Third Lady of Yukigakure
The Invisible Hand
"Whatever it takes."
Saya is, first and foremost, a woman deeply dedicated to her village, and her clan. Everything that she ever does, be that good or bad, is meant to add to the everlasting glory of Yukigakure, and the Yoi clan. Quite selfless in that regard, the woman always puts needs of those before her own, and before anybody else's.
With that dedication comes ruthlessness. Saya is, perhaps, the epitome of that. There's absolutely no thing, no matter how nasty or dastardly, that she wouldn't do in order to achieve her goals. She would kill, maim, threaten, blackmail, sacrifice both her enemies and allies on the altar of whatever goal she is currently occupied with.
All of that may cast an image that Saya is a ruthless efficiency machine that doesn't feel any remorse about what she's doing. That would not be true. The woman does have a moral code, and she does realize she does evil things. She does not like it, but she sees it as necessary. And because of that she is capable, and willing to break her code, whenever it is required. She dislikes sacrificing her people, and she does that sparingly, making sure no sacrifice goes in vain.
Saya's lifestyle is very ascetic. She does not like things often attributed to 'lady items', such as jewelry and dresses from finest silk - these do not touch a string in her heart. Instead, she appreciates wargear, and is rarely seen without her armor and weapons. Though it would be wrong to say that she is devoid of all femininity completely, she does love colorful flowers. Preferably potted ones.
She might not give an impression of a family woman, but Saya holds her few friends, and her family, very close to her heart. Not everything is smooth with these relations - as her parents barely see her as a person, more like an achievement of their own, but despite that she still loves them. She also loves her sister, and misses her greatly, though understands that her departure was with the purpose of serving Yukigakure. Another sacrifice for the cause.
Life of servitude to the village is not the happiest one, is filled with lots of hardship, without much visible gain. And although Saya shoulders the burden stoically, sometimes she feels like loathing the position she is in now, craving for appreciation, and wishing to have all the things she voluntarily rejects in the name of the village. These moments of weakness, she usually faces alone.
The appearance of the Yukigakure Lady is meant to mirror everything the village represents, what it stands for. Saya's portrait fits rather well. A tall woman, with hair and skin as white as the snow which surrounds the ninja village. Her eyes are of gray, steel color, and even when calm, the stare they give is sharp, like a jagged blade. The facial expression is like a mask chiseled out of stone - it represents cold neutrality, and rarely changes to display any other emotion. The woman has a rather large forehead - a sign of a large brain within.
Saya's outfit of choice is also very constant, no matter the occasion. Her body is encased in a suit of dark-green samurai-like armor, the plates of metal protecting her shoulders, chest and thighs. Underneath, there is a woolen bodyglove. It is very warm, and serves to preserve heat in the blistering coldness of Yukigakure. At her belt there is a katana, and her ninja pouch, which looks very old - as if the user has never changed it since the academy days. Saya's legs are donned with knee-high boots with a low heel, which end at the knee protector.
This appearance gives the woman a strict, military look, not ladylike at all. Underneath the clothes, however, Saya's body is still rather feminine, well built, lithe and strong. She has a great pattern of long cuts and scars underneath, signs of stitches that go along her limbs, across her chest, stomach and back, neck, and ending at the back of the head, hidden within her white hair. Most of these scars are of surgical nature, and are not something their owner would willingly show to anyone.
Saya Yoi was born roughly 32 years ago. She did not come to this world alone - her twin sister was named Miyumi. Their family was one of wealth and power - both the mother and father held positions in Control Branch of the Yoi clan - a secret clan, that was, none the less, highly in favor of the Lady of Yukigakure.
The couple was very happy that they had not one, but two children. They were a bit of oddity, however - ever since birth, both siblings had hair of color as white as snow. However, it was not perceived as a flaw - merely as a small sideeffect of previous experiments that the parents have conducted on themselves. Their happiness, however, was not that of a proud parent - instead more like happiness of a scientist that received new test subjects. And their love for the children, though clearly present, was the same.
The path of the Yoi clan meant the children would be 'improved' practically since day one. Both Saya and Miyumi were injected into their joints with resilin. The result was a somewhat unforeseen one - the children were able to make large leaps around the house, often ramming into furniture and topping over things. To their parents' dismay, many items of value and worth were broken as a result.
