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Kit or Fawn?

Chapter Text

It was for the best for the village.

It was for the best for the Clan.

No matter the consequences, Shikaku and Yoshino were going to live through the consequences of their choices. After all, there was no turning back and there was no time to second guess anything.

-.-

Yoshino did everything she could to stop the bleeding and helping Kushina through the birthing process. All the while mentally cursing for the man attacking them while on an outing. The attack caused Kushina to go into premature labor and that was just the start of their troubles. Yoshino had Shikamaru in her care that day and didn't know who take care of at that moment.

Things only got worse when Kushina's seal began to weak massively and in that moment of weakness… chaos reigned over the village. Their respective husbands arrived just in time to save them from getting killed from the masked man, but they were too late from preventing the Nine-Tailed Fox from escaping.

"Shikaku, take Shikamaru! I have to stay." Yoshino ordered, handing her infant son over to Shikaku. Shikaku wanted to yell, scream, anything to get her to come with him. But he knew that Kushina needs his wife's medical attention as the redhead is still in labor and it was far too dangerous to take them to the hospital… Dammit, the village needs someone to be in the forefront while Minato does whatever to jail the tailed beast. Against his better judgment, Shikaku took his son from Yoshino's grasp and gently pressed his lips against her temple. For all he knew, this could be their last night seeing each other alive. "Protect him."

"I love you." Shikaku murmured into Yoshino's hair, he moved away so that he could face Minato who is whispering to Kushina. "Minato…"

"Protect the village, Shikaku." Minato tightly gripped Kushina to himself, holding onto her hand as she attempted to get through the contractions. "Lead them, I'll take care of the beast."

"Don't do anything troublesome."

-.-

The village watched on in amazement as they Fourth Hokage summoned a massive Toad to go up against the Nine-Tailed Fox. Shikaku was doing everything in his power to lead his clansmen and the shinobi around him to protect the village. All the while trying to figure out what to do with his ever napping infant son. Every time he found someone to take Shikamaru to safety, they were quickly taken out due to the continuous destruction of the village or needed elsewhere.

It was a horrible time for this to happen, it was midday of Market Day, civilians and shinobi alike doing shopping and not at all expecting this to happen at all. Right now everyone is scattered around trying to get to safety or help people get to safety. It was complete chaos as people were getting killed off before they could make it to the shelters or avoid getting killed in general.

Everything was just going up in shi-

"Shikaku!"

Shikaku turned around to see a severely wounded Minato Namikaze. He quickly helped him so that he wouldn't keel over due to his injuries. "Minato!"

"Sh-Shikamaru… Kushina is not strong enough to contain the Nine-Tails once more… and our baby is still at a risk…"

Shikaku eyes widened as he put together what exactly not only the Hokage but also his teammate and close friend is asking of him. "Yoshino?"

"She told me to ask you first, she supports whatever you decide to do…"

Shikaku looked down at his infant son who is nearly a replica of himself, to realize Shikamaru is wide awake. Looking into his son's eyes he made a promise to him to always love him, no matter the outcome of that night. "I love you, little fawn."

Shikamaru's nose scrunched up when his father kissed his nose but he promptly closed his eyes and fell back asleep once more.

To be continued…

Chapter Text

Shikaku stood in front of a grave, his entire expression showed just how worn down he is. It has been a very long month since the attack. A very tiresome month… white flowers decorated the grave, to the point the name of the grave is completely covered up the name. There were several children drawings sprawled around the grave, it only seemed to remind everyone who visits just how loved this person once was…

"Mom… dad… please watch over everyone…" Shikaku murmured aloud, he turned around and walked off towards the direction of the hospital. Yoshino still has yet to wake up from her injuries and is not showing any signs of recovery. She was dealt massive amount of damage and it makes him wonder how she even managed to survive this long.

Several broken ribs.

Severe brain damage.

Internal and external bleeding.

Dislocated joints.

And the cherry on top of this troublesome cake… two cherries actually…

One, she was found with her tongue ripped out of her mouth and is suffering from the aftereffects of a powerful genjutsu. Someone made sure Yoshino would never even mutter a single word on what she saw that night. The entire thing has him up in a frenzy, there were more questions than answers and nothing was adding up. People started to whisper that the Uchiha were behind the attack, but that is complete bullshit. Fugaku and several of his head clansmen were in the middle of the fray, escorting civilians to safety and doing whatever they could to go up against the beast. Then… there was that one particular whisper on how people saw Shikaku hand his infant son over to the Fourth Hokage and shortly after the beast disappeared with two infants to be found in the middle of the fray.

Not exactly the truth or a lie, but it was enough to warrant for the Third to enact a law when people made mention just exactly what the Fourth did to stop the attack. The law isn't going to do much. People still whisper, people still act, and people fear what they do not know.

Typical.

Even with the Third's Law in place and only a month since it was enacted, the villagers are already treating everyone connected to the infants with the utmost… Shikaku couldn't even think of it without having his anger consume him completely. Ten doctors stopped doing their job in taking care of Yoshino and now there needs to have a background check on anyone that is overseeing Yoshino, Shikamaru, Naruto, and Kushina.

Speaking of Kushina… she's still recovering, but not completely out of the woods. Her body is still dealing with the fact she is no longer a Jinchuriki and the chakra she once contained is no longer there, that resulted with massive chakra exhaustion. That is just one problem Kushina is facing, another problem is that she had used her body to protect Naruto and Shikamaru which resulted in a broken spine. The new doctor stated that she no longer has the function below her waist and if the hit was any higher, it could have been almost the entire body.

Let's not forget, Kushina is now dealing with the loss of her husband and how her son is going to be treated differently for something he could not control. Even so, Shikaku made a promise to her when she woke up during her time of recovery that he's going make sure she is taken care of.

That was quickly met to a fist to the face, but that was understandable. Kushina cried for the loss of Minato on his shoulder and how Naruto is going to be met with so much hardships. She quickly apologized when a realization hit her that Shikamaru is going to be facing those same hardships.

"Shikamaru and Naruto are connected to on another. They will always have each other, and the friends they make will help them grow."

-.-

Shikaku held Yoshino's hand, rubbing her knuckles with his thumb. He hardly had the time to spend a considerable amount of time with her since the Attack. Having to help the village, dealing with the elders, clan, and ensuring Shikamaru and Naruto are not turned into possible future weapons… Yeah… he still has a lot on his plate.

Nudge.

Shikaku blinked slowly blinked, he looked down at his and Yoshino's connected hands. Did… did she move? He quickly stood up and hovered over Yoshino, his grip on her hand tightened pleadingly and his free hand he cupped her check while caressing it with his thumb. The heart monitor started to beep erratically, and Yoshino expression started to twitch.

Shikaku held his breath when he saw Yoshino agonizingly open her eyes. He could see the mass confusion written in her eyes and the thing he could do is whisper sweet nothings to her in an attempt to calm her down. Slowly but surely, Yoshino began to calm down and her heart rate started to even itself once more.

Yoshio mouth opened and closed as she attempted to say anything but the only thing that escaped her chapped lips are gurgles. Tears of frustration started to flow but were wiped away as Shikaku held her head and used his thumbs to wipe the tears away. "Shikamaru is safe. He and Naruto survived and are doing okay… They're okay."

-.-

He's getting too old for this…

Far too old for this shit… There goes his retirement. Hiruzen Sarutobi took back his position as Hokage and started to lead his people back to some sort of stability.

Keyword. Stability.

Nothing was stable on everything he was dealing with right now. People are demanding for Naruto and Shikamaru's head on a silver platter, all with the belief killing them and you kill the beast. That is not how exactly it works, but that is a massive no.

For one thing, there is no way he would allow any sort of harm come done to the babies. That comes along with protecting them from Danzo, who already has his eye's set on them. Fortunately, Shikaku had firmly put his foot down and warned the old War Hawk if he did anything then he would have the wrath of the Nara, Akimichi and Yamanaka's clans against him. Well, he didn't outright say that, but it was heavily implied.

"We can't separate them for long extensive amount of time…" Hiruzen mused as he read over Shikaku's latest update on Naruto and Shikamaru's condition. He started to pull up reports that were pilled around his desk and started to reread them. His anger only seemed to rise as he continued to read what was written on the reports. Kushina's home partially got destroyed during the attack, but the mobs made sure there was nothing left for her return. Disgusting. Then there's the Nara Clan… whispers on how callous the Nara Head is for turning his son into a monster then there a few that wonder if it was done to create some sort of weapon. But what was agreed through majority of the villagers… everyone is putting their anger and sorrow directly to two innocents baby's that have nothing to do with the actions of the beasts they hold within them. 'The Nara Compound partially came out unscathed… Perhaps Shikaku could take in Kushina under the Clan's protection. Two birds, one stone.'

-.-

A ten-foot nine-tailed fox stared at his jailer, wondering how his life could have possibly lead up to this. As much he wants to corrupt or even deal some sort of damage to his jailer, the kit makes it so damn hard to do anything towards him. Or maybe it's the fact the other half of himself took away his anger and desire for vengeance is the reason for it.

Looking around his jail cell, one thing for sure is that Yin-Kurama preferred to how things are right now compared to his previous place. His jail cell compromised of being stuck inside a massive hollow tree with it's roots molded to mimic the door of a jail cell. It was in the middle of a thick forest that barely had light and the only source of light is the never-setting sun that seemed to be mocking him.

To be continued…

Chapter Text

 

Kushina kept her head held high as she was rolled into her former home. Her breathing started to uneven as she began to truly take in what everyone had warned her the place got ransacked but… not to this degree. Walls were painted with warnings, calling for murder on her son and oh Kami… how do they even consider themselves human? That was just the walls, the furniture were either taken away or were destroyed on the spot. Pictures that once hung on the walls were thrown around, burned or torn to the point it was unsalvageable. Many were mission, mainly priceless heirlooms from her homeland were gone. So many items that hold so much significance towards her, are gone.

“We managed to save a few things…” Kakashi murmured to her as he pushed her wheelchair around the apartment. “They’re at the Sarutobi’s residence.”

Kushina didn’t bother to ask about the details or about Minato’s own items. She ever kept any photos of them in her apartment in fear of people finding a connection before the proper announcement… the what ifs began to swirl in her mind, wondering what could have happened if they had done what they originally planned for the birth. “The nursery?”

“…Gone…”

-.-

Shikaku glared at the mob that seemed to grow by the hour at the main entrance of the Nara Compound. His clansmen were doing a good job at keeping them at bay, but even so… they’ve found several shinobi and civilians alike attempting to go through the forest to get to their target.

The Main Household of the Nara Compound, where Shikamaru and Naruto are currently located. Shikaku is going to have a serious talk to Danzo and that rumor mill of his. It didn’t take an idiot to know that. Scratch that, it almost feels like a horrible portion of the village is populated by idiots. A massive horrible portion…

“That’s it! All of you have five minutes to leave the premises before you’re taken in for a night in the jail or T&I.” The Captain of the Konoha Military Police Force announced to the mob as he and several other members of the Police Force appeared surrounding the mob. Shikaku let out a sigh of relief, thankful that he didn’t have to do anything towards the idiots. If he had to face them… he would be the one taken to T&I.

“Fugaku.” Shikaku called out to the man as he approached him. He ignored the pointed glares of hatred or freight coming from the mob.

“Shikaku.” Fugaku responded he walked over towards the Nara Head, a frown forever present on his face. “This is the fifteen time in the last three days, you have to deal with this already.”

“What a drag… I’ve been pretty occupied.” Shikaku deadpanned, at least several members of the Police Force shot their leader a look for his choice of words. He signaled for his clansmen to disperse and they quietly did so. “Yoshino is coming home tomorrow…”

Fugaku nodded solemnly. “I will personally ensure no harm come down upon her…”

“Thank you.” Shikaku motioned for Fugaku to follow him into the compound. Fugaku sent out a silent signal to the Police Force before he followed Shikaku.

The two men walked in silence as one followed the other. It wasn’t tense or awkward. Just simple silence…

“I’ve heard you’ve been refuting the rumors against my clan…” Fugaku allowing himself to muse aloud.

“I know what I saw and it wouldn’t make too much sense… I’ll talk to Inoichi on curving the rumors down.”  Shikaku grumbled, scratching his neck as he did so. “I heard about Itachi, how is he?”

