Sometimes shinobi are called to action, to offer their lives in the service of their clans, their villages, their countries. But other times, their assignments are quieter. More watching and waiting, spying and thieving. And sometimes, on a mission, there isn't much to do at all...
"Genma," Kakashi nudged his mission partner's foot with his own.
"Hmm," The bandana-ed jounin replied around the senbon dangling between his teeth.
"You really think this is feasible?" the silver-haired ninja shoved an open book under his companion's nose. "Or is Jiriya just pounding sand?"
"The half panel. On the right"
"Hmm," Genma studied the illustration. "Depends on who's in it."
Kakashi raised an eyebrow, inviting the lanky man to continue.
"OK, say... this is me..." Genma pointed to one of the figures in the drawing.
"And this is you..."
"No this is me," Kakashi interrupted, pointing.
It was Genma's turn to raise an eyebrow. "Really? OK, this is you."
"And that's Ruka," Kakashi pointed again.
"Wow, he's that flexible?"
"Oh yeah," Kakashi's exposed eye lit up.
"That makes this Raido,then." Genma pulled the senbon from his mouth and used it to indicate the drawing.
"Aaa. Can he...?"
"Definitely." Genma smirked.
"So we just need one more person." Kakashi looked thoughtfully into the canopy of trees screening them from the night sky.
"How about Anko?" Genma offered.
"Yeah, she seems like she wouldn't be the type, but you'd be surprised."
"You think so?"
"I know so."
"Is that so?" Kakashi grinned, "Does Raido know, too?"
"We're men, Kakashi, what do you think?"
"Heh, so then he'll be easy to persuade."
The copy-nin regarded the drawing for a moment before remarking, "She's kinda short for that."
"Well, you gotta figure Jiriya's exaggerating a little, for the sake of the art."
"Yeah, OK, I'll give you that one." Kakashi looked thoughtful, "Anko, huh? Very interesting..."
"That it?" Genma asked.
"Mmn. Yep. I guess it is feasible." Kakashi took his book back and returned to reading.
Genma reopened his own book, and both men sat in companionable silence for several minutes.
"Aa." A masked face rose from an orange paperback.
"You think this is doable?" Genma proffered his own book, pointing with the senbon again.
"What is this, Volume 3?" Kakashi flipped the book over to glance at the cover. "Yeah, kind of. But not like in the picture. We tried it but..."
Genma waited for Kakashi to elaborate.
"Well, we had to make a couple of changes. See how this one..." Kakashi trailed off, trying to figure out how best to explain it.
"I know!" The silver-haired jounin leapt to his feet, forming a sequence of well-rehearsed hand seals. A second Kakashi poofed into existence on the other side of Genma.
"OK, stand up."
Genma closed his book and stood, facing his comrade in arms.
"Now uh... you might want to get rid of the senbon for a minute, Shiranui-kun."
"Please." Genma said, rolling his eyes.
"Suit yourself, it's your mouth."
Kakashi and his clone stepped forward at the same moment, seizing Genma by the hips and shoulders and flipping him upside down. One Kakashi arched over backwards while the other straddled Genma's head.
"Shit, Kakashi, shouldn't you be the one worried about my senbon?" Genma rolled his neck, dragging the tip of the needle along the inseam of his companion's pants.
"Just you try it!" Kakashi growled, leg quivering from the sensitive touch.
It was too much temptation for Genma, who complied, stabbing the senbon into a very sensitive place. The clone poofed out of existence, dropping Genma, who nearly landed on his head before tucking into a somersault. He collapsed on his back, laughing hysterically.
"See what I mean?" Kakashi asked, straightening back up and wiping tears of mirth from his own crinkled eye.
"I guess so," Genma replied when he had caught his breath. "But you didn't really finish the demonstration."
"Well I wouldn't exactly call that cooperating, Genma" Kakashi pretended to pout.
"Ah whatever, you big baby." Genma swatted at Kakashi's rear with his book, who neatly sidestepped, then folded his legs under him and resumed his placid seat against the trunk of the tree.
"So was that it?" Kakashi asked.
"Yeah, I don't know whether I'll get around to trying that one any time soon."
"There are better ones in there," Kakashi pointed with his own book. "Go to page fifty-three..."
"Aaa..." Genma replied, flipping pages. "Oh, yeah. Thanks."
The elite shinobi resumed their graceful, boneless poses, books in hand, silence reigning over their encampment.
The best missions are often the ones where not much happens at all.
ooo ooo ooo
For those that though I could only write dark, gory material full of pathos.
Please enjoy. Reviews very welcome.
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