Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

The many towns and cities tucked in the crevices of the world, uncontrolled by any formal power. Some are friendly. Others, not so much.

Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Raika » Sun May 19, 2013 9:19 pm

A small village on the edge of the Land of Grass; Kaki wasn't sure what the name was, honestly. It wasn't even listed on his map.

But it was the base of his target, from what he'd heard.

The brown-haired teen gazed out at the loose collection of buildings as he crouched in the tall grass; open on all sides but for the winding river to the north, a sea of grass that hit his waist, buildings that looked like houses and a town square with a small shrine in the middle, probably for the local god.... His best guess was that the town used to be a collection of hunters or herders before it got taken over.

The black wolf beside him sniffed at the air and growled softly, quieting when his partner laid a hand on his back.

Kuruga "Hebi" was the name on the wanted posters; some skinny guy with wild eyes and long, braided hair. His bounty wasn't too high, but there'd been rumors about him suddenly making raids with his gang more openly after having just been a small-time petty thief.... It was a strange hunt.

The two fell back to their campsite, hidden from the village by a small hill, and Kaki looked up at the sky, scratching Yami behind the ear.

He missed travelling with Hissori-kun... but they'd decided to part ways for a while to do their own thing. Kaki and Yami had ended up becoming small-time bounty hunters. Who knew what Hissori-kun was up to... probably something away from crowds.




A half-moon rose amidst bright stars in the night sky, the grass and river turned silver and almost colorless in its light.

Yami took the lead, low in the grass, while Kaki snuck behind, his dagger already in his grasp as they approached the village....

And then Yami sniffed the air and turned back, and a hand clamped down on Kaki's mouth, the teen struggling for a moment before noticing his wolf partner's calmness.

A quieter shift in the strong grasp let the young Hofushi get a glimpse of his captor before brown eyes widened in shock.

What the hell was he doing here?!
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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Oddric » Tue May 21, 2013 7:15 pm

It had been almost three days since Kurado passed into the Land of Grass. His time there doing research was longer than most of his expeditions. This is simply because there was a lot of information to sort through and decide on. Demonic omens and a shrine to some God, two of the important pieces. Both things that peaked the hunter's interest on their own. Together, near the same village? It was a code red alert.

"You have a good companion. He knows a real threat when he sees one." Kurado was quick to say, pointing out the wolf's calmness and showing his own passive involvement. He was a man of business, quick to get right to the point, skipping over unimportant details... like how he managed to sneak up so well onto the duo.

Raising his eyebrows at the young boy and loosening his grip, he tried to ease him out of panic and into a calmer position. "I have no interest in taking you back to Yuki, Kaki... if that's of any relief." Taking a step back, he let the former genin go. It had been quite a few months since he stopped him and Hissori on their way out of the Snow Village. Their interaction, however brief, was probably the only reason he remembered his name. Kaki would probably notice the burn-born scars along the right side of his body; Kurado had decided to wear a lighter black cloak on the warm spring night, revealing more of his physique.

"Of course, I have to ask." The man's black hair was growing in length, nearly falling to his shoulders now. It bounced ever so slightly as he nodded toward the dagger in Kaki's hand. "What are you doing here? Nothing malicious, I hope. I've seen too many missing-nin turn into rogue shinobi." The two terms were technically synonymous, but Kaki probably got the point. Kurado killed monsters, and a human who killed for fun or power or any negative intent was monster enough for him.

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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Raika » Tue May 21, 2013 8:26 pm

The teen relaxed as the older shinobi brushed away his worries of being forced back to Yuki, though he still remained slightly tense given how close they'd gotten to the village....

Still crouched low in the grass, Kaki slipped his free hand into one of his cargo pockets to pull out a folded-up paper, opening it with a deft flick of the wrist and showing the bounty to Kurado-sama.

