Chapter 4: The First of Far Too Many Battles
Before I begin, I’d just like to apologize for the later update than usual. Finals and college applications consumed my existence for the past couple weeks, but those are now over and done with, so let’s move on.
Last time on Kasumi: The Last Signer,
Kasumi showed herself to be much more special and amazing than her mother! Now, watch as she does the same with the principle Naruto
Chapter 4: The First Battle
The chapter starts with Kasumi meditating because Kakashi taught her to do that to control her emotion. So, did he just make the connection between psychic powers and emotion between chapters? Admittedly, it’s not that difficult a connection to make, but the chapter starts with “BAM, meditating now,” with little other explanation.
Kakashi asks her how the meditation is going, to which she replies it’s going well enough, and Kakashi asks if she’ll dazzle them with another duel before the next mission. Kakashi must be easily amused; the card game is people standing around while virtual monsters attack very occasionally. As a matter of fact, probably most of the Leaf Village is, considering that everyone is in awe of this amazing new sport.
Kasumi remembers how the villagers basically praise her for being so beautiful, special, etc. for being its champion of dueling. Apparently, being the only one to practice a sport that nobody else has ever heard of is worthy of praise. Imagine if saying “Believe it!” was a sport, Naruto would have become a god.
Kasumi tells Kakashi that she’ll accept any challenges that come her way, since she hasn’t dueled in a while.
"True" Kakashi said "But you never know if the meditating I've been teaching you helped you to control your psychic powers.”
Wait, so he didn’t find a connection between emotion and psychic powers? He was just telling her to do stuff at random and praying something would happen? Have fun with that, Kakashi.
Apparently, they had been walking and talking, since they then meet up with Kakashi’s Genin team. Or maybe Kasumi is an alien or something
, I dunno. Kasumi says she doesn’t like to hurt anyone, which is a bit of a non-sequitur. It almost feels like a couple lines of dialogue were cut out here.
Sasuke points out that she certainly had no qualms about hurting Divine, but she rebuts that that’s different. Yep, hurting that one person is so much different from all the other people you kill or attempt to kill later on. And yes, I’m being entirely serious.
The ninja then commence their mission to find a lost cat, and it’s resolved in 2 sentences because Kasumi has nothing to do during this time. They return the cat to its owner, who is overbearing and starts smothering the cat. Well, in the actual anime/manga. Here, it just says she was worried about the cat and holds it, and instead Kasumi has to tell us that yes, that’s why it ran away. Author, we get it, Kasumi is super smart and observant and stuff. Now how about you actually put her observations into the narration since, oh I dunno, she’s the narrator
The Hokage offers them some new missions, and Naruto rejects them immediately because he’s sick of such menial tasks. Kasumi whines about Naruto going into his stubborn mode, as she calls it, and Iruka has to explain to Naruto the importance of the lower rank missions.
Even I a non Shinobi knew the importance of starting off slow and easy.
Yeah, shut up, nobody asked for your input. She then notices Kakashi appearing ashamed and muses that he’s going to get hell for this later on. Apparently, Kakashi is fully responsible for every one of Naruto’s actions in every situation. I didn’t know ninja training was also supposed to be behavioral reformation.
However, the Hokage offers to give them a higher rank mission, a prospect which excites Naruto. The Hokage then calls in the client, a gruff old man who calls them all wet nosed brats. He then specifically insults Naruto and Kasumi, respectively calling them “a midget with the face of an imbecile” and “short stock.”
I don’t get it, is Kasumi just a magnet for that term? I have never heard anything akin to that insult used outside of the context of this story, yet here everyone calls Kasumi by that. The author might have meant shortstuff
, which I have heard, albeit only in other fiction.
Naruto doesn’t realize he’s the one being insulted with the imbecile remark, while Kasumi doesn’t take her insult well.
Kakashi and his team almost immediately know that this was a bad move on the old man’s part.