Saya, along with her twin sister, Miyumi, entered the academy at age of five. It was a fun filled with fun, adventure, and ... fighting and getting into trouble. The two girls made plenty of friends - kids to play, study and hang out with. But at the same moment, they did not exactly get along with the other kids - due to their odd looks and white hair, they were pointed fingers at, and called 'grandmas'.
Differences between two sisters started showing back then. While Miyumi was able to shut those words out and simply ignore the bratty children, Saya was getting very angry. She caused a lot of fights because of it, beating people up and getting beaten, though the latter was much harder to do. Due to Yoi experimentation continuing, around that age the children had their pain nerves singed. Saya couldn't feel pain, which made her a frightening bully.
Needless to say, she got in trouble for it often. Every time she broke someone's nose, or lips, she had to deal with teachers, and sometimes even her parents were called upon to pacify the rowdy child. However, most times she was getting out scotch-free - Miyumi was always there to defend her sister, and she had quite a silver tongue - often being able to present Saya as victim of harassment and abuse, earning her pardons. Still, her parents did not quite appreciate hearing this every week, and punished Saya, in order to teach her discipline. Since pain was no longer an option, they resorted to other punishments, like leaving her malnourished and locked in a room for a few days. It did not have much of an effect, but, eventually, as she would grow older, Saya would understand the value of discipline and self-control. But back then, she was a hothead. Her studies reflected this too - everything related to fighting, Saya did perfectly. Anything else? Not so much.
Once Saya and her sister passed the Academy exams, aged 9, and were given their forehead protectors, the Clan presented them with a different 'gift'. On the next day both girls were operated, the bones in their hands replaced with very expensive plastic, and their nails - with retracting ceramic knives. Adult life was going to begin early.
The Yoi are very adamant about how their clan members are trained. And, thanks to their influence, the Genin team which both Saya and Miyumi were put in, was comprised entirely out of her clan members. The sensei was a 40-year old man, a kenjutsu specialist and a very, very stern man. He did his job well, but Saya never really liked him all too much. The third member, however, was a different story...
It was a boy, around their age. His name was Reijiro. And he was ... nice. He was cute, funny, and very nice towards both sisters, adopting something akin to a big brother personality towards both. Both girls couldn't help but become enamored with him - first crush, and all that. But, somehow, neither sister suspected the other to harbor such feelings for the boy, up until a holiday came around, a holiday that had a purpose of celebrating love and compassion. The girls approached the boy at the same time, too, surprised to see one another. And Reijiro had to make a choice.
He chose Miyumi.
Saya was very angry that day. Angry that Reijiro chose her 'weaker' sister instead of her. Upset, she left the celebration that day and spent it in her room. She didn't cry, but she did harbor nasty feelings inside. And on the next day, she confronted her sister about the whole thing.
it wasn't really a fair fight.
Verbal fight, that is. Though not realizing it, Saya was in the wrong. She lost back then, fair'n'square, when Reijiro chose the more feminine Miyumi over her rough and boyish demeanor. And now, for not willing to accept defeat. She never dared to raise a hand on her dear sister, but when it came to verbal spars, the meeker Miyumi had the upper hand. Saya's arguments were rebuked easily, and the accusations that followed left her defeated, and ashamed.
Though, in time, Saya's anger was quelled, the confrontation left a mark.
The girl became more closed in on herself, and sought solace in her training, instead craving for sensei's approval. And training regimen was quite brutal. They weren't taught to chase cats and do gardening - instead they were prepared for life of a real shinobi.
Saya was taught kenjutsu by her sensei. The man was stern, but wise. He taught the girl that a true shinobi must not restrict himself with only one discipline - instead he or she should be knowledgeable of all - even those they do not have much talent in. Out of all three, she progressed through training the fastest, and was the squad's unofficial leader - she was strong, and commanding, able to show authority. Neither Miyumi nor Reijiro dared challenging her at that.
