The Tanaka Clan hails from Tsuchi no Kuni and has ties to Iwagakure no Sato. They are often described as 'tanks' by those who have fought them and seen their hijutsu, Itami no Chien, in action. Their hijutsu allows them to delay damage recieved in combat, however, only for a time.
The Tanaka Clan is one of the oldest residing clans in Iwagakure and have had a great deal of input in the happenings and goings on of the country. As a result of this the Tanaka always had intense vested interest in the throne of the Kage and would often publicly announce their support regardless of the characteristics of the individual ruler. The Tanaka ideology revolves mainly around the preservation of the Tanaka and their ‘old money’ way of life; to this extent the Tanaka are an incredibly shrewd and selfish Clan, only holding their highest loyalties to the Tsuchikage themselves. Even this loyalty is fickle, however, and can change depending on who takes up the mantle piece of Kage. True members of the Tanaka for this reason often find themselves in advisory positions and/or are extraordinarily ambitious individuals.
The Clan holds their hijutsu to the utmost secrecy and revel in the fact that they can do what others can’t, secrecy is a key part of being part of the Tanaka as well as a significant amount of loftiness in upholding the Clan values.
The Tanaka Clan as a whole has an extraordinarily xenophobic viewpoint on civilian’s in Tsuchi no Kuni; the general consensus being that they are lesser individuals for not belonging to the military might of Iwagakure. As such it is encouraged that the Tanaka do not associate with civilians where possible and it is entirely against Clan code to have romantic relations with anyone non-shinobi.
The Tanaka Clan are as ancient as Tsuchi no Kuni. Originally a tribal clan attracted to the early foundations of Iwagakure, the Tanaka were always highly private and greatly suspicious individuals.
The founding Clan Leader, Tanaka Koi, was a headstrong young woman who had opposed the alliance of the Tanaka and Iwagakure. In other clans the Clan Leader is both strong and intelligent. Tanaka Koi was strong and intelligent but also highly xenophobic of others, it was only because of the mass desire of the clan that Koi allied begrudgingly with Iwagakure. The Tanaka were seen as great additions to the front lines of War because of their unusual ability to delay damage gained. Their bulwark natures often buying more time for the main forces to cut off enemy backup. Strategically the Tanaka were seen as 'canon fodder,' capable of great feats and numerous enough to flesh out the front line with their ability to withstand immediate harm.
Tanaka Koi was not a trusting woman, much like many of the Tanaka descendants, and from the First Shinobi War the Tanaka often came into verbal conflict with Iwagakure over clan grounds and resources. Fortunately for the Tanaka their unusual hijutsu gave them the favour of the Tsuchikage and often this protected them from civil war because of their xenophobic, selfish behaviour. Koi saw the benefits of backing the most powerful shinobi and so the ‘elitist’ backing of the Kage began. They played key parts in all three Wars, with Koi leading the helm of the Clan. During the first war, Koi and her clansmen were on the battlefields of Nohara no Kuni when news came that the Shodai Tsuchikage had died and the Gobi released. They moved from Nohara no Kuni to the battle against the Gobi, helping to seal it back into containment. Because of their foolhardiness the Tanaka were propelled to the echelons of the higher Clans, though not a founding Clan they had played an integral part in the history of Iwagakure.
During the reign of Nidaime Tsuchikage, the Tanaka remained mostly quiet, consolidating the recently found power and rank. They paid little attention to the outside fretting that the Nidaime Tsuchikage was a myth instead keeping a close eye on the frontlines of the coming war. They had lost out when the Gobi had broken free of its chains from the Shodai Tsuchikage from winning their own battles and were ready for the next round of fighting, feeling that the Non-Aggression Pact had stolen glory from their grasps. Koi stoked the fires of fury within her Clansmen, and during these years she gave birth to her own son, the first Clan Heir; Tanaka Ishi. No one could fault Koi, for she had brought the Tanaka from a wandering tribal clan to one with significant strength and power.
