Ebisu Hideaway

In the request Ruby accepted from the GNA, the Celebrity Burglar had written that her hideaway was not, in fact literally hidden away. That turned out to be a half-truth; in reality, it wasn't intentionally hidden, but it was still pretty darn difficult to find. The darkness wasn't helping matters. Ruby had been asked to come at night; if she was less capable of self-defense, she might feel a little unsafe moving through the rows of close-packed, shuttered, unlit store fronts by her lonesome... The bustling streets of the otaku district proved to be mostly empty once there was no more shopping to be done. The paranoia inducing backstreets didn't set the best tone for the supposedly fun burglary experience Ruby had been invited in on.

Finally, Ruby came to a complex of offices, which looked a little like a very squat two story apartment building until she got closer and realized that what first seemed to be nameplates on the doors were actually the names of businesses. One of the three on the floor read "Ebisu Hideaway." If she did indeed sell her services as a Celebrity Burglar and made a profit doing so, one would think that she would plop a little more down on a proper storefront. Either way, there certainly wouldn't be two different Ebisu Hideaways, so Ruby knew she was in the right place. The door was unlocked, so she could go right in, or she could instead opt for ringing the door bell. Either way, she'd soon be inside and greeting her employer.

The office somehow looked even smaller on the inside than it had from outside; it was so squat that an especially tall person might hit their head coming in and would definitely have to slouch going through the doorway, and so narrow that a couple people joining hands could easily reach from one wall to the other. That said, the space was used to its fullest. Only a minimum walkway was cut through the middle, branching one way to lead to a unisex restroom and another to lead to a closed door, although it wasn't apparent what was behind said door. At first, it appeared that every flat surface of the room was covered in garbage bags; an unappetizing thought, to be sure. Upon closer inspection, however, Ruby would see that the bags were dark green colored cloth sacks, each tied neatly at the top, all with different sizes and none smelling like garbage, thankfully. A small desk sat near the back of the room along with the room's only furniture, a small chair behind and a small chair in front. Ruby would just barely be able to make her way into the chair, if she so desired, though talking to the girl across the desk would require leaning one's head to look around the bags piled up on the desk.

The girl, presumably the Celebrity Burglar, Ebisu, was seated across the desk, almost hidden by the bags, using a screwdriver to fit a plate back onto some strange, metal sphere, about the size of a volleyball. She was dressed in a bizarre outfit, including a deep green ninja hood that did not all match the gray exercise outfit she was wearing besides, consisting of sweatpants and sweatshirt. It was a little drafty in the office; that may be why she was so bundled up. Her eyes were bright blue and her hair very dark green, almost black, short and only slightly visible underneath the hood she wore. Said hood covered her entire face, save just the eyes. It was hard to say much about her body while she was dressed as she was, but it looked like she was probably some type of Netopian despite her name, and she was short enough to be comfortable in a room like this, which is to say, a little short. She looked young, too, but how much so was hard to say while she had the mask on.

She set the ball aside on a desk, where it promptly rolled off and onto the bags littering the floor. With her other hand, she grabbed a green PET that had been hidden behind the desk-bags earlier. "Welcome!" she'd greet her new acquaintance clearly and cheerfully, despite the cloth over her mouth. "Are you Ruby? Have you come to burgle with me?" she'd further ask, tilting her head curiously as she stepped out from behind the desk.
"Are you sure about that address?"

"Of course. It's quite similar to the last one."

"Huh...who would've guessed we'd return to this area so soon?" The otaku district was decidedly different at night...a lot deader. "A bit surprised they're all already closed. I wasn't expecting any 24 hour shops, but it's not THAT late..."

"Do remain vigilant. I know you can take care of yourself, but you're still a young woman traveling by her lonesome. One wrong move, and who knows what a lunatic would try."

"Oh, trust me, I know." Still, let's go ahead and unsheathe her sword, so she wouldn't lose a single moment doing so when it mattered. "All right, there's the address. ...Looks like an apartment complex."