Fighting was not the only type of training they did. The Yoi wanted to prepare their genins both physically and psychologically. They were taught not to be afraid of blood, or of killing another. The means to do that were rather disturbing - the Yoi took in criminals convicted to death, and the children were tasked with killing them. Using nothing else other than their knife-nails, to make sure they get in close and personal. Saya does not like to remember this part, but she did it well. She kept doing it until any sort of hesitation behind her strikes at the tied men and women given in their 'care' vanished. She was 'getting used to it'.
The genins were assigned special missions, too. They were to find and kill non-ninja criminals, to have a taste of the action, and know how it feels to kill a person that is not tied up to a chair and helpless. Miyumi seemed to like this kind of practice the most, which did not fit in with her calmer demeanor, but Saya didn't mind. In fact, at times she allowed herself to sit back and let her sister do all the work. Their ways of dealing with the bandits differed - Saya liked to end the job quickly, while her sister liked to 'toy with her prey, for a bit'.
Then there was training to enhance their mental fortitude. These were conducted in lieu with Yukigakure interrogation team. Not only did they perform their practices in front of, and on students, they also taught how to block the disturbing thoughts and images out. The children were undergoing indoctrination with the Yoi credo, and getting acquainted with the darkest side of a shinobi life helped out broaden the restrictions of what's allowed and what's not.
By the age of 14, the team was deemed ready for the Chuunin exams. And unlike half of the participants, they already had plenty of blood on their hands. And a will to kill.
Their sensei has been thoughtful, when deeming the three children ready. Their composition was flawless - Saya and her kenjutsu was a close-ranged fighter, Reijiro was a useful for ranged combat and defense with his ninjutsu, and Miyumi held a support genjutsu role. All three had killed enough people already to ensure their hand would not hesitate, before slitting someone's throat.
Before being shipped off island, the team was called upon by the Control Branch Council, for instructing. These people have explained to the children what Chuunin Exam was in reality - it was a miniature war. A chance for all the villages to show their strength, without committing to a full-blown war. Rules in such a competition are few and far between. They explained that Yukigakure's economy had been struggling, as of late, not being able to compete with the Great Shinobi Nations for contracts. They perceived these exams to provide them with opportunity to change that.
The team was given objectives.
Main objective was to win the exams and make it to Chuunin, of course. However the secondary one had a sinister note to it. The team was supposed to eliminate as many chuunin teams as possible, from the exams. Permanently. Saya, along with the rest of her squad, had sworn to do it..
The Exam took place in Konoha, that time. It was a place where exams were often held - it was the biggest country, with the strongest village. Saya was amazed to be there, for the first time. The land had trees, the earth was covered with grass instead of 3-4 feet of snow, and the Sun was actually warm, here. Much unlike her frozen home. It was ... beautiful.
Observing the land's beauty, and thinking about it, in time, made Saya upset. She spoke with her more educated sister, Miyumi, as to why these people have so much beautiful warm land, while hers is sentenced to a life in a place, where howling winds blow, temperature is always below zero, and the sun is covered by dark, stormy clouds. To which Miyumi only answered that these people 'got here first', while theirs had to settle with what is left. These words carved into Saya's memory, and steeled her heart.
During the part of the exams, where they had to fight other teams for scrolls, the Yukigakure team had their chance. They have met the other teams prior to this phase, and have noted their childishness. They were not ninjas, they were kids, who thought of the Exam as the fun game. Teams from Great villages were most numerous, but they lacked in quality. And they would suffer for it, greatly.
After easily getting a scroll needed for themselves, Saya's team started hunting. She was angry, and Konoha teams were her prime priority. Silly girl, she wanted to make them pay for 'hogging' their land. The other teams that got in their way weren't more fortunate either. By the time this phase was over, the Yukigakure team managed to butcher a third of entire teams present.
It did cause an incident. Konoha, the Host of these Exams, was particularly angry - they lost practically all the shinobi of this generation they sent. The elderly Yukigakure lady simply ignored their accusations, saying that 'things like this happen all the time during the exams. Sometimes more, sometimes less.' But news of Yukigakure genins' ruthlessness has spread, as was intended.
Konoha wanted to get its revenge, however. And in the matchups for the second stage - the duels, made sure every genin is matched with the strongest opponent possible. The judges were given an unspoken nod, to not stop the fight until someone dies.
