It's been a long while since I've mustered up the courage to write. So sorry to the people who've been waiting for some Hisoleo fanfiction from me. Unfortunately this isn't the Sequel to, "Late Night Surprise." I've been busy with myself and struggling with myself, but moody thoughts aside I hope you'll like this! I hope you're open to the extra crack ships I have in store for you all.
I would also like to thank my friend SuperSaiyanHollow(from AO3) for being my beta and helping me improve on my writing skills and broadening my vocabulary. It really means a lot to me. Note that I've used both the manga and anime to help me with this fanfiction. If it's going to have a sequel is debatable and depends on you the reader. So I hope you like this.
An alternate universe where Leorio is Hisoka's target, Gon has an odd love for oddities, and Killua is a very curious individual. We are back at Zevil island with the gang trying their best to be Hunters. Hisoka decides to have a little fun and test Leorio's skills. Will Leorio qualify Hisoka's expectations and move on to become a hunter or will Hisoka crush Leorio's dreams and even kill him? Gon is intrigued with Gittarackur's(Illumi) needles, but what risks will he take to become Gittarackur's friend? Killua is incredibly confused and annoyed. Is Kurapika a boy or a girl? When he comes across his unconscious friend will Killua do the unspeakable? Stay tuned~
M/M, Slash, boy x boy(whatever you wanna call it)
I do not own this story or the characters. I would be on a worst hiatus then Togashi would ever be. Trust me~
That reminds me to mention, I'm not a frequent updater so~ yeah.
Ships: Hisoka/Leorio, Illumi/Gon, Kurapika/Killua
Exam Phase Four;
The Fourth Phase of the exam will be taking place on Zevil Island. Each person draws a number which corresponds to the ID number of their target. The ID tag of their target is worth 3 points, their own ID tag is worth 3 points, and all other ID tags are worth 1 point. Each applicant must collect 6 points in order to pass this phase of the exam. Any method to steal your target's ID tag is allowed, that includes killing your target and taking the tag off the corpse. Good luck to the lot of you!
"I'd like to commend everyone on board for their excellent work during the Hunter Exam's Third Phase! I will serve as your guide. My name is Khara! It will take two hours for this boat to reach Zevil Island, all twenty-four applicants…"
Hisoka paid no mind to the pretty, little, redhead giving out instructions. Although, he must applaud her for keeping up with her cheery, happy attitude despite the depressing atmosphere washing over the ship.
"Tag 403, huh?"
Yellow orbs shift from the wooden floor and dart toward the man leaning comfortably against the ship's wooden rail a little ways away, making idle conversation with his friend. This man, this tall, lanky man was his target.
Hisoka's brow twitches from both annoyance and disappointment. It seems the Fourth Phase wouldn't be as interesting after all. The Trick Tower had been a huge let down. Far too easy for Hisoka's liking. Even the guy with the scars gave Hisoka a boring time. Hisoka believes his name was Togari or something close? He can't recall. Hisoka was never good with keeping track of names. More specifically, keeping track of weaklings.
Hisoka sighs dejectedly and slumps against the wooden rail.
"Worried?" Gittarackur asks, Hisoka catching his attention.
"No, I'd say not."
Shakily, Gittarackur turns his head to his left side to have a better view of Hisoka. It's kind of a struggle moving with all the needles lodged into his head and neck. "You don't phase me as one who gets easily scared." His small eyes scan Hisoka's features. "You're irritated?" It didn't come out as a question, more so like a statement.
"Well, aren't you keen~." Hisoka doesn't tear his gaze away from his target; he simply acknowledges Gittarackur with a grin.
"How odd, I expected you to be more excited. Don't you get a jolly out of slaughtering?"
"Are you kink shaming me?" Hisoka stares at the man sitting beside him. His eyes trace the Needleman's course features and counting each needle in Gittarackur's cranium. It never ceases to amaze Hisoka how different Gittarackur looks compared to his true face. "I don't exactly just like killing. I often search for a challenge, and my target," Hisoka explains as he returns his gaze towards examinee 403, "won't be much of a challenge."
