Jason decided to take a break from training for once and investigate rumors about a strange animal roaming the forest. It sounded like fun to him and he hadn't had any fun in quite a while. He had been so focused on training lately it seemed like nothing else mattered. Not today. Today he would take a break from training and go explore the forest for this animal. He had already donned his ninja gear and had left on his way. Now he was entering the forest among the tree tops. He had no information about what kind of animal he was searching for or where it might be. He only knew that everyone who had seen or had an incident with this creature had described it as a flash of gray and white fur. Apparently it liked to play tricks on anyone who entered its domain and it even managed to steal things from practiced shinobi. All of this made Jason even more curious and more determined to find out what this mysterious creature was. He loved mysteries and puzzles. Anything that stretched your intellect really.
Jason stopped on a branch high above in the tree tops. He needed to really focus and try to spot any hint of movement both on the ground below and up in the trees. He was at a disadvantage not knowing what animal it was he was searching for. And the fact that no one in the village seemed to have any information on it at all didn't help either. But it was ok. He would treat this as a mission to locate and gather information on a specific target, only knowing the general area in which the target was. Still, even looking at it that way, he was going in to this blind. He was glad he brought his bow, Artemis with him. It had been a gift from his father for graduating from the ninja Academy. It was one of his most precious belongings and his best weapon. He had been training in archery since he was five years old after all. He was practically a master with a bow at this point. He brought his attention back from his thoughts and on to his surroundings. Down below on the forest floor were a few deer grazing but otherwise Jason didn't detect any other movement.
He headed straight toward the center of the forest, deciding to start there and work his way outward in a spiral. He believed being on his own that this was the best way to scout the area. As he started his first trip outward from the center he saw multiple animals but nothing even close to this gray creature he had set out to find. He kept his eyes peeled and kept on searching. After about an hour of searching, Jason's body went on autopilot, leaving his mind free to wander. He thought back to his old friend Odin. He was curious as to how he was doing. It had been ten years since he had seen his friend but lately it seemed that Jason was often thinking about him and wishing he was strong enough to leave the village and search for him. The only problem with that was he had no idea where he was these days. Curiously, Jason hadn't seen any other people yet in the forest. Usually after being out here for a while you were bound to run in to at least SOMEBODY. He found that odd. No matter. Jason once again came back to his senses when he heard some strange animal noises. He stopped suddenly, looking around for the source of the noise. Down on the ground about 25 meters away was a pack of wolves beginning to chow down on a deer. Just the way of life out here in the forest.
Jason watched the wolves for a few more minutes before deciding to keep on looking for his own prey. If anything he was more determined than when he started. He knew he would find a lead to this creature soon. Almost immediately Jason noticed a gray fox darting away from the area. Could that be it? It was quick. He didn't waste any time contemplating it. The fox was too quick. If he wanted to find out he had to go now. He took off after it, still in the tree tops. It was almost as if it could sense Jason following it the way it weaved in and out of bushes and used the environment to try and lose him. Jason was able to follow it for about fifteen minutes before it disappeared from his sight and he was forced to stop and come up with a plan of attack. Even though he lost track of the fox he KNEW it was still somewhere close by. It was something about the way it acted. It was as if it was playing with Jason. Well, if it wanted someone to play with, Jason was more than happy to oblige. After that is what he came out here for in the first place, to have some fun.
Jason summoned two shadow clones and instructed them to search the surrounding area for the fox. They immediately went off in opposite directions to look. Jason stayed where he was and kept scanning the immediate area. Five minutes after he had sent his shadow clones away, he felt his clones dispel and from their knowledge they hadn't found the fox either. He started to doubt himself and think maybe he was wrong about the fox when suddenly he saw it slowly make its way out of some nearby bushes, looking straight at him. It was definitely that everyone has been talking about. It was the strangest fox he had ever seen. It was obviously full grown and its fur was all gray except its chest, ear tips and the tip of its tail which was white. But that wasn't the odd part. What was really strange were its eyes. They were white but the pupils were crimson red with an obvious intelligence behind them. As if to confirm that, Jason felt some weird pressure in his mind. As if another presence was in his mind.
