The Yume are a scattered people, but are quite consistent in both their general attitude as well as their preference in the application of their hereditary techniques and abilities. While most other Shinobi at least find a use for combat techniques, the Yume are almost entirely pacifists and medical specialists, preferring to heal their allies rather than harm their enemies.
"Mend the world."
Yume are not judges, nor executioners. They want little to do with war, but seldom find peace in a world of conflict. They see themselves as pious healers, and offer their aid to anyone that is not overtly evil. Their jutsu is a strange one, far different than their Shinobi cousins. They still use the same hand seals and share an understanding of elemental jutsu that calls back to days chakra was first gifted to the world, but their medical jutsu calls back to an age long before villages. Tending more towards ointments, potions, and natural remedies, Yume ply the trade of herbalist above the more scientific arts of modern Shinobi.
The Yume are a spiritual folk, and venerate all the kami of nature. Nearly every single one of the Yume are pacifists and have absolutely no use with any manner of attack jutsu. Medical Ninjutsu is the most common art found in the family, though there are almost as many that focus on elemental ninjutsu. The few remaining tend towards fuuinjutsu, drawing out kami from their natural objects, and imbuing their power into items, and places. While these serve no mechanical purpose, many are comforted with the spiritual nicknacks, and the more ‘unique’ individuals in the world love to collect their trinkets.
While nature provides for the Yume, they understand that death and decay are necessary things. The unique individuals from this family that embrace the darker aspects of nature can tend to be very dangerous. Their understanding of poisons and creeping vines has brought a savage undoing to those who dared harm their favorite trees. In this way these people tend to make themselves outcasts among their family, but they are still seen as necessary in the natural balance. Even if a few villages must fall, it’s still another way to mend the world.
The clan is somewhat fragmented, living in a few small communities that lie scattered around the Land of Fire. While none are directly on the great nation’s claimed land, they exist near its borders in the River Country, Mountain Country, and Forest Country. These three groups trade with each other, though each one tends to be independent. All three Yume communities live in perfect harmony with each other, and typically with the world around them.
Yume communities are small, just a few generations that tend to exist separate from civilization. Game trails tend to lead to Yume villages far more often than a dirt trail, and real roads are unheard of. Though they live separate from civilization, they are no strangers to it. Visiting villages often enough to trade medicine and art, they bring back what few supplies they can not make themselves. The community tends to be run by the general consensus of the adults. Other than this, they have no official ladder of leadership.
Yume communities tend to be small in size, though the land they affect is quite larger. Plant life tends to thrive around them, and brushlands can easily become forests. Plants get more and more dense, and more and more fruitful, as they grow closer to the Yume, and often times the overgrowth helps conceal their camps from people who wish to locate them. This isolation, however, is not for everyone.
Most Yume leave home after becoming young adults, and voyage through out the world. They gain experiences their otherwise sheltered life would deny them, and often times return to the Yume after several summers.
Outcasts stand alone in the world, and embrace the darker aspects of nature. Though they appear rarely, they appear consistently. These outcasts are given begrudging aid from the community when they are in true need, but otherwise they are shunned by their family. It is well enough; most often the outcasts leave on their own to escape the boring life of peace and serenity the Yume promote. Outcasts are not hated or hunted by the rest of the Yume, but few Yume and fewer Outcast ever want to spend much time together. Instead the Outcasts roam the world, searching for purpose and meaning.
The clan’s history stretches back as far as history, the way the clan elders tell the story. It’s said that the Yume make use of gifts that all people once provided, but that only the Yume have kept up with the old ways. Part of the old ways was their spoken word, and their runic language. While runes served as able markers to convey thoughts and communicate, for true story telling the simple runes lack the depth needed to ascribe detail. The Yume history is the first story taught to the storytellers of the family, and once per year on the winter solstice it is the focal point of a night of merry making and feasting. Though the tale takes nearly hours to tell, and is often broken up with song and dance and interrupted with an ancient dessert of sugared nuts and fruits, and a great deal of alcohol for the adults, it equates to what is roughly true.