Gittarackur shifts his gaze from Hisoka and towards the man he's glaring at. His head snaps back in place like a toy, alarming some of the passengers sitting beside him as he quickly recognizes the unfortunate target. "Ah, Leorio Paradinight," Gittarackur hums in thought. "Born on March 3rd in a small town in Spain. He's 193cm tall and weighs 85kg."
Hisoka chuckles. "Already done your homework, I see~."
"All in the sake of knowing what type of people he is associating himself with." Gittarackur spares examinee number 99 a glance before staring back at Leorio. "His history doesn't include anything about him studying or practicing any form of martial arts." But, of course, Hisoka knew this. Both men can see Leorio's aura silently flow together whilst slowly leaking out of the pores of his body. "He obviously hasn't mastered his Nen either," Gittarackur points out. He shakily looks back at Hisoka again. "Will you pursue his tag regardless or will you find three other unfortunate examinees to dismay?"
Hisoka hums in thought, examining Leorio's form from head to toe. Leorio's tall and lean, maybe his suit is hiding muscles. His aura brightly shifts along with his emotions like an open display, though, it's not like the man even tries to hide his outbursts and displeasures. Just like the time Leorio confronted Hisoka in the fog, face morphed into a hard scowl and aura showing no fear whatsoever despite the odds being so strongly against him. His bravery combined with his assertive self is the whole reason why Hisoka ruled Leorio as eligible to carry on with the Hunter Exam.
Hisoka tilts his head watching as Leorio snickers with Kurapika, examinee 404. Hisoka's brows raise, liking very much the cute, lopsided grin Leorio is making. The man looks charming, not to mention his aura is calmly rippling with relaxation and cheeriness. Leorio isn't even aware that his aura is causing some of the examinees around him to relax. The depressing atmosphere around the ship is now leaving, though not completely. Leorio has a doctor vibe. That's a good thing considering Leorio's chosen career path. Hisoka remembers overhearing that part being said during Leorio's and Kurapika's conversation on the Phantom Troupe and the fallen Kurta clan.
Now that Hisoka's remembering further, he has seen Leorio without his suit before. It was during the First Phase of the exam when Leorio confronted him in the fog. Hisoka remembers only seeing his bare upper body. Leorio may not have rippling, bulging muscles like Hisoka, but he still has plenty to spare. Hisoka licks his upper lip as he remembers the barely forming abdominal muscles on Leorio's near flat stomach, the lighter shade of tan on Leorio's chest compared to his neck and arms, and the way his body glistened with sweat from running all those miles. Had Hisoka not been occupied with playing examinee, he might have taken a moment to admire Leorio's build. Maybe even savored it a bit-
"So?" Gittarackur interrupts Hisoka's train of thought.
"What?" Hisoka raises a brow in question, looking back at the other man.
"It's rude to ignore others acknowledging you, you know?" Gittarackur shook his head in disapproval, though to others it may have looked like the man's head shook uncontrollably. "My earlier question: Will you pursue Leorio for his tag or take out three other victims for theirs instead?"
"Hmm," Hisoka hums in thought while cupping his own chin. He looks up to the sky, searching for an answer he already had. "Well, I guess I could play examiner again~."
"Oh?" Gittarackur raises a brow, as best as he could anyway. He would ask Hisoka why the sudden change in attitude, but he couldn't care less if he's being honest with himself. Besides, knowing the man, Hisoka is probably getting off at the thought of drawing blood from examinee 403. He'll never understand the joy in Hisoka's hobbies, though Gittarackur admits he's had some pleasures now and again in dismembering a few targets… especially the ones proven to be a handful… oh. Does this mean he and Hisoka have more in common than he thought? Is Gittarackur equally sick? Should he kink shame himself-
"My, my! It looks like someone has got their eye on you~," Hisoka coos, breaking the other out of his thoughts. Gittarackur gave Hisoka a deadpan look, questioning him silently. Hisoka responds by raising his hand and pointing his index finger towards an examinee. Gittarackur's eyes dart towards the being Hisoka is gesturing at.