"Kuruga, or "Hebi", as I've heard people call him, is a small-time thief who's recently been doing larger raids with his gang; his bounty isn't too high, so I assumed Yami and I would be able to take him out before he got too big, but... the fact that he's suddenly doing raids more openly has us feeling like something's off. Apparently he used to be a greedy coward, but in his last raid things got bloody. He took over the village ahead and made it into his base. Though, with you here.... I'm sorry to say it, Kurado-sama, but you're not exactly the best omen for an easy hunt when we're nowhere near Yuki," he gave the demon hunter a worried grin then; Kaki and Yami had never dealt with the kind of things Kurado-sama hunted, and if that had affected their target, well....

Kaki had kept his voice low during the explanation, trusting Yami to warn them if the bandits got close to noticing them or tried to sneak up on them, but now he looked to the village with a frown, brown eyes turning lightning blue, the pupils reshaping into lightning bolts. There was definitely a group large enough to be a large band of bandits there, judging by the chakra in the air.... But the Arashigan was never the most precise when it came to giving exacts about a group.
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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Oddric » Fri May 24, 2013 8:50 am

Leaning forward slightly, Kurado's eyes squinted to look at the wanted poster that Kaki had pulled out. Even though Kurado's vision was a step and a half above anyone else during the night, it was still difficult without proper light to look at pictures and and make out words.

Kurado put his right hand over his mouth, eyes relaxing as he listened to Kaki explain his side of the situation. Pink scarring covered a good part of his hand, constantly it leaked katon chakra. Not to any appreciable extent, but it was always warm to the touch.

"Hebi, huh?" This was news to him. "I know of the whole situation. Going from a nearly solo bandit robbing stores and breaking into people's homes to having a small army and taking over a village is quite the jump." The taller man straightened out his back, brown eyes looking down at the village beyond the hill they were nearing the top of. "Well, you are right. Unfortunately, I think this bounty hunt you've set yourself up on is a hell of a lot more complicated than you thought."

Kurado sat down on the grass, pulling out a scroll from his cloak. Furling it out, a puff of smoke erupted from black writing on the parchment to reveal a small, brown, bound book. Folded papers of different colors (though mostly white) were protruding from the book, Kurado had clearly written and stored a lot within the book. It contained a plethora of knowledge.

Flipping through the book, passing by images of creatures and clippings of newspaper articles, Kurado stopped at a bookmarked page. The date of a few days ago scribbled on the top corner of the page. The elite jounin removed a few folded pages from the open crevasse of his journal and spread them out along the ground.

Snap

Snapping his right hand's fingers, flames surrounded the tips of them to provide light. "More than just Kuruga, strange things have been happening to other people in the area. Missing though, all just gone missing. And they have all been from towns surrounding this village." He showed Kaki missing persons posters. "I've been investigating for the past few days, and it turns out that some of these missing people have joined up with Kuruga's gang. These people have no business being thieves and overtaking villages. I mean hell, one of them is a frickin' bakery store owner." Kurado scoffed, shaking his head as he pulled out a few clippings from newspapers. "To pile it on, there have been thunderstorms over the town the day these people go missing. And guess what, any raids that this Kuruga fellow leads? There have been excessive plant life death. I was interviewing some people who were robbed and in the hour I was there a tree had lost nearly all of its leaves." The hunter looked up at Kaki, curious at his reaction. "These are paranormal events, more specifically, demonic omens. I think several demons have possessed people in Kuruga's gang. Including the wanted man himself."

Folding up the papers, Kurado stored them all into his journal again. The flames on his fingers submerged back into his hand. "Normally I would tell you to get out. That this is too dangerous. But I think I'm going need some assistance on this hunt. I have no idea how many demons are in that village, or what exactly it is that they want." He stored the scroll back into his cloak. "There is a shrine in the village, though. Praising some petty 'forest-y' God. That's why I originally came here, I was searching for information on Gods. It's been unused for over a century, the people who used to live there had no idea what it was for. The demons though, I think the demons might see some use for it. Part of me thinks they don't realize what they're dealing with, but it makes me worried. So many demons in one area isn't good. Not at all." He let out a sigh, catching his breath. Clearly Kurado wasn't used to talking so much.

