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 Past Training - [Private - Flashback]

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Umiko-chan
Academy Student
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PostSubject: Past Training - [Private - Flashback]   Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:34 am

Umiko was born in none other than the Hidden Cloud Village, located in the Land of Lightning. She was born, raised and grew up in the large village and, for the most part, went through life relatively unnoticed. Her mom was not even a shinobi. She owned a flower shop in the village while her father went out on numerous missions a week to help pay for their home and to put food on the table each day. The small family lived their life this way for many years and, although being much more quiet than her fellow young shinobi, her life was pretty normal. At least, that was how life was until a major incident resulted in the death of both of her parents. This incident was the turning point in Umi's life and the very reason she ended up a rogue shinobi in the first place. It was also how she had come to utilize bows and arrows as her favored form of combat. Nothing else felt quite as right to her as the string of a bow and the tip of an arrow. Though largely inefficient, in the right hands they were more than lethal.

It was an otherwise silent night that had followed a typical day for the family. The mother and father of a young kunoichi laid asleep in their own bed on the top floor while Umiko herself curled up to her pillow in a room downstairs, fast asleep. It was all too sudden to determine what exactly ended her slumber. Was it the loud thud of a foot kicking the door? Or perhaps it was the resulting sound that resonated throughout the house of the door collapsing to the floor? Either way, Umi awoke with a start, looking around for the source of the nose. It was not until she had completely awoken that she realized the sound did not spawn from within her room. She slowly approached her bedroom door and placed her palm against the wooden panels that comprised it, pressing her ear slowly to it in hopes of hearing a clue as to what was transpiring outside of her room.

After no more than a minute had passed the sound of a scream brought reality to Umi's mind. The reality that someone had entered their home forcefully. The reality that that same person had far from good intentions in doing so. Umiko quickly slung the door to her bedroom open and darted out of her room, looking around rapidly for any cause for concern downstairs before a second scream resounded from upstairs. Alerted by the screams she stormed up the stairs as fast as she could, rounding to face her parents door and bursting through the crooked door that barely clung to its hinges. "Mom!?" the young kunoichi screamed as she laid eyes on the horror before her. In the bed laid the dead body of her father, having been killed in his sleep. One arrow stuck out from his chest and a second from the front of his skull. Her mother laid slumped on the ground, probably having woken up to all the noise. However, through her leg was an arrow as well, preventing her from moving very much.

As soon as her mother realized that Umiko had entered the room, her eyes widened in fear for her daughter's safety. "Run, Umiko!" she shouted, as the burglar, whom brandished a green cloak, turned to spot the young kunoichi. "... A child." he whispered, his voice dark and broading. Umi, with tears streaming from her eyes, made the split decision to turn and run, sprinting towards the stairs. "Stop." the man commanded, taking a step towards her only to stop for a brief moment as a hand grasped his ankle. "Let go." he muttered, turning around and firing an arrow into her mother's forehead. Her grip on his ankle loosened in death and he proceeded to speed after Umiko, speeding down the stairs and spotting her just as she was about to make it out the front door. The eery man immediately drew a special arrow from his quiver and placed it along his bow, firing it at the young kunoichi's legs. The arrow release a wire, wrapping itself around the girl's legs and bringing her to the ground.

"No! No! Don't kill me! Please don't kill me!" she screamed, tears streaming from her eyes as she tried to break free from the wire that held her ankles together. She crawled a mere few inches before the man caught up to her, placing his foot firmly on her back. "Calm down, child. I'm not going to kill you." he muttered, leaning down and picking her up, throwing her over his shoulder. "I'm going to spare you... So long as you comply with my teaching." he told her, stepping out of the front door of the house. Umiko's body slowly went limp as she closed her eyes, her cheeks stained with tears. She was completely silent, almost as if she no longer cared. The fact that her parents were lying dead upstairs was setting in. The fact that she now had no one except for this stranger became all too obvious to her. Although he was the reason she was now alone, she could not bring herself to reject his willingness to be a part of her life. At the very least, she would learn why he did this to her. And after he trained her, she could always exact revenge in the name of her parents.

"Wake up." the two words weren't very loud but they were firm and stern enough to wake the young Umiko. Her eyelids slowly slid open from over her eyes and she slowly came to a wobbling stand, her knees shaking for a moment from her legs being bound for so long. She finally regained her balance and looked to the man, whom no longer wore his hood over his head. He looked very similar to her. Even his hair color and eye color were exactly as hers were. She paid no mind to this, however, as she was still stricken with the grief of her parents' deaths. As she looked around she realized that she was no longer in the Hidden Cloud VIllage. Even worse, she was no longer in Lightning Country. The densely forested area hinted to somewhere in Fire Country. She had learned about each of the countries and their terrain in the Academy. Although there were numerous trees surrounding the area, they were in a clearing free from any trees or foliage. It was roughly twelve meters in radius and formed almost a perfect circle all around. There were a few large rocks here and there but other than that, it was just a large patch of dirt and grass.

