Chapter 38: Preliminaries Part 2

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"Kankuro against Tsurugi Misumi."

Not me... Still not me... I look at Kankuro who's standing next to Temari and I see his arrogant smirk. He's confident. At least he has the skills to back up that confidence.

He heads down to face his opponent. He looks exactly like Akado Yoroi, the one that fought against Sasuke, but with clear round glasses instead of the round sunglasses. Are they from the same team? Speaking of round glasses, that Kabuto guy that fought Yukari had them too.

"We will now begin the fifth match."

I'm pretty sure Kankuro will totally own this guy.

"Unlike Yoroi, even against little punks like you, I'll show no mercy."

I knew it! He's in the same team as the other glasses dude.

"I'll say it now, if I use my techniques on you, it'll be over quickly."

Stop talking and do something...

"Then I'll also..."

Kankuro takes his wrapped puppet off his back.

"...End this quickly."

I don't why, but he sounds cool all of a sudden. Not that I'll ever tell him or anyone else that I thought that.

Suddenly, Tsurugi rushes at Kankuro and attempts to land a direct hit. Kankuro blocks it easily, but then... Tsurugi's limbs start wrapping around Kankuro!

"That's just downright creepy..."

I mumble as I see the man's body twist beyond any human capabilities. Kankuro's wrapped puppet drops to the ground as Tsurugi tightens his grip. They say a few things to each other that I can't really hear because I'm too far. Then... there's a snapping sound! Kankuro's head then hangs low.

"No way...!"

Yukari gasps next to me. I can't believe it either! He can't be... Kankuro can't be...!

Suddenly, Kankuro's head does a 180 and faces his opponent. I can spot cracks on the face, revealing wood under the initial layer. I let out a sigh of relief. It was the puppet all along... I look at Gaara and he doesn't even look remotely surprised.

"You could've told me you knew all along! I almost had a heart attack!"

Gaara looks away and I hear him snort. He did it on purpose!

Looking back at the fight, Kankuro has reversed the situation. Getting out of the wrappings that I initially thought contained the puppet, he manipulated Karasu, his puppet, and used it to wrap around Tsurugi, forcing it to tighten its grip until Tsurugi was screaming in pain. In his breathless cries, we could hear him say that he's giving up. Hearing that, the proctor ended the match, with Kankuro emerging as the victor. I knew he'd win.

Kankuro then make his way up to the balcony with a smug grin on his face. I glare at him.

"Hey, hey, what's with the death glare?"

"I thought you were dead! How could you do that to me?! At least give us a heads up or something!"

"Awww, I didn't know you cared, Kiu."

Kankuro is so teasing me right now... And he's enjoying it... Right as I'm about to retort, I hear the beeping of the display screen as it scrolls through the names once more. I won't get my hopes up this time. It probably won't be me anyway...

Just as I thought. The screen displays two names that I'm not familiar with. Haruno Sakura and Yamanaka Ino. As both contestants make their way to the fighting area, I recognize one of them. It's the pink haired girl in Naruto's team. Is she Ino or Sakura?

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