Saya's opponent was indeed strong. A boy from Konoha, he was 3 years older than she. And, too, was a swordsman. They fought each other evenly - he was stronger, she was more agile. The skill at wielding the blade seemed evenly matched as well. However, Saya did have a single advantage. She knew how his body was built. She did not know hers. Although she had no artificial skeleton yet, she used the modifications done so far to achieve an advantage.
The foe did not seek to end her with a single blow. Figuring that impossible, he instead tried aiming for weakspots, to cause smaller injuries over time, and cripple her before the killing strike. His plan would've worked, had Saya been a normal human. She was not. Her muscles were moved, her blood circulation system was modified. Her weaknesses were .. elsewhere.
So whenever the boy tried to cut her arm, or jab at her leg, she let him. Instead, she launched a counterstrike at his weakspots, which he wouldn't be able to defend. They hacked at each other. But while he was becoming weaker with every blow, she did not. Her wounds didn't bleed much, her limbs did not refuse to listen to her. She was getting the upper hand.
Realizing this, her opponent became enraged. Going in hard, he figured his only chance was to go all-in, before Saya's advantage would stack. And when he launched a blow that was supposed to cut her in half, Saya put her hand in the sword's way... and the blade was stopped.
It cut the flesh, but the bones of sturdy plastic, harder than steel, had held the blow. He blinked, surprised and confused, before the girl took his head off in one fell blow. He tried to stop the swing with his own hand, but the sharp blade just cut right through it.
She was victorious.
Her team did well enough as well. Reijiro managed to bust his opponent, but spared him - he never had too much guts, and kept clinging to some notion of 'Honor'. Miyumi's fight went to a standstill, and ended in a draw. Her genjutsus were simply not meant for one - on - one battles.
Yukigakure did not win any friends that day. However, the genins' performance had impressed those, who did not care much about honor, and were more interested in jobs getting done, fighting skills, and efficiency. A bit of time had passed, since the Exams, and the village was flooded with contracts. Both from singular people, and from ... foreign villages.
Once having returned home, Saya and her team were commended for the spectacular performance during the chuunin exams. Their deeds have showed the world the power of the frozen, distant land. But the trio were not allowed to bask in fame for long - they had more ninja duties to perform.
And they were just old enough to implement the last stage of alteration by the Yoi clan. Their skeleton had been gradually replaced with bones made of endurable plastics. A difficult and dangerous task, it was, and required a lot of time for recovery between operations.
That time Saya used in order to learn more about other ninja arts, rather than ones she was strong at. During the exams, she encountered abilities she was not familiar to, and had it not been for her superior speed and reflexes - she might've died. The girl knew this, and put considerable effort into studying and developing new techniques, in between lying sick and tired from the exhausting operations.
Diligence that she lacked during academy years she found within herself now. She spent countless hours, and wasted many tags and papers, trying to get a grip of fuuinjutsu - the one area Saya sucked most at. It was then when she learned a lesson - that every human has limits. Her effort did not go wasted - she managed to master basic concepts, simple seals. But anything beyond that just did not get through.
Genjutsu went a bit better - Saya had more talent in it than with fuuin. Her study was not going into conventional genjutsus, however. Miyumi was her teacher in that. Sister wielded her genjutsus as primary weapon - as means to win battles. Saya, however, quickly figured that she needed that not - her blade was her strength. But genjutsus still had its use - as a support role, to distract the enemy before the killing blow is made.
The Yoi called the doctrine 'Tactical versatility'. It was expected of their shinobi to learn a bit of everything, instead of becoming a master of one ninja art. The result would be a warrior without particular weaknesses to be exploited, meaning he, or she would not be completely overwhelmed by any kind of foe.
Studies helped Saya distract herself from other things. Particularly the blooming romance between Miyumi and Reijiro. Despite having made peace with her sister a while ago, Saya did feel a twinge of pain and guilt every time she saw them together. The fire was quenched, but there were still hot coals.
Miyumi was a perceptive type, she noticed that. And wanted to help her sister out by giving her 'dating advice'. She was popular among boys, after all. Saya followed all she said, but it felt ... weird. It felt weird to dress in a thin kimono instead of her sturdy military garb... Felt weird to laugh at unfunny jokes of other boys, or hear compliments she thought were lies...