"The name is Kairu." he spoke in a rather gruff voice, his body sitting upright on a nearby rock. His eyes honed in on Umiko, analyizing every tiny features of her face from her complexion to her irises. Once he finished he came to a stand and looked around, his eyes turning a pure grey as he did so. This looked quite odd to Umiko, despite being a member of the Ryoushi clan, as she had never seen anyone with those kinds of eyes nor did she know that she possessed the ability to activate those same eyes. "Okay. No one is within the vicinity." he noted out loud, his eyes returning to their original brown hue as he turned his gaze to Umiko. "I have a lot to tell you. But it will have to wait. For now, I will teach you." he told the young kunoichi, his face as serious looking as it could possibly be. "Teach me? Why are you-" she started but he held up his palm to stop her, closing his eyes before sighing. "It will all make sense in time... I just need you to trust me." he spoke once more, opening his eyes. Despite everything that had happened, Umiko, for whatever reason, felt that she could trust this man... After all, he had not only spared her but wanted to train her. At the very least, she would let him teach her.

"So what are you going to teach me?" she asked the man, raising an eyebrow at him. Kairu pulled a retractable bow from his hip and brandished it as it extended into a full-sized bow. "I'm going to teach you how to fire an arrow." he told her, quickly retrieving two arrows from his quiver, placing them along his bow, and firing them in her direction. It all had happened so quickly that Umiko lacked the time to so much as flinch. Each arrow soared past both sides of her head, slicing small loches of hair from her head and puncturing a tree directly behind her. She was perfectly unscathed, despite her hair. "When we're finished, you'll be able to fire just as accurately. Perhaps even more so." he spoke, turning around and looking towards the forest. "Come here." he told her, extending his arm with the bow in hand. "Take it." he instructed, as Umiko approached him and hesitantly reached for the bow, retrieving it from his grasp and examining it slowly. She had never seen a bow before. In fact, she had never even heard of such a weapon in use in the shinobi world. After examining it, she held it firmly in her left hand, gripping the middle of the string and tugging on it with all of her might, though it budged very little, if at all.

"Just as I thought... You're not ready. You've been away for too long." he muttered, though refused to elaborate even after being questioned by Umiko regarding what he meant by the sentence. "Here." he spoke once more, retrieving a large bucket of water from behind the rock he had just been sitting on prior. He placed the bucket on the ground in front of Umiko and instructed her to sit down. "Use your palm. Hit your palm against the surface of the water but maintain control. Do this repeatedly and do not stop. Avoid going too deep into the water but make sure you hit the surface with as much force as you can." he told her, hoping she would understand the concept. Umiko sighed, not really knowing the purpose of this training but deciding she would do it none-the-less. She pulled her palm back slowly before striking the surface of the water inside the bucket. "Good. But you lack the strength to control yourself. Keep going until the bucket needs to be refilled." he told her, before walking back to the rock and taking a seat to observe her.

Umiko proceeded to continue her practice, striking her palm against the surface of the water again and again, doing her best to only strike the surface itself. She continued this practice for quite some time before the water level of the bucket was nearly depleted. "I need more water..." she muttered, looking to Kairu. He simply nodded and extended his hand to the top of the bucket, a sphere of water swirling in his palm before flowing into the bucket, quickly refilling it. "Again. This time don't think. Feel. Use your instincts. Don't just try to hit the surface. Force your palm to stop just as you feel the water. Ignore your eyes, relying on them to determine when your palm hits the water will only confuse you. You're better off relying on your sense of touch to determine that." he gave her the pointers as if he had done this form of training before himself. Umiko did not prod him about it. Rather, she turned back to her bucket of water and continued practicing. She sighed with exasperation, slowly pulling her palm back before thrusting her hand forward against the surface of the water. However, this time she snatched her hand back just as it came into contact with the water.
"Very good." Kairu chimed in, his hand placed on his chin as if he was thinking over something. "Keep going. But try not to pull your hand back. Hit the surface and hold it in place. It's easy to snatch back your hand when it's in motion. It's even more difficult to apply the perfect amount of force to stop your hand perfectly." he told her, gesturing towards the bucket of water. "Keep trying. You've made progress in determining the right moment stop applying force but you still need to work on your over all control." Umiko sighed as she averted her gaze back to the bucket, biting her life. If this training would help her get stronger to avenge her parents then she would go through it without complaint. She struck the bucket of water once more, this time trying to stop her palm as soon as it came into contact with the water. However, she did not apply enough force and her palm went a little too deep. "Damn it, why is this harder!?" she shouted, hitting the water as hard as she could. "What's the point in this?!" she spat, looking to Kairu.

