It was interesting after their Yukigakure failure; they weren’t reprimanded in the slightest. Both Miko and Deidara were thrown off at how they got off without a single word, granted they did bring back an up to date map of the village so maybe it wasn't a complete loss.
For a month after their makeup; Deidara was paired up with Tobi to track down the Sanbi, which wasn't too bad. Miko was sent on stealth missions to gather information since she wasn't needed to capture the beasts for the time being. It was unusual really. Miko would send Deidara a messenger owl at night to send letters every few days, with Deidara sending a letter back just hours later.
He’d gotten accustomed to seeing the familiar snowy owl every few days; it gave him a better outlet for venting how much Tobi annoyed him to hell and back. Deidara knew that he was possibly overreacting but going from two partners that he worked well with to a bumbling idiot wasn't exactly ideal.
What made it possibly worse was after capturing and sealing it away was they had lost Hidan and Kakuzu to a group of Konoha shinobi; which really put them in a bad spot when sealing away the tailed beasts; it taking longer to seal them away.
Eventually Deidara and Tobi had ventured off on their own; Deidara wanting to take down Sasuke Uchiha for killing Orochimaru since he took the kill. Tobi wasn’t too keen on taking on the younger Uchiha.
“Ohhh! Partner! Isn't that Ms. Miko down there?!” Tobi leaned over the clay bird he was on precariously; spotting the only female Akatsuki member that was out on the field as she was hopping through the dense forest.
Deidara leaned over the side of his bird and lo-and-behold it was her; though now he noticed her usual long hair was chopped down to just above her shoulders, which fit her better than the long locks she had before. “Oi, Miko!” He called out, his bird quickly descending to catch up with her. He hovered a few yards away from the trees that she was in.
She quickly stopped when she heard Deidara’s voice, a wide grin spreading on her face as he got closer, “If I didn't know better I’d say you were following me Deidara.” Miko waited for him to get closer before jumping up onto his bird.
A smug grin graced his face, “We see each other after a month, and that’s the first thing you say to me? Someone obviously doesn't miss me, hm.”
“Maybe I did, maybe I didn't.” Miko leaned towards him, their faces inches away before it was interrupted by Tobi butting in.
“Ooo!! You two are awfully close! Are you two secretly dating?” He covered the part of his mask where his mouth would be.
A scowl covered both their faces as they pulled away, “Its... nice seeing you in person Tobi..” Miko muttered, “Anyways, what brings you both out here? I thought you were going after the Kyuubi.”
“No, I have other plans.” Deidara hummed; looking off to the side, “What are you doing going this way, hm?”
“Slowing down Uchiha to keep him from taking out Itachi; we can't lose more members or we’ll have a harder time sealing away the jinchuriki.”
It wasn’t a bad idea but from what Deidara knew; she wasn’t adept to countering genjutsu created by the sharingan. What did she have in mind with slowing down Sasuke?
“Come with us then. It’s where I’m headed; we can team up again and take the younger Uchiha out without an issue, hm.”
There was a short pause as she pursed her lips in thought; “It's not a bad idea, and worst case scenario; Tobi dies.”
Tobi cried out in hurt, a hand going over his chest, “so cruel! I thought we were friends!”
A faint snort left Miko’s throat as the words left Tobi’s mouth, “Sure, we are.” she reached up to tie her hair back into a low ponytail, “What’s the plan Dei?”
“Simple really,” He began; going into detail and backup plans just incase. What many people in the Akatsuki didn't realize was the attention to detailing that Deidara put into his plans; though it all does seem careless when looked at face value.
“Where do I fall into this plan if you need me?” Miko raised a brow, “Honestly, I think you can handle this without me.”
Deidara held his hand up, “Thats where you’re wrong, the sharingan can copy almost everything, except , kekkei genkais. You can create snow; which if I’m correct, is your kekkei genkai. Not everyone can create snow and ice without water. What I need from you is cover to keep this isolated, hm.”