Naturally, she didn't do too well. However, there was one boy named Uchiwa. He was a meek, weak thing. Not from Yoi clan. Easily intimidated by Saya's commanding voice and authoritative gaze. And he could not say No to a person he was afraid of.
They dated for about a year. It was an odd union that did not really bring any pleasure to both. Saya picked him because he was the 'last choice'. And they broke up on her initiative too - she knew Uchiwa was weak, and that he went along with her not because he chose to, but because he was afraid of retribution. Plus, the thought that she picked the smallest fish in the bucket felt ... demeaning. At the end, the girl let him go - and he was very thankful for that. Saya was done with trying relations.
So that's how time went on - studies and medics, who replaced bone after bone in her body. On her 18th birthday, her skull was replaced - a most difficult operation. Having survived it, subject Saya was deemed 'whole'. Miyumi was treated the same day. Also successfully. A great party was held to celebrate the success. Saya did not attend to it for long - having left an hour later. She grew to dislike such social events.
Saya's first experience as a mercenary happened when she was around 19 years old. Already an accomplished Yoi member and a skillful shinobi, she showed much promise. One day, secret envoys from Sunagakure visited the elder Yuki lady, and proposed a deal - a substantial amount of money, for some of the Yuki ninjas to fight under their banner. The deal was standard: a sum was prepaid, the other half of it paid after the contract has been fulfilled. And a huge contribution to Yuki in case mercenaries die - that was to ensure Suna would not waste their lives needlessly.
Miyumi was terribly distressed and worried over this - the last day before Saya's departure she did not leave her side. Saya managed to calm her down, swearing that she would return in one piece. Miyumi gave Saya a gift - a small crystal of bright blue color. "For good fortune."
Saya was put in charge of the Yuki team - three other ninjas chosen she had never worked with before. They were not from Yoi clan - the clan did not want to risk more than one falling into enemy's hands. Their secret had to be preserved.
Her team got fame, or infamy, during the first days of the war. Sunagakure wanted to win time for mobilization, and to curb one going on in Amegakure. Saya and her team were sent to destroy the flood control system that kept the ever-pouring rain water a bay. If succeeded, the whole section of the village would be flooded, preventing them from committing to the war fully, for a bit more time.
The mission was doomed to failure. There was a traitor among Sunagakure's high command. When Saya's team approached their mark, they quickly found out that the installation was heavily protected. They were ambushed.
Saya's team had a chance of retreating. However, when faced with impossible odds, or failing the mission, the young female chose the former. Instead of retreating, she ordered her team to attack, and create a diversion for her to slip in, and plant the explosives. The team was apprehensive of the plan, but dared not disobey. Yuki ninjas were drilled to be disciplined. The battle has started.
Her team performed outstandingly, managed to draw most, if not all the guards to them, and putting up a fight long enough for Saya to complete the mission. Using her stealth skills, she slipped in unnoticed, and set up the bomb at the water pumps. She then escaped, and a few moments after the village was rocked by an explosion.
She won a great victory that day - but at a grave cost. Her team was left behind. Most died in combat, and those who were captured were executed by the angry amegakure ninjas, who were upset with destruction of the flood control system.
Sunagakure command commended Saya for the tremendous effort. However the way she had achieved victory made her a bad rep among Sunagakure's forces. Several times they wanted to give her more men to command, but each time the teams refused her as a commanding officer. Until the end of the conflict, she performed as a solitary agent, an assassin or a spy. However, her role in the rest of the campaign was not as glaringly obvious, blending in with the rest of the war effort.
The war ended in a couple of months, with Sunagakure's defeat. However, Saya had gained a reputation during the short conflict - a reputation of a ruthless and efficient mercenary.
This conflict had started a couple of months after the one between Suna and Ame has ended. Saya once again found employment as a mercenary, this time fighting for a kindred country - Shimogakure.
Although not accompanied by a team this time, she served a sinister purpose during the campaign - her job was to infiltrate Kumogakure, and kill shinobi, or otherwise important people that contributed to the war effort. But that was not all.
