been a bit difficult. Now that it was heavily snowing and the creature had been spooked, it was even more so.

"It's hard to see anything beyond this snow!" Mitsuo called out to his partner as he looked out over the blank white landscape. With his hood up, he was able to keep the snow out of his eyes long enough to look around, but there wasn't exactly much to see. "I don't think our chances of finding a cave are very g-" Mitsuo pause mid-sentence as a spot on the landscape off in the distance caught his eye. About 40 meters from them, off to the northwest of their path, the terrain rose in a sort of hill, though, based on the way that the snow was piling, there seemed to be a bit of an indent in the hill. Putting his hand to his brow to block snow from his eyes and squinting to see through the blowing snow, Mitsuo could see what appeared to be a partial opening in the terrain.

"Over there!" He called out, pointing at the spot. While he couldn't be 100% sure that the opening would, in fact, lead to a cave that they could use for shelter, he began leading his mule towards the opening, assuming that Tatsuo would follow. As he approached the spot that he had indicated, Mitsuo became increasingly certain that it was, in fact, an opening, but snow from previous storms had started to build up in front of it, partially blocking the entrance. Hopping off of his donkey, Mituso began clearing away some of the snow from the opening to create a path big enough to walk through. He noted the fact that the height of the opening was only a little over five feet, meaning that they would have to duck to get into it, but at this point they couldn't really complain.

"I'll go in first!" Mitsuo stated as ducked into the opening. After a few feet in, he found that he was able to stand up straight as he entered a sizable cavern that appeared as though it would just be able to fit the two shinobi, their gear, and their pack animals.

"Looks all clear!" He called out as he backed out of the cave and grabbed hold of his donkey's reigns, slowly leading it into the cave and out of the storm.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Mon May 29, 2017 12:18 pm
by Niro
Tatsuo quickly dismounted his mule once he had finessed them over to the cave opening Mitsuo had discovered off the beaten trail. With a grunt, he ducked under the low lip of the cave and then worked on getting his mule to follow suit, easing its head and neck under the lip while making sure his own supplies on its back didn't fall off due to either the weather or scraping against the rock. A few precious specks of light filtered into the cave as the snow storm continued outside.

A snow wall had blocked off parts of the cave opening, the only entrance being the small entrance Mitsuo had uncovered. The cave was large enough to accommodate the entire party and Tatsuo sighed in relief. The cavern wasn't even fully illuminated either due to the absence of light in the back of it.

"We're gonna have to wait until that storm calms down or else we might get lost or we might have some sort of accident." Tatsuo told his friend, untying his pack from the mule and pulling several firemaking supplies from it. He placed a grouping of starter logs atop of each other and attempted his best at encircling with the loose rocks on the floor of the cave. The young Akari then fished a small slab of flint in which he struck with his kunai, causing sparks to fly off of it.

Several grunts and frustrated sighs eventually led to a small fire being lit in the cavern, illuminating it even more for the group to see in. The cavern wasn't much bigger than what they had already seen save for some small boulders piled up in the back of the room.

Tatsuo sighed once more before sitting down next to the fire and attempting to get comfortable on the cold floor. "We're pretty close to the steppes, in all honesty. The majority of our trip was spent on the Plateau and we're probably a good half way through the Minami no Kabe at this point. We've been going since before sunrise." Tatsuo stopped to yawn and then looked out of the small entrance. The sun had set and it seemed the weather would accompany them into the night. "Let's try and get some sleep, I'll put another couple of starter logs on the fire and that should last until the morning."

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Mon May 29, 2017 3:34 pm
by Yura
As Tatsuo got to work starting a fire, Mitsuo tasked himself with tending to their pack mules, wiping them down to remove any lingering snow and making sure that they each got a well deserved drink of water. With that done, he started clearing the area of the various rocks and twigs that littered the floor so as to allow them to rest at least somewhat comfortably, even if they were on cold stone.

