Summary: Ever wonder why Master Shiunsai never trained Rikimaru how to handle war?

Rated: T

Disclaimer: I don't own it; so don't even bother suing!


Ayame and Tatsumaru stood stock still in the warm, spring afternoon, staring at the scene before them in shock. The cool wind blew through the air, chilling sweat off the two ninjas' skin (though whether from the training that had abruptly been halted, or sheer terror they wouldn't know) as they watched their master, Shiunsai, attempt to restrain the hysterical Rikimaru.

"LET ME GO! LET ME GO! I WON'T LET YOU KILL ME YOU SON OF A BITCH!" Screamed the 14 year-old boy as he attempted to run off. The old man struggled to keep the boy still as Rikimaru kicked and squirmed wildly.

"Rikimaru, calm down; no one is going to hurt you! Now keep still!" Shiunsai struggled with a grunt hoping that he wouldn't have to hurt the suddenly crazed boy. It was earlier in the morning when Rikimaru began to act strangely.

First, he had been muttering to himself during breakfast, and when Ayame teased him about it, the boy slammed his hands on the table and stalked out of the room holding his hands over his ears; then, after they had jogged about ten laps around the village, Rikimaru began fidget nervously, and after asking if he was alright the boy wouldn't look at Shiunsai at all, preferring to stare at the ground or the trees, and muttering to himself still; then while practicing some new kata, the fourteen year-old suddenly let out a scream and curled into a ball with his hands over his ears, whimpering and whispering,

"Shut up. Just leave me alone. Leave me alone. Just leave me the hell alone."

Concerned, Tatsumaru took a cautious step towards his little brother in an attempt to see what was the matter, and Rikimaru let out another scream before taking off towards the surrounding forest. Shiunsai quickly grabbed the boy from behind, before he began to struggle roughly and scream loudly.

"What the hell?" One of the villagers that was walking by, a tall, burly man with a limp, said running up to assist the old man in restraining Rikimaru. "What's going on?" He asked the ninja master as, he grabbed the boy's legs, Rikimaru screamed louder and doubled his efforts in getting away. Ayame whimpered and buried her face in Tatsumaru's chest.

"I don't know, Kotetsu-san," replied Shiunsai as he had to yell just to talk to the man, "Rikimaru just began screaming and tried to run into the baboon forest, but we have to calm him down before he hurts himself!"

"Or us," replied the burly man.

"STOP IT! JUST GET AWAY FROM ME! PLEASE, STOP HURTING ME!" Rikimaru began to sob from terror. Everything was too loud, and bright, and oh gods, why was there a little girl with purple hair, and a blue kimono, and spiked geta shoes, stabbing him in the gut?!

"You should kill yourself," said the girl in a high-pitched static-y sounding voice, before stabbing the teen again.

"You should kill yourself." STAB! "You should kill yourself." STAB! "You should kill yourself." STAB! STAB! STAB! STAB!

Rikimaru screamed again in fear before he felt a sharp pain in the back of his head, and almost happily, sank into darkness.