“He’ll survive. It was a clean break and he’s young.” Fugaku replied, giving him a nod of thanks for Shikaku mentioned his eldest son. Itachi Uchiha had broken his foot in an attempt to save his baby brother during the attack. Luckily, after breaking his foot someone from the clan had saved them and took them to safety… which reminds Fugaku to track down the girl and give him his personal gratitude for her actions. “Your own son… I commend you for your actions. To allow your son to be u-”

“Shut up.”

“Right.” Even if he’s a clan leader and has a huge hand in the village politics, but when it comes to talking about family, it isn’t exactly Fugaku’s forte. “Mikoto should be done helping Kushina settling in…”

Shikaku ignored the pointed look Fugaku sent his way. “You saw the state of her apartment…”

“She could have stayed at the Uchiha Compound… Mikoto nearly threw a tantrum when Kushina told her she’s staying here.”

At that, Shikaku didn’t bother to hide his snort. He stopped just right in front of his home, memories started to flood right through him. Taking in a deep breath to break his train of thought to allow someone else to pop into his mind. Should he mention this tidbit piece of information to Fugaku? Minato did trust him, and the two of them do have a mutual trust or a healthy amount of respect. “The boys… they cannot be far apart of each other for too long.”

Fugaku nodded his head at the answer, it may not be the entire truth but for now, it will do. “Do… do you regret it?”

“…We made a promise to live through the consequences. There wasn’t any room for second-guessing.”

-.-

“Remember, we’ll be alternating from time to time to help around here. Kami already knows how much longer it will take for Shikaku to finally snap.” Kiku Yamanaka said as she placed a steaming cup of hot tea on a small table that was next to Kushina. “If you ever feel the need to take a break, we’ll be here.”

“We’ll be making sure Yoshino and you are well taken care of.” Mikan Akimichi said as she continued to move around furniture to ensure Kushina was able to move around in her wheelchair with little to no difficulty.

“I know that…I just don’t want to be a burden.” Kushina grumbled under her breath, glaring at her legs. Little to no chance of recovery they sa- the Uzumaki attention got caught on a picture that was one the table next to her. What was in the picture frame made her regret her train of thought. Her injuries were nothing compared to many and from what she was told, Yoshino will never be the same. Mentally and physically. “They look…so happy together.”

“Oh? That was taken three days after Yoshino gave birth. Difficult pregnancy nearly took her too…” Kiku mused over as she thought over Yoshino’s son birth. She was midwife for her god-son’s birth and it was a rather difficult one at that. Despite this, Shikaku and Yoshino still had dreams to have a huge family but now, after what happened, that dream was dashed away due to the actions of one. “Mikoto, is dinner almost ready?”

“Almost, give it about five to ten more minutes.” Mikoto yelled out from the kitchen.

“I feel as if I’m intruding here…”

“If it makes you feel any better, the Hokage made it an order for you to stay here.” Shikaku deadpanned as he entered his home with Fugaku following behind him. “Staying anywhere else would arise suspcision." 

“Yeah, yeah, politics.” Kushina rolled her eyes, she ignored how snippy Shikaku currently is. “The boys are in the nursery.”

Without saying another word, Shikaku walked through his home to go to the necessity which he and Yoshino decorated themselves for their son during those nine months. Taking in a deep breath, Shikaku opened the door and attempted to ignore how the room smelt so much like Yoshino. Walking into the room slowly towards the crib to see both Shikamaru and Naruto sleeping without a care in the world. They were holding hands… how… innocent…

-.-

“CURSE THAT BASTARD!!! WE’LL ESCAPE AND MURDER THEM ALL!!!!”

“You do realize we are one of the same, both of us escaping will result with us merging as one once more. Or if one escapes, it will promptly cause that half of us to have their energy transferred the other vessel.”

“Work with me here!!!”

“I’ll do that once you stop being an idiot.”

“If I’m an idiot, what does that make you!”

“You took all of our idiotic tendencies.”

“I will finish you!”

“Yeah… good luck with that, dumbass.”

-.-

She feels like she should know this place, but her memories are foggy and the more she attempted to remember, for the only pain to spread all throughout her body. For the life of her, Yoshino doesn’t even know where she is let alone the people that are taking care of her. The only ones she has some sort of recognition is her infant son and… husband?

Husband.

She’s married. Makes sense, she guesses. The baby looks like him, matching hair, ears, nose and even his chin. Shikamaru’s eyes… his eyes make her head and heartache, distinctive fox-like rings around his eyes, making appear more defined than they should for a human. Was her son born like this? She didn’t have that type of feature on herself and Shikaku doesn’t either.

Yoshino couldn’t demand or ask why her baby looks like just as he does right now. He doesn’t match the pictures that are around the room she was placed in. Nothing was adding up and why does it hurt so much when she tries to figure out what exactly happened during those massive blanks in her memory.

To be continued…

Chapter Text

Two years… it's been two years since the Attack and it's been very hectic two years. A very slow two years for Shikaku, he watched on as Shikamaru and Naruto played around the grass as he sat on the porch. Yoshino is sitting beside him, completely covered in blankets and sitting on top of a giant fluffy pillow. Winter is slowly approaching and the weather makes her joints stiff and sore.

Within those two years, Yoshino has been… slowly recovering but it was evident she's never going to be the same person she once was. Even so, Shikaku isn't going to give up on her and no matter how much his heartache, he knows deep down this is the same woman he fell in love with. He could tell by the way she smiles at him and at their son. Or whenever she get's in one of her rages… even if Yoshio is no longer able to verbally express her emotions, her eyes did more than enough to do so. Like right now…

"Sigh… fine." Shikaku grumbled under his breath, he let out a groan as he stood up and walked off the porch towards the boys. In an instant, the toddlers looked up at Shikaku and quickly reached for the other. The Nara Head quirked an eyebrow, this was something the two have been doing since the beginning. Inoichi, after the Yamanaka prodded into the minds of the brats, found out the physical touch allowed them to communicate through the use of the seal. The Yamanaka suspects the Nine-Tails weakened the seal just enough for this to occur, but it doesn't provide any sort of immediate trouble. Something along the lines of Yin-Kurama isn't leaving Shikamaru until he defeats the two-year-old in a game of shogi…. Yeah, Shikaku still doesn't understand what that meant as Inoichi had to quickly drink a headache away and going on about sewers and hollow trees. "Time to bring in the herd."

Naruto let out a squeal of delight and quickly headed towards the forest all the while dragging Shikamaru behind him. Shikaku snorted as he watched his son being dragged around by the Uzumaki, it reminded him of his connection with the kid's mother. Kushina is still living in Nara's household with them, she has a room on the far side of the home but still close enough for her to get herself to the boy's room without any help. She's still recovering but if her sassy and quick temper were of any indication, the Uzumaki is on the right track for recovery. Hopefully…

"Don't pull to hard, Naruto. You're going to dislocate his arm a-" Shikamaru gave out a short cry. "gain…" Shikaku held back a sigh as he watched Naruto stare down at his friend with wide eyes that displayed the utmost terror. Naruto let go of Shikamaru's now limp arm and could only watch as his friend drop down on the grass with an audible grunt. Shikaku kneeled in front of the boys, he patted Naruto's head to reassure him and then proceeded to have Shikamaru to sit up for him to relocate his arm back into place. "One… two… three."

A short gasp later and Naruto is now tugging Shikamaru by his forest green short through the forest opposed to his arm. Shikaku could only shake his head as he watched the boys run off before he quickly followed.

-.-

Let's go to the park today…

'Let's go to the park… what a horrible idea…' Shikaku thought bitterly as he, Inoichi and Choza watched as parents not even bothering to hide the fact, they are taking their children forcibly and speed walk out of the park. Many of the parents glared at him, but never at the boys. Never at the boys. He would never tolerate that. The boys were being dragged towards the sandbox by Ino while Choji tagging along all the while munching on chips.

At three years old, Naruto and Shikamaru just faced the first act of prejudice against them. This is the first outing out of the Nara compound without fear of villagers of attacking them and mass observation on their respective seals. So far, their seals do show some… cracks, but not enough to cause worry. I wouldn't be so much of a drag if that troublesome Toad Sage would just come to the village and check over the seal properly. Not just skim over it like nothing.

Either way, the sand box is free and they have the toys packed up, the boys paid no mind to the other kids who were scurried away by their parents. The three men followed the kids, each of them carrying toys they brought along for the three-year-olds. After handing off certain toys to the kids, Choza, Inoichi, and Shikaku went over to sit on a stone bench that was underneath a large tree.

"They're still not talking yet?" Choza asked as he pulled out a paper parcel that contained dango.

"They could string sounds together, but have yet to make words out of it. I'm not worried about it…" Shikaku took a stick of dango when Choza offered. "I'm not home as often as I want to be, and I normally not a talker as it is… Kushina talks to them but as of late, she's been doing physical therapy and that cuts her time with the boys. Yoshino is the main one that looks after them when she's not doing the in-home therapy secessions."

"Where the boys have to be quiet…" Inoichi added in, he has put himself in charge to help Yoshino's mental health. There has been a tremendous improvement, but compared to how she was before the Attack, it may seem like little not nothing. Now, she's able to stand for longer periods of time and started cooking again. Small things for now, as Yoshino gets tired easily and her memories of easily known recipes still escape her. "She's teaching them sign-language?"

"Yes, the boys prefer to communicate that way with us." Shikaku chewed on his dango and kept a close eye on the kids. "However… there at nights where I swear I hear them talking, gibberish or words, I couldn't tell coming from their room. Every time I get close to the room, it goes silent."

"Didn't you once mentioned you didn't start talking until you were four or five?" Choza asked, with an eyebrow raised.

"That's why I'm not worried. For all we know… this could be a result of that or we coddled them for so long they didn't bother to talk. Kushina is worried that it goes beyond being a Jinchuriki for Naruto…"

"I'll have my sister come over to observe when she has a free day." Inoichi offered.

"Thank you."

"Besides all that… How's Yoshino really? Mikan mentioned she's taken to using a rolling pin around…"

At Shikaku's smirk, Inoichi didn't bother to hide his snort of laughter. "I always knew you were a masochist."

"No comment."

"Does she remember anything?"

"Nothing. She remembers nothing of that night."

-.-

"It's adult night, it's your turn to take care of the kids~"

"It's adult night they say…. Have a good time they say…" Itachi looked down at the five four-year-olds whom he was just put in charge of taking care of. He is used to taking care of Sasuke on his own, but that is one kid. Now he has to deal with five of them.

"Ni-chan! Play with me!"

"Let's play, Ninja!"

"I'm hungry."

~Stomach growl~

~Double stomach growl~

"Food it is then."

-.-

Itachi carried Ino over his shoulders as he kept a close eye on the boys who were walking ahead of him. More like Naruto dragging Sasuke and Shikamaru with Choji leading the way to the Raman Shop. The five five-year-old's ignored the stares, (or glares in several cases) that were thrown at Naruto and Shikamaru's way. This causes Itachi to heavily resist the urge to throw his hands into the air and wonder why the villagers are a bunch of idiots. He found out about Shikamaru and Naruto's situation through word and mouth, a drunkard who holds a deep grudge.

Even so, Itachi wonders why to bother with a law if people make it so obvious about this supposed secret. They might not be able to tell the younger generations just who and what the kids are, but they are more than willing to install hate into them. At least he could take in personal pleasure whenever he saw Shikamaru stare down at anyone that looked at them far more than the norm. It could be noted the young Nara's eyes could easily intimidate or make someone uncomfortable to the point they stand down. At least Naruto isn't paying any mind as Shikamaru appears to be willing to take on the hate and anger.

-.-

"He said what!" Kushina held her son close to her, both carrying identical smiles. "What did you say, Naruto! Say it to mommy~"

"Ramen!" Naruto laughed aloud, his laughter filled the entire home that seemed lighten up the entire atmosphere.

Shikaku didn't bother to hide his snort, of course, Naruto's first word known to everyone is ramen. The Nara head is currently laying on the sofa in the living with his own laying on top of him. "Ramen…"

"Shika…"

Shikaku blinked, he looked up to see Yoshino dangling a plush toy deer above Shikamaru's head. He saw his son reaching up towards the toy and seeing that certain sparkle in Yoshino's which reminded him of his wife's… more devious side. "You knew…"

Yoshino only gave him a smirk, before she handed Shikamaru his toy dubbed, Shika, she leaned down and kissed Shikaku's marked cheek.