Mitsuo had just unhooked his pack from his donkey and removed a bag of food rations when the cave was suddenly illuminated by light and he caught the scent of smoke. Clearly Tatsuo had gotten the fire started. "Too bad we don't have better ventilation in here" He said, coughing a little from the fire's smoke. He looked around the now illuminated cave and found it to be fairly unremarkable; just a lot of rocks and dirt, though there did seem to be an area in the back of the cave that the light didn't quite reach. "But, I guess, beggars can't be choosers." He added.

"That's if we haven't been blown off course already" Mituso stated as he sat down next to Tatsuo, offering the genin some of his food, "The visibility wasn't exactly the greatest out there once the snow started to pick up so hopefully we kept going the right way. " Mitsuo continued to snack on his rations, taking the occasional drink from his canteen, before getting up from the floor to unhook his sleeping bag from the donkey.

"I have an extra blanket if you need it." He said as he unrolled his sleeping bag near the fire. As he settled himself into his sleeping bag, he finally allowed himself to relax a bit and tried to get some sleep as they would likely be up at sunrise the next day to continue on their journey.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Tue May 30, 2017 10:08 am
by Niro
The mules had also laid themselves by the fire and seemed to have fallen asleep rested against one another. Tatsuo graciously accepted some of the older shinobi's food before grabbing his own canteen and supplies to get into. Their small meal would go by uneventfully with Tatsuo poking the fire and trying his best to keep it alight for the group.

The hour grew late and Mitsuo was right as he unrolled his sleeping gear and got ready to sleep. Tatsuo got up and removed his own sleeping bag from his pack which was on the far side of the cavern and closest to the grouping of boulders in the back. He laid against his mule for extra warmth once he walked back to his spot, the beast huffing but not moving from its position as it felt the pressure against it.

The fire crackling in the dim light of the cave as the two boys tried their best to sleep and continue on their journey in the morning.

The falling of rocks woke Tatsuo in the bleak hours of the morning.

That was weird, falling rocks so close? The cave should have muted any outside sounds to them.

Tatsuo blinked his eyes and looked around the room. The fire was still going and the wall of small boulders in the back of the room was gone.

Wait, what

Tatsuo whipped his head around the room and froze, his eyes wide. Against the leftmost wall of the cave was a large brown bear, calmly walking towards the fire and pulling on his pack, probably wanting the extra food contained within.

Tatsuo took a deep breath before he kicked Mitsuo's leg softly, trying his best to rouse him from his slumber without alerting the bear to their presence or the mules to the presence of the alpha predator not 30 feet away from them.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Tue May 30, 2017 11:43 am
by Yura
Mitsuo groaned a little as he opened his eyes, having felt Tatsuo's kick in his sleep. Rubbing his eye groggily with one hand, he lifted himself up onto the elbow of his other, looking over at the genin.

"Did you just k-" Mitsuo started to say before noticing the alert and serious look that Tatsuo was giving him. Only, it didn't seem that it was him that Tatsuo was staring at. Turning his head to the other side, Mitsuo finally saw what captivated Tatsuo's attention; a bear. A damned bear had gotten into the cave. Or had it been there the whole time and neither one of them had seen it? Well regardless of how it got there, it was now an imminent threat.

For the time being, the bear seemed to be distracted as it tried to get into Tatsuo's pack. Looking around, Mitsuo reached over to his own travel pack and slowly slid it over to Tatsuo before pointing at the pair of sleeping donkeys and mouthing the word "go", hoping that the genin would be able to silently move over to the donkeys and lead them out of the cave before the bear noticed. He wasn't sure if the weather had eased up at all, but he would much rather take his chances with the weather than with a bear in close-quarter combat.

Slowly sliding out of his sleeping bag, Mitsuo slowly moved to grab onto his weapon pouches and his cloak, both of which he had discarded earby before sleeping, all while keeping his eyes on the giant creature currently sharing a cave with them. As he pulled on his cloak, Mitsuo thought that they might actually be able to get out of the cave without the creature noticing, until the creature lifted its head from Tatsuo's pack, its mouth full of the rations that had been stored within it, and made eye contact with Mitsuo. For a moment, there was silence as adrenaline started pumping faster through Mitsuo's veins. He didn't move, hardly even breathed, as he waited to see what the creature would do.