"Examinee 405, Gon," Gittarackur acknowledges with a bit of a hiss at the end. He watched as said Hunter applicant jolts in surprise from being caught. "Gon Freecss."
Gon immediately looks away from him, feigning conversation with Examinee 99, Killua Zoldyck. Gon's ears and neck burn a red shade, embarrassed from staring at the Needleman so obviously. Killua raises a brow at the flustered boy before looking at Gittarackur for a second. He immediately looked back at Gon, snickering about something while pointing his finger at Gittarackur. Gon's ears turn redder.
"Aren't they cute together?" Hisoka comments, though Gittarackur doesn't tear his gaze away from the young boys. "They've certainly become more than acquainted with each other."
Gittarackur hums. "They've been attached to the hip since they've met. What were the odds Killua would find someone his age here? I guess just about anyone can take the Hunter exam with ease."
"You'd be surprised at the things Gon can do. Little guy nailed me in the jaw a while back." Hisoka's grin grew wider, watching as Gittarackur intently observed the young applicants. He can see the small glimmer of interest in the other's eyes. He can deny Gon all he wants, but Gittarackur will soon too be drawn to the boy's charm. Gon's got that type of power and grip on people. "He may not seem like much, but even you should know not to judge a book by its cover. Why, look at Killua for example! Such a young boy; no one would suspect him to be a top class assassin."
Gittarackur hums in response. It's true, no one has caught onto Killua's identity. Hisoka may be right about Gon having special qualities for his age, but the boy stuck out like a sore thumb. In every phase, Gittarackur had caught the boy staring; certainly not assassin material. Like Hisoka said, Gon probably caught some sort of strange liking to him. Gittarackur isn't sure why since even he admits his appearance isn't appealing, a bit upsetting to look at.
The first time he caught Gon staring was during the First Phase of the exam when the two had accidentally bumped into each other. Instead of running away frightened by Gittarackur's horrid appearance, which was to be expected, Gon remained gazing at Gittarackur in awe and apologized repeatedly while bowing a number of times. Wanting to stop the flustered boy, Gittarackur responded by patting Gon on the head as if to show that there were no hard feelings. Ever since, Gon's had his eyes glued to the Needleman like a moth to a flickering light. Gittarackur shrugged it off at first, thinking he left Gon in a stunned state but never did it cross his mind that he had left an impression on the eleven year old. Soon Gittarackur found the boy staring at him all through the exam: he caught Gon staring when they had reached the end of the First Phase, when they were catching and cooking the wild boars', when they were resting on the air-ship, and again after finishing the Third Phase. Gittarackur caught Gon searching for him and silently beaming when he finally spotted him. It was annoying. Especially, when Gon would be so close to Killua while doing so. Why can't Killua be that excited to see him…? Oh right, because Gittarackur is in disguise.
Gittarackur just can't see why Hisoka and Killua developed such an interest in Gon. The boy isn't that special.
"Hey, Gittarackur!" Killua calls out from his spot. Said man silently beams at being acknowledged by the little assassin.
"Oh, calling out to his big brother I see~?" Hisoka hums, quiet enough for him and Gittarackur to hear.
Killua had a wide, teasing grin on his face while waving with one hand to catch Gittarackur's attention. With his smile stretching wider, Killua cups his hands together over his mouth and yells, "Gon thinks you're weird!"
"Killua!" Gon shouts back angrily, catching everyone's attention in the ship and causing a scene. Gon looks back towards Gittarackur, panic written all over his face and shouts passionately, "I think you're cool!"