"Mama…" Shikamaru raised his arms up towards Yoshino, giving her a pout. Yoshino grinned down at her son and leaned down to kiss his forehead.

"Ichiraku!"

"That's my boy, Naruto!"

The Nara family paused their actions to hear in as Kushina gushed on as Naruto repeated the words, "Ichiraku Ramen," again and again.

"Say, Mama, Naruto~ Say Mama~"

"Ramen!"

To be continued…

I will start to dabble with the start of the Uchiha Massacre Arc next chapter.

Please review! I love to hear your thoughts!

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn?

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

Itachi stared down at the two scrolls his father just handed him. He watched as his father left the room, closing the door behind himself. Something is wrong, horribly wrong. His father's entire demeanor struck something within him.

Fear?

Confusion?

Frustration?

Itachi doesn't know, he recently graduated from the Academy and it was then when he took note how his father's shift of manner changed. Far more than the usual. Looking down at the scrolls, he could recognize that one contained a wax seal of the Uchiha Clan and the other one which he could only open when the time is right. Whatever that meant…

Which brought Itachi back as he remembered what exactly made him wonder what the hell is going on…

"Do not mention this to anyone of this and even to myself once I walk through that door."

-.-

"Ten hours, forty-seven minutes and nine seconds…" Shikaku wrote down the number on a clipboard. He looked over to see Naruto holding onto Shikamaru as life depended on it. As of late, they started to separate the boys in an attempt for them to get used to being apart from each other for longer periods of time.

Kushina has hopes that the six-year-olds could independentize, even for a night so that it could be possible for her and Naruto to fully move out of the Nara's Home. Even if it meant moving next door to that newly built home, that is still connected to the main home. As much Kushina is forever grateful for the Nara's hospitality, she needs to go out, be on her own with her own son and she's a grown independent woman dammit! Her words, not his.

So far, things are looking up for the boys…

"Let's go to the park! The park!" Naruto yelled out excitedly, his movement matching his voice. Shikamaru allowed himself to be moved around, he let out a yawn in agreement before he was dragged out of the house.

So, far… So, far…

At the ripe age of six, the boys were now old enough for their respective parents to feel safe enough for them to run around the village on their own. Luckily, they always make sure to stick close to familiar places, routes, and known adults they are close to.

Soft fast steps caught Shikaku's attention, he turned his head towards the doorway to see Yoshino holding up a sake bottle and two saucers.

'Oh right… it's their anniversary.' Shikaku couldn't help but give her one of his rare smiles, one that he only shows to her. 'She's remembering dates…'

-.-

"What's wrong Itachi? You've been more quiet than usual." Kushina motioned for Itachi to take a seat across of her. "Mikoto told me you wanted to talk?"

Itachi hesitantly took a seat across of Kushina and checked around the area as his paranoia overtook him. They were in Kushina's new home, it still needed some work here and there, along with the fact it was made with the Uzumaki in mind. He could recognize several items for the Land of Whirlpool from where the woman hails from. "I do…"

"How have you been since your promotion into Anbu? At only eleven years old, eh?"

"…How long have you known my parents?" Itachi asked abruptly.

"Ah… I've known them since I first came here to Konoha… Is something wrong with them?"

"I… I don't know…"

-.-

"Come on, Sasuke~ Let's go play!"

Shikamaru watched as Naruto and Sasuke ran off towards the park, hand in hand. He couldn't help but let out a sigh of relief. As much he loves the blonde, he could only take so much without feeling the need to find someplace to recharge his metaphorical batteries… it wouldn't have been an issue if Lord Fuzz Butt would just let him take a nap in peace. But noooo~ The giant fox is more interested in beating him in shogi or go against him. Not a single moment of peace for him…

"I don't see you complaining, brat."

'I am complaining.' Shikamaru grumbled back, he did a mental check on their latest game of shogi. 'Oh… checkmate.'

"…. Brat."

Shikamaru didn't bother to hide his smug smile, this did cause several villagers are keeping a close eye on him to take several steps back and even a few to scurry back into their homes or to the nearest shop. The young Nara didn't care for this, long as they paid no mind to Naruto, all could be possibly forgiven… to a point. They were just a bunch of idiots that h-

'Checkmate.'

"AGAIN!"

'Nap?'

"NOT UNTIL I BEAT YOU!"

"Troublesome…" Shikamaru dragged out, he quickened his steps to catch up with Naruto and Sasuke, to only see a bunch of older kids blocking their way. Oh, this won't do… especially when one of them sneered at his brother in everything but blood and name.

-.-

Yin-Kurama sulked in his cell as he redid the board, once again he was beaten in the game by the kit. So many times and he's debating on whether or not if Kami itself had bestowed the Nara Clan with their intelligence and wit. Maybe they'll play a different game this round, maybe checkers? Or some sort of card game?

Kurama's ear twitched when he felt the kit's emotions began to shift, he looked out the cage to see the forest began to darken immensely. What could possibly be happening to the Kit for this to occur? Normally Shikamaru is usually to lax to allow anything to get to him. Even at six years old, the young Nara isn't prone to temper tantrums or getting any sort of fights if he could avoid it...

Hm... The kit got himself in some trouble...

-.-

"What happened?" Shikaku watched on as Yoshino dabbed a wet cloth across Shikamaru's busted bottom lip. His son attempted to hold back his tears, but it appeared to be useless as the boy wasn't able to say anything without it coming out as a bumbling mess. Looking over his shoulder, the Nara Head could see Kushina putting an ice pack against Naruto's cheek that is starting to blossom multiple hues of purple. The only that that came out partially unscathed is Sasuke, who is keeping his head down. The young Uchiha was given an opening by his friends to go find an adult and informed them of the older boy's actions against them. Not it appears, guilt is weighing heavily over him for it. "Sasuke?"

Sasuke hesitantly looked up, to reveal a bandaged on his nose and forehead to Shikaku. "A bunch of older boys attacked us... They were saying a bunch of mean things to Naruto and Shikamaru."

Things Sasuke still has no understanding of but knew it was bad when Shikamaru made the first move to get the older boys to leave them alone. It mainly started out with words, but then... the leader landed an attack on Naruto and all bets were off!

"They started it..." Shikamaru sniffled into his mother's arms.

"We know. Do I want to know who was the one that left bite marks over one of them? Or managed to nearly scalped another?"

Sasuke raised his hands at the mention of the bite marks while Naruto raised his own at the latter's question.

"... What did you do, Shikamaru?"

"... scratch marks..."

Very animalistic strach marks...

To be continued…

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn?

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

Nothing ever goes according to plan.

Ever.

Itachi tightly gripped Sasuke's shoulder as they slowly walked through their home. Itachi had previously discarded his Anbu uniform when he saw his brother running through the compound at the wrong time. He was supposed to still be at the academy, training. Sasuke saw too much to be let loose around the compound at this time. Especially at this time, not with the others are rounding up the elders of the clan.

Itachi reached behind his back to feel the sheath of his tanto, to ensure it was still there. He's going to need it for his plan and to ensure the mission is a success. Perhaps he could use it to his advent-

A sharp scream rang out through the home, Itachi was caught off guard and it was enough time to allow Sasuke to slip out of his grasp. Itachi ran after him, from the sound and looks of it, to their parent's room. He called out to his brother, to stop him from opening the door to the room. His eyes widen when he saw Sasuke open the door and letting out a scream of his own.

"Father!"

Standing of his heavily wounded father, is a masked man holding a bloody katana. Sasuke froze in his spot, not able to take his eyes off the man. He didn't see how his mother is attempting to put pressure on her husband's wounds and yelling for him to run. The eight-year-old felt his world to slow down around him, he could feel as if the image in front of him will forever be ingrained in the forefront of his mind. He suddenly felt someone pulling out of the room. The movement allowed him to see his father reaching out towards him, before the arm fell on the ground and Fugaku's entire body went limp.

Once he was out of the room, Sasuke's entire body shook as shock began to set in. His hands shakily went up to his eyes and rubbed them. He felt himself start to cry but he swore he wasn't crying. Looking down at his hands, to see them covered in blood.

-.-

The hairs at the back of Shikaku's neck kept raising up, he knew this feeling. He knew the purpose of that feeling. However, he couldn't help but feel as if something else is about to occur and he couldn't put a finger to it. He stood in the Hokage Tower as he waited for Team Weasel to return from their mission of retrieving the elder's of the Uchiha Clan. Oh how long it took Itachi to find out about the possible Coup but at the same time…

The timing was to convenient.

Itachi is right about one thing, someone is pulling strings and there wasn't enough proof to prove it. For now, there is enough information to arrest the elders before they order the rest of the Uchiha Clan to go up against the village. Shikaku rubbed his chin as he let out a frustrated sigh, the last couple of years, Fugaku has been acting off. Far too off than the norm.

The only person that seemed to pick up on this Itachi. Mikoto has put her attention towards her sons and assumed her husband is worried about the recent changes occurring around the village. Sasuke is still to young to know the difference but Itachi… he knew right off the from the start, something is off about the man.

Snap.

Shikaku's eyes snapped open, he looked out the window to see the moon shining brightly up in the dark sky. He needed to get back home quickly. Without even giving the Hokage and the Village Elders a single glance, he opened window and jumped through the rooftops to get back home.

In that instant, the entire village suddenly felt a sudden surge of familiar chakra fell upon the village and quickly the village start to light up as everyone started to quickly wake up. Shikaku suddenly felt two familiar chakra signatures chasing after him. Even with that, the Nara Head did not slow down.

-.-

Kushina tightly gripped the chakra chains that wrapped around the monster that destroyed so many families, including hers. Despite the fact she's unable to use her legs, it doesn't mean she's weak. "Naruto! Shikamaru! Get out of here, NOW!"

Naruto is attempting to pull Shikamaru away the mangled body of what used to be the young Nara's mother. The blonde is crying his eyes out, he's still trying to comprehend what just happened and nothing was making sense. One moment, they were all getting ready for bed and the next thing that happened is Auntie Yoshino pushing him and Shikamaru out of the way and… so much blood. So much blood.

So much blood. Shikamaru tightly gripped his mother's corpse, sobbing uncontrollably. He kept rocking back and forth, unable to fully comprehend what just happened. Gripping his head harshly, grinding his teeth together harshly, and at this point, he doesn't know if he had knowingly or unknowingly tapped into Kurama's chakra. All he cared for is going after the monster that killed mom.

-.-

The moment the intruder stepped foot into the Nara Compound, the clan quickly went on high alert. Several of those that were tasked to stand guard went to investigate to only be found dead. Several others quickly followed as they attempted to take him down. It quickly became known what the masked man target is. The main Nara household.

To be more specific, the boys.

One of the elders of the clan quickly ran towards the home to warn the household, and just as he opened the door, he was stabbed in the back. This was the first thing Yoshino saw and she gripped her head as a sudden headache came over her that nearly caused her to topple over. It took Kushina yelling at her to move, it was when the Nara Matriarch saw the masked man target her son and her body moved on it's on…

-.-

Obito's eye widen when he suddenly pushed out of the Nara home. The force alone was enough to have him spit out blood, cursing the fact he might now have a broken rib. He looked up to see the Nara Jinchuriki crouching in the hole of the wall he just created. The Jinchuriki has a charka cloak that looked reminiscent to the Nine-Tailed Fox… perhaps he could use this to his advan- Oh no…

Shikamaru picked up Obito's now broken mask, he let out a snarl as he looked up back up at his mom's murderer. An unknown at first glance, his smell is unfamiliar, and nothing was making sense. The only thing that is making sense, is that he needed to remember the face of the man that destroyed his life.

To be continued…

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn?

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

What worse that a Jinchuriki getting out of control of their Tailed Beast?

TWO, Jinchuriki getting out of control of their Tailed beast!