They knew I didn't like the words Short Stock cause once during a mission Sasuke mistakenly called me Short Stock...Let's say I sent him to the hospital for three whole days.
Wow. Bitch. Wait no, it’s okay because Kasumi is perfect and nobody likes Sasuke.
Anyway, after the insults sink in, both of them threaten to kill him, with Kasumi even about to summon Mia to attack him!
Um, okay then. It’s supposed to be comic relief, but it goes too far and just makes both of them less likable. This kind of scene works in Naruto
because it’s in a more visual medium; things like music and animation can help accentuate the jovial nature. Here, the writing style isn’t even very exaggerated, making it seem like they’re legitimately threatening him.
Luckily, Kakashi stops them, in the process talking to them as if they were dogs. Now if only more' people treated Kasumi like that. Kakashi turns to the man and warns him not to call Kasumi, whom he reveals to be his daughter, “short stock,” since it’s a pepive
pet peeve of hers.
The old man then introduces himself as Tazuna, renowned bridge builder (yes, he himself says that), before telling them that they’re expected to protect him with their lives.
In a scene that seems to have been moved a few lines down from its original placement, Sasuke tells Kasumi that he thought Tazuna was already dead when he called her short stock. Fist of the North Star
reference here. Sasuke comments that he thought he was going to die when she sicked her furry winged creature on him.
So Sasuke was hospitalized by Winged Kuriboh
? Seriously? I mean, I don’t like Sasuke, but I wouldn’t blatantly contradict canon and say, “Oh, he sucks as a ninja, he couldn’t even beat a flying ball of fur!”
Naruto happily declares that they’re going on a road trip, and Tazuna rightfully states that he doesn’t want this buffoon guarding him before asking if Kasumi is coming along. Kakashi affirms that she is, feeling the need to talk about her dead parents to this stranger.
Naruto and Tazuna get into an argument about whether Tazuna should respect him, ending with Kasumi clonking Naruto on the head because Naruto is never allowed to be in the right or be anything other than an idiot.
There is then a clunky time skip to when they are all outside the village, and Winged Kuriboh makes a noise to warn Kasumi of something that I’m sure won’t be important later.
Sakura asks Tazuna if his homeland, the Land of Waves, has any ninja, causing Kakashi to answer that it doesn’t and exposit about the various ninja villages. Kasumi doesn’t listen because it doesn’t pertain to her on a personal level, until Kakashi talks about the Third Hokage. Sakura blurts that he’s amazing, yet Kakashi and Kasumi are disbelieving.
Why? Did this have something to do with Inner Sakura
in the original? Her thoughts aren’t really mentioned here at all, so it’s just kind of out of nowhere that they’re disbelieving. It’s not as if anything in the previous exchange would have betrayed her real thoughts, either.
Sakura is confused at first at their disbelief, until remembering that Kasumi is psychic, so she can read minds. She can, but she shouldn’t be able to, since all psychics can do in 5D’s
is bring their cards to life. Sakura then asks if the information about ninjas means they won’t face any other ninja during this mission, which Kakashi confirms.
As the group continues along, they step in a puddle, and Winged Kuriboh makes another sound to warn of the two rouge ninja that leap out of the puddle immediately after. I suppose being stepped in was very embarrassing for them.
The ninja then wrap Kakashi in a chain before anyone can really do anything about it, then proceed to use it to tear him to shreds. Kasumi then angsts some more as the ninja run at her. I’m not entirely sure why they're attacking her; there’s nothing about her that really betrays a sense that they need to get rid of her. I would think they would just get rid of the only real threat to them, then get rid of Tazuna, whom they’re targeting.
In response, Kasumi summons Mia, who stops the chain with her sword. After some compliments from the Genin because Kasumi totally needs them, she summons a Killing Edge
from a spell card to use. Yes, the 10-year-old will totally hold her own with a sword, considering she’s never used one or any real weapon in her life.