There was an awkward silence in the crowd, all except for the shrieking seagulls and the muffled laughter of both Killua and Hisoka. There was a light, pink flush on Gon's face, one that Gittarackur couldn't help but stare at for longer than a second. He snaps his head swiftly towards Hisoka, choosing to ignore the boy.
"How rude," Hisoka scolds, watching Gon's bottom lip pucker out in a disappointed pout before glaring at a still laughing Killua. "He just wanted to make friends with you~."
"I'm not looking to make friends. Zoldycks don't need friends," Gittarackur responds. "And, Killua should know better." Gittarackur side glances at Killua, the boy is still teasing an angry, red-faced Gon. "Oh, Killu," Gittarackur sighs. "When will you learn?"
"Oh, come now. Gon isn't all that bad."
"I still don't know what you both see in him."
Hisoka chuckles. "He's a fun boy, even Killua was drawn by his light." Hisoka pulls himself up from his sitting position on the wooden floor and stands to his feet, eyeing the island as it grew closer. Gittarackur followed suit. "He's full of surprises. Maybe you'll learn to like him too."
"I already read his bio. He's just another island hic. I don't need to learn anything further than that," Gittarackur sneers, looking the island's way and internally groaning when he spots Gon shyly staring at him from the corner of his eyes.
"Whatever you say, shotacon~."
"What was that?"
"Oh, nothing~." Hisoka chimes. He looks Leorio's way, whom only leers at him before turning his attention to Kurapika. Hisoka's smile grew wider, already sensing the fun that's to come during their stay on Zevil Island. How long will Leorio last before cracking under the pressure of Hisoka's presence? A better question: Would he pass Hisoka's test?
"Thanks for your patience, everyone. We've finally arrived at Zevil Island!" Khara announces once the ship came to a rocking stop. Crew members placed a wood plank down, serving as a bridge from the ship to the island. "Now, please disembark in the order by which you cleared the Third Phase!"
Leorio huffs, "This again?" Both he and Kurapika stand to their feet, giving Khara their attention.
"After each person disembarks, we'll wait two minutes before the next person's turn," Khara continues, showing off the timer she had in hand.
"That means we'll be waiting here a while," Killua presumed, earning an agreed hum from Gon. Both boys leaned against the wooden rail as the other hunter contestants gathered around Khara.
"You will stay on this island for exactly one week. During your time, you must amass your six points of ID tags and return here." Khara shifts her gaze around, making sure everyone understood her terms. "All right then!" She exclaims, "The first person may start!"
Leorio narrows his eyes once Hisoka stepped forward. Walking down the wooden plank with a wide smile plastered on his face, Leorio couldn't help but scoff at the smug look on the jester's features.
"I understand…," Kurapika spoke. "Those who disembark earlier hold the advantage."
"Yeah," Leorio nods, "They can hide and monitor their target's movement." Leorio huffs, glaring hard at Hisoka's backside. The cocky son of bitch knows he'll get those six points easy. He can practically hear Hisoka's mocking chuckle in the back of his head, flaunting his six points around with the biggest smirk on his face. If Leorio could, he'd punch that smirk right off that magician's face. A powerful punch that even Hisoka wouldn't see coming. People would name it the Warp Punch-
"Careful, Leorio. You'll end up with wrinkles, if you keep pulling that face," Kurapika interrupts Leorio's train of thought. "Surely won't help for someone your…supposed age,"
"You calling me old again, Kurapika?" Leorio huffs, glancing down at his friend.
Kurapika chuckles, smiling up at Leorio. "You're glaring at Hisoka more than usual. Is he your target?" Kurapika asks, internally wishing for his friend not to have a target as complicating as Hisoka. The gods only know what struggle Leorio would go through if such a thing ever comes to fruition.