Miko gave him a look before crossing her arms, “I mean; it's not a bad plan. Use the snow to mask the locations of you and your art to make it harder for him to detect them.” she paused for a moment before nodding, “Alright I’m in, what about Tobi though?”
“He’ll be useful for have I have planned, hm.”
“I have a feeling this will be fun to watch.”
The plan was pretty simple in layman's terms; Deidara would start off testing out how big his explosions needed to be and work his way up, Tobi would be there if he needed landmines buried under ground, which left Miko in the outer banks to cast her jutsus to throw him off. It was weird having a three-man team but more jutsus the better and having all three ranges covered is a great idea. Now if everyone stuck to their parts.
The C1s Deidara had used so far were not working; Sasuke could easily dodge them. While it was mildly annoying, it was interesting. Once he realized the C1s weren’t working, he went on to test out his explosive clay dolls; which was very entertaining to watch the younger Uchiha cut down only for them to keep going after him. Once Sasuke realized that he was getting nowhere fast; he quickly lept into the trees to get away from the quickly reforming dolls.
Deidara was quick to start detonating the dolls, putting Sasuke on the defensive. However when he thought he finally ended the other; a burnt wooden log came flying out of the blast with a nearly unscathed Sasuke landing not too far from it. This irked Deidara but he was prepared as he shoved his hands into his clay pouches and then slammed his hands over each other creating a new masterpiece; activating it into its full size and splendor.
“Ta-da! Now presenting my partner’s signature pieces! His specialty:The C2 dragon!” Tobi announced.
“You know what to do Tobi, hm?” Deidara hopped up on top of his newly created clay dragon.
“Yes siree partner!! Are we going with that Deidara?” Tobi seemed mildly excited with how the plan was going.
“Yup, that is the plan.” He put up a hand sign; a portion of the tail of said dragon collapsed in on itself; which quickly filled the mouth of the dragon. The dragon’s mouth opened; revealing much bigger versions of his C1 explosives spilling out. “I’m counting on you Tobi, hm.”
“Yes sir!” Tobi took a step back as Sasuke dashed forward, “Here he comes! Now let’s really show him the power of your pop art, partner!”
“Pop is dead!” Deidara held up another hand sign, another portion of the tail disappeared, the dragon’s mouth filling once more with a projectile bomb, “My art is superflat !” the projectile launched itself at Sasuke at full force.
Sasuke easily dodged it, but what he wasn't expecting was it to loop around and head for him still; blowing up when it got close enough. It was meant as a diversion; so Tobi could bury the mines underground without Sasuke noticing at first, which worked. When the dragon’s wings began to flap; Sasuke made his move towards it. He needed to cut it down before Deidara took flight.
However; his range was only five meters, which Deidara was easily able to fly out of.
“ Deidara when do you need me to cast it? ” Miko’s voice came in through a small radio earpiece. She could see what was happening from a distance; but she couldn't hear what was going on outside of the explosions.
“If I fall out the air, do it; but so far I’m in full control.” He raised a hand to his ear, “Just keep watch for now.” Deidara put up another hand sign and created another projectile; “This one’s got more bite. Blow him to bits, hm!” it launched immediately.
Speed was definitely Sasuke’s strong suit as he dodged it; however he landed on a mine, which went off in moments, but much to Deidara’s dismay, he survived with the curse mark be gained from Orochimaru.
Tobi broke from under the ground, “I set all of the landmine clay! We’re ready to go!”
“Good job Tobi! Now just stay out of the way!”
Tobi saluted him before scrambling off the battlefield, knowing he was better off to the side. Miko kept watch from the sidelines, not liking the waiting game she had to play. Something just didn't feel right to her. The next explosion had gotten to Sasuke this time, completely demolishing one of his wings. His sword flew into the air and then embedded itself into the ground; an electric charge going through it. Unseen by Deidara; Sasuke had two very large shuriken stars attached to metal strings which he pulled to distract the other. It was easy dodging them.