"I won't pull you into this. You can head out. But, if you say you're in, you have to realize how dangerous this could be. Demons are evil sons of bitches." Hands on his folded legs, Kurado looked over the young man as he awaited a response.

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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Raika » Fri May 24, 2013 12:01 pm

As Kaki listened, he knelt on one knee beside the older shinobi, his gaze studying the missing posters when the demon hunter provided the light.

He hadn't known that Kurado-sama was a fire-user like himself... though that was a lot of burn scarring, now that he paid closer attention. When had that happened? He'd been fine the day he, Yami, and Hissori-kun left....

And when he was done talking, two pairs of brown eyes met.

"Kurado-sama.... Did you ever know that Raika used to be the host of a demon that once attacked our clan? Raidra was a twin-tailed dragon demon, and one of the biggest reasons our clan hid away from the world. Raika rarely told us about how hard things were for her at the start. She usually just told us what things ended up being like after they became friends. Raidra's dead now; she was the one who brought Raika back when she died trying to protect Kumo from another demon, exchanging her life for Raika's. I don't really expect demons to be good without the intervention of someone amazing like her. And I know they can be really dangerous. But... I don't plan on running away."

The young archer grinned then, eyes fierce as flame.

"Agreed."

The black wolf had settled beside Kaki, blue eyes gleaming in the moonlight.

"We're hunting to learn and train. If we don't chase danger every once in a while, we won't grow."

"Ehh? It's been a while since you talked around anybody else, Yami."

"Didn't have anything to say."

The two partners stared at each other for a long moment before they both grinned, eyes of brown and blue turning back to the demon hunter.

"So what's the plan?"
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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Oddric » Fri May 24, 2013 3:52 pm

Eyes flickering, Kurado lent an ear to Kaki as he spoke. He had a mind to go through more of Raika's history with Raidra, but given Kumo's current state it was rather difficult.

"Demons aren't nice. None that I have come across, anyway. Raika might have met a one in a million type of demon. Don't expect any of those in that village to show you mercy." It was curious though. Was Raika able to form a bond with the demon that had once possessed her? A bond with a demon definitely wasn't a good thing. Just more things for Kurado to check up on.

Kurado's head turned to Yami as he spoke, the hunter had expected the pooch to stay silent. But, he let the surprise slip by. All of Kurado's summons were capable of speech, he didn't see why an animal familiar couldn't be as well.

"All right." He smirked, pulling another couple scrolls from his cloak. "The demons down there aren't giant animals or dragons or mythological creatures. They aren't trapped in people through fuuinjutsu." A puff of smoke from the scroll brought forth a chest. Popping it open revealing many weapons, amulets and other seemingly random objects. "They used to be people, once upon a time. People who went to Hell and, over time, lost their humanity and became evil creatures. Should they manage to claw their way out of Hell, they possess people and cause havoc. Not like this though, never coming together like this, they have some sort of a plan" From the trunk, Kurado tossed Kaki an iron flask and a small tied pouch. "Demons can't be killed... not easily, anyway. But they can be slowed and hurt. They can't stand holy water, iron, and salt. Water's in the flask and salt's in the pouch. Salt can be used to keep a demon out of a place or away from you." Kurado pulled a necklace with an amulet attached to it, placing it around his neck. "Demons can be exorcised from their host and cast back into Hell, though. If we do it without damaging the host, the person that the demon is riding can be saved. It's hard enough to do it with one possessed person... but we have a small army of people, with several of them taken over by demons. This is going to be more than difficult."

Click

Shutting the trunk, it vanished back into the scroll which Kurado slipped into his cloak. "It'll be easy to tell who the demons are. Harm them with iron or holy water or salt... they'll be visibly harmed and their eyes will turn black. If you find them, try to keep them trapped or tied down. And I'll exorcise them. However, we still have the matter of a dozen other people, some who are possessed. There's going to be a lot of multitasking. I think we'll have to make use of the houses, sneak into them and knock out any bandits will we exorcise the demons." The Yuki-nin sighed, rubbed the back of his head. "Sorry. I'm not usually so nervous. Bringing you into this isn't something I'd like to do, I'm exposing you to pure evil and a lot of danger. The whole 'God' thing isn't making me very comfortable either. But, if we do this well, we can disband the gang, capture this Hebi fellow, and find out what the demons were up to."