Leorio gawks, completely forgetting about checking out Hisoka's ID number. "I'm not sure. I wasn't looking at his tag exactly, but…" Leorio looks back towards the other's backside. Hisoka is now entering the forest, his physique being hidden by branches, bushes, and shadows. "Hisoka has been eyeing me the entire time we were sailing here." Leorio balls his hand into a fist, lightly slamming it into his other open palm. "I bet he's looking to settle things." Leorio's bruised cheek throbbed as he remembered his last encounter with Hisoka. The magician had knocked Leorio out with a single blow to his face during the First Phase of the exam. Leorio's thankful his teeth are still secured in place, but his cheek still hurt annoyingly. Leorio swears next time he sees the bastard he'll make Hisoka sorry he's ever met Leorio Paradinight.
"He has…?" Kurapika's brows furrow downward. He cups his chin in thought. "Could it be you're his target, perhaps?"
Leorio's breath hitched. A fearful shudder tickled his spine at the thought of Hisoka hunting him down for his ID tag. All thoughts of teaching Hisoka a painful lesson drift away from mind.
"Any method to steal your target's ID tag is allowed, that includes killing your target."
Leorio's blood ran cold. He knew he was risking his life the minute he signed up for the Hunter Exam, but actually dying no less than by Hisoka's hands?! Leorio can already picture it: Hisoka hovering over his dead corpse with a single, bloody card in hand, smiling widely with blood spattered on his outfit-
"I could be wrong!" Kurapika immediately follows, seeing that Leorio became visibly shaken. Leorio had turned pale after Kurapika voiced out his thoughts. Kurapika waves his hands in an attempt to erase the probably terrifying thoughts going through Leorio's head. "It could be something else."
"Oh yeah, like what?" Leorio asks, hoping someone else is targeting him. He prays to the gods above. Anyone but Hisoka, please. Someone less intimidating would be nice. Someone like Tonpa?
"I don't know, maybe…," Kurapika hums in thought, eyeing Leorio up and down. "Maybe he's trying to guess your age?"
"I told you, I'm a teen too!" Leorio near shouts, startling some of the people around him. He huffs and crosses his arms. "And, I'm sure Hisoka can tell too!"
Kurapika honestly doubts that theory. Hisoka probably thinks Leorio is older than he is. Kurapika doubts anybody here thinks Leorio is younger. "That could be one of many possibilities, Leorio. Hisoka probably lost himself in a daze and you were in his line of sight." Kurapika shrugs, extending his index finger from his balled up hand. "Or maybe he was staring at another Hunter applicant you so happened to be in the way of. The possibilities are endless."
Kurapika watched Leorio ponder the likelihood of his reasonings, hoping the taller man wouldn't ask for more possibilities. He lied when he said his last sentence. He wasn't sure what other possibilities there could be for Hisoka's staring. The last possibility being that Leorio is actually Hisoka's target, and Kurapika doesn't want to make Leorio panic more than he already is.
"I guess you're right… I hope you're right," Leorio mutters, his chest becoming lighter from the chances. There's no way the universe hates me that much to make me Hisoka's target.
Kurapika silently sighs in relief. "But," Kurapika frowns as his brows furrow, giving Leorio a serious expression, "be on high alert."
Leorio's brows raise from the sudden attitude. He swallows thickly, giving Kurapika the same stern look and nods along with him in understanding. Even if Hisoka is targeting Leorio or not, Leorio should keep his guard up nonetheless. The Fourth Phase of the exam is deadlier than the past three phases and everyone here has their own method of taking their target's tag. Leorio must stay alert to anyone he comes across even Hisoka. If the two face off again then Leorio will have no choice but to fight. He's becoming a hunter no matter what!
Killua stared down at Leorio and Kurapika as the two had their conversation. Even if they are a farther distance away from Killua, and with the silent mutter of the crowd blending with their chat, Killua can still make out the discussion between the older teens. "Leorio is as good as dead," Killua thought. He shook his head in pity; it was nice knowing the old man. Hisoka is way stronger and clever than Leorio. While Hisoka has proven to have experience in manslaughter, Leorio looks as though he's never won a fight in his life, couldn't even harm a fly. Leorio is right to fear for his life. Hisoka won't show him mercy.