Shimo had a list of all of their casualties during the war. They wanted to keep it even. For every of their dead, be it ninja or civilian, they wanted one of Kumogakure to suffer. They weren't discriminate - everyone was targeted. Not only fighting men and women, but also families, and children.
Saya once more had proven herself a skillful infiltrator, and combatant. Not often, but she was being caught, and in that event, butchered both the shinobi that dared trying to stop her, and his family. The name 'Invisible hand' she had received during that war. Among the Shimogakure shinobi however, Saya was known as the 'Equalizer'.
Some speculate that the death of Kumokage is her doing.
After almost a year of intense fighting, having served in two short, but brutal campaigns, Saya returned home as a somewhat decorated war-hero. Her actions had added to Yukigakure's fame as a village of hardcore mercenaries. Her entire family gathered to meet her, followed by a nice family dinner.
However, Saya was bearing the weight of her own mistakes and regrets on her shoulders. She felt guilty, for sacrificing her team in the first campaign, and for all the innocents that died by her hand in the second. She visited families of those that died under her command, told them how they died, and asked for forgiveness. Neither was muchly appreciated by people she visited.
After the period of wars, came unstable peace. And with that, the number of long-term mercenary contracts began decreasing. Saya found herself doing odd jobs more often than she liked - escorting important people somewhere, and the like. Assassinations were still the majority of her work - it was her forte after all.
Miyumi helped out with getting her sister assigned for missions, big or small. She was also the one responsible for creating the image of 'best mercenary' for her - she was a rising negotiator and politician for the Yoi clan. And she did all she could to promote Saya into power. Saya was grateful for that. Their relationship was ... close.
It was a great surprise for Saya, when her sister, aged 24, was going to depart to a faraway land called the Ranmataru empire. She never even heard of such a place. Rumors were that her sister was going there to be wed to a local ... something unheard of, especially considering the blooming romance with Reijiro, and the fact Miyumi was pregnant from him.
Miyumi never explained much on the last evening before departure. When Saya demanded answers, she simply hugged her, and whispered in her ear that 'all that is being done is done in the name of Yukigakure'.
Her ship departed in the morning. Saya watched it slowly drift away from the frozen docks, until it disappeared in the distance. Before departure, Saya returned to Miyumi the blue stone that she gave her during her first mercenary campaign. "For good fortune." The rest of her day Saya had spent in her room, with door locked. The young woman did something she had never done in years.
After getting over her sister's departure, Saya's life eventually stabilized. Doing missions, training, that sort of thing. She attempted to replace the connection lost between her and her sister, by reconnecting with parents. However, that did not work out too well. Despite the fact they both loved each other, the two elderly shinobi never stopped viewing their daughter as anything more other than their own personal accomplishment. That created an air of alienation that neither side was able to breach.
However, the Yoi clan was muchly more interested in Saya than they let on. Because hers would turn out to be the role that would shape Yukigakure into what it is now. One day, when Saya returned home from her training session with her old sensei, she was approached by her father. It was ... unexpected. Parents never were the ones to initiate talks for no reasons.
He told Saya that the elderly Yuki Lady was ... dying. Age was finally taking its final toll on her. He spoke that with her demise, Yoi clan's position of favor would be gone as well. And the only thing that would keep the current state of things would be ... for someone of the clan to become the new Lady of the vilage. With the emphasis on the word 'Lady'.
Saya was bewildered. Was he suggesting a coup? The man read the expression on her face, and had assured that he does not suggest anything of the sort. The woman then said that if he's implying for her to promote herself as candidate for the position - she would have no chance - while certainly famous in the village and abroad, she was much too young, with little experience in running the village. "I am a soldier, not a manager." - she answered. Her father assured her that experience can be gained through practice, and that she would have all of her clan's support in difficult matters. All they needed from her - is to promote her candidature, when time comes.
Reluctantly, Saya agreed.
She was around 28 years old, when the old Yuki Lady that everyone knew and loved, has passed away. And, as her clan requested of her, Saya put herself up as a candidate. Many were surprised - her opponents and contestants for the throne were wizened, older shinobi. Compared to them, Saya looked like a child.
But it was a child with sharp combat skills, exceptional at fighting singular targets.