The Yume were a tribe before they were a family, existing alongside others in the time before Shinobi villages, and great ninja wars. The family was simple then, existing as others did by reaping the reward of coexistence with nature. The Yume, as it seems, believed all humans to be parts of a single family, and more than anything they lament the fact that so many have turned their back on the old ways. The Yume remained true to the old ways, or as others might have said; the Yume have failed to adapt to changing times.
This growing isolation due to a lack of technological adaptation became something of a drawback as the world seemed to just out grow them rather quickly; so they took to the woods and were satisfied existing on the outside of modern society. They lingered there for some time, before truly delving deeper into the wilds and turning their back on civilization.
It lasted for some time, Yume seeming to just vanish from history. They perfected their talents out there, and tended to the great, hidden wilds. Only with the dawning of more and larger wars did they get shaken from their isolation. Seeing a huge threat to the world suddenly forming, they left the wilds and returned to investigating the odd humans that had hidden away in their cities.
They brought with them their medicine and wisdom, and do their best to spread peace. They only want to see humans return to the safe confines of the wilderness, ever one with nature and never again soaked in the blood of endless war.
Theirs is not a tale of wars and glory, nor a tale of valor and conquest. The Yume story is one of healing and peace. Hours of the Yume History are devoted to retelling of ancient recipes that are too important in the family to ever be forgotten. Lists of names of the people who were saved by Yumi medicine follow. The telling of their story is a great event that marks the beginning of a new year. In the middle of winter the family gathers for feasts and merry making, taking a few days off in order to better associate with each other, and spread new lore and discovers.
While their exterior history seems bland, the Yume have long lived a rich family life. Each one loves and lives a life devoted to patient study and quiet meditations. They cultivate vast gardens that could turn deserts into jungles if they were unleashed, while at the same time they preserve the ancient traditions of medicine and foraging, and add newer and more potent recipes to their fold. Few of their family have ever moved on to dedicate their lives to the Shinobi trade, so their name is mostly unknown except by those who live near them.
Their name is spreading, however, and people who listen will hear of the mystics that bring with them healing potions. People who talk of older times, who fawn over fauna, and a family that seems completely backwards in the modern time.
Blessed by the Kami
Yume chakra is unique throughout the world, and it sets them apart even more than their lifestyle. Whether it is their kinship with the wilds that has blessed them or their blessing has drawn them towards nature, Yume stand out for having chakra that is mixed with more than their elements. Enriched with vital essence, when the Yume are interacting with plants they find their spiritual energy is more potent. The natural fibers of living or very recently dead plants react well to Yume chakra, bending and growing at the shaman's whim. To plants, it is the essence of growth.
This growth isn’t as dramatic as the plant creation caused by Wood Release chakra. Instead it is actual growth, often times sped up with special medical ninjutsu. Even at their fastest Yume still require a day to get a sapling to shoot up a meter or three, but in any other context that is remarkably fast growth. Growth is slow enough that most have to really look to see it, but the Yume see it and relish in each new flower that buds on their many and varied plants. Yume can not create plant life as the wood element does, but their hold on already existing plants, including their seeds, gives them a huge amount of influence over them.
In scientific terms, the Yume Kekkei Genkei causes plant cells to undergo mitosis at a much higher rate than is natural. Their chakra sustains the cells through any amount of damage as cells divide at an alarming rate. Hundreds of thousands of cells can be caused to split and grow in just a few seconds, forcing a plant to grow an inch or so. More importantly, this life sustaining chakra allows plants to be shaped and bred in different ways.
The new species they are capable of creating is limited by the imagination, and a few rules listed below, but they may otherwise freely break the laws of nature. Different genera may be bred together to create outlandish hybrids, and once chakra and jutsu are added nearly anything is possible. While the Yume will argue that all plants are sentient, some have been noted to be much smarter than humans.