Somehow, she then does, stabbing at them while Mia defends her from the chain. The two ninja then disappear from sight, and Winged Kuriboh tells Kasumi that they’re about to strike Naruto, which she then relays to him. Sakura did this originally, I think, but she’s not allowed to do anything here, especially considering she already did so little.
Before they can finish him, though, Sasuke pins the chain to a tree with a shuriken, and he, Kasumi, and Mia then approach them.
"Next time" I growled out "It won't be a stab."
Apparently stabs are inherently less threatening than any other type of wound from a blade.
The two rogue ninja manage to break free, though, and again disappear from sight, and everyone assumes a defensive position around Tazuna. However, the ninja show themselves next when they are already defeated, Kakashi carrying them.
Kakashi apologizes to Naruto because they apparently attacked him at some point and congratulates Sasuke and Kasumi, especially the latter because nobody would ever dare put them on the same level.
Kasumi tearfully wraps her arms around Kakashi after Mia and the Killing Edge disappear, and tells him to not do that again. It would have been hilariously tragic if they hadn’t disappeared beforehand.
Sasuke mocks Naruto for freezing up, causing him to glare, which Kakashi for some reason interprets as fighting. He tells Naruto that his wound needs to be treated immediately because it’s poisoned. Someone
suggests cutting the wound open to let the blood flow dilute the poison, but for now to just keep still.
Sakura jokingly asks Kasumi if she has an Antidote spell card, and Kasumi answers that she may actually have one (she probably does; Antidotes are an item in Fire Emblem
). Meanwhile, Kakashi asks Tazuna about the ninja, since the rank of the mission stated that they would not be going up against other ninja. Despite this, Tazuna commands that they continue to escort him.
Kasumi ponders what they could be after, and of course the possiblity of them being after her comes up. Because the objective of this mission is obviously to escort Kasumi; that old fart is along for the ride!
Sakura ponders if they should quit now and get Naruto help, which Kakashi completely disregards to instead go off on a tangent about how dangerous it is for Kasumi to be on this mission. Well, you’re the one who brought her along in the first place. Hindsight is a bitch, ain’t it Kakashi?
Naruto then stabs himself in the hand to cut the wound more open. Well, there goes the antidote idea. He makes a vow to protect everyone, which Kakashi promptly interrupts by saying he’ll die if he loses any more blood, which causes Naruto to freak out in what is supposed to be comic relief. This scene was out-of-place enough in the anime, but here, where it’s painfully unfunny, it’s even more so. Kakashi tells Naruto to show him his hand so he can examine it.
I knew Cleric Mist couldn't have healed him. So I continued to look as Sakura asked "What are you Naruto? Some kind of Masochist? Do you get off on pain?"
I wanted to tackle both of these statements, and they were right next to each other, so yeah. As to the first part, why? Barring the presence of Critical Existence Failure
in Fire Emblem,
clerics can heal any wound, so long as the person being healed is still alive.
As to the second part... Actually, I don’t think I want to touch that at all. Let’s move on.
To the surprise of Kakashi, Naruto’s wound heals almost instantly, so he dismisses it. Tazuna tells Kakashi something that he needs to know that isn’t actually revealed to us yet, in the process calling him “Kakashi Sensei” for some reason. I don’t even know.
Cue clunky transition to them on a boat. Goddammit, I used up the Old Spice reference way too soon.
Kasumi is hanging her head over the side, complaining about being seasick in a scene that is, admittedly, funny at first. However, Kakashi then ruins it by talking about how some people do, in fact, get seasick. No, really.
The group eventually spots the bridge that Tazuna is supposed to finish building, on the other side of which is their destination, the Land of Waves. Sakura complains about how thick the fog has become at this point, but the rower tells them all to quiet down because the mist will keep them hidden. Tazuna compounds this statement by stating how much trouble they would be in if they were caught by Gato. Cue flashback to what Tazuna told Kakashi, when it really could have just been put where it was supposed to be in the narrative.
In the flashback, Tazuna tells them all about a scary man that wants him dead.
