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After finishing their discussion a duo of father and son could be seen heading towards the outskirts.
"Hey dad, I have been thinking, but why is our village one of 'the great five shinobi villages'? Konoha has its fertile land and bloodlines, Kumo has its mastery over tailed beast prowess, and Iwa, which has a Kage whose kekkei genkai is considered the strongest, both have ores within mountains. Even Kiri has easy access to sea resources and their Seven Ninja Swordsmen, while we? We sell some spices and pottery and live on a sand-filled wasteland." Teruya said as he gesticulated.
"You're not wrong but not fully right either." Otsuka chuckled. "While it is true we are considered the weakest of the Five Great Shinobi Hidden Countries, we have something that stands out above others."
"Well, will you tell me?" Teruya asked with annoyance.
"No, I don't think I will." Otsuka teased him with a smile.
"…mother is a terrible influence on you." Teruya complained with a black expression.
"Haha, don't let her hear you say that." Otsuka laughed before moving his hand to ruffle Teruya's hair. "It's not really a secret but you will be told about it during the inauguration at the Academy." The only reaction that Teruya graced his father was an annoyed huff.
"Oh cheer up son." Otsuka nudged him, but seeing his lack of reaction he decided to move the topic to something that would definitely force a reaction out of him. "You didn't even ask about the technique that I will teach you today, I thought you were excited about that, but I guess I was wrong."
Hearing that Teruya's eyes sparkled. "Right! You will finally teach me a technique! Will I be able to throw fire… and give that redhead a 'hot' surprise? Or-or maybe how to produce wind? That one would be great, It would be way better than just fanning myself with a paper…"
"Well, I could…" Otsuka started. "I planned to teach you a technique that is a basis for the puppet technique, but if that's what you want…"
"What?! No, no dad, you should stick to your plans, don't worry about me." Teruya interjected with a hint of panic in his voice, resulting in Otsuka making a knowing smile. "…you knew I'd react like that, you're terrible, hmph."
"No, I would never." His father said as the duo reached an empty training ground. "So, what do you know about ninja techniques in general?"
"Only that it uses chakra and hand seals, couldn't find anything about the subject."
"That's normal you couldn't find anything. After all, we wouldn't want civilians to try hurt themselves trying to use chakra unsupervised." Otsuka said, giving Teruya a pointed stare at the last part, at which Teruya looked away and dryly laughed.
"Anyways, while what you said is correct it is not entirely right. There exist ninjutsu's that do not require hand seals to use, for example, your body strengthening technique is one such example. I will not bother explaining hand seals for now, as the technique that I will teach you does not require them. That technique doesn't require transforming your chakra into a different nature than the neutral one, requiring only to transform it, lowering the difficulty of learning it. With your skill in chakra control, I have no doubt it is the most fitting technique for you to learn."
"Stop speaking around it dad, what is it?"
"The technique is called chakra threads."
"That sounds… boring." Teruya said, at which Otsuka chuckled.
"Well it is not flashy like most ninjutsu, but I believe this technique is the most underappreciated ninjutsu in the entire shinobi continent. You will see it in time."
"Okay dad, stop with the trivia party, let's get to the meat." Teruya said with excitement.
"So impatient, sheesh. Youth these days." Otsuka complained.
"Okay boomer." Teruya shot back, making his dad annoyed which resulted in a vein on his forehead becoming visible.
"Anyways," Otsuka said with a noticeable strain in his voice. "to create a chakra thread you need to move your chakra to the tip of your finger and condense it very tightly before trying to push it out, while at the same time keeping it connected to the chakra still within your body."
"You already know how to do two out of four steps – the first and third steps. Your usage of the body strengthening technique requires one's ability to move your chakra – the first step - and when you used litmus paper to learn about your chakra affinity it required moving chakra outside of your body – the third step."
"Unfortunately for you the other two are the more difficult ones." Otsuka quickly said before Teruya could get a big head. "Let's begin, first move chakra towards any finger of your choice."
After Teruya did so he continued. "Now try to condense it into a single spot right below the tip of it. It is important to visualise in your mind how you want to manipulate your chakra. Take your time, if you do not compress it enough it will simply scatter into the air after you push it outside." Otsuka did not tell him how to visualise it so Teruya can make a method fitting for himself. If he told him how he does every step himself it would impose his line of thinking of shape manipulation upon Teruya, making it more difficult for him to feel chakra as his 'own'.