The man simply sighed and closed his eyes, looking at the young kunoichi. "Just. Do. It. At least a few more times. And I'll show you the fruits of your labor." Umiko sighed and grunted, turning back to the water. "Fine, fine!" she shouted, attempting the training once more. She struck the water again and again, the water splashing lightly each time. She stopped her palm as soon as she felt the water but she still fell short each time, either pulling too much or not pulling enough. Finally, however, her palm hit the water and she stopped it just in time, the flat of her hand aligned perfectly with the surface of the water. "Atta girl." Kairu told her with a smile, coming to a standing position now. "You're ready to officially begin your training now." he told her, extending his hand to help her up. Umiko simply glared at him and stood up on her own, ignoring his friendly gesture. Kairu ignored the situation and handed her his bow once more, retrieving an arrow from his quiver and handing it over to her.

Kairu pointed towards a nearby tree with a multiple circles drawn out on the bark in white paint, forming a target. "Aim at the target. Try to hit the center with this arrow." he told her, watching as she placed the arrow along the bow. "Okay..." she muttered, tugging on the string of the bow. Her eyes widened and her jaw nearly dropped as the string pulled back smoothly and with relative ease. She was unable to budge the string before but now it was so easy... She eyed the target and adjusted the bow, trying to keep the arrow as straight as she could. "Alright..." she muttered. "Breath deeply. Inhale. Exhale. Shoot." he instructed her. Umiko inhaled a breath of fresh air slowly before exhaling just as slowly, calming her body before releasing the string of the bow. The arrow discharged from the bow in the blink of an eye, striking the tree just outside of the outer ring of the target. The arrow jutted out of the tree, signifying where she had hit it. "Damn it!" she shouted, stomping her foot but Kairu stepped behind her and patted her on the head.

"That was an impressive shot for your first time. That might have been the best beginner's luck I've ever witnessed..." he told her, smiling. "... You knew I would miss the target?" she questioned him. "Yes. I did. But the target isn't there for you to hit it on your first try. It's there for the remainder of your training. To show your growth and improvement." he told her, walking over to the tree and placing his hand on the arrow. With a quick yank he pulled the arrow out of the tree, still as sharp as ever at the tip, before walking back over to Umiko and handing her the arrow once more. "Keep trying." he told her, before releasing the strap of his quiver and giving it to Umiko. "This might help." he told her, as she strapped the quiver over her shoulder. "Alright..." she murmured, turning her gaze back to the target while Kairu moved to sit down on the rock once again. "Keep trying. Shoot every arrow you've got at the target until you run out. Then retrieve the arrows and do it again."

Umiko repeated her breathing from earlier, pulling the string of the bow back before discharging the same arrow once again, hitting roughly the same distance away from the outer circle once again, but this time on the opposite side of the target. Umiko did not outwardly display her anger this time, however, but simply retrieved another arrow from the quiver nad placed it along the bow just as she had done with the fire one. She pulled the string back and shot another arrow. However, this time she missed the tree altogether, hitting a second tree nearby. "You're going too quickly. You've just learned how to use a bow. Take it slow." Kairu told her before grabbing a nearby bag which he apparently had been carrying with him. From this bag he took out a piece of bread, taking a small bite from it. Umiko glanced at him before moving her gaze back to the target, retrieving another arrow and placing it along the bow. "Slow... and steady..." he whispered, squinting her eyes before releasing the arrow. The arrow flew through the air before hitting the target, just outside of the bull's eye.

Several days had passed and each day Umiko had spent just about every waking minute practicing her aim with a bow in hopes of improving her accuracy. She raised the bow up and retrieved an arrow, placing it along the bow before firing it at the target once again. The arrow flew through the air swiftly before striking the bull's eye on the tree. "I did it!" she shouted ecstatically, smiling and turning to Kairu to see how well she had done. The man clapped his hands together, grinning with pride. "Very good! You're improving very quickly." he told her, gesturing towards the target once again. "Keep going. This time move around a little while you're aiming. Step from side to side, but keep it to a minimum." he told her. Umiko obeyed him, stepping from side to side as she aimed another arrow at the target. She released the arrow, this time missing the target but still hitting the tree. Obviously hitting a target while moving would prove difficult...