"Well, for your sake, it'd better be an office suite that looks like an apartment complex."

"Let's see...ah, that's definitely not a person's name. And...Ebisu Hideaway. This is it." Hmm...the door was unlocked. Still, she shouldn't barge in...that'd be rude. Ring the doorbell first, THEN enter. That'd do it. And inside...garbage bags? Thieves were actually pretty tidy, from her experiences. "Strange. Is it trash day tomorrow?"

"I doubt it. Are you sure there's trash in them? They don't really look like they're filled with garbage."

"Oh, you're right. It's a bit hard to tell due to the lighting, though." Well, she shouldn't stall. After putting up her weaponry for the sake of not looking like a crazy person come to off all inside, Ruby made her way over to the desk, and sat at the chair. "Hello. It's a rather...cozy little place you have here." She wasn't exactly tiny, but she wasn't exactly a huge person, either...and she still struggled a tad to get through. Still, she was here, so...let's see. Lighting aside, Sue seemed to be somewhat small, and in a ninja mask...and sweatclothes. One of those was less associated with thieves than the others. She also didn't come across as Electopian, despite claiming to be a ninja...she didn't really mind, but it was a bit odd. "Yes, I'm Ruby Knighton. As long as what we're going to do is within the realm of the law, I'm at your service."
"Hee hee! They say home is where your heart is... So it's not about how fancy or big your hideout is, it's all about how you use it!" the small woman introduced herself, crossing her arms and nodding approvingly. "Nowhere is cozier than here with my precious treasures and ninja tools! Of course, the treasures are in the small bags and the tools in the large bags, so I can keep them sorted out," she explained. "Wouldn't want to donate my tools, after all!" Upon inspection... all the bags seemed pretty much indistinguishable and about the same size. "Anywho, to return your introduction, I'm Ebisu, but you can call me Sue if you'd rather! Or Suzy! My real name isn't Ebisu, obviously... it's an assumed name! My real name is Susan!" she explained, again sounding proud over nothing.

Finally, she got around to addressing the second, more important part of Ruby's greeting. "Oh sure, unless philanthropy is a crime now! There's a lot of fun things you can do if you do them for charity, you know?" Ebisu explained with a wink; Ruby might have had some recent experience with that. "Me, I'm a kleptomaniac! But I'm also a philanthropist! Those are two big words that don't normally go together. Anyway, here in glorious Electown, where even your craziest dreams can come true! There was a long time ago where my obsession was a little, er, unhealthy, and thankfully, that time was all when I was a cute young girl," she continued, revealing that she was apparently a little older than her small size would have one believe. "Now, I'm old enough to drink and own my own home, which means I'm also old enough to be prosecuted! I never will be, though, cause I found a way to direct my unhealthy love of stealing into serving the public good!"

"Okay, here's how it works," she explained, turning and bending over to quickly grab up the ball she'd let roll onto the floor earlier. "Because I'm a celebrity, people come here to the office, or contact me over the net, and request burglaries. You heard me right! So basically, these stogie old guys have all built up their fortunes and what not; they could donate an arm and a leg, but they don't, cause what do they get out of it? I give 'em a little push! Basically, they'll set up rooms full of stuff for me to pilfer and I give 'em a personalized burglar show! That makes 'em celebrities themselves, and it's hot, real trendy right now, cause the only thing better than giving stuff to people that need it is apparently making a big deal out of it but kinda pretending you're just putting a fun spin on it. I guess? Anyway, the magic's all thanks to my little Ebisu Drone here!" she announced, holding up the ball in both hands so Ruby could see.

It was pretty featureless, apart from the one panel she'd opened earlier to work on it and a glass circle on the front which was either a monitor or a camera. She pushed a button on its side and suddenly, the front lens lit up. "Hee hee! This little baby's a camera drone. All it needs is a navi inside to operate it. Kinda fun to think about isn't it? You've operated your navi all this time, now they get to operate something in our world for a change! See, normally, I'd let my navi, Veil, do it, but uh, under our contract, she's off today... well, you know how it is! She's overworked, I guess. But the truth of the matter is, today's haul is eeeextra huge! I can't pass it up! So even without her, I need to get it done. That's where your navi comes in: he or she can save the day by being my cameraman... or camerawoman!"