Another bomb was now headed his way, but Sasuke was quick jumping up then using his sword as a foothold before launching himself upward and slicing off the wing of the dragon with his Chidori blade. Once Deidara was losing altitude, Sasuke gave another pull on the metal strings; the attached shuriken sinking into Deidara’s arms and pinning him to his now falling dragon. Within moments it had hit the ground and the landmines around and under it went off in an array of explosions.
Miko felt her stomach sink for several moments when she saw Deidara’s cloak flying through the air; Tobi cried out his name and began mourning immediately.
“How many times do I have to tell you to shut up Tobi!?” Deidara snapped, now on a much smaller clay bird as he flew out of the smoke. Blood went down his arms and even some dripped out of his hand mouths.
“Wha- You’re still alive?”
“Miko now!” Deidara called out, knowing she was somewhat within radio range.
“On it!” She answered, her position still not compromised. Miko performed the necessary hand signs for the jutsu, inhaling deeply before exhaling.
Snow style! Isolated Blizzard Unleashed!
Sasuke turned, looking around, “There’s a third one?!”
Within moments the air became extremely cold and dark clouds covered the area. It was obvious that Sasuke was at a severe disadvantage as snow began to fall heavily in the area around him. He hadn’t dealt with this type of jutsu since he was thirteen. This wasn't good.
“Cold! Cold! Cold!!!” Tobi cried out as he tried to find his way out of the storm, running blindly further into the forest around them.
Soon the snowfall began to quickly swirl into a blizzard with Deidara at the top of the storm. From the outside it looked extremely isolated, which it was. Sasuke tried to use his sharingan to see where the caster was located, but all he could see was a blur around him. While Sasuke was trying to find where Miko was hiding, Deidara was stewing in his own fury; angry that his plans wasn't working. He reached into his clay pouch and pulled out a large mass of it; chowing down immediately.
Once he had his fill; Deidara put his hand to his earpiece, “Get out of range! I’m about to use the Kurara C4, hm!”
“ If I get too far, the storm will weaken! ”
“ Just do it! ”
Miko flinched at the yelling in her ear, the radio making his voice peak and distort a lot more than it would normally as she began to make her escape from the field. She vaguely knew what the C4 did; however she didn't want to be close enough to see what happened. Kurara C4 destroys any living creature in its range on a cellular level. Pretty damn scary for those who aren't expecting it. As Miko moved further from the blizzard, the weaker and weaker it became; eventually dissapaiting and revealing a massive Deidara copy. Sasuke started to make his way away from the giant explosive; the giant Deidara was hot on his heels.
Soon it began to swell; distorting the size before detonating; but there was no explosion. In fact it was silent, too silent for a bomb. However that’s how it worked; the bombs were so small that they couldn't be seen with the naked eye and when inhaled, it was too late. You had to be outside of its range in order to survive.
“ Ha! ” Deidara activated the miniature bombs, small creatures in the area quickly dissolving before his eyes and soon Sasuke began to disintegrate; or it appeared that he had.
Both Miko and Tobi were too far to tell what was going on originally before seeing Sasuke’s chidori charged hand pierce Deidara’s chest from behind. Then again, looks are deceiving; it was quickly shown that it was a clay clone when Deidara burst from the inside of the flying clay bird. He quickly created another, smaller Karura C4 than engulfed Sasuke. Deidara was determined to take out the younger Uchiha no matter what.
“ Deidara, I’m going to get further away from this area. I trust that you’ll come find me after won't you? ” Miko didn't want to accidentally get caught in the next massive blast, she valued her life and she hoped Deidara valued his own.
“Don't worry, I will. I promise.” He answered as he fell from the clay bird, “I’ll send something to retrieve you if I can't move, hm.”
“ Good... I...I lo- I’ll see you later okay? ” She hoped that he didn't pick up on her small mistake, heading towards the local town to lay low undercover.
A faint grin spread over his face when he heard her voice waver for a second, “You still owe me dinner; don't worry, I’ll hold you to it, hm.” Deidara could hear her laugh before their radio went to static.