'You just defined the term Dark Signer' I mentally thought in my mind
Oh my god. That redundancy
is so bad as to be painful. Disregarding that, apparently Kasumi profiles every scary person ever as a Dark Signer, or she never learned because her parents never fully explained it. Bad student, or bad teacher? You decide!
Tazuna elaborates, saying that the man is Gato, whom Kakashi declares to be one of the richest men in the world. This prompts Kasumi to go off on a tangent about how she was rich too until her parents died and now she is sad, etc. etc. KASUMI NOBODY WANTS YOU TO BRING UP YOUR LIFE STORY AT EVERY FUCKING OPPORTUNITY SO SHUT UP.
As Tazuna explains all of Gato’s evil deeds, Kasumi keeps mentally drawing comparisons to Dark Signers, even though the only similarity they really share is being evil. He then says that Gato originally came to the Land of Waves under the guise of a business venture but has since shown his true side. He then says he will want any who oppose him to die or become his slave.
This causes Kasumi to draw comparisons to Divine, after which Divine is never really mentioned again, so it’s as if he never existed in this story. As it should have been in the first place.
Tazuna states that Gato essentially has the resources of the Land of Waves in an iron grip, and all he has to fear is the completion of the bridge which Tazuna is supposed to build. Kasumi now compares this to the Daedalus Bridge
. Kasumi, we get it. You’re the daughter of characters from 5D’s
. Now would you please stop bringing this fact up in every situation humanly possible? Please?
Naruto asks why the mission was ranked so low if it was so dangerous, and Kasumi replies that the reason is poverty, much as how Satellite is poor and blah blah blah I don’t care. As a result, Tazuna couldn’t afford to put up a request for higher than a C-rank mission. He and Kakashi get into a spat about it, which is completely out of character for the latter of the two, so Kasumi can resolve the conflict to show how special she is.
Back to present time, the rower tells the others that they’ll be taking an inland waterway into the Land of Waves, to make sure that they aren’t detected. He does so, and they land soon after. However, Kakashi (and Kasumi, but that’s a given at this point since she’s always involved in anything positive) thinks that they’re bound to run into more ninja sent by Gato.
All the ninja are on guard, and Naruto throws a shuriken at something, but no ninja is actually there. Sakura derides him for this, saying that they have Kasumi to detect any ninja in case of an ambush. Yes, because it’s not as if ninja are trained to have keen senses or anything. Nope, without Kasumi, you’d all be completely helpless.
Naruto throws more shuriken in that direction, prompting Sakura to punch him in the head and yell at him in BOLD FONT
to quit it. I have no idea why basically every exclamation in this passage is bolded; it rarely happens elsewhere, if at all, even in this chapter by itself. However, he turns out to have just been throwing the shuriken at a snow hare.
Kakashi proceeds to yell at everyone to duck, and they all do so just in time for a giant sword to barely miss them. After the sword gets stuck in a tree trunk, a man with a Mist Village ninja headband stands atop it and glares at the group. This scares Kasumi enough to back up a bit, and she trips over a rock and twists her ankle. Either this is a contrived excuse to get Kasumi out of this fight scene, she’s Made of Plasticine
, or both.
Kakashi identifies the man as Zabuza, a rogue ninja from the Mist Village. The others get ready to fight, but Kakashi stops them and says that Zabuza is at a much higher level than them. Zabuza then asks Kakashi to hand over Tazuna and Kasumi, the latter of whom he’s after for some reason or another, addressing him as “Kakashi of the Sharringon [sic]"
as he does so.
Kakashi commands the Genin to protect Tazuna and Kasumi, then lifts his headband up, revealing that the eye it had covered was the Sharingan. Everyone asks what exactly the Sharingan is, causing Sasuke to exposit about all of its abilities, the only one of which that matters here is that it can copy opponents’ skills.