Suddenly Jason was seeing images of himself and had a sudden questioning feeling overwhelm him. Then it was gone as quick as it had come. "What was that? Did..did you just do that? Wait, can you use telepathy? No way, that's amazing! You're definitely no ordinary fox that's for sure." Jason said to the fox. Again he felt that same weird presence in his mind. This time it was a series of images, feelings and thoughts. It started out with an emphasis on the word "Nami" which Jason figured must have been the fox's name. From there he got pictures of more foxes that looked just like Nami and then a thousand years passed and they were all gone. An overwhelming sense of loneliness came over him from the fox. He felt so bad for Nami. All she wanted was to not be alone anymore. She just wanted a friend.
"So that's why you've been playing tricks on all those people. You just wanted some attention. You were trying to have fun, that's all. Well don't worry, I'll be your friend! Is that ok with you Nami?" Jason asked the fox. Nami jumped and wagged her tail and a sudden joyous and gratefule emotion came over Jason. He assumed that meant she was happy he would be her friend. Jason reached out to pet her on her head but as soon as he touched her something happened. It felt like a bolt of lightning hit him. It was a searing pain through his entire body and he couldn't move. In that instant he could feel everything Nami has ever felt, everything she ever thought or experienced flashed through his mind and he instinctively knew they had been bonded for life. It only lasted a few seconds but for Jason it felt like hours. When it was over, Jason saw Nami looking at him. If there was any doubt before it was wiped clean now. Nami was definitely her name and they were now partners until they died. At first he couldn't really understand the images and feelings she sent his way but now he understood exactly what she was saying without any issue. 'Are you ok?' she said to him. 'This is probably very weird for you. I'm Nami, a spirit fox. We can communicate telepathically with anyone we choose. Also, when we find a human who is a match for us, we pair with them when they touch us and are bonded telepathically and emotionally for life. Now you and I are bonded and I will always be close by to you if you need me.' This was all too weird. Jason had set out this morning on a whim to find this fox because he thought it would be a fun break from training. Now he was having a telepathic conversation with a thousand year old fox whom he was bonded with for life. Today definitely did not turn out how he had planned. "So you've been waiting all this time for a human to pair with? That must have been really lonely for you Nami. I am glad that you chose me though. I think we are going to make a great team together." Jason said to Nami with a big smile on his face. He really was happy he met Nami and became her partner. It might not have been what he expected would happen when he set out this morning but he couldn't argue that the outcome was beyond amazing. Nami was the last of her kind and HE had been the one she chose to bond with. It was a great honor.
"What other abilities do you have Nami? Besides obviously being able to use telepathy I mean." Even though when they were bonded he was able to see everything about her, it was too much information to retain and so he was curious to learn more about her. 'Well I'm basically a normal fox besides the telepathy. Oh and I can share my enhanced senses with whoever I choose so if I shared my abilities with you, you would be able to sense enemies and allies through sight, sound and smell. I also have the ability to move completely soundless. Not to mention I can stay in contact with you telepathically up to a mile away thanks to our bond but anyone else has to be within around twenty five feet to communicate telepathically. That's about it. I'm sure I could be helpful to you. And when you aren't busy we can play together!' she conveyed to Jason. He immediately began thinking how he could use Nami's abilities to his advantage on missions and in battle scenarios. That's just how Jason's mind worked. Strategic, calculating and always trying to think his way out of things. It would definitely come in handy that's for sure. He could already think of several strategies to incorporate Nami. And since she will always be close by, if he ever needed her he could call her telepathically. "Thank you Nami. You really are an amazing creature. Also, you are probably the most beautiful fox I have ever seen. Will you come back to the village with me? Or are you going to stay here? I hope you come with me. I like having you around. You are good company to keep." Jason said to her. He really did like her being with him. He felt at ease and hoped she would come back with him. 'Well of course I'm coming with you Jason. I will always be by your side from now on. Come on I will show you the quickest way out of the forest.' With that Nami turned and headed into the bushes behind her. "Hey wait for me!" He shouted as he ran after her and they both headed back to the village as partners.