Then came the roar. With a bellowing call of aggression echoing through the cave, both beast and man sprang into action against each other. As the bear took its first step towards him, Mitsuo started weaving handseals before slamming his foot into the ground, causing several rock formations to spring out of the ground and latch onto the bears hind paws, causing it to fall flat on its face as it tried to charge. He couldn't let the creature gain any momentum or they would never be able to out run it.

"Let's go!" Mitsuo called out to his teammate, hoping that he had given him enough time. Mitsuo had barely had a chance to move back towards the entrance of the cave, however, before he heard the breaking of rocks and turned to find that the bear had already broken through on of the stone formations. "Dammit..." Mitsuo muttered in anger. He had figured the creature would be strong, but had hoped that that technique would be able to hold it longer. Weaving another set of handseals, Mitsuo created a cloud of dirt in front of him before launching it at the creatures face, successfully hitting it and covering its eyes in dirt. Mitsuo followed this with another set of handseals before kicking at the ground and launching a small wave of lava from the ground at the beast, hitting it square in the shoulder.

Now blinded and burned, the creature let out a thunderous roar as it tried to break free from its final binding, shaking its head to get rid of the dirt from its face and get a better idea of where its prey was. Mitsuo, meanwhile, took the opportunity to back his way out of the cave, his teammate having already escaped before him.
Jutsu UsedShow
*Doton • Binding Formation
D-Rank Ninjutsu
After channeling doton chakra into their foot the user will slam the ground within 3 meters of a target's feet with their heel, causing a formation of rock to shoot upwards at a speed of 6 binding the target's feet at a strength of 4.

*Doton • Dirt Cloud
D-Rank Ninjutsu
After performing the correct hand seals the user will form a 1 meter diameter ball of loose dirt in front of them, launching it off up to 10 meters away at a strength of 4 and speed of 6. Upon impact the ball of loose dirt breaks apart forming a vision-impairing cloud of dirt with a 3 meter radius.

*Youton • Kick Up
D-rank Ninjutsu
After performing a string of handseals, the user will kick one of their legs at the ground, skimming their foot just over the surfrace of the earth. Chakra at the bottom of the foot converts the ground into lava, splashing forward up to 5m with a speed equal to the strength of the user and an impact strength of 5. This jutsu causes 1st degree burns. The lava hardens over the span of 3 posts, reducing the strength of impacted objects by 1 strength per post.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Tue May 30, 2017 12:10 pm
by Niro
Tatsuo's kick had worked and now his friend was up and aware of the current issue in front of their very faces. Mitsuo slid over his travel pack and indicated for him to get out of here while he held the thing off. He gave a curt nod before slinging the pack over his shoulder and slowly rising to a crouch.

The young Akari slid the reigns over both of the sleeping mules before standing a little higher from his crouching position and tugging on them, waking both mules from their slumber and into a groggy state. They rose and nipped, following the reigns until the beast behind them roared. Being in their unfocused states, the pack animals had neglected to see what the cause of their evacuation was. The first mule caught site of the beast and bleated before rearing up and kicking free of Tatsuo's control.

Tatsuo grunted as he let loose of the first reign and tightened his grip over the second. The mule was less important than his life and Tatsuo realized that. He grunted as he shoved the second, fighting mule under the cave opening and into the extremely early hours of the morning within the Minami no Kabe.

The first mule bleated wildly within the cavern as Mitsuo fended off the larger animal. The dirt, rocks, and lava slowed the animal while the mule ran around, attempting to escape. The bear finally broke completely free of its bindings, the burning sensation and molten rock starting to slowly cool over its skin. It gave one last roar before shifting its attention to the out of control mule and leaving Mitsuo to escape into the night.

Mitsuo appeared from the entrance of the cave and Tatsuo pulled an explosive tag from his weapons pouch. He slapped it on the cave entrance and detonated the tag, causing the entrance to cave in. If the bear would try to chase them, it would have one hell of a time attempting to clear the rubble quick enough.