Zabuza tells Kakashi that his bingo book
had an extensive write-up on him, saying that he had copied 1000 techniques, and that he was known as “Kakashi the Copy Ninja.” This would be much more surprising if Kakashi hadn’t introduced himself as that to Kasumi the first time they met.
Zabuza ceases the bantering, stating that he needs Tazuna and Kasumi. In the process, he says that he wants Kasumi for himself, which only raises more questions of why he is attempting to kidnap her. He then disappears and reappears atop the water, claiming that this ability is the greatest ability of Mist Village ninja. Hence why most everyone can do it later on in Naruto
Zabuza disappears again, and the group begins to get agitated by wondering when and whom he will strike, especially as he starts talking about the eight places on the body he could target to kill them instantly. Kakashi attempts to calm them down by saying he will protect them, but Zabuza then appears in the middle of them and knocks them all over.
He points his sword at Kasumi’s throat and tells her to come with him, for he can teach her to use her powers. So, he’s exactly the same as Divine, motive-wise? Please don’t tell me every villain is going to want to kidnap Kasumi, much less for the exact same purpose.
Zabuza then turns and cuts Kakashi in half, but it ends up only being a clone made of water, causing Zabuza to freak out about Kakashi being able to copy him through the mist. The real Kakashi then appears behind him, holding a kunai to his neck, and Kasumi summons a new monster, Wyvern Rider Jill, for no real reason. However, this one little move causes all the Genin to once again compliment how awe-inspiring her powers are.
Zabuza laughs off Kakashi’s threats and says that it will take a lot more than mimicking him to defeat him, though he does acknowledge that copying him through the fog was impressive. He also acknowledges making the clone say something he would say; I don’t really see how that’s a big deal at all, though. “You did a good job sounding like yourself!”
Zabuza dissolves into water, for he was also just a water clone, and the real one appears behind Kakashi. Kakashi dodges a slash from his sword, but Zabuza then kicks him into the water before turning to Kasumi and saying that she will be his after this is over. I’m not even going to bother with the pedophilia jokes anymore, they’re way too easy to make.
Zabuza appears next to Kakashi and traps him in a sphere made of water, claiming that he’ll now be able to kill the others and kidnap Kasumi, so long as Jill doesn’t interfere.
Jill nods to Kasumi*
, and Kasumi summons the spell card Javelin
for Jill. Jill proceeds to throw it at Zabuza, who deflects it easily and insults them for thinking something like that would work so easily.
Kasumi could just have Jill fly over there, since she is a wyvern rider, and wyverns can fly, but she then just gives up for no real reason. Zabuza makes another water clone to kill them since he can’t move from the water prison, and the clone then calls all the Genin brats.
The clone beats on them for a little, but Naruto again boasts about being the next Hokage, then tells Kasumi to summon Black Rose Dragon.
"To do that, I need a tuner monster. A level three one to be exact" I said.
No, you don’t.
You only need to Synchro summon them in duels; Aki summoned Black Rose Dragon by itself plenty of times outside of duels. And why a level 3, specifically? It can be any level, so long as the levels of the Tuner and all the non-Tuners total to the level of Black Rose Dragon, whi- Sorry, I forgot nobody cares.
Kasumi then summons Blackwing Gale the Whirlwind, and when Zabuza asks how it could defeat him, she responds that it has the ability to cut the attack of an opponent’s monster in half. Logically, Zabuza points out he’s not a monster, but Kasumi retorts that if her monsters can exist in reality, so can their abilities. Despite that not really being an answer, and such things never actually being portrayed in 5D's
itself, that logic does make some sense.
The problem here, however, is how an ‘opponent’s monster’ is quantified in real life. Is it someone specifically trying to kill you? Someone you just dislike? Someone you’ve had any bad thoughts of ever, even if you’re on good terms with them at the present? It’s generally vague in the context, and the story itself doesn’t help specify.
Kasumi halves Zabuza’s power, and the same immediately happens to the clone.
What was his clone doing the whole time, anyway? Standing around and taunting them some more?