Several weeks had passed and Umiko had trained nonstop every single day that she had spent in that clearing. Kairu had occasionally left to get more food and supplies but Umiko did not try to run away. After all, if she left she would never be able to avenge the deaths of her parents. Though the liklihood of her being able to kill the man were becoming increasingly dim. She held the bow up once again, shooting an arrow at the target and hitting the bull's eye perfectly. As soon as the arrow made contact with the bark of the tree, she started to move rapidly around the clearing, firing arrow after arrow at the target, hitting the bull's eye each and every time. Her aim had become perfect, even while moving. However, this did not account for the target itself moving. This form of training was becoming increasingly obsolete. She finally stopped and looked towards Kairu, tilting her head. "I'm going to need a moving target if you want to see improvement." she told him.

"Fine. We will move on to the next step in your training. However, first I am going to teach you a handy technique that will make the use of arrows obsolete." he told her, moving closer to her with small strides. When he came within feet of her he took away her quiver of arrows and placed it back along his shoulder, leaving her with only the bow. "I am going to teach you a technique passed down in my family. It's called Chakra Arrow." he told her, gesturing towards the bow. "Take the string between your fingers." he instructed, watching as the kunoichi did as she was told. "Very good." he told her, placing his hand on hers. "I'll help you mold the chakra the first few times but channel a small amount along your bow. Try to form an arrow." he told her, watching as she did as she was told. A small stream of chakra slowly flowed from where her fingers met the string of the bow, extending along the bow. "Good. But you need to work on your control." he told her, helping her out by molding her stream of chakra into a solid arrow. "Just like this." he told her. "Now fire it." Umiko released the string and the arrow comprised of chakra went flying through the air, maintaining its shape and composure as it flew. It struck a nearby tree, jutting out from the bark for several seconds before dispersing, leaving no trace of its existence save for the hole it pierced into the tree.

"It is useful for many purposes, this technique. Once you've mastered it, as well as hitting moving targets, your archery training should be complete and you will be ready to go out on your own." he told her, smiling. She sighed as she pulled the string back once again, another stream of chakra flowing along the bow as this time she tried to solidify it into arrow on her own. The chakra formed an arrow but immediately shattered, the pieces dispersing. She kept trying, however, creating arrow after arrow, determined to get it right. Each and every time, however, she failed with varying results. Finally, however, she succeeded. She produced a perfectly solid arrow along her bow, holding it in place for several seconds before releasing the string. However, this time it dispersed in mid air, leaving not a single trace behind. "You didn't use enough chakra. You need to gauge where you want the arrow to land then determine how much chakra it will need to reach its destination." he told her.

Umiko nodded and formed another arrow along the bow, just as perfectly as she had manifested the last arrow. Finally she released it, sending it flying at a nearby tree. The arrow of chakra soared through the air and struck the tree, lasting a few seconds before dispersing, leaving a hole in the tree where it had struck the bark. "Perfect!" Kairu told her, smiling at her quick improvement. "You've completed another step in your training. Your last step will be hitting a moving target." he told her, making his way towards the forest. "Follow me. I'll show you where your next training will take place." he told her, brushing aside the foliage to make his way deeper into the forest. Umiko shrugged and walked behind him, doing the same as she followed him into the densely forested terrain.

Although her archery was far from perfect she was gradually coming closer and closer to being able to go out and practice on her own. This was what she had been training and preparing for all along. She had not been training for perfection, necessarily, but the bare minimum amount of skill that she would need to avenge her parents and survive on her own without this man to look after her. She thought this over as she followed him into the forest, wondering whether or not she should complete the final step of her training with him or if she should initiate her own plans. She sighed, closing her eyes before reopening them, staring at the man's back. He was completely oblivious to her at the moment, paying her no mind. Did he think so little of her? Or did he simply trust her? Either way, his trust was misplaced... She raised the bow with her left hand and tugging the string back quietly with her right, an arrow made purely of chakra slowly forming along the bow. "Good bye..." she whispered, releasing the string and sending the arrow flying through the humid air. The arrow struck him through the center of his back, extending clean through his body and out of his chest. He coughed up blood, dropping to his knees and spitting the red substance on the ground, his eyes widening as he realized what had happened.

"Umiko... You... You... were my daughter..." he murmured, his eyes slowly losing focus as he muttered his last words, falling face first into the dirt. Umiko looked at his dead body, blood welling up around the edges of his corpse. "...Father...?" she whispered. She dropped the bow to the ground abruptly and dropped to her knees, her eyes tensing up as she could suddenly see all around herself in complete 360 degrees. She gasped and crawled over to Kairu, retrieving a mirror from his bag and looking into it. What she saw in that mirror were gray eyes... Just like his.

[4225 Words]

Training completed for Lesser Chakra Arrow, Chakra Arrow and 21 SP.


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PostSubject: Re: Past Training - [Private - Flashback]   Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:49 am

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