Age : 24
Posts : 56
|Subject: A Cliff-top Forest (Advanced Stealth training) Wed 16 Jul 2014, 9:04 am|| |
|The gentle light of the setting sun cast long shadows from the trees, a soft dusk breeze caused an orchestra of rustling leaves. Katsu stood on a cliff over looking a river, glowing a radiant orange with the last reflection of sunlight. Katsu waited and contemplated the considerable hike he had made to get here, hoping it would be worth the effort. This small stretch of forest was significantly out of the way of any sort of landmark, and rarely visited, with good reason. Katsu stood on a plot of land that, come night time, would be swarming with carnivorous insects. Katsu had only heard of it from a handful of reports of injuries, and even the occasional fatality, but that was the reason it was the perfect place.|
As the sun dipped below the horizon Katsu readied himself, climbing a tall tree and perching at its tip. It was quite an experience seeing the forest come alive with countless little bugs, Katsu steadied his breathing as insects burrowed up through the ground. From a distance they looked like oversized, beefed up ants, and it seemed they had already located some prey, a small rabbit. It was shocking how quick it was over, the rabbit was surrounded and overwhelmed almost immediately, it was shocking how quickly they dismantled the rabbit, leaving a pile of gory covered bones behind. It was so shocking, in fact, that Katsu let out a small gasp. The insects who had not yet begun to partake in devouring some poor animal left on the ground quickly located Katsu and began to climb his tree. His location revealed, Katsu sighed, "shit, already?" and made a leap to a nearby tree. Katsu was impressed with how he managed to land without a sound, until, too late, he realized he was clearly visible on top of the tree as the insects reached his previous location and spotted him almost immediately. Katsu made a move to climb down the tree, until he saw that more of the bugs were climbing it as well. As Katsu moved to another tree he saw that the things were climbing that one as well, it was at this point that Katsu realized that all the insects had lost interest in their other prey and were now entirely invested in this large, meaty, intruder.
Katsu was surprised at how large the insects territory was, and, under moonlit skies, spent hours attempting to successfully hide from the things. He would hide, only to be located a few seconds later, and would have to spend several minutes eluding the insects to find a new place. But he was contempt in practising over and over again, confident that he would be able to easily avoid the insects should the need arise. This was until he realized the insects had adopted a new strategy, one Katsu might have anticipated had he comprehended earlier just how numerous the things actually were. The things had established a complete perimeter, using their numbers to cover a large area of trees and ground, Katsu was fortunate that their numbers were in fact limited, otherwise they could tighten the circle without leaving openings as they moved trees. But now Katsu had no escape till morning, and the things were combing the area they knew Katsu was in, this was now a matter of survival.
Katsu breathed a sigh of relief as the sun dawned and the hordes of insects receded into their burrows. The mere thought of his life ending as bug food gave Katsu all the determination he needed, the tricky part had been nailing the technique. As he had gone through the night, learning to calm himself and remain still and silent had been easy enough, as had finding the perfect hiding place, somewhere dark and concealed, yet subtle enough to not warrant closer inspection. The hard part had been shifting his position, as the moon arced across the skies, the shadows moved and his hiding places were compromised, and the insects would often simply see Katsu in transit to his next hiding place. But eventually Katsu figured it out, a thrown rock to distract them, waiting for a breeze to rustle the leaves and mask his footsteps, waiting for a cloud to block the moon, charging in one direction and then subtly slipping into the shadows and moving into a different direction entirely, Katsu learned many tricks that night. As he groaned with effort and began to head home he contemplated the evening, his stealth had improved immeasurably, but it had a ways to go. Katsu smiled, somewhat deviously, at the thought of trying it on his friends, he could try eavesdropping on a conversation and learning some valuable, close kept, secrets, feigning that he had been preparing to play a harmless prank if caught. He imagined sneaking up and using his mind reading technique on an unsuspecting high rank ninja out for a midnight stroll, oh the possibilities... Katsu had a ways to go, but it was a ways worth going.