Killua eyes Leorio's backside, up and down. He's lanky and lean. Killua isn't picking up any threatening vibes from Leorio compared to Hisoka whose appearance is anything but inviting. How does Leorio plan on defending himself from Hisoka? Does he plan on having Kurapika's help?
Killua's eyes tear away to stare at said Kurta. Kurapika isn't very threatening either. Sure, they have their wits and a bit of combat skills too, but Killua doubts it will help with Hisoka. Even if Leorio and Kurapika team up, the outcome may not be pretty. Maybe Kurapika can talk their way out of Hisoka dismembering both them and Leorio? That sure seems like a lost cause.
Killua narrows his eyes at Kurapika, scanning their appearance angrily. A vein pops on his forehead, and his brows twitch in annoyance as his eyes dart from broad shoulders, to a small waist, to short hair, and to slender hands. "What are you?" He wonders, eyes practically boring into Kurapika's spine.
Is Kurapika a boy or a girl?
"What's wrong, Killua?"
"Nothing," he responds, not even sparing Gon a glance. Eyes still squinting with a disgruntled look on his face, he clicks his tongue and looks elsewhere, dismissing the matter for now. He isn't even sure why the thought bothers him. It's not like his views of the Kurta would change if they were a girl. It's just itching curiosity.
"It doesn't seem like nothing," Gon says under his breath. He crosses his arms together as he looks over at whoever Killua is glaring at. Kurapika? Did he do something to annoy Killua?
"The second person may start!" Khara exclaims.
Gon's gaze soon tears away from his friend and towards Gittarackur. Gon's arms straighten, body leaning on its side to watch the man leave.
Gon stared long and hard at the man, counting the needles on his head again. He's intrigued by his peculiar appearance, from the way those needles tremble in place to the way his strained skin twitched. Gon's sure no one has noticed considering everyone is too afraid of Gittarackur to stare for so long. Hisoka is probably the only other who's noticed since he spends the most time with Gittarackur. Gon wonders if Hisoka has seen Gittarackur without the needles in his head. Does he use them for a form of attack like Hisoka's cards or do the needles serve a purpose? By the way Gittarackur shakes violently, Gon guesses they are to keep him from falling apart? It's a tough call. Gon would ask the needleman but said man seemed bothered by Gon. Almost like the sight of Gon irked him.
Said boy looks back towards Killua straightening. The ex-assassin is boring holes into the back of Kurapika's head again. Gon glanced at Kurapika before staring back at Killua. Killua's brow twitches, peeved as he looks back towards Gon. Killua leans into him; Gon had to take a step back. His brows furrow together, a puzzled look on his face. "What is it, Killua?"
There's a pregnant pause between them. A gentle breeze whisks by them, causing both their hair to ruffle with the wind. Khara calls out for the third person to depart. Gon looks away for a split second to see Gittarackur before looking back into Killua's sharp eyes.
Killua blinks once, twice, and asks in a hushed tone, "Is Kurapika a boy or a girl?"
Gon is taken aback, nearly staggering back from the obvious and surprising question. "Is that why you've been staring at him so closely?" Gon asks, smiling sympathetically. Killua pulls away with a scoff, eyes going back to their friend. "Isn't it obvious?" Gon goes to point a finger at their friend. "He's a boy!"
"How can you be so sure?" Killua asks, crossing his arms.
"He looks like one-"
"Try again." Killua raises his hand towards the Kurta and traces the others figure with his fingers. "He's way too pretty to be a boy. He has slender, delicate hands; a thin build; small waist; big, almond shaped eyes; and even his voice is girly. He looks like a fairy book princess."
Gon hums, eyeing Kurapika intently now. He nods his head to Killua's observation. "He does seem like it."
"But, you can't judge a person by their cover. Aunt Mito said so!"