Naruto always payed mind to the stares, glared and so much more from the villagers, everytime he went out into the village for whatever reason. He ignored it for his mom, Uncles, and so many he cares for own sake. Especially for Shikamaru, whom he knew is taking the brunt of the hate for his own sake. Naruto learned to ignore it for everyone else's sake. But it weighed deeply in his heart and this caused him to heavily lean on Shikamaru.

To swallow down his fear, question everything about everything and everyone around him, even going as far to wonder what is wrong with him. Naruto gave everyone a smile, only spoke around his friends, family and no one else. Unless it was important or when it was needed, otherwise he remained quiet and just smiled. With a mother like his, she's does the majority of the talking and did so for the both of them.

Right now, Naruto knew he couldn't stay quiet about his thoughts and emotions. He needed to release them, to show everyone just exactly how he feels about everything that is going on around him.

This is the first time he ever felt this strange emotion himself, Naruto felt it everytime he went out into the village and especially around the day of his birth. Hate, absolute hatred began to fill within him. Somewhere within him, Naruto swore he could hear deep sadistic chuckles that only seemed to fuel on his hatred. Hatred turning into anger, his breathing became erratic as the blonde steadily stood on his feet and slowly head over towards the now destroyed wall where Shikamaru threw that monster into.

Ignoring his mom's pleas for him to stop and to run away. No, he wasn't going to run away from this. Let him live or die, at least he could say he stood his ground and gave it all.

"Let… him… GO!"

-.-

Death… so much death… Shikaku felt his heart start to beat rapidly in his chest, nearly going up to his throat as he was being informed what has been going on in the clan grounds. Anbu who were part of the Uchiha operation, arrived to inform him just who intruded into the grounds of the Nara Clan. It was the same man that nearly massacred the Uchiha Clan.

"He escaped and right now we are trying to contain the boys. We don't know at this point if the Kyubi's are trying to escape from within them or simply channeling it's chakra…"

Whatever was said next seemed to blur as Shikaku attempted to figure out how the Uchiha Clan and the Nara Clan are connected for this to happen. The only thing that seemed to connect are the boys, but even so, why both?

"Shikaku…Yoshino… She's… she's one of the fallen…"

Blank…

"Wh-what…"

-.-

The man escaped, and the anger continues to swell within them. One thing was said to the other and they quickly turned their anger to one another. The both of them had some form of formal training received from their respective family and close family friends. That doesn't seem to matter as they allowed their respective anger out on each other for whatever reason, many of them are for things they have no control over.

Trees began to fall one by one as they are either getting smashed, slashed or they couldn't withstand the chakra pressure coming off both eight-year old's.

This may seem like a serious fight from the outside, but from the inside… they are confused, afraid and they do not know how to stop the anger. They are both terrified at the fact their respective anger only seems to grow and showing no sign of stopping and fighting against one another appears to work but their fear is fueling their anger.

Then… pain only seemed to finally put a stop to their anger.

Naruto received a severe slash starting from his right shoulder up to ear. Shikamaru has his own distinct slash marks from the start of his left cheek bone all the way down to his chin, with one slash mark cutting through his lips. When they stood across from each other and reality began to set in, they both fell to their knees and began to breath in deeply, then slowly, the crawled towards each other.

-.-

Shikaku let out a slow breath when he found the location of the boys and felt relief rush through him. They were holding onto to each other, sobbing into each other's shoulders. It appeared they needed to release the last of their adrenaline out of their system and it finally happen… shit. Those wounds are going to leave permanent scars by the looks of it…

-.-

There was no time to grieve… Shikaku needed to be strong for his son and for his clan. Kushina and the boys are at the Akimichi's, while he took care of the funeral arrangements and putting everything back in order. The hole in the wall needed to be fixed… removing all the blood… the blood. Shikaku leaned against a tree as he put himself in charge of surveying the forest to check which trees were salvageable and which weren't.

This is the first time he has been able to fully take in what had happened in the last couple of days. Shikaku couldn't help but curse out at how he already lost his wife once and now her permanently lost her forever. On top of that, he couldn't help but blame himself for it.

He had the choice of either staying at home with his family or staying at the Hokage Tower to wait for Itachi's return… If he had gone home, things could have ended differently.

So many what if's…

So many…

To be continued…

 

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn?

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

The soft pitter patter of the rain hitting could be heard all throughout the now seemingly empty home. The smell of house cleaner seems to be forever be ingrained into their minds, and both boys kept their gaze on the spot where they last saw Yoshino Nara's bloody corpse…

Naruto grabbed hold of Shikamaru's shoulders and began to push him through the home to go to their shared room. It was decided that they are going to move in next door were Kushina and Naruto were originally planned to move in, but now the move is now going to be implanted with having Shikamaru move in with them. There was no way Kushina was going to allow the young Nara to stay in the home where he saw his mother be murdered.

Shikaku slowly walked through the front door, he took off his sandals, remembering all the times Yoshino would remind him to do so before stepping foot onto her clean floor. Walking into the living room, he saw on the couch, not caring for the fact it had a tarp over it. He had to replace the furniture in the home after the majority was destroyed or had blood splatter on it and T&I currently has them to see if they contain any DNA on the man that killed his wife. Either way, he doesn't want it back. It reminded him too much of Yoshino…

Everything in the home reminded him of her. He had built the home and gave it to Yoshino as a wedding gift. They had planned to have more kids, but that never came to be as the world seemed to be against them from the very start.

"Dad…"

Shikaku looked up from his spot to see Shikamaru is dragging along a large backpack which he assumed to contain clothing and random board games. "Little Fawn… You have everything?"

Silence.

"…I miss mommy…"

"I miss her too, Fawn…I miss her too."

-.-

At the other side of the village, chaos only seemed to continue on showing no signs it was going to stop anytime soon. Elders that were part of the Coup d'état were either found dead in their homes or were quickly taken to T&I by the Anbu whom arrived to help Itachi deal with the supposed enemy. Supposed due to the fact it appears those that were behind the Coup, have no recollection of last couple months or even years. It appears that a certain few were under a gen-jutsu and creating plans to possibly take over the village. The huge red flag here is that, the ones that were under control, are or were the ones that did not care for the continuous distrust coming from the village. If anything, they took it in stride and continued like nothing. It was in the recent years, those individuals' views shifted, and all looked planned. The shifts were slow to ensure no one was alarmed. It didn't help that those that showed massive distrust towards the village welcomed them in and didn't once question it.

'I was right…' Itachi repeatedly dug his nails into his knees, drawing up blood. The pain is helping him repent for his actions, but deep within him, he knew it had to be done. The information he knows now, he didn't know back and then who knows how everything would have ended if the Coup went on or if that dangerous mask man never came to supposedly help him.

"Dango?"

Itachi stopped digging his nails into his knees and started to pull down on the sleeves of his shorts to hide the marks. He looked up to see three sticks of dango waving in front of his face, looking further up to see Izumi, who kept her gaze out towards the lake that was within the Uchiha Compound. After some hesitancy, Itachi accepted the dango and motioned for Izumi to sit next to him. Unlike him, Izumi did not show any sort of hesitancy before she sat next to him.

Silence fell before them; the only noise is them munching on their sweets. It wasn't exactly a comfortable silence, there was things that needed to be said but they couldn't get the words out. They couldn't find the right words to say.

With a heavy sigh, Izumi leaned her head over and laid it on Itachi's shoulder. She intertwined her arm around Itachi's own and started to nudge his legs so that they could swing their legs in sync. "Is this why you've been distant?"

"…I… I'm…I…"

"You didn't want me to get in the way? That's why you put me in a gen-jutsu?" Izumi lifted her head to see Itachi kept his gaze down to his lap and his free arm fell limp on his side. "That was my first kiss you know~"

"Is this your attempt to make me feel better?"

"Itachi, you saved the Uchiha Clan. You did what was necessary not only to protect the clan but also the village. Even if it did cut into our training…"

"…again… is this your attempt to make me feel better?"

"Come on, let's go look for Sasuke." At the mention of his younger brother, Itachi tensed by Izumi didn't pay any mind to it. "You've been avoiding him. You need to at tell him what he needs to know to move on, even if it's not the entire truth."

"HEY ITACHI! OH? HI ITACHI'S GIRLFRIEND!"

Itachi took in a deep breath through his nose before he turned his head to glare at his older cousin who is running towards them. Shisui Uchiha, someone whom his parents, elders, and even that Old War Hawk had sent to watch over him. The older Uchiha has bandages covering one of his eyes and that seemed to cause Itachi gulp at Shisui's reason for covering that eye. "Shisui… you already know Izumi."

"Oh, I know, I just wanted to see if you were going deny the fact, I called her your girlfriend."

"You haven't told him, Itachi?"

"Wait… are you two… actually… THING!"

"No… I haven't told him yet."

-.-

Sasuke sat at the back porch of his home, he ignored his mother's call for him from within the home. He was last in his mind, replaying that night where he lost so many people knew once knew. His father, aunts, uncles and people who he once knew in his short life… all taken away for what?

He may still have his mother and brother, but the both seem so distant. Sasuke hasn't seen Itachi since they were both left the hospital and their mother just seems… she's there but she's not. Completely out of it and has been cleaning the home relentlessly. Mainly the master bedroom, and she doesn't even sleep there anymore.

Why… why did his father had to die… WHY! Sasuke gripped his head, squeezing his eyes shut and gritting his teeth as he mentally went over that night, time after time again. He felt so weak, he wasn't able to do anything about it, h-

"Sasuke?"

Sasuke looked up to see Naruto and Shikamaru standing over him, both of them looked to be in worse shape than himself. Far worse shape, he could see that Shikamaru has half his face covered in bandages while Naruto has it around his ear and it goes down his neck, but he's wearing a turtleneck blue shirt that hid the rest of it. Neither boys looked like they've slept in days too. "What happened with you guys?"

Naruto and Shikamaru looked at each other and then back at Sasuke. Where to start? The two heard and were told what happened to their friend. They had asked their respective parent to visit Sasuke, to check on him and to see how he's taking everything in. Naruto nudged Shikamaru to sit next to Sasuke while he went back inside to look for snacks for them.

It was quiet for a while, it felt as if Naruto is purposely taking his time to make sure they talked.

"The monster that killed your dad, killed my mom."

There. It's out in the air. No mincing words, beating around the bush or anything to prolong the silence.

"Woooooow…. Way to put it out there, kit."

'What do you want me to say? You said if we don't fix it now, there's a high chance it'll cause him to do something stupid later on in life. Life making revenge your main priority in life.'

"Isn't that what you have in your mind right now."

'Oh, it is, but right now I'm an eight-year-old that has no power. What could I do to him?'

"Bating your time then?"

'But of course. I wouldn't be my namesake if I didn't do so. Oh, I win again.'

"Shikamaru…?"

"Yes?"

"Did it happ… How did…" Sasuke motioned at Shikamaru's face.

"Troublesome."

-.-

"Public story? The masked intruder has been putting high ranking members under a strong gen-jutsu and had the rest of the elders or stronger Uchiha member of the clan to create a Coup against the village." Shisui started to go over the cover story of the almost Annihilation of the Nara and Uchiha Clans. Well, people are still trying to figure out names to call the event that had occurred the other night but at this time, people are still trying to figure out what happened. "The head, Lord Fugaku caught wind of this and played the part of a loyal Uchiha but has been informing you to tell the Hokage of their plans… Yeah, we could play with this plan!"

"That… sort of what happened…" Itachi muttered to himself, he closed a scroll he was reading and resisted the urge puke out his lunch. "It's horrible cover up story."

"Oh, like you have a better one! Everyone believes you just so happen to catch the mask man roaming into the homes and killing people for the hell of it!"

"Isn't that what happened?"

"The problem we have has to do with the fact we currently have several members of our clan in T&I. All are waiting for their own personal date with Ibiki."

"Only a certain few know that piece of information." Itachi rose up from his spot and put away the scroll he was reading. "For all we know… that masked man started to kill off high ranking members of the Uchiha Clan and made an attempt to kidnap or kill the Jinchuriki's. Could it be he wanted to make sure no one had the power to control the tailed beast? Or were the Uchiha's protected their fellow villagers and were killed in doing so? We do not know the reason for it… "

"Itachi…"

"Shisui… remember, Satoshi?"

"Yes… he's one of the few that were captured."