By the time the Second Shinobi War broke out, Koi was 70 years old; a monumental age for a still active shinobi and one of the most prolific shinobi in the village. Koi took her place at the Tsuchikage’s side during the second war, sending her son and clan heir, Tanaka Ishi (then in his twenties), as her champion. Ishi did not disappoint. He commanded the Tanaka forces with ease as its own contingent on the frontlines of the war, while the Defence Corps bolstered Iwagakure into an unbreakable fortress. The Tanaka contingent had been fighting for just over five years when it was announced that the Lord of Yugakure had died. This had meant little to Koi but because the Tsuchikage had wished it to be so, the Tanaka contingent withdrew from the frontlines against Konohagakure and came home, welcomed as war heroes. Behind closed doors however Koi was furious that the war had been ended before the Tanaka had been able to show their full capabilities. She continued to purport the ideology that the Tanaka were destined for greatness and their greatness could only be won on the trials of war. Ishi, now a fully accomplished shinobi of his own accord, supported his mothers views and began to take over key points of the Tanaka Clan so his mother could continue to advise the Tsuchikage. The Tanaka paid attention to the affairs of the court and fully supported the Tsuchikage in his actions to seek out the Gobi Jinchuuriki.
When the Tsuchikage successfully fended off an assassination attempt in -37SD, Koi was the first to nominate the Tanaka as the executioners blade. She fully supported going to war against Konoha, believing that they had yet to settle the score for the first two wars. Ishi riled the Tanaka Clan, waiting for the order from his mother to go to war. It was then that Koi realised the benefits of breeding outwardly with other shinobi. She decreed that Clansmen were allowed to find wives and husbands outside of the Clan, so long as they possessed great talent and were of shinobi rank. Koi, still xenophobic in her views, outlawed mating with civilians.
When the order of war came, Ishi sent the Tanaka out into Kaze no Kuni to fight in the dunes against Sunagakure and their allies. During this time his own son, Tanaka Kaito, was born to a powerful and accomplished female shinobi. One year later another child was born. Kaito was rumoured to be the Heir apparent as the eldest of the siblings and with Koi still alive and residing in the Clan compound and Ishi leading the main offensive in the third war, Kaito was expected to be the next greatest Tanaka accomplishment. While Kaito was taught in the ways of war, the war raged on for the Tanaka and for Iwagakure.
The Tanaka continued to add to their already death-defying alias, facing off against seemingly impossible odds alongside other shinobi and coming out victors more often than not. The Tanaka contingent were there when the Tsuchikage appeared at the Siege of Sunagakure and were part of the fight against the Kazekage, fending off the opposing forces from interrupting the fight between the Kazekage and Tsuchikage. Koi too had come out from retirement to fight alongside the Tsuchikage’s side, but her old age showed and during the fight she sustained heavy damage. Knowing her time was short after the fight (for the Tanaka only had so long to fend off their sustained damage), Koi promoted Ishi formally to the Clan Head and announced that her succession would be purely hereditary. The present Tanaka members were too humbled by her age, skill and actions to object and so the hereditary hierarchy was born. When Koi died, Ishi took his rule over the Clan.
They brought Koi’s body home and cremated her on Clan grounds before casting some of her ashes into a set of swords held by Ishi. Ishi did not have the same respect as his mother, however, though he was a highly accomplished shinobi he did not hold the Tsuchikage’s counsel. Instead Ishi found kinship with Tantetsu Kyoya, Tantetsu Nerukō’s son and rising shinobi, and would begin to position the Clan behind Kyoya instead of the Tsuchikage.