As mentioned several times, Yume pride themselves on the gardens they keep. Every Yume has their garden, and every Yume respects the territory of other Yume. Among the Yume violations of another's domain is the worst crime. That said, it is typical for a Yume's garden to be open to all.
Yume gardens differ in size and differ in scope. They differ in purpose, differ in meaning, and in all ways are unique to the Yume that builds them. Be they filled with every color of the rainbow, thick with ancient trees, or spartan fields where grasses wave in the wind, Yume take to their gardens with the devotion of a hermit. These gardens are always more than they seem.
Cultivated over a life time, as the Yume grows, more and more exotic plants find a home in their gardens. Rare species and completely fabricated genera dot or dominate the chosen landscape, and each one is far more than just a plant. Thrumming with ancient power and carefully controlled development, some plants have been known to host sentient minds. There has yet to be a plant able to speak directly, but many Yume learn to commune with their plants.
Truly remarkable creations, the sense of wonder one feels when entering a Yume garden for the first time is not a false sense of awe. Nearly every plant within is one the natural world has never laid eyes upon.
The Rules for Yume Gardens are odd, however can be understood easily by looking at the world of summons. The Toad Mountain or Snake Cave, these things collect at their own ancestral home, where they teach the sages of their kind their senjutsu. Yume have their gardens to act as the home for their plants, and each garden is just as mythic, except no one ever learns any senjutsu.
Yume may collect any number of special plants, however it takes time to grow a garden right. Only one plant can be worked on at a time. Plants follow the rules for summons, and only differ in how they are purchased, and used. Creation of a plant costs the Yume XP equal to it's Rank, as if it were a jutsu they did not specialize in.
Unlike summoned creatures, Yume Gardens can not be summoned. They hold no contract, and can not physically relocate themselves on their own. While some plants can move in subtle, or even less than subtle, ways, each one must remain rooted in place.
Beyond these rules, and so long as it fits into kindom Plantae, the Yumi may do their best to create it. Yume plants follow the same rules for summoned creatures in the number of special abilities they may have and the number of jutsu they may possess. Like Summoned creatures, Yume plants also have a chakra pool all their own. Each plant should be given a personality, and should be explained in great detail.
A Yume with a Garden may not also have a summoning contract with an animal. Yume may have any number of plants of their own rank or below, and a single plant a rank higher than they are. Yume with a garden may begin play with a single plant of each rank, up to their own starting rank.
Not Quite Educated
The Yume are not affiliated with any of the Hidden Villages, but they take the raising of their children just as seriously. Every Yume without exception is edcuated in the old ways; field trips and lectures.
From the time they are very young they are told endless stories. Fables more than anything, these are meant to give a Yume perspective on the world, impart wisdom, and support morality. Along with these, however, comes endless recitation of ingredients, and wandering adventures looking for and identifying plants.
Yume are schooled well in their particular blend of herbalism, but also in techniques that are similar to more traditional Jutsu. In both medicine and elements, Yume have Jutsu that emulate the more common jutsu of the Villages. For this reason, a Yume will always have a number of jutsu that will strike outsiders as remarkably familiar, even if the Yume have a slightly different approach to the jutsu itself. It will still also use all the same hand seals, and require the same amount of chakra. Because they are cut off from villages, however, only the most commonly used and useful jutsu are observed and copied by the Yume.
Yume may only begin with 5 Jutsu that are not Yume Hijutsu, or Custom Jutsu. This includes all academy jutsu, and jutsu such as surface walking. After creation jutsu may be learned or developed as per normal.
Likewise, it is not terribly uncommon for Yume to be illiterate. This serves them no benefit, but seldom hinders them at home. The Yume have always held an oral tradition, not a written one. It should be noted, however, that even the illiterate understand very common words like Stop, Danger, and No Parking.