"He was found dead in his cell this morning. Suicide. Along with several others." Itachi looked away from his cousin and up towards the waterfall. "Many were ashamed of their actions and decided to atone for their actions by killing themselves to ensure the Uchiha's name would not be tarnished…"

"That… actually makes a whole lot more sense… This could play along with what happened to the Nara's… but we still have another problem"

"Danzo?"

"Danzo."

-.-

Knock. Knock.

"Come in." Itachi called out from his desk from within his room. He didn't need to turn around to know who was knocking on his door. "Sasuke, you should be asleep."

"Could I sleep here with you?" Sasuke asked in a small voice.

Pause. "Let me get ready."

Itachi continued on with his work, he heard Sasuke quickly enter the room and shutting the door behind himself. His brother shuffled over to the bed and plopped himself on top of it. The only sound that could be heard is the older brother's pencil strokes against paper and the start of the younger Uchiha's sniffles.

Taking in a deep breath, Itachi placed the pencil down and stood up, then he walked over to his bed to sit next to Sasuke. "Do you want to talk about it?"

Pause.

"No."

"Okay." Itachi pulled the at the blanket so that it covered the both of them. He ran his hand through Sasuke's hair in an attempt to calm him. It only took a short while for the younger Uchiha to turn around and clung onto his brother to muffle out his cries.

-.-

Two years and so much has changed… This was extremely evident for Iruka Umino, who has seen the change from an outside point of view. Out of the three of them, Naruto changed the most out of him, Sasuke and Shikamaru. He became calm, collected and only spoke when he feels like it serves a purpose, mature and serious along with a shaper wit. It unnerved Iruka to no end considered how Naruto used to be, childish and filled with cheerfulness. Sasuke is no longer that happy child, eager to please and be worthy of his family's name. Someone that enjoyed life to the fullest and always happy to make friends. There was as short time he became withdrawn and cold towards everyone, but as time went by and became a bit more open but never to how he was in the past. Shikamaru, you have to know the kid to see the difference. Before the that event occurred, he was always doing his work on time and with full marks, never taking naps and things that are not typical of any Nara. Now, he's falling behind his work, low test scores, and constantly taking naps mid-lectures. With this case, this would be normal behavior for someone from the Nara Clan, this is completely out of character for Shikamaru.

Iruka hopes the boys know they could come to him if they ever need to talk to someone. Which reminds him… he has to invite the boys out for raman or dango tonight. It's adult night and he would normally takes the boys out for dinner or lunch then take them home until someone comes by to pick them up. It's something he's been doing for the last two years, mainly to get the boys out of the home by the request of there respective parents.

"Class, you're excused." Iruka dismissed his class for the day and watched them quickly leave the class. The only ones that stayed in place were the three boys whom are putting away their supplies, or in Shikamaru's case, still snoozing away. "Boys, could one of you wake Shikamaru up? We have a long day ahead of us."

Naruto pulled a pencil from his dark orange pencil case and chucked it over Shikamaru's direction. It landed on it's target, Shikamaru slowly lifted his head and looked around to see class is now over. The only ones left are him, Naruto, Sasuke and Iruka-sensei. Great… another useless day. Everything felt so useless nowadays, he's slipping in his school work, he hasn't been in the same room as his father longer than an hour before the man went off to work and it got to the point where all he wants to do is nap but that seems to be easier said than done. Kurama isn't making it easy for him so he just laid down his head and pretended to sleep his day away.

"Let's go, Shikamaru. We're getting dango today."

"Tch… what a drag."

-.-

"You need talk to your son, Shikaku! You may still be suffering of what happened that night, but so has he! You didn't see what happened to Yoshino, we did! He did!"

"Don't you think I don't know that?" Shikaku raised his voice, he buried his face into the palm his hands. He rubbed his face as he thought over of his actions towards his son in the last four years. "I know…"

"Shikaku…" Kushina motioned for Shikaku to come closer to her spot on the couch. "Come here…. Shikaku… come here now."

After some hesitation, Shikaku slowly walked over towards her and sat next to her. Kushina could easily see how much losing his wife had changed him both physically and emotionally. On top at the fact he has been avoiding Shikamaru seemed to add on to the stress, the Nara doesn't know how to approach his son after everything that happened to the both of them that night. Guilt just consumed him of that night, as Shikaku felt guilt for not being there for his son and wife that night.

"You need to spend more time with him, and stop this self-loathing."

"You're troublesome, I hope you know that."

"I know."

The sound of the front door being opened and two distinct footsteps could be heard. The two adults turned around from their spots on the couch to see Naruto and Shikamaru walking into the home quietly.

"Mom… Uncle…"

"Father… Auntie…"

Naruto and Shikamaru quietly headed towards their room and shut the door behind them. This only caused Kushina to start glaring at Shikaku. "Go talk to him! Take him out to do something, something!"

"Then you try to do something with Naruto. I don't even remember when was the last time I saw him smile…"

"FINE!"

"What a drag…"

"Oh, don't you start with that, mister!"

"Yah, yah…"

To be continued…

The next chapter is the start of the genin graduation and putting them into teams.

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn?

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

A/n: … maybe. Muahahah!

-.-

"How did things go with your father?" Naruto asked as he jumped onto his bed wearing a pair of dark orange pajamas. On the other side of the room is Shikamaru sitting behind his desk, wearing his own pair of pajamas, but his were dark brown. The two had spent the entire day with their respective parent, and it was long needed.

It has been long four years since Shikamaru lost his mother, in that time, he hardly spent any quality time with his old man and they only spoke when necessary. Now several things are out in the air and promises to attempt to reconnect with each other. Even if the two have conflicting schedules, they two made a promise to at least take time to just talk… or clean up the stables together at least. It's a start, it's a start… "He plans on training me in the clan's techniques soon. And you? How did you spend the day with your mom?"

"…Kakashi visited and I quickly made an exit when she started to yell at him."

"…Told her about him constantly reading Icha Icha in front of us?"

"Yes." There was no hint of remorse in Naruto's voice, just a hint of amusement in his upturned lips. He lifted his head to stare up at the ceiling as he thought over his short time, he spent with his mother today. The actual talk he had with his mother was mainly about him asking about his birth father, and things got rather… awkward. Simply stating that he's a spitting image of the man. That's it. Just a spitting image. If it wasn't for Kakashi coming down to visit, things would have just gotten even more awkward than it was. "I have yet to put a name to my biological father."

"Woooow…. what an idiot."

'Care to explain?'

"If you can't see it, then it's not worth saying."

'Does it have to do with the fact she always quickly changes the subject whenever the Fourth pops us in the conversation?'

"Bingo."

"Oh, well… I'll figure it out later." Naruto deadpanned before he plopped himself back on his bed.

Shikamaru gave the blonde his own deadpanned expression before he got ready for bed. "Naruto?"

"Hm?"

"…ask dad to train you too."

"…Okay…"

-.-

"Sasuke… What are you doing?"

"I'm hiding."

"I could see that… why?"

"… Fangirls."

"Ah… carry on then."

"Thank you, Big Brother…"

Itachi walked away from where his little brother is hiding away from his rabid fangirls once more. It was market day and his mother had tasked him with retrieving this weeks' worth of groceries. This was just like any other day, typical for the upcoming Head of the Uchiha Clan. With him retiring from Anbu and becoming the Captain of Konoha Military Police Force, it was becoming increasingly for him to find some sort of normalcy as of lat-

"There he is!"

"Itachi-kun!"

"Look over here!"

"Marry me, Itachi-sama!"

It only took Itachi less than .5 second for him to go hide along side of his brother. The two hid behind the tarp as they watched their respective fan-girls. Oh, the fan-girls…

"How many marriage proposals has it been this week alone, Brother?"

"To many count…"

"You could avoid all of it, if you just marry Big Sister Izumi already."

"Is this your way of giving your blessings to giving your only brother away?"

"No, she already asked for my blessings to marry you. You are too much of a dunce to read the room."

"What."

-.-

Shikaku thanked Ino for the two floral bouquets he currently has in his arms. One has a mixture of crimson roses mixed in with tea roses and a single pink carnation. The second bouquet has a mixture of gardenias, hydrangeas, jonquils, and forsythia. Random, but to the point. Each of them holding different meanings and it is something he put deep thought into it. "Thank you, Ino."

"You're welcome." Ino gave her god-father a sly smile as she watched him leave with the flowers in his arms. It's good to see him like he is right now, no longer tense, there's light back in his eyes and his head is no longer dragging down on the ground. Hm… maybe Shikamaru and Naruto know about what's going on with Shikaku's personal life. Far as she's concern, there's only three important females' in his life, the late Yoshino Nara, herself, and Kushina Uzumaki. Shikamaru never made mention of his father seeing anyone and far as he knew, never made any sort of effort. Who could it be? This is going to annoy her now. "DADDY!"

"Yes, princess?" Inoichi struck his head out through the door that lead to the back room.

"Daddy, is Uncle Shikaku seeing anyone?"

"…No?" Inoichi walked out of the back room and walked up towards with an expression of confusion. "What happened?"

"His order of flowers changed. Look." Ino handed her father the ticket she had created for her god-father's latest order of flowers.

Inoichi looked at the ticket that contained the list of flowers his friend had ordered this week. His eyes widened at the sight of it. "…Tell your mother I'm taking the guys out for drinks tonight."

-.-

Naruto sat on a high tree branch, reading a scroll he had checked out from the public and Nara library. Today's topic: military tactics. Military tactic that delves into one sided battle which has the losing side actually winning in the end. Its' a rather therapeutic read for the blonde and it gave him time to think.

Mainly on figuring out how to out maneuver Shikamaru. Who's always several steps ahead of him, in someway or somehow. Eve if Naruto has strength and stamina, Shikamaru uses his intelligence and it always seemed to win against him. What is he doing wrong?

"You're becoming too predictable."

Naruto blinked, he looked down at the forest floor to see Shikamaru waving at him. He took note how the other teen had swapped out his jacket to something that now went down to waist and the sleeves are long enough they now have to be folded up to his wrists. The scars he received four years ago are now fully healed but it left a horrible reminder of that night. On a lighter note, it did make Shikamaru look like his father. A running gag with everyone that has seen the both of them. "Too predictable?"

"Yes, predictable." Shikamaru shrugged, he stuffed his hands into his pant's pockets as he watched Naruto put away the scrolls he was reading. He couldn't help but snort, at least the Uzumaki is no longer wearing excessive amount of kill me orange. The blonde is wearing a long sleeved white hoodie with orange trimmings with a pair of matching pants with the colors inversed. Underneath the partially zipped up hoodie to reveal a mesh shirt, and a pair of black sandals. His blond hair is now longer and shaggier, with jaw-length bangs framing either side of his face. "Come on, we are supposed to meet with Iruka-sensei and Kakashi-san at Ichiraku's soon."

Naruto jumped down off the branch and landed next to Shikamaru. He stuffed his hands into his hoodie's pocket's before he headed off towards the direction of the ramen place. "Let's go."

Silence fell upon them as they walked towards their destination, too many eyes are focused on them from all sides. Quite a sight to see both teen walking about the village. Normally the two would either be running about or not even be seen in public, as the two prefer to stick be unseen opposed to be seen. Especially when the both of them are doing all sort of pranks, even if no one has enough evidence to persecute them they all know it's them.

Fun Fact: They only do massive pranks as part of dares or whoever discriminates against their friends and family. Besides that, they hardly done anything no one could prove or even remotely connect it back to them. Those are the best of pranks.

"Ignore it." Shikamaru stated when they walked passed a seemingly odd spot on the side of a building.

Naruto didn't outwardly showed any sort of indication he saw took note of the odd spot or Shikamaru's words. He did roll his eyes when he heard a noise coming from the spot, the blond just ignored it. There was no need to get into his friend's shenanigans… again.

-.-

"I'm telling you, Kakashi-san… Naruto has a devious side to him, but he would never stoop himself so low to do that." Iruka pointed his chopsticks at Kakashi as the two talked over a bowls of steaming out ramen. "Even so, I approve his off actions if he was the one who had gotten your books and glued all the pages together. Plus… what would Kushina-sama say about her son's supposed actions? Who would be the one getting in trouble?"

"…ugh…" Kakashi's head fell forward, even if he does take out his anger out on the blond during training, the retaliation is something he's not looking forward to. "Could you say something to him? He does look up to you."

