"Every opponent I face is nothing more than a mere puppet, I control every function. You think otherwise? When I attack, you dodge. When I run, you chase. When I dodge, you attack again. You are nothing more than a mere puppet, and not even a good one at that. So... When I use this technique... You die. Dance for me my little Marionette, until I sever your strings!"
From a young age Ayatsuri, then Shōki,was considered different from the norm, a bit odd. He had no memory of his parents and lived as an orphan in the Land of Wind, being taken care of by a mysterious benefactor. Every day Ayatsuri received a package from his "parent" that contained large amounts of Ryō and various household items along with instructions on how to use them. From the age of five Ayatsuri understood the concept of money and would walk to Sunagakure to purchase whatever he wanted, things such as the region's specialty known as "Sand Dumplings", or various toys and foods. Even at this age he showed immense intelligence, knowing when he was cheated on the cost or when he was given less than he actually purchased and demanding the rest of what he was due. His life continued in this way, receiving packages containing immense amounts of Ryō every day, until one day the day, the day of his 6th birthday, he received something new along with the usual package, a Marionette. His eyes lit up once they landed upon the toy, for not only did it interest him it was also the first gift he had ever received.
From that day on Ayatsuri was always seen with the Marionette, quickly picking up how to control the toy and making it dance or perform complex gestures such as full on battle scenes with fluid motions. He was often seen manipulating the Marionette with one hand and performing some other task with his free hand. Two weeks after the Marionette arrived something strange happened, that day's package was being delivered by a man. Within the package was a note that simply read "This man is your Sensei, study hard". Ayatsuri grinned at the promise of learning new things and his education began, the man was instructed to teach him the same basics that an Academy education would provide and then instruct him in the art of battle.
Ayatsuri completed the equivalent to an Academy education in a single year, he truly shined when it came to gaining more knowledge. He was then taken out into the barren deserts of the Land of Wind and handed a blade before being told to kill the prisoner in front of him. He rushed at the prisoner but hesitated to lift his blade and the prisoner immediately lashed out with a blade of his own, slashing across Ayatsuri's eye. He flew into a pain induced rage and rushed at the man, driving his blade into the prisoner 57 times and leaving his chest a bloody heap. Ayatsuri was immediately praised and he grinned, blood running from his eye and his hands dyed crimson by the prisoner's blood.
Ayatsuri bore the scar for a week before he caught his reflection in a cup of herbal tea and immediately scowled. He gouged his eye out with his own hands, ripping it from the socket. He cleaned the cavity and wrapped gauze around his head to cover the wound. He then resumed his training, steadily growing accustomed to his loss of half of his sight and his other senses seemed to increase to make up for it. His sense of hearing and touch seemed to combine to allow him to "sense" attacks that were coming from his blind side. A week later he removed the bandages and cleaned the cavity and the area around it once more before sewing a patch of leather-like material into his skin to over it. He went to look at his reflection once more and grinned, saying one word "perfect"
The next day Ayatsuri received another package that was carried by a different man, this one had come to instruct him in the Puppet Arts and the other man remained to teach him the more advanced forms of ninjutsu. He grinned at the thought of using puppets as more than toys and applied nearly every waking moment to his training, rapidly growing in his proficiency in both the Puppet Arts and ninjutsu. His skill increased steadily until he was able to manipulate a maximum of ten puppets, using only a single Chakra Thread for each puppet. His training lasted for another three years before he grew bored with the men's teachings.
Having learned all he could from the men he began to grow increasingly absent from his "home", choosing to wander with his puppets for lengthy periods of time. One day he returned to find his treasured Marionette destroyed and the two men laughing at him from a corner of the room. Ayatsuri flew into a rage and hung them both using his Chakra Threads before tearing open their bodies and inserting various mechanics to allow the manipulation of their bodies and he made them dance as Marionettes from the balcony of his house, raining blood on the ground below. He continued this gruesome dance until the bodies of the men wear destroyed and he left, grumbling to himself that he would need to take some time to create puppets from corpses.
Ayatsuri began wandering once more, having crafted a puppet with the exclusive purpose of housing the Ryō he had accumulated from all the packages over the years. His interest peaked when he spotted a "patchwork doll" and he set out to create his own. Months later he succeeded in creating a "doll of his own" which he instantly named "Merry". She possessed long black hair and extremely pale skin, and her most notable features was the black heart sewn onto her left check and the numerous stitches scattered across her body, the most notable of which is the large one traveling across he neck as if the throat was slit open. It was later revealed that Merry was a female Shinobi before Ayatsuri killed her in battle, a deft slash from one of his puppet's blades tearing open her throat. He then removed her organs and cleaned her out before preserving her and storing her away in another puppet that he crafted exclusively to house her. He was unhappy with his creation stating that it didn't come "alive" as he wanted it to. He wandered for another five years before he met his solution, Heishiro Maitake.