When the Tsuchikage was slain by Nerukō, the Tanaka (led by Ishi) pledged their loyalty to Kyoya when he was given the role of Tsuchikage. The Tanaka were part of the group who still wanted to push for war with Konohagakure and so paid fealty to Kyoya while waiting for a better option to come along. Ishi had proposed himself to become Kage to the rest of his advisors, but had been talked out of it when he realised that it would conflict directly with his rule as Clan Leader. So the Tanaka waited for either war to resume, or for someone to take over from Kyoya. During this wait Kaito was formally announced as the Clan Heir to the Tanaka and was expected to become a great prodigy, though he had essentially been the Heir for many years and had been treat as such it had yet to be formalised because Ishi had been focussed too heavily on the war front and the coming schism between the Nohime Clan and the Tantetsu Clan.
When Kouen acted against the council and the Sandaime, Ishi didn’t hesitate in joining the fray. He sent the Tanaka contingent to participate in the fight against the Sandaime and the council but his son would not be part of that fight. Kaito had been, away from the public eye, an accomplished member in ANBU and within the eye of the public the Heir to the Tanaka Clan. He had been expected to take control of the Tanaka just as Ishi had from Koi. Instead Kaito was horrified by the senseless violence and bloodlust of his own father, the man experienced a break from his former self and left Iwagakure during the fighting. Ishi had tried to stop Kaito from abandoning his duties which led to a skirmish between the two at the war torn gates of Iwagakure. Kaito had gained the upper hand against Ishi because he did not rely on his Clan hijutsu, but he did not kill his father. Instead Ishi was left to face a Clan knowing his own son had abandoned his duties both to his country and to his family.
One year later Kaito returned to the mercy of the Tsuchikage, presenting himself to Yutakako Takara and throwing himself upon her mercy. Ishi was incensed when Takara allowed amnesty to Kaito, for she too had not believed in the senseless killing of many. He had demanded his sons death, for payment of his abandonment, but Takara had waved him away.
With Kaito returned it is unsure whether or not he is still Clan Heir, Ishi still resides as Clan Head and Kaito’s sibling still has potential to take over the Clan. For now the Clan resides uncertain of its leadership, though there is blood baying between the two potential leaders.
The Tanaka Clan has a strict hierarchy. Being an older Clan, the Tanaka thrive on rigidity when it comes to structure within their Clan and more often than not the clan is entirely hereditary. At the top of the Clan is the Clan Head: the leader in all matters and usually the strongest and most accomplished of the Tanaka. Second is the Clan Heir: usually the son or daughter of the Clan Head and one who is thought to possess great prospect to one day replacing the leader of the Clan. The third in the hierarchy is the Clan Advisor; usually the eldest Tanaka, though not necessarily the strongest, the advisor counsels the leader on all things including the direction of the Clan. The largest of the hierarchy, and the lowest, is the Clan Member; a member of the Tanaka not directly related or descended from the Clan Head who can still utilise the Clan’s hijutsu. The Clan Members make up the bulk of the Tanaka Clan and are often found to be ambitious individuals who excel as frontline infantry and as medics because of their knowledge of human anatomy and physiology.
Hierarchy is a key component of the Tanaka Clan. It is entirely up to the Clan Head whether or not to follow the advice of the Advisor. As a result of the dictatorial style of ruling the Tanaka, especially in its earlier heyday, experienced frequent changes in leadership. The internal Great Schism that occurred during the Third Ninja War means that the family of the Clan Head tend to keep to themselves, forging a sense of royalty within the Tanaka and a distinct atmosphere of mistrust amongst their members. The bulk of the Tanaka follows the word and law of the Clan Head, but there are those that conspire to change the leadership, even to present day.
Itami no Chien
Itami no Chien is the secret hijutsu of the Tanaka Clan.
It imbues the user with the ability to manipulate their platelets and nerve endings in order to momentarily halt damage incurred in a fight. Medically speaking platelets are the bodily agents that allow for the body to halt bleeding, when imbued with chakra and with the control of a Tanaka clansmen the user is able to momentarily delay damage or wounds (from superficial to life threatening) received throughout the duration of the hijutsu. Upon higher control of Itami no Chien the user is able to use chakra to blunt the nerve endings around impact spots (where the user may be hit) in order to continue seemingly untouched. Lower levels of release cannot anaesthetise the area and consequently feel the pain of a blow even if the damage is not yet apparent.