"Hm?" Iruka looked over at Kakashi with a mouthful of noodles, he raised an eyebrow at Kakashi when the Jonin plonked his head against the counter. Kakashi doesn't know this, but he was the one that glued all of his books together. He just had Naruto and Shikamaru distract Kakashi while he did the deed.

To be continued…

Next chapter, onto the academy!

Okay, I ran out of ideas, but next chapter will have the boys in a schooling setting and dealing with everyone there.

Oh, if anyone could find the meanings of the flowers, kudos!

Chapter Text

Kh[-u

Kit or Fawn

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

Naruto wrote down notes in a notebook as he waited for class to start. He heard the chair next to him screeched loudly and the sound of someone trying to catch their breath caught his attention. Looking over his shoulder to see Sasuke trying to catch his breath as he had plopped himself in his seat.

Sasuke looked over at Naruto and gave him a glare. "I tried calling out to you this morning."

Naruto only shrugged before he returned back to his writing. Sasuke only rolled his eyes as he ran his hand through his now sweaty hair. The Uchiha internally groaned when he heard the majority of the girls in the class started to squeal about him and how 'hot' he looks. Could he just go one day without being hounded down by the raging fan-girls for once? At least there are only two girls in the class he could, to a point, stand their presence is Hinata-san and Ino. To a point.

"I win! Take that Ino-pig!"

Everyone turned their sights to the supposed best friends attempt to beat each other for being the first person arrive in the classroom. Today's winner, Sakura Haruno.

"Whatever, Forehead Girl." Ino stuck out her tongue out at Sakura before she headed up towards her seat. She elbowed Shikamaru to wake him up and rubbed her hand through Choji's hair before she sat between them. "I just let you win this time~"

"Admitting defeat?" Sakura quickly headed towards the empty seat next to her crush with a winning smile. "Ino-pig?"

"Oh, please." Ino waved her off. "I've known Sasuke since we were tots. I've got enough dirt on him to make him do anything I want. Isn't that right, Sasuke-kun?"

Sasuke blushed heavily and plonked his head against the desk. She has so much dirt on him. Naruto and Shikamaru had introduced him to Choji and Ino early on in their childhood as their parents knew each other. Plus playdates, babysitting, and Clan's business. Including the fact how Inoichi-sama has been helping him with… what he had witness some years ago. This did result with him getting to know Ino, and realize how terrifying she could get at times.

For example: The one time she gave them all makeovers… and masquerading them as girls on a market day. The upside on that day, it had Naruto create that anti-pervert jutsu and him developing a healthy amount of respect towards women for trying to live up to the ever changing beauty standards.

"Tsk." Naruto grinned at Sasuke's dismay.

"You too, Naruto."

Naruto cringed at being called out, he reached up an pulled his hoodie to cover his head and face to hide his own dismay. Oh, the dirt she has on all of them. With a grumble, Naruto continued on to write in his notebook. His face scrunched up when he felt he was being watched, turning his head around and he heard a loud eep coming from the back of the classroom. Oh, that would explain it.

The weird Hinata Hyuga. She always get's red and would occasionally faint in his presence for whatever reason. Even if she's weird to many, Naruto likes weird. At least Hinata is soft-spoken and polite unlike many of his classmates… Right now the girl is trying to hide in her cream-colored hooded-jacket. Giving her a short wave, Naruto turned back around in his seat, picked up his notebook to switch to a different page and continued to write. Maybe one day she'll get over her fainting spells.

"Hi, Naruto-kun~"

Oh, no… Naruto heavily grimaced when he saw his supposed own group of fan-girls. It wasn't as big as Sasuke or even Itachi's own entourage of fan-girls, it was still enough to cause a huge amount of annoyance to grow within him. Apparently he had taken Sasuke's fan-girls after he beat the Uchiha after a sparring match. Things have never been the same ever since. He could sense Shikamaru chuckling at him from his spot in the classroom. From somewhere in the class, Naruto started to sense a rise of killer intent started to rise from within the room and before he could turn around to pinpoint it out, it was gone.

Suspicious.

'Please… just one day… one day please… let me nap.' Shikamaru mentally pleaded with Kumara to give him a break and finally allow him to nap.

"Didn't you say to your old man, that you were going to do better at school?"

'…Troublesome.' Shikamaru let out a loud yawn as he sat up straight in his seat. It was almost time for class to start anyway, might as well get ready for it. At least Iruka is easier on him compared to previous instructors he had throughout the years. Iruka doesn't mess with their grades intentionally, or make up the stupidest reasons to get him and Naruto in trouble. It got rather troublesome.

"Waking up already?" Ino jested, nudging Shikamaru with her elbow once more.

"Troublesome… What are we doing today?"

"Revisions, followed by a sparring matches." Ino responded without missing a beat. "The graduation is coming up soon, Iruka-sensei and Mizuki-sensei are getting us prepared for it."

Shikamaru's face scrunched up at the mention of Mizuki's name. The guy is right down troublesome and it made him wonder how the guy even became an academy instructor. It was clear the guy has a clear distaste towards teaching, especially those that have a sheer talent in the Shinobi arts. He always tried to fail Naruto, but with Iruka there and Naruto actually staying on top of his work, that's not happening. As for himself… there's no way you could fail someone if they are already failing in the first place, is there? "Great…"

-.-

"What changed?"

Shikaku didn't look up from his drink before he drank it down. He placed the cup back down on the bar top and motioned for the bartender to serve him another round. "It… it was slow, neither of us saw it coming."

"And…?"

"We understand each other. Through our grief, we grew closer together."

"…and the boys? Do they suspect anything or have you've told them already?"

"We don't know."

-.-

"How much in trouble would we be if our parents find out we are doing this?" Naruto asked as he and Shikamaru looked over a makeshift blueprint of the location of the forbidden scroll.

"Mizuki has me doing this for extra credit, you don't have to do this with me, Naruto."

"I want to be unpredictable… and we both know there's more to this than just-" Naruto cleared his voice and changed his tone to match that of Mizuki. "Retrieve the scroll to boost up your grades to pass the class, Shikamaru-kun. The Forbidden Scroll… the one which no one is allowed to even look at it without getting in trouble."

"I know. That's why I had Kakashi to get in contact with Iruka-sensei. Play along, okay?"

Naruto snorted before he grabbed the blueprint and stuffed it into his hoodie. "Let's go… how long have our parents been seeing each other?"

Shikamaru quirked an eyebrow at him.

"What? What!" Naruto followed after Shikamaru as the other preteen only shook his head for whatever reason. "Shika! Did you know about it? For how long?"

"I'm just surprised you even noticed it. Your usually very dense when it comes to it."

"Dense. First is predicable, now it's dense…"

To be continued…

… hehehe….

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

A/N: Please Read: Okay, so I may not have out right made it seemed like Naruto and Shikamaru could communicate through the seal. The Yin and Yang parts of Kumara could do it, but the boys could mentally communicate with each through the same manner. I never used it before as there wasn't a place or use of it. Until now…

-.-

"We meet at last…"

Naruto stared up into the cage of the demon fox that apparently has been sealed within him since the day of his birth. The reason why so many people were killed that night, why he never knew his father and… the reason why Auntie Yoshi-

"Naruto! WAKE UP!"

Naruto felt his world began to swirl in front of him and all he could hear is the Kyubi laughing at him as he was being pulled away.

-.-

Naruto took in a deep breath and quickly realized what was going on around him. Shikamaru is repeatedly shaking him, calling out for him while Mizuki smirked down at them. That man just informed them that they are both Jinchurki's of the Nine-Tailed Fox and that was the reason why many of the villagers harbored such hate towards them. He looked over at Shikamaru to see him staring up at Mizuki with a familiar look in his eyes.

"We already know."

'We know?' Naruto really wanted to question Shikamaru's words but it appeared to be working in their favor. Mizuki looked taken aback and didn't know what to say to tore them down. 'You knew about this? How long?'

'I knew about it far as I could remember. Sorry, I never mentioned it before.'

'Third's Law… Do you think we could use this information to get us out of trouble with our parents?'

'… yes.'

"Boys, run!"

Naruto and Shikamaru turned to see that Iruka running towards them, without even looking back at Mizuki, they both ran. They could hear their teacher yelling at the traitor, demanding to know why he did what he just did.

Naruto tightly gripped the giant scroll in one hand and reached over to Shikamaru to haul them behind a large enough tree. It was just far enough to ensure they were still hidden but still close enough to hear what Iruka and Mizuki are yelling.

What they heard only seemed to confirm many of the questions they had thought they've buried deep within them. So that's why people hated them for no apparent reason. They could understand the anger and resentment, they do, but it is heavily misplaced. Then… the other side of the anger and resentment, peace and a fire began to burn within the people whom understood the last wish of the Fourth Hokage, how he wanted the boys wanted to be seen as heroes and not as monsters. Iruka's speech to Mizuki caused the boys to cry how he's their biggest advocate.

Shikamaru's eyes widen when he saw Naruto opened the scroll an began to looked through it. "What are you doing?"

"Either you find something you could use, or shut up! Where is it!" Naruto hissed at Shikamaru as he continued to unravel the scroll to look for a potential jutsu for him to use. His eyes widened when he found something that could very well prove useful. "Found something…"

Shikamaru looked over to see what Naruto found and his eyes widen. He mentally went through the off ch-forget that. Naruto has the stamina, chakra and sheer determination to do that jutsu. Plus, this is perfect for the both of them as they are both incapable of using the simpler version of the jutsu. "This is… perfect."

"I know."

-.-

"I think… we may have overdone it…"

"Just a bit."

Naruto and Shikamaru stood over the heavily battered Mizuki, letting out a moan of pain when the Nara kicked him in the shins. Naruto turned his attention over to Iruka, when the man let out a groan of pain himself. The Uzumaki quickly headed over towards him and saw the state of the wounds Iruka currently has. It appears nothing major for now, but he would most likely going to need to see a doctor soon. "Can you move, Iruka-sensei?"

"Naruto…Shikamaru… about what Mizuki said… You two are more tha-"

"Sorry, I'm la- What happened here?"

Everyone, whom were still conscious, turned their heads to see Kakashi Hatake, along with several anbu appeared before them. Kakashi sweat dropped when he took note of Mizuki's state and he wondered how this came to be. "Do I want to know…?"

"…He broke the Third's Law and you're late." Shikamaru rubbed his cheek, wincing as he did so. Mizuki had managed to get in a cheap shot and now it's going to be a drag having to sport this around for the next couple of weeks. He turned to see Kakashi staring down at Mizuki, his expression bare of any emotion. "So…who want's to tell Auntie Kushina about this? This wasn't part of the plan."

Kakashi's paled, who curse his habit of always being late. He was supposed to be here before things got physical and he could only imagine what the woman would to him. At this rate, the brats won't get in trouble, he will be the one in the receiving end of her wrath. "On a lighter note, you two just accomplished your first mission, and you two aren't even genin yet?"

"Mom is still going to try and kill you."

"….Damn…"

-.-

"YOU DID WHAAAAAAAAAAAT!"

Naruto and Shikamaru watched on as Kushina dragged Kakashi around the home by her hair, they were sharing a bowl of popcorn as they enjoyed the show. As predicated, Kakashi got the majority of Kushina's wrath all the while they got praises for keeping a calm mind throughout the entire 'mission'.

'Should we mention about…'

Shikamaru tilted his head as he thought over Naruto's words. Of course they need to talk to their respective parent on what was told to them back in that forest. Although he knew the presence of Kurama, but the Kyubi only told him so much and would only say as much as he did until Naruto fully knew of his status. Now, everything is on the table and now they need the missing pieces to solve this massive puzzle. 'Wait until dad gets home.'

'Just to clear things up, I was talking about my mom seeing your dad romantically.'

'…Wait until dad gets home.'

-.-

Kushina rubbed her face as she and the boys waited for Shikaku to come back home from the Hokage Tower. She made it a point ignoring the fact Naruto and Shikamaru are poking an unconscious Kakashi. From the message she got from the man, he needed to figure out what exactly had occurred tonight and possibly torture that bastard.

