On ivory lines, hack ghostbusting and the significance of 3. The trio follow a dead-end lead to a seaside town and end up working as exorcists for the performing troupe there.
A/N: Completely not based on geographical or historical fact in the slightest. I barely know where Innoshima is, for god's sake, so please don't kill me for any hideous indiscrepancies.
It started like this: they had ferried out from the mainland to Innoshima on a lead and were wandering near the outskirts of the said town, having traded all their cash for crossing fare. The day had been brutally warm and hunger, their-ever-present companion, was past nipping at their heels. It was full-on straddling them.
"Oh," Fuu whined, stating the obvious. "I'm so hungry."
To which Mugen replied by producing a tattered and dirty rag from some fold in his garments and wrapping it under his chin. He tied a rather ridiculous bow atop his head and continued trudging along in silence. Jin regarded the action with an impassive look.
Fuu quickened her pace, peering at him queerly: "What are you doing?" She asked him, clearly vexed.
"I'm sick of listening to you bitch about the same damn thing every minute."
Fuu balked at his answer, angrily placing both hands on her hips. "I'm /hungry/, so sue me!"
"But that's just it," Mugen said with exasperation. "You're always hungry. Day, night. It's your constant state of being. Tell me something new."
This was-especially on a day that experienced a heat of this calibre and a lack of food that would wane anyone's tolerance-the absolute last straw for Fuu. She let out an angry shriek before reaching up to tug at the swaddle of cloth around his head, which she figured would function as an adequate noose to strangle him with.
Mugen raised an arm and threw her angry and (furiously) scratching form onto the ground. Unfortunately, despite his quick reflexes, he tumbled forward when she darted out a sneaky leg to trip him. This, to Jin's rare surprise-considering the obvious and comprehensive gap between skill levels-somehow developed into a street melee that several passer-bys scooted around to avoid. He sighed, dumbstruck moment past, and took a step towards them. "You two-"
Which was the moment at which a young man came barrelling through the street they were brawling in, effectively knocking Fuu's tiny and malevolent form off of Mugen's back. Their anger redirected, she placed both hands on her hips, sleeves rolled upwards and sandy dirt marks on her flushed cheeks. Mugen rearranged his bonnet and would have threatened to kill him, if Fuu hadn't pulled some sort of magic act and somehow obtained his sword, scabbard and all.
Fine then, fists it was.
"Where the hell do you think you're going, you little shit?" The child writhed in his grip, his lithe body contorting with the air of an acrobat.
"Stop, I've got to go meet them now," he said furiously, before taking note of the cloth wrapped around Mugen's head.
"That turban-" he started, even though it was the furthest thing from it. Rather than a mystic, Mugen looked more like someone suffering from an extremely painful toothache. But nevertheless, the boy continued: "Are you the exorcists?"
This prompted the following thoughts to fire rapidly through Jin's heat-maddened brain: that, for one, this child would likely lead them to some sort of place that would be infinitely more shaded than the frying pan of a street they were in and, for seconds, they were likely being mistaken for the trio they had found dead out in the road, several miles back, from some bandit-related ambush. They figured this since they found nothing of consequence when Mugen felt compelled to mug their corpses.
Despite his calm logic, it was at the end, when his stomach growled hungrily in its traditional gavel-banging manner, saying: "Shut up and feed me bitch," that he decided to go.
"What are you-" Fuu started loudly, but Jin calmly cut her off with a slick "Yes, we are the ones."
And so it was then and there, as Fuu and Mugen incredulously watched Jin walk after the small child through the streets, that the trio was about to have their very first encounter with the Kagami Kinsen troupe of travelling performers.