It was why the Yoi clan put their bet on her. She was their greatest fighter and battler. And, to everyone's surprise, instead of making an election, the village Elders decided the new Lord or Lady to be chosen via an open ninja battle tournament. As they have explained it, the strongest ninja of the village would win, and lead. They did not mention how much the Yoi have paid them to say that.
Saya may not have been the most capable figure for such a high post, but she was young, strong, and willing to fight. Her opponents, the wizened old men, were just that - old. And their last years they have spent in their comfy rooms, and offices, instead of the training ground. Though likely more experienced in general, Saya's experience was fresher. That, and, well, the power of youth.
One after one, the wizened shinobi fell before her, defeated, and humiliated in front of the whole village. Everyone was a spectator to Saya's triumph. The cunning Yoi purposefully made it such a way - the crowd loved a winner. And they loved her too. After the last contestant had been defeated, the Elders, much surprised of the outcome, had given her the official title.
Saya was now the new Lady of Yukigakure.
It was an odd feeling, to be alleviated above all the rest, in a single day. Becoming the supreme authority in Yukigakure was something to cope with. But Saya was a determined individual, and wanted to do her best at this new position.
She started learning.
If before all she needed to know were battles and tactics, now she tackled the much more delicate subjects like diplomacy, politics and the like. The Yoi provided her with the best teachers and advisers - that way the clan would ensure Saya to keep her clan in favor. In addition, the council of Control Branch had elected Saya as head of their clan - in order to seal the ties between the clan and the Lady even more.
Saya received word from Miyumi as well. It came in form of a letter, where she was being congratulated at claiming the highest title anyone could aspire to. In addition, there was a gift - a suit of armor and a sword made out of a rare metal - Ranmataru steel.
Saya has been in charge for around 4 years now. She proved to be surprisingly talented at grasping the needed knowledge to rule, and, soon enough, became capable of ruling Yukigakure without the advisers holding her hand. Strong-willed and commanding, she controls the village like she did her men in battle.
With an iron fist.
'Whole' Yoi: Saya is a 'Whole' - a title given to the member of Yoi clan who had undertaken all of the improvements it gives their members, and survived. The improvements are numerous, to summarize: Resilin in joints, which allow leaps twice or even trice as high, relocated muscles and arteries which reduce vulnerability of them being hit, singed nerve endings which make her unable to feel pain, retractable ceramic knives as nails, conditioning against hypnosis and mental torture, and every single bone in the body being replaced with synthetics, which is much more resilient than steel. The downside is that Saya has to eat medicine every day to not fall apart.
Skilled Sensor: Having been trained to become an assassin, she also has discovered her sensory abilities, which help her plot a course through enemy defensive lines without being seen. She is a capable sensor and is able to see even the faintest chakra signatures. She can make difference between them, and make conclusions about a person's strength, basing on the level of chakra he emanates passively. She cannot distinguish between a real person and a Kage Bunshin.
Kenjutsu Master: Saya has been a kenjutsu prodigy since early ages, and her skills with using a sword are one of the best in the world - she is easily considered one of the greatest swordsmen of her generation. Her swordstrikes are hard to see, even if she's not trying, so fast they are. Her body is just as prepared - agile and strong, and her reflexes are sharp, befitting of a kenjutsu warrior.
Excellent Chakra Control: Saya wasn't born with a horribly large chakra pool, so in order to compensate, she had to learn to spend what she had, very thriftily. With practice of being a sensor, her chakra control is nigh perfect - using techniques costs less than it is for people with less talent, and never ever more than it should.
Keen Senses: While others can't see her blade cutting though the air, she can. Her sight is very sharp, only a bit short from rivaling dojutsus. She can navigate through locations using her hearing only, blindfolded, and parry blows and thrown objects, armed with nothing but her hearing. Despite her own movements silent as a grave, she can hear herself. That says a lot.
Silent Killing: Saya's primary role on the battlefield is that of an assassin. Silent killing is her que. She walks without sounds, her clothes doesn't flap, her armor and weapons do not make a clink, and her steps do not kick up dust or leave footprints.
Saya has a polar fox named Shiro. She loves it very much.