Walking up to the top of the hill, a rather lightless village seemed all too quiet. The shrine in the center of the village, under the dim light of the moonlight, had herbs and unlit candles surrounding it. There was definitely a ritual that was going to happen, but when was the big question. No one was walking around that Kurado could see, and a couple of the houses had some dim flicker of light. "The houses with the light, that's where there are bandits resting. We'll jump from house to house, and hopefully stop those evil things." He looked to Kaki once more. "Still in?"

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"This adventure is made possible by generations of searchers strictly adhering to a simple set of rules; test ideas by experiment and observation, build on those ideas that past the test, reject the ones that fail. Follow the evidence wherever it leads, and question... everything. Accept these terms, and the cosmos is yours..."
-- Neil DeGrasse Tyson

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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Raika » Wed Sep 04, 2013 8:46 pm

Kaki nodded, scratching the back of his head with a slight frown. This hell-people business wasn't exactly a familiar thing, and--

"Wait, so if we can't harm the people being possessed but we can't tell who's a demon and who's not without touching them with iron or salt or holy water and that hurts them, then...."

He looked down at the flask and small bag.

"We have no clue what we're doing is what he means to say."

Kaki grimaced at that, remaining silent as he slipped the salt and flask into separate pockets, brown eyes turning lightning blue as he looked out over the village, trying to isolate roughly where the greatest masses of chakra were located, though his doujutsu wasn't nearly precise enough for that....
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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Oddric » Sat Sep 07, 2013 8:02 pm

Kurado sighed. He could see the hesitation on their faces. Confusion, too. This wasn't going to be easy for them. "We have to go to every house, confront every person, and test to see if they're a demon or not." He showed Kaki his own iron flask which contained holy water. "Don't be mistaken... a person possessed can be injured, but the demon inside cannot be killed. If you stab a possessed person in the heart, the demon will survive. When I exorcise out the demon, the person remaining will be dead." Hopefully Kaki saw the risk involved. They to try and not injure any people. "Demons are sensitive to holy water, salt, iron... a normal person won't care if you splash their face with holy water. A demon will hiss, the water will turn to steam on their face. Their eyes will turn black. We just have weed out the demons from the bandits. And I'll do the exorcising."

As Kurado finished speaking, his eyes leaped from Kaki and to the village down the dark hill from where they rested. There was movement in the houses. Then... some sort of sound. Kurado couldn't make it out. He crawled forward, trying to keep low to the ground as he looked to the various houses. People were coming out. They weren't leaving the village, they were going further in. Something was going on.

"I can't see... but..." It was too damn dark. But there were definitely people on the move. "I think they have a bound hostage."

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"This adventure is made possible by generations of searchers strictly adhering to a simple set of rules; test ideas by experiment and observation, build on those ideas that past the test, reject the ones that fail. Follow the evidence wherever it leads, and question... everything. Accept these terms, and the cosmos is yours..."
-- Neil DeGrasse Tyson

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Re: Demon's Bounty (Oddy)

PostPosted by Raika » Fri Sep 27, 2013 3:50 pm

Kaki's eyes narrowed at distant movement, pushing his right sleeve up and tapping a seal on the underside of his forearm, his bow and quiver popping into existence, the former in his hand and the latter already in place on his back.

"I can't see... but... I think they have a bound hostage."

"Looks about right."

A practice arrow was pulled from the quiver, lacking the specialized tip he usually added and instead having a point of rounded, fire-hardened wood which he dipped into the iron flask of holy water, gaze never leaving the figures moving through the village as he let the wood soak for a moment before taking aim.

"Do you still think we can save them and move in stealth at the same time?"
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