'Visualise, how could I visualize it?' Teruya thought, drifting into the memories of the last few days, before getting an idea. 'Okay, I got it.'
Otsuka sensing his son did it continued with the guidance. "Now you need to start moving it out of the tip of your fingertip to the outside, while simultaneously forming more condensed chakra in the spot that your chakra already left, connected with the part that was already done, resulting in the creation of the continuous string. It is easy to fail, so do it very slow. If you condense the new part of the chakra string but fail to connect it, it will simply fall out of your finger and disperse, and if you connect but fail to condense it to the same level it will disperse from the moment where the imperfection in the chakra string gets outside of your body, resulting again the other part separating and dispersing."
This part was very difficult for Teruya, maintaining the already condensed chakra was difficult in and of itself, but he also had to move it outside AND attach an identically made part of the condensed chakra at the same time. As such he did it very slowly, moving only microscopical distances. After he got hang of condensing chakra and forming it connected to the already made part he sped it up and Otsuka could see a slowly inching blue wire outside of his son's fingertip.
After a few minutes of getting it further out of his hand, he got it to the point of it being around five centimetres long, yet before he could celebrate he felt the breeze of wind and the created string crumbled away and dispersed.
"Wha-, why!" Teruya complained.
"You condensed your chakra too much resulting in the chakra string becoming fragile, which made it weak enough for a simple wind to crumble it. Chakra string isn't like a metal rod that is straight and rigid, it has to be flexible. Try again." Otsuka advised with a calm voice.
Meanwhile, on the inside, he wasn't as calm as he appeared to be. 'He actually was able to make a string five centimetres long on his first try. When they were teaching it in Academy I only got to lead a string out of my body only after a week, and it wasn't even that long! The biggest difficulty is managing condensation, connection and movement all at the same time. His skill in chakra control alongside his sensor abilities must have helped him achieve that.
Teruya continued to practice until the end of the day with a dinner break. At the end of the day, he managed to make a 10-centimetre-long chakra string, though in the middle of extending it he got distracted and it dispersed.
"You're making decent progress." Otsuka said with a poker face. 'Let's teach him an improved version instead of the rigid one.'
"Starting from the next time start forming a chakra string at the end of the chakra pathway in your finger, rather than the fingertip."
"Is there any reason for that?" Teruya asked at which his father nodded.
"Yes, if your chakra string is connected to the chakra pathway system it is possible for one to retract and extend the chakra string, while the technique you were using only allows one to make it longer. The difference in usefulness is as big as heaven and earth."
"Then why didn't you start by teaching me the better version?" Teruya pouted.
"Didn't want to throw you into deep water at the start, son." Otsuka said, at which Teruya shrugged and said "Fair enough."
"But I'm amazing, right dad?" Teruya started to gloat.
"If you didn't notice you barely managed to extend the chakra string for 10 centimetres, on top of that it was only from the single finger and you're supposed to make it from all fingers simultaneously…" Otsuka said, making Teruya downcast, before continuing with a smirk forming on his face. "…but you did well, so I think I might be able to convince the mother to allow you some cookies."
"The ones with chocolate!?" With a speed of light, Teruya's head snapped right back up at Otsuka.
"*Chuckle* You really dislike biscuits with nuts, don't you? Yes, the chocolate ones."
"Woohoo, you're the best!" Teruya laughed as he threw himself at Otsuka, which caught him and carried him home on a piggyback.
Okay, I got bad news lads, I'm doing some proofreading of previous chapters to fix some grammar, only that, but this means that a lot of comments will be gone which I find painful. The previous week I already edited 3 chapters, and today I've edited the fourth.
Can we get an F in the chat for the comments?
Now on a more positive note. Since the previous chapter, I saw a sudden spike in people adding this fanfic to their collection as the webnovel puts it. For comparison in the last week, there were around 30 people adding my fanfic daily, while previously it was… 1 on average, so we are making gains! As the protagonists of certain fanfic put it: "Grind is eternal!"
"Mom, I'm famous" Author shouts in the background.
So uh, hi *awkwardly waves*.