"Now, of course, when I say give we give 'em a show, I mean we have to go the whole nine yards. I use all the ninja tools I can make use of, but beyond that, I also wear my sweet, sexy ninja clothes. Your clothes are pretty neat, but you're gonna have to be a ninja for this one, or it'll throw the whole thing off! For that reason, I'm gonna have to get you to wear ninja clothes. I've got em in uh... black, dark green, dark blue, and dark purple that's so dark it looks black! Oh, and white, but uh, a white ninja is pretty weird... You know what, you just put on whichever you like! I've got em all stacked in the bathroom there. And don't worry- you don't have to change your underwear or anything like that! It's not that kinda show," she giggled, waving one hand teasingly. That might be reassuring after Ruby had ended up in nothing but bandaids in front of a modestly large audience last time.

If Ruby was happy to go along with the faked burglary, she'd find that the bathroom was, fitting the rest of the office, very small; it had all the amenities, including a toilet, shower, sink, and mirror, but it was as though the builder had only allocated space for a person to stand in the room and not move around. It was just large enough for Ruby to do what was needed to change, but no larger. At this point, whether Ruby went along with it or not, Ebisu would gab a little more. "So the place isn't as far from here as you'd probably figure it is. The owner's name is Sal, he's a younger guy than I usually deal with. Not too bad looking! But anyway, he's got a fancy place, super nice, and I hear he's decked it all the way out with stuff designated okay for us to steal! Another part of the deal is that he has to be asleep the whole time, so that's kinda fun, huh? We'll grab up all the stuff he's got in his specified rooms to donate... Now, unless you're some kind of magician, we can only take what will fit in a sack... I usually put one over my back and carry it that way, but you can do what you like. I'll give you one once you're dressed. Anyway, my point is: look for the highest value items you can find once we're in there! Oh, uh, I should also mention: the guy has a maid, and she contractually doesn't have to be asleep. So I guess it'll be a test of our ninja skills to try and evade her the whole time we're in there! Sounds pretty fun, doesn't it?"

Finally, she seemed to run out of breath, exhaling deeply and ending the extraordinary series of explanations. "Alright, so that's that! Any questions? Once you're done, we'll head straight there!" she asked, either through the door or face to face, depending on what Ruby had decided to do. She'd also have a chance to look at the costume inside... it had a hood like Ebisu's own ninja outfit, but instead of a tracksuit, the rest of the outfit was a sleeveless tunic with a wide, open cut at the chest, a thin mesh shirt beneath, and a cloth belt wrapping around the tunic. The garb would hang down about to the knees, but only flaps would cover the front and the back, with the cloth belt was necessary to hold it together at all. It included greaves and knuckle-guarded gloves as well. The colors varied, as she'd explained. It looked awfully showy, but then, not nearly as showy as her bikini in SAWAD-Fest had been. "Oh, I don't know how comfortable you are with the skin, so uh, you should know that if you want, you can pin the flaps to the waist so they'll stay in place better, or pin the chest up closer to the collar if you don't wanna show that much cleavage. The viewers like a peep show, hee hee... But a lotta people see this, you know? So I don't blame you if you don't wanna give em lots of bouncey, panty-flashing stuff."
"True enough." Not like Ruby could say her hideout of sorts was particularly impressive, herself...in that sense, they were certainly alike. "Well then, nice to meet you, Susan. I'll call you Sue, if that's all right with you." She also believed she was a poet, apparently.

"Philanthropy isn't against the law, but..." The knight woman would have gone on about instances where it was in fact illegal, but since Sue kept on going, she should probably just hold off on that. The last part of her introduction made her smile a little, at least. "Well, I'm happy you managed to channel it into something that helps people. I don't think enough people do that sort of thing, quite frankly."