"It's book by his cover, stupid."
"Right!" Gon chuckles, scratching the back of his head embarrassed. "But, you can't tell by looks alone. You have to ask the person."
"Good luck trying not to offend him," Killua waves the idea off. Who's to say Kurapika is actually a girl? They always get offended when you get their gender wrong. It's worse with a boy, they might actually try to punch you. What if Kurapika has preferred pronouns? He would have told them by now, right?
"You're right…" Gon cups his chin, ogling at the floor for an answer. "Oh!" he exclaimed excitedly with a pointed finger. "His scent!"
"His scent?" Killua questioned, looking at Gon quizzically.
Gon hums in agreement, nodding his head happily. His eyes beam with confidence about his idea. "Guys smell musty while girls are more floral, earthly even."
"Yeah? So tell me, what does Kurapika smell like?" Killua scoffs, humoring the other. Gon's got a strong nose but he didn't actually think the boy used it for things other than hunting for food. This is kind of creepy, but anything will do to satisfy his crippling nosiness.
"He smells…," Gon starts, trying to come up with words to better describe his friends scent. "Fresh leaves like a forest! Maybe a tinge of cinnamon."
"That… doesn't help in the least," Killua groans. "If anything that only throws me off."
Gon pouts. "It was a good idea in my head." Gon sighs, looking back towards the group. Khara had already scent off the fourth contestant. "Why do you want to know anyway?"
"Just because." Killua answers flatly. Gon scoffs, rolling his eyes to the back of his head. "What? I'm not weird. You're the weird one!"
"I'm not weird. You're weird!"
"You're the one with a crush on pinhead Larry."
"What? No, I don't!" Gon shouts, gaining the whole ship's attention. Everyone eyes the duo dubiously as did Leorio and Kurapika with a questioning stare of their own. Killua and Gon awkwardly grin toothily at the crowd with an embarrassed laugh. They wave at their two older friends reassuringly, totally not hinting that they were just talking about their Kurta friend. Leorio and Kurapika shrug, giving the two a suspicious look before going back to their conversation.
The boys snicker together, looking smug, but the attention soon drifts back to Khara as she slowly calls off each participant. "5th candidate may start!"
Killua doesn't forget to bump fists with Gon before walking off. Crossing the barely sturdy wooden plank, he strolled into the forest without an ounce of worry. With his years of heavy training and endurance, Killua hasn't a doubt he'll pass this next phase easy, which really sucks though since he's here to have fun and not die of boredom. Who knows, maybe he'll be lucky enough to have someone amusing targeting him. Hopefully, someone who will keep his mind off of Kurapika's gender.
Under the shades of the tree, Killua comes to a stop. He looks around, scanning his surroundings first. The trees are taller and much more thicker compared to the ones Killua's got back home, though Killua's sure his trees are fuller.
He doesn't see anyone, but he can certainly feel eyes on him. Killua ghostly grins, moving on forward as his predator follows closely behind. He's no assassin that's for sure; Killua can hear every footstep the person was making. It's like they're purposely stepping on every leaf they come across. This is going to be a very boring phase.
Gon sprints forward with his fishing rod firmly in hand. He looks back towards Leorio and Kurapika and waves them goodbye as he descends into the forest. The shadows of the tall trees fall before the boy, hiding him from daylight's view. Gon smiles, reminded of the small forest back at home. He would always venture off to meet with Kon and the other forest critters. He takes a strong whiff of air, letting it all out in an exaggerated sigh as a feeling of nostalgia settles in.
Gon then skids to a stop, eyes peering at the branches above him. He spins, darting at the bushes behind him. He narrows his eyes, listening to his surroundings keenly. Gon takes a small moment before continuing off into the forest. That was odd; he could have sworn he saw something leap in the trees. It was probably a spider monkey or a flying squirrel. "Probably imagining things…?"