Naruto tells Kasumi to now summon Black Rose Dragon so he and Sasuke can enact the plan they created that is only being mentioned just now, but she instead summons Blackwing Armor Master, since she would need a Plant monster to drain Zabuza’s attack to 0. As a funny little aside, Sakura mentions that with a level 3 and a level 4, Kasumi can now summon a level 8 Synchro. This error is made more obvious when she summons Blackwing Armor Master, a level 7, instead.
Naruto summons a ton of Shadow Clones to attack Zabuza’s clone in order to distract the real one, and Sasuke then throws a giant shuriken at the real one. He catches it, then dodges a second shuriken that Sasuke throws, giving Blackwing Armor Master the opportunity to attack.
Apparently not, actually, since Zabuza can still easily bisect it. Or at least try to, since it’s completely unaffected.
"What?" Zabuza asked "I struck it hard but yet I still didn't harm it.
I would be surprised if you could, honestly, since Blackwing Armor Master has an attack of 2500. So, if Zabuza could destroy it after having his power halved, he would have more than 5000 attack points as a monster, which is quite a bit.
But no, it’s actually because Blackwing Armor Master can’t be destroyed in battle. The second shuriken Sasuke had thrown turns out to actually be Naruto transformed into one, and he morphs back and throws a kunai at Zabuza. This forces him to release Kakashi from the water prison as he dodges, Kasumi in the process seeing that Armor Master had wedged something into Zabuza’s shoulder while attacking him.
Zabuza moves to attack Naruto, but Kakashi stops him and congratulates them all on their plan, especially congratulating Kasumi for summoning Armor Master. How is this worthy of special mention? Armor Master contributed nothing to the plan; if you excluded Kasumi from this scene entirely, the whole thing would play out exactly as it did in the source material.
Kakashi and Zabuza then break apart and start to rapidly do hand signs before attacking each other with Water Dragon Jutsu at the same time. The two then cancel each other out, and they both start to do more hand signs for a new technique.
Kasumi explains to Zabuza about the wedge in his shoulder, and how she can reduce his attack to nothing by removing it. She does so, and Kakashi finishes the hand signs first, which summons a water vortex that engulfs Zabuza. Again, you could omit Kasumi and her monsters from this scene entirely, and nothing else would be different. Kasumi being in this scene actually makes it less awesome, because in the process, the author omits Kakashi being able to do the hand signs faster than Zabuza despite copying him.
Zabuza's eyes widen as I heard his thoughts No way, outsmarted by a ten-year old girl and her Blackwing Armor Master?
So, she and her monsters receive sole credit, despite Kakashi, Sasuke, and Naruto also all contributing to your defeat? Okay, then.
Zabuza is forced back into a tree, but before anyone present can finish him, needles come from nowhere and strike him in the neck, killing him. A masked ninja appears in the trees, and Kasumi says that one could easily mistake him for a girl. Of course, Kasumi doesn’t, for she is just that smart.
As this new ninja congratulates Kakashi and takes Zabuza away, Kasumi notices that he has a duel disk. Tazuna then says they must have been humiliated that someone else killed Zabuza. Well, all of them except Kasumi, of course, because she’s Kasumi.
However, Kakashi and Kasumi then collapse, respectively due to overuse of Sharingan and of psychic powers, and the others help carry them as they continue to Tazuna’s home, ending the chapter.
Of note in the ending author’s notes is the question of if Haku
should be a Signer. Um, no. A thousand times no. That would be ridiculously stupid.
Anyway, join me for the next installment, which hopefully won’t take as long as this one did, where another duelist actually manages to match up to Kasumi! What a twist!
@Psyga: You'll probably be happy to know, then, that this chapter is where the canon pit stops are most prevalent. Later arcs, and even later events in this arc, that are told in Naruto itself are more altered or glossed over.
@Emperordaein: I do realize he stopped saying "Believe it!" eventually, but he hadn't yet at this point in the series, so I found the joke apropos regardless