Right now, Kushina wants him home and have the talk with the boys. Mizuki told them about them being Jinchuriki's and the boys are far to calm about it. Far too calm for her taste. She knew she had to talk to them about, but she hoped deep down, they wouldn't find out. The Uzumaki didn't want them to go through what she went through growing up.

"Damn… you sure did a number on them…"

Kushina lifted her head to see Shikaku walking into the home, taking off his flak jacket as he did so. "What happened?"

"Mizuki went rogue, wanted the scroll and planned on putting the blame on the boys." Shikaku stated before he plopped himself on the sofa that was next to Kushina. He waved for the boys to come sit next to him, he did however raise an eyebrow at seeing Kakashi being completely knocked out in his home. Shaking his head, Shikaku turned his attention back to the boys and he saw how quiet they are. It reminded him of when they were young children, never once did they bother to talk to anyone except to themselves. This is further evident as the boys arms are linked together and refused to looked at him or Kushina. "What do you guys want to know first?"

"Is this why the villagers hates us for no apparent reason?" Naruto asked in a small voice, so unlike himself nowadays.

"Yes." Shikaku stated, he ignored how Kushina shot him a look for his blunt response. He gave her a look himself before he continued on. "People don't understand but that is no reason for their behavior towards the two of you."

"That man that attacked us that night… did he wanted us because of what we contain within ourselves?" Shikamaru asked, a bubbling rage could be seen within his eyes. His teeth are clenched shut, grinding together as he wanted answers. "If so, how is he connected to us let alone the Uchiha's?"

"They are connected, we just don't know how exactly they are."

"…"

"Why us?"

To be continued…

Meh.

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn

-.-

D/C: I own nothing.

-.-

"Yin-Kurama Speaking."

"Yang-Kurama Speaking."

'Naruto and Shikamaru's mental link to each other and to their respective Kurama's.'

-.-

Iruka let out a sigh of relief when he saw a familiar blonde laying on top of the Hokage Rock, to be more precise, the Fourth's Head. He was informed by Shikaku and Shikamaru that Naruto had run off and were not able to locate him. The younger Nara had informed him that Naruto is blocking him out and it is making difficult to find him. No one could blame him for running off after hearing of his heritage. To be more precise, who is his father. Iruka doesn't know the whole story, but knows his student enough that if Naruto wishes to open up what he found out, then he would be there for him. "There you are, Naruto… I've been looking for you."

Naruto didn't make any sort of notion of Iruka's arrival, he kept staring up at the cloudless sky. Everything remaining the same for him as the Academy Instructor laid down next to him and also stared up at the vast blue skies. The both of them continued on with for an unknown amount of time, neither of them said or did anything to disturb the peace between them…

"Mom told me who my birthfather is."

"Ah…"

Pause…

Pause.

Longer pause.

"You aren't going to say anything about it?"

"You'll say something when your ready to say something and I'll be here to listen to you always. I do not know who this person was, but I do know that you grew to be a stupendous young man and many people are proud of you, myself included."

Naruto pulled out a folded up picture from his person and handed it over to Iruka, who took it with curious eyes. Iruka unfolded the picture and what he saw made his jaw to go slack momentarily before he cleared his throat. He folded up the picture and handed it back to Naruto, who took it without say a word and hid it in his person.

"Come on, let's get ramen." Iruka stood up from his spot, he looked down at Naruto to roll over and covered his face with his hands. Leaning down, Iruka stated to softly shake Naruto in an attempt to get the young Uzumaki to look at him. "Naruto… Naruto, look at me."

Slowly, Naruto moved his hands just enough to look up at Iruka. "Why did he pick his own son? Why did Uncle allowed Shikamaru to… Shikamaru never told me…"

Naruto hid his face again and Iruka saw his shoulders began to shake, he could hear soft sobs coming out of him. Iruka began to rub Naruto's back and began to whisper to him in an attempt to calm him down. The sky began to darken as night slowly began to approach and the chill of the night finally had them looking for shelter for warmth.

-.-

"It was for the best of the village, it was for the best of the Clan…. No matter the consequences, we were going to live through it by that one choice. There was no turning back and there was no time to second guess anything." Shikaku kept his gaze towards his son, never once breaking with him. The both of them were out at the stables, sitting on top of piles of hay and burlap sacks of feed. They originally planned on going after Naruto, but that was stopped when they found Iruka and the Academy Instructor said he would go find him, (Shikaku swore that the young man already has an idea where Naruto is and didn't make mention of it. This was later proved correct when Kakashi sent Pakkun to Kushina to tell her as such). This left with Shikaku having to answer every single question Shikamaru has for him, no holding back.

"You were also the Fourth's right hand man… how close were you and mom to him?"

"We grew up together, trained together, and fought along side each other… it's the same thing for Yoshino and Kushina. I put my complete and trust into that man, I helped him become Hokage and helped him with the position."

Shikamaru looked away from his father and stared out into the distance, he saw several of the Nara Deer watching on with curious eyes. "The attacked happened midday of Midday, tell me the start and end of that day."

"It was supposed to be a double date, Yoshino had finally gotten stir-crazy and demanded a day out…" Shikaku's eyes seemed to glaze over at the memory of that day. He intertwined his fingers together and continued to tell his son of his memory of that day that changed everyone's lives. "Just a day out in the market, Yoshino telling Kushina the up and downs of a natural homebirth… we ended up at the park, enjoying an early lunch when… we were suddenly under attack."

Shikaku continued on retelling the sequences of events that occurred that day and well in the night. On occasion, Shikamaru would ask a question or to go further into detail about something before he continued on. Going over how Yoshino helped Kushina through the birthing process, while Minato attempted to ensure the Kyubi doesn't get out but it still happened in the end.

Shikamaru gripped his head as he continued to listen to what his father had to say about the day his life changed forever. It was one thing to hear it from Kurama but to hear it from the man himself, it is something completely different.

"The original plan was to place the Kyubi back into Kushina and allow it to die with her… but her body was to weak to allow it to happen. Naruto wasn't able to fully take in the Nine-Tailed Fox as a whole, which resulted with…"

"The Fourth needed another container to place the other half… It was either going to be going sealed within me or be taken by the masked man and still leaving the village in great danger."

"…the mask man… he's the reason why mom and auntie…"

"Yes."

"…Okay." With that, Shikamaru jumped off the bale of hay and walked off without saying another word. He needed time to think and his next course of actions. There was no time to question his father why his father allowed him become what he is today. It was a joint decision between him and his late mother, from a view of a Shinobi, he fully understood why they both allowed it to happen. He truly does, but he couldn't help but question it in the back of his mind.

"There was a very high chance you were not even to survive through the process."

'Did you play on those chances?'

"I didn't plan on dying anytime soon."

'What were my chances of surviving without you help?'

"Very low, Naruto has a higher chance of surviving because of his background. Uzumaki's have naturally higher chakra coil's then the average human, his even more since he's the son of a now former Jinchuriki."

'It allowed him to grow accustomed to your chakra, but only enough to seal your other half.'

"If you had gotten stuck with the other guy, you'd be dead."

'…'

"What? I'm the good half, the other half is just right down evil."

"Troublesome."

-.-

Iruka carried Naruto on his back, the twelve year old head's head had lolled on his shoulder and snoozed away. It was getting late and he needed to take the twelve year old back home. It took some time to coax to leave the monument and to get some ramen, but it happened by the end of it. The kid is mentally and emotionally exhausted, he just needs sleep now.

Walking through the Nara Compound, Iruka slowed down his pace when he saw the home well lit and three individuals are waiting on the poach for the final member of their family. Walking up to them, Iruka stood in front of Shikaku, Shikamaru, and Kushina. Shikaku walked down the poach and towards Iruka, the two worked together to shift Naruto to Shikaku's own grasp. "Do you have time to talk now or tomorrow, we have some things we need to go over, along with Kushina-sama."

"Tonight."

-.-

Naruto work up with a loud gasp, he sat up and saw he was in his room already dressed in his sleepwear. He looked around and saw that Shikamaru is snoozing away in his bed on the other side of the room. Taking in several deep breaths, the Uzumaki silently got off the bed an crept towards the door.

'They're talking to Iruka-sensei right now.'

Naruto paused, of course Shikamaru never allows his mind to fully rest. Allows wide awake, even if his body states otherwise. '…'

'Do you want talk now or in the morning?'

"Now." Naruto stated evenly as he went over to turn on the lamp that was next to his bed. He looked over to see Shikamaru getting up from his supposed slumber. "How long have you known?"

"Since the first moment I could formulate a single thought. My earliest memory is beating Lord Fuzz Butt in shogi." Shikamaru deadpanned, he shifted in his bed so that he could reach over to turn on his own lamp. Letting out a grumble when he was momentarily blinded by the light. Looking back at the blonde to see him unable to make eye contact with him. "I didn't say anything until you were able to make contact with him."

"I found out because of some crazy lunatic! I would have preferred it if it came from someone I trust! I just wanted answers, that's it! I wanted to know what happened to us four years ago!" Naruto pulled down the collar of his dark orange sleeping shirt to show Shikamaru his scars and pointed at Shikamaru's own. "I'm terrified of that happening again…no matter how I attempt to think it through…looking at it from every angle, I understand why my parents turned me into a Jinchuriki but you...? Why aren't you up in arms, why am I the only emotional one here!"

"The Kit is saving it when he goes up against the masked asshole."

"Who said that?" Nauto's head snapped when he heard an unfamiliar and dark voice ringing through his mind.

'If I had to guess… Yang-Kurama?'

'…You have to shitting me…'

"Nope, he's not shitting you."

"Dumbass."

'I'll have you know, I'm top of my class!'

"Suuure, it took you how long? I've been watching y-"

'Creep.'

"Baka."

'Fuzzy Slippers.'

"Fuckhead."

'Well, I'll tell you something that should be of vital interest to you. That you, sir, are a NITWIT!'

"So says the dumbass that has little to no people skills."

'I'd slap you, but that would be animal abuse.'

"Are you always this stupid or is today a special occasion?"

Shikamaru and Yin-Kurama sweat drop as they hear Naruto and Yang-Kurama continued to insult one another. It got so bad that the former two broke the link temporarily to get some sort of rest. The young Nara couldn't help but let out a sigh of relief as Naruto got easily distracted by the… now increasingly cursing match against the jailed Nine-Tailed Fox.

'What a drag…' Shikamaru grumbled to himself as he got himself comfortable to sleep. He was about to loose consciousness when he felt that familiar pull towards the back of his mind. Now he is sitting across of a smaller sized Yin-Kurama and in-between them is a shogi board. Without a second thought, Shikamaru slapped the game away from him and lazily glared at the now smug tailed beast.

"This means I win."

In response to comment, Shikamaru snapped his fingers and a Go board appeared. "Not a fat chance, Lord Fuzz Butt."

-.-

The next morning, the entire home was tense and nobody said a single word aloud. It was one of those rare days where everyone is at home and not in a hurry to go anywhere. The boys are excused from going to the Academy for the rest of the week, Shikaku had taken the rest of the week of and Kushina cancelled her plans with her friends. It's just the four of them and everything looked to be going up in flames.

"… How exactly did it escaped everyone's minds there was a huge possibility the Fourth Hokage was my father yet everyone ignored it? Kakashi said I'm identical to him to a T." Naruto deadpanned, breaking the silence. "Mom hung out with him for the vast majority of her pregnancy, before she got pregnant, and pretty they've been stuck to the hip for who knows how long."

"The village is filled with idiots." Shikaku deadpanned, holding nothing back. This caused everyone in the room to fail at holding back smiles before they began to break into full blown laughter. Laugher that was needed for everyone in that moment and it was much needed for all involved. Laughter slowly died off and it was replaced with light chatter, mainly going over how the preteens beat Mizuki to a complete pulp and the new jutsu's they learned from the scroll. This only caused Shikaku to grumble while Kushina laughed at his dismay. "

There was a temporary silence and Shikaku cleared his throat. "Naruto…"

"If you make my mom cry anything but tears of joy, I'll make your life hell." Naruto interrupted Shikaku before he continued eating his breakfast. "What? If you're wondering if I'm… mad at you, I'm not. Sort of…" Naruto's nose scrunched up as he didn't want to mention his birthfather. He may not have come to terms to what happened on the day of his birth, but there was no reason to stew on it at this point. Shikaku and Yoshino both did that they knew what was best for the village and their family, even if it did leave a bitter taste in his mouth. However, as stated before, nothing could change the past and the only thing to do now is to move forward. "More towards the dead than towards the living…"

Naruto stared down at his food wondering how he should say the next set of words to the man who had helped raised him. "I'm just… I don't like being out of the loop when it comes to something that connects to me…"

"I promise to be open and be truthful to you here on out."