"I...see. Whatever gets them to help, I guess." That was...weird. Then again, most people didn't walk around in metal armor. And speaking of metal... "If you don't mind me asking, what's that sphere you're holding?" A drone? Sure didn't look like one...ah, that explained it. "That definitely seems handy. What do you think, DragonMan? Think you can handle it?"

Her Navi's form appeared over her shoulder, taking a good, long look at the drone. "I'm more the proactive type, but so long as it's not incredibly complicated, I should be able to operate it without a problem. And I will admit, being able to move around as I wish in the real world sounds fun."

"There's one problem solved for you." Question was, if they were supposed to be ninjas, shouldn't she-oh, okay, the clothing thing was already covered. "Armor's not very conducive for sneaking around, that's for sure. If you have some that'll fit me, I don't have a lot of choice, do I?" She didn't have to tell her which color she wanted, but one look at Ruby's ensemble would tell anyone what she'd go with. ...Also, it was a bit scary how relevant the underwear bit was in the shadow of her last mission. "That's a relief..."

"Mmm? You seem oddly genuinely relieved by that..."

"Oh, it's nothing." Well, so far, everything seemed level enough. Still, that didn't mean there wasn't something wrong. She'd need to keep at it, and make sure. "Let's see what I look like as a ninja, shall we?" And into the bathroom she went. Before putting it on, she took a good look at the outfit...ugh. Didn't look like she'd be able to wear her bra under it, it was too open in the chest. Other than that, though, nothing to object too much on. All right, armor off...dress and boots off...bra off...wait, what'd she say? "Really? He's asleep? I would've thought he'd be watching the whole thing from security cameras..." Granted, everything seemed to fit together...maybe too well. Too early to say for sure, though. "It should be exciting, if nothing else."

Soon enough, Ruby popped out, in full, pitch black ninja attire...except for the greaves. "Yeah, I've got a question or two. What do I do for footwear? I didn't see anything in there, and my own boots aren't going to work for this. Also, do you have anything I could use as a weapon? ...I say weapon, but it doesn't have to be dangerous. Just something I can hold in my hand, or on my side, that can at least provide the illusion I can fight back. Always having my sword at my side has made it so I'm a little uncomfortable if I don't have something like that with me at all, as much as I hate to admit it."

"Your regular sword won't do? But I'm sure ninja were always packing Netopian broadswords."

"Very funny, DragonMan. ...Anyway, those are my only issues. I think I'll remain unpinned...it might hinder my movement if I did. And I'll keep this hood up at all times, since, well, if I let it down, my hair would make it tricky to put back up. Once those thing I brought up are addressed, I'll be good to go." Right, 'robbing' a house. Not something she expected to do today...or any day, for that matter...
"You're in, he's in, we're all in!" Sue celebrated with a cheery smile, hidden by her mask, but visible in her eyes. She patted the drone once again to confirm DragonMan's agreement. From there, she and Ruby would speak through the bathroom door, as the latter girl dressed into her ninja garb for the mission. Sue crossed her arms behind her head and stared at the ceiling as she responded to Ruby's comment on their sleeping host. "Mmm... Isn't it kind of funny? It's kind of like Santa Claus, ha ha ha! Only instead of waking up and finding they've gotten presents, they wake up and find they've given them! Oh, it's still plenty exciting, believe you me! Sneaking around in the dark and putting things in bags is the best! Er, next to helping people, of course." It didn't sound like she really meant that last part deep-down, but she was making an effort, at least.