When spotted each other they immediately stared each other down, Ayatsuri's cold stare meeting Heishiro's warm amber gaze. In the fierce battle that ensued Heishiro's Katana decided the battle by it's tip coming to rest on the throat of Ayatsuri, before Ayatsuri admitted that he had been bested and began to travel with Heishiro. Heishiro showed nothing but genuine interest in Ayatsuri's puppets, having never seen anything like them before, and was even more interested when Ayatsuri revealed his "doll". Heishiro became thoughtful when he was told of Ayatsuri's predicament, the issue of bringing his doll to life. Heishiro crafted him an Alloy that would replicate any chakra that was passed through it, including the natures of the one that the chakra belonged to. This gave the doll a life of her own, and Ayatsuri then went about giving the doll freewill. As such Merry possesses freewill but when an order is given by either Heishiro or Ayatsuri she will obey immediately. From then on Heishiro and Ayatsuri have traveled together, one was seldom seen without the other.
Ayatsuri has tailored his own clothing to "fit" him better. He wears loose deep black bottoms, the cloth of which is extremely light yet durable to prevent both restricting his range of movement and tears. He bears a sleeveless deep black top, loose fitting and torn at the bottom, the collar of his top rises just to under his nose and is held in place with black leather straps with metal buckles created from Heishiro's alloys. He possesses a single icy blue, almost gray, eye the other having been gouged out by his own hands. He has extremely soft deep black hair that falls just barely above his eyes, hanging down in a slightly messy manner. His ears have also been pierced in two areas, metal hoops clinging to the skin. He wears a white gauntlet on his right forearm, held to his arm once more by black leather straps. Upon his feet he wears the customary tabi and sandal combination, in a deep black. His appearance aids him at night and but also tends to attract suspicion in the day time.
Ayatsuri has been said to have a dark and unsettling personality by those who have been around him, with the exception of Heishiro, this is largely due to his appearance and the puppets that he is almost always seen with. In truth Ayatsuri has an extremely warm personality, he only grows cold when he is facing an opponent or a possible threat. He has a surprisingly good sense of humor and is often found tossing jokes back and forth with Heishiro or those who dare to venture nearer to him. He hates those who have no pride and as such he refuses to strike a downed opponent, always telling them to "Stand and die with some pride". He is extremely intelligent and as such he is extremely analytical in nature, often forming strategies at the same instant as Heishiro with each of their separate strategies playing off of the other's strengths and fortifying their weaknesses.
Ayatsuri possesses extremely high speed and is able to output only an average amount of damage with physical attacks such as punches and kicks, due to this he tends to rely on his puppets and jutsu to make the most of his offense and defense although he has been trained by Heishiro in wielding a sword in order to "round out his offense", as such he is able to hold his own using a blade and is able to more skillfully manipulate puppets who function as swordsmen. Due to his slim build his physical defense isn't very high, but he has an extremely high pain threshold and due to this his body will give out on him before he loses the will to fight in addition to his preferring to avoid close combat if at all possible. He uses his chakra, speed, and puppets to supplement his defenses but he much rather simply remain out of range of his opponent's attack, using his unique combination of puppetry and long range jutsu to do battle.
Puppet Master Edit
Ayatsuri possesses an expansive collection of puppets, one that is rumored to house over two hundred powerful tools of destruction. Many of his earlier puppets are single function, made exclusively to house items or to fire projectiles and the like. Despite his immense arsenal of puppets, there is a collection of 4 puppets that he uses most often.
Satsujin (殺人) Edit
A close combat puppet that is often used to herd the opponent into other attacks by cutting of routes of escape. It is composed of a legendary wood found only in the forest that lies on the border of the Land of Wind and the Land of Fire, this wood is fire resistant and has been said to take the flames of multiple large Fire Release: Great Fireball Technique without singeing a single part. Like most of Ayatsuri's puppets it's joints are protected by Heishiro's alloys to prevent them from jamming, this also allows Heishiro to have an added element of offense or defense by manipulating the alloys present in the puppet. At the core of Satsujin lies a variation of the alloy present within Merry, it serves the functions of amplifying the Chakra Thread and then splitting it into five separate parts to allow the manipulation of the head, both arms, both legs, and the torso using the original Chakra Thread to control each part separately if the user wishes to do so. Within Satsujin are various tools that are largely offensive in nature. It bears a striking resemblance to Heishiro with the exception of the spiked deep blue hair and dark wood used to create the puppet.