"So you have been lying about other things then!"

"…I walked into that one didn't I?"

"Yes."

To be continued…

Mesh Mash of stuff. Next chapter will have our characters of returning back to the academy and so on.

Question: What do you guys think of the personality of RTN!Hinata?

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn

-.-.-

D/C: I Own Nothing.

-.-.-

"Yin-Kurama Speaking."

"Yang-Kurama Speaking."

'Naruto and Shikamaru's mental link to each other and to their respective Kurama's. Or to emphasize something.'

-.-.-

"Sakura? What about her?"

"Didn't you have like the biggest crush on her when we were younger?"

"I did. Right up until she tried to beat me up because… oh, how did it go again… Stay away from my, Sasuke-kun, Naruto-baka!" Naruto did his best Sakura Haruno's impersonation that caused Shikamaru to snort in mild amusement, while having Kushina and Shikamaru wonder just how many of their classmates rubbed the boys the wrong way. Kushina especially did not like what she was hearing, especially on the girls that either say her boys as punching bags or pieces of meat.

Ino is excluded from this list as the woman gave the girl permission to ensure the boys are kept in line.

"What about Hinata? What do you think of her?" Shikamaru asked, already had his own assumptions on what Naruto thought about the young heiress.

"Hinata? Is that the girl that always faints around you, Naruto?" Kushina smiled widely, but her eyes showed a massive amount of mischievous that hid behind them.

"Yeah, Hinata-chan only does that around me." Naruto pulled a face, trying to think up reason why the Hyuga would always faint around him. Well, not all the time now. Recently it has gotten better, she could now say up to at least two to three sentences before she faints. "It's very weird."

"But you like weird." Shikaku stated with an eyebrow raised.

"Very much so-"

"Naruto-Kun~" Several high-pitched screams filled the air, cutting off Naruto. The screams caused Naruto's pupils to shrink and dread-filled all throughout him. Without a second thought, Naruto flung himself onto Shikaku and clung onto his shoulders for dear life. "Save me."

Kushina raised an eyebrow at the sight of several young girls running towards their small group. All of them have hearts in their eyes and it was clear to her just what they are. Fan girls. She has heard the boys would face fan girls, but mainly because Mikoto's boys always had problems with them. This is the first time to see it happen to her own son… interesting. Especially when she sensed something rather peculiar that has been following for quite some time.

"SHIKAMARU! NARUTO!" Another familiar scream filled the air, and this caused Shikamaru to jump into Kushina's arms. Running towards them at full speed, is Ino who has fire in her eyes while dragging Choji by his scarf. "YOU TWO HAVE SOME EXPLAINING TO DO!"

-.-.-

Sasuke sat impatiently in his seat, hating how his fan-club attempted to get his attention. It was annoying, but what was more annoying is the fact he hasn't gotten any word from his friends on their recent whereabouts. The last thing he heard about them, is that they are apparently taken something from the Hokage's office which caused the entire village to go into a massive uproar.

Fun…

He is going to wring their necks once he sees them if they do show their faces again.

"This better be the last time you guys do this to us! You two had us worried to death!"

"We are sorry, Ino! We were not allowed to tell anyone what happened to us!"

"Troublesome woman… we were forbidden to tell anyone about this."

Everyone in the class turned their attention towards the main entrance of the classroom, to see Ino dragging Shikamaru and Naruto into the class by their ears. Following them is Choji, who is munching away on a bag of chips. The Yamanaka continued to reprimand her friends for their recent escapades.

"Fine! Just tell us that you guys are okay, and not have us wondering if you guys are jailed up somewhere or worse!" Ino let go of the boy's ears with a tired sigh, she turned around to face them with her arms crossed over her chest. "You two I swear…"

"If it makes you feel any better, we found out our parents are seeing each other." Naruto waved his hand towards Ino's direction in a gruff tone.

"Why'd you tell her that?" Shikamaru raised an eyebrow at Naruto, wondering why the blond told the fellow blond of the news.

"Wait a sec…"

"…Really!" Ino squealed out, her eyes turned into hearts as her entire behavior did a 360. "It's about time they made it public! Do you guys think they'll get married? Oh, I hope so! Imagine it!"

"…and we lost her…"

-.-.-

Naruto once again pulled out his notebook, writing down notes into it. Iruka-sensei is explaining why Shikamaru and himself are back after… a short break due to a family problem. From what Ino had had him, Mizuki broke a law and was punished accordingly. Luckily, the general public does not know how the now former academy instructor had attempted to get two of his students to steal from the Hokage himself. The Elders of the village, and those connected to it all, know how the man had broken the Third's Law, committed treason, and so many other things that it was just a matter of time the idiot was going to wind up in prison.

"What happened to you? Shikamaru?" Sasuke whispered under his breath, he had pushed his chair closer to Naruto to get away from his ever-admiring fangirls. He kept getting closer every time one of the girls made an odd move towards him.

Naruto ignored how close Sasuke kept getting towards him. If he could move his own seat to get away from his own batch of fangirls, he would. The only problem with that the Uchiha is leaving him little to no room to move.

"We haven't seen you guys in days." Sasuke continued to say.

Naruto paused. He tapped the table with his table wondering what to say. That voice in the back of his mind was telling him to tell his friend but there was another one telling him to eff off. He has a sneaking suspicion the second voice is the Fox… "I had an identity crisis."

"…"

"…"

"…"

"…what."

"I had an identity crisis." Naruto replied casually with a shrug, he moved around so that he was face to face to Sasuke and gave his friend a tired grin. "I'm okay now… hopefully."

"No, you're not."

"Shut up."

"Excuse me?" Sasuke raised an eyebrow at Naruto to see his friend's brows furrowed in annoyance.

"Not you…"

-.-.-

"Shikamaru, Naruto, could the both of you stay behind?"

Shikamaru and Naruto glanced at each other, wondering what their instructor wanted with them. They watched on as their friends and classmates whisper about what could the be reason Iruka-sensei wanted to see them. Far as they knew, neither one did anything to warrant such a thing. Then they started to whisper on the possibility that it had to do with their recent absence and the former instructor's recent actions.

Once everyone was gone, Iruka signaled for both preteen to walk down towards his desk. Shikamaru and Naruto slowly walked up to their instructor, watching as he pulled out two scrolls from his desk. He promptly handed the scrolls to his students as he explained what they were for. "It's your pay."

"Our what…?"

"Normally, this would be done in the Mission Assignment Desk, but we did not want to arouse suspicion…" Iruka laughed uneasily, he watched as his students open their scrolls and the looks of shock caused him to lose all source of laughter. "If Mizuki had left the village with the scroll, it would have been a complete disaster. You did the village a massive service."

"… Let me guess… we can't tell anyone about this mission?" Naruto asked, he had to clear his throat before he spoke.

"Of course."

'I'm going to go pr-'

"Don't use your earnings on pranking or bribing people…"

"Dammit."

To be continued…

R/R.

Chapter Text

Kit or Fawn

-.-.-

D/C: I Own Nothing.

-.-.-

"Yin-Kurama Speaking."

"Yang-Kurama Speaking."

'Naruto and Shikamaru's mental link to each other and to their respective Kurama's. Or to emphasize something.'

-.-.-

Naruto and Shikamaru walked out of the academy, both wondering what they should do next. They had just received a reward for a mission and the thought of spending it sounds very tempting. Very tempting…

'We could get our folks something?' Naruto offered.

'Get them what?' Shikamaru responded he scratched the back of his neck thinking over what they could get to their parents. With their combined earnings, they could afford to take them out for dinner or something of that manner. Shikamaru paused when he sensed Naruto had stopped walking, he looked over to see Naruto staring up ahead with an unreadable expression. Looking over where the blonde was staring it, to only see Kushina whispering something to Hinata Hyuga. Normally, this would not be an issue… however, right now the young Hyuga kept glancing over at Naruto has him worried. Especially how Kushina smirked towards her son's direction. 'What…'

'Mom is corrupting Hinata-chan… Mom is corrupting Hinata-chan!'

Robotically, Naruto marched forward to stop in front of Kushina and Hinata. Kushina gave her son an all-knowing smile before she lightly pushed Hinata towards him. "Hinata-chan's caretaker had a last-minute mission he had to do. He had asked if we could take her home."

Hinata for her own part was able to look at Naruto directly in his eyes without feeling faint or having to run off. She did, however, sport a blush. This would have never happened if it weren't for one Kushina Uzumaki. From what Naruto had heard and known, his mom used to be good friends with Hinata's own mom before she passed away some time back due to an unknown illness. Hiashi had asked Kushina to aid his daughter during this time as he was not allowed to do so for fear what the elders would do. It was mainly mentoring the young Hyuga through a tough time in her life. Of course, Hinata changed but no one knows if it was for the best or for the worst.

Naruto looked over at his mom to see her giving him a grin and that sparkle in her eye only made him want to run away. Without saying a word, he took hold of Hinata's hand before leading her to her home. He did speed up the pace when he heard his mom yell out how he could take his time getting home.

-.-.-

'The graduation exam is pushed back by a week. This gives us more time to study or train.' Shikamaru thought to himself, making his way to his favorite cloud watching spot. He needed to think about what he should do next. It was clear he needed to pass the exam to move forward which he knew he had in the bag. The only thing that keeps running through his mind is the team matchups and dealing with whoever becomes their assigned Jonin.

For himself, it was no doubt that he would be teamed up with Choji and Ino. To continue off with their family's legacies of InoShikaCho. Who is going to be the assigned Jonin, is still up in the air. Long as Shikamaru sticks with Choji and Ino, it all should be good.

As for Naruto… It is completely up in the air on who he is going to end up teaming up with. The academy did have a history of sticking the strongest with the weakest together. Which is something that had Shikamaru rolling his eyes. They would only do this once possible specialized teams were created and go from there, like InoShikaCho for example. Going from that, he wouldn't be surprised if Hinata, Kiba, and Shino will become teammates considering all their backgrounds and what they specialize in. Everyone else, it is still up in the air.

"What a drag…"

"Worried about that idiot brother of yours?"

'I'm more worried over the fact he might end up with one of his fan-girls.'

"Mainly that pink-haired girl?"

'Mainly her. There is so much he could take before he snaps again.'

"He really stopped liking her after that one event, huh?"

'What do you think?'

-.-.-

Naruto waved at Hinata-chan as she was more or less, dragged back into her home by one of her clansmen. He has a good idea onto why said clansmen kept shooting glares at him and whispering furiously at her to not wanting her to be seen with the demon child.

The Uzumaki didn't frown until Hinata-chan was out of sight and shooting back a glare at the clansmen that attempted to intimidate him. He would have to talk to Hinata and Neji at a later time to figure how much hatred the Hyuga has against him. With one last glare, he turned around and made his way back home. There was nothing else to do for the day except to possibly study some more for the delayed graduation exam, help with the deer, go do some pranks… or get ramen. Getting ramen does sound like a good idea at this point.

Walking through the village, Naruto saw everything differently. Before, he did notice the glares, the whispers, and the snide insults were thrown his way. However, Shikamaru was the one that took the brunt of it. Now he could see how much hate that is thrown his way. It was far worse than he original thought it was. As much he wants to shrug things off, he could not. His anger continued to grow and he could not figure out w-

'What the hell are you doing to me?'

"What?"

Naruto could sense the devious grin from Yang-Kurama, it caused him to twitch uncontrollably. So that is why he his emotions were out of control. 'Stop it.'

"Stop what? You and I both know that deep within you, you resent them. You resent the glares, the whispers, and it doesn't help how they attempt to whisper in that girl's ears. I'm just amplifying what you attempt to squash down."

'Leave Hinata-chan out of this and stop messing with my emotions.'

"It's just a matter of time until I take full control of you, brat."

'Not if I have anything to do with it.'

TBC.

R/R.