|Tomorrow Will Be Kinder [Genma, Katsuko]||[Jul. 7th, 2012|09:17 pm]|
[Takes place in mid-September, approximately a week following Somebody Saved Me, a month before Ryouma’s return.]|
Genma was on his way back from the convenience store, paper sack of late-night provisions in hand, when he saw the pair of stiff-backed Uchiha police staring up at something on the roof of the Merchant’s Exchange Bank. One of them had his arms folded in the universal sign of the displeased authority figure, while the other was elbows-out, hands together, forming seals.
It was probably nothing Genma needed to worry about. He was off duty, out of uniform, and hungry for the rice balls he’d just bought. Raidou would be home within the hour, most likely, and the cops clearly had the situation under control. It was probably some genin kids goofing around on a rooftop where they didn’t belong — who would be foolish enough to rob a bank in a ninja village?
He stopped anyway, staying back in the shadows, trying to catch sight of whatever the MPs were focused on.
“This is your second warning,” the male cop said. “Move to the edge of the roof and identify yourself. If you make us come up there, you’re only going to make this harder on yourself.”
Genma thought he could see a hint of a shadow that wasn’t part of the roofline. It didn’t appear to be moving. Poor kid, frozen in a panic, probably. Caught, and knowing that Uchiha eyes would see through any jutsu he used to cover an escape.
“Last chance,” the cop said.
Abruptly, there was movement: a body-sized object came rolling down the slope of the tiled roof.
“What the...? Ikuko!” The man shouted. The woman released a jutsu that cast a bright phosphorescent glow over the street, illuminating the falling... body. Yes, definitely a body. It tumbled as if the owner were absent, almost until it hit the ground.
Three things happened at once: The male cop leapt up to the rooftop the body had fallen from, the body tucked and rolled, and Genma ran into the light, because that was no unconscious stranger, and it was no genin, it was the woman he’d partnered with only days ago, in Wind Country.
“Katsu—” He cut himself off before he said her full name. “Shit, are you okay?”
Katsuko straightened slowly, scrubbing a hand over her face and through her hair. She blinked, yawned, blinked again, and gave Genma and the Uchiha woman a hazy look. “Hmm? What? Oh, hey.” Her lips quirked in a sleepy imitation of a smile as she recognized Genma. “Don’t mind me, I was just taking a nap.”
“On the roof of the bank?” The cop asked. She sounded like she’d heard more believable stories in fairy tales.
“All clear up here,” the other cop called from the rooftop.
“Stay where you are,” the woman told Genma with a glare, before she turned her focus on Katsuko. “How much have you had to drink tonight, miss?”
Whatever was going on, it was clear Katsuko was about to be in serious hot water, whether they nabbed her for public intoxication, trespassing, or just being remarkably stupid about where she chose to catch some shut-eye.
“I was looking all over for you,” Genma said, grabbing Katsuko’s arm and thinking fast. “I’m really sorry, Uchiha-san, but I need her to come with me for a briefing, top priority.” He shoved the sleeve of his t-shirt up, exposing his spiral tattoo. The Uchiha’s red-black eyes whirled to life, checking for a henge or any other fakery.
“And you are?” the cop asked.
“ANBU,” Genma said. “And that’s all I’m at liberty to say. I’m sure you understand.” He linked his elbow through Katsuko’s, pressed his chakra through swiftly executed handseals, and translocated the pair of them straight to ANBU HQ’s rooftop. Uchiha eyes might have seen where they went, but they wouldn’t be able to follow.