The hijutsu in turn increases reaction time since the user does not react to a blow with full release. One might stumble slightly at a punch but they will not for the duration of high controlled release be hindered by the damage or pain of the blow. When one is cut using this hijutsu, the skin itself is cut but the platelets clot the blood enough to stop the body from bleeding out. When one is hit by a ninjutsu the body uses its chakra to deal with the physiological damage. Where possible and even with Itami no Chien it is advisable to avoid an attack, being brutish with Itami no Chien is a sure fire way to get oneself killed.
This does not stop the user from receiving damage from an opponent - when the hijutsu ends all damage incurred will affect the user, including the pain with it (if anaesthetised first). Since the hijutsu imbues the body (especially the platelets) with a great deal of specialised chakra the user experiences a momentary delay in the damage inflicted upon them. When the hijutsu ends one will have roughly one minute (or one post) before the impact of the damage hits them.
This hijutsu does have its drawbacks. Most Shinobi can weather punches over time with no issue. When the Tanaka hijutsu is activated, while they experience seemingly momentary durability, the effects (or the equivalent of damage over time) are experienced almost immediately. Furthermore devastating attacks and ninjutsu that are sustained during the course of the hijutsu will almost certainly incur death if not appropriately dealt with with an offensive technique or altogether avoided. For example, one cannot weather being incinerated, having ones head chopped off or being ripped apart — in terms of absolute destruction there is no ‘taking’ the blow. What this hijutsu does help against are low attacks to potentially long term life threatening ones; cuts with bukijutsu or minor - small localised explosions that would otherwise harm an opponent but not outright blow them apart.
Many might believe that the Tanaka Clan are invincible and are therefore reckless in battle, this is not the case, like any Shinobi the Tanaka must be intelligent during a fight since any damage incurred has the potential to serious wound or outright kill the user post-hijutsu. For a proper explanation of each nature/type defended from, please read below:
- Katon Attack; Low level Attack; users body singes in affected area but acts unhindered. High level Attack; user may be knocked back by the force and can have limbs destroyed, but it still otherwise able to continue.User can still be incinerated if significant jutsu are used.
- Doton Attack; Low level Attack; users bones momentarily resist breakage. High level Attack; user can be knocked back and trapped, glancing blows can resist moderate damage but limbs can be crushed under devastating attacks and rendered useless but the pain will be delayed until after the hijutsu ends
- Suiton Attack; Low level Attack; piercing of skin and limbs can be ignored. High level Attack; user can be drowned, user can take heavy punishment of the body but it likely to die once the hijutsu ends if devastating techniques are used.
- Fuuton Attack; Low level Attack; most low level cutting (with low - moderate effects) can be ignored with hijutsu is active. High level Attack; user can be cut significantly damaged and pierced, is also susceptible to being blown back and can be killed (even with hijutsu active) by being ripped apart.
- Raiton Attack; Low level Attack; user can ignore low - mild burns, but cannot ignore being paralysed (they will simply not feel the pain) unless they have high chakra control to counter the muscle paralysis. High level Attacks; user can be blown up, burnt to death and paralysed. If one has exceptional chakra control and is of a higher level (Sp. Jounin and above) overcoming paralysis is possible. User can ignore the pain of mild - severe raiton attacks.
- Bukijutsu Attack; Low level Attack; user can ignore low - mild cuts and strikes. High level Attack; Sp. Jounin and above can ignore the pain of mild - moderate ranked bukijutsu. Cannot overcome being decapitated/disembowled /leg or arm cut off but may not necessarily feel pain.
- Taijutsu Attack; Low level Attack; user can ignore low - moderate taijutsu moves. High level Attack; Sp. Jounin and above can ignore the pain of mild -moderate ranked taijutsu, can also ignore the breakage of bones for the duration of the hijutsu.
- Genjutsu Attack; the hijutsu does not defend from genjutsu. Like any other shinobi, a Tanaka must rely on their other skills to avoid genjutsu attacks.