Satsujin's Arsenal Edit
- Smoke Bomb launchers in its mouth and the palms of its hands, all of which are normally kept covered to prevent jams. The smokescreens can be laced with a numbing agent to slow the enemy's movements, Ayatsuri's Neurotoxin, or composed of an extremely flammable gas. The latter is often used in conjunction with Wind Nature jutsu to gather it into a specific area and then a Fire Nature jutsu to cause combustion.
- Six inch claws on both it's feet and hands created from one of Heishiro's strongest alloys rendering them nearly indestructible and giving them increased cutting power. The claws are curved much like the claw of a raptor to allow them to easily tear through flesh and are barbed to enable Satsujin to grip and hold an opponent. There are small channels that run from the tip of every claw to their base, allowing Ayatsuri's Neurotoxin to gain entrance through the smallest of scratches.
- Attached to the arms, legs, and head are large blades that are normally kept concealed within the torso of Satsujin. The arms and legs may be removed and reattached with the blades facing outward to give an added element of offense.
Sakkaku (錯覚) Edit
A puppet that is used for both stealth strikes and the application of Genjutsu. It is composed of a white wood that is found in the deep reaches of the forests in the Land of Fire. Once a flow of chakra is applied to this wood it disappears from view, causing light to bend around it thus rendering it invisible. The wood is extremely durable but is also light allowing the puppet to be manipulated to perform airborne acrobatic maneuvers to confuse or distract opponents. At the core of Sakkaku lies a variation of the alloy present within Merry, it serves the functions of allowing Sakkaku to become invisible by applying a flow of chakra to its wooden body and allowing the activation of various Genjutsu using the puppet. It's appearance plays up to it's purpose, it's face is hidden by a black mask with the kanji for "Faceless" written upon it in green, it has long ink black hair that flows as though it is being poured from the back of Sakkaku's head, it has a slim almost lanky figure that has been constructed to make no sound while it moves, and it wears a deep black shroud similar to that of Crow. Sakkaku is used to perform the powerful Genjutsu Death Illusion: Human Puppet and various others. Like most of Ayatsuri's puppets it's joints are protected by Heishiro's alloys to prevent them from jamming.
Sakkaku's Arsenal Edit
- A slim katana that has been forged so to lessen the amount of drag present when it is swung to allow strikes to be both fast and nearly silent.
- Senbon launchers in the tips of Sakkaku fingers, these are often tipped with Ayatsuri's neurotoxin.
- A sound manipulation device hidden behind Sakkaku's mask. This is used to create or manipulate sound waves in such ways as to distract the opponent by making it seem as if the sound came from a different area, immobilizing the opponent with certain frequencies of sound that cause high levels of pain, and the dissipation or amplification of sound.
- Razor sharp Garote wire that can be deployed by either pulling either index finger from it's socket to reveal a length of wire or using senbon to attach the wire to various locations the wire can then be used to constrict the movement of the opponent or to kill.
Yade Shibō (矢で死亡) Edit
A puppet used almost entirely for long range strikes. Yade Shibō is crafted from the same wood as Sakkaku which gives Ayatsuri the ability to make it invisible by applying a steady flow of chakra to it's body. Yade Shibō is the tallest puppet Ayatsuri has crafted, standing at 6 feet even. It has short bright red hair that is spiked up in a messy fashion, a black mask that covers its face from just below the eyes, and wears an ankle length black cloak. At the core of Sakkaku lies a variation of the alloy present within Merry, it serves the functions of allowing Yade Shibō to become invisible by applying a flow of chakra to its wooden body, the enhancement of the piercing power of its arrows and senbon, and the use of the cannons in it's mouth and chest. This is the only puppet that Ayatsuri has in which the joints are not protected by Heishiro's alloy, reasoning that since it won't be anywhere near the opponent there is no need for it.
Yade Shibō's Arsenal Edit
- A large high-tension bow and a large quiver of barbed hunting arrows worn on it's back at all times.
- An Eye Scope in place of it's left eye to allow precision targeting using Ayatsuri's Ningyōtsukai: Vision technique.
- Precision enhanced senbon launchers in it's hands, shooting the senbon at higher speeds to lessen the influence the wind and distance have on their trajectory.
- A small cannon that shoots condensed blasts of lightning nature chakra hidden inside its mouth.
- A larger version of the mouth cannon in the center of Yade Shibō's chest that shoots condensed blasts of lightning nature chakra surrounded by smaller cannons that shoot blasts of fire nature chakra.