"We need to move quickly, there's no telling what is lurking in the mountain lowlands at night." Tatsuo called to his friend, shifting the pack to be more comfortable on his back. "It'll be awkward but we should ride two on the mule to move quicker. I can hold your supplies since mine are...gone." Tatsuo gave a mirthless chuckle before loading himself onto the mule.

The clear, piercing note of a wolf's howl rang out among the mountain peaks as the night drug on.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Tue May 30, 2017 2:16 pm
by Yura
Mitsuo was only a few feet through the entrance to the cave before Tatsuo's exploding tag brought stone and dirty down to block it. Mitsuo kept moving for a few more meters, giving himself some distance from the cave, before finally stopping and assessing their current condition. They had lost one of their mules in the chaos along with Tatsuo's packs, meaning they now had to rely on only one pack mule and whatever was left in Mitsuo's pack. Could be worse, I suppose, he thought to himself. On the bright side, the snow storm had become little more than a light flurry.

"This trip is becoming more eventful than originally planned." Mitsuo called out as he walked over to where Tatsuo stood with their remaining mule, taking the creatures reins. The genin was right on both fronts; the night could be dangerous in this area, and it was going to be a bit awkward for the two of them to ride this thing. Nonetheless, Mitsuo hoisted himself up and mounted the creature, taking the front spot and holding out his hand to help his friend get on. "Don't take this the wrong way, but should probably put your arms around me." He said looking back at his teammate with an awkward grin, "I wouldn't want you falling off or anything." he added for clarity.

With that, he urged the donkey forward away from the cave, though a sudden thought occurred to him. "Which way should we be going?" He asked, realizing that the snow had covered the area, obscuring the path that they had been on the day before. "And perhaps more importantly, did we manage to escape with the map?"

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Wed May 31, 2017 4:49 am
by Niro
Tatsuo took Mitsuo's extended hand and tossed a leg over the mule, getting comfortable against both the elder boy and the mule. He wrapped his arms right above Mitsuo's stomach and returned the awkward grin. "You just really enjoy the sight of me riding in the bitch seat, don't lie." Tatsuo replied.

"Just keep on heading south, this should led us into the steppes and from there I've remember where the shrine was and if we're too far off of our original exit point from the Minami no Kabe then we can always find some one migrating to Iwa and ask for directions, get our bearings and all of that. Been staring at the damn map all day just in case something like us losing it happens. Shit like that always happens." Tatsuo lamented from his position behind Mitsuo, the mule braying in what seemed like sad agreement.

"Aw shit, that reminds me I'll have to pay extra for the one we lost." A groan escaped Tatsuo's lips but it was followed with a laugh. "Heh, could be worse. Could be missing an arm from a bear attack."

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Wed May 31, 2017 10:37 am
by Yura
"Hey, don't jinx it," Mitsuo replied as he directed the donkey to the south.While it was indeed unfortunate that they had lost the map to the bear, Tatsuo seemed to be confident in his memory of it. "For all we know that damn thing could follow us all of the way to the shrines for revenge."

The pair rode on to the south for quite some time, making idle chitchat as they went. Luckily, the further south that they got, the lighter the snow storm became until it finally stopped, just as the first light of dawn started to shine from behind the distant hills. Thank god, Mitsuo thought to himself, relieved that, for now, they wouldn't have to continue walking through the snow.

"So this trip has certainly been more eventful that we really planned for, what with the freak snowstorm and the bear attack." Mitsuo said to Tatsuo, practically stating the obvious, "What do you think will happen next?" He asked.

Off in the distance up ahead, with the light of the sun just starting the crest over the hills, Mitsuo could make out what appeared to be a change in terrain a few hundred meters from them. "I think we found the steppes." He said to Tatsuo.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Wed May 31, 2017 11:50 am
by Niro
"Now I'm the one jinxing us?" Tatsuo asked incredulously as Mitsuo mentioned that bear wanting to come back for revenge. Hopefully the rations, donkey, and injuries were enough of a combination to keep the bear away until they reached the shrine.

