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"This world...it shall continue to suffer and rot from the inside out as long as the arrogant reign supreme. They, blinded by their own hubris, always seek to rule everything in their sight; always seeking to force the masses to do what they will never do themselves....and worst of all, they sow the seeds of destruction and ignite the flames of war. As long as there is breath within me, I will exist as a bane to this filth. I am the weapon forged to rend through the darkness and to spill the blood of 'gods'. This is my purpose. This is my shinobi way."
-Hisashi Shinja, Viper of the West
Hisashi Shinja (信者久志, Long-Lived Believer), also known by his moniker "Viper of the West" or simply "Viper", is a member and current leader of the nearly extinct Shinja Clan. Following the events of the Fourth Shinobi World War, he and his kinsmen peacefully attained leadership over the Land of Stone and installed him as the first Yamakage of Ishigakure. Hisashi is an exceptionally talented shinobi, famed across the lands for his innate sense of justice and an extreme hatred for the prideful.
In the beginning, life for Hisashi Shinja was the personification of bliss; he was born into a clan of excessive wealth and wanted for nothing. In those days, the Shinja clan was divided: the majority of the clan lived in the lap of luxury, reveling in wealth accumulated over years of both legitimate and illegitimate ventures, while the vast minority existed as the current incarnation of Kumogakure's Kinkaku Force. Their lives were determined by an aged mandate. Those born without the bloodline limit would reap the full benefits of wealth and power whilst those whom were born with the bloodline limit were forced into the service of the Land of Lightning's village; existing as a covert operations unit. At the age of seven, Hisashi became the newest addition to this unit; manifesting his eyes upon the confrontation of his Inner Fear: snakes.
The story goes that Zennou, a member of the Kinkaku Force and Hisashi's elder brother, was obsessed with the reptilian monstrosities and often crossbred them in order to produce new and unique venoms for combat usage. One day, the curious Hisashi slipped into his brother's private quarters to snoop about as younger siblings often did, bumping into one of the many cages in the process. The cage fell and released a rather deadly viper, which promptly bit Hisashi upon the leg and slithered away. Zennou, luckily, arrived shortly thereafter and administered the anti-venom, but Hisashi's young body reacted badly to the concoction and struck him ill. For nearly a month, the boy was bedridden and almost claimed by death several times, spurning a deathly fear of snakes within him. Once recovered, he had the unfortunate confrontation with this fear when playing in a local field, where a snake slithered past. Hisashi practically leapt out of his skin and ran all the way home. When he was finally calmed down, the eyes he looked upon his family with were none other than the clan's bloodline limit...From thenceforth, he participated in numerous underhanded missions for the good of the Hidden Cloud; staining his hands with blood at an extremely young age.
The tides of change revealed themselves shortly before the events of the Third Shinobi World War when the Kinkaku Force was ordered to settle a typical skirmish on the Land's borders; and as usual, the order called for no survivors. He and his kinsmen annihilated the helpless civilians with minimal effort, but when it came time to extinguish the final life, the life of a red-haired girl, Hisashi could not bring himself to do it. Instead, he aided in her escape, covering her exit with a smoke bomb and delaying his teammates by breaking his own ankle. When the kageship pieced together what he had done, they punished him severely and his kinsmen looked to him with disdain. However, in the future, this disdain turned into admiration; for his rebellious behavior was just beginning.
When the Third Shinobi World War erupted, the Kinkaku Force was ordered into combat alongside the Raikage and his younger brother. The crowning moments out of all the war's chaotic events came from a brief skirmish with a team dispatched from Konohagakure; composed of the village's next Kage and his students. Hisashi personally squared off against Hatake Kakashi and witnessed a failed attempt at a Chidori. Whilst battling the future legend, he also beheld the Raikage's might in battle and fell completely in love with the element lightning; forever inspired by the events of that day. Following the war, the Kinkaku Force was once again placed on border duty, and once again Hisashi rebelled. This time, the punishments stopped and he was given the privelage of being personally visited by the Raikage himself. He was threatened with execution should his behavior continue, and in the typical manner of hot-headed teenagers, Hisashi rebelled again, this time defecting from the Hidden Cloud entirely. His elder sibling, Zennou, soon followed suit; unable to leave his younger sibling alone to the wolves.
He guided Hisashi to one of the numerous lairs of Orochimaru and introduced him to his master, who then welcomed him with open arms; for the White Snake had been keeping an eye on the Shinja clan for generations. They tarried there for just over a year and left immediately after discovering the White Snake's primary goal: to steal Zennou's body and to extract their dojutsu for study. Zennou was wreaked with unimaginable guilt, so much so that he placed himself in a self-imposed exile. During this time, Hisashi returned home to the Land of Lightning to see how his kinsmen were faring. The ungifted Shinja were just as complacent as ever, much to his distaste, while his bretheren within the Kinkaku Force suffered daily. He questioned why the wealthy side of the family did nothing to ease their pain and was given no legitimate answer. This sparked a rage within him. Under the guise of a common bandit, he laid waste to the host of wealthy Shinja whilst they traveled to the Land of Hot Water via caravan for their monthly vacation, leaving only his younger brother Toshihiro unscathed. Then, he came the next day to collect his younger brother and convinced his remaining kin to defect from the village alongside him.
Of course, the Hidden Cloud pursued after them and the battle for freedom began. Though some lives were lost in the pursuit of liberation, Kumogakure ultimately came under the impression that they had slain the entire host; a fact that they were sorely mistaken in believing. Free from the village's hunters, the Shinja settled within the Land of Stone; relying upon the underground contacts the family had utilized for years in order to survive. It was then that a certain piece of news reached Hisashi's ears: the Kage had ordered that all information regarding the Shinja and their involvement in the Hidden Cloud be struck from the Village's history. Enraged, Hisashi returned to the Hidden Cloud with one goal in mind: to assassinate the Raikage; for how dare he removed all recognition of the Shinja's contributions to the village? For they helped build it. His attempt ultimately failed and he barely escaped with his life, but not before he swiped two treasures of the village on his way out; both of which were artifacts of the Shinja to begin with.
From this point forward, Hisashi resigned himself to a life of peace. This was primarily due to his falling completely head over heels for a kunoichi who supposedly hailed from the Land of Waves. They wed shortly after his return and life became good and quiet, that is, up until the events of the Fourth Shinobi World War. The world unified to stand against a common enemy, and the Shinja were no different. They traversed the Lands and stood covertly amongst the Allied Forces, fighting valiantly against the White Zetsu Army. In the aftermath, the Shinja returned home to the Land of Stone and braced themselves for the economic hell that soon followed. Peace, albeit wonderful, was not a great benefactor when it came to shinobi-required missions. Now, due to the friendship between nations; any and all major jobs went to the Allied Nations, thus causing the smaller nations to close down their own hidden villages. This spurned an unprecedented rise in crime and chaos that the Allied Nations, due to the massive amount of war casualties, just couldn't handle.
The Shinja clan would not stand for their home being dragged into chaos, and therefore they took over the land entirely, installing Hisashi as both Daimyou and as Kage over the region's remaining shinobi and denizens. Relying upon the underground contacts of the past, he reformed the village entirely, admitting mercenaries, missing-nin, and bandits into his village under one circumstance: leave your crimes at the door. This proved flawless and the new Ishigakure flourished, so much so that the Allied Nations regarded it as a potential threat. Political pressure and veiled threats did nothing to halt its rise to power, and to this day it stands as a haven to any and all seeking redemption and a home.