Āmādo-jishi (アーマード獅子) Edit
A puppet that was forged for transportation, imprisoning an opponent, sneak attacks, and application of poisons. Āmādo-jishi is the only puppet that Ayatsuri possesses that is forged entirely of Heishiro's alloys instead of the traditional wood. It possesses an outer shell composed of one of Heishiro's most durable alloys allowing Āmādo-jishi to burrow underground, an inner compartment that is composed of an alloy that can prevent the use of chakra when Ayatsuri's chakra signature is not detected inside, and three reinforcing layers arranged on top of the compartment in such a way that evenly disperses force to make it nearly impossible to output enough damage to break out of the compartment. The joints of Āmādo-jishi are protected by crescent shaped covers that prevent jams yet allow freedom of movement. It has the appearance of a golden scorpion large enough to allow Ayatsuri to ride on its back and to contain up to three opponents. It is the largest of all of Ayatsuri's puppets that has been seen in combat. It has five eyes, all of which are scopes, that allow Ayatsuri to access Āmādo-jishi's sight through the use of his Ningyōtsukai: Vision technique. It has large pincers and a deadly looking "stinger" on its tail. Ayatsuri often rides Āmādo-jishi during battle, providing him with a defense and still allowing him to attack if the opponent manages to get past his other puppets.
Āmādo-jishi's Arsenal Edit
- A large curved scythe in place of the traditional "sting" on the end of a scorpion's tail. The scythe administers an extremely potent neurotoxin that rapidly attacks the motor functions of the victim in order to cause total paralysis while allowing the victim's heart and lungs to function. The tail is as flexible as possible without having to sacrifice sturdiness and has a limited length that it may extend to attack the opponent.
- Three adjustable senbon launchers that can be shifted to aim at different angles, providing an added element of offense since Āmādo-jishi does not have to be directly facing the target. Each senbon is coated with a potent numbing agent in small doses, allowing Ayatsuri to cause the opponent to lose the sense of feeling in specific body parts, the senbon can also be coated with a diluted version of Ayatsuri's neurotoxin that is meant to paralyze the specific part that the senbon strikes.
- Large pincers that can be used for impaling an opponent, gripping and holding an opponent, or slashing attacks due to the blades on the outer side of the pincers.
- Smoke bomb launchers within the pincers. These smoke bombs have been wrapped in explosive tags that are meant to detonate in the same instant that the smoke is released. The smoke is laced with Ayatsuri's neurotoxin, causing the smoke to paralyze those who breathe it in or have open wounds. Due to the power of this combination there are only five of these in each pincer, a total of ten of these smoke bombs.
- At the end of each of Āmādo-jishi's eight legs are small blades, allowing piercing damage to occur from being trampled.
- A small flame thrower located alongside the senbon launchers in Āmādo-jishi's mouth that has been modified to shoot balls of flame.
- Steel covers that serve the purpose of covering the launchers and joints of Āmādo-jishi when it burrows or dives into water.
- An apparatus that allows Ayatsuri to hide inside the compartment of Āmādo-jishi without needing to come out for air, allowing Āmādo-jishi to be used underwater with Ayatsuri hidden away inside.
Weaknesses and Strengths Edit
The in depth training that he received from a young age allows him to skillfully deploy Genjutsu in addition to his offensive with his Puppets. He has a significantly above average knowledge of ninjutsu due to the training he received during his time with his "parent". He is relatively weak in taijutsu, able to barely inflict average damage with punches and kicks but he is slightly above average in swordplay due to the lessons given by Heishiro. Ayatsuri is extremely intelligent and tends to form strategies in the midst of battle while analyzing the skills of his opponents.
- The alias Ayatsuri Ningyō means puppet, or when translated into literal English "Manipulation Doll".
- Ayatsuri's personal traits are:
- Ayatsuri's favorite foods are Sand Dumplings, anything sweet, and Onigiri. He dislikes anything salty and pork.
- Ayatsuri's favorite and least favorite drinks are anything Strawberry flavored and Ginkgo Tea respectively.
- His hobbies are modifying his puppets and swimming.
- His favorite phrase is "Jū-gen" or "Ten strings"
- The color associated with Ayatsuri is deep purple.
- His long term goal is to become a revered puppet master, recognized the entire world over for his art. His short term goals appear to be to find things of interest and to improve upon his art.
- His deepest fear is of his art disappearing and being forgotten "Like a single grain of sand in a gust of wind"
- Ayatsuri has completed 275 assassinations, many of those alongside Heishiro.
- Ayatsuri is considered an S-Rank criminal due to his line of work, yet like Heishiro, he is generally welcome in most villages he wanders into due to his warm personality and willingness to help.
- Ayatsuri is rather uncomfortable around large animals, and due to this he tends to become jumpy when wolves are at Heishiro's side.
- Ayatsuri currently has a rather large bounty of 45,000,000 ryō on the black market.