Gon shakes the thought from mind and focuses on the bigger task at hand, hunting for Hisoka's tag. He'll have to figure out a way to snatch it from the magician. Gon can't just attack him directly. Hisoka would annihilate him on the spot. Gon's going to have to think this thoroughly through, so he'll be ready for the main event. Maybe he'll be lucky enough to see Gittarackur and actually ask him about his needles!
"Good luck, Leorio," Kurapika bids his farewell as he strides forward.
He carefully crosses the plank before jogging towards the trees. He hides himself out of birdseye view, making sure none of the awaiting contestants follow his trail. He hides behind the trunks of the trees, finally choosing a spot to wait for his target, Tonpa. He kneels down and rests a hand on the bark of the tree. If things go accordingly, Kurapika will steal Tonpa's ID tag unscaved. He's lucky to have such an easy target but he shouldn't be celebrating so soon. He himself is still someone else's target. Kurapika's going to lay low until the end of the phase.
Kurapika took a deep breath to calm his frantically beating heart. He palms his chest, feeling the way the organ beat against his ribcage. He felt apprehensive. The Fourth Phase will distinguish between rookies, hand picking authentic hunters. Though Kurapika doesn't doubt his abilities, he can't help the gut feeling that something major will happen. Death isn't something he fears, and yet Kurapika doesn't see himself joining his clan any time soon. Maybe it's not that he might die, but he's afraid for Leorio's wellbeing.
The churning in his stomach almost confirms his suspicions. Can Leorio pass this exam with ease? Who even is his target, and who is targeting him? Kurapika shudders fearfully, the thought of Hisoka targeting Leorio leaving an awful feeling in the pit of his gut. When he steals Tonpa's tag Kurapika will immediately go search for Leorio to aid him if needed. Kurapika just hopes that's the only thing he'll have to worry about in the exam. Hopefully, nothing will surprise him.
Leorio tensed for a second before nodding. He bends down to grab his suitcase. His grip on the object tightens as he swallows thickly. It's time for action; no going back now! Before he could make a step forward, Tonpa mutters something under his breath. "You got something to say?" He sneers at the older man. He glares at him from over his shoulder.
The shorter man's dull look turns into an amused smirk."What? I was just wishing you luck. Nothing more," Tonpa answers truthfully. His hands were raised in surrender, meaning the other no harm… or so an idiot would believe.
"Yeah, whatever." Leorio huffed. He walks forward, four steps in until Tonpa spoke again.
"A mere, thank you, would have been nice."
Leorio's teeth grind against each other as he stops for a second, heavily debating giving the older man a sucker punch. He shook the thought from mind and continued onward. Stepping off the plank, Leorio ran straight without looking back. Tonpa yells something obscene, but Leorio won't let it get to him. This sad, little man is just trying to aggravate him, probably stalling to make Leorio's waste his time. Well, Tonpa won't get the best of him.
Leorio slows his running, taking in his surroundings and memorizing it just in case he ends up lost. It seems pointless since everything looks the same. He grunts. Who's he kidding? He's no Gon Freecss; he can't be one with the forest.
Leorio comes to a brisk stop. What's he even doing running when he doesn't know who his target is? Leorio sighs heavily. He runs his hands through his hair. "I guess I should hunt the other applicants since I don't know who's my target," Leorio mutters to himself. His eyes dart left and right before continuing on his unknown path.
He's a bit nervous now. The only reason he's so far into the Hunter Exam is thanks to the help of his friends. He's all on his own now. Not that he's complaining, he didn't expect to make good friends along the way when he signed up to take the exam. It was out of pure luck he'd meet everyone along the way, and Leorio will forever be thankful to them. He won't let them down this time. He'll get all six points and continue to the next phase along with them.
The magician crept to mind, and Leorio's eyes narrow, lips pursing into a tight line. If Hisoka comes to hunt him down, Leorio will fight to keep his tag. Nothing will keep him from his goal. Not even a homicidal maniac!