As Ruby stepped out, she looked her over top to bottom and nodded approvingly, until she reached the very bottom. "Whoopsie! I forgot you aren't already wearing tabi. I'm not either yet! Hopefully you can use a pair of mine! I don't know your shoe-size... probably not as small as mine... but it's really just socks and sandals, ha ha. No need to worry too much," she answered, then produced another pair of pitch black stockings and sandals, with a strap intersecting the point between two and three toes. "Uh, weapon... Well, I don't carry shuriken or a katana, but I do have some tonfa or nunchucks if you want those? I went through a phase once, ha ha! But nunchucks are actually pretty hard to use. You might just want to take the tonfa," she suggested. Ruby would probably prefer to have a sword of some kind, but it seemed like she was out of luck in that regard, unless she wanted to hold on to her own imitation sword... although, where she'd even put that was another question. At any rate, Sue put both items on the desk so Ruby could see them. The pair of black, metal nunchaku, connected by a silver chain, looked pretty weighty and well-crafted. On the other hand, the tonfa were the same color, but wooden and a little cheaper looking, designed so they could hook into a sash by the grips or be held either sideways or long-ways in the hand, thanks to a regular and side grip. Based on the price points, it seemed likely she had picked the nunchucks first, then tried out the tonfa once she realized she was no good at those, then ultimately settled on nothing at all.

"Right, right. I guess it'll be a better show if you leave it unpinned, huh? Ha!" Sue laughed, giving Ruby's ample chest an undisguised look over as was unavoidable once the subject was brought up. "Wowza! You've got the body for show-business, that's for sure. And yeah, keep the mask on. Helps build the mystique! It's weird getting robbed by someone who doesn't care if their face is seen, right? I mean, it's weird getting knowingly robbed anyway, but... ha ha! Whatever," the small ninja waved it off, standing up next to Ruby. "I've got my gear on... under here!" she stated dramatically, then began to fight with the zipper on her tracksuit. As it came off, her figure became more womanly, starting with her surprisingly ample breasts, then past her notably thick hips. All in all, Ruby probably had the more traditional female ninja body as depicted in media, truth be told... small-but-busty was a little unusual for a ninja. Other than that, her outfit matched the color of her mask and looked very similar to Ruby's, up to the idea of keeping it unpinned. "Whoops, not all my gear! Ha ha." She paused to remove her sneakers, then quickly switched over to tabi matching Ruby's own. "There we go!" If Ruby was inclined to stare, she'd notice that wearing the ninja garb up top with no pin was going to be a little dangerous. There was plenty of movement up top and beyond that, it was a pretty thin top; the dark color made it less notable than it would have been, at least. Beyond that, the flaps hanging over the back and front of the lower body were plenty risque as well... even as Ebisu crossed one leg to get her shoes changed, there was a brief plash of bright, pastel pink, which could only be her panties.

"Let's roll out!" she insisted, before Ruby had time to reconsider on account of any of those factors. "Go ahead and jack your navi into the drone, he'll need to follow along. Don't worry, it's got plenty of charge!" By this point, Ruby would have put on her footwear, picked up any weapon she chose to carry with her for her costume, possibly reconsidered her choices in putting on the outfit, and all that'd be left was to jack in DragonMan. "It moves pretty fast, so maybe try moving around in here a bit before you get out there, buddy. Better to crash into the walls of my apartment then anything on the outside!" As he used the drone, DragonMan would find she wasn't kidding; he could only see a very limited view from the camera, the direction of which would be obvious from the orientation of the lens, and the thing zipped around fast enough to match a quick-footed ninja. He might even get motion sickness, if he was capable of such a thing. The net-space inside the thing was very nondescript, really more like being inside a cockpit than being on a homepage, with darkness all around and just a chair to sit in, with simple controls on a single console for movement and to stop or start recording. It appeared that recording was the default state, because it had flipped on as soon as he got in. Once he was settled in, the three of them could venture outside and on towards the night's mission.


"Now normally, I would go along the rooftops. However, seeing as I have an apprentice tonight, we'll just stick to the streets! Be sure to keep your camera on us as we approach, DragonMan. There's no rush, but for the sake of the tape, we gotta move quickly and outta sight! Well, out ot sight of anyone but the camera that is. Oh, and I know I'm a little gabby, but we probanly shouldn't chit chat much unless its to say something cool like 'mission start' or 'mission complete.' Anything too much will just make editing harder. So, uh... mission start!"