Slowly the flurry stopped and visibility resumed to its original state, compared to when they left Iwagakure, besides the darkness of the night and the howls of animals.

Again, a wolf's howl broke through the night. However, this time, it perked Tatsuo up a bit. That howl was a lot closer than the previous howls they had heard all night.

"I really don't like that sound of that..." Tatsuo muttered as he shifted in his seat, head on a swivel as he looked upwards and around them. The howl rang through again, and again it was closer. He squeezed his legs around the mule's midsection to urge it forward quicker and the animal picked up the pace, happy it was allowed to move quicker as the howls of stronger animals danced in its ears.

"Mitsuo they're getting closer, do you think they might've picked up our scent or the mules? Either that or we're heading towards them." Tatsuo pondered as he continued looking for any signs of the pack they continually heard and the mule kept a faster pace.

"This is annoying I can't see anythin-" Tatsuo was cut off mid sentence as he turned around and spied something white lying low to the path. He squinted his eyes and cursed. "They're behind us, probably already in position. We need to ditch the mule and just run at this point. The steppes aren't too far."

The wolf on the path began to raise itself from its slow crawl and begin into a faster gait as the rest of the pack began to close in from other locations. The mule broke out into its fastest speed, finally becoming spooked enough by the presence of predators to not care about the people on its back. With a grunt, both of the ninja on its back were tossed and it took off down the path.

"Shit! Let's go!" Tatsuo yelled as he scrambled to his feet, pulling at Mitsuo's arm to help him up and begin their great escape.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Wed May 31, 2017 5:29 pm
by Yura
Wolves. Of course there would be wolves. He had heard the howling off in the distance when they had first left the cave, but he had hoped that they wouldn't show up. He should have known better.

"I don't know if it was us or our mule, but it doesn't really matter now, does it" Mitsuo responded to Tatsuo's question as he urged the mule forward faster, "Whichever it was, they are closing in on us." Within moments, their pursuers came into view with several white wolves revealing themselves on the path behind them, no longer taking the effort to remain hidden; they had found their pray.

"They aren't just behind us!" Mitsuo called out, pointing to their left as a pair of wolves sprinting parallel to them, preparing to close in and take them out. Mitsuo was reluctant at first to abandon the mule even though he knew it was their best chance to make it out of the situation alive. He had no choice in the matter, however, as the mule bucked and threw him and Tatsuo off to the side of the path.

Lifting his head from the dirt, Mitsuo noticed that while most of the wolves continued to chase after the mule, two in particular had broken off from the pack and came running straight at them.

"Awww crap," Mitsuo groaned as he quickly got to his feet. He began forming handseals as he ran after Tatsuo, knowing full well that they weren't going to be able to out run these creatures. Spinning around quickly, Mitsuo focused on the area directly between them and the pair of wolves, flooding it with youton chakra causing the ground to suddenly erupt into molten lava, creating a moat of sorts between them. Noticing said moat, the pair of wolves slowed their approach, cautiously trying to find a way around the lava. Taking their hesitance as an opening, Mitsuo removed an pair of exploding tags from his bag and attached them to a pair of kunai, aiming them at the pair of wolves and detonating them upon impact. He couldn't be sure that he had killed them, but they certainly weren't going to be chasing them anymore.

"Why does nature keep trying to kill us!" He called out, catching up to Tatsuo as they approached the steppe.
*Youton • Quagmire
C-rank Ninjutsu
After performing a string of handseals, the user focuses on a 5x5m area within 15m of their body. Lava then forms on the ground over the area. This jutsu causes 2nd degree burns. The lava hardens over the span of 4 posts, reducing the strength of objects by 1 strength per post.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu Jun 01, 2017 6:45 am
by Niro
The two wolves Mitsuo dispatched howled in pain from the exploding tags and were thrown off into snow banks along the path and moat of lava now raging in behind them. The majority of the pack had gone after the easy kill of the mule but some had also stayed to watch and make sure their secondary objective was completed. Another chorus of howls broke through the night as the hunt continued, the mules and the boys being chased by white ghosts through the lowlands of the mountains.