- Poison; the hijutsu does not defend from the effects of poisons, a character must have their own SA for poison resistance as any other character or must deal with poison appropriately. The only way the hijutsu might stop poison is if the immediate effects of the poison cause the player to bleed out, whereby the platelets and clotting ability of the hijutsu stop the bleeding while active. It will not stop internal damage to the body that normal poison gives.
- Genin level of control of hijutsu: N/A
- Chunin level of control of hijutsu: Low level attack defence.
- Sp. Jounin or higher, level of control of hijutsu: Low level attacks and high level attack defence.
When used properly the hijutsu is an excellent way to increase longevity in the field, it does not grant any kind of protection (since the user always receives the damage at the end of the hijutsu) but increases the response time the user has in a fight.
In order for the user to delay extreme damage (to the extent where the user may likely die after the hijutsu ends) the user must possess extreme chakra control and the ability to fully release the hijutsu. In this explanation, 'extreme damage' could be all but severing ones hand - with complete and accurate control of the hijutsu one could still use the hand until the hijutsu ends. Once the hijutsu ends in this example, the user would lose the hand.
Without chakra control and the ability for full release, higher level attacks and intense damage will cause the hijutsu to fail prematurely, greatly hindering the user if not outright killing them. Going back to the above example; a lower level of control of this hijutsu would mean the user would not be able to use the damaged hand at all.
The length of time the hijutsu lasts is entirely dependent upon the level of control the user is capable of. For ease of understanding the hijutsu lifespan will be translated into post count:
- Full Control (Jōunin or higher) = Up to 8-12 rotations [Roughly the length of one fight]
- Partial Control (Chuunin or higher) = Up to 5 rotations [Roughly the length of half a fight]
- Locked Control (Genin or lower) = Up to 1 rotations [User has no functionality or control, may be accidentally activated ICly for one rotation.]
Sustained Injuries and Chakra Control
In order to maintain the hijutsu and still be functional uses certain chakra levels and requirements:
- Wounds likely to cause beyond-repair damage to limbs or life threatening injuries.
- Very High Chakra Use & Full Control [Able to continue for 2-3 more rotations regardless of what point in the hijutsu rotation the user is at.]
- Wounds likely to cause beyond-repair damage to limbs or lasting issues/scars.
High Chakra Use & Full Control [Able to continue for 3-5 more rotations regardless of what point in the hijutsu rotation the user is at.]
- Wounds likely to cause lasting issues or scarification.
Medium Chakra Use & Partial Control [Able to continue for 5-7 more rotations regardless of what point in the hijutsu rotation the user is at.]
- Wounds that are a nuisance but otherwise remedied by simple first aid or seeing a medic.
Low Chakra Use & Partial Control [Able to continue to max rotation per control level.]
- Cuts and scratches, scrapes and minor burns that can be ignored by almost anyone.
Very Low Chakra Use & Locked Control* [Able to continue to max rotation per control level, except Genin.]
If one just 'tanks' all attacks the outcome is that the character will die, this hijutsu does not make the user immortal or invincible - any and all damage will occur to the character at some point, regardless of skill or ability with the hijutsu. A character using the hijutsu with full control will be able to shirk off mass damage of smaller appendages and body parts until the hijutsu ends, once the hijutsu ends the user will lose said appendage if total damage is done. One cannot come back from having their head severed from their body, or their body entirely blown up, however.
Acute Chakra Control
Due to the complex nature of controlling human physiology while simultaneously reacting to the outside environment, users of the hijutsu must have extreme and acute chakra control.
Tanaka Clan Member
One must be part of the Tanaka Clan in order to learn this hijutsu, it cannot be copied by doujutsu since it modifies the body internally or by learning it from someone.
Whether secondary or primary specialisation, one must have medical knowledge as a specialisation in order to use the hijutsu since the hijutsu requires in depth knowledge of human physiology and anatomy.