13: Enlightenment continues into Day 2
Scene starts at the border of the Leaf and Sand Nation.
*Having just made it to the sand border Team 7 began setting up their camp site. Yuriko was building up a pile of twigs.*
[Yuriko] Fire style, fireball jutsu.
*A tiny fireball lit up the twigs. Yuriko had made the camp fire.*
[Iyo] Shadow net.
*His shadow spread out and into the water. They began to stab fish and through them up onto the ground by him. Aoshi picked them up and started to roast them over the fire. Misaki waiting impatiently to start eating. Iyo and Yuriko made their way over to her to sit down. Aoshi began to hand out fish, making sure the first one went to Misaki.*
[Iyo] I think I’m ready to hear more.
*Misaki looked at Yuriko. She just shook her head no. Misaki grumbling to her fish.*
[Misaki] What do you want to know?
*Iyo thought about it.*
[Iyo] Tell me about your family?
[Misaki] You know my family. The Akimichi have been a brother clan of the Nara for generations.
*He shook his head.*
[Iyo] Grandma Chocho is an Akimichi. Grandfather Mitsuki is not.
*She looked at Yuriko for help. Both had family secrets they didn’t want to share. Still, Yuriko didn’t lift a finger to help her.*
[Misaki] My grandfather is in charge of what was Lord Orchimaru’s research institution.
*Misaki glared at her. And she should shut up.*
[Misaki] And is the Otokage. The Hidden Sound became an official nation after the war. The Kage and Daimyo were established as the same hereditary role.
[Iyo] So you are the next leader of the Village Hidden in Sound.
[Misaki] Potentially. My brother Watatsumi seems to be the one my grandfather wants as Kage of the Sound. But the nation’s research institute is both part of the country and separate. It has strong ties to the Hidden Leaf. The Hokage probably wants me to inherit the position as leader of the research institute to strengthen the bond that had taken damage between her and my grandfather.
[Iyo] What happened? I thought they were on the same team.
*Misaki turned to Yuriko.*
[Yuriko] Uncle Mitsuki made a deal with the Mizukage. He is the strongest anti-Uchiha leader outside of Konoha. My grandmother saw it as a betrayal to the village, her clan and to her friendship as a former member of Team 7.
[Iyo] Who is the largest anti-Uchiha supporter within Konoha?
[Yuriko] The Nara Clan.
*He looked at her in shock.*
[Misaki] Yuriko was assigned to our team in hopes of making strong ties between the Nara Clan and the Uchiha. The Nara clan brings in support from the Yamanaka and the Akimichi. My ties to the Hidden Sound potentially tamper the Mizukage’s strength.
*Iyo turned to Aoshi.*
[Iyo] Why are you our Jōnin then? You monitor the Hokage for the Hidden Mist.
[Misaki] He is also Yuriko’s uncle. Her uncle Itachi is married to Mieko Hatake. Aoshi’s twin sister.
[Yuriko] Not that it matters. I’ve never met Aoshi before. I saw him for the first time with all of you after the graduation ceremony.
[Aoshi] Things were complicated.
[Yuriko] It’s fine. I was well aware of your anti-Uchiha support.
[Iyo] Why is everyone so concerned with the Uchiha clan?
[Misaki] Because they historically have a very bad track record. And in only two generations they went from a few serving members to a thriving clan again.
*Yuriko stopped eating.*
[Yuriko] You guys still don’t understand anything about the Uchiha. Our history of bad choices comes from a history of everyone assuming we are the monstrous bad guys.
[Misaki] I admit the Leaf never did achieve great methods for dealing with the fear towards Sharingan wielders, but even your own clan member thought it was smart to decrease your size.
*Yuriko stood up.*
[Yuriko] Don’t you dare speak of my ancestor like that. He was torn between his loyalty to the Hidden Leaf and his duties to his clan. The Uchiha became that because everyone only gave them the choice to be seen as separate and feared individuals.
[Iyo] That sounds incredibly biased, Yuriko.
*Yuriko’s eyes turned bright red. She had finally gotten comfortable enough with them to remove her mask during meals. Now they could see the full range of her emotions.*
[Yuriko] You think with all the effort you guys make to understand how the Uhciha’s abilities work you would of figured it out by now. It comes from pain and sadness. The more an Uchiha experiences the more likely their Sharingan can grow stronger. Even then it isn’t certain. Only a handful of Uchiha can achieve something like the Mangekyō and it often requires taking a fellow Uhciha’s eyes to unlock it. It’s not something we run around doing for fun. It’s always a gift from a dying family member or for a last resort.
*The three others looked at each other grim.*
[Iyo] That’s so morbid.
[Yuriko] Isn’t it.
[Misaki] That doesn’t excuse the misuse of it. Sarada Uchiha has made power plays as the Hokage that are more for the Uchiha clan then the village.
[Yuriko] My grandmother would never choose the Uchiha before the village! Making decisions that can benefit both isn’t a bad thing. What do you think the Senjus and the Sarutobis did. What would they do if the entire village was skeptical of their clan existing?
[Misaki] I think even you have started to realize that your grandmother’s agenda has shifted.
*She just shrugged.*
[Yuriko] If you keep bad mouthing your Hokage I will be forced to do something about it.
[Iyo] Enough you two. That isn’t a productive conversation.
*He turned to Aoshi.*
[Iyo] Your Sharingan is from where?
*Everyone looked at him surprised. How could Iyo not know.*
[Aoshi] It was a gift from my father, Kakashi. He was given his by his former teammate Obito Uchiha.
[Iyo] And you still dislike the Uchiha?
*He looked at Yuriko who had started to reach for her mask.*
[Aoshi] I don’t. Maintaining their position is just complicated. They have been blessed with a strong Kekkei Genkai that many people covet. Some would even destroy nations for it. That is a huge burden not just for clan members, but for the head. Most can’t stay straight and narrow for as long as the Hokage has. The last few years has shown questionable choices. Coupling that with growing political tensions makes this a situation that needs to be controlled from the inside. However, based on the traditional structure of the Uchiha the most inside you’ll get to handling things is through allies by marriage.
[Iyo] That sounds like a massive grey area.
[Yuriko] It is. AND it’s completely unpredictable.
[Misaki] It’s not like blood will turn on blood.
[Yuriko] As it should be.
[Aoshi] If that’s the case then Misaki and Iyo both couldn’t ever disagree with you, Yuriko.
[Iyo] Come on. We are distant cousins at best.
[Misaki] All Ōtsutsuki may not even be related.
[Yuriko] I think he was talking about your grandfather.
[Iyo] Uncle Mitsuki?
[Yuriko] He is a cousin of the Hyuga.
[Iyo] This is getting too much. We are ending it here tonight..
*He got up from the group and walked directly into the forest.*
[Misaki] Iyo going off to think is normally not a good sign.
[Yuriko] It’s not easy for anyone to have to suddenly see the world differently. His parents were nice enough to keep him out of what’s going on.
[Misaki] If he dies it’s on their heads for that choice.
[Aoshi] No, it’s on yours….
The Cold Hard Truth – George Jones