Tatsuo channeled some of his chakra as he ran, his melashiin bursting forth from his lower back in all of its purple glory. The spiked tendrils hovered around him as a form of defense as they were chased by the wolves. Mitsuo and Tatsuo continued their sprint to the steppes, the mule having disappeared somewhere off of the path and themselves trying to outpace the wolves behind them.

Two wolves jumped off of higher vantage points off the immediate trail and were confronted with the tendrils shooting forward and piercing their skulls before they were able to sink their teeth into either of the shinobi.

"Mitsuo keep it up we're almost there!" Tatsuo shouted as they approached the border of the mountain lowlands and the steppes. The scenery began to change from grey and rocky to a more muted green and yellow color as the geographic features of the region shifted into the steppes. Tatsuo glanced behind him as the path flattened out and began to be more made up of dirt than snow and rock. The wolves were putting on even more speed in a last ditch effort to reach them before the chase became futile.

A stream of freezing water was coming up in front of the boys, pouring southwards as the melting snow from the Minami no Kabe added to the streams in the area. "Mitsuo keep going! Into the river!" He shouted as they came upon it.

Tatsuo wasted no time in jumping into the river and being swept away from the pack of wolves.
~Basic Formation: Melashiin
D-Ranked Ninjutsu
Type: Melashiin
Channeling chakra to their shiin, they cause it to inflate, fully forming into its full glory. Taking the shape of a long fleshy protrusion, the melashiin is able to recover at double the rate of a normal body part would. The strength and durability of a melashiiin are equal to 3/4ths of the user's strength and stamina.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:26 pm
by Yura
Surprisingly enough, Mitsuo didn't hesitate to dive right into the river despite knowing how cold it would likely be. I guess when your options were getting torn apart by wolves or going for a swim in cold water, the choice was a bit of a no brainer.

Unfortunately for both of the boys, the water's current was much stronger than either had likely anticipated as the recent snows had added to the amount of water in the river. Drifting down the stream at an accelerated pace, Mitsuo did what he could to keep himself from ramming into the various large rocks that breached the river's surface while trying to keep his head above the water. After a time, he lost sight of his teammate, unsure of whether or not the genin had gone under the water or had merely shifted in position to be out of his field of vision.

"Tatsuo!" Mitsuo called out through chattering teeth, the freezing temperature of the water starting to take its hold on him. His shouting was likely to no avail, however, due to the sounds of the river crashing into the rocks. Moments later, however, he managed to sight his partner some distance ahead of him, his head poking up from under the water.

Mitsuo knew that the pair of them needed to get out of this river. Between the impacts with the rocks and the arctic temperature of the water, the river was taking its toll on him which meant that it was most definitely taking its toll on Tatsuo. He just didn't know how to get out of it. Luckily for them, the river opened up into a basin of calmer water some 30 meters ahead.

Flowing into the river basin, Mitsuo swam as best he could, his body battered and numb, over to Tatsuo. Finding his teammate to be seemingly unconscious, Mitsuo hooked one arm around Tatsuo's torso and slowly swam them to the basin's bank. His feet finally able to touch the ground, Mitsuo used all of his reserve strength to drag Tatsuo's body out of the water and onto the shore, far enough that they wouldn't risk falling into the water again. With no energy left, Mitsuo collapsed on the ground near his friend, passing out as well.

[Graded]Iron Lords [Plotboard]

Posted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:08 am
by Niro
"Oh hohoho, what do we have here?" A short, squad older gentleman swathed in muted yellow robes strode along the the shore of one of the few lakes within the steppes of Rock Country. He stood around 5' with no hair on his wrinkled head. A larger than normal Bernese Mountain dog strode beside him, nearly coming up to his shoulder. "They do not look too well, my friend. Let us get them some place warm."

The enormous dog crouched down next the two unconscious young shinobi and patiently waited for his master to gentlely place each boy on his back. Once ready, the mysterious pair of man and dog left with the boys down the same path they had used to reach the shore bed.