Shiori walked out of the bathroom in her sky blue pajamas. Kabuto walked by her to go turn off the shower, as she padded across the wooden floor silently; her body was a bit tense, she had never worn socks before and it was taking a ton of concentration for her not to trip and fall. Her small hands grasped the edges of her sleeves tightly; she liked how the fabric felt. She was warm, like she had been in the ramen shop, she yawned, and then shyly looked around. She was standing next to one of the beds. Kabuto and Orochimaru smiled at her.

Orochimaru patted a place next to him on his bed, "Come sit down," he said, and Shiori clambered up onto the bed, walked on her knees to the spot he had indicated, and sat down. Orochimaru looked at the girl; her dark hair was black from being wet, but Shiori had obviously figured out that the towel could be used on her hair too, because it wasn't dripping. He pulled out a brush, and ran it through her hair.

"Ouch!" she said, and whirled around to look at him with a furious expression. "That hurt!"

"I'm sorry," Orochimaru said. "I'll be more gentle."

Shiori frowned, and looked at Kabuto, who had just came back into the room, he smiled at her, and pulled a book out from his pack. He came over to Orochimaru's bed, and sat down next to the small girl. He opened the book, and looked at her, "Would you like to look at this with me?" he asked. "It has some interesting pictures."

Shiori smiled; she loved pictures, "Yes!" she answered, nodding her head up, and down, which tugged on her hair. She gave Orochimaru that same furious look, but the thought of the picture book was too tempting, and she turned back to look at it. The picture was of a forest, it was full of flowers, trees, and there was a river. Shiori smiled, and looked at all the colors. Behind her, Orochimaru frowned slightly at how she had looked at him furiously; he wasn't used to being on the receiving end of a look like that, and it struck him as odd that a child of all people had been the one to give him one. He sighed, and continued to brush her hair. When he was satisfied that he'd gotten all the tangles out, he braided her hair, and then tied it at the end with a scrunchie out of Kabuto's pack.

"What's that?" he heard Shiori ask Kabuto.

"That's a parrot," he told her. "They're a kind of bird, and if you talk to them enough, they can copy what you say."

"That bird can talk?" Shiori asked with a puzzled look on her face.

"Kind of," Kabuto answered. "They don't know what the words mean; they're only able to say them."

"Oh, okay," Shiori said, then she turned and looked at Orochimaru; her eyes widened when she didn't see her hair whirl around when she turned. "Where's my hair?" she asked in a fearful whisper.

Orochimaru showed her the braid, "I braided it, so it wouldn't get tangled."

"Oh," Shiori answered, and filed away what the word 'braid,' meant.

"Where did he learn to braid?" Kabuto wondered.

Orochimaru smirked at Kabuto's curious expression; he had learned how to braid from watching his mother braid her hair when he was a child.

"Ah, Kabuto, the look on your face is priceless," he thought, and then he looked at Shiori as she flipped slowly through the book. "She was a very fortunate find; she'll do well, but she isn't what we came here for. I need to start looking for ninja for my experiments," he glanced at Shiori. "Now that we have her with us, we'll have to be very careful that she doesn't see them- No, I'll make them think that they're coming to serve me on a mission somewhere far off, and then I'll take them back to my village,

and-" He smiled; this plan would work. A loud thud sounded suddenly, and Orochimaru looked for the source; he saw the book lying in the floor, Shiori had dropped it. He gave Kabuto a questioning look.

"She's asleep," he whispered, and Orochimaru got off the bed slowly, as Kabuto did the same. Orochimaru picked up Shiori gently, and Kabuto pulled back the blankets on the bed; Orochimaru laid her down, and pulled the blankets over her. Then, he and Kabuto walked over to the other side of the room.

Kabuto looked towards Shiori, and then at Orochimaru, "Why are we bringing her with us? I mean the kid's cute, and all, but what have you got in mind?"

Orochimaru smiled, "A ninja village needs students, and she is the first of many," he replied.

Kabuto thought about it; it was true, at the moment, he, and Orochimaru were the only ninja in the Village Hidden in the Sound.

"That girl has a ton of potential, all she needs is a sensei to show her how to apply that talent, and make it grow." Orochimaru said.

Kabuto nodded, and adjusted his glasses as he thought over Orochimaru's words. "What are you going to do about gathering specimens?" he asked.

"I've already thought of that," Orochimaru answered. "I'm simply going to hire some ninjas for a mission; escorting me to the Land Of Earth, then I'll lead them to our base, and then-" He smirked, "Well, you know,"

Kabuto nodded, a grim smile was on his face, "Sounds like a plan," he commented. "What if the Village Hidden in the Clouds comes looking for their ninja?"

"That's why," Orochimaru smiled sinisterly. "We're going to take the back way, so no one will have seen them after this land."

"Won't Shiori ask where they went?" Kabuto questioned. "She seems very intelligent, she's sure to notice their absence."

"She's also very young, I'll just tell her that they had to go somewhere, and that we won't be seeing them again," Orochimaru said. "They'll fade from her memory quickly."

Kabuto smiled, "I take it that we'll be off to the Village Hidden in the Clouds tomorrow then?" he asked.

Orochimaru's eyes narrowed, "What makes you so sure that it will be tomorrow?"

"Forgive me, Lord Orochimaru, but you're very impatient with some things, and I've been getting the feeling that you're more than tired with this town." Kabuto said.

Orochimaru laughed, "You know me too well, Kabuto," he said, and then his expression was thoughtful for a few moments. "Yes, tomorrow does seem like a good time to go," he said, and then he smirked. "Ah, Sarutobi is going to be so sorry that he didn't name me Hokage," he thought.