Ebisu was no slouch when it came to running like a ninja; she managed speed that would have been fearsome to face in the swordfighting competition Ruby had participated in. If Ruby failed to keep up, she'd slow down, bur otherwise, it was quick all the way. The streets were mostly empty, as before, so even though Sue's pathway kept to the shadows, there wasn't much reason to bother. Finally, possibly just for the sake of appearing to sneak past someone, she led the pathway to where a policeman was walking on foot. She motioned Ruby over seriously, pointed to a narrow alleyway just across the road, then dashed across silently while the patrol's back was turned. Ruby and DragonMan both would need to motor to follow her, and both would need to avoid crashing into walls... this was harder for one than the other.

On the other side, Sue would give a thumbs up, even if something silly had happened, and would lead the way through the darkness. The path seemed longer than expected, and low-end houses seemed to give way to fancy white fences and gates. As they turned the next corner, it became apparent that the gates had all been part of one single household, looking terribly out ot place in its opulence compared to the resr of the district. A tall, white brick outer wall surrounded the building, obscuring much of it from view at so close a proximity.

"Lucky!" Ebisu hissed in a whisper, though Ruby might wonder what was so lucky about being sealed out or their intended mission location. "This gives us a great chance to use the grappling hook!" Ebisu had carried two large, green-and-white-checked bags with her, mostly empty for the purpose of storing treasure, but she had a few tools loose in there as well. She brought out a tightly coiled wire with a mean hook on one end, probably the most dangerous tool in her ninja arsenal. With a practiced motion, she uncoiled it, gave it a few swings in the empty air, then tossed it up to hook the top of the wall on the first try. "Ha ha! See? Pretty cool, right?"

Regardless of Ruby's opinion of that, Sue led the way up. DragonMan would have to decide which way he wanted to play this, because as soon as Sue started climbing, her suit quit providing any level of modesty; he would have a worm's eye view of her voluptuous behind, and more private areas, if he wanted it. Of course, Ruby was still here, so she might notice... unless he went after both of them, of course. If either of them felt so inclined, they would see that the ninja's underwear was indeed a somewhat childish, chalky pink color with a white kitty print on the front, but there was nothing childish about the butt wearing them.

Once over, and seemingly none the wiser of any peeking, she would assist by holding the rope and offering one hand down if Ruby needed it to finish scaling. The mansion itself was as extravegant as might be imagined, with sprawling topiary, a fancy vehicle (in a town wherea vehicle was really an unneeded luxury for most people), and many statues designed, curiously, in the shapes of preying mantises and spiders. Even odder, all of the statues were oversized and all of the plants were rooted... there was nothing easy to swipr anywhere on the outer premises. Sue seemed to be making note of that, as her eyes eagerly darted around, looking for goodies. "Huh..." she murmured, momentarily crestfallen. "Well, let's keep moving!"

She paused near a low garden wall and motioned Ruby over. "Whatcha think? Want to go straight through the front door, or would you rather sneak through an upper window? I could hook a windowsill and pick a lock!" she explained, sounding excited by the prospect. "Oh, or here..." she murmured, noting a grate just nearby them. "We could get this grate off and infiltrate from underground!" Ruby might think the better of that, even as her partner pressed her body to the ground to examine it and stuck her butt in the air, as if begging DragonMan to put the camera on it. Of course, Ruby might realize that infiltrating through the passage beneath the abode would carry certain problems if they hadn't been expected, both of hygiene and of smell...

Nearby, a light glimmered in the eye of one of the spider statues, which depicted an arthropod attached vertically to an octagonal web... at first she might hope it was a jewel, but a closer look made it clear it was some kind of lens... A camera for home security, perhaps? She'd also notice a few odd, empty spots in the garden, with display stands carrying no loads, almost as though someone had moved any potted